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Last month I had the pleasure of participating in a wonderful storytelling group where we all shared the adventures of dogs in our lives, both past and present. This was conceived by my talented friends by Fred Swan and Stan Peterson who are both well loved artists in Portland Oregon. The event, called Dog Tales was an intimate experience that lead to knowing more about my fellow artist that I would have ever learned during those brief conversations we’re able to have during gallery openings.
Happy Together No Matter the Weather (left) and A Friend for All Seasons (right) by Linda Robertson. Both 24 x 24 in., acrylic on canvas. $425 each, framed.
This event was the seed for the new show called Dog Park on view until March 21 at the Ford Gallery. I have two new paintings in the show which express my enthusiasm for my canine companions over the years. I created these in the same style as my recent encaustic paintings, but just to shake things up I worked in acrylic with which I have very little experience. The process was alternately fun and pretty darn awful, but I eventually found my rhythm and I’m very happy with the results.
I often try new mediums and methods to remind myself how it feels to try something completely new because I think it makes me a better teacher and artist. This project was an especially good reminder that sometimes I just need to keep working at a problem until I figure it out, no matter how frustrated I might get.
As an added bonus, a friend let me play with Illustrator on her iPad so I could quickly try different colors for the silhouette in one of my paintings. Very fun!
I hope you’ll catch the show if you can. More than 30 artists are represented using a variety of styles to celebrate the dogs that fill their hearts with love.
2505 SE 11th Ave, Portland, OR
Show runs through March 21
You may have heard that the new edition of my eBook, Embracing Encaustic: Learning to Paint with Beeswax, is now available for instant download. While this is an updated version of the printed version, there are also 35 exciting new artists who share their work as well as reveal their personal painting methods and explain why they are compelled to make the work they do. Get the book here!
If you aren’t a regular reader of eBooks, never fear! Follow these easy instructions on how to download and read my eBooks.
The big surprise is that there will be two eBooks instead of one, both under the Embracing Encaustic title. This allows a total of 70 artists to be included between the two books while keeping downloads manageable. The second eBook, Embracing Encaustic: Mixing Media, will have all new techniques and will be available within the next 2 months.
The artists represented in the pages of my Embracing Encaustic eBooks were gracious enough to allow me to share their work with you, and for that I am forever grateful. These books wouldn’t be nearly as interesting without their vast talents and generosity. I’m so excited to share their work with you!
The artists in Embracing Encaustic: Learning to Paint with Beeswax include:
Amy Royce, Andrea Benson, Ann Huffman, Bethany Handfield, Bridgette Guerzon Mills, Debra Claffey, Eileen P. Goldenberg, Emily Rutledge, Eva McCauley, Geoffrey Kostecki, Gretchen Papka, Janet Amundson-Splidsboel, Jeff Juhlin, Johanna Gardner, Judith Williams, Kara Brook, Kellie Weeks, Kevin Frank, Kimberly Kent, Kindra Crick, Linda Robertson, Linda Widstrand, Lisa Sisley-Blinn, Mary Farmer, Mary Mettenbrink, Mitchell Visoky, Norman Soskel, Patricia Dusman, Rachelle Kaldani, Robin Samiljan, Sally Arnold, Serena Barton, Sherrie Posternak, Stephanie Hoff Clayton, Tracy Spadafora.
The artists in Embracing Encaustic: Mixing Media include:
Alicia Forestall-Boehm, Amber George, Amelia Currier, Amy Finder, Caryl St. Ama, Catherine Nash, Daniella Woolf, David Price, Deborah Martin, Deborah Winiarski, Diana González Gandolfi, Elise Wagner, Erica Konrad, Ezshwan Winding, Francesca Azzara, Gregory Wright, Jessie Smith-Larson, Josie Rodriguez, Judy Wise, Karl Kaiser, Kathleen Burke, Leslie Pearson, Linda Robertson, Lisa Marie Sipe, Marty Ittner, Michele Thrane, Pamela Winegard, Paula Roland, Shaun Doll, Sigrid Rogers, Susanne K. Arnold, Tatiana deFigueiredo, Tina Viljoen, Tracey Adams, Tracy Proctor-Kelly, Vicki Moser
Many artists need time alone in order to focus enough to get their work done. While I consider myself very sociable, even I think twice before I go to an art event because it’s still time away from my studio. It’s fine to have your alone time, but I want to encourage all of you to get out of your studios and go visit with other artists whenever you can! Local art events offer an easy way to visit many studios in a short period of time, so that would be a good place to start.
We just had a big one here in Oregon, called Portland Open Studios, and I was happy to visit with a number of artists I’ve never met before as well as those I try to visit regularly. I often post photos from my studio visits on my Facebook timeline.
At every studio I try to ask other visitors “what was your favorite stop so far?” This year several people mentioned Randall David Tipton. I hadn’t heard of before so on the list he went and boy am I glad of it! Read the rest of this entry »
When Fred Swan and I had our show together People’s Art gallery a couple of years ago we looked at those big beautiful windows with the light streaming in and knew something special was going to happen there.
After some discussion about what would best fill that space we were intrigued by the idea of wax scrolls. We worked independently on them, then brought our creations together as an installation in that front window. Having so many panels of paper and wax with that delicate natural light penetrating them filled the space with energy and movement. It was beautiful! People were very excited about the feel and scent of these art works, as well as their visual appeal.
Since that show I’ve made (a lot!) more scrolls and I’ve come up with new ways to add color and patterns to the paper, cut outs to be removed and reattached and a new way to hang them. It’s such a relaxing and meditative process, but it also gives you the instant satisfaction of making a 5 foot long piece of art in a day! If you’d like to try this yourself come see me in my Portland, Oregon studio this Saturday, 9/27. There are just a few spots left in this class and it won’t be offered again until next summer. If you’re not in the area join my mailing list to be notified when my online class for this is ready! I’m making big plans for that right now…
Great news! My online encaustic classes are now available by the class or by the lesson, allowing you to purchase exactly what you need. A few lessons are as little as $5 and each class page has at least one free bonus video.
Each page has a free excerpt from the class plus at least one free bonus video! Check them out here: http://www.RobertsonWorkshops.com/
Are you new to encaustic? Not a problem! You should know that encaustic is one of the oldest forms of painting, with paint made from pure pigment mixed with beeswax and resin. The mixture is applied hot, and then reheated to fuse the layers together. It’s one of the most forgiving mediums available, allowing you to “undo” virtually anything, giving you the freedom to be fearless and let your creativity flow. My online encaustic classes will get you started working in this beautiful and unique medium in no time.
OK folks, this is it, the show everyone in Portland is talking about! Join me this Saturday for this epic annual show that is also a fundraiser for the Oregon Food Bank. Peoples Art of Portland, Po Boy Art/Jason Brown, and Chris Haberman present…
4000+ Pieces of art
ALL ART IS $40
Cash / Credit and Carry
BIG opening Sat. Dec 14th at 2pm (until 9pm)
Bring canned food for free entry
700 SW Fifth (3rd floor)
Pioneer Square Mall, downtown Portland
open Thurs-Sun 12-6pm
show runs through Jan 12th
This weekend I attended the International Encaustic Artists annual conference called encaustiCon, in San Antonio Texas. It was a wonderful event with lectures, workshops, networking events and a great vendor room. I highly recommend it!
A highlight of the event was their banquet which included presentation of the first annual La Vendéenne awards, where I was thrilled to win a trophy in the Media category.
The La Vendéenne Awards were named in honor of a fourth century AD encaustic painter whose remains, along with her encaustic tools, were found in the La Vendée region of France. The awards are intended to “recognize outstanding contributions to the advancement and practice of encaustic art.”
Awards were presented in several categories, and here are the winners!
The jurors for the award included Gail Stavitsky, Chief Curator of the Montclair Art Museum (NJ), Paula Owen, President & CEO of the Southwest School of Art (TX) and David S. Rubin, Curator of Contemporary Art at The Brown Foundation (TX). The beautiful trophy was crafted by James Meyer, an extremely generous and gifted artist and studio assistant to Jasper Johns. I have to admit, part of me wants to press the trophy into wax. Is that wrong?
As happy as I was to win the award, I was equally thrilled to see my work appear during the keynote speech, in Dr. Stavitsky’s slide show about contemporary encaustic work. You may recognize her name from the groundbreaking exhibition she curated in 1999 called Waxing Poetic, Encaustic Art in America. Waxing Poetic featured more than fifty artists whose content, style and subject matter differed widely but whose medium of choice was the same, wax. That show was the first introduction to encaustic for many gallery owners, reviewers and other artists.
The International Encaustic Artists 2013 encaustiCon, will be held in Santa Fe, New Mexico, at the Eldorado Hotel from Oct. 31st ~ Nov. 3rd, 2013. Will I see you there?
I’m proud to have an article in the current issue of Encaustic Arts Magazine called “Creating and Embracing New Opportunities” which tells the story of how my book, Embracing Encaustic, led to many more new opportunities including my online encaustic classes at RobertsonWorkshops.com.
Here’s an excerpt: “As the huge truck pulled up in front of my house I got a chill up my spine. I knew the books would arrive sometime that week but no one seemed to want to give me a firm delivery date. I watched as the driver struggled to maneuver the bulky pallet through my garden gate and I worried that it wouldn’t fit. As he drove away, leaving me with box after box of my new encaustic book I thought, not for the first time, “What have I done?”
It all started about 5 years ago when one of my students mentioned that she couldn’t find an encaustic book with step-by-step instructions for beginners. That got me thinking that it wouldn’t be too hard to put one together, especially with the new print-on-demand services that had recently become available for self-publishing books online. Using this service they would be printed as they were purchased, so I would never need to print a large number of books. By that evening I had decided which service to use, downloaded the software and purchased the Internet domain name Embracing Encaustic.”
Read the whole article online. It’s a very inspiring magazine, so please share it with your friends!
When you mix colors do you tend to make nothing but mud? There’s a class for that! (and a quick tip below…)
On June 19 from 6 – 9 pm I’m hosting guest instructor and color expert Kimberly Kent in my Portland, Oregon studio to help you expand your painting palette while you develop your color sensibility.
Learn to mix, glaze and see color better. The exercises and techniques in this class will give you new tools for understanding how to mix just the color you need. You’ll work in encaustic paint in this class, but these concepts can be applied to color mixing in any medium. Find out more about my classes or register here.
How to Avoid Making Mud
Here’s a great example of the tips you’ll learn in this class: To avoid making mud, mix two primaries first. Once you get as close as you can to your desired color add the third primary. For example, mix yellow and blue to make green, then a touch of red to get the green you want. Just a few tips like this will have you mixing colors like a pro!
Last week I hosted a 5-day Wax Week Mixed Media workshop in my Portland, Oregon studio. I usually travel across the country offering this workshop at schools like Idyllwild Arts in California and Arrowmont School of Arts & Crafts in Tennessee, but I needed some time off from all the packing and unpacking so I invited students to come visit me this year.
Students from Washington, California, Colorado and Texas joined in the fun working with encaustic paint, paper, pastels, stamps, pigment sticks, inks, encaustic monotypes, wax scrolls and more! Here are a few photographs from the June session.
If you missed this Wax Week class you have another chance in August when the weather in Portland will be spectacular for a visit. Come join us!
Update: I’ve been notified that I’m a finalist for a La Vendéene award from the IEA (International Encaustic Artists)! The awards are intended to “recognize outstanding contributions to the advancement and practice of encaustic art.” Awards will be presented in early September at their encaustiCon event in San Antonio, TX. Wish me luck!
The La Vendéene Awards are created in honor of a fourth century AD anonymous female encaustic artist whose remains were found, along with the tools of her art, in the La Vendée region of France. The awards are intended to recognize outstanding contributions to the advancement and practice of encaustic art. Nominees do not have to be International Encaustic Artists members. IEA will present awards to no more than one nominee in each category: Artistry, Innovation, Education, Media, Lifetime Achievement.
I met Jess Greene at the encaustic conference last year when she was just starting to figure out what she wanted next in her life. I’ve been thrilled to watch her fulfill her dream of providing some really interesting projects centered around helping people become more creative.
My online encaustic courses are listed on her SeekYourCourse.com web site and she’s about to launch a nationwide project called the Jumpstart Creativity Tour which will have a stop in my town of Portland, Oregon this summer. Read on for more information about Jess’ exciting projects and how you can get involved.
From Jess: In college, art classes were only for the art majors so despite my interest there never was room for me. And the desire was only a whisper anyway. I was pursuing other things.
A few years after college, when I was a science teacher, I started reading artist blogs. Blogging gave me a window into the lives and work of artists in a way that finished work in a gallery never could. I started feeling a strong desire to paint. Then I finally did. I went to an art retreat and my world shifted. Suddenly there was the possibility of making art in a supportive community of other creatives.
This video was made during a visit of the Dalai Lama to Hawaii and is a wonderful introduction to the idea of Living Aloha that was instilled in me growing up in the islands. For those of you who ask how my life there has influenced me and my art, this is a big part of it. Enjoy!
I enjoyed a great party last night at the 24th annual Cascade AIDS Project Art Auction in support of the fight against HIV/AIDS. CAP’s Art Auction is the social event of the year in Portland. There was great food, wine, music, dancing, and art. Some 250 artworks were juried into the live and silent auctions, including one of my paintings pictured here, called Watching Light Leave.
Here are some photos from the event. Enjoy!
Easily the funniest event of the night was when I saw some crazy woman running her hands all over Janet Amundson Splidsboel’s beautiful encaustic painting. Up went my hackles and I stormed over ready to tackle her! I got there about the same time as security only to discover it was the artist herself, buffing her painting with the palm of her hand. In the bright light she had noticed a spot on the surface that was driving her nuts. We all had a good laugh and I told Janet it was a great publicity stunt. She suggested to the security guard that they meet up and do it again later. Well done!
I had a similar experience once too. I once sold a painting while fixing a chip that went unnoticed until the opening. The gallery set me up for an impromptu demo as I was fixing the work and it sold before the wax was cool. Art marketers, take note!
What a party! Last weekend there was a huge grand opening party at the eagerly awaited Mark Woolley Gallery where one of my paintings has already sold. Long time Portland art broker and gallerist Mark Woolley opened this new space as part of The Settlement galleries in Pioneer Place. For those of you were able to visit my “Spots of Time” show at People’s Art, Mark’s new gallery is on the same floor. Make sure you also have time to visit Place, another gallery on the same floor with a fantastic show this month (photos below).