Sunday, December 4, 2011

Making Some Discoveries

Yesterday I had the pleasure to reintroduce myself to Mitch Lyons. I first met Mitch a couple of weeks ago at the annual PA Guild of Craftsmen Fair held in my hometown of Lancaster, PA. If you have never attended this arts and crafts fair... IT IS A MUST... I encourage you to visit the PA Guild of Craftsmen website and mark your calendars. I also highly recommend visiting Mitch's website you will not be disappointed! Mitch is a master at making clay monoprints. YES I said CLAY!! I had never heard of such a thing and Mitch informed me "it's because I invented it". Thanks for sharing Mitch! God Bless.

1.Colored slip is added to the leather hard clay slab.
Until you are able to make your own personal pilgrimage to PA to visit Mitch enjoy these photos I took yesterday (with Mitch's approval of course) which captures the intricate, beautiful, monoprinting demonstration Mitch so graciously presented at his home art studio located in New London, PA.

2. Introducing more color by sifting in chalk and pastels.

Mitch is planning to hold a two day weekend workshop in April 2012 and I am already saving my pennies to make sure I am there!  See his website for details. If you are not able to visit his studio he does sell DVDs on his art making process. Either way his artwork and process are so inspiring and captivating you will not be satisfied with just one peek at his website you will want to meet him in person - he is planning to host some traveling workshops and he is open to doing one day demonstrations.

NOTE: I have added my personal captions to these photos but to read how Mitch explains his clay monoprinting process in details click on this link.

3. Getting ready to make a monoprint.

As I stood next to Mitch yesterday I could not help but to be re energized about the art making process and re discovering the joy it brings me. Mitch is just what I needed to boost up my creative spirits and I left eager to jump into my little attic art studio to explore what my own emerging art journey had to offer.

4. Creating a charge with a brayer (Mitch said "it's a pizza roller").
I am so blessed to live so close to such remarkable artists like Mitch who have been making art for over 40 years; yet Mitch still holds the enthusiasm of a mindful artist discovering his pleasure in art making for the first time.  THANK YOU, Mitch for sharing your love of art making, answering all of my "Curious Girl" questions and I look forward to revisiting your studio in April for your weekend workshop.

As for the fruits of my labor upon my return from visiting with Mitch see the pictures below of the fun I had creating and exploring my own recipes for making an original mixed media collage art project.

~ Sandra

The elements: a recycled iPhone box I painted with white gesso, my hand painted mixed media papers, and a laser copy of an old fashion hand plow (the plow image shows up in other artwork I'm currently creating inspired by my summer volunteering at my local CSA at the Lancaster Farmacy). I miss the farm.

Close up of the hand painted papers adhered to the substrate using Golden Soft Gel Matte Medium with some additional handmade markings layered on using a Faber-Castell watercolor pencil (black).

Adding on additional hand painted paper (remains from another project - nothing goes to waste). I just let the negative shapes created by the cutouts dictate the orientation of the layout. 

Front view of the piece thus far. I love how you can still see some of the Apple wordage seeping through the gesso.

Close up of the overlaying papers and the texture they create.

The final piece with the hand plow image added on using a gel medium transfer.

Defining the size: 3-1/4 x 5-1/2 inches.

"Winter PLOW" mixed media collage


  1. Sandra-- You did a good job with the pictures. It was fun! Terry

  2. Terry! YOU LEFT A COMMENT - Yeah! I am so proud of you and your social network savy. I can't wait until April to go back for the workshop. Thanks for driving and the awesome afternoon... its great having friends who appreciate ART as much as I do. ~ Sandra

  3. That was really interesting. Thank you for sharing Mitch with us. Can't wait to see everything from you when you attend his workshop!!! That will be lots of fun!

  4. I know I can't wait! Seriously I was like "you are going to have me wait until April to start creating" we all smiled and laughed but I was partially serious. I wanted to just jump in! I really feel myself being pulled to this process and Mitch is such a great guy and a wonderful sense of humor - it will be a fun time that's for sure.

  5. Sandra,
    It is people like you who drive me forward to continue my work. You are rare, and I thank you for your "over the top" energy.
    Mitch Lyons

  6. Wow Sandra, thanks for this information, I'd never heard of Mitch before. I'm definitely going to check out his web site.

  7. @AnonymousAh, thanks Mitch! So nice for you to leave a comment. I truly enjoyed my visit to your studio and plan to return again. I am still amazed when I look back at the photos and remember the demonstration. Your work is amazing and honestly beyond words.

  8. Thanks Ro, Mitch has been invited to teach a workshop in Australia wouldn't it be wonderful if you two could connect in person from the result of this little post of art sharing. His work really speaks to the fabric art world. I know you would love his free spirit for creating art (quite similar to Flora's but he's a guy LOL). Blessing and have a great week!

  9. Sandra, this looks like is was a great workshop. I love the colours you used on your pieces!

    1. Thanks! It was an OPEN STUDIO day and Mitch was kind enough to share his process with his guests (me included). I was so inspired by his work that I created this little blue piece when I got home to my own ART STUDIO... it's great when artists share and inspire each other.



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