Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Uranus Sideways

18"x18", silver leaf, stencil, heavy molding paste, acrylic, graphite and oil pastel.
The first interesting thing about Uranus is that it orbits on its side...it spins on a tipped-over axis. So one side is bathed in sunlight while darkness covers its other side. After years of this placement Uranus changes its orbit and faces the opposite side to the sun? Uranus has rings but much more narrower than Saturn. The moons so far number 27 and are named after characters in plays by Shakespeare.

There are endless myths concerning Uranus, one naming him Father Sky. It is written four of his sons are in charge of the seasons and he is the one who covers the sky with a bronze dome. Never mind all the other stories, sons, wars and cruelty. He was considered a vanquished God of an elder time, before real time began.
I enjoyed creating the four corners in silver leaf to represent the four seasons and most of the drawing of Uranus and 12 moons were with my left hand so as to maintain a simple view. It was great fun reading the names of the moons Miranda, Ariel, Umbriel, Portia and Desdemona to name a few.
I have two more planets (three if you consider the moon Charon) to explore before I reach the Oort Cloud. The science is a little thin on these planets but I'll research what I can with my books and online.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

In Search of Saturn

18"x18", photo collage,crackle paste, gel, acrylic, tissue paper print and wax thread.
Beginning such a long time ago with a photo of an ancient Saturn and then returning to create 'the story' of  planet and myth...not so easy. I kept telling myself to keep moving it forward and at the end of the day I would have a new piece and a new direction. Several days working and I have ended here with this piece. I have added 10 moons of the 17 in the order of  their orbit and both the writing of Galileo and the photo of Galileo spacecraft. So I danced between ancient art, science of now and science of the 1700's.
This has been an interesting series for me. Not only do I love the idea of space but I have always felt I have been living here (all of us actually) in this solar system as my wider more expansive home. I get such a feeling when I know I'm gazing at Venus or Jupiter!  I'm sure the discoveries are in there infancy but I have learned more than I had in my school years and creatively it has been rich and satisfying. I'm off to Uranus and truly feeling very far from Earth and  the Sun.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Saturn Forgotten

The actual paper measures 18"x18" but this little corner is about 9"x12". I began here over a week ago and then 'life' happened.. I keep regular studio hours so it's a big deal for me to be away from the work table. First the refrigerator quit and all that needed to happen to get the old one out and the new one in and at the same time keep all the food cool. Next we both got an awful case of  food poisoning and with only one day to recover before needing to leave for Sacramento (two hour drive). We stayed two nights and carefully ate saltines & drank bottled water ....not such a good time but we finally felt better before coming back home.
Now with so much time away I haven't a clue about where I was going with this piece. I used crackle paste and measured pencil lines along with some yellow and ochre glazing. I'm going to 'sit' with it this weekend and on Monday set up paints etc. and begin again.
Happy March!!