Land of Lost Luggage Feed

Reaching across...Cyber Colleagues

Altered Perception by Holly Dean

I have to admit that I am a very hands-on kind of person.  Becoming fluent with blogging and Facebook has not been an easy task for me.  When Julie Prichard and I first started working together I wanted to just be the "idea" person, not onscreen and especially not looking at the camera! I am really good with being in front of an actual audience or class full of students, but cyber people was just plain weird to me.  How would I be able to read their eyes or see their questions in their body movements?  Anyhow, Julie eased me into it and I got over that.  Then she pushed me to blog more and make FB pages.  Once the classes we do on The Land of Lost Luggage got up and running I found that the interactions within our forums were like private tutelage.  We got to "know" our students work, their hesitations, their strengths.  Pretty soon it was clear that some of these students were our colleagues and we were learning from each other.  The questions asked within an online class gave us pause, created new ideas, and helped us to solve and resolve issues for others.

I want to give a shout out to all of you who have been taking classes with us and tell you that you have made me grow and learn as an instructor.  You have helped me move pass my own limitations and find new avenues to explore.  Best of all I count a number of you as friends and colleagues and I celebrate your contributions to the world of mixed media.  The interactions you provide keep me focused on my own growth while I work to foster the growth of others.  You keep me reaching for new techniques, new ways of seeing things.  I applaud you today.


Artfully yours, Chris

Facing my fears...

It has taken me a long time to master the simple idea of layers in Photoshop.  When I work in real layers I have no issues.  I totally understand the concept of layers in a physical sense, but for some reason my mind just could NOT grasp the concept when it was not tangible.  Recently I decided that I had run out of excuses and I needed to try again without bringing in my past defeats.  Sometimes we let the things we didn't understand from before influence our decisions about what we can do today.  I hated math because I wasn't good at memorizing things, but I learned that I think very mathematically about many things.  I am a pretty non-traditional learner and teacher.  I rely on my intuitive brain a tremendous amount.  It sometimes takes a number of trials for me to learn what a more organized brain might learn quickly.  Yet, sometimes I see things in a flash that no one else can figure out.  Brains are amazing and adaptable.  Creative endeavors fuel our brains to keep growing and changing.  I'm convinced that all these years of doing art have made my brain more flexible because now I understand layers in Photoshop!  I'm going to keep working at growing my brain, how about you? 

Julie Prichard and I have an amazing assortment of online art classes that are perfect for growing your brain, especially the creative side.  Why don't you check out our Online classes here.  They are so much more fun than the gym!

Artfully yours, Chris

Experimentation: Unlocking the key to your artistic self


When I first finished my training with Golden Artist Colors I was so overwhelmed by the number of products and the amount of information that I had to absorb.  I knew if I was ever going to be able to share things with others I really had to know what I was talking about.  The boxes of product arrived and I began to play and experiment.  I quickly learned that I had to lose the fear of making a mistake and go ahead and try whatever came to mind.  Not long after I had the opportunity to write my first book, ALTERED SURFACES which was the result of putting  all that experimentation and fancy technical information through the seive of my mind and sharing it on paper.  I found that people responded to technical information if you could translate it into useful language.  Since that time there have been two more books, my online partnership with Julie Prichard and another book in the works, along with hundreds of students in workshops. I love teaching and am always looking for the opportunity to share what I know with others, especially the part about experimenting.  Never be afraid to try something different it may lead you to your true artistic self!

Artfully yours, Chris

Taking inspiration from a grey day


Studiodec 002

Today I awoke to a gray and wet day. I will say that rain is preferable to the high winds we had last week, so I won't complain.  I would like take a moment to talk about the benefits of gray! I've been working on developing subtle shifts in "color' using muted and grayed tones to develop volume and depth.  Ordinarily I would do this with Golden's Acrylic Glazing Liquid (a studio must have), but since I'm working with the OPEN Acrylics I needed to find another way to do this.  I think I have gotten it and Julie and I will be sharing our secrets with you at some point down the road in "The Land of Lost Luggage" or in our book that is in progress.  You can make your own grays easily or keep a jar of Neutral Gray nearby.  Gray shifts easily from cool to warm with the addition a little blue or brown.  Try mixing up some different grays and see what they can add to your work! 

Artfully yours, Chris