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Laura Shallcrass

Making hand embellished gold leaf prints

Making hand embellished gold leaf prints

Tonight I thought I'd share a little about what goes into making my hand embellished, 24 karat, gold leaf, giclee prints. (Boy, what a mouthful!) and to be honest it is a bit of a process, so it's kind of fitting.

I start with a fresh giclee print and my supplies on a clean work surface. I've been using Norris 24 Karat gold leaf and Norris Size, which is the glue you use to apply gold leaf. I also have a small clean paintbrush, synthetic is better for working with size, a pencil and a cup of herbal tea. Essentials. 

I then mark where I'm going to put the flecks. The size is clear when it goes on so it's hard to remember where I put it which is why I mark the places I want it.

Then I apply the size, wait for it to semi-dry then apply the gold leaf. 

Then I use a very soft mottler brush to dust off any stray flecks of gold leaf.

After that they're signed, numbered and ready for packaging. 

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Sign up for updates

Sign up for updates

Ok it's time. I'm joining the ranks of people with email newsletter lists. I'm going to be honest, I hate email marketing. I'm a serial un-subscriber. You're offering me 10% off when I sign up for your emails? Great. I'll sign up, buy my product and then unsubscribe the next day. 

So I won't be offended if you use the exact same treatment on me. 

But the time has come when I think I actually have something to say. And I hope there's a few of you out there who would like to hear from me. Occasionally. Very occasionally!

So if you think you might be interested in upcoming shows, new works for sale which haven't been released or listed yet and the odd studio insight then go on. Sign up.

And I've got a carrot! Want a free wallpaper? A shiny, sparkly, crystal-y one? Well you get one free when you sign up! Even if you unsubscribe tomorrow. It would serve me right. Ha!

If you missed the pop up at the beginning enter your email into the Newsletter box at the bottom of the page to join the fun.

x

 

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A gift guide for the impossible to buy for

My Husband says I am impossible to buy presents for. He may have a point. I love beautiful things, which I think makes me easy to buy for, if it's lovely I'll love it etc... But I'm picky. So here I have compiled a list of things for the discerning & design minded. With a couple of picks from my collection which I'm sure will be winners.

But really it's not the things that make the day or the season is it. As long as Robbie and my boys are there I'll be happy as. MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!

XXX

 

1. Moleskine Watercolour Notebook

2. Palomino Blackwing Pencils

3. Billie Bucket Bag by Julian Danger

3. Studio Arhoj Ghost Light from Good Regards

4. Rhino art print by Laura Shallcrass

5. Rose Quartz limited edition art print by Laura Shallcrass

6. My Family Table by Eleanor Ozich

7. Ashley & Co. Candle & Hand Cream in Once Upon a Time

8. 2016 Frankie Magazine calendar 

9. Mr. Bunny Cushion by Laura Shallcrass

 

 

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  • Process
  • Laura Shallcrass

Process

Today I thought I'd share a little about what goes into one of my oil paintings. Starting at the beginning.

Although I'm a trained illustrator I have never really studied traditional painting methods so the way I paint is all a bit of a mish mash of trial and error and things I've picked up form other artists. I don't feel like it's right or wrong, it's just the way I do it, this is definitely not a How To! 

For these crystal paintings I buy the crystals, photograph them myself and use both the photographs and the crystal itself as reference. I used to use found images but somehow it seems to loose some of the magic. Please ignore my ghetto props!

After photographing I'll print the image and start on the canvas perparation. I did a stint at an art supplies store a while back which left me with a penchant for high end equipment (argh!) so I use Schmincke Primer, 3 coats. With this painting I wanted a gradient background so this has 3 coats of oils fading from blue to black (Schmincke Norma Oil Colour here), it's probably pretty tough to see in a photograph because of the way the light hits the canvas but anyhoo. 

Next I draw the crystal by hand on paper and transfer that to the canvas. Then I do a very rough undercoat so that I know where all the important bits go..

After that it's a more detailed undercoat in colour... 

Then the real work starts. I lay the colour down with a heavy bristled brush...

And blend with a sable

Up until this point I've been using what I call in my head the middle colour. Not the lightest, not the darkest. I know you're supposed to paint dark to light with oils but this way works for me and I'm sticking with it.

After that is all in and blended I have a very general idea of what the painting is going to look like and I can make changes if I need to. Next is the detail. Here I do use the dark to light rule starting with the darkest bits, blending them into the colour and then last of all I add the highlights. That's when I feel like a painting really comes alive and I know for sure if it's going to work or not. So there you go:

Titanium Aura Quartz

 

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What do you want to see in November?

So. I have a rough plan for the pieces I'm going to produce for my new show Lucky but I'd love your help. So many of you lovely, loyal follower folk have been so good to me over the years and I'd like to produce some work especially for you! If you comment below an idea of what you'd like to see me paint/draw it could end up being included in the new show, aaand you could win yourself the first edition print! Remember the scope for my show is luck, magic and belief so please try any keep your ideas within that territory. Sound like a plan? GO!

Fine print: Enter as many times as you like there will be only one winner and I reserve the right to interpret your suggestions to work within my chosen theme. Winner gets number 1/100 signed and numbered (unframed) giclee print, including delivery.

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The last year (and a bit!)

So I think it's perfectly clear that I am not the worlds most prolific blogger. Not even close, in fact it's been well over a year since I've written a post. I have had a lot of things going on (which I'll get to shortly) but really it just comes down to pure golden laziness, and for that I apologise. So to make up for it here is what I've been up to since I've been gone.

 

This right here is the biggest of my reasons (excuses!) for not blogging.

I felt pretty rubbish for the first 20 weeks, it was a hard slog but eventually I came right.

And managed to throw together another show at Kapa.

And just as I was feeling good and starting to get some work done this happened!

Two weeks early! Just when I had committed to new commissions which I thought I'd have plenty of time to finish beforehand. 

But I got there in the end and really loved the result.

So I thought I'd carry on the momentum and make my first attempt at portraiture. I've had in my head for a while the idea of doing a series of paintings around the idea of luck, omens and belief. This is the first. Lucky Red Shirt.

Because I didn't have enough to do, what with two kids, commissions, commercial graphic design and illustration work aaaand my personal illustration work, I decided to make some textiles! Cushions and kids tees to start with, mostly because I wanted them for myself!

I've been continuing to produce work towards a new show which I've tentatively titled Magic to be held at Toi o Tahuna in November.

 All while being mama to my now 4 and 1 year olds. So that's a year (and a bit!)s worth of blogging. It doesn't sound as busy as it felt when I condense it all down like that. Totally manageable.

So I'll leave you with where I'm at today. This is the underpainting for Citrine, the third in my crystal series and the 4th of what I'm hoping will be 17 works for my new show. What am I thinking!!? Oh and I've also taken a park time job doing graphic design for an agency in town. Because I needed more projects. 

Thanks for reading!

Laura

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And We're in!

I am writing this post from my new desk in my new studio in my new house! To think that a year ago we were looking at sections trying to figure out if we could do a project like this at all. And now after a mere few months of homelessness we have a home of our very own for the first time! I am so incredibly grateful and find that I regularly have to pinch myself to believe that it's all real. A huge THANK YOU to all those who helped in small or large parts to get us in here, we couldn't have done it without you! We are still not fully unpacked yet so I hope you'll excuse the boxes in the photos and the unfinished-ness of the interiors but for those who've been asking here are some pics.

I finally got to hang my Ryan McLennan prints! Boston likes it here. My studio is the last room to be unpacked as you can see.   And Kota likes it here too.

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Photographic Update

Hi folks, This is going to be a short one tonight as I'm feeling a little under the weather. Not to worry, it's just a cold, but I'm not feeling overly chatty. So in lieu of words here is your Photographic Update.   

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Shared Lines

I'm going to take a break from house blogging this week to bring you some of the most exciting work I have so far seen at the gallery. (For those of you who don't know, I work at a gallery sometimes.) And this week is just so happens that there is a super exciting, inspirational new show on. It's called Shared Lines and is a collaboration between some artists from Christchurch and some more artists from Sendai (in Japan). Both cities were ravaged by their respective disasters in 2011 and as a response Shared Lines was born. This is my fav. Wooden dog by Misato Sano.

I love the very japanese aesthetic of Maiko Kanno

The simple yet elegant, and oh so poignant work of Christchurch artist Lucy Matthews

And I met the lovliest girl who had made the most beautiful film which combined fireworks and rock and roll dancing. Only the best combination ever!

 

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