Charging into a New Year

My final batik of the year ended up being a pair. I came upon this pond while riding a bike along a path in Barrington, RI. It stopped me in my tracks. The soft glow of a cloudy day lite up the water, and the contrasting deep shade under the trees along the bank was so quiet and peaceful, I had to hang out for a while.    Most of my subjects are like that. I’m on a little personal adventure when some detail will grab my attention, and I just have to stop and study it. I’ll squint to see how light interacts. I might just sit and feel the air moving. For that moment, I am relaxed into a kind of bliss I rarely feel outside of raw nature.   Brickyard Pond I & II Batik on Cotton 20 X 25” framed (ea) $680ea

My final batik of the year ended up being a pair. I came upon this pond while riding a bike along a path in Barrington, RI. It stopped me in my tracks. The soft glow of a cloudy day lite up the water, and the contrasting deep shade under the trees along the bank was so quiet and peaceful, I had to hang out for a while.

Most of my subjects are like that. I’m on a little personal adventure when some detail will grab my attention, and I just have to stop and study it. I’ll squint to see how light interacts. I might just sit and feel the air moving. For that moment, I am relaxed into a kind of bliss I rarely feel outside of raw nature.

Brickyard Pond I & II
Batik on Cotton
20 X 25” framed (ea)
$680ea

2018 was a year of exploration. Which has only wet my appetite for more.

For the fun of it I’m posting the progression of steps of dye and wax with these batiks. Because I start with the lightest colors first, building gradually darker dyes thru many steps ( these images depict only the more noticeable ones) It’s almost like these batiks emerged gradually onto the cotton from a fog.

Happy new year everyone! I’m excited to see where 2019 leads! I do have a few plans in place, one is to experiment with batik and indigo. I’m really looking forward to this side path. Indigo stands up to light, and I will be able to ditch the frames to explore other display methods. My mind is already spinning….

2019 Batik Workshops Scheduled
click for details

March 4-7 10-4:30
St. Augustine FL - Vilano Community Center

September 11-13 10- 4:00 pm
Highlands NC - Bascom Center for the Arts

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The Devil is in the Details... or Lack of

Welcome to my first blog post ever. My intention is to focus on what's happening behind the scenes in my batik studio, hopefully about four times a year. Check back occasionally if you are interested in this sort of thing: and if you would like notification of a new blog post by email, please fill out the form on the contact me page.

I have intentionally put this year aside from any shows or classes to experiment with my technique, and take some chances without the looming fear of a flop on a deadline to hold me back. I even have "Be Wreckless " taped to my desk.

My graphic design background trained me in composition and color theory, and a lifetime of drawing, especially in pen and ink, directs the way I use the tjanting tool to apply melted wax.  Now five years into learning the medium of batik,  and focusing on achieving detail, I can see that there is also a process of leaving some details out. All detail is not equal, and as I study what I'm drawn to in others' art, a common thread is undefined areas. It's much more interesting to put a lot of detail in some areas, and leave other areas with just a suggestion. And this skill has not been quick for me to come by. Over the last few months I have had my share of successes and failures, and have yet to feel like it is a natural instinct.  But I do have a new direction! Here are two recent batiks that I was the most successful in maintaining that balance.

Cindy Wilson

  I worked hard to keep detail in the grasses only in the foreground, and transition to simple blocks of color gradually. The trees at the top are only suggested in the highlights, while the shadow areas remained flat. I'm learning the shapes have to be dynamic enough to pull it off.   Lopez Island Hillside  16x26" batik on cotton (framed 22x32") $1100 available

 I worked hard to keep detail in the grasses only in the foreground, and transition to simple blocks of color gradually. The trees at the top are only suggested in the highlights, while the shadow areas remained flat. I'm learning the shapes have to be dynamic enough to pull it off.
Lopez Island Hillside
16x26" batik on cotton (framed 22x32")
$1100 available

The detail in the poppies, contrasting with the rough splatters to suggest white flowers was nerve-racking to try, I had to splatter the white before I began dying anything. What looked like a mess in the beginning paid off, and I held back a lot of detail in the background, so it wouldn't compete with the flowers.   Poppies in Paris  13 X 13” batik on cotton ( framed 21 X 21”) available $580

The detail in the poppies, contrasting with the rough splatters to suggest white flowers was nerve-racking to try, I had to splatter the white before I began dying anything. What looked like a mess in the beginning paid off, and I held back a lot of detail in the background, so it wouldn't compete with the flowers.
Poppies in Paris
13 X 13” batik on cotton ( framed 21 X 21”)
available $580