Technique Showcase

Join us Tuesday afternoon for a display of art techniques you can explore at your leisure. Artists will be working at their craft and available to answer your questions as they demonstrate.

Title: Riatta at Calypso Farm
detail, Portrait of a llama, in progress. Egg tempera on gesso panel. ©2016, Karen Ackoff.

Texture excerpts in Photoshop ©Quinn Burrell and University of Michigan Department of Radiology

Secret Belgian Binding. @2017, Carol F. Creech.

The Little Bonsai, Nancy Hart
pen, ink and watercolor, ©

Scuba diver taking a core sample from coral. Cheryl McCutchan. Adobe Illustrator. ©2016

Slender Climbing Cactus/Echinocereus leucanthus for Vanishing Circles Collection and Exhibit through the Arizona Sonora Desert Museum, Rhonda Nass, colored pencil, ©2010.

Karen Ackoff

Traditional Egg Tempera

Egg tempera is one of the oldest painting techniques, said to date back to ancient Egypt. It was popular until the 1400s, giving way to the rise of oil paints. Traditional egg tempera will be demonstrated on a rabbit skin glue gesso panel to which emulsions of pigment and egg yolk are applied. Paint is applied with brushes (using a hatching technique), sponges, toothbrushes (to spatter), etc. Egg tempera dries quickly and is applied in many thin layers, which are built up to the desired color saturation. Egg tempera is durable; it dries quickly to a tough film, allowing for a diversity of transparent and opaque effects.

Quinn Burrell

Creating Quick and Realistic Textures in Photoshop

Learn tricks for creating textures in Photoshop and implementing them into your final artwork. We will cover a few basic textures such as fur, scales, and bone, and learn how to copy, layer, and contour them so they fit naturally into a scene.

Carol F. Creech

Bookbinding Techniques for Lay-Flat Sketchbooks

Have you ever wanted to make your own sketchbooks, but did not know where to start? Come learn about bookbinding techniques that make the most of your paper and are fun to create! I will be demonstrating several hand-stitching techniques from a simple pamphlet stitch to the more complex Coptic stitch and Secret Belgian binding. These allow your journal to lay flat and maximize the paper surface available for drawing or painting.

Nancy Hart

Pen, Ink and Watercolor

Nancy's presentation will be working with micron pens and copic multi liner pens over a watercolor wash background on watercolor paper. Techniques that demonstrate texture will be the focus to develop environments that depict atmospheric perspective in nature.

Cheryl McCutchan

Adobe Illustrator Techniques

Illustrator has an incredible array of palettes and tools that can be daunting to the new user. Yet, this array of possibilities makes Illustrator extremely flexible for creating illustrations in a variety of styles. Cheryl will show you how she creates complex illustrations with the wide array of tools found in Illustrator. Some of these include the pen tool, width tool, blob brush, masks, transparencies, gradients, effects palette, and so many more. Cheryl will also show you how she exports images from Illustrator for use on-line, in textbooks, and in animations she creates in Adobe Flash/Animate. If you have questions about Illustrator tools or an Illustrator conundrum you're having trouble working out, please come ask Cheryl during the technique showcase. She is always willing to help!

Kalliopi Monoyios

Sketching & Timelapse Apps for Smartphones and Tablets

Fingerpainting has come a long way since your last kindergarten masterpiece. Thanks to powerful sketching apps for smartphones and tablets, you can sketch anytime, anywhere, assuming you brought your finger and your phone. Many of these sketching apps are impressively sophisticated — and so cheap you’ll hardly believe it, especially when compared to the software we pay an arm and a leg to have on our desk- and laptops. Kalliopi will demonstrate several of the most popular ones that can be toted around with you in your pocket. Never be left without your sketchbook again!

Rhonda J Nass

Colored Pencil Drama on Dark Paper

As a professional illustrator, TIME IS MONEY, so I've developed/found techniques that save time when producing artwork within a client's deadline. Some we'll focus on: 1. choosing a paper color that captures the majority of your subject's color (so that color needn't be applied), then building from there; 2. using a stroke that appears strokeless (I'll demo my "airplane stroke"); 3. using a light hand pressure so the color and finish applied initially is the color and finish long-term (not muddied by pencil wax rising to the surface over time); 4. creating drama and power at the focal point (six tricks I'll demo) that attracts the viewer, and dropping detail (and work time) elsewhere.

My hope is to briefly whet your appetite for working with colored pencil in a fresh, absorbing process which can produce a satisfying product while giving you confidence that the work you do today will retain its excellence long term in the hands of a client or patron, assuring your reputation as a professional artist.

I'll cover "airplane stroke," "sanity window," "vignetting," "aces," and many more code words that will be decoded at the demo. Welcome to an adventure.

Title: detail of Hibiscus with Pollinators. Trudy Nicholson
Medium: Ink of Scratchboard, ©2011.

Trudy Nicholson

Ink and Pencil on Scratchboard

I will demonstrate and talk about my technique, as well as show stages of development of previously completed work. I will have practice boards on which participants can briefly try the technique themselves - a few at a time. I'll also have books about scratchboard showing the work of other artists.

Spotted Salamander, Ambystoma maculate, Matt Patterson, Acrylic, ©2016

Matt Patterson

Natural History Painting of Reptiles and Amphibians

All are welcome! Matt will be doing a demonstration painting with acrylic and acrylic gouache on a coffee toned illustration board. The demonstration will be his process of composition, depicting a subject and building up a painting from a pencil drawing. He will talk about his research process and process of gathering reference along with having a hands on aspect to the demonstration.

Castilleja integra (Indian Paintbrush) & Selasphorus platycercus (Broad-tailed Hummingbird). ©2016 Charlotte A Ricker

Charlotte Andrea Ricker

Exploring Watercolor Pencil

Watercolor pencil allows you to experience the best of both worlds, combining the fluid qualities of wet media with the precision of dry techniques. This versatile medium will allow you to achieve vibrant color by applying a smooth, even wash of pigment as an under-painting to provide a unifying foundation, and adding layers of color to achieve a luminous glow. We will also experiment with a variety of techniques for building layers of color and detail, applying dry pencil strokes to achieve fine details and rich textures. We will explore the beauty of mixed media by combining this portable medium with pen & ink and graphite, which can be used to add dramatic color to your field sketches, or create finished works of art.

Hyrachyus modestus fossil and reconstruction. ©2017, Nicole M. Wong, AMNH

Nicole M. Wong

Fossil Reconstruction Techinques

Learn how artists in the Paleontology department at the American Museum of Natural History examine and reconstruct fossil skeletons. From CT scans to UV lights, magnesium tape to gouache, there are many tools and techniques that artists can use to glean information from a fossilized specimen. Nicole will talk about the challenges she faces in fossil reconstruction, and the methods she and her colleagues use to tackle these issues.