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Contagious Creativity - How To Catch The Creative Virus

July 20, 2020

 

My Painting Process for "Veiled"    

“Creativity is contagious – pass it on.”

Albert Einstein

 

Creativity IS Contagious! And it is meant to be shared. This quote is making a factual statement about how inspiration works.

 

Inspiration creates a spark that fuels the creative fire within us all. Creativity is contagious and meant to be shared. 

In light of these times of incessant hand-washing, sterilizing, isolating to protect us from catching a very serious virus – Covid-19 – why not counterbalance that with spreading a positive, joyful virus of creativity to heal your heart and maybe someone else’s heart?  That is the idea behind the project I have created for Gel Press for this month – may it spread and become a gift to the world!

 

So - who wants to catch the creative virus?  It hurts no one. You can do it in the comfort of your own home.  And it promotes a healthy heart-soul!  There is nothing like a little paint, bright colors, and creative play to chase your fears, germs, & worries away!

I can think of no better way to heal and bring back a little joy than to just have mindless, creative fun.  With that in mind, I went to my studio, pulled out my Gel Press printing plates, and began throwing color and stencils around.  What happened next, made me smile so now I’m sharing it with you…  

 

 

Watch this video I created for Gel Press as a Creative Team Artist and then read below to see what went on behind the scenes to see how the painting began...

 

 

 WHAT WENT ON BEFORE THE PARTY......

warning: what I'm about to tell you could be contagious ;)

 

Pssst…Let Me Tell You A Secret…

Do you want to know the Secret to Creativity – how to catch the Creative Virus?? 

 

The answer begins with….NEW!  Trying a new technique, a new material, a new surface, looking at the world in a new way, etc… - anything “new” leads to inspiration!  And then inspiration acts as a spark, which ignites creativity.  The only problem is, the more you paint and create, the more difficult it becomes to find something new – we easily become stagnant with our art.  But sometimes, when you least expect it and when your eyes light across your messy studio – something new finds you!  In my case, it happened early on in the process, when I pulled out my 2 largest gel press plates, which allowed me to print large!

 

Inviting The Muse To Have Coffee…

 

Before we invite The Muse, we must know who She is and where She lives. 

 

A Muse is defined as “a person or personified force, who is the source of

inspiration for a creative artist.” – simply put, it is your inspiration.  For me, that Muse is sometimes my youngest daughter, Grace. She is the youngest of my 3 children and when she came into my life I was in a more settled place as an artist – a time when I was more “aware of moments” – a time when I was “listening” instead of rushing through life. When I’m painting her, I’m actually painting myself – I’m actually painting MY story.  She is the subject in my painting, “Veiled”.

This photo was my inspiration and reference image for my painting, "Veiled".

This is my daughter, Grace -  My Muse - which I invited into my studio...this started the magic!

 

So how do I invite this sometimes mysterious, sometimes elusive, Creative Muse to have coffee and just hang out?  It happens whenever I ask myself the question “what if?”.  

“What if” represents curiosity and the willingness to experiment.  It is the beginning of everything fun and creative.  If an artist is never curious, never experiments, they never experience anything new and the Muse will eventually leave the studio.   If you don’t believe me, try doing the same technique, the same way and never changing for 2 months.  Eventually you will find yourself not wanting to create very much, procrastinating, and get busy with something else. Eventually the Muse/Inspiration will depart and you will put the art materials away – this happens to so many artists!  This is why curiosity and experimentation is integral to keeping your Muse in your studio and thus, catching the Creative Virus!

 

So this practice of asking what if and trying something new happened when I went to dig for my Gel Press plates.  I had 2 large printing plates placed in the supply bin together – simple right?  I thought “hmmm…what if I placed these plates side by side and make a larger surface?”  Well that was a new way of printing and got me excited which caused that little spark of creativity to ignite! 

 

 

 

Keep It Simple – The Only 3 Things You Need To Remember…

 

To make things very simple….the only “rules” to have rolling around your head during this process are the following words below.  You must speak these 3 things out loud (who cares if you look crazy doing this?!) – trust me it will happen if you speak it out loud!

 

Say the following out loud…

  1. I’m going to try something NEW

  2. I’m going to ask WHAT IF? at some point

  3. I’m definitely going to have FUN!

Now print with out thinking too much, pull out color with creative abandon. Don’t be afraid to let your eyes light on something across the room and use it – those are always my favorite new discoveries!  And even better - put on your favorite play list, turn the volume up and DANCE in your studio while doing this – which equals FUN! 

 

 

“What if” represents curiosity and the willingness to experiment.  It is the beginning of everything fun and creative.  If an artist is never curious, never experiments, they never experience anything new and the Muse will eventually leave the studio.   If you don’t believe me, try doing the same technique, the same way and never changing for 2 months.  Eventually you will find yourself not wanting to create very much, procrastinating, and get busy with something else. Eventually the Muse/Inspiration will depart and you will put the art materials away – this happens to so many artists!  This is why curiosity and experimentation is integral to keeping your Muse in your studio and thus, catching the Creative Virus!

 

So this practice of asking what if and trying something new happened when I went to dig for my Gel Press plates.  I had 2 large printing plates placed in the supply bin together – simple right?  I thought “hmmm…what if I placed these plates side by side and make a larger surface?”  Well that was a new way of printing and got me excited which caused that little spark of creativity to ignite! 

 

 

 

Let’s Get This Party Started!...

 

Once you have the Gel Press printed sheets, settled on your subject

 

matter, it is time to collage, soften, draw, then paint!  I call this entire process “Party On Your Paper” (see archived Gel Press Blog Posts of mine) because when you are through with the collage part of the process, it will look like a wild, beautiful, lively party of patterns, lines, textures and color!

 

Bringing Back Some Of Your Party Guests….

 

So now the painting is finished and I advise letting it “rest” overnight.   Because, at the end of this Paint Party you might need to bring back a few of your Guests – some of the beautiful patterns and textures you might have lost in the painting process. In the video you will see that I used my larger, 12x24 stencils that coordinate with the 9x12 stencils I used on the gel printed collaged papers.  This final touch will effectively connect all of the elements and give your painting harmony – all of your guests will be talking to each other and your Party will be a huge success!

 

this was before...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

but I did not like that I had lost some of my party guests...

 

...so I used my 12x24 StencilGirl Stencils [see links below]....

...& brought them back to the party!

 

 

 

Let The Party Continue - Spread The Creative Virus!….

 

For me, in this climate of isolation, fear, and negativity it is important to counterbalance all of this with inspiration, creative joy and positivity – that is why I am sharing this painting process with you!  I do this with the hope you will then share this Contagious Creativity and pass it on to someone else who needs a little uplifting!  I typically do this on my social media sites and my YouTube channel [you can find the links on my website listed below]. Sometimes I have art studio “play dates” with other artists, which now are done through Zoom or Facetime.  – maybe you could do the same!

 

Now it’s your turn to pass it on - go spread inspiration and your joyful, creative self as much as you can because - art heals!

 

I hope this post helps you through this crazy, difficult time of socially isolating – inspiring and causing you to Catch The Contagious Creative Virus!

 

And remember – these are the only rules…try something NEW, ask WHAT IF?, and have FUN!

____________________________________________________________________________

to see more of Trish's Party On Your Paper Collection of paintings click here

____________________________________________________________________________

 

LINKS TO SOME OF THE ART PRODUCTS I USED IN MY VIDEO.....

 

LINKS TO STENCILGIRL STENCILS….

Wisteria Collection Stencils [3]– [used at the beginning, during the gel press printing process]

 

9x12 - Looped Bare Wisteria Vine

https://www.stencilgirlproducts.com/stencil-looped-bare-wisteria-vine-trish-mckinney-p/l555.htm

9x12 – Open Bare Wisteria Vine

https://www.stencilgirlproducts.com/stencil-open-bare-wisteria-vine-trish-mckinney-p/l554.htm

9x12 – Grand Wisteria

https://www.stencilgirlproducts.com/mask-Grand-Wisteria-Trish-McKinney-p/l679.htm

 

 

Wisteria Collection of Giant Stencils [2]– [used at the end of the video]

12x24 - Wisteria Giant Stencil

https://www.stencilgirlproducts.com/mask-Wisteria-Giant-Trish-McKinney-p/g026.htm

12x24 - Wisteria Loops Giant Stencil

https://www.stencilgirlproducts.com/mask-Wisteria-Loops-Giant-Trish-McKinney-p/g027.htm

 

 

INSPIRATIONAL LINKS….

Party On Your Paper – Trish McKinney – Gel Press Working Artist Blog Post

https://gelpress.com/party-on-your-paper-with-trish-mckinney/

 

 

 

LINKS TO GEL PRESS MONOPRINTING PLATES….

I used these 2 mono printing plates in my video side by side…

12” x 12” - https://gelpress.com/product/10803

12” x 14” -  https://gelpress.com/product/10804

 

 

____________________________________________________________________________

GOLDEN PAINTS & COLORS I USED .....

 

Beginning Segment While Monoprinting I used these colors.....

GOLDEN OPEN Acrylics - Color Combos I used while gel press printing….

  • 1- Quin Nickel Azo Gold + Light Ultramarine + Titan Buff

  • 2 - Trans Red Oxide + Nickel Azo + Light Ultramarine + Teal

  • 3 - Quin Nickel Azo Gold + Light Ultramarine + Teal

Midway Segment While Painting The Figure I used these colors.....

 

GOLDEN FLUID Acrylics….

  • Quin Nickel Azo Gold

  • Quin. Magenta

  • Quin. Crimson

  • Quin. Burnt Orange

  • Permanent Violet Dark

  • Dioxazine Purple

  • Pthalo Blue (Green Shade)

  • Anthraquinone Blue

  • Cobalt Blue

  • Turquoise Phthalo

  • Teal

 

 

 

 

 

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