Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Mixed Media a Collage Bayou Painting

I love combining my love of paper crafts with my love of painting. To me, it's the best of both worlds and I don't feel like its "work" at all. Here's a little peek at my most recent mixed media painting in progress.

I started by layering various patterned papers. My intent for this was to make a bayou scene, so I went for papers that made me think "gumbo". I also three in some old newspapers, sheet music and burlap.

These images show the papers as well as the drawing of the scene on top.
Next, I started layering paints and definition, carefully leaving parts of the papers showing through. I love the unexpected patterns peeking through in random places.
Here is one more in progress pic. Someone described the color and style as "well worn denim".

And here is the final piece. I call it "Moonlight on the Bayou". It's 20"x20" and for sale in my Etsy store.
Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Mixed Media Art Fun

Since I'm always creating, I like to change subject and medium to keep my perspective fresh. After a big painting session, especially when it's a commission, I like to clean the studio up and "play". My art "play" is my mixed media minis. I love using my paper stash, ephemera, Faber Castell pens and markers, paint and whatever else comes to mind.

Faber Castell's Design Memory Craft Blog always has fun challenges. This month the challenge is to create something about your dream.

Here's my piece.

Check out the other creations at Mou's Challenge .

Thanks for stopping by and have a great weekend.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Custom Mardi Gras Pet Paintings

I'm working on a few Mardi Gras pet paintings this week. One of the orders came from an owner who ran into one of the first paintings of mine that Mimi's Cafe obtained over ten years ago. It still hangs in the Albuquerque, NM. 

Here is a sneak peek of the progress.

If you would like to keep up with the daily peeks into my studio, follow ("like") my facebook page 

Hanks for stopping by and have a great day!


Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Antique Alley Art Tour West Monroe

Downtown West Monroe will be rocking this Thursday night! In conjunction with the Downtown Art Gallery Crawl, the Antique Alley Association merchants will be open late and hosting artists in their shops. With the River Gallery at 308 Trenton Street having 30 artists, and 30 more shops being open, this makes 60 artists in a two block area. There will be a band outside - Amanda McDowell and The Twlilight Zone will be entertaining the shoppers.

I have been so busy getting ready for this, as well as my daughter, who is also showing art in one of the shops.

There is still lots to do!

Here is a peek of one of my pieces.

I will also have a four foot x four foot piece, "Born on the Bayou" for my Southern theme.

It is coated in resin and really shines! It will be at Brazzell & Co Home, 311 Trenton Street, West Monroe.

If you are local, come on out to Trenton Street, West Monroe from 5-9pm!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Starting off This Week Full Throttle

Happy July! I'm starting this Monday full blast. I had to take some things to the post office, so just for fun, we stopped by the Duck Dynasty warehouse. Can you believe that we live just a couple miles away and haven't stopped by. (Gasp?)

We didn't stay long, and off we went to run errands.

I finished a new piece Saturday. It's 30" x 40" and my daughter named it "Over the Rainbow". It's similar to my "Summertime Blues" painting. It's available if anyone is interested. Just message me thru my website or facebook page.

 "Over the Rainbow" by Melanie Douthit

I got the sweetest commission this weekend. I was asked to put a hidden message in a piece. I'll be starting it tomorrow. I'm also working on a very fun project that I hope turns out. More on that in the weeks to come.

Thanks for stopping by today!

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Excited about the July 2013 Bayou Life Magazine

Sometimes life just surprises you in unexpected ways - suddenly. That's what happened earlier this month, when I was running errands in between driving my daughter to and from swim lessons. I got a message from one of the fabulous writers at Bayou Life Magazine - a local publication in our region - asking if they could feature me for their Bayou Artist. Of course, I said YES! (Then I secretly wondered if they had the right person!). I was so excited, that I didn't even want to tell anyone - just in case they made a mistake. I didn't even really tell my husband, who walked in on part of the interview - again, he didn't know! He knew it must have been important when I introduced Mary, though. I told two of my friends (neither of them artists) - just because I had to tell someone, then let it slip to hubby one day while chattering away. So I waited. Then when one of the girls that worked at the magazine told me it was delivered, I went to get a few copies. well, it depends on what your version of 'just a few' means.

Here is the fabulous cover - a photograph by local photographer Burg Ransom. He is one of the best local wildlife photographers in our region!

Here is my daughter with the article. She was the one person with me through the interview and photo shoot. She is a great secret keeper!

Here is the two-page spread (which I'm not sure if it's readable on this blog).
 P.S. I also 'dislike' seeing photos of myself... but it was required for the article!

I'm am over the moon excited about this feature, as I follow in the footsteps of some very impressive artists as well as talented people in other areas of the arts. I'm thankful to the team at Bayou Life Magazine for highlighting someone who is so many steps behind those that have been featured before me. Mary Napoli, you are a jewel!

Thanks for stopping by today, and have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Pets in the Art Studio

I admit it. I paint on the floor. I spread a large drop cloth on my studio floor and plop right down and spread everything out and create. Much like I did in grade school when I spread my crayons out and colored in my favorite coloring books. I don't think a table could be big enough to hold everything when I'm painting. The yellow is to my right, the white is under my leg, the blue is by the water container. It's just all right in reach.... Even though getting up is a slow process... It just works.

Sooo... Having said that, I have to add that I share my studio with a dachshund. A long bodied, short legged dachshund who loves to be where I am, and in the sunshine which streams into my studio. So is it a surprise that only a handful of times has she stepped IN my wet paint palette? She has, in fact, walked on top of a wet background on canvas before, which I think is adds to the texture. But walking in dark blue wet paint and tracking it on the floor (thankfully not carpet) doesn't work. I didn't get a photo of the blue paw prints because I was more concerned about cleaning her blue toes, but I did do an after photo, much like the shame photos you see on social media sights.

But there is no shame. It is what is is, my helper in my studio and a whoops moment. Who can resist at face?

This photo appears along with other pets in the studio in is weeks blog post at EBSQART. Check it out.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Queens and Calico Cats

This has been a busy week. I'm teaching a basic "art 101" class focusing on drawing, shading/values, and using charcoal and pen and ink. I haven't used charcoal in several years, and stayed up late one night this week to create this demo.

I forgot how much fun it was to use. Watching my student work with it made me want to do some pieces with it.
Meanwhile - back in the art studio....I have been having fun with my "queen" series of paintings. My current one is a bit different - I covered the entire canvas with mixed pieces of patterned paper - then worked on top of it. It made a lot of texture (especially in her face) but it turned out really cool. It already has a new home with a kitty that looks just like this one, named "Lottie".

And I have one more bit of news. I'm now offering my art prints on Fine Art America. You can order various sizes, and even get art on canvas. I'm slowly adding pieces to it. Just go to Melanie Douthit Fine Art America.
Thanks for stopping by and have a great day.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Choose Joy

Summer has officially arrived in the south. We already have filled our schedule with fun things like camp and theater. I'm teaching a beginning drawing art workshop next week, and will also be working on some more theater backgrounds. 

I enjoy the monthly challenges at Design Memory Crafts blog. This month we were challenged to create something about a lesson. Here is something good for everyone: Choose Joy.

This mixed media on wood piece used paint, scrapbook paper, stamps, Faber Castell markers, and stickers.

The outlines were done with a black Pitt pen.

Lots to do today. Thanks for stopping by. I have more art and images to share soon!

Friday, May 17, 2013

May Flowers - Mixed Media

May is such a busy, busy month!! For our family we have end of school (both kids), start of a new job (son), four theater productions (same show, different times), one dance production - in addition to regular life. In a way - all these things are "flowers" that we stop to enjoy along the way.

In honor of flowers, I'm taking Mou's Challenge on the Faber Castell blog and sharing this little mixed media piece I made.

I used Faber Castell Gelatos (blue and green) to add color to the black and white graphic paper on the left of my piece, and pit pens for my black outlinings (word blocks and flower stems).

Have a wonderful day and thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Blend of the Bayou in Monroe

Every year, the Northeast Louisiana Arts Council has a fundraiser called "Blend of the Bayou". At this event, "men who mix and brew" come out and cook everything from bbq sandwiches to gumbo and fried catfish. Part of this event is a "Bayou Gallery" with 15-20 of the area's prominent artists with art items for sale. The event was this weekend and the weather was absolutely beautiful! I attended with four other artists from the coop gallery I'm with attended as well as other art friends from the area.

We sampled the food, mingled and talked to art collectors. I debuted one of my latest pieces, "Summertime Blues", which I'm happy to say found a new home that day.

 And for the first time every, the youth at the local theater were invited to perform a few of their songs from Guys and Dolls. As you know - our family has worked hard on this production the past few weeks.

Again - it was record low temperatures on this gorgeous Sunday in May (which in Louisiana terms - was perfect!). I look forward to more beautiful days like this day this month. Thanks for stopping by and if you want to stay updated, you can subscribe to this blog and/or follow me on Melanie Douthit Art Studio's Facebook Page. by selecting the "Like" button. Have a great day!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Delta Artists at Tunica Riverpark in Mississippi

I was so excited to have been contacted by a gallery in Memphis, Tennessee (on Good Friday) to be a part of an exciting art exhibit in Tunica, Mississippi. They have redesigned the museum to include a "Delta Artists" exhibit featuring artists from the "delta" (Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana and Arkansas). I was one of four artists from Louisiana. The other 3 are colleagues of mine from Monroe/West Monroe: Don Hudnall, Donna McGee and Joli Livaudias. The receiption was last week, so Donna and I went on an adventure to North Mississippi. I was in great hands, as Donna is a native of Mississippi.

It was a wonderful artist's reception with Good Company Trio jazz band playing. Here's a press release with the details of the opening and exhibit: Tunica Riverpark Delta Artists

We had a beautiful view of the sunset on the Mississippi River. If you get a chance, go to Tunica Riverpark. The exhibit will be there through the end of August.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Theater Set Design

Last month it was painting a French Quarter mural. As promised, here is a portion of the final mural. I enjoyed working with Linda Ward on this!

This month it's New York, New York! I've been working as set director for the local youth theater's production of Guys and Dolls. So many parents chipped in- many who claim have no "art" skills- and we had a great time. One mom dubbed our time as "art therapy". Who knew! Lol. Here are a couple of pics of the progress.

(I couldn't resist the shout out to Buddy the Elf)

And as you can see, it made for quite a colorful and fun set! Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

The making of a French Quarter painting

I have been stealing away time from commissions to work on some art inspired by our recent trip to the French Quarter. I've working on a series of small pieces of homes on or near Esplanade. Here's a montage of a couple of pieces.

(Above painting has been sold)

"1026 Esplanade" 11" x 14" (contact me for inquires and availability)

Thanks for stopping by and have a great week!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Mixed Media Bird and Recycling

I've been working on some new rather large pieces lately (including a mural which I'll share soon). I finally finished the last of this batch today and finally had time to play with my mixed media. I've been loving the challenges Mou has been posting on the Faber Castell Design Memory Craft blog, so I took the challenge today. She asked us to upcycle something creatively. So.... Here is what I did.

I started with a 5.5" square wood block that I prepared with gesso and paint. I choose some scrapbook papers and added the back of a McCalls sewing pattern- one from the Brook Shields line. (That should date it in the 80s.). I adhered my papers to the block and then started adding paint.

Then I had to decide what I wanted to create. Since the pattern envelope was nearly covered up, I added some cardboard from a box I had in my craft room. I tore away the layer to reveal the neat texture, and so the process continued.

I used a fabric sticker for my bird. I used a white Faber Castell big brush pen to define my clouds, various gelatos to add color to some of the elements, and a Pitt pen to draw black lines. I used various stamps to add texture. The stickers are from Tim Holtz.

Thanks for the fun challenge, Mou.

I have more large painting to do this weekend- elements for the theater set in town. It's fun to do what you love in different settings. Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Steampunk Inspired Shadow Box

I'm gearing up for this week's Downtown Gallery Crawl. I will have some New Orleans art as well as mixed media work at the River Gallery on Trenton Street in West Monroe as well as some Steampunk influenced art at the Downstairs Gallery on Art Alley in Monroe. What a night this will be!!

Here is one of the items I created for the Steampunk show. It's a Tim Holtz shadow box using a variety of items including Tim Holtz metal plates and a few items from Scarlet Lime's mixed media kit. I love creating using paper craft products.

I added things I've had for years in my stash including brads, photo corners, chipboard letters as well as some gears and even an old jingle bell. The legs on the piece are tiny candle holders from the craft section of our hobby store.

I still have to work on adding some steampunk elements to my skirt. Yes - we are dressing up in full costume (I'm scared!). LOL.

Thanks for stopping by. I just might post some after-opening photos - so check back.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Wall Mural - New Orleans Style

My artists friend and I donated our time to one of the regional Child Advocacy centers to paint a mural in one of their rooms. The director wanted and New Orleans scene and the local arts organization referred her to me. I wonder why? (smile)

Here are some photos taken through the end of the day. We aren't quite finished but we have made so much progress since starting with a blank wall.

I just wanted to share a few pics. We are hoping to finish it up in the next week or so (whenever our schedule permits) and I'll have some final pics of the room. The director is going to use pillows in the chairs to match the awnings in the beignet shop. It was fun.

Thanks for stopping by!!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

The making of Esplanade Beauty

I thought I'd do something a little different today and post some photos of my painting process, well - at least one of them. Depending on what I'm working on, I have several methods of working on a piece. I have so much inspiration from our recent trip to New Orleans. We stayed on Esplande right where the French Quarter ends and the Marigny District starts. We spent most of our time eating and listening to Jazz on Frenchmen Street. I came back with some beautiful photos to paint from.

I prepared several canvases at once by choosing some colors and blending the paint. At this point I had no ide what I would be painting on them, but had some New Orleans scenes in mind. I chose one of the canvases and sketched out my scene, a building on Esplandade. Then I started adding paint to an 11" x 14" canvas.

Some pics of the progress.

The above photo is when it was almost finished.

"Esplanade Beauty" (sold)
I added the final details in this photo. I still think I have a few things I want to do before it's "done". Then my hubby will add a gallery style framing to it. I had a purchaser following my facebook page see my "in progress" photo, so this painting will be shipped of early next week.
I hope you enjoyed my "view" into my studio today. I'll be posting a few step by steps in the next few weeks of some mixed media. Check back often and don't forget to "like" my facebook page, Melanie Douthit Art Studio, or follow my in twitter at DouthitArt to see peeks of new art.
Thanks for stopping by!