I spend the majority of my studio time studying the human body for the purpose of developing a contemporary method of drawing the classical figure: Building a human body inside out from head to toe is a laborious and complex process that involves the study of anatomy, body mapping, pattern making, and a high degree of hands on material work. (figure.01-.03).
However, from time to time I take a break from my regular routine to explore other art interests. For instance, I love using my I-phone to transform my drawings into designs for printmaking. (figure.04). Also, one of my long-term hobbies is collecting thrift store art. In the majority of ‘not quite right’ pieces people give away, I find there exist a brilliant composition hidden in the whole. To honor the unknown artists and to give their work a new life, I find and photograph the composition I find pleasing in their work, then use I-phone apps to transform and update the original (figure.05).
THE UPS & DOWNS OF SILKSCREENING DIGITAL DESIGNS
When working directly with fiber related material like paper, fabric, masking tape, saran wrap, or even string, I usually use a very hands-on approach. However, when drawing designs for screen-printing, I have become quite accustomed to using my i-phone and its many functions as a method of experimenting with pattern design. My first step when using the i-phone to produce a digital design, is to take a photograph (often something from nature, or my own drawings and paintings). In a second step, I experiment extensively with the image using apps that allow me to erase, add layers, change colors and so on. After research for the design is complete, I print the photo (Walmart), enlarge it (Staples), and then transfer it unto a silk-screen.
Screening the digital design unto fabric adds a whole new level of challenges to the design process. For example, the digital image may have been enlarged too much or too little for the fabric it is printed on. Or, another problem that tends to surface when using a digital design is that it may be too intricate or pixelated for the silkscreen process. Sometimes, however, the digital design translates into a silkscreen print even better than anticipated. Whatever the outcome, the journey of discovery through experimentation, for me, is all the reward I need.
Since graduation in 2011, Linda has been busy developing a contemporary figure drawing approach. In 2018, she received a Calgary Arts Development Small Experiments Grant in support of her research project “Bones Muscles Skin: Drawing the Classical Contemporary Figure.”
Funding enabled her to study the suitability and potential of masking tape as a contemporary form of media.
The process of using masking tape, saran wrap and wire to make 3-dimensional life-size anatomically precise figurative forms is work intensive and demands a detailed knowledge of anatomy. Thus, Linda spends much time in studio drawing and making body structures.