What are you working on now?

This week we have Renee Brown of DecoratetheDiva and Greg Spalenka sharing with us what they have been working on.  First up is Renee.  Her shop is described as having: Eco Earth Nature Modern Retro Romantic Vintage Jewelry.  She uses an interesting array of objects in her work including Acai Seeds which is exactly what we are getting a glimpse of in this week's 'What are you working on?'.
This is what I'm working on. I've come up with a unique design with acai seed beads and sterling silver.

 It takes me a whole day to make one from start to finish. I work off and on throughout the day making decisions on placement, color, and balance. I have one of my children or my husband string it the first time because patience in not my strong point and we can spend some chat time together. I usually have to take it apart several times before the beads are in line where I like them.

Finishing it off takes the longest because I have to check how it lays on the mannequin and myself about five or six times, including taking off and adding more beads for the perfect length and space between each strand.

I have the photographing down now. I used to take about twenty pictures and find the best angles and layout. Now I have the poses down and only take five to seven pictures and edit them before adding them to my shop on etsy. The big pile of beads is my favorite shot of the acai seed bead necklace. I have been selling them faster than I can make them so I'm working on these before the Christmas rush.

  DecoratetheDiva on etsy
Acai Seed Rainbow Necklace with Free Shipping


Next we have Greg Spalenka of Spalenka on etsy. Greg's shop description is that of Fantasy & Visionary Art from the Minds Eye, and that is exactly what we get to see below!  Greg was commissioned to create a poster and has documented that process on his website.  I'd like to share a few of those images here as well as the finished piece that is available in his etsy store as a limited edition archival print.

In his own words: "This assignment was to create a poster for "National Portfolio Day', an event that takes place throughout the year to educate artistic individuals in high schools and junior colleges as to the different art colleges available to them."

Above photo:  Sketches were drawn with the idea of art connecting to your heart. The image of different elements growing out of a heart was chosen. Initial design and type ideas were discussed with Jeff Burne. Then a large drawing was created on Gator board. This archival board is like a very stiff foam core. 

 I have stacks of magazines, old books, transparencies and newspapers that I cut images from.  Intuitively I place them on and around the loose drawing.  The board turns into a large collage.  Even though much of this imagery will be covered over with paint, I like the idea of it's energy being a part of the final artwork.

In some of the art I create I let parts of the drawing show through, but in this instance, it all gets covered. All collage pieces are glued down and sealed with acrylic matte medium. I wear surgical gloves because most of this process is done with my hands.


When this first layer of oil paint was dry I gave the whole piece a glaze of yellow ochre, burnt sienna, and burnt umber.  After this glaze has dried more refinement of form continues.  The process of refining form and glazing lasts until I feel the painting is complete.  There may be sanding and scraping of the image between layers of glazing to give it added texture.

 Art Heart by Greg Spalenka
13x18 (in) Archival Limited Ed. Print


Thank you both for sharing what and how you do what you do!  What are YOU working on?  If you are an Artisans Gallery Team member please visit our flickr forum and add your latest works to be featured next Friday.


Brad Sears said...

Amazing work! Thanks much for sharing.

Michelle said...


Kanokwalee said...

Awesome. I love hearing how other designers/artists work. Thank you Renee and Greg for sharing your work and process. They're great pieces.

Roxana said...

This is such a great weekly post. It's so much fun to see what others on the team are creating with their hands and minds. Thanks Paula as well as Renee and Greg for sharing.

who.knows.what.dreams.may.go said...

thx so much for sharing such lovely artists!

Waterrose said...

both are amazing artists and I appreciate the insight to each methods of creating. Beautiful work!

bluebicicletta said...

That poster is completely amazing! Wowee! And what jewelery! Lovely to see inside the artist's work!


Renegade Perceptions said...

I am new to this blog and so far it is awesome! I do love seeing how other artists work...