Happy Sketch

My Random Happy Sketches!


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Peripherals, a Brand New Art Project

I’ve started a new project that is very different from everything I’ve created before!  I filmed an announcement about the project that you can see here on my Facebook page or you can read along as I go into deeper detail about the specifics of what my project entails.

Peripherals is the name of the new body of work I am setting out to create! This body of work will be paintings of how I see through my legally blind eye. For those of you who have been following along with this blog off and on for the past 6 years (6 years?!) this is probably news to you. That’s because I can see perfectly fine with my one good eye, with a pair of glasses for its nearsightedness, so it didn’t seem necessary to mention it before.

If that’s the case then why am I suddenly deciding to do this project? Well, in the past few years I’ve been listening to the stories of a family member who is currently in the process of going completely blind. I’ve learned about their emotional and social challenges that they have been going through due to their significant loss of sight. Not only that but the harassment they face on a regular basis from the public simply because they cannot see well. The harassment seems to be worse when people find out that they are not completely blind. They told me they wished they could show people exactly what they were seeing so people could understand what they were going through and stop bothering them. (In another post I will go into detail about what exactly I mean by “bothering” and “harassment”). Because of their stories I realized I was in the right position to do exactly that, show people what visual impairment looks like. I cannot show you that family member’s legal blindness but I can you show mine.

This is how I’m going to do it!

I’m going to paint exactly what I’m seeing through my legally blind eye. To do that, I need to look at my subject with my good eye closed. I look with my bad eye and make a mental note of what I’m seeing. Then, I will paint what I saw with my good eye. If you were to watch me, the whole process would look ridiculous. I will closing my good eye over and over again, as if I am winking at my canvas.

Now to try to be as accurate as possible I need to paint from life and not from photographs. This means I won’t be taking old paintings and painting black spots on it to show an approximation of how it looks. There are so many approximations all over the internet and in text books with artists and scientists showing images of what tunnel vision or blind spots may look like. I’m going to show you exactly how I see!

Here’s the nitty gritty!

If I’m only going to be painting from life and not from photos that means I will be painting scenes of my apartment/studio, my friends, myself and of my city. As you’ve seen with my previous work I mostly paint from photographic reference. Although, I have painted from life many times before, but mostly of models during life drawing, or of still lifes in my studio. I haven’t done any En Plein Air (Painting outside) and unless I want my whole body of work to be just set in my apartment, I need to get comfortable painting outside. In public!

The break down is as follows.

Over the next few weeks I will be carting my supplies to various spots in the city and painting. I will not be painting my view from my bad eye, as of yet. First I want to get comfortable painting outside. What’s the difference between outside and inside? Time. Inside, I can control the light source. Outside, the sun is my light source and it moves, so I really only have an hour to get my composition and colours just right and then another hour or two to work on the details based on my initial composition. Or so I think, I haven’t really done this before :P

As I’m practicing I will also be “Scouting” out good spots and working on possible compositions. So there will end up being a lot of paintings of the same areas. From these studies I will decide what subjects I want to focus on.

Then, In the next month or so when I’ve become somewhat more comfortable with painting outside, I will start painting my favourite locations as I see them with my bad eye. On days that it’s raining I will work on compositions from inside my apartment/studio.

Don’t worry, because it’s been raining a lot up here in London, Ontario, I suspect you’ll see some “blind eye” paintings from my apartment really soon.

After I’ve collected enough En Plein Air studies that I am happy with, I will take them into the studio and repaint them on larger canvases. The paintings inside my apartment can probably start right away on large canvases once I’ve decided on subject and composition.

There is also the option of taking a larger canvas to a location on multiple days until it is completed. I just need to go to that location at the same time each day I go, so the lighting is correct. We will see as I go along which option will work best. I have a lot to learn!

I’m trying to paint as much as I can right now because there are only a couple of months before summer is over, then a couple of months before the weather gets really bad and I’m forced to stay inside. So, for the first little while, expect a lot of En Plein Air paintings!

During the month of August I will also be spending a week doing research on what it’s like living as a legally blind person. I will talk more about that as we get closer to that time.

Phew, I haven’t written a post this long in a while! I’ve already done a couple of days of En Plein Air painting so here are some pics of how they turned out! Please comment with any questions you may have or just comments on what you think of my project. Thanks!

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I Made a Bullet Journal From Scratch!

I’m a bit of a stationary nerd and lately I’ve been drooling over Traveler’s Notebooks and Bullet Journal spreads and I decided to make my own. This notebook combines everything I love about the customizability of Traveller’s Notebooks with the all in one functionality of bullet journaling.

Prior to this, I was using a tiny agenda to keep track of dates, a Field Notes notebook to list tasks for the day and a large Moleskin cashier notebook for brainstorming. I used to use a medium sized hardcover Moleskin​ adgenda for dates and tasks but I hated bringing around another big notebook for brainstorming ontop of that, hence why I went with the smaller options. I also have another notebook in my room where I attempted to write down dreams and daily affirmations, but that didn’t last. I missed doing that but I can’t combine it with my current system. That would be four notebooks to carry around! Bullet journalling was the answer, but I didn’t like any of the notebooks I have on hand. Luckily, I have a lot of paper supplies, so I made a notebook with everything I wanted!

Tada!

Before we open it up let’s go through the supplies I used to make this beauty. Starting from the top left hand corner:

Steel Ruler – Rhodia Dot Grid Paper – Bulldog Clip – Decorative Twine – Double Sided Tape – Washi Tape – Small Cutting Board – Cardboard – Decorative Paper – Small Envelopes – Blackwing Pencil – Bone Folder – Stapler – Scissors – Cutting Knife (not shown)

Once upon a time, a long time ago, I bought a stationary set. The cover for that set that held in the paper and envelopes I used to make the cover for this book. I simply cut it in half and made a spine out of two pieces of cardboard.

One piece of cardboard holds the covers together and a second more slender piece sits on the outside and secures the strings that keep the pages in place. I lined the outside spine with Washi tape for a cleaner finish.

When we open it up we notice there is red paper on the inside affixed to a larger piece of cardboard that makes the soft stationary holder now a hardcover book.

I know I said I wanted to combine everything but my sketchbook must remain separate. My main sketchbook is larger and I don’t always want to bring it with me which means I sometimes regret not having something to draw in when the urge strikes. So I put a small cashier Moleskin notebook in the front flap. It fits perfectly and I’ll always be ready when inspiration hits!

When you flip the first page which is hard cardboard you find two envelopes and my Index page. Inside one envelope I’m keeping business cards and in the other is my bullet key card.

The next spread is Long Term Projects, a wish list for things I want to buy someday, and the 2017 year calendar at a glance.

The 2017 and 2018 year at a glance continues on the next spread. I’ve always found this very handy in previous agendas so it made sense to add one for myself.

The next spread is my future log. I added a piece of Washi tape to the edge of the page so I can access it quickly. Here I made another calendar for each month where I highlight the days I run and total up the Kms at the end of the week. My running monthly goal is underneath as well as my cross training goal. After that I list off the important dates.

After the future log you’ll find a splash page for the month. I saw some bullet journals where people would make a memories page or a mood board so I thought I would do something similar. I might add movie tickets or stickers or doodle as the month goes by. Once again I added a piece of Washi tape to bookmark the page.

The next spread is my monthly log and I got to say that so far I’m not enjoying it. There is a lot of space so I might play around with it next month or leave it as is. I’m sure next month will be busier.

Here is my Daily Log! I write the date and in the morning as briefly as I can I write down any dreams from the night before. Then I write a sentence about what I’m grateful for and a sentence for what I’m excited for that day and then I leave a blank spot for the evening when I write something that happened that made that day great. Under that I list out my tasks and events for the day. Since I am very forgetful I decided to set a daily reminder on my phone that tells me at 8:30am and at 10:30pm to write in my journal.

If you flip through the pages you’ll eventually find the other side of the envelope cardboard that holds more tiny envelopes! I don’t have anything in them yet but I’m sure I’ll find something.

I also used this adorable squirrel paperclip to use on the top of the page I’m currently writing in. I forgot to add a bookmark string to the spine when I was tying in the books of paper but I think I like this better. It’s too cute.

Each book of paper has 10 spreads which makes 40 pages that I stapled together at their spine. Then using inspiration from Travellers Notebooks, I used gold string that is affixed to the inside of the spine of the cover to tightly tie the book in place.

By doing this I could slip the booklets out and add more later if I wanted to. I think I won’t though because I had so much fun making this, I would probably just make another one.

I made 5 booklets with 40 pages each, so that works out to 200 pages. I hope that’s enough for the year!

Here’s the back page! With a couple sheets of scrap paper, just in case.

Thanks for following along with me! I think I’ve made a journal that is simple enough to combine all my scheduling and journaling needs with all my favourite beautiful stationary details that keep me organized and excited to open it up everyday.

I hope I’ve inspired you!


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New Work “What a Hot Mess” for In The Round 4 Annual Group Show

I’m very excited and a little nervous to show you my new work for this upcoming show, In The Round 4 at Graven Feather Gallery. This is my first attempt at a sculptural piece. I’m satisfied with how they turned out so I’m positive I’ll be making some more in the future. 

My “What a Hot Mess!” Series is my commentary on how toxic our judgements are on other people’s appearances (as well as our own) especially when it is expected that one’s personal identity should reflect in their personal style and aesthetic. 

Please check out the show opening if you’re in Toronto next Thursday November 3rd at 7pm at Graven Feather Gallery beside Trinity Bellwood’s Park. This is a group show so there will be over 100 “rounds” on display! There will be something for everyone and for a low price of $65!

“What a Hot Mess!” 1 of 3 Oil paint, glass and hot glue on wood panel.

“What a Hot Mess!” 2 of 3 Oil paint, glass and hot glue on wood panel.

“What a Hot Mess!” 3 of 3 Oil paint, glass and hot glue on wood panel.
Here are a couple progress pictures.

First you paint the glass. I could of just painted lines straight down and called them stripes but I wanted to be authentic even if I was only me who would know that it was stripes from a blouse, folds and all. It was important that I painted actual fabric patterns on each pane of glass, from my own closet no less. 

Then you break the glass. What followed was hours and hours and hours of sanding down sharp edges while watching Netflix. I only got glass in me twice. Haha
Leave a comment on what you think of my new direction! Don’t worry though I’m still painting ;)

Hope to see you at the show!


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I Now Have a Clothing Line!

I recently got invited to collaborate with Vida Clothing to turn my paintings into wearable art. I know this isn’t something new and revolutionary and I wasn’t even interested at first until I realized I can finally do something with my obsessive flower painting! Oh, Florals are not your jam? Don’t worry I have plans for other designs in the near future. But for now check out what I have up! 

Vida sent me codes that expires quickly to celebrate the launch of my new collection.

Enjoy 15% off your purchase using code Welcome15

OR

Enjoy $50 off your purchase of $250+ using code Welcome50

Expires on 9/14/2016 <<< <<< <<< <<<

Here’s a preview of some of the items available.


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Current Projects Fresh Swears

Hello

I have been a very bad blogger. But you have heard this all before haven’t you? I begin with apologies for not posting often enough and how I will get back at it and yada yada yada but no more! Extend your pinkies as I extend mine! I, Jessica Caissie, pinky swear, the most holiest of playground swears that I will post a blog update once a week on Thursdays! As I write this very post it is currently 11:33pm EST on a Thursday, so this counts.

Now that that is out of the way, what have I been up to right? I’m still painting fabric, in fact I’m working on a good-sized one too. I took some progress pics of what I have done so far. I still have a LONG way to go.

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The once was “White” fabric is going to be very multicoloured. If anyone has been following my Instagram I posted a colour study so expect it to look something like this. It’s going to be nuts! This painting is going to be part 1 of 3 and I expect it will take me way into 2017 to complete all 3 of them. I’ll update here and there on WordPress but expect to see more progress shots on my Instagram. 

As usual I cannot just focus on one thing, I will also be participating in the 4th Annual In the Round Show at the Graven Feather Gallery. It’s this fun group show where over 100 artists pay a small fee and receive 3 die cut wooden circles and they create art out of them and they put them all on display. Here is the link if you’re interested in signing up. 

Ta ta for now!

 


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“Unframed”…A New Painting

In continuation of my “Identity” series I started back in 2014, I recently finished this small piece with plans to create more. This painting will be 1 of a set of 4. I’m really excited to finally be able to get back to work on this. Over the past couple of years working on “The Gift” and portrait commissions has left “Identity” sizzling on the back burner. While working on those other projects I thought of different ways I could expand on that idea. I hope you enjoy the work I produce in the next while. Anyway…

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Unframed #1 – Oil on Canvas and Wood Frame 9.5″ by 9.5″

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I painted all of it.

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Details

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I threw it up on my wall and it looks great beside the Tornado by Brian Harvey and prints by Bryce Huffman. The white oval frame at the bottom will be my next canvas. (The two figures and flowers are my paintings…obviously?)


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Commissions and drawings on Sick Days.

Hello, long time no talk.

I’m still working on a big commission so I haven’t had any time to work on personal painting’s. Although in between painting sessions and nights I get home late from work I’ve been working in my sketchbook. Today I wasn’t feeling well on my day off so I curled up in bed and drew Jupiter. Yes Jupiter.

I’m getting ready to launch a new online shop on Society 6 with Illustrations and I’m working on a planet series.

As soon as I’m done this commission which hopefully won’t be any longer than a week or two from now, I’ll be throwing down a portrait study or something, I don’t know, something’s gonna happen!

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I got a new sketchbook. It’s much sturdier.

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All done, with black and red ballpoint pen. Still have to scan it and Photoshop out the line in the middle to make it online ready.

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Details!