Feet First

Karen Tashkovski

When I was growing up, I really hated being different.  Ethnic.  Whatever you want to call it.  The long last name that no one could pronounce.  A first generation American with a family from a country no one had ever heard of.  The funny thing is my dad actually added a letter H to our last name (making it even longer) so that people would be able to pronounce it.

Tash * Cough * Ski

Not so hard.  Of course the accent can be on either of the three syllables, and when I say it really fast people are like – what?

As I got older, I learned to appreciate my individuality.  It obviously helped that the world seemed to be heading in the same direction.  Actresses like Renee Zellweger, for example, were using their real names and we learned to accept that.  I loved signing my last name to…

View original post 402 more words

Advertisements

The Gourmet

A trip to Vince’s Gourmet Imports (440 N. Main Street, North Syracuse, New York 13212) inspired my new still life painting project.  The Studio in Art students completed the course with these epic 16″ x 20″ acrylic paintings.

20190612_115846.jpg

20190407_140557

20190612_115800.jpg

20190407_140939

I have paired them here with their inspiration photograph.  Students selected the picture then began with the contour line drawing.  These were transferred to canvas with the magical help of graphite paper, placed onto gessoed and burnt sienna-stained canvas panels.

20190612_115549.jpg

20190407_141009

20190618_110719.jpg

20190407_140800

My main educational tip – begin with white in your mixing tray.  Add raw sienna and whatever main color to the mix (blue, yellow, etc).  This will insure that you don’t make too much of a color by starting too dark and adding crap-loads of white, lol.  The other thing to keep in mind is to not homogenize the mixture so that you can utilize dark and light variations of the color while painting with one brush.

20190618_110653.jpg

20190407_140338

I am an advocate for students developing and maintaining their own styles as artists.  We looked at the work of Alice Neel and Janet Fish.  Some students went with the black outlines à la Neel.  And Fish’s representation of glass was helpful to their decision making.

20190618_110535.jpg

20190407_140403

20190620_082620.jpg

They took the paintings home today, but their images are on display in the counseling offices and will remain there throughout the summer months. I made 8″ x 10″ color copies of the paintings, mounted them to black construction paper and placed them in frames.  I love this new gallery space!

20190620_082654.jpg

20190620_082628.jpg

20190612_120015.jpg

20190407_140959

20190612_120507.jpg

20190407_140726

I feel incredibly blessed to have shared this artistic adventure with these very talented fourteen-year-olds.  Studio in Art is an accelerated high school level class that I teach to 8th graders at Chittenango Middle School in Chittenango, New York.

20190612_115945.jpg

20190407_140519

20190612_115630.jpg

20190407_141123

20190612_120206.jpg

20190407_140731

20190612_120418.jpg

20190407_140500

20190618_110611.jpg

20190407_140557

 

 

 

Final Countdown

IMG_20190520_090139_847.jpg
Trina Turk top and pants, BCBGMaxAzria belt, BCBGeneration sandals
IMG_20190523_094707_706.jpg
C by Bloomingdale’s cashmere cardigan, Trina Turk dress, Marc Jacobs booties

Nine days left of the 2018-2019 school year – I wonder what I will wear?

IMG_20190524_092348_705.jpg
Free People cardigan, Max Mara top, 7 For All Mankind jeans, Marc Jacobs sandals
IMG_20190528_092827_044.jpg
Free People cardigan, Rachel Zoe dress, Marc Jacobs boots

The classroom will be messy until next Friday.  We are still painting.

IMG_20190529_092811_356.jpg
Banana Republic cardigan, Free People top, Alice = Olivia pants, Calvin Klein booties
IMG_20190605_092032_709.jpg
Michelle DaRin necklace, Free People tunic, BCBGMaxAzria top and pants, Marc Jacobs booties
IMG_20190604_085323_996-1.jpg
Honora necklace, BCBGMaxAzria sweater, top and skirt, Nine West booties
IMG_20190530_084002_201.jpg
Kobi Halperin top, BCBGMaxAzria pants, BCBGeneration sandals
IMG_20190603_085130_672.jpg
Theory sweater, BCBGMaxAzria pants, Marc Jacobs boots
IMG_20190612_083658_501.jpg
Cinq a Sept silk top, French Connection leather skirt, Marc Jacobs booties
IMG_20190611_085015_117.jpg
Theory cardigan, Rachel Zoe dress, BCBGMaxAzria T-shirt, Marc Jacobs boots

Sensu Meets Natsu

20190604_172535.jpg

My encaustic paintings are currently on display at Kasai Ramen!  They are part of a group show curated by Jamie Santos.

The group show is titled Natsu.

57674135_447093152713238_3841216898964389888_o

20190604_172521.jpg

There will be an artist reception on Thursday, June 13, 2019 from 6 – 10 pm.  Hope to see you there!  Here is the link to the Facebook invite – facebook.com/events/66304848748843

20190604_172456.jpg

These twelve paintings are from my Sensu series of encaustics, created last month ($250 each).  They are 8″ x 8″ encaustic & collage pieces.  On the back of each painting, I have instructions on how to care for these paintings.  ❤

20190604_172443.jpg

Care Instructions for Encaustic Pieces – 

Over time, dust and other particles in the air will collect on the surface of the painting and make a film that will look dull.  Regular buffing in the first three months will help to keep the surface shiny and will bring out translucency in layers that are not currently visible.  After three months, the surface of the encaustic painting will stabilize and won’t attract dust as readily.  Any time the painting starts to look dull, it can be buffed with a very soft rag to increase the transparency and shine of the surface.  Light dusting of the piece is all that is needed in the form of maintenance.

To make sure your piece lasts a long time, it should not be hung where it will experience below freezing temperatures or in direct sunlight coming through a window.  Be aware of placing your piece near a powerful light bulb or any kind of lighting that produces a lot of heat (Christmas lights).  Don’t leave your piece in a car on a hot day or near a fireplace.  As long as your piece is kept in your house at a comfortable temperature, it should stay in perfect condition.

Because the wax is soft, it could be damaged if dropped or if a sharp or hard object is scraped over the surface.  Fingerprints will also damage the surface over time, as the acid on our hands will etch itself into the wax.  A quick wipe of the surface after everyone touches it will prevent this from happening.

If you ever need to pack or move, or ship your encaustic painting, make sure you wrap it in a piece of paper with a smooth surface before wrapping it in bubble wrap or anything that has a texture that could damage the surface.

Encaustic painting is very archival, resistant to moisture, fading from light exposure or yellowing from acid.  In fact, encaustic painting is the most archival form of known painting.  Your painting has the potential to last for hundreds of years if well cared for.  I trust you will enjoy it!

Stone Face

20190604_172718.jpg

20190604_172837.jpg

Art Rage (505 Hawley Avenue, Syracuse, New York 13203) has offered up another large-scale portrait show – this time they’re paintings – by Buffalo, New York bred and current Hudson Valley artist Joe Radoccia.

20190604_172819.jpg

20190604_172808.jpg

These are oil paintings with gorgeous technical drawing proficiency and a burnt sienna/sepia color palette that alludes to the past – in regard to both subject matter and mature stoic models.  They are installed using magnets that connect to a metal brace on the wall, which also seems to be an allegory – magnetic personalities who found themselves in a battle for their sexual orientation rights, telling stories that combine hope for tomorrow with a bit of waiting-for-the-shoe-to-drop angst (will it fall/falter/fail?).  One that Art Rage fans find compelling – social (in)justice, in this case, as it relates to the history of gay rights and the personal histories of these larger-than-life characters.

20190604_172800.jpg

20190604_172750.jpg

The show is titled About Face: 50 Years After Stonewall.  It chronicles the events during and following what is known as the Stonewall rebellion, a protest/fight-back by attendees of a Greenwich Village nightclub during a police raid.  It was this single event in 1969 that catapulted the gay pride movement as mainstream history.

20190604_172740.jpg

20190604_172727.jpg

Each painting in this series is accompanied by interviews with the models and these snippets form the narrative link.  It is a fascinating and informative journey.  Personalities sharing their unique stories, which, combined, create a tapestry of unity, spirit, power and grace.

20190604_172618.jpg

20190604_172708.jpg

The art reception was last Saturday, but other events are scheduled during the next month and a half.  Joe Radoccia will do an artist talk on Tueday, June 18, 2019 at 7 pm at the gallery.  In addition, there will be film screenings as well as LGBTQ activist lectures.  See their website for the deets on those activities here.

20190604_172658.jpg

20190604_172646.jpg

The show runs through July 12, 2019.  Art Rage is open Wednesday – Friday 2 – 7 pm and Saturday noon – 4 pm.

20190604_172604.jpg