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Using Black Walnut Ink & Oil Pastel with Brush and Pen

Using Black Walnut Ink & Oil Pastel with Brush and Pen

Because oil pastel colors set up an oil resist barrier to paper, ink distributes differently over it. This combination naturally forms puddles and patterns. It is beautiful with little effort; and a great way for students to start working with artisan black walnut ink. Once the basic forms are down, we use pens to add detail and enhance form.

This video moves through steps in drawing, coloring and using both brush and pen with ink. You do not need to draw well to begin to use this drawing method.

In addition to demonstrating, it is also a poem about creative consciousness, the state of mind that accompanies creative work. My hands reflect this state of mind in subtle ways. Small hesitation reflects the ongoing decisions embedded as choice and directed action. The stroke of pen and pastel is rhythmic. Rhythm is a background setting supportive of creative thought, interpretation and inspiration. This consciousness feels out of time. The artist moves in a timeless rhythm to “make” artwork that emerges from a consistent application of material, energy and consciousness so new objects appear.

Normal consciousness is in sync with our surroundings, our engagement with our environment and the emerging and dissipating moments of being alive in place, space, relationship and culture. It is in time, contextualized by past, present and future. It is organized in events that appear, and generate new events that segue into one another. When we are in one place, we are simultaneously aware that in other places there are other events appearing and disappearing over time. This normal consciousness, and the passing of time, is referenced here by the audio track. Fragments of event reports and references to the passage of time are embedded in the audio track because the radio was playing as I worked. The unity of what I am doing and what the radio is broadcasting is interwoven by the sound of pen and pastel moving across the paper.

This video is a transition into a series of video lessons that demonstrate methods of making art with ink and color. The lessons also focus on creative process as  a state of mind and way of moving from thought forms to material renderings. The underlying philosophy is that the agency an artist uses to make art is the same that we all can and do use to shape and add new objects and our environment. My goal is to encapsulate this process into video packages where creative process is mindfully visible.  This is my motive, and artisan black walnut ink is my method.