Painting has taken up the majority of my time, lately, which is why I'm probably single again. You see, I grew up always being denied my dreams of becoming an artist. Growing up with Roman Catholic parents who dreamed of their famous soccer player every single day made it difficult to ever express my dreams, or myself for that matter. When I did, I would be shot down with the typical, "there's no money in that!" "You need to get a scholarship by playing soccer!" They hammered it into my head so much so that when it came time for college I didn't know who else to 'go become". And anytime I considered an art degree I'd run away afraid of committing to the debt. So I packed my bags and joined the Navy, and after my first enlistment, I still decided to stay in the service because I was comfortable. I believed that I could never make it as an artist or photographer even though I had my G.I. Bill at my disposal. Now ten years later I am ready get out of the service. I did my time, and my heart just isn't in it anymore. My whole life up until this point has revolved around putting my fears and others before me.
My heart now lies with the dreams my soul conceived when I first put a crayon to paper. Unfortunately, the ambition and dedication it takes to become someone and fill the shoes you were meant to fill is not conducive to the beginning of a new love story. With happy ever after love comes dedication and prioritizing someone else's needs before yours. So I recently hit an impasse.... a combination of work, therapy, chasing my dream, going for my BFA next year, getting out of the service, and starting a new relationship boiled over inside of me. I realized I couldn't be that gay family with the white picket fence, dog, little ones running around, dinner ready on the table, and household chores, because at the moment my priorities are me, myself, and I (Thanks Beyoncé).... Not yet at least, because I do want those things along with a flat in NYC, but I don't want my needs to be a burden or strain on someone else.
In lieu of my continued momentum toward tomorrow I wanted to share this video, which discusses my first attempt at pouring resin over my paintings. I've always wanted to achieve that glossy high-end look with some of my work but never had the space or just kept putting it off. I definitely will say this.... READ EVERYTHING OVER OF WHAT NOT TO DO! With that said, no, I didn't completely mess it up. I was actually surprised at how easy it was to do. The steps are short, but they involve a lot of patience and tending to. Here are a few of my not to do's and things that worked for me:
Successes: I didn't want the resin to go over the edges for the 2nd piece, so I used a technique called "Damming". Which from all the videos I saw, artists would wrap metal tape all around the edges, which I did, but I modified a bit. I did not want a thick Lucite layer of resin, so I wrapped painters tape around all of the edges and went over that with metal tape. Knowing that I was going to be as careful as possible not to let the resin run over the edges. If it did, the metal tape would come off first and whatever minor run off I had would just peel off with the painters tape.
1) I was researching ways to minimize the amount of bubbles that would rise and one Youtuber said she would put the resin in a warm bath after mixing it for like 10 min...yah ABSOLUTELY DID NOT WORK! Only thing it succeeded at was reducing the amount of time you had to work with it. Mix it SLOWLY and blow out the bubbles with a straw or torch 15 min AFTER pouring. I may or may not have stood over the first pour with a straw blowing out every bubble for thirty minutes…that’s what I get for throwing out my crack lighter! lol (it was my first pour; I wanted it to be perfect!)
2) Do a single pour. Don't sit there working with the resin you poured then decide you want a little more and add bits here and there. This resulted in dimpling in random spots.
3) If you are working with magazine clippings like I was, seal your work. After pouring the resin, I noticed it bled through on a few of the clippings I had put down.
4) If you are doing a collage, make sure EVERYTHING is tacked down so the resin doesn't seep underneath. I didn't have a glue stick, so I made my own modge-podge with Elmer’s glue; and because I didn't want the rippling to happen, I avoided slathering it on and only doing the corners of my clippings. Rippling still happened and a couple corners rose to up and out of the completely cured resin.
5) If you like to sign your paintings on the front, DON'T FORGET TO SIGN IT BEFORE YOU POUR. I was so excited to work with it that I forgot to sign my pieces. Fortunately, I'm going to have to pour over both pieces anyways, so I'll have a chance to sign the frames at least.
6) Line your work area with newspapers, wax paper, or parchment paper. "You're going to be careful and not let it run off anywhere"....yah that’s what I said....now I have a foam poster board sealed onto an old mantel.
7) Don't NOT read the what not to do's online, because chances are you will do something that you think won't harm the end result, and well, it does. A good resource I found for all your resin questions is at www.ArtResin.com. Now this is not me endorsing them lol. I swear I watched every video I could on pouring resin, and it’s like they reached out to all the resin artists and asked them to feature their product because "Everyone loved Art Resin and you couldn't use anything else!" Well, I did, not because I didn't want to, but my art store didn't have the large size, so I went with Envirotex Lite.
Check out my youtube video for a more in depth explanation of my process!