Night Flyer


acrylic inks, collage on w/c paper, 10 X 11″

night flyer, the one you rarely see

but know in your wild bones

the one you hear in your crackling knees

feel in the subtle touch of breeze on skin

the sharpness of claws too

this night hunter, clad in radiant garments

is a gorgeous killing machine

. . . and oh those eyes!

You know the Great Horned Owl?  She is so magnificent that she makes you shiver if you see her close up.

We were experimenting with paper textures in Monday Muses and I had such a desire to draw and painting something wild. So I put her in there and tried to stay a bit abstract. The film strip edges helped to bring it all into focus.


Wear It or Ride It

I’m woefully behind on posting!  So I’ll be playing a bit of catch up, because the art keeps happening regardless. My Experimental Acrylic and Mixed Media Painting Workshop at the Sebastopol Center for the Arts was over a week ago. Students came from as close as Sebastopol and as far as Little Rock, Arkansas and the creative sparks were flying!


We started out with warm ups and getting the paint on in expressive ways involving squirting, splattering, scraping, finger smooshing, oh and a bit of brush painting as well.


Demo: acrylic inks and gesso on w/c paper, 10 x 10″

The title of this little piece is Wear It or Ride it, though I didn’t see the figure until I looked at the picture I’d taken.

We went on to create ground textures with acrylic mediums and papers. Then, paying attention to design and color factors,we developed the textured beginning by glazing with acrylics.


What Species Is This?


Poured acrylics and collaged acrylic skins on w/c paper, 10 X 11″

What sound would this creature make?  Could he/she be your friend, or would you cower when you saw its eye fixed on you? I think I might simply marvel at its extravagent garb!


More Camping Sketches

Have you tried sketching in the dark around a campfire?  It’s as challenging as sketching a bird in flight, except that you can’t see what’s on the paper either.  But, so much fun.


Sharpie Pen and watercolor in 4″ X 8″ handbook brand w/c sketchbook

Oh, and it was also raining, but sitting under towering redwood trees that was not an immediate problem, especially not with watercolor.  We were camping at Gualala Point Regional Park in California, a drought ridden state, but not entirely dry.


The Pearly Everlasting – a lovely flower I wanted to identify – and what a marvelous name it has!


Within minutes of putting our food in the “locked” food safe I surprised this little fellow who’d snuck in through a hole to raid the larder.  After that he was always somewhere nearby watching for his next chance. . .along with the blue jays.


The campground was humming with activity under the redwoods at nightfall with many fires.


I think I have gotten quite weary of painting beaches for so many years.  So I threw in some feet for interest, sketching and painting this time while the wind flapped the paper around.  But once again, it’s the obstacles that loosen me up and add interest.


Suzanne’s husband Scot – always a willing subject, especially in his favorite red shirt!


Finding a spot of morning sun I settled in with my coffee to sketch the closest object – my precious Coleman stove!


New combinations


acrylic inks, interference acrylics, finger printing and photo collage over black gesso on w/c paper

Bits and scraps of techniques tried and abandoned.  Jars of paint rarely used.  Old failed paintings.  Pictures that have been sitting in the picture file for months and years.  Dried up left over paint pealed up.  Sometimes it’s time to get it all out and see how it might fit together.  After all, we can never as artists create something new out of absolutely nothing!  In the end our works are new combinations of what has come before.


More Free Concert Sketching


 Pitt Artist pen and watercolor in Handbook brand watercolor sketchbook, 4″ X 8″

Hundreds of people on the Windsor (CA) town green in lawn chairs or on blankets, eating and drinking and listening to a free concert – Slim Jenkins playing Voodoo Blues.  After a glass of wine I just pick up my pen and go at it.


Something about the live music and relaxed summer evening and the only ones working are the musicians and food venders. . .allows random lines and deliciously sloppy watercolors. . . and then I get up and dance with the crowd in the still sunny evening light.


Then later in the week, we went to the Rivertown Revival in Petaluma on the river.  These Petaluma folks are rightly proud about their town and its lively spirit.  Lots of them were in Steam Punk regalia too.  Using the full spread I sketched the Incubators on one side and The Sam Chase on the other.  They were both seriously rocking! (the painting got done next day at home) I didn’t get all the members of either group but just the ones I could see from my seat.  Drummers missing!


Tombow brush pen which bleeds when wet – good for instant shading.

But I wasn’t done so at home I did a couple more sketches from Bob’s photos.



Some day I’ll get some Steam Punk attire. . .maybe. . .at least now I have one of those parasols!


Reaching for the sun


 acrylic ink texture printing, acrylics, collage on w/c paper, 10 X 11″

reaching for the sun 

casting it like a discus

he is both bound and bound-less

the child of volcanic eruption

all fire and molten rock

yet he is the lightest of fibers

fine filaments that fit between the tightest boulders

move them ever so slowly over eons

while we think, in our heavy footed earthen way

that the shape of things now has always been

we worship the god Mercury for his speed

misjudging the movement of time

thinking it can be held in a human hand

 One of my favorite themes – the human body bound and yet transcendent.  This theme of volcanic eruption clearly precipitated by my recent stay in Lasson Volcanic National Park.

The technique is a simple print making one using plastic wrap coated with ink for the transfer.

In conversations with the Muse I mix paint with vision, collage with story, word with meditation and prayer. And out of the mixture comes a release of energy and healing and a lightening of the load of everyday living. You'll find most of it here, where I've been showing up for the past few years, along with collectible paintings, travel sketchbooks, figure studies and an invitation to join me in art play and discovery!

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

My Website and Workshops

Check out my book!

The Art Journal As ...
By Susan Cornelis


All images and text are the original copyrighted work of Susan Cornelis unless otherwise attributed.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 192 other followers