interference acrylics

The Three X’s

All over Amsterdam you see the image of three white x’s on a black stripe on a red background. One can’t help but wonder what it means. It looks a bit like a pirate flag. But since I was there I’ve learned that the X’s actually stand for St. Andrew’s crosses. St. Andrew was a fisherman who was martyred on an X-shaped cross in the 1st century AD, which is relevant to Amsterdam as the city’s symbol dates back to 1505 when it was a fishing town and all ships registered in Amsterdam flew this flag. (Thank you to a FB and Instagram friend for clarifying)

The only reason I bring this up now is that those X’s popped up in my art demo in Muse Group on Monday. The lesson was painting on a black painted surface. Interference paints are iridescents that only show up on a dark surface where they seem to throw the light around.

3xInterference acrylics and collage over black gesso coated w/c paper

Presenting. . . (drum roll) the three X’s!

Not as in X-out or don’t you dare, or wrong times 3

but as in, this is a riddle. . .

What happened when the 3 X’s went for a walk and suddenly found themselves on stage and had to act out a character?


One was dressed in bright stripes and struck a fashion model pose

Another was in black and took a defiant stand

And the third shy one was in blue like the background and happy to blend in.

Which one were you?

Interestingly most of the Muse Group students agreed with me that they would prefer to be the one who blends in. But gosh, it’s fun to get a little bit of spotlight every now and then!

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.

Almost Out of the Woods


by Muse Theresa Vernon, iridescent/interference acrylics, gesso, stamping, collage on w/c paper

Almost Out Of The Woods

Almost out of the woods.  Are these the woods I am almost out of?

An intense place to be.  Ferment cracking the surface.

The fire underground.  Dark growth – the roots of the future.

Blue skies appearing ahead for sure.

But meanwhile I am still in the thick of it.

Engaging the elements and creating what will pay the price of freedom.

I can think, I can fast, I can wait.

This is the place of transformation.  It takes as long as it must – no less.

Be in it in order to leave it behind.  Short cuts will not take you there.

The only way out, is through.

-Theresa Vernon

Theresa has been wowing us in Monday Muses with her intricately patterned pieces with healing themes.  She has lots of these up on her blog:  A New Life: A Path of Healing for the Whole Self if you’d like to see more. These words poured out of her in the five minute free write we do after painting/collaging.  We can all relate to this intense place in the woods, but how many of us are brave enough to face it consciously and let it manifest through our art?

A new eight week Monday Muse Group (in Sebastopol, CA)  will be starting June 3.  If you’d like more information or are interested in joining us, contact me.