not-so-messy glasswork by Di Parsons.

IMGP45341. Most artists have a favorite medium, what is yours? If you work in multiple media, which one is the most enjoyable for you?

My favourite medium is glass. In particular, lampwork. My first love has always been glass, and I’m thrilled to finally get to work it myself, even lateish in life. My inner dragon is very, very happy.

I never could sculpt, or draw, or paint. But somehow, with my hands in front of a torch throwing a flame hot enough to boil glass, I can create things that were only possible in my wishes before.  I find I can use glass to express my often silly and blackish sense of humour.  Adding melting glass to more hot glass means I can build things I wouldn’t even have dreamed of before my inner dragon was woken.

2. Do you have any secret shortcuts? I mean, do you use odd tools, techniques, or anything else that isn’t strictly status-quo for your medium? How did you figure out that it worked?

LOL short-cuts is my middle name! So often, many glassworkers have to be resourceful in terms of tools and techniques. ‘Proper’ tools are expensive, so I have a lot of items that weren’t meant to be used as hot glass tools, which work just as well. Steel items, like cutlery can be used to great effect. One of my favourite tools is a simple flat-ended awl from a mini screwdriver set, while another is a steel apple/cheese corer. Even a pair of teabag tongs can be the go-to.  I’m always on the lookout for tools that I can use.  The best tool of all, however is a sense of humour. Without that, I’d hardly be making anything.

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The tiny box of Fedora El Morro.

1535702_766469853380498_1676994651_n1. Most artists have a favorite medium, what is yours? 

My favorite medium is photography.

2. Do you have any secret shortcuts? I mean, do you use odd tools, techniques, or anything else that isn’t strictly status-quo for your medium? How did you figure out that it worked?

I use anything and everything I can get my hands on to achieve the images of my intent. White and black foam is cheap and awesome to have around for lighting. I use fabrics and curtains from thrift stores for backdrops. I have a collection of cameras, some fancy, some old, some simple. I just took a three day photo trip with a friend. I brought 5 cameras a lots of lighting. While I used the polaroid camera, the D5000, the D700, the Go-Pro 2, and the Sony HD video, I only used ONE CHEAP CLAMP LIGHT with a 500 Watt photoflood bulb in it….the entire trip…one light, no modifiers. The best gear one has is whatever they have access to.

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Kristof Corvinus's black tulip shine.

TheHidden1. Most artists have a favorite medium, what is yours? If you work in multiple media, which one is the most enjoyable for you?

If I am painting I prefer oils first then acrylics second best. Drawing and illustrating I love using colored pencils ( I only will use Prisma color) . Recently however I’ve discovered a love for watercolor pencils. They have become invaluable to me when I am out in what I call my “world studio” to draw people and places in my sketch journal. I have found I can make some nice finished work with them. Traditional watercolor not in pencil form, however, I am pretty lame with.

When I don’t have time, supplies or inclination I love playing around in my various digital art programs.
Mixed media has become more important to me; either in ATC form or larger canvas art. My favorite thing is to use flat back “bling” that are typically used in scrap booking and Mardi Gras beads. Anything that will give extra dimension to color and shape in the paintings I use. Whatever I have handy actually. Glitter, wire, dryer lint, paper products, baked polymer clay, beads, etc.

The little whimsical sculptures I do are always polymer clay and painted with acrylic.

2. Do you have any secret shortcuts? I mean, do you use odd tools, techniques, or anything else that isn’t strictly status-quo for your medium? How did you figure out that it worked? 

One of the oldest and most favourite odd short cuts/techniques I use is to blend my colored pencils. Grumbacher’s Fixative is sprayed on something small and absorbent but sturdy ( such as small bit of tightly rolled cotton cloth )to rub over the pencil. It makes effects one sees in paint.  How I found it worked was by being excessive with it when spraying over colored pencil drawing back when I was a teen. It pooled of course and made the color bleed.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA3. You’ve sold work before? What was the first thing someone bought from you, that you made? How did it feel to sell that piece? Are there pieces you keep hidden away, or keep for yourself, and why?

Yes I’ve sold my work. I believe my first official art sale was when I was either sixteen or seventeen. It was our local hair stylist in the small swamp town I lived in. She wanted a portrait of her daughter for a memorial library in town at the private school. Her daughter passed away from drowning at an early age; about three or four. The woman  has only this one faded photo of her from the sixties. Nothing else. I painted it in oil. The drawing was painstakingly slow because I was nervous and wanted to honor this child as best I could. I breathed life into her. The first thing my client did was clap a hand over her mouth and left the room crying. It had touched her so much. Later she confessed to me she had almost forgotten what the daughter really looked like. That was truly inspiring and emotionally touching to me. I will never forget that reaction and experience.

As to what art I have hidden or keep to myself? I have a few drawings, mixed media pieces and such that I use for imagery work. To help manifest the reality that these images portray. With some exception no one sees them. They live in my studio on a small alter I have or travel with me in a special sketchbook so I can look at them all of the time.
I used to have some paintings that depicted very dark and troubled times for me. I couldn’t part with them but also I couldn’t stand to look at them. I have since then destroyed those.

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Kristof Corvinus’s black tulip shine.

TheHidden1. Most artists have a favorite medium, what is yours? If you work in multiple media, which one is the most enjoyable for you?

If I am painting I prefer oils first then acrylics second best. Drawing and illustrating I love using colored pencils ( I only will use Prisma color) . Recently however I’ve discovered a love for watercolor pencils. They have become invaluable to me when I am out in what I call my “world studio” to draw people and places in my sketch journal. I have found I can make some nice finished work with them. Traditional watercolor not in pencil form, however, I am pretty lame with.

When I don’t have time, supplies or inclination I love playing around in my various digital art programs.
Mixed media has become more important to me; either in ATC form or larger canvas art. My favorite thing is to use flat back “bling” that are typically used in scrap booking and Mardi Gras beads. Anything that will give extra dimension to color and shape in the paintings I use. Whatever I have handy actually. Glitter, wire, dryer lint, paper products, baked polymer clay, beads, etc.

The little whimsical sculptures I do are always polymer clay and painted with acrylic.

2. Do you have any secret shortcuts? I mean, do you use odd tools, techniques, or anything else that isn’t strictly status-quo for your medium? How did you figure out that it worked? 

One of the oldest and most favourite odd short cuts/techniques I use is to blend my colored pencils. Grumbacher’s Fixative is sprayed on something small and absorbent but sturdy ( such as small bit of tightly rolled cotton cloth )to rub over the pencil. It makes effects one sees in paint.  How I found it worked was by being excessive with it when spraying over colored pencil drawing back when I was a teen. It pooled of course and made the color bleed.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA3. You’ve sold work before? What was the first thing someone bought from you, that you made? How did it feel to sell that piece? Are there pieces you keep hidden away, or keep for yourself, and why?

Yes I’ve sold my work. I believe my first official art sale was when I was either sixteen or seventeen. It was our local hair stylist in the small swamp town I lived in. She wanted a portrait of her daughter for a memorial library in town at the private school. Her daughter passed away from drowning at an early age; about three or four. The woman  has only this one faded photo of her from the sixties. Nothing else. I painted it in oil. The drawing was painstakingly slow because I was nervous and wanted to honor this child as best I could. I breathed life into her. The first thing my client did was clap a hand over her mouth and left the room crying. It had touched her so much. Later she confessed to me she had almost forgotten what the daughter really looked like. That was truly inspiring and emotionally touching to me. I will never forget that reaction and experience.

As to what art I have hidden or keep to myself? I have a few drawings, mixed media pieces and such that I use for imagery work. To help manifest the reality that these images portray. With some exception no one sees them. They live in my studio on a small alter I have or travel with me in a special sketchbook so I can look at them all of the time.
I used to have some paintings that depicted very dark and troubled times for me. I couldn’t part with them but also I couldn’t stand to look at them. I have since then destroyed those.

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The Sweet Mercy of Mademoiselle Rat.

1507979_652634554798130_164619109_nMost artists have a favorite medium, what is yours?If you work in multiple media, which one is the most enjoyable for you?

For more than 25 years my favorite medium has been putting ink on people’s skin. Now I love oil on canvas and is what I mostly work on.

Do you have any secret shortcuts?

I did for tattooing,when I started nobody wanted to teach me,so I had to find out techniques by myself, 25 years ago female tattoo artist in France was just hell. Tried everything to solder needles,from super-glue to blowtorch. SoI opened up a shop and threw myself at the deep end of the pool,soon after I started attending conventions and finally got help and advice from others.

You’ve sold work before? What was the first thing someone bought from you, that you made? How did it feel to sell that piece? Are there pieces you keep hidden away, or keep for yourself, and why?

Before tattooing I was a fashion designer,sold my collections all over europe to big companies and had the great pleasure to see my clothes worn by unknown women in the street! At the time I did everything in watercolours.

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The vibrant grit of Albert Jeffers.

1098191_445911528850316_1376786094_n Most artists have a favorite medium, what is yours?

I can’t decide. My main focuses are acrylic and skin. Working in skin gives me a way to hone my craft when I don’t feel like thinking too much. I’ve been doing it so long that I really do my best to let my clients express themselves through my eyes and hands. So in that sense I feel like I’m kind of a medium for less visually creative people so that they can express themselves. It’s a very powerful form and I feel sometimes it borders on magic, which introduced me to skin art in the first place.

My first tattoo was from Mike McCabe, who was a student of R.O. Tyler, featured in Tattoo Time magazine by Ed Hardy. So at that time in my life the visual symbolism on the body being connected to the spiritual sybolism in my life, they had intersected. Acrylic is a serious departure from that. It dries fast so it allows me to rework any mistakes, where skin is not so forgiving, I can go off on a tangent and still make it look good. I dabbled in watercolor for a few years and I got pretty good at it technically, but it didn’t allow me to express myself the way acrylic has. With acrylic, if I get stuck or bored or my mood changes, I can just let it dry and take the piece in another direction. If you work in multiple media, which one is the most enjoyable for you? Again I enjoy both.

With tattooing there’s a social component that I would never have seen in life had it not been for the job. I was a really shy introverted kid, always afraid of being shunned or thought of as weird. With tattooing I was in control and had something people wanted and they seemed (and still seem) to look up to me. It really has made me the man I am today, otherwise I fear I would be this shy shy psychotic shrinking violet, just too weird and afraid to express myself. So like before I had children, tattooing taught me that some people actually cared about what I had to say or who I was and were interested in me, for many years it was totally ego driven and I turned into a real asshole and offended a lot of people and fell from grace and then I kind of felt the world had turned on me, but it was really just me being self-important and selfish. Treating tattooing as if people were privileged to be wearing my work. A few things changed that.

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Korinne Robertson floats away.

1. Most artists have a favorite medium, what is yours? If you work in multiple media, which one is the most enjoyable for you? 

1. As a photographer, my medium could or should be film, but it’s not. To keep up with high demand, workflow and ease of use, I use a digital camera and photoshop.

1579947_10153689904190332_755628487_n2. Do you have any secret shortcuts? I mean, do you use odd tools, techniques, or anything else that isn’t strictly status-quo for your medium? How did you figure out that it worked?

2. I am not sure if I use secret shortcuts. I have my camera set and adjusted for my personal use, and if another photographer picked up my camera, they may find that they wouldn’t choose my default metering choice, or the fact that I am set up to burst shoot on demand. With my recent foray into levitation photography and surrealism, I figure I’m less “status quo” because I look for wind, light and environments that portrait/consumer friendly photographers would not gravitate towards. I spent countless hours learning how to shoot a model and encourage them to not look like a mannequin. Flow and movement play a huge part in my “other” photography work that doesn’t include my mainstream clients.

Jamie Lee Hartley, wiry rebel of paint and noise.

1148950_10151786771977579_1292412884_n1. Most artists have a favorite medium, what is yours? If you work in multiple media, which one is the most enjoyable for you? 

In the music part of my life, I like the bass as a favorite medium. I like to play it loud and proud, and with a lot of effects. I carry that same motto over when it comes to painting. I’ve never taken classes on either, and so I just kind of make it up as I go along. In painting, I like using acrylics the most, but I use oils, water colors, melted crayons, and just about any fucking thing I can find that will give me the desired effect, and hue I’m searching for.

2. Do you have any secret shortcuts? I mean, do you use odd tools, techniques, or anything else that isn’t strictly status-quo for your medium? How did you figure out that it worked?

I don’t really know of any type of shortcuts to take in painting, although I did recently discover the using pencil to sketch and idea, that I plan to paint in a lighter color, also doubles as a nice shading effect if you paint over the pencil lines inside an hour.

3. You’ve sold work before? What was the first thing someone bought from you, that you made? How did it feel to sell that piece? Are there pieces you keep hidden away, or keep for yourself, and why?

I can’t remember the first painting I sold, although I’m sure by now I’d think it was horrible. Having anyone interested in something you do as an art form is always a good feeling, so when they want to give you money for it, I say fuck yeah. I need the beer money anyway. I try not to keep anything I do strictly for me, but at the same time I don’t paint pictures solely for the purpose of selling them for money.

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burning my face off

full (16)I love fire. I was afraid of it as a child, but as I grew older and began to challenge myself to other new and frightening experiences, I decided it was time to meet flame and make a connection with it.

A few years ago, in the middle of a bad relationship, I watched my lover breathe a huge fireball. In a very unsafe and exaggerated manner. But Oh! it was beautiful, billowing out of his mouth. I was hooked. I learned through friends who had been doing it more carefully-to look up into the sky and send the breath with the flame, to sputter just right so as not to splatter, to use the right fluids…to wet down my hair and tie it back, to clear the area first…all the standard precautions. I began to breathe fire often, at most occasions, dancing under fireballs at parties, on the beach, even alone, in the desert, on a solitary road trip. Just to see it dancing. Just to feel the glare on my face.

I love fire.

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Three things I miss about 1989.

tumblr_llv78nlRaH1qepg0fo1_500I miss watching Female Trouble a few times a week.


It was the first movie I had ever seen that completely acknowledged how I felt about life, that made perfect sense to me. It was reassuring in all the right ways and it influenced my speech, my life in fact. It made me feel all right about being a xenophile, and being unable to fit in. We were strange people and the world shit on us regularly- and somehow this movie made it all ok, because it meant there was a whole world of other strange people out there, and they all had been through it and survived. 

And yes, it came out in 1974- around when I was born(ish). But I saw it in 1989 and that for me is the era I associate it with, being that I was only a toddler when it was made.

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