Pat Erickson

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Like many artists, my life-long fascination with creating began very early. I was fortunate to have observant parents and a doting aunt who was a professional artist. Once they noticed that I wanted to draw on anything that would sit still long enough for me to decorate it, I was provided with paper, crayons, pencils.

That may be why I developed a style of working that continues to this day. (From age 3 to 70, it has worked for me and often made instructors “tear their hair” trying to introduce me to the traditional methods of painting.)

I draw a shape, outline it in a dark color (or ink) and fill it with color. In this manner I have progressed from pen & ink studies, to watercolor and acrylic paintings, cloisonné enamel jewelry and now PolyShrink.

Each media has lent itself to my “coloring book” style of working but PolyShrink has been a “lifesaver” now that age is taking its toll on my near vision. What better than being able to produce a painting or design at a size you can work comfortably with, and then, Voila, a light touch of heat and your painting becomes a “masterpiece” with excellent resolution and saturated color.


I prefer to use my PolyShrink projects as small paintings. True, they may pin on a blouse or hang from a chain, but they are, never the less, small individual original paintings…miniature variations of my watercolors or enamels.

Translucent PolyShrink is my “canvas” of choice. My technique is usually the same from project to project. Once I complete the design, I transfer it to translucent PolyShrink that has been sanded with 400 grit “wet or dry” sand paper. ( I gently sand back and forth and then up and down and on both diagonals to have a good “tooth” to hold the colored pencil leads onto the surface of the design.)

Next I enforce the design using permanent fine point markers. (Usually Permawriter 11 00 and 03 point pens available at Michael's outlets.) The next step is coloring with Prismacolor pencils, taking care not to lay down too heavy a color layer since shrinking effects the distribution of the pencil lead granules. Pilot metallic pens and some sharpie pens add further enhancements to the design.

Baking to shrink is next, followed by dusting the pieces with Faith Transcendence embossing powder to provide the art work with a glossy finish.

Edges are usually inked with a Krylon 18Kt Gold Leafing pen as a finishing touch. The addition of a pin backing, or other findings if the item is to be a necklace, complete the item. I use a matte finish if I am completing the piece with a beadwork bezel so as not too compete with the gleam of the beads.

 


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