Welcome to the 6th edition of The Pulse - a survey in words and pictures of the online artist community. The Pulse is a collaborative project that aims to introduce you to new artists, help you get to know familiar faces even more, further your own artistic expression, and allow you access into the creative hearts and minds of a very talented crew of individuals. Stay tuned for a new post every Wednesday and see all previous posts in the series here.
What is the one technique or tool that you cannot live without?
I don't know where I'd be without my beeswax. I keep it in an electric skillet and just heat it on a very low temperature to melt the wax. I work on a small scale so it is juts the right size to dip my drawings on Japanese paper in the wax... total visual and tactile transformation.
As a long term rubber stamper my absolute must have products are stamps. They are so versatile, creating any type of mood or image is possible and the types of techniques that can be done with them are almost endless. Stamps never wear out or break and don't (usually) disintegrate over time. Stamps are also a technique with a large variety of applications - mixed media, scrapbooking, off-the-page, art journaling, book making and greeting cards can all be enhanced by stamping techniques.
My all-time favorite and most often used tool is the Scor-It Board. Originally designed (and hand-built one at a time) by Tim Hammonds, who worked in the printing industry, it was eventually manufactured by Zutter Innovative Products and is, sadly, no longer in production. The lines that are scored produced a "hinged" score - a raised ridge that is the inside of the fold. The lines can be used for decorative embossing and debossing too.
The one tool I cannot do without is my computer. It not only provides inspiration, as I can look at art from around the globe, but is a tool I use frequently to improve my art practice, via online workshops and tutorials. Photo-editing programs enable me to alter my photos to give me a starting point for paintings. A frequent painting theme is aeriel views. I take images from Google Earth and alter them in Photoshop until I find a representation of the subject that appeals to me.
The technique I can not do without is dry-brushing.
My absolute favorite thing to use is an old debit/credit/gift card. It is so easy and quick to spread paint around with it. It's great if you want a thin smear of paint or a thick layer, and it doubles as a mark maker to give you texture. I like how with a card I can lay down numerous thin layers in my journal and it doesn't require a lot of paint. And it dries fairly quickly so I can just keep adding.