Monday, August 31, 2009

Three Winter Night ACEOs--SOLD

watercolor on gessoed paper
3.5 x 2.5 inches

That was fast! All three of these are going to a good home, to be displayed together. Thank you!


I was experimenting with painting with watercolor on paper treated with gesso--it makes a beautifully malleable surface and creates effects not possible any other way. I've used a variation on this technique for decades--it's exciting, unpredictable, and allows a great deal of lifting and restating. I did a large painting with this technique for my latest book, and this little card-size painting just for the experience.

I had prepared two sheets of good watercolor paper by slathering it with gesso, with loose, random strokes to encourage a variety of textures, even patting it with my hand here and there while it was still wet. Once the gesso dried, I painted over both sheets with watercolor, which sits on the surface and makes wonderfully interesting textures. I used one sheet for the larger painting in the book, and found particularly interesting passages that would make good backgrounds for the ACEOs. I cut them to size, then painted the tiny landscapes on them, lifting where necessary and flooding in the cadmium orange on the one with the owl.

A great exercise for the imagination!


I've been fascinated by these tiny paintings for several years, and because of their small size and affordability, have been able to own original paintings from several artists whose work I admire a great deal.

ATCs are artist trading cards, and that's how the phenomenon started out--but many people who were not artists wanted to collect these little jewels, too. So ACEOs were born--still the size of a playing card, but "artist cards, editions and originals" to meet this need. Some ACEOs are prints and some are still original, as is this one.

People are collecting and displaying these tiny paintings in ingenious ways--framed and grouped together, piled in baskets, in scrapbooks--however they want!

I hope the idea allows you to own an original work of art--get your feet wet...

And again, a huge thank you to my buyer, whose excitement and enthusiasm are contagious!


  1. Wonderfully simple! I want to try the gessoed paper now.

  2. It makes a really interesting texture--a bit unpredictable, but challenging and satisfying!


I'd love your feedback...please share your thoughts!


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