Featuring guest artist, Ana de Gortari.

This week, I feature a new guest on my blog. Just as I love to promote the work of other artists on my Facebook artist page, I would also like to do the same at Louise's ARTiculations with guest posts such as this one. Please contact me if you are interested in being a guest artist. 

Ana and I met last summer when I wrote her after seeing her art in one of my online classes. Ana's Facebook page said that she was from Ottawa, Canada, and I was skeptical. All of her posts were in Spanish.

For a few minutes that afternoon, I was a detective asking questions without prying too much, but wanting to know if she really did live in my city.

Well, not only does Ana live nearby, she also has a daughter who was a student in my class!

You have to realise that the online art course where we “met” has hundreds of students from all over the world!

Since that day, we have become friends and we meet to share ideas about art and to talk of our other common interests.

Today’s article, Fascinated by Colour and Form, features some of Ana’s fabulous mixed media portraits.

Here is  Ana's story...

I can’t remember a time when I was not fascinated by colour and form. 

I received my first set of watercolours when I was about seven. My parents had been to Europe, and my mother brought me a 48 colour set from Germany, I think. This gift was truly magical. I had never painted with any set that had more than 6 bright colours. This one introduced me to the teals, the mauves, the pale greens, and a universe of new hues unfolded before me.

Kadari by Ana de Gortari

Writing and art journaling

Writing is also a passion of mine, so art journaling came naturally. I still have the journals that accompanied me throughout my teenage years.

Later on, life got in the way, but in December 2010 I felt an overwhelming need to art journal again. By that time, there was a fair amount of courses offered on the Internet. I learned about collaging, art journaling, drawing, and painting.

At first, I tried to stay away from the potential mess of acrylics by using dry water soluble media, such as Neocolors, Tombow markers and Artist’s Loft markers. I even dabbled in digital illustration, and loved it.

New discoveries and future goals

Collage was another wonderful discovery.

I began embracing the mess, and found it was great outlet for creativity. Collage also allowed me to meld digital art and acrylics, though I’ve only used acrylics for background in collage.

Right now I am exploring the versatility of acrylics, as well as the silkiness of water soluble oils. I just found out that there is an odourless solvent for oils, so I may try working with oils soon.

Ana de Gortari's mermaidI love painting fictional characters that may one day come to life in text. As a former scuba diver, I have a preference for mermaids. I am currently working on a fantasy novel in Spanish. It doesn’t matter whether it ever sees the light as a published book. However, this project has a special place in my bucket list.

I grew up reading fairy tales every day, so I own some serious real estate in fairyland and am in speaking terms with its denizens. Steampunk seems to be rearing its metallic top hat on the horizon, hopefully very soon. These are potential art explorations, and might bring about multi-layered characters to settle new landscapes.

I am hoping this will be a year full of discoveries both in art and literature. Thankfully, there’s so much to learn that I will never run short of ingredients to throw into my very own fairy cauldron.

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