January 2022 begins with some abstract works on paper using archival colored inks
January 2022 begins with some abstract works on paper using archival colored inks
I was so pleased to hear from an old friend from my ski racing years- Crandy Grant.
Crandy and I have kept in touch on social media where he follows my artwork via Carol Skinger Artworks.
In recent years Crandy built a delightful cabin on land his family owned in VT for many decades. He involved the younger generations of his family to help in construction and I feel sure they built some great memories together.
In the beginning of 2021 while the whole country was still dealing with the COVID shut down, I heard from Crandy through my contact page that he’d like to commission me to make a watercolor of the cabin on the lake. I do that.
Crandy is an ideal client: “I have been very impressed with your work and I’m especially fond of watercolors. My preference would be to leave you completely on your own for sizing, colors and however you feel best to depict this scene“.
I have to say I am very lucky that many clients feel this way and I appreciate it.
I made two paintings for Crandy in the end as I got stuck at a certain stage! Wondering how to proceed, I started a 2nd painting showing the cabin in winter. In the end both paintings came together, I sent both and he loved them. We agreed that one day my husband and I will come spend a night or two in the cabin.
It’s fitting that we connected over a cabin. My big experience with Crandy was in 1968 when he and Greg McClallen were the ski coaches for a small band of ski racers from VT including me, and we drove from VT to Colorado and stayed at the Tagert Hut 17 miles from Aspen. We drove out in 3 cars, one of them our VW bus. Parents out there, would you let your 16 year old with 2 month old driver’s license take one of the cars and do this? Grateful to my brave and independent mother!
Tagert Hut, an A-frame was located up a dirt road full of switch backs high above Ashcroft which is on Castle Creek Road. This was June of 1968. The hut was built in 1960 and it was under the care of John Holden in the 1960’s. He and his wife Anne had been faculty members at the Putney School in Vermont and they started Colorado Rocky Mountain School in nearby Carbondale in the 50s. I had been a student there for 8 weeks the previous summer.
When fellow ski racer Bill Farrell and I decided to get up before dawn at Tagert Hut and hike or hitch our way to the only ski race of the summer at Montezuma Basin, I recognized the Holden’s right away when they picked us up. Like Tuckerman’s Ravine there was no lift at Montezuma Basin so we both hiked the course with everyone and studied it on the way to the starting gate. I won! Greg and Crandy’s training camp was a great help. I was trying to move from a ‘B’ to ‘A’ classification and winning that race was the first of several to cinch leap.
Tagert Hut – Colorado 1968
Here is my summer painting of Crandy’s cabin which I started first and finished after completing the winter painting. If you drew a line west from there you’d be on lower part of Lake Champlain and to west of that, Lake George. The low mountains you see are in NY state. I look forward to seeing it.
Many thanks for the interesting commission Crandy. It’s one of the things that made my COVID winter of 2021 memorable in a good way.
I was working on one of the paintings when I took a break and watched a (virtual) Red Bench talk via Vermont Ski and Snowboard Museum in Stowe. It was titled Nose Dive- A History of Mt. Mansfield’s Famous Trail. Guess what? The 1967 Jr. National Alpine Championship Downhill on the Nosedive was THE LAST important National or International race on the Nosedive, that cold day in March ’67 when you won the Men’s Downhill and my sister Erica Skinger won the Women’s Downhill (and she won the overall Women’s title). So you both get that piece of Nosedive history.
Love this 1935 photo showing the Nosedive when that’s all you could see, 5 years before the single chair opened.
I’m going to describe best practices for framing here but caution you that using these methods is expensive. I myself sometimes use these methods for art in my own home and sometimes I don’t. Not everything needs to be handled this way. Not everything needs to last for 100 years. In short, if you have art or prints you have hidden in a drawer because you cannot afford museum grade framing, maybe you need to rethink the plan so you can enjoy the art you own now.
Archival framing methods are the way to go, which means 100% kozo paper hinges, 100% cotton rag, acid and lining free, alkaline pH buffered 4-ply mattes, and conservation glass or Plexiglas.
You can also go with plastic corner mounts and hinge the top matte to an acid-free foam core backing with acid free linen hinges.
There is some back and forth on buffered and non-buffered matte board, but with concerns about general acidity of the air, using buffered matte board is the more conservative method.
I have always found Japanese paper hinges (using rice starch paste) a real pain to work with, so I tend to use a middle ground:
For something that you want to be long lasting as well as reversible (so the owner can have the print or art re-matted later, etc. if so desired) you will want to avoid dry/cold mount methods.
If you insist of entire adhesion to backing for a totally smooth appearance, digital prints should probably not be heat mounted. Ask your framer or reprographics professional. In Pittsburgh, that is Modern Reproductions and Tristate. But lets face it lots of things can be fully mounted.
Pictureframes.com has a “personal frame shop” on their top header. This is a great way to try on mats and frames and you can even select a wall color behind the framed art. You have to upload an image from your computer. Because color can appear differently on a screen than it does in reality I still suggest using a local framer. In the Pittsburgh area I like (in no particular order) Boxheart Gallery, James Gallery , Framezilla , and Panza Frame and Gallery. And I think you should not feel embarrassed to take your big discount coupon to Michaels as well. They have archival and museum glass too.
If you decide to have any of my work framed via an online framing business, you must take the dimensions from my actual art once you receive it and not from my “approximate dimensions” listed for each piece.
Framing is up to you! Yes archival framing is best but expensive, just do what you can to get art on your walls and enjoy it!
A few of my custom house portraits. Contact me for an estimate. I use watercolor and gouache which is opaque watercolor.
In January 2020 I completed 21 new artworks, mostly watercolor and gouache and rushed 12 of them to the printers. For the next 90 days I am so happy to say I am one of the new artists and makers who will have work for sale at Casey Droege’s Small Mall in Lawrenceville. My work will be archival glicee prints of these latest artworks at Small Mall at 5300 Butler St in Upper Lawrenceville. The opening is Wednesday February 12, from 6-8 PM. See my new prints here.
All my work created in January was a promise that each artwork would include a sculpture, or what I think is a sculpture. Most of them are in Pittsburgh.
“Small Mall is the concept store for CDCP, an arts business focused on growing Pittsburgh’s art economy. Stop by our experimental retail space to purchase art and design objects from some of the region’s most talented makers.”
Have you heard of the new TRYP Hotel in Lawrenceville? Read more about the architecture and art there. Casey Droege was the art consultant bringing the artwork of many artists to the walls. Monmade was involved too.
I encourage you to sign up for Casey’s eblasts and read about what they are.
2020 I started the year with a month of art making on the theme of including a sculpture, or what I think is sculpture in each artwork. Perhaps because my father was a sculptor and metals artist I have quite a lot of sculpture and I have an appreciation for sculpture. Here is the group of what I completed on this theme in January 2020.
The show in February 2020 was at CDCP Project Space317 S Trenton Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15221. Just before COVID 19 shut everything down.
About the venue: Casey Droege of Casey Droege Cultural Productions (CDCP) expanded from the still current Small Mall space 5300 Butler St Lawrenceville into the former Percolate Gallery space Wilkinsburg in summer of 2019. The director of Percolate Gallery Space Carolyn Pierotti stayed on as a key partner in Droege’s Wilkinsburg expansion named CDCP Project Space.
You might know Casey for her programs mixing 5 minute artist presentations with chefs in various locations titled Six x Ate. You can subscribe to her Six x Ate eblast here so you won’t miss one. lor and Gouache. El Anatsui design for façade of Carnegie Museum of Art 2013-14, Carnegie International. Made and installed in Pittsburgh by Dee Briggs and community. Richard Serra’s Carnegie 1985.
Artist in Pittsburgh born and raised in Vermont, Lake Champlain Islands & Stowe.
My own artwork and prints can be purchased directly from me.
Some of my prints and cards are available at prints at Casey Droege’s Small Mall shop in Lawrenceville as well as her satellite space in Wilkinsburg. In addition some of my work is available at Firebox Art Studios LCC in Carnegie, PA and Dovecote in Aspinwall.
Carol Skinger. All Rights Reserved.