Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Have you heard about Sumi ink painting?

The Annunciation by Sandro Botticelli, 1489,
Tempera on panel, 150 cm × 156 cm (59 in × 61 in), Uffizi, Florence

Every year last week of September "Las fiestas de San Gabriel" (Celebrations of San Gabriel) takes place in the neighborhood square where we live. During these fiesta nights. While I work in my studio I hear the lovely Canarian folk songs. As you may know San Gabriel is an angel who typically serves as a messenger sent from God to certain people. I am sharing a beautiful painting by Sandro Botticelli (see pic above). "The Annunciation", in which Gabriel visiting Virgin Mary to tell her that she has been divinely impregnated and will bear the Christ.

Sumi ink Painting Set

Last weekend`s full moon was incredibly beautiful. It was a little bit cloudy that night and the moon looked much more dramatic than usual. I read somewhere on the net that 33 years ago, the last time the moon was this much closer to the earth. To celebrate this historical moment, I wanted to create an artwork with a new material and opened my brand new Sumi painting set. 

Sumi-e 2000 year-old art form of Japanese brush painting is spiritually rooted in Zen Buddhism. Sumi-e's earliest practitioners were highly disciplined monks trained in the art of concentration, clarity, and simplicity. Sumi is made from the soot of pine branches selected from trees in the beautiful groves on the mountainsides close to Nara and Suzuka. These two regions of Japan are prized for the highest quality ink. In harmony with the environment, Master Sumi Ink artisans create ink from the purest, natural materials. 

After watching lots of YouTube videos and reading very useful information about how to use Sumi ink with its special brushes I painted September's full moon (see pics below) sketch. I am trying how to control the ink with tick brushes which is very difficult. At first try, I used the first page of the little sketchbook of the Sumi set. The paper was thin but double folded in each page, so the ink didn't bleed to the next page. It's genius! I would love to make more of these, perhaps a series of nocturne paintings for this sketchbook. If you collect artist sketchbooks please contact me.  Have a great day!

work in progress 

Sketch of September's Full moon, by Birsen Ozbilge, sumi ink on rice paper.


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