Sunday, July 31, 2016

Gran Canaria Sketchbook drawings

Sunset at Etretat, by Monet, 1882

During the 1880's the famous French painter Claude Monet worked on a number of paintings depicting the cliffs and sea at √Čtretat in the Normandy coast (see pic above). He was coming to the beach followed by kids carrying his canvases and he was painting the same rock form at different times of the day. Each painting has different colors and effects according to the light and shadow of the hour. 

In a way, I am similar to him with my drawing and painting obsession of El Burrero. I have done a lot of sketches and studies of Burrero Beach rock form for the last 2 years and without a doubt, I will create more of them...
work in progress

Sunset in Burrero no:2, by Birsen Ozbilge
Oil pastel on craft paper, 12,5" x 9,4" (32 x 24 cm), 2016
Available, click on SHOP

This week I was working on a slide show videoclip for my Gran Canaria sketchbook drawings (see pic below). I scanned 30 sketchbook pages and put them together with their work in progress photos in a video editing program. This 5 min. presentation is the summery of my 6 months of work. Enjoy it, and have a great week! (If you have difficulties viewing the clip, click on this link )

Editing the videoclip

Sketchbook drawings from Gran Canaria videoclip, 4:54 min.

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Friday, July 15, 2016

Paintings from my neighborhood "El Burrero"

From "El Burrero" paintings

The very first time, about 13 years ago, I visited and immediately fell in love with El Burrero, a little coastal town in Gran Canaria. Over the years since we know this place, its population didn't grow that much, it has a few more new houses and same number of services. It's still one off the beaten paths of the island. Heaven for windsurfers but maybe its special strong windy condition is not for everyone. Last 5 years we have been fortunate to live close to this place, just 15 minutes walk from our place.

Since we move to this area, I have been sketching and painting seascapes of El Burrero. Recently, I created a short slide show with some of my finished artworks and their work in progress images. I am planning to paint more of El Burrero seascapes and try to exhibit them in the future... A few pieces from these series already found their new home. I am thankful for that and any kind of support, encouragement for helping me to do my job. Now, sit back and enjoy the slide show below (if you have difficulties viewing the video click on )

"El Burrero Paintings" slide show video clip, 2:50 min

Last week we went to visit our friends at El Burrero. After the lunch, I worked on a sunset seascape oil pastel painting looking at the view from the kitchen window which is my favorite spot to work (see pic below).

I used Cray- Pas Expressionist 50 color oil pastel set on aa acid free heavy weight craft paper. I am experimenting this combination for a while and getting very good results for being able to apply more layers of colors. Also, I painted some parts not totally covered using cool tones over warm, to show some brown paper which created an interesting optical illusion for the sea (See the finished work below pic). 

work in progress

It may be hard to see in the small image but there are a few fishermen in the rock form. Click on the image below and see if you can locate them. Enjoy the weekend!

"Sunset in El Burrero" by Birsen Ozbilge, 
Oil Pastel on acid free heavy-weight craft paper,
 24 x 32 cm,  2016
Available, contact me for purchase details

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Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Customized handmade linocut bookplates for book lovers!

Pasting the original linocut bookplate to the book

Last week I started to work on a small owl design for making a linocut bookplate print. You may have seen a bookplate with "Ex libris" written in the inside cover of a book, which indicates ownership of that book. "Ex libris" meaning is "from the library of" in Latin language. The custom of labeling bookplates to the books has been used by individuals and libraries for over five and a half centuries. People commissioned talented artists to create their custom-designed bookplates. At the turn of 20th century, bookplates were collectibles for their aesthetic value as miniature prints. I proudly continue this old fashion custom of labeling on each of our personal library book with a bookplate saying "Ex Libris Biblioteca Birique" since 1998. And finally, I created a bookplate design which I will use for labeling our new books (see pic above). So, now I am open for commissions, I can create customized handmade linocut bookplates for book lovers!

Let me show you some pictures from making the linocut print and explain the process. I transferred the owl image on lino sheet and started to carve outlines first. Once I completed the owl, I started on "EX LIBRIS" piece and then the book rim piece which is the space for the name of the owner of the book. Afterwards, I cut outside part of the owl and attached them together by putting a clear tape from the back side. (see pics below)

work in progress

I cleaned the table for the printing process and placed an A4-size paper with clear tape. I drew guide lines on it. I put another paper next to it for inking the plate. I put a little printing ink on my marble, and covered the brayer with an even coat of ink. Then I rolled the brayer on the plate evenly. I placed it on the first paper, inside of the guided lines carefully. I covered with printing paper and pressed with a wooden spoon firmly all around the surface and pulled the print out slowly (see pics below).

work in progress

Owl Exlibris Bookplate by Birsen Ozbilge, 2016
Original handmade linocut print, 7 x 14 cm

I am giving the digital printable image of this owl bookplate as a gift. The pdf document is one page including 8 high resolution bookplates with cutting crop marks. Print as many as you need for your personal use. 

I created two pdf documents with A4 (EU) and Letter Size (US) options, choose to download depending on your paper size. Set your printer as "landscape" printing position mode and uncheck "fit to print" option if selected, to make sure they are printed at the correct size.

Enjoy it!

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