My residency at the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the Arts is half over and I’ve been getting a lot of really great work done. It took me a few days to find my working groove, but once I did I felt really good about what I was doing. When all of your daily responsibilities and errands (minus grocery shopping and laundry) are removed, there are suddenly so many more hours in a day! So much so that I had to work to increase my drawing stamina. There’s something very satisfying about going to bed with a tired hand/arm because you spent all day drawing and I haven’t had that feeling in a long time.
Above you can see my work area. You can see photos of the whole studio and the rest of the facilities on the center’s website. Working on comics obviously doesn’t need the kind of space that someone working on large oil paintings or sculpture installations does, so I didn’t take a photo of the entire studio which is basically a converted garage with lighting and temperature control (it’s very comfortable!). The table I’m working at is almost the perfect height to stand and work which made me happy, since I’m used to working while standing at home.
Here is a closer view of what I’m working on. You can see almost every phase of the page except the thumbnail version and a painted version. I draw my pencils on bristol and then use my light box to ink onto watercolor paper. Since I intend to paint each page with watercolor, I don’t want pencils on the same page and I don’t want to have to do any erasing. Plus, if I make any mistakes, I can always retrace. No matter what happens, I’ll still have the original pencils to go back to.
Here is a close-up of a page. I am working on the graphic novel that I submitted a proposal for a few months ago. Whether or not the publisher decides to pick it up, I still intend to shop it around or finish it myself (possibly a Kickstarter?). I should be able to start inking pages, maybe even today, and it’s one of my favorite parts!
I made it safely to Nebraska City yesterday and I am officially an artist-in-residence at the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the Arts. I was definitely nervous about the whole thing but so far everyone has been really nice and the space is very comfortable. Today I will begin working in my studio for the first time.
During my 4 week stay I will be working on the first chapter of the graphic novel I created a proposal for. Whether the publisher is interested or not, I intend to go through with it and the original author is on board as well. I requested a table at TCAF this year so hopefully I can have this chapter available either to sell or to give away (depending on how long it is) if I end up with a table.
Today will be spent making sure I have everything I need – food, supplies, etc. – and settling into my studio. It’s such a big space that it makes me wish I was painting on huge canvases again! Instead, I’ll mostly have paper taped to tables.
It feels very much like I am at camp or at my first day of college, especially without my husband here. It’s going to take a few days to find my routine and get used to having zero responsibilities except my art and cooking myself dinner.
I am still open for commissions while I am here so if you were thinking about working together, don’t hesitate to get in touch.
This week I received an offer for a four week residency at the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the Arts. I will have a place to live and my own studio from October 29th – November 23rd at the center in Nebraska City, NE. And since I’m from Nebraska originally, it will be nice to have family close by for a while – even though my husband will have to stay in Denver.
I am so excited and I am looking forward to having that time to really focus on my work without as many outside, life distractions. I will be working on a, still unannounced, graphic novel project and may end up teaching a comics workshop or two for kids.
Sorry I couldn’t find any decent photos that I could post here, but if you go to the website you can see the gallery of where I will be staying and my studio.