May Diary 24

I love this time of year. Spring is so beautiful with all its flowers and smells. People seem to get out of their winter shells and start smiling again. Is it just me, or do conversations flow more freely this time of year?

Spending time on the balcony is one of my favourite things to do and the bumblebees seem to love my balcony this year 🥰

bublebees on my balcony

Art travel

At the beginning of May lucky me had the pleasure of traveling to beautiful Skåne in the south of Sweden to join in on the celebration of the Bachelor Exhibition at Malmø Art Academy. We enjoyed four days of art, interesting conversations, nice company, good food and partying with the young art students. – What a joy!

enjoying beautiful days in Malmø

Work Life – Balance

When you know where you are, you know where you’re going!

I decided to dedicate most of this month’s leisure time to reading and hanging out with nice people and getting some mostly needed rest from my normal studio practice. A friend recently donated a stack of art books from her parent’s library and I’m so grateful.

my new stack of art books

May 17th

Constitution Day is my absolute favourite day of the year. I normally roam the streets in my traditional bunad, but this year both me and my hubby had to work. But we did enjoy a nice meal together.

Time for Gardening

The month of May also requires some gardening time to take care of the allotment, the flower beds and the balcony. Lucky me has a very nice little furry helper.

my furry little helper

Abstracting my garden

At the moment abstracting my garden is one of my favourite motifs when in the studio – here is a tiny glimpse bound for an exhibition in Texas, USA later this year.

abstracting my garden

Inspiring Summer Days in Oslo 

The beautiful city of Oslo gives lots of opportunities. Check out urban sauna life in the harbour, world class architecture in Bjørvika, pittoresque buildings in Damstredet and Telthusbakken, concerts, festivals, theater, opera, dance, take a stroll along the beautiful Akerselva river or chill out with a few hours of island hopping before enjoying a meal at one of the capital’s three star Michelin restaurants. Check out Visit Oslo
detail from Damstredet

Art in Oslo

I really enjoy going to exhibitions and Oslo has two of the biggest art museums in Europe showing wonderful exhibitions.

I highly recommend Trembling Earth and Horizons at MUNCH museum – and Rothko, Kandinsky, Bergman and Marakatt-Labba at the National Museum.

from Trembling Earth at MUNCH
Trembling Earth at MUNCH is a must this summer

Upcoming Art Drop

At the moment I’m selecting work for my upcoming Art Drop, so stay tuned for more info!

February Diary 24

Truth be told, my initial plan of scheduling time for spontaneous creativity on a daily basis did not work out very well. But February was not all about heavy work loads at my day job. I also went to a few interesting exhibitions and chilled with some really nice people who made me feel happy and energized and inspired and ready to paint!

refueled, inspired and ready to paint!

The Year of the Dragon

The year of the dragon started on February 10. In Chinese culture, the Dragon holds a significant place as an auspicious and extraordinary creature. It symbolizes power, nobility, honor, luck, and success. 

2024 is forecasted to bring about opportunities, changes, and challenges. If you’re seeking a shift in your current lives, this year might offer a favorable chance.

opportunities, changes and challenges

Studio days

Last month I started experimenting with new color schemes, shapes and themes and to my surprise I really enjoyed it. Since my studio is my happy place where I nurture and celebrate some of the good things of this earth, I decided to bring these joyful experiments further by incorporating them into some already existing artworks.

My master plan for this year includes continuation of a few projects started during lockdown as well as playful testing of new artistic expressions.

This pic shows how I keep track of what’s going on in my studio:

what’s going on in my studio

Throwback to lockdown

A few days before Norway closed down on March 12, 2020 our class had started the initial discussions on how to pull off our graduate project. I remember discussing that a crucial part of artistic development is developing your personal style and that looking back on your history might give you some clues. 

During lockdown all students at my art school were left with one opportunity only; working from home. 

Long hours alone in my studio together with my cat was nice, but as days turned into weeks inspiration got scarce. I started to examine what I had collected over the years and pondered about what I liked and disliked about each object. I studied shapes, patterns, colours and textures on tablecloths, vases, urns, bottles, wine glasses, embroideries, flowers and plants.

Read more about my graduate project here

old sketchbooks, new challenge

Old stuff, new challenge

This month I pulled out my sketchbooks from Easter 2020 filled with sketches and notes about heirlooms such as furniture, textiles, handicrafts and photo albums. 

Once again I will simplify, stylize and abstract form elements and patterns, and bring my findings into new contexts.

In my art work I strive for progression, not perfection. I emphasize the process of abstracting. I prefer quirky and imperfect, incomplete aesthetics, perhaps a bit wabi sabi like. To me the most interesting part of creating lies somewhere between intuitive play and logical thinking. Here’s a sneak peek (work in progress):

sneak peek | work in progress

Transforming colours

Colour and energy is all around us. Colours have different energy, some you like and some you don’t. When you mix different colours with each other they transform. Two bright complementary colours next to each other will give the impression of an energy kick, but if you put a bright colour next to a neutral colour you get a different kind of energy, a different expression.

I love working with contrasts, and I love challenging myself. Colour mixing can be really fun, but also very time consuming and frustrating as daylight changes my studio light during the day. 

Studio time includes lots of fun and complex problem solving. If it’s not tricky, it’s no fun! So at the moment I try mixing colour values and presenting them in new ways to explore how this makes a difference to my expression. 

If things go as I hope, I might throw a spring art drop with some brand new works in a month or two. Fingers crossed and stay tuned for more news.

time will show

Celebration time

At the end of February the family gathered to celebrate my Hubby’s birthday at a really nice restaurant with a wonderful view over the Oslo fjord. The food was delicious and the wine bountiful. What a night!

What a night!

Xmas Art Drop 2023

Finally I have the pleasure of sharing some of my brand new artworks with you. How about that! The online exhibition / studio shop is now open exclusively for those who follow my newsletter. This private early access is available for five days only.

  • My series are all original and individual artworks.
  • My artworks are handmade and one of a kind. 
  • There are no prints for sale.
  • Affordable prices

What’s up: New collection

Proudly presenting brand new artworks for you to enjoy and purchase directly from my website. Check it out! 

New series: Magic Moments in Nature

Magic Moments in Nature

Like most Norwegians I love nature. Hiking in the nearby hills with my grandmother is among my strongest childhood memories. Daily rituals of roaming the woods, watching animal wildlife and exploring the fjord grounded me with Mother Earth and made me realize the importance of respectfully taking care of Nature. They say childhood shapes your future. 

Hiking and exploring together with nice people give new perspectives, positive energy and good memories, therefore I try to block out holes in my calendar to spend time in nature on a regular basis. Because spending time in Mother Nature can help relieve stress and anxiety; boost our immune system, creativity, and focus; and teach us to live more in the present.

Photoshoot in scarce winter light

Inspired from Mother Nature 

The paintings have several layers as do Mother Nature. Some layers are hidden while others stand out more clearly. Each trip gives rise to different shapes and brush strokes. Color schemes are inspired from both people and places. 

When in my studio I work from my heart and memory, not from photographs. Thus each painting captures unique emotional impressions and is a representation of what happened at a special moment in time and space. I aim to explore and filter reality through the prism of my individual perception by reinterpreting natural surroundings. 

Sizzling with energy

Guided by intuition I try to transform or «translate» my experience into patterns, shapes and color arrangements. Some of them are more recognizable than others. My intention is to make the paintings sizzle with energy, just like I felt during that special moment in time.

Hopefully the paintings touch on the complexity of being a tiny person walking around  in a big world and the wonderful feeling of belonging, of inner peace and calmness. 

Hope they bring out some Magical Moments in your life too! See them here

Looks quite good when matted

Inspiration for you

Every month I search for inspiration. This month I hope to inspire you! I paint what I cannot express in words. I paint to grasp the world around me by listening inwards. I paint in search of authenticity, trying to find and develop my true voice and always remember my artistic vision. Sometimes that resonates with the viewer and sometimes not. 

I believe every artwork will reveal its secrets to the right viewer and therefore you instinctively know when to buy a painting or not; because it speaks directly to you.  

Hope you find something you like! Go to shop

I love spending time with trees

The original paintings are hand painted, one of a kind and signed on the backside. Please remember that the paintings are sold unframed and unmatted so that you are free to choose what suits your personal taste and match your beautiful home best. 

In case you wonder; my prices will never ever be less expensive than today. The only way they will go is up, so grab the chance today!

Check them out! Go to shop

Measurments must be right

Summer Feeling Continues

Summer isn’t over yet! As July turned into August, I deliberately chose to continue the summer feeling for one more month. And what a brilliant month it has been (except for a terrible sinus infection). Besides lazy breakfasts, walks with my cat, hammock time and old movies, we enjoyed another nice visit from overseas. 

As September is approaching, I’m thinking of enjoying one more month of the magical summer feeling before autumn arrives. How about that?

Flower power
Flower power in my studio

But first, I’m gonna recap a little from August days in my studio. When thinking back on my studio time, I believe I made some progress and discovered new ways to deal with old problems. Ha ha! After all, being an artist takes a lot of problem solving. 

What’s up?

Last month of summer holidays gave me lots of studio time. I’d say much wanted and needed studio time after busy months of work and travels. 

During my summer vacation I restarted my daily art practice and continued working on my long term project finding my deeper voice. I also started exploring a new Wabi Sabi project; the art of imperfection. But most of the time I had lots and lots of fun. 

People and artists are different, there are various ways of carrying out one’s art practice. Those who know me, will know that I always work on parallel projects, both short term and long term projects. This is a glimpse from one of them:

New adventures in my studio

Process-based  

Some of you might know that I am a process-based artist. That means I explore the “unknown” parts of the creative process. The question: “I wonder what happens if?” really inspires me to paint and to explore new ways of doing stuff. 

I work on several paintings at the same time. Each painting takes me on a ride, where neither of us knows the final destination until we arrive. Thus art is a guide and has much to teach me about life, what is going on in the world and about myself.

My work evolves, ebbs and flows, sometimes circling back for another look or to re-work. I have learned to accept these changes to be authentic and truly embrace my own creativity and my own voice. I paint what I cannot express in words.

The painting process is a never ending story: 1) what happens if I try this 2) did it work out? 3) how do I respond to that? 

Hang in there! The clue is never giving up! Sooner or later the painting will fall into place. At some point there is nothing more that I want to change. And that’s when I know the painting is finished. Voila! 

I love my studio, and what happens there. It’s my happy place!

Process includes lots of coffe

Inspiration 

Every month I search for inspiration. Besides reading lots of books and visiting some interesting art exhibitions, I had the pleasure of spending time with one of my nieces from overseas. We had some really interesting conversations, I’d love to do that more often! My husband and I continued revisiting some of our favourite old movies. So weird to discover you’ve forgotten half of the story, but what a joy!

So, what’s not to like about August? Hope you’ve had a good one, too!

Heads up!

People keep asking me how to buy my works. HEADS UP! here are some news for you: 

  • New original works will be available from my website soon! 
  • More info to come next month. 

Sign up for my mailing list /newsletter to be first in line to grab one!

Thank you for reading! I’ve had the most wonderful August days in my studio, my Happy Place which brings me joy and happiness and fills me with energy. Soon I will share some of the results with you. Stay tuned!

Work in progress
Work in progress

Wonderful Summer Days

Life has been so busy lately. I’ve been dreaming about lazy summer days and slow living with family and friends for months. I can hardly remember ever longing so deeply for my summer holidays. And I’ve really missed painting these past few months! 

Life has been so busy lately

I love lazy breakfasts, walks with my cat in the nearby woods, wonderful lunch baskets and swimming in the river, hiking and bicycling with my husband and of course, spending warm summer evenings in my hammock reading interesting books after nice dinners with a glass of Greek Retsina.

My hopes were high since June was super hot and sunny, but July turned out to be quite rainy, so I had lots of studio time.

Sunny Days in my studio in between the rain showers

So what’s up

Since last summer went down the drain due to covid, I had made plans to explore some new art territory this summer. But because the rain stopped me from working in my outdoor studio, I had to rethink. Seems that life has its own purpose. 

I decided to focus on having fun and to restart my daily art practice. My long term project on finding my deeper voice needed some attention. And I also started exploring a new Wabi Sabi project; the art of imperfection.

As usual I have lots of paintings going on in different stages; 1) the playful start, 2) the messy middle and 3) the clarifying stage. As one layer has to dry, I move on to the next piece. This way I never run out of work.

I paint what I cannot express in words. I paint to grasp the world around me by listening inwards. I paint in search of authenticity, trying to find and develop my true voice and always remember my artistic vision. 

Sometimes that resonates with the viewer and sometimes not. I believe every artwork will reveal its secrets to the right viewer and therefore you instinctively know when to buy a painting or not; because it speaks directly to you.  

Playful summer days in my studio

Inspiration

Every month I search for inspiration. This summer I have read lots and lots of good books (and a few not so good ones) and visited some interesting art exhibitions and had great conversations with my friend from overseas. 

During evenings my husband and I decided to revisit quite a few of our favourite melodramatic and humoristic movies by Spanish film director Pedro Almodòvar. What a joy!

Wonderful days

For me, making time to create is an important part of self-care. Studio time is sacred and my way of healing and dealing with the world. So I show up and create. That means getting into the studio no matter what is going on in life. 

Making art is a means of living my life, a way to be who I truly am. I think of art as my best friend and my studio always welcomes me, even on days where life is overwhelming and energy levels are low. 

The most wonderful days in my studio give rise to joyous series of explorations that lead to personal understanding and more interesting artworks. I’d say that my studio is my Happy Place which brings me joy and happiness and fills me with energy.

Well, I have to admit that friends and family were a bit neglected this summer, but what the heck: What a splendid way to spend my summer holidays painting!

Hope you had a ball, too!

Celebration
Magic Summer Holidays

Summer Vibes and Group Exhibit i Canada

This month I’ve been busy painting (and selling) big cats, testing how to make digital art and giving my studio a much needed spring cleaning. I’ve also enjoyed the company of the younger generation in my studio, been to exhibitions and movies besides finding the slow vibes for a much needed summer vacation. 

Painting inspired by Her Highness Miss Selma
Painting inspired by Her Highness Miss Selma

Studio time as self-care

Most of us live busy lives. There are full time jobs, bills to pay, cooking and cleaning, friends and family to take care of, smartphones, concerts, football games and television. At my age I also need a good night’s sleep. 

For me, making time to create is an important part of self-care. Studio time is sacred and my way of healing and dealing with the world. So I show up and create. That means getting into the studio no matter what is going on in life. 

The most wonderful days in my studio give rise to joyous series of explorations that lead to personal understanding and more interesting artworks. 

Group exhibit in Canada

24.-25. June one of my cat paintings is exhibited in the beautiful city of Vancouver in Canada. Click here to check it out!

Catzy Cat on show in Vancouver Canada
Catzy Cat on show in Vancouver Canada

Inspiration

This month I’ve visited and revisited the Marianne Bratteli exhibition Beating Heart at the MUNCH museum in Oslo. To my surprise this is Marianne Bratteli’s first comprehensive museum exhibition. I find her works powerful and interesting. Despite the colorful and playful expression, her works also depict how war traumas, if not resolved, can go from one generation to the next.

Marianne Bratteli exhibition Heart Beat
Marianne Bratteli exhibition Heart Beat

Art as a means of living my life

People keep asking me how to buy my works… (go to website)

But to be honest; I’m not so interested in art as a means of making a living, I like my day job. What interests me more is art as a means of living my life.

So let’s chill out, let’s find the summer vibes and enjoy the summer!

Summer Vibes Art by Rekkebo
Summer Vibes Art by Rekkebo

Ps. Think I will log off and have a much needed digital detox this summer – what about you?

Busy Days in May

May was a busy month. Spring is definitely here with all its beautiful flowers and gardening duties, not to mention pollen allergy. 

Spring flowers in May
Spring flowers in May

So what’s up

Besides working on some new smaller abstract works on paper, I had a blast creating a large abstract work on canvas this month. The only trouble was I had an allergic reaction to the glue I used for the collage parts, so next time I’ll be wearing a protection mask and work in my outside studio.

new abstract work on canvas (WIP) left to dry on the balcony
new abstract work on canvas (WIP) left to dry on the balcony

Inspiration

This year we had swedish-french family visiting for the 17th of May to celebrate Norwegian Constitution day. We had a super nice day watching the children’s parade in front of the Royal Castle.

May 17th 2023
May 17th 2023

We also visited the MUNCH museum. I especially enjoyed revisiting the abstract expressionism/ art informel exhibition The Shape of Freedom dancing in front of my favourite artist Franz Kline wearing my traditional bunad from Setesdal. 

Dancing with Franz Kline in my Setesdal bunad
Dancing with Franz Kline in my Setesdal bunad

A few days later we left for Malmø to visit the family’s young artist and check out the Annual Exhibition at Malmø Art Academy

Malmø Art Academy
Malmø Art Academy

Why Abstract Expressive

Somehow I have always found myself attracted to (semi) abstract and expressive art. I find vivid colours, bold lines, weird brushstrokes, twisted shapes and quirky faces a lot more interesting than hyper realistic paintings. 

I don’t aim to show the obvious, but what might be there if you take a moment to look inside yourself, shake your emotions and listen to your heart. The best part of exhibition openings is listening to what stories people tell each other while looking at my artworks over a glass of wine. Sometimes their stories lead to new paintings.

For some time now (4-5 years) I have been working systematically on abstractifying my art through extensive explorations in mark-making, layering and textures. While composition and contrasts are really important, I sometimes find that both colour and shape can be quite overwhelming, so lately I have felt the urge to limit myself hoping to reach a new level of insight.

lots of canvases going on in my studio
lots of canvases going on in my studio

So what’s up

This month I had a great deal of fun by opening some of my large rolls of paintings. To my surprise I had forgotten many of these paintings and I’m already looking forward to continuing the process this summer in my outside studio.

Of course I continued working on my abstract series on canvas and made a few smaller studies on paper. It seems that my abstract series is evolving and that some of the paintings are bridges over to another semi abstract series. I think I might go for an exhibition after all.

from my ongoing abstract series
from my ongoing abstract series

Inspiration

This month I’ve spent some time at the National Museum in Oslo. I especially like the modern art section (room 75-88) on the second floor. And to my surprise I also found loads of inspiration from Fashion Design and Royal Costumes (room 30-31) on the first floor. Unfortunately I missed the temporary exhibit with Carrol Dunham on the top floor. I will definitely go back several times. Check it out next time in Oslo!

Aiming for Authenticity

My abstract series on canvas keeps moving forward, slowly but steadily. I sometimes find it hard to grasp what the painting is about, but as soon as I understand the hidden message, the piece seems to come together pretty nicely. 

ongoing abstract series
ongoing abstract series

Along the way I’ve had different working titles for this long term project. I paint in search of authenticity, trying to find and develop my true voice and always remember my artistic vision. 

I paint what I cannot express in words. I paint to grasp the world around me by listening inwards. Sometimes that resonates with the viewer and sometimes not.

As usual I have lots of canvases going on in different stages and I’m starting to look forward to seeing the end of this project. I sometimes wonder how many canvases this project will end up with. But one canvas seems to inform the next one, so it feels like I’m still in the middle of discovering something new.

Some artists prefer working on one canvas at the time until it gets finished. My working process is different. I work on parallel projects. I like taking a break from one project by working on another. What I discover in one place often leads to new ways of seeing and working. I like that very much.

Group exhibition coming up

If you know me, you’ve probably seen some of my cat paintings. This month I decided to make some more and one of them will be exhibited in the beautiful city of Vancouver, Canada in June. 

Cats are wonderful
Cats are wonderful

Inspiration

Inspiration is paramount. This month I went to the MUNCH museum with a group of colourful friends who have not yet had the pleasure of visiting the new museum.  Afterwards we had a nice meal and some good conversations at one of the many restaurants in the Bjørvika area. Socialising with nice people is so rewarding.

I also recommend a visit to the Thorvald Hellesen exhibit Pioneering Cubism at the National Museum (NaM) Oslo

Reflections on working process

Some of you have asked me about my creative process and why I always seem to be working on many paintings at a time. 

In a previous day job, I coached my clients to do less, so that what they chose to do could grow bigger and create a more lasting impact – because diluted focus tends to get diluted results. But this is no good when it comes to my art practice. 

I like working on several parallel projects. In my studio I have a lot of canvases in several stages going on; because playful beginnings, the messy middle, clarifying stages and finishing touches all demand different kinds of focus. That way I can choose what to work on depending on how much time and energy I’ve got. 

lots of canvases going on in my studio
lots of canvases going on in my studio

Another aspect is that what’s going on in one painting often seems to inform the next and what I discover in one place might lead me towards resolving a painting that got stuck somewhere along the process. It’s a win-win situation.

This is absolutely not multitasking, I’m a huge fan of monotasking. I focus on one thing at a time and  try to show up in my studio before or after my shift. I like  spending most of my spare time painting. 

My overall goal is to have fun, trust the process and enjoy life!

Besides working my day job, and being knocked down by a virus this month, I’ve also created some new weird portraits. Since time (and body) was not on my side, I chose to do some small work – and to my surprise 3 of them went overseas to their new homes this month. What a joy!

8 small faces
8 small faces

Inspiration

This month I had the pleasure of visiting the new exhibition The Shape of Freedom opening at MUNCH museum in Oslo showcasing many of my favourite abstract expressionist artists like Kline, Pollock, Rothko, Frankenthaler, Krasner, Mitchell to mention a few. The experimental techniques these artists did at the time is well known to most art students today, but back then this was a revolution in painting.

Click here to check out the exhibition

I believe that your path shapes you. If you choose a different path, you will experience different things – both in the studio and in life.

choose your path carefully
choose your path carefully

The Year of the Cat

Happy Lunar Year, everyone! January 22nd kicks off the Year of the Rabbit, or the Year of the Cat 2023. 

In my part of the world winter is still on, but days gradually get longer, and nights shorter, until the summer solstice in June.

A Year of Hope and Good Luck

In Chinese culture the sign of the Rabbit is a symbol of longevity, peace, and prosperity, so 2023 is predicted to be a year of hope – and I do believe Hope is what the world needs right now!

The Vietnamese celebrate the Year of the Cat. According to Vietnamese tradition the Cat brings good luck and clears away bad spirits. The cat is considered to be a friend and symbolizes strength and power. 

Those who know me, know how much I love cats – so I’m very excited for the year to come!

Artists and their cats
Artists and their cats

A Year of Exploring Creativity and Arts

I’ve also read somewhere that creativity and appreciation for the arts thrives in Rabbit years. So you might feel like exploring museums, music festivals and performances. I know I do.

In Vietnamese culture cats are a symbol of kindness, perseverance, patience, thinking ahead before starting to do something. Cats are considered to be open-minded free spirits ready to explore. Sounds familiar! 

Hopes and Plans 

New year always brings new energy and I hope and plan for this year to bring more time for creativity and playful exploration in my studio. My studio is my Happy Place which brings me joy and happiness and fills me with energy.

With my full time job, planning is essential and I try to make time for my creative art practice every day. 

My plans for 2023 are a mix of short-term goals I want to complete in the near future and long-term goals that will take months and years to finish. 

This year I will focus on 30 day projects, one project for each month. As a former project manager I have naturally made a list of challenges and possible outcomes. 

My plans contain both unexplored territory, projects in the messy middle and a few projects nearly finished. All in all, lots of fun and problem solving.

Plans also include recreation time like reading, writing poems and spending time with family and friends. 

Plan B or C

Like Rabbits and Cats I always have a plan B, because the most certain thing in life is that nothing ever goes as planned. Change is inevitable and it often brings exciting opportunities. 

To me, planning for project progress is a critical means to meet deadlines, and time management gives me the opportunity to focus on what’s important now. 

The best thing about deadlines is that they herald new beginnings. I love starting up and exploring new projects.

My mantra is: I wonder what happens if I do this, or maybe that?

But now, if you’ll excuse me; I’ll get back to my stack of interesting books. It’s recreation time, or “time to compost” as my gardening husband puts it.

See y’all next month!

artists and their cats
artists and their cats

Thank you – Happy Holidays!

Thank you for showing interest in my art! Thanks for your kind support, for sharing likes and comments and for buing my artworks! It has been quite a year, and I think I have the best people cheering for me! Thank you – Happy Holidays!

Being an artist means a lot: As long as I have my studio I always have something to look forward to. And all your positive energy keeps my creativity grow! Lucky me!

Thank you for your support and positive energy! Spread love!

Nice people from all around the world

I feel so lucky to be able to do this, so lucky to have family and friends cheering for me. And I feel so lucky to meet so many nice people from all over the world, some in real life, some over the internet. 

I honestly don’t know who I’d be without my art practice!

What a year!

What a year this has been, with so many nice surprises! I don’t know how to recap this in a few sentences, but I’ll give it a try.

The first two months of the year I was really stepping it up and launched my newsletter and I had scheduled loads of interesting projects. But plans changed as a long desired opportunity knocked on my door – and I took on a new day job which I really love!

Working full time also means new priorities regarding my art practice. For instance turning down 4 invitations to exhibit my work this year.

Top 5 portrait of Paul
Top 5: portrait of Paul

Top Five 

Wow! I was totally blown away when I learned that my painting was the curator’s choice and made TOP 5 among almost 1000 artworks in this year’s international TAE exhibition in York, UK taking place in June.

I was so honoured that my abstracted portrait was highlighted in the catalogue. The model, who is an artist himself, was thrilled as he received the good news.

Makes me really happy to know that this special artwork now belongs to a dedicated collector in sunny California, USA.

Want to buy my artworks, please sign up for my newsletter!

When life gives you lemons

They say: When life gives you lemons, make lemonade! Well, my planned summer holidays went down the drain this year due to Corona. I had no other choice but to surrender as I couldn’t beat that stubborn Covid-monster inside my body. 

So no large painting outside in my planned forest studio this summer. But other nice things happened!

One of my mural portraits at MUNCH museum summer of ’22

Making murals at MUNCH museum 

I had never thought I would be able to show my work at the new MUNCH museum, but this summer opportunity knocked again – and I made 2 large mural portraits on the 11th floor. I loved coworking with kids visiting the museum! The exhibition is now closed and the murals on the walls are painted over. 

New Batch of Artwork

In November I finally finished my new batch of abstract paintings and put them out for sale exclusively for those who follow my newsletter. To tell the truth, it is always a bit scary to show new artworks – what if no one likes them but me?

The first one sold almost immediately and I’ve received lots and lots of nice comments and interesting suggestions on how to go further! That’s so exciting!

I absolutely have the BEST PEOPLE cheering for me! What a year!

Thank you & Happy Holidays! Hope to see you again next year!

Happy Holidays!

Join my Newsletter

With the energy from The Year of the Tiger I decided to step up the game: So this month I welcome you to join my brand new Newsletter. 

I’m a lifelong learner. I love a challenge, so this year I will find the courage to step outside my comfort zone, to climb out on a limb and reach for my next level of growth as an artist. I want to go all in!

Why newsletter?

I offer you the chance to be the first to get news and special offers from my studio. News about upcoming exhibitions, opening nights, artist talks, workshops, open studios, giveaways and new art for sale. 

By signing up for my newsletter you will get special discounts and get to grab brand new artworks before they enter my webshop.

How often?

I plan to send monthly newsletters, unless something very exciting and extremely urgent matters pops up on the horizon.

How to Sign Up

I will be sending my newsletter directly to your email inbox. If you cannot find your welcome email, please check your spam mail. Make sure to move my newsletter to your inbox and add me to your contact list.

Click on this link to sign up for my newsletter.

Enjoy the ride! 

Small works for big changes

Time flies when you’re having fun! That’s for sure! Early this summer serendipity knocked on my door and intuition told me to jump on the art train passing by. I have not regretted one single minute, not even a second! I have found my joy!

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Having fun is vital 

I had so much fun doing Louise Fletcher’s free taster that I signed up for the full 10 week course and exchanged my plans for a lazy summer holiday with long hours of work in my art studio. I didn’t get much of a sun tan this year, but I gained artistic insights and had a ball!

For me having fun is vital for my well being and when things get too serious or busy I get overwhelmed and lose my energy. This summer has been amazing!

Small works for big changes

Working small on sheets of paper has many advantages when you master the format. You get to experiment a lot more and finish work in a smaller amount of time and you get to know your preferences; what you like or don’t like. 

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Intuitive process

When working on technical paper or sheets of canvas paper I feel free to follow my intuition, I feel free to play and never think of “ruining” an expensive gallery canvas for that matter. Working on paper also means I can sell works at affordable prices.

Feeling fearless 

Another aspect of working small is that there’s really nothing to lose: If your painting sucks, make another and notice what you do and don’t like. It’s called learning and the more I learn about my preferences, the more “me” my paintings get.

My favourite idea when working in my studio is: “I wonder what happens if”… and this is how some of my small playful works give rise to big, bold changes.

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I’m So Excited for what’s to come!

Well, to make a long story short I had so much fun and learned so much doing the full 10 week course this summer, that I signed up for the brand new 6 week master class starting in a couple of weeks. I’m so excited for what’s to come!

Serendipity knocks

As I was closing my studio preparing for a long summer holiday, serendipity knocked on my door. It’s said that “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear!” I never thought that quoting these words in my June blog post would make a difference, but Boy! Was I wrong! 

So be prepared for what you wish for! 

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My art practise is my life line

Almost every single day I create something. That’s my priority. I feel like my studio time fills me with energy. Expressing myself through painting, sketching and collage helps me be more aware of what is going on inside, especially when things are busy outside and the world situation is hard to grasp. 

Having fun is my fuel

The hardest part of creating is finding my own voice. On my way through art school, workshops and classes I somehow lost my joy. Last spring I dragged myself into the studio, only to find that I didn’t like what I was creating. Now, that sucks! Imagine going to your happy place, getting stuck and feeling frustrated. Some say that being an artist is like having a midlife crisis your entire life… 

(C) copyright. All rights reserved Art by Rekkebo – Having fun is my fuel!

Serendipity knocks

Thanks to my art friend Cheri, whom I met through the international creative community Canary Rising, I finally discovered “My Octopus Teacher” – if you haven’t watched that film yet, please do! 

Brilliant teachings

What a life changing experience to have found British abstract artist Louise Fletcher and her brilliant teachings. Louise is a down to earth teacher with excellent motivational skills and strategies that really helps you get back to basics, letting loose and feeling free! 

Louise’s free taster course in the first half of June filled me with so much joy and hope that I signed up for a full ten week course and skipped my summer holidays! 

I’m so excited! I can hardly wait for next week’s teachings and assignment! 

(C) copyright. All rights reserved Art by Rekkebo – I love ripping off the tape

Spiralling upwards, downwards or sideways?

In art school my teachers often talked about how artists work in spirals, meaning that when learning new techniques you add to your toolbox so you can make art at a higher level. So far, so good. 

The downside of learning all that new stuff is that you might get lost, forget about who you are as an artist and spiral yourself down, or enter someone else’s spiral. 

Last spring I felt tense and stuck. I didn’t seem to get anything right. I was sick and tired of creating paintings that sucked. I had completely lost my joy and I felt like spiralling downwards. And I had absolutely no clue how to push my art further. 

Don’t stop looking!

But: If you’re searching for something, even if you cannot pinpoint exactly what it is, don’t stop looking – because one day you will find what resonates with you! For me having fun is essential; I love playing and experimenting! For me Louise’s and her team’s teachings are spot on! 

This is my journey –  I will find my joy – and make my studio my happy place!

(C) copyright. All rights reserved Art by Rekkebo

Summertime fine

Today painting almost feels like an out-of-body experience, I’m so excited and I love love love being in flow having fun in my studio. 

Think this will be a great summer!

My global collage village

Hope for the best, prepare for the worst and expect nothing! A year ago I had no idea what impact Covid-19 would have around the globe and how it would affect my daily life. Today I know a lot more. I’m glad I didn’t know everything forehand. Sometimes it’s best to accept the situation and don’t push the river, so to speak.

Cancelled and closed

I admit it has been a bit tricky to stay optimistic the past year. I mean, most of my plans are on hold and the corona situation will probably make sure it stays like that for quite some time. Like many other artists, the only thing I can do is work, work, work alone in my studio and hope for better times to come. Sometimes it feels like my painting sessions continue long into my sleep, like a neverending story. 

All shows are cancelled. All workshops are cancelled. Even art supply shops are closed. I have run out of several mediums and therefore have to improvise.  Most likely I’ll have to order something from an online store just to get things going.

Making collage (c) Copyright. All rights reserved Art by Rekkebo

No man is an island – or?

They say “no man is an island” meaning that most people need to be part of a community in order to thrive. This capital city has been more or less closed down for five months and we are all pretty isolated. Maybe it’s time to rethink how we downsize our health care systems, organize our work and communities and how we live our lives? 

As some of you have read and commented on earlier, an art school is not particularly suitable for online schooling while working on your graduate project. Last year Covid-19 forced all supervision to take place in a virtual classroom and in such moments it’s hard to keep the motivation going. In times like this you have to trust the process and seek inspiration elsewhere.

Small collages in the making (c) Copyright. All rights reserved Art by Rekkebo

My global collage village

A year ago, as Oslo closed down, I quickly understood that I needed to get myself a hobby and a creative online community to hang out with. Luckily I came across a fantastic group of international collage artists. I have learned so much from making collage, taking online classes, discussing with morning birds and night owls and hanging out with these wonderful people. My art collection has grown along with my hope! So thank you Canaries, you really inspire me to grow my wings! 

April 1. 2020 I made my very first 5 minute intuitive collage. One year later I have taken on a few challenges and made some progress. I do not compare myself to artists with 10 plus years of experience – they do amazing works! And I’m still a beginner. But as long as I’m happy, I carry on. Doing it my way. I find making collage to be both relaxing and challenging and very suitable in my ongoing process of abstractifying my work.

This April (2021) I focused on making a series of 36 collages and I’m actually quite happy with some of them. A few even found their way overseas. I will definitely dedicate more time to working with collage. But first I will try to add collage into my paintings.

36 small collages on my wall (c) Copyright. All rights reserved Art by Rekkebo

Coming in from the cold with fresh eyes 

We had a really cold winter this year. Since I have moved my studio home, opening windows was not a preferred thing to do, so I had to come up with less smelly ways of working. Making collage is one of them. Working small and journaling is another. Rethinking and retextualisation is part of the process. So I’m not looking for “new landscapes”, I use “fresh eyes” to see what is already there. 

It’s not always what you look at that matters, it’s what you see. So, I’m kind of looking for traces, searching for myself…or rather; new ways of “inventing” my art. 

What if?

When time is abundant and money is scarce, when your studio is smaller than your big dreams, when you run out of your favourite art supplies – what do you do? You either freak out or you try new things! I wonder what happens if I do this or that? Or try another way? My next project might be using my grandmother’s sewing machine on my canvases. The sewing machine that only runs backwards. Wohoo, that might be a lot of fun!

Never give up, keep trying and practise every day! Success comes in many different shapes and forms. Have faith and have fun!

Thank you for buying my art

Thank you so much for buying my art! It gives me a lot of energy and creative joy! Love all your nice feedback and inquiries regarding my work. Unfortunately, I am a little behind with the orders, but trust me they will come!

Tusen takk for at dere kjøper bildene mine! Det gir meg masse energi og skaperglede! Veldig moro med alle hyggelige tilbakemeldinger og henvendelser. Jeg henger dessverre litt etter med bestillingene, men de kommer, de kommer!

Digital theft

It feels horrible to find out that my pictures are stolen and sold on dubious websites. I have previously been spared for digital theft, but this fall I had some devastating news. To avoid future digital thefts, I have therefore changed the quality and image size of what I post online. Sad, because this affects all of you good people with honest intentions.

Digitalt tyveri

Det er skikkelig kjipt når bildene mine stjeles og selges på tvilsomme nettsider. Jeg har tidligere vært forskånet for den slags, men i høst fikk jeg meg en durabelig nedtur. For å unngå fremtidige digitale tyverier, ser jeg meg derfor nødt til å endre kvalitet og bildestørrelse på det jeg legger ut på nett. Trist, fordi dette går utover alle dere som har ærlige hensikter.

A strange year

2020 has been a busy year, and a very different year, marked by Covid-19, which put an end to many plans. The spring term at art school was therefore strongly influenced by online studies, which is far from optimal during the 3rd school year’s most important period working on my graduate project in visual arts. Fortunately, opportunities arose to hold an exhibition in Gallery C-14 when the corona restrictions opened up for it. This autumn has also been characterized by restrictions, but you learn to improvise, so I have spent my autumn months well; they have been packed with new inspiration and long work hours in my studio.

Et underlig år

2020 har vært et travelt år, og et veldig annerledes år preget av Covid-19 som satte en stopper for mange planer. Vårsemesteret ved kunstskolen ble derfor sterkt preget av nettstudier, hvilket er langt fra optimalt under 3.årets viktigste periode og arbeidet med hovedoppgaven. Heldigvis kom muligheter for å arrangere utstilling i galleri C-14 når korona-restriksjonene åpnet for det. Høstsemesteret har også vært preget av restriksjoner, men man lærer å improvisere, så jeg har brukt høstmånedene godt, de har vært fullspekket av ny inspirasjon og intenst arbeid i atelieret.

Closed studio

This December, my studio has been closed after a busy autumn and I have spent time with my family. Truth be told, my health has faltered a little bit more than usual this strange year. I have therefore tried to spoil and nurture myself during this dark period of the year. Because health is important for my creativity. 

I feel fine and I’m looking forward to getting back in my studio. I have so many ideas and soon it’s time to plan for the year to come. I hope for a prosperous year!

In the meantime, I wish you all a happy new year!

Stengt atelier

Denne desembermåneden har atelieret vært stengt etter en travel høst og jeg har brukt tid og energi på familien. Sant å si så har vel helsa skranglet litt mer enn vanlig dette underlige året, jeg har derfor forsøkt å pleie meg selv litt ekstra godt i denne mørke tiden. For helsa er viktig for kreativiteten, så det er godt å kjenne at det kribler litt og at jeg gleder meg til å komme igang igjen med å lage bilder. 

Jeg har mange ideer og snart er det tid for å planlegge året som kommer. La oss inderlig håpe det blir et fruktbart år!

I mellomtiden ønsker jeg alle et riktig godt nytt år!

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Making Woodcuts in Trine’s Garden

Time flies when you’re having fun! I cannot imagine that a whole year has passed since this wonderful weekend making woodcuts in Trine’s garden in the artist colony at Ekely.

Back to Ekely

As some of you might remember, I have taken a couple of printmaking classes at Ekely before and really enjoyed working in Edvard Munch’s print making studio. This weekend course, though will take place at the teacher’s private studio.

Hot, hot summer

Oslo had an extraordinary hot summer last year, I think we had three months of sunshine and hardly no rain. This weekend was super hot, so the teatcher, Trine Lindheim, had prepared for the class to work outside in the generous garden.

woodcuts in the garden

Copyright (c) Art by Rekkebo

Artist colony at Ekely

While we were working, carving out motivs on wooden blocks, the cat slept quietly in the shadows, and fishes swam slowly in the pond. A few curious birds were chatting, probably wondering what on earth was going on in this normally peaceful place of the artist colony at Ekely. What a summer!

My plan

Before going there I had prepared a few sketches in advance, but I changed my mind and started working on a motif from a photo I took with my cell phone the previous afternoon while strolling along the Akerselva river toghether with my beautiful cat, Mr Muskat.

Copyright (c) Art by Rekkebo

 Copyright (c) Art by Rekkebo

Oh, I simply love taking walks with Mr Muskat and he seems quite happy, too – playing hide and seek, running super fast or climbing high up in the trees to impress Mom.

The woodcut process

  • First you draw the motif onto the wood block.
  • Secondly you start carving using sharp tools with different blade shapes to make various structures in your design.
  • Third stage is to make test prints and adjust your carving so that the motif will stand out the way you want it to.
  • The process sure takes time when you have little experience.

printmaking studio

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The teacher

The teacher, Trine Lindheim is a well established norwegian artist working in several diciplines. I first met Trine when taking a woodcut class at Ekely in spring 2018 and immediately signed up for her summer weekend class.

The group

The group held paricipants from beginners level to quite experienced level and for that reason we received coaching adjusted to our individual level. It seems to me that everyone was quite happy with both our own and fellow participant’s outcome. Some even made plans to join next summer course.

Saturday in the sun

The first day we “only” carved one woodcut and used one single colour for our prints. Carving is quite tidious work and the summer heat forced us to take breaks every now and then.

Together we had long delicious lunches, fruits and soft drinks and, off course, inspiring conversations. The charming group of ladies was quite enthusiastic about each others work as the process we went through.

drying prints

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Sunday Funday

The second day was even hotter, and we were prepared the work would be a little more difficult as we now worked on a second woodcut to join with the one we made yesterday. And we were to use several colours. Sunday funday!

Knowing we had limited time, we tried to minimize the breaks and worked real hard on our woodcuts to complete what we set out to do. We were actually quite impressed by ourselves and cheering for each other to take new steps towards mastering the art of woodcuts. We hardly wanted to leave, because we had such fun!

Thank you, Trine for teaching us! And thank you Ladies for a nice weekend!

discussing next step

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One advantage of printmaking is that the process is a bit quicker than the slow painting process of days and weeks. When printmaking you also get to testing out different colours using the same motiv. I kind of like this quick printmaking process, but I’m not so sure about the carving…

Anyway, here is the result. It still needs to be framed.

Muskats rike

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Related article 

PÅ NORSK

TRESNITTKURS I TRINES HAGE

Tiden flyr når man har det gøy! Tenk at det har gått et år siden denne herlige helgen med kurs i tresnitt i Trines hage i kunstnerkolonien på Ekely.

Tilbake til Ekely

Som noen kanskje husker, har jeg tatt et par kurs i grafikk på Ekely før og jeg trivdes godt med å jobbe i Edvard Munchs trykkeri. Denne helga finner kurset sted i lærerens private grafikkverksted.

Den varmeste sommeren

Oslo hadde en veldig varm sommer i fjor, jeg tror vi hadde tre måneders solskinn og nesten ikke regn. Denne helgen var også varm, så læreren vår Trine Lindheim hadde lagt opp til at en del av kurset skulle foregå ute i den deilige hagen.

Mens vi risset motivene våre inn på finerplater, sov katten stille i skyggene og fiskene svømte sakte i dammen. Et par nysgjerrige fugler kvitret lystig, de lurte nok på hva som foregikk i denne vanligvis så fredelige delen av kunstnerkolonien på Ekely. For en sommer!

Jeg har en plan

Jeg hadde forberedt noen få skisser på forhånd, men jeg ombestemte meg og begynte å jobbe ut fra et bilde jeg tok med mobiltelefonen ettermiddagen i forveien mens jeg gikk tur langs Akerselva sammen med katten min, kjekke Herr Muskat.

Åh, jeg elsker turene med Muskat! Han virker glad han også – der han spurter forbi meg, leker gjemsel eller klatrer høyt opp i trærne for å imponere mamsen sin.

tools for carving

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Prosessen med tresnitt

  • Først tegner man motivet på treplaten (kryssfiner).
  • Deretter risser man motivet inn i kryssfineren ved hjelp av skarpe verktøy som har forskjellige former på bladet, dette for å lage ulike strukturer i designet.
  • Neste steg er å lage prøvetrykk og så må man justere utskjæringen slik at motivet blir slik du vil.
  • Hele prosessen tar tid når man har liten erfaring.

tools for coloring

Copyright (c) Art by Rekkebo

Læreren

Læreren vår, Trine Lindheim, er en veletablert norsk kunstner med solid erfaring som lærer og kursholder. Jeg møtte Trine første gang på Ekely i våren 2018, og registrerte seg umiddelbart for sommerhelgerklassen.

Gruppen

Gruppen inneholdt deltakere fra nybegynnernivå opp til ganske erfarent nivå, vi fikk derfor coaching tilpasset vårt individuelle nivå. Jeg tror alle var ganske så fornøyde med både vår egen og andres innsats og hva vi klarte å skape. Noen la planer om å bli med på neste sommer kurs.

En lørdag i solen

Den første dagen jobbet vi “bare” med en enkelt treplate og laget trykk med en farge. Å lage tresnitt er ganske tidkrevende, arbeidet krever nøyaktighet og sommervarmen tvang oss til å ta pauser titt og ofte.

Det ble tid til lange og deilige lunsjer, pauser med forfriskninger og inspirerende samtaler. Den sjarmerende gruppen med damer virket ganske så begeistret for hverandres arbeid etter hvert som prosessene skred fram og klessnorene i grafikkverkstedet fyltes opp med deltakernes trykk.

hand driven press

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Søndagsmoro

Søndagen ble enda varmere. Vi var dessuten forberedt på at arbeidet ville bli litt vanskeligere i dag ettersom vi skulle lage et nytt tresnitt som skulle passe sammen og legges oppå det vi laget i går. Og vi skulle bruke flere farger. Søndagsmoro!

Fordi vi hadde begrenset tid, prøvde vi å minimere pausene og jobbe hardt for å klare å fullføre oppgaven. Jeg synes vi var flinke til å heie og inspirere hverandre for å mestre kunsten å lage tresnitt. Vi hadde det så gøy, vi ville nesten ikke dra hjem!

Tusen takk, Trine for alt du lærte oss! Og til damene for en fin helg!

En fordel med å lage tresnitt er at prosessen går litt raskere enn den treige maleprosessen som tar dager, uker og måneder. Med tresnitt får du anledning til å prøve ulike fargekombinasjoner på samme motiv. Jeg liker godt den raske trykkeprosessen, men jeg er ikke så sikker på at jeg er så glad i treskjæringen…

Uansett, her er resultatet som fortsatt mangler innramming. Me lyt vona at det kjem ein dag i mårå og…

working hard

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Relatert innlegg. Her kan du lese mer om tresnitt 

Painting with Peter

Artists need inspiration. I have long been fascinated by Peter Esdaile’s enigmatic image world. His magic characters move in a slightly surreal, colorful and mysterious world. The image composition lets the eyes wander over large canvases and Peter’s many layers of painting techniques provide associations to several different stories.

Peter Esdaile

Copyright (c) Art by Rekkebo

Lucky me took part in one of Peter’s weekend courses this autumn. The material list included: large canvases, water buckets, window sill, large brushes, rubber patches, paint medium, spray bottle and a selection of acrylic colors. I decided to put the most important equipment into my trunk bag, wrap up four canvases and hope for some new insights.

I was genuinely curious about how this sorcerer of an artist works out his surrealistic mix of teams on the verge of seemingly chaos and cheeky coincidences. I wondered why he mixes the daring play of abstraction with solemn classical figuration, I also wondered how Peter pulls it all together and make things look like a three-dimensional world on a two-dimensional canvas. Where does he get the motives from? What techniques does he use?

Peter the teacher

Copyright (c) Art by Rekkebo

After an hour’s relaxing train ride I met a wonderful bunch of enthusiastic artists at Nedre Eiker Art Society. The charming old house in the centre of Mjøndalen held both an atelier and a chill out lounge with coffee and homemade cookies. After a small introduction, Peter started the weekend’s first demo of many, and enthusiastic participants were ready with mobile cameras.

It was exciting to see how a professional artist has developed personal techniques and shares the secrets with us.

The weather was nice and sunny so we dried our large canvases outside on the pavement in the quite little street. I believe som neighbours and pedestrians were quite impressed.

wet paintings on the pavement

Copyright (c) Art by Rekkebo

Key words in this painting process are: rhythm, direction, different strokes, many layers of colors. Thin coating, thicker coating, we are looking for potential motifs, scratching, leaving something to stand out while the rest is painted over. We let our body works the large canvases, we let coincidences prevail and take control when needed.

Time flies as we leave more paintings to dry outside in anticipation of the next layers of color.

In short: A creative process of controlled coincidence that alternates between apparent chaos and steel control. Bright light colors against heavier darker colors. Occasionally we work all over the picture, sometimes only partially. Nothing is right or wrong, just try and fail, play, learn and master.

Thank you for a wonderful and educational weekend, everyone! Hope to see you again!

my 4 canvases

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På norsk: 

Kunstnerspirer trenger inspirasjon. Jeg har lenge latt meg fascinere av Peter Esdailes gåtefulle billedverden. Hans magiske figurer beveger seg i en litt surrealistisk, fargerik og mystisk verden. Billedkomposisjonen lar øynene vandre over store lerret og Peters mange lag av besnærende maleteknikker gir assosiasjoner til flere ulike fortellinger.

Til alt hell fikk jeg plass på et av kunstnerens ettertraktede weekendkurs denne høsten. Materiallisten inneholdt blant annet: store lerreter, vannbøtter, vindusnal, store pensler, gummispatler, malemedier, sprayflaske og et utvalg akrylfarger. Det var bare å stappe det viktigste ned i trillebagen, surre lerretene fast og la det stå til.

Jeg var oppriktig nysgjerrig på hvordan denne trollmannen av en kunstner jobber fram sin surrealistiske miks av lag på lag med tilsynelatende kaos og snodige tilfeldigheter. Jeg undret meg over hvorfor han blander abstraksjonens djerve lekenhet med soleklar klassisk figurasjon, og på hvordan Peter får det hele til å henge sammen og se ut som en tredimensjonal verden på et todimensjonalt lerret. Hvor henter han motivene fra? Hvilke teknikker benytter han?

Etter en times avslappende togtur møtte jeg en herlig gjeng med entusiastiske kunstnere i Nedre Eiker Kunstforening. De sjarmerende lokalene i Mjøndalen sentrum huset både malersal og chill out lounge med kaffe og hjemmebakst. Etter en liten introduksjon gikk Peter i gang med helgens første demo og spente kursdeltakere stod klare med mobilkamera.

Det var spennende å se hvordan en profesjonell kunstner har utviklet egne teknikker og deler hemmelighetene med oss.

Med så ivrige kursdeltakere med mange store lerreter på gang var det kjekt å kunne legge arbeidene til tørk utendørs i det fine været til glede for naboer og forbipasserende.

Stikkord i maleprosessen er: rytme, retning, penselbruk, ulike strøk, lag på lag med farger. Tynne strøk, tykkere strøk, laseringer, vi leter og skraper fram motiv, lar noe stå mens resten males over. Vi lar kroppen jobbe over store lerret, vi lar tilfeldighetene råde og tar kontrollen når det trengs.

Timene flyr av gårde og ute på fortauet ligger stadig nye malerier til tørk i påvente av nye lag med maling.

Kort sagt: En arbeidsprosess av styrt tilfeldighet som veksler mellom tilsynelatende kaos og stålkontroll. Lyse lette farger mot tyngre mørkere. Av og til jobber vi over hele bildet, stundom bare delvis. Ingen ting er rett eller galt, her gjelder det bare å prøve og feile, leke, lære og mestre.

Takk for en herlig og lærerik helg, alle sammen!
Håper vi ses snart!

Art by Rekkebo

Copyright (c) Art by Rekkebo

Printmaking at Ekely – Part Two

I recently had the opportunity to join a printmaking class at Ekely – Edvard Munch’s studio in Oslo where the famous artist lived and worked for 28 years. This was my second time working in the great master’s printmaking studio where all the great Norwegian printmakers have worked over the years. The atmosphere was superb, and so was the teacher, Trine!

printmaking at Ekely part 2

Copyright (c) Art by Rekkebo

Preparations before class
The week before my printmaking class I started thinking of what kind of motif I would like to try out. Since woodcut is new to me, I asked for advice from a few experienced colleges before starting sketching my motif. I decided to go for a quite simple motif and have another one as a backup plan.

High pressure printing
Woodcut and linocut are examples of high pressure printing. Woodcut is the oldest graphic technique we know of. Wood has a beautiful structure and numerous prints can be produced from a woodcut. Linoleum is easier to work with due to its smooth structure, but only a limited number of prints can be produced with the linoleum.

printmaking at Ekely part 2

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Woodcut
Woodcut is a relief printing technique in printmaking. You might say it resembles the historic petroglyphs engraved on stone or mountain walls. Woodcut was probably the first graphic technique to be used for mass communication since the technique allows you to make a number of prints from the same carved woodblock.

printmaking at Ekely part 2

Copyright (c) Art by Rekkebo

The process

Carving: We used a set of gouges; sharp tools with different blade geometry to carve the design into the surface of the plank of wood. The lines are mostly cut along the wood grain. The deep cut away areas will carry no ink. Only images at surface level will carry the ink to produce the print.

Ink: The surface is covered with ink by rolling over the surface with an ink-covered roller (brayer), leaving ink upon the flat surface but not in the non-printing areas, the lines and patterns we have carved out.

Printing: The carved plank of wood is put through a high-pressure printing press together with a sheet of paper, and the paper picks up the ink from the engraved lines, making a print. The motif will come out mirrored. This process can be repeated many times; 100 – 200 hundred impressions (copies) could be printed from the original printing plate.

We only made a few prints in black and white, and we also tried adding blue and green. Next time I hope to make woodcuts with several colors in the same print. Hopefully I can join a weekend class this summer!

New inspiration
I’m so grateful for having this opportunity. This woodcut class filled me with new inspiration; it sure is quite different from the slow painting process which goes on for days and weeks. Woodcut also suits me well since there is no action needed regarding my allergies during the process. The only drawback is that you need a high-pressure printing press – but hey, I’ve heard there are printing studios to rent and some has whispered there are simpler ways to get the work done. Guess I’ll do some more research and get back to you later.

printmaking at Ekely part 2

Copyright (c) Art by Rekkebo

 PÅ NORSK

Grafiske trykk på Ekely – del to
Jeg har nylig vært så heldig å lære litt om tresnitt på Ekely, i Edvard Munchs atelier i Oslo der den berømte kunstneren bodde og jobbet i 28 år. Dette var andre gang jeg jobbet i den store mesterens trykkeri der alle de store norske grafikerne har jobbet opp gjennom årene. Atmosfæren var fantastisk, og det samme var læreren, Trine!

Forberedelser før kurset
Uken før tresnittkurset begynte jeg å fundere på hva slags motiv jeg ville prøve meg på. Fordi tresnitt er nytt for meg, ba jeg om råd fra noen erfarne kunstnerkolleger før jeg begynte skissearbeidet. Jeg besluttet å gå for et ganske enkelt motiv og ha et annet i reserve.

Høytrykk
Tresnitt og linosnitt er begge høytrykk. Tresnitt er den eldste grafiske teknikken vi kjenner til. Tre har en vakker struktur og man kan produsere mange hundre trykk fra en treplate. Linoleum er enklere å arbeide med på grunn av sin glatte struktur, men kan bare produsere et begrenset antall.

Tresnitt
Tresnitt minner litt om helleristninger. Tresnitt er en av de eldste kjente grafiske trykkteknikkene, avtrykket/bildet oppstår etter trykking fra en utskåret plate av tre. Begrepet tresnitt dekker både teknikken og selve avtrykket/bildet. Tresnitt var trolig den første grafiske trykketeknikken som ble benyttet til massekommunikasjon, siden teknikken lar deg lage en rekke utskrifter fra samme utskårne treverk.

printmaking at Ekely part 2

Copyright (c) Art by Rekkebo

Prosessen
Utskjæring: Vi brukte et sett med skarpe verktøy (u-jern og v-jern i ulike størrelser) for å snitte motivet inn i overflaten av treverket/kryssfineren. Man skjærer vanligvis med tre-retningen og man kan gjerne utnytte treverkets struktur og årringer som en del av bildet. Man skjærer så dypt at trykksverten ikke kommer ned i de utskårne områdene når sverten valses på.

Trykksverte: Treplaten innsettes med trykksverte ved hjelp av en rulle innsatt med svart farge. Høytrykk betyr at de graverte områdene med linjer og mønster ikke tar til seg farge. Strekene du har gravert inn vil dermed vise seg som hvite linjer mot den svarte trykksverten.

Trykking: Den utskårne treplaten/kryssfineren kjøres så gjennom en høytrykkspresse sammen med et papirark som tar til seg trykksverten. Motivet kommer ut speilvendt. Trykkeprosessen kan gjentas flere hundre ganger.

Vi laget bare noen få utskrifter med svart farge og prøvde med blå og grønn. Neste gang håper jeg å lage fargetresnitt. Håper jeg får plass på helgekurs hos Trine i løpet av sommeren!

Ny inspirasjon
Jeg er så utrolig glad for å ha fått denne muligheten. Tresnittkurset fylte meg med ny inspirasjon; dette er ganske annerledes enn den trege maleprosessen som pågår i dager og uker. Tresnitt passer meg bra ettersom det er allergivennlig og rimelig kjemikaliefritt. Ulempen er dog at du trenger en trykkpresse, men jeg har hørt at man kan leie seg inn ved enkelte trykkerier, og noen har hvisket at det finnes enklere metoder. Og det vil jeg finne ut av!

printmaking at Ekely part 2

Copyright (c) Art by Rekkebo