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Printmaking Meet Up At The Bluegrass Art Center

My neighbor at the Pendleton Art Center, Gabrielle Lundy, makes cool folk art using found objects.


One day, we were talking about printmaking, and I told her that I thought her work would make great collagraphs.

I invited her to visit anytime, and I would show her how it works.

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Once we set the date, I thought it would be fun to invite any artist to join us, so I made an ‘event’ on facebook.  Here is what it said:

ARTISTS! I am inviting a few artist friends to meet up for some printmaking fun. We are going to put a pot of soup on the wood stove, and I have 2 presses. We can spend the afternoon sharing a meal, getting to know each other and making stuff.

You don’t need a printmaking background, I have plenty of printmaking stuff I am happy to share (paper, knives, ink, linoleum, plates etc) You can prepare something and bring it or make it there…this is a casual, printmaking meet up, nothing formal, no cost to participate, just making art with a press.

Space and materials are limited, we will meet at the Bluegrass Art Center, which is a rustic and beautiful location…but if there is too big a response, we might have to find a bigger space…so only say you are coming if you REALLY can make it.

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Photo by Becky Ebert

I didn’t know what to expect, but we had a amazing group of artists visit.
Everybody brought some food, and we shared a delicious ‘pot luck’.

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photo by Pamela Lee Yeager

Many of the artists had never worked in printmaking, so it was a very new experience for them.


Some good friends I have known for years came along with some other artists I have only met on facebook.


My neighbors on the 4th floor at the Pendleton Art Center:  Gabrielle Lundy and Pamela Hackim


Betsy Baltzer


Cheryl Beardslee


Cole and Victor Imperi


Penny Gates and Pamela Yaeger


Becky Ebert


Sue Gorman

It was a great time!  A big THANK YOU to Mike Cowden and the Bluegrass Art Center in Old Washington, KY for letting us use his beautiful space.
I hope to do something similar again soon…maybe a paint party next time?!

PS. if this is the kind of thing you might have enjoyed, and you use facebook,  you can add me as a friend, or subscribe to my posts here:
www.facebook.com/kenSwinson

 

 

 

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2012 in Review

Without a doubt, my biggest accomplishment of 2012 was the Makensie Hay-Youngman memorial at the Brooksville, KY library.  Shortly after her death, Makensie’s parents asked me to do something for her memorial.  I had a strong feeling that Makensie’s family and friends should have an active part in creating the artwork.

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Making art has helped me feel better during difficult times, and I felt it might help them in a small way with their grief.   With my direction, over 20 people helped create the 4 large paintings.  Each panel represents a different season of the year, it is loaded with tidbits from Makensie’s life.  I am very proud of the finished artwork.  It was inspirational to see how I could share my talent to help others.

thanks Susan Naylor for the photo!
thanks Susan Naylor for the photo!

Speaking of sharing artwork, in 2012, i did a lot of teaching…A LOT!  I did quite a few workshops with adults(and children) at the Baker Hunt Art and Cultural Center In Covington.  I did a lot of volunteering with different summer camps, schools and community programs.  Here is a link to a video I made about one of my favorite activities:


If it doesn’t show up, here is a link to the video: http://www.youtube.com/embed/J52_tYVaaH8

2012 was a big year for video and animation projects.  I went to school for information technology, and have really enjoyed mixing art and technology.  I have been working on a few different projects, but for the close of the year, I would like to share the first project of 2012…an animation collaboration with artist/singer, Leah Frederick:

If it doesn’t show up, here is a link to the video: http://www.youtube.com/embed/QBE1Zpk7DEU

the cookbook
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this year, I collaborated with my neighbor, Claudia Moose.  Claudia is a gourmet cook, and we have worked together to combine some of her recipes with my photographs to make “Cooking With Bourbon”  100% of the proceeds from the book sales have been given toward art programs for the youth in our community.  The first edition has sold out…stay tuned, we hope to have more available soon!

the van
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in 2012, I started to paint my van.  The idea was to add something new every time I take a trip, and it would become a moving, living work of art.   It is a work in progress.  My long term goal for the van is to make it an art studio on wheels.  I have been taking lots of small trips, learning how to make art while ‘out in the wild’.  The more I travel, the more excited I get about discovering this wonderful world.  My goal for 2013 is to master life on the road, and spend a good amount of time exploring and making art.

The Tiger Lily Press Calendar

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I was honored to be one of the artists chosen for the Tiger Lily Press’s 2013 calendar…i was July since that is my birth month!

 

I have enjoyed a great year of shows including:

Augusta Art Guild
City of Bellevue
Bluegrass Art Center
EAT Gallery
Kentucky Artisan Center in Berea
Leslie H. Spetz Custom Framing and Gallery
Hyde Park Square
Pendleton Art Center

thanks to the great hosts, and great collectors who let me make my living doing work I love.

So the final big event of 2012 (other than the flu) was a stroke of good fortune.  The Cincinnati Enquirer wrote an article encouraging people to buy local art for the holidays.  They visited Indigenous: a handcrafted gallery, and saw my latest painting.  They liked it so much, it was prominantly featured on the front page of the newspaper, AND on the front of the home and style section!  I ended the year with lots of business…enough to pay for a new transmission on my van!  Here is the now famous painting.  You can click the painting to buy a print from my website, or visit Indigenous in O’bryonville to get one in person.

 

Thanks again everybody for a great 2012…I’m going to keep working hard to make 2013 even bigger and better!  If you want occasional updates through the year, fill out the email subscription form at the top of this page OR friend me on the facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/kenSwinson

 

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Printmaking Collaboration with Radha

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I just started a printmaking collaboration with Radha, one of my neighbors at the Pendleton Art Center.  She is one of my favorite printmakers, using many traditional patterns from her home in India.  Visit her website http://radartist.com to see for yourself.

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These monotypes are the beginning of our collaboration.

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I have used elements from my prints for the monotype…when they dry, Radha will print on top of them, we will pass the artwork back and forth until the artwork is complete.

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Stay tuned, I’ll share more prints as the project develops

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Sneak Peek for Augusta’s Art In The Garden

Art In The Garden is this Saturday.  It’s a fun art show along the river in beautiful Augusta, KY. I wanted to share some art that I will have at the show that features my favorite little river town.

 

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“Peace, Love and Folk Art” Block Print – $20 unframed – 85 framed
Another one of Augusta’s Treasures – a log cabin with one of the most charming ladies you will ever meet.  Many years ago, she was the first shop to ever sell my art, and has always been a great friend.

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“Jacqueline’s Place” Block Print– $20 unframed-85 framed
1830’s House In Augusta, KY – One of the few historic homes that are open to the public. It’s a shop called Jacqueline’s Place. Be sure and visit while you are in town

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“By The River” Block Print – $60 unframed – 180 framed
One of my favorite buildings in Augusta.  It’s no longer being used, but for many years, it was Augusta’s black church.  I really want to make it my art studio some day.

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“Riverside Drive” Block Print Tryptich – $75 unframed – 210 framed
Riverside Drive in Augusta, KY offers an amazing view of the Ohio River.  I carved 3 block prints, then printed them on one 20”x10” sheet of paper.  It captures the feeling of a very special place.

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“Augusta’s First Courthouse” watercolor – $120
This historic building was Bracken County’s first courthouse in the late 1700s. It is a private residence, and is located beside the jail, which is available for tours.

You can get more information about the show here:
http://www.augustaartguild.com/ArtintheGarden.html

Hope to see you there!

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Kentucky Wonderland

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I just finished a big and important project, and am ready for another art adventure. It starts today, and here are the details.

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I am going to ride my bicycle along the Ohio River from Maysville, KY until I reach Paducah. From Paducah, I plan to follow the TN/KY border across the state until I reach the Daniel Boone National Forest. I will cycle north through the forest, making a giant loop through most of the great state of Kentucky.

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While on this trip, my goal is to travel slow. I plan to stop often and make a lot of art while on the trip. I have been on a few long distance bike trips, and it’s easy to get obsessed with miles-traveled-per-day and miss out on the reason for taking the trip in the first place!

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I’m in Ripley, OH today, it’s been chilly. I’m going to camp somewhere between here and Georgetown, OH so I can hit Mycle’s Cycles (the only place I take my bike) tomorrow, followed by a day in Augusta, KY.

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Art Adventure Kentucky Road Trip

Do you want to see some beautiful countryside, great artwork, and get a FREE gift?

Here’s 4 places to visit this spring:

1. the Augusta Art Guild in Augusta, KY.

I’m having a one-man-show Friday, May 6th from 6-9pm
watch the video for more information
the show is on display until April 22.

if you can’t see the video, follow this link:
http://www.youtube.com/embed/dP3kfYinMsA
 

2.  the Bracken County library in Brooksville, KY

To see the memorial mural for Makensie Hay-Youngman.  It is one of my greatest projects.  We are dedicating the mural Saturday, April 7th from 2-4pm.  It will be on permanent display.

You can read more about the project here:
Art Project Helps Family Cope With Loss-By Wendy Mitchell

 

3. The EAT Gallery in Maysville, KY

EAT Gallery features jewelry from goldsmiths from across America. All items of jewelry are one-of-a-kind and are hand fabricated in gold, platinum, silver and other precious metals. They also showcase rare and unusual gemstones and pearls from around the globe.

more at their website:
eatGallery.com

 

4. The Bluegrass Artisan Center in Old Washington, KY

Opens after their winter break April 14!
Featuring paintings by Sue Gorman and sculpture by Megan Thomas

more at:
bluegrassArtisanCenter.com

 

I love all these places, and know you will too!

I made a map for you to download and print to guide you on your road trip.
(Click the map for a printable version)

When you visit each location, get your map stamped.  Collect all 4 stamps, and you get a free limited edition block print by Ken Swinson. 

This will be a special print, only available to road trippers…and maps must be filled out by June 2nd. 

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The Eco Village in Berea

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Yesterday, I was taking care of some business in Berea, KY. The town is centered around a progressive college where students receive a free education in exchange for making and selling crafts like pottery, woodwork, weaving and jewelry. Many graduates stay in Berea, and open shops, creating a vibrant community of artisans.

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The college created a small community called the eco village. It is a series of buildings where students develop environmental and self sustaining techniques for living.

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They have a system called aquaponics, where plants are grown in water with fish. The plants and fish give nutrients to each other, and produce good food to eat!

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One building in the village is completely self sustaining. It produces it’s own energy, food, and water.

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Another building is made from mud, straw and recycled materials. As an artist, I was inspired by the straw house. The building materials remind me of a clay sculpture.

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Wouldn’t it be fun to sculpt your own house?

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This is a window where you can see the interior of the wall…yes, it’s STRAW!!

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Here is an interesting take on a log structure.

Every time I visit Berea, I leave inspired. The Eco village makes me want to try and bump my garden up a notch, maybe I will try and do something innovative with my spring peas.

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I’ve Been a Busy Printmaker

I have been involved with some fun printmaking projects.  Recently, I helped the Tiger Lily Press with a 4ftx4ft linoleum print.  You can see more about the project on this video.

Here’s a link to the video:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vAQ0M-IG4a8

I have been busy at my press.  Here is one of my latest prints.  It is the view of Cincinnati’s skyline from Price Hill.

 

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Tomorrow, Friday, I will be making Holiday themed prints at
Indigenous, a handcrafted gallery  from 12-8pm.

Sunday, November 20, I’ll be participating in an Art Sale at the
Baker Hunt Cultural Art Center from 11-4pm.