Art Break Wednesday: Mini Ott Light Give-away – the Better to See you With!

Yay Images

 Perhaps THE most important resource a visual artist has is light.

I’m lucky to have two windows in my office/studio.  Neither one faces north, from which streams the best light for artists so they say, but I’ll take them. I also have overhead lights which came with our circa ’70s house, and which now have compact fluorescent bulbs in them, a few lamps with various types of bulbs, and a couple of those clip-on task lamps for my drawing table and big work desk.

My favorite one of those is my flexible Ott task lamp which hovers over my small drafting table.  It offers a high quality of light which seems most like daylight to me.  Even so, especially if I’m working with color, I prefer to produce art during the day than at night.

Does that have anything to do with my nearing-50-year-old eyes?  Probably.  Also, I have to wear reading glasses for close-up tasks now, and pay attention to small details.  Case in point: One recent evening, I made a couple of illuminated letter “S’s” in an Ottonian style, in which gouache is used inside and around the gold leaf.  I put them in vintage gold frames, whose double mats I painted gold, and sold one at an art show.  The other I photographed to list on Etsy.

Now the letter, only 2 inches tall and 1 1/4 inches wide was not perfect, but it looked fine to me at a small distance.  I don’t mind slight variations in hand-lettered art – that can add to its charm.  But when I uploaded the photographs and my little letter was magnified dramatically on my computer screen, I saw a couple of areas I couldn’t live with.  The red gouache had been thinned just a bit too much and left a drippy effect near the top of the letter (and I’d missed a wee spot elsewhere to boot!).

Detail – illuminated S with drippy outline

I carefully un-framed the letter and took it back to my drawing table.  Daylight, and this time a magnifying glass, did the trick.

That’s better!

I touched up the areas, took new photos and reframed the piece, and now it’s up on Etsy.

Illuminated S ©Robyn Hood Black

I’ve also discovered that for fine work, I enjoy using a mini Ott flip light right beside whatever I’m working on.  It can be clipped to the side of a small box or jar or piece of matboard to illuminate a project while I’m working.  I like these so much, I bought one to share with you!  Just leave a comment by midnight EST Monday night, Nov. 19, sharing what kind of light you like for  your work or hobby, and you’ll be randomly entered to win.

A fun way to brighten your day!

In other news, I’m beyond honored to be featured today on Julie Hedlund’s terrific blog, talking about writing and artsyletters.

 

12 thoughts on “Art Break Wednesday: Mini Ott Light Give-away – the Better to See you With!

  1. Thanks for showing us the “before” and “after” — very interesting what you miss if you don’t look carefully! I guess a magnifying glass can be a good artists’ tool.

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