WIPs And An Interview

I’ve been doing a lot of behind the scenes work the past week. Tweaking my website, social networks and most excitingly: working on an awesome PDF project which I will be releasing within the next month or so. I’m super excited to share it with you, but I want it to be the best I can make it, so I’m not rushing it. I have this tendency to always want to do things quickly and yesterday NOW, so this is a bit of a learning experience, but it’s good.

In some exciting news, Kim from Craft Create Connect interviewed me on her blog! Feeling super excited (OK maybe I need a synonym for excited to stop overusing it?!!) and also honoured. So go check it out. You can read a bit more about me, the why behind my art and what motivates me.

I showed you some canvases I was working on in my previous post. These are intuitive paintings so there is no set goal or outcome, I don’t know when they will be finished (in some way they might never be finished!) until I call them finished. Here is some more progress on these two.

Green Abstract Intuitive WIP | acrylics on canvas board | www.iris-impressions.com @rrreow

Pink Abstract Intuitive WIP | acrylics on canvas board | www.iris-impressions.com @rrreow

I’ve been struggling with this process majorly. They sat untouched for about a week, until I felt the drive to go back to them and I did something simple but amazing: put some noise cancelling headphones on and played music. MAJOR IMPACT YOU GUYS!! The music was both inspiring and also kept me away from getting too much into my head with thinking ‘what to do next’ or ‘this isn’t very good’ and other inhibiting thoughts like that. I even did some dance moves. Don’t tell anyone.

If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook you’ll have already seen some progress on this girl & unicorn journal spread. I’m pretty much done but just need to work on the background now and maybe some text. I went from loving the sketch, to feeling doubtful about the initial painting, to loving it again now. Curious to see where this one will end up.

Girl & Unicorn WIP | mixed media in art journal | www.iris-impressions.com @rrreow

What have you been working on this week? I’d love to see! Comment below (you can use the comment luv under the text box to show me your latest post) or tag me on Facebook or Instagram to show me!

Art101 Challenge – Find Your Way

Find Your Way | www.iris-impressions.com @rrreow

So we’re 3 days into the Art101 Challenge! My dear artist friends have been creating up a storm and so have I! As you may be aware, my goal is to do 30 paintings and I am well on my way by having completed 6 (SIX!!) pieces already. I guess I should set myself goals more often, it obviously works for me!

To see all pieces I’ve completed recently (not just as part of the challenge) have a look at my gallery. I will share my favourites in this post and tell you a bit more about them.

Be Still And Listen

Be Still And Listen | mixed media in A4 art journal | www.iris-impressions.com @rrreow
mixed media in A4 journal

I finally got around to doing Alena Hennesey‘s lesson on Life Book 2014 (you can still sign up by the way!). I love love love her gentle nature! She just oozes calm and I think I was able to tap into that a bit when I created the above piece in my A4 journal.

I’m really trying to push myself lately to try new things, tap into my inner subconscious creativity, let things flow freely. I find it SO SO hard though! I actually bought myself a scented candle so that before I start doing art I can just take a moment to ground, become still and take in the quiet. It’s something I really need in my life.

Pink Hills

Pink Hills | mixed media in A5 art journal | www.iris-impressions.com @rrreow
mixed media in A5 journal

I think the above was heavily influenced by looking at all Alena’s yummy art, but somehow it also came from within. I made a sketch for this when I was feeling very upset and angry and I think I needed hills, mountains and trees to help calm down. It was a very intuitive piece and I love it, not even so much for the result as for what I feel is a new freedom in experimenting with shapes, colours and more abstract concepts.

Find Your Way

Find Your Way | mixed media on 8x8 canvas board | www.iris-impressions.com @rrreow
mixed media on 8×8 canvas board

This piece is very meaningful to me. The words came from an interview with Flora Bowley in which she reiterated the importance to ‘do the work to find your way’. That resonated with me SO MUCH, because that is where I feel I am right now on my journey. I am putting in the work so that I will become a better artist, so that I am following my own path, developing my own style. I am trusting that I can find my own way and that it will be the right way for me. It’s exciting and scary!

Let me know which one is your favourite & why?

This Week In The Studio – playing like a child

This Week In The Studio

This Week In The Studio (TWITS, teehee!) is an ongoing series in which I share what I’ve been working on recently and give you a sneak peek into my process and works-in-progress. Click here to view all posts in this series.

Jupiter, my recently turned 3-year-old, likes to be involved with doing art because it’s what he sees me doing. However, I find it VERY hard to let go and let him be messy. We have carpeted floors, I’m sure you understand =p I’m just not ready for the randomness of painting with him. The other day I tried and I ended up putting it all away again after 5 minutes.

Then I had a brainwave… I knew he liked using my brayers, so I could get out my Gelli plate and do some prints with him. BINGO!! Super awesome idea and it worked a TREAT! The bonus is that it’s a much more targeted painting exercise so a lot less mess and it also seems to hold Jupiter’s attention for much longer.

Jupiter using the brayer on the Gelli plate

Now I’ve created a monster though, he wants to do this at EVERY opportunity!! I’m getting loads of Gelli prints out of it.

Jupiter using the brayer on the Gelli plate

Look at him! He’s so into it! Love a toddler’s total commitment to what they’re doing. Don’t ask me to do art with Zephyr though (he’s 11 months) =p

In the studio I’ve been working on a number of 8×8 canvas boards. I’m loving working on canvas, the texture is so nice and it lends itself really well to creating washes and rubbing paint over it to make interesting layers.

I’m experimenting with a shabby/grungy style in an attempt to develop my own techniques and preferences a bit. Up till now I’ve done a lot of online classes and tutorials. This has been great from the point of view of getting started, not having a fear of the blank page and adding skills to my arsenal, but right now I feel like I’m very ready to take that next step and start working on my own stuff without a blueprint or following someone else’s idea.

You Cannot Fail You Can Only Learn - mixed media on canvas board - © 2014 Iris Fritschi-Cussens

^ You Cannot Fail, You Can Only Learn. I was walking along near Charing Cross Road the other day where there are tons of second hand book shops and this shop had boxes outside with every book for £1! So I picked up a music dictionary and used it in this piece. Loving it!

Bonded By History - mixed media on canvas board - © 2014 Iris Fritschi-Cussens

^ Bonded By History. This piece was inspired by something a friend of mine was telling me. You can view step-by-step pictures and more information about supplies used in this post.

Embrace Your Fear - mixed media on canvas board - © 2014 Iris Fritschi-Cussens

^ Embrace Your Fear. The grungy shabby backgrounds I was creating called for some contrast and what better than the red from Little Red Riding Hood?

What have you been up to this week in your studio?

This Week In The Studio – pushing my boundaries & playing

This Week In The Studio

This Week In The Studio (TWITS, teehee!) is an ongoing series in which I share what I’ve been working on recently and give you a sneak peek into my process and works-in-progress. Click here to view all posts in this series.

Recently the theme of my work has been to push my boundaries. I am trying new things and getting out of my comfort zone. I have pushed through years of creating work I didn’t like and now that I’m finally creating paintings I like, I want to keep learning, keep growing, trying things, not be afraid to experiment!

I still very much feel like I’m finding my own voice, my own ‘style’, and in order to do that I just have to create, create & create!


^ Playing with paint. Choosing colours and doing everything loosely and without thinking (well, trying to anyway!!).


^ This was a Life Book 2014 lesson taught by Traci Bautista. It is about being in the moment. Again playing, being free, not thinking too much and working fast. I absolutely LOVED the techniques I learned with this and it was also very satisfying to do. It’s a direction I very much want to go in but I’m meeting some resistance from my thinking mind. I’m definitely going to incorporate these techniques into more work.



^ Two progress shots where I’m trying to achieve a similar effect as in this painting from the other week. I’m loving the whole grungy, shabby feel of this. I’m doing lots of smearing with paint, using glazes and metallics.

My computer kind of imploded yesterday, the operating system just went completely kaput. I may have lost all my files. Having to breathe deeply and accept this and move on (or if files can be recovered, which I’ll know tomorrow, it’ll be expensive, in which case I’ll have to accept that!). I go between wanting to swear/have a tantrum and feeling like I should use this as an opportunity for growth. Definitely a big challenge whichever way I look at it! Anyway, because I couldn’t do the computery things I had planned (writing this blog post, submitting some art, adding some links to my blog) I finished the painting above.

I will try to post pictures of the finished piece later this week. I really want to explore this shabby style more and experiment with different techniques and materials. The above painting is on canvas board which is so lovely to work on. Next time I do a painting like that I will either do a tutorial video or step-by-step photos as I’d love to share these techniques with you!

What have you been working on this week?