Palettes of Vermont (2005-2006)
Renowned artist Warren Kimble first proposed the Arts Council sponsor a statewide arts project in the summer of 2005. His words were, “Let’s give everyone in Vermont an artist palette and tell them to have fun with it.” The original goals were to engage at least five communities, at least two hundred Vermonters, and to generate a sense of joy through a shared creative project among participating communities and individuals. In retrospect, these goals were so modest as to be almost laughable. By the end of 2006:
- 7,000 wooden artist palettes and 30,000 paper palettes had been distributed free of charge to Vermonters and schoolchildren who wanted to take part;
- 150 organizations and 145 schools participated;
- At least 40,000 Vermonters (6% of the state’s population) made art; More than 2,000 people and palettes gathered on the state house lawn for PalettePalooza.
The palette to the right was one of three that I had created (one of them chosen to travel the state for the "Fifty Flavors of Vermont" palette exhibit- but that's another story). The wooden palette was primed with a regular gesso to seal the wood. Then the palette was gessoed with several textured coats of an absorbent ground gesso. This type of gesso allows watercolor or acrylic washes to be absorbed and trapped with the layers of the primer rather than beading up and lying on the surface. It was also given a coat of light molding paste, and swirled with a brush to add more texture. This is also an absorbent coat as well. I wanted to used mixed Water media to capture the look of faux enamel. I added a three dimensional egg and glass beads for embellishment. I decided to revisit this peacock design, change it up a little, but wanted to see if the mixed Water media experiment would translate onto a goose egg. Come and find out with me!