Steampunk Pin-Up & Goddess Project

Hello everyone! Last week I finalized the concept sketches for the next 3 hotties in my Steampunk Pin-Up series, SteamBabes. You can see the sketches HERE, and follow my progress via my Facebook Fanpage, Twitter, Tumblr or Google+.

The neat thing about these SteamBabes is that the models for each piece are friends of mine - fellow artists Amy Brown, Ash Evans & the lovely Angela Brenneman. I really appreciate them posing for these pieces! I thought I was going to start work on them last week. But when I went to my paper cabinet, I was completely out of the paper that I had drawn the first SteamBabe on. Of course I want the series to be consistent - so I've got a Dick Blick emergency shipment coming this week. ;)


In the meantime I've been tweaking and refining the concept art for the first 4 Goddesses in my Goddess Project series. These have been tricky. The art in these images needs to be rather versatile. Not only do I want them to be spectacular paintings BUT the figures were designed partly with licensing/manufacturing in mind. For instance these images are a proposed line of figurines AND perfume lockets. But they are also going to be large oil paintings with many other components in the painting. So yes, this is rather challenging. I've got a myriad of things I need to consider while designing the rest of the sketch for these paintings. As you can see by this sketch for the Morrigan painting. She's positively littered with hotspots - basically areas I've got to be extra careful designing because once the painting is finished - I'll pop out those areas and use them for additional product projects. For instance the oval at the top and the oval at the bottom will be necklaces. As always I'll be sharing the process with you. Wish me luck! And feel free to fan the Goddess Project Facebook Fanpage to find out the latest news.

Tommorrow I'll be sharing pics of my new studio (it's finally set up and functional) and the link to my newly updated Wholesale Website. Yay!!


~Brigid ;)


Be Careful What You Wish For . . .

Over a year ago I made a wish. I wished to live in a newer house that required less maintenance (our current house is 250 years old), in a warmer climate with a lower cost of living. I wished for a studio with a door on it. I wished for my husband to have employment that was lower stress and afforded him more free time. I wished that my own art career would continue on the upwards trajectory with more of my income contributing to the household income - with the eventual hope that my income would become the primary source and my husband could enjoy even more free time. As the saying goes be careful what you wish for.

Two months ago my husband was laid off. Within a month he had a new job, we'll be moving to Texas to accommodate this new position. This means we'll be buying a new house, moving to a warmer climate with a lower cost of living and my husband will be working some from an office in Texas and some from home. Meanwhile my art career has surged, and I've more work on my plate, more licensing gigs, commissions, projects and inspiration then I know what to do with. All this is wonderful. But it's rather stressful too.

The mere thought of moving across the country with 2 dogs and 2 cats and a huge house full of crap is just so very exhausting mentally. I have a dozen artwork commitments all due in a month. I have a little girl about to go into middle school. I have to sell one house and buy another. I have to get rid of some of this crap. I hope my new studio has a door. I really NEED a DOOR.

But when I start to feel overwhelmed I remind myself that I asked for all of this. Did I think I would just wake up one day in a new state with a new home? Am I so spoiled that I have the nerve to complain and feel overwhelmed about life changes that are ultimately good? NONE of this is insurmountable. Dealing with the aftermath of a Tsunmai is what qualifies as insurmountable. I'm happy and healthy, so is my family, and we have to move to Texas this summer. This is, in the grand scheme of life's challenges, an easy one. So I'll shut up about it already. And share some new art with you. ;)
Read More

New Silverpoint & Sepia Tone Prints!

I've got 8 new prints for you today!

The first is actually a set of 6 prints that are designed to be displayed as a Hexatych.

The original of this work of art is a series of 6 silverpoint drawings on antique book paper. The colorful patterns behind each drawing are original designs by myself. I created the patterns then printed them on fabric. Each of the original drawings is displayed in a shadow box.

I've mainstakingly reproduced each image for you to create the best quality set of affordable giclee' prints I could. I'm so pleased with the results. You can buy the complete set - signed of course - for just $60.00. (Sorry but I will not be offering these images seperately. While they are individual images they are meant to be displayed as whole - the entire set. Please note the image above shows the prints framed - this is for display only. Purchased prints sets are prints only - unframed.)


The next two images I have for you are called 'Specimens'. The original is comprised of two silverpoint drawings - again on antique book paper. The drawings are framed by books. I rescued two Antique books slated for destruction. The books were glued solid and a frame cut out of their covers to accomodate the drawings.

Original diptych on display at Davenport & Winkleperry Gallery

This was a challenge to reproduce for prints. I was unable to photograph the book covers effectively to allow for them to be reproduced as a print. So I've taken the original drawings and created a new work of art entirely - two sepia toned prints. They are available for purchase seperately.

Specimens - Group A

Specimens - Group B








All of these new prints are available for purchase online. CLICK HERE!





Studio Sale!

Happy Monday! I want to invite you to participate in a Studio Sale I'm having this week!

All this week I'll be cleaning out my studio and offering a wide variety of original oil paintings, drawings and sketches for sale for the first time ever!
Available works include many of my older Fairy Pieces - so if you are a lover of fairies you are in for a treat. I've also got some lovely black and white graphite drawings in steampunk and mechanical genres and some rough sketches at a great price.

I'll be on Twitter and Facebook sharing photos and info about the pieces as I clean the studio. Feel free to follow me on Twitter or my Facebook Fan Page and if you see something you like make me an offer! Just tweet back at me or post something to my facebook fan page. If you prefer to make an offer privately you can email me.


Oh and don't forget I'm blogging about Bravo TV's reality show "Work of Art - the next great artist" Read my weekly recaps of the show at my other blog

Steampunk World's Fair & Professor Elemental

This weekend, May 14-16 I'll be at the Steampunk World's Fair in Piscataway New Jersey.

I'll have a table with some prints and goodies and I'll be painting live (digitally on my Wacom Cintiq). I'm also participating in two talks/lectures/whathaveyou. One on Steampunk Art - and another on Steampunk in Virtual Worlds.

I'm absolutely delighted to be a guest at this event. I can't thank the organizers enough for inviting me. I'm so excited to meet so many wonderful artists, performers and steampunk enthusiasts in person!

I'm especially excited to meet my most recent Steampunk friend - Professor Elemental.

If you are into Steampunk and you don't know who he is -  well you need to! He is the artist behind the instant classic and unofficial Steampunk Anthem - "A Cup of Brown Joy". CLICK HERE to watch the video.

When the good Professor asked me to create the cover of his new album "The Indifference Engine" - I of course leapt at the opportunity. And I'm so glad I did!

The album is awesome - and the cover - which I'm now finally able to share with you - is one of my favorite steampunk paintings to date. It was great fun to paint! 

click to view image larger

click to view image larger

If you are familiar with the brilliant creations of  Brute Force Studios - then you might recognize the inspiration and reference for the goggles and gun in this photo! (Special thanks to Mark - the maker of those special pieces  - for posing for the "body and accessories" reference for the painting.)

So if you are planning on attending Steampunk World's Fair - the rumor is you can get a special advanced copy of the album (did I mention its awesome?) at the Fair. I'll also have signed prints of this image available at my table. 

Hope to see you there!

What I've been up to!

WOW! I can't believe it has been almost a month since I've updated the blog. So sorry! I've been very busy with several projects and a handful of deadlines - most of which I can't talk about in any detail yet.

But to give you a rough idea:

1. I wrote an article for Faerie Magazine (finished and out soon)

2. Collaborated on an illustrated written project with Natania Barron for another magazine (ongoing)

3. Illustrated the album cover for Professor Elemental's new album (ongoing - and it's awesome by the way!)

4. Started rough concept sketches of full figure adaptations of some of my doll girls for a manufacturer.

5. Pulled together two proposals for two other manufactuers.

6. Illustrated the Three of Swords for the Super Punch Tarot Project.

And that last one I can now share with you!

CLICK HERE to see the full line up of amazing tarot cards from an incredible group of artists!

I'm also pleased to share that the originals of Unfair Things and Ascension were sold to a private collector after my exhibit ended. This was awesome and that influx of cash allowed me to finally be able to upgrade my computing power to a MacBook Pro - and to upgrade my programs etc. This has taken some getting used to but I'm loving it!

I know I've promised to do an online gallery show. I've been trying to find the right time - and well it's been difficult with all the work I've on my plate at the moment. I also want the online gallery show to have some newer pieces - which means time to paint these new pieces. So I'm thinking I might be holding this show later then I had planned. But don't worry I'll let everyone know. I'm definitely interested in your suggestions as to what is the best time for you as an individual - I'd love to be able to take that feedback and find the overall best time to hold the event.

The plan for this online gallery exhibit is to stream live and show you the images via a stream of my desktop. This way I can zoom in on them - kind of how you'd move in closer to see the detail if you were viewing them in person. I'll also chat live and do Q&A.

For those of you that are familiar with MMOs we'll also be hosting a live gallery opening at my virtual gallery in Second Life. That's a truly immersive way to experience the art!

Sign up for my mailing list to be informed about the dates!

I hope all are happy and well! Till next time!

Solo show this weekend

Phew! I'm exhausted!

I get a lot of feedback regarding the photos of my studio here on the website. It is a nice space and I'm glad people like it. But with getting ready for this solo show - FaerieCon last weekend - and being sick with piggy flu last week ..... Well this is what it looks like now!


I wanted to take a moment and remind everyone about the opening night reception of my solo show this weekend November 21,  5-8 pm.

I've been hearing from people who plan on attending and, well, I think we might have a nice turnout at this little shindig!

I'm very excited and can't wait to see everyone there.

My husband Ed and I spent last night putting hardware on the backs of frames and popping art into their beautiful black lacquer homes. (All the frames in the exhibit are black.)

Of course I have had the whole collection in my head for months now - but seeing it all come together for real - was very special. I'll be stopping by the gallery this morning to drop off the art.

I still have two oil paintings to finish for the show - they are almost complete so I am not concerned (knocks wood).

Unfortunately I do have one oil painting that won't make it to opening night. When I returned from FaerieCon I came down with the swine flu (I can only assume I got it at the con - bummer - hope no one else got sick). So I lost a WEEK of work laying in bed. I did manage to get some drawing done and plan out next steps for upcoming projects unrelated to the show - but I certainly was not well enough to sit at my art desk and hack out oil paintings.What a frustrating feeling!

Regardless after seeing everything together last night I'm quite pleased with how its shaping up!

For those of you who can make the show I would urge you to do so. The mediums I have used for this art - silverpoint and oil are mediums best viewed in person. They are both mediums that enjoy a very special relationship with light - one that just doesn't translate to print.

For those who can't make it - fear not. I'm planning a virtual opening - I have a few ideas. One idea was to host a Second Life event - which I still plan on. But feedback regarding that was that many fans would prefer something different since not everyone uses Second Life. So I'm thinking a Twitter show - with live interaction and detailed video and closeups of the art. I'm intersted in your thoughts.

That's all for now! Cheers!


Steampunk Art Exhibit - Brigid Ashwood

Greetings everyone! I am pleased to bring you the final details regarding my upcoming exhibit.

I personally invite you all to opening night!

If you do plan on attending please feel free to let me know either via the comments on this page or drop me a line via email or at one of my online haunts (twitter, facebook, myspace). I'd love to know to expect you!

I can't wait to share this collection of works. Hope to see you there!

(Please feel free to repost this information anywhere you like. I've included the full text found on the invitation below the images to make copying and pasting easier.)

click the image for full size

click the image for full size


TEXT of INVITATION (feel free to use this text to share this event information)

Brigid Ashwood
Winged Things & Improbable Machines
an exhibit
Gifts Inn BoonsBoro Maryland

Working with classic mediums such as silverpoint, oil paint, wood panel and antique book paper, artist Brigid Ashwood has created a collection that resembles a surreal reliquary of artifacts, all gleaned from the deepest recesses of the imagination. The exhibit reads much like the lost sketchbooks of a tortured dollmaker;  many finely rendered images reveal delicately crafted joints, creaking against porcelain and weathered wood. This blend of antique and traditional materials, combined with references to pop culture's current obsession with all things Steampunk, make this exhibit compelling to behold.  We cordially invite you to experience it for yourself.

For more information go to:

Full URL:


Gifts Inn BoonsBoro Proudly presents

Winged Things & Improbable Machines an exhibit by artist Brigid  Ashwood
Opening Night Reception  November 21st 5-8 pm

Exhibit Duration
November 21st 2009 through Jan 2nd 2010

Gifts Inn BoonsBoro
16 North Main Street
Boonsboro, MD 21716

Hours Mon. – Sat. 10:00 – 6:00

Holiday Hours (Nov. 29 - Dec. 20)
Sunday 11:00 - 4:00
Monday - Saturday 10:00 - 6:00



Locust Queen

Got a quickie update for you. I am feverishly at work creating a lot of new art. While the bulk of the pieces are indeed intended for the November Gallery Show I'm happy to share that I have several shows and exhibits lined up for this year so if you miss one show maybe you can catch another.


Additionally most of the art will be available as prints after the show is underway.


Without further ado - Here is Locust Queen. She is Oil paint on Panel.

This is what she will look like as a print available for purchase.


And here she is in her original frame.

Till next time!

Inspiration and Art

As I've mentioned previously I've a gallery show coming up in November. I've had a few gallery shows before but this one for a variety of personal reasons is very special to me. This means while I'm working very hard I'm also putting a lot of pressure on myself. But thanks to a few close friends I'm staying relatively sane. (Thanks ladies!)

The process of creating this collection has been fascinating to me. I've been working in a way that is new and strange to me. The images are unfolding with a strong will of their own. They have a clear mind of who and what they are and demand accuracy in their portrayal. They seem to live in my occipital bone - right where the bone meats the nerve endings at the top of my spine. They are collecting themselves there - gestating their form and making their presence known. At times relentlessly. The vision I had initially planned for the show was left behind months ago. My Muse has dictated to me that those ideas must wait - because right now - something else must be done. These images demand to be captured.

And so they will be - there's no arguing with your Muse.

I've been aided in this creative process by some wonderful music. I thought I would share a bit of what I am listening to with you. In a sense this is the soundtrack to the collection of art I am currently creating.

Cello music by Zoe Keating and Wendy Sutter

The Soundtrack to Amelie by Yann Tiersen

Music that I like to call Broken Gypsy Doll music this includes:
Beats Antique, Pentaphobe & Vagabond Opera

And an inspiring group of sister songwriters, singers, musicians called
The Sisters 3


I cannot share too much of the art for the show before the show itself. I am sure you an understand why. However I will share the pieces that I can and of course when the show is open we'll post photos of the opening and eventually there will be prints and a full accounting of the art at the exhibit.

For now I will leave you with a teaser. She is not yet finished and she is nameless.


He is coming... Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde update

Sometimes a piece of art doesn't go the way you planned. But if you are flexible it can turn out to be a really awesome piece despite (or sometimes because of) whatever "went wrong".

Dr. Jekyll was great fun to paint. However I did a few things in the beginning of the painting process that came back to bite me in the butt when it was time to format him for prints.

I had planned to paint Dr. Jekyll in acrylics - because of that I prepared the substrate a particular way. In fact I applied a texture to the surface. This was my fatal error.

I started painting the piece in acrylic then decided to switch to oils. The oils looked great. The painting went well. Except...the texture I had applied to the surface is unscannable. The painting looks great in person and the texture adds to its beauty - but when I try to scan the painting the texture is extreme and obscures all the details. We tried to photograph the painting and while we were able to get a good photo we were not able to get a photo good enough to make prints from.

Soooo....I had a dilemma. Ultimately I decided that I had to effectively re-paint Dr. Jekyll digitally in order to get a crisp enough image in order to offer high quality prints.

This meant that I would then also be painting Mr. Hyde digitally. Its important that the two pieces complement each other because they are a diptych and go togther.

In the process of re-painting Dr. Jekyll I made a few changes. Minor changes but I think he looks even better for it.

So here is the last version of Dr. Jekyll


And now - for the one I know you've all REALLY been waiting for.

Here is a sneak preview of the painting of Mr. Hyde.


I'll share more as I progress.

For now I'm off to work on an entirely different painting...mwahahah. One I am really excited about. It's part of the upcoming gallery show.

Later Ya'll!

Dr. Jekyll - Steampunk Art Update

I FINALLY have a Dr. Jekyll Update for you. (btw I know the Dr. Jekyll half of this diptych isn't really steampunk - just Victorian - but the search engines are logging these posts in a certain way and I want to maintain consistency across entries - and Mr. Hyde is decidely steampunk so it will even out in the end. )

First a quick bit of background. Some years ago I was diagnosed with Chemical Sensitivity. This sucked big time of course especially since I couldn't use my most favorite medium any more - Oil Paints. I did look into alternatives at the time but unfortunately with CS you can become so sensitive that even smells that are not toxic but have a toxic association can trigger a response. So even though I tried using turpentine alternatives the paints themselves made me sick sick sick.

Happily after several years off and an all natural organic diet (and eliminating refined sugars, High Fructose Corn Syrup and wheat from my diet - which allowed my body to detox and reboot) I am MUCH better. And I've found I can use my oil paints again.

I had suspected I could for a while now for a variety of reasons. But I proved it yesterday while painting Dr. Jekyll.

See I HATE acrylics for portrait painting. Now let me explain before you get upset. There is nothing wrong with acrylics it is a great medium. Many many amazing artists use them and do amazing things with them. I however, do not. Acrylics just don't mesh with my painting technique. They work fine for me when I am painting Munnys or Manga or Design work - because I paint differently when I create those kinds of things. But when I portrait paint - when I am working in realism - I tend to "buff" the paint onto the surface and blend blend blend. Acrylics just don't work for me in that respect then.

So yesterday as I sat down to paint I looked at the acrylics with dread and said there had to be a better way  and resolved to try oils again but with some major differences.

One major change is that I no longer use turpentine or any of its alternatives. To clean my brushes while painting I use simple Safflower Oil and paper towels. This works brilliantly. Then at the end of the painting session I cleaned the brushes with shampoo and water.

This experiment went so well that I now feel comfortable investing in some Walnut Oil based paints and dive back into oils again. I painted all day yesterday and felt fine. Yay!

Here is yesterdays progress.

The little sparkly glints are just where the light has hit still wet oil paint.

I don't know about you but I see a MAJOR difference in the quality of the painting in this piece versus when I was still working in acrylics. I'm interested in your thoughts as well.

Steampunk Art - Dr. Jekyll Meet Mr. Hyde

Before I head off for a busy Saturday I thought I would post my VERY rough preliminary sketch for Mr. Hyde. This is the drawing that features a Mask by Tom Banwell.

Well, actually I have two sketches here and thought it might be worth posting both as they are a good example of my "process".

This first image (above) is the original sketch - drawn in graphite on vellum paper.


This second image is a great example of how I use photoshop to assist me in the creation process. Even when I will be painting a piece in pigments (as opposed to painting digitally) I rely on the computer a great deal to allow me to experiment and play with a piece to find the best composition.

In the above example you can see I added shading to his jacket, hat and background - this was just a small visual adjustment since I spent very little time shading this sketch with values but rather focused on the development of Hyde's mechanical enhancements. The resulting sketch was so lacking in any kind of depth I found it a little distracting and so quickly added some digitally.

I also adjusted the angle of the gripping hands to make them a bit more menacing and active in the portrait. They may need further adjusting still. The last addition was a bloody smear of color. These portraits will be painted in grayscale but I do want to play with a splash of vivid red on Hydes portrait - a smear or fingerprint could be very interesting. *wicked grin*

Alright I'm off to a lunch appointment. I'll be back later on to keep working on this piece. I'm really enjoying it!

Steampunk Art - Dr. Jekyll - #1


I'm currently working on several pieces of art right now but the one that is at the forefront of my attention is a piece inspired by Daniel Proulx the man (and creator) behind Steampunk Rings.

Mr. Proulx posted a series of photos on his Flickr account - some simply of his own handsome self - some in the same clothing but wearing an incredible (and eerie) Steampunk mask made by artisan Tom Banwell .

I knew right away I wanted to create a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde piece inspired by the photos so I immediately wrote them both for permission - which I am delighted to say I received.


The inital sketch was a play on the dual personalties styled after the Joker card from a deck of playing cards. I quickly abadoned this as well, frankly, its a bit played out in contemporary art at the moment. I've seen similar concepts popping up all over the place so I decided it was a no go.

Additionally all the art I create right now has to be made in the spirit of "fitting in" with my upcoming exhibit. I can't branch to far off the overriding theme for the show and a playing card concept - no  matter how cool - wasn't going to fit.

But a daguerreotype would. ;)

See where I am going with this? No? K - let me elaborate.

I LOVE antique daguerreotypes - everything about them. And the particular look of these fantastic photos does influence my exhibit heavily.

So I'll be drawing Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde as two seperate pieces. Part of a pair of faux daguerrotypes that will - when completed be displayed in a hinged frame and mounted behind upholstered mats. The mats will be covered in two different fabrics (respectively) designed by myself (something I've been playing with). The design of each fabric will echo the personality of the man whose portrait they grace. (Ya know fluffy for Jekyll - mean for Hyde).


Now the fun part. I'd love some audience participation on this project. Give me your thoughts and ideas. I LOVE collaborative projects and since this piece started out inspired by fellow artists I think it only fitting that the collboration be ongoing.

And when it is finished - if there is enough interest I have plans to offer this set as a VERY limited edition of say 12 pieces that would be giclee prints with fabric covered mats set in hinged frames.

So without further delay here is the initial sketch for Dr. Jekyll. I am open to feedback. The only point I will make is that I do want his portrait to be reserved to enhance the contrast between the two personalities.

Please feel free to leave your comments below - I've turned off comment moderation so they should show up right away.


Journals, Skins, Freebies & Steampunk Art

Alright people lots to share!

New Journals from Modofly!

These journals are so awesome! I can't even begin to describe how totally cool they are in person.

And they are made in the USA! These ship directly from Modofly - not from me.

So if you want one CLICK HERE. 





Skinit - protective skins for your electronic goodies

Skinit has 4 of my images available as skins for just about every electronic device you can imagine.

There are two Steampunk designs, one Wolf, and one Kitchen Witch available  - CLICK HERE


Free Desktop Wallpaper!

And last but not least SteamBee is finally available as a free desktop wallpaper.

Download him HERE


Thats it for today!



More thoughts on Licensing

Since my last post regarding licensing I've had quite a few people email me with more questions. (I would encourage people to ask questions here on the blog so we might all benefit from the discussion.)

One thing I liked to reiterate is that if you have any questions about licensing and the business of art especially in the fantasy genre go buy Jessica Galbreth's book - RIGHT NOW. Seriously - Jess is a MASTER at the business of art and like E.F. Hutton when she talks we all should listen so if you haven't bought it already just go do it. Go on. I'll wait. Here's the link: Buy Jess's Book

Okay moving on. There is no right approach. You have to figure out for yourself what your particular formula for succes is going to be. And while I know its scary and confusing and overwhelming. None of the artists you perceive as having more experience or expertise then you are going to be able to give you a guidebook to assured success. You will make mistakes - there will be deals you aren't happy with. Promise.

Licensings is difficult to get into. It's very competitive and I feel personally its overrated. Most of the artists I know make far more income selling directly to their fans then they do off of licensing.

But I think it's important to understand one thing. And I wrote this in an email today and I really think it's valuable so I'm sharing it here.

Far to many artists hold licensing up as the Holy Grail of success - which it is not. Perfecting your craft, your techinque, your style, your vision and your connection to your fanbase should be - and is - the holy grail.

Most licensing for most artists results in small paychecks that trickle in every quarter. Some licensors never pay you. Some sign you up and never make your products (potentially keeping you tied up and unavailable for other opportunities).

Yes some licensing can be very lucrative. Some artists make quite a bit of money at it. But like any field the people at the top making the most money are just a handful of people. They work very very very hard and there is always something "special" about these people. Something that sets them apart. (And just for the record whatever your impressions I am NOT one of the people at the top of the licensing ladder - I make very little of my income off of licensing).

The artists at the top work hard, they are prolific, they are unique while at the same time staying on top of trends. They diversify their subjects while never straying from their particular style. The quality of their work is top notch and improving all the time. They are unfailingly professional. Did I mention hard working?

To get to the top of the licensing game you not only have to be all these things - you have to be better. Because you need to make room for one more. Yourself.

This is not meant as discouragement. But rather a reality check. Knowledge is power. You need to know what you are in for.

If all you want to do is license your art with your friend who makes handmade journals and sells them at the local fair (and I'm not knocking that) then go for it. Ignore this advice - as it has little bearing on smaller ventures.

But if what you want to do is license your work to a major clothing manufacturer and see your art in every Hot Topic from here to Timbuktu - then bring your A game and cross your fingers.

I'll be cheering for you!




Gallery Exhibit Information

I'm happy to share with you a small press release for my exhibit in November:

Winged Things & Improbable Machines - an exhibit by artist Brigid Ashwood.

Working with classic mediums such as Silverpoint, Egg Tempera and Antique Book Paper artist Brigid Ashwood has created a collection that reads like a surreal reliquary of an imagined future-past. The works offer a glimpse into the lost sketchbooks of what could be Da Vinci's Steampunk Cousin - or maybe a mad dollmaker - or tortured taxidermist. The blend of ancient and traditional materials with references to pop cultures current obsessions with all things Steampunk, Da Vinci Code-esque and Japansese Ball Jointed Dolls make this exhibit compelling viewing. Don't miss it.

November 21st 2009 - Jan 2nd 2010

Opening Night Reception November 21st 5-8 pm

Gifts Inn Boonsboro


And some additional information that you might find interesting. Gifts Inn Boonsboro is a gallery - it gets it's name in part from the fact that it is also the gift shop for a Bed and Breakfast called Inn Boonsboro.

Inn Boonsboro is a fabulous literary themed Bed and Breakfast that is owned by world famous bestselling author Nora Roberts. Nora lives is Boonsboro ( I happen to be a Nora Roberts fan! And interestingly enough Boonsboro is only 8 minutes from where I live)

Nora also owns a book store in Boonsboro called Turn the Page Books. Whenever she releases a new title they have a signing at her store and hundreds of people show up. Its quite something.

During the run of my exhibit we will of course have an opening reception but we're also planning an additional reception for the people who attend the book signing in December.

Hope to see you at the opening!



Unfair Things - Steampunk Doll

I finished a new piece that is very special to me. I'm quite pleased with her I must say. :)

I envision her as a self created Steampunk inspired doll creature - who collects to her other creatures and things for own dubious purposes. My husband commented that he felt a certain menace in her - just under the surface and my sister said she is "alarming limbless". So yes based on these comments I think I managed to project what I wanted. *evil wink*.

Text reads "Bring to me a fitting portion of string... an aether lamp and unfair things".

This image is part of my collection for my gallery show this coming Fall 2009. The theme for this first show is the same as my website title "Winged Things & Improbable Machines." And yes it will feature steampunk art - or at least works that are steampunk inspired - however that will not be the main focus but rather one element.

The majority of the collection will be Silverpoint Drawings on antique bookpaper. I've perfected a process to allow me to draw on this paper and the results are stunning. I've also been working on my own technique for aging and staining new paper.

I'll talk more about the exhibit in coming months and share what art I can. In the meantime I hope you enjoy "Unfair Things".

Signed prints are available HERE

Oh yes! And in other news I am also now offering SteamBee as a print all by himself. I can't tell you how many requests I have gotten for exactly this - so happy to tell you he's now available! (or she I don't honestly know if SteamBee is a male or female - up to you I suppose!) Buy HERE



A Sketch a Day? We'll See

I've never been a terribly prolific artist. I don't crank out a big body of new work in any given year. I'm pretty comfortable with that - as I think there are pros and cons to prolific vs. non prolific - so for the most part I don't sweat it.

That said I have this exhibit coming up and I kind of need to have some ART for it. And while I am comfortable on the whole with my process I would like to become just a tad more prolific. I'll never be the type to offer up to the masses a new painting every two days. My process just doesn't allow for that. I'm not knocking anyone! I am in awe of those of you who have that ability - it just ain't me. But, that said, practice makes perfect.

Drawing or sketching daily regularly may not make me better but it does keep my head and my hands in the space they need to be.

I think back to times in my life where I have for whatever reason been actively DRAWING DAILY and it was a tremendous boon to my overall creative spirit. It just got the juices flowing and the head in the right space for overall creative energy. That is something that I really need right now. With the responsibilities of daily adult life constantly struggling for my attention its hard to be in the right creative mood when I am "supposed" to be.

So for a while now I've been trying to just draw or sketch for a certain amount of time every day. I don't have a perfect score. Not by a long shot. But it still has been great.

I've made sure to go ahead with this exercise even when I have plans to work on a larger piece of art that same day. Sometimes I just sketch for 5 minutes sometimes an hour. This does wonders to get me into the creative mood and I've felt more connected to my work overall when I've allowed myself this warm up time for sketching. Most of the pieces I have been doing have been small ATC/ACEO* sized images in either graphite or silverpoint.

The other day I did a larger one.

It's available as a print (directly from me so yes it is signed!)

Many of the larger drawings will end up in the show in November. Most of the smaller ones I plan to give away. ;)




*what is an ATC or ACEO? It stands for Artist Trading Card or Artist Card Edition or Original - they are 2.5x3.5 inches in size. More info here.