Balance Rock Moab Utah

 

Balance Rock Edited

By Stephanie Hopkins 2020

My artistic rendition of Balance Rock in Moab, Utah inspired of Walker Scott Moore’s photo taken at night.

When creating the sky, I envisioned illimitable depth and movement. I am pleased with the results! I took pictures of this piece in different lights and the camera captures the many layers of colors of the night sky in each location I took the shot. It’s truly astonishing how viewing this art piece from different angles reveals another layer or change-if you will- of color in the night sky. Having said that, I used my ancient phone camera to take the pictures and it really doesn’t do the painting justice.

The rock formation was my biggest challenge and I enjoyed exploring this technique in creating landscape. I have used paste before in my art projects but not to this extent. I have learned a lot with this piece-as I do with all my art-and look forward in seeing where my next big project takes me.

BalancingRock_Milkyway01

Photo Taken by Walker Scott More

To see more of Scott’s photography, please visit his website at WSM Photography

“Balanced Rock is one of the most popular features of Arches National Park, situated in Grand County, Utah, United States. Balanced Rock is located next to the park’s main road, at about 9.2 miles (14.8 km) from the park entrance. It is one of only a few prominent features clearly visible from the road.” -Wikipedia

Close Up Shots

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My process

I used wood from my Father’s wood shop and cut the wood to size and sanded it for a smooth surface. I believe the wood I used is Birch and it was great to work with.

I collage the front and sides of the wood with outdated dictionary paper and used Matte Medium to adhere the paper. When dried I applied two coats of Gesso, allowing each layer of coat to dry. Then sketched the rock formation and tower with a regular number two pencil.

I used Ranger Ink Grit Paste for the texture of the rocks. As that was drying I painted Sky with Teals, Purples and several shades of Blues and used Matte, Satin and Gloss Acrylics. Then painted the rocks with blends of Raw Sienna, Cadmium Red, Burnt Sienna, Milk White, Black and Yellow OCHRE. Through this process I added White Gesso at times to help with the look of movement I wanted to crate and to lighten some of the colors for depth. Gesso is also good for helping with the spread of paint which was needed since I was painting over collage.

After the sky and towers were completely dried, I added the stars by using Platinum White Acrylic mixed with a little water. The Acrylic Varnish is the last step and it is  important to wait a few days until applying. The mediums used in the painting need time to set properly. I’m not sure I will apply the Acrylic Varnish to the rock formation seeing as I used paste. I need to research that a bit more first being sealing it. Having said that, there are several layers of paint on the paste so I wonder…

The Brands of Acrylic Paints I used for this project are Golden, Liquitex, Master’s Touch and Folk Art.

Gesso and Matte Medium by Liquitex

-Stephanie

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