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02-April-11. Mod podge in industrial quantities. What are they doing with gallons....
04-April-11. New Winsor-Newton canvas. much better make in their new Chinese factory
05-April-11. Simply Simmons brushes. they have been hard to get lately. The brush factory manager took his retirement. explains everything

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Open a Book & Open Your Mind

The decorative painting book business has nosedived in the last four years, with several companies closing down their printing presses so to speak, and the number of new publications has been reduced to a pair of nostrils above water level. The reasons are that the industry of decorative painting has had difficulty in bringing in younger artists, and those that have , for the most part, have not forged enough of a separate identity to distinguish themselves from the previous generation. There have been a few exceptions, which to their merit, has kept an interest in painting so that the patient still has a heartbeat.willow1

Willow Wolfe’s new book ”Painting Home Decor” is a good example of work by an artist who has managed to innovate, refine and develop themes that combine elements of decorative art and fine art.  The materials are fairly sophisticated for decorative painting: pen and ink, oils , oil gel blending, oil rouging and gold leaf. It seems to work and the projects look fun to do and are decorative in an artsy vein far removed from the naif folk-art and primitive figures that were the staple of  the genre for many years. Like almost everything in decorative painting, its blatantly commercial, but we sell at Madame Pickwick, almost all the products she uses, and to be fair, they are not expensive and won’t set one back too much. The ”Select” brushes from Princeton which Willow endorses and helped them develop are almost embarrassingly inexpensive for the most part and some of the styles such as lunar blenders are really cheaply priced compare to say Loew-Cornell’s crescent brushes.

The lunar blender, second from right is magical. The Select deerfoot is a bit pricey.

The lunar blender, second from right is magical. The Select deerfoot is a bit pricey.

What has been a phenomenon over the past three years has been the exceptional number of artist canvases being sold to decorative artists. The wood cutters and makers must be contemplating getting into the firewood business this winter because  as a surface of choice , it has fallen off. Canvas is hot and when the craft/decorative arts practitioners go for something in a big way, there is no stopping them. The question is, after their home is filled with canvas what next? Willow’s projects are quite tasteful and she seems to be establishing herself as THE decorative artist to watch in the future.

For wholesale inquiries on products Willow is using contact info@madamepickwick.com

-Dave

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