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Thursday, September 15, 2011

Be Generous, Buy Art, Meet Gensler Fundraiser Sept 29

Ampersand is proud to support GenerousArt.org in their efforts by supplying free panels to select Generous Artists on which to create works for sale in order to raise funds for local Austin non-profits. The Generous Art online gallery is dedicated to donating 40% of sales to local nonprofits, and gives 40% to local artists, seamlessly supporting the Austin community. Please join us for this grand opening affair - everyone is welcome:  Generous Art Opening Show and Fundraiser:  "Be Generous, Buy Art, Meet Gensler"

Listen to live music by the Robert Kraft Jazz Trio, while browsing and buying one-of-a-kind works of art. Come meet global design firm Gensler and tour their new offices in the W Hotel. Refreshments will be served.

WHEN:  Thursday, September 29, 2011 from 5:30 p.m. until 8:30 p.m.

WHERE:
W Hotel, 3rd Floor
212 Lavaca Street, Suite 390
Austin, TX 78701

ENTRY:  The event is free and open to the public.

ABOUT GENSLER:  Gensler is an international group of architects, designers, planners and consultants dedicated to the transformational power of design in improving the quality of life in the communities it serves.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Aquabord™ 2.0


Aquabord™ has undergone a number of important changes over the past few months due to a change in one of the raw materials we use to produce this unique surface for watercolors. We saw this challenge as an opportunity to make Aquabord even better than before. While the new Aquabord is in essence, the very same, it does have a few differences: 


Left: Previous version
Right: New flatter version
1. The new Aquabord™ surface has a flatter, more even texture. It’s less pebbly and feels more like a cold press watercolor paper.

2.  The new surface is slightly softer. You need to use less pressure when wet-lifting paint just like you would on paper.
3.  The new surface is more absorbent and emphatically more like watercolor paper (see helpful tips below).
4.  The new surface requires less water for washes and blends. It behaves more like a cold press watercolor paper now, so you don’t need as much water for wicking the paint across the surface – the paint moves more freely and blends beautifully.
5.  The vibrant color you’re accustomed to still applies.
6.  The lovely eggshell color of the natural clay you’re accustomed to is still around.
7.  You can still seal your watercolors and frame them without glass.

Top: New version
Bottom: Old version
Some helpful tips: The new Aquabord surface is very porous. You may see some air bubbles come up when you apply very wet washes of color. To prevent this, flush the surface first before you start painting. Take a flat brush and apply big washes of water across the surface. Allow all the air bubbles to release. When the surface reaches a damp stage, then you can start applying watercolor to the surface. By allowing the air to escape first, you are basically opening up your surface to accept the pigment. This process will prevent those tiny air bubbles from affecting the consistency of the smooth transitions in your washes. 
Top: Washes on Aquabord
Bottom: Washes on 

Watercolor paper
More than a dozen professional watercolor painters and avid Aquabord users repeatedly tested our trial runs until we had the surface they felt worked best. As a result, we think you will love this new version of Aquabord. Either way, you are welcome share your feedback with us. We make Aquabord for you and it matters to us that you have a successful experience with our products.
We greatly appreciate your patience over the last few months during this reformulation. We think the new Aquabord is well worth the wait and we hope you do too. Now it’s time to do what you love and get back to painting watercolors on Aquabord!