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Friday, February 24, 2012

International Society of Scratchboard Artists

Baby Zebra, 9" x 12" Lesley Barrett
The International Society of Scratchboard Artists  has a special place in Ampersand's heart.  We are honored to be a sponsor of the society as well as honored that most, if not all, of the artist members prefer Ampersand Scratchbord™ panels for their work.  This unique society has worked diligently to initiate itself and at long last, The International Society of Scratchboard Artists has come to fruition. 

Scratchboard has long been around, a type of engraving and a use in illustration, it is now being embraced as a fine art form.  Scratch art is a subtractive form of drawing, working a darkened surface made black using India ink, by making marks with a variety of tools and oil-free steel wool.  Ampersand carries a line of these accessories as well if you are interested in starting scratchboard work.

The surfaces for scratch art have evolved as well as the art itself.  Before Ampersand's Scratchbord was used for scratching techniques, there was heavy paper coated with india ink available, which is still in use by many artists.  But now, Ampersand is the proud contributor of the only archival wood panel specifically designed for scratchboard art.  

The ISSA is currently gaining membership and has opened their doors for their first annual juried Exhibition in July.  They are taking entries now through April 25th.  To read the prospectus and find out about entry fees, refer to their website:  ISSA Annual Exhibition.  To learn more about the ISSA, their events and joining as a member, you can find all of the details on their newly developed website:  International Society of Scratchboard Artists.

Thanks for reading,

Friday, February 10, 2012

Artists Changing Tomorrow

“The arts are a gift to our children’s present as well as their future, “ says Karen Vernon, a long time friend and product consultant to Ampersand and an internationally recognized watercolorist.  She founded Artists Changing Tomorrow in 2010 in order to fund art education in Texas.   

Artists Changing Tomorrow is a program developed to sustain and maintain the arts: visual, literary and performing.  Its goal is to provide art education and arts outreach via schools and community programs.  To achieve its goals, ACT has developed a bi-annual silent auction to raise funds, where art is donated from one hundred artists around the world.  This years auction is on February 18th at the Sterling McCall Event Center in Warrenton, Texas.   Works will include oils, acrylics, watercolors as well as painting, fiber art, photography and ceramics. 

Artwork from the 2010 auction

Ampersand has been honored to be an underwriter of the event  and the supplier for the panels, either Gessobord™, Claybord™, Aquabord™, Pastelbord™ or Scratchbord™.  Each piece has been created on an Ampersand panel, and you can view the entire auction online at the ACT website:  ACT 2012.

To purchase tickets for the event, register for proxy bidding or order a show catalog contact ARTS, Arts of Rural Texas, information below.

Arts for Rural Texas
114 N. Live Oak
Fayetteville, TX 78940

Even if you don’t live in Texas, you can be part of ACT and part of this event.  If you wish to donate to the event or register for the auction and bid by proxy, you can call ARTS, Arts of Rural Texas at  979-378-2113.  If you are an artist desiring to be considered for the next invitational auction in 2014, contact ARTS at


Friday, February 3, 2012

Featured Artist: Cynthia Mosser painting in Mixed Media

Fraternal Foliage, mixed media on encausticbord, 2011
Cynthia Mosser has been creating mixed media for a number of years. She has been drawn specifically to Encausticbord™ because its absorbent ground can handle the range and layering of mediums she uses  and because the cradled versions are ready for exhibition or sale without the need for additional framing. Cynthia says she also prefers the velvety surface of Encausticbord because she finishes her work in encaustic which not only requires a rigid support, but also a heat resistant substrate.

In this featured article on our Ampersand website, Cynthia shares her step by step painting process through a very detailed, movement-rich abstract piece.  Cynthia will walk you through creating one of her paintings, referring to the specific materials and tools she uses as well as sharing photos along the way.

To read more about Cynthia and see her process first hand: download the whole article

Or to see more of Cynthia's own work and mixed media portfolio, check out her website:

Paint On!