Madison Woods

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since Jul 25, 2013
Madison likes ...
forest garden
My husband and I live way off the beaten path in the rural Ozarks of Arkansas. I make Paleo Paints, write and create watercolor paintings inspired by nature.
northwest AR (USA)
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Recent posts by Madison Woods

Hi Francis, I am doing well. Getting ready to leave Qatar tomorrow where I've been visiting my husband who is working out here. Today there was a sandstorm so I couldn't go out to explore as planned, though. I'm amazed at your crayons! They're beautiful. And so professionally formed and wrapped, too. I didn't even know there were crayon molds like that! Maybe the green stone just doesn't have much pigment to it? Does your rock tumbler have a rubber liner? Mine does, and I think it's the rubber that is causing the color transfer. I may try it without it and see if that helps. One day I would love to try making some crayons or pastels. I haven't yet looked into how the pastels are made. Have you begun to sell the crayons? I would imagine the scented ones do smell very nice and it's a shame they won't sharpen good. Sandalwood is a nice scent, too. Maybe there's a different essential oil you could try that would require less volume to give good scent. Thank you so much for sharing your work here. If you used a dark paper, I bet the light green would work great even as it is.

The difference between the bone and charred wood is huge in color and texture. The black is deeper and more velvety. It is matte though, whereas the charcoal does keep a slight reflectiveness the bone does not. I read somewhere that bone makes the blackest of blacks and so far that has proved out for me. When thoroughly charred, there is no grit and the dried paint wets instantly. With the charred wood I have a bit of effort to get a good black application, though it does fine for gray. One thing I haven't done yet is experiment to see whether the species of bone matters or the type of bone. So far I've only used deer vertebra. But I have a good bit of other bone parts to try when I get more time. I know there is a difference in the charcoal made from various types of wood, though, and perhaps the problem with my charred wood black is the wood I used. I used a hardwood (oak or hickory, not sure which) for the paint, but later made willow sticks for drawing charcoal and it was much softer than the hardwood. So I may experiment later with paints from the various woods too. So many things to experiment with and so little time, lol.
4 months ago
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Morgan Lawson wrote:
wow! this looks amazing!
it looks like a picture in a book. I love it!
i definitely would like to see more works like this! please share with us :)



Hi Morgan, thank you for the compliment! I made a composite of two recent paintings and a collection of my pigments so I could post just one image, and spare some space on the thread :) Right now I'm visiting my husband who is working in Qatar, so I haven't painted much but am trying to keep a travel/art journal. The rookery painting is from that entry about the cultural village museum we visited last weekend. At https://www.wildozark.com/katara/, I have a whole blog post on that day with photos, if you'd like to see. When I get back home in March, I have a quail painting to do, and lots of other work I need to do too. I'm going to try and sell some original art at a festival in May (well, I'm always trying to sell it, but will do so at a festival in May, lol), so need to do a wide range of sizes to have a wide range of prices :D My problem is that I like my raptors best, but those take the longest. People seem to like the barns/sheds and birds like crows and owls best, so I'm trying to do more of the sorts of things with a better chance of selling, too. As for pigments, I need to get to grinding more rocks. Are you an artist? If so, I hope you'll try out some of your local pigments!

4 months ago
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Francis I love what you are doing! I have also started simply 'washing' my rock powders and have dispensed with the sieves. I let the heavies settle and pour off the colored waters and let them settle separately, then use the lightweight portion to make the paint. I'll usually grind the heavy portion again and repeat. This makes a very fine paint when I don't want the texture. With charcoal I've not experimented as much as you have, and what you've done is exciting. I started using charred bone instead of charred wood for my paints and I like it a lot better. But I never was able to get as smooth a paint as you have. Your little rock tumbler seems to work better than mine. I have found that the rubber liner is leaving color in my lighter pigments, so I quit using it altogether. I absolutely love your crayons! Yes, I see no reason why you shouldn't be selling all of this on Etsy. I've never had any luck with Etsy, but I wish you all the best. You've got great products to offer! ~ Madison
5 months ago
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It's been a while since I posted anything to this thread. I'm still making paint and painting with it. Are any of you still working at it? Here's the latest addition to my series of raptors. Finally decided to try a bald eagle. There's so many good ones out there, and even by artists right here in my own area, that I was nervous to try it. But one of my favorite local photographers captured a great image of one and I decided to give it a go. All of the colors are from light-fast Ozark pigments (sandstone, shale, limestone, sassafras root bark, and charred bone). If you want to see the whole process with all the ugly in-between stages, I've got a post on that at my blog: Bald Eagle. It's 16 x 20", the largest size I've done yet. Now I've got three paintings at this size, so I'm trying to work up to larger ones.
5 months ago
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Hi Jen, your artwork is spectacular. Selling art is a pretty time-consuming work for me, and I'm not making a living from it that's for sure. From what I've read, it seems an artist needs to get out there into the art fair markets, but doing that is also time and money consuming. I'm working on getting into exhibits... also time-consuming, and does costs some money but not as much. Just hoping to find an audience of collectors who want to buy. I may eventually give that up and just do it because I love it, lol, because it does seem like a long shot to 'make it'.
6 months ago
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Hey, r ranson, I always loved watching Bob Ross. Yes, you can make any kind of paint at all once you have the pigment. I bought tubes and materials to make the oil paints a few months ago, but haven't had the time to start experimenting with that yet. I only just began with watercolors when I started making them in summer 2018, so I'm going to give myself more time with that for now. Plus I started doing a series of the raptor birds and I'm not sure if I should swap media in the middle of it, or maybe that would add more interest to them if I do. I think I'll stick with watercolor for now. It's so much easier to grab and go with a work in progress, mainly. I don't have a dedicated studio space for working, so the mess of oils might be more than I can do in my kitchen. Oh but I want to try it badly, lol.

Here's the latest finished work, all in Ozark pigments, watercolors. I tend to swing wide between projects. The birds are very time and mind consuming, so in between them I'm beginning to do nature fantasy to give myself a different sort of experience.

11 months ago
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Here's another one, fresh off the easel. All of these colors came from rocks made into watercolor paints. I call it "Destination Unknown". If you'd like to see the whole process (of making the painting, not the paint itself), I have it all at a blog post on my website: Red-tailed Hawk Painting

11 months ago
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Fred Norman wrote:Really nice artworks! Just saw your blog and I already found some interesting topics.



Thanks Fred, just saw this reply. My writing is split between two separate websites, so not sure which one you saw. The color experiments and the actual finished paintings go to paleopaints.com, but the musings about the things I'm doing and anything else go over at the wildozark.com website. I started the paleopaints site when wildozark was broken for a week or two, and then just decided to keep it. Thanks for visiting either one!
1 year ago
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Marcelo Smith wrote: my experience with ball mills is a little more industrial



Oh my. I long for a bigger contraption for crushing my rocks, but that's a bit much! So far my little rock tumbler slash ball mill is working as long as I go outside to break up the rocks a bit first. Here's a nice earthy yellow I'm in the middle of making right now:


Working on the biggest painting yet, of a red-tailed hawk. If you decide to start making pigments and painting, come back and share with us! It can become an obsession... just a warning.

Edited to add the url for the pigment. It doesn't look like it's working as an upload: https://www.wildozark.com/yellow-ready-to-mull/
1 year ago
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Thanks for the book reference. I actually have copper on hand to try that and just haven’t done it yet. I need to move it a little higher on my to-do list!
1 year ago
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