Title: Hindu Woman
12 x 16
Weight: 5.0 lbs.
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As a high school student in Hayward, California, Diana Lee was selected, along with four other gifted students, to attend extended art classes. Throughout her junior and senior years, Diana acted as a teaching assistant, aiding other students in drawing. Although she showed promise as an artist, Diana discontinued her artistic efforts after graduating from high school in 1965, and didn’t take them up again until 1978, after the birth of her second child, chiefly creating portraits and fantasy drawings in pencil. About a year later, she discovered the medium called scratchboard, in which she produced the portrait of her pet cat called Rufus. After the births of a third and then a fourth child, Diana took a ten-year hiatus from art, picking it up yet again in 1988, and has been pursuing it actively ever since. She has attended various classes at the Santa Rosa Junior College in drawing, painting, three-dimensional art and principles of color.
Scratchboard Art is a form of direct etching using a sharp, pointed tool to scratch out an image. Traditional scratchboard is a three-layer medium made up of a support surface coated with a layer of smooth white clay and then sprayed with a layer of thin black ink. The artist scratches through the layer of ink to expose the white clay below, producing a black and white image. I use the tip of a surgical scalpel to scratch through the black ink. Color can be added to the exposed white areas of the work with inks or paint. Most scratchboard artwork can take well over 100 hours of scratching to be completed. Scratchboard is unique and produces dramatic imagery unlike any other medium. It gives the ability to create amazing detail and, when combined with color, it creates a spectacular effect.
In March of 2009 Diana Lee joined a select group of featured artists, including Claybord inventor Charles Ewing, in an international show of scratchboard art in Indianapolis. Sponsored by Ampersand, the company that manufactures scratchboard, the show in Indianapolis was one of the first ever to focus specifically on the medium scratchboard. She was selected again for another international scratchboard show, taking place in Colorado, in January of 2010, juried by Charles Ewing. Diana is featured in The Artist’s Magazine, March 2010 issue. She has produced commissioned illustrations for a California women’s magazine and books by a fellow artist. She has exhibited her scratchboards in a number of galleries in Northern California. She is currently finishing up a "how to" book on scratchboard including tutorials on using scratchboard with different color mediums. Diana travels around the US doing workshops and demonstrations with scratchboard. Ampersand uses her artwork to illustrate the potential of their product and for their new signage.
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