22SPR Finding Nature Through Fractals and Layers SAT (3/19-4/09)

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Instructor: Danielle Horton / 4 weeks / March 19, March 26, April 02, April 09 / Saturday / 6:00PM - 9:00PM
Class Size: 5-12

Go into yourself and test the deeps in which your life takes rise; at its source you will find the answer to the question whether you must create.”


I believe as artists we are all here to contribute, to share, and to study and learn from each other and I hope this class allows these habits and attitudes to come into play.

One of my favorite ways of creating layers of color and depth in a painting is through fractals. Fractals are never-ending patterns, often seen in nature, where you take an image and create a pattern out of it from scaling the image over and over again at different sizes transforming it from a singular entity into a pattern that goes beyond a still-life, or a landscape, and allows you to think of the ever evolving ether of life that surrounds us. If you are looking for reference Jackson Pollack’s technique can be recognized as fractal expressionism. Fractals in nature are recognized in snowflakes, seashells, ferns, branches of a tree constantly breaking of and growing, changing, but of the same family and shape. I think it creates a beautiful metaphor for humanity in a visually striking way and there are some simple techniques I would like to demonstrate to create such an effect. Through quick studies of a still life of the students own choosing, a limited palette of sepia tone and one primary color, and sharing our work to each other and having critiques at the end of each class we will keep everyone fresh, and open to the work and the story we are developing  as we create patterns and layers of our paintings.  I will have demos creating fractals out of an everyday object (ex. comb, hairpin, car keys) and show ways of creating patterns from the object. I will do a demo on palette and color and how to layer images with different mixtures of paint playing with warm and cool tones to push the images forward or recede them into the background. This class is for people with open minds and hearts who have a fondness for nature, the surreal and the poetic obscurity that can come into abstract painting.

I never choose a subject for what it means to me. I choose a subject and then what I feel about it, what it means, begins to unfold.”

-Diane Arbus


  • Acrylic Paints: titanium white, yellow ochre, burnt sienna, raw umber, (one primary) either ultramarine blue, cadmium yellow, or cadmium red
  • Brushes: Fan brush (for scumbling), assortment of large and thin brushes for range and detail
  • Optional: Gel medium (gloss)
Additional Details
Skill Level:
Horton, Danielle

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