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Artist Lea Gadbois demonstrates her resin painting style

Lea Gadbois enjoys demonstrating how to do her art. She was happy to talk with whoever came to her table. Photo credit: Caitlyn Young

Having an interest in astronomy for as long as she can remember, Lea Gadbois incorporates her love for the stars into her art. Years ago, Gadbois began to do what she calls “starry night” paintings, and soon branched out from there. Now, she paints nebulae and constellations.

Gadbois went to Chico State for Art Studio with an emphasis in drawing and glass. However, she took one painting class and decided to pursue painting. On occasion, she will draw instead of paint. She has a number of dog portraits for sale in the gallery at Chico Paper Company. Gadbois enjoys drawing too, but she says it takes more time to create because sketches are more detailed.

Gadbois first experienced working with resin when she painted a coffee table back in college. She liked the shine of the resin over her paintings. On her first starry night piece, she said that, “It was just more eye catching (and) people seemed to really respond to the shininess.”

Lea likes the resin paintings because they go a lot faster than the other paintings she creates. She likes that she can do different types of art, and continues to switch up what kind she creates.

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Gadbois adds sparkle to her space paintings. She covers her paintings in resin because “it was just more eye catching, people seemed to really respond to the shininess." Gadbois said. Photo credit: Caitlyn Young

Gadbois especially loves camping and gazing out under the night sky. She wants to try to capture the feeling of looking up at that sky, because she couldn’t go star gazing or camping every single night.

“My paintings are basically (made) to capture that feeling of escape, like when you go on vacation and you go camping…” Gadbois said.

She wants people to look at her paintings and remember where they have traveled, or realize the beauty of space.

Gadbois creates smaller paintings for each Zodiac constellation. Photo credit: Caitlyn Young

Gadbois’ Process:

  1. Paint a base layer on the canvas (usually black)
  2. Mix a clear medium with pigments and glitter to create the paint colors
  3. After background is dry, paint foreground, adding sparkle
  4. Create two-part resin – mix the parts together really well
  5. Pour resin over painting (the resin just drips off the sides)
  6. Use blowtorch to get rid of any bubbles
  7. Try to keep the painting dust free as it dries (usually takes about eight hours to cure)
  8. File down the resin drip bumps on the back of the canvas

Caitlyn Young can be reached at [email protected] or @Orion_CaitlynY on Twitter.

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