Friday, April 28, 2006

Drawing Breakfast

I started the morning by drawing. I first drew my whole breakfast, and that was hard, not enjoyable; a repeat from the other day. Then I drew just my teapot and tea cup. I enjoyed it a lot more. The difference was I added painting to the second drawing. Got my ink pot and a brush out and shadowed areas, etc. It was much more interesting and engaging to me to add the extra layers to the drawing. And the second drawing turned out much better than the first. I'm discovering that just line drawing really doesn't engage me. After the second drawing I wanted to do lots more. And, as Martha Stewart would say, that's a good thing.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Mocha Java Time!

"Mocha Java Time"

Forgot I had this little painting waiting in the wings to be posted here. It was a fun piece to do; as you can see I was feeling very colorful that day! I did this shortly after returning from Artfest. I was still in massive color brightness mode. And I had enjoyed some YUMMY coffee while in Pt Townsend. Those Northwesters sure know how to make a luscious coffee!

It's a gorgeous day today in my neck of the woods. High of 74 degrees, sun shining. I'm considering going out into the yard and drawing some of the plants we've just put out there. Some interesting shapes and colors. I also may start another canvas. I particularly liked my dog in yesterday's "falling" painting, and have a small canvas that would be perfect for further exploration of said doggie. Yesterday's painting was challenging, but I enjoyed it very much. I want to add more line to my work, pencil marks, random splotches. I feel that my work is still very controlled, I don't take a lot of chances. It was fun to play with line, though a bit uncomfortable too. More exploration is needed...

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Spring beauty, winter art

A touch of spring on my front stoop. Gerbera daisies are one of my favorites. They're such happy flowers, one can't help but smile at the sight of them. We had our yard hardscaped earlier this season, and now have been having fun planting the beds and putting pots out everywhere. The daisies seem pretty happy where they are; they like the dappled sunlight.


Funny enough, my painting today is a winter one. I was inspired by an image I saw in an old "W" magazine and the work of Camilla Engman. I'm adding her site to my list. Her work is whimsical and moving all at once. A couple of her pieces especially touched me. I heard about her from my friend Dawn who pointed out one of her patterns for adorable stuffed animals in the Stitch n Bitch book. I had no idea she is an illustrator and painter as well. Check her out!

If I can figure out how to do it, I'm going to submit the above painting to the "Inspire me Thursdays" challenge created by Misty Mawn and Melanie Komisarski. This week's theme is "Art in the Every day". The challenge is to use an everyday object in the piece of art you create. I used a star cookie cutter as part of the background of "Falling".

I also spent some time this morning with the Danny Gregory book and did his "medicine cabinet" exercise. It was challenging; I found myself getting bored and wanting to just finish. I'll be looking at that more closely and seeing what that's all about. Anyway, here is what I did.

I'm happy I drew today and will continue to do so regularly, hopefully every day.

I'll close with a quote from Danny's book:

"I believe in the energy of art, and through the use of that energy the artist's ability to transform his or her life and by example, the lives of others." Audrey Flack

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

"When We Were Angels"
Acrylic and collage on canvas

I can't believe it's after 5:30pm already! The day flies when one is creating. Did the painting above today. It felt good to work again after a few days off. I don't know if it's just that it's spring, but all I want to do is make stuff all day, everyday!

I received a couple of great books in the mail yesterday...
The first is "How to Make a Journal of Your Life" by D. Price. It's a petite little book, really fun, and his drawings are wonderful! Between that and Danny Gregory's "Creative License" book, I'm ready to begin sketching things out in the world. I have my little sketchbook and pen at the ready in my purse, and now just need the opportunity to go out there. I HAVE to take the car to the car wash this week, so that will be my first foray into public sketching. I'll let you know how it goes.

The second is "Knitted Flowers" by Nicky Epstein. It's luscious eye candy; even if you're not a knitter just look at the photos and you'll come away inspired. I'm only a couple of patterns in, but I can tell knitted flowers will be coming off my needles sometime soon!

The arrival of my book was serendipitous, as I had knitting on my mind. I met my friend Dawn yesterday afternoon for coffee and knitting/crocheting. We're both just learning crochet and enjoying the book"The Happy Hooker" by the gal that did the "Stitch n Bitch" books. If you're looking for a crochet book with cool patterns, I highly recommend this one. I've started the flower scarf (with the help of my patient mother-in-law who's been crocheting for years), and Dawn wanted to get going on it too but had a couple of questions. So we sipped our beverages and I passed along a couple of hints from mom that helped me with my flowers. I worked on a cute little mini poncho that I'm knitting while we chatted. It was a gorgeous day outside and we sat in the shade and enjoyed the light breeze. What a great way to spend a Monday afternoon! Unfortunately, my flower book arrived after I'd met with Dawn, so I didn't get a chance to show it to her. Next time...

I'll end today's post with a wonderful quote I came in D. Price's book...
"Be strong, and do not betray your soul, carry your light to illuminate your destiny. Rejoice, for you are a part of the Great Mystery!"

Friday, April 21, 2006

hanging out with the furry babies

Couldnt resist snapping a couple of pictures of my Cosmo (aka "Little Kitty"), lounging behind the bowls on the buffet in the dining room. She came to us back in November, a couple of weeks after we lost our sweet Cleo, a 16 year old toy poodle. We heard meowing outside the front door, and lo and behold, there was Little Kitty, bottom jaw horribly broken. We rushed her to the vet, and it wasn't clear whether she would make it or not. But, tough little thing that she is, she survived and is flourishing.

And then there's Ginger, our 5 year old toy poodle we adopted from the Poodle Rescue Group in town. She's the most affectionate dog I've ever known, and we're both completely in love with this little sweetie. She has us wrapped around her little poodle pinkie and she knows it!

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Ok, so I've learned never to preview the post until you're SURE it's exactly the way you want it. I just finished a lengthy post, previewed it, went back to make a couple of changes, and lost the whole thing. And of course it was a long one! So let's try this again.

I've begun reading "The Time Traveler's Wife" by Audrey Niffenegger. It's a luminous book, beautifully written. She quotes a poem at the beginning of the book that I found incredibly moving. Here it is:


The time will come
when, with elation,
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror,
and each will smile at the other's welcome,

and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.

Derek Walcott

Part of today was spent at a local community college finishing up what I needed to do to get myself registered for fall for the graphic design program. Yes, I'm going back to school. Starting fall 2006 I will be a full-time student for awhile, after 25 years. Yikes, I'm getting old! But seriously, I'm excited to be returning to school and learning the skills that will enable me to be an artist AND get paid! What a concept!

Till then, I will be making as much art as possible, as I know once school starts, that will be it for awhile. Thanks to my Honey, I don't have to work outside the home right now, so I can focus entirely on my art and process.

This is the canvas I had so much trouble with, but has finally become what it was meant to be. It's called "Spring". Funny how some pieces flow right out, and some are a struggle start to finish. I wonder what that says about the interior landscape?...

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Well, keeping to my promise to post new art regularly, here's a painting I did about a month ago. It's acrylic on canvas, with water soluble pastels. I worked on another painting yesterday and struggled a bit. I'm working with fear of "ruining" a piece, and it keeps me from delving in with abandon. That's why yesterday's work was so hard. I wasn't sure where I was going and wasn't particularly comfortable with it, was afraid of wrecking the whole thing. Today I'm going to work some more on it and a smaller piece. I'm going to put my IPod on, get lost in the music, and quiet the voice that's constantly warning me to "be careful, don't ruin it". I'll let you all know how I do.

Monday, April 17, 2006


Now begins my second post and the adventure of uploading photos to this blog. I'm so new at this, and it's kind of nerve-wracking trying to figure it all out. I'm posting some paintings and journal pages that have been done within the past couple of weeks since my return from Artfest, an amazing art retreat held every year in Pt Townsend, WA.
The piece above was painted last week in a 3 day frenzy of creating. It's called "Home", and is acrylic paint and collage on canvas.

This piece was painted prior to my trip to Washington. As you can see, I'm drawn to brilliant, saturated color.

This is one of my journal pages I did after returning from Artfest. She just flowed onto the page.

These two images were also completed in my journal after Artfest. These pages were inspired by a feature in an old Vogue magazine I'd had for awhile. I saw them while flipping through the magazine for collage materials for a painting class I took with Diane Culhane (phenomenal artist!!). They caused me to reflect on beauty and our society's conception of female beauty (young and thin). Yet there is such beauty in the above forms as well; abundant curves and shadows, interesting shapes and fullness. I wanted to represent that viewpoint with these pages.

I'm going to post new art very frequently, so if you like what you see so far, please stop by and check it out!

Monday, April 03, 2006

This is a test

my first foray into the wonderful world of blogs. Want to see what it looks like.