Sunday, July 18, 2010

July 18, 2010

Quite awhile since I've been here. Been very busy with our youngest son's wedding and house guests and a nasty cold/flu which just hung on and sapped energy. Hopefully I'm back to enjoying trying to create some art.

First I tried to get back into painting by doing a FF challenge on one of the painting web sites that I'm on. It turned out just ok but at least got my brushes wet.

I like the colors and the blending, poor bee doesn't look much like himself, he he he

Then more time went by and a lovely lady by the name of Mollie put up a demo on painting a sunflower so I though aha just the ticket. I love sunflowers such happy flowers. So I tried to learn the technique.

Well, just couldn't get the dot technique but I was trying. I had another failure and almost gave up and then I worked on the following one. I still couldn't get the hang of the dots and just bringing water to the dots and letting the paint do its work. I sort of got it but wasn't getting the results I wanted. Then I reread the directions and tried some more and sort of got it but then couldn't resist just adding my own colors and idea to the sunflower. It wasn't the total looseness that I wished but satisfactory. I'm not comfortable having no drawing to go by and just trying to do the drawing with the paintbrush other than a bit in the center. Also struggled with my leaves, definitely need much more practice on this technique but a lot of folks had very kind encouraging comments on my painting. I used mainly Daniel Smith paints (really love them) and a few Michael Grahams that I still have left. Painted 10x14 Arches 140# block. Think I will try this again on a larger sheet and see if I can't paint larger and looser.

The other thing I tried was a demo I had found online of Fantasy Flowers and it also helped me climb out of my blockage to painting. In this you just put on paints and kind of shape a vase, again no drawing, and then use ink pens to pen in some suggested flowers; then use colored WC pencils and add some shading. This is how far I am with this. Kind of fun and that's what painting should be about.

And a close up

So now am going to try and finish paintings that I've started and if I can't get inspired by that I will flip the paper over and do something else on the back.

Friday, April 30, 2010

APRIL 30, 2010

Well here is what I've been working on this week. In one of the web sites that I'm in we are working on portraits. There was a lovely photo of an Indian boy that I loved, poor guy. So I tried him. First I had to draw. I don't draw well, my fault, I don't practice but this time I was determined. Here was my effort.

So then after a week's worth of work I was fairly pleased so I decided to put paint to paper. This was my result. Not too good. Didn't have colors right and not the right paper. I just kept changing and changing which meant stressing the paper.

Well needless to say I haven't been pleased, too purple, eyes not right but I kept on. Did I mention this is the little Indian Arapahoe that I am trying to paint.

Poor little guy I hope he forgives me. I really tried but it got to the point that I had removed the paint so many times that I had a hole in the paper. Yup that bad. I did learn a lot of things and I plan to redo this proud warrior on different paper that will take my constant changing and removing the paint. He was what I ended up with on my first try. You will see this little guy again and hopefully he will be better.

Monday, April 19, 2010

The finished Daisy

I was persistent and bound and determined to finish this. It was quite a struggle and I'm not sure if I like it. It was a foreign way for me to paint, one petal at a time and quite meticulous. I love that way, admire the work but it probably isn't the kind of painting that I do very well.

The results? Well not too bad considering, not my favorite painting of mine but it looks a lot better than it did. I know I could work a lot more on it but really I have so many things stacked up to paint I'm going to move along, take the marvelous instruction that Ruth gave me and try and incorporate some of it and see what else I can learn with the next thing I attempt.

ONWARDS to the next challenge.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

April 7, 2010

Well again I have become remiss in painting. Got very very involved in a photo project for my husband's 70th birthday and that took a month to gather the photos (I have hundreds and hundreds of both slides and hard photos) This does not count all the 100 CDs I have. Really I think I just take too many photos.

Anyway project was a huge success, all six children contributed wrote stories and we now have a beautiful coffee table book of my husband's 70 years.

So even though I have other projects I'm working on I'm starting to get my brushes wet again.

First I have been working on a demo from a watercolor site that I'm on, thanks Ruth. I haven't gotten far and it may not be the best way for me to paint as I'm definitely not a meticulous painter but I love the results of a meticulous painter. I feel that one can always take away a lot of techniques by doing the different demos and thus that is what I'm trying to do. Here is the result of how far I've gotten, have a long way to go.


And I also from the same web site had a Friday Foto challenge of two men chatting but in a different setting. I put them in my own imaginary setting and this is what I got. Some things I like but many things not so much. I changed colors of clothing and that worked and the shading of the clothing worked but some of the other things not so much. Need to just paint more and really am talking to myself a lot about "taking some time for me".

men jawing.jpg

So now I have a few things to do but am going to get back to my daisy petals and maybe start something in pastel as well. The above two paintings are in watercolor.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

JANUARY 30, 2010

My eldest granddaughter's 12th birthday. My they grow up so quickly. Here's Cristina doing one of the things she loves best -- playing soccer. She is on a select team so it's amazing to see the improvement with the high level of training. She is one very determined little girl, she may be tiny but she is determined and feisty.

To go on with the painting --- Finally finished the iris I was doing, lot of other things interferring but I went as far as I could. Didn't find that I ended up liking the paper that I was using any better Fabriano, just doesn't blend as nicely as Arches nor does it stay wet long, really sops up the water. Here is the final result.

Now I'm going to switch to pastels and try and finish the daffies although I'm not liking them much, went too crazy on the background so will see what I can do. Also plan to start another watercolor or actually maybe finish some of the ones that I started and never finished. But may go for a challenge one as it gets me moving. We'll see. Meanwhile, have a lot of transcriptioin to do until Tuesday, plus a birthday party to attend at the CheeseFactory yummy and of course work out on Monday, must try not to miss that as it makes me feel much better.

Until I have something to write I will close.

Friday, January 22, 2010

FRIDAY, January 22, 2010

WOW, this month is just flying by. I can't believe we are fast appoaching the end of the month and will be back into family birthdays next week. I thought I had a huge breather but NOT. First one is next week our son Greg and then three days later our granddaughter Cristina. Where does the time go.

Well I've been working on a couple of things in two different mediums. The first one is a soft pastel one just the preliminary work. Am doing it on a beige colored Mi Tientes pastel paper to give my fingertips a rest from the sandpaper one. Don't really know what I'm doing on this so I'm just punting as they say and we'll see how it turns out.

Then I'm working on a watercolor iris painting, photo from Susanfx (thank you) from a Friday Foto challenge on a watercolor web site that I'm on. I forgot to say that the daffies above are from a photo also from the same site different photographer Lil (thank you).

This paper I'm using is Fabriano 140#CP, 9 1/2 x 12 1/2, can't say I like it much but have a lot of pads of this. I find it doesn't blend as well as Arches which I love. Also water seems to soak in a lot quicker, it dries quicker so more difficult to do the wet-in-wet technique which helps give the lovely blending of watercolors. I love irises and have tons of my own photos of them so I think I will continue doing different paintings in different mediums. I'm only a short way through doing this but want to keep on putting up my progress to help keep me on track.

Need to get busy working on this before going to the gym for my swim class.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Sunday January 10, 2010

Well my latest undertaking was to try and learn pastels. I needed a jump start in learning and so I've spent the last week following a wonderful demo that Desiree both wrote and videotaped. So much information but I'm learning. We started with a piece of sandpaper fine (think mine was not so fine as my fingers feel like they are worn to the nubs). There is so much to remember and do and it has helped me slow down a bit and be patient. I also realize I am not a realist painter in the truest sense or really any sense. I add color that's not there and I don't follow a photo totally. I have to be satisfied with the way that I interpret but continue to learn.

As I said I went from this:

To this:

And then this is all I'm doing on this one.

I'm certainly not that pleased with the outcome but very pleased with all I have learned. The next one I will not have to learn each step but then move on to other things that I need to learn (like how to properly blend soft pastels). I'm really excited about learning this new medium but I think for the rest of the day I'm going back to watercolor and give my finger pads a chance to heal a bit.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Well, busy putting away Christmas decorations but in between played catchup with my 20 minute paintings.

The first one is from a photo that I took at the OR coast obviously at sunset since we get fantastic ones here and not sunrises over the water.

The next one was also from one of my photos this one from a trip we took last May through Utah, many National Parks, Arizona and California and back home. This particular photo was taken in an Escalante Slot Canyon. For those of you that don't know, that is sheer walls of rock in this case that special Sedona red, and there is a passageway through the walls and then it opens up into a larger area and then ends. If one looks up you can see the sky. Well folks apparently get married here and this was like a tiny offering altar where as we found it there were two sticks side-by-side sort of the couples' offering to whatever they believed in. Fascinating and very beautiful.

My reds didn't quite make it but you get the idea.

Plan to start on another painting sometime this afternoon hopefully. It will cheer me up after having to put away the Christmas decorations.

Monday, January 4, 2010



My new resolutions this year -- I don't usually make them but have changed my mind. Maybe it will make a difference and I will stick to them.

The biggest one is to paint EVERY day. I've started a 20 minute warmup with one of the painting sites I'm on. They are horrible BUT my brushes are wet and I'm starting to get back into the mindset of painting.

Another is to not let other things interfere with number one.

Here are the dailies that I have done so far. The object is to pick something to paint, set it up, set a timer for 20 minutes, no drawing just using the brush and paint and water or waterever you use and paint what you see. Then STOP after 20 minutes in my case let it dry and then post. We are supposed to see a difference in quality after awhile. I sure hope so as these really aren't good but have to start somewhere.

This was the very first one I did New Year's Eve. sort of getting a jump on the New Year. Found out lots of things mainly I'm really rusty in my painting.
New Year's Day I decided to get more ambitious. What a mistake MISS (make it simple stupid) should be my motto. I see something and think I can paint it. Mistake but I did learn that if I want to do glass I need to take more than 20 minutes and really think about it.

Next one 1/2/10 I bought a gorgeous poinsettia plant from my granddaughter HUGE and I isolated one flower and a couple of leaves. One thing I liked about it? The front middle leaf, it turned out okay. Ran out of time to put in veins in the red portions and messed up the other leaves but hey finished in exactly 20 minutes.

I also have gone back to another painting site that I enjoyed for years. Made a lot of friends on it so again picked a photo from the offerings made by the host for that week. We choose a photo, prepare out supplies and begin painting. We paint for two hours and stop and post what we have finished. The thing is that we can continue later but the idea is to paint and show what you accomplished in two hours. Another exercise to help get my mind organized as to what I want to do and also to experiment with other mediums if I want to. Right now I'm sticking to watercolor as I love it BUT may join a class to learn about pastels. Here is what I posted today for my WDE

So this is all I have for today. Enjoy your day. I'm off to work out and come back and do my 20 minute warmup and then maybe start another challenge photo or try something else.