Sunday, August 31, 2008
Saturday, August 30, 2008
Friday, August 29, 2008
What I want you to see in this painting are the reflections of the purple and yellow flowers on the surface of the dish AND the lovely, sparkly lights that the bottom of the dish is throwing onto the table cloth. This candy dish is turning into a real fun toy... enjoy!
Thursday, August 28, 2008
I'm getting all nostalgic typing this... better get back to what I've been doing. I'm spending some time to sort out my art room in preparation for my fall classes. It's not like I'm actually going to school but I love my art supplies... never mind commenting Ron. I need to make sure I've counted all my stuff so I don't over-shop. The gadgets are building up to having a life of their own and I'm working on organization and finding everything a home. Unfortunately, I'll have to use last year's pencil crayons, sigh. [for 12 years running I hassled my mother for new pencil crayons whether I needed them or not. I NEEDED them because I could face anything if I had new pencil crayons. What a funny duck I was... ]
Now I have 6 grandkids getting ready for school - things change so quickly and it's only Kalista now that will be home with mommy. Two more tikes are off to school... Kiera is going to have an intereting year in Japanese pre-school. Ethan is joining his brothers and sisters for a home-schooling experience. It's going to be a lot of fun!!!
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
I enjoy drawing and painting things that have defined shapes like this. It's easy to concentrate on the shapes rather than on "painting a tulip". Thinking about the latter can sometimes impact my ability to paint what's in front of me.
Here's and example: can you draw a tree? Of course you can! You've been able to do that since you turned three. Make a circle and then make two parallel lines down from the centre. See? You can draw a tree. The symbol for a tree anyhow. The problem with that is now you have an idea in your head and it's hard to knock it loose. Your brain keeps on telling you that a tree is that even when your eyes are giving you better information. Learning to "see" the real shapes in a subject takes time and practice. In this little painting there are many ovals, a parallelogram, a (near) triangle, and a couple of circles. When you take "tulip" out of your thinking and deal with the shapes in relationship to each other... voila! a tulip centre emerges. Fun stuff... sign up for an art class at a community college near your home, lol...
Have a great night!
Monday, August 25, 2008
What do I like? The colors are working for me - especially on the right hand side of the painting. I like that this was done from life, not a photo. I think that makes it fresher and more artsy... working from photo reference just isn't as much fun. The flowers are bright and cheery... and very informally arranged... I was still cutting flowers when Lindsey arrived to paint. An afternoon of color and light... it doesn't get much better than that (unless the grandkids are in town!).
What would I change? I would mess around a bit longer with the setup to make the overlapping sections interesting. I would use my viewfinder when I sketch so that the entire bottle has room on the page (!?!). I would make the flowers facing the viewer instead of having them facing toward their own personal window (which was added last to give the flowers "a view").
Over the course of this summer I've come realize that I really love to paint still life arrangements. I'm not sure if this is because I get to the painting experience without a drive... or that some of the shapes are hard edged and I love that! More stairs are on the agenda folks.
Anybody else on Olympic withdrawal?
Sunday, August 24, 2008
What a beautiful place to stay with a trailer or tent. The day facilities are very nice too. We parked and walked in about 100 yards where we found a bench just waiting for us. Ron wandered about with the camera taking photos of interesting flora and fauna and mountains, while I set up to sketch the beautiful little lake and the spectacular backdrop Rocky Mountains. About the time I began to add the watercolor to my sketch the wind picked up and it was a challenge to get the job done before the entire set blew away. Hurry doesn't generally improve these sketches... and the wind blew away the overhead clouds, changing the lighting. So, I made adjustments as best I could and we packed up and moved along. What a fun thing to look forward to on a Sunday afternoon drive! The sense of adventure, meandering along with no firm thought as to where we would land up... lovely and relaxing. I KNOW I could enjoy camping if I had a good mattress. That's all I'd ask.... But, my honey requires a few more bells and whistles... we're dreaming.
Saturday, August 23, 2008
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
I'm so happy to see that uploading photos works now on BLOGGER. That's' great.
These are little red tulips I mentioned last night. At first I lay down some nice yellow and scarlet lake to blend and mingle together. Then I worked on leaf colors and shapes in behind the flowers - these need to be interesting as well. I chose to use quite a bit of the complementary blue. That Makes the flowers pop. A fun little piece to paint. Enjoy!
Monday, August 18, 2008
- Painting - I finished a little painting of tulips which I attempted to keep loose... you be the judge tomorrow.
- Visited with my sister-in-law Karen and my cousin Claire today at lunch. Then Karen and I headed over to Art Supply Direct where we picked out some brushes, pencils, and other fun art supplies that Karen will need in class this fall. That was fun - it's always a blast spending other people's money!
- Yesterday I assembled the painting that I am donating to Shell's United Way campaign. This is the first painting that I have taken from zero to 100% complete all by myself (okay, Ron helped with the glass). I hope it auctions for a good sum... Shell has to match it and I love to see them part with their money... ;o)
How about Simon Whitfield and that gutsy come-back in the triathlon! I knew he was a good runner but THAT was incredible. I suppose it would've been a golden moment if the race had ended 20 meters sooner... when he was leading. BUT, hey... I'm not complaining.
Enjoy the Olympics!
Sunday, August 17, 2008
I love the color and the texture on the hibiscus so it's a fun subject for me. After I painted the petals I began lifting some of the veins... then I remembered to try floating. I took clean water on my rigger and drizzled it on the petals, waited a bit and then rubbed the color off with a tissue. It worked pretty well and gave the veins a lighter, softer texture.
Have a great work week!!!
Saturday, August 16, 2008
Further, I learned a great deal about framing art and the costs of doing it at home (Ron's future hobby ;) vs outsourcing it. Among other things, I had a lesson in linen hinging and discovered that many artists simply use acid free double-sided tape to attach their art to the backing board. Who knew?
Another observation, a critical one for me, is that it takes quite a bit of time. Since my "art time" is limited by my health I need to make conscious decisions about how I spend that time. Although I understand the learning curve is steep and I'm past a bit of that now, each art exhibit involves application, framing, delivery, showing up for the opening, picking up art at the end, etc. Many of the activities that I began during preparation for this show will become second nature (stretching watercolors as I complete them, framing immediately, archival photography, etc) and eventually entering a show will as well. The issue is this - promoting my art takes time away from painting my art. I'm going to have to consider if there are other ways to sell art more suitable to my needs - Internet sales, clothesline sales, or other new approaches... maybe I'll dream up something on my own. Any ideas?
Don't get me wrong... I am SO glad I have this opportunity to show my art in public! It's something that I never dreamed I would have the opportunity to do when I began painting 3 years ago. AND... I will do it again. To make future shows easier I will incorporate some habits into my art routine and that will make those opportunities easier to manage.
And lastly... NO HEELS ON CONCRETE! PERIOD.... never going to happen again folks!
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Lindsey planned, sketched, and painted Cherry in 1 hour. Ken, Sheila, and I had our paintings planned before arriving. We took a few minutes to explain our plans to each other (very helpful). Then at 2pm, we began painting and we cut it off at 3. There were a few shadows and minor things to do (which was okay in the rules - lol). We cleaned up, untaped our paintings and took these photos. I think it's an impressive 4 paintings considering the 1 hour painting rule.
Sheila had a lovely, atmospheric evening seaside painting. Ken chose a lake scape, I chose a backyard bench with a croquet game in progress on the lawn . ALL of us painted much faster than we usually do. This resulted in more wet in wet, puddling, etc.
Although we all began very wet we all found it difficult to maintain that through the hour of painting. This is something that would be worthwhile to do again.
It was fun! I'll submit this to Watercolor Magic for inclusion in their feedback about the event.
The four of us with our "1 hour wonders".
Ken and Sheila discussing the minor details at the end.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
As I'm describing this here, and as I look at it in this smaller format, I'm seeing some things I may change... stay tuned.
I've just watched the Chinese women win the gold medal in gymnastics - beautifully I might add. Nice to see the home team, the inexperienced underdogs, win. They were just delightful to watch. That said, I'm feeling for the USA ladies who came a bit unglued. I really enjoyed watching Nastia Liukin flip and dance her way on the floor - she was so musical. Nastia was written off by pretty much everyone when she wrecked her ankle in 2006 and had a slow recovery from surgery. She worked very hard for her place on that elite team. I thought she looked great on the floor tonight and "rose above" the circumstances - good for her. She is a first gen American - born in Russia. Her dad, and coach, represented the USSR as a gymnast 20 years ago in Seoul. The world has changed quite a bit since then... Enjoy the Olympics - it's sure to be the best TV you see this summer!
Monday, August 11, 2008
For those of you that are purists, I intentionally left out the little tree that currently grows out over the view - artistic license, etc. I'm sure it was like this at some point... and I like it better without that little scrubber getting in the way of the falls. Another time I might make it all about that little tree, but not today.
Views like this abound in the Canadian Rockies and in Kananaskis Country where this scene is found. I'm living 45 miles from this view and I've just seen it for the first time. Both Ron and I vowed we'd get out more - he with his camera and I with my paints. Enjoy!
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Friday, August 8, 2008
Thursday, August 7, 2008
This was a fun experience but I believe I'll wait until I've done some reading and/or have some instruction before I tackle another one. I kind of like how this one turned out but it was a dicey thing at times - trust me because I just can't take the time to explain it all.
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Here's my second try at the little twisted pine. This time I toned down the sky by using warm ultramarine blue instead of cool pthalo blue. The tree has just a bit less foliage and I like that. However, my first attempt is, in my opinion, wilder and reflects the mood I was in when I painted it (see July 23rd post). Six of one, half dozen of the other.... Enjoy!
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
Life lesson? The term "bloom where you're planted" applies even if you're a little yellow flower...
Monday, August 4, 2008
Sunday, August 3, 2008
Saturday, August 2, 2008
Friday, August 1, 2008
Hi all... I'm sending out this reminder to those of you that have committed to come to my place August 12th to execute your Speedy Delivery painting. Here's the latest:
- There are currently 5 painters coming - Cheryl, Ken, Sheila S, Sheila W, Lindsay. This will be a fun group.
- Ken Lampard challenges us to use a minimum 1/4 sheet of watercolor paper... Good Idea!
- Let's keep it simple and loose with smaller brushes. I challenge us to use a minimum of 1" flat and a large (minimin 16) round.
I suggest the following format for the Aug 12 get together:
- Hour 1 - while we have a coffee/tea, each painter will explain to the others what they have for a composition, review value studies, color scheme, painting plan. I think this will help us all by allowing us to learn from the others and possibly change our plans on the fly if we want to incorporate a new idea. By the end of this discussion, we should have figured out our work areas.
- Hour 2 - Paint... One of the problems with this method is that sometimes it's hard to leave a piece alone... we want to continue beyond the "done" stage. I recommend we get partner up so that we can give eachother feedback as we go.
- Hour 3 - discuss how we feel we did, take a group photo with our paintings, and wrap up.
The online instructions gives us most of the information we need to proceed. To give you a better idea of how you need to prepare I have the magazine which has ALL the instructions on how to plan the painting. The following is quoted from the full text of Kathy Collins' challenge in the Watercolor Artist magazine:
"Step One: Choose a composition. The simplest designs, such as a cruciform pattern or layers of color in varying sizes, usually work best for me and help me to connect large, dark shapes.
Step Two: Sketch a value study with a strong white pattern in contrast to the darkest darks (everything else in the painting will be mid-toned). For maximum impact, the value pattern should be simple and apparent to a viewer across the room.
Step Three: Have big brushes at the ready. I prefer flat 1 1/2 or 2 inch synthetics with a sharp edge. A large brush is a key element in single-session painting because it allows you to cover large areas and connect colors and shapes before the paint dries.
Step Four: Decide on either a war or cool color dominance and limit yourself to no more than four or five colors for unity. For example, if you're using a warm palette, you'll want mainly reds and yellows, but you'll need at least on cool color, such as a blue-green, for contrast.
Step Five: With the big decisions made, you're ready to paint. Starting at the top of the paper, brush in midtone colors and progress downward, laying in foliage or abstract shapes for the background. Next transition from mid-darks to the darkest darks, painting negatively around the centre of interest, such as people boats, houses or still life forms. Change colors every inch or so, using thick but fluid paint to enrich the most intense values around the focal point (were the deepest colors meet the white of the paper).
Step Six: It's critical to avoid having too much water on your brush. Keep the colors intermixing by charging in flowing, wet paint next to the still-wet colors already on the paper. The remainder of the work is done in dark to midtones, leaving some pinpoint whites for interest. Soften some edges to smooth the transitions or to achieve the effect of distance.
Step Seven" Finally, if need, push the values around the focal areas to make brilliant whites pop against an almost-black background. The painting is finished in one session."
See you August 12th!