Think left and think right and think low and think high. Oh, the thinks you can think up if only you try! - Dr. Seuss

Monday, December 30, 2013

A Cute Watercolour

Whew, it has been a l-o-n-g time since I posted.  I did not realize it was almost a month.  In that time, my hand is healing, Christmas has come and gone, and I have cleaned my studio (LOL).  And believe me, it needed it!
So here I am today, having rewarded myself for putting order in the room, with a watercolour I did today of Annie (or a representation thereof) playing soccer.
It is all ready to frame so tomorrow I am off the buy a frame that comes close to fitting.
Hope you have a great New Year!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Elephant Sketch

I was inspired by a documentary I watched the other day to sketch this elephant.
The documentary was titled "How I Became An Elephant" and I found it very moving.  It really called attention to the plight of the abused elephants in Thailand and I hoped to convey sadness in the eyes of my drawing.  I would recommend that anyone interested in animal rights watch it.
Thanks for visiting!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Bijou - Pencil Sketch

When we were in Detroit, I visited Blick Art Supplies and, wow, I was like a kid in a candy shop!  I could not decide what I wanted to buy.  So I took my time and only purchased supplies I know I cannot get here.  My best find was hot pressed water color paper (2 for 1).  While I was there I got a hard cover sketch book and today I dug it out.  My finger is on the mend so I have decided to dive right in to some serious!!!! art.  As a start, I opened the sketch book and just drew.
Bijou was sleeping on Steve's chair so he seemed a logical subject.  I have never really sketched an animal before but I just looked and drew.  I tried to keep my eyes on the dog and not so much on the paper and I am pretty happy with the result.  Could be a bit better with the shading - A LOT BETTER, IN FACT - but as a first effort he is OK and kind of cute.
I found such relaxation in the sketching that I might need a bigger purse (so my sketch book can come everywhere with me).
Thanks for visiting!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Calico Angel

For our challenge over at TRY STAMPIN' ON TUESDAY this week, we are to create any kind of tag we want and give a short tutorial on how to make it.  Here is mine:
I chose to do a mixed media tag with spray ink background coloured and collaged angel, metal and button accents and a simple printed message.

Supplies: cardstock tag or heavy paper to cut one out
               cardstock to draw your angel on, copy paper
               spray inks of your choice, Kosher salt
               scrap of fabric, foil 2" square
               tulle or netting
               Copic Markers or coloured pencils to colour angel 
               permanent pen
               2 twigs
               wooden heart or button heart
               star brad
               matte medium or Mod podge
               hot glue gun
To make the background, all you need is spray inks (of any kind) in the colours you want and Kosher salt.  I used two blues and a purple for mine.
All you do is spray your tag (mine is water color paper but any heavy paper will do) with your inks.  You can blot and spray again if you are not happy with the coverage.  Then, while it is wet, sprinkle with the salt and set aside to dry.  IT MUST BE BONE DRY BEFORE YOU TOUCH IT AGAIN.  Then rub the salt off and you have a cool, sky-like background.
Now, draw a very simple angel body on cardstock and paint or colour her face and hair.  My shape is a head with a pyramid body.  Make the entire girl about 5" in height.  Now for the fun stuff:  I used a piece of tinfoil and a 2" punch and punched out a halo for her which I glued to the back of her head.  For her dress, I raided my fabric stash and, using matte medium (but you can use Mod Podge) I adhered the fabric to her body to create a dress.  When it is dry, trim it to the right shape and size.  Her wings are netting which I gathered and hot glued to her back.  Now, hot glue the angel to the tag.  For her arms, I took two tiny twigs and hot glued them behind her body.  Then, I wrote my sayings on white paper with permanent pen and matte mediumed them to the tag.  Lastly, I added a wooden button heart to her dress (first I snipped off the shank) and also I glued the star (which is a brad with the back snipped off) up in the corner.
Very simple! and yet so cute.  I am going to do a series of calico angel tags so please check back.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Snowman Tags

It seems like forever since I was able to do any kind of art.  But really my surgery was not quite two weeks ago.  I am so tired of not being able to create that I gave it a go today.  I did some water color tags with snowmen on them.
The tags are cut out of water color paper (140 lb) and then I water colored the snow people. Any little snow piles are either white acrylics or moulding paste.  I drew the figures in pencil first and did not erase the lines.  I like the softening effect.  After I finished painting the tags, I outlined them in permanent pen.
Although these are not very demanding to do, they are fun and I was able to create them with very little trouble- even though I am still healing up.
Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Winter Fairy

Before I go on, I want to explain what happened to my sketch of the day.  I was making a copper wire pumpkin when the wire pierced my finger.  Almost immediately, infection set in and I have been on antibiotics for just over a week.....and it is not cleared up yet. 
So, today was my first day even giving any kind of art a try.  Here is the result:
This is a mixed media canvas (12X6") with the background being layers of spray inks which I blended together.  Then I dripped gesso down from the top.  Next was stamping tiny snowflakes with gesso. I drew the fairy on bristol paper, coloured her face with Prisma pencils and then cut her out.  Her wings are cut out separately out of vellum and I lined the edges with paint pen (as well as adding the dots).  I then used matte medium to adhere the wings and head to the canvas.  Next was painting her hair.  I painted the part that I drew on the bristol and then carried it over to the canvas to incorporate her into the piece. I used fluid acrylics.
The last step was stamping the larger snowflakes using gesso. (I added these where I did so that I could cover over a mistake)
Now, my only question to myself...and to you....should I add some text?  Let me know what you think.
Bye for now!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Sketch Of The Day

Hi gang!
I have got away from drawing and painting for a few weeks and I have no idea why - but I have to fix that.
Today I am starting a series of projects (one per day). Now each of these will either be a sketch or  a drawing and painting.  I miss sitting down and creating.  By my own rules, photos do not count.
So, here goes......
Day 1 - simple pen and ink sketch
Once I finished it, I decided to put it on a card front for Darcey's birthday (hence the black paper and the button you see).  I cannot ever remember drawing a "real" animal before but I think he turned out OK....although his head is a little fat.
Stay tuned until tomorrow to see what I can come up with.
Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Pumpkin Art (sort of)

My pumpkin family is about twenty years old.  They were such a simple yet fun project to do.
My dad cut me a log and then here are the steps:
I de-barked the log (not an easy thing to do) basically by roughly cutting and then sanding the post.  
Then I cut it into sections with a chain saw.  I made the sections all different sizes.
Now for orange OUTDOOR acrylic paint - several coats.
Drill a hole in the top and glue in a dowel you painted green.
Draw and paint faces once again using OUTDOOR paint.  
And you are done.  Every year they will weather a bit more and you will find that everyone loves these permanent jack-o-lanterns.

A little story about my pumpkin family:
You will see from the photo that there are nine left in my little group.  There once were twelve.  I gave one to my daughter for her own front step when my grandson was tiny.
The other two kind of walked away.  About ten years ago, a little boy stopped by my home a week or so before Halloween, rang the bell and asked if he could have one.  How could I say "no"?  And then a few years ago, a little boy was trick-or-treating and when he was leaving, he just picked up the littlest one I had.  His dad told him to put it down and he started to sob.  As a result, that pumpkin found a new home.
Just like in a real family, apparently my pumpkins sometimes feel the need to leave the nest.
Happy Halloween.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Raspberries and Seed Pods

I love taking photos of plants and flowers. To me, a great photo is also great art.  Now, I am not suggesting my photos are great -- but they sure are getting better and I LOVE taking them.
My Raspberry Bush
amazing that there are still ripening berries.
I tried really hard to capture the ripe berries, almost ripe ones, ones that will never ripen and the various colours of foliage.
And I am very happy with it.

Seedpods on Our Back Fence
Two different stages of progression - the first is much newer than the bottom photo.  The bottom one is just about dead.
On the top one, I like how the vines crisscross in front of the pods.
In the bottom one, I focused in on the pod so the leaf in front is faded.  I am so happy that I am learning about focusing.  It is trial and error but I see how my skills are evolving.

Let me know what you think!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Fungi Continued

I was walking in the park again yesterday and found these fungi on a big old tree.  They were dying to be photographed.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Fungi Photos

Hi everyone!
I had to take these photos of some fungi in the park.  I love taking close-up pics with my macro lens.

To me, photography is one of my favourite forms of art.  Let me know what you think.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Day Of The Dead Addiction

Good day everyone!
I am soooooo loving painting these Day Of The Dead girls!
Here is my second one - acrylic on canvas:
I learned a lot doing her.  The large flower on her forehead makes her face look way too wide so I either should have made it smaller but - better yet- should have shown a hint of her other eye.  I painted in her eyelashes but they get lost in the embellishment around her eye.  Next time, I will do as Megan did and do a circle around her eye and then embellish.  The other thing I would change is the two tiny flowers beside her nose.  I just do not love them.
I know I sound very critical but over all I really like her.
Thanks for visiting.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Day Of The Dead Girl

This 12x12 canvas is done in acrylics. She is a Day of the Dead face based on the class I took by Megan Suarez. I think the black flourishes in the center of her face are a bit heavy but other than that I really like her.  She was so much fun to do.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Day Of The Dead

I am taking yet another class -the Day of The Dead faces.  Here is my first effort:
She is coloured using Copics.  She started as a sketch but I was looking for something to do and decided to colour her.

Monday, September 2, 2013

The prompt is Cup

Hello,  I am part of a month long facebook page of just plain fun art.  The first prompt for the month is "cup".  And here is my first piece:
I used a copy of a sunflower photo I took and decided to put it on a water coloured mug.  It is hard to see but I used green, yellow and orange for the mug  and soft yellow for the background.  I added the bubbles (but afterwards wish I had made steam instead) and to soften them,  I lightly gessoed over them.  I printed the sentiment on white paper and then modpodged them on.  The sunflower is printed from a photo, cut out and then mod podged on as well.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Gypsy 101

I have been taking yet another class - this one from Tam Laporte.  This is her Summer Gypsy class and it is great fun.
She is a mixed media piece done on water colour paper.  The paint is mainly water colour crayons with some Crayola water colours as well.  There is some collage on the background and I used gesso to soften it down.  I drew her using graphite pencil and used the pencil for shading her face.  The gold earrings are gold sharpie pen. 
I am really happy with how she turned our although next time I might disguise the collage a bit more.
Hope you like her!

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Fairy #3

This fairy features a water colour background, acrylic hair and wings, and a face coloured with Prismacolor pencils.  The floral head band is also acrylics.  I used perfect pearls on her wings as well as paint to give them shimmer.   Hope you like her!

Fairy #2

This fairymust be a garden nymph as she has a butterfly as a friend.  I used acrylics for the hair, wings, clothes and background.  The butterfly is a die cut.  Her face and body are coloured with Prismacolor pencils which blend sooooooooo well. She is 9 X12 and painted on bristol paper.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Whimsy Fairy

Good morning!
I wanted to show you my wood nymph in-training. (You can tell by her crooked wings that she has a way to go)
I drew her with pencil and coloured her face with Prismacolor Pencils.  Her hair and wings are painted with acrylics and her headband and dress are Twinkling H2Os. The background is acrylics printed using my Gelli pad.  A real mixed media work.
I am having a bit of trouble blending the coloured pencils but am sure it will get better!
See you soon.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Some Gypsy-Inspired Girls

I am taking a drawing class with Suzi Blu and the theme is gypsies.  This session is strictly drawing - we cannot shade or colour.  Here are some of my drawings.
A young lady

A small girl

A teenager
I have a hard time drawing with NO shading but hope that will come soon!
Thanks for visiting!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Little Peasant Girl

Here is a little peasant girl I did using Copics.  She was fun but I think next time it will be pencil crayons --or maybe not.
Her dress is typical peasant - any fabric there is on hand.  She is on 9X12 bristol paper since Copics don't leach through too badly.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

"Funnel Girl"

More on the cute and creepy side.  I love everything Tim Burton and I was inspired by his work when I did this 9X6" drawing.
Her dress is a funnel - inspired by a huge one I saw on the back of a truck the other day.  Other than grey, the only colours used are pinks, orange and yellow.  Adds to the eerie nature of the piece.  
After she was finished and I looked at her, I knew I have to create a series of girls with "industrial-like" clothing.  Metal fashion plates.  As I am off this weekend, I am going to start the next one.  (Hint: her dress will be an oil can).
Please check back to see her when she is finished.

Cute and Creepies

I have been working on some "cute and creepy" characters and here are my first efforts:
These were coloured with copics and are ready for embellishments.  So stay tuned to see the finished projects in the near future.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Second Pastel Girl

Here is my next pastel girl for Ady's class.  She is done on packing paper once again.  It is fun using just black and white.  And, she is much prettier in real life. LOL!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Pastels - The Next Experiment

Here is my first pastel sketch for Ady's class.  I like how she turned out but see lots of areas I must work one (for sure - the nose).
She is done in soft pastels (black and white) on packing paper.  It is very inexpensive and takes the pastels well.
let me know what you think, please.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

More Creatures

My one imaginary creature became a collection of three water colours.  I am so happy with how they turned out.  I think I will get them framed to give to someone.
Thanks to Carla Sonheim for an awesome class!!


and now the collection:
Thanks for visiting!!

More Water Colour Fun

I am still working on my imaginary creatures and this one is a dog - of sorts.  The purpose of the exercise is to look at random markings on a page and interpret them into a creature.  I saw a dog-like creature in my water colour markings.
This guy was just plain fun to paint and I hope he gives you a smile!
Thanks again for stopping by!

Water Colour Blob Creatures

I have to tell you - I am in love with classes by Carla Sonheim.  She has the absolute best style of teaching and her classes are a joy.
I am taking an Imaginary Creatures class right now and exercise one is to paint a water colour blob critter.  
Here are the ones I did:
When I look at them, the first is a coy dog, the middle one a penguin and the third one - I just do not know.  But that is so okay with me.  In fact - I love this soft little painting for a child's room.
I cannot wait until day 2 (may even cheat later today) to see what we do next.
Thanks for visiting!

Sunday, May 26, 2013

A Whimsy Girl Trinket Box

I purchased a wooden box and then painted it and covered it with paper, added a girl and a bit of embellishment and - voila- a decorated box for a special young lady!
Thanks for stopping by!

Silly Photos

I think everyone knows that I got an awesome camera for Christmas and LOVE to take pictures. But (I admit) I am not the greatest at it.  I found this course - Silly Photography - by Steve Sonheim and have finished the first assignment.  I had to take twenty photos of the same subject - with my eyes shut.  I could not open them until all 20 were taken. I then had to pick my favourite and post it somewhere. I did this assignment six times and here are the results:
I like this photo because of the scope of the elements I captured from my back yard. I  am happy that some areas are in shadows and some in sunlight.  The trees seem to frame the area.
Possibly my very favourite photo!  I shot into the tree from high and low and by walking around.  Since my eyes were closed, I bumped into the table LOL.  I love the contrast between the smooth and rough branches in the foreground. Just enough shadow to make it interesting.
Not the best 20 to choose from.  I was a bit crooked with most of them and, since we were not supposed to edit, I could not straighten them.  I do like the depth of this picture and how much detail there is even in the background.
Another poor 20 results - but this is the best of them.  I somehow got the base of the tree (guess I pointed down) and I kind of like that feature.  The lighting could be improved with editing.
I really like how the pink of the blossoms adds colour to this photo.  There is a bit more contrast in this photo and the details are crisper.  This is actually a phot I am happy with -shows lots of elements without being too busy!
OK, I had to take a series of photos up into the branches of the tree.  For this one, I must have stepped backwards and only captured the top of the tree.  Since the sky is so clear, the details of the branches really stand out.
I think I will practice this exercise again soon.  It was fun and really made me look at my pictures.
Have a great day!

Friday, May 24, 2013

A Baby Owl - Very Plump

Good afternoon!
I have a canvas I finished today.  Thanks, Juliette Crane, for your amazing course.
The canvas is 5X7" and the background is done on using the GelliArts plate and acrylics.  The owl is also acrylics with a heart from left over canvas on his belly.  
I wanted to make him plump since I saw a baby owl all hunkered in and he looked so fat that I had to make mine like him.  There are lots of dots on this picture used in all different ways.
I used acrylics, collage, paint pens and a Pitt Pen to create this canvas.
Hope you like it!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Gelli Art Fun

Hi to everyone!
I got a new toy last week - a Gelli Arts Plate and have been learning how to use it.
Here are some backgrounds I am making to incorporate in my mixed media work.  I can just see an owl in front of one of them.

These are so much fun to do and the results are not always what I expect!