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Thursday, October 6, 2011

Snowy, Snowy Night in Wisconsin

I was having a little fun with the October project for the Watercolor Workshop group I take part in. The theme this month is to paint night scenes. Well, it was just too tempting!
It had to be done! My take on art is to paint, draw, etc. in a serious manner, but to, also, have fun, experiment and play!
So old Vincent Van Gogh and I teamed up to have some fun on this one. It is done in Daniel Smith watercolors on Kilimanjaro watercolor block, 300 lb., 10" x 14". The snowflakes were put on first in masking fluid. Then I put on the watercolor paint. After that was dried, I took off the mask and did a wash of Daniel Smith Interference Blue, iridescent paint over the snowflakes and quite a bit of the color area. It is difficult to see the effects of the iridescent paint in this photo, but it shows up on the original painting. Great fun!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

We have a family habit of naming the regulars that live here with us at Tree Henge (our name for our home). We have a squirrel that tries to rule the feeders whose name is "Attila the Hungry" and whole army of chipmunks that do clean-up duty under the bird feeders. These are all named for various brands of vacuum cleaners: Hoover, Electrolux, Orick, and our newest addition, Dustbuster. Here is a sketch I made in August of Hoover on his favorite rock in the sun waiting for his turn under the feeders. This is done in ink and watercolor pencil in my sketch journal.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Detailed Study Drawing Crested Cormorant

Not all of my work has been of the quick sketch nature. Here is graphite study made after the trip to Horicon Marsh. We were so lucky to see several Crested Cormorants and while we were much farther away, I wanted to learn more about them at closer range. Using various guidebooks I have on birds, I did some background reading and study. Then using a photo from a "Paint My Photo" artist's web site, I made this detailed drawing of a Crested Cormorant.

Elsie's Summer

Where has Elsie been this summer and why has she not been posting?
After a very long winter and way too much painting in my studio, I decided I really needed to change direction in what I was doing. I do not do well on ice, so I was feeling very housebound. Instead of a focus on more finished paintings, I have chosen to "get out and get sketching."
I have taken three on-line courses from Cahty Johnson (Not my daughter, but one of my favorite art teachers) involving "Quick Sketching", "Artist Sketchbook Journaling "
and Watercolor Pencils. While I have done a few paintings, most of my work has evolved drawing in graphite, ink, watercolor pencil and combinations of these.
Bob and I spend a marvelous weekend at Horicon Marsh recently and I had great fun sketching and Bob enjoyed photography. Here are some quick sketches.

There Used To Be A House Here

I belong to an on-line watercolor artist group and our September challenge was to paint something related to an "abandoned" theme. Here is my painting. It is entitled, "There Used To Be A House Here." It is inspired by my neighbor's lovely old rural mailbox. Her mailbox has the beautiful rust patterns, but is far from being abandoned. I used my "artist imagination" to lean it over, added a broken hinge and broken flag etc. Then I was inspired by the same neighbor's prairie restoration garden and added samples of prairie plants, as if the house had disappeared, and only the mailbox remained and the prairie started to reclaim the land.
It is a glorious fall here in Wisconsin and I love seeing the old prairie plants.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

I really love Daniel Smith watercolor paint! He has recently produced a group of new pigments which are inspired by old Mayan colors found on old paintings etc. on Mayan objects etc. I got some of them and just had to try them out on a South West scene. While I made up this scene entirely, I have admired the gates and garden scenes of old adobe homes in the South West.
This is "Blue Garden Gate". It is painted on a 300 lb. Cheap Joe's Kilimanjaro watercolor block with Daniel Smith Mayan watercolor paint.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

It has been some time since I have posted on my blog, but I have been painting all along. I'll try to get some of my more recent paintings posted and do a little "catch-up".
This is an experiment using Daniel Smith watercolor ground to prepare the surface of a standard canvas to paint on with watercolor. The surface is not quite the same as watercolor paper, but does present an interesting surface to paint on. I've been doing some Chinese brush painting and so I tired out some bamboo in that manner.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Edge of the Waterfall

I'm finding that those times that I allow the paint to do the work, when I'm open to suggestion from the painting as it develops, I'm often happier with the outcome. This watercolor painting started from simply floating some colors on to the wet paper and letting them do some mingling. I tilted the paper a little to start the action, then watched what happened.
Actually, I applied the paint thinking the painting would be upside down from what I used! After the paper dried and sat for a day or two to "cook", I came back to it and started turning it around, seeing what suggested itself. As it came into this position I could see water coming down and the suggestion of rocks. Then I just started working with the shapes, adding definition. Soon I noticed that there was a falling off at the bottom....I played that up and the waterfall started to appear. Yes, water and rocks are two of my favorite subjects.