Monday, March 31, 2008

Patriotic Art

My art association is having an exhibit and competition next month. I need to get ready 1-3 pieces of art with a theme of Patriotic Art. I have until the 26th of April. I haven't decided yet what I will do. I am kicking around the idea of a red, white, and blue neckerchief around the neck of my labrador retriever for one piece. Now my brain has to work figuring out what else to do.

I also need to make some time to do some sewing. I need to make some head coverings, do some mending, and make some new tops. Sewing is not a pleasure any longer. It is more of a chore. But you can only go so long without new clothes, or repairing old one.

Well it is getting late and I need to put hubby's clothes in the dryer, set the coffeemaker for his coffee, and get to bed.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Moleskine Sketches

I had put my Moleskine sketchbook aside for some time. Today I took it out and decided to get back to filling it.

The neighbor is having a flowerbed built around his tree, and I decided to sketch it while it is in the prep stage and again when finished with flowers. Right now there are wooden forms up where they have poured a short cement wall to hold the dirt. As I sat outside, I decided to journal a bit about our small apple tree.

As today is the Worldwide Sketchcrawl, I will be continuing with the Moleskine. I really like these books. I have the one with thicker paper. It takes some water pretty good. At least as much as I put on with my colored pencils and waterbrush.

I have a lunch date with a former coworker/good friend. I shall do some sketching before that, and hopefully will have time to sketch my meal before devouring it. Then I will fill a little more time driving around for a few more sketches.

Tomorrow evening The Guild House is having their auction for charity. Two of my pieces have already been sold. But there are still 2 graphite pieces that will be in the auction. The artists have been invited to the auction for wine and nibbles. I look forward to my first auction, but a little intimidated by having my work being auctioned in front of me.
Click on photo for a larger view.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Workshop Art

Well here it finally is. The product of my Saturday workshop. The squiggle lines are supposed to be there. They were done on purpose. It is not my personal style but the style I was learning. The teacher had what she called "Spirit Cards". (They were done by just taking a big piece of paper and putting paint on it. Not covering the paper but just like little doodly things on it. Then the sheet of paper is cut into deck card size pieces.)

After we did the sketch with markers so no erasing, we followed the outlines with a colored crayon. Then we went in with color around the items in the still life. I chose red for mine and the paint used for this part was acrylic. I can't remember for sure, but I think the next step was we were given a spirit card. Each one was different. She had stacks of them. We used what was on the card and put those marks on our painting. (It may have been the painting of the still life and then the spirit card).

Next we filled in by painting the still life, and then added a background. We were given a magazine, and three page numbers. We were to take our background from one of the three pages.

Talk about way way out of my comfort zone. I usually work very detailed. And very small. This one was a half page of watercolor paper. (probably 14x18). And more random and loose. It was fun to learn but not really my thing. I don't really like the picture. To me it looks like a child has scribbled over a painting.

Another Masters Postcard

Another of my masters postcards has arrived at its destination. This is "St Rose of Lima" by Carlo Dolci for marionh. Here is where you can see the painting.

My Drawings

Here are the two drawings I did on the plein air outing. The one with the tree will be on its way to Texas for a postcard trade. That one was done with watercolor pencils and is 3"x6". The Rock is done with watercolor pencils, watercolor, waterbrush, and micron pen. It is also 3x6 and both are done on watercolor paper.

Monday, March 24, 2008

From Mary's Yard

I took photos from a neighbor's yard this morning. She has some beautiful blooms, and these are just from the front yard.

Sunday, March 23, 2008


I thank my Lord for his gift of life, and many blessings to everyone out there.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

En Plein Air-San Clemente Mission, Bakersfield, CA

Today was our plein air art day. It was beautiful weather and perfect for a day out. We had quite a few ladies who came. Some just to take pictures and look around, some to paint, and some to draw. Nine of us were there for most of the morning. 2-4 people dropped by for a few minutes each. One was a gentleman who may start going with the group. He is a watercolorist. Has taught classes. We had one new young lady join us for the first time today. She is a watercolorist also and does some postcard and ATC sized art. Her art cards are ACEOs as she sells hers on Ebay.

I finished one postcard that I will trade. It was some colums on the walkway of the mission. That is two from my plein air outings that I will have traded. I have only one more regular postcard to do for the trade project. And next week we will go up into the hills to see the wildflowers in bloom. I guess I will have to do that one in color. Today's was graphite with pen and ink added.

I took about 100 photos today. Some of just leaves, some of the plaques and tiles around the mission with prayers and things on them, some stained glass windows, and whatever else I saw that looked interesting.

Here is the drawing I did of the mission and one I did of the cross on top of the chapel. Also a couple photos of the mission or grounds. Click on any of the photos for a larger look.

Bald is Beautiful????

Well another medical problem has surfaced. Will they never end? My hair is thinning rapidly. I am already a hair puller since the 1970s when I quit biting my fingernails. (you can read about the hair pulling problem here: I don't need any help thinning my hair. I have never minded my husband's bald head, but I didn't particularly want to see one in the mirror.

I saw my medical doctor today. He said it is usually caused by one of two things. Thyroid or medication. I will go for yet another blood work tomorrow. And he told me to get some Rogaine as soon as possible.

Well I got some generic Rogaine (which the doctor suggested) but when I read the directions and possible problems, I am not sure I want to stop the falling this way. He said that there was some trauma about 4 months ago that probably caused the hair loss. He said it takes that long for the follicle to react. Well it was 4 months ago since the knee surgery. And the problems with the medication that made me sick. And then the threat of bone infection which caused worry. He said any one of those could be the culprit. He said hopefully it will grow back. But we needed to stop it now.

Pick up a box of Rogaine and read the box. See for yourself. I don't need more medical problems from that. And it isn't a permanent solution. Once stopped, the hair will probably drop again. And now what do I do about my monthly hair appointment to "wash the grey away"? Will that cause more damage?

Here are two pictures of the Hyacinth and Grape Hyacinth that I bought at Trader Joes after the doctor appointment. I think the blooms on the Grape Hyacinth look like blueberries. You can click on the photos to see a larger version.

Monday, March 17, 2008

More Masters

I have two more Master's postcards ready to go in the mail tomorrow. One will be on the way to France and the second to Oklahoma. I'm getting kind of sad as I have only about 8 more to do. I'm not ready for them to be done. I am ready for another project to start.
Today was a beautiful day for weather. It was supposed to be cold, but it was very warm with a slight breeze. I sat outside with my art supplies for about 3 hours while the dogs played. It was so nice, I almost fell asleep. I plan to stay out some more tomorrow.
Wednesday the plein air outing will be at the San Clemente Mission. The first trip there was in January when it was too cold. Most of the time was spent on a tour which was nice but left little time for art. I wasn't able to make that one. Too soon after the knee surgery. So I will be going this time. I am getting around better all the time so the outings will be more fun for me.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

2008 Postcard Exchange

I am in another postcard exchange besides the Masters one. I have been doing a variety of things for that one. I think I have previously posted some of the ones as they arrived at their destination. This is the latest one to arrive in Washington State. It's called "Reach for the Sun". Done in colored pencils, pen and ink.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Mary of Burgundy

My third Masters postcard has arrived at its new home in Florida (and later will travel to Australia). Pretty bad that all my art is traveling more than I have. But I enjoy sharing art with others and receiving theirs in return.

I have almost 100 ATCs and a good start on postcards. I bought some dollar store albums (many) in preparation for the postcards I hope to get now and in the future. This way they stay safe and I can let others look thru them without fear of damage. The ATCs are in baseball card plastic sheets and I have them in a binder. I have one for the ATCs that I make and another for what I receive. In the album you can see the backs of each card and read where they came from.

Here is the Masters project postcard. It is Mary of Burgundy by Michael Pacher.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

My Second Master's Exchange

This is the second Master's postcard I finished (2 more are on their way). This one went to Bigs in Australia. It is "Study of St George for Merrie England" by Anthony Sandys. The painter's 6 yr old son posed for the painting. When I first looked at it and even after I had drawn it, I thought it was a girl.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Easter Bunny for Gudrun

Here is the Easter card I sent to Germany in an exchange project. We didn't know who got our names until we received our cards. My card came from Eskielady/Lynda. It was a Ukranian egg. Very detailed and very nice work.

I did two more Master's postcards for that exchange. One will go to Florida and one to Australia. I will post those after they arrive.

I almost didn't sign up for the Master's project. I have never really cared about studying art history. But I am pleasantly surprised that I am really enjoying the research of finding pictures I want to study and make. And I am not sticking to the more well-known painters.

I was not a history buff until I started researching about WWII trying to find information for my sister-in-law Dannie's father who died shortly after she was born. He was an American pilot for the RAF and went down on his second trip. The plane crashed in France and that is where he is buried.

Dannie knew very little about her dad, and we have found out quite a few details but not nearly enough. It's like he just appeared at the age of about 25. I haven't been able to find out anything about his family (except his dad's first name) or his childhood, schooling, etc. It would be nice to know if Dannie had more family than just her grandparents. And how her father became a pilot.

With her dad being born in Maryland, his time in the RAF, and his death and burial in France, it makes it harder to get information. Everything has to be done by internet or mail.

Well it is bedtime. I am tired and want to get up early and go to early service at church.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Plein Air Outing

Today was a beautiful day for painting outside. We had lovely weather and a great view. The stripes where you see the pink rows are almond trees in bloom. This is a view from a gated community on top of a hill about 10 minutes from my house. Click on the photos to view them larger.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008


I have been tagged by Ai Here are 5 things you may or may not know about me:

1. I don't like having my hair messed with. I don't like going to the beauty shop to have my hair cut, or anything else. I think it comes from my aunt who used to push my hair back behind my ears every time she got near me. I used to have to shake my head after hair appointments to get what felt like "handprints" off my hair.

2. My mom and aunt tried to keep me young. They didn't want to have to stop buying me dolls. When I was in 7th grade, I got 4 dolls for Christmas because they knew it would have to stop.

3. I had the mumps when I was in 8th grade. Two weeks to the day before my 8th grade graduation. I didn't get to attend the ceremony. I wasn't too unhappy about not wearing the dress that my mom and aunt bought me. I didn't like it at all. It was too fussy and I was a tomboy.

4. As you can tell my aunt was very much involved in my life. She was my dad's sister and more like a grandmother than aunt to me. She wanted a daughter and only had one son who lived. She had a daughter that she lost in infancy. I learned early how to get what I wanted by hinting to my aunt. She has been gone several years now, but lived to be almost 96 and I was as close to her when she passed away as I always was. I miss her a lot.

5. Early in my childhood I stopped wanting to hug anyone. It may be because my parents forced it, or maybe because my dad and his mom dipped snuff (nasty stuff), or because I didn't want my friends to see and get embarrassed (I was a very shy child). After I became an adult, I was in a couple situations where I had to learn to accept a hug. Now it comes naturally to me and I enjoy it. But I still don't hug my parents unless they start it (and not often because they know how I am). It's weird that I am not comfortable hugging them but I can hug people I haven't known long.

Well now you know my secrets.

Monday, March 03, 2008


I really enjoyed the workshop on Saturday. The technique is a little too abstract-like for my taste but it was really nice to be in a room with about 14 more artists learning something new. The time passed really fast, and when I got home I realized how long it had been. I was really tired.

I wasn't really thrilled with my picture, but the teacher seemed to think it was interesting. I did enjoy the part where she gave us some color samples and we were to mix a matching color from the 12 or so colors on our pallette. We each had 5 (no one had the same colors) and I came just about perfect to 3 and not too bad on the other two.

Even when I oil painted, I didn't mix colors on my own. We had a teacher who was telling us what colors to mix. I always wrote down the "ingredients" for the different colors so that I would have it for reference. So this was a new experience for me. The idea scared the life out of me at first. I couldn't imagine getting the colors from dark to light without white. But after I learned that water was my "white", I did a better job.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Tomorrow is the Watercolor Workshop

I am all packed up and ready for the workshop. I have to carry a large foam core board so can't pull my trolley with supplies. I had to load those into a bag. Since I will be walking with a cane, I need the other hand free to maneuver the board.

Today had good news at the doctors. I had two appts. The surgeon in the morning and the infectious medicine doctor in the afternoon. I don't have to see the surgeon for 3 months. The other I don't have to see again unless something comes up. He said my blood test showed my sedimentary level is still a little high (30) but it has come down (was 50 about a month ago). 50 was with infection. Any way I have to watch for fever, pain, or redness that isn't the flu or a cold. He said I am not out of the woods yet but it looks better.

Here is the first Old Master ATC I did for the exchange project. The original is Study of the Head of a Blonde Woman by William Bouguereau. Mine went to Anney in Germany, and she has received it. I sent a small copy of the original and a short artist's biography with my ATC. Anney said that was really nice to get the extras. I figure while I am learning about them, each person I send to could learn a little too. You can see the original here: