Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Art Series

Sometimes there is a topic you paint, which you feel drawn to paint or draw again and again. Sometimes it is because you are not satisfied with the result. Sometimes you want to try something a little different.

On our walk the other day, we can across a really cool old tree. It was cool because it had this interesting hollow in it. Then there was the light across it (my favourite part) and the pattern of the bark. So I took a photo that I might draw it later (I did a great number of photos to draw later :))



So I have been drawing the tree. First I did it in gouache on toned paper. I was not really happy with the results... my gouache being the cheaper variety ;)



Next up I tried pastels on watercolour paper. This I was VERY happy with, despite the fact that I would have vastly preferred the toned paper for my pastels :)


Finally I tried some pencils on watercolour (cold pressed) paper. I think it looks unfinished, so I'll try to figure out what it needs and add it :)



Will I try to return to the tree again? Maybe. I have an inkling of trying ink and wash or just watercolour. Either way, the tree is now immortalized in my art journal :)

Monday, July 28, 2008

Daybook for Monday 28th July

To get the rest of the daybook entries, don't forget to visit Peggy over at the Simple Woman.

For Today...

Outside my Window
... it's already warm. The sun is up, and the dew is still dripping off of trees and our arbour.

I am thinking... The week ahead looks to be hot, good job I was planning on working on school plans :)

I am thankful for... fresh tomatoes from the garden... I am hoping to make some tomato soup this week!

From the kitchen... lots of fresh stuff! I love this time of year!

I am wearing... black skirt with white polkadots and grosgrain ribbon trim, teal t-shirt. My hair is in a ponytail for now...

I am reading... several watercolour and pastel books. I have a couple of novels I plan to start today.

I am hoping... to find some music for my Asia continent box.

I am hearing... a grasshopper, the radio and not much else- the kids are outside with the bunny :)

Around the house... various crafting items ready for use- I got some stuff this weekend for school.

One of my favorite things... is walking in a pleasant area with my family.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week... make three continent boxes, print out school plans, work on some art, maybe get the kids out a bit more...

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you...

I couldn't choose between them, so here are two from our walk this weekend :) I call them both: Virginia Summer.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Artist Trading Cards

Little known outside the artistic community, these are individually produced, tiny cards the size or regular trading cards... only in this case the artists MAKE them :)

I decided to participate in a swap of these mini delights, and the results are below. I am not sure that ALL of these will go, or if I will make some other to go in their place, but I was quite pleased with what I did!













Friday, July 25, 2008

And the Award Goes to...


ME!! That wonderful, Happy Painter, Donna, awarded me with the Arte Y Pico award! How wonderful!

The rules for accepting this award are:
1. Choose 5 blogs you consider deserving of this award for creativity, design, interesting material and a contribution to the blogging world.
2. List the name of each person awarded and a link to their blog.
3. Show the award and the name and blog link of the person who presented you with the award.
4. Show the link to the Arte Y Pico blog. http://arteypico.blogspot.com/
5. Show the rules.

Now, the five blogs *I* nominate are:

1. Delph over at Kazumiwannabe (wonder French artist)
2. Cristina at Home Spun Juggling (Hilarious homeschool comics :))
3. Ann at Bluebird Hill (you have to see her current WIP!)
4. Liz over at Adventures of Boromini (I just love that bear ;))
5. And Maggie over at MaggieART (very inspirational... she just made her 1000th post!!!!)


Not to mention that the other day Meinhild awarded me the Brillante award, for which you can see my nominations at THIS blog post :) Thank you indeed Meinhild!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Two EDMs- one with surgery :)

EDM #14: Draw what you see when you get up in the morning. This is pretty much it. When I get up, I am not wearing glasses or contacts, so everything is fuzzy. The window is opposite my pillow, so as I am getting up, this is the first thing I see. Of course I could draw the messy bookcase/bedside table or my wardrobe door, but neither of those were interesting either :)
It looked a little bland, so I applied to the Anita school of plastic surgery, and added a little paint!


EDM #181: Draw a Trash Can. Of course I call them 'bins' most of the time, but this one is mine. As you can see, it is the end of the day because the thing is full! The problem with not having a black paint, by the way, is that when you have something black to paint, you make do with one you make. Needless to say I didn't want to wait too long to keep painting the bag in the bin :) so it's grey!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Summer's Bounty

That's what I like to call the latest picture in my new journal. This time, when I made it, I upgraded my paper to the more expensive Canson montvale, and a pad of Mi-Teints in a variety of neutral colours. I love the toned paper, and hope to try using some gouache with it at some point, but the white paper is there purely so I can draw and paint with the watercolours, and ink.
So, using those lovely colours, I drew the rest of the peppers from Saturday with my trusty Pigma Micron, then added watercolour washes with my Winsor and Newton set. I actually like the result!


Three smaller pictures, so I could record EACH of the lovely peppers, whose colours tempted me to buy them. I have no idea what to make with them, but I am sure I will think of something ;) Suggestions are warmly welcome however!
This definitely applies to the EDM: "Draw something hot"... because I know that these peppers are ALL hot! (Especially yesterday's habañero!) .

Daybook for Tuesday 22nd July

Woops! Forgot to do this yesterday, but I am sure no-one will mind! For more Daybook entries, go to Peggy's place at the Simple Woman Blog :)

For Today...

Outside my Window... The heat is building up again. The skies are that pale blue I associate with really hot days.

I am hearing... Cicadas. Considering it is not even 9am, and those things are hissing like mad, you can tell it is already hot out there!

Around the house... Got some laundry to fold. The kids have craft stuff lying around from where they are creating things too :)

I am thinking... that I really want to paint and draw the rest of those peppers!
I am thankful for... Sunny days. Virginia has a great many more than England does, and I do enjoy it, although I am also thankful when we have rain :)

From the kitchen... I'm considering making some whole-wheat bread because I can't seem to get good bread at the store these days. Otherwise we have a pork tenderloin for dinner tonight :)

I am creating... I have been making some of these teeny tiny knitted toys recently.

I am going... NOWHERE! I have no plans to get out into the heat ;)

I am wearing... White skirt (calf length), blue t-shirt. Hair in a low ponytail.

I am reading... A really weird novel, Pastel School and the latest Country Living UK.

I am hoping... to save up enough to buy a really nice pastel or watercolour set. I haven't decided which yet :)

One of my favorite things... is snuggling up to the kids!

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week... maybe make another teeny tiny toy- or just another toy! Paint some of the other peppers, and get my son's bedding washed (I'LL have to strip the bed though, he never hears me ;))

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you... It's hard work- being a 4 year old!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Up Where the Eagles Fly...

While sitting outside, we heard the cry of an eagle. As we looked up, two distant silhouettes hove into view. Too far to see what they were precisely, we guessed that they might just be the originators of the cry :)


The farmer's market is a weekly trip I make (or try to make) every Saturday. This weekend, one of my two favourite stall holders had the coolest pack of hot peppers. Inside the punnet, were about a dozen peppers of different kinds, from the spicy Habañero, to the much cooler poblano and jalapeño. I couldn't resist drawing them (the man had grown them himself), although the second one went a little awry.


Both pictures are pastels and pastel pencils. Inspired a little by the Pastel School book I have been reading ;)

Friday, July 18, 2008

Two More for the Gallery

Some stuff for a swap. I forgot to add the little guy's smile before scanning. I like him better this way anyway ;)


And some sketches from the day yesterday, ink and wash birds, ink and pastel kids.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Another Portrait and a Delicious Cake!

So I made my aim come true... I did a pastel self-portrait. I am not too happy with it for a couple of reasons. 1. I didn't like the paper. Watercolour paper does not work well!! (At least not this cheap stuff I got). and 2. I messed up somewhere. I can't say for sure where, but something is a little- off about it. Other than that I learned a bit. Like it needs to be a lot bigger to get the detail in ;)


Sometimes surfing the web had be hazardous. I was looking for something the other day, when I ran across this delicious recipe for an Orange Cake. It was unique enough to catch my eye, simple enough to make me want to make it, and delicious looking enough to make my mouth water. I made a special trip to the store for the oranges ;)


And sat down and drew them immediately. I wanted to draw the process! So what I set to with the baking this morning, I drew the blender and the bowl too...


And what would life be without results? So I drew those too. My cake was not the prettiest due to sabotage. Yes, the kids had eaten a lot of my sugar, so I had to supplement with light brown sugar! Then the cake stuck a little to the pan. I probably should have waited and let it cool a little longer :/


Nevertheless, the taste is delicious. Very orangey, and so simple to make :)

Monday, July 14, 2008

Two More EDM Challenges

Two more food related drawings. First a cucumber from my garden. It tells you on the page that when I first came to America, I was surprised by the appearance of cucumbers. I still think they look more like Gherkins than salad cucumbers ;)



Today, I drew something red (one of the EDM challenges) AND something in my favourite colour. There are two in the picture so...


One tomato from the store and the less perfect specimen from the farmer's market. Bet I know which tastes better. They are both local however, and Hanover Tomatoes from Virginia are apparently very famous!

Daybook for Monday 14th July



For Today...

Outside my Window... a gentle rain is falling. It is a much needed rain, but I am waiting for it to stop so we can all go out to check on the rabbit.

I am thinking... about whether the kids will keep up their end of looking after the rabbit :) And how cute he is. I am only thinking it because of my previous answer though LOL.

I am thankful for... a lovely weekend. DH and I cooked together yesterday- he did the steaks on the grill and I did the sides. DELICIOUS!

From the kitchen... Chicken drumsticks and some sides- I am still working on what precisely!

I am creating... an art journal. Well I MADE it yesterday, I am going to be working in it soon :)

I am going... to post off our evaluation and notice of intent this week. I SHOULD have asked DH to do it this morning, BUT I forgot because we were running late.

I am wearing... pink T-shirt, denim skirt and bare feet. My hair is wet, so I put it up in a clip.

I am reading... the latest Country Living UK edition and a couple of novels.

I am hoping... to work on a pastel self-portrait this week. I'll have to find a mirror though :)

I am hearing...Silence. Wonder what the kids are up to?

Around the house... laundry (as per normal) and some summer school work to catch up with. And a new bunny to play with outside ;)

One of my favorite things... is when the kids are artistically inspired by the things *I* do :)

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week... finish the swap and mail it, mail the NOI and Evaluation, draw, paint, read.... and the chores around the house ;)

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you...

It's been awhile, so I thought you'd like a sunset :) Stop by Peggy's house for the other daybook entries :)

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Blog Award

Ann over at Blue Bird Hill gave me this award, which I was HUGELY flattered by, since she writes one of my favourite art blogs! THANK you Ann! And then ANOTHER of my favourite artists, Delph Courret at Kazumiwannabe nominated me too :) THANK YOU Delph!!

The Rules of acceptance are:
  1. Put the logo on your blog.
  2. Add a link to the person who awarded you.
  3. Nominate at least 7 other blogs.
  4. Add links to those blogs on yours.
  5. Leave a message for your nominees on their blogs.
What a great way to share your love of other artists and their blogs and work! Not to mention other bloggers ;)

1. Liz - Adventures of Borromini. I love watching Liz's Flickr, and her blog is great too :)
2. Shirley - Paper and Threads. Shirley has some of the most interesting entries in her art journal!
3. Dawn - By Sun and Candlelight. One of my favourite homeschool bloggers, Dawn always gets nominated for these awards... but she DESERVES it!
4. Alice - Cottage Blessings. Like Dawn, Alice is often nominated. Her writing is very inspiring for homeschoolers AND she now has a book out!
5. Martha -Trumpetvine travels. Another wonderful art blog! I love travel journals!!
6. Peggy - The Simple Woman. Peggy has a lovely, inspiring weblog. She started the Daybook, which so many of us enjoy!
7. Dana - ThinkPinkDana. A friend of mine, fellow artist, cancer survivor and blogger :) She has a website with a few blogs on a little of everything!

A Self Portrait and a Tap

Sounds kind of funny, but that's what I drew yesterday. The self portrait was in the car... M'Lady had fallen asleep by the time we got to the store, so I waited with her, while Jacobite and Rebel went inside. Apparently they took a while, but I didn't really notice! Even better- since I was the passenger, I could finish the shading on the way home!

The other picture was our bathroom tap. I know this is another of the EDM challenges, so I drew it. I'd really like to go back later and do another sketch, complete with the controls and the reflections deeply studied!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Meeting Mocha

Well I tried to draw our little bunny from life... but all I ended up with was leg cramp and half a dozen half finished sketches!

Instead I drew a picture from one of the photos I took.  He was still in the photo of course ;)

Drawing a black bunny on black paper is somewhat challenging, so I did my best to show the kind of white underfur that shows through.

Mocha has brown and grey/white underfur, which was quite visible in the right light!

Hopefully I'll get some more pictures of him soon!

New Member of the Family

Meet Mocha, over on Wortcunning :)

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Summer's Blushing Beauties

That's what I titled this picture. It (there is just one from two views) tormented me with it's sweet smell while I drew it.

Giaconda Pastel Pencils.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Food Glorious Food!

Don't care what it looks like... ;)

First up... an accidental plan view of dinner. Accidental because during a distraction I started to draw... then realised it was plan! I ended up drawing standing up LOL. Luckily it was the leftovers again ;) (DD fell asleep eating so she had a lot... shame she didn't STAY asleep ;))


Then, because I am having problems with my hand from too much mouse work (:-o), I kept it simple with a spray bottle.


That allowed me to put a strikethrough on my list of EDM's ;)

As did today's drawing:

Or rather drawingS. Different media versions of EDM #179: Draw an onion. From the top: pastel pencils, graphite pencils (H, 4B and 9B), Derwent Watercolour Pencils.

And a painting for someone on a swap:

Monday, July 07, 2008

July 4th Holiday Drawings

Yes, I am British, but I still have to celebrate the 4th July- after all, the rest of the family is American :D Even though it was a holiday weekend, I still kept my drawing up, and although I did not get food in every day, I did sneak it in a few times ;)

The evening of the 3rd July, we had a concert and fireworks display we attended. I managed to do some plein air sketching, despite the woman next to me staring at what I was doing :) I forgave her when she told her kids to make sure they didn't ruin my 'pretty pictures' :D

Here you can see some of the concert goers, and the stage- complete with cameras (it was televised live in our area). Below I added the conductor (he was all I could see of the orchestra around the equipment there) and an ice-cream vendor.

At the very bottom here, you can see my view of the crowd in front of me, and one of the buildings that surrounded us :)

On July 4th, I did some 'grids' and just drew little things from around and about. Like a dead tree that caught my eye.

Or the barbecue, my festive pedicure, my daughter's burger (trick #3 in catching food... draw the kids ;)), or the darkening sky. I coloured them later with my new art toys... Koh-i-noor's Gioconda soft pastel pencils, and a gold marker pen.

On the 5th, after a trip to the library and Farmer's Market, we went out of town down to Yorktown, Va. There is a lovely spot where you can see out over the York river, and beyond into the Chesapeake Bay. The tall ship The Alliance was out (it takes paying customers) and proved to be a worthy subject... not just once but twice.

I experimented with drawing with my new toys again... without the ink outline this time. I really like these pastel pencils!

On the 6th, I drew my new toys :) Partly because I wanted to, and partly because I love them!


I did manage to sneak in some food again.. this time a picture of some of my Farmer's Market Haul- which is also what I named the picture! I drew this in white charcoal, then colourised it with my new pastel pencils. Despite only having 12 colours, I think it came out very well... it certainly made me love the pastel pencils more :)


I hope you had an enjoyable long weekend too (only if you were in the US of course, otherwise I hope you had a nice weekend ;))!