My Journey Into Art

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Expanded Paint Palette

I have been enjoying the new colors that I added to my watercolor palette. My artist grade paints are all M. Graham watercolors. I love the thick, creamy consistency and the vibrancy of the colors. I added Gamboge, Yellow Ochre, Cadmium Red, Phthalo Green-Yellow, Phthalo Blue and Sepia.

I used most of the new colors in this painting on 8" X 10" Strathmore 500 Ready Cut 140 lb Hot Press paper.

Butterfly on Cactus

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Playing with Pastel Pencils

I was very excited to try out my new pastel pencils. The last time I worked with pastels, I found it rather difficult to obtain the level of detail I wanted with the pastel blocks. With the pencils, it opened up a whole new world of accuracy and detail which I was after. I still love using the pastel blocks to get my hands in it and become one with the paper. I'm a tactile person so the pastel blocks feed my need for touch.

Mandrill on 9" X 12" Canson Mi-Tiente paper, pastel and pastel pencils.


Monday, December 26, 2011

Holiday Goodies

While my gifts weren't a surprise because I picked them out myself, I was beyond thrilled with what I got. I was like a kid overflowing with excitement when the shipment arrived. My creative juices began to flow and I can't wait to try everything out.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Lavender Field

I had been working on and off on this painting before I came down with my cold. Last night I put the finishing touches on it. I really like how the background sky and midsection of the painting turned out before I even started the lavender flowers. I almost left it like that. This is a mixed media piece in that it has watercolors, gouache and acrylic paint in it. It's painted on 12 1/8" x 16 1/8" Arches 140 lb CP watercolor paper.

Lavendar Field

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Not Art....

A book recommendation. I just finished reading The Dovekeepers: A novel by Alice Hoffman. I think it's the best book I've read all year. I couldn't put it down. If you like historical fiction, then you will like this. It reminded me of another book that I loved that I read years ago, The Red Tent by Anita Diamont. It follows the same vein of a sisterhood of women and how they all pull together for one another.

I haven't made any art in the last week because I've been nursing a bad cold. I don't sleep nights because I'm too stuffed up and then have no energy during the day. I've been curled up in a blanket with my book. I'm starting to feel better so maybe my muse will come back shortly and I will be creating again.

Until then, I wish you Happy Holidays!!!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Circle Crazy

I love circles. I am drawn to their shape. I doodle them when I talk on the phone. By the time I was finished with this piece, I was circle crazy and not in a good way. This took much longer to complete than some of my other realism type paintings. I kept adding layers of color to boost the vibrancy to my liking. I've come to realization that abstract-type paintings are not really my thing, and that's okay.

One thing I would like to mention is that Fabriano Artistico watercolor paper is fabulous. I made a mistake by filling in an area with dark purple paint and I was able to completely lift off the color without damaging the paper. I love this paper.

Circle Crazy

Friday, December 16, 2011

Thank You Card

I was supposed to help out at my kindergartener's holiday party yesterday morning. I ended up missing it because my daughter had a dental emergency and I got held up at the dentist's office. Later in the afternoon when I went to pick up my boys from school, my 6 year old came out with a large holiday gift bag and handed it to me and said it was from his teacher for me. I was completely shocked. I was not expecting a gift from her. I volunteer when I can and always contribute supplies for whatever projects she has going on but I don't feel I do that much for her to have felt the need to thank me in this way. I was very touched by the note she included.

I saw Dion Dior's tutorial last night and it inspired me to make this Thank You card for the teacher. I don't have the Twinkling H20 paint that she uses but I do have a set of Yasutomo Pearlescent Watercolors which seem to have a similar effect. I just hope my son remembered to give the card to his teacher.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Another WIP

I just realized that it's been almost a week since I last posted so I thought I would update with what I have been doing this past week. What started out as a quick idea has turned into a very time intensive ordeal. Here's the kicker -- I'm not even sure that I like it. HA! I will finish it because I like to finish what I start. Here's a peek:

Friday, December 2, 2011

Sulphur-breasted Toucan

This guy was fun to do. The best part for me was the bill. It was so colorful and fun to play and see how the watercolors would behave. After it was done I was contemplating doing a background. I decided against it because I was afraid of ruining the painting. I didn't want to take the chance of the black running into the background and losing the defined edge. Next time I will paint the background first. I'm not consistent with doing that. I'm not sure if the proper way is to do the background first since I haven't taken any formal watercolor classes. Sometimes I do and other times I don't. It all depends on what strikes my fancy in the moment.

Sulphur-breasted Toucan