Category: Watercolor

Spring Art Show

Well, it’s finally time.  Tomorrow the Lakewood Artists Guild will be accepting submissions for the 2010 Spring Art Show held at the Community Center at Mayfair Park.  I have two pastels and two watercolors that you have already seen  in previous posts, but I thought I’d show them framed and ready to go.

Almost a Rose   5 X 7  Watercolor

LA Fall    5 X 7   Watercolor

Birches      8 X 10   Pastel

Shih Tzu    8 X 10   Pastel

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Time to Paint Again

I received many kind comments on my paintings on display…but it appears that people liked the birches the best.  I usually use a photo or two that I have taken as a starting point for my landscapes,  but this one was strictly from my imagination…..I wonder what that means…..

Saturday was a good day for sitting and talking with fellow artists, but Mother’s Day came roaring in with cold winds and dark clouds.  The sun eventually broke through and the booths and rides in the center of the park were fairly comfortable.  Unfortunately, the Artists Guild Booths were on the westernmost outside edge and we wore layers and layers even in the sunshine.  I’m afraid that a two day show that requires you to breakdown  in the evening and set up again the next day, requires just a little more energy than I have to spare, but it was fun to relive the street fairs I joined in the early 70s and I’m truly glad I joined the group.  The economy certainly affected sales, even of the smaller craft items that usually do well.   But, my main reason for being there was just to be able to display a larger number of paintings than I can usually afford to enter into art shows.  So, mission accomplished.  The photos aren’t the greatest, but the following may give you an idea of what it was like.
The last photo shows a 3 dimentional logo that Chick made from carved letters:

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California Valley – Watercolor

Well, I finished the watercolor.  I’m not sure if I’ll have time to do another one tomorrow.  Maybe when I know I have everything gathered and ready to take to the Fiesta early Saturday morning….this is 11 X 14   transparent watercolor with a touch of opaque in the foreground.


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April Flowers

Unfortunately, I have no idea what these flowers are.   I was going through my collection tonight to choose something that might be done quickly, saw them, chose them and here they are.  I’ve been neglecting my daily painting,  and it really shows ( I think ) in the brush work and color, but painting is like learning to play the clarinet (that’s Chick’s thing), if you don’t practice, it’s harder to reach your goals.  I’ve read columns by writers that say the same thing.  Rather obvious, I guess.  I just realized that it applies to jumping rope as well.    So…….lesson learned (hopefully).

I’m hoping to have some pet portraits to show soon and maybe an announcement about them and the AIDS ride that my son, Thom, is part of, but I need to hold that for a few days.

My biggest pressure right now is getting some paintings completed for the Pan American Fiesta to be held here in Lakewood on May 8th and 9th. I’m sharing a booth with another member of the Lakewood Artists Guild.   I do have some pastels you’ve already seen, but I’m determined to get lots of new work (ok, ok, some work) done for it.   DESPITE the constant winds attacking my allergies, I have to say.  The weather is sunny during the day and beautiful…..I just wish I could enjoy the winds.  We’ll all miss them come August!!

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Flower Sketch in Color

Here’s yesterday’s sketch redone in color.  I’m still sorting pictures from our California Poppy trip last week, so I probably won’t have anything up for a couple of days.  In the meantime, enjoy!

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Merry Christmas!


The Poinsettias seem especially nice this year.  I can’t imagine Christmas without them.  Here’s one from my diningroom table.  The painting process is below:


Here is my last minute set up….we’re all in a holiday rush, right?  I took a picture of the plant and stood it on my table easel to paint from.  It was easier tonight than trying to set up lighting and painting the actual plant.  As you can see, for this watercolor I’m painting each petal and leaf individually wet-in-wet.  I decided not to take the time to paint a background, although I may go back and do that later.


This shot show the Winsor Newton travel set I’m always referring to as well as my  5.5 X 8.5 drawing pad.  You may be able to tell that I tape 3 of the edges down to the pack to keep the paper from buckling while the paper is wet.


And here’s the final version.    I hope you all have a wonderful holiday and I’ll see you with lots of work in 2010…….(although, I should say with lots of fun!).  Peace to you all.   Jan

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Fall Leaves

Fall leaves 12-1-09One of the things I most enjoy about watercolor is that I don’t have complete control over the medium.  I see incredible true-to-life paintings that floor me, but I actually like the stage I’m at.  Sometimes the paintings turn out pretty much what I envisioned, and other times they take on a life of their own.  Today’s is one of those.  But I like it.   Just as before, this was done in my 7 X 9 sketch book filling the page essentially, and using my Winsor Newton travel kit.

Unlike many areas of the country, Southern California is not into winter yet…..and may not be by Christmas….we’re never sure.   But Fall has finally graced our streets and the wonderful yellow, oranges and reds are towering over all.   Enjoy.

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You all know my motto…..”when in doubt, paint flowers”!!   I have been working on the 100 paintings challenge on Wet Canvas and in my case, that means pastels.  While thinking about the next version, I got side tracked reading Elizabeth Mowry’s “The Pastelist’s Year”.  She is head and shoulders my favorite pastel artist ….and not a bad writer either.   So, I thought I’d do a small watercolor tonight.  The image is approximately 4 X 6.  Once again using Winsor Newton watercolors in my 7X9 sketch book.  I definitely need to keep practicing using watercolor.  It’s the medium I need to work looser.  But, fuchsias are year around happy flowers.  So, I hope you enjoy!

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Autumn Leaf and Challenge Announcement

Fall leaf 11-10

This is a quick watercolor done this evening of a leaf collected while walking my dogs.  Fall in L.A. is a strange affair. Hot temps and very few beautiful leaves.  Most trees just go from green to brown and drop leaves when the wind blows.    The image is 4 X 4 done with Winsor & Newton watercolors in my sketch book.  Not really watercolor paper, but works ok.

And now for the challenge announcement:

I’ve decided to bite off probably more than I can chew, but I’m going to try.  There is a movement going around in the art world about a comment that has been attributed to several people over the years, so who knows….that to really know a medium, one needs to complete 100 paintings in that medium. In last month’s issue of the Pastel Journal,  artist, Maria Bagetta, wrote an article about her having achieved that goal.  In order to make this workable, Maria confined her paper size to 10 X 10 and decided to restrict herself to 30 minutes on each painting.

The photo of the 100 paintings is amazing!  Debrah Secor, a pastel artist and teacher in Albuquerque, N.M. challenged readers of the website, Wet Canvas, to do the same thing.  She opened up the challenge to any medium, not just pastel, and each person could choose the size of painting and time limitation.  She had a great response in October that has rolled over to November.  There’s one member that has completed something like 70 so far and is expecting to complete the 100 this month.

So………….I decided to pick up the challange (there is no time limitation, of course and many may not finish, but so far they are  having a great time of it.   I will work in pastel, 5 X 7 size and 30 minute time limitation.

The following illustration is called a Notan.  A Japanese word for simplified drawing of the values (dark, medium & light) of the proposed painting.   Unfortunately, I skipped the medium value, but you’ll get the idea.

That’s as far as I got today.   Let me know if anyone in Vegas makes book on my finishing!


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Yellow Rose

Yellow rose_10_6This was such an unusual yellow rose with red edges and red and green leaves that I took a picture of it while walking the dogs earlier in the year.  Watercolor, of course, in my 7 X 9 sketchbook.   I actually liked the bud more than the opened flowers as the red seemed more intense.  Unfortunately, this shot doesn’t show the brightness of the original painting.   I may go outdoors tomorrow and see if I can get a better shot.   All comment are truly welcome!  Remember, this is a learning adventure…..and I can take it   :-)

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