September, 2009

Morning glories

Morning Glory 4

I decided that I couldn’t wait any longer, so I sat down and had some fun with watercolor!  Funny how life keeps getting in the way these days.  So, my new personal goal is to get something done daily and not worry about it.  This is a quick watercolor (4 X 6) done in my sketchbook of a very small amount of  the monster Morning glory taking over my back yard.  My efforts at controlling it’s goal of world domination have been insufficient in this heat.  I’m expecting to hear from the City of Lakewood about possible lost animals soon!

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Guild Meeting

Wednesday night was the first meeting of the Lakewood Artist Guild after the summer break.  I really enjoyed getting together with artists I had met before the break, plus several new members.  The visiting artist was Ernie Marjoram.  He is a Los Angeles Professional Artist and teacher.  In fact, he is leaving soon vor Vienna and Italy… my envy showing?   Ernie did a wonderful job talking about how to design a painting (he uses oil, but the info was useful for any media).  It was a great demo and lecture and I’m anxious to put to use what I learned. I asked Ernie if I could take his picture during the demo and you will see that below.

Members are incouraged to bring a painting each month to share.  I took a small (4″ X 8″) pastel I had done some time ago. You’ll see in the pictures that the majority brought much larger paintings….but sometimes special things come in small packages, right?

Ernie Marjoram

First pastel

pastel at guild 9_16_09

Art Guild 9_16_09

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Summer Field in Pastel

First pastel

Although I did some pastel portraits back in the 70′s, I really didn’t do too many. It was hard to find a class in those days. Then I spent years designing and selling quilts in shows etc., and my art was sporatic. Then one day, I found “Paint the Changing Seasons in Pastel” by Elizabeth Mowry and I was hooked. The pastel above is the first one I tried after a couple of practice dabs and you can see the Mowry influence in the strokes. Who would have thought you didn’t have to smudge the life out of the medium? I’m off to an art guild meeting, but I thought tomorrow I’ll do this scene again and see how my techniques have changed. Should be fun!

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Pink Flowers

Tissue flowers_9_15_09

My motto: when in doubt, paint flowers.   I have some ideas I’m working on, but I find that if I go too long planning something, it’s like I’ve actually done the artwork.   So, while those ideas are tumbling around in my head, I thought I’d throw in a watercolor of flowers.  I don’t know what kind they are.   I saw something like this group and did a small sketch some time ago. I painted them in my 6 X 8 sketchbook with Prang watercolors.   I’ll try to remember to show the steps next time.  I think it’s been awhile since I’ve done that.

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Bishi with a bow


This is my female Shih Tzu, Bishi.  Earlier in this blog, I have a line drawing of Bishi and Pango (male).  They are such gentle, loving dogs, I don’t know why I haven’t painted them more.  They are gold and white, so the next painting will have to be in color.   This is 4-1/2 X 6 in my sketchbook, using my usual flair with water wash.

Photo of Bishi

This is the photo I used for the sketch.  I see in the photo that her head was tilted more and I like that.  I learn a lot from my rushing the drawings and making mistakes….or rather not making the best choices!  Now, I’ll definitely mark the tilt before drawing next time.

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When Life Gives You Lemons


There’s a saying…..”when life gives you lemons, make lemonade”. I’m posting my lemonade today.

As you saw in my coastal village sketch a couple of days ago (and I have lots of other

examples in my blog), I love sketching with a flair pen and then moving the ink around with water. Obviously non-permanent ink! In fact, you can’t always know in advance what color the wash will be….I suppose depending on how they mixed their black. I’ve had everything from pink to blue show up.

The other day I found a package of 12 flairs in 12 colors…….I imagined the fun I was going to have washing all those colors around. BUT, what I found was that only the black worked. The rest just sat there….and I expected to have a really bright sunflower scene again.

So, using the black flair here and there and mushing as much as I could, I came up with the drawing above. I’ll have to find another use for the other 11 flairs, but for today, they made lemonade!

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September Sunflowers


Sometime ago, I saw a bouquet of sunflowers in a stall that had purple leaves (the sunflower, not the stall).  So, today I thought I’d play around with the unusual colors .   This was done on the same sketchbook (5-1/2 X 8-1/2) using  Windsor Newton paints from my small travel case.  As I stated in the opening to the blog….this is my “adventure”.   So, I’m working on trying different media, different styles and different colors.  Sometimes I’ll be comfortable with the results and sometimes I won’t……….but I find I always learn something.  Here I learned I didn’t like the leaves as they turned out, but maybe I’ll think of another way to do them someday.  After all, I liked what I saw in the flower booth.

Fishing Village


Well, I decided yesterday that I was letting too many things keep me from getting the important stuff done…   So, I’m going to try again to join the daily painters on Wet Canvas.  Today, I posted this sketch done in my favorite sketching style using a flair pen (non-permanent ink) and then brushing water to push the ink around.  This was done on my 5-1/2 X 8-/1/2 sketch pad.  Just a lot of fun….which is my preferred way to start the day as well as end it.

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