Sunday, August 30, 2015

Life drawing

I'm doing something new, and loving it!

I think I was more nervous about what to bring, and what would be provided more than anything. In the end I choose a medium size sketch pad, my set of Stabillo pastel pencils, an eraser and a bottle of water. Packed my nerves along with my kit and drove off to mingle among the "real" artists and do a live nude study. 

The first poses were considered warm-ups and they were 3 minute poses. I remember doing this in college (the last time I drew a nude in class) so this didn't bother me, although I would have preferred to skip the warm up and go straight into a longer sketching session because I rarely warm up, but then maybe I should do that more often?
Next we settled into a 2, 30 minute poses and here I was happiest, getting a chance to add a little more detail. I did notice that when the model changed position, some of the artists moved their postions also to get better angles. Me? I stay right where I am regardless of the angle being good or not, I figure I'll learn more if I draw whatever I am given.
foreshortening : portray or show (an object or view) as closer than it is or as having less depth or distance, as an effect of perspective or the angle of vision

I was very happy to have my different colors with me so that I could use the colors to add depth and interest to my drawing. She is actually sitting in a chair with one foot propped up on an ottoman, but I didn't have time to draw everything in.

Then we switched to 2 20 minute poses...frankly I would have preferred a longer pose of 40 minutes, to really focus on details. We all had smiles on our faces during this set as the model was falling asleep.

The last pose, I see my fingers are covered with pastel dust, and I need to add wipes of some sort to my arsenal of supplies if I decide to use them again, which I sure I will.  I really enjoyed using the pencils, but next week I am contemplating black markers for contrast. I think I might work on a different medium each week to see how well they work out. Right now I can say I like the softness of the pastel and being able to smudge for shadowing. 

Drawing the nude bodies doesn't embarrass me, I was more worried about how the other artists would accept me and whether my sketches would be good enough for me to be accepted into their group. After all they all know each other and I was the outsider. I think it went OK, no one shunned or snubbed me, lol

Tuesday, August 25, 2015


Is the bomb.....
or least it looks like a bomb went off in my kitchen!
However, I love the technique despite the mess, but I am still learning tons of things!
My first attempt, using vinegar in the water as I steamed the paper. You can see the lightly defined leaf prints. I loved it so much I've already drawn on the paper. The paper comes from a Arnold Grummer Tall Zig Zag book. The drawing was done with my Stabillo pastel pencils, I must say the paper held up VERY well considering it was steamed and then rubbed a lot with my finger during the pastel part 

I need to break down and order alum and some proper kitchen tools like a steamer.

 But this is my third attempt using Miracle grow brushed onto the paper, then steamed with botanicals layered between the sheets of paper. This is still wet, but I couldn't wait to take a picture of it and it will be a good way to compare the prints once the paper has dried for how it fades. It's going to become the cover of my my book for the above picture. I'll show another picture once it's completed.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Leaf skeletons

So.....Pinterest gets me into so much trouble! I saw this tutorial on making your own leaf skeletons and I thought to myself ( and please notethis is where I start getting into all kinds of thinking...) I could do that too!

 I already had the washing soda and dedicated materials for the project, so I was all set. I was sure I could even do what they said couldn't be mulberry leaves. They said it would be too fragile, that thick waxy leaves work best.... ppppfftt, what do they know?....evidently they know more than I do, lol My poor mulberry leaf basically disintegrated into mush. Which "leaves" me... ( sorry, couldn't resist the pun ) with a dilemma for a project that I am working on for my next Arnold Grummer post.

 But I'll work on that later. For today, here is the result of 3 hours, of boiling and gently scraping the mystery leaves....
Now, if this had been the results from the Mulberry bush then I would have been quite content with the time and effort spent, but as it stands, buy the darn leaf much easier! I know I will.

Now, what to do with my mulberry bush leaf idea...hmmm...I wonder if Pinterest has any ideas?....

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Loving handmade paper

Yes, this has become my new addiction, I love it more than drawing and painting. It's just fun to make something with your hands....and it's hard to wash off, lol I made an album cover today for the Arnold Grummer blog post. I plan on taking it down to the beach with me and I know what's in my head that I would like to draw, however, we will have to see what I actually end up doing in it, lol I made a short slideshow too which shows how I created the seahorse and starfish out of paper pulp, and how I made the hand stitched title if your interested, would love for you to check it out.
And please, if you like what I do, please leave me a comment, it just makes my day and I promise I'll stop by your blog and leave you one too!

Monday, August 17, 2015

Tweet nesting

I love to play around and just re-cycle things, like this poor little birdie. He started out as a Christmas ornament and then got collaged and nested on my back porch for awhile but the outdoor elements took their tole oh him so he got yet another makeover.

Here are some of the things I used to give her and her nest new life. Hope you stop over at the Helmar blog to see the new her!

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

blingy "help me find it" box

So my art desk is a thing closely related to a disaster, I bring supplies like pens, markers and pencils over to it to work with and they quickly become lost in the piles of papers, glues and other tools. So I thought if I had a box to sit on my desk and as I used the pencils,  I could lay them in the box where they could be stored until I was finished using them and returned them to their proper storage least that is my plan so I set off to buy me a school box and of course I knew I would bling it up with some of The Buckle Boutique Adhesive Rhinestone sheets!

Here is my blingy "help me find it" box! Hopefully this will save at least an hour a day in just trying to locate my pens in the mayhem of other art supplies piled up on my desk.

Here is the plain, sad looking little box. I admit when I bought it I could see the circles, filled with rhinestones, and that it had lots of potential bling aspirations! You can see how many pens and markers were rounded up from my desk alone, this is a much needed box!!

I used copy paper to create templates to trace on the adhesive sheets and then cut them out with scissors. It was very easy to do.

I outlined the circles in the Lime Green sheets since it matched the plastic lid color. Yes, I admit I was thinking about that when I bought it. 

Wouldn't this make a great school box for an older child? Maybe one to keep in their locker for all those little things that are hard to keep up with? And look at how that bling shines when the light hits it! ohhhhh.....ahhhhhhh....go ahead, I know you want to!
At least I won't need any help finding the box, eh?

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Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Touching my art

Well, that title might be a little mis-leading for some ( whose minds are in the gutter, usually that's where mine is...) but what I mean by "touching my art" is that sometimes I go back later and put more "touches" on a piece or sometimes I have been known to drastically change a piece of art. It just depends on what the piece had been "telling" me. They do talk to you if you are willing to listen.

This is the finished and re-touched piece which will be going on display at our local library. I will be bringing it in today to be set up with the other works on art for the month of September, I am looking forward to seeing what every one brings in for the exhibit.

This is what it looked like before...sometimes, when I put a lot of work into something, I am just tired and do consider it done. And some times I know that there is more work that I should...I could do on it, but I'm not willing to at that moment. This is one of those pieces there were several things I knew I wanted to work on and knew I would be "touching" it at a later time.

First off, I knew, even when I considered it "finished" that I did not like the title on the book spine. I had tried to do it while it was already on the box itself so it wasn't as good as I knew it should be. However, I had some yellow handmade paper left over and made sure to keep it so that I could come back and fix it. I didn't know I was going to hand stitch the title until just came to me and I love how it turned out. I actually love to hand stitch words, they always look great. I also moved C.S. Lewis up to the quote, put my name on the spine and gold leafed the bars.

I edged the tag in some pastels and smudged it to give it a tea distressed feel and added a small purple flower which I think matches to the flowers on the tea cup itself.

Then I had one of those moments where I wonder if it's a great idea or if it's going to ruin the project entirely. Sometimes I think I am teetering too close to the edge of an artistic cliff but I am usually willing to jump off of it anyway...just hoping it doesn't end in a disaster, lol In this case it was adding lipstick to the rim of the tea cup. Yep, I put on lipstick and "kissed" my cup. There is a little DNA left behind on all my art I think.

I did do it very lightly so maybe the lip impression isn't that great, but I was freaking out that it might not work, but in the end, I think I like the little personal "touch".

So, is there a moral to this story of touching your art?
 ( Is your mind still in the gutter? I know my mind traveled there...)

Sunday, August 2, 2015


Have you ever had moments in your life that inspire you, whether they were good or bad?
First I had a girlfriend who had a man problem so we did what any girlfriends would do...
we drank wine, ate chocolate until she felt better.

Then a couple of days later I dumped some letters from a project down on the floor that I was working on and it just hit me, or should I say inspired me....maybe it was a chocolate induced inspiration, cause we did eat a whole lot of

 From those two things, a canvas was born, and it's basically nothing but text.

If you could unscramble the letters it would say this:
 Love is all mixed up. Trust your instinct and let go of regret. 

DecoArt Americana paints applied with a brayer directly to the canvas
Bannana Cream, Tangerine and Snow

Then letter cuts out on the Cricuit
Out of Character and Don Juan

Sealed with Americana DuraClear Varnish

Entering this in The Mixed Media Monthly Challenge #15 - Get Texty