French Cottage

Art, Pencil, Watercolor
FrenchHouseSqWeb

French Cottage, 14×11, graphite and watercolor

I walk by this house frequently as it is one of the first houses on the street leading into the fancy neighborhood. The roof is aluminum and the shutters and windows are blue. It stands out on a street of extravagant craftsmans and tudors.

Advertisements

Lemon Branch

Art, Pencil, Watercolor
LemonBranch_web_lowres

Lemon Branch, watercolor, graphite & colored pencil on bristol, 14 in. x 11 in. 

Here it is, the last citrus branch in the series. This took probably about 12 hours or more- worked sporadically over a week and a half. I prefer to create projects for myself that can be completed in a day or two. Much longer than that and drawings start to become “that thing I need to finish.” And that’s usually a recipe for procrastination. But last night I hunkered down with new episodes of House of Cards and finished up the final leaves.  I’ve got all three in my Etsy shop and here’s how they look next to each other:

Snazz.

Limes on a branch

Art, Pencil, Watercolor
LimeBranch_web_lowres

Lime Branch, watercolor, graphite and colored pencil on bristol, 14 in. x 11 in. 

There was no Watercolor Wednesday this week because of [excuses]. I did, however, finish the second of three citrus branch paintings. I’ve been making these while watching episodes of Justified, so looking at them makes me talk in a Kentucky accent.

 

 

Friday Wrap Up

Advice Requested, Art, Pencil, Watercolor
OrangeBranch_web_lowres

Orange Branch, pencil and watercolor on bristol, 11 in x 14 in

I finished this painting! It may not look like it, but this took many hours. I think 3 or four nights of 2-3 hours each. I always mean to- but never ever remember to- keep track of how many actual hours it takes to make anything. But I’m guessing 10ish hours here? That seems ridiculously high. On the plus side, shading is somewhat mindless/meditative. And I like how it turned out. That’s always a nice after spending a boatload of time on something!

I’m planning to continue with this theme. Pencil drawing with a watercolor element. I can imagine many different subjects for which this this could work well. Including my favorite subject, architecture. And portraits, too. But my productivity is sure to go down the toilette with this method. I’ll have to do unrelated 10-minute mini drawings every morning just to keep my Instagram feed fed.

 

Good things that happened this week:

I dragged myself out of the house last night and went to Craft Night. I had a real hankering for putting on my couch pants and watching Murder She Wrote all night but I decided to ignore myself and risk uncomfortable conversation for the possible benefit of normal social interaction. I’m glad I did, because it was fun and I left one of my paintings to be hung at Craft Night’s current show at Bar Carlo. I’ve never had anything in a show before. No big deal, but fun. I put up my Royal Typewriter from a couple weeks back. It’s in there with a whole bunch of terrific stuff from the others.

 

+Please feel free, feel requested, to use the comments section below if you have any advice or suggestions. Any advice is accepted. All suggestions will be considered.+

If you’d like to follow this blog, see the Connect page.

Watercolor Wednesday

Art, Ink & Watercolor, Sketches, Watercolor
TJsBouquet

Ink and watercolor in Stillman and Birn Zeta Sketchbook, 5.5 x 8.5

I haven’t been buying flowers lately but this small bouquet at Trader Joe’s was $3.99 and I figured it was a minor enough extravagance to indulge. I seem to always pick bouquets with something orange. Come to think of it, I pretty much always pick the same type of bouquet with the same type of flowers. Having any colorful flowers to look at is nice but maybe next time I’ll try for something different. I could really go for some red ranunculus.

Mixed Media: Pencil and Watercolor

Art, Pencil, Today's Focus, Watercolor

Trillium_web_lowres

This Week’s Focus: Continue making new art.

Tasks:

  1. Finish Orange Branch painting
  2. Start second watercolor/pencil painting
  3. Write three blog posts
  4. Upload at least 4 new images to Instagram and Facebook

 

In my attempt to become more lucrative with my art I’ve been thinking about what qualities of my art I consider to be successful versus the qualities that other people seem to “like”. There is a disconnect but I’ve noticed a pattern. My research is based solely on Instagram, Facebook and Etsy popularity of my own stuff, which is surely problematic for a number of reasons. But I’ve found that most things people like are bold and colorful. I feel weakest with watercolor so naturally, I hate most of my watercolors. I tend to like my pencil and ink drawings best, because I think I do a better job at realism in those media- and realism, in my mind, equates to good art. Boldly colored graphic art is much more popular these days- and I love other people’s graphic art too, but maybe there is a combination of the two that would be fun and successful. I’m on the lookout for what that might be.

The painting up top is my first attempt. Graphite and watercolor on Arches cold pressed paper. Next up is another similar go with an orange branch on bristol. The trick may be finding a paper suitable for both pencil and watercolor. And how to go about the color.

+Please feel free, feel requested, to use the comments section below if you have any advice or suggestions. Any advice is accepted. All suggestions will be considered.+

If you’d like to follow this blog, see the Connect page.

Watercolor Wednesday

Art, Urban Sketches, Watercolor

StJohnsBridge001

It turned out better than I expected, but I won’t say I’m happy with this. What makes me really dislike this sketch is that I drove all the way up to St. John’s bridge to paint it and realized I forgot my water jar just when I got settled into a great parking spot. All I had was a little tiny crappy water brush. So, I painted angrily.

Watercolor Wednesday

Art, Ink & Watercolor, Urban Sketches, Watercolor

Colorwheel003

Color wheels are so joyful. I have an indistinct plan to cover a wall somewhere in my house with framed color wheels. I think maybe the bathroom. Or the laundry room. Someplace that really needs a blast of cheer.

The view from the window right now is quite gray so the color wheels could help in any room of a winter Portland house. Though I will say, the houses in my neighborhood are practically a color wheel themselves- so these gray days usually fail to bum me out. Maybe we should all do ourselves and our communities a favor and paint our houses happy shades of Permanent Magenta, Gamboge, and Cobalt Blue.

purplehouseweb

Road Trip to the Central Coast

Pen & Ink, Sketches, Urban Sketches, Watercolor

Several weekends ago I ditched the kids with my husband and visited my friend in Grover Beach. I sketched on the drive down, sketched everywhere we went, and sketched on the way home. I filled 4 pages of my Goodbye California Sketchbook! And my friend still speaks to me, so I must’ve managed to sketch and interact with her at least enough to not completely piss her off. She’s a real sport.

On the way down I stopped in Chualar for the old PG & E Substation. It was windy and I was basically standing on the onramp to the freeway for the only possible vantage point. A CHP officer was pulled over nearby and I didn’t want to have to explain myself, so I drew fast and saved the watercolor for later. Next, I stopped in beautiful Gonzalez and battled the after school crowds for a parking spot with a view of the water tank. Next, I sketched the oil field just north of Paso at an inexplicably popular exit with no services and a view of, well, an oil field. The old Motel sign is in Paso Robles across Hwy 101 from Firestone Brewery. I wanted to sketch that too, but I was running out of daylight. And get this: I had to sketch the Soledad sign from an internet photo because THEY TOOK IT DOWN!!! Big mistake, Soledad. Despite it’s implications, the sign was all you had going for you. Hwy101page

In SLO, we wandered around downtown, sipping tea, second-hand smoking hobo cigarettes, and fake shopping. The Fremont Theatre was a must draw, as well as the Mission. BTW, I did my 4th grade mission project on Mission SLO, so I know pretty much everything about it. After all, I have built it out of sugar cubes. I’m not a Mason, or anything, but the art store, Law’s Hobby Shop, where I purchased all my college supplies, used to be in the building which houses Masonic Temple. Now its a Christian Bookstore or something lame. I had to draw the Indian statue out in front of the Cigar shop. When I was living there, some DB frat guys stole the original Indian and it was never seen again. I had always thought it had been returned, but as I was sketching, the owner came out and told me he replaced the stolen one. And then bolted it’s ass to the building. Then I sketched the mountain, which of course, is Bishop’s Peak. Which I have hiked to the top of no fewer than 25 times. Probably.

SLOpageweb

I didn’t finish my Cal Poly page- I still plan to include the Cal Poly Seal. But this page shows the Yosemite Hall dorm- is where I met my husband. Aww! Memories!! And some places where I learned.CalPolyweba

Finally, we drove to Morro Bay and sat atop a hill where I had a lovely view of both Morro Rock and the power plant towers. It was really quite lovely.MorroBayweb