Friday, October 17, 2014

Who Let the Dogs Out!

Hi Everyone!

What a crazy week it's been. I am busy working at the moment. I teach art in residential homes and I must say it is fun. I love getting out into the community and inspiring seniors and those with special needs to tap into their creative side.

I also found myself asked to create a vivid blue doggie commission. I am rather pleased with it. A friend even told me it reminded her of Chagall. I found it intriguing to juxtapose the solidity of the blue body with the translucent watercolor swirls of the background. What do you think? I am now adding blue pet portraiture to my repetoire over here at Etsy.


I am also thrilled that my doggie calendar for 2015 featuring all my original artwork is now out. You can buy it here.

It's been such a crazy week I have not had time to make my daughter's Madhatter halloween costume for a party tomorrow. I will have to scour thrift stores for crazy jaquard prints to create a truly tasteless ensemble! What kinds of costumes are you cobbling together?

Linking up to Paint Party Friday! Come and check out some amazing artists!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Upcycling into a Collage Dog

Today was pretty fun. I got it into my head to make a dog collage so I looked around the sidewalk for things I could put in my painting. I ended up with dried grass, candy wrappers, bottle tops, a squashed can of beer and all many of dried bits and bobs.

Then at home I went completely crazy and tore up lots of magazines and glued them down along with the found items. I made a complete mess. I love making messes but my husband doesn't like it. Luckily he was at work!

I don't think I am ever so happy as when I am paint splotched, with sticky, gluey fingers. Do you love working in chaos or are you tidy and clear up as you go along.

In the end my dog was so cute. All the mess was worth it. I have to tidy up before my husband throws a fit. There is something really exciting about turning found materials into something completely different, turning it on its head so to speak.

Bits and Pieces Dog, Mixed Media, 18 x 24 inches

Linking up to Paint Party Friday, Illustration Friday and PoCoLo! Come and check out some amazing artists!

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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Cat at the Window

It's been a long hot summer and I haven't had much time to put brush to paper what with driving my kids all over the place! The older one is a pet sitter now which is great but I have to drive her to her pet assignments. How has your summer been? I was rather relieved that the kids are back at school and I can get creative again.

Right now I am working on a cat commission. Here's the initial sketch. This is of a brown burmese cat looking wistfully out of the window at kids' playing on the beach. I am finding I love to work in mixed media, in this case pastel and watercolor. I am currently working on the finished product for the client.

Linking up to Paint Party Friday! Come and check out some amazing artists!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Baby Giraffe

Baby Giraffe, Watercolor, 18 x 24'

I have been inspired this past week to make my watercolors look more brilliant and lustrous on the paper, so I was excited to hear about a nifty little product called Gum Arabic. When I worked on this cute little baby giraffe and mixed some gum arabic with the paints, I did notice that the colors were brighter somehow.

Gum Arabic seems even more exciting though when used to controlling spread of paint in wet-on-wet, so that rather than getting a big muddy mess of colors pooling together I was able to separate them to some extent and just get some nice bits mixing at the edges of overlapping colors. Here is a flying parrot I created using gum arabic mixed with watercolor. It has a rather nice, loose abstract feel to it I think:

Parrot in Flight, watercolor, 18 x 24'

Have you ever used gum arabic with watercolors? Did you like the effect? There are all sorts of watercolor mediums I haven't tried yet but which seem rather exciting: Ox Gall, Aquapasto, Texture Medium, Granulation Medium etc. etc......I will try them all one day!

Linking up to Paint Party Friday and Creative Every Day! Click the buttons and come join in the fun....

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Mice Amongst the Poppies

What fun to try my hand at painting some tiny mice scurrying around in a poppy field. I started with putting masking tape around the edges of the paper. Then I put in a lot of the grasses with masking fluid and a fine brush. Next I started painting in the vivid poppies with watercolor. And the background, and the little mice.

Next I removed the masking fluid....what fun!

Ripping off the masking tape was tricky but fun too.  Then I really felt I needed to put in more detail in pastel and I really wanted more vivid color with the I grabbed my pastels and went to work. Enjoy them! Squeak squeak

Mice Amongst the Poppies, mixed media, 9 x 13'

Linking up to Illustration Friday under the theme of SUMMER  ..... and to Paint Party Friday! Click the button and come join in the can buy this print at Redbubble HERE

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Harvest Mouse


Working with masking fluid can be fun. I find it gives a lovely texture to animal fur, like with this harvest mouse. I wanted the husks of corn to have lovely pure white highlights too so I go to work with my masking fluid. I love watching the stages of how others create their art works so hope you enjoy seeing how I did this.

Next I started putting on several layers of watercolor.

Then I started peeling off the dried masking fluid. I really love doing that! The mouse is really starting to come to life here.

A bit more yellow in background and foreground methinks. A few details sketched in with black pen. Then let me peel off more of this delightfully stringy masking tape .... and voila!

Harvest Mouse, 12 x 18', watercolor

That's all folks! Turned out rather interesting I think.

Linking up to Crafting Along and Paint Party Friday so come check out a bunch of amazing artists!

Buy prints and cards of this adorable harvest mouse at Redbubble by clicking HERE.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Eurovision Fever

Charlie, lab/pointer mix

Hi Guys!

I have to confess that I have fallen head over heels in love with a friend's dog, Charlie. He is the cuddliest, snuggliest dog on the planet, and although he is a lab/pointer mix I think of him as the Target dog's older brother.

I really enjoyed doing Charlie's portrait. He looks very colorful and of course, very adorable too.

Portrait of Charlie, watercolor & pen and ink, 12 x 18'
I'm in a feverpitch of excitement. I have fever! Eurovision fever!!!!! Tomorrow is the Eurovision Song Contest and I am so buzzed. I will be going to a party full of Eurofanatics and we will watch the Final streaming live.

I think I am going to have to get behind Austria's entry. I am after all half Austrian - an Austrish (half British, half Austrian). Which half is Austrian you ask? Well the bottom half that has weakness for Sachertorte, Schnitzel and Bratwurst of course. Which lets me segue gently into the name of Austria's entry - Conchita Wurst. Don't you just LOVE that name?

S/he is a Kim Kardashian lookalike. Her song, Rise Like a Phoenix is pretty good too. Are you going to watch the Eurovision and who do you want to win?

Go Austria!!

Linking up to Paint Party Friday so come check out a bunch of amazing artists!