Monday, June 26, 2017

A New Birdhouse for the Garden

This birdhouse was designed and painted to coordinate with the posts on the wheelchair ramp.

I'm always excited to add another birdhouse to the garden. Especially since the other birdhouses on this side of the ramp are already full of baby birds peeping and cheeping as I roll by in the mornings.

This design is quite similar to one of the birdhouses on the arbor at the front of the house.

I try to repeat some of the colors and patterns to pull the eye through the garden and pull things together with a theme of some of the flowers that I grow here.

The nice thing about mounting birdhouses to the posts on the ramp is so that we can watch them all from both the house and from our tea table in the front garden.

Monday, June 19, 2017


I'm still wanting to plant a lot of daisies but not able to afford it to I'm adding daisies to the garden everywhere that I can. This season I'm doing it with paints.

I still keep changing my mind about the types of leaves that I want to paint on these so I'm trying everything and then outlining them with a paint pen so that they will show up from the street,

I'm getting a LOT closer to finishing the painting of my wheelchair ramp. It's the centerpiece of my yard and garden and will be joined with and arbor and trellis to match.

I even painted daisies on some of the garden gnomes to add more fun and energy to the theme.

Yes, I'd rather be planting daisies than painting them but this makes everyone smile and will have to be good enough for now.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017


What I find most amazing about this photo is that the tops of some of the rosebushes are nearly up to the rooflines of our house and the neighbors.

One year they told me they really liked my roses and I said "good, they're headed your way"...and they thought I was kidding.

I'm not sure if you can tell from this photo, but the roses wrap all the way around 3 sides of the garden and efforts are being made to transplant some of them to the 4th side of the garden.

The really amazing thing about this is that they all came from an old family farm. One near the house and the some wilder ones from out in the woods. Time and the bees have done the rest.

Sunchaser Garden, Recycle Project

 You wouldn't think an old, beat up wagon would be much use for anything but this one has solved a major problem around here.

All it really needed was a coat of white paint so that it would blend in with the mesh patio furniture here. It's pretty good sized which is what gave me the idea for putting all of my garden plants into it.

One of the biggest problems with a regular garden here is that there are lots of trees and too much shade for most plants.

Putting everything into the wagon allows us to pull it over to any sunny spot in the yard or garden and to move it whenever we want to.

 I call this my "Sun Chaser Garden"

So far we're growing chives, chamomile, celery, radishes, carrots, peas, tomatoes, strawberries and sedum.

The strawberries that I'm trying this year have pink flowers and small alpine berries. They're not hearty in this zone but I plan to overwinter it in the house. I can't wait to see what happens with it.

It seems to be doing well so far.

Iris and Lily Painting with a twist

This picture doesn't really have anything to do with the rest of this post. I just wanted to see what the painting would look like in black and white.

I started this painting in kind of a rounded format thinking that I might want to use it as a sticker design.

As you can see I soon abandoned that idea and just began to enjoy the work.

This time I decided to try a technique that I'd seen on a painting show by Eke Sommers over 20 years ago. You don't do a lot of shading while you're painting.
You outline EVERYTHING Then apply an even coating of black watercolor over the acrylics and let it begin to dry. Your shading is achieved by removing part of the black coating and allowing the remaining areas of black to provide the shading.

Here it is with the black acrylic paint, just before I covered it with the black watercolor.

This is the finished painting with bits of the watercolor shadows left behind just waiting to be sprayed with a clear coat to fix the remaining watercolor and make it more permanent.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Painted Birdhouse for the Ramp Project

This bright and busy design on a birdhouse is a great way to practice your brushstrokes and have something to show for all of your hard work.

I took the opportunity to vary the shape, size and color of the different strokes to find out which ones I like best.

This project took me about 3 days start to finish but the time it would require for you may vary depending on how much of it you want to do at a time.

There were only 2 sides of this birdhouse that weren't made up of slats so I painted one red and the other blue and then added a few flowers to them.

You can see here how the wheelchair ramp inspired my design.