Thursday, March 31, 2011

Covered in paint...again!

Yes, and it's not just this painting...there's one arm, both hands, my shirt, my jeans and the table as well...and of course that big canvas in the other room where I flung the rest of my palette when I finished for the day.
I guess it's about time to hose everything off and get a bite to eat before I see where the day will take me next. I hope yours is a glorious, messy adventure too!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

I spent the day working with a lot of my old paintings and taken new approaches to looking at them as I used the images on a wide variety of merchandise in our zazzle store*  but I can't wait to get my fingers and brushes into paint again. The only problem now is that I'm not really sure whether or not recent experience will affect the sort of work I do from now on.  Will I start painting round pictures in case I want to use them on round products later or will I just keep working as I always have (painting whatever I please, what feels good and what makes me happy) I can't wait to find out!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Watercolor Afternoon

I spent some time unwinding with a few ideas I wanted to try in watercolors and gave them all away after I stopped to snap this picture. I gave the orange card to one of the gals in my painting group and  brought the rest home to scan before dropping them in the mail. All that remains is the orange envelope because the gal I gave the card to plans to frame it and didn't need the envelope.

Monday, March 28, 2011

A fresh coat of paint

Well, as you can see I'm still pretty undecided about the walls in here except for the fact that the brown had to go. I've been priming over bits of it for some time but am unsure what color I really want the room to be so I tried a bit of the living room color over the cabinet and still haven't made up my mind whether the vines will stay or go.
The biggest problem when living in a small space is that there is no where to put anything to get it out of the way so most of the time I simply end up reaching around furniture and painting the bits that show.
At this point I'm sure you're wondering how much longer it will take and you're not alone, I'm beginning to wonder too.
As you read in a recent post I sometimes use both hands or switch back and forth between them.
I've found this especially useful in attemping to reach difficult areas with my brush.
Tomorrow is my watercolor day so I'm looking forward to a lot more color and easier surfaces to work with. It will be a nice break from all of this.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Second Time Around

It's actually more than the second time around for decorating shoes and clothing. I've been painting on everything since I was a kid so designing my images on them now feels like I've finally made it happen in a more real and lasting way and I love it that they're printed on instead of hand painted  in acrylics which sometimes made things stiff or shiny. These photos are from the 1990's so it's taken me a long time to get where I wanted to go with this idea and I'm looking forward to seeing where it will take me next.

The dishes of course were another matter though also done in the 1990's with a paint that had to be fired in the oven which of course was pretty awful to live with. You couldn't just cook dinner after that so it complicated life for a while. I'm excited now to be able to put my images on all sorts of dishes and other things without all the inconvenience and the smell. People are always saying "it doesn't get any better than this" but in my experience I can can say that it certainly does so hang in there and keep trying. It's taken decades but I really feel it's been worth the wait.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

At knifes edge

Well, I'd been working on this painting quite a while and I guess it was nice enough...almost normal and then of course it took a left turn and went all "me". Yes, it felt great but who knows what it will end up looking like when or if I'm ever "done" with it but it made me happy.

It's been difficult painting sunflowers without the right shade of yellow on hand so I was really happy when one of my "art angels" popped in with more paint and canvases and you guessed it, just the right shade of yellow. It's wonderful to have friends that appreciate my work enough to make sure I've got enough supplies to keep it going. Thanks Ron!

Now I'm really glad I took the time to paint up these little chairs so I've got a bit of something to give folks that make the trip up here. I had originally planned to sell them and buy art supplies, now I don't have to and we're all happy.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

You never know what will pop up...or out around here!

I've been sorting and re-arranging tings around here again. When you've got as many hobbies, interests and businessess I have all going on at the same time in 600 square feet it's amazing, challenging and chaotic but never dull.
Today I was going through a bin of crochet things and a stack of art "stuff" because I was looking for a pattern for crochet flowers which I DID find along with a number of other things that had "gone missing" recently.
Another thing that got me started on all of that was finding an old envelope I was decorating for a friend. Actually at this point it's half an envelope...I'd gotten carried away with my watercolors and painted so many flowers on it that there wasn't any room left for addresses so I'd trimmed it to fit a small frame and hoped to sell it. When it didn't go it was tossed into the pile again where of course it lived until it turned up again and I'm happy to say it went on lots of interesting adventures on new products.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Springing into my day

The calendar says it's spring but we woke to snow and ice. Hot Coffee and fresh baked caramel rolls cheered me up and made the house smell wonderful ...which of course is a pretty good trick as those of you that have been here know.
 It's hard to believe that just a few days ago the birds were back at the feeders outside my dining room window. Just a few feet from this window hangs a painting that I did of summer at the lake so I shot photos of that to take to work this morning at*
I'm not sure what I can do with this but I had a lot of fun putting yesterdays watercolor on a lot of things before dropping it in the mail and sending it to a friend.

Something interesting happened after I posted about using both hands to draw yesterday. Later that evening (or early this morning, depending on how you look at things) I read issue 3, March 25,2011 all*you magazine which ran a section called "Power your brain" and there, on page 54 it said "mix it up. if you're right handed, use your left hand...changing your habits can strengthen the pathways that deliver information to the brain and sharpen your thinking. The same goes for learning a new skill..."
It didn't mention art or using BOTH hands at the same time but I seem to be on the right track with all of this and I'd love to hear your comments on the subject.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

BOTH hands at once! pencil drawing and right hand watercolors

I did a bit of scribbling with both hands and as many pencils as I could hold. Today that was 2 in the left and 3 in the right. It's relaxing and boosts your creativity by stimulating different sections of your brain plus it's just FUN!!! After that I decided to see if I can still do 2 drawings at the same time with just one pencil in each hand. It's pretty easy to see which one was done with the right hand and which was done with my left. I think it's funny that my left hand is younger because it hasn't been used as much. I may explore this idea further but in the meantime I found some more of those watercolor note card and envelopes so I went back to using my right hand and tried to teach myself to paint poppies from a book. You see the results here and I'm sure someone will be getting them in the mail soon. Well, I'm going back to a bit of design work and plan to post some other projects for you in the morning.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Think about pen and ink

Here are a few of my pen and ink drawings that I'll be taking to work at*   It will be interesting to see how they look on various surfaces. As I'm doing that, I'm thinking about what sorts of things I'll want to grow this season to do my next set of drawings from. There's still snow on the ground here so thank goodness I've been at this for a long time and have a number of drawings to keep me busy until the gardening season starts. Last year I was drawing directly on note cards and selling my originals so a lot of work got away from me. I'm really happy to be making changes to prevent that in the future except as gifts to a few special people in my life.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Work, Hobbies and Everything in between

Life gets interesting when you're not sure what's work and what's play. The crochet items will go to various charities. I meet with two different groups of gals for great conversation as we knit and crochet whatever folks seem to be needing these days.
The painted images here take a bit more explanation.The center one is a detail of that large painting with the flying toast & stuff. The lower image is a detail of the painted finish I did on my bathroom walls.
What made this interesting (and a bit confusing from the work or play aspect) was that I made neckties and a bunch of other products from these images and had a lo of fun trying to see how they'd wrap around different surfaces.
I enjoyed it a lot but who know whether or not the products will sell. I guess that's how I'll know if people liked them or not.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Watercolor, Acrylics and life in general

A quick little watercolor this morning as I'm attempting to teach myself more about working with a fairly new medium for me.I started out as an oil painter  so the reverse process of color applications has always made watercolor a struggle for me.

Practice is always useful and I made today's effort into a pair of note cards to brighten someones mail this week. I was out of the nice watercolor greeting card sets that I like to use so these are mounted on quarter fold parchment paper. Considering my supplies on hand I think they turned out pretty nice.

I keep going back to that big acrylic I've been working on. I love some of these detail views of different parts of it and I'm still painting on it as well so it changes all of the time.

Monday, March 14, 2011

As you can see here, even on a bright and sunny day the wall color in the "winter studio" (OK, it's the dining room...or it would be if only...) makes it much too dark to photograph or film art or craft projects in here.
The plants were enjoying the sun and the light hit a couple of the paintings I've been working on pretty nicely but I still didn't feel like I could really work in here.

I began painting out the brown on the walls but can't quite decide whether or not to go over those vines I'd painted over the doorway. What do you think?
Yes, I've got things over all the doorways. I haven't decided what to do about this shelf but I included this shot so you can see how much difference it makes already as we begin to re-do the walls. Now all I've got to decide is whether or not I want this room the same color as the living room. what do you think?

Sunday, March 13, 2011

A more organized approach

I'd been designing some things with this old sunflower painting on them and began to wonder what would happen if I took a a more traditional approach to the subject. I've never had the patience for  graphing everything out so I figures it was about time to give it a try. If it gets tedious I can always pull out my palette knives and let fly.
I pulled out my paints after I wrote this and just realized that the whole day had gotten away from me when I heard the evening news come on and my phone went off. I'm not quite sure how it's coming along but I had a lot of fun flinging paint at 2 other canvases as I was putting my supplies away. There's paint on the table, my hands, arms and clothes. I'm so worn out, I'd have probably kept at it until I fell over. Most people don't understand this and you can't really explain it to anyone that's never done or felt it. I've stopped trying to explain my world to anyone else other than the few lines I write about it here.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Turn your old art into new things

Here are a few more old paintings from the stack in the garage. The Blue one was an amazing surprise when I began to combine and flip the image on items and it just flowed seamlessly into itself. I never could have imagined anything like that back when I put paint to canvas. I hope that your day is full of positive solutions to your old thoughts, problems and projects too. It's what gets us ready to take on whatever's coming our way next.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Big Finish

Well, I FINALLY got around to finishing that potholder I was playing with the other day. The colors just make me happy and I thought it was surprising how different each side looks so I thought I'd share these pictures with you. Now I'm headed back to designing items from my paintings and who knows what I'll be doing tomorrow so keep could get interesting.

Bright Swirl

Doug shot photos of these old paintings out in the garage we've been trying to convert to a studio. It was nice to see them again and I'm off to play on zazzle to see how many different things I can turn them into. I hope you find some fun in your day to. Do something creative that you enjoy and you'll be surprised how quickly the day improves.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Good Morning

Good morning! One more cup of coffee and I'm off to watercolor group. It will be a nice change from what I'm doing at home and I should have a few pictures to post later.
In the meantime I crochet a few more rows on that potholder and started to fight back "the creeping craft monster" around here. It's amazing how fast a persons hobbies can take over a space, Isn't it?
Well, here's what I painted. I couldn't resist coming home to see how many things I could do with it. I started with shoes and things got really crazy from there but it was lots of fun to see how it came out on various surfaces.
I also took advantage of the opportunity to create a "creeping craft monster" tee shirt.
Now I'm off to get a grip on the housekeeping around here and catch up on the mail.
Take some time to have some fun, it will help you be more fun and better able to handle anything that life throws your way.