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.

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.

Friday, June 2, 2017

Keeping Things Going on the Urban Homestead

Some of the art projects stay here like this new bird house on the front arbor.

There are still a few patches of lawn left but less and less as the years go by and nature recovers the land

The first priority is to use the things I've got here to keep all of the other things going. When it comes to plants I'm dividing and transplanting them and may consider selling or trading some of them as soon as I get my wire wagon painted and can bring them to the curb to sell or trade. Until then I'm trying to sell some of my paintings and carved, painted Dala Horses. Art money funds art supplies and keeps that end of that going.

I just finished painting this little sunflower canvas panel. It used to have a red background and didn't sell that way. This mottled blue background makes it coordinate with 2 others I have and having a nice set to decorate a room will be nice in the house here or will make them more likely to sell.

This container has a few walking onions and is where I planted 2 potatoes as well as a couple of herbs from my sister and the end of a lettuce from the grocery store. We often save and plant the root end to get another lettuce harvest. I would prefer to be growing  all of my own veg but at this point I'll take whatever I can get.

This painting was the result of a painting, play day with family. We were all playing with palette knives to see what we could do with them. Of course I ended up with sunflowers in honor of all of the ones I've grown here over the years.