Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Photos of the finished painted box with cat designs



This little box is a gift for a friend who enjoys cats and bright yarns. I didn't have much of a design plan in mind as I started and pretty much just painted whatever came to mind on the cat shapes. I'm not that thrilled with the results but it was fun to work on and I think my friend will enjoy it anyway.

The border around the bottom of the box is supposed to be balls of variegated yarn unrolling playfully. I may come back to this idea sometime and develop it further, possibly try it on a chest large enough to store knitting and crochet supplies in.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Thanksgiving Card

This card is a fun combination of things I've been doing lately. It starts with a photo of a floral arrangement I made and a photo of a flower I painted. These are surrounded by card stock, marker and ink.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Envelope Art

Another envelope corner

Front corner of a different envelope.
Watercolor and Ink

Back of envelope in marker and ink.

Cat Box

You never know where your ideas will come from. This time I'd "found" an inspiration page that I'd put together from catalog clippings a couple of years ago for another project and decided to use that.

 This wooden box was given to me by a friend so it seemed like the perfect thing to paint on as a gift for another friend.

The small orange cat was inspired by some native american pottery designs.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Fall Flowers

I combined a photo of the flower arrangement I made with some drawings based on it into a card.

This is the flower I did on the envelope.

Here's just the drawing from that card.

This drawing is from another envelope. I plan to do a lot of this sort of thing up until Thanksgiving when I'll switch gears and move on to other subjects and materials. I haven't quite decided what it will be yet but I'm looking forward to the change.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Owl be seeing you

I'm not sure which is sillier, this drawing or the title on this post which was a play on the words of the Sinatra song playing in the background as I was working. Either way I'm hoping you'll enjoy it as much as I did.

Poinsettias on the mail

I'll bet you're wondering why you're seeing so many poinsettias drawn and painted on my envelopes these days. The answer is an easy one. This year one of the "forever" stamps for the holidays has a hideous picture of a poinsettia on it and I figured anything I draw or paint couldn't be much worse than that.

Yes, inspiration comes in many ways and I'm always ready to follow it wherever it takes me.

Front of envelope

Back of envelope

Monday, November 18, 2013

Birds, gray days and project plans

This picture catches a bit more activity at the feeders than usual. My camera isn't good enough to slow down the wing motion so you can see what was really going on but I think it's a good idea to take these pictures from time to time to see which species of birds show up at what times of the year.

I keep sorting through things in the parts of the dining room that I use as studio space. often my "finds" will dictate what I'm working on at any given time.

I've got all the floral things packed up to get more decorating done at the Senior Center so having those out of the way for a while will give me more space for other projects.

Of course the first thing I'll do is finish writing that letter while I finish my coffee and we'll see where things go from there.

Cats in the mail

 As you can see, cats are not a subject I'm used to drawing so I thought I'd take a playful approach and give it a try anyway.

This one's even more awkward but it's only the envelope so it won't matter much.
This went to an Aunt and gave me a bit of practice for the wooden box I'm painting for a cat loving friend.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Today's mail and a bit of hand sewing

As usual while sorting through things around here I stopped to write a letter. I'd written all around the drawings on the letter so I'm just showing you the corner of the envelope.

I'm turning this little piece of fabric into a napkin for when I have company to tea. It should go nicely with things here and I was pleased with the quality of my hand stitching which I had hoped would show up better when I scanned it. I don't do much hand sewing anymore so it was nice to see that I can still manage to get the stitches pretty even.

I did some floral arrangements yesterday and plan to start work on a painted box next. There's always something to do around herre and I feel like I'm making progress all of the time.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Found while sorting out the studio

This photo is about 10 years old and I don't even have most of these paintings or drawings anymore but it was an interesting moment in time when I was doing those knife painted flowers and experimenting with different types of paint (acrylic, oil, alkyds) and tools (painting knives, bits of plastic,wood, my hands, old silverware). It's nice to have seen so many of them displayed together.

It's headed out in the mail now. There's always someone who loves to get pictures or who finds the mail a welcome break in a difficult day. It didn't take long to put together and we've all enjoyed it, haven't we?

Friday, November 15, 2013

3 step poinsettia in watercolor pencil

1. Draw



Yes, this is another envelope corner. I couldn't resist going back and adding some leaves to it as well.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Button, button

A friend shared a jar of buttons with me this morning and I've had such fun "playing" with them on and off all day. I sewed a few on the shirt that needed them and then began to play with the idea of some Christmas designs to thank her and to share with others.

The first thing I began to do while working on projects was to sort and bag a lot of the buttons I'll be passing on to others as I pull out the ones that I really want.

 My goal with the buttons is the same as my goal with everything else. Use what I can and try lots of new ways to make the best of the things I do have and share the rest with anyone that might enjoy it.

This looks promising so I'll keep at it a while and see what happens.

Starting a Christmas Drawing

I started in this in watercolor pencil. I scanned it in at this point so you can see how much difference it makes whether you add ink and outline or not.

When I completed it I went to Zazzle to see how it would work as a repeat pattern on paper and fabric.

I'm having lots of fun with it on all sorts of products. It's amazing to see how the same image looks in an assortment of sizes, angles and arrangements.

I'm hoping others will like the way some of these have turned out and that I'll be able to write soon and let you know that there have been lots of sales of this simple image

Monday, November 11, 2013

Personalized Card Design

As I was cleaning off the worktable I "found" this little scrap of scrapbook paper and I thought I'd do some designs based on it to make a nice card out of it.

This was done in watercolor pencils and ink and was a fun diversion form cleaning and organizing.

Yes, I do plan to get back to work in there but have some floral projects and one painted box to get out of the way first.

There were also 2 crochet projects but I moved them into the other room so that I wouldn't get any paint or floral foam on them.

Julia's infinity scarf pattern

You can make this scarf in any yarn that you have, and in any stitch that you like, with or without a hook ( a lot of people do like to finger crochet). The only rule is to make your chain long enough to join and wrap around as many times as you'll want it to.

 white worsted weight yarn
size I crochet hook
64 inch long foundation chain
half double crochet stitch in the back loop

Join at the end of each round, chain 2 and start going around in the other direction so that you get ribbed look.

When you get it as wide as you want, join it , clip the yarn off about 8 inches away from the scarf. Pull it through the last loop then get a yarn needle and weave the loose end in so that it doesn't show.

Friday, November 8, 2013

From the Sketchbook to the Mailbox

 I start with a photo then grab my colored pencils and a pen. it gives me a chance to relax without worrying about the quality of the sketch or finished drawing...and it brightens up my letters to people while giving them an idea of the things I've been working on.

Today's sketchbook projects

I started with this which reworks an idea I painted back in 1996. I wanted to see how it would look in watercolor pencil and ink. (my original was in acrylics). I kind of like this lighter and brighter version. It's a nice change of pace.

I just finished this sunflower in watercolor pencil inspired by a photo I'd taken of the sunflowers I grew last summer.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Design update

I've been going through my stores on Zazzle and eliminating hundreds of products trying to make things easier to find and quicker to sort through.
The new products that excite me right now are scarves and lunchboxes. It will be interesting to see how some of my drawings and paintings look on them.
I'm eliminating a lot of my old images and getting lots of ideas for new ones.
I'm so excited about today's projects that I've got to stop writing about them and get back to doing them.
Stop by soon and take a look  Zazzle  .

The first snow of the season

 I took this picture from the front step where last nights snow is already beginning to melt. I'm looking at it as a gentle reminder that I'd better finish cleaning up the last of the fall leaves as soon as things melt down and dry up a bit. We mulch our leaves back into the lawn on most of the yard and in the few areas that we don't mulch we rake and fill the composter with them.

I at least managed to empty the rain barrel and tip it upside down in time. (They're expensive and left filled to freeze and thaw it wouldn't last long.) Yes, all of this seasons water went into the plants and trees.

 With bright sunshine like this our little dusting of snow won't last long although I'm happy to report that it did stay long enough to put us in the mood to bake a pie.

 Both of these shots were taken reaching over the top of the coffee machine to the wildlife area here where a lot of birds and things take shelter in the tangle of bushes and vines outside of my dining room window. There are mostly roses and grapes but I haven't hiked in there to find out what else is growing or living there these days.

I left this photo instead of cropping it so that you can see that I'm leaning over the machine and looking through the top part of the window where a fresh pot of coffee is steaming things up a bit and making things smell really wonderful.

 As usual, here are a couple of pictures of the bird feeders outside of my other dining room window( the one next to my work table)