Friday, April 16, 2010

105 - More Trees, Now with Perspective

My goal with this piece was to create a sense of depth. I'm really having fun with watercoloring.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

103 - Branching Out

I'm taking my first-ever watercolor class. Last night was the first meeting. It's very laid-back, more of a studio session than a formal class, but I enjoyed it immensely. The instructor gave great feedback and was very supportive. Here is what I painted last night. I'm particularly excited about the leaves on the ground! I need to learn (a lot) more about perspective in watercolor, because I don't think the perspective is particularly convincing in this piece. So that's a goal.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

97 - 102: The Anatomy of a Painting

Start with color

Add a sky and try for a meandering meadow. Not quite sure if my meadow is meandering or not, but hey, I made clouds!

Trees have trunks, so put a bunch of those in. Add some of that grass that grows near water.

Make some Happy Trees

Add more happy trees, and take a photo at a weird angle to be all artsy and stuff.

Voila! Add a corny frame from photo bucket and you are well on your way. You know, to making art.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Monday, April 5, 2010

93 - Christmas for Gypsy

We hired a neighbor to cut down a dead tree in the back yard that was tangling up the power lines. He removed the big branches, but we asked him to leave the twigs behind for Gypsy, whose greatest happiness on this earth is a good stick.

92 - Good Weather for Potting

91 - The View from Back Here

Power lines

Friday, April 2, 2010

Thursday, April 1, 2010

89 - Art Up Close

I've been experimenting with pastels. Instead of simply applying pastel to paper in the usual fashion, I snap off a small piece then crush it with a stone. I take these "crumbs", apply them to the paper, and work them in with my fingers. Using fixative to set the work, you can get amazing results. (The photo below is a small part of a larger piece in my Etsy shop.)

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

88 - Oh, hai

The days are finally long enough (and warm enough) to hang out on the deck as a family in the evenings. I think Gypsy approves.

Monday, March 29, 2010

84, 85, & 86 - She Blinded Me with Science!

On Saturday, we visited a local Science Museum to celebrate Meg's 30th birthday!

3-D String Art

A wee, baby dinosaur.


Thursday, March 25, 2010

83 - Storage Solution

I needed storage in my studio for oddly-shaped things - blank pads of paper, shipping materials, frames, etc. We had a wobbly bookcase which was missing the back panel, so we laid it on the side and re-adjusted the shelves. Brilliant!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

81 & 82: A New Medium

I decided to try my hand at watercolor. Actually, I've worked with watercolor in the past, but it's been a good 10 years. So I picked up a tiny water color set at Dick Blick Art Supply last weekend.

My first efforts have been the view from our back yard, because we have wonderful afternoon sunshine out there. The view is not glamorous, but it provides some good practice material. The wonderful thing about watercolor, when combined with sketching, it that it's wonderfully inexact. That's my kind of medium.

Friday, March 19, 2010

78 - What's the Message?

What's the message?

1) Make a picture of me next!
2) Put down the art supplies and play!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

76 - So Long, Winter

We knew yee all too well.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

75 - Where's the Sun?

Bunny hasn't been able to find much sunshine to nap in, so he's doing his best with the materials at hand.

Monday, March 15, 2010

74 - School Time

This is a piece I did on tracing paper, which, naturally, is quite thin. I love the effect on the slightly wavy paper, it really adds depth. I need to go back and fill in some trees or other background stuff, but for now, here it is.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

72 & 73 - The Trouble with Red

Red pastels are notoriously hard. Btw, when it comes to pastels, hard is bad. It tends to leave drag marks on the paper and sometimes even scratches.

But I was working on a piece where I wanted red and a lot of it.

So I snapped off a piece of red pastel and crushed it.

Then I scattered the crumbs on the piece and rubbed them in with my hand. Problem solved!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

70 - Playground

When we were kids, we didn't live near a playground, so we played in the cemetery that was just a block away. It didn't seem particularly strange to us, but upon reflection I suppose it was. We'd ride our Huffy bikes all throughout the twisting dirt roads. The cemetery is huge and confusing to navigate because the roads constantly fork and run in circles.

One of our favorite pastimes was to try and find "baby hill" which was a quiet, distant part of the cemetery reserved for children who had passed away quite young. We were extremely reverent around this space.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

69 - Angles

Taking a photo from an odd angle can really add interest. First we start with a relatively innocuous image (it's some sort of fireplace vent).

But when you get closer and peek around the corner with your camera - CREEPY AND SCARY! Which, you know, is a good thing.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

68 - Reflection

Dad's house, as seen in the reflection of a car in the driveway.

67 - The Fish

This weekend, we were driving through mid-Michigan when I spotted something unusual in a church parking lot. I yelled to my sister (who was driving), "GO BACK!" So she promptly pulled a U-turn (which we call a yoo-ey) and drove into the church lot.

So, what happens when you collect hundreds of empty laundry jugs and string them together?

You get THIS!

You can see the back end of our car over on the right - that gives you an idea of the magnitude of this thing. I don't know if the fish was a Jesus metaphor or simply an advertisement for their weekly fish fry.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Friday, March 5, 2010

65 - Joe's Gargage

We had dinner last night at Joe's Garage. All of the original art hung in the restaurant had a common theme, but I couldn't quite put my finger on what it was. Until Meg pointed out: each painting featured a manhole cover. Pure genius. Forgive the crappy iPhone photography - it does not do this art justice.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

64 - Rare Glimpse of Winter Maisey

Don't you hate it when you're all snuggled up in a blanket and your tail's sticking out?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

63 - Art Pants

On the weekends, I generally change into these pants to make art... can you tell?

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Monday, March 1, 2010

61 - Good Dog, Bad Dog

I've opened a shop at Etsy called Maiseycakes. Stop in if you like!

This piece is part of the "Good Dog, Bad Dog" series.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

60 - Mama's Girl

Wondering where Maisey has been? Under a blanket, that's where. She has a very short coat and even though she wears a sweater during the winter, she prefers to spend her evenings under a blanket, limiting photo ops.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

59 - Shut Eye

Gypsy catches a little shut eye while we watch Fargo.