Friday, January 30, 2009

A Few Good Men...

I had a chance to work on these guys last night and some this morning. Hopefully they will be all done this weekend. Then, naturally, they will land in the shop. My valentines made their way to a local, independent bookstore today... so happy that worked out! Have a great weekend.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Drawing Men in the Morning

One lucky lady in the midst of all these men :)
I had such a good time spending the morning drawing plenty of men! It's been a while, mostly I like to paint women... who knows why. Anyway I'm looking forward to painting these dudes later today and over the weekend. There are new woodblock print valentines in the shop now, check 'em out!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A Couple of New ACEOs

Here are a few little ladies I've finally finished... it's amazing how many did not turn out! Oh well, the paper is small, guess there's not that much lost but time. ACEOs are quite a challenge for me because they are so small (3.5 x 4.5") Anyway, I've many more to draw and paint. It feels so nice to get out the watercolors and paint on such a cold midwinter day... the warmth and brilliance of the wet paint on white paper lifts my spirits. We went to the local conservatory again and they had plenty of bulbs - daffodils and hyacinth... cyclamen, mums, tulips etc. It was truly a feast for winter-weary 'white out' eyes. (that could be the start of a poem! ha ha) Naturally, my camera was at home as we stopped there on a whim. But, next time I'll take photos. These ladies will soon land in my shop.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Afternoon Printing

Excuse the blur!

Hooray, I was able to print today for an unlimited period of time - which is unheard of in my life! These valentines turned out even better than I'd hoped. I did some printing on fabric too. Maybe they'll turn into quilt blocks or become lavender sachets... who knows. Black linen was close at hand so I tried it and really like it- it has a very different feel from the ivory book pages and old sheet music.
Speaking of hearts, tonight I watched the conclusion of Wuthering Heights on Masterpiece Theater... there's nothing like unrequited love...oh so good!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Valentines and Orcas

Crayon rubbing
The Carved Woodblock
Orca watercolor by my 5 year old son.
I just love the watercolor my son did at school yesterday and had to share it. Kids have really got 'it'! Here's a valentine I've been working on.... inspired by Scandinavian textiles... and probably some socks I used to wear as a child. I have a few more in the works and I'm anxious to finish carving so I can print!! The cards will eventually land in my etsy shop.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Quilting on a Historical Morning...

My daughter and I played and hand sewed while watching the inauguration yesterday... I found myself getting choked up as soon as I saw Obama walking down the platform waiting to be announced. What a day, I'm so glad I was able to watch it live. Hopefully, this quilt will be completed soon. I'd really like to hand quilt it, but don't think I'll be able to put in the time. (although it is not a bed quilt but 'throw size') Still not decided on that. I'd like to enter it in a quilt show that happens out on the Palouse in late August.
I'm still adding little bits here and there to make it look more special and finished. The shapes represent dark tunnels... and where they lead to... coming out from the darkness and discovering what's on the other side. I like the idea of tunnels, especially the ones that were blasted out of stone mountains. I've seen many of these in France and the US and am intrigued by the shape of it as you approach and exit. Being inside also creates an interesting 'viewfinder' to see the world through. Anyway, excuse the ramble!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Lady Sketches

A few days ago I did a bunch of quick paint sketches on big paper... planning on doing more paintings of ladies on wood. Guess this will be another series.! Usually I don't do them on paper first... but I'm trying to do more warm up exercises. If I had more time, I'd love to pour out my heart in a sketchbook but right now in mommyland... there's not enough time!!! Someday, though :)

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Winter Happiness

This morning at breakfast, I slipped these on... she still has her jammies on! Gotta love those little legs and feet!

My daughter's new ankle warmers.... didn't have enough left over yarn for longer leg warmers. But, these also double as wrist/hand warmers for moi! (who knew?) Sometimes experiments bring great rewards :)
My son and I had a valentine making party... he loves the glitter glue and I had to confiscate it after awhile because he was making 'glitter haystacks.' We are making 14 + 2 for the teacher and aide. He is very focused on making the envelopes... last year we made them out of newspaper, stamped with red hearts.

Finally I finished these socks for myself. These are my first cotton blend socks - usually I use superwash wool. Love the way these turned out! Happy weekend.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Yummy Yarn

No, this isn't yarn... but fabric needed to finish the linen quilt I nearly have completed. Just a few more squares to create. I'll post a photo soon.
Fall colors for my daughter's leg warmers... must get to work on these post-haste so she can wear them now! This particular yarn is magic and when knitted, looks patterned and a bit 'Fair Isle' - love it.
Yesterday I went to my fave local yarn shop to find some sock yarn for my daughter's leg warmers. While there, I was seduced by this fabulous Noro yarn. I just couldn't seem to leave the store without it! I'm going to make a vest ... I've made 2 before and hopefully the 3rd one will be exactly how I planned :)

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


Cal Champ... barely begun

Last night, I sketched out this lady on 'big paper' with watered down paint. I liked the pose but didn't have the patience for the hands... I need to do some hand studies, it's been too long since I've really drawn them! She's got these deep set, large kind of 'bulgy' eyes that I really like. I hope to capture them in a better way as I work through the painting. So, this is the California State Champion - Tennis. (Inspired by my grandmother as well as my father who both held the title - respectively- back in the day.)

I had a chance to work this morning on my new lady...I like the purple, my daughter's room is painted a few shades lighter. (painted by moi, 9 months pregnant and in a tizzy of nesting!) Anyway, I think it's a great shade - it's got a bit of yellow in it to neutralize and white with a hint of black. Really enjoying painting her!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Monday Monday

Wow, I've been listening to a lot of 'oldies' on the radio and it shows in my posts today! We've been so occupied lately building trains, high bridges and play-dough pizzas... and holding our cat I have not had much of a chance to get online. My sweet 14 year old cat suddenly got very sick... turns out he has lymphoma and won't last long which is tough to take.
Here are some paintings I worked on this weekend... the bottom 2 are still in process but getting closer to being done. The lady on top I just sketched out this am. I really felt like doing a face today and voila! Might paint her in the grisaille (spelling?) method if I have the patience for it :). Hope your Monday is going well.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Finishing up...

Finishing up a few of the small paintings I started in a fury around Thanksgiving time. The piano ladies... I still am thinking of a good title that will explain the story behind it. Think I need to sleep on it!
The first one is inspired by my imagination when I was a kid... a 'what if' kind of thing. I did not like all the rules in school, including no gum chewing, no running in the halls, that we all had to play baseball on Mondays, etc. So, what if everyone had to have the same haircut? The same sack lunch? What would it be like to live that way, hmmm. Funny how some crazy childhood thinking turned out to be not such crazy ponderings after all :) Thinking I may make their shirts longer so they're not floating.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

A Few More Drawings...French Inspired, of Course!

This one is unfinished (Doorway to Cezanne's Studio... Aix-en-Provence)
Antibes, France
Here are a few more I'm working on... I hope to get more finished and then add them to my etsy shop. (Hopefully by this weekend). No school again today... snow is melting and now flooding is a big problem. If only the streets would improve maybe life could resume. arg!

Monday, January 5, 2009

New Drawing

Antibes, France.

Well, with school cancelled and hubby gone back to work, I was still able to get some painting done today in between the snow shoveling! Tackling our lower deck and upper deck... should take some photos... the snow is really getting deep. Maybe drawing pictures of the South of France is my way of dealing with this heavy winter we're having... works for me! Happy Monday :)

Sunday, January 4, 2009

New ACEOs and a Beautiful Rotting Apple

Look at the pattern on this rotting apple... beautiful, no? I'm enchanted by the perfect oval that formed... and the little design inside it. Maybe a portrait would look even better inside that oval!

Kelsy Keeps her Face Towards the Sun


I spent a good part of Saturday afternoon painting my ACEOs (artist cards, editions and originials - 3.5 x 5.5"). Some I was happy with and others turned out to be rotten apples! I fear the last photo looks a bit like Angelina Jolie... which was not my mission at all. She was inspired by an old theater photo from the 1930s - I think she was playing Katherine from Wuthering Heights. Anyway, I added several to my shop this morning... check 'em out. I'm going to try to finish more today - as well as some ink drawings. But first, I have to shovel more snow - we're supposed to get between 8-15 inches overnight. Say it isn't so!

Friday, January 2, 2009

New Quilting Directions and Thread Painting Dabble

Thread painting

I dug out a quilt that had been started... ? about a year ago and thought I'd try using 'Wonder Under' to speed things along. (applique could take me a lifetime to complete at this point in my life!) I actually used my sewing machine for this. (I normally only sew by hand when making quilts -just an 'unplugged' kind of girl)

My mom talked me through how to go about thread painting on the phone and boom, I was off. (she really is a Svengali when it comes to sewing!) Next time I'll do it on ivory fabric... so hard to see on that grey cotton. I tried it on a few quilt blocks after a little practice. It's like driving without any brakes.... but I've learned you have to embrace that out of control feeling.