Friday, June 10, 2016

Make Something Out of a Mess.

I wanted to try an abstract painting. 
I like many abstract paintings but I could not
tell anyone what makes a good abstract.  
"Artwork which takes liberties, altering for instance color and form in ways that are conspicuous, can be said to be partially abstract. Total abstraction bears no trace of any reference to anything recognizable."         (Wikipedia)

 It looks like it should be easy doesn't  it.
  All you have to do is splash some paint around 
in a pleasing manner.  
Easy Peasy. 

 A few years ago I made some collage pieces of an abstract nature.
That was fun. 
 Then I took one and made a pencil drawing.

From there I added some paint and ink and some textures, but the attractive arrangement of paint and textures I wished to create did not happen.  Unfortunately I did not take a photo of that mess before I cut it into pieces.

To the largest piece I added a vase and some flowers made of 
torn pieces of a colorful Easter newspaper add. 
The eye changed directions and gender, the spider
was removed and a nose and lips were added, 
 an indication of hair and then more texture. 
 This is a variation of abstract which I feel more comfortable with.
Paper Flowers submitted to 30 Faces in 30 Days
One more drawing for this week, done in pencil,
 submitted to 13 Goddesses.
The Egyptian cat goddess, Bast. 
Her first identity as Bast in the 2nd Dynasty (2890 BC)
was as a warrior goddess with the head of a lion.
 By  the 22nd Dynasty (c. 945–715 BC,
  she became known as Bastet the protector.

Linking up to Paint Party Friday

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Faces and Goddesses

Not much to say this week.  I have been involved in a number of group challenges that have kept me busy and the yard is too wet to do much gardening.

This is my interpretation of Hestia, the Greek goddess of the hearth and home.  This one took me longer than usual, lots of blending as it is done mostly in colored pencil. 

 Baba Yaga in Slavic folklore is a fearsome looking old woman who flies around in a mortar and wielding the pestle. She sometimes plays a maternal role and has associations with forest wildlife.  She may be helpful or she may hinder those who seek her out.  This one is done in ink stipple.


 Paper Flowers
A mixed media of collage, acrylic, gesso, Cray-Pas and pencil.

Linking up with  Paint Party Friday
and 13 Goddesses


I discovered a grapevine growing in my backyard.  Hopefully they are human edible and not hard and sour like most wild grapes in Texas.

So many unfortunate people here in the Houston area have lost everything they own due to the extremely heavy rains we have had for the last month.  I consider my self so very fortunate.  This is a brilliant orange and purple sunset after a heavy rain one day.  The photo does not do it justice.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

My Week in Review

Week Off

Only two offerings this week for Paint Party Friday.
This one for the theme of "Abundance" for Color Me Positive.
I used ball point pen and graphite pencil here except for her face.  Faces can be obtained with ball point but only in strong color.  I used oil pastels for her face and hand.

This is "Dawn".  She was made with Prismacolor pencils, gel pen and acrylic applied with a rubber stamp.
Linking today with Paint Party Friday



Very little work was accomplished this week.  I've been on vacation.  Yum, lunch at Mi Tierra in the old Market Square in San Antonio, Tx.  I love that city.  It has been one of my favorite places ever since I was a small child.  The heart of the city is the beautiful river walk and lush, green Brackenridge Park with its winding river, lush gardens and ancient oak trees.

Of course one must visit the Alamo no matter how many times one has seen it and I still love the zoo. 


San Antonio is a wonderful blend of the very old and the new.

I also accomplished one of my long time wishes, to go up in a helicopter.  It was just a short 45 second ride.  Left me wanting more.

Have a great and safe holiday weekend folks.  Come back next week.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Paint Party Friday

My Sketches

One of the pencil sketches from last week became my entry for the theme of "Wonder" on Color Me Positive.
I used Inktense spray watercolor inks with a paint brush.  I love the way they apply and the colors are so much brighter than watercolor. 

 This one is still a WIP.  I finally found a way to use the solvent with colored pencils to eliminate the grainy effect resulting from the paper texture.  A very small paper stick made for pencil blending works great.  I have great hopes for this one.  Keep my fingers crossed.  Often my visions do not look as good on paper as they do in my imagination. Does that happen to anyone?


Blick Art Supplies is sponsoring a contest.  Draw a portrait of your pet. Check out the  Blick Portrait Contest.  I drew our little long haired Dashund that crossed the rainbow bridge several years ago.  She was a rescue after the terrible hurricane Ike which hit us in 2008. We named her T'Ike. (usually known as Tike)  My husband was retired but I was still working and she was his best buddy. 

Some bits from nature this week. These are not professional photos.  Feel free to use them for paintings.

Dandelions in the park

 ...and a basking lizard

...  grapes and ginger flowers in my back yard.

Be sure to check out all the goodies at  Paint Party Friday

Happy Friday  
Dr Who the tenth Doctor minion 
ATC card

Saturday, May 14, 2016

My Drawing Board This Week

Paint Party Friday 

 I finished finally.  Though I see some shading that still needs to be done, it is pretty much done. I had some great suggestions for names but I remembered a book I read as a kid.  "Brighty of the Grand Canyon.  Therefore I decided to call my burro "Brighty".

Another item I have been working on is this armadillo.  

My first background attempt was disappointing so I cut the armadillo and foreground away from the background...  

and made a new background that was better planned.
I think I like it better.

Some sketches.  Maybe they will go further, and maybe not

For the Mixed Media Monthly challenge of butterflies and blooms, this is an ATC card


My beautiful roses and cards  from Mother's Day last Sunday. My two adorable grand kids added some of their art work.

Thanks for viewing. Have a great weekend and new week.

Friday, May 6, 2016

Paint Party Friday

 WIP Friday

Everything on my desk this week is unfinished.  Two more drawings for my  alphabet series.   I made another "A" for the colorful alphabet - a colorful armadillo. I don't know what to do with the background yet.  And then I made a pencil drawing with a collage for the pencil and color alphabet. "D" for doll. This one was made from a photo I took at a flea market. There is something compelling and spooky about these old dolls. And then there is  my little burro still waiting for his body.

 This is what I have done for my colorful alphabet.  Some of these are older paintings and some are new.  Still need an "A" which is on my drawing table now.
  And this is my pencil drawing alpha.  I love pencil and color combined.  Maybe this will be my "style".  Need a B and C for this one.

But wait!  I finished the doll and made a couple of little "quickies". Quickies for me take a minimum of two hours.  The caterpillar had two versions but I was just not pleased with the first one.  I  threw it away.  I almost never throw anything away. There is almost always something that can be done though perhaps not according to the original plan. So, I dug it out of the trash, changed day to night and put in some fireflies.  There, I like it better.  Do you throw away disappointing work?

      The bottom one is a watercolor of my grand children in my backyard.  I made it for  a Mothers Day card for my sister in law.  She is like a third grand mother to them.  And a Happy Mothers Day to everyone.  Even if your babies have fur, you are a mother to someone.Linking to Paint Party Friday


Saturday, April 30, 2016

Texas and the Paint Party

Remember the Alamo!


Last week end Hubby and I went to the annual reenactment of the Battle of San Jacinto.  Every April Texas history buffs, horsemen and reenactors gather at the San Jacinto monument located near the Houston Ship Channel where the actual site of the battle that ended the Texas battle for freedom from Mexico took place on April 21, 1836.  Cannons boomed, horses galloped and grown men dressed in frontier gear fired pop guns.  

 It was an interesting day with square dancers, Native American dancers and lots of banjo music and at the end of the day, a cool margarita and some enchiladas.  Perfect.

Here is what is on my desk this week. What Is On Your Workdesk Wednesday and in my art studio I had a helper, or at least a watcher. See her there peeking over the edge of the table?  She does not let me pet her very much but she loves to watch and follows me throughout the house.

 On my table you can see  a curious object decorated with artistic swirls. I found this at a resale shop.  It is a beatifully worked leather folder decorated with colored stones, a brass snake and a leather strap to tie it up.  Inside are pages of really nice buff colored paper that feels almost hand made.  I have no idea what I will do with it.  It is just too nice to scribble in but I simply could not resist it.  Any suggestions?

Here are my contributions to Paint Party Friday    Ya'll come on over and check us out.

I am embarking on a project, 100 Day Project. This is a project I read about on The Great Discontent - 100 Days Project  Using the alphabet as inspiration and beginning of course with A, I plan to make 26 small drawings or paintings based on each letter of the alphabet. This is my own personal challenge, I did not officially enter the 100 Days Project. I did cheat somewhat for the letter "C".  My painting for that day was ...disappointingLooking through my archives I found the "catfish" which fits the theme nicely.  So I did follow my rules of a drawing a day.  We will see what happens with the other 74 drawings...

I am also working on a larger piece using graphite pencil and colored  pencils. 

A burro standing at the edge of the Grand Canyon.  I have not decided on a name.   Does anyone have any ideas?

Visit my page at A Knack For Art and please "like" my page.  I almost have 100 likes.