Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Color Bouquet Grouping

These four 8x10's are a continuation of my fun from yesterday. I'm on a roll!

Monday, December 25, 2006

Color Bouquet

Christmas Eve dinner with family was a success, we all had fun being together, but it was a bit too much for my feet. So, today seemed like a good time to sit down and splash some paint. A good friend bartered some wonderful colors of Daniel Smith paint for me if I would help her with some computer tutoring and this is the result of the new paints. Thanks, Norma!

This was such fun that I think I will do a series of small ones to be matted to 8x10 size to sell at the next ArtChix sale in January.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Studio Build - Insulation

This morning the insulation was installed on the ceiling and exterior walls. Now we wait for the inspection of this before the wallboard can be installed. The construction company closes down operations between Christmas and New Years, so it will be over a week before that gets done, but that is okay. These guys deserve time with their families over the holidays, too.

At least it should be a bit warmer than it has been with some insulation providing a barrier. We have had a very cold house since the beginning of the build so I look forward to keeping some of the warmth inside.

From a Grandma Artist

Pardon my diversion from this being an art-related blog by including our Aubrey's Christmas photo. If this doesn't put you in the holiday spirit, nothing will!

Nothing much going on with the studio build, so preparations for Ms. Aubrey's visit continue here today. I know she is too young to eat three kinds of cookies, but I am exercising a Grandmother's perogative and baking them anyway.

Have a Merry Christmas all,

Aubrey's Grandma

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Latest SWAP painting

I belong to an online art group called SWAP (Sharing With Artist Partners) and we send a painting to another group member (secretly assigned by the group moderator) four times a year. This is my SWAP painting which I received this week. It was painted by a Phillipine artist, named Linda. I like the colors and compostion of this a lot, it looks very tropical. When the studio is finished I hope to have wall space for a gallery of my SWAP paintings, I think I have five or six now.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Roof Tiles and New Paint

Yesterday brought the near completion of the roof tiles over the studio. We were planning on having the entire house exterior painted by the builder when the job was completed, but the painters' schedule opened up so they began painting the old part of the house yesterday. We have the same color, but a satin finish instead of the flat. What a difference that makes! No more work now until Monday to finish up the roof, continue with the exterior painting and then wait for the next inspection.
Remote computer test

Friday, December 08, 2006

Monument Valley Demo

This is the second of my class demo paintings that I am submitting here today. I submit them not because they are necessarily worthy of display, but rather that I am showing my students who peek in here how I tried to refine them after class. I intended to show how to illustrate the depth of field in a landscape painting by value shifts (light to dark as you move forward), temperature shifts (cool to warm as you move forward), and size shifts (smallest in back, largest in front). I missed a bit on the temperature shifts in that I ended up with a cooler foreground foliage clump than I intended and the middle ground butte could have been warmer. But, I think the students for the most part "got it" and their paintings showed better shifts than mine! Onward and upward. My next painting will be a floral that I have been waiting to paint, we'll see how that turns out.

Mission Bougainvilleas

Today I am finishing and refining a few of my watercolor class demo paintings. This one I chose because I liked the composition and how it demonstrates dappled shadows, the suggestion of bricks and mass foliage techniques. I had everyone use masking fluid for the flower clusters and wish I had shown them how to do them without the masking. I plan to redo this one, but use a stucco-walled mission and do the bougainvilleas without the masking. Next class, new approach. But, I still like the composition on this and learned a lot myself when doing it. I still think that teaching watercolor helps me learn more than ever before because I have to organize my thoughts and break a painting down into logical steps instead of just diving in and splashing paint around.

Most of my demo paintings are less than successful because of trying to hurry them through a three-hour class, but most can be salvaged to some degree.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Studio Build Electrical and Pre-Stucco

Well, today brought many changes to room addition. The electrical lines have all been run inside. The painters arrived to wash down the old part of the house and prepare it for painting, awaiting the completion of the stucco for the new part to paint that part of the house exterior. The stucco prep is almost finished today, too. Lots happened! It shouldn't be so cold inside the house tonight since so much of the cracks and crevices have been sealed with the foam insulation, should be much better anyway. More to follow tomorrow night!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

New Aubrey Photo

Since the building inspection won't happen until tomorrow and I won't have any progress photos until after that, I decided to share one of the latest Aubrey photos. Apparently, she mimicks what she sees now and they caught her with this funny face. We will have her here with us starting December 22nd for a few days, I can hardly wait!

My latest artwork consists of printing more cards and prints as I prepare for the next ArtChix art show, December 16 and 17. We had a successful show in November and will hope for the same. prior to Christmas.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

The roof is ready for tiles

The roof is ready now for the roof tiles. Hopefully, the inspector will be here on Monday, then the roof tiles can go on. We are thankful for the warmer temperatures currently. It has been cold in the house with this open space without insulation.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Becoming One with the Studio

We now have outside wall windows and the addition has officially become one with our house...today they opened up the wall that will form the L-shaped room with the addition and framed in the entry from French doors through the family room. It is difficult to get a decent camera shot to show the room in its entirety, but it looks to be a nice size to me right now. Next is the inspection before any more work is done.

I have started another Canyon de Chelly painting and will be posting it here when finished. While all of this has been going on I have been able to paint some, but my art things are in about three different rooms and the garage. No matter, I can paint almost anywhere!

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

After an almost one-week delay after the wrong trusses were delivered, followed by the long holiday weekend, we now have an official roof over the studio. Hopefully, tomorrow they will move the windows to the new outside wall and that will be the beginning of the wall demolition of the family room and bedroom. We are progressing!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Status quo

No photos today. The awaited trusses were delivered but, alas, were built with the wrong pitch. So, a new order went in and we are all hoping for next Monday for them to be delivered. Due to the holiday week this is all okay with us!

I hope everyone will have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 20, 2006

Pears in a Silver Bowl

This is the finished demo painting I started for the Thursday Watercolor II class. It is interesting to see how everyone interprets the same reference photo, so I am looking forward to our next class.

Friday, November 17, 2006

My studio will have walls! The framing for the outside perimeter is finished, awaiting Monday's delivery of the trusses for the roof. They put back in temporarily the cutouts for the windows for support, my studio room will actually have windows, too. Those will be the same ones that are currently on the outside wall. Onward and upward!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Pot on Satin

This is my demo painting I did during the Watercolor I class yesterday afternoon. I chose this as a simple shape that would enable me to demonstrate the importance of modeling to make objects look three-dimensional. After painting so many pears to demonstrate this principle, I chose to change the subject and do a pot! The class did very well considering they are in the beginning class. I was very happy with their results.

In doing a self-critique on this, I recognize there are some problem areas, but considering my two and one-half hour time spent on it, I think it did demonstrate what I hope for and am not too bothered by the flaws. I want to do another, probably a half-sheet, in blue and rust colors. Another day, another time!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Framing Day One

Today they finished the wall demo and will return tomorrow to begin working on the trusses and walls framing. This is beginning to get exciting!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

It's Getting Worse!

At this point, after they stripped away all the stucco and part of the roof tiles, the back of our house definitely looks the worse for wear. But, the floor was poured and they will start tomorrow with the actual framing. This is going very rapidly at this point.

I'll keep everyone posted with progress photos as it goes along.

Return From Zion

We returned from my Zion workshop last night to find the busy studio builders have been preparing for the concrete pour this morning. Lots going on! Photos to follow later today.

I had a wonderful time at the workshop. Except for one day of cold, cloudy conditions the weather was beautiful. Here are two of the paintings I did while there. Painting en plein air is not my forte, but I am getting more tolerant of those conditions and enjoyed being out there, painting.

The focus of the workshop was exporing the fluidity of watercolors and letting the water push the colors together on the paper. I punched up my color choices and had fun adding colors I normally don't use (manganese blue, for one).

Sign me tired, but satisfied, from a good workshop experience in a beautiful setting...Zion National Park.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

The Studio - Day One

The permits came through much earlier than expected, so the builders started digging the footings today, big surprise! Now, the fun begins. As soon as we return from our Zion trip, we have to clear out the art room and half of the family room, we had started sorting through things, now we have to get down to the nitty-gritty since they have started. Exciting, but tiring.

I'll keep posting photos of the build as progress is made. The room will be 8'6" x 25'7".....all for my art! I can hardly wait. Lots has to happen before then, though, so I will try to be patient.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

I am beginning preparations for my Zion workshop with Carl Purcell next week. This is always a highlight of my artistic year, it will be my third Fall Workshop with Carl in Zion National Park. Carl is a wonderful instructor and demonstrates his magical brushwork for three days in this marvelous setting. What a treat! I have also registered and been accepted for his March workshop in Zion. Spring is the only season we have not visited Zion, so I look forward to that as well. Hopefully, the room addition project will be finished by then!

If anyone needs reference photos of Zion, I have thousands! Just contact me and I will share.

I am teaching my first Watercolor II class of the season this afternoon. Should be fun....I usually have fun anyway!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Tear down and pack away

Lots going on today to get ready to tear down my art room and get ready for the building to start. The permit-gathering continues, our application is now in the hands of the City of Surprise....I hope they are kind!

For the duration of the build, my work table will live in the breakfast nook. Our home will look disorganized and strange for the duration of the build, with lots of things out of place, but it will hopefully be worth it in the end. Of course, I have Thanksgiving (with dinner guests), Christmas (with family here), two Art Chix sales, teaching watercolor classes both at the Art Club and here at the house, etc. going on during this build, shows good planning, huh? It will be a test of patience, but I am keeping my "eye on the prize" and know I will enjoy having a nice art studio in the end.

My first Watercolor II class starts Thursday, I will post whatever we are working on in the classes as they happen. My demo paintings never turn out to be masterpieces, but it is only fair to include them in a blog since that is the purpose of my blog, to share what is happening in my art world.

Carry on!

Friday, October 27, 2006


This is a painting I did from a photo provided for members of the Watercolor Workshop online. Doris is also a member and her husband had taken this photo and she thought it worthy of sharing with the group. Thank you Doris!

Since I have been trying to loosen up a bit in my style, this was a step back to the more detailed, tight style but it was a fun step back! Isn't he/she (?) pretty? I just couldn't resist this flirtatious pose.

I painted this as a gift for a friend, I hope it will be enjoyed as much as I enjoyed painting it.

Magnolia in Crystal Demo - Final

This is the final version of my magnolia in crystal demo. I would like to do this in a half sheet size and with warmer, richer colors next time. I like the composition and thank Char of WetCanvas for her demo on this flower. Next time I will also try to avoid the use of masking fluid as I dislike the hard edges when the masking is removed.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

I have gotten my magnolia in crystal bowl demo by Char of WetCanvas up to this point and am awaiting critiques from one of my groups before continuing. It has been fun so far, but I find I strayed from Char's original drawing somewhat. We'll see if I strayed too far! I am using my new Pelikan pan paints as a trial on this so I can see if I want to tuck it into my plein air setup. I need to add more darks and soften some of the petal edges a bit.

After visiting with our grandbaby again this last weekend I have more reference photos that have me all inspired to do another portrait. So many ideas, so little time!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

I added a few more darks to this and will consider it finished for now. I have printed a tutorial demo painting from WetCanvas of a magnolia in a crystal vase that I am excited to start so that will be my next project. Lots of closet cleaning, etc. to get ready for the remodel that has to be done first, but I will have it sketched on the watercolor paper so I can sneak a few minutes here and there and get started on it.

Friday, October 13, 2006

I painted with the Thursday afternoon group at SCG Art Club yesterday and managed to get a good start on this sepia garlic painting. My friend, Carol (Dabs) Holt from the online Watercolor Workshop did this painting a few years ago and gave me permission to copy it. She got hooked on sepia about the same time I did. I am finally getting around to trying this for my own kitchen. I like the way the bulbs are sort of "emerging" from the shadows. I need to add more darks, but it is getting there.

Tomorrow is the SCG Art Club's open house during the Oktoberfest festival. I will be selling raffle tickets all day and, hopefully, selling lots of my paintings!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

I am now testing my retention of the right steps to get back to the necessary pages to post to my blog site and add images. If I don't "practice" I will not do it correctly the next time!

This is a recent portrait I did of our granddaughter, Aubrey. I would very much like to become proficient in portraiture, and our precious Aubrey seems like such a worthwhile subject to practice with, in addition I can add more paintings to my Grandmother's Gallery.

Blog construction ongoing here! I am learning, slowly, how to upload photos and comments to my blog site, patience and time required! Next, I will do more design work on my blog homepage.

This is my most recent completed painting, it is a half-sheet size and is still on the board, awaiting my decision that it is truly completed. It is titled "Tumacacori Granary". We visited Tumacacori in southern Arizona this past Spring and it was so old and picturesque. This is all that remains of the granary, they stored their corn, beans and squash seeds in the jars on the left; as well, I assume, as in jars on those steps in the center of the room. The shadows and light vs. dark value changes were striking when we were there and I knew I had to do at least one painting of that.

My membership in an online critique group has been invaluable for helping me to see needed changes.

This is my first posting for my new blog. Testing 1, 2, 3, 4!