Thursday, December 31, 2009

Florida Mountains

After the Tuesday morning snowfall, we waited for the roads to clear and drove up into the nearby Florida Mountains. The lighting on these mountains was very dramatic at that time, and changed from being in the clouds to being in the glistening snow rapidly. This shot reminded me of being in Alaska or what the Alps must look like, although I am sure there would have been much deeper snow!

This is a nine-shot panorama of this range. We drove into the Spring Canyon part which is a pass to Rockhound State Park, Spring Canyon, which goes through the left side in this photo and up to about the 5,000 foot elevations. There was more snow there and there were families having snowball fights, etc. while we were there. It was a great excursion for us, who rarely see snow!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Winter Wonderland?

We awoke this morning to this...snow! It had been predicted for overnight but when we went to bed last night the skies were clear so we thought it would be a false alarm. But, we got about 2 inches before the temps changed it to a light rain so it won't last too long here at the lower levels. if the roads aren't too bad this afternoon we may try to get some photo ops at the nearby mountains.

This was the first time our motorhome has been in snow. Thankfully, we have lots of propane to run the furnace, at night it dips down below 30 degrees.

Two of these photo files were corrupted when resizing so I don't know what that funky stuff is along the bottom, but won't worry about it now, you can still see the snow on the prickly pear cactus!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Deming, NM

We are enjoying a Winter Getaway vacation at this time. We headed East on I-10 yesterday and came to our favorite Deming RV park - 81 Palms. I drove for the last part of the trip and, while driving, noticed the reflection of our rig in the back of this shiny (though somewhat battered) semi in front of us. I asked Tom to grab my camera and take photos of this, but I had the wrong lens on it so you can't see it as clearly as I had hoped, but we are there! On my honor, I had nothing to do with the right side of that rear door, it really was beat up.

As I am typing this, it is now after sunrise and 30 degrees outside. Thankfully, we had the converter replaced in the motorhome and are toasty warm inside. I did have to run outside for a few quick sunrise photos, though. They are predicting a possible 1-inch of snow after midnight tonight and with the clouds and temps right now, I can believe it. I rarely can take snow photos, so that might be interesting...cold, but interesting!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Sandy's Tree Ornaments - Final

I finished this last week, but had such a busy weekend that I couldn't get it uploaded to here. I like this better now with the added pine needles and a few details tweaked here and there.

Happy Holidays to all of you in Blogdom!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Operation Warmheart

I wish to announce some exciting news. I belong to the Sun City Grand Art Club, as well as to one of their sub-groups called Grand Artist Jewelry. This Grand Artist Jewelry group has taken on a holiday service project to raise money for Operation Warmheart. This is a charity sponsored by the Luke Air Force Base First Sergeants, they raise money to assist deployed military and their families. This includes providing food, emergency shelter, airline tickets for the family of a severely injured airman, and many other worthy services.

As artisan jewelers, we have offered many hand-made pieces for sale today, Friday the 18th, at the Concierge desk at Sun City Grand's Sonoran Plaza. This sale will run from 8:00-4:00 today. The Concierge desk is across from Zuni's, where you will find lovely pieces of hand-wrought jewelry. There will be pieces that will be for sale, with 100% going to this worthy charity and others with percentages of the sales going to Operation Warmheart.

After today's fund drive with jewelry sales, I will also be involved in an ArtChix sale at the Sun City Grand Art Club. I will carry over my participation in today's sale benefiting Operation Warmheart where I will have designated pieces available for sale at my table at the sale. I will also accept donation to the cause.

I offer credit card convenience at my table, so if you would like to leave a donation it would be appreciated by so many!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Sunrise Today

On the way to an early-morning appointment we witnessed another glorious sunrise. We were too late at that point to catch the rosy glow of sunrise, but this golden glow wasn't bad! I love mornings where there are clouds above the horizon to reflect the light and glow of a sunrise.

I have not gotten back to my painting to make the suggested changes yet, will probably just have to wait until the watercolor session tomorrow afternoon. I'll start another Yupo painting then, too. I also am getting ready for another ArtChix sale this weekend so life sure gets busy some weeks.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Sandy's Tree

I had planned on posting this today as the final painting, but after seeing the photo on the PC screen decided it needed some more tweaking. I mentioned earlier that I would be working on a study of one of Sandy Maudlin's paintings on Yupo of this subject. I did not copy her excellent composition of this; but, rather, added the same elements so I could see if I could replicate them. Her Christmas ornaments were as they should be, mine are more separate in a less pleasing way, but served my purpose for this study.

I took the Yupo and paints to my Thursday afternoon watercolor group at the Art Club and just started playing yesterday. This was such a great afternoon of playing with paint and banter with long-time artist buddies! Some days just happen to be wonderful get-togethers, although any time we can get together and paint is never bad!

I am starting to lean toward Yupo, every time I try to use it it excites me more! The vibrant colors, the ease of lifting highlights, it all makes sense to me. Now, if I could just attend one of Sandy's workshops to get those pesky techniques down, I would be thrilled! Sandy...make a DVD?!!!!

ASAP, I will finish those bare limbs I left so unartfully done on the upper left and add a few more Christmas light sparkles. I truly enjoyed working on this and promise Sandy to not use it for profit (other than adding more skills to my skill bank and the enjoyment I had studying her painting!). Thanks Sandy for inspiring me to try this painting!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Sunrise Spectacular

We had several early-morning errands to run yesterday morning so headed out just as the sun was coming up. It is so wonderful to have a good, purse-sized digital camera with me at all times so I don't miss shooting these spontaneous moments. We have had quite a few cloudy-sky days lately and these make for fantastic sunrises. It is during mornings like this that I am grateful that I can't seem to sleep late, this is a blessing and a curse!

One of our errands was to the recycling center, so pardon the fence and nearby rooftops but that is where we were at this point of the sunrise. Plus, we were being green! Before we left our community I tried shooting the sunrise through the saguaro cactus and mesquite trees at the entrance, but since this is a new camera for me I wasn't letting it focus before shooting the photo and they were all blurry. Drat! But, you take 'em when you can get 'em so you get to see roof tops and recycle bins.

As we were driving through Sun City West the rosy glow was being replaced by this golden glow. Sun City West is recognizable by the thousands of palm trees there, they look nice in silhouette.

This afternoon I will paint with my watercolor buds so will hopefully have something painted to show tomorrow. I am planning on painting on Yupo, so no guarantees! One of the monthly projects for the Watercolor Workshop is something shiny for the holidays, we'll see what I create on Yupo. Yesterday's post by Sandy Maudlin showed all of her past Yupo paintings, all were masterfully painted, and it inspired me to bring out the Yupo again. I plan on doing something like her Christmas tree/ornament paintings, I have learned so much just by studying her style on Yupo and trying to replicate some of the techniques she uses. She truly is a masterful artist!

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Two Turkeys

Very little blog posting has been going on around here for the last week. I was either preparing for, or enjoying, the visits of our sons and their families over the Thanksgiving holiday. When I knew Aubrey would be here, she and I planned on a painting session and a beading session to further explore our creativity together. I drew simple (coloring book style) turkeys onto watercolor paper) and set out the paints to let her do whatever with. As you can see, her interpretation of a turkey was one of a black one.

I asked her what happened to the turkeys face and wattle, she replied "they are under the paint"! I guess that says it all when it comes to artistic license. In critiquing our work, Aubrey's treatment of the edgers of the feathers does make for more realistic feathers!

Aubrey's best friend during this visit was Destiny, our step-granddaughter. She took a more mature, careful approach to her turkey and I realize now that I did not get a photo of hers, but it was magnificent! Aubrey's Mama, Christine, joined us for awhile and it was an excellent session.