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Leafy Sea Dragon (Still in progress)

Hello Friends,

Well, yesterday I worked on this for a couple of hours or so, but this is as far as I got. I think this one is going to take a while!

I hope everyone is enjoying your Memorial Day weekend. The weather is nice here today. Stay safe everyone!

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug!  🙂

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Bull Shark Pencil Drawing

Hello Friends,

Last night I decided to finish the pencil drawing I started last week of this bull shark. It has appeared here already but without all of the sea foliage and shadow. I didn’t do it exactly like the photo in the book called Creatures of the Deep by Erich Hoyt, but it is similar. I think the next couple of pencil drawings I plan to do are of a viperfish and anglerfish. If you’ve never seen them, look them up. They are pretty scary looking!

I have learned that after doing pencil drawings like this, I have to rest my arm. Once I start working on something in the evening, I find myself still drawing hours later I guess because I am somewhat of a perfectionist. 😉

Anyway, today I may get back to the leafy sea dragon painting if I can get the colors mixed the way I want them. Painting is actually easier on my arm than drawing but I really love both!!

I haven’t prepared the walls in the spare bedroom for painting yet. I am not sure if I should take on that project right now. The walls are still a nice blue color and we still have the paint so I may must touch it up. I do want to start hanging my sea creatures, although I’m not sure I want to invest in framing everything. So I need to figure out something to do with the pencil drawings.

I hope everyone is having a great week! I had to break up some potential Wompus and Brownie snarls yesterday. Wompus growls at Brownie, and sometimes Brownie barks at her. But I think they are getting used to being in the same room together when I am in here working.

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug!  🙂

Leafy Sea Dragon Painting in Progress!

Hello Friends,

Well, I have FINALLY started my leafy sea dragon painting. I usually like to do the background first, but I will still be adding to it a little after I paint the sea dragon.

It has been a nice cool and quiet morning here today. I woke up before 6:30 which was perfect for sitting out in the backyard to have my coffee and read some. My husband went out of town for the night last night and will be back this evening. My daughter is at work, so I decided today was a great day to start this painting!

I put on some music – George Benson and then Dire Straits. I haven’t painted at my desk in so long I forgot how great it feels! I just really want to get done with this time-consuming writing class so I can paint more!!

I am going to go exercise now and read while I’m on my stationary bike. My feet have been a little swollen this week because of the changes in weather and my arthritis. I also tried to find a new pair of tennis shoes yesterday, but that was an unsuccessful trip. My “bike shoes” are wearing out which also contributes a little to my feet hurting. So I have to keep looking for the kind I need. However, I did get to have a great lunch with my friend, Jen! So the trip to town was great!

I hope everyone is doing well this week. I am enjoying this springtime weather! I hope it lasts longer this year before the heat wave hits for the summer. I just saw a couple of quail strutting through the front yard (my desk faces the windows) and they are so CUTE! Well, that’s all for now.

Have a wonderful day and give someone you love a big hug!  🙂

 

Wompus Waving!

Hello Friends,

Today I am sharing something out of the ordinary. Our son’s cat, Wompus, was in the kitchen window trying to help me with dishes this morning. But our dog, Brownie, chased her into the spare bedroom, so I closed the door. That’s where I keep her at night with the door shut, and that’s where all of her stuff is.

Anyway, I finished dishes, then was pretreating some laundry when I noticed Wompus’s little paws coming out from under the door. So I had to film her! Hopefully, you can hear her purrs, too.

She is quite a character. I think she is competing with our dog to see who is really “queen” of the house now. Our son warned us she might try to take over. But I just can’t keep her cooped up all the time, so I let her wander, especially while Brownie is asleep, which is most of the day anyway.

I never thought I would become attached to a cat, but she is pretty funny and irresistible. She nuzzles me a lot and loves to play with ribbon. But she still doesn’t sit with me in a chair. Go figure. However, she did just walk across my keyboard as I was typing this! Crazy cat.

Also, here’s a shark graphite drawing I have been working on the last couple of nights. Forgive me, but I have not gotten my paint colors figured out for my leafy sea dragon yet. So I haven’t started it. Is the suspense killing you? Probably not, but as they say in recovery groups I’ve been to in the past, “keep coming back.”

Here is the new shark pencil drawing so far. As you can see, I need to darken it in a lot of places. Plus I want to put the sea floor in that is below it.

I also have been spending this morning reading for my next assignment in my writing class. I need to come up with three ideas for stories and/or articles. I have several article ideas and a couple of story ones, but now I have to outline them and write a synopsis for each story. Plus I have to do marketing research for potential places to submit the work if I were going to do that. So back to work!

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug! 🙂

 

Manta Ray Pencil Drawing

Hello Friends,

Well, I still haven’t gotten back to my leafy sea dragon yet, but that will be next. In the meantime, I thought you might want to see a sketch of how massive the manta ray is in comparison with this human in the ocean.  Isn’t it amazing? They have a “wingspan” of up to 22 feet!

What is even better about them is that they known to be friendly! When I showed this to my daughter, she said it was terrifying. Honestly, I would be in complete awe if I was a diver and was this close to a manta ray.  Wow, wouldn’t that be a great experience? I think so, but I realize some people don’t love the ocean as much as I do.

I hope those of you who celebrated Mother’s Day were blessed. My daughter took me to Turtle Bay and out to eat at a mongolian barbecue place. My husband opted to stay home and let us have some mother/daughter time. She works so much now, it was nice to go out together.

I have come up with one idea for one of my stories. I intended on starting it today, but I want to finish the reading first. I did jot down my idea, though. So there’s that.

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug.  🙂

 

Jellyfish #1

Hello Friends,

This is my first jellyfish watercolor sketch.  I say sketch, because I don’t use my best paper for sketches.  I have found the paper quality makes a difference for me, but maybe that isn’t true for all artists.

Anyway, I found a picture of this type of jellyfish in a book called Creatures of the Deep, by Erich Hoyt, at the library.  On page 54 in a margin note he says, “A very deepwater scyphozoan jellyfish (Periphylla periphylla) provides an intensely bioluminescent example of gigantism. The conspicuous medusa ranges up to 20 inches (50 cm) in diameter, which reverses the trend toward decreasing size at depth.”

In the book, the photo’s background is black because the jellyfish is in such deep waters. I changed the background color for my painting. I also need to work on getting it to look more luminescent which is the hardest part!

I have almost finished drawing my leafy sea dragon on the watercolor paper (the better quality) but haven’t begun painting it yet. It might be awhile before that is done.

I hope everyone has had a good week. I got positive feedback from my instructor on my fiction story.  So I am moving on to Assignment Eight. But we have a busy weekend ahead so I probably won’t start it until Monday.

Tomorrow is our monthly Writers Forum meeting, and Sunday our daughter wants to take me out to dinner and go to Turtle Bay for Mother’s Day. She is excited because she “actually has money” this year to do something!  She’s always been so thoughtful. She is working ten hour days for awhile and will have Fridays off except for today because she had to go in to finish her super grading stuff. She is almost ready to promote to the next level!

We heard from our son and he is doing well. He loves the backcountry and his crew. We got his letter in the mail yesterday which was a nice surprise. That was his second letter. In his first one, he mainly asked for some guitar chords and lyrics of a few songs he likes. Apparently someone brought a guitar there! He loves the quiet and the person who leads their physical training in the mornings is teaching them yoga which he likes, too, apparently. So I’m glad he is really enjoying himself.

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug!  🙂

 

 

 

What is a Brush Drawing?

This is informative! Check it out.

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug! 🙂

Rebecca Art Tutor

On my courses I teach drawing and painting in distinct blocks of time, so there is five weeks on drawing before moving onto painting.  The problem with this is that it can subconsciously teach learners that drawing and painting are different activities when they are very closely linked to  one another.  Brush ‘drawing’ is one way of communicating to learners that you can ‘draw’ when you paint.  A brush painting is ‘drawing’ with paint or ink and a brush.  A true brush drawing is done in line (that means the paint is not watered down or blended so the line is kept just like a line ‘drawing’.  There is no tonal information in a brush drawing.

A brush ‘drawing’ is drawing with a paintbrush.

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SUICIDE ANNIVERSARY

Hello Friends,

I don’t normally do this, but today I was reminded that last year on this day, my brother committed suicide.  So I am going to re-post the post I wrote last year for any who may have never seen it.

May is Mental Health Awareness month.  If you are feeling lonely, discouraged, or severely depressed, call someone…please.

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug!  🙂

 

Hello Friends,

I have been feeling a little reluctant to write about this, but honestly, I don’t see how I can NOT write about it.  This will be long; bear with me, please.

On the morning of May 5th, 2017, I learned that one of my brothers committed suicide on May 4th. In a way, I wasn’t surprised when I thought back on the last time I had spoken with him.  He called me out of the blue about a month before this and asked me if I knew where his daughter was.  I thought this was a strange question since I have not seen her since she was three years old!  She and her mom left California in the early ’80’s when her mom and my brother divorced.  Anyway, I asked him why he needed to find her.  I asked him if he was sick.  He said he wasn’t sick, but he couldn’t hardly walk anymore. He said he wanted her to be able to have all of his part of the financial investments that our parents left us “just in case something happens to me.”  In the back of my mind I had a flash of what he may have been planning.  However, I did not ask him if he was feeling suicidal.  I wish I had.   I was actually surprised that he even called me.

My brother and I had a very rocky relationship for most of our lives.  I never really understood why.  I am the youngest.  He was the middle sibling.  We were four and a half years apart.  He would have been 61 this July.  He always seemed closer to our other brother.  However, throughout our lives we all really went our separate ways.  The closest I ever felt to either of them was when we went through the death of our mother in 2006.  Our father died three years later.  So our eldest brother had to handle all of the inheritance stuff.  It was a very stressful time for all of us.  Since then, we have all lived separately; my oldest brother left the area and my other brother and I never knew where he was until about three years ago.

That was when my middle brother decided to call me and apologize for everything he had ever done to hurt me.  He was crying and truly sorry.  This was something I had been praying for since 1987 when God had turned my life around.  I had tried many times to make amends with him, but he was just not ready.  Needless to say, I was thankful for that call.  I told him I had forgiven him many years ago and had been praying we might be able to have that conversation someday.  I told him I had always wanted to know him and I loved him.  I asked him if we could just start to have a relationship then, but he said he didn’t want to.  He was addicted to drugs and couldn’t get clean.  He was living in a trailer park where he had been for the last 20 years.  He didn’t know how to change, and he didn’t ask anyone for help that I know of.  I felt helpless, but I let him be.  I called him a few times just to see how he was doing, but he just didn’t know how to connect with me.

I believe he suffered from mental illness his whole life; most likely anxiety and depression, just as I have since I was at least 15.  Looking back on my childhood, I now believe my dad suffered from depression and this was why he drank.  I also think my mom had anxiety issues not just because of his drinking, but because of her own chemical make-up.  She was always worrying about everything and everyone.

I went through my drug and alcohol abuse days from about 1980 to 1987.  That was the year I quit everything and got help through counseling and an ACA (adult children of alcoholics) meeting every week for a couple of years. However, both of my brothers kept using drugs and alcohol for the rest of their lives.  My brother who died was hurt on a job many years ago and was getting pain medicine through the veterans hospital.  He was in the Navy for four years when he was right out of high school.   Apparently, though, his back became so bad, he could hardly walk anymore.  I believe that he just chose to die to escape the pain that was consuming him.

I have been that low many, many times myself emotionally.  However, I am thankful to have a loving husband and two children who love me and would never ever want me to make that choice just to escape any pain I may go through in my life.  It doesn’t solve anything, and it leaves those whom the person left behind in shock, angry, and sad.

When I learned of my brother’s suicide, I was definitely shocked.  Then I was angry for a few days. Then I had to begin dealing with the aftermath of what would happen to him and his stuff.  At the time I didn’t have a clue as to where his daughter was.  Then his best friend found my brother’s ex-wife’s phone number.  She was contacted and then my niece was.  Yesterday I spent most of the day on the phone with my 37-year-old niece whom I do not even know.  It was strange, but good.

Hopefully, just getting in touch with her will be the blessing that comes out of his sad choice.  My brother and his daughter were estranged from each other for most of their lives as well.  I always felt sad about that, but hopefully she and I can build a relationship with one another now even though we live very far apart.

To this day I have no clue as to where my other brother lives.  We became estranged after our parents were both gone eight years ago.  He left the area and has never wanted to come back. However, our brother who died did have a best friend who knew where our oldest brother was.  So the same month that my brother called and apologized to me, he also went and found our other brother to make amends with him as well.  However, I have no way to find our eldest brother to try and do the same.  He is living off the grid which is what he always wanted.

I know this has been a very long post; if you stayed with me, thank you.  I wrote this to encourage anyone who is thinking about suicide or knows anyone who is, to tell you to please reach out for help.  There is lots of help to be found!  First, try to talk to someone you know.  If that doesn’t help, call a local suicide hotline.  Or call 1-800-273-8255.  This is the number for Suicide Prevention Services of America.  Their website is http://www.spsamerica.org if you want more information.  I have never used their services, but I am sure there would be someone there to talk to.

Well, friends, I am definitely going to be reaching out for some help myself in dealing with this.  I have talked with someone locally whom I am planning to meet this afternoon.  Perhaps this is going to be the start of something good.

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug!  🙂

A New Painting Project!

Hello Friends,

Well, now that I have finished that big writing project, I am planning a few different painting projects (when I feel up to sitting at my desk again, that is.) But actually, lately, I have just been sitting in the easy chair with my paints on the end table and working on paintings and drawings.  I can put a wet heat pack on my back while I sit there and listen to music or watch t.v. at the same time.  I do like multi-tasking.

Anyway, one sea creature I have been wanting to paint (besides jellyfish) is called a Leafy Sea Dragon.  They are found in the shallow coastal waters around southern Australia.  I love these!  They are made to look “leafy” so as to better camouflage themselves while swimming around.  And their bodies look like dragons!  They are so cool!

So here is a picture of the one I am going to attempt to paint.  It is in the book from National Geographic Kids “First Big Book of the Ocean” by Catherine D. Hughes.  I bought it a long time ago when I was looking for bigger pictures of sea creatures.  So here is the photo from the book…

 

and here it is on my light board.  This one I had to trace because it is so detailed!  The photo credit in the book just says there was a Director of Photography from Kids Publishing and Media named Jay Sumner.  However, I couldn’t find specific credits to the photos themselves.  So I am not sure about who actually took the photos in this book.

Anyway, here it is traced onto tracing paper on my light board.

THEN I had to use the light board to trace it again onto my watercolor paper!  This particular Leafy Sea Dragon is carrying a bunch of eggs, too!  Now I don’t know how this one is going to turn out, but I know it will be a big challenge.  Actually trying to match colors is the hardest part, although, it doesn’t have to be exact, of course.

I still haven’t decided what exactly I’m going to paint in acrylics on the rest of the toy box pieces, but I will eventually.

Today I NEED to exercise and get this little kink out of my back.  So until next time…

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug!  🙂

Writing Project Finished!

Hello Friends, 

I do not have any new artwork to post yet, however, I did want to share that I have finally completed my seventh assignment for my writing class!  Yay!

I wrote a fictional story about a teenager who is a senior in high school and has been getting tattoos since she turned 18 in an effort to hide her scars from her addiction to cutting.

This has been the most challenging writing I have ever done and although I struggled with it, I enjoyed the process.  I also had to include a cover letter as if I were going to submit it somewhere. So now I will wait and see what my instructor has to say about it!

Hopefully, I will have some new work to post sometime this week.  It seems I may have a slightly pulled muscle from working out the other day; not sure how it happened, though.

Until next time…

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug!  🙂

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