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Toy Box Fishes

Hello Friends,

Remember my Toy Box Whale? https://patsyscreativecorner.com/2018/04/08/toy-box-whale/ This new piece is titled “Toy Box Fish!” I am doing all of these pieces in acrylics which is really a challenge for me.

I’ll share the backstory which some of you may not know. A few months ago I took apart our son’s wooden toy box. I didn’t want to give it away or throw away the wood. Plus I wanted to save the front of it which has a teddy bear with his name painted on it. I did that when he was about three years old. I wanted to keep that part so when I took the toy box apart, I decided to paint ocean scenes on the other four parts.

This is part number two. I created this scene which has a Moorish Idol fish, some little pink and purple fish I doodled, and a seahorse which is trying to camouflage itself. I have three more pieces to do. One is the other side of the toy box which is the same shape as this piece. The other two sides are longer shorter than this one.

When I finish all of them I am planning to hang these in our son’s old room which I want to decorate into an “ocean room.”

So this is what I have been working on since Wednesday. I have also been drawing another shark. I want to paint a large seahorse in watercolors, too. But I do have a writing assignment I need to finish by the 30th. Yes, I have sort of put it aside for a bit because I “needed” to paint! I am sure my artist friends will understand this need.

I hope everyone has a lovely weekend!

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

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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!  🙂

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!  🙂

 

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!  🙂

 

 

 

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!  🙂

Toy Box Whale

Hello Friends,

Yesterday I spontaneously decided to paint!  AND…this is not watercolor;  it is acrylics.  I have not used acrylics in a really long time!  They are more challenging and frustrating to me than watercolors.  AND…it is my first whale painting!  So why did I call it “Toy Box Whale”?

Well, there is a reason for my madness.  This piece of WOOD used to be the bottom of our son’s toy box.  It measures 28″ x 16″.   For years it was filled with all of his stuffed animals.  When he moved out last year,  the box and stuffed animals stayed where they were.  A couple of weeks ago I decided to pack up the animals along with other stuff in his closet.  Some things were packed, but some were sent to Goodwill.

I didn’t want to get rid of the toy box, though.  Years ago I stenciled and painted our son’s first and middle name, a teddy bear, and hearts when he was about two.  (That was before I began teaching myself to draw and paint.)  My husband suggested keeping that part, so when I took it apart, I decided to keep all the pieces.  So I disassembled it and kept everything except the lid.  A long time ago the lid broke and couldn’t be fixed.  Each piece is thin white plywood.  The side and back pieces are framed in a light wood.  I am trying to decide what other ocean creatures to paint on those pieces.  Perhaps a sea turtle and a jellyfish on the small ones and maybe an ocean scene on the longer piece.

The smaller pieces can be easily hung on a wall because of the cut out handles in the wood frame.  However, the whale piece will be trickier to hang, because it is just a flat piece without any wood framing.  So until I figure out how I’m going to hang it, the whale is sitting on our keyboard in the living room.  (I haven’t played it in a long time.)

Our son’s old room is painted a light blue, so I am thinking of repainting it the same color and then making the room into a sea creatures room.  It will most likely take me a long time since I am not done with my writing class yet, though.  I really hope to be done with it in a couple of months!  I had to ask for an extension on the due date of my story.  I added and subtracted text as I was editing it for what I hoped would be the last time, but…now I have to retype it.  I am probably going to finish it tomorrow.  Then I also have to write the cover letter for an editor as the other part of the assignment.  So after days of writing, I decided to paint for a change!

I hope everyone is having a great weekend.  We are having beautiful spring weather here.  We had a pretty good rain a couple of days ago.  It is sunny but cool.

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

Frida Kahlo-Painter of Pain

frida-kahlo-2

 

Hello Friends,

Recently I decided to look into the biography of Frida Kahlo, the female Mexican artist who definitely painted her pain.  Above is my personal favorite picture of her.  Most of her paintings have always felt a bit unsettling and disturbing to me.  I never felt comfortable viewing them, but I think it was because I never researched her life to find out why she painted the things she did.  I really didn’t know anything about her until I watched a Biography DVD about her that I checked out from the library a couple of weeks ago.  It was then that I learned about the horrific bus accident she was in when she was just 18 years old. This accident changed her life in many ways.

Frida Kahlo was born on July 6, 1907.  Her full name was Magdelena Carmen Frieda Kahlo Calderon.  She later changed the spelling of her first name to a less Germanic spelling. Her father was Wilhelm Kahlo, a “German-Jew of Hungarian descent who had come to Mexico as a young man.”  He first worked in the jewelry trade which was his father’s business, then took up photography after marrying Matlde, his second wife.  Then he changed his last name to Guillermo.

Frida’s father was a positive influence in her life.  When she was six, she was stricken with polio.  Guillermo encouraged her to swim, participate in sports, ride a bike and keep herself physically active.  However, her right leg remained disfigured and much thinner than her left for the rest of her life.  She mostly wore long skirts and long pants to hide it.

When Frida was 15, she was admitted to the Prepa, or National Preparatory School.  She changed her birth year to 1910 and claimed to be 12 instead.  It is believed she did this because she wanted to be more closely associated with the Mexican Revolution which began that year.

September 17, 1926, was the day that changed her life forever.  Frida had been shopping with her friend Alejandro Arias.  As they were walking along they decided to catch a bus that had benches along the sides for people to sit on. As the bus driver tried to pass in front of a turning streetcar, they crashed and Frida was thrown from the bus. Alejandro found her lying in the street with the rod of a metal handrail impaling her left hip and exiting through her female organs.  She also suffered several fractures in her third and fourth vertebrae, pelvis, and right foot. Her left elbow was dislocated and the rod also caused a deep abdominal wound.  She spent a month in the hospital and never went back to school.

accident-by-frida-kahlo

“Accident” 1926 by Frida Kahlo

After she went home she was confined to bed for much of her recovery.  It was at this time that her mother gave her a small lap easel to use for painting.  So Frida put a mirror in the canopy of her bed and began painting her self-portraits and still lifes.  When she was able to get up more, she also began to paint larger portraits of people she knew.

frida-kahlo-with-easel

Frida Kahlo painting in bed

Frida suffered through many operations, several body casts, and a great deal of mental as physical anguish.  Her friend Alejandro went away to Europe for two years and they wrote to each other, and he visited sometimes, but their relationship was not meant to become anything more.

Frida fell in love with and married Diego Rivera on August 21, 1929, a famous, overweight, middle-aged artist, when she was just 19.  She relished the attention she received in being his wife.  They had a rocky marriage and both had affairs; the most devastating one for Frida was when Diego had an affair with her sister, Christina.  Diego and Frida divorced in 1939, but were remarried a little over a year later and stayed married until her death on July 13, 1954.

She painted over 150 paintings in her lifetime but only had one individual exhibition.  It was held from April 13 to 27, 1953, in Mexico at the Galeria de Arte Contemporaneo.  She had also suffered through many more operations in prior years in attempts to fix her spine and leg which had both been so badly damaged in the bus accident, but the last operation she had was in 1953 when her right leg was amputated below the knee because of gangrene.

There is so much more to know about Frida Kahlo, but I don’t want this post to be too long.  If you would like to know any more about her life and paintings, you can read more about her here:   http://www.fridakahlofans.com/biocomplete.html.

I also would recommend the book “Frida Kahlo, The Brush of Anguish” by Martha Zamora, which is the source I used for this post and where the quote in the second paragraph came from.  I found the pictures on Google.

I have often thought about trying to paint about some of the painful things I have gone through in my life, but then when I sit down to paint, I find I would rather paint beauty, because focusing on flowers, landscapes or beautiful sea creatures is what has helped me through the last few years.  I appreciate everyone who loves the sea turtles I have painted.

I am currently working on doing illustrations for a children’s story I wrote quite a while back (not Larry, the Lonely Leatherback, but a different one.)  I have been trying to get the characters to look the way I have them pictured in my mind, but sometimes it is difficult to figure out how to draw them in certain poses!  However, it is a challenge, which is what I love and keeps me going.

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

“Painting has to get back to its original goal, examining the…”

Art of Quotation

“Painting has to get back to its original goal, examining the inner lives of human beings.”

— Pierre Bonnard, French. Painter


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Chinese Brush Painting with Moon Bear World!

 

Hello everyone!

This is an amazing video to watch if you want to see Chinese brush painting!  This woman’s voice is relaxing and she is incredible!  I did have to turn up the volume a lot to hear her clearer, and the person taking the video gets a little shaky and noisy at the end, but I still enjoyed it!  I definitely plan to practice her techniques.  Her YouTube videos can be found under Moon Bear World.  Check it out and enjoy!

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

My First Fairyland!!!

Hello everyone! WordPress has been being a stinker at my house for some reason so I haven’t been on as much as I used to be. Every time I try to check comments, nothing loads. And I have not had time to get online when I am in town, because I try to go to the gym while my daughter is in classes. That’s another reason I haven’t been doing quite as much painting lately. The school year makes it harder to get to.

But this week my husband is off and he and my son are sharing the load of taking my daughter to her classes this week to give me some free time to work.

Soooo…….here is my latest painting. I realize this is a Spring scene, and we are less than two weeks away from Christmas, but this is what I have had in mind for a long time and didn’t want to wait until Spring to post it!

This is my first fairyland. It is done in acrylics. The pictures of it were difficult to take, though, because the canvas is long and skinny. It has been sitting with the drawing on the canvas since last week. I began painting it three days ago and finished with the last touches today. So bear with me as I sort of give it to you in pieces!

Here is a full shot as best as I could get. The “panoramic” feature on my camera is weird so I didn’t use it.

Fairyland

Close-up of the far left of the canvas…..

Fairyland far left

Close-up of the middle of the canvas……their dog resembles my dog, Brownie, I think. 🙂

Fairyland Middle

And…a close-up of the far right of the canvas…

Fairyland far right

There will be more fairies to come maybe and perhaps what I have in mind for a member of the family which is half sketched. I don’t know if it will be done by Christmas, but it is what I will be working on next. Can’t tell ya what it is though, just in case that someone in the family sees this! 😉

I hope everyone is having a relaxed Christmas season this year. Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug. 🙂

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