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Diver!!!

Hello friends.  I did this painting of a sea turtle diving last week but have been pretty busy since then.

The project I am currently working on is all drawn out and I am excited about getting it painted, but it is a secret project for a friend.  So I can’t show it to you until I give it to her.

In the meantime, I may do another sea turtle….

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

 

Diver

 

Octopus on the Loose!

Octopus

Hello Friends!  Here is another pen and watercolor doodle I did the other day.  I have been reading about octopuses lately and decided to try my hand at drawing and painting one.  It was a challenge, but a lot of fun.

Now I know their “mouth” is not a human-like mouth located on their head like this, but I added it for animation fun.  Somehow I thought it made him look happier.  I haven’t thought of a name for him yet.  Any suggestions?

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug!  🙂  (Although, if you are hugged by an octopus, be careful!)

Child Ballerina #2

Here is the child ballerina re-done. I like the way this one turned out much better especially the skin tone. What do you think?

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

Ballerina 2 (2)

Ballerina 2 Close-up

Pointillism….Wow! This takes lots of patience!!!

This is one of the most amazing things I’ve watched. It is time lapsed, but can you imagine how long this must have taken to do? This person and all artists who like to do this form of artwork really amaze me. I used to have a friend many years ago who did this type of art. At the time I thought she was a little cuckoo! BUT after I took art history and learned about Georges Seurat many years ago I was really taken aback. If you’re interested, you can read about him here. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georges_Seurat. But then……..

Check out this video of Maddie Weyman drawing Audrey Hepburn (who I love, by the way.) Maddie is pretty incredible. She has a nice relaxing song to go with it, too.

Art is Therapy

Art is Therapy

Hello my blogging friends. I am sure you recognize this painting since it’s the background of my blog. It is the best example I have of what I will be talking about. I did this painting one day last year to 1) Experiment with color and 2) For mental therapy at the time!

In the last few days I started reading a couple of different books. One is called “Understanding Color” by Marcia Moses. I am constantly learning and re-learning about color in painting and drawing. Watercolors present such a unique challenge in the area of mixing color. I have a few books about color, but this one has given me some fresh things to think about.

One thing I like is how she defines certain terms that have always kind of confused me, such as tone, tint, and shade. These are basic things, but I honestly don’t think about them much while I’m painting. I like how she shows examples of each in the book

Another interesting thing is how she shows how to make colorful grays even sharing how she got rid of the color Payne’s gray from her palette. This surprised me, and I don’t think I’m going to do it as of yet, but I am planning to experiment with making different colorful shades of gray and even shades of black. I for one have never liked the way the different colors of black look right out of the tube. So I am looking forward to experimenting with making different blacks also.

I have never really created a color palette and stuck to it for all I paint. I realize there are many different combinations one can make for creating a color palette. However, I have never created any conciously and kept them. I do a lot of experimenting as I work on a painting to get the colors I want for that particular image. As you can tell in my previous child ballerina painting, I could not get what I wanted, because I am still learning about what colors to use for mixing skin tones.

This brings me to one point that Marcia makes in her book. She says that artists, even art instructors, should never feel that they have reached a point when they think they know it all about art, color, etc. I so agree. I apply this thought to everything in my life. I never think of myself as having “arrived” as an artist or writer or even spiritually. There is always something more to learn and room to grow. New challenges is what drives me in my life.

The other book I am reading is called “The Art Therapy Sourcebook” by Cathy A. Malchiodi, ATR, LPCC. She explains what art therapy is and how it can help even non-artists to deal with painful feelings. She talks about creativity, being spontaneous, and mental illness. I am not very far into it, but one thing I already read that stood out to me is when she said in Chapter One, What is Art Therapy? on page 14,

“Art therapy can also be helpful in releasing emotions. In psychological terms, this experience is referred to as catharsis. Catharsis literally means “cleansing” or “purging”; in therapy it refers to the expression and discharge of strong emotions for relief.” Then in the next paragraph she says, “For example, it is known that creative activity can actually increase brain levels of seratonin, the chemical linked to depression.”

I know art therapy is not for everyone, but I just want to say if you are struggling with depression or something hard in your life, just draw or paint and see what happens. You don’t have to have an art therapist to “interpret” your drawings; just try it for fun! Releasing pent-up depression or anger is healthy for us mentally. And life is so much more enjoyable when we learn how to deal with feelings and express them in a healthy way.

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug! 🙂 (Even that is healthy in and of itself!)

Ballerina – Older Child

I really liked the way this girl turned out, especially her dress. I like her skin tone much more also; it looked as if she is actually wearing pink tights with the dress, but I also noticed that her skin tone is too close to the color I made the dress. In the photo her dress is more of a cream color that blends in a lot with her surroundings, but I wanted it to stand out a little more. She is also in a lot of shadow, but I didn’t want to paint her that way. I think the background is much too light. I sharpened it up a lot in photoshop in the third picture here, but that is not how it looks. I am not sure what color to try and add into the background to bring her out more.

Any suggestions??? I need lots of help with this one!

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

Ballerina - Older Child 2

Ballerina - Close-up of Older Child

Ballerina - Older Child Close

Ballerina – Small Child

Ballerina Small Child

This girl’s expression didn’t turn out anything like I wanted it to. I wanted it to be much softer. I couldn’t get her skin tone right either. The photo has her in a lot of shadow, but I have so much to learn about painting people obviously! Anyway….

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

WORKING ON BALLERINAS, ETC.

Grace Swinging

DSCN0394

Hello my blogging friends! Here’s a couple of very old photos of my crazy kids.

I think I am done with “Wacky Wednesdays” and “Flower Fridays.” I thank you for the support of those two features on my blog in the last couple of months. However, as I have said before, I am not really an abstract artist, so the Wacky Wednesdays were just for some crazy fun. However, I do have some abstract ideas to do from some photos I took recently, so you’ll still see some in the future, just not the very near future.

One of my goals is to become better at portrait painting even though I have no live models to work from. I don’t have time to take a class, but I am just trying to work from photos. So I am currently working on the ballerinas I have found in books. However, I am changing their expressions and the backgrounds so they are not exact copies of the photos. I also found some photos from when my children were toddlers. I don’t know how they will feel about it if I feature them on here from way back when, but I really don’t think they’ll care. I ran across some of the cutest pictures of them recently that brought back a flood of memories from the years that were the most fun for me as their mom. Those were the years before they talked back, had huge temper tantrums, etc. as all kids do when they are growing up. Not to say as toddlers they didn’t have temper tantrums. But I never said they were going through the “terrible twos.” I despise that expresssion. I think two was one of my favorite ages for both of them. In fact I used to call them the “terriffic twos.”

Turning two is when most children are discovering so many new things all at once. Some are already talking like my son was, in full sentences, but my daughter was barely talking at all then. It wasn’t because she couldn’t; she just didn’t want to! She was somewhat shy which was fine, but only around strangers. She was an observer of all that was going on around her. She still is a great observer of her surroundings, and she is cautious in making friends. That’s why she has found a faithful few instead of trying to just have tons of so-called friends like some kids do. I think in this day and age people have many, many more acquaintances than true friends, but that’s a topic for another day.

My son, on the other hand, was just always talking up a storm. Even now when he is excited about something, we hear about it! He has a real gift for writing fiction which I hope will be what he is successful at someday. I enjoy them both so much now. My daughter is 16 and my son is 18. It is sometimes so hard to think of him as a young man, but he is. He has his own thoughts and ways of doing things as we all do.

So as you can see I am dealing with the years leading up to the “empty nest.” Frankly, I am more ready now than I was a year ago. I know he wants to get out on his own, but there’s lots of things he still has to do to prepare for that. I have no idea how long it will take, but I will say I already have plans for his empty room when he’s gone. Wink, wink, nudge, nudge. What mother doesn’t make plans for an upcoming spare room in her imagination?

When I moved out the first time, my mom left my room the way it was, because she had a feeling I would be back in less than a year. Well, she was right. I would do the same with him, but I have a feeling with his determination, he will make sure he never has to move back home. I hope his determination takes him far in his life, too. It is one of his best qualities.

Anyway, as you may be able to see, I didn’t really have this blog post PLANNED. It is “off the cuff” as they say, but here it is. This is where I am at in my life. I haven’t been writing lately, because I just don’t have the energy. The last quarter of the school year always feels a little crazy to me, so…I do my art, 1) because I enjoy it, and 2) to stay sane.

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

Flower Friday

Here’s a photo I took in the spring of last year of the thistles that grow around our fish hatchery. I have not drawn or painted it yet, but plan to eventually. So that is all for today, no drawing or painting.

Thistle

Also, I am thinking of my parents today. I believe it would have been their 63rd anniversary if they were still here. Rest in peace Mama and Daddy. I love you and miss you.

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

Seagull By the River – Acrylic Painting

Seagull by the River

Here’s a little 3×5 acrylic I did yesterday.

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