Because Art Should be Play and Not Work

Friday, February 12, 2016

Bits and Pieces for the second week of February


In the past year I have become quite enamored with florals and still lifes and I continue to try to become more loose with them, as that is the look I like. One of the artists whose work I have recently discovered is Annie Gonzales O'Brien. I love the way she combines collage and paint in her floral still lifes. I recently purchased a book by her called Bold Expressive Painting. The above painting I just finished combines her collage style with some experiments I had done previously using alcohol inks. I like the way this one turned out,



I just finished reading this book about walking the Camino. I've always been fascinated by pilgrimages and have read several books about the Camino and about going on such a walk. I have a blog friend who will be walking the Camino in April with several friends. I am looking forward to traveling vicariously along with her.


Martin Luther King: serigraph by Byron L. Smith. "Black American Artists envisioning social change" is an exhibit that is currently at the Museum of Art and Archaeology (I mentioned in the last post which hosts a book club). The exhibit is very small as this is not a large museum, but I discovered some wonderful artists that I was not familiar with:



Elizabeth Catlett: Linoleum cut "Sharecropper". I adore woodcuts and I think this is just wonderful.
Other artists in the exhibit are Faith Ringgold (most of us know her work), Romare Bearden (fabulous color!) and Jacob Lawrence. Wonderful discoveries for me!


Romare Bearden--LOVE this!!


It's cold and snowy here this week-yesterday morning it looked like we might get some accumulation, but it didn't amount to much--but it is cold--my back does not like it!


And one more floral after the dreary winter scene. Have a good week and please take the time to leave me a comment even if it is just to say "hi"!

Thursday, February 4, 2016

WOWZA! What?? ?Finally--a new blog post!

I haven't blogged anything since October--I've had good intentions..but you know how that goes I'm still painting and making art

This is my woman from Guatemala--it is from a photo I found online--I loved that pink building behind her with all that texture--yum and of  course, you know it would have to have lots of pattern 
and color
.
And these two girls, inspired by a pose of two models I saw in a fashion magazine. I love the color in this one as well.

I am currently reading this book. The Museum of Art and Archaeology here has a book club and they have events at the museum-a book discussion and museum tours of art that fits with the them of the book. This book was chosen because February is black history month. The books that are chosen for the book club usually combine art with history and so far, real events. This book alternates between the life of a young woman who was a slave in Virginia and she was an artist and in the current time period with a lawyer who is working on a big case involving reparations for descendants of slaves. Very interesting and I plan to attend the different events at the Museum.

It's my grand daughter Audrey's 21st birthday in a few days. I love this photo of her--I think she looks fierce!

We just recently added Showtime to our Amazon Prime membership so we are totally hooked on Homeland! Even my husband who doesn't like much TV is hooked!


And finally I am trying to participate in the 29 Faces challenge for February. I started late so I have only done one so far. After photographing her, I can see that her mouth is crooked and i had a heck of a time getting her eyes right, but I like her.

Please be sure to leave a message on my blog if you've enjoyed my post. It encourages me to keep on posting!!

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Paint Mojo

I was lucky enough to win a place in Tracy Verdugos online Paint Mojo class this fall. I've learned some new techniques and I've really enjoyed it. Here are the various stages of the big painting I made in her class.







This is her prize flower--if you look closely you can see the glow around it. I think she must be walking to town and taking her flower to show it off--

This style of painting-discovering the hidden people or things within the paint is one of my favorite kinds of painting. And Tracy has her own little twists on how to do it. It was a very good online class. I have a few other things to post from her class at a later date-but this was the big ta dah project.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Something besides face sketches

Besides 29 Faces, I did some paintings over the summer and this fall. This one is called "In the Garden".


I haven't named this one yet, but I think this woman is a curandera and this bird is a magical creature that she converses with in the moonlight. What's your story?


I love this woman holding a chicken. Is she taking it to the marketplace or is she taking it home from the marketplace or is it just her pet chicken that she likes to carry with her?


 All three of these paintings are "found" paintings--I just paint backgrounds with lots of pattern and design  and then look at them to see what image begins to emerge. I love this kind of painting--so many happy "accidents".



Friday, September 18, 2015

29 Faces: Post 3

I started out the week thinking I would draw pictures of my self through the years.


Looks kind of like me


Me about age 3--again looks kind of like me--looks like that baby could be this girl, but neither really look like the photos I was copying. then i thought I would try my children--yikes

This is supposed to be my daughter--a cute baby drawing which doesn't look like her and finally


This was supposed to be my son at which point i threw my hands up in the air!! Why is it so hard to draw pictures of our own family?  So,  I decided that i needed to switch it up because i was getting frustrated and I switched to a whole other category and you will have to wait until the next post to see who I chose next.








Monday, September 14, 2015

29 Faces Part 2

I am really enjoying this challenge. Here are seven more faces. See if you know who they are:

She was the wife of a "great' author.

A first lady

An aviator

"Little Sure Shot"


A journalist at 24, she traveled around the world in 72 days

  A world leader

Devoted her life to studying and learning about one animal



Zelda Fitzgerald, Eleanor Roosevelt, Amelia Earhart, Annie Oakley, Nellie Bly, Indira Ghandi, Jane Goodall

Friday, September 11, 2015

I am a big fan of Lynne Perella. I have saved every article she has written for Somerset Studio magazine--so many in fact, that I now have a notebook full of articles. I decided to do some Perella style of my own based on her circus article.



 I love her many layers and her use of historic photos which she transforms and the many different elements she uses in her mixed media pieces.

Monday, September 7, 2015

29 Faces challenge

I decided to give this challenge a try--I usually have trouble sticking with anything for 29 days, but so far, so good. Here are my first 6 faces. How many can you guess? (answers at the bottom of the post)








Ghandi, Einstein, Oscar Wilde, Edgar Allen Poe, F Scott Fitzgerald, and Che Guevera.


Friday, September 4, 2015

Painted Blossoms

This summer I purchased a book called "Painted Blossoms" by Carrie Schmitt. I wanted to enlarge my repertoire of flower styles. Here are are paintings I did from the lessons in the book.


 A more traditional bouquet--not really by style, but I do like the colors and it was fun to try.


I like these drippy flowers--


For this one I used a background I had already painted at some point and then I applied paper napkins with red poppies and then painted over those and added the white flowers.



Este Macleod is one of the artists featured in the book and I adore her paintings In this painting I attempted to do her stylized flowers.


This one is much more like what I usually paint--I love the colors and the layers.
After doing these I decided I was done with flowers for awhile, but now I can look back on these studies and incorporate the styles into other paintings. How about you--do you have a favorite flower style that is your "go to" flower?





Friday, August 28, 2015

North Carolina retreat--the final post



We'll start out with cooking! That's Robin trying to keep her delicious chocolate layer cake layered! After driving up the long dirt road, it began dangerously slipping--she also brought us chocolate chip cookies--much appreciated!. Pam was our queen of the kitchen with lots of good recipes and she knows how to cook for a crowd, as well as Monica and Anna.
And Lorena made us this spectacular layered jello desert--it was almost too pretty to eat! We also had plenty of wine to get us through the retreat!

Now moving on to the myriad of art projects that we could do. Anna filled her SUV to the brim with all of her art supplies--I think she must have cleaned out her studio. This is just a portion of what she brought.
That paper feather is from a little workshop that Teri taught us.

The first major art project we did was to make boiled books. Lorena taught us this one. First all the plant material has to be gathered. So some people went searching in the surrounding woods for just the right things (unfortunately some people found poison ivy!). Then you have to make the paper book from watercolor paper, add the plant material between the pages and then boil the book.

My little book fits in this pocket in my travel journal, but a friend borrowed it... Following is a photo of one side of the imprints in the book. Pretty, yes?
More projects included: intuitive paintings, friendship bracelets, stamp carving, painted canvas, tiny books, silk painting and working in travel journals.

One day Anna and Xio and I took off for a drive on the scenic Blue Ridge Parkway. Beautiful views and clouds that day and a big rattlesnake crossing the road!


And finally just a few more hanging out group photos. One of our members Lori slept out on the deck all week on an air mattress. That's her bed on the right.

You can see that we spent lots of time on the deck!

I think that photo on the upper left must have been taken one of those hot days!


We had such a good time!! It was so great to meet all these wonderful women who have shared their ups and downs and joys and sorrows over the years!!