Sunday, January 31, 2016


We have moved.  We are still in Las Vegas, but Jim no longer wanted to do yardwork and the extent of my outdoor work was caring for my potted plants (what my dad calls my pot farm) and roses and feeding my hummingbirds.  Soooooo...  We bought a townhouse.  We've been in it for two weeks.  Jim already loves it and I think I'm going to love it, too.  There are still boxes everywhere, but little by little it's beginning to look like home.

The first thing we did even before we moved in was to paint my art room.  It's a wonderful space.  There is a large window facing north and a smaller window facing south.  The light is fabulous!  We painted it the palest of lavender.

I hope you are all well and happy.  I've been reading blogs and have seen many exciting photos and paintings.  Keep up the wonderful work!  Don't give up on me.  I'll join you soon.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Drew Struzan

Jim found a terrific documentary on Drew Struzan.  We just watched it.  It's called "Drew: The Man Behind the Poster".  Even it you don't know the name, you will recognize the art.  We rented it from iTunes for $1.00.  If you're looking for something fun to do on a Saturday afternoon, check it out.  Happy Saturday!

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Step Back...No, Further...

I wonder why you don't start at the same skill level you left off at when you don't paint for a lengthy period and you start back up again.  It doesn't seem fair.  Not that I had reached great heights, but...
Anyhow, I did this little painting from a study in a book by Philip Jamison.  I love his work.  I've practiced with this particular study before.  If you're not familiar with his work, here is a sample.

Now I realize that this will make my painting look even worse, but I don't want to have you think my little painting is any kind of reflection on Mr. Jamison:)  By the way, he is a very nice man.  I wrote to him years ago.  He replied on a card that had one of his paintings on it. 

I found a new way of attaching my paper to my board.  I've tried soaking and stapling, just stapling and also brown paper tape.  I saw a video in which the artist used masking tape.  She tore off pieces the length and width of the paper, rolled them up so they were like double-stick tape and put them on the back of the watercolor paper.  Very clever!  It seems to work well.

Here's my version of a daisy study by Jamison.

So this is my new starting point.  More paintings to follow every week.

I hope you had a lovely weekend!


Saturday, July 11, 2015

By the Shores of Gitche Gumee

I took a trip to Wisconsin 2 weeks ago.  It was my dad's 80th birthday.  There was a party for him.  It was fun to see him, my sister and aunts.

These are my favorite parts of my visit: 
going for a walk with my dad, just the two of us.  We went
to a park we used to go to when I was a little girl.

Going for a ride with my sister in her boyfriend's side by side.  We drove on country dirt roads.  I felt like a kid again.  It was a warm day.  The breeze was blowing our hair and the sun was shining on our faces.  We laughed and laughed - carefree girls again.

Going to Lake Superior by myself.  I drove to Wisconsin Point in the late afternoon.  There was one group of people out there, but they were far from my part of the beach.  Perfect.  Lake Superior is magical.

Seeing a friend that I've known since kindergarten.  When we see each other, we pick up our friendship as if time and distance didn't exist. 

I have some good news to share.  I am no longer teaching a night class.  I have taught a night class for 10 years.  I will miss my night students.  They are terrific, but I wanted to have some free time in the late afternoon and evening.  I am teaching summer school during the day until the end of July.  I will have August free.  Back to school during the day on August 31.  What is my plan?  I'm going to spend time with my sweet husband, my furry children and...I'm going to...paint!  Hooray!  Now I have no excuses:)

Happy Saturday!

Saturday, May 23, 2015

165 Colors Tested!

Testing these colors has been fun.  It makes you feel like a kid who got the big box of crayons for her birthday.  When I was a kid, it was 64 colors.  Now it's 120!  Anyhow, all I can say is YIKES!  The next time I need to buy some paint, how will I ever be able to choose?  I still have 73 colors to test!  I think this will help me avoid mistakes when I buy online...if I ever make up my mind:)

I can't remember if I told you that last year I read a book by Winston Churchill.  It was great, but it took me a long time.  Jim said I went to bed with Winston Churchill every night for 6 months:)  I still have some books of his that I want to read, but I'm reading The Last Lion by William Manchester right now.  It's a biography of Churchill from birth to 1932.  This is going slowly, too, but I'm offsetting it with little breaks reading about another Winnie.  I'm reading The Complete Tales of Winnie the Pooh.  The illustrations are by Ernest H. Shepard, who was the original illustrator.  There's nothing like classic Winnie the Pooh.

Milne inscribed this in Shepard's copy of Winnie-the-Pooh:

"When I am gone
Let Shepard decorate my tomb
and put (if there is room)
Two pictures on the stone:
Piglet from page a hundred and eleven,
And Pooh and Piglet walking (157) . . .
And Peter, thinking that they are my own,
Will welcome me to heaven."

Happy Saturday!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Happy Mother's Day!

We took my mom out for lunch at Bob Taylor's Ranch House yesterday.  The ranch house has been a favorite of locals for many years.  It's 60 years old and it has the feel of old Las Vegas.  We had a great time.  The food was good and it was nice to relax and talk.  We decided to go back for dinner soon.

I've used mostly Winsor and Newton paint until now.  In the past, I've bought art supplies online at Daniel Smith, Dick Blick, Cheap Joe's and Jerry's Artarama.  Daniel Smith has made some changes.  It looks like they're going to focus on manufacturing paint and won't be carrying paper and other supplies like they have in the past.  I've been playing with the dot cards that I mentioned in the previous post.  I think this is a great way to figure out if you want to purchase a color. I'm not doing my book of colors exactly the way they show it in the video.  I'm putting more colors on each sheet.  My paper is 140 lb. cold press and I'm going to put the sheets in a 3-ring binder like they do in the video.  Here's a photo of what I'm doing.

The number you use to order and codes indicating how lightfast the color is, if it's staining or non-staining, granulation and transparency are listed below each dot of color.  I think this is a clever marketing tool.  I've already found some colors I want to order:)  Cool or what?


Sunday, May 3, 2015

Have You Seen This?

I think this is a terrific idea.  It's new to me.  Check out the video.

I ordered my dot card on Thursday.

Now I'm back to real life and lesson plans.  I don't understand why Jim won't do them for me...  I would like to eat chocolate and watch movies, please:)