Thursday, March 31, 2011

Fisher Price

Growing up, my favorite toys to play with, were the Fisher Price Little People.  We had the barn, the village, the house, the airport, the camper . . . you name it, we had it.  Unfortunately we outgrew our Little People and our dad gave them away to a local preschool . . . (years of therapy and the scars are just starting to fade -- ha!)  

Seriously, they just don't make the Little People the way they did back in the 1970's (and oh how I wish they would!)  But thank goodness for eBay!  So a few years ago I bid on the Fisher Price house and bought it.  So now what?  (Admittedly, this was not the most well-thought out purchase I ever made.)  After a few years of walking by the little house during every trip to the basement, painting became the solution.  Here's the first of what I hope to become a little series.  I call this one, "A Family Portrait."  I hope it evokes for you, the familiarity and comfort of home with warm feelings of youth and of course, a touch of humor.  Aaah, the good ol' days!

"A Family Portrait"
6.5" x 6.5"

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


I just received word that my watercolor "Recycling" was awarded an Honorable Mention at the Jaffrey Civic Center's Spring Show.  It was a lovely show, with lots of terrific paintings by very talented artists, so this is a very nice surprise!

24" x 24"

Shadows are hard

Yup, shadows are hard to render for me . . . and this one had all sorts of crazy shines and such.  Gaaaah!  It's that rare moment when I really capture a shadow, but when it comes, it's so satisfying.  So I'll keep practicing.  

I think I'll end up cropping this one to include only the top two pumpkins.  So while I'm not thrilled at the overall outcome . . . there are some parts where I think "hmmmm . . . not bad . . . I'm starting to get it."  My colored pencil technique needs some more work as some of those marks are all over the place.  But this was a fun diversion nonetheless.  (Not to mention, a more successful result than some of my others.  At least I'm moving in the right direction!)


A Glutton for Punishment . . .

So . . . after numerous starts and stops . . . and studies . . . and pure exasperation at my continued failures, I decided to try my hand at another watercolor painting of "3 Pumpkins."  (All previous attempts were made well before I started keeping a blog . . . a blessing in disguise for those who follow my blog -- mainly Dan, Dad and Cheryl!)  So why am I trying again?  Apparently I like punishment.  

I decided I needed more contrast, so while the photo I took has a very dark background, I chose to keep the background in my painting, very light.  Half-way through though, as usual, I was disgusted with my poor, heavy-handed skills on two of the three pumpkins.  How I was I supposed to know I was so challenged at making a pumpkin actually look like a pumpkin from a top view?  Ugh!  So instead of becoming distraught (yet again) . . . I took out the colored pencils and decided to have a go at it.  Here's what's happening so far. 

notice the hideous rendering on the bottom right pumpkin -- yeeeow!  I think the colored pencil is DEFINITELY helping . . . and more importantly I'm having fun!

Understand, I'm really taking a risk posting these images as all hell could break loose at any moment, sending this "painting" off to the trash again.  But I'm determined to make it work this time.  Thank you for joining me on my roller-coaster ride to becoming a better artist!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Pitcher with Quilt

I made a lot of progress on the painting this weekend despite some commitments.  I'm going to let it sit for a while -- and look at it with fresh eyes in a few days to see where it needs "tweaking." (I already see a couple things!)  There's so much to learn . . . but I'm enjoying the process!  In addition, I must come up with a better name for it.  "Pitcher with Quilt" -- how boring!!  Have a good day.  

Saturday, March 26, 2011

New Painting

I started this painting the other day and here's my progress so far.  It's 9" x 12" . . . not too big.  It has a long way to go, but I hope to finish it by the end of the weekend.  I hope you like it.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Daily Paintworks, Help Japan Challenge

Recently I've been following the Daily Paintworks website -- (it's terrific . . . and soooo inspiring) -- and have begun participating in their Weekly Challenges.  This past week's challenge's theme is "Home" and is actually an auction where each artist has agreed to donate the proceeds from the sale of their painting to a charity that will benefit the people of Japan.  I've uploaded my watercolor painting, "Waiting" and was very excited when it received a bid!  If you'd like to peruse the artwork and/or put in a bid on any artwork (while also making a donation) click here.  Below is my entry, and I will donate 100% of the proceeds to the American Red Cross for their efforts in Japan.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

New Paintings

I am hoping to use this blog to post new paintings, as I am trying to paint each day, and at least have a few small paintings each week to show for my efforts!  We'll see what happens.  For now . . . here are my latest . . . I hope you enjoy them.