I had to take a break from art; my house and my "stuff" were getting away from me. But just when I had gathered enough stuff for a yard sale, I wound up in the hospital with atrial fibrillation and pneumonia. It seems to take a couple of months to recover after that kind of setback. I continued with cleaning up the yard and reorganizing the house "stuff", planning to start painting again after the holidays and a wedding. (My grandniece got married.) It also didn't help that our desktop computer is being finicky; sometimes it stays on and sometimes it doesn't. I have a laptop, but I prefer the larger screen (I'm also getting a cataract in my left eye so it's harder to see detail than it used to be). I also got a smart phone so I always have a camera on me if I see something that might make a good painting. That's going to take a few days to figure out. But I thought I had better post something before my blog disappears since I hadn't posted for almost a year and explain the absence.
So here it is January already and I haven't started painting again. I'm not sure where to start to get back to where I left off. Maybe I should start with a trip to the optometrist so I can get new glasses and see a little better and get some inspiration back and put that smart phone camera to use.
Monday, May 18, 2015
Sunday, April 26, 2015
This one I painted for my nephew Dennis since he was the one who sent me the photos. He is visiting here from Florida and his birthday was yesterday. I hurried up and started this last evening and finished it this afternoon. It's slightly different than the smaller ones. I used the watercolor canvas again. It's supposed to be for all mediums, but I'm having a little trouble with blending with acrylics yet even after I coated it with a layer of gesso. I need to use it again and make notes. I think I like the water and waves better on this one, but the clouds better on the smaller ones.
Tuesday, April 21, 2015
No wonder I'm not getting the house cleaned. Here's another painting I did yesterday and finished today. I went to the craft store last week to get some matte medium and of course I had to browse. I found some 5" x 7" watercolor canvas panels and I had to try them. They are smoother than regular canvas board and can be used with watercolor and acrylic. Of course it's a seascape. I thought it would be easy since I've been doing them lately. Still not easy. The other seascapes I did had the waves on the left side. Apparently, that's easier for me to do since I am right handed I guess. I might have to straighten out the horizon line though. Also, the next time I use the watercolor canvas, I think I will put a coat or two of gesso on it. The paint sinks in too much unless you are using watercolor paint and leave the white of the paper for the white areas.
P.S. There are two photos of the same painting for a reason: The bottom one was a regular scan and a lot of the texture on the canvas shows up as glare. The top one was edited in Windows Live Photo Gallery with "Noise Reduction" and I think it makes a difference by cutting down on the texture glare. I don't know why I didn't think of this earlier. I had fish for dinner yesterday. Maybe that helped.
Thursday, April 16, 2015
I took a break from cleaning the attic and did another mini painting. Here is the second version of Moon Over the Ocean done on ACEO size watercolor card. The paint soaks in a little on the watercolor paper, but it helps make the clouds look more diaphanous or fluffy. Also, the moon is not paint; it's the white of the paper showing through.
Monday, April 13, 2015
I decided to take a break from painting for a little while and try to do some spring cleaning since it is getting warmer. I thought I should start in the attic since that is where we store things and the downstairs is getting cluttered with things that should be stored somewhere else. I read somewhere that you should start in your storage areas and get rid of unwanted items so you can clean up the main areas of the house. The attic has stairs and is sort of finished in an over 100 year old house. (There are nails above the window frames where they strung clothes lines to hang clothes to dry in the winter or when it was rainy.) But it hasn't been cleaned out for a while (40 years?) I have old magazines, fabric, sewing supplies, quilting supplies and a whole bunch of unfinished projects or projects that never actually got started. My husband is also a "collector." We have "antiques" passed down from relatives and mementoes from our college years. Not to mention stuff from the boys that they haven't retrieved yet. I hardly had room to turn around in the one corner that I decided to start on. I almost gave up, but I am starting to see progress in getting rid of things. The lesson learned from painting is, "don't give up." Sometimes I would think that a painting wasn't worth finishing, but if I kept going it turned out OK. I also need a place to work on framing and a place to store some art supplies. That's another corner.
Wednesday, April 8, 2015
Since I read somewhere recently that you can paint acrylics on watercolor paper (even if you don't use the watercolor technique), I thought I would give that a try. However, I have a package of Strathmore ATC size assorted papers that I looked through and decided to use the paper made for use with acrylics first (made sense to me). It has a slight texture and is sort of a light cardboard thickness. At first I didn't like it, but after finishing the painting, I decided I did like it. I used a photo that my nephew sent me that I thought would look all right painted small. I might try the watercolor card with the same scene and see if there is much difference in painting technique.
Wednesday, March 25, 2015
I finished a small painting today, a smaller version of "Big Clouds Over the Beach." I guess you could call this "Mini Big Clouds." I wanted to see if I could do another one like it since I didn't make notes on colors, brushes or technique on the larger one. Well, if you scale down the size I learned that you need to scale down the brushes. I had a lot of trouble with the foreground water in this one, but didn't on the first one. Maybe I should stick to 9 x 12" instead of 5 x 7." I could probably keep adjusting things, but decided to just quit while I'm slightly ahead. I did coat the canvas board with several layers of gesso so it would be smoother. I think it helped some. There is still some glare from scanning and I probably should try to take a photo, but I'm not having any luck with that either. I tried Carol Marine's instructions for taking photos of paintings, but haven't found a good spot for lighting yet.
Friday, March 20, 2015
Here's another beach scene, but I'm not as happy with it as I was with "Big Clouds Over the Beach." It is smaller, 8" X 8" and done on a different texture canvas board. I did the Big Clouds painting on an older canvas board that is no longer available (Grumbacher) and it was really nice to paint on. I probably need to switch to gessoed artboard, but I have a lot of the regular Fredrix canvas panels in all sizes. I need to figure out how to make them smooth so I can use them. I'm working on that. It's a good thing I used the old canvas panel when I did Big Clouds or I might have given up on acrylics. I also need to make notes of which brushes I used for what and what colors I mixed to get the colors I got.