Friday, September 30, 2011

Poppies And Paint Party Friday!

mixed media on 11x14 wrapped canvas

Its Friday again my friends and I can hardly believe another week got by me! I haven't done too much creating this week but I was able to finish a canvas that had been staring at me for a couple of months. This piece actually came out of a panic attack believe it or not. lol So glad I can laugh about it now. I had the background done which is a layer of collage paper and I covered it with raw umber, then some titanium white on top with some sap green along the bottom. All I was sure of was that I wanted to do an abstract landscape.

Typically I shy away from bold colors but I thought about doing red flowers against the green. Last Sunday I started to feel anxious which is happening more often since losing bosco. So I ran and grabbed the canvas and some alizarin crimson, white, and more green. I just started slapping it around not minding that it was imperfect. I wasn't even going for poppies, I didn't know what I was doing until I stopped.

I really like the pop of the crimson against the white with that raw umber peeking through and then of course against the green its very bold. I don't often take this many different shots of a painting but I wanted to try and share the texture with you. I am loving the texture from the layer of paper and the paint.

So this is what I am sharing over at Paint Party Friday this week! And in case you missed yesterday's post, my blog is looking different because of a blogger template mishap! lol I am not sure yet what I will do with it but I am satisfied for now :)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Antique Ford

mouse over to see the before

I was so excited to post this photo but had a few blogger glitches as you can see from the new template. That was so not planned and I almost lost all of my side bar stuff in the process! lol I won't bore you with that long story except to say that a. I am happy I didn't loose everything, and b. I am not sure which template I will go with but this will do for now.

As for this image, it is an old Ford that I shot at a local farm that was having a Tractor Show last summer. Lou is a big fan of any and all antique cars, tractors, machinery etc, so off we went and he really likes this image. And today I used one of Kim Klassen's latest textures "the ladder" and just LOVE what it did for this old car.

AND the big news for this post is that I was able to use a mouse over technique for my photos!! If you mouse over the image you can see the original thanks to Kim's video tutorial she graciously shared on her blog. You can watch the video HERE. I was shocked that I figured out how to get it to work although as you can see the image is still too big for the space. Not sure yet what that is about or how to remedy it yet. But I do love the mouse over!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Texture Tuesday . . . Love

click on image to view larger

When I heard that the theme for this week's challenge was "Love" of course Bosco popped right into my mind. He is there alot these days and I miss him beyond words. I found this super cute image I shot of him a few years ago. The top of the couch was where he loved to hang out!

I used Kim's "scripted autumn" texture on this image both in soft light and multiply. I was able to remove the texture layers from bosco's face which is something new for me to but I figured it out! I also adjusted the saturation and hue to get it in a lovely sepia tone which I think works well with this texture. I don't often add text but these words came to mind and I thought they were fitting given the theme for this week.

Here is the original image. . .

As always, head over to Kim's blog and check out all the love being shared this week!!
Click HERE!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Face Sketching And Another New Class :)

As most of you know I love to sketch especially pretty girl faces. I wanted to share one of my sketches using techniques I learned in a new class with Jane Davenport called "Supplies Me". If you have an addiction to art supplies like I do then this class is for you! Each week she covers a new supply and incorporates it into sketching faces and figures. Yes, my addiction to online classes continues! lol

Face sketching has always been challenging to me but Jane shares a quick and easy technique for a face which I used on this girl. I really love how she came out especially the eyes. I was supposed to use colored pencils but went with graphite in case I needed to erase. I only wish I could paint this type of face as easily as I can draw it.

I am sharing this pretty girl today for Sunday Sketches. Stop by Sophia's blog to see all the great work being shared this week!
Click HERE!!

Wishing you all a lovely creative Sunday!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Embracing The Imperfect

As some of you may know by now I have a bit of a perfectionist streak in me. And it can affect my ability to create sometimes. I have often wanted to let go and be messy and like the results. Well, recently I signed up for a class with Katie Kendrick called "Layered Impressions" and am really enjoying it. Its great, Katie is great, and she is sharing really cool techniques. If you have the chance to take a class with her you will not be disappointed!

One of the first exercises I completed were the 2 pieces I am sharing today. Katie had us sketch a face with our non-dominant hand and then paint away. I have to say I was anxious at the get go because I knew it would be imperfect. And the first one I did is the girl above which I did not like but have since grown to love.

By the time I got to creating this girl below I really loosened up and enjoyed the process. I can see the difference showing up in her face. I hesitated at using such bold colors but just decided to go with it.

Excited to see what Katie has in up her sleeve for us next!
I am sharing these girls over at Paint Party Friday. Be sure to head over there and see what great work is being shared this week! Click HERE!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Texture Tuesday

click on the image to view larger

This week's challenge was what Kim likes to call her "free and easy edition". The only requirement is that you have to have a layer of any one of her textures. So I chose her new "scripted autumn" texture for this image that I shot in RI. I love this tree lined path. It was taken at the bed and breakfast we stay at out in Newport. We walk it each morning for breakfast from the beach cottage to the main house up on a hill.

For the processing I used 2 layers in soft light, one layer in multiply and for the first time tried a filter in pink and loved what it did for the image. The words came to mind as I was processing the image. I knew that the path would be the perfect spot to add them. I removed a few layers of texture from the path so the words would show up well.

Here is the original image. . .

Hope you will join us over at Kim's blog to see all the great work being shared this week!!
Click HERE :)

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Sassy Girl Sketch

'she wanted to dance'

I just love sketching. It frees my mind and I just never know what or who will end up on the page. This girl was sketched out using a number 2 pencil. Typically I go for my graphite but thought I would change it up this time. lol

I have been flipping through the pages of Julie Nutting's Collage Couture the other day which inspired me to sketch out this sassy girl with the fancy outfit. Its a fun book full of great techniques for fashionista type "she art" As you can see I went a bit wild with her hair. And then daring with her outfit! But I love it.

I am sharing her this week for Sunday Sketches. Don't forget to stop by Sophia's blog to see all the sketched loveliness being shared this week!

Friday, September 16, 2011

My First Journal Page

As you all know its been a rough few weeks for me but I am glad to be getting back to some art. I am hoping it will help heal me or at the very least distract me from myself as I grieve. I have never done an art journal mostly because I don't like painting on paper when it curls up from the wet media. I know, I am a perfectionist that way. lol I had one laying around for about a year and gave it a whirl. The pages were really thin so I glued some of them together before I added gesso.

I used my caran d'ache watersoluble crayons, stamps, black gesso, and white gesso to make the mishmash you see on this page. I was letting myself be messy which I hardly ever do but it felt good to just spill out all the stuff in my head on this page. And I actually like it! lol

I am sharing this today over at Paint Party Friday. It feels good to be back sharing some new art. Hop on over there and check out all the lovelies!
Click HERE

Monday, September 12, 2011

Remembering A Sweet Moment. . .

Lou and Bosco
Newport, RI 10/7/04

As you all know creativity is a healer. During the most difficult times of my life I have turned to my writing, photography and now painting to help get me through. This time is no different. I am still reeling from the loss of my pug and some days feel as though I won't ever stop crying. On Saturday I went looking through some photos of my Bosco, shed some tears, and then put my focus to creating something beautiful.

I love this photo I shot of Lou and Bosco 7 years ago on a trip to Newport. There is something so amazing about capturing those candid moments that cannot never be posed or planned. I thought this image would be great with texture and I cropped it in such a way to leave room for an inspiring quote I found about dogs.
Lou loved what I did with this photo and I do too. The words really complete it for me. It made me feel a little better taking my pain and translating it into something beautiful.

Thought you might like to see the original image . . .

Thank you all for your ongoing support and kind words as I weave my way through this maze of grief.

I am grateful for all of you . . .

Sunday, September 11, 2011

NYC . . . We Will Never Forget

NYC skyline as seen from the Brooklyn Bridge

We finally had a cool morning here in NY today and I headed down to the walk trail. My favorite season is just around the corner. I am still crying over my pup and felt the pain as my feet touched the path. I hadn't been down there in a few weeks. I missed having him trot beside me. As I listened to the first crunch of a leaf under my shoe I thought about how no matter what happens in our lives somehow life moves on with or without us.

Every year on this day I think about that moment, the one none of us will ever forget. I am a NY'er and live less than an hour from the city. That morning I was laying on the couch in pain, feeling sorry for myself that I had just had cancer surgery. As I watched the horror unfold on television I felt stupid for feeling such self pity. I realized how grateful I was for my own life. I remember feeling scared as we waited to hear from my brother who was only 40 blocks from the scene. Then I felt such relief knowing he was ok. Loved ones were all that mattered. Having just suffered the loss of my pup and on days like today I am reminded of how precious life is.

I captured this shot of the skyline a couple of years ago when my husband and I walked across the Brooklyn Bridge for the first time. Although the skyline will never be the same what is left is a reminder of the resiliency of NYC and all who survived. . .

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Goodbye My Sweet Bosco . . .

I feel so sad and have been crying all night long. Yesterday we had to put our sweet pug to sleep. It was the hardest decision to make and the worst. I have eluded to bosco's health trouble in a couple of previous posts but was not ready to share it all until today.

At the beginning of all this I had a bad dream the he died. I don't ever have premonition type dreams but apparently that what it was. The short version is that about 3 weeks ago he started vomiting. I didn't think anything of it as this was a dog vomited alot during his short life mostly from inhaling his food to fast. But it continued for a few days and then the night of the hurricane Irene when we lost power he was vomiting alot. So I took him to the vet the following day and found out he had lyme's disease which was bad enough but results of a lymph node biopsy revealed he also had lymphoma. Being a cancer survivor myself I still cannot get past the fact that my dog had cancer.

We started treating the lyme's with antibiotics as the vet was unsure how much of what was going on was related to the lymphoma. So all last week he wasn't getting much better, and he even needed an anti nausea pill to keep food down. And then over this past weekend as the anniversary of my first husband's death loomed over my head he started loosing his apetite. Thats when I knew it was getting bad. So Tuesday we took him for more tests and they revealed that his kidney's were inflamed and causing all this trouble on top of the multiple swollen lymph nodes up and down his little abdomen.

We gave one last effort to get his kidneys going but it didn't work. Yesterday morning when I got him up he was starting to get really tired just walking around and would plop down on the floor wherever he was and sit there. And he would not touch any food at all. This was a dog who was a human vacuum cleaner when it came to eating.

The night before last I had a dream of him and in the dream he was at the door wanting to go out. The door was open and I was telling him wait, no, no, no..... and all I remember was him looking back at me. I feel like that was his way of letting me know he wanted to go.

He was my first pet, and the pain I feel now is almost unbearable. He would have been 8 next month. My husband wants to get another pug and I don't. Maybe I will change my mind but the thought of going through this again with another one is too much for me.

I will take some solace in knowing his is no longer suffering and I hope he is laying in the sun somewhere.
It was always his favorite place to be . . .

Sunday, September 4, 2011

She Remembers . . .

In my last post I eluded to having a rough week and this girl just about says it all. I haven't been doing any art and yesterday I was feeling really upset so I went into my studio room hoping to get my mind out of its funk and anxiety. I grabbed a new piece of watercolor paper, a watersoluble graphite pencil and just started sketching a face. It was fast and messy because frankly I am tired of trying to be perfect.

I just kept adding water to her letting it go wherever it wanted to. I used a bit of black and pink caran d'ache crayons. Then I added some stamping with a few of my favorite stamps. When I stepped back and looked at her I was overwhelmed with the emotion of it. I didn't plan to make her look sad and yet she does. If I tried to create a sad face I couldn't do it. But this was what was inside me that splashed out onto the paper. The words "she remembers" popped into my head while I was stamping. And when I looked back at her I got chills.

Although I don't wish to be sad I do wish I could create art this raw all the time. I want to create art that makes people feel something. And when I look at her I feel.

I have spent most of the week crying. I have a sick pug at home and am beside myself over it. And to make things worse tomorrow is the anniversary of my first husband's death. Even though it will be 17 years it is still hard. I really never look forward to labor day weekend.

Sorry for this bummed out post today. I do hope though you enjoy the art. :)
I will be sharing this girl for Sunday Sketches. Please stop by Sophia's blog and see all the beautiful work this week!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Published In Somerset Studio!!

I took a trip to my local bookstore since it is the release date of the autumn issue of Somerset Studio because I was so excited to see my technique article in print. And was actually shocked to see it on the shelf already! I wish I had a subscription so I would have received one sooner but now this will probably motivate me to get one. My friend Diane Salter was kind enough to share these images with me that she took from her copy. Diane as many of you know is an amazing artist. You can visit her HERE!

I love what they did with my artwork and it is so great to see my work along side the likes of Christy Tomlinson, Misty Mawn, Angela Cartwright (who I referenced in my own article!) and my friend Marilyn Rock!

I have had a really bad week and this was a nice perk for me. Eventually I will share in another blog post what thats all about but for now I just want to take a moment here on the blog to celebrate this accomplishment.