Sunday, October 28, 2012

Latina Woman

11x7 watercolor figure on Kilimanjaro 140 lb cold press paper, finished today, another in my series of mannequin models.  I decided to make this woman a Latina, because I think they are the most beautiful figures in the world.  She's looking over her right shoulder as if daring anyone to catch a lady in red!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Sleeping Beauty Nude

11x15 watercolor on Fabriano 140 lb hot press paper, from a woman I drew in a life drawing class.  Since photos weren't allowed, I used only my pencil sketch for guidance, adding my own color choices.

Friday, October 26, 2012


11x15 watercolor on Fabriano 140 lb hot press paper, a backlit woman's silhouette in front of windows.  I have used my photo of a mannequin and changed it quite a bit, from red hair to dark brown, and a black fur coat to a sweater with greens, plums, and soft browns.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Southwest Cactus Pot

12x12 mixed media acrylic and ink on collaged paper adhered to matboard, from a photo I took in Taos, NM.  There are also pansies in the pot as well as other foliage.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Gone to Seed Daisies

7.5 x 10 watercolor on Canson 140 lb cold press paper; Daniel Smith paints, done this afternoon from my photo I took in the mountains of a dying, drying, daisy and its white withering friend beside.  Other shapes were done negatively while adding background colors of UB, carbazole violet, and quinacridone burnt orange.  My photo appeared unbalanced with only the two daisies so hopefully this works! I'll enter this in Art Colony blog's November challenge 'Gone to Seed'.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Hello Hollyhocks!

10x8 watercolor done today from our first house backyard, pink, red, dark pink hollyhocks along the wooden fence.  When we were in the mountains last week there were still some of these old fashioned lovelies blooming here and there.  I still plant them every year as they are my favorite and they are coming up wild in the studio yard.  Paper used is Langton 140 lb cold press.  Colors:  Alizarin crimson, quinacridone violet and magenta, Grumbacher red, permanent rose, Taylor's Pink Flamingo, quin gold, arylide yellow, Midnight blue, Undersea Green, UB, gamboge, Prussian blue, Coffee with Cream, Sepia.  At the end when dry I splattered alizarin.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Basket Bouquet

15x22 watercolor, work in progress finished with the addition of muted background garden shapes and colors of various foliage/flowers.  Now the white basket is framed by middle values and shows up more distinctly than against white paper.
I want to step over the bouquet, pick it up, and take it into the house to display the fresh blooms in a nice vase.

WIP Basket Bouquet

In this step you can see I've continued on with the darker areas under basket and tulips, with the addition of mixed greens.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Next Step detail of WIP

Here's the next step, adding colors underneath the basket.  I've used quinacridone gold and burnt orange together with a bit of carbazole violet in this detail.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Basket Bouquet - Work in Progress

A work in progress (WIP) begun today using no photo, only drawing flowers from silk ones I have in the studio.  Size is 15x22 and this is watercolor on Kilimanjaro 140 lb cold press paper.  After painting so many autumn and winter scenes my eyes were yearning for a colorful floral.  I will add a background garden design and the basket will be sitting on green grass.  So far I drew calla lilies, roses, and tulips.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Basket of Gourds - palette knife watercolor

11x15 watercolor still life on Italia 140 lb cold press paper, completed this afternoon using palette knife only.  No pencil drawing nor brush used and I worked from a black and white reference.  I began upper left by spritzing fine mist water onto dry paper then laying in pure fresh color with the knife tip for autumn leaves and the woven basket.  Assorted colorful gourds rounded out the composition, and lastly, I made calligraphic marks with edge, side, and tip of the knife.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Three Birches palette knife painting

12x8.5 watercolor using only a small palette knife of birches on Strathmore 140 lb cold press paper, done this evening.  I used the knife usually reserved for my oils and scraped and dragged paint up and down until tree shapes were visible; lots of lost edges to blend in with white snow background and foreground.  I was not sure I could do shadows with the knife but those were easy once I wet the horizontal areas with water, then the paint.  Colors used:  Quinacridone burnt orange and gold, carbazole violet, UB, Midnight Blue, raw sienna, transparent pyrrol orange, new gamboge, Peachy Keen, Brown Derby, Coffee with Cream.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Kitchen Help

15x11 watercolor and India ink on Saunders 300 lb paper, done today.  I like to draw from life and do whimsical imaginary scenes such as this steamy, smoky kitchen and this obese yet jolly waiter or chef.  I drew with ink and made some proportions larger, exaggerating the symmetry of the small figurine as well as the oversized teapot he's carrying.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Sleepy Kitty

5.5 x 6.75 watercolor of sleeping kitty curled up with her left foreleg hooked over her left back leg in deep dreamland.
This is wet in wet painted on Langton 140 lb cold press paper this afternoon.  This baby, Cleo, belongs to DLT on WetCanvas and was featured in the current Weekend Drawing Event.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Red Pear on Doily

12x9 watercolor on Strathmore 140 lb cold press paper, a short demo this afternoon for my art students.  I drew a pear outline in white Crayola crayon, then laid in quinacridone gold, gamboge, arylide yellow, orange, red, UB, carbazole violet, and permanent rose.  Stenciled the doily using paper and painting the holes.  Colored pencil in purple was sanded over wet wash for texture; water spritzing, splatters, and spritzing colored dilute wc paint was done for more texture.  I even added Caran D'Ache watersoluble wax crayon lower right of the pear and the stem. Finally a background multicolored wash was loosely applied with manganese blue, green gold, and a mix of UB/alizarin crimson for the shadow when totally dry.  Just a little fun one using primary colors.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

New Mexico Scene - Plein Air

In downtown Lincoln, New Mexico, I went on location to paint watercolor plein air.  This small building closed with a sign saying  'La Placita' and had a covered patio with plants growing.  Its stone wall was charming as were the vines and trees by the blue grey house.  There is negative painting seen in the background.  In this historic area one may remember the Lincoln County War and famous outlaw Billy the Kid.  Size is 10x14 inches 140 lb cold press Arches paper.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Great Horned Owl

15x11 watercolor on Saunders 140 lb cold press paper, work in progress finished today. Here in this last step, I've added distant background water and foreground.  I might glaze again the foreground water but for the most part, he is done.  In the ref, he had a red brick building behind him, so I've taken artistic license and put him in a more natural setting of a lake with trees.

This is the third step showing distant horizon line of autumn colorful trees, plus tail feathers.  I dropped small amounts of water into an almost dry watercolor where it lost its shine, to give the illusion of fog.  Also I added a few reflections of trees and finishing touches to the tree branch the owl is perched upon.

Here is the completed great horned owl's body, step 2 of my WIP.  I'll lightly draw in a branch for him, then plan the background elements. (Owl photo reference courtesy WetCanvas)

Friday, October 12, 2012

Owl Sketch Work in Progress

11x8.5 ink sketch of great horned owl which will be used to develop a full watercolor wildlife landscape. This will be a work in progress, or WIP, that can be seen below in the beginning stages below on Saunders 140 lb cold press paper, 15x11 inches.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Calico Cat Neiman

15x11 watercolor of my friend Mollie's calico kitty, painted wet in wet on 140 lb cold press paper. Sadly during last year's drought in Texas, this kitty came up missing and is still gone.  I took this photo of her during a visit and she was a beautiful cat and this is why Mollie named her Neiman Marcus!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Birches in Snow

15x11 watercolor done today on Strathmore 140 lb cold press paper using American Journey and Daniel Smith paints and a palette knife for the large tree colorings and marks as well as twigs and branches. Of course I always add my own intuitive or impulsive colors as these here do not exist in nature.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

No Fly Zone (sparrows)

15x22 watercolor on Lanaquarelle 140 lb hot press paper, drawn and painted today as we had 90 degrees F with no snow in sight.
These sparrows and one goldfinch were trying to keep warm and their frozen birdbath is behind them.  I used Coastal Fog, Coffee with Cream, Brown Derby, Sepia, UB, QBO, permanent rose, and wet the back only.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Wild Heart

7.5x5.5 watercolor on Strathmore 140 lb cold press paper.  I first drew a heart shape with white Crayola crayon, then put a few strokes inside it.  Next was adding paint to dry paper laid flat, beginning with new gamboge, then Grumbacher red, and Prussian blue, letting the colors mix by themselves.  The crayon resisted color and gave a nice wild edge to the shape.  When dry, I used black Micron 01 pen to draw in loose sided box with hooks and beads to anchor it.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

The Forest for the Trees

15x11 watercolor on Strathmore 140 lb cold press paper finished tonight.  This exercise in negative painting has 6 levels, beginning at the front row of trees and stepping up as you work towards the last one.  Its title is actually "I Can't See the Forest for the Trees", which may well be my state of mind on a good day.  I felt like celebrating autumn with this weekend's cold front, the cats cuddled up in their flannel pet beds, and the smell of pizza.  It was a good afternoon to spend painting.  When dry, I splattered new gamboge, transparent pyrrol orange, and Prussian blue.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Kidz Games

9x10 watercolor on Crescent matboard that has been gessoed, drawn yesterday then painted today.  On WetCanvas we are studying subjects in motion this month and this is my endeavor, a first depicting children doing sports.

Friday, October 5, 2012

The Artistic Touch 5 - New Book is Out

Here it is! At long last, Chris Unwin's new book is out featuring primarily watermedia.  I'm lucky she asked me to submit images for consideration, and two were chosen:  Furbaby and Porky.  You can see these animal portraits below.  If you would like to own one of Chris' books, I have them ready to be picked up at my studio at below MSRP.  Email me if interested in having one for yourself or for that special person on your Christmas list!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Hen House

22x15 watercolor on Saunders 140 lb cold press paper, a demo done in 2004 for the Yoakum Co. Art Association in Plains, TX.  It was painted wet in wet in one hour, give or take a few minutes.  The Plains group is very active for a small town and invite me back each year for demos.  In August I was privileged to judge their area wide exhibition.  This painting is SOLD.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Happy Pear

8.5x7 torn paper collage on matboard, a demo I started for Monday evening art class, and finished up today.  Using slick magazine pages and matte medium, tear colors needed and adhere to a black marker line drawing.  When dry coat several times with gloss medium varnish for a shine.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Donkey Daze

5x11 watercolor of two donkeys discussing their days over the fence, developed from previous ink sketch.  I'm not a landscape painter but will happily do one if there are animals, old barns, or people included.  This is on Strathmore 140 lb cold press paper with Daniel Smith paints:  Quinacridone burnt orange and gold, green gold, raw sienna, UB, thalo green, alizarin crimson.   American Journey paints:  Midnight Blue, Peachy Keen, Coastal Fog, Periwinkle Blue, and Apricot.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Donkeys sketch

5x8 ink sketch using Tombow brush pens, black and grey, on white index stock paper.  From this work I'll develop a painting in watercolor showing the donkeys' local colors, the fence and background.