Thursday, January 31, 2013

In the Pink

11x8.5 mixed media sketched with Faber Castell Pitt pen, medium grey, on Master's Touch sketchbook.  This is a study for a work on a full sheet, 30x22.  With this, today I used Sharpie colored markers, watercolor pencils, black India ink; her dress and umbrella were colored pencil with water added.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Milky Way

11x8.5 watercolor on Italia 140 lb cold press paper, drawn and painted today.  This is bad boy Chester who cannot resist milk, ice cream, or any dairy products so we cannot leave any unattended.  I did this work wet into wet using alizarin crimson and thalo green mix for his black coat, and quinacridones gold and burnt orange for the table and wall.  Other colors are permanent rose, peachy keen, and ultramarine blue.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013


6x10 watercolor of an English apothecary shop (pharmacy), painted wet on dry, on Canson 140 lb cold press paper today.  The photo ref was featured in WetCanvas Weekend Drawing Event, courtesy of Lin, and is an old shop in Skipton, North Yorkshire Dales, UK. Our time limit is 2 hours.  I did an underpainting first of cerulean blue, quinacridone gold, and permanent rose and worked from a black and white photocopy.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Garden Art ink sketch

Ink sketch 12x9 using black Tombow brush pen on Bristol paper, beginning with dark areas of stone garden angel's wings.  I used a photo (below) taken in Tyler, TX at a garden center where all sorts of outdoor art and statuary was available. (I used a black and white photocopy to do the value study.) After putting in darkest areas, I then took a script liner or rigger brush, size 1, and added water to make a middle value grey.  The image below is uncropped, almost a vignette.  I'll draw a pencil version on Arches 140 lb watercolor paper, and this will be the subject of next week's demonstration for an art association.

Here is the uncropped layout, with nearly square dimensions.

And the original photo reference for those huge glazed blue pots!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Some Like it Hot! still life

15x11 watercolor still life of table top vegetables work in progress is now completed.  Today shadows were added using cobalt violet, cerulean blue, quinacridone magenta, permanent rose, yellow ochre, olive green, sap green, quinacridone red in an attempt to tie all elements together.  I darkened most of the colander holes and added stems that were waiting until the end.  This was a fun and colorful one to do, now on to the next endeavor.  I hope you like it!

WIP - step 3 Some Like it Hot still life

More work was done later in the details such as tiny colander holes that have 3 different colors, some shading, glazing inside the container and emphasizing highlights.  Most pepper stems are done, but I did omit those that will have shadow under or across for ease of painting.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

WIP step 2 - Some Like it Hot still life

Today's work continued on with adding detail and correcting values of the veggies.  The red purple onion on right side was painted.  I did add a slight shadow on the white metal colander by red bell pepper.  You can see four photo refs I've stuck to the Plexiglas.

Friday, January 25, 2013

WIP - Some Like it Hot (still life)

15x11 watercolor on Arches 140 lb cold press paper work in progress begun yesterday with detailed drawing using fresh jalapeno peppers, tomatoes, bell peppers, and onions of all varieties.  It was painted wet in wet today, and this is about 1.5 hours worth of work in a direct painting style using 1" flat sable brush.  I've been buying old kitchen colanders on eBay and photographing any interesting ones in antique or secondhand stores; love the rusted and shiny metal juxtaposed with smooth colorful vegetables' skins.  I may put these salsa ingredients on a white tablecloth and will finish this still life tomorrow.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Alley Cat

12x12 watercolor on 140 lb cold press Saunders paper of a stray tabby climbing out of a beaten up garbage can in the alley.  This work was done wet on dry and is SOLD.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Black Thomas and Garden Frog

11x15 ink on Strathmore wc paper, drawn with ink tip and blended with wet brushes.  This fellow was lounging in the garden with a frog planter looking on.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Daffodil Lineup

4.25x7.75 India inks on 300 lb cold press wc paper, another in my experimentation with ink series. With this simple spring scene, I sketched the daffies first in pencil.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Calling All Callas

24x18 watercolor work in progress is finished! I opted for a soft grey neutral background without any of the bold brightness of my usual work.  After all, calla lilies are wedding flowers and deserve an elegant setting even if it is only a painting.  I may glaze its background one more time but do think it is done.  I did add a middle lily by negative painting the shape, and do need to soften edges throughout.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Work in Progress: Calling All Callas

24x18 watercolor WIP (work in progress), of a calla lily grouping I drew on Friday then began painting today.  I used Canson Montval block with Daniel Smith paints, wet on dry, encouraging drips and run-backs.  This is about 1.5 hours of work.  I still must finish the stems of mixed greens and one more lower right petal, then decide if a background color is needed or not.  Painting whites is such a challenge! But I love a challenge.  So stay tuned.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Aspens Ashimmer - reworked watercolor

22x15 watercolor and gouache on 140 lb cold press paper, my demo for today's workshop class.  Our task was to take an old painting that just didn't look like we wanted, and remake it into something better.  For mine I choose a previous floral that had already been redone but still was lousy.  I turned it vertically and drew aspen outlines using black watersoluble Tombow brush pen, then with white gouache and watercolors, mostly opaques, I painted this scene.  Below you can see the old dog itself.

BEFORE version, titled Poppies and Berries, that had lots of negatively painted leaves and blooms...way too much detail as is my usual habit.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Pansy Pot

11x15 watercolor of fresh multicolored pansies in blue & white plaid pot over soft abstract background. This work is SOLD.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Chuy Cat Yawning

5.5x7.5 watercolor on 140 lb hot press paper over a pencil drawn sketch.  This is my grey tabby cat, Chuy (pronounced Chewy), who will turn 12 this year.  In the photo I took, he was just awakening from a nap on brocade and embroidered silk pillows.  Behind him is a gold and red velvet Oriental throw with gold tassels; more gold tassels can be seen on pillow edge his right paw is close to.  He was not allowed on the pillows so must have been saying "ha ha!" when I discovered him there.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Three Apples

11x7.5 ink painting vignette of three luscious apples all in a row.  I used Dr Ph Martin's India inks after first sketching the fruit in pencil; colors blended and allowed to mix and mingle together on 140 lb cold press Strathmore watercolor paper.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Cat on Porch

7x6 ink sketch of a cat on a bed and breakfast porch where I stayed near Kerrville, TX.  I used a black Tombow brush pen putting in darkest values first (the way I paint) then added water with a rigger brush for mid-value greys.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Compote Pears

7.5 x 10.5 watercolor fruit still life of a bunch of pears in white china compote.  It makes the fifth still life so far this year.  I'd fallen way behind in painting still life subjects so one resolution this year was to do more.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Candlelight Roses - completed WIP

Finally finished with the romantic still life over the weekend! The lace tablecloth and curtains gave me fits as did the many reflections in the silver candlesticks.  This was an exercise in using mixed grays to enhance pure color of the fresh roses.  Size is 15x11 watercolor on Strathmore (reverse side to allow more happy accidents).

Saturday, January 12, 2013

WIP almost done Candlelight Roses

More work was done on background lace curtains, mainly by mixing brownish greys and dropping in color while wet.  Then the foreground was made to resemble antique faded lace patterns, done on a diagonal to provide movement within the composition.  After correcting values and softening edges I'll be able to pronounce this one finished, maybe tonight or tomorrow. 

Friday, January 11, 2013

WIP Candlelight Roses continued

Here is the work so far with round vases and water along with the roses about completed. Next I will tackle the remaining candlestick, so stay tuned.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Candlelight Roses work in progress (WIP)

This is grey ink sketch using 3-4 different colors done today using old silver candlestick and imaginary roses for a work in progress watercolor I'll post as I go.  I flipped the candlestick and drew it higher on the right side for balance, then added a red and black bowl as seen in the beginning image below.

15x11 watercolor on Strathmore 140 lb cold press paper and Daniel Smith paints, about 1.5 hours of work this afternoon during the pouring rain (thank you Lord, for the rain!) Stay tuned.  Another New Year's resolution for me was to resolve to paint more still life.  So this one is my 4th still life, and I have done even more but they are ink sketches that have not been shown.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Old Phones Desktop

9x12 watercolor office still life painted today from my ink sketch yesterday.  I used Daler Rowney Langton Prestige 140 lb cold press paper with Daniel Smith paints.  Since there is minimal color here, I call these mostly neutral works 'value paintings'.  These old rotary dial phones are still in use as is the office No. 2 lead pencil and notepad on the proverbial desktop.  Remember how their cords became twisted and were never long enough?

Old Phones sketch

Relics of the not-so-distant past, these rotary dial telephones sketched in ink remind us of how far technology has advanced.  Pencils and notepads are included as well in this simple nostalgic still life drawn with Faber Castell grey pens in Master's Touch sketchbook, 8.5x11.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Ap-pear-antly Pears!

20x26 watercolor on Yupo synthetic paper, a product that allows pigments to sit on top and look more vibrant as they cannot soak into any tooth.  So an artist must develop textural effects to accommodate. Here in this painting done a few years ago, I have used plain Jane pears and made them come alive.

Geisha Dolls

15x22 gouache on hot press Lanaquarelle 140 lb, drawn yesterday in watercolor colored pencil and painted today.  I also dropped in several places watersoluble oil pastel.  These dolls were a part of an Asian display at a very large antique store and I got remarkable photos from which to paint.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Red Rose Deep - using inks

7x4 India inks on 140 lb Saunders Waterford watercolor paper, drawn with colored pencil then inked over the lines.  I used a deep red silk rose.  This is my first full ink painting using Dr. Ph. Martin's products and really do enjoy the vivid hues.

Friday, January 4, 2013


10.25 x 4.25 watercolor on Canson 140 lb cold press paper, drawn and painted today, another in my New Year celebration series.  The thin ribbons are leftover Christmas trim and bottle of bubbly is long gone. For this one, I did use masking fluid.  I may have to buy a bottle of Dom Perignon as my birthday is coming up this month.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Spent Sunflower

9 x12 watercolor on Canson 140 lb cold press paper, drawn yesterday and painted today from a photo I took years ago.  I've added more color to its head as the photo was more white after birds had picked seeds.  Since we got snow today, a sunflower and blue sky were just perfect subjects to paint.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013


13x6 watercolor of a bunch of fresh radishes inspired by a trip to the local HEB grocery store.  This complementary color scheme of pairing red with green prompted a touch here and there of turquoise and of course white tipped roots.  No masking was used with this painting.