It's not what you gather, but what you scatter that tells what kind of life you have lived. Helen Walton

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Happy Holidays!

We are at the wonderful (stressful) time of year again.
We will have a quiet year this year and that is okay with us.
Selfishly, it gives me more time to play with my paints.
I finally pulled some of my paintings out from under the bed
and had them framed. I really never love anything I do but it is surprising
how nice they look when we stick them in a frame.
The navy blue wall is a perfect backdrop for them but they do overpower the room.
Things can't be perfect, can they?

My Christmas gift to me
I had a disaster (things happen) at the art table last week.
Two days later I cut it into strips and wove it into watercolor paper.

I was somewhat happy with the results but a friend suggested I weave it into
a colored background.  So today I made the background with water color paint,
witches cloth on yupo.  Not sure what I have yet.  This method is always a surprise.

I think I posted a very bright background I did recently.
Today it got a "geometric" treatment.

Not sure if it is done...stay tuned.
Wishing you all a very happy Holiday Season and thanks for being my "blogger friend."
Happy PPF all!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

It is great to be a winner!

I never win anything but I have always felt I was lucky in life.  
So what if I didn't win at any of the many things I have entered over the years.
Well friends, that has all changed.  I won a Rhodia sketchbook at Sandra Strait's 
site, Life Imitates Doodles
Thank you Sandra!
It's great to be a winner!

Last weeks background is starting to take shape.

I added the treeline and painted out the sky.
Not sure what is next, maybe my name.

On the left I have a grid design I did in my art class that I never liked.
The background was so busy, it overwhelmed the grid so it was relegated
to a spot under the bed in the guest room (where all disappointing paintings
go.  I woke up with an idea the other morning, pulled it out and went an 
entirely different direction with it, as you can see.  Am I the only one that sees the mouth of someone in the broken portion?  Not a gleeful
subject but I like the results and all
of the bright colorful grids are long

As I have mentioned before, I wake up with these wild ideas
and if I am lucky and have time, I can act on them.  Today was one of those days but of all things collage was part of the idea.  I need to tell you I have never done collage in my life so this was another new experiment.

Thanks so much for visiting and HAPPY PPF!!!

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Mistakes happen, don''t quit

I am lucky to live in an area with a great art center.
We can rent studio time and/or we can take classes for very reasonable fees.
This was originally a "grid" design done in a class.   I just couldn't get comfortable with it.
So, I matt mediumed on top of the acrylic and did a spider web on top of the original
design.  The only thing I liked in the original piece was the dragonfly so I "saved it".
The spider web is halloween webbing on the yupo and then I spray different colored dyes
on the webbing.  It sucks up the dye and transfers it to the yupo.
The rest is done with stencils and white acrylic.
I think I like it better now.

Another background started here.  This is acrylic and then I smush a drycleaner bag on it,
let it sit 10 minutes and then remove and admire.

We got lucky this week...triplet blooms!
Happy PPF!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015


The challenge this week at the Diva site is from Paula Bramante.
We are to use cairns or rocks as our theme.
Liss Rankin M.D. provided us with a very thoughtful "life cairn"
I chose this design to use as my string.

I hadn't intended it to be a monotangle, but it sort of just happened.

I have always been a rock lover (or "rock hound" as we called ourselves as we searched
for rocks on the California deserts.
Recently we visited Portugal and I was fascinated with the cobblestone streets and took
many photos of them.
On return one of those photos inspired the painting below.

Friday, October 23, 2015

It's Friday...

Where does time go?
I am back working four days a week and it has totally messed up my art time.
So, this week rather than working at our community art center, I decided to work on my lanai.
The weather is now in the 80's, so it was pleasant for playing.
I got my yupo ready, assembled the paints and poured away.
When I didn't get the results I liked, I tipped my board around trying to find something I liked.
Then I added a bit of water and tipped some more.
Finally I had it!

I left it to dry.
If you look carefully you will see that the paint drifts to the top left corner.
Yes, it drifts and it drifted right on to a yellow chair cushion below.
Well, all of those cushions needed washing anyway and "most' of it came out and nothing shows
when I turn the cushion over.

This is another background done over a watercolor background.

And here is my latest blooms.

Happy PPF

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Fall celebration

One of the few sacrifices we make living in Florida is fall.
Sometimes we can feel it in the air but we have to travel north to enjoy the color.
Whenever we go north, I collect leaves to press and use in various
art projects.  These leaves came from my daughter's yard in Connecticut.

Life is about trade offs.  My orchids growing on my lanai are my trade off.
If I loved in a climate with fall, I wouldn't have these blooming in my yard.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Sketching flowers...

This beautiful cattleya orchid is blooming on my lanai this week.
People have asked me why I don't use these beauties as the subject of my art.
Finally, this week, this orchid inspired me to try it.  Why not?  If I didn't like it,
I could just throw it away
The nicest thing about sketching orchids is that you get to smell them while you sketch.
This particular one has a very light citrusy scent.

So here is the first attempt.  
Then I decided to do a "close up"

Now I was on a roll so I sketched my arrangement on my dining room table

Watercolor and sketching were a nice change from my acrylic projects.
This morning when I went out on the lanai, another beautiful surprise awaited me.

Happy PPF!

Monday, September 28, 2015

Diva Challenge #237

This weeks challenge #237 at I am the Diva is an interesting one.
Charlotte Carpentier has challenged us to use something as a stencil and then tangle on the pattern.
Years ago, I was in Walmart and say these things that fit in the bottom of the sink to protect
the sink from getting dings or marks.  I bought it because I thought I could use it as a background one day.  
You can see it has a cute pattern.
So that is what I used for this week's challenge.

Friday, September 25, 2015

I have a background for that!

I have been entertaining myself doing backgrounds (what else is new).
So with the arrival of the Pope in the US, I had just the background to celebrate him
I cut lots of diamonds out with a vague idea in mind.
On completion, it reminded me of a quilt square.
Happy PPF

OOooops, I forgot to show you the results of the background I posted a couple of weeks ago
Here is the background
And here is my flower, still mounted on the cardboard I use to work on.
So now,
Happy PPF

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Doodlin' dictionary revisited

I have repurposed a dictionary for doodling and and trying new ideas.
This just seemed to fit the Diva's challenge to tangle on something different.
I know fall is coming up north but here in Florida my orchids
are coming into their blooming season.
Here is one of the first ones.

They always brighten my day.  

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Thursday, September 10, 2015

A couple of different yupo ideas

Water color yupo spiderweb.
I got some nice depth in this one.  It is two feet by three feet so it is quite large.
No plans for it yet but I had lots of fun doing it.
At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I love watching the colors mingle on yupo.
They have their own mind and their own plan, so the controller in me just has to let go.
That is a good exercise.

This was an acrylic dump on yupo paper.
Why the gears?  I have no idea.  I just think they are interesting looking.
So now when this dries, I want to add a dirty looking edge to it all...sort of like
my Dad's workbench or something.  Not sure how or why but I want it to look sort of sooty.
Any ideas?
Would love to hear.
In the meantime, thank you for your visit and Happy PPF!

Friday, August 28, 2015

Quick sketch

A quick sketch of my four legged boss, Harley.
He is snuggled up on a pillow in a chair where he can watch me do whatever it is
I do at my "creative desk".
Wishing all a Happy PPF

Friday, August 21, 2015

Better late......

When it is hot outside (as it has been in SW Florida)
we tend to stay in and do nothing.  
So this week I sat looking at a  background I had done a week ago
wondering what it might become.  When in doubt, the abstract is
an easy bet and it gives me practice in layering.
So this AM I did accomplish a little something.
One less background (which means maybe I can do another).
For me, the backgrounds are the fun part, watching the colors mix and play.
The work begins when I have to figure out what to do with it.

The blue tape holds the yupo to the board.
I had hoped to do palm fronds but don't quite see it yet.

So that's what I am up to.
Happy Late Paint Party Friday!

Monday, August 17, 2015

Sharla's Challenge

We were supposed to use S curves and C curves
Well, Twistee is sort of a C curve but that is where it ends.
But that was what came out of my pen this AM, the first Zentangle in about
a year and a half.  
I enjoyed it even if it didn't really follow our directions, and that is part of what it is all about!

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Dog days of summer

It has been hot, grey and drippy in South West Florida.
Day after day of it.
So I pulled out my paint and my yupo and made a colorful statement.

Yet another background.  I had to come up with a plan rather than adding it to my growing
collection of backgrounds.

I am not done yet.  I think I will stamp a few solid white letters around.
So that was one day.
The next day I took on an old background  (from the "collection")

I spent hours cutting out my stencils
But I got a nice a flower arrangement for my efforts.

In the midst of the grey drippy weather, two of my orchids are blooming

I wish you could smell them.  They have the lightest, most delicate scent, each one different from the next.
Wishing you a Happy Paint Party Friday!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Vacation sketches

I always have the best intentions when I am traveling.
I have my Peerless Water Colors, my water brush and my microns.
The problem is that we get so involved in going and doing that nothing gets drawn.
However, sometimes when I return, if I have the time, the memories are vivid
and I can sketch out impressions.
So that is what I am sharing today...impressions of our vacation in Ornans, France.
(See previous post for photos)

Flying into Geneva, we flew over Lake Geneva and I was impressed with the 
plots of sunflowers, corn and hay.  

Walking around Ornans, next to the Loue River, I loved the many gardens tucked next to old
stone walls that may have been there since 1300. There were old  "sheds" of stone and stucco in many of the yards.

You can see, I have no idea of perspective but I do enjoy random sketches.
Happy PPF

Sunday, July 19, 2015

A visit to Ornans, France

We have just returned from an amazing trip to Ornans, France.
We visited friends who have a summer home there.
I don't know what I was expecting but this was a spectacular town built along the Loue River.

Some of the homes, including the one we visited, are 400-500 years old.  They must maintain the original exteriors but the interiors are all updated beautifully.

Spectacular rocky cliffs and castles overlook the town.
(This is a view from our third floor bedroom window)

The surrounding countryside is a painter's dream

Petunias everywhere

Gorgeous woods nearby
Beautiful old churches topped with the typical rooster
And of course, amazing food!

We were also fortunate to visit the Gustave Courbet Art Museum.  Not only was his collection amazing but the building housing the collection was as unique as any I have seen.
They built around his original home with a very contemporary style complimenting the old walls of his home.  Portions of the building have a glass floor looking down on the Loue River.
This was an awesome trip for us.  It will be hard to top.