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December 16, 2011

Holiday Traditions

This was the 3rd year that I took my grand daughter Sydney to see the NY City Ballet's Nutcracker.  I remember the performance vividly from my younger days and will always judge other performances by the size of their growing Christmas tree.  It is still magical to me!  This week the performance was featured on PBS's Live from Lincoln Center, so we now have it on our DVR. My other grand daughter (age 3) can see it the next time she visits from Washington DC.

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On Tuesday my husband and I went to an open rehearsal of the NY Philharmonic playing Handel's Messiah.  There is at least one peformance each day of the Messiah someplace in NYC, and the NY Philharmonic alone is playing 5 performances of it - through this weekend.  It was wonderful - and we now have the CD on in the apartment each morning.  This page was drawn as we were waiting for the rehearsal to begin.

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December 14, 2011

December 2011 Figure Drawing

 I'm still not brave enough to "draw" a figure with my paintbrush.  Oh well!  This can be one of my goals for 2012.

Here are 6 drawings from the 18 I did last evening.  I don't like the specific male model who posed last night, so all of my drawings were done of the woman model. 

Two minute pose:  9B graphite

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Five minute pose: 9B graphite

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Two 10 minute poses: 9B graphite

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Two 20 minute poses:  Albrecht Durer watercolor pencils and a blue watercolor wash

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December 12, 2011

Busy Weekend

We had 5 of our grandchildren here Saturday and then for an overnight visit - and we braved the crushing crowds at sunset to take them to see Rockefeller Center and the gorgeous Christmas tree.  Their parents were very afraid that we might lose one!  They were great - and very impressed.  Unfortunately the 2 year old fell asleep as soon as we unfolded his stroller and started to walk away from the subway.

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When they left Sunday, I resumed quilting a new baby quilt for our 7th grandchild - due next Saturday.  I put the last stitch in at 11:45 PM - logging in many hours yesterday watching Downton Abbey on PBS.  This quilt was machine pieced and hand quilted - a total of about 60-75 hours.

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I finished making the princess dress and newborn sleeper - and those are ready to go to Washington DC.  And 9 of the Christmas ornaments that I made for this year are done - 3 more to go.

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December 7, 2011

2nd Annual Master Print Using Fun Foam

Pat Gaignat, who wrote an article about this process in Cloth, Paper Scissors in the Sept-Oct 2010 issue, taught our small art group to make fun foam art stamps.  One year ago we "interpreted" a painting by Cranach using this process.  Last Christmas I posted a tutorial for making a simple Santa stamp in 4 colors.  Today we met and interpreted an Indian painting from the new Islamic Galleries at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Here is the painting that inspired us:

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I sketched her to simplify the image.

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Then I painted it to work on ways to simplify the colors.

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Today was the day that we met and created stamps for our painting - laughing, swearing, having lunch, and finally printing out one copy.  Here is my print - using a limited stamp pad palette

It is certainly an exercise that must be working our neurons.  And having made stamps for such a complex image, less complicated ones are really easy.

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December 2, 2011

Daily Sketchbook Page - Dec. 1

My husband and I went to an open rehearsal of the NY Philharmonic to hear Mahler's 10th Symphony - and I sketched the lady who was in front of me on line (reading her NY Times which was hung over the glass partition) and the cellist who was warming up on stage.  Lovely concert which is scheduled for more performances tonight and tomorrow night. 

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