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February 28, 2012

We Had to Come to the Sierra Mountains to See Snow

We are in South Lake Tahoe for the week, and I was finally able to walk in the snow this year.  I took a long walk yesterday morning through Heavenly Village - when the snow was so heavy that the mountains disappeared from view.  I stopped in the Marcus Ashley Art Gallery when I looked almost like the abominable snowman in my white parka, and found a fabulous Dr. Seuss Art Collection.


When I was asked if I had any questions, I confessed that my only question was "Can I sketch one of these fabulous little figures?"  Not only was sketching permitted, but the Cat in the Hat was put in the viewing area and I was offered a mimosa, or wine, or coffee while I sat and drew the figure!  It was 11:30 AM, so I declined the alcohol!

Here is the Cat in the Hat I loved:



And here is my quick sketch - in pieces because I had a small sketchbook:



Finally, here is the view from our window this AM - with more snow expected tonight: 


February 24, 2012

MoMA Print Studio Withdrawal

I am leaving tomorrow for vacation and will miss the next to the last week of the Print Studio! 

The Museum of Modern Art in New York City has a 6 week Print Studio program to celebrate two new MoMA print exhibits.  There is a work space in the Education Building and the public in invited to come from 12-4PM, every day except Tuesday, to get inspired and create art.  There are 35 shelves of amazing books to use for inspiration - called the Reanimation Library because these illustrated books were orphaned and destined for destruction.  And there is a color copier, scanners, and computers with photoediting software.

I already posted collage pamphlets that I made in the first 2 sessions - and today wanted to post the covers of all 7 collage books that I made to date in 7 sessions.  Each book is 5 3/4 X 7" and has a total of 8 pages - 2 folios stitched together with a 3 hole pamphlet stitch.

Working in the Print Studio is very inspiring and I am able to work very spontaneously and freely using a technique which is relatively new to me - collage.  My idea for a theme develops quickly as I pull a few books and start to examine the illustrations.  I then quickly select more images which support the theme and/or add visual interest to the pages.   My time is spent tearing and gluing paper, stamping, and adding watercolor pencil highlights.   These books are not amazing, but I loved making them. 

Number 1 - Inheritance of Genetic Characteristics.  This clearly originated in my science/medicine background.


Number 2: Images and Colors of Venice.  This Spring is our 3rd visit to Venice.



Volume 3:  Faces




Volume 4:  London - a City I know well.  A page from this book was on the MoMA website yesterday!


Volume 5:  Figure Drawing - another one of my passions


Volume 6: Children


Volume 7:  Blood Cells 


February 20, 2012

A Map, Some Art Supplies, and a Great Exhibit

I had a wonderful day Saturday - talking a long walk among art supply stores and ending at the Flatiron Building where Gwyneth Leech was ending her fabulous art exhibit called Hypergraphia. 


The weather was wonderful and the City was full of people out walking, running, shopping, and playing.  By counting blocks, I estimate that my walk from Dick Blick to NY Central Art Supply, to Casey's Stamps, and then the Hypergraphia exhibt was 1 1/2 to 2 miles.

I bought a new sketchbook for figure drawing and a package of gold leaf, which I didn't draw - and these items which I did draw.


I'm always amazed at how little it takes to make me happy - 2 pencils, a pen, some paint and a new rubber stamp.

Gwyneth Leech paints on disposable coffee cups and creates wonderful works of art.  She sat in a beautiful small gallery in the prow of the Flatiron building for the last few months, ending Saturday afternoon.  Here is a photo I took from where she sat and watched thousands of people pass by each day. 


Here is her blog post from the last day.  She told me that she now has more than 800 painted cups - and plans are being made for exhibits in other cities.  You must read her last blog post!

February 16, 2012

Figure Drawing - Feb 14, 2012

Here are several sketches from Valentine's Day at the Society of Illustrators.  One of the models had on a red sequin headband and red net stockings - one of which is visible on her leg in the first sketch while the other one is wrapped around her wrist.  This is a 10 minute pose.


The remaining two drawings are from the 20 minute poses.  I sketched the models with a watercolor pencil and then brushed on clear water in the last few minutes to achieve some shading.

These drawings are on 9 X 12" watercolor paper and are too big for my scanner.  The photograph background color was adjusted a little in Photoshop.






February 13, 2012

Happy Valentines Day

 I'm not a very good "doodler" so I bring a Doodle Sketchbook when I go visit my mother each week.  During the cold weather. we go for a long walk in her Senior complex and sit for awhile on a bench, in a glass crosswalk, in the sun.  Last week I doodled hearts and actually finished multiple ones while we sat for an hour and talked. 

This weekend, I resized them and used them as Valentine gift cards for our grandchildren.  Even doodling takes deliberate practice!  Having a separate sketchbook has made me very loose and experimental.  I bring a simple set of watercolor pencils with me, a water brush, and pen - plenty of tools for this activity.







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