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June 28, 2013

Bookbinding Adventure - June

I just finished two Japanese Stab Books - one with a soft cover and the other with a hinged hard cover.  Each month since January I researched a book structure and made one or two books to increase my skills. 

January: 2 Coptic books

February: 2 Long stitch leather books

March:  Flag book with samples of paste papers I made that month

April: 2 Accordion books

May: A portfolio 

June: 2 Japanese stab books - with Classic 4 hole stitching pattern


I make case bound watercolor books for my daily sketches/paintings and discovered that I love making books.  This is a fun project for the year partly because I love the reading, research, and problem solving.  Now I need to decide on additional structures to make in July-December. 


Soft Cover Stab Book: Size - 8"wide x 5.5" high    16 Pages     Canson Mi Tientes cover and text paper pages.  Black waxed linen thread.  A Gelli print was added to the cover.  My research notes and methods are in this notebook and I made it to practice the stitching pattern.





Hinged Hard Cover Stab Book:  Size 8.5" wide X 7" high   24 Pages  Tex Libris book cover, Strathmore 400 Drawing paper, Paste paper was used for the inset on the cover and the end papers, Waxed black linen thread.  I will use this book for figure drawing practice when my current sketchbook is completed.




 The Paste Paper End Papers


June 25, 2013

Visual Journal

My "Daily Watercolor Sketchbook" is my visual diary - the place where I try to include bits and pieces of my life.  I also have specific destination travel sketchbooks, a figure parts practice sketchbook, a live figure drawing sketchbook, and a doodle notebook because I need to encourage myself to loosen up.

Here are some daily sketchbook pages from the week before the Beach and after we returned.

Desk Chair that I Can See From my Special Place on the Couch:  I prepainted this page when I had some leftover paint on my palette.


Cut Hyacinths and My Blooming Gloxinia: 


Duck for Charlie and Sea Gull for Robbie and Zach:  We had baby Charlie overnight while his two big brothers were at the beach with their Mommy and Cousins.  The duck is a quick drawing of part of the Hans Chrisitian Anderson statue in Central Park - where we stopped to feed Charlie his afternoon fruit.  The sea gull is from one of my many photos from our week at the beach.


NYC Dinner with Cousins: Another Pre-Painted Background


Edward Hopper Exhibit at the Whitney Museum: Teri, Pat, Benedicte and I had brunch, went on a tour of the current permanent collection exhibit with my friend Gail, spent 2 hours in the Edward Hopper exhibit, and then went gallery-hopping in the neighborhood.  I was so over-inspired that day that it is hard for me to remember what I wanted to try next.  The Hopper exhibit has >200 of his drawings and 20+ of his paintings.  Many of the drawings are preparatory to the paintings.  Others are fabulous figure drawings or drawings of parts of the human figure.    I highly recommend getting to NYC to see it before it closes on Oct 6th if you love master drawings and some pretty famous Hopper paintings.



June 21, 2013

Finding My Own Visual Language - Exercise 4

Visual Exercise 4:  An Exercise in Mark Making  From: Dunnewald et al.  Finding Your Own Visual Language

This is a "freewheeling" exercise done by "marking" (doodling) an entire page until full, completing 6-10 pages of marks.  I did suggestions #3 and 7 - using different tools and different paints/inks.  The end of May and most of June were so busy that I didn't post any of these doodles and I haven't even thought about exercise 5.

I'm not sure how interesting these marks/doodles are to anyone but me - but I am fascinated with the use of my wide parallel pen which is one of the last pages of doodles that I did (see below).  I'm not a doodler so filling this many pages with random marks was a fun exercise. 
















I prefer geometric rather than organic/amorphous shapes 

A Rigger brush can be very accurate for drawing lines and making marks.

A wide parallel pen is an amazing tool for doodling - very dramatic and interesting shapes emerge!  I wonder if a narrower parallel pen would give me the variation in line that I'd like with figure drawing?  Seems like an experiment worth doing!


June 17, 2013

Sketchcrawl With Sydney at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

Sydney finished her school term last Wednesday and on Thursday she and I went to the Metropolitan Museum of Art to see the new costume institute exhibit "Punk" and to sketch.  We went into the American Wing and Sydney sketched the standing bear from a statue of 3 bears.  She was very cute as she sketched in pencil, then added pen and erased her pencil lines. You can see her chosen bear behind her on the right. 


I sketched Diana, the Roman Goddess of the Hunt.  This sculpture, by Augustus Saint-Gaudens, is a half-size caste of the second statue that sat on the top of the tower on the old Madison Square Garden at Madison and 26th St. The original is 13 ft high and is at the top of the Great Stairs at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.   It was a weathervane that was illuminated at night and could even be seen from across the Hudson River.  Here is my photo of the statue in the Met and my painting. 



We stopped to talk to another artist as we walking out and she asked to see Sydney's drawing - and was very sweet and encouraging to her!


It was pouring outside so we came home for the afternoon, and I taught her how to make Gelli Arts Monoprints! 


And we still weren't finished playing. That Met bag she was carrying had a kit for wrapping ear bud earphones with multiple color threads and beads! 

June 14, 2013

June Figure Drawing at the Society of Illustrators

This was my first figure drawing session since April - and I really enjoyed it.  There were 2 good models, fun live music, a glass of pinot noir, and Sara, my friend from our beach vacation.  The format is always the same: 10X2 min, 4X5 min, 2x10 min, 3X20 min.  I uploaded a few of my drawings in each category.

I really like the short poses best.  The models are more adventurous and I am drawing without thinking.  Here are 2 0f the two-minute drawings and 2 of the 5 minute drawings:





 One 10 minute pose:



Two 20 minute Poses.  The final pose, with both models reclining, was way beyond my previous experience, but I walked to a space where I could see them best, did a contour drawing, and then threw watercolor paint on the sketches.  I'm glad I didn't wimp out - the challenge was good for me!



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