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November 25, 2006

A Personalized Christmas Card



In September I posted my first non-sketchbook watercolor painting - my son and daughter-in-law's new house in Washington DC.  When I was talking to my son on Thanksgiving, he said they would love to use the painting for their Christmas cards but wanted it to have a wreath on the door and candles in the window.  I am madly trying to finish baby quilts, ornaments, and other family gifts before we leave for London for the holidays so I told him another painting was not possible. 

So yesterday morning I looked at some images, and created this sketch:



And by dinnertime, and through the magic of Photoshop, my son had created this:


He even had to do some color adjustment on the plants and tree to turn summer into late autumn.  I am so delighted that this worked so easily and even more thrilled that my watercolor painting of their very first house will be their Christmas card this year.   

November 24, 2006

Conference Doodles


I brought my sketchbook, waterbrush, and travel set of watercolor paints to a Med School Retreat last week and sat in the last row at an end seat so I could doodle during the proceedings.  I sketched the keynote speaker and then painted the sketch without the person sitting next to me even realizing.  Then I turned over the program and sketched the panel discussion and moderator in ball point pen - to try to practice figures.  In the spirit of playing with art, I decided to cut out and collage my figure doodles with the painting.  Definitely an unplanned composition!  Again, I think I'm so tired after a 2 day Thanksgiving event in our apt. that I forgot to crop the scan before posting it!  It is definitely in my Moleskine large size journal!

EDM Challenge #94: Draw a Spoon



I am really, really bad at painting reflections in glass and metal.  So I actually drew spoons for 2 days to try to improve my skills.  In reality, I would need to paint reflections every day for an entire year to understand what I am doing.  As I type this I realize that I never even cropped the second sketch so it is very obvious that I am using the Moleskine watercolor journal now for my daily practice.  I am able to use both sides of each page using watercolor, so I am enjoying the process and results as I flip through my visual record of the recent weeks.

November 14, 2006

Finally Catching Up: EDM Challenges 90-93


EDM Challenge #90: Draw Something with WingsI was in London during the "Wings Challenge" and saw mostly pigeons!  However, on a long walk past Fortnum and Mason, I saw this wonderful large glass peacock that was a major feature in one of their window displays.  My husband had just patiently had coffee while I sketched St. James Church and I decided not to push my luck and his patience.  So I took several photos and waited to sketch and paint my bird until I returned home from my travels.


EDM Challenge #91 - Draw an Apple:  I don't eat apples and I therefore had to find one to sketch and paint.  I wasn't working wet enough to get good blending of all of the colors, but I try to share all sketches, whether I like them or not.


EDM Challenge #92 - Draw a Paper Bag:  We didn't have one brown paper bag in our apt, so I begged a small one from my neighborhood grocery store, folded it, and carried it in my pocket the rest of the day. 


EDM Challenge #93- Draw Eggs and an Egg Carton:  My husband immediately told me how wonky the egg on the left is - which of course I knew as soon as I drew it.  But I bore easily and couldn't bring myself to start over or repeat the sketch the next day.    We're trying to clean out the refrigerator before we gather our groceries for a big Thanksgiving dinner, so we won't have a fresh dozen eggs until next week.  So here is my egg carton and last 2 eggs.

George R. Brown Convention Center, Houston Texas


Immediately after arriving home from London, I unpacked, repacked, and flew off to Houston Texas for the International Quilt Festival.  I started quilting in 1980 and attended my first Houston Quilt Festival in 1983.  It was relatively small and held at the old, wonderful Shamrock Hilton Hotel.  Since then it has changed venues several times and continued to expand.  This was the 23rd year that I attended and it now fills the entire Houston Convention Center - all 5 parts.  I sketched this view of just one of the 5 parts from my 10th floor room at the Hilton Americas.  The building always reminds me of the Pompidou Museum in Paris.