December 6, 2019

Getting Ready for Christmas

This morning I put all of the ornaments I made since 1976 on our Christmas Tree.  I have so many memories as I add each one.  Each year I made approximately 24 - one for each of our children, one for our tree, and 20 to give away as small gifts.  I race against the clock to make them now, and I make the same one for each of our 8 grandchildren, one for us, and a few spares.


Our grandson Callum likes to look at their tree and ours, and pick out one that the children don't have yet.  This year he wanted an ornament with a pair of embroidered cats.  But we settled on one cat per ornament.  Here is my work in progress.  The pair of cats is the original - made in 1983 and yellowed with age - like us! 


I sketched the pattern from a 1981 issue of Holiday Crafts, and saved the patterns. 


Years ago I made a Teesha Moore 16 page watercolor pamphlet book from a single 22 X 30" sheet of 140lb paper and started to draw and paint all of my handmade ornaments.  I now have 45 painted in the book and need to make another book.



May 20, 2014

Studying One Watercolor A Day

I'm slowly working my way through Veronica Lawlor's book One Watercolor A Day - taking weeks instead of days to do the exercises.  I am a self-taught watercolor painter and thought these exercises might be fun - quicker, looser, and more wet-in-wet.

Day/Exercise 11:  Children's Toys

This was the very first toy I bought - when my daughter was pregnant with our first grandchild.  Trudi the duck still lives among the toys at Grandma's house.   



Day/Exercise 12:  Flowers 

The flowers were painted from photos I took.  The top one is from above, looking down into a dense flower garden.  I used pencil to mark off the area of the flowers, then painted them.  The background was added wet-in-wet.  The second is a cone flower picture that I painted without using a preliminary drawing.  When it was dry I added a few pencil marks for definition.


May 2, 2014

One Watercolor a Day - 3 Exercises

I am still periodically doing an exercise from this book, and here are three recent pages.  I'm painting in a Strathmore 9 X 12 watercolor (140lb) Visual Journal - and using my usual Winsor-Newton watercolor palette.  The paintings are too big for my scanner, so I'm photographing them and then trying to lighten the blue-tinged background page in Photoshop.

Exercise 7:  I painted the shapes of peppers and then actually drew their shapes on the top half of the page.  And then I sketched the red and orange peppers on the bottom half of the page - trying not to just color them in like a coloring book.  The yellow pepper at the bottom was another one that I painted first and then added ink because it was fun!




Exercise 8:  Paint a plant paying attention to all of the different colors in the leaves.  This is one of my house plants -  the one with the most color variation. 


 Exercise 9:  Draw a bird  - which was hard for me unless I wanted to freeze in Central Park as I waited for some of their regulars to appear.  However, I took many photos of geese at the Stone Barn Center for Food and Agriculture last Fall.  I was able to combine photos and paint 3 Toulouse geese for this exercise.  My friend Teri knows that I am doing these exercises in an attempt to loosen up my painting - and when she saw this page - and their sample in the book - she just laughed!  Apparently I'm not loose yet! 



April 4, 2014

New Projects

Before I decided to enroll in the "Studying Under the Masters" Online class this winter, I bought Veronica Lawlor's book One Watercolor a Day so I could play with loose watercolor exercises during the dark winter days.  It is designed for 42 days (6 weeks) and this week I started the book and did 4 exercises in my 9 X 12" 140 lb Watercolor Strathmore Visual Journal.  Here are exercises from 2 days.

Day 3:  Red Monochromatic Painting of a Dreamscape

I was inspired by a mosaic in the Lincoln Center Subway stop and used scarlet red, permanent alizarin crimson, and these mixed with gold gouache and Payne's gray. 


Day 4:  Color Studies

In this exercise I needed to paint the same still-life using 3 different color combinations.  I used Van Dyke Brown for the Monochromatic painting, Yellow, yellow orange, and yellow green for the Analogous painting, and blue, yellow-orange and a 3rd color which was supposed to be red-orange.  My other mannequin models are a pencil drawing and a vellum paper drawing in analogous colors - just to continue to play....


The rest of the days I painted tulips twice - trying to paint the petals wet-on-wet - and one brushes/paint still life.  We are so ready for Spring in New York City - and yesterday the tulip plants in front of my apartment were 3-4 inches high.  I painted this week from tulip photos that I took last year.