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August 22, 2018

Art After Breakfast: Week of August 13th

Figure Drawings from "After Breakfast:"  These are my 10 minute line of action figure drawings that are done on scraps of used copy paper while sitting at the kitchen counter as soon as I finish breakfast.  I began to do these when my dominant hand wrist was broken, and still enjoy the challenge.  These were drawn from photos from a second hand book entitled:  The Human Form is Action and Repose by Phil Brodatz amd Dori Watson (1966).  

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After I cut out the figures from my 4.25 X 5.5" pieces of scrap copy paper, and lined them up on a sketchbook page, they reminded me of a photo from our family archives. This photo was taken from my college newspaper of the modern dance group, as we practiced for a performance.  I'm the dancer kneeling in front.

 

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Dance is a big part of my life:  Tap from age 4-14, Modern in high school and college, and Classic Ballet classes beginning at age 32!  I still go to a weekly ballet barre class here in NYC (at Steps) to maintain discipline and flexibility. 

I'm not sure if the used book listed above is still available, but these are nude photos of a man, and a woman, in MANY separate photos.   

 

 

August 20, 2018

Flowers and Figures al Fresco - August 8th

We are having almost daily rain and threats of thunderstorms this summer, and I didn't go to the Wednesday Adult Art Programs in Battery Park City for several weeks.  These were the newest blooming flowers in Wagner Park.

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Figure al Fresco is also held in Battery Park City on Wednesday - in South Cove.  Our model was Sophie and I enjoy drawing her.  I do rapid sketches with a General Sketch and Wash pencil, and then use water in a waterbrush to add the gray tones.

5 min poses

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10 min

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Almost 15 min

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August 17, 2018

Sketchbook Skool WHIMSICAL Homework for Anna Denise Floor

Anna Denise Floor has beautiful watercolor journals of her family life.  Early in her project she started to develop layouts for her pages and showed us the five major 2 page spreads she uses as guidance.  She draws from her imagination, capturing special moments of life, and I really enjoyed her sketchbook tour in our Whimsical Class.  Our homework was to use her "storyboard layout" and show 5 things about us.  We were supposed to limit our pages to two colors, and I really didn't want to do that.  So here is my full homework spread - photographed whole because it is too big for my scanner - and two "half" pages which I scanned with overlaps. 

 

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Left Side of Page:  I illustrated and wrote about 1. my MD degree and my career, 2. Bookbinding to make watercolor sketchbooks that are the size and paper I like,  My life as a 3. Quilter and 4. Seamstress. 

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Right Side of Spread: Repeat of 3. Quilter and 4. Seamstress, and 5. Drawing and Painting in watercolor sketchbooks.  I included my imaginary characters Axel and Alice because they first appeared in my imagination and homework for Fabio Consoli's homework in the Sketchbook Skool class IMAGINING. 

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August 14, 2018

My History With Watercolor and a Return to Being a Beginner

In 2003 I became interested in keeping a sketchbook, with the hope that I could also keep a travel sketchbook in the future.  I sketched in pen and played with "watercolor," not even realizing that I was using The French School 12 pan set labeled Opaque Watercolor Gouache.  For the next 2 years, when I could find time, I just had fun with a pencil, pen, and these student grade paints.  I read two books: Cathy Johnson Painting Watercolors from the First Step Series, and Anne Elsworth Watercolor Skills Workbook.  Both of them recommended buying artist grade watercolor paint as soon as you can because it is easy to get discouraged when you are using student grade paints with less pigment.  Anne Elsworth recommended limiting the expense by limiting your palette - buying two triads of primary colors, one warm and one cool. 

June 2005:  I bought artist grade watercolors in 2004, but didn't use them for 1 year.  These are my very first marks made with my 5 ml tubes of WinsorNewton professional paints. and samples of the secondary colors mixed with these primary colors.

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Jan 2006 - I started drawing/painting every day and made a color chart with each triad.  This is the one made with the cool triad, which are at the 3 points of the triangle. 

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In 2008 I replaced the Cadmium Yellow with New Gamboge and Cadmuim Red with Scarlet Lake.  I wanted to use more transparent pigments. 

I added 3 convenience colors in the next few years to avoid having to mix grays and browns:  Ivory Black, Neutral Tint, and VanDyke Brown. Someone on the Everyday Matters Yahoo Group then recommended another Triad - yellow ochre, burnt sienna, and paynes gray.   So now I have 3 triads on my palette, and love mixing the secondary and complementary colors. 

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On Aug 7,  I went to a free beginners watercolor session in Bryant Park because the instructor, Marilyn Rose, and I were two students in Danny Gregory's 2008 multisession Sketchbook course here in NYC.  It is always fun to go back to basics, and I had a wonderful time painting these circles last week in the class using my own paper and palette.  I chuckled when I remembered my beginnings one day in 2003 when my wet paints were migrating into each other, and I thought maybe that wouldn't happen if I left a thin strip of white paper between them. 

This exercise is a good example of the various colors that can be mixed with my 3 triads of primary colors - and I loved it as a color mixing, wet-in-dry, and wet-in-wet exercise for me as well as the beginners.

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I'm very happy that I decided to create sketchbooks of my life as I was retiring.  Learning how to use watercolors is part of the adventure and goal I set for myself.  Colors make me so happy! 

 

August 7, 2018

Deliberate Practice: Copying the Masters

Met Breuer NYC is celebrating the 100 year anniversary of the death of Gustav Klimt and Egon Schiele.  50 works from the Met's Scofield Thayer Collection are in the exhibit, OBSESSION, Nudes by Klimt, Schiele and Picasso.  I like all 3 of these artists, and figure drawing, very much and sketched one Klimt and one Schiele.  The Schiele was painted at home. 

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This is the link to the exhibit, which will be on view until October 7th. 

https://www.metmuseum.org/exhibitions/listings/2018/obsession 

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