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December 23, 2010

Happy Holidays and a Wonderfully Creative 2011

I make fabric ornaments for our Christmas Tree every year and I'm now trying to paint all of them to have images I can play with.  This small stocking was made in 1989.

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My daughter and I took Sydney to the NY City Ballet version of The Nutcracker this week.  She loves the Mouse King, but I painted him after we went last year.  This year I decided that we really needed a Nutcracker drawing  - and I sketched this one from a little ornament I bought for her.

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I still have two more small stocking stuffers to sew today, then tomorrow I'll make the flourless chocolate cake for Christmas Eve dinner here with all of our children and grandchildren.  My husband is making a rib roast, and creamed spinach.  I just need to bake bread and make rice pilaf.  We love Christmas!

December 20, 2010

Multiplying Santas

I made a fun foam Santa stamp from a drawing that I posted earlier - and used it to stamp on the front of a sketchbook.  I then stamped the envelope of a Christmas card and a piece of newspaper to clean the ink from the stamp parts.  

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The following day I stamped the front cover of 6 pamphlet stitched sketchbooks for my Grandchildrens' Christmas stockings and stamped 3 more Santas on tracing paper to clean the stamps.

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Each of these extra Santas were used to make two journal pages in my sketchbook - a definite case of multiplying Santas....

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Happy Holidays to everyone!  And a fabulously successful, art-filled New Year.

December 17, 2010

Sydney's Winter Adventure

Sydney will turn 6 on Monday and her younger brother Callum will turn 4 on Sunday.  Celebrating Hannukah, Birthdays, and Christmas all within a few weeks is too much for them, so I took Sydney for a "Birthday in June" art supply shopping trip the last two years and will see what special presents/adventure Callum will want this summer, instead of now.  This year I also decided that Syd and I needed a special day for her birthday and yesterday I picked her up from school after an early morning dismissal and we headed to midtown to Grand Central Station and Bryant Park - to see their Christmas Villages (crafts booths), watch the ice skaters, photograph the Christmas trees, and take a carousel ride.  Then we headed to Bead World - our real destination - and she picked out 10 special beads for us to put together for a "fob" for her school backpack. 

Her hat wasn't keeping her ears warm so we decided that she needed a pair of earmuffs like I was wearing.  Here she is happily showing off her new pink earmuffs!

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And my sketch of her in my visual journal to remember this happy occasion.

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Regular readers of my blog will know that I only sketch and paint my grandchildren from the back - this may be a new beginning....  I painted her silver jacket with WN silver gouache which looks great on the page, but doesn't scan as a metallic.

December 12, 2010

Sonheim Lab Drawings 35, 37, 38

I still sketch from Carla Sonheim's book Drawing Lab, and hope to finish all 52 exercises by the end of Winter.  I periodically post some of my 100 Faces (Lab 16), but have only completed  36/100.  I have a zipper pouch with cards cut from watercolor paper, pencil, pen, eraser, 8 watercolor pencils, and a watercolor brush that I carry with me when I know I might have a chance for a live Face Drawing.  I'll post a picture of my great pouch with the next batch of faces.

Lab 35:  Browse a magazine and rip out a few pages that speak to you.  Then collage one or more elements to a page and add a sketch around the collages.  I picked up the Sunday NY Times magazine and found this mask/color samples, and didn't want to look for anything else.  It spoke to me!

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Lab 37  Instructions for this lab are as follows:  Quickly make a list of 20 things.  Using a random number generator (she provides the URL for one on the web), draw each item in the order that they are "selected" as a random number. 

My list of 20 items is on the left side of the spread.

This was great fun and another one of her terrific methods for making original drawings.

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Lab 38:  Sidewalk Crack Drawings

I photographed sidewalk cracks for several months while walking around New York City.  When I finally got to this Lab, I selected a photo, rotated the image on the computer, and finally saw a little lamb.  I should have left out the curb edge (upper left corner) and the bottom of a scaffold support (bottom left corner) - but I hope you can see my lamb anyway.

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Katherine Tyrrell, on her blog Making a Mark, posts monthly data re: art book ratings and sales.  I'm not surprised that Drawing Lab remains tops in sales for Drawing Books.  It is a great book if you want to loosen up and have fun - especially with a group.

December 9, 2010

Visual Journal Pages - Random

I love to create journal pages that reflect my daily life - and post them only occasionally to my blog.  Since I started sketching daily in Jan 2007, I filled 33 sketchbooks in addition to travel sketchbooks and those devoted to figure drawing.  Here are 3 recent daily pages that I like:

I volunteer for Goddard Riverside, a settlement house on the Upper Westside of New York, sorting new books donated by publishers each Fall and then working at the annual Book Fair where the books are sold for 50% or less.  This page was created by sketching the main characters of 3 books that I bought for our grandchildren.

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We take our oldest Grandson to 4 NY Philharmonic Young Peoples' Concerts each year and he gets to try instruments in the Kidzone, which is held the hour before the concert.  Last Saturday was a concert on Baroque music and he was able to try the harpsichord, and play a violin (which he does anyway.)  The violinist picture on this page is the image from the Kidzone violin site in Avery Fisher Hall.

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I spent last weekend planning and making some Christmas gifts for the children and decided to draw a grid page, in case I want to make some fun foam stamps for the season.

 

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