Sunday, May 29, 2005

Pears and Crystal - day 7

Still struggling with this one. Funny how sometimes a painting just flows from your brush, and sometimes you fight for ever bit of it. Next step is to add some of the darks into the crystal.

Friday, May 27, 2005

Pears and Crystal Day 6

Not sure where this is going.. I'll give it one more day and then it might be scrap paper.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Pears and Crystal Day 5

hmmm.. still not looking like much... I'll give it one more day and then decide if I should keep going or move on to something else. I had an art prof that once told the class if you can get 1 in 10 paintings that you are happy with you are doing well. I think that is the reason I don't move on to the more expensive 300# paper.. I don't want to feel like I have to finish a painting or be afraid to try something.

Pears and Crystal - day 4

Starting to look a bit like a bowl now...I had to rest yesterday afternoon, I was getting eye strain. Happens everytime I paint crystal :)

My entries for the NC Watercolor Society and a exhibition in Texas went off yesterday. Wish me luck!

A few weeks ago I went to Lowes and bought every different type of daisy seed packet they had.. short ones, tall ones, all different colors. When I got home, I mixed them all up and spread them in my little flower garden. I had zinnias there last year, and few volunteers are coming up from those. This morning I noticed that many of the seeds have sprouted! Yea! Now, if I can just remember to keep them watered.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Pears & Crystal Day 3

The first layer on the crystal is done..payne's gray and q gold.

Look, I'm artist of the day on artistoftheday blog :)

And artist of the month for June on Bridges 2 Design

Monday, May 23, 2005

Pears and Crystal - Work in Progress

This is going slow...a wash for the background and pears, and a start on the first layer for the crystal. I need to speed up or I won't have the slides for the competition by the 8th. Not looking like much at the moment :)

Just have the drawing done today. I think I might have a painting marathon this evening during CSI (the repeats and the peats)

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Where do marshmallows come from?

They come from a farm on route 17 in Georgia. Dev and I spotted this giant marshmallow farm on the way back from a rock hunting expedition.. where we found some cool amethyst and clear quartz.

This is one of the crystals Dev found. It hasn't been cleaned yet, so it looks like it has spots, but it won't.. the inside if clear and a gorgeous purple color.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Roses and Grass

I cut the grass today (part of the glamorous life of an artist!) Am I the only one that likes to cut grass? I like the smell.. I like how the shaggy weedy grass turns into nice neat grass. Now I don't like to vacuum :P so I don't think it's cleaning thing.

My roses are fighting black spot and now they are wilting away. They were sooo pretty a few weeks ago:

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Egg Basket - Day 5

Calling it finished..
You can see a larger version and a close up here:
Great Grandmother's Egg Basket

Next in line is a crystal bowl and pears.. I know.. crystal again lol

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Egg Basket - Day 4 1/2

And almost done.. a few touch ups in the morning. I can see already that the little triangles of light to the right of the basket are too even.

Days Three and Four

Adding darks to the weave of the basket. The flash reflected off of the masking fluid and gave a little hit of what it will look like when I remove the mask. Neat!

And deepening the shadows... Added burnt sienna and q gold to the table top, and decided not to put in the wood grain. I think it would be to fussy and fight with the basket. It's getting really close to removing the masking. I need to add some warmth to the eggs and cloth, and just a touch of cool to the table top. Tone down a few the highlights on the basket. Anything else?

Monday, May 16, 2005

Day Two - Egg Basket

Adding color to the basket, and a few more darks.

More darks, developing the shadows on the eggs, & erasing the pencil lines. This photo was taken in sunlight, instead of the whites are much warmer.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Egg Basket - WIP Day One

The contrast was increased on the drawing so you can see it better online. This painting is based on a photograph I took of my great grandmother's eggbasket

Here I've added the masking on the highlights through the basket, on the eggs and on the table. The background and the cloth have their first layer.

Starting the darks in the shadows, and shading on the eggs.

More shadows on the basket, especially in the weaving. Had to take a break and rest my eyes :) So far, so good.. even if it is an "adolescent" painting.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Shelter Auction

Our local animal shelter is having an auction June 10 & 11 at Birkedale Village in Charlotte NC. 100% of the proceeds go to fun surgeries /medical care, toys, food, etc. for cats in the shelter. They would love any cat or animal related paintings,prints, note cards, glass work, sculpture, jewelry, etc. Please send submissions to: CMAC c/o Erin Murphy, 8315 Byrum Drive Charlotte NC 28217

I'm donating the painting above and a few other cat prints. Samurai, Diva, and Emp approved.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Drawing Class

We did one and two point perspective and talked about MC Escher. I think it went pretty well. I always like it when a 12 year old says,"Class isn't over already, is it?" Teaching in my own studio is soooo very different then teaching in a school. We can really concentrate on learning art, and not on discipline or the 1000 other things that they try to throw in to the curriculum for arts classes.

Some of My Favorite Art Quotes

Every artist dips his brush in his own soul and paints his own nature into his pictures. Henry Ward Beecher

The artist is nothing without the gift, but the gift is nothing without work. - Emile Zola

Art is a collaboration between God and the artist, and the less the artist does the better. - dré Gide

I cannot help it that my pictures do not sell. - Vincent van Gogh

My garden is my most beautiful masterpiece.
- Claude Monet

There is no short-cut to art, one has to work hard, be open and flexible in your mind, keep the child alive inside you, and through a whole lifetime be ready to learn new things and – of course – be mentally prepared for a hard punch on your nose – especially when you think you are doing well.
- Bente Borsum

The artist himself is often surprised at the finished work of art. He cannot tell 'how it happened', nor could he repeat the feat at someone's bidding. -John F. Carlson

An artist's job is to surprise himself. Use all means possible. -Robert Henri

Art seems to me to be a state of soul more than anything else. -Marc Chagall

Anyone have one to add?

Tuesday, May 10, 2005


My irises are so pretty this year! I can't wait until I have a sunny day to take photos, they are sure to end up in a painting at some point. The trick for larger blooms seems to be allowing the green to die back on it's own (no trimming! no matter how scraggly they look.) and a healthy dose of epsom salts early in the spring. Epsom salts are also good for roses and magnolias...and just sprinkling over the grass.

Friday, May 06, 2005

Strawberries and Crystal - another update!

I went to the Charlotte Art League awards for their juried show and I actually won first place! Woo woo!!! I'm so excited! This is my first blue ribbon and I am so honored. It was a wonderful show with so many beautiful paintings.(I don't think the one I won in 4th grade for standing on my head counts. lol )

I finished the calla lily painting for my brother's wedding present just in time. I hope they like it. I had my mom acting as a spy to find out my new sis-in-law's favorite flower and it's calla lily. The plant the painting was done from is also part of their gift. They can plant in the yard of their new house.

Tonight is the open house for the Charlotte Art League show. I will finally find out what award I won. Honorable mentions get a gift certificate to a local art store so that would be great! I really need to get off the computer and go get dressed. We are going out for chinese (Fong's the best chinese in Charlotte NC! and I hope that get's them a good google spot lol) I have no clue what to wear. I have probably the least artsy wardrobe of any artist can an artist be such a geek at the same time :)

Betsy was here today. She's my trainer and I usually meet with her once a week. Today we did full body, but concentrated on triceps, biceps and shoulders. My arms were shaking while I was trying to paint! Oh well.. they pain we suffer to be healthy :P to shower and search my closet for something appropriate..wish me luck tonight!

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

A Spell for a Southern Green Anole

This little guy is living in the jasmine vine out side our front door. He is so very elegant. He is a Southern Green Anole Anolis carolinensis seminolus. They are often confused with chameleons because the green anoles can turn brown.

Isn't the internet a amazing? I typed in "little green lizard with red thingy under it's chin" and *poof* I have the Latin name and it's feeding habits!

(Any other closet fantasy readers who get the title reference?)

Today was drawing class. My students were working on texture and trying out conte crayons. They seem to be learning to observe more carefully... I guess all those contour drawings worked.

Spent the morning working on the website and linking...bah. Hopefully tomorrow will be mostly working on the calla lily painting for my brother.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Strawberries and Crystal - Update!

I entered the Strawberries and Crystal watercolor (scroll down to see the painting) in the Charlotte Spring in to Art juried art show. They called and said it won a prize, but they didn't say what it was! I have to go to the awards show on Friday to find out lol It could be anything from an honorable mention to best in show...I'm leaning toward the honorable mention side. It seems like most of the previous winners have been abstracts. That's true for most shows it seems...not sure why that is. Some I can see why they win.. their use of color or composition or depth is amazing. But then some... I just don't get it, they just look like splotches to me. And I have had several years of art history, I understand what is supposed to be the intent of abstract art....I still don't understand why some abstracts are considered good. Oh well, to each his own.

I have the entry ready for the recipe and art contest. I entered the lemons and crystal (homemade lemonade) and the strawberries and crystal (strawberry shortcake.) I think we just get a free recipe book if our work is used, but it was a fun contest anyway :)

A gentleman came to the shop today and purchased a small daffodil painting for his wife. He said her birthday is May 1 and every year he gives her a present everyday between her birthday and Mother's Day. How sweet is that!

Tonight I am filling orders that have backed up while I was away this weekend and working on a painting of calla lilies for my brother's wedding present. He is getting married this weekend and I am so thrilled that he has found someone to share is life with. He deserves to be happy!