Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Brushing Up on Chinese

In preparation for my trip to China, I have been practicing my
Chinese brush painting techniques!  I used to teach this with my students,
and we always enjoyed the simplicity and beauty of the art form.

I will do some of these in my sketch book, as well as on some small
postcard size paper to sell along the way.

I have ordered my own Chinese initial stamp my art with
my signature in Chinese!  When it comes in, I will have to do a completed
piece, and "sign" it with the stamp.  I know you have seen the small, red
Chinese characters on brush paintings, usually in a box or circle.
There are also often some larger characters that have some meaning:
hope, harmony, peace, etc.  I hope to be able to buy an antique stamp while
in China with one of these meanings to add to the work.  neat

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Baby Birds

I have been having the best time watching these little guys!
The mockingbird pair started trying to build their nest in the
wreath on my front door about 6 weeks ago.  Then there were 4 little
blue eggs.  And now, there are 3 very hungry and sleepy little
baby birds!  I check on them all the time...and I hope they get used
to seeing me through the glass, with my camera.
I have put up a wire barrier to try to keep my cats away...I so hope that they
do not end up as appetizers. 
I will keep you posted on their progress!

"Let everything that has breath, praise the Lord!"

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Nature Shots

This is a window frame, and today, I mounted these
four painted canvases onto it.  The glass panes protect the painted
surfaces, but let you see the dragonfly design through them.  I thought it might
make an interesting piece.

My little magnolia tree in the yard is blooming, and I couldn't resist
taking a few pics of the beautiful, creamy white petals today, too.

And who doesn't like "black eyed susans"?  These are growing
wild along all of our Louisiana roadways right now.  They
look like "summer" to me!  And their simplicity makes me smile.


Thursday, May 23, 2013

A Little Progress

Making a little progress on this drawing...still lots to go!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Laughing Molly

I started this drawing last night.  I drew her older
sister several (many!) years ago, and I promised to
draw her too.  When I saw this photo of her,
I knew this would be the one to draw.  This little girl is
very lively, and funny, and I think this photo
captures her spirit.  Plus, the lighting is fabulous...
when there are lots of shadows, there is more to draw! 
I hope I can get her likeness just right...I have a long
way yet to go, but it sure is

I am continuing to get things ready to go to the Dallas wholesale market
again soon, so I haven't been doing a lot of art...just marketing stuff.  But I really
needed to just this portrait will offer some welcome

Friday, May 17, 2013

China on the Horizon

We received our final itineraries today for our upcoming trip to China!
It is time to start getting excited...and making plans.
We don't leave until July 24th, but it will be here soon.
Some of the photos are places and things we will see:
the  Yuyuan Gardens in Shanghai, a Ming dynasty vase,
the Forbidden City in Bejiing, and the gorges along
the Yangtze River.  It will be a great trip, and there should
be lots of inspiration for paintings and drawings.
I also plan to take as many pictures as I can!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

The Colors of Autumn

In a small town, you know a lot of people.  As a teacher,
I came into contact with a lot of students.  And sometimes,
 you know the parent, as well as the student.  I happened to know
both in this case.

The parent was the daughter of a fellow
teacher, and I had watched her grow up over the years.
She married, and had 3 beautiful girls.
Then, I had the opportunity to teach art to all 3 of them from
time to time in various workshops and classes.
They were all delightful, and I enjoyed spending time with them.

We all never would have guessed the tragedy
that would soon take one of those young girls....
the middle one, Autumn.  Her mother brought one of
Autumn's stories to me; a story she had written as an
assignment in school.  It was about a life-changing moment
between a grandfather and his grand-daughter,
when he shares with her how his priorities and
attitude changed after a serious accident.  The text
above is the last paragraph of that story.  The mom
wanted me to do something with it...she wasn't sure what,
and I suggested adding the text to a photograph of some
woods, maybe in the fall, with autumn colors.
I have been working on this tonight, and this is my
favorite of the possible ones.  I will let her
see it, and see if this is what she wants.

Those of you who know me, and our situation, will know
that I have shed a tear or two while
doing this.  But I feel honored that she would ask me to
do it...for she knew that I would understand.
May God continue to bless this special family,
and comfort them always.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Bug Off

I have been playing around with these "bugs"...made from bits and
pieces.  This is a chair leg, with some decorative brackets,
a spool off of an old typewriter, and some nails.

This "dragonfly" is made from a porch post, some beaded
 board, a key plate,
a drawer pull, and some wire antennas.

This one is also made from the porch post, a hinge,
some beaded board, and an upside down fleur de lis hook.

These have been fun to do.  They will be for sale
at the shop, and I will plan to take them to
Dallas market in June as well.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Waving in the Wind

I have been playing around with these little
vertical paintings as possible flag designs.  There is a
flag company that accepts submissions from freelance artists.
Right now they are taking Fall and Holiday designs, so I might
just send these on to them.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Duck, Duck, Goose

I was returning from south Louisiana today, and saw these
geese near a pond.  Thought I would stop and take a few
pics.  The baby geese were precious...some were younger than others. 
I thought the parents might be very protective, and threaten me...but
obviously, they were used to people, and they came right up to me. 
I imagine people have been feeding them, and I didn't have a thing with me!
But they let me take their pics anyway...and they sure were cute.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Aprons and Paint

My Wednesday class kids wanted to paint some aprons they
could wear during class. (they are always getting paint
on their clothes!)

Kate is painting a great big hot pink "K"

Anna got into some red paint and hearts

And this Kate was finding it harder than she thought
painting on the fabric.  She was doing a chevron pattern,
with lots of different colors.

I ordered the aprons from Dick Blick.  They make several
kinds of art aprons.  They are using some acrylic paint to paint
their designs onto the fabric aprons.  The girls all
wanted their names on theirs...Samuel is painting an angel fish
design.  The did not finish them they will work on
them again next week.
I will probably be teaching some summer art classes for kids 10 and up.  I will try to
post my schedule on the blog, on Facebook, and at the shop....soon!