Welcome to my world of animals, quilts, art and color!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Focal Point?

In my art group, Fiber Optic Group, we are studying design.  The next session is on focal point.  I think the focal point in this design is the purple ribbons, mainly by contrast but also using placement.  I find the design principles hard to master but I'm sure my work will improve through the practice!

Boxing (Day) Bird

Here are two versions of my Boxing (Day) Bird.  The first seemed to have too much contrast so I added a wash of PearlEx Silver mixed with paint and then a glazing medium.  I discovered the black stamp on the bottom really helped to "ground" the composition.
And this is Willy guarding my room!   Looks ferocious doesn't he?

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Zentangle Xmas

A friend gave me the "official" Zentangle kit for Xmas.  What fun!   But before I start with the kit, I wanted to finish the Zentangle in progress.

This seems to be a finishing day.  No turkey at my house!  But maybe I should go and cook some chicken. . .

The Scanner is Always Right

Last night, I was disappointed in the scanned image of the focal point piece. I even played with the color settings thinking it MUST be the copy quality.  By this morning, I admitted the scan was correct; it was the piece that needed correcting.  Some copper Lumiere paint resolved what I finally perceived as the problem.

Today I also finished a work done on a piece of manilla file folder.   The raised portion is Elemer's glue.  It was suppose to act as a resist, but didn't!   I do like the effect though.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Xmas Eve

There is no better way to spend Xmas Eve than in my studio.  This is a project for the Fiber Optic Group on Focal Point using line and shape.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

What, Me Depressed?

My goal this winter is to not succumb to winter depression.  Lots of Vitamin D, California Quilt Show in January and lots of art are my main strategies.   I decided Christmas time would be better with bright spring flowers, so this page depicts bright flowers and my annual winter struggle.  The words, 3 individual phrases cut from a book and put together by me, say:
"There is nothing worse than having
soft stems which die down in the fall
and grow again the following spring"

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Gee, Instructions Do Help!

Today, I decided to read some internet sites on drawing faces.  Very good idea!   Now I know about proportion and made myself a nice little grid to put under the drawing to help me place the face features.  I also learned a bit about shading and how to draw eyebrows. 

I think she looks much better than my previous efforts!  I do need some help with hairstyles though.  My hair is always a disaster. 

Saturday, December 18, 2010

No future as a portrait artisit

I don't know what is more pathetic:  spending Saturday night listening to The Who while drawing faces or the faces themselves!  But practice does make a difference even though I'll never be a portrait artist.  The first set is Friday's attempt, the second is Saturday's (to the beat of I Can See For Miles!)

I like the first face in the second set; she looks like someone I would like to meet.

Maybe I should listen to Beethoven and do Zentangles instead. . .

Motto on my whiteboard:

"It is impossible to get better and look good at the same time"  Amen!

I also have a background page ready for something, I know not what.

Hopefully some day it will tell me what it wants to be!   In the meanting, it sits in my journal awaiting inspiration.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Star Light

I like walking my dogs early in the morning, especially in the winter.  I love to look at the city lights and the stars.  The view from Edworthy Park is spectacular!   Maybe that is why I often make dark blue journal pages and quilts.  I love dark blue.

And we get Sky News; a great source of pictures!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Life Really Does Need an Undo Function!

My hard drive crashed earlier this week, but, hey, I have a dual backup system!  No problem, right?  Except my camera software was storing picutres in a shared folder that was not part of the backup.  Big problem. My tech is going to see if he can recover the pictures from the old drive.  A lot of pictures existed elsewhere on my drive, so I guess I have the really important stuff.

On a lighter note, I bought some new stamps.  I especially like the one that says "I wish life had an undo function".  Could have used that when the drive crashed!  Here is a page with some of the new stamps.

I also tried some heavy gel to add texture to a page and I brought out my old, make that ancient, tole painting supplies.  After over 12 years, most of the paints are still okay!!  Here is the heavy gel with Jo Sonja silver metallic paint:

And finally, a work in progress.  There are many layers on this page; I have no idea where it is going nor where it came from!  Last night it told me it wanted to be flower. 

Monday, December 6, 2010

The scan was right. . .

I decided the scan was right and I was wrong.  Winter Night needed something else:

Gesso to the rescue!

Why isn't art a verb?

You can be drawing, painting, sketching, quilting, collaging but you can't be arting!!  We need a new verb for those of us who work/play in a variety of forms.  I'm tired of telling people I play with glue and paper.  Maybe I should say I'm investigating the properties of various forms of adhesive mediums for use with tissue paper.  That should keep them guessing.

Anyway, I haven't blogged for awhile (even posting blogs has a verb!) but I have been "arting".

First, lots of zentangles!  I prefer to call it "ink art"!

Pigma Pens, 8 1/2 x 11 inches

Pigma Pens, 9 x 12 inches with watercolor background

Pigma pens Moleskine journal with watercolor background

Pigma pens Moleskine journal with chalk pastel backgroun

card for a friend on watercolor

Pigma pen on watercolor paper.

Pigma pen in Moleskine journal.

And a couple of collages:

This one started with tissue paper for a background and Sakura Pen-touch Gold

And finally, one that looks better in real life.  Or maybe I just think it does. . .

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

More Zentangles

Such a lovely day.  Snow, cold, wind, icy roads.  I just love it.  Good time to Zentangle so I colored the tree some more.  I prefer it not colored, but too late now.

The next one has the background painted with water color pencils with the curly design masked off.  It didn't work quite as I planned; make sure there is no dry paint on your stencil when using a mask!  It will pick up the color of the paint.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Zentangle Round the Christmas Tree

I am absolutely determined to not succumb to winter depression this year.  Part of my strategy is to look for the good things about winter. I  have more important strategies, but this one sounds like fun!    I have not decorated for the holidays for a couple of years but this year I plan to at least put out my Snowman theme stuff (I don't have to worry about taking them down right away!)  And in case I decide on a tree, I thought I should practice decorating one, zentangle style.

It's a good thing I copied it at this stage because I went on to add watercolor and now I don't really like it.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Fabric Beads and Zentangles

 It has been a busy few days.  First, some fabric beads.  Making these could become addictive!   I started making beads for a specific quilt, shown below, and then went on to make some others.  I'll try to get a picture of the quilt posted tomorrow.  Just the beads for now!  And please keep dangling beads from curious kitties!

 The assorted  beads were made using scraps of fabrics.  I found that Golden Polymer Varnish worked very well if you want the beads varnished.  All the beads on the top row except the last one  are varnished.

Next,  a new zentangle, which I colored.  The pink didn't show up too well on the scan.

The quilting is done on the Zentangle quilt but I just added Puff Paint for highlights and now have to wait for it to dry and expand before I take a picture.  Maybe tomorrow!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Texture Challenge Quilts

My art quilt group, Fiber Optics Group (FOG) just completed a challenge to make a small quilt using samples of fabrics representing textures that we had brought to our last session.  The textures were weathered stone, polished river rock, a cat's tail, an old leather book, fair wings and chocolate pudding.  Here are some of the results:

Below are a couple of pictures of samples made using line as a major design element:

This is a wonderfully creative group that I am hard pressed to keep up with!   But we have a lot of fun and work hard.   Look out quilt world, here we come!

Monday, November 8, 2010


I just finished my first Zentangle (a form of doodling; google to find lots of links).  I plan to use the method for a quilted whole cloth.  I started the quilting today; it is a lot harder than using a pen!

And here is what the quilt looks like so far.  The "string", in zentangle speak, is a metallic thread couched on the top.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

My Gallery

As this is Create Every Day Month, I am trying to at least complete something every day.  Today it was a journal page from my on line class.  We were asked to draw frames and then put a different kind of picture in each frame.  Working that small was challenging.  So was drawing all those straight parellel lines; no rulers allowed!  The page background was shaded with soft chalk pastels; I love the soft look they give.

Oh oh

As part of my journaling class, we had to draw faces with the hope of finding a visual representation of our muse.  Jessica has a cute one named Dear Me.  Here is my initial effort on finding a muse.  I'm sure she will undergo some changes, but for now I kind of like her!

And my journal page, Is Today Over Yet, underwent a few additions and then I tried Golden Polymer Varnish on top to keep the acrylic paint from being sticky.  The varnish smeared the white Signo Pen ink!!! This is why my muse is called Oh Oh!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Is Today Over Yet?

I don't want to talk about today.  Let's just say my car will be fixed for tommorow.  Many thanks to Sheni's Auto Trend.

The day did provide inspiration for a journal page I started last week.  I might add more to it tomorrow, but for now here is what it looks like.

Acrylic paint, collage from magazine picture, light gesso overlay, stencil with White Signo pen and purple Sakura Glaze pen, whining written with Pitt pens (tried with a Sharpie pen but it didn't work well on the acrylic paint).

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Art Every Day Month

November is Art Every Day Month.  Click here to learn more!

Art Every Day Month

Shiva Paint Sticks

Recently I was playing with Shiva Paint sticks and the new Christmas rubbing plates.  Not sure what I'm going to do with these (wall hanging, place mats?) but here is what they look like.