Monday, July 28, 2008

Gloria Perkins Workshop

This was a fast paced workshop. Gloria is famous for her exquisite florals. I saw her work in Nashville and wanted to learn more, so I signed up for her class at her studio in Sharpsburg, Ga. I learned so much while there, mostly that I have a long way to go on technique. It was hard, she was working fast and the reason for it was to keep us from dabbling in the paint too much. The photos do not do these paintings justice. I do not know why my photos of my work turn out so fuzzy. Anyway, here they are. I will go to her workshop in Nashville in March, 2009. She is doing some more florals... oh me, what am I getting myself into?

Saturday, May 31, 2008

First Oil Painting

I decided today to clean up my studio/office because my mother is coming in a couple of weeks and I don't want her to see the mess. I ran across some old paintings of mine and thought I might start photographing them to try to get them in some kind of chronological order. I made a slide show of my watercolors in Adobe and it was a fun look, so I am going to try to do it with all the stuff I have done and see what happens.

No painting today, but this is the first one I did with Cheeko Douglas. She is such an inspiration. I don't believe anything could rival her passion for painting. She told me she paints 24 hrs a day, "I paint all day long and when I sleep, I dream of painting." I wish you could have seen the way her face lit up when she told me that. Anyway, she helps us a lot when we paint. She shows us how, then steps back and sets us free! Here is my effort.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Happiness on a Table

I have I think, finished. I redrew the picture with the help of the photograph. That helped me see what I wanted and narrowed my focus and eliminate the entire world, which is what I tend to do. This satisfies me more than the first one, but; I wish I had done as good a job painting the agave. Something wrong happened with the paint mixes. Oh well, it is just paper.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Trip to Nashville

My trip to Nashville in March was fun and a challenge. I worked in oils, watercolor and acrylics (I am now more intrigued). I worked in color theory in the oils and am facinated with the huge assignment of painting all the color combinations in a full spectrum pallette. I have been working on them for about 2 months now and am getting them completed. Will show some of them later.

In watercolor, I painted with Kathie George, a long time favorite teacher of mine with whom I have been taking yearly workshops with for about 9 years (we think). I am submitting my finished Koi, her design, on Ginwashi rice paper. We did a batik on that. I finished it off with a rubbing of a TJAP stamp (pronounced chop) that is used in Bali to stamp batiks using an irridescent gold oil pastel crayon. I brought the finished piece home and brightened the colors some.

To go back to the project of painting reflections on the table, I am going to redraw and repaint. I thought that what I was looking at was so different from what I was actually looking at, so I will do a redrawing and repainting. I am going to use the picture to help get a better contour drawing to get started with on paper, then trace my drawing onto watercolor paper. That should help with all the erasures. Meanwhile here is the image of what I saw (I added a few things to the setup).

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

2 point perspective drawing

Ok, I knew that I would need to redraw the table. So I started on trying to get that right from the start. I did a 2 point perspective drawing so I could show the sides of the table which I wanted to paint the darks in. I first did a one point perspective where the table was wider at the front and narrower at the back but it still looked tipped south too much. Then I tried a 2 point and realized that I needed to make the angles at the back closer to the horizon to keep it from looking as if I were standing up looking down, so I raised it. Now I realize that my angles need to be narrower to get the table to stand up more. I will play around in my sketchbook till I get the right angle of view before I am satisfied. If I do get what I like, I will post. But for now, here is the more correct version. I am waiting to hear from Cindy to see if I can post her instructions. She has answered and told me next steps.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

A small task

Today while sitting on the porch with my husband, I decided to try to paint the reflections on the coffee table. I had just bought a new bowl that I was anxious to paint and it needed company, so I brought the agave to sit beside it.

I was trying to draw the table (as evidenced by the folk art rendering), when I finally got it! Drawing the negative spaces helped me to render some of the shapes. Now, I know you are thinking, HUH? Believe me, I am okay with showing my poor starts and stops, but the important thing is the learning part...I GOT IT!! Finally, but not in time to do a good enough drawing. That's ok, I will keep trying to draw these confound objects that I have trouble with.

I spoke to my art teacher (Cynthia Mask, Auburn University) today and she is going to help me paint the reflections on the table, so this is not finished, just at a point where I could take some help. She is going to help with words--via email. This is going to be fun to do. I am sending her my blog for her to get a good look at the progress so far and she will tell me what needs to happen next. Stay tuned for the next one.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Jacsha Heifetz performs

I love to hear him playing his violin while I paint along. I learned to love him from my husband, who is a giant fan of his.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Knife Painting

Been a long time. Had little time for painting lately but still taking lessons. I will post a picture that is going to a Cafe in Dadeville to be displayed along with all the other painters in Cheeko's art class. One of our class members decided to do a knife painting and before you knew it, all classes wanted to learn the method. As for me, I was just struggling with my landscape thinking surely she would not ask me to learn this, but lo and behold, she wanted me to learn it too while it was a "hot topic" and she was in the mood to teach it.

Cheeko has a wonderful array of reference material from which we can choose to paint. She encourages those of us who want to experiment and learn and grow in our paintings. She also helps out whenever we don't understand how to paint a passage, she is not shy about coming to our canvas and demonstrating.

This work was done from a Walter Foster Still Life workbook. We change all sorts of stuff about the painting but get the ideas from the set up. These are fun to do. Some of the painters work from their own reference material, but since I am in the learning mode, I still use them to paint from.

Thursday, February 28, 2008


Representing white in a painting is a good exercise in values. White has to have color painted into it so that tonal value and volume can be described. Another beginner painting...OMG, the things that cause me problems: LEAVES and that nebulousness of the floated washes that are supposed to appear as leaves and negative painting of leaves that are not there!! This was hard, but I have to take it easy on myself, because I am trying to learn how to do these techniques. Working with an angled brush helps to diffuse the harder cast shadows, now I need to learn how to work in smaller places with that loaded to one side brush. This was fun. In the middle of painting all this, I guess my husbands frustration with the dinner table being filled with watercolor paper, paints, books, bottles, erasers, pencils, etc. got the best of him, so I moved all my stuff back to my studio...I will send a snapshot of my wall of unfinished paintings. I decided to hang them up so I would look at them often and see if I can get some of them finished.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008


This was a fun project. Mine is the pansies (I don't think anyone thought I did the buffaloes, LOL). I have done other Scratchboards using the small kits provided by Ampersand. It is messy because you scratch off the lights and leave the darks using tools such as broad and pointed scrapers, chisels, steel wool, etc. to achieve tonal qualities. Ever seen any of the professionals work in this area? It is so hard to believe that artists can use this media to achieve such fantastic work. I am including a sample by Sally Maxwell, she is a master scratchboard artist. Go look at her work at :

Sunday, February 24, 2008

More from the paintbox

This afternoon, I had a wonderful time doing my last painting from the paintbox book of exercises. I was thrilled to see that I had finished with the book and will move on to more exercises in another book. I am pretty pleased with this one. I got my camera on my tripod and set up in my small studio to take pictures with a fair degree of regularity now. This painting has come a little easier, I find that all this practice I have been doing, has begun to sink in and take root somewhat.

My colors are beginning to become stronger and I am working my brushes differently. I just love this process.

Saturday, February 23, 2008


It has been a while since I last posted. I have been so busy trying to get my step-mother settled in assisted living that I have not painted a lot other than doing color wheels. I did however continue with my lessons and have painted a pretty embarassing mountain scene. My watercolor teacher said, put it away for a while and come back to it later. So, I started painting a sunflower still life from a book. Susan Schewee has a PBS program in which she demonstrates watercolor and I love watching, so I got a book of designs called Beginning Watercolor...I pay homage to anyone who can do this as a beginner. Here is mine. I am mostly happy with it except for the stupid leaves, they look pretty stiff. Still don't know how to paint leaves! But I keep plugging along. Also, I need some color in the background to make those flowers the big question? WHAT DO I DO NOW??? Paint some color that might ruin all the work I have done??? Oh well, it is just paper, right?

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Lesson 1

Last night was my first watercolor class, I was excited! I learned more in this 2 hrs than in a long time, I guess you cannot learn how to paint watercolor from books. But I did learn about paint consistency, thick as buttermilk or thin as skim milk. Never was able to put that together before. But that was after I painted my image. We also learned how to paint a prettier tree which will take some getting used to but the secret is that you turn your painting upside down and hold your wrist over the bottom of the tree and without moving your hand, pull in jerking motions toward you, this way you get a more natural look. We painted a very simple image with 3 colors. Learned how to fling paint, then spray with water to create foliage. Mine was done with too small a brush so it looks like the leaves are just emerging. Cynthia Mask is our teacher, she is getting her fine arts degree from Auburn University.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Snow in Auburn!

Hooray for snow, it is beautiful; large fat snowflakes falling and quickly covering everything in its path. We are forcasted to get 3-6". Click on the image to see a close up image, you can see how heavy the snowfall is. I frequently take pictures of the lake across the street from the front of our house because I find such quiet beauty at the most unexpected times. I will take a snapshot and upload to the computer so I can remember. I finished another of the paintbox exercises, this one is really showing my lack of talent but, I am going to post because it is a visual record, so I can bring it back at a later date to see where I was and where I have come.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Flowers, Snow, Wheels

I am going to oil painting tonight after a long break over the holidays. My watercolor class last night was delayed until next Tues due to the death of the instructor's family member. So, I painted another two from Frank Clark's Paintbox. This time daisies and snow. But, I have also been making color wheels by mixing paints using either a 3 color method or a 6 color method. I like the 6 color method the best. With the 6 color method, choose warm, cool reds, warm, cool yellows and warm, cool blues. The one I am posting is from KOI, it has a neat water cartridge paintbrush which I used to paint the colors.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Busy Holidays

Now that the holidays are over, I can get my house back in order, just took the tree to the garage. I have been painting all along. I am taking another watercolor course at Auburn University starting tomorrow evening. I am so excited to finally get a structured course in the basics of watercolor. So, I have still been working on leaves. I have spread myself all around the house with leaves and watercolor. My husband has been putting up with the kitchen table covered in all sorts of an array of watercolor paints, brushes, paper, books, etc. You know the drill, when you paint, you loose all sense of time, space, others...Speaking of others, Bella, my dog has taken up the habit of carrying a rope around from room to room. She played with it some at Christmas and this morning, she looked so cute standing in the den with that thing in her mouth, I had to take a snapshot, and those of you who know me, know how special my dog is, so I am including her as well.

Back to leaves, I have been painting them too as well as trying out this book called "Frank Clarks Paintbox". I usually just read the book and don't do the exercises, this time I decided to do the exercises as well, so I thought I would post them too. I have also been busy making color wheels. That has been fun too. Let's see how many pics I can post at one time. Only 5 of them. I will save the rest for later.