Monday, July 27, 2009

Back to it!

Haven't posted in a while, no new painting to post and quite a bit going on. Our art league's membership show was last week. I didn't sell anything but, according to someone who was there at the time, someone almost bought one. Guess that will have to do. ;-)
Two paintings are entered in our upcoming juried art show. Eager to see if either are accepted.
Since I have started painting more often, I have found that I want to paint more often. The fever is growing. There is so much to learn and practice that I can't let anything slide. Would also like to accumulate a body of work, don't have much right now. Well, to be more accurate, don't have much I would want to show anyone.
Getting ready to begin a new painting, first time to try a watercolor canvas. Should be interesting. In art class last week, we painted American Indian pots on watercolor board. Things must be handled differently, no fiddling allowed or it all comes up. It was fun! Wonder if the watercolor canvas will be the same?
When I get a chance, will post a photo of my Indian pot from art class (unfinished) and my latest painting.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Just Wishing

Finished reading blogs a moment ago. It is interesting to read the artists' bios. Most have had formal art schooling and have been doing their art since childhood. Looking at their work, I feel as if I am so far behind, rushing to catch up. Have never sold a painting, entered only one juried show so far (amazingly accepted!) and took a few art classes in college as electives. As a child, I drew for fun, mostly doodling. Had a Walter Foster drawing book or two to use for direction. I guess the difference in me and the artists I am reading about is they had a drive to do art from a young age. My drive came to me late in life, hence playing catch up. I also don't remember any encouragement from my discouragement at least.

I need to fight this type of thinking, however. I am not playing catch-up with anyone, I am on my own personal art journey. I need to admire other art without comparing my own to it. Each time I paint, I learn something, mostly what not to do but that is so important. The occasional work shop or class will help too but finances don't always allow them.

Not sure if what I write here is interesting to anyone but it does help me to think things through and to remember to enjoy my art and not worry about the outcome. Progress will come but only if I work at it, don't become frustrated and push right through the occasional wall.

My latest painting is posted here. I made a big mistake in the background color (photo doesn't show true however) and have some ideas of how I might fix things. The flowers themselves need more work as well. It is a small painting, 4x6.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


Finding inspiration can be difficult at times. At least, for me personally, that is the case. The creative muse can be fickle, leaving at the oddest of times, sometimes staying aways for what seems like an eternity.
I find my inspirations in different places. Nature is the most common place. My home is in the middle of several acres so, if we choose, my husband and I don't have to see anyone. We are surrounded by Nature, sometimes beautiful, other times harsh and hard. The trees are beautiful, appearing different as the daily light changes. When we have rain, wildflowers are everywhere and there are the animals and birds that live here as well. Sometimes, because I am surrounded by these things on a daily basis, I forget to really see them. They can become commonplace and uninteresting. I begin seeing just a tree or just a bird or gee, there is another deer, ho hum. It is rather like taking it all for granted, something I try very hard not to do because I feel truly blessed to be able to live in this place. When I snap out of it, I begin to see the beauty again, not just in the form of the tree but in the texture of its bark, the shape of the branches and varied greens of the leaves.
Another place I have found inspiration lately is by reading the blogs of other artists. Here I find people that have the same joys and difficulties as I, so I feel less alone or unusual. There are also those that have artistic blocks, difficulties with a painting or drawing. Sometimes I get the feeling that I am the worst artist, having doubts about my abilities. In reading blogs, I find others with the same doubts and, seeing their beautiful work, it makes me feel better about what I am doing and attempting to do.
Thank you to all of the other artists, no matter what your style or medium, for sharing what you are working on and how you are feeling with the rest of us. It has truly helped me with my art and my outlook!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Painting Monday

This will have to be a painting Monday, as I got nothing done in that regard over the weekend. The occasional migraine will lay me low, unfortunately it took my entire weekend this time. Feeling fine today and eager to get back into my "studio" (kitchen table). I am working on a small painting of bluebonnets, first attempt.
While walking the dog yesterday, she met up with a porcupine. We live in the country so she doesn't have to be on a leash. Meeting a porcupine isn't all that unusual but Callie getting close enough to one to be quilled, is! She was a very lucky dog, only getting three quills in her chin. Looked rather like a spindly goatee! Easily pulled out and didn't seem to hurt her very much. I hope it hurt enough so she remembers to respect the porcupine's space from now on. She has learned the hard way (more than once) about skunks.
Morning walk time, hopefully, we won't see any skunks or porcupines this morning.

Saturday, July 11, 2009


One of my many activities this time of year, is to keep three rather large hummingbird feeders filled. Where we live in north-central Texas, the common hummingbird is the Black-chinned. The throat of the male looks black until the sun stikes it, then it is a most beautiful purple. During migration, we occasionally see a Ruby-throated Hummingbird, identical to the Black-chinned except the throat patch is larger and very red, doesn't look black. Very rarely, another hummingbird will visit, a Rufous, who, as the name suggests, is rusty red all over.

This morning, before I had a chance to fill feeders, our rare visitor showed up, looking for breakfast. It chased away any other comers, as male hummingbirds will do but, since the feeders were all empty, not sure why. When I went out to fill the feeder, the Rufous flew away, not used to my presence as the regulars are. Didn't see him for several hours but he just returned! I took a few photos through the kitchen window. What is very interesting is the different sounds the hummingbirds' wing make. If one listens, there is a difference in the sound of the wings in all three of the hummingbirds that stop by. The Rufous is the most distinctive, sounds almost metallic!
Now I am wondering how long this guy will hang around. If he is smart, he will stay for the free meals! One day, I will use him as the subject of a painting.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Painting, yes!

I am waiting for a layer of paint to dry so will write a bit during that time. The art class painting I finished is shown at left. It was a fun painting to do and, although it isn't a type I would normally do, learned a lot by doing it. Best of all, it was fun.
Finding myself enjoying painting more and more, wanting to paint more often, resenting things that interfere. Have to stop that resentment though, there are things that have to be done, after all, can't paint 24/7.
Sure would improve faster if I could, though!
Doing a small painting of Bluebonnets, two blue and one white. Yes, there are white Bluebonnets but not common. Found a few on our place a couple of years ago and took some photos. Now trying to translate that with paper and paint. Might be a little tedious, Bluebonnets have a lot of small parts and my paper is 4"x6", but hope to be able to manage it. If I can't, will try larger!
Oh, how I wish that I had kept up with art in all of those years since college. I would be so much further along in the process, more accomplished- but at least glad I found it again. Lots of lost time to make up for. Back to it!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Back to Painting?

The only painting I have been able to do in over a week, has been at yesterday's art class. Between running errands, preparing for and having guests, taking care of garden and home, has been little time or energy for it. I am spending this morning doing more garden work- needs a good soaking, plus pulling up corn plants, no more from them this year.
One thing that will help is that I am able to have my paints and other supplies out again, which makes sitting down and painting much easier. Oh, to have a studio where it can stay out all the time! Don't ever see that happening, too much expense, but one can dream.
Just had a call that there will be a Coleman Fine Arts League board meeting tomorrow morning, just one more thing to pull me away from home and art. Being involved is nice, but I find myself resenting time I have to spend away from what I truly want to be doing! Guess I am selfish with my time. I think, since I am coming back to art after such a long time, I feel I have to make up for all of that lost time. I have so much I would like to accomplish but I can't get better unless I can spend more time at painting.
Not only is painting on my list but also graphite, pen and ink, along with watercolor pencil. So much to do, so little time! I think I have voiced that lament before. Oh well, one can only do what one can do, so guess I had better just take each day as it comes and not worry about it.
Heading back to the garden to move the sprinkler. Guess painting will have to wait until this afternoon!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Painting withdrawal

These last few days, I have had no time or energy to do any painting at all. Even missed my art class today. Tomorrow, our son and his new bride are coming for a visit, so have spent all of my time on geting this house in shape! Hadn't done much to it in a while, painting is so much more fun, therefore, it really needed help! Add to that the regular chores that must be done in the garden and for the birds and deer and that makes for very full, tiring days! I did manage to do a little writing but wasn't much at all. Once company leaves, need to dive right back in.
I have two paintings I want to do; both are flowers. One is a lace cactus flower. I have done this one before but wasn't happy with it so will try again. Another is an iris that I painted in class. Didn't like that result either, so want to give that another go as well.
In our small house, there is no space for a studio so all of my artwork is done at the kitchen table. When company comes, everything must be put away, making doing art next to impossible, unless I sketch, which can be done anywhere. Once company leaves, I will get all of my painting supplies out again, take over the kitchen table and be able to sit down and paint whenever there is a spare moment.
I see by the clock that it is about time to go put out feed for the deer. We like to watch them so put out a bit of corn and protein for them to snack on in the late afternoon each day. Lately, the does have been bringing their new fawns out so even more fun to watch.