I love gerberas!
Don't gerbera daisies look like something someone made up? Maybe a seven year old? I love 'em.

We woke up to lots of snow this morning. Not a pretty sight. And the Bay is just as white and frozen looking as it was in mid-winter.

I just realized that I never finished the alphabet squares! I still have "Z" to do. I knew from the beginning what I was going to draw for it too - so what's my problem!?


Figures and Landscapes

Small Landscapes and simple Figures

These little landscapes could be habit forming. They're fun to do in various color combinations and compositions.

The figures were done from old photographs. I tried concentrating on the shadows to give a simple form, using very little detail. My Wednesday class is so interested in figures that they are beginning to convert me. Trying to keep one step ahead of them, and at least come up with some simple demos, I have become interested in drawing and painting figures also. I always thought it was definitely necessary to know how to do figures, but could never quite get enthused. I'm almost enthused.


Is it Spring yet?

In the sketchbook I made a couple of weeks ago, I put in some brown. acid free, lightfast construction paper. I love how it works with Prismacolor colored pencils. This is the first time I have scanned the sketchbook. An open spread just fits in my scanner. I didn't plan it that way, but I guess if we want to scan our sketchbooks, it is something to consider.

It was a little disappointing to wake up to a very gray sky and more snow this morning, but it can't last much longer. Tell me it can't last much longer.


Y is for . . .

"Y" is for Yard.
The snow is receding and the little green shoots are appearing. Finally. We still have a long way to go before spring-like weather here, but every ray of sunshine helps.

One alphabet square to go.


X is for . . .

"X" is for St Francis Xavier.
This is a view of St. Francis from our front window - over the rooftops and through the trees. It is only a few rooftops away ~ kind of kitty-corner across the block. It is visable from the water front, out on the bay, across town. I like being able to see it from the dentist's chair ~ I know home isn't far away and I'll be there soon. We all need these little landmarks in our lives, don't we?

The second finished page of the alphabet project.
Two letters to go.


W is for . . .

"W" is for Watercolor.
This is my tiny watercolor palette that I made in an "Altoids Smalls" tin. Painting this little square was the first time I have used this palette.

I have had a couple of people asked what's next. I only have X, Y, and Z left for the little squares project (maybe this isn't big enough to be a project - big as in important). What I plan to do is go with some themes. Just looking at the finished squares bring to mind a few ideas. For my ancestor square, I can see doing some things along the lines of ancestors, family, antiques . . . I could just kind of expand the idea and do four or five drawings or small paintings a week in that catagory. Some may even turn into "serious" paintings. That would be good! I could use a serious painting or two right about now. As small and simple as these drawings/paintings have been, I do think they are good for taking a chip at the old painter's block that crops up now and then.


V is for . . .

"V" is for Vase

On the bottom of this vase is "Albion Ware". I can find a few pieces of Albion Ware on the Internet, but only one vase that is at all similar. It is called a tapestry pattern and it is a little glittery. It is not this yellow. If anyone reading this happens to know that it is very valuable and we could sell it and be set for life, let me know, okay?


U is for . . .

"U" is for utensils
I have done this pot of kitchen utensils previously in another sketchbook. I LOVE the red whisk.

I was thinking of doing "ultramarine" for "U". The dictionary says ultramarine, besides being a pigment, means "beyond the sea". I like that! However, one of the rules I have set for myself for this project (I don't very often set rules for myself - or follow any one else's if I can help it) is that I have to be able to see what I am drawing. It can't be a fantasy, in-my-head subject. Right now ultramarine, beyond the sea is a fantasy here - our Bay is as white as white can be. It is going to be awhile before we see ultramarine out there.

And Daughter, if you are reading this, please tell me what I should have done with "else's" in the preceding paragraph. Yes, I know, I shouldn't have started this sentence with "and".


T is for . . .

"T" is for Thread
I was surprised to find these very small, beautiful, jewel toned spools of thread in a box in my mother's sewing supplies. The colors surprised me - they are like little shining gems. I wonder where they came from. She wasn't a little sewing kit kind of person - she had serious supplies.

Recently I have been obsessed with the idea of making a bound sketchbook. My poor husband got pretty sick of hearing about it as I planned it out for two weeks - out loud of course. He never really said anything, but I could tell by the way his eyes glazed over, that he had heard enough.

I did make it (can't seem to get a good photograph), and it was really fun. I made a few mistakes, but that is what learning to bind a book is all about - or learning anything, right? I am certainly not going to go into the bookbinding business, but I will definitely make more.

COLD and WINDY here! One of my students this morning turned around and went back home, one was rear-ended at an intersection, three had to take detours . . . THINK SPRING.


S is for . . .

"S" is for Spoon
Spoons are challenging, but fun. There is a surprising amount of dark value when drawing shiny objects. The bowl of this ended up too rounded, but - oops - we weren't going to judge, were we? Sometimes I will draw spoons "around the clock" - that is from the 12:00 angle, the 5:00 and so on. This one, I would say, is the 8:00 or 2:00 angle.

We are digging out this morning from last night's blizzard. The snowplows dumped an amazing amount of snow at the ends of our driveways and REALLY socked in the cars on the street. The sun is shining now, so all is well.


R is for . . .

"R" is for rocking chair.
This is one of those subjects that you could spend hours on, trying to get it correct. Since that is not my objective with these two-inch squares, I had a few relaxing minutes of concentration, getting into the zone and not worrying about the outcome. A few minutes of lower blood pressure.

It could go either way, couldn't it? If it's a difficult subject we can drive ourselves crazy trying to do it right - make it good enough. Then we raise our blood pressure and wear out our erasers. I think it all depends on the reason we're drawing - are we drawing for the fun of it, or do we really need a good rendering of the subject. One reason is just as valid as the other, but we seem to have to give ourselves permission to just draw for fun.

Forty-three degrees here right now! That is something like sixty degrees warmer than it was a few days ago!!!


Q is for . . .

"Q" is for quilt.
No, I didn't do the pattern from a real quilt. I was going to, but I was a little distracted, so this is what we get.

I was working on some very simple landscapes today with figures in them to show distance, scale, and a center of interest. Fun. They didn't scan well and it is past my bedtime. I'm feeling a little blurry eyed and fuzzy brained, so until tomorrow . . .

It's ten degrees tonight. It's warming up.


P is for . . .

"P" is for Pottery

I think, from what I have found on the internet, that this is a Hopi Pot. It has been in my family for more years than I know, and I have no idea where it came from. I'm really not sure why, when things were sold, given away, or split up among family members a few times, why this made the cut. It must have meant a lot to someone, and I'm glad it did. I think it is beautiful - sooo old and so comtemporary at the same time.

It has been a very quiet weekend around here. Too quiet. I didn't accomplish much of anything and I didn't really enjoy the nothingness of it. Lethargy - " the quality or state of being sluggish, lazy, or indifferent" (according to Webster) and I say if you're going to be in that state, you should at least enjoy it. It is 5:00 p.m. I still have time to accomplish something, or at least adjust my attitude toward my lethargy.

P.S. I had an email from a friend that says we have to have "nothing" weekends once in awhile to let the week catch up with us. Thanks - I needed that. I just fixed fried potatoes and french toast. Feelin' better now.