Sunday, September 25, 2016


Added some rice paper (white) to the edges of the "quilt" pieces and then added white gouache to that to make it stand out more.  A bit of texture to add interest. All done.

Fourth sheet (11 x 15") Fabriano coldpress watercolor paper.  

Bee Quilt

I stained some of the white rice paper with Quinacridone Gold to use in the next painting...

Not sure how it's going to be used, but I like the organic look of it...we'll see...

Wednesday, September 21, 2016


Started another in the Bee Series paintings.  This one, called Bee Quilt and I haven't decided yet what to add to it within the "squares" but I'll come up with some collage or something...perhaps add some texture with string?  Ideas will be percolating for a while.  

I haven't been painting much at all this month - migraines coming 1-2 times a week have kept me off kilter.  Because of that, I'm limiting my time on the computer down to just a couple times a week for short periods of time.  

I'm trying many things to help get rid of these blue meanie migraines, and hoping they go away soon.

Hope you all are enjoying your September, and are being creative this month.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016


I've got the blues...

What colors do you have 
and love?

I have begun a new painting in the Bee Series.  
Will share it later.

Sunday, September 11, 2016


Hawks are coming to are area.  I have a lot of feeders so I have a lot of birds - cardinals, bluejays, nuthatches, goldfinches, house finches, chicadees, mourning doves, etc.  It's a buffet for a strong predator.  Everyone has to eat.  

Aren't they gorgeous creatures?

This Cooper's Hawk was taking a cooling dip in the water standing on the swimming pool cover (we put mosquito dunks in there so the neighbors don't burn us at the stake about breeding mosquitoes; tablets tossed in once a month gets rid of the larvae).  It is being drained today since we are going to have more rain this evening.  Anyway...

When I glance outside and see no birds at the feeders, or hear the bluejays squawking, I know a hawk is close by.  This one was right on the deck railing, turning his/her head to stare at me when I looked out.  Big Red-shouldered hawk. 

 Notice the different back feather patterns and the difference in the color of the eyes to help distinguish between the hawks that come to our area = Red-Tailed, Red-Shouldered, Cooper's, etc.

Going from big to small...

We have a family (or two) of hummingbirds.  I've seen two males, one (or two) females, and a couple of smaller young ones, all coming and feeding at the two sugar water feeders I've put out.  Set out two if you see them fighting over a single feeder and make sure the second feeder is out of sight of the first = on the opposite side of the deck = cuts down on the territorial behavior and everyone gets to eat.  

Friday, September 9, 2016


Saw a disheartening article in USA Today online just a few days ago:  A town in South Carolina sprayed for Zika, killing thousands (if not millions) of honeybees in the process!  The beekeepers were sharing the photos of the bees lying dead on the ground, at the entrance to the hives, etc.  The insecticide is toxic and they are spraying it all over from planes without warning people to bring in their pets or children, and from large trucks that arrive in the middle of the night (like they did here locally).  And, of course, the insecticide kills things other than mosquitoes - like honeybees, butterflies, etc.  

Are humans really so stupid?

I know this is a real worry to a lot of people right now - and we have had reports of people with Zika here (who have come home with it from outside the US).  I know it's in the Miami region and will move up and around.  But can we not think, research and get good information before county or city bigwigs say, "Spray it all now"???

So this has made me want to return to my bee series paintings...which I am doing.  

So sad...

Used Daniel Smith Walnut Ink on parts of the bees in the final version.  Used a stick because the dip pens just didn't work for me.  

Would there be walnuts...and walnut ink if there were no bees?

Wednesday, September 7, 2016


I have some new books (2) and an older book (the one called Colour) so I'm going to be reading about colors = fun. 

Interesting for an artist.  

Thursday, September 1, 2016


Water is great for those of us who work in watermedia of all kinds.  But it's not so great when it's being pushed towards our homes by a hurricane.

I am wishing and hoping that all in the southeast are staying safe from this Hermine coming your way.  And hoping the same for Hawaii because there are 2 hurricanes out there in your area.  

Stay safe and go to high ground, if needed.  

Be careful out there!!

Monday, August 29, 2016


Several years ago I heard of paper made from stone.  I think Jeanette Jobson was working on it, or had tried it.  Now you can easily find it in the art supply catalogs.  It's called Terraskin paper. 

I bought some sheets many months ago and played with it using acrylic inks.  Now I'm just using watercolor on it.  

These pieces are cut down from a full sheet (a full sheet is larger than 22 x 30 inches but I cut the large sheets down to that size so I can pin it to my Gatorboard) - the excess pieces are long so I cut them in half, giving me 2 pieces that are 7.5 x 14 inches.  A nice size to play with.

Little landscapes without drawing (you don't have to draw because you can lift back to white if you want.  I like the way the granulating colors work on this stuff (which is like Yupo but not as slick and thin) - you can see dots of granulation where the pigment separates.

I like to let the color dry a bit and then run my finger over areas, creating some texture and lines.  You can add colored watercolor pencils to the piece, too.  I imagine you could do anything on this "paper" that works on regular watercolor paper - but drawing on it with a sharp pencil will cause indents in the TerraSkin and that's not a good thing.  

I think you would probably be wise to spray seal the paintings once you are happy with them, just to protect them from rewetting and smearing.

In order to get darks, you have to stop lifting and fiddling with the color, but sometimes you get some nice shapes and edges by just rubbing the drying pigment with your fingers.  

I bought my paper from Amazon (which, I think, gets it directly from the manufacturer here 
but you can order smaller sheets (10 in all, each sheet 20-28 I think) from now.  Check out here if you're interested.

My only question?  Why not call it TerraStone instead of TerraSkin?  

And that 22 x 30" sheet is still pinned to a block of Gatorboard, waiting for me to do something interesting with it...

Thursday, August 25, 2016


There is a medical condition called White Coat Syndrome that is very real.  You go in to see your doctor for a rountine check-up and your blood pressure goes up.  Your blood pressure at home is fine, but every time you see your doctor, it's high.  That's White Coat Syndrome.  Your blood pressure is effected by the stress of just seeing your doctor!!  

We artists have White Paper Syndrome.  You all know what I am talking about here. You see something that inspires you, you get your paper and materials together.  Then you just stand there stopped dead in your tracks.  Stuck.  That's where I'm at right now.  

I have been thinking about monotones and greys - all the beautiful greys that can be made.  But the white paper is just sitting there on the table, daring me to do something wonderful with it!

I know it won't happen today.  I seem especially tired, unenergetic, flat, uninspired, sleepy.

I could just make a lot of greys and see which ones I like the a warm-up stage before even touching that paper.  Or I could just take a nap! I think a nice nap gets rid of White Coat Syndrome and White Paper Syndrome, too.

Hope you are inspired and creative today.