Sunday, November 29, 2015


When the Hansa Yellow Medium wash dried completely, I rewet the paper (flowers and pad are masked off) and gently brushed in Quinacridone Rose.  This gives the background a nice, warm rosy glow.  

This has to dry completely before doing another wash/glaze.

I thought the color was too pale and not pink enough, so I glazed another layer of Quinacridone Rose and let that dry completely before going in with a layer of Cobalt Blue.

The layer of cobalt left a nice, muted grey but not flat color.  When this dries completely, I remove the masking and begin on the individual elements of the painting, hoping to keep a light hand as I go...

The next step will be to remove the masking fluid and begin painting the subject.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015


Thanksgiving is here in the US.  A busy time for those who plan to visit relatives or friends, or plan for their own visitors = cleaning, cooking, celebrating, and watching football!  

I wish you all in the US who celebrate a very Happy Thanksgiving, safe travels to grandma's house, and may there be chocolate pie on the table when you get there :)

Monday, November 23, 2015


So, here I am again, back to more traditional watercolor painting on watercolor on paper.  Still working towards completing a decent water lily painting with a delicate background and soft colors.

First, I flipped the original sketch so the pad is in the upper right, got rid of all the extraneous leaf and lines and redrew it on watercolor paper.  Then I masked out everything but the water.

I decided I needed to do light glazes to get the water to look pale and delicate so...

I prewet the paper with a big flat, soft brush, then gently brushed on Hansa Yellow Medium to get a good but light coverage.

Each glaze has to dry completely before going back in with a second color.

Some people have the patience for glazing layers and layers - as long as they keep using transparent watercolor pigments - and still get a rich, deep color.  I may glaze 4-5 layers or so and see how it goes, making sure I'm choosing clean, transparent colors at each stage.

So...after the Hansa Yellow Medium dries completely, I will add Quinacridone Rose to this to get a nice warm glow.  Then I have to see what it looks like and what it needs before going on with...a blue?

Saturday, November 21, 2015


The colors began too garish, too much.  So I wanted to tone things down, leaving a little pop of red but not so overpowering.  Still not sure, but I do think it's better.  It's closer to the original in my sketchbook.

On half sheet Arches (15 x 22 inches) 
painted with fluid acrylics.

Thursday, November 19, 2015


Thinking about abstracts and working on things in my sketchbook.  

First, I just sketch in the book, a small Aquabee sketchbook ( 6 x 9 inches).  Since Aquabee can accept watermedia, I then add some color and texture using my Graphitints and Inktense, using muted color.

The inktense and graphitints go on dry and can be wet with just a wet brush so I can work on the colored abstracts, using smooth and textured bits as well as color.

I have a tendency to cover every section with color and I need to learn to leave open and quiet spaces.  
So, that this point, I go back in with white gouache and recover some whites or lights.  

Then I'll use these as guides for actual large paintings (at least fourth sheet or half sheet) on watercolor paper and fluid acrylics.

Again, too colorful!  And I went beyond the guide of the sketchbook version.  That's okay, but I want to tone things down- mute the colors I use.  

I liked the sketchbook version, so will get closer to that but allow myself some red - maybe.  

Tuesday, November 17, 2015


I began this blog back in November 2006 - nine years ago.  How is that possible?  I am surprised that this has kept my attention and that I have connected with so many artists online because of this blog.  

So this is my Happy 9th Anniversary.  Will it last until the 10th?  How long have you been blogging?   Have you added Facebook and Pinterest and all the other social media apps or have you moved your work to Facebook (seems like a lot who began with Blogger and Wordpress - what happened to Wordpress? - have started posting more things on Facebook).  

So - 9 years and counting...

And here are the latest alcohol ink paintings on TerraSkin that was coated with acrylic gloss gel or string gel to get a texture the inks would sit on.  If the TerraSkin is not coated, the ink just sinks into the "paper" and you can't move it.  Someone suggested I put pure alcohol on first and then drop in the inks - will try that, too.

Autumn Days

Under the Sea

I am enjoying collaging bits onto the TerraSkin and then using the alcohol inks to reinforce some shapes and colors.

Autumn Surprise

Drizzled acrylic string gel onto the TerraSkin and then dropped the colors in = interesting!

Sunday, November 15, 2015


November 8th was Hermann Rorschach's birth date.  You know what he was famous for:  the Rorschach ink blot test, those odd blobs of ink on white paper that are supposed to look like something.  It was even mentioned in an early Batman movie (Val Kilmer as Batman seeing a Rorschach on Nichole Kidman's wall) when he said, "Are you into bats?"  And she, being the snarky psychologist, said, "The question is, are YOU into bats?"

Here is one of the original Rorschachs.  In the 1960s, Rorschach's inkblot test was the most prominently used projective test in the United States; it ranked eighth in the list of tests used in U.S. outpatient mental health care.

Here is my own version.  Now...I wonder if this has extra meaning because I created it myself?  Hmmm...

I've never played golf, but I see two men breaking two golf clubs over their knees at the bottom of this - now what does that mean? ha ha  You might say, "Why is she doing this?"  But hey, it beats watching another football game.

What do you see?  I promise, I won't judge you.

I have no idea why my type is doing this and can't seem to fix it - sorry!!

Saturday, November 14, 2015


Terrorists attack Paris - again.

Friday, November 13, 2015


Having tried the alcohol inks on Arches hotpress watercolor paper, Tyvek, and Yupo, I've decided Yupo is the only reasonable substrate to use with this stuff.  And since I don't have any Yupo and probably won't buy any, I think the few alcohol inks I bought will remain in a box and be used just for additional elements to other things...unless.  There are some demos in the book, Pigments of Your Imagination, that use tar gel and even glue over paper...might try that before giving up on these.

Until then, 
here is Sweetie's experiment on glossy photo paper with a background printed on it (4 x 6 inches), 
and a jellyfish on a small scrap of Yupo.

He gave up after a few tries, saying it was more fun to watch me work with it than do it himself :)

So I worked with a few colors on scraps of Yupo (mostly the Yupo has the remainder of bad paintings on it, front and back, but you get the idea).

When the ink dries, it seems to be permanently stuck on the Yupo but I haven't tried to remove it using rubbing alcohol yet.  

This is the only one I liked - but it's still just abstracted playing with colors and seeing what the inks will do.

Have you ever tried the alcohol inks?  What did you think about them?