Tuesday, December 27, 2016


Blue Winter
  by Robert Francis

Winter uses all the blues there are.
One shade of blue for water, one for ice,
Another blue for shadows over snow.
The clear or cloudy sky uses blue twice-
Both different blues. And hills row after row
Are colored blue according to how far.
You know the bluejay's double-blur device
Shows best when there are no green leaves to show.
And Sirius is a winterbluegreen star. 

Friday, December 23, 2016


From our 2nd week on Anna Maria Island and around...

Great White Egret, long and tall and sleek - also not afraid of people as he/she was used to fisherfolk coming in with their boats or catching good stuff he/she could share :)

What do you call a group of Snowy Egrets?  These guys and gals were hanging out at the Anna Maria City Pier, waiting for something good to be brought up in a net from the fisherfolk netting bait fish.  The Pier was busy with people walking back and forth and these bold ones would move a bit and then reposition themselves.  

Saw this interested spikey spider (red spikes sticking out of the black body) in a web - in fact, saw many of them along the nature walk we took at Leffis Key south of Anna Maria and Holmes Beach.

After a trip to St. Petersburg to the Fish and Wildlife Conservation group (for Sweetie's continuing research), we drove back into St. Pete to see the permanent Chihuly Collection at the Morean Arts Center.  Some of his glasswork (this was from a ceiling) reminded me of the spider and web.

After touring the Chihuly, we walked across the street to the HotShop to see glassblowers in action.  Unfortunately, I had a migraine all day and couldn't enjoy the brightness of the kiln/hotbox as much as I normally would, plus it takes a long time to make one vase!

The glassworker's name was Eidelweiss.  Interesting first name.  While she put the vase-in-progress in and out of the hotbox, I went back into the shop and looked at all the beautiful things for sale.

Loved the warm golden reflections on this large Chihuly vase.  

Looks like we are going to have a warm, snowless Christmas - which suits me just fine!  Hope you get the Christmas you wish for, wherever you are; and if you have to travel, be safe.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016


Sweetie and I got away for 2 weeks to Anna Maria Island, staying in a friend's place while they were visiting family up here = works for everyone!

Here are just a few photos from the first week.  More to come from Week 2 later...

Right now, like everyone, I am accepting presents I ordered online, doing grocery shopping, catching up on laundry and emails, etc = the usual stuff one has to do after a vacation. All while trying to adjust to temperatures in the 20'sF after 2 weeks of temperatures in the 70'sF :)

Great White Egret on pier.

A foggy day on the beach at Anna Maria (Bean Point).

Seagull parents with Mom sitting on eggs and Dad watching over her, carefully.  We didn't get too close so they wouldn't spook, but they were right on the beach where people walk all the time.

These Snowy Egrets were ready to do some off-roading in this guy's truck! ha ha  

Actually, this was at a fishing boat launch area and they were waiting for the owner of the truck to return in his boat with some fresh fish for lunch! ha ha

I pick up fallen grape leaves on our walks, and set up these three pretty ones.  This may become a future painting.

The holidays are here.  The crowds are everywhere one goes.  The music plays in stores.  The wrapping paper needs to be purchased and the presents wrapped. The cards are mailed (unless more come in).  

Wish you all a Happy Holiday season and snow (if you like that kind of stuff) or sunshine and a rainbow (if you are somewhere warm).

A hint of a rainbow on Anna Maria Island, 
December 2016.

Friday, December 9, 2016


This one is finished.  

USA Crows 2016

On Fabriano Artistico 140# cold press paper - 15 x 22 inches

Monday, December 5, 2016


Just a few more cards to be sent out this year.  Added a bit of irridescent paint to give it a little sparkle (which doesn't show well here).  

Working small helps but I wish I was more inventive when it came to the cards.  However, I don't think most people would want crows or bees on their Christmas/Holiday cards! ha ha

Thursday, December 1, 2016


Just two crows thinking about the brutal election just past, and the divisiveness that has not stopped.  I guess we'll see what happens in 2017, eh?

This isn't finished but here's how I did it:
Draw it out, mask the whites, paint the flag and let the colors drip and drizzle.
Repaint the flag, remove the masking, wet the crows and using sandpaper, scrape off watercolor pencils of the colors you want.

USA Crows

Half sheet (15 x 22 inches) 
on Fabriano Artistico 140# cold press watercolor paper

I'll finish and share again later...

Have a wonderful holiday season.  
Love more, live more, enjoy each other more, 
and please be good to yourselves.

Friday, November 25, 2016


Just making a few new cards for the holidays this year...I need to buy more blank watercolor cards. 

Most people get regular cards but I do give family and close friends hand painted ones (if I have enough made).  

Starting late again!

But it sure beats going out for Black Friday sales!!!

Saturday, November 19, 2016


Darkness below her, and deep blues closing in around her.  Dull grey surroundings closing in.

Blue Rain Crow

Watercolor on Arches 140# coldpress paper

15 x 22 inches

Think I'll just draw in the crow in graphite, pale and almost disappearing.


Thursday, November 17, 2016


Noticed this large box turtle walking in the neighbor's yard about a month ago.  Sweetie decided to "rescue" him.  He was probably someone's pet that was released.  We set up a nice space for him. 

He likes boiled eggs and loves strawberries.

Since the weather is getting colder at night, we will release him into the woods and let him find a nice place to dig a hole and winter in before freezing temps set in = better for him than staying here in the cold and trying to keep him warm and healthy throughout winter.   

Tuesday, November 15, 2016


Wavy lines and shapes. 
Nothing solid under her feet.  
Looks like she might be trying to call out a warning - or sick up something stuck in her craw.

Vertigo Crow

Watercolor on Arches 140# cold press paper

13.5 x 14.25

Friday, November 11, 2016


Another piece of TerraSkin paper (made of stone).  Watercolor with bits of watercolor pencil scraped onto the wet pigment for texture.

Slowly adding up texture and shape and darkening some values, adding veins. 

A bit more to do and let dry before the end...

We really don't have pretty leaves this year - maybe it was too warm for too long?

Monday, November 7, 2016


Wiped back the top parts so they were not so close to the edge, then rewet and used watercolor crayons to add some texture.  I like them more now but still not as nice as the very first effort.

I kept the same size on the blue/green cool one but cut back the size on the warm one.

Both are done on TerraSkin stone "paper" with watercolor and watercolor crayons.

Do you have a favorite?

Thursday, November 3, 2016


Life Flower No. 1

Watercolor on TerraSkin stone paper
28 x 9.5 inches

I changed the colors just a bit on this one - the first and best.  Then made 2 others that are kind of ugly.  

Oh, well.  Just playing with colors and since these are on TerraSkin (stone) paper, they can be washed back to white or layered over with other things or whatever.

I used to stand and paint for an hour or more at a time.  Now I don't seem to have much energy.  No migraines, just low energy.  I keep telling myself I'm not that old yet but maybe I am kidding myself.

Here are the ugly ones...

Obviously, no planning - the tops are too close to the edge and the thorns are a bit too big.

This one is 28 x 8.5 inches

It's okay to just play with colors, though, and maybe rework them if I want them to be anything I keep - or wash it all off and start again.

And this one is 30 x 5.5 inches so very skinny.

Happy November
Where did the summer and fall go???

Monday, October 31, 2016


Sweetie bought a kit to dress up our pumpkin.  We bought a small one that's very green on one side.  Added the bits.  And here is Froggy Pumpkin.  It should be the only one like this in the neighborhood when the Halloween beasties come out.

Happy Halloween!

Saturday, October 29, 2016


A long, thin painting (watercolor) on TerraSkin paper. 

Love the way the color separates, granulates, changes as it dries on this stuff.  

This is:  Life as a Flower

(Life begins so green and fresh, so clean and new...then changes and sometimes there are thorns but look at the end result:  hopefully it's beautiful!).

I got up at 7:30 this morning, went downstairs and painted this.  Are the migraines over?  So far, so good - almost one week without and I'm beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel and hope it's not an oncoming train! ha ha

Closer view so you can see the colors and how they flow.

Wishing you a wonderful weekend.

Thursday, October 27, 2016


September was a horrid month of migraines which laid me low for days at a time - weeks at a time, really.  October = 6 so far and that's good news!  Had an MRI and it showed "normal" which is all the report I got about it - 35 minutes in a tube with and without dye injected into me and I get "normal" a one word report??  So asked for a copy of the report the doctor got!  Maybe I don't want to know...but that just isn't me.  I want to know even if I have to look up the medical terms.  I know it irritates some doctors who just want you to agree and move on - take this pill and you'll be fine - or whatever.

Anyway, enough whining.  I am painting nothing but small cards so here they are...

Pumpkins are everywhere these days - wonder what they do with all those leftover ones in the boxes at the grocery?  Have you seen the ones people are carving like our presidential candidates?  Scary! ha ha

Some seed pods.  

These cards are homemade from 5 x 7 bits of Arches or Fabriano 140# coldpress paper.  Which means I'll have to find some envelopes for them.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016


Just a few paintings on cards = collaged pieces (the mermaid was painted on Tyvek + and bee is glued onto gold gessoed paper that was painted around using a honeycomb stencil).

Sunday, October 9, 2016


The other day I looked out my window and saw a sky that could have been painted by Rene Magritte.  I looked for the large green apple but didn't see one :)

Magritte seemed to love painting skies - and then putting something surreal into the painting, making us think about what, exactly, he was trying to say or do.

Many of us are familiar with one of his most famous painting, Son of Man, whether we know the name of it, or not.  

I'm not sure surrealists want you to figure out what they are saying - if anything.  Magritte said he covered the man's face so we think about how we always want to see something behind what we actually see.  The bowler, which he wore, could be a self-portrait aspect or not.  The sea, the stormy sky, who knows??

Hoping your day is NOT surreal.  And hoping all along the eastern coast of the US can rebuild and gather their lives back together after Hurricane Matthew.  So sad to see the news reports from Haiti where almost 300 died turn into 800+ recorded dead there.    

Wednesday, October 5, 2016


Just another quick one done on TerraSkin paper using watercolors and watercolor ink.  Trying to keep my brushes wet in between migraines...

18 x 8.5 inches on TerraSkin paper

Blue Tree, Yellow Sky

Hope your month is going well - for me, the weather has turned to cool mornings and nights, misty daybreaks, dew on the grass, the crows have returned and are calling, some weekend hours spent watching the grandkids play soccer, long-sleeved shirts and jackets coming out of the closet, leaves just beginning to tease us with changing colors.  I love autumn.   

Monday, October 3, 2016


15 x 5 inches, watercolor and 
watercolor ink on TerraSkin paper

Bee World

Saturday, October 1, 2016


For the entire month of September, I was fighting migraines - 8 total, which means 16 days in pain.  Not plesant.  During this month, I learned that I am not capable of dealing with chronic pain without becoming a wimpy woman who cries when she sees puppies, little piglets, sad dogs and cats, kittens, even while watching a program about a wonderful woman who quilted 100 original (no pattern, free style) quilts in her life who was a sharecropper's wife.  Yep, made me cry.  So my emotions have been put into some kind of blender and are just raw - because of the pain.  

In between migraines, I painted this.  15 x 5 inches, watercolor and watercolor ink on TerraSkin paper.

Migraines September 2016

I am hoping October is a better month.  Until then...

Thursday, September 29, 2016


Another in the Bee Series paintings.  Haven't used the painted rice paper yet but thinking about how to incorporate that into another painting...

For this one, I copied some materials I got through the mail and then collaged the copied paper onto the watercolor paper around the painted bee. 

Not sure what to name it - so the working title is just Pesticides Kill.

If I am going to have a show using these, I need to start making some in other sizes.  Right now, the majority of paintings are fourth sheet (11 x 15 inches).  Maybe next one will be a full sheet or half sheet again.

I haven't had a migraine in 4 days.  For every day of migraine, the next day is also bad - I feel drugged (whether I took anything for the migraine or not) and achy from the tense muscles.  So 14 days so far this month and I am hoping October is better.

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.