Thursday, January 31, 2019


First, another mermaid tail.  "Just Keep Swimming" is my own saying, and I put them on all my mermaid tail paintings.

This mermaid tail was painted using a photo from the Newport Aquarium mermaid visitors we had last year (the mermaids visit every year at the Newport Aquarium and you can get some good shots of them coming into the tank, leaving it, and swimming around.  It's pretty cool if you like mermaids - which I do.

And what does Scrabble tiles have to do with this?  Well, when we were in Anna Maria at a flea market, we saw vendors with loose Scrabble tiles for sale.  Then saw that they glued them to the little Scrabble boards to spell out Anna Maria or AMI or Beach Days, etc.  Cute idea.  But it gave me another idea - one I haven't seen.  Stay tuned and you'll get to see it soon.  I bought a few of the tiles and I'll show you how I'm going to use them.

I had a birthday day this month and got a lot of really great presents, too.  So happy to have my Sweetie, who treats me like my birthday is some kind of national holiday - only better!!  And family who knows I am happiest with books and art supplies (or gift cards for the same).  So another January, another New Year, another we go, 2019!!!

Tuesday, January 29, 2019


These white ibises have such long, curvy beaks.  Interesting creatures who can be found by the water or in a field, they aren't choosy about their food, it seems. 

My photo reference was taken in a field but I put these two in the sand by the sea because an artist can change their surroundings however they want to do so! 

Sunday, January 27, 2019


Back (for a while?) to the 7 x 10 Rough series of birds.  This one is a great blue heron.  Got his neck a bit thick (perhaps he's been working out??).

Friday, January 25, 2019


This was done on a scrap of the 7 x 10 rough paper.  Just a little bookmark size painting of a turtle.  They have turtles come up on the beaches to lay eggs on Anna Maria Island, but only during the season of May - October.  

And then it's time for mermaids :)  

Wednesday, January 23, 2019


Sweetie and I returned Saturday from Anna Maria Island (two warm, sunny weeks) to a snowstorm.  Not a big snowstorm in our area.  But enough to drop 3 inches of snow and drop the temperature down to 15F degrees - Brrrrrr!!  So snow and ice covered everything for a couple of days.  But I have paintings to share which I did while in AMI.  And I'll get back to my series of 7 x 10 Rough paintings of birds soon.  Until then...

This one was done when walking through the Coquina Beach Market.  An artist had trays of shaving cream mixed with acrylic inks in various light colors.  You took a sheet of the cardstock and put it down in the mix, let it sit for about a minute or two; then lifted it up and you got a mix of colors.  This one looked like a turtle from the start but I did add a little watercolor to reiterate the form a bit.  Cute.  But it still smells like shaving cream! ha ha  

I'd never seen that done before so was pleased to try it - she had beautiful acrylic pour paintings, too (that technique lends itself to sea and sand scenes so well and there are many artists doing that in Florida).  (Didn't think I had the artist's name but I found her card.  Her shop is called Everglades Eclectic and the artist is Jeanne Dee Mason.  You can find her on Facebook and she sells on Etsy.)  

And while on the sea turtle theme, I did a couple others.  

This one is not finished - just a start - in my Stillman & Birn watercolor sketchbook.

And this one was done in watercolor in my 7 x 10 block of Arches rough.  Guess I had turtles on my mind for a while!  Plus they are easy shapes to do.  Just have to add some more detail for interest.

Monday, January 21, 2019


I like the outcome of this enough to try some more using this paper.

Have you ever tried it?  

Saturday, January 19, 2019


I bought a block of Stonehenge Aqua Hotpress after seeing a lot of work from an artist who uses it well.  I'm not usually a fan of hotpress paper so we'll see.  I want something that gives me interesting texture without being a fussy as Yupo and something that's still paper.  This might be it!

I like the texture it gives me and the way the paint doesn't soak in and can be pushed around.  I can also lift out a little and reshape areas after it's dried.  

Interesting so far...

And not a bird but some red berries (probably honeysuckle berries) beside the house.

Thursday, January 17, 2019


I forgot the theme and painted this on the 7 x 10 Arches 140# rough block of watercolor paper.  Not a bird.  An interesting plant.  It was not this color, being just mud-brown and dull.  A printout that was running low on certain inks caused it to look blue and silver so I thought I'd use those colors and try for some pen and ink along with the watercolor.  

I'll get back to the birds on the 7 x 10 rough after this - but I also have some totally different and interesting paper I want to try - stay tuned!

Tuesday, January 15, 2019


Again, part of the 7 x 10 Rough series of bird paintings for 2019...

The great blue heron is a beautiful bird, often showing blue-grey and violet, sometimes just a dull grey color.  This one (from a photo taken during my recent Anna Maria Island trip) was in the evening and he looks very blue.  He (or she?) was fishing for little things beside a running stream inside Perrico Preserve.  

I know herons and egrets are found in the Ohio River Valley area, but I've rarely seen great blue herons around here.

Sunday, January 13, 2019


Another in the series, 7 x 10 Rough...

The pileated woodpecker comes to our suet feeders once or twice a year, but never stays.  He's just passing through.  

This woodpecker is the model for the Woody the Woodpecker cartoons - you can see why with that red topknot!

Friday, January 11, 2019


I think he ate too many Christmas cookies!

This is watercolor on an Arches block of 7 x 10, 140# rough paper.  

New Year = New Birds :) 

The next few will all be on this block of rough 140# Arches so I'm calling the series

Wednesday, January 9, 2019


I started an abstracted painting - just putting down paint and letting it go.  Then reinforced the idea of the water, sandy shoreline, and grassland.  And added the great white egret.  

Still have AMI on my mind.  

Monday, January 7, 2019


While in Anna Maria, I often visit The Olive Oil Outpost for a scrumptious cafe con leche.  It's my routine to stop once a day - yes, I'm addicted and like the people there a lot.  

On the way to the OOO, beside the walkway between streets, was this strange plant that had red pods growing on a tall red stem (it stood about 4 feet high).  It also had a single white flower blooming, which I did not paint.  

It caught my eye and I had to try to paint it when I came home.  

Some impressionistic greenery around it and another stem without the pods.  

Wonder what this plant is called?  I was going to ask someone, but forgot to do so while I was there.

This is painted on a scrap of 140# Fabriano Artistico cold press paper.  

Saturday, January 5, 2019


Another on the slick mixed media paper using watercolors.  

Blue skies, sunshine, walks to the beach, and the date palms outside the house where we stayed on AMI.  

Thursday, January 3, 2019


This was painted, while I was on Anna Maria Island in December, with watercolor on a slick paper (actually, a mixed media block of paper I thought I'd try).  The paper causes the paint to sit on top, creating some interesting textures.  It's not like Yupo since it is paper, but even more slick than hot press watercolor paper.  

Playing around with, but still using watercolors (tubes, crayons, pencils).

This is my impression of the two weeks in Anna Maria and all I saw there in December.

And Happy New Year 2019!