Friday, March 28, 2014

It's Finally "Finished" Friday!

I finally quit procrastinating - sort of.  I finished 2 more portraits last night and got another one done this morning.  But I'm done and that is all that matters!

I was so bad at procrastinating yesterday that I even got started on next week's assignment - a lino block print to avoid doing them!!  But I guess in the long run, that keeps me from procrastinating for next week as the assignment is half finished.  The block is carved; all I have left to do is the actual printing.  I want to do some cool backgrounds to really make it unique, so I believe I'll be pretty good about it.  Might even be a "finished Tuesday" or something! 

Anyway, here they are:

I'm taking the rest of the day off.  Except for that pesky thing called work of course!

Y'all take care now!


Thursday, March 27, 2014

Not Even Close to Finished Thursday

It's Thursday and I have procrastinated until the cows came home.  In fact, they're not even home yet!  And I'm still procrastinating.  I totally know why, and it's no excuse, but I'm still doing it!

I haven't done a portrait of any type in years.  Years and years!  Now that's not to say that I haven't mucked about and scribbled and doodled some faces, but a full on portrait?  Nope.

This week's assignment is FOUR portraits.  Granted, they don't have to be large, and they don't have to be "good" - they just have to be done.  Can I just let it be at that?  Not, I.  No, I have to do large full on portraits.  Or at least, for this one I did.  I'm so hardheaded it's ridiculous.  On the plus side, I did get to use my new handy dandy drawing board and electric eraser which was awesome, but not exactly a good reason.  Oh well.  For not having done any faces in years, besides owls and a couple of girls in paintings, I think it turned out pretty well.  I'm glad to see that I haven't totally lost my ability and I can still get proportions pretty well.  And that's what this assignment is all about - proportions.

Ok, I promise, I'm done procrastinating.  I'm going to post this and get back to work!  See y'all tomorrow!


Tuesday, March 25, 2014

A Late Finally Finished Friday and a Beautiful Tuesday

Good morning y'all!  It is a beautiful Tuesday morning.  Chilly out of doors, but still beautiful.  There isn't a cloud in the sky, the wind is blowing, and it's just a day that calls for you to sit up and take notice.  I love spring in the South - when it, ya know - behaves!  Though trying to figure out what the weather will do down here is like trying to figure out what a cat will do - it's nigh on impossible.  So I'll just take my days one at a time and enjoy them when they shine.

I've had a crazy busy weekend so I appologize for not getting up last week's assignments on time.

Assignment:  Contrast - Paint 2 paintings using any type of contrast (texture, temperature, color, value, etc.)
  This one is mixed media on a 16x20 canvas - Acrylics, Gelatos, and Paint Pens.  I finally got to use my gelatos and they are so much fun, though I definitely need to keep playing with them.  And as luck would have it, my new paint pens came in the mail that day so I was able to use them too!

This one is also mixed media on a 16x20 canvas - Acrylics and Paint Pens.  I took a leaf out of one of my favorite artist's book and did the vase in a flower pattern using a white Sharpie Paint Pen on top of black acrylic.

I really love how they turned out.

I just checked the mail and my new book is in!  I love reading books about art and I've ordered quite a lot of them here lately.  I'm enjoying perusing them.  Since acrylic is kind of a new medium for me, I love learning what techniques and tricks are out there.  Plus, I just love looking at others' work and getting inspired!

 I haven't had the chance to read these thoroughly yet, but they are on my desk for more detailed perusal.  What I have looked at so far is very inspiring and really great information. 

Loving these Sharpie Oil-based Paint Pens.  They're really easy to use, have a great flow, and bright vibrant colors!  Plus they're permanent on just about anything!

Alright, I think that's all I've got for now.  I'm off to go transfer my recorded lectures into notes.  I'll be back later this week with my next assignments - Portraits.  It's been ages and ages since I did any kind of portrait.  Here's hoping I haven't forgotten everything!

Laters y'all!  If you're day is beautiful, head outside and enjoy it!

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Another Finished Friday, an Art Suppy Mega Haul, and an Alisa Burke drawing!

It's Friday again and that means that I've completed yet another set of assignments (once I quite procrastinating)!

The assignments were:

1 painting Asymmetrical Composition
1 painting Symmetrical Composition

On another most fabulous note...

I won one of Alisa Burke's fabulous birthday give-a-ways!  I'm super duper excited about this.  I won one of her Canvas packs from yesterday.
 The pack includes:

A signed copy of her book Canvas Remix
A canvas messy pouch (filled with a few of her favorite supplies)
A little package of painted canvas scraps to play with!

I can't thank Alisa enough for doing all of these fantastic give-a-ways to celebrate her birthday week.  And a huge huge thank you for the goodies!!!  I cannot wait to get them!!

Moving on to another super happy thing - I got a lot of my supplies in today!  Yay!  I know the UPS & Fedex men were wondering what in the world was in all of those boxes!

I so want to just dive right in!  But unfortunately I actually have to write a paper tomorrow and study for a test on Monday!  Back to school blues!  Oh well.  I have lots of things to keep my "free time" not so free!

That's all I've got for tonight folks!


Thursday, March 13, 2014

Art Supply Addiction

My palms are itching like crazy.  I want my stuff and another week off from school so I can have plenty of time to play!!!  I will be posting my thoughts on these supplies as I get to use them.  The only things I didn't order and wish I had was the Dylusions Ink Sprays.  I've seen some really awesome art journal backgrounds done with those.  But I'm very disappointed that Ranger doesn't offer them in a whole pack of all the colors.  Yeah, it'd be pricey, but my local Hobby Lobby is the only one that carries the ink sprays and they don't carry all of them. 

On a side note, but not totally off topic - I've been playing around with my new Sakura Koi Watercolor set some more.  I have to say - the waterbrush is probably the greatest little brush ever invented.  Where were these things years ago?  I mean seriously, they are awesome!  I also have several more of them on the way.  I am a firm believer that one can never have too many brushes and certainly never have too many of those nifty little things.  They're freaking awesome.

Just some doodles in my sketchbook using my new watercolors.  Anyone wanna go to the beach with me?  I'm in such a beach mood!

Alright.  I'm done procrastinating (year, right!)  I have to go make my dad's Stuffed Chicken and paint!  My assignment is due tomorrow and of course, I haven't painted anything ahead like I was supposed to do!  I really have slacked off this week.  But it's been fun!

Later y'all!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Progress and a new Supply!

Good evening (omg! is it really after 1 am?), um well then - morning rather to y'all!  I've slacked off most of the day - which is nothing new, especially because every artist I know, including myself, is the worst (or best, depending on your view point) procrastinator out there!  But I finally managed to buckle down and get some painting done!

I'm not sure if it's finished, I rather think not as I keep looking at it - and not necessarily with good thoughts.  But oh well, I do love love love how the drip background looks peeking through the blooms and the bottom.  Quite lovely in my own humble opinion.  Anyway, without further ado:

"Cherry Tree" possibly still in progress

I did manage to go a little overboard with the blossoms themselves!  They're just so gosh-durn fun to do.

Now, on to the really fun thing - my new toy!  I've been following Alisa Burke's blog for quite a while now and have seen her using the Sakura Koi Watercolor Pocket Field Sketch Box for her on-the-go jaunts.  It looked so nifty and handy that I decided I'd try it out myself.  I've seen the Waterbrushes around as well and heard amazing things about them.  This kit includes one.

So anyway, I got one and have been playing around with it and I must say that I absolutely love it!!  It's so easy to tote around and you don't have to worry about water at all - it's right there in the brush.  That funny little black topper is very important!  Don't lose it!!  There is actually water in the brush now and that little plug is keeping it all nice and in the brush!  There are tons of colors (24 to be exact) and it is very easy to tote in a purse or bag.  It has a removable palette which can be placed either on the left or right side and a little finger ring in the bottom for holding in the hand.

(I swear I'm not getting paid for this!)  That being said - I do recommend this little gem.  It's sold online or can be found at Hobby Lobby (which is where I got mine).  Michael's does not carry it.  It's listed at $35.99 at Hobby Lobby,  but I used a 40% off coupon (who doesn't love coupons) so I got it for a little under $22.00.  Not to shabby and definitely worth it.  I've had lots of different little watercolor trays and none carry as well as this, in my opinion.  So a big thank you to Alisa Burke for recommending it!

I love seeing what supplies other artist's use.  I have a terrible case of ASA - Art Supplies Addiction.  Really, it's just awful!  I have this really cool wardrobe trunk of my great grandmother's from the very early 1900's (I actually found a newspaper page from 1917 lining one of the drawers.  I'm not sure just how old it really is, but I do know that it most definitely is almost 100 years old.  And yes, I did keep the newspaper!).  I use it to stash my supplies in since I currently have very limited space and no "formal" studio.  It is full to bursting.  I'm not sure what I'm going to do when I absolutely run out of room.  And there is a definite canvas storage problem as well.  Anybody have a spare house I can borrow?  Ha! Ha!

It would take an appliance dolly to pick that thing up!  But it is very convenient.  Well folks, that's all I have for tonight.  I will absolutely be better about not procrastinating tomorrow but Morpheus calls now and I must answer.

Happy painting!


Monday, March 10, 2014

Couldn't Fight the Sunshine

It's been such a beautiful day today, I loaded up the girls and went to the park.  I took my sketchbook and watercolors with me, so did a little doodling of the pear blossoms.  Oh how I wish I was at the beach today!  As the sun sets, I'll be starting real work on my 2 in progress paintings.  But I just couldn't say no to the sunshine today!

Works in Progress

In my last post, I showed y'all some acrylic drip backgrounds I've been working on.  Well, I've done a bit more and I wanted to give y'all a peek.

That's all I've got for now.  I think the backgrounds are as done as I'm going to let them be - I'm starting to see the rest of the painting in them.  I'll put up more progress pictures as I get to them.  Hopefully by tomorrow night!

Until then, I'll see y'all in dreamland!


Saturday, March 8, 2014

It's Spring Break Y'all!

 Good morning and Happy Saturday to all you fine folks out there!  What a week it's been!  My week has been full of flash cards and panic attacks, study sessions and last minute "Green Goddess on a Cracker!" moments!  Yes, it has been mid-term week!  I'm really rather dreading Finals week since I know that it will be so much worse than this week has been!

All that aside, the good news has been that I didn't have any art projects due yesterday!  Which made my less than nil available time somewhat more manageable.  However!  My oldest daughter did have an extra credit project for science class due Thursday.  She had to make a book about an endangered animal - she chose the Cheetah.  Since she's not allowed to handle an X-acto knife just yet (I'm not really sure why I am, as I cut a hot streak outta my thumb!), I somewhat less-than-willingly agreed to make the cover and pages.

And here it is:

I went to Michaels and got a chipboard kit (I have future art journals in mind) and pack of somewhat Serengeti colored cardstock.  And you wouldn't believe how difficult, nay! nigh on impossible it is to find cheetah printed vellum scrapbooking paper!  So her cheetah has leopard spots.  Best I could do!  So I drew out the design and cut it all out, which was such a ruddy pain in the tukus, but it got done!  Used black acrylic for the face, attached some whopping jeweled brads for eyes, and light grey jewelry wire for whiskers.  I rather think it turned out kinda cute!  She had to attach pictures and cards to the inside pages.  Which, I totally forgot to get any pictures of because she finished it somewhere around midnight the night before!  The white spots of glue did dry clear, so she doesn't have a cheetah that's going grey!

In between rounds with the X-acto knife, I did manage to get a couple of paintings started.  My next art assignments are all about symmetry and asymmetry, so I think I'll continue on with an earlier idea of a series of cherry blossoms.  I've done a couple of acrylic drips for the backgrounds.  They're still in progress, as I want to do at least one more drip session to really get some good layers.  The bottom one has undergone 2 drips so far and I accidentally had the top one in the "line of fire" so it got some spritzing as well.  That's why it looks like little rain drops on the top of it!  Kind of a neat effect, but not what I'm going for. 

I want to add, that while I was painting or was doing that project for my eldest, I was cruising YouTube for inspiration.  I came across a very talented man named James Kruse who uses the acrylic drip method with amazing results.  Y'all should definitely go check him out.  He's a right talented little bugger!

I'll keep y'all posted on "in progress pictures" with these 2 paintings and ya'll please cross your fingers for me that I get a couple of more done this week (or more) so that I can have time to get some other school work completed in the upcoming weeks.  It'd be so nice to not have to push other things aside because I've got painting after painting to do!  Or vice versa really, I'd rather be painting!  But, time management and all that.

For the first time in way too many years, I'm experiencing the joy of Spring Break for myself.  No classes and no visits to the elementary school for me this week!  Four whole days to just do my thing!  I love it!  Yes - only four because I've still gotta work!  But I just can't wait to see what I manage to do with my days off.  I plan to paint like a mad woman and catch up on my Big Bang Theory and Black Sails!

Alrighty, I've procrastinated enough - it's time to get my tail in gear and get ready for work.

Y'all have a wonderful weekend!  It's a beautiful sunny day today and ought to be around 75 or so!  And as usual, I'm stuck inside.  But y'all enjoy the day and let me know what kind of fun you had.  I've got to live vicariously through somebody!


Monday, March 3, 2014

Art Education - a Writing Assignment

I had to write a paper for part of my mid-term grade.  Nothing major, but was definitely a fun and interesting assignment.  It was also one that I've been giving a lot of thought to in both this class and my Foundations of Education class.  I think, as a future educator (and an art educator at that) that these concepts are very important to know and understand.

Making a great subject even greater!
I want you to choose your favorite subject. From this subject, I want you to come up with 5 different ways in which art can be used to make that subject even better. 

 Since my favorite subject is Art (of course), I decided to re-work the assignment a little bit and instead incorporate other subjects into an art curriculum.

Art Education
Making Other Subjects More Fun

By: Brenda Lee
Art for Elementary Teachers
February 28, 2014

            Art is everywhere.  It surrounds us daily, we think about it frequently, and we create it often.  Art is integral to childhood development.  Before a child's first birthday, parents begin teaching their children shapes and colors along with abc's and 123's.  Teachers often integrate art education in their teaching, especially in elementary, without even realizing.  Art teachers, too, integrate other subjects, sometimes with a lot of thought behind it, and other times it happens organically.  There are many ways to integrate other subjects, subjects that students may find boring or difficult, into an art curriculum.
            Math is a difficult subject for a lot of students.  Several math concepts go hand-in-hand with art and they can be taught and reinforced in the art room.  Examples of these are shapes and geometry.  Students can draw these shapes and even learn how to shade them so they look 3D.  Perspective in all its forms is very closely related with lines and angles.  Symmetry can be taught by cutting out snowflakes.  Even ratios become important when mixing colors.
            There are many students who don't like to read or write, making language arts a difficult subject.  But again, you can add language arts into an art curriculum.  Walter Anderson's Alphabet is a perfect example of integrating ABC's.  An art teacher could have students create their own alphabet inspired by Walter Anderson or another artist.  An art teacher could also incorporate poetry, story illustration, and a writing assignment on various artists.
            History and Social Studies are great subjects to integrate into the art curriculum.  A lot of artists painted famous historical figures or historically significant events.  There are also paintings of how every day people lived, what they wore, and what the political and religious movements were of the day.  Art students can also study art from other cultures including African, Japanese, Native American and more.  Through the study of their art comes an understanding of who those people were and what was important to them.
            Integrating science into an art class is a simple thing.  The teacher can teach color theory, optical illusions, nature inspired art, human anatomy for figure drawing, medical illustrations, and much more.  The art teacher can also assist students in creating scientific experiments.  How salt affects watercolors and what happens when you add isopropyl alcohol to wet acrylic are two examples of such experiments.
            There are countless ways to incorporate the other subjects into an art curriculum and vice versa.  By doing so, you not only reinforce things learned in other classes, but you give children a chance to understand them a little better and to become a part of the process of learning.  Once children become part of the process, then learning becomes fun for both the teacher and the student.  


I know, I know... it's brilliant!  LOL  Maybe not, but it's something and it's true.

Anyway, to end, I'll leave you with a little funny.

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