Monday, July 13, 2009

We are off again

My husband, my dog and I will be away for a few weeks camping. This is my time to really do lots of plein air painting and get lots of new reference pictures for the winter. I will have lots of new stuff for you when I get back. Enjoy the sunshine.

Daly and Joejoe are Ready to go Home


Yes the boys are done. I am really pleased with them. Daly, in the background, is the one that always has a sparkle in his eye and Joejoe is the more serious one. I really tried to get that feeling with the dogs. I must admit that it was a challenge though as the picture of the dogs appearance was wonderful but their eyes were flashbulbs.
I included a bit of shading in the background as I had suggested in my earlier blog and I am very pleased with it. (The shading is a little darker and more widespread on the original. The scan didn't pick it all up.) It really seems to make them stand out and also helps to give the picture a more balanced view as a landscape. I used a cloth and rubbed the graphite on to do this and I found that it worked well to get that uneven look with lots of soft edges.
Have a great day, my next pencil project is Jack Russells, should be fun.


My First Blogging Award


I was very thrilled to receive this Premio Meme award from my friend Dors (http://dorsart.blogspot.com/ ). It is my first blogging award. Thanks so much Dors. Dors is an Australian artist that I have met through my blog. She does some great work, check it out.
The rules for the award are to list 7 things about myself and then pass the award on to 7 other artists. Well, here I go: I have a great dog, Rusty. He is a miniature poodle and through him I have learned the true meaning of a lapdog.I love pens and pencils and I am constantly trying and buying new ones.I want to learn how to do basket weaving and rug hooking. I love the rugs that have woven pictures on them that they do in Nova Scotia and I would like to learn how to do that with some of my pictures.I have a love/hate relationship with my computer. Some days are good but other days I am calling my son to rescue me!I love to read and often I have to read the last chapter so I can turn out the light.I have a husband of 38 years who is my most enthusiastic supporter and I have two children who have helped me in hundreds of ways to move forward with my art. I have been so fortunate to have such a fan club.
I would like to pass this on to artists that have motivated and encouraged me all the way.
Brenda Hill at www.myartclub.com - a great friend and pencil artist whose work I love to look at.
Becky McMahon: www.triskeltreecreations.com – a great friend and artist. She does wonderful work with Chinese brush painting on rice paper
Grahame Butler: http://grahamebutler.blogspot.com/ - I love to look at his work and he is always so quick to comment on mine.
Gabriel Greig: www.gabriellegreig.myartchannel.com and www.mrspicasso.com - she is an artist and a clown, a truly unique person and very inspiring
Florence Morris: http://artbyflorence.blogspot.com/ a new artist that is just getting her wings. It is very exciting to see a new artist learning and growing.
Mike Sibley: http://www.sibleyfineart.com – I just love to look at his work and he has so much information on his site.
Tony Miller: http://pencilshaver.blogspot.com - Again, I just love his work and he is such a fountain of knowledge.



Thursday, July 9, 2009

The Art of Realism - Graphite Show



I am quite excited about this show, it will be all graphite. It is not often that pencil art gets such recognition and yet it is such a great art form. My picture "Sunday Morning Swim" will be in the show and I am quite pleased to be included in such a great group of pencil artist.

Daly and Joejoe are coming along nicely


Well you can see I have really been working hard. I must admit that once I have my project set up and things are going well I have a hard time stopping. Both the dogs are coming along great and I am quite pleased with the results.

I am now starting to look at the overall shape of the drawing and I think I will have to extend the bodies a bit more and also I am going to cloud in around them a bit so the shape is more horizontal and to make some of the whites in the hair stand out better. To finish the lower part of the drawing I will be using a cloth to get away from the harsher edge that is there now. Their beards are a lot of fun, there are so many curls and swirls of hair it is a real challenge to keep it light but also get that feeling of fluffiness in the hair. I love how it is coming together.

Have a great day and my next post should have the boys ready for home.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Daly and Joejoe


My new project is two schnauzers called Daly and Joejoe. They are two lovely looking dogs and I must say they do look like they are a lot of fun. I was very excited to get started with them. Daly was drawn first as he is in the background. As you can see from my outline of Joejoe in the front I do not spend a lot of time drawing in the details. I look to get the overall shape, or place that they will take on the page and then move in. I put a base coat down with my 2B pencil so any detail drawing would be instantly lost. Once that layer is rubbed down I am ready to work on different areas. To get some nice hair lines in the white areas I have found that my fine tipped shaper has been an excellent tool. It gives that subtle soft line that I need. I am quite pleased with my start and I am looking forward to getting Joejoe in the picture.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Back from Our Trip


I am back; it is hard to believe after all the excitement of planning and travelling that our trip is over. We flew to Toronto to visit with family then onto Nova Scotia. We visited with friends, travelled along the southern shore, took the ferry to New Brunswick and visited areas along the southern shore there as well. It was great, the highlight for us was the day we spent at Hopewell Cove walking around the flowerpots, they really are an amazing thing to see. From there we flew to St. John's, Newfoundland and travelled right over to the west side to Gros Morne National Park. There were many highlights to this trip, we saw an iceberg and lots of moose, took a trip up the fiord at Western Brook Pond and for my husband, the real highlight was we took a trip out with a lobster fisherman while he pulled his traps. In all the weather was great most of the time, the scenery was breathtaking and people were friendly and helpful wherever we went.

I have posted several pictures from my sketchbook that I thought would give a taste of our trip. The first sketch is Peggy's Cove; no trip is complete to the east coast without a visit to the Cove. It may be a tourist trap but it is still a very scenic spot. This is followed by the famous fishing plant in Lunenburg, the Nova Scotia shoreline,
some scallop boats at the wharf in Digby
and the Flowerpots at Hopewell Cove, NB.
From there my sketches move to Newfoundland. The first is the Narrows that lead into the harbor at St. John's, it is so narrow it makes you wonder how a cruise ship can get in. Also the slopes are covered with fabulous walking trails. (Some were way too steep for me!)
The last picture is the Lobster Head Lighthouse at Rocky Harbour in the middle of Gros Morne Park. It was such a great view I just had to stop and draw it.

I really enjoy keeping a sketchbook/journal when I am travelling. It makes a great souvenir when I get home but also I find it helps me relive those special moments on the trip. I tried a few different tricks this time which I found really helped to make my sketching fun. I took some watercolor pencils and a brush that had a water compartment in it. It was fun to sketch and color and then quickly bring the colors alive with a little water from the brush. You could move the paint around and blend it without putting too much water on the page. And a great plus was the brush didn't leak! Another thing I did was use some of my brochures as references. I did sketch on sight but I also found that there was not always time to do a quick sketch during the day but in the evening when everyone was relaxing or early morning before things were happening I had time and wanted to draw. It was a great to pull out the brochures and complete a drawing of one of places we were at.

Enjoy your holidays and remember to take your sketchbook along and have some fun.