Thursday, April 30, 2015

Tense


When I was in elementary school many years ago, Friday afternoons were set aside as "Art Days." The whole class was able to put aside all of the books and lessons for a determined amount of time and work on creative projects of a semi- structured nature. That might have been one of the many defining moments when I decided that I might like to pursue art as a career. All the pressure was off, we listened to records (yes real vinyl records, if you can remember those) and immersed ourselves in a "no rules" zone as we began to shut down the week and prepare for a weekend away from our studies.

Continuing with my art studies, I eventually found myself working in the creative field. I know there are people who say that they love working as artists, that when you do something you love, that it's not like working at all. That might be true to a degree, but this Libra gal feels compelled to share a little reality check. Actually, I can write a whole other series of blog entries on this topic, the flip side of all that "play time" but I'll try to keep it brief. While art is fun, it is also work, especially when money is being exchanged. There are sometimes insane deadlines, bills to pay, colleagues, clients and employers (some also insane) and their expectations, all the while juggling assorted family obligations (which always come first) and doing it all with a smile on one's face and with as much grace as can be mustered, even if through gritted teeth. No wonder they call it the daily grind!

Maybe that's what I love about Illustration Friday- The name in itself brings back fond, relaxing memories of "Art Day." No real pressure, all are welcome to participate or not, and nobody gets all bent out of shape when some of us go off on conceptual tangents. For anybody who frequents this blog, they might have noticed that I take that to heart- I don't always post as regularly as I could, sometimes I veer off course, style- wise, and color the way I want, with or without rambling narratives. Today I decided that I was just going to put the obligations aside and paint for the fun of it (minus the vinyl records, but music is playing in the background). The soft gray, introverted mourning dove sitting among the sometimes menacing cactus pads was chosen to illustrate this theme-  Familiar inhabitants of our yards, they seem to like it here, but always appear wary,  a little bit tense and poised to take off, depending on the circumstances.

Hope your "Art Days" are purely for fun!


Thursday, April 16, 2015

Soft

Soft Drinks
I didn't raise the alarms when the nice folks over at Illustration Friday got around to changing the week's word a little late. In case you missed it that was "Warrior," and I was enjoying a little break in the action. Not the most inspiring topic when there's plenty of fighting going on all around the world, you know? Depending on who's being asked and when, it's been noted that I can be stubborn- But that's just when I need to hold my ground in my own small scale clashes. Some of those same people will also say I have a very quiet voice. As a whole, I prefer things to be low key and peaceful. 

When they switched the theme over to "Soft," you could almost hear the "Whew!" as I breathed a sigh of relief. To celebrate, I thought I'd offer up a batch of old fashioned soda pops- As in soft drinks. Cheers!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Ruckus

Hello Bloggers, it's time to make some noise again with this little one for Illustration Friday
The hungry baby birds are making a ruckus in the trees around here- 
Spring has sprung!


Thursday, March 19, 2015

Strong

Eau de Aroma

There must be something in the air- Two posts in two weeks. But here I am, trying to sneak another pic in for Illustration Friday on a Thursday afternoon. If we want to stay strong, we have to keep moving, right? That goes for paintbrushes, too. (Swish, swish!)

This little stinker couldn't resist sharing that mini motivational pep talk for anyone who's visiting today, and a quick "scent"-iment as the season officially changes. 
Happy Spring to all! 



Thursday, March 12, 2015

Path


I'm not sure if this old sentiment is actually an Irish blessing, but since it's close to St. Patrick's Day, I just gave it a few shamrocks and will stick with it as this week's contribution for Illustration Friday
My alternate, unabridged version of this saying adds "...It's just that all the sociopaths and psychopaths along the way create extra- long detours." (OK, maybe that was inappropriate, but that's what was on my mind. "Paths," get it?) A wee bit of mischief always comes naturally- I do have a little Irish ancestry and the leprechauns were calling again! 

Besides, if you're reading this, you're not too far away for me to wish you a Happy St. Patrick's Day!  

P.S. I'd like to add that this was an experimental effort, a quick mixed media piece. I rarely discuss my process here, but lately I've been changing it up a bit for my own sanity's sake. Experi- "mental," maybe? This began as a really rough thumbnail sketch, hand lettered and then enlarged as a copy, painted over with diluted white acrylic paint (mainly to fade the sketch) and colored with pens on semi- wet paint, building up the color as it was still appearing pretty transparent. The final stage was to go over it with Prismacolor pencils. The paint gave the inexpensive paper a little more "tooth," grabbing the pigment more favorably. I might like to try this technique again using a heavier weight paper and with more concentration on my part. Stay tuned!


Thursday, March 5, 2015

Reflection

Looking back, I see reflections of some places, faces and things that I don't recognize anymore. 
The truth is not always as pretty as we want it to be, so we just get fitted with some rose colored glasses and keep moving along as we always do, as long as we're able.
You see, spring is on its way and there is still much beauty to behold...
Hope you're catching a glimpse of that beauty, too.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Home

Home made for the holidays
Santa and his elves might be busy in their workshop putting the final touches on the goods, but the kitchen is where these goodies are being baked. Visions of sugarplums have been dancing in my head, by the plateful to share with friends and family
Here's a favorite recipe for Molasses Cookies, from my home to yours.

Merry Christmas!