Tag Archives: sketching

small art 1.30.16

 I did this little paint sketch during my TWSO workshop session on Tuesday night. I find that when I keep my hands busy doing creative things, I can think through creative problems better. The paints used are Peerless Paint watercolour chips, the pad is the lovely Papier Canal square watercolour paper block.

 This fruit is called a Buddha’s Hand… I think if someone from our current day would have named it, it would have been called Cthulhu’s Maw.  Interesting fruit, though. Wonderfully fragrant, almost floral rather than citrus. I’ve yet to figure out what I’ll be doing with it, but I’ll figure it out.

small art 5.29.14


It’s raining here today and I’ve taken up residence in my bed, wrapped in flannel sheets and blankets to stave off the damp chill streaming in through the window over my left shoulder.

I’m glad I made the excursion to the book store yesterday because even though it was overcast and cool, it was still a pleasant walk, the sun trying hard to break through the dense cloud cover but only succeeding in making the sky look like it was a little bit backlit.

The BC teachers’ union is on rotating strikes and so my son was off from school and joined me for the trip. I’m feeling better, in less pain, but moving around a lot still feels taxing. I was grateful for having him there, even if only mostly for moral support.

I’m savouring the sips of my freshly brewed coffee. There is nothing quite like a good coffee. I was raised by a coffee lover and was indoctrinated early, though what I drink these days is far different from what I grew up with. We drank espresso, in the mornings diluted with lots of warmed milk, otherwise we drank it black with only some sugar to cut the bitterness.

I picked up some new magazines yesterday. They are European imprints and I’m pleased that the local Chapters carries them. Daphne’s Diary is delightful, and even with the currency exchange it is still less expensive than the some other eye candy craft magazines. Visually appealing, with useful and inspiring content, they are a treat.

The other, 52 Weeks of Everyday Style is also hailing from Europe, with words like “jumper” and “car-boot” to make me smile. It includes lots of relatively easily executed DIY projects though I find that looking through these kinds of magazines sparks my creative vision in unexpected ways even if I don’t make a single thing from its pages. This one was $11.

I decided to sketch a bit and use the coloured pencils I’d dragged into the room a few days ago but had yet to make use of. I may still journal over the top of the black copic pen inked background.

navigating productivity

Yesterday was a good day. The weather would change about every half hour, so we had everything from sun to torrential rain. I think Gaia just couldn’t make up her mind.

Not so long ago I saw posted on Maya Stein’s Facebook page a call to “write a book” and a photo of the titles up for grabs. I picked “How to Navigate Loss” because me and loss? We’re close personal friends…

I’d written out the concept (on my usual preferred brainstorming medium of choice, index cards) and yesterday afternoon I finally started sketching. I’d gotten perhaps five spreads done and was going to leave it for the next day but knowing myself (and my gnat-like attention span) I figured that if I didn’t push through and get ‘er done, that it would languish unfinished until my fickle muse decided to stop applying multicoloured hair dye for long enough to finish the story.

So I pressed through, ignoring meals and most of everything else. I drew and coloured and folded and glued… and at a little after two o’clock this morning, I was done. Done! *patting self on back, because I FINISHED without a whole lot of anguished creative suffering!*

And, apart from this Accomplishment, I also plotted out a plan for the recategorization of the categories on this here blog, as well as rewriting my bio info, which will be added to my “About” tab (just as soon as I transcribe it from my index notes).

Progress and success comes in tiny (but equally immense) steps.

(And maybe smudging the whole house with white sage and palo santo really *did* move some stagnant energy out. I’ll take it!)

Oh playful muse… come out, come out, where ever you are

I found these wonderful socks at Mother’s just before Christmas, and was moved to purchase them… I thought that they would resonate with my playful, creative side, and would wear them when I needed to lighten up… and have fun with the creative process.

    I’ve been feeling far too serious lately, in my creative process. Actually, in life in general. *sigh* I don’t like taking things so seriously, but there is a part of me that it speaks to, though it can sometimes be a part that hinders progress simply because it RUMINATES too much and hence gets absolutely nowhere.

      So… the socks were donned today, partly because my toes needed warming, as did my soul. I’ve begun sketching a drawing which I hope to incorporate onto a painting upon a newly purchased canvas. I want to experiment with acrylic glazes and mediums, something I haven’t done in a long time. I have had a series of paintings in my periphery which I haven’t gone on to create, for reasons I can’t even begin to ennumerate here, though a lot has to do with the level of expectation I have of myself, which on the whole is quite unrealistic. The time is as good as any to get started, and so with a playful attitude I shall begin this journey, remembering to breathe… to be gentle with myself… and that I need to let go of expectations and just immerse myself within the flow of the creative process… *sigh* *cringe*

      Lucky 13… well, not really, but it’s a catchy title

      Pencil sketch highlighted with watercolor

      The work week has finally waned and I am so ready for the weekend! I have been trying to catch up on blog posting (yes, I’ve been back-posting… shame on me!) and have a few more entries to post (one of which will talk about our latest acquisitions earlier this week: iPhones… what sublime gadgetry)! In any case, I took Gabriel and his buddies to the pool this afternoon and, while there, sketched a bit. The eye (above) is one of them. Not bad for the limited palette. I’m hoping to finish up my yellow postcards and get started on the next batch (blues) and on the Gothica project (another back-post which will go up shortly).

      Yellow postcards and raincoats…

      I’ve been working on my (June) yellow postcards… they were supposed to go out around the 1st of July but as usual, I balked and I’m still working on them. I’d collaged and painted a sheet of watercolor paper and cut it up. I’m at the next (and hopefully final) step of adding some final elements to most of them. Some of them seemed to need more than a little touch up, and I thought I’d draw some raincoat clad people and apply them to the tops of the collaged backgrounds (hence the sketch, above, of the raincoat girl). Will post more this weekend, by which time I hope to have completed the cards.

      Pastel postcard production

      I’ve started on the next batch of postcards and will mail both last month’s and this month’s out together shortly. Thought I’d share some photos of the process of their creation…

      Started off with a watercolor background on some thick watercolor paper, and thinly cut strips of light colored papers, applied with my favorite collage medium, Perfect Paper Adhesive (matte)…

      Then I sketched some ladies’ heads to go with the spray of flowers I cut out… all were scanned into Photoshop and manipulated and then printed out onto transparency…

      Almost done now… the sheet of postcards is about ready for cutting up. Added some stenciling with acrylic paint, and chalk marker.

      Inching along with the postcards

      Well, I’ve come a little bit further with my Colors of India postcards… it’s all moving so slowly. I’ve still been under the weather, though I’m finally on an upswing… must be that Z-pak the doctor prescribed this weekend. Hopefully we’ll all be germ-free shortly and feeling spritely again.

      The upper left corner has an image of Ganesh, the Hindu elephant god. The following are quotes from Wikipedia:

      Ganesha is worshipped as the lord of beginnings, the lord of obstacles, patron of arts and sciences, and the god of intellect and wisdom. He is honoured with affection at the start of any ritual or ceremony and invoked as the “Patron of Letters” at the beginning of any writing.

      He is the Lord of Obstacles both of a material and spiritual order. He can place obstacles in the path of those who need to be checked, and can remove blockages just as easily. The Sanskrit terms vighnakartā (“obstacle-creator”) and vighnahartā (“obstacle-destroyer”) summarize the dual functions. Both functions are vital to his character, as Robert Brown explains: Even after the Purāṇic Gaṇeśa is well-defined, in art Gaṇeśa remained predominantly important for his dual role as creator and remover of obstacles, thus having both a negative and a positive aspect.

      Paul Courtright says that:
      Gaṇeśa is also called Vighneśvara or Vighnarāja, the Lord of Obstacles. His task in the divine scheme of things, his dharma, is to place and remove obstacles. It is his particular territory, the reason for his creation.

      I find it interesting that many Hindu gods (in fact, the whole pantheon of gods in general) have this duality in their nature. Is it so surprising that we mere mortals are “afflicted” with the same attribute? So much time and effort is expended into quashing our shadow sides instead of honoring them as an integral part of who we are… the push and pull that moves us forward… toward completion of a cycle. Each has a purpose, and each can be harnessed to move us forward. I believe that transcendence begins with acceptance.