Friday, July 31, 2009

Lily Pads at Duke Gardens

This is the watercolor resulting from yesterday's value sketch. Finally had to just leave it alone before it turned to mud. It was a wonderful day and this small painting will remind me of how incredible it was to spend a day outside painting with a good friend. What more could I ask!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Duke Gardens

Wonderful day painting with my friend Lin in Duke Gardens and then a long leisurely lunch and talk! You can see her work at "View From The Oak" She is such an inspiration to me! You will love her paintings!

I started with a drawing. It seems to get me started when I feel overwhelmed and surrounded with that much natural beauty - I was totally overwhelmed. After the sketch, I started a watercolor. Wasn't really happy with the result, so I stopped before I totally made mud of the work. I will look at it again tonight and see if it can be salvaged. Salvaged or not - it was an incredible day!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009


This is an "oldie but a goodie". This is my cat KittyBurger and he still looks the same except the black spot on his nose has gotten larger. This morning he has red paint on his ear and his back. Couldn't help himself from getting to close to hubby and his painting project. Curiosity!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Tree Farm

Sitting in one of the many porch rockers looking out over the acres of Christmas trees made me want to come back at Thanksgiving and pick out my own. Each field had trees that were approximately the same size and shape. Closest to me were the six foot blue spruce - beautiful.

Monday, July 27, 2009


Just spent a wonderful weekend with four other girl cousins in Sparta, North Carolina. We stayed in an old home named "Bald Knob Farm House". The house is surrounded by Christmas tree farms and filled with antiques. Each day I found time to do a quick sketch to remind me of this incredibly peaceful place and the wonderful women I shared it with. For the next few days I will share those sketches.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Hot Press (smooth) watercolor paper is not always easy to find in journal form, but I love the texture. This is a spread from a small journal I made using that paper. In May everything in my yard seemed to come alive at the same time. The two flowers in this journal spread were particularly vibrant at that time. The purple iris are flowers that I grew up seeing in almost every yard but the weigela is a small shrub brought home by hubby. Stays green all year and blooms twice in the summer. Gotta' love it!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Virginia Spiderwort

Early in the morning in my backyard, my Virginia Spiderwort opens for a short time. For most of the summer months I can count on the beautiful periwinkle color to stay with me. This pencil sketch is in preparation for a small watercolor I want to do. Hopefully soon!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Yellow Door

This is the second painting I did on the Paint Out at Cedar Hill Farm. The owners were so gracious to share their home with us and there seemed to be beautiful scenery and still life setups at every turn. New to this experience, one of my biggest problems was deciding where to set up and paint. Surrounded by talented artist - including my new painting friend Lin - it was intimidating and inspiring at the same time. What an incredible day...

Monday, July 20, 2009

Garden Gate

Painting plein aire is another new experience for me, but Alamance County has a wonderful group of outdoor painters that are very supportive and encouraging of beginners. This watercolor was done during one of their all day "Paint Outs" at Cedar Cliff Farm in the Piedmont area of North Carolina - an incredibally beautiful setting. The owners have filled their own lives with art and a landscape that screams to be painted!

Sunday, July 19, 2009


Yesterday I tried to catch up on my scrapbooking, so today's work is an older piece. It is a watercolor woodcut and was created just like it sounds. The drawing was done on a piece of birch plywood, cut, and then instead of the regular printing process - watercolor was used as the printing medium. It's a time consuming process but I always like the soft effects it creates.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Day Lily

My day lilies have not done well this year at all. They probably need to be separated - I got only a few blooms this year. That is really discouraging since you see them growing wild in side ditches all over the state. What does that say for my gardening skills? Oh well, another day...

Friday, July 17, 2009

The wonder of weeds...

Did you ever stop and really look at a plant? A flower? A weed? Any kind of plant growing in nature? They're amazing. I settled on this particular weed because of its ties to my childhood. Detach the long stem and head of the plant, wrap the stem around itself once, tighten the loop, pull forward toward the head - and wham! The head pops off smashing into whatever (or "whoever") you're aimed at! Hours of fun back in the day!

Now I'm happy to sit quietly and draw it. What does that tell you? What energy kids have!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Duke Gardens

Quick sketch done yesterday at Duke Gardens.
Spent the day yesterday at beautiful Duke Gardens. Took lots of pictures but promised myself that if I sat down I would draw/paint in my journal. This is a watercolor/wc pencil sketch of the bridge on the lake. There is no way that they didn't mean for this to look like Monet's bridge!

Cat's Whiskers

My cat's whiskers are not very large this year - only about a foot tall. This contour line drawing of one of the larger ones gives you a good idea why they are called "cat's whiskers". And if you make the mistake of just grabbing the stem of the plant you will get a good "clawing" from the stickers!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


My geraniums have been off and on with their blooms. Right now they are doing well and surrounded in the pot by my spotted nettle. This painting was also done with the water-soluble oil pastel and I like the way it forces me to keep the work loose. Really loose as a matter of fact. It reminds me of coloring with fat crayons!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Sweet Williams

Years ago I threw out some wildflower seeds along my driveway. The soil there is not very hospitable and only a few of the flowers ever can up. Each year, however, one or two will make an appearance. This is one of the Sweet Williams - the seemingly most hardy of the original group - painted with water-soluble oil pastel on watercolor paper.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Flower Study using NuPastel

This pastel began and ended as a flower study using NuPastels. These pastels were harder than what I was used to and I liked their consistency. I reached a point where I didn't care enough about the landscape through the window to continue, but still didn't consider the work finished. I am leaving it as is for now. Maybe later...

Sunday, July 12, 2009


Having done very little blogging and certainly never intending to create a blog of my own, we will call this a work in progress...So I will start by sharing a journal page. My Chipping Sparrow. And from here...well, we will see.