Sunday, December 18, 2011

Minerva Is On The Canvas

I have placed a preliminary layout of my Minerva painting on the Linen canvas I stretched recently. I will begin the background as soon as I finish up a portrait commission that just came my way. Its not a big portrait, but all the same a real challenge. I will be working from a large black and white photo from the 60's. Until it is finished, I won't be working on any of my personal pieces.

Oh, and since it's Christmas and my gallery is closing shortly anyway, I decided to take a long holiday this year. I will be back in the gallery after the New Year. Merry Christmas to All!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Painting Surfaces

The Fed Ex guy delivered my new 10 yard roll of Oil Primed Belgian Linen yesterday. Nothing on the planet compares to a newly stretched Belgian Linen surface. I have used many many surfaces over the years (including a stint as a faux finisher, painting walls and murals) and I always come back to oil primed linen. It costs more than twice the price of acrylic primed cotton duck, but it is so superior in longevity and feel. I must admit I hate the first layer that takes forever to go on and seems to slip right off, but when I get into the guts of the painting, WOW, what a difference from other surfaces. Lately, I have been trying a technique learned at the IMC last summer. Taking a drawing to Staples and having them copy it onto a paper used for blueprint copies by homebuilders. After affixing the copy to a masonite board, I give it numerous coats of Acrylic Gel Medium to protect the copy (from my original drawing, not a photograph, EEEEWWWWW) and prepare the surface for painting. When dry, I can paint in oils or acrylics over it. And, I still have my original drawing to be framed later or just saved for posterity. But, I have found that it seems this surface sucks all the oils from my paints and it may just be my mind, but the colors seem flat to me and I keep trying to punch them up. Anyway, oil primed linen has a wonderful smell also, unlike acrylic primes which have no smell. This morning, my studio smells so good, I just want to go right to work on something. Guess I will stretch that canvas this evening when I get in from the gallery/studio in little Washington. Now, Go Paint!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Composition Changes & Overlapping

Well, Minerva has gone through a major change. Rodin's The Thinker has now been moved to be behind Minerva and I inserted an easel on the left of the picture. I was watching TV last night after dinner and looked over to the fireplace where I will place works in progress for evaluation purposes. The first thing I noticed was how static the composition was, every thing disjointed and set apart. Overlap, was the one word I heard over and over at the IMC. We were told to always have our figures overlap one another. Now, by placing the sculpture behind Minerva and making him a few values darker, he has added importance to her. I will darken the easel and painting just a bit so Minerva is where your eye wants to go.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Amazon Changes

I had already said that the snakebeast would change as the painting progressed. Even in the early drawing stage, I saw that there was not enough action to hold your interest in this piece. So, now the snakebeast has an open mouth and a menacing eye. Also, I walked into the studio to work on it again and did not like the anatomy of her left leg, the one on the ground inside the snakebeast. As I write this, I am trying to remember the flesh on the dragons that Boris Vallejo did up at the Illustration Master Class last year. I am wishing now I had taken a closeup of that. He uses color like no one else.....I remember blues and pinks within the flesh and then lavendar and greens.......I will pay closer attention when I return to the IMC in June.

I still love my heavy doors behind the Amazon......taken from a photo of Stearns Steeple in Amherst. I did take the value down a notch by laying in a glaze over the entire building. This helped push the Amazon into the forefront. Your eye goes to her now.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Stretching Canvas

OK, I have my concept drawing, which will probably change as I get further into this painting. Someone once said, and I can't remember who it was or the exact phrase, but the essence was this, "Painting is a series of mistakes and problems you must correct or solve, until there are no more faults with your work" I have never really finished a painting I guess, I always see something else that needs adjusting.

So, I went to my stash of canvas on rolls for stretching and OMG, just like Mother Hubbard, my cupboard was bare. Actually, there are two rolls of canvas scraps behind the studio door. Stuff suitable for 8 x 10 or smaller paintings. MENTAL NOTE, REORDER WHEN YOU NOTICE YOU ARE LOW!
So, on the phone I ordered a 10 yard roll of Oil Primed Linen. It should arrive in 8 days. Until then, I am forced with completing several other projects that I should have completed months ago. Remember the Amazon.......I will work on that until my linen arrives.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Concept for Minerva

Here is my favorite photo of Rose, posed as Minerva and the concept drawing I did based on this photo. I eliminated the easel in favor of a palette leaning against the sculpture of The Thinker, by Rodin. My original idea was for her to be standing beside the sculpture with her chisel and hammer in hand, chipping away at the sculpture. But, once I saw this pose, that idea was thrown out. I have slightly shaded the background objects to remind me later that Rose is the focus and the other objects must become a part of the dark background. I just love her wistful look. If you like this costume, you will be surprised to know it was just a large piece of blue cloth wrapped and safety pinned in strategic spots over a bedsheet shift I created for Persephone. I think I will add "Master Costumer" to my resume.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Begining Minerva

I am spending this evening reviewing the photos I had taken this weekend of my model Rose. Rose has agreed to be Minerva, the Goddess of Art, Science and Wisdom. I hope to stretch a canvas tomorrow and begin on Thursday with some drawings. I did two pages of thumbnails in my IMC Sketchbook and have a clear idea of where I am going with this painting. I will try and post photos as the painting progresses.

I spent today at the Art League and my little re-enactor boy painting was juried into the show. There were over 500 entries this time. Oh! I took one of the fruit cakes I made yesterday and it was a big hit. It was totally gone before anything else on the table of cookies and cakes. Mom would be proud of me.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Fruit Cake is Christmas

This posting is for all the people out there who hate Fruit Cake.

As a child I hated Fruit Cake. But every year my mother worked so hard to find the money (we were poor in those days) for the ingredients for her Fruit Cakes. She spent an entire week, cutting up the nuts and fruits, since back in those days they did not come already cut up. She labored hard the night before, cutting the papers for the tins and then greasing them up with Crisco. On Fruit Cake day, I was pressed into service and helped her stir the thick unstirrable nut laden batter. My arms ached by dinner time. All this for some awful brick thing, she called cake.

When I left home in the 1970's my dad became the cake stirring servant. By this time, he had been through open heart surgery and subsequently retired. Now, mom had a nut and fruit mincer also. But, now she faced arthritis in her hands and sholders and making her fruitcakes was still an all week long affair that left her exhausted and frazzeled.

Mom is now unable to care for herself and no longer makes fruit cakes. As I get older, I try harder and harder to hold onto some of her Christmas Traditions. This week, I bought the fruits and nuts, greased the pans and paper liners, made the stiff batter and as I write this, I am baking 10 of mom's glorious fruit cakes. Somewhere along the way, I even came to love eating Fruit Cake. Merry Christmas and Hold Fast To Those Traditions!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Deer Roundup & Missing Socks

We pulled into our driveway the other evening to find 9 deer on our front lawn getting ready to bed down for the night. Since we don't hunt, we decided to play car cowboy roundup instead. We drove across the lawn herding the deer unsuccessfully. Four headed one way and five scattered in another direction. Keep in mind, we were creeping the car along, so as not to frighten them into the road. Most nights, we see their eyes in the dark, in our back field, which is too rough to herd deer in.
The kittens are in the hall fighting right now. Rockie, the larger of the two is crying out like a little girl. Such a baby when Monet gets the best of him. Just a few moments ago, Brett was putting on his socks and shoes. Rocky grabbed one of the socks from the floor and ran up the hall and under the sofa with it. Too Cute!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Now On Facebook

I thought having a blog was a time waister, but now I have finally joined Facebook. OMG, way too much time spent likeing and friending people I have not seen or heard from in eons. Is this really how we want to maintain our friendships?????? The worst part of it all is, I am a computer illiterate and have trouble doing the most simple tasks. Now I have to deal with something called Walls and Profiles. I keep asking myself, how much is too much information to release about myself and life.

I worked most of yesterday at the Ice House. Heading there shortly, today. Still have this awful cough and sprained neck muscle.

Still no new location for my gallery. I suppose I will be having a closing sale very soon.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Can I Please Get A Break?

I just read on Robert Ballards facebook page that, Cal Ripken (one of my heros) and Lynda (wonder woman) Carter were in his shop this weekend. My humble studio is two doors down. Naturally, I am at home all weekend with the worst head and chest cold ever and now a pulled muscle in my neck and back from all the coughing. I always miss the celebs that come to town. Not Fair!

I am happy to report, I have lined up my model for Flora, goddess of springtime and flowers. Mark your calendars for April 2013, and my "Everyday Gods and Goddesses" solo show at The Art League Gallery in the Torpedo Factory art center in Alexandria VA.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Really Sick - But Pumped about Solo Show

The cold has moved into my head and chest..........writing you from the lap top beside the sofa. Rockwell has snuggled up next to me and I have my sketchbook from the Illustration Master Class with me. Even sick, I am pumped and excited to begin the Everyday Gods & Goddesses. I have lined up a Minerva (Roman Goddess of Art, Science and Wisdom). Good friend Rose O'Donnell, the Gallery Director at The Art League is my model for Minerva and she is perfect. I am doing some thumbnails today for that one and thumbnails for Poseidon/Neptune. Waiting for a reply from a friend I think would be excellent as Flora. Headed back to bed now.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Finished Miniature

I put the finishing touches on this little 2 x 3 inch painting today. Yep, I went to the freezing cold studio/gallery today with my sore throat. Stayed for three hours and then felt worse and worse. Also, worked on a commissioned portrait of some pets and almost finished it today. That painting needs a day or two of dry up time before I proceed with the final touches on it.

It's Official - Monet is a boy

Working from home again today....woke up with a head cold and did not feel like sitting in a cold building with no restroom. May go down later if it warms up some.

Monet is a boy after all. He and Rockwell were neutered yesterday and are back home today. The procedure has not slowed them down one bit. They are knocking over everything in the home studio and climbing all over the computer while I try and work.

I follow lots of blogs and today did some catching up of my blog reading. Check out James Gurney's blog...Gurney's Journey...he has fantastic information.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Thank A Veteran Today

If you are reading my blog today, thank a Veteran. We should all remember those veterans who fought and died to give us the right to post our feelings, views and opinions on a blog. Freedom of speech is a precious thing, not to be taken lightly. Each time I post my blog, I validate all that the patriots of 1776 fought and died for. Isn't freedom of speech a wonderful thing? Also, thank those veterans who continue to ensure we don't lose this precious freedom.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Another Beautiful Pet

I just love doing pet portraits. Actually, I love doing portraits, period. I think that I am drawn to it because of the eyes. I feel eyes draw me in and I am always challenged by them, wanting to make them compelling and mesmerising. This one is set for delivery tomorrow morning.

Still no place to take the gallery to, but I am still searching. I will keep the domain name for a few years and I plan to continue the Annual Little Washington Miniatures Show in a nearby location. I may be down, but I am definitely not out.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Jennifer Rides a Beast

Working from home today with the kittens underfoot was great. Warm and cozy, loud rock music playing and I got into my zone.

This is the first drawing of an idea I got from this photo of Jennifer. Jennifer frequently models for me and on a recent photo shoot, I ended up with this picture that just screamed for her to be riding a beast of some sort. Wooly mammoth was my first thought, but too overused. So I sat with my IMC sketchbook in front of the TV one evening and did a series of thumbnails of possible ideas. This beast is what I have ended up with. My thoughts were, he should be large but agile and able to scale rocky cliffs and mountains. He should be bug like in the face, but elephant or dinosaur in his body appearance. The first quick sketch had him more like a dinosaur with the plates down the back which she could hook a leg over. I quickly rejected it....too overdone. I will continue to develop the drawing over the next two days. OH, my husband says, Lots of long hair on Jennifer this time. She is always wearing her hair pulled back in the photoshoots. So I will use my imagination or call her for some hair shots. Tonight is pizza night and a movie. Awesome

Working At Home Today - No Toilet in Gallery

The weather is very slippery here today and cold. Since I have trouble with Lupus and need a restroom nearby frequently, I have opted to stay home today and work in more comfortable surroundings. There is no restroom at the gallery. Another disappointment in my business life.

Friday, October 28, 2011

My Latest Miniature

This is about three afternoons of work so far on my latest miniature. I am using my 16 x 20 painting, "Vanitas #3" as my subject, but I am editing some of the items out of this painting. This is on a 2 x 3 inch piece of Ivorine. I hope to get some time to work on it again this weekend.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Kitten Update

Hard to believe these are the same two starving kittens who wandered into our trap a few weeks back. Pitiful little Monet (black kitten) was the weakest and had been on his own for a week longer than Rockwell (Tuxedo kitten). Both are now sleak, fat and rambuncious. Yesterday, I let them back outside for the first time since coming to live with us. They were nervous at first, but quickly made friends with all the other cats here and came back inside after a half hour for reassurance that their food dish had not disappeared.

Still dealing with the mini show.....more art blogs to follow soon.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Good Karma Day

I got the solo show spot for 2013. AWESOME! 42 artists were in the running for the 8 show slots. The Art League Gallery is in the Torpedo Factory Art Center and it is considered one of the top 5 art centers on the east coast. And then to make my day even better I got to paint a mural tree on my granddaughter's bedroom wall today, which means I got to hang out with her. She turns a year old this week and is the apple of my eye. She is such a darling little Princess. A perfect art day!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Posting Comments on the Blog

I must be a real dummy.....for the life of me, I just can't figure out if I am responding to comments left for me and whether or not they are getting to their destinations. If you receive my response to your comments, let me know at just once and then I will know for sure I am doing this right. I am not senile, just not good with machines or technology. HMMMM that could make a good short story.......machines kill old lady for not using them correctly. Maybe Stephen King has done that one already?

Bird in Gallery and Solo Show Jury

I drove in to Alexandria today with five of my Gods and Goddesses paintings to drop off at the Art League Gallery. I am trying to get a solo show spot for 2013 at The Art League Gallery in the Torpedo Factory facility. I am one of 42 artists going before the jury on Monday and there are only 8 spots available for the show schedule in 2013. Pretty tough odds here, so I won't be too disappointed if I don't get a show. I had a show back in 2006 and because of the stiff competition and overwhelming number of artists, you can only try every 5 years for a show. Soooooo, everyone out there in cyberspace, please think positive thoughts for me.

While I was away, my hubby watched the gallery today. With the wonderful weather we are having, he left the door open for the fresh air and a tiny Titmouse flew in, circled three times and then landed on a panel for a few minutes. Then he flew back outside. Is that a good or bad omen? I think all wildlife is good, its definitely a good omen.

Still No Place To Go

I drove over to the River District Arts Center that opened up in Sperryville recently, hoping to find a studio or gallery space there. Of course, they are booked full with a waiting list since Spring. Of course in Spring, I had no idea my landlord was not being honest with me about the sale of his little building and I had no reason to look elsewhere. Very depressing that people can't be honest with one another. I suppose I should toughen up and adopt the mindset that it's ok to screw someone over if it means making a dollar. That's ok, Karma will prevail. Or maybe the other higher being who is politically incorrect to mention these days. I still believe!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Gallery Closing

I have been putting off this blog post for as long as possible, but decided keeping quiet is counterproductive.

My landlords have sold their B & B along with the tiny building my gallery is in. What a shock. Especially since they told me,and the realtor told me no less than 3 times, that the building was not for sale back when they listed it in January. Of course, three other great sites were available in town at that time, but I let them slip away, after all I was secure. I hope Karma is paying attention.
And so, my life is in turmoil right now. Nothing reasonable or affordable is available in the area. I keep hoping each day, something will come my way, but it is now time for a new game plan.
I will keep searching until the last moment and keep all informed on new developments. Meanwhile, the Miniatures show is again, very successful, selling lots of the tiny little jewels and the Rappahannock Studio Tours is the weekend of November 5th and 6th. During the studio tours, I will offer jewelry and gift items at 20% off and all of my artwork at 30% off.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

New Miniature

Since my regular easel is at home during the 3rd Annual Little Washinton Miniatures Show, I am working on some miniatures which take up no space in the gallery. This is the Sharp Shinned Hawk, "Daffy" who kept flying into my dinning room window last year. The painting measures 2" x 3" and is oil on ivorine.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Amazon Warrior Continues

I am working from my home studio this month, the gallery studio is tied up with the miniatures show. By the way, the show looks great....75 artists from all across America have submitted works and we sold four the night of the Private Collectors Preview.

I am please with the heavy doors and ironwork. May weather them a bit more as I progress through the painting. I am at the point of laying in a first layer (underpainting). Once all parts have this underpainting, I will move into the real detail and pump up the color work some. I like vivid color and rarely paint in dull or greyed down colors.

As I look at this image on the computer monitor, I realize I need to darken the value of the body shadow areas. Not enough value contrast so far.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Kitten "Madame" - Boy or Girl?

I am so embarassed to admit that we may have made a mistake on the sex of our new kitten, Madame. I was so sure she was a female, but in my defense, she is a longhaired kitten and the naughty bits are not so easy to view. Recently my husband has said that he thinks she is developing into a boy. I checked again and I see what he means, but she still looks not so boyish, compared to her brother. So, I am taking both kittens to the vet next week for their rabies shots and we will let the vet decide, boy or girl. If a boy, Monet will be the new name.

Miniatures Show Opens and No Wildlife Today

Well, no wildlife between me and my car this morning. I was on time for opening the gallery.
We had a Private Collectors Preview last night at the gallery and the evening was crisp air, lots of champagne and delicious tidbits to eat and of course, glorious miniature artworks.
Our opening reception for the general public and artists is on Sunday, from 3:00 until 6:00. All are welcome.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A Sea of Bears

QUESTION: What has four mouths and 16 feet? ANSWER: A momma bear and her three cubs.
Imagine my surprise this morning at around 6:00 am, as I walked out my backdoor and walked three feet over to my backporch steps and there at the bottom of the steps was a Momma Black Bear and her three cubs all eating my garbage. Now I know you are thinking, cute little cubs, but these guys were two year old cubs about the size of Rottweilers. They all looked up in surprise at me as I shrieked OMG and made a hasty retreat to the house. As I tried to shut the kitchen door, a cat toy got lodged between the door and doorjam (just like the Keystone Cops) and I could not get the door closed, all the while thinking that momma bears are very protective and will attack if they feel their cubs are in danger. I finally got the door shut in time for my sleepy husband to come to my aid, not knowing what in the world was going on. Ok, I know what you are thinking......the big bad snake lady is a sissy after all. No time for the camera today, but it is now charged and ready for action in case they come back in the morning for the other bag of trash. Poor husband.....what a mess to clean up today.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Snakes that Play Dead

I caught my two feral cats in the yard poking at this dead snake. So I scooped it up in a net and placed it in a jar for the husband to identify when he got home. I knew it was not a typical black snake, the tail did not taper down to a thin point and his head looked odd somehow. Sure enough, the husband believes it to be a Hog Nosed Snake and he recalls reading that they will roll over and act dead as a defense tactic. Image how surprised I was when he started moving around in the jar. To test the theory, we poked at him and sure enough he did a death roll and played dead for about 15 minutes. You will notice his nose points upward in the one photo. Look at the exaggerated open mouth with the tongue sticking out. Also, no fangs or teeth. I have never been afraid of snakes and won't kill one if it is non poisonous, so we drove him to a remote area away from my house and released him. He looked very similar to the pond snake we had last year, thus in case we are wrong about his type, did not want him in my pond eating my fish.

Oh! We are hanging the miniatures show over the next two days. The private collectors preview (invitation only) is Thursday, the show opens on Friday and the artist's reception is on Sunday. Don't expect any blogging til next week end.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Miniatures Judging Today & Amazon Painting

I spent the entire day today handling the 3rd Annual Miniatures Show judging process with Guest Judge, Marilyn Milici. It is very interesting to watch and listen to the Judge's thoughts. Good friend Jeanne Mitchell acted as the judge's assistant, recording the winner information and presentation of artworks, while I was busy preparing a judge's luncheon. It's a two hour drive out here from Alexandria and the Judge gets VIP treatment from Ice House Gallery. I did not get any painting time today, but the Amazon Warrior background is getting very close to finished. I made great progress on it the other day at the gallery studio.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Final Reenactor Boy

I always put a finished piece above the fireplace on the mantel for a few days just so I can glance at it when I am not really thinking about it. This really helps me to find flaws. Guess what? I found one on the Reenactor Boy. If you check back at the older blog postings and the photos of this piece, you will notice that his black hat is the same value as the background trees on the house side of his head. I spotted this while watching TV and catching up my reading one evening. This is just the sort of thing we don't see even if we are searching for errors, but will jump out at you when your mind is on something else. So I have lightened the background trees on that side of the hat by about three values. His hat now reads as a black hat and not a continuous blob of dark value. At the same time, my husband suggested I add a powder horn, which a hunter would have had with him if he were carrying a black powder rifle. I now call this piece complete. I have already received an offer for it, but am thinking I would like to hang onto it and try to license the image or get it into prints.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Miniatures Show Crush Time

Well, the mini show is in full swing...judging was supposed to happen this past Tuesday and was delayed until this coming Tuesday for a few reasons. I hope the miniature artists waiting to receive word of acceptance won't be too upset. I have had a number of health issues as well as a family loss. And then there was a misprint in one prospectus, (we don't think any of these actually went out, but I wanted to allow a little more time to be fair to all artists. ) I had fortunately scheduled things so that there is always a plan B and lots of time to reschedule all parts of the show. We are looking at having 75 artists exhibiting this year. If the economy picks up and sales are higher this year, I will add a new prize catagory for next year's show.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Background Begins

I have begun the background for the Amazon Warrior painting, laying in the color scheme and value design I have in my mind. My goal is that the warrior is surrounded by dark color values to lead your eye to the warrior and make her the important part of the painting. The doorway is based on some photos I took of the Sterns Steeple in Amherst Mass, when I attended the Illustration Master Class this past June. I loved the old buildings up there on the college campus and took tons of reference photos. I had no idea I would use them so soon. Oh, I am already not liking the snake.....I think it may become a dragon.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Kittens Travel to Studio

The two little kittens now have official names....the boy is Rockwell (in honor of Norman Rockwell, my absolute favorite artist of all) and the girl is Madame X after the infamous painting by John Singer Sargent. It's weird, but she looks like Madame X, all in black velvet and very elegant and thin looking. They travel to the gallery/studio with me each day and are pretty well behaved, but I am not getting anything done for all the visitors stopping in to see the kittens. So, I left them at home today so I could get a background going on my Amazon Warrior painting. I will post a photo of that tomorrow evening.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Happy Accidents and Artistic Genius

Well, I got the original drawing copied at Staples, placed a good layer of Matt Gel Medium onto the masonite board, picked up the soaked copy and laid it down on the masonite and OMG, my masonite was a good two inches larger than the drawing. I had asked my husband to cut my boards months ago and forgot he did two sizes for me. Fortunately, I am great at spontaneous solutions. The copy paper was much larger than the image, so that I could wrap the ends over and adhere them to the back of the board. And I fortunately had laid the drawing on from the bottom end first which left all the added blank area at the top of the drawing. So........Genius that I am, I let it dry and continued my drawing to the top half of the board and paper. So now, almost the entire arched doorway is visible and I have left lots of open space for a title and such, if this were to become a book cover. I wish that I could have said this was all planned, but it was one of those happy accidents. My husband commented that it is a MUCH better composition now. Ouch, that hurt!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Amazon Warrior Drawing

Once again Jennifer has modeled for me and she is terrific. Even brought her own sword and dagger for the occasion. Originally I thought about putting in a cyclops for her to kill, but he looked goofy. So I erased him and added the snake. Pretty generic looking snake, I hope to elaborate on him when I get into the oil painting.

Off now to Staples and have the drawing reproduced on what I am told is Bond paper. I don't believe the clerk or manager understood what I was asking. I will ask the paper type again today if I get a different clerk or manager.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Song Mountain Fine Art

Check out the website of Ellen Strope.....Song Mountain Fine Art. Ellen and I correspond occasionally about our mutual interest in the Black Bear, cats, dogs and just about all critters. Ellen feeds Wee Otis and I feed Barney. Actually, Barney helps himself to my birdfeeders and pear tree. But I do love watching him. Anyway, Ellen is a fantastic wildlife artist. You can really see her love of subject in her artwork. OH, Ellen said it was 32 degrees at her home this morning. Burrrrrrr!

Earthquake and Conan Updates

We sustained some minor damage to our brick home as a result of the earthquake.....a long crack in the mortar that runs from my studio window to the roofline.

Also, Conan has returned to our back deck for regular meals again. Trap and release is a great way to reduce populations of feral cats in a humane way. It cost me nothing but some time and a little kitty kibble. You can see from the photo, he is a redhead and looks very much the barbarian.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Rockwell's Little Sister

OK, a week after Rockwell showed up, his little sister was trapped in the Hav A Heart Trap, instead of the orange cat. She was much more starved than Rockwell and wilder. She is taming down nicely though. So, she needs a name also.

I have no ideas, don't have any favorite female artists, except maybe Cecilia Beaux or Berthe Morisot. Obviously neither name thrills the tongue. Please send your ideas to and help give her a name. I put up posters everywhere, trying to find homes for the kids. When I asked my son, How many cats before I become the crazy cat lady? He replied, "Two less than you already have". OMG We finally trapped the orange cat, neutered and released him through our local volunteer vets program. He disappeared for three days and finally showed up this morning for a meal, still feral. We named him Conan the Barbarian. Conan won't come near me now.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Re enactor Boy Muzzle Loader Rifle

Here is the progress so far. I like the rifle, but did not get to work on the boy's face.

Irene and Re enactor Boy

I brought home the Re enactor Boy to work on, knowing that I would be stranded without power at the house for a few days. But, no problems here from the storm. I did get the muzzle loader painted in, using my husbands antique muzzle loader for a model. He is very fussy with his guns and I did not dare take it to the gallery/studio for fear of damaging it and never being forgiven.

Anyway, he gave me the seal of approval on the finished painting of the gun. And that's high praise!!!!! I will shoot pictures today and post them tomorrow or tonight.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Rockwell - New Kitten

Rockwell is the favorite name so far with 5 votes. Rubens has 2 votes and Jeanne sent me the name Tux, short for Tuxedo. Visitors to the Ice House Galllery are really enjoying visiting the kitten and voting for his new name. I will accept further votes until Monday. After Monday evening the kitten will receive his official name and first vet appointment.

Check out the blog of Laura Young.....wonderful stuff!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Earthquake Hits Marshall and Warrenton Area

I experienced my first ever earthquake yesterday and hope I don't have to do it ever again. I was in the studio working at the computer when everything started to shake and a deafening rumble that kept building started. My portable house telephone started jumping across the table next to me and my art supplies danced about on the shelves. I actually thought a helicopter or plane was crash landing into our house. I picked up the phone and ran to the central hallway.... we do have the occasional tornado here and that is what we do. Find safety in a doorway away from glass. I could see the livingroom ceiling fan swinging wildly around and thats when I realized it was an earthquake and I bolted for the outdoors, telephone and kitten in hand. I was terrified and can't imagine how my friends in California deal with the quakes they experience. My fellow miniatures artist, Elinor, sent me an e-mail to see if we were ok out here. You should all check out her website Elinor knows about earthquakes. Thanks Elinor.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Name The Kitten

I need your help in nameing this little kitten! In my efforts to trap an adult orange tabby that has been hanging around, this tiny little kitten showed up in my HavAHeart trap two days ago. He appears to be 8 to 10 weeks old and was suffering from malnutrition. He already has gained and is filling out nicely. He was covered in seed ticks and filth. You can see here how pretty he is after a bath. We are fortunate to have volunteer vet services at our local SPCA shelter and when this little guy reaches two pounds in weight, they will neuter him and give him his shots for free or a small donation. The orange tabby missed his appointment this morning, he is too smart for the trap.

Now we need to name him. Since I have had so many pets in my life, I have run through every normal name, such as Mittens, Boots, Smokey, Precious and the like. Lately, I name my pets after artists. I own a Matisse and Picasso right now and once had turtles named Michaelangelo, Donatello and Raphael. Below are a few suggested names we are thinking about, Please vote for one of these names and give this little fellow a place in history. The names are Rubens, Monet and Rockwell (my favorite). My husband likes Rubens. I am saving the name Degas for my next dog. Oh, and if any of you folks wants this kitten, just shoot me an e-mail at

Saturday, August 20, 2011

More Re enactor Boy

Drat, added the image twice again......I have no idea how I manage to do this. Anyway, I worked on the grass areas again and have started to block in his face and hands. I will try for an accurate likeness tomorrow, although that is not my intent for this piece. OCD rules!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

One More Mouth To Feed

Ok, this is not art related, but this little racoon will make a great miniature painting when my time frees up to start something new. Right now I have three projects going and new ideas daily.

The racoon is a very young one and showed up this weekend when my son came out for a visit with the old folks. He is definitely of my DNA. We both love all animals, art, Sci Fi and his father's world famous hamburgers.

My son called me the next day and just before he hung up he said, Don't forget to feed my new buddy. And so here he is, eating with one of our 5 cats. This grey cat was once feral and became a real gumby once we tamed him down. There is another feral cat hanging around and he has a date with the SPCA next week for neutering and shots, then we will release him. I wonder, How many cats before you become officially a crazy cat lady?

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Further Progress on Re enactor Boy

I made lots of progress on the re enactor boy. Worked on blocking in the clothing and split rail fence. I have noticed that all my paints are drying very flat and dull to my eye. I am sure this is a result of not enough acrylic gel medium on top of the paper. My color pallet is usually very bright and I also have a very glossy finish on my art. I will rework the grassy areas as soon as they are dry enough that further work won't lift the colors as I apply the next layer. I build up my paintings very slowly.

Paper Question

I am still a novice at this computer and blog stuff and have not really figured out the reply process when someone leaves me a comment, so I will reply here .............Kim asked what paper the little boy is printed on. I am not really sure since the girl who helped me at Staples was a new employee. She did tell me that it is the paper that the contractors and architects use for the blueprints they get copied there. I will say this, it was much thinner than anything I would have normally used, but it held up pretty well during the mounting process.
I have another print order, stationery this time, at Staples and will try to find out what the paper actually is called.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Actor Sonny Shroyer Visits Ice House

The Dukes of Hazard reunion festival was held this weekend in Sperryville, just up the road from my little gallery. Actor, Sonny Shroyer who played Ennis in the Dukes TV series, came into my shop with his wife on Friday. I was working on the reenactor boy drawing, getting ready to start the painting and Mr. Shroyer was very complimentary. He really liked the reenactor boy. I am pleased to say that he also liked my Little Washington Notecard series and purchased a few.

Day 2 - Donato's Technique

I am finally trying out the technique that Donato Giancola demonstrated at the Illustration Master Class this past June. I previously posted the drawing of this young reenactor. This is the first painting session after mounting the drawing to the masonite board. I am very pleased with the background I have put in. It is based on a building just outside of town here.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Doug Hoppes is drawing great bugs

Hey guys. Check out Doug Hoppes site for some great bug drawings. Actually wasps and bees. Very well done!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Another Miniature Finished

I will be placing an ad in the Piedmont Virginian Magazine this month, to advertise the 3rd Annual Little Washington Miniatures Painting Exhibition. Most people are not familiar with miniatures and many artists claim to be miniatures painters, when in fact they are creating small works, not miniatures. As you can see in the photo, a miniature is extremely small compared to a small work. The image should be around 1/6 scale or smaller, in a petite frame and the image should stand up to scrutiny when viewed with a magnifing glass. This little portrait of John Adams is the same size as an egg. This is my second John Adams, created for my own personal collection.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Recent Portrait Commission

This charcoal portrait commission was picked up at the gallery on Saturday morning. As much as I like the pay, the satisfaction I get when I see the look on a client's face is priceless to me. This was the client's grandfather, and she was very pleased. I was very pleased that she was happy. I absolutely love being an artist!

Linda Goes Gray

I became a grandmother this year and decided it was time to end my partnership with Lady Clairol. She and I have been intimate friends since I was 33 years old. Women in my family gray prematurely. And so, I am finally posting an updated picture of myself on this blog.

Oh Well, I don't have to be gorgeous, I am talented!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Civil War Reenactor

I apologize for the duplicate image of this young reenactor. I am still trying to get the hang of my new laptop. Anyway, you will remember that a few posts back I had a great photo opportunity and got some incredible photos of some civil war reenactors. This little boy was there with his dad and he was so proud to tell me that he had actually fired his dad's musket and he was even more proud to tell me how his dad had taught him about gun safety and how to shoot the musket. When he climbed up onto the fence, I knew I had to do a painting of him one day. So here goes.....I started the drawing this afternoon, after working on another drawing of the same reenactores in a different scene. Before I show you that one, I need to make some adjustments to it.
Tip: When you think something is wrong with your drawing, photograph it and print it out. It's amazing the errors I find in my work when I do this. I already see two areas on this little boy, that I will change tomorrow.

Oh, it was 100 degrees again this morning when I arrived at the gallery.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Hummingbird Returns for Fifth Year

It's official. Three people have now seen my little female hummingbird with the string wrapped around her leg, at our feeder again this year. I posted a photo of her last year and will try to get a photo of her this year. This year her piece of string looks shorter and looks like it may be wrapped more around her leg. I think it is amazing that she has survived five years with such a handicap.

In the future I promise to post art related information more often!!!! What can I say, I love nature.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Are You Hot Also?????

I ran both air conditioners all day today. My little building dates to the mid 1800's and has no insulation, just clap boards. The sun beats down on the large front window as soon as the sun rises and it was 100 degrees when I arrived at 9:30 this morning. Even so, my day was great. I almost finished the charcoal portrait I started this morning. It is on a 16 x 20 piece of blue Canson pastel paper. I am very happy with what has been done already and am looking forward to starting my illustration for my portfolio.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

My Bad

OK, time does not exist for the artist. Well, this one anyway. Already a week and no post. Thus the Journal title, Monthly Masterpiece. So to catch up, I finally had a decent week at the gallery/studio. Started a floral painting based on a beautiful study I did recently. Worked hard on it and after three days work, I abandoned it. As Charlton Heston said, "When the wine is bad, through it out". That was a line from The Agony and The Ecstasy where he played Michelangelo. I restarted it on Sunday and now love it, love it, love it. I have been thinking and thinking and thinking, and drawing, drawing, drawing, illustration ideas since returning from the Illustration Master Class. Spent this morning starting an oil painting of water lilies and this afternoon researching my subject for my first illustration for my illustration portfolio. I am going to try the working method of Donato Giancola, which I saw him demonstrate at the IMC. I begin the drawing tomorrow. I received a commission to do a portrait in charcoal, posthumously. I start that tomorrow also. I even made my rent for this month. Not a bad weekend, eh? Now if this momentum will just keep going!
Oh and my plantar faciaitis is now almost totally healed. YEAH!!!!!

Monday, July 11, 2011

The Trouble With Invisible Dragons, copyright 2011 Linda Lawler

This is the finished illustration for the cover of the children's book, "The Trouble With Invisible Dragons". I have already written a short childrens' story and will continue to do illustrations for the book this year. Once I have a dummy ready, I will shop it around to publishers.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The revised concept drawing after Day 1 Critiques

This is a little dark, but I did that so you could at least see it. Anyone who can enlighten me as to how to photograph drawings so they come out well, please e-mail me at

Ok, this is my revised work for the Invisible Dragon coverart.

I almost have the color final ready and will post it as soon as I have it finished.

OMG! My son liked Medusa......this is the highest form of praise for me. He also thought my Boris Vallejo autograph was cool.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Mr. Jefferson's Privy

History is everywhere in Virginia and my husband and I have a passion for American History. We visit a few historical sites each summer and last week we drove down to the Lynchburg area to see Poplar Forest. This was Thomas Jefferson's other home, the one he retreated to when he needed to detox and get away from the bustle of society. He actually moved his wife and family there when the British invaded and came looking for the "Traitor Jefferson" at Monticello. These two photos show you his privy. As you can see the man loved octagons. His house at Poplar Forest is also an octagon. I was told that the board seat in the privy is the very original that Mr. Jefferson placed his own bums on. This really made him more human than hero to me. Also, how adorable that he even had a childs potty installed. In later years, his granddaughters spent a lot of time with him at Poplar Forest. I hope you all have a rebelous 4th of July. Make some noise in memory of Mr. Jefferson and all the heros of our Revolution.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Falling chunk of Medusa's arm

Here is the chunk of Medusa's arm falling away which I added as an afterthought. I am still not too sure about the crack in her face. I will consider it again in a few days, with fresh eyes.

Medusa is Finished

I worked all day yesterday on Medusa, adding cracks and pitting to make her look like stone. I was so happy to finally have her finished. When I returned to the studio this morning and walked in I immediately disliked what I had done the day before. A fresh eye will always reveal a mistake. So I spent this day, removing or redoing the cracks and pitting. Finally, I decided to add a chunk of her stone arm, falling away.

Medusa is now finished.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Preliminary Sketch for IMC

This is the first drawing done as part of my assignment at the Illustration Master Class. On the first day there, we had our drawings critiqued and then we had to do new concept drawings. Tomorrow, I will post the revised drawing.

Our assignment was to take the title "The Trouble With_______" and we were to fill in the blank and then generate a concept drawing for the cover of a childrens book with that title. My idea was a book titled "The Trouble With Invisible Dragons"

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

On Crutches and Finishing Medusa

Well I overdid it again. Today I helped with yardwork and managed to pull the plantar thingy again in my foot, just stepping down off a stone wall out front of the house. I was in agony and had to retreat to the shady porch and it has not gotten better this afternoon. So, out came the crutches and I am doing my Tiny Tim impression. I plan to hobble to the gallery/studio tomorrow and try finishing up either Medusa or the cover illustration for a childrens book, that I started in Massachusetts at the IMC. Anyone who knows me, knows that I always sign my art before it is finished. Especially if it is a piece that will take a long time to do. I learned years ago, that my OCD personality makes me finish something that has my signature on it. I used to start paintings, put them in a corner when a new idea came along and then they got forgotten. At one time I had stacks of canvases in a corner, waiting to be finished. I am always thinking of new things to paint, I just don't have enough time to do them all. There are other things I do which keep me on track with my art career. I have a prioritized to do list. I actually number my to do list and complete them in order if at all possible. Anytime I do something out of order, instead of just scratching it off the list.....I have the compulsion to redo the entire list.....It Must Be Neat. Like I said.....OCD. Hey, I even recycle paper towels.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

New Sites to Check Out

Here are two new sites to check out. Very Informative!!!!!

Studio Critiques

This is a shot of the day one studio critiques. Iain McCaig is bent down in the center of the picture and is showing how to try out composition changes on transfer paper laid over the original artwork. Rebecca Guay is on the left leaning in to watch.

I am still recuperating, head cold has gone to the chest.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Back Home Again

This is the dorm that I stayed in at the IMC in Amherst Massachusetts. Very Pretty!

I am home again and managed to bring home a nasty head cold from the IMC. I will write more after I have recuperated. My plantar faciatis is on the mend and I am staying off my feet for a few days to let it heal. I can't believe all the walking I managed to do on my poor foot.

It's official, I lost 10 lbs just from all the walking. They fed us like we were kings and you all know my legendary appetite. I hope to keep up the walking here at home.

Back to the office now, I have so much catching up to do.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Fair Well to Amherst IMC

Today was the last day at the Illustration Master Class. I managed to work on my painting a final time for two hours. Still not enough to finish it or even make me happy with it.

Our last lecture was on the business end of being an illustrator. Nothing good is ever easy and this next step of breaking into the field and landing jobs will be nothing short of building a pyramid.

I also have learned that the children's book field may not be where I really want to go. I was much more drawn to the book cover art and the sci fi art. I will work this year to build a great portfolio and then throw my hat in the ring, so to speak.

Well, off to shower and then to sleep. I am leaving here at 6 am for home.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Last Day at IMC is Tomorrow

I painted furiously all day today when not in a lecture. Rebecca Guay lectured today about the importance of body gesture and finding that essential moment in an illustration. If you have never seen her artwork you will be enchanted by her work. Tomorrow is the last day and then its that lovely 10 hour drive back home for me and then the next day is father's day. I plan to sleep until noon and then do something nice for the father of my son.

I know I can't finish my painting by tomorrow, so I will finish it up when I go back to the studio in the Ice House next week.

Off to my final lecture today, "Why I Paint" Donato Giancola.
I am so tired, but I can now go up the flight of 15 steps at the school studios, without stopping and still have breath enough to speak. I think I have lost 10 lbs.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

More IMC

I am getting ready to go to the next lectures. Featured speakers are Boris Vallejo and Julie Bell. I have pushed myself to the limit today and went beyond. I am very proud of my work although it is still not finished and I fear it wont get finished, but I am giving it my best. I visited the Mead Art Museum at Lunch today.

Attention my miniatures painting friends. They have the original Trumball painting of George Washington as a general. The very one I have been making little miniatures of. If any of you see Chuck in Little Washington, let him know and tell him I said Hi. To Jeanne in Manassas, they have some exquisite miniatures in their collection.

Off to the lectures now.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

More from the IMC

Another fabulous day. James Gurney and Greg Manchess gave super lectures today and this evening. I actually got the color going today. Painted a fairly decent blue sofa behind my invisible dragon and the dragons' head and body is well under way. The highlight of my day was when Greg Manchess was walking around helping students. He was with the two guys beside me and then after spending a great deal of time with them, he simply walked behind me and said, Oh yes, that's an invisible dragon, you pulled it off. And then he continued on to the next student. Earlier when he was suggesting composition changes on day two, he had said to me, "you sure you want him to be invisible? How you gonna approach that?" Greg has done tons of action book covers, such as Conan the Barbarian, movie posters and now he is doing huge traveling murals of pirates for Smithsonian. He also has a postage stamp of Mark Twain coming out at the Postal Service next month. Way Cool!
Had a great time talking with Rebecca Guay this evening also. You absolutely must google her site and check out her fantastic artwork. She is the organizer of the IMC. Thank You Rebecca

Hello From the IMC

Hello from Amherst Massachuesetts and the Illustration Master Class. Last night James Gurney gave a sensational lecture on Light and Color. I purchased his new book, by the same name and had him sign it for me yesterday. Today he will speak on composition. Just so you know what a novice I am......I have made four major revisions to my original sketch. Each new guest faculty member finds something wrong with my concept. We were supposed to start the painting yesterday afternoon. YIKES! This morning I hope to actually start painting.

Oh yeah, I am one of the few folks up here without tats.

To my friends and family back home........I am exhausted!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Day 2 - Way Cool, Much Better Today

Today was the official start and my second day in Amherst. We got a cold front and some rain during the night and I actually woke up needing a blanket. I am much less cranky when I am not hot and sweaty. My roommate arrived last night and we are compatible roomies. We are about the same age, love the same illustrators and we are both overly polite and accomodating. I won't go looking for a motel!

This day was fantastic and our last lecture ended at 8:30. All the faculty are soooooooo funny, generous and so supportive. I am getting more info than my brain can hold. I was so insecure until two things happened today. Early this morning a fellow student complemented me on my blog, which he has been following since we all shared our site addresses. Then he complemented me on my SCULPTURE of Medusa. I was blown away that he thought it was a 3 dimensional sculpture piece. How cool is that? The second ego boost came during the critique session. My drawing (I will post photos when I get home) got a very positive and informative critique, the highspot being......Iain McCaig, liked my dragon. Commented on it's originality, but did suggest compositional changes. Iain is the artist who did Star Wars art at Lucas Films. So I have started a rework of my drawing. I also discovered that I love Sci Fi art more than I realized.

I learned more today than I have learned in the last two years. My Brain Hurts, I Am Going to Bed Now! Goodnight

Friday, June 10, 2011

I Made It to IMC

Well, I am finally here. The trip up took me 2 hours longer than I expected. I had not factored in New York City. Can you believe that I-95 goes right through the city? And boy was the traffic at a crawl. Then, one delay after another in Connecticut due to road construction and folks leaving work early on a Friday and headed to the shore or country. But, I come from pioneer stock and took all this in stride.

I arrived at the Morris Pratt Dormatory to check in and boy oh boy is it basic. No AIR CONDITIONING IN THE WHOLE PLACE! We get two flat sheets for our modest twin bed, two towels and one pillow case for the pillow. I never went to college and did not expect the toilet and shower arrangements. Two toilets and two shower stalls for I am guessing 8 women on this floor. Being a modest old woman, this is too much like an army barracks for me. My roommate has not arrived yet, "another surprise". Hopefully she will arrive before I turn in for the night.

Well, tomorrow should be better. If not, I may find a nice motel nearby with A/C and privacy. Oh I forgot, this room smells like old gym socks.

Good Night

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

More Medusa

Medusa is now 3/4 finished. This photo was taken so quickly and I was so excited to be one more day closer to my trip north, I did not notice until now that I cropped out most of the right side of the painting when I made the shot. Also lost some of my favorite snakes on the right side.

Only two more days til the Illustration Master Class. I am really excited.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Wrangling Cats

This photo shows our baby mocking birds which were born in the Alberta Spruce at the foot of my front porch steps. I can't imagine what the parents were thinking. I have five cats and also occasionally feed two others from the neighborhood. Guess where all the cats spend the lazy hazy afternoons of summer? YEP! The front porch. And so, two days ago, the parents encouraged (they pushed them) them out of the nest. Since then, I have scrambled to get the cats inside before the birds get active in the mornings. This morning I spent a lot of time gathering up my numerous cats and locked them in the basement for the day. I wonder how long it is until the babies can fly on their own? Right now they just hop about and up onto low hanging branches.

Five days until the Illustration Master Class! The excitement is building!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Illustration Master Class Update

I have received my schedule and assignment for the upcoming IMC at Amherst Massachusetts. All I can say is "OMG". I have never seen such a packed agenda. I only hope my body and brain are up for all this. There are non stop activities, lectures, demonstrations and studio work the entire week, a full seven days. There will be lectures even into the evening hours. The assignment I have selected is to illustrate a children's book cover. We have been given a general topic of the book and we change the title a little to give it our own idea. I have soooo many ideas that I am having trouble picking the one to go with. I have (I HOPE) a pretty decent preliminary sketch developed. The first day up there is a critique of our sketches, so we shall see if I am up to the challenge or shot down in flames.

It's still two weeks away, but my suitcase and equipment are packed.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Learning About Color

One of the best ways to learn what you can or can't do with colors, is to do color study charts. This one uses Hansa Yellow Light and Dioxazine Purple and Yellow Ochre and Dioxazine Purple. Both yellows are complimentary colors for the purple. When mixing complimentary colors together, you are actually greying the colors and if mixed in equal parts, you end up with a grey or brown mix. After the initial first row mix, the following two rows were lightened with Titanium White to give more combinations. I could have taken this a step further and introduced a black to darken or reduce the hue intensity.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Reverse Work

I almost never paint the subject first and then add the background. Its just too difficult for me to work that way. But here is the exception to the rule. I wanted to establish the flow of the snakes right from the start. I just could not keep from jumping into the details first.

It seems to have worked out ok for me this time. I have an initial layer on the background. I will go back to it later and try to create a soft sky and clouds effect behind her. I also have asked Jennifer to come back to the studio again.....I am not thrilled with the position of the lowered arm.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Encounters with Nature

I have a small goldfish pond in my backyard and on my day off, I go out early in the morning with my cup of coffee. It is so peaceful there. This morning I am sitting quietly and saw motion out of the corner of my eye. I slowly looked up to find a buck with button antlers standing between my two Blue Spruce trees at the patios' edge. Not more than 20 feet from me. We both froze in place and stared eyeball to eyeball for what seemed like an eternity. Yesterday, a rose breasted grosebeak landed on my porch rail outside my kitchen window while I was eating breakfast........I don't think I could ever be happy living in a city.

I really need a camera class.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Snakes & Arm

Wow, I have really made progress in the last two days. I have most all of the snakes blocked in and her arm and hand. I hope to add three or four more snakes in the lower part of the painting when I return to work this week.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Snakes & More Snakes

I don't know why, but I started the snakes on the right side of the painting instead of my usual method of working from the left to the right, just like we write.

Oh well, must have been something subconcious going on there. I am finding I really enjoy doing the snakes. Tip: Use a cheap and flexible piece of garden hose to simulate the snakes under a stationary light source. The cheaper, the better.....they seem to be more flexible. You can produce most any bends you want and all under the same light source which is very important.