Friday, April 28, 2017

Gail


Today was a very beautiful sunny day, much appreciated after two days of rain.
I sat out on the porch and worked on this picture as two sleepy cats snoozed beside me.
As always, I left taking a photo until just before the daylight disappeared, and,
when I transferred the photo to my computer, I realized that I had not finished
her pencil sketched earrings!
So, here is Gail, sans earrings and I'll finish her up tomorrow!

Hope you've had a good day!



Thursday, April 27, 2017

Enid


"Enid was desperate to catch up on her beauty sleep!"

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Letitia

Here is today's creation - "Letitia".
I used Prismacolor pencil and a bit of Micron pen to make her.


Also, I can't remember whether I have shared here a link to a blog
I write for a group of stitchers I belong to:
There is a new post there with some lovely creative stitching on it.

Thanks so much for stopping by!



Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Lois

I wanted to make a painted and stitched portrait today for my 100 Days of Faces project. 
As I worked, I thought it would be fun to photograph my process.


First I taped a piece of white cotton fabric to a piece of cardboard and mixed some acrylic 
paint with Golden fabric painting medium. I painted in a face and neck.


When that much had dried, I took it to the ironing board and pressed it. On the ironing
board, coincidentally, there happened to be a bit of this green paisley fabric and I thought it would make a pretty dress. I cut it quickly and used Pellon Wonder Under to adhere it.


I painted in eye blanks, and a vague nose and mouth.


I had some black paint, so that became her hair color...


and I gave her some eyebrows and eyeballs.


While painting her face, I got a little stain on the background fabric so I decided to paint the background. After that I added a few more details and beads. I had spent so much time on this already, I decided not to add any stitching. I named her Lois because she reminds me a bit of one of my mother's friends when I was a kid.
So much for my "process"! The dress fabric was chosen by coincidence, hair color decided at the last second, and background painted because of a stain. Just a bit haphazard!!

Thanks for visiting!
Hope you're having a great day!

Monday, April 24, 2017

Natalie

Yesterday I posted an older face I had done in felt a while ago - me with our 2 cats! I was just too tired to create a new face. I'm pretty happy with what I've accomplished so far, so I don't stress if I miss a day.


Today I took out my Prismacolor pencils and did a new portrait, a woman whom I named Natalie. I spent longer than usual on this one and really got into layering colors. At the end I added a few touches of dark brown Micron pen. I've decided that daily portraits are enough, especially if I'm going to do 100 of these. Coming up with the stories is just too much. I hope that, at some later time, I'll come back to some of these characters and create stories about them.


Thank you so much for stopping by.
I hope you've had a very good day!!

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Susie

"Susie" is just popping by to say
Happy Earth Day!!



Friday, April 21, 2017

Meghan

Today I worked on a sketch of a girl which I had begun yesterday.


Meghan

She loves her new kitten
and cuddles it like a baby.
It is her first pet and she wants it to feel
loved and protected!


This is the sketch I made yesterday, and I changed the cat's head and
modified the lines of the girl's shoulders and hair.
I love to have a day to reflect on a sketch before completing it,
as mistakes are more obvious the second day.
And I'm loving the softness achieved by using Prismacolor pencils
and a touch here and there of Micron pen.


Thanks so much for stopping by!


Thursday, April 20, 2017

A Sketch and a Visit

Today was a busy day, so I only had time for a sketch.
Tomorrow I'll revise this a bit, color it and give this girl a name.


I went to New Hampshire today with a friend who had to pick 
up some medication from her dog's veterinarian.
The vet also treats rescue animals and I was thrilled to be able to
meet this barred owl named "Pixie".
He was so quiet and serene and, since owls are an obsession of mine,
it was a real thrill for me to see one close up.



Also, a baby squirrel was being fed with a syringe
and was absolutely adorable with his greediness and squeaking!


I hope you've had a wonderful day!
Thanks for visiting!!


The Handmade Joy Exchange 2017

The wonderful Anne Butera from the blog My Giant Strawberry has hosted yet another wonderful Handmade Joy Exchange this year and I was fortunate enough to be a participant!
My "Joy Partner" was Nichole from Vermont, who sent me a lovely package of handmade items, carefully placed in a deep green cloth bag, which I am anxious to use as a canvas for embroidery!


Inside the bag there was 
(1)a hand bound vertical sketch pad, the cover of which was embellished
 with beautiful calligraphy and watercolor flowers
(2) an original watercolor painting of a bouquet of flowers with a sweet green matting
and (3) a hand made patchwork pincushion with a pretty pewter button in the center!


I commented to Nichole, when I received her package, that it always strikes me, when I do this exchange, how kind people are and how talented. Receiving this package from a perfect stranger, who worked so hard to make each item, makes me feel warm and hopeful. Since then, I've been following Nichole on Instagram and have seen even more lovely paintings of hers! 


The person for whom I was to make something is Joan, a wonderful woman who has a cat rescue and adoption center on a small island in Greece. The center is called God's Little People, and you can read a bit about Joan here.
Being a cat lover myself, I could think only about making something having to do with cats!
I decided on this pillow with cats made with wool appliqué and the name embroidered in the middle.


Here are close-ups of some of the cats I was inspired by on Joan's blog, including one little blind cat.




Joan enjoyed the pillow and we have kept in touch through Facebook.

All in all, the Handmade Joy Exchange has been a very enjoyable experience!

Thank you Anne, for hosting this great exchange!!

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Amelia


Amelia

She is strong and opinionated and she rubs
many people the wrong way.
She has had to learn, after years of repression, 
 how to express her feelings,
but her words come out harsh and unfiltered.
Time will teach her to speak confidently,
conveying her ideas with strength and certainty
without needless hostility.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Katie

A quick sketch with colored pencils for today, which 
I colored in my doctor's office waiting room!
The name was an easy choice for me - our daughter's 
nickname when she was little!


Katie

Her eyes are constantly sparkling with wonder
as she discovers new things to be excited about!
She loves bugs and chipmunks and every kind of little animal
that wanders through her back yard.
Her aqua bike is her favorite belonging as she speeds around 
the block with her best friend every non-rainy summer day.
She's a curious girl with a sense of adventure
and her joy in the possibilities of life
guarantees that she will have a good chance at happiness.

Monday, April 17, 2017

George

This weekend I met an elderly gentleman at a nursing home
who inspired this character.


George

He is a skeptical man who doesn't like change.
He lives in a nursing home because he cannot walk 
and he doesn't want to burden his six children, 
He talks proudly about how accomplished they are
and how much he cherishes his grandchildren.
He's a quiet man, who has a gentle wit,
a distinctive brogue
and a twinkle
in his eye. 



Sunday, April 16, 2017

Celeste

I hope everyone reading this has had a wonderful Easter!


Celeste

She lived in a time when ladies wore hats and dresses
and sometimes even white gloves to church.
She was careful to be polite and proper, as was
expected by society,
and she never spoke out of turn.
But deep inside she felt a yearning
to be honest, to be herself
and
to be wild and free.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Margie again...

When I sketched Margie yesterday,
I did not have color in mind,
so today I decided to make her a brunette!



It's too late to write anything else!

Good night, my friends!


Friday, April 14, 2017

Margie


Today I had time only for a quick pencil sketch
and I've decided to name her "Margie".
I'll probably develop the drawing into a painting,
so her story will have to wait until then!

Hope you have enjoyed your day!

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Jimmy

I had started this stitched picture a while ago
and decided to finish it for today's "Person of the Day"!


Jimmy

Ever since he was little, Jimmy has collected animals
like some boys collect baseball cards.
His mother has learned to be tolerant, since Jimmy takes
such good care of his creatures.
He reads everything he can find about animals,
watches nature shows on TV,
and plans to study to be a vet.
Animals and their well-being are his passion.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Mother and Child

It is a universal emotion,
the love of a mother for her child.


They could have any names, any racial background, any ethnicity -
but their bond is the same the world over.
It is a powerful thing.

I used micron pen, pan pastels and colored pencil on this quick sketch.

Thanks for stopping by!
Have a great Thursday!!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Jake

Some characters are more likable than others - 
that's the way people are.
But we never know what's beneath the surface
when we first see someone's face.


Jake

Jake has a chip on his shoulder, a big chip.
and his surly attitude turns most people off.
He grew up in a bad neighborhood and has lost 
several friends to drugs and crime and,
much as he tries, he can't seem to free himself 
from the ghosts of his past.
He expects the worst and doesn't trust people.
Recently he has been placed in a mentor program -
if only he can open his heart,
and trust -
if only....

  

Monday, April 10, 2017

Jenny and Bobby

I found a sketch in an old notebook and
developed it into this drawing which I've named
"Young Love"!


I like the retro feel of this one!

Hope you've had a great day!
Thanks for visiting!

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Judy

After a beautiful, very busy day,
I got to work on finishing this piece which I had begun earlier.
Yes, it's me, Angus and Rosie!


"This is what happens when you try to sew
with uninvited helpers!"

This little painting needs more work, but I'm happy to have brought it to this point.

I hope everyone has had a good weekend!

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Making Faces

Today I didn't get a chance to draw a face, but I thought I would spend a few minutes writing about this "100 Days of Faces" project I'm doing, and what it means to me.
I've been drawing since I was a little girl, but never had any formal art training. Over the years, I've taken a smattering of art courses in various guilds and Adult Ed programs, but never an intensive, truly instructional program. I wish I had some of my earlier artwork now, but I'm sure I must have destroyed it, thinking it was "not good enough". That old inner critic has hounded me my whole life!
Now that I'm getting older, I realize that nothing is accomplished or improved upon without practice, and I really want to practice, make mistakes and learn.


I love faces, expressions on faces, hair styles, accessories, and the stories behind those faces. I frequently doodle faces in the margins of crossword puzzle books, notebooks I carry in my purse or in various sketchbooks. It is from these little doodles that I get inspiration for my drawings, paintings and stitched portraits.
I will be honest and say that it takes courage to put my artwork out on Instagram and my blog, since I usually can find fault with every piece I do. So, thank you, dear readers, for supporting me in my efforts, reading my posts and commenting. I'm hoping to get back to stitched faces soon!

Friday, April 7, 2017

Lucy

Today I did a quick portrait of a lady named Lucy.


Lucy worries about the state of the world every time she turns on the news.
She worries about her own country and about the people who suffer atrocities
in other countries. She worries about injustices, racism, poverty
and war. She worries about the environment and what kind of world she will
leave to her children and grandchildren.
Lucy is determined to do what she can to change things, to resist and to make her voice heard.
She wants and needs to be part of the solution.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Maggie

Actually, I think I've done a Maggie before,
but the name seemed to fit this little lady!


Maggie

"Maggie could not wait for the work day to end
so that she could get back home to her six cats."

Day three of 100 Days of Faces - so glad I have sketchbooks to refer back to for ideas!

Hope your day is going well!




Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Grandpa

I wanted to do a painted sketch of my grandfather today,
but, while this picture has some of his characteristics,
it is a younger and more simplistic version of him than I remember.
However, what I write about him does tell a bit of his story.

Grandpa Joe


He was a genial grandpa who smoked cigars, played the horses 
and called his bookie every day on the rotary phone on his hall table.
He stuffed our pockets with m&m's when we came to visit
and told us jokes and fantastical stories from his rocking chair in the living room.
His great grandchildren called him GG
and he had the same childlike sense of mischief that they had.
People said that he was a "character".
He never owned a car or learned to drive, so he took the streetcar to 
work every day and held an impressive position in his company.
He lived a very full life, 
charmed many people
and was a very colorful man.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Marilyn

And it's the first of 100 days of faces!


"In defiance of the very dreary day,
Marilyn decided to wear her 
favorite tulip shirt."

Monday, April 3, 2017

100 Days of Faces!

I'm joining a group on Instagram, a challenge called
The 100 Day Challenge.
Yes, 100 days, and my choice of subject is "Faces".


As I read about this project, what struck me was that
this is a good way to really improve in doing something,
and I would like to improve in my ability to draw faces.
I'm not quite sure how I'll go about this - some days a sketch,
some a painting or stitched piece - I'll have to see.
My head is full of ideas and my goal is to loosen up
and have fun.

Hope everyone's week is off to a good start!