Tuesday, November 30, 2010

More Ducks

These ducks are hanging in the Wilmington Art Association Gallery as part of the CPSA DC114 Explorations in Colored Pencil show.  Both are for sale and are $100.00 each.  The show runs through December 31.

Friday, October 15, 2010


It just can't be 2 months since my last post.  Time doesn't fly anymore - it's supersonic! 

I have been dealing with tendinitis in my Achilles tendon.  Sometimes I've had to be completely off my feet and at other times limping around with a cane.  So you'd think that being forced to sit would inspire me to do lots of art.  Not so.

Here is my latest.  Part of a series of 4 water birds, this is the canvasback duck.  These are small pieces, about 7 inches by 5 inches and will be available for sale at the Wilmington Art Gallery in December.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Daylily Project

I'm documenting my daylilies.  I have about 30 different varieties planted in several large flower beds.  I've wanted to do this for a while and finally started on it. 

 This is Yazoo Wild Violet. 

Unfortunately, I've don't remember the name of this one.
I will have to look it up.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

July! Already!

How it can be July already.  It seems like it was just April last week.

Tomatoes are coming in by the bucket full.  We're eating fresh salsa by the quart.  Or course, that's not so bad.  Green beans will be ready by the end of the week.  My husband's row of purple hull pink eyed peas will be ready by the end of the month.  This is the best part of summer - fresh vegetables from the garden.

My sweet dog, Ozzie has Lyme Disease.  We hope that we've caught it in the early stages.  He's on antibiotics for 30 days or as long as it takes to get it in him.  He's very smart and you can't give him the pills in the same way more than once.   Poor boy has also snapped a tendon in his leg.  He can't have surgery until his Lyme Disease is under control.  Lyme Disease affects how his blood clots and causes joint pain.  I did not know that dogs could contract Lyme Disease, but they can and so can cats.  There is a vaccine available, so have your buddies vaccinated.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Ripples moving out

When you drop a stone in water, it makes ripples and they move out across the body of water. On the other side of the water, they may be so small that you can't see them, but they are there and have made an impact, no matter how small.

So it is Kelly Light's Ripple blog.  Started as a one-person effort to help the Gulf Coast animals, she has raised over $5000.00.  She has done this ten dollars at a time.  Artists are contributing trading card size works. Each is priced at $10.00.  Children are doing works as well as some known artists.

I'm working on my piece and hope to have it ready next week.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Garden Veggies

Tomatoes are growing in my  garden.  I have quite a few plants this year - about 15.  My husband got carried away at Lowes.  We are experimenting with container gardening this year.  This tomato and about 25 others are growing in large flower pots or 5 gallon buckets.  All are doing very well.  I have a few plants that may have tomato wilt and if they do, that means that they came that way from the plant nursery.  This big boy might be ripe by the 4th of July.

I found this fellow wondering through the squash plants. She can bring her crew over anytime.  We have to deal with squash bugs and squash borers.  These squash are actually growing in 5 gallon buckets on my deck.  That got them out of the regular garden when the squash borers have had a feast in past years.  But the squash bugs have found them.  Luckily, praying mantis like to eat squash bug eggs.  She is a small mantis  - only about 2 inches.  But with her help, we've managed to get a couple of squash.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

On to the next thing...

  My neighbor has a beautiful blue hydrangea bush and she has graciously allowed me to cut the blooms. 

This is a small study of one of the blooms.  It's only 6 x 6 inches.  It's done in Derwent inktense watercolors.

Also, lighter subject matter.  Not so realistic, but more artistic.

This is probably the first of several studies in preparation for a still life piece that I have in mind.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Red, White and Blue

This is my piece for the Red, White and Blue show that is being hosted by the town of Cary, NC.

This is also the reason that there have not been many blog postings.  This piece took a while and with gardening season too, there just wasn't much time left.  Plus, I didn't think my followers would be too interested in cucumber seeds and chive plants or the woes of tomato diseases.

This is titled "Native Colors" and is about 14 x 18 or so. It is on blue  Tiziano paper.   It'll be framed up in an 18 x 21" frame with a mat opening of 11 x 14.  After the show is over, I plan on framing it in in a larger frame so that more of the background blue paper shows.  It's a "big" image and it needs a lot of background around it.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Garden Tour

I took my camera with me this morning as I checked out the plants in the various flower and vegetable gardens around my house.  Come along with me.

First, the container plants.

 This is a clematis.  It must have 30 blooms on it.  It is growing in a large container with a study trellis.  It's been in this pot for about 4 years and appears to be doing just fine.  It really is lovely and so nice to have flowers on the deck already.

Next to the clematis are the chives.  These are the regular onion chives and they have nice pinky-purple blooms on them.  These are edible as long as you haven't put chemicals on them.  Flowers in your salad!
 The blueberries are coming along nicely.  This is a dwarf bush, bred to grow in a container.  It's starting its 4th year.  Last year I got about 2 quarts of fruit from this small bush - a handful at a time.  It's just wonderful to go pick fresh blueberries for breakfast.  I got this blueberry variety at Park Seeds.  They will start ripening in late June.

Just to prove that my peach trees do bear, here's a tiny new little peach.  I will never get to pick it, because the squirrels will get it when it's about the size of a ping-pong ball.  It's a battle every year with those rascals and they seem to win most of the  time. Plus I'm fighting a wild grape vine that like grows in the peaches. 

Look what I found in the daylillies.  It's my cat, Poppie.  He like to sleep between the plants.  You can't even see him until you're right on top of him.  It's a good place to snooze.

Finally, I found an Iris blooming.  This variety is called Swazi Princess.  Some years it's much darker - nearly black and some years, it's more on the burgundy side.  I think iris are so beautiful, orchid-like sometimes and such great colors.  I saw more buds on my other colors, so more blooms are on their way.

I'm so glad to see color in the garden and green on the trees and in the yard.  Winter was cold this year and very gray and brown.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Spring Blooms

Spring has sprung in my yard.   We've had temperature in the 90's and the pine pollen is everywhere and covering everything.  We call it the "yellow haze".   The good thing is that with the warm temperatures, all of the trees have "let go" all at one time.  So it'll all be over with soon.

My cherry tree is covered in the most beautiful pale pink flowers.  This is a double weeping cherry tree.  I often see my neighbors riding down to my end of the street to take a look in the spring.

Daffodils are blooming.  This is an open corona type.

Grape Hyacinths.  Such great color.

Yes, this is a daffodil.  It's kinda' hard to find these bulbs, but just look at that bloom.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Coming in for a Landing

I'm calling it finished.  This is a osprey coming in for a landing in the nest.  Her chicks usually hatch about 2 weeks apart, so I tried to make one chick younger than the other.   I had so many problems with this piece and I'm not exactly sure why.  I used Bristol board.  It was ok, but I think I like the Magnani  Portofino watercolor paper better.

The light is all over the place in this.  It's coming in from the  right side, but it also looks like it's comming in from the top and the left side.

Then there are the clouds.  I just couldn't get them the way I wanted them.   I put a couple of layers of 10% cool gray on them, followed by the shadow colors and pure white for highlights.  The biggest problem is that they seem kinda' flat - not puffy.

This will be going to the North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island.  If they like it, it will be part of a summer exhibit that will also be shown at the Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores.  The theme for the show was "High Tide on the Sound Side" and should be composed of wildlife and plants that are found along the sounds in North Carolina.

This is all colored pencil.  I was hoping that it would be good enough to enter into the CPSA show too, but I don't think it would be juried in.

I'm glad I'm done with this.  Definitely and exercise in perseverance and determination.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Wings to go

Making progress.  This has been one of the most frustrating pieces that I have done in a while. 

I think some of the problems have come from the paper, which is Strathmore Bristol.  Bristol is often recommended for colored pencil, but I'm not so sure that I like it.  It doesn't hold as many layers as the Tiziano I've used for other pieces.

Light source has been a problem too.  The light in this piece is coming from the left side, but it's not too evident.  And there's some amount of backlighting from the reflection of the cloud.

I'm planning on getting the body finished tomorrow.  Then comes framing.   Acceptable, but I'm certainly not happy with it.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

This one's finished!

This is my shawl I've just finished in the last few days.  It's made with Cherry Tree Hill Alpine Baby, a mohair, silk and nylon sport weight yarn.  It's such loopy stuff that it's almost like trying to crochet with velcro.  It's almost impossible to unravel.  It took me a while to find a pattern that I thought would work with this yarn.  I finally settled on the Country Cotton Shawl from Lion Brand.  I tried several sizes of crochet hooks before determining that a size I would handle this loopy stuff.

So here is the finished product.  My skein of yarn has about 1000 yard in it and I used nearly all of it.  Even though I hated crocheting with the yarn, I really do like the finished product.  The color path runs from greys to blues to a speck of white here and there.  This shawl weighs less than 8 ounces - isn't that amazing  for the size.  It's warm and light weight.  I'm thinking of adding a button or two to the front so that I can keep in closed a bit easier.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

This and That

Wow!  It's been more than a month since my last posting. 

Persistence is what I've been practicing.   I've started over on the osprey piece 4 times, finally settling down on a purely colored pencil piece.  That might have been a mistake, as it took me weeks to get  the sky done.  The clouds have been nearly impossible, although they are coming along.  They don't look very cloud-like to me.  I'm starting on the bird now.  I hope this will pull everything together.  Maybe I need to practice the 10-10 rule.  Every 10 minutes, step back 10 feet and look at your work.

Some of you know that I have another blog, doviesaprons.blogspot.com.  I find that I can't keep both going.  So I'll just be posting everything to this blog.  That means that there will be more than just art here.  I also crochet, knit, sew and occasionally cook gourmet.  For example, this winter I've made 3 shawls and I'll be posting about them soon.  Just recently I  made French moelleux au chocolate.  

Thanks for being patient.

Monday, January 18, 2010


I sincerely hope that my few readers have had great holidays and a good start to a new year.
I'm starting on a new piece.  The drawing has taken me quite a while - several weeks in fact.  This is an osprey and chicks.  Composition is sometimes a problem for me.  I had several other versions of this.  But I figure that the more drawing I do, the better I get at it.  Hopefully this piece will be accepted for a summer touring show at the NC Aquarium.