quick late night post

It’s been a really busy week…more so than usual.  I’ve been helping my mom…doctor appointment, taking her cat to the vet, etc.  I’m ready for a quiet weekend.

I signed up for Tracy Verdugo’s “Paint Mojo” workshop that begins next month.  I am looking forward to it.

From my watercolor book:




The one above was inspired by Tina Berning.

From my sketchbook:




…and this last one is inspired by my “Flow” coloring book:


Our weather here in northern Arkansas is much cooler the past few days.  I think fall is on its way.  Have a great weekend!

more 4×4’s…


Autumn is a season for big decisions — like whether or not it’s too late to start spring cleaning.

Autumn — time to drag out your winter clothes and see what kind of summer fun the moths had.


I need some new potholders and I’ve been thinking of making some for myself and maybe some for Christmas gifts. The Stitching Scientist has these.  Who knew there are so many tutorials and videos about how to make potholders.  The Ribbon Retreat blog offers this tutorial.

And then, I was looking at some other craft projects and found this great idea for recycling those wooden leaf and bowls that you can easily find at most flea markets.  Jennifer calls them Boho Chic Jewelry Trays. I’m sure they could be used for other items, as well.

On to this weeks 4×4’s.  This first set started with a magazine cover.  I put gesso on both sides.  I used acrylic paints, markers, and oil pastels.  These number 129-132:





I used watercolors, acrylic paints, and black acrylic ink and a dip pen on Bristol paper.  Before drawing the black lines…I brushed Liquitex Gold Interference paint over the entire surface.  This set numbers 133-136:





until next week…going to go hold my dog’s paw…he’s freaking out because of a thunder storm…

don’t take anything personally…

Don Miguel Ruiz’s “Four Agreements:

1.  Be impeccable with your word

2.  Don’t take anything personally

3.  Don’t make assumptions

4.  Always do your best

Good words to live by, but difficult to put into practice.  I need to reread the book.

I didn’t make any 4×4’s this week… but I have been sketching again.  I change from week to week.  This first one is me (from a photo).  I used graphite:


This is myself and my daughter (from a photo)…it’s not a good likeness:


This is a random drawing of no one in particular:


This a sketch from a Golden Book illustration:


I am taking another online class that began this week.  This is an excellent class so far.  The first master we are studying is Van Gogh.  It’s on Jeanne Oliver’s ning art site.  Check out the other masters coming up in the next few weeks.  I also like that she doesn’t charge a huge amount…it’s actually a bargain.  I have already gotten more than my money’s worth from the first lesson alone.  Here is my version of Van Gogh’s sketch in a letter to his brother, Theo, in January, 1882:


I’m going to try this again…something about the body proportion is off 🙂

I also got my latest art book from Amazon this week:


I like it…has lots of inspiration for making abstract art. The author makes this statement about the book:

“I want this book to be fun to read and easy to use without exhausting your attention span or your wallet.  I’ll keep the emphasis on making instead of thinking about making.”

…until next week

its been awhile…


“Take the obvious, add a cupful of brains, a generous pinch of imagination, a bucketful of courage and daring, stir well and bring to a boil” ~Bernard Baruch

I have no excuses, just haven’t been particularly creative lately.  I am looking forward to a new class with Mary Ann Moss that begins next Tuesday.  She is closing this session after July 4.  She will offer it again next fall.  Go here to read more about it.

I did manage to complete three sets of 4x4s.  I wanted to do something different.  This first set is doodling with a Sharpie markers, both fine and ultra fine.  Here’s what it looked like before cutting into four sections:


This set numbers 81-84:





This blue and red set numbers 85-88.  I used inks, acrylic paints, graphite, and lots of gel medium.





This last set is collage, charcoal, oil pastels and acrylic paints.  I used Mi-Teintes Pastel paper by Canson.  This paper is the darkest shade in the pad…a dark gray.

This set numbers 89-92:





Have a great rest of the week…until next time…

no pressure…


“Have no fear of perfection – you’ll never reach it.”  ~Salvador Dali~

My husband is always saying to me, “perfection is an illusion.”  I tend to be a perfectionist about some things.  Some…

I have been making books based on Teesha Moore’s Amazing 16 page Journal.  Her ” how to”  videos are available on You Tube.  The journal is made from one sheet of  22 x 30 inch paper.  I used Stonehenge print making sheets for mine.  I painted the big sheet first before tearing it down into pages.  I used Dick Blick Matte Acrylic Paint.  It’s my new favorite craft paint and comes in so many colors.  The torn edges are kind of rough from tearing the paper using a big metal ruler.  I can leave them as they are or use a stamp pad along the edge.  I found that I can also blend  an oil pastel along the edge of the page as well.

This is the first book I made.  It was my practice book.  The finished books measure 8 x 10 inches.  I plan to do a lot of collage:


…one inside spread:


I added some Washi tape along the spine of this book:


…one inside spread:


The third book is best, I think:


one inside spread:


I also finished my next set in my 4×4 series.  These number 49-52:





sketchbook snippets….I didn’t make the first picture…It was my inspiration for the ink and brush drawing:



I wish I knew the secret for drawing hair 🙂

Have a good weekend!


“Your job is to collect good ideas.  The more good ideas you collect, the more you can choose from to be influenced by.”  ~Austin Kleon~

I didn’t know it until yesterday,  but Jeanne Oliver has mentioned Austin Kleon numerous times in conjunction with her new workshop,  “Studying  Under the Masters, ” which I am taking, by the way.  It started yesterday.  It has over 700 people enrolled so far.  Jeanne kicks off the workshop with her study about Henri Matisse.  I haven’t watched all the lesson videos yet.  I like how Jeanne starts her portion of the workshop telling about Henri Matisses’s life.  To find out more about the workshop, click on Jeanne’s name and it will take you to her personal blog.  This workshop will be open for two years.  I’m happy about that because I’m taking the other workshop I mentioned in the previous post.  Sometimes, I wonder about all the time I spend watching other people do art instead of doing my own.  I need to stop doing that so often 🙂

I have some 4×4’s started.  I figured out if I make 8 per week, I’d have over 400 tiny pieces of art by the end of this year. Since my goal is to make 200, I can slow down.   In the meanwhile, I have some collage and sketch work to post.

I made a page with markers that bled through onto the back.  This is a sketch I made using the makers blobs.


This a doodle collage piece I made during the holidays.  I used blue and black ball point pens along with a green Sharpie pen.  The collage pieces are from a magazine advertisement:


4 x 4 Project

“Remember Bob Ross? The painter on PBS with the ‘fro and the happy little trees? Bob Ross taught people how to paint. He gave his secrets away. Martha Stewart teaches you how to make your house and your life awesome. She gives her secrets away. People love it when you give your secrets away, and sometimes, if you’re smart about it, they’ll reward you by buying the things you’re selling.” ~Austin Kleon~


In my last post I was telling about a new project I have started for 2014.  My goal is to make 200, 4 x 4 inch tiny pieces of art this year.  This idea came to me after watching some videos by Jane Davies. Jane gives some of her secrets away.   Check out the 4 x 4 group at Flickr.  Here are the requirements as stated by Jane:  “This is a group to show your 4″x4″ art.  It can be in any medium or technique; the only requirement is that it meet these dimensional requirements.  I encourage you to make 4″x4″ art in groups or series.”

I have completed eight 4 x 4′ s.  The next ones I do will NOT be on watercolor paper.  Jane suggests using a smooth paper like Stonehenge.  I do have some Stonehenge paper and I also have a nice Bristol vellum pad I ordered from Dick Blick recently.  My pad is the biggest one, measuring 19 x 24 inches.  I figured out that I can get 20 of the 4 x 4’s on a single sheet of that.

All of these pieces began with three shades of blue paint on the background.  These first four have several layers of paint.  Some have collage papers and stamping with some of my foam stamps making impressions in the wet paint.  I finished by doing some line work with an ultra fine Sharpie marker.





These next four pieces do not have as many paint layers.  I used collage pieces, graphite,  white charcoal pencil,  and a little bit of  line work with the ultra fine Sharpie marker.





My goal is 200, 8 down…only 192 to complete.  I am having fun with this.  Anyone wanting to play along, check out Jane’s tutorials.  There is something to be said for having a goal and working in a series.  NOTE: Check out iHanna’s blog for more inspiration about getting started on your own project for 2014.  Hanna gives her secrets away too!

watercolors and faces…

“Do the best you can until you know better.  Then when you know better,  do better.” ~ Maya Angelou~

We have been snowed in since last Friday.  It’s been very cold for Arkansas but I heard the temperatures will be on an upward trend by the middle of the week.

This piece is watercolor background on watercolor paper.  I let it dry completely and did some pen work on it.  I started to use Caran d’Ache crayons to highlight some areas but the pen and crayons didn’t mix very well.   I had fun making circles 🙂

NOTE:  I linked this to Paint Party Friday

IMG_1335to see more details, click on the photo to enlarge it…



Some sketchbook bits:




no title…

“In seed time learn,  in harvest teach,  in winter enjoy.”   ~William Blake~

A quick post this morning…it’s been a busy week.  I did have some time to sketch.  One night, I had a sleepless night and sketched and sketched 🙂

This first one is another page that started with  magazine collage:



This next spread is a graphite sketch on the left, and a left hand drawing with my uni-ball Vision pen on the right:


Another quick sketch with a ball point pen…her eyes are kind of wonky 🙂


…playing in my big sketchbook with some patterns…






“If you want things to be different, perhaps the answer is to become different yourself.”  ~Norman Vincent Peale~

I have a painting started but I haven’t worked on it lately.  I’m fighting a sinus infection and haven’t felt up to par this past week.  It’s been cold and damp in my little basement art room…so, I’ve been relying more and more on my sketchbooks for art.  I can grab a pencil, pen, or marker and work while trying to stay toasty and warm.  I’m fortunate that I don’t live in a really cold part of the country.  The winter seems colder to me this year,  or maybe, it’s bothering me more this year.

I used a Pilot permanent pen and a Blick Studio marker (basic gray 2) on this face.  I think I drew it first with the pen and added the shadows of gray later.


This doodle piece was done with the same marker as above but this time I used a black ball point pen.


I did this last night.  I tore out some interesting pieces from a magazine.  I really had no set plan when I started.


Here are some little bits of some pages in my little sketchbook: