Monday, June 29, 2015

That Darting Bird

...another cardboard creation...

    At a live art meet, I met Schona Kessler. She's a Washington State based photographer and art/craft dabbler. Click her name to check out the ah-mazing work she does. Anyhoot, during our live meet up, I tried to make everyone a postcard sized work of art. There just wasn't enough time for me to make something for everyone. So, I've finally got something done for Schona. I did a 4x6 cardboard postcard, with one of my favorite poem excerpts. 

    I started like I always do...with a simple sketch...

Above is a rough sketch, that was then lined with a fine tip Sharpie.

My medium choice, this time around, are Reeves water soluble wax pastels. I first start at the head of the bird. I'm using two colors. I lay down some red...and then some orange. I usually use a Tortillion (rolled paper blending stump.) but, I can't find it! So I just used my fingers. On the bottom pic, I used a Uniball Signo broad pen, to add a glint in the bird's eye.

I've added in more colors. Smudged them in just like the red/orange. I almost always use more than one color on everything. The wings are in two different colors of blue along with white and black for high/low lights. Also, another thing you should know about these pastels....if they are cold or you're working in a cold area...they won't smudge properly. So, don't get discouraged if they are not creamy and smudgy. 

I'm putting the final touches on this postcard. I've lines the bird with a black Pentel Color Brush. Added some yellow/orange/white rays. I wanted it to look like there was movement. I should also mention that with the smooshing of the colors...I have to re-apply often. Sometimes you can smudge away a color too much. ...I used a Faber Castell Gel Stick along the edge. I think that the gel stick is the same as the Gelato's...but don't quote me on it. :)

Here is the finished cardboard postcard. Stamps on the back and in the mail it went. :)

Saturday, June 27, 2015

A Visit to El & Em

...where I've been & what I've hauled...

    I have some more babbering to do about my recent trip to Washington State. Pull up a chair if ya want to hear about it. :) 
...I was staying in the small town of Battle Ground. (Where no battle took place, I have read! LOL!) Anyhoot, at their city center...their main street so to speak, are an abundance of vintage stores. My favorite store, is a new one called, "El & Em." 

They have vintage things, but what I like about them, is that they have craft things mixed in. If you were a mix media or paper fanatic, you'd love this store. They even had a room in back where they hold classes for a diverse range of crafts. Wish I had know that sooner...I would have attended one. ...Here's a look inside the store...

Check out the ladder on the ceiling...what a great, unexpected way to display....anything. 

Some of you might recall a hardware organizer, that I was talking about. The one from Harbor's in this store. The black 4 level deal-io in the bottom right of pic. They had all kinds of charms, for sale, in it. 

Since this is a haul post too...I bought two things from this store. One is a sewing desk drawer. I love the drawer pull on it and the detail along the side. It fits 4x6 cards perfectly....hmmm...

I also got a little cloche with a pic in it. I have a thing for cloches! You can see the one that I've had for a while. It holds the award ribbons I made. I also got a new smaller version from Goodwill. Oh, and I bought that brass bell there too! Both for the whopping price of 99 cents each. :)

I found another of these little glass boxes at Goodwill. I have a growing collection of them. Right next to them I got those little ceramic birds. :)

Are ya still with me? Okay last haul share. A couple of years ago, I bought the 3 clay masks that are at the bottom of the pic. I love their whimsical faces! When I got home I thought, "Gee, I shoulda bought more." They were $6 a piece. Got them at an art shop in Cannon Beach, Oregon.  I found the same shop selling these masks, ...but there was only a small few to choose from. I told the shopkeeper that I wanted to add to my collection...bummer that there wasn't more masks. He told me that the artist has gotten ill and will no longer be making these fun little masks. :( I'm grateful to have these little works...I wish I had gotten more info on the artist. 

Anyways, I hope you enjoyed this post. I know it's a bit long winded, but hopefully the abundance of pics make it more enjoyable. TTFN!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Waffle Window! weirdness in Portland Oregon...

   For those of you that know me, my trips involve FOOD! If I can get something unusual, the better. ...So waffles...not so unusual, but The Waffle Window in Portland makes a fabulous variety of Waffles. Check out the pic below. It's a window in the wall. Not a drive thru...just walk up to it. 

Picture by Joshua Fetalvero

To the right of the pic, there is a parking lot. They have a covered picnic area where you can chow down. 

First we had savory Waffles...

I had the 3 B's...Brie, Bacon & Basil

It came with apple jelly. The sweet and savory combo was delightful! We also shared some dessert themed Waffles...

Mmm, Blueberry Cheesecake...

Nutella & Banana

The Hawthorne District has many interesting boutiques, vintage stores, eateries...etc. But you can also find things on the street...if you've got an eye for it. Below are some pics my son Josh took...

Someone took the time to write, "Fairies Exist."

Beauty in graffiti...yeah, I think so...

News stand

Portland has a lot of little spots of "sticker bombing." Usually mixed in with graffiti. Some might think it's trash...but I dunno...I kind of like it. 

Beautiful Faces find from Powell's Book Store...

    I have book stores near home. I could go anytime. I'm pretty sure that I can find the same books, in the stores near me. However, I just have a love for Powell's Book Store in Portland Oregon. It's hard to explain, but it just seems like a magical place. If you don't go regularly, you need to use their map to find your way around the store. To me, it's a treat to visit and it feels like everyone else feels that way too. 
    I chose a book by Jane Davenport. It's called, "Beautiful Faces." Here it is below...

If you wanna learn to create faces, this book is for you. The whole entire book is eye candy. The tutorials are clear and easy to understand. You get many progression pictorials. Below is my first try at creating a face using the book. 

Maybe not my best work, but it's a good first try. It's done on a 5x7 canvas board. I'm gonna send it out to a friend of mine, as is, with stamps on the back. :)

Besides the tut's on faces...I learned two new tips that I love. First, instead of sketching with a regular pencil, sketch with a flesh tone pencil. Make a mistake? Who cares! It'll end up blending one will notice. The second tip is for those who like brush tip pens, such as, Pentel Color brush. Use Aqua brushes filled with ink. You can make your own custom colors! 

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

A Berry Nice Painting!

...painted with Marion berries...

    I just wrapped up a two week vacation to Washington state. I'm in love with the Pacific North West and can't wait to move there...whenever that may be. Anyhoot, I was taking a walk in my parents backyard. Checking out all of the trees and nature stuff. My dad tells me that they have a Marion Berry tree. I trotted on over to check it out. Behold! A tree that I never took notice of, had some really dark, Raspberry looking like berries. Not sure if I wanna eat them, but I gotta pick them! LOL! So, I do and my fingers turn a red sorta wine color. (Yeah, I squashed some.) Long story short, I thought that they would make for a great painting medium. Here's how I started a Marion Berry painting.

I primed a canvas board with water color ground. It's the first time that I've ever tried it. Next, I did a quick sketch. (Found out I can't erase well on water color ground! LOL!) I decided that I liked the pencil sketch showing through. Lined the sketch with a fine tipped Sharpie.

Took the Marion Berries and smooshed them with a cork. 

I added a teeny tiny bit of water, but really I don't think I needed it. I just smooshed some more berries. A small round tipped brush does the trick to apply my unusual medium...

At first, I'm excited. The color is beautiful....but then it slowly turns into a dark purple. Almost gray. Not a bad color, but that wine color was just so darn beautiful! So, I keep adding more...layering the color. My mom says to place it in the sun between layers. She seemed to think that it would dry the color into place. (...and she's not an artsy fartsy peep.) ...but you know sorta works!

Now I've got several layers of different colors. The dark grayish purple becomes the shadows. The wine color shining through better. I also tapped on my paint brush to create splatters on the canvas. In and out of the sun to dry. The last thing I do to it is spray it with clear coat. I'm not too sure if the color will last. It seems to be holding up so far. Only time will tell. 

I've got postal stamps affixed to the back of this 5x7 canvas board and addressed to my friend. It goes in the mail as is today.