Monday, August 29, 2011

75 day sketching Challenge Day 16 & 17

I think you can sort of see that as I proceed through this exercise of sketching every day (and you can scroll back through a few of them back to August 13), that I become more interested in "detail" and perhaps even "storytelling" in my sketches.

I find that having to work exclusively in ink I have to plan things that overlap and try to gauge where something will touch something else far more than if I had a pencil and eraser in my hand. My perspective is still "off" but it's getting a little better as I go along...looking at angles now and trying to think through how the stapler stuck out of the shelf before drawing the lines of the actual shelf.

This is my little desk in the guest room at the cabin where obviously I keep a plethora of odds and ends from string, to tape, to envelopes. It's where the books I am reading get stacked and the manuals for how to set the phone machine...yadda yadda. This is a 2-day sketch because I forgot last night and so Brenda says...just do two the next day. I felt that this was complex enough to count for two. This took about 20-30 minutes. But when you are doing it you are not aware of time at all.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Last En Plein Air Sketch for the Summer

I've painted at the Thirsty Whale Restaurant before. But this time instead of acrylic I chose watercolor on hot press paper. (For when you feel drippy.) I have not decided yet if I should go back and do some ink lines on this one. I'll wait a few days to decide that.
It was a beautiful morning on Minocqua Lake...but a cool breeze was blowing and my sweater felt pretty good. It was probably about 73 degrees. We had lunch on the open air deck afterwards (8 of us) and I recommend the chicken salad wrap! Yum. But it was breezy there too and I was STILL glad to have the sweater. (My best garage sale find of the season was that nice sweater!)

Temps here in the north woods are beginning to feel like the cusp of autumn!

Last night I forgot all about my daily sketch! Until 9:39 (as noted on the clock!) So I just sat on my bed and sketched my dresser top!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

75 Day sketching Challenge Day 8-11

With quite a bit of company still at our cabin on the lake, all I have had time to keep up with IS the 75 day challenge. (Did a little "blind contour" of the shoe as well.)

I am finding that the little pen I got at the stamping store has been a fun one for the shinier paper in this sketch book. Our company will be leaving tomorrow so I am hoping to get back into the studio and I have one more en plein air sketch group on Friday (if the rain holds off).

Thursday, August 18, 2011

75 Day sketching Challenge Day 5 and 6

Greg has 3 tomato plants growing in pots down by the lakeshore where they get sun.
He's so pleased they are ripening up this week.

We had to wait quite awhile in Philips, WI at the Harbor View Restaurant yesterday where lots of folks were having a great old Wed evening. A volley ball game was going on below the deck area and music and lots of good food. So it was worth the wait. (Boy I sure need to practice doing umbrellas!)

I wanted also to share with you a quote from a recent article in the newest issue of "Cloth Paper Scissors" magazine. An article by Loretta Marvel on how drawing was a huge therapy for her in recovery from illness.

...."I picked up a pencil to draw. My view was limited to the living room and what I could see through the double doors onto the wet porch. Ho hum; boring, I thought, but I studiously sketched the two leather chairs and then began on the battered Morris chair, whose many slats kept me busy holding up my pencil and looking up and down to get the scale right. The only sounds in the room were the hiss of the gas fire and the pencil scratching across the page, and after a few minutes I was absorbed in the drawing.....during those drawing sessions, my mind quieted down to the narrow triangle occupied by my eyes and my hand and the page, and I entered reveries as sweet as any that could be had in a tree house swaying in the willows."

(Yesterday we were on our way back from Marshfield, WI where I'd been to see my cardiologist. He says I am doing GREAT! and he's lowering my blood pressure meds again!) Yippee. I wonder if maybe all this drawing is lowering my blood pressure? :-)

Monday, August 15, 2011

Friends in the Sketch Challenge!

These two sketches are by two friends who are joining me in the challenge. I apologize in the tiny one. Susan and I experimenting with large and small photo uploads and I don't think we have it down yet! I hope we can try it again (or you can try clicking on her image to enlarge it).

The two are a fascinating contrast! Susan's is a sketch of a piece of stained glass art work. Joan's above is her studio! Mine (see below) are both en plein air sketches. Anything goes in this thing! Keep tuned for more sketches from all of us. (I promise not to make you look at all 75!)

75 day sketching Challenge Day 2 and 3

These sketches are about 5" x 5" and represent several different kinds of pens.
Tombow water soluable pens allow for some water and shading to be added after the sketch which adds variety to the sketches. I am using my Micron Pens too. And the tomato was just a roller ball pen from WalMart.

And I used a burnt sienna ink pens on the one on the right just for variety. The left is the view near our church out over Flambeau Lake. The one on the right is a small portion of our cabin here on Tippecanoe Lake showing the loft windows and hanging plants and shadows from morning sun.

(The mosquitoes were just terrible this morning while I did this! That keeps you sketching FAST!

While I was sketching my husband handed me his FIRST tomato of the season! (Things grow slowly up here in the north woods of WI). He is glad we may get to harvest a few of these in our last 5 weeks here! So anyway, I quickly sketched it (in ink) and then had to add the color with a water-filled pen and my little Winsor Newton color palette.

I am finding that trying to get shape and shadows using ONLY a pen is a new skill for me. Naturally if I do just a contour drawing, you don't have to worry much about that.

My friend, Susan, who is also taking the Challenge says that she has already noticed that she is looking at details much more closely than before!
Anyone interested in starting the challenge, scroll down to my Aug 13 post for details.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Nature's Jewels

This morning on our pier after the fog lifted I found the most beautiful jewelry in the world!
Three of them actually...hung like ornaments on a Christmas tree or the most beautiful necklaces in the jewelry shop!

I wish I had thought to run up to get a black background of some kind to put behind them.
But they are lovely with the natural water, rocks, and boats behind them too.

They took my breath away.
Lucky me.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

75 Day Sketching Challenge!

I had to laugh at this sketchbook cover. It looks like one of those funny "plan ahead" stickers! I thought it was kind of appropriate, however!!!
I needed something that would make me smile every time I got it out!!! many of you are taking Brenda Swenson's sketching challenge? A sketch every day for 75 days (ink only)!

I think this could be SO helpful and fun.
First off...go to Brenda's blog for all her information on the "challenge rules".
Click here and scroll down to her July 20 post.

After you have read the rules go up to her Aug 1 post for some more hints and suggestions.
Then follow her instructions and send her by email your entry information so you make a "commitment" to do this!

I am starting today so day 75 for me will be October 27.
She would like to have a digital photo of yourself to put on your Artist License when you write and tell her you are done!!! All on your honor!!! You don't need to show anyone the sketches unless you want to!

The materials are some paper and a pen! Duh. We can do this people!
The sketches can be don't need to do anything huge!
My personal hint for this would be to find a small bag of some kind for the sketchbook and pen(s). SO that you can throw it into the car when you are waiting at the dentist or at any meeting while you are waiting for something to happen and so you can find your materials and do not have an excuse that you lost them!!!

Lost for an idea? Empty your purse out and sketch what you find.
Sketch the place setting at your table at lunch.
Go for a walk and bring home some leaves to sketch.

Hey blogger buddies...I am NOT going to do this alone. Who is with me!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Painting at Gateway Lodge near Mercer, WI

What a lovely morning! We got lucky (rain came in the afternoon!).
It was a long drive. BUT thanks to Susan Lansdown our great driver, Joan Stevens and I had a splendid ride there! Thank you Susan!!!

There were about 8 or 9 of us there.
And we had a nice lunch afterwards at the Lodge.

This old swing caught my eye...just near the Lake (Turtle Flambeau Flowage).
Watercolor on 11 x 14 Arches rough.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Hoggie Doggie's: a local icon

En plein air this morning was beautiful...about 80 and sunny.

According to the weather man...we are in for some rain and cooler temps this weekend. Perfect timing!
I looked at Leesburg, FL today (my place of residence). It was 101 there today! OH MY GOSH. Everyone there wishes they were here in WI with me!!!

Located on Hwy 47 and J in Woodruff, Hoggie Doggie's restaurant is THE lunch spot for every kind of dog you ever wanted!!! About seven of us gathered to paint around 9 am this morning until noon. Lovely day.

I switched back to acrylic this morning after several weeks in watercolor. Feels all new again! Blah. 11 x 14 on canvas board primed with orange. I just couldn't "get in the groove" today. I was all thumbs and nothing seemed to work right. I loved everything everyone else did! Some days are like that!!! I added the figures when I got back to my studio.

The en plein air show opened today..I need to get up and see how it looks! Also the People's Choice opens this Saturday for two days. I am checking artists in tomorrow afternoon from 3-5.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

En Plein Air Show in Woodruff, WI

Although I had 6 possible pieces to put in the show, I settled on these four.
Top back: Arbor Vitae Lake, Top right: Discovery Center: Manitowish Waters
Bottom left: Minocqua Brewing Company in Minocqua (local restaurant) and
bottom right: The Thirsty Whale: local hangout on Lake Minocqua.

These were delivered to Howard Young Hospital for hanging today. And the show should be ready to view by tomorrow (Wed, August 3 and hang through Sept 28).
Besides the local en plein air painters, there will be a concurrent show of the Manito Art League of a variety of art. So lots of fun pieces to view.

If you are local and plan to attend the show here are the directions:

Take Hwy 51 north to Woodruff to the 3rd Ave. (the stoplight at the Citgo Station).
Turn left on 3rd Avenue and go about two blocks to Maple Street. Turn left and you will be at the back entrance to the hospital at the gift store wing. Enter under the portico and turn left and then right following the art show signs past the gift shop.

IN addition, the People's Choice art show of the Lakeland Art League will open next Saturday morning so I am framing for that now. I'll have 5 pieces in that show. I am also in charge of writing all the identification cards by hand. I am almost done.

Note how dark it is behind the paintings through the window? It is not night time! The photo was taken about 10 am this morning. We were in the middle of a HUGE storm with blinding rain and dark dark skies and huge thunderbolts! Flash flood warnings everywhere in our area!