Why is it so easy for me to forget how fun it is to use watercolor with gesso? Messy, uncontrollable… fun! I have about 18 of these started, making ready for two different swaps. The Global heART Exchange, and Pals Poist, with Jacinta Moore. Maybe I will see you there.
Pals Poist was created by Jacinta. If you are interested, check her out on Instagram. Each artist connects with individuals they would like to swap with. The swap begins in March. There is no theme, and you can choose how many you would like to swap with. If you are not on Instagram, but want to swap, let me know in a comment.
Made myself a challenge, knowing full well January might be busy. Not bad, managed to get thirteen paintings done for the month. The first two here, I painted for the Love Notes postcard swap. I forgot to scan the first card. So hey, that makes fourteen paintings! More I am sure, than I would have completed had I not tried for 30.
The table above, scanned much more red than the earth, clay tone that it actually is. I was unable to tweak it in Photoshop.
I apologize for the horrible photo below. This was a fun attempt at being loose after watching a video by Angela Fehr. I embellished with watercolor pencil and splatter.
The four pieces below are much too tight, and over worked. I tried again, with better results. (See the four above.) I learned that with Quinacridone Gold and Gold Green you have to take care so they do not become dirty and dark. Lesson #1.
Lesson #2 – for either of those colors to be rich and not neon, you must layer at least three washes. Think that qualifies as a conundrum. For me anyhow. Fun in the learning though 😉
I am holding myself to a 30 piece challenge this month as well. It may be several days of painting a series of pieces and not daily painting. I have two gifts to paint. Something different on the way. 😉
If I were to choose favorites, they would be #7 and #8.
Reminded me of a feather, or wings. Which do you see?
Moon Over Mingus. SMD
Brilliant sky on a cold winter night.
Snow falling. 12-28-18
I went to town to run errands the other day. Cold. Dark clouds in all directions.
Stopped at a light, I noticed a few tiny snowflakes falling. Hooray!
Barely 20 minutes later, and blue skies dominated. Here and there, patches of snow falling. Looked more like smoke rising. First time I have seen that. Very cool.
See the snow falling?
Art On 45
Fellow artist, and good friend Christiane Drieling invited me to take part in her annual Art ON 45 event. From the group page: “ART ON 45” is a juried art project – artists are asked to paint/draw/collage on a 45rpm record and donate it for a silent auction to benefit a local organization. For the upcoming fourth edition, Christiane has chosen NCLAC (North Central Louisiana Art Council) to be the beneficiary because of their commitment to establish a valuable art program at the local Boys And Girls Club.
I left this to the last-minute. Partly because I was slightly intimidated by the substrate. Mostly though, due to my still lagging energy level. But what fun it was!
The submission guidelines suggested using primer on the vinyl record. Many articles I found on the subject showed a lengthy, involved priming process. I took a chance, and skipped all that. I cleaned the record. And started by using FolkArt Multi-Surface craft paint. Made for tin, plaster, terracotta, rigid plastic, paper mache, fabric, canvas, concrete, wood, glass & ceramics. It took 5 or 6 thin coats to cover the dark record. I painted both sides and made sure to seal the edge as well.
I was stumped on what to paint. A mandala? A pour? A musical subject? Finally I just went with… what I do. I pressed a textured paper towel into wet paint, to add texture to the table. Stenciled the pattern on the vase. Used “bits” of acrylic skins to add roughness to the wall. Here the raised areas show up as white spots.
My first try at the blooms leaned towards sunflowers. At the end I noticed I had neat little rows of buds. Never good. I tried again, and am happy with the results. I used Posca pen, first time, and there are a couple of bloopers. But I left them as is. Under the vase, the pen skipped. Gave me three neat little lines. Kinda cool that accident. And mimics the table pattern. Under my signature, another splatter. Resembles a twig tip.
One more accident. I melted the vinyl while drying the paint. For the record, vinyl melts fast! I used a heat gun to dry the flowers, at a safe distance. A few seconds too long, and I had a nice little, unplanned ripple. While waiting for the paint to dry completely, I decided I liked the defect. I took the heat gun to two more areas, and let the edge warp slightly.
Fits in with the slightly rustic feel of the piece. And makes sense, in my mind. If this was hanging on the adobe wall I painted, the heat of the desert would surely do the same. In time.
Turned out the satin sealer I used is really a high gloss finish. NOT happy with that. Had to get it in the mail, so gloss it is. It does however highlight the texture of the record.
Up late. Wanted to paint. Should have been asleep. Took ten minutes and made two starts.
I went through my saved Instagram images. Work by other artists that just makes me happy. Color themes repeated. And this was one of them. A Big Stick Popsicle. Dripping on the sidewalk.
I had to lay down some paint. I wanted to see the colors flow. So that’s all this was. A quick commune with water and pigment. I was thinking, this has been an underlying theme for me this year (quick bits). It has already been a year!
You can look at the menu, but you just can’t eat You can feel the cushion, but you can’t have a seat You can dip your foot in the pool, but you can’t have a swim No one, no one, no one ever is to blame Aspirations in the clouds but your hopes go down the drain…
A well versed thought. Describes my busy year. I’m not sad or, down. Just thinkin’. Looking towards next year, and the positive changes ahead.
At the end of September I was given a horrible diagnosis. The doctor took my case to the board, a team of specialists. And they decided there is nothing they can do. My esophagus is 100% non- functioning. It also narrows at the bottom, like a bird’s beak. And my stomach stays open. The “flap” doesn’t close. He said that some people ask if they can replace the esophagus. I had never heard of that before. He told me with my lungs though, I would likely not survive the surgery. So that is off the table. Plus I know, the likelihood of rejection or complications from Lupus is high. So he referred me to another specialist. And told me, he could help me with a feeding tube, if that is what I decided to do.
A feeding tube. A hole in my stomach.
Yup. I was completely bummed for a couple of weeks.
But the thing is, food goes down. It just also sometimes, comes back up unexpectedly. Or gets stuck if I forget to chew thoroughly. (Painful.) I wash it down with a quart of water (32 oz., sometimes). I have had these same symptoms for years. The acid reflux is very likely a contributing factor to the damage in my lungs.
Early last month I had an appointment with another pulmonary specialist. Actually four of them came in the exam room. My case was so intriguing, (insert humor) that they asked me to stay for a second exam the same day.
They mentioned mixed connective tissue disease. A new term I have learned. Just means that it is not only Lupus, but a mixture of issues. Not unusual. I also learned that some of my symptoms DO in fact have names. Revelation!! They said what I have is rare, but did not give me the name. Maybe they did and I was just too busy digesting so much information.
The GOOD NEWS is, that my esophagus CAN BE REPAIRED. HALLELUJAH AMEN!!!
(Looking above with hands in prayer, eyes tearing, “Thank you Jesus!”)
They are fast tracking me for surgery. They will remove the damaged part of the esophagus, and bring the stomach up to meet it. Then they will work on repairing my lungs, sometime later.
Amazing news, right?!
Where I am now. Still in recovery mode. Caught a cold, well it was early November I think. Was barely over it when we went to San Diego. I knew the trip would just prolong recovery. It is basically a Lupus Flare. Pretty mild though. I am just exhausted, and sleeping more. Also, I lost my voice during the trip. Just used it too much, visiting with friends. It is still not back to normal.
I have two major projects I need to finish (start) before early next month. Hoping to also get a head start on the 30 day challenge. But you know what day it is, so that may not happen. Kinda hoping the challenge will be in February again. But either way, I will be interrupted.
There you have it. I rambled. One thought led to another. What the heck. Had to share the bad with the good. And the good is really GREAT 😉