Friday, March 27, 2009

Leaf Bubble Painting

I have uploaded three images to show the progression of each layer of paint. The bubbles are easily recognizable in the first photo.

You can still recognize the bubbles in this shot.
I used them to shape my rocks and other items in the background.

I am pretty happy with the painting so far. I do have a few places on the leaf that are too dark but I am working on those.

I probably should have used a darker paint to create my bubbles which would have given it more texture and contrast.

Any suggestions or comments are welcome!

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Bubble Painting

This is my first attempt at painting with bubbles! I saw the technique on Sandy Maudlin's blog. I found her blog when she was featured on Chris Beck's blog Brush-Paper-Water.
Both of these women are great artists and you should spend some time on each of their sites.

The mixture consists of 6oz. water 3ozs dishwashing liquid and 2oz fluid acrylics. Add ingredients and stir with straw. I noticed in one post that Sandy's students were using what looked to me like a straw for an atomizer so that is what I tried and it worked.I tried blowing bubbles with a mouth atomizer...use a straw!

When the bubbles have risen above the rim of the bowl, quickly lower your paper onto the bubbles and lift straight up. Bubbles lose color within a few seconds. Blow fresh bubbles each time you add a layer. You can dry between each color or not. I tried placing the bubbles where they would be appropriate for the painting I had in mind.
This techinque is fun and quite different than the controlled strokes I am used to. Tomorrow I will post my progress on this technique.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Update on the Peony

Hello Everyone!
Here is the latest full sheet photo of the progress on the peony painting.

Working on the shadows is pretty slow but I love taking my time and getting things just right.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Incredible Shoes!

These "shoes" were my contribution to a book my watercolor class produced to raise funds for the Fountain City Art Center.

Each "shoe" was an original work of art produced by
students of Mary Baumgartner.

The book of original art was auctioned at the Annual Spring Garden Party and copies were sold after this. Book sales raised nearly $1,000.00 for the art center.

Click here for more photos of the shoes.
Our project this year is a book of purses.

Monday, March 16, 2009


Here I have placed mostly random shapes of color to suggest leaves, branches and other light and darkness found in the shadows beneath the flower.  The color shapes were applied using thin washes or glazes of color. These are allowed to dry completely before going further in this area.

This photo shows the first shadow layer over this entire section. 

I used a mix of Brown Madder and Ultramarine Blue.

The Ultramarine Blue will give a grainy texture to the shadows. 

I will repeat this step lifting color in some areas and darkening in others until I am happy with the way the shadow appears.

Here you can see that I have allowed the shadow color to flow onto the petal. This is so that the edge of the petal will be lost into the shadow and anchor the flower to the background. 
I keep the edge of the paint wet just beyond where I want the paint to stop which prevents the paint from drying with a hard edge. 

It is important to watch the paint while it is drying in case you need to add a little more water to keep the edge soft.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Glorious Morning

This is one of the first paintings of flowers that I completed in watercolor.  I love the way the morning light filters through the flowers.

More on the peony next week.

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Welcome Spring!

I know Spring isn't officially here until the 21st but it is supposed to be near 80 degrees today! Next week will be in the 50's and 60's.

I was so inspired by Linda's delicious cupcake painting that I decided to paint this bunny, which is one of my favorite pieces that I use to decorate for Spring. It is really a mossy green but I decided to paint it purple, excuse me Winsor Violet and Opera.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Peony Progress

I stuck to my plan and became more focused on the peony. This is the part I have avoided most...The yellow, heart shaped center.

I began with a Winsor Yellow wash and added some detail with Raw Sienna. Over the Raw Sienna I layered Quinacridone Gold. For the next layer in the darker areas I made a mixture of Opera and New Gamboge for a glowing orange.

I lifted and shaped as I went and it wasn't as difficult as I had expected. The green seeds in the center are a mixture of Winsor Blue and Quin Gold with a small amount of Aureolin. I used Alizarin Crimson on the curly stems. The black around the seeds is a mixture of Winsor Blue, Winsor Green and Alizarin Crimson mixed with very little water to acheive the deepest black.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Sir Frederic Burton

Several years ago when the Internet was just gaining in popularity I was "surfing the web" when I came across a painting by Sir Frederic Burton entitled, "The Meeting on the Turret Stairs."

I felt the emotion between the subjects, Hellelil and Hildebrand so strongly that I HAD TO HAVE THIS PAINTING! I had no idea that if I had popped over to I could have purchased a print. 

Oh well. 

I decided to paint one for myself which you see posted here. I used this method to teach myself how to paint (or draw) and I learned a tremendous amount about painting during this time.
I used colored pencil on mat board and added pastel to achieve the darkest values. 

The original of this was painted in watercolor, is approximately 6 feet tall and hangs in the National Gallery of Ireland.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

It's Me!

I haven't painted on the peony in a couple of days so I decided to do a quick sketch of myself during my lunch break and post it on the blog.

I haven't drawn my portrait since I was in college!

My plan is to concentrate more on the peony in the next few weeks. I have one other painting under way and one that I am drawing before I put it on watercolor paper.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Chili Peppers

This painting is for my oldest son and his wife.

They just moved into a new, much larger home about 3 weeks before their new baby arrived. Beck (my d-i-l) mentioned that she plans to decorate her kitchen in chili peppers and I thought it would be a great opportunity to give them some original art.

This is the third in a series of chili paintings. The original was painted on 6x6 aquaboard. The background is much more golden in person than is showing on my screen.

I hope they enjoy the painting.