Thursday, January 29, 2015

CATS' MEOWS ... Feline Works-in-progress ...

I painted a wet-in-wet wash with quin. burnt orange for her head and back - the areas getting more light. For the white ruff and areas in shadow, I first did a thin glaze of permanent rose, then an overall wash of a mixture of the rose, with quin. burnt orange and cobalt blue. When that was still wet, I tried to get some texture in the fur with curved lines painted with a thicker application of the same colors.

This is one strange-looking cat!!! 

... a bit better ...
I wet everything except the white patches, and the eyes and nose. I stroked in a thin wash of a mix of quin. burnt orange, permanent rose and cobalt blue. While it was still wet, I added some lines with a thicker mixture of the same colors to imply fur texture. The eyes were glazed with aureolin, quin. gold and touches of quin. burnt orange. The shadows in the white ruff are being done with a lavender-grey mixture. He still looks very intense! Hopefully his eyes will look less Svengali-ish when I get more of the body and head done.

Thank you so much for dropping by!  

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

This and That ... Some Works in Progress ... Some Life in Progress ...

FINALLY ... I think I am finished with Miss P. I have sent an image of the painting to the owner, and have left it for her approval. I scruffed the background, did some more detail and darkening in the shadowed areas, and put a bit of shadow around the other eye. It looked like a marble lost in the snow without it.

Time for a change in animals! I did two cat drawings [Maine coon cats] to do as demos for my watercolor class. I have one serious cat fancier in the class. And I wanted to show them that you can use the same techniques for all subject matter - flowers, animals, still life ... 

For the background, I soaked the entire area around the cat, and applied indigo at the perimeter. First I had to clean the well of paint - hadn't used it for about ten years, and there was a fair bit of horse, dog, chinchilla and cat hair in there! The eyes I first wet, stroked in aureolin, then dropped in cobalt blue. After it dried, I wet it again, stroked in cobalt blue, and added a few dabs of quin. burnt orange. The nose is a w/w application of quin. coral and quin. sienna.

I've done a w/w wash, using cobalt blue and a bit of quin. burnt orange.

And now for Maggie's part in the story. She has improved immensely! She is more calm, and always comes when called. However ... she still has energy to burn, and it takes the form of digging and disappearing shoes. I don't know how she fit in that tub to do all that digging!

And these are a pair of my muckers my landlady found floating in the pool. She very kindly retrieved them, and propped them up by the door to drain.

And last, but certainly not least, The Big Guy! He is starting to shed out, so is quite itchy. Here, you can see he's had a fabulous roll on the ground to scratch that itch!! It's quite mild here right now [T-shirts in the afternoon] and drying out, so I have been able to start doing a bit of riding again. I missed it SOOOO much, and Bruno missed the contact and routine [and carrots], too.

Thank you so much for dropping by!

Sunday, January 18, 2015

A Tale of Two Dogs ... Drake and Miss P. Continued ...

I am still happy with how Drake is coming along.  I've darkened his chest a bit, and tied it in with the dark of the background. He looked a bit odd to my eye, being so narrow below, but he does have a narrow chest and long, lean legs.  I'll probably do that with the left side of the dog to imply a bit more shadow on his ruff and face. I also did a w/w wash of the top dark area of his face, first with a dilute black, and then while wet, with a more concentrated black to give a soft look to his fur. Not sure - is his nose is dark enough?

I am working on  the 6th or 7th version of Miss P. The background is pure and mixed washes of permanent rose, quin. burnt orange and indanthrone.

It was time to get some color on the scarf, so I could better judge how dark to go with the background. Seeing it now, I think a bit more indanthrone is in order. And I gave her  a personalized scarf with her initial on it.

Outside of painting, I have started teaching again. Still LOVING it!!! I spoke to the program director about setting up a drawing class, and she was agreeable to the idea - just have to write up a proposal.
And I still have a house full of hairballs inside, and a huge under-exercised hairball outside in the barn. The weather is a bit better, and the riding ring somewhat drier, so I get one or two rides a week. I can hardly wait till Spring!!!

Thank you so much for your visit!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Well ... It Seemed Like a Good Idea in Theory ...

looking cute ...

glazed with permanent rose ... still all right ...

glazed with indanthrone ... not bad ...

WHAT possessed me to try this, I don't know! I wanted to get more violet in the background, and also imply the look of confetti - a party atmosphere. I got very heavy-handed with the violet. And now I have to start this again. Chalk this one up to "live and learn"!!!

Started scrumbling with some dark browns and blacks for the background on Drake.

Finished scrumbling ...

... and then glazed with black. I am not thrilled with the effect the glazing created, and may have to do some lifting and scrumbling to get that rough look again.  Another start???
Well, I buggered one painting, and it is close with the second one, too. The problem with these two was that I didn't have a clear idea of what I wanted in the background, especially with Miss P. Drake isn't too bad, and may be salvageable, but I have to start the Westie again, with a much clearer mental image of what I want for a background.

Thank you so much for dropping by!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Well ... I'm Past the EEK Stage, and into the "What the ???" Stage - Dog Portraits in Progress

Here, I added a w/w wash of cobalt blue over the dried quin. rose and burnt orange.

Then, I spent this morning finishing her eyes, and doing some soft glazing on the furry shadows.

Here she is - in a close-up.

With Drake, I started a scrumbly background with aureolin towards the top and quin. burnt orange below. 

I am continuing with the scrumbles, using two shades of brown made of quin. burnt orange, quin. violet and indanthrone.

A decent morning's work for me. I hope to get more done this afternoon, after playing with Bruno and the dogs.

Thank you for dropping by!

Lake Tahoe Blue | The Lake Tahoe Blue announce the signing of Julian Davis | Pointstreak Sites

Lake Tahoe Blue | The Lake Tahoe Blue announce the signing of Julian Davis | Pointstreak Sites

I am a very proud aunt! My nephew is back playing hockey.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

The "EEK!!!" Stage of a Painting ...

You've all heard, and probably gone through, the "ugly" stage with a painting. The "eek" stage is the one before that! This is definitely the "eek" stage here ... two little brown blobs with a larger pink blob below. 

She looks more like a dog - eyes darkened, and the first wash of a background color. 

... and Drake looked quite strange at this point.

I quickly added some shadows, and more detail around eyes, nose and mouth.

He looks almost handsome. Right now, I am doing thin glazes almost everywhere on the painting. The colors I am using are quin. rose, cobalt blue, quin.violet, quin. burnt orange and indanthrone. The painting is moving well, and maybe ... just maybe ... I'll finish this week. I am thinking of doing a soft, sfumato background, lighter on top, darker below.

Thank you so much for dropping by!

Friday, January 2, 2015

Two Doggish Drawings to Start the New Year

Meet Drake. He belongs to a friend [and fellow hygienist] living in Calgary.  Betty is probably one of the most genuinely kind and sweet people I know. She's retired from being a dental hygienist, and lives with one of her sons and his family in Calgary. As the parents both work, Betty is primarily in charge of Drake. From what I've heard, he is a young, high-energy, mostly Malamute rescue dog from up north. And Betty asked me to do a portrait of him.
Above is my line drawing. I almost always use a grid for the initial drawing, and then move to more shading and detail in the next one.

This was done from Betty's favorite photo of Drake. He has an intense look to his eyes, and a happy-go-lucky grin.

My client downloaded more photos of her Westie, and I found this pose to be irresistible, so here we go again ...

I wish you all a wonderful, healthy and creative New Year!!!

Thank you so much for dropping by!