Friday, October 21, 2011

Cindy Lou Who

I realized yesterday that I only have three sewing days left till Halloween since we will be going on a trip for the week before. So today I pulled out my pattern and got going on my daughters Cindy Lou Who pajamas. Unfortunately instead of having a lack of heart this Halloween we now have pajamas two sizes too large. I think it will work but it will certainly fit for a long time to come.

Last night I attended a meeting of the Blissful Home Guild (I have a lot to learn) and worked on annother drawing while listening to my friend teach about planning parties and gracious hosting. I worked on this colored pencil drawing of her 6 month old son. I would change the backbround to something lighter if I could. The bright color is too intense for the colors in the face.

The changes are coming less dramatically to the painting now. There are a lot of details to work on and small issues to fix.  I am copying from a painting titled "U.S.S. UNITED STATES Bombards H.M.S. MACEDONIAN - Naval Battle of 1812‏" by Gordon Grant. I was not sure at first if I was allowed to copy someone else's painting and especially post it on this blog but I wrote to the gallery that owns the painting and they replied "It is ok to copy this or any other painting provided you mark it as "a copy" stating in this case it is "a copy of Gordon Grant "

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Color Pencil Portrait

Yesterday I did not feel like I had time to start annother painting so I pulled out my colored pencils and did this drawing of my son. I think I added too much shadow on the right side of the face but he knew it was him so I guess it was a sucess.

I tried to approach the project as if I were using paint, thought about adding the colors the same way I would in a painting and just built up the darkness slowly. I have never done much with color pencils before so I guess the thought process worked.

It will be a good study for a future painting.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011


Last night and today have been a whirlwind of research. I think there were a lot of things about painting they never taught in my college painting classes. They never really talked about ways to prepare canvases for different types of paintings.

I believe for the detail required in the ship painting I should have applied more gesso to the canvas and sanded to build up a smoother surface. I should have done a neutral under painting on the canvas so I am not painting directly on white.  I also realize that I apply too much paint to the canvas and instead of trying to build up to the color I need I should be mixing the colors more on my palette and then applying them to the painting. My palette also needs to be a neutral tone instead of white. The white makes reading the color tones correctly difficult.

I have been looking at countless websites and visited the library today where I picked up eleven books on oil painting and portraiture. The kids loved looking at library books and we checked out twelve books for them. It can be difficult to get books for myself when I have two kids in tow but I put the baby on my back in an Ergo and the toddler kept busy with popping bubble wrap in the stroller.

Once nap time is over I will be able to get gesso and acrylic medium out of the guest room / storage room and begin applying a neutral background to my canvases for future portrait paintings.

Later: I tried to get the kids started on some artwork after naps but Nathan only wanted to use my paints and work on my painting. He can tell there is a difference between my paints and the one dollar watercolors. After bedtime and cleaning up a floor load of toys, I got back to painting. I worked on the water and then on the sails and am happy to say things went more smoothly. I am happy with todays work.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Day 2- Frustrations

I warked some more on the Ship painting today and am growing frustrated. I dont know how to go about painting a ship. I am so much more used to the process of painting portraits.I feel like I need the canvas to be at least twice, maybe four times as big to fit in all of the detail that is needed.
The kids colored also after they got up from their naps but were not quite as dedicated as they were yesterday. We soon all gave up and headed outdoors to enjoy the fall leaves.
I am planning on starting a series of portrait painting soon also. Went to Micheals and picked up 6 canvases all at 40% off and some Veridian paint.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

New Starts

I am starting a new adventure. I am undertaking the seemingly impossible. Can I actually work on developing as a painter with a baby and a toddler trying to do everything possible to distract me?
I want to chronicle my adventures of trying to squeeze painting into my busy life. I am not great at staying focused or dedicated to any one task so this could be a big challenge for me. But I am tired of saying I want to be a painter and am ready to make it happen.
Today I crawled under the pile of children paraphernalia stashed in the guest bedroom, to retrieve my paintbrushes and other supplies. They have not been pulled out in about a year and a half or more since I finished the painting of my cousin's  pregnant belly.

 I sat both of my children down with artwork of their own, and I started a painting for my husband. He had said for a long time he has wanted a painting of ships battling. So I decided to work on it for his birthday. I prefer to paint Portraits so this will probably be quite the challenge. I at least got some paint on the canvas in the hour or so I could keep my kids moderately contained.

My son was very interested in what I was doing and kept on wanting to help. He worked on a watercolor of his own and also painted his water mug and his hands. He wants me to help him paint all the time. I think he wants to be able to do it better than he is able. So I painted Daddy for him. Not my finest work.