Friday, 29 July 2011

Linen and lace

I enjoyed doing this piece.

I'd watched the video on You Tube, and I thought I'd give it a go. It was explained in Spanish, and of course I didn't understand a word (except maybe when she said, "... uno, dos, tres...." - at least I think that is what I heard! Hahahaha!!!

But she worked slowly, and step-by-step, I figured out what she was doing, and I tried it on my own. If you do go to the link, you'll see how perfectly accurate hers is - and in comparison, mine has lots of room for improvement. I guess that's why she's a 'Profesora de pintura decorativa' and I'm ...errr ... me! Hahahahah!!

The 'round' is a cake-board, of mdf, and after gesso-ing and a coat of paint, it was still rough to the touch, so I sanded it. One more coat later, it was perfect.

I love doing this, and I'm planning to work a bottle with a lacy design like this as well. I am always about: I did it once, but the real test is doing it again; and doing it better :)

Thursday, 28 July 2011

Four sides of roses

This is a little Jack Daniel's bottle - that I think is very pretty. It also has a good screw-top cover that closes the bottle perfectly, so that it can be re-used.

I painted a background of metallic pearl - and that was done weeks ago - and I wondered what I'd paint on the four sides.

This is what I decided, and I show you all four sides:

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Re-worked: Bottle of olives

Black olives are one of my favourite things - and this bottle contained a lovely batch of them!

I outlined the squares in black - and then painted them in with Folkart Metallics paint: christmas green, garnet red, periwinkle (blue), inca gold (yellow), plum, and peridot (a funky yellowy-green). Then, I outlined it all over again, and painted in the comma-strokes in sequin black.

Despite the many images, it is only one bottle:

Note: Because of the flash, these colours appear lighter than they actually are. They are all deep, vibrant colours, and quite shiningly lovely ;)

Celtic knots

I love these things, and I've done them in crosses, and in long strips, and coloured them in different shades - but I can't find the book I did all that in :(

SO: with my new watercolour pencils handy, I did this. Even if you don't look too closely, you can see how HOPELESS I am with these watercolour pencils. They're all blotchy and patchy, and not smooth and lovely like the ones the great artists do. Guess who's not a great watercolour-pencil-user yet! Sigh.

This is my favourite one to do whenever I am bored. You'll find it
all over my exercise books!

I especially like this one, because it is one, continuous
loop of thread or whatever. I try to do lonnnnnng ones, like a
border, and find them fascinating. They're also the ones that
can be made into crosses - which I'll do sometime soon,
and post here :)

A complicated one, of many strands. Fun to do,
but I really need to concentrate!

And here they are altogether in my spanking new
sketch book. And, yeah, my scribble with
my manuscript sharpie :)

Saturday, 23 July 2011

Like my roses

This guy does a pretty good demo of how I paint my roses. It's a mixture of Donna Dewberry's and a few of the other artists that I watch: first I plot in the background with my darkest shade; then I do the back petals, and curve them into the bowl; then the sides; then the bottom petals, and finally the little ones that are half-curls, that make up all the intermittent petals.

(As usual, I have no idea what he's saying, but it never matters to me. I just watch and watch, and I hope it makes sense eventually.)

Lilies and anemonies

One of my favourite artists has come out with two new videos, which I only just found out about. Better late than never, eh?

Noticed the centres, and the pollen dust?

I love it when I am reminded about one-stroke stuff. Can't wait to try this out on something!

Monday, 18 July 2011

Spanking new watercolour pencils!

Yesterday, while waiting for me to finish with getting my hair done, my husband found me a box of watercolour pencils :)

He knew I wanted one, but hadn't found it yet, and so when he found it - and going at a discounted price - he bought it for me!

I couldn't wait to try them out, and I've put up my efforts here! They're not as easy as the experts make out on You Tube, but they weren't as hard as working with actual watercolours. I love watercolours, and I'm hoping that this will give me a foretaste for working with water, and will lead me to watercolours one day.

A clumbsy, I think. And lot's of room for improvement. But, it's fun, so it's all good!

Here's the new box - ready with a sharpener and a round brush

A try-out of three of my favourites: a rosebud, some poppies, and a tulip

I found some old sketches, and coloured a black-eyed susan, too ;)

Sunday, 17 July 2011

More bottles - and my sleeping helpers!

I talk about the bottles I worked on here and here in this post, I show you how I finished it up.

Most are with scroll-work . . .

... and this one has a hibiscus, our national flower - which I must improve on!

And this Bols bottle, I painted with stylised chrysanthemums, with little gold-dust bits in their centres :)

And here are my girls, who are ALWAYS at my side when I am painting - my sleeping helpers!

Sunday, 10 July 2011

My new love: Watercolour pencils

I know that these have been around for ages, but I didn't go near them because I never knew I could make something that even vaguely would resemble art.

But, now I feel differently about things, don't I?

Watch a real artist at work below. If you're good, you're good. It doesn't matter whether you work in oil paint, or in watercolour, or mess around with colour pencils! Tim Fisher proves it!

Then, how about this one: For making yourself a colour swatch?! Brilliant!

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

The National Museum of Decorative Painting

In the US. And you can find it online. It has a whole host of stuff, along with a newsletter.

If you click on the link I provide, it will take you to its Contemporary collection. It is amazing. Please have a look.

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Recycling bottles

Every time we've got an empty bottle, my husband will clean it and leave it for me - so that I will one day be inspired to paint it! That's why I have a whole collection of bottles, of various shapes and sizes, all lined up on my shelves.

Yesterday, I decided that I'd start on some of them: so I did their 'backgrounds'. I'm in a metallic mood, so they were all finished in various shades of metallic paint.

This first one is in metallic black and gold. I didn't really manage to capture it's exact look with this picture. I tried it with, and without, the flash, and both times the results were far from satisfactory :(

From Jack Daniel, to Tazo, to a couple of jam bottles - nothing is spared!

Here's the Bols bottle again, along with an Esprit bottle.

I'm not entirely pleased with how this turned out, but I'll not paint it over. I'm trying to
wean myself off too much white... so this is a work-in-progress:
the weaning, not the jam jar ;)

Monday, 4 July 2011

Metallics for an old jar

This glass jar has been lying around my house for the longest time - and finally, it fell under my paint brushes!!!

First, I did the background in Periwinkle, then I painted the flowers in Pearl, with Plum centres (all Folkart metallics). They adhere very well to glass.

Finally, I put in silver pollen goblues - actually meant for fabric (but do I care?!).



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Painting - but not on paper or canvas

I need to remember this, so that I can do something similar on fabric. The flowers and the background are almost tone-on-tone, with the white highlights standing out. I think I can use this process to paint on fabric. I'll give it a try and see.

I don't know what they're saying, but I think it must be: This is easy, do try it! ;) HAHAHAHAH!!!

Sunday, 3 July 2011

Watercolour tulips

Amazing tulips!

I'm not a watercolour painter - maybe one day - but I am planning to paint something like this soon!

Friday, 1 July 2011

Beginning a watercolour painting

I finally managed to get Part 1 to load, and it is worth listening to:

I watched all the parts, right up to Part 5, which is here as well:

I don't know if I'll ever try this, but just listening to her has helped me understand a lot about painting, colours, and values.

Honing our skills: How to take things one step further; always!

I was looking online for some notes on the colour wheel, and about 'colour theory', and I stumbled onto this website: Wet Canvas.

It is an amazing site, and I will be visiting often to find out more about this subject of painting that I am so fascinated with that I can't get enough of it.

For me, it is not enough to paint the same things over and over again. I am following a few blogs, and see the work of people who have attended classes, and I know I wouldn't want to take a class: they all seem to be producing the same thing: if it is daisies, they're all painted the same way, and in the same colours; if it is roses, the roses look like they've been stenciled from the same piece of stencil. Yes, they look good, but for me, that is not enough. I think, with art, things must always be different - there cannot be 15 pieces, and each one look exactly like the one beside it :(

Even my own work is not good enough for me. I look at some of my pieces, and I just know that something is not right. But what? That is why you will find me trawling the internet, looking for stuff to learn and stuff to do, so that I can paint better.

One of the first people who've taught me to look further is Bob Davis. From him, I learnt about sketching, and distance and near, about shadows and how they change the dimensions on the flat page.  I talk about Bob Davis here - and I really can't gush enough about him!

Then, Neadeen Masters taught me about backgrounds and how to make them rock! A visit to her website told me I had struck gold again: it is filled with information and art lessons, and her philosophy about art. And she echoed my need to 'fix' what was wrong with my work, and how I could go about taking my painting one step further. Here homepage is here, and it has a wealth of information and ideas.

And her talking about the Colour Wheel, and Colour Theory, brought me to this exceptional treasure trove of lessons, and ideas and fellow artists:

  Wet Canvas

This is where you are going to find for a long time: because I think it is going to take me forever to read all that I want to, and see all that I want to, and learn all that I feel I must!!!

Here's where I will be right after I post this:

Colour Theory and Mixing

I hope that some of this excites you as much as it does me!

Happy painting :)