Monday, January 27, 2014



Yesterday I was able to attend the all day drawing marathon at the Palo Alto Art Center.  These sessions have been held regularly 4 or 5 times a year for over 25 years.  Sadly, the coordinator is retiring and there will only be one more session in March.  Perhaps some ambitious soul will take up the reins and there will be more great opportunities in the future.  

Interesting models.  Christina is my all time favorite.  She has great curves which I tend to really exaggerate, and she knows how to create interesting poses with great flexibility.  The other model was quite a handsome gentleman, but he just sort of stood there and was really boring.  If I could see Christina at all, I drew her and ignored him.   Modeling is a very difficult job and involves creativity and talent and skill.  Yesterday, I appreciated Christina more than ever.  

I started out with large pieces of newsprint and a new set of extra chunky charcoal in 5 different colors, all of which were very neutral.  I wasn't very excited with the results I was getting.  I think I need a different surface for these charcoals to really do magical stuff.  I had my mini iPad with me, so I decided to use it and practice with some of the apps.  

One of the apps I enjoyed using was called  "Vellum"  It has line, ink, graphite, shading, and scribble plus erase.  The width of the ink line is determined by the speed of the stroke, so to get a thin line you have to move quickly, making accuracy very difficult.  Well, I like a challenge!  I also used "Auyrn Ink" for a watercolor effect, and "Sketch Club" which I seem to have the most control.  In the afternoon session I changed sides and instead of lots of short poses, I did a charcoal with the same pose all afternoon.  You have to set up before the models do, and the room fills up so you can't change your position once you have settled in.  Wouldn't you know,  I was not thrilled with my view.  Actually, I was feeling extremely unhappy, but you draw what you get.

Saturday, January 25, 2014


It took me several days, but I finally have both my website:
and my blog updated with my workshop schedule for 2014.  The above is a technique I will be teaching in my new workshop: "Texture and Self Portraiture in the Digital Age".    If you would like to attend one of these workshops but can't find one in your area, contact me and perhaps we can make that happen.   

Friday, January 17, 2014




Here is the mono print I created from the first sheet of YUPO.  Actually, the sheets or YUPO I ordered are larger than I like to work on so I cut one in half.  I had fun lifting paint off of the surface through some new stencils I had bought.  I really don't need any more stencils but I can't resist!  When I got the painting this far, I sealed the watercolor with acrylic spray so I could retain what I have achieved.  So now I have to decide how to finish it.  I am leaning toward acrylic ink because it is the most transparent.  After spraying with the acrylic, watercolor will no longer adhere to this surface.  I think collage papers would look very interesting on top of this, but I am trying to create some images without collage for awhile. The collage version will be next.   It is nice to have ideas for the next painting percolating while I work on the current image.  That way there is a nice flow from one piece to the next with an interesting progression.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014



Every year I write down my goals for the coming year, then I put the list away and take it out the next year to see how things went.  If you are familiar with the rules of goal setting,  you know it MUST BE WRITTEN DOWN, otherwise it is only a wish, not a goal.  So, every year I write down..."get my AWS signature membership status".  I thought it was never going to happen.  Last year I made it into the show, so I fretted all year what to enter this year.  I was able to enter two paintings since I was eligible for signature.  My problem was that AWS does not accept collage elements in a water media painting.  If you have been following my progress, you know I am always adding collage!  The other challenge was that the two entries had to look like the same person painted them.  Since I rarely do anything the same way twice, I was in a quandary.  After stressing and stressing, I finally decided to enter this one and another I thought the style was similar enough.  I was very prepared to be disappointed but HURRAH! AWS accepted this painting. 

One always has to have goals yet to be met.  It motivates us to work harder and do better.  I still have a few more goals on my list.  How about you?  Have you written down your list yet?  It's not too late so grab that pen, find some quiet reflective time and get started making your dreams come true.

Thursday, January 9, 2014


2nd Notan painting

Detail from 2nd Notan Painting

Finished 2nd Notan Painting
If you have been following along, I started this series out putting lots of juicy watercolor on a sheet of YUPO, trying to follow the directions from a video by Mark Mehaffey.  Then I took a second sheet of YUPO and placed it on top of the first sheet with all the wet paint.  When I picked the second sheet back up, both sheets were covered with paint in an interesting patterns.  There was so much juicy paint on the YUPO mono print, I decided to take an old Tyvek painting and  make another mono print.  There were lots of different colors when I started but they all kind of smooshed together and it came out mostly blue with a little of the other colors peeking through.  I made a stencil from a Tyvek envelope I picked up free at the post office.  By slitting the sides and opening the envelope up, you have a nice size piece of paper to create a big stencil.  I held the stencil down on the paper in strategic places with Museum Putty.  This is a product easily found here in earthquake country!  I gessoed the open areas of the stencil and then texturized the background with some lace and I used cheesecloth for the face.  This painting is mostly watercolor with a little acrylic.  I played around with my collection of watercolor sticks, as well as the Dr. Martin Hydrus and a little white acrylic ink. I decided  not to finish the painting with a strong Notan effect.  This isn't a show piece but the process has merit.  The lace texture is very appealing to me. 

Be sure and click on the individual images which will give you an enlargement where you can really see the texture.

I have the next one at the Notan stage.  It is from the YUPO mono print.  I have a few ideas of how to proceed from here.  I just have to decide which idea I want to go with first.  Best to sleep on it.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Here is the latest painting using a stencil on YUPO. I used Mark Mehaffey's technique of creating lots of juicy color on the YUPO, then creating a mono print with a second sheet. I actually made two prints and have started paintings on those. This is fun!

Location:Matsonia Dr,Foster City,United States

Saturday, January 4, 2014


Here is the digital drawing I did today. I am focusing on the watercolor app called Auryn Ink. I think a pressure sensitive stylus will be particularly good for this app as I kept wanting to go back and forth changing the width of my mark. That is a huge difference between using a brush that you can manipulate by hand and a digital brush.

I drew the outlines as if it were pencil. I thought this would be a first layer and then I would eliminate it in the end, like erasing one's pencil marks, but I can't seem to find a layer feature that I can understand. If someone knows how to work the layers in this app, please share!!! I then started laying in the color. I think this will be a favorite app once I get a better understanding of how to work with the variables.

BlogPress from my iPad

Thursday, January 2, 2014



After seeing the wonderful exhibit at the DeYoung Museum in SF showing the work of David Hockney, I have decided to spend more time learning how to manipulate the art apps which I have downloaded onto my iPad.  I don't expect to have my work printed into large scale prints like I saw at the museum, but I was impressed how Hockney was able to use this technology and yet produce work that was so representative of his work in watercolor, acrylic and oils.  

So much of digital work that is passed around in various venues on the internet features amazing technical wizardry of images that look like photographs but were created in the iPad or iPhone.  As astounding as these images are, they didn't motivate me to want to create that type of digital image.  

Now I want to figure out how to make a "Myrna mark" with my iPad.  I will be receiving a new stylus in April that should make the process much easier.  It has a very fine tip and is pressure sensitive which will allow me to create a mark that changes width by pressure instead of having to manually change the width.  It is called the YuFu Stylus Pro and was just successfully funded through Kickstarter.

These are two images I played with yesterday.  The first one I was playing around with layers.  I still don't understand exactly how to use layers, so that is the first thing I am going to master.  I played with two apps.  I think a better plan is to stick with one app until I have it fairly figured out, then move to another app.  January will be dedicated to Sketch Club.  My goal is to do one a day.   

What art goals have you set for yourself this year?

Related Posts with Thumbnails