Friday, November 28, 2014

Orange Friday and Keeper of Mystery

How about if instead of braving the masses you stay at home in your PJs eating leftover pie and doing a little shopping on Etsy? Support independent artists!

Now through Nov 30th use coupon code THANKYOU to save 20% in my etsy shop!

This is my latest mini monster, The Keeper of Mystery.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Mini Monsters

In time for the holidays I have added some more mini paintings to my Etsy shop. I call them monsters... I suppose some of them are more creatures, or imps, or some sort of Forest Creature. They are not scary monsters, I don't really do scary art! Most of these are around 2x3 or 3x3" or so and they all come with the frames shown. You can see them in my Etsy Shop.

And here is a peek at a few of them:

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Snippits and Monsters

I want to share a few snippits from Ray Bradbury that have amused me. These are from Zen in the Art of Writing, published in 1994. It is a collection of essays written at various times over his career.

"You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you" -- I think this can apply to any creative endeavor.

"I have never listened to anyone who criticized my taste in space travel, sideshows, or gorillas. When this occurs, I pack up my dinosaurs and leave the room."

"Bees do have a smell, you know, and if they don't they should, for their feet are dusted with spices from a million flowers."

I am not done with the book yet. I will probably have some more snippits to share. I find the very best books on writing could probably equally well apply to drawing or painting - okay, maybe not Elements of Style, but certainly Bird by Bird and Writing Down the Bones.

Here are some more of my imaginary lands, inhabited by imaginary creatures, places I hope to visit one day.

In other news, I have added a few new listings to my Etsy Shop this weekend, just in time for holiday shopping.

Friday, November 7, 2014

October Country

“...That country where it is always turning late in the year. That country where the hills are fog and the rivers are mist; where noons go quickly, dusks and twilights linger, and midnights stay. That country composed in the main of cellars, sub-cellars, coal-bins, closets, attics, and pantries faced away from the sun. That country whose people are autumn people, thinking only autumn thoughts. Whose people passing at night on the empty walks sound like rain.”

― Ray Bradbury It was a beautiful autumn day here in Seattle. Some years we have a lot of those. This year we have had a lot of rain and most days the leaves land on the pavement and are quickly reduced to the consistency of soggy cornflakes. They then drift in matts onto the grates over the storm drains and when the rains return the streets flood. However we seem to be in the lull between storms and I am hoping it will be nice enough tomorrow to gather some leaves. It is much more pleasant to collect them when they are dry - or maybe slightly damp - at least not clumped in puddles. I did find some good Ginko leaves yesterday and dried a few off to take home. I saw a beautiful yellow and red tinged oak that I am sorry I did not take a photo of - it was lying in a puddle. I may try to paint what I remember, anyway.

The leaves in this picture are actually leaves I collected and traced around. I like to find different kinds and different sizes. I wish their color would last forever but I suppose if it did we would take it for granted and we would miss out on the delicate new green of spring. I've been reading Ray Bradbury. I started for October, and if you are not quite ready to leave Halloween behind then I recommend to you several of his books:

The Halloween Tree

The October Country

From the Dust Returned

Something Wicked This Way Comes.

All very atmospheric.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Intricate Monsters

It has been, as they say, a while. For some time this Spring and Summer I was having hardware issues and got rather used to navigating the web via my iPhone, which did not lend itself to blogging. However thanks to my ever-thoughtful stepfather, I am now the owner of a shiny new Dell (okay, matte-black finish, some sort of odd perhaps non-slip texture which I am sure will somehow uh, come in handy?) At any rate I need to get back into the habit of blogging.

I never stopped making things, of course, because I can't do that for very long without feeling edgy and also like life is perhaps pointless. I am not sure creating art makes the world a better place, but it is the only real gift I have, such as it is, and I do feel compelled to use it. Also, it does bring me a feeling of peace I have not found anyplace else. Not every moment of course, there are certainly times I feel quite frustrated and end up ripping things up (Note I do not show you the things that don't turn out - there are some of those.) There are also plenty of times when I spill my watercolor water for the 3rd time in a day and get rather irritable about life in general. However, There are still many times when I am immersed in art when I feel most like myself. Watercolor is the closest thing I know to flying. This summer I worked on a number of pieces that involved watercolor with an intricate overlay of pen and ink. They were a bit more planned than some of my works, though with areas for less structure. I enjoyed doing them and I liked the end result, but I think I am going to go back now and do some less structured pieces, at least a few, because it's more relaxing and sometimes more surprising. I am going to share some of the pieces that came out of this ... These are mostly Daniel Smith watercolor on Arches cold press paper and the ink is mostly Sharpie. I have these fine point Sharpies

Please note I still have the same scanner but I am not sure this is the best scanner driver! Perhaps I will take some iPhone photos over the weekend to show a bit more detail. One thing about living in Seattle is you kind of have to plan for when there will be some light. maybe. enough. if you are lucky....