You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘aquarelle’ category.

Inktober leaves 10-4-15Inktober leaves – Pilot ball point pen in a Strathmore mixed media 5 1/2 x 8 12 sketchbookInktober leaves with oil pastel color 10-4-15

Same Inktober leaves – Pilot ball point pen with oil pastel color on top of the ink

I just found out it was Inktober.  Who knew?  Teresa, for one.  She, along with others, have been featuring Inktober on their blogs.  One does an ink drawing each day in October.  Well, that’s not gonna happen here. I got boxes to unpack. Lots and lots of boxes. But a break in unpacking is always nice so I figured I would join in the Inktober fun. I can procrastinate with the best of them!

During a dog walk I found these beautiful autumn leaves which was my Inktober inspiration. Not being able to find any real art implements I used a pilot ball point pen for the drawing.  Then added some color using some kid’s oil pastel crayons I found.  Each day holds new surprises in box opening.

When I was packing up the apartment, everyone was talking about the book “the life changing magic of tidying up” by Marie Kondo.  I thought I did quite a bit of life changing tidying up. But not enough.  My sister sent me this cartoon today which made me laugh.

Live changing magic

While laughing I went on Amazon and bought the book.  I’ll let you know how it turns out.  I hope I actually read it and not put it on a shelf with all the other self help or informational books that I buy and don’t read thinking that if I own it, the information will magically transfer to me.  I realize now that’s not how it works.

But there’s always a first time!

 

 

 

 

FullSizeRender (12)Handmade watercolor dragonfly card – elegant writer & watercolor on Arches 140# coldpress

It’s been one week and two days living in a our new house.  We got all of our worldly possessions a few days ago.   Much sooner than we expected and now it looks like a tractor trailer from goodwill exploded in our living room.  I’m sure we have some “vintage” items but mostly it’s “crap”.  Every time I open a box I think “we moved this?”  And for some reason I have a lot of cleaning products.  A lot. You would think we lived in an operating theater.  We don’t.

Rhonda had an excellent idea.  Put all the boxes in a closet and if they are still there in a year, just get rid of them. Good advice Rhonda.

I was reading an article about living a “curated” life.  What does that even mean? One collects special crap?  I don’t know.  Maybe the people that live a curated life, also buy artisanal, premium, handcrafted firewood.

I missed the super blood moon.   It was raining and cloudy here so there was nothing to see. Instead I watched this “literal” video of “total eclipse of the heart. It is hilarious.

The above card was done using the elegant writer pen.  I sketched the dragonfly out in pencil.  Then I outlined most of it using the elegant writer calligraphy pen. I used a lighter touch when I went back with clean water per Leslie White’s instructions.   Leslie is one of the queens of using the elegant writer with watercolors.  I’m not sure if this painting counts for inktober.  If not, I’ll have to do something just in ink.   Maybe a drawing of boxes and boxes stacked on top of one another.

 

ASHEVILLE, NC!
NYC to NC 9-2015NY to NC – hand made watercolor card on arches 140# cold press


I took my own advice from my previous blog post and got out of NYC. I moved. From NYC to Asheville, NC.  First time in my life I will live anywhere else but NY. Talk about a lifestyle change!

The past few months have been crazy.  Buying a house in N.C.   Selling our apt. in NY.  Packing up a place we’ve lived in for 27 years.

The moving truck came on Tuesday.  After it left we realized we severely underestimated the amount of stuff left that we were going to take/throw out.  It took us much longer than we thought to get out of the apt.  Then The Husband took our bedroom TV off the wall which also took off a bunch of paint and left some holes.  Ugh! We then had to quickly try to spackle the holes and arrange for someone to repair the wall.  We finally left our apt. around 6:30 pm. HOURS after when we thought we would leave.   Then drive upstate to my sister’s house to get the dog and the nephew who said he would help with the drive down with us.  Thank you Jack, you were a godsend!

The next morning about 5:00 am Matt, Jack, Kaiya and I got into the “clown car” and off we went. 13 hours later we arrived at our new home, unloaded the clown car and finally fed Kaiya who hadn’t eaten all day. She then proceeded to barf it all up in the living room.  Twice. Jack said it will get rid of the new house smell.

Some quick observations about living in Asheville:

  • I have to drive everywhere.  Yikes!
  • I’m leaving a city of 8 1/2 million to a city (and I used that term lightly) of 87,000.
  • My new perfume is now Deep Woods Off. I am a mosquito magnet.
  • And I live in a place with bears.  Lots of bears.  Black bears.  Everywhere.

Wish me luck!

The above card was made for my dear friend/watercolor teacher.   It depicts a city skyline and the blue ridge mountains.  No goodbye’s NY.  Just “see ya later”.  I’ll be back.

The Hoover Mason Trestle

Bethlehem Steel Stacks 9-13-2015Hoover Mason Trestle – watercolor on 1/2 sheet of Arches cold press

Bethlehem, Pennsylvania is well known for the Bethlehem Steel Corporation.  It manufactured steel and was a major shipbuilder during the industrial revolution. Like most manufacturing, steel making went overseas and the company declared bankruptcy in 2001.

The blast furnaces and a narrow gauge railroad remained and in July of this year the Hoover Mason Trestle opened.  Like the High Line in NYC which is now a park created out of a disused elevated railway, the Hoover Mason Trestle revitalized the old railroad and it’s now a public walkway/museum.

I love when the old is kept along with something new.  (Add something borrowed and something blue and we’ll all be celebrating a wedding.)

Now, as a community service, I’m giving you fair warning.  Next week will be a Trifecta of Traffic Nightmares.  Pope Francis is coming to NYC.  on September 24th.  President  Obama will be here.  And the UN General Assembly will be in session.  The Pope and the President will be addressing said Assembly.

My advice?  If you’re already in NYC run, don’t walk, out of town.  If you’re not here, don’t come to the City.  It will be a logistical nightmare.  Hey, I’m here to help.

 

trees 8-18-2015Trees –  a la Richard Taylor 9″ x 12″ on 140lb Arches cold press

I recently heard a phrase I had never heard before:  Pizza bones.

Pizza Bones??????  A friend down south said that his dog was waiting for the “pizza bones”, by which of course, he meant the crust.  And then I heard another person down south refer to pizza crust as the bones. It must be a southern thing.

I was amused by the phrase, but I must admit, in NY we would never refer to the crust as bones. The crust is an integral part of the pizza. There are some people who would say that the crust is the best part of the pizza. But now I have the phrase “pizza bones” stuck in my head and I try to imagine which part of the crust is the femur or the tibia.

And speaking of femurs, I have a neighbor who lives in a first floor apartment so she is lucky enough to have access to the backyard.  One day she was digging to plant something and dug up what looked like a human bone, or more specifically a part of a femur!   What does one do when one finds a piece of a human bone? You call NY’s Finest.  Two cops show up, look at it, scratch their heads and say “if you find a skull or hip bone give us a call back.”

OK then.

While looking through a book called Watercolor Landscapes by Richard Taylor I came across a landscape that I admired.  There was a “field of bluebells” under the trees.  I have no idea what a bluebell looks like. (I later googled it.)  Not wanting to slavishly follow Mr. Taylor’s painting I did my own version.  Look really closely and you may see some bones underneath the purple shadows.  What kind of bones you say?  I’ll let you decide.

 

 

Sunny Summer day at the BBG 2015Summer day at the Brooklyn Botanical Garden – 10 1/2″ x 15″ on 140# Arches coldpress

NO, The Husband and I are not expecting a baby.  “We’re pregnant” is a phrase that just irks me to no end.  WE cannot be pregnant. I can be pregnant.  (Well, not me, personally, I can’t be pregnant, that ship has sailed.) But I, as a female, could be pregnant.  We, as a couple, cannot be pregnant.  Last time I checked only a female can carry a baby.  (Or a petri dish, but that’s a different blog.)   I just heard a person on a talk show say she and her husband were pregnant.  After I finished yelling at the TV (something I have started to do frequently since I stopped working) I looked up the word “pregnant”.

The Oxford dictionary defines pregnant as:

(Of a woman or female animal) having a child or young developing in the uterus.

Whew,  Glad I got that off my chest.

My work here is done.

The painting above is from the Brooklyn Botanical Garden.  A beautiful sunny summer day in the garden. The paths were bright and dappled with sunlight and the flowers were in full bloom.

Kevin's card 8-2015

And the above hand-made watercolor card was done for my nephew who is off to college to study automotive repair.  Good luck Kevin!

Subway ridersAnd it was just another day on the NYC subway when I spotted these two.  I was more fixated on the fact that it was SO HOT in NY and even hotter down in the subway station and here are these two in what seemed like really hot latex body suits.  Whatever.  Luckily the came train shortly after I took this picture of them and we all went to where ever it is we go.

Bonus Fun Fact:   This symbol: # is also known as an “octothorpe”.

still life from Shirley Trevina.Card for a friend on 140# Arches coldpress watercolor paper

Last week a friend from high school dropped by for a visit.  We hadn’t seen each other in eons and had lots to catch up on. One thing led to another and we began to talk about her wedding in 1979.  I asked if I had gone to her wedding. Without missing a beat she told me I was IN her wedding.

pattis wedding 1979

We laughed and laughed.

The memory banks must be full.  Afterwards she sent me pictures of her in her beautiful wedding dress and me in my Qiana (Qiana nylon, a DuPont invention from the ’60’s.) bridesmaid dress. I’m guessing my dress was flammable.

The above card was done for some friends who have wonderful lunch gatherings. Lots of food, friends and mostly laughs.  I used a reference from a Shirley Trevina book.  I used some Caran d’Ache water soluble pencils with a razor blade to add the speckles in the leaves.

Mountain view 1

 

Mountain View 2Elegant writer calligraphy pen and watercolor on 5 1/2″ x 7″ watercolor paper

Chinese broccoli or Kai-lan has the uncanny ability to stick in my teeth.  It seems to have some sort of super-glue to tooth enamel ratio that isn’t the same with other vegetables. I’m enjoying a nice vegetable Thai dish and suddenly I have some stringy green stuff hanging out of my teeth either gagging me or scaring my dining companions. Makes me not want to eat it, but I know it’s good for me.

Even scarier is kale.  Kale, the hipster green super food that’s put into everything. Kale smoothies, kale pancakes, kale burgers, kale chips and kale ice-cream.  You name it, kale is in it.  I never even heard of kale a few years ago. Recently, Mother Jones ran this article about kale being a silent killer. It can purify soil from a heavy metal toxin which goes from the soil into the kale.  Good for the soil, bad for us. Uh Oh! What will the artisinal, farm to table, organic, sustainable,  free range hipsters do without kale.

Potato chips and chocolate are looking healthier and healthier.

And then there’s this Vox article debunking the Mother Jones article.

I’m not saying we shouldn’t eat kale anymore.  It still has tons of nutrients. And my friends Pat and Elaine make a kale salad that’s to die for. Just stay out of my teeth!  I’m talking to you Kale and Kai-lan.

The above paintings were drawn with the elegant writer calligraphy pen. I then splashed water on the paper to make some of the images randomly bleed.  After that I went back with a wet brush and a paper towel, painting with the wet brush making the elegant writer lines bleed. I would blot areas with the paper towel. When you blot with the paper towel the elegant writer line color sometimes changes from a paynes gray color to pinkish/purplish.

I let that dry and the went back with watercolor and added color to the landscapes.   I like the abstract qualities of these small paintings.

 

 

 

Waiting for the F trainSmith 9th Street “Waiting for the F Train” – 22″ x 15″ watercolor on 300# Arches cold press

remote

My sister recently sent me this picture of our old Hitachi TV remote.  She wrote:

“Remember this remote? 

I think we had the same TV in the 80s.  I took mine to Alaska and back.  It’s gone now but I just found the remote.   Power. Mute. Channel. Volume.   That’s it.

I want that TV back.  Our remote now looks like it could launch the space shuttle and I can never figure out how to do anything with it.”

Yes, Alice.  I remember that remote.  And I too long for the old days.  I have a Smart TV.  I am an idiot and don’t know how to use it.  I was at a friend’s house with the same smart TV.  He showed The Husband and me how you take one cable, connect it to the back of the TV and the other end to your computer and voila!  You can get your computer pictures, play video games, watch Netflix, order from amazon, control the Mir space station and the Hubble telescope and who knows what else.

I can turn my TV on and off.  And sometimes change the channels.

The above painting was done over a number of months.  Now that it’s complete (maybe) I want to think about whether or not to deconstruct it like I did here and here.

Normally I would do the whole painting in a grisaille first and then add some local color. This time I thought I would switch it up a bit.  I started it as a grisaille and I then added color with the grisaille.

It’s finished.

For now.

City Hall Park 2015City Hall Park – Watercolor on a 1/2 sheet of Arches 140# coldpress

City Hall Park is an oasis among the tall buildings in lower Manhattan.  I used to go there frequently to eat lunch, chill, sometimes listen to concerts or look at art and, of course, people watch.  Mostly you see other office workers, occasionally a celebrity and once in a while this guy:

Living in NYC has its perks with celebrity sightings.  But I have to say I was a bit jealous when my sister traveled to the Washington, D.C. area (Virginia, actually) to an event and got to meet Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg a/k/a Notorious RBG.

When my sister got back she texted my brother who does not read my blog and me to tell us about the weekend.

The Sister:  I won’t lie…it was a thrill to meet Justice Ginsberg.

My brother who does not read my blog:   I met Darth Vader.  The Sith lord, Leader of the galactic empire, Supreme commander of the Imperial fleet, Suppressor of the rebel alliance, Basically an evil bad ass.

The Sister:  You win.
I guess the term “celebrity” is relative.
The above painting was started and stopped over a period of months and many times almost got turned into scrap paper. I think I managed to save it enough to say that I like it.  It was a learning experience, that’s for sure.

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 807 other followers

free counters