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The Husband’s quest for the west continues with a week-long trip to New Mexico.  Land of Enchantment.  At least that’s what their license plates say. Now why would he want to take me away from this?

cityscape - Brooklyn 11-2013Street scene, Bushwick, Brooklyn – watercolor on 140# Arches coldpress

 To this?

Cotton wood trees New Mexico 11-2013

ABQ Balloon - Nov. 2013

Rio Grande New Mexico 11-2013

Yes, I’ll admit, we had a great time and while we were there all the cottonwood trees had turned a gorgeous bright yellow.  We had perfect weather except for the trip to Santa Fe and Taos.   Luckily the weather didn’t get bad in either city until the afternoon so we did get to see some sights. The Santa Fe Museum of Art had an interesting collection including some works from famed collectors Herb & Dorothy Vogel.

We took a hot air balloon ride, which came complete with a crash landing. We rode horses down to the Rio Grande. And when I say “rode” I mean we slowly walked with a guide except for once in a while when my horse decided to trot because he thought we were going too slowly all the while I was shaking and looking for rattlesnakes.  Yeehaw!  My horse was “Chief”  and The Husband’s horse was a GIGANTIC Belgian staff horse named Bob.  Bob was the size of a 50’s Cadillac!

Before the trip to New Mexico I was lucky to take a workshop with Jean Haines.  I took the workshop because I wanted to paint more loosely.   Of course I hadn’t read any of Jean’s books and only saw a few pictures of her work so I was totally unprepared.   Luckily Jean is a wonderfully warm teacher with a great sense of humor although she did look at every photo reference I brought and hated all of them.  She does not draw at all except with her water and paint and really discouraged everyone in the workshop NOT to draw before painting.   Here are a two things I painted.  Flowers and half a dog.  half a doggie a la jean haines

Jean Haines flowers 10-2013

The cityscape got worked and worked and worked until I didn’t care anymore and went wild.

Greenwich Street and Park Place on 140# Arches Cold Press

I just could NOT get the image I wanted, but ended up with an image I (sort of) liked.   I wanted to do something with this painting, so I used some Caran d’Ache watercolor markers on it.    I’d never used them before and got some very interesting results.  They blend like watercolor paints so in a few spots where I used them I went over that area with water to blend them with the paint already on the paper.  In some spots, I used them just as a marker, going over areas and outlining them.

I may try this one again sometime.  Maybe at that time  I’ll be able to get the coffee cart where John and Mohammed sell me coffee every morning.  (And sometimes sneak a pastry in the bag even when I tell them I don’t want anything today.)

Does it give you the same headache it gives me when listening to kids (and sometimes adults) talking?  You know what I’m sayin’?   If you’re not sure, click on the link and listen to this: Makes you nuts, right?

Greenwich Street and Park Place – WIP

So, like, I’m working on this painting which I didn’t want to post until I read Leslie’s post today. You know what I’m saying?   She spoke about her painting of a wolf that she didn’t want to post, but in the end she did because she realized that sometimes it’s the doing and the learning that is more important than the final product.

So here’s my street scene that I’m not, like, totally happy with, but thought I’d post since there are some important things I learned from it.   What have I learned?  I learned that I shouldn’t try to post while watching the Oscar’s AND Big Love at the same time and then forgetting to save, accidently close the blog, and losing everything I just wrote.

Oh, what did I learn from the painting?   Yeah, that’s a little harder to put into words.  Suffice to say that I learned a lot, and know that I have to keep painting & experimenting to get it right.    You know what I’m sayin’?

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