Thursday, July 31, 2008

Art Day 11: Frustration=donkeys

So I gave up on Harper from the beginning. Wasn't in the mood. Maybe later. Then I decided to go to Egon Schiele....drew a whole thing, didn't like it. I think I will appreciate his style from afar...just so far from mine. Then I tried just doing some random guy's portrait...hated it.
So I then went to donkeys. I took this picture in Peru, and decided to make sort of a cartoon version of it. I was so over it at this point, I attacked it with my watercolor pencils. Art month is stressing me now. Creative juices aren't flowing.
BUT, I did figure out stuff about my style thru my frustration: I like nature, shading, more realism, dislike backgrounds, and I enjoy working on weird surfaces. I will still be dedicated to art month because when I set goals I always stick to them (grrr).

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Art Day 10: Charley revised

I totally revised my plan. Started the drawing over. More background, more animals, different raccoon. This is the underpainting. I tried to just paint thick, flat color and my better instincts told me not to. I paint in layers as an artist and teach that way as well. So tomorrow I will paint the one or more layers on top and hopefully be done. You can not see details in an underpainting, it's just to show where colors go and to result in a nice, crisp painting in doing so.
I am not really enjoying this project as much, and looking forward to moving onto Egon Schiele--yeah Beth!! Schiele is another favorite and I've always wanted to try his style.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Art Day 9: My Charley Harper

Inspired by Templeton's photo of a raccoon, I decided to do my Charley Harper of his raccoon. I am not fully pleased with it, I think I either need to make it smaller with more background, and/or have less rounded edges. This is a work in progress, but it's on canvas so I will be painting it with acrylic.
We'll see what happens tomorrow!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Art Day 8: Charley Harper cont'd

Yay! Computer version of Charley Harper. I am a lot happier with these results. Drawn in pencil first, then colored in with photoshop!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Art Day 7: Charley Harper

So another one of my focuses on art month is demonstrating techniques of artists I admire. My goal will be to replicate 1 or more of their famous pieces, then try it myself. Today I did Charley Harper. I learned a lot about his technique. He's very geometrical, and never uses a black outline, therefore requiring a background. I like his color schemes.

When I tried this, I wasn't sure what medium to use. I tried marker and immediately hated it. I didn't have his color palette and it didn't give me the look I wanted. Temp was using the computer, and that's where the ideal coloring would have happened via photoshop. (Result, possibly buying an additional computer!)I will try that tomorrow. In the meantime, here are my horrific drawings for the night!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Art Day 6: Photo

I really am trying to avoid doing photo as my art for a day. But since I woke up at 4:30am to spend 16 hours on an aircraft carrier, I think I can use the photos from the day. Our friends Elizabeth and Nick (who is a Lt. Nuclear Reactor Engineer on the Truman) invited us to a family and friends day on his ship. From seeing the engines, learning about the bombs, watching aircraft land and lift-off and watching an air show from the deck of the aircraft carrier, it was pretty awesome! Here are pictures from the day:

Artsy ones first

The ship at sunset
The seahawk ready to lift-off
Workers working
The steam from lift-off
The view

More of snapshots:

Thank you Kellenbergers!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Art Day 5: Mouse

I haven't "cartooned" in awhile. I am not pleased with this one, but this is my contribution to art day 5. I hand drew it, then computer colored it.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Art Day 4: Finished girl and goat

I took a picture this time so the color would be a little better. This is it, I am pretty pleased with the end result. I have to say, it's nerve wracking putting my artwork out in the public on a daily basis. It's intimidating and challenging, but it's good for me!
On to more things this weekend!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Art 3: Progress

I worked on the face for about an hour before I started painting. It always look different on screen then in person. I have a base coat down for the painting, and may finish tomorrow. The picture looks darker than it is in person, the scanner seemed to pop the color, but actually it's pretty light. Temp took a picture of me working.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Art Day 2: Girl and goat

Today I decided to tackle this photo I have really enjoyed that I took in Peru. I have drawn it on watercolor paper, but not sure what medium I will use to color. The pencil drawing took about an hour, tomorrow the painting will begin. Since I have a fascination with line, I may experiment with that, we'll see how gutsy I feel tomorrow.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Art Day 1: Botanicals

I had some plexiglass saved from my art school days, and decided to break it out. It's a 16"x20" sheet from an old frame, and I wanted to paint it. For those who are local, the guy that paints those cartoons on glass at TenTop was an inspiration. I like the transparent canvas concept. Anyway, I imagined flowers, and decided to paint some that typically decorate our bedroom. First preparing the surface by scrubbing it with a harsh sponge, I painted with acrylic paint so it would stick. I drew a rough outline of where the stems would go and started painting. This was very new to me and I am happy with the results. Day 1 successful!
Sal helping us take a picture.
the project
the inspiration and so you can see what it looks like just on plexiglass.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

My commitment

I have been struggling with self-discovery in my art. I struggle with my formal training, art that I am 'drawn' to, and what I have been told I "should do".

My most formal training is based on layers of a medium. You don't just paint a picture one layer of color and are done. It takes hours and hours of layers of paint. Problem is, I don't like to spend more than a couple of days on a piece of art. I respect the technique, but it doesn't suit me.

I am attracted to clean lines, different weights of lines, not usually realistic things, but portrayals of realistic things. I have always enjoyed cartoons and animation. I like a little stretch of reality.

In the public school system, we encourage kids to have deep meaning behind all of their art. Don't create just because. Tell a story, capture an emotion. But that's never been my style. So I feel like a hypocrite if I try to enforce that.

Art really should be whatever you want. If I follow rules, then I am not being innovative. You don't grow by "coloring inside the lines". So in talking to some art friends, I am going to make a commitment to make art every day for a month. I will dedicate at least 30 minutes to creating some art every day. I may work on the same piece for a couple of days, or may create something new. I am not sure. But I think this is the best way to figure out what direction I want to go in.

Photography has really been a passion in recent years (but really I got my first camera when I was 4th grade I think). I will be teaching photography this fall, but I think I need to fine tune my fine art skills and keep photography as a hobby.

**the picture above is a drawing I did when I was 15. that was a time when i drew every night at my desk, so excited to grow as artist. i need to channel the inner 15 year old aspiring artist again!!

I will post my progress each day. Wish me luck! I am nervous--weird!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Another of the series

I swear these kill me, cat owner or not, you'll laugh!

**also, sal's tests came back normal, so he's hanging in there! YAY!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

New header on the blog-Ed Ruscha

Temp inspired me to do an artist header on my blog since he did one. One of my favorite artists is Ed Ruscha. He's a contemporary artist, but was around at the end of the Pop Art movement. Click here for more info about him.
Below is more of his work:

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Oh Salvador

Poor Sal has been thru a lot this past year. He's always had a heart murmur, but it's progressed and is now on medication for the rest of his life. He's hanging in there though. If anything, we feel his energy level is higher since on the meds. We went to get his kidneys checked today, and find out the results tomorrow. He's also had a wart on his arm for awhile, and they found a cyst beneath it. He had a little biopsy on that too just to make sure.
I know Sal is loved by many, keep him in your thoughts. He's been such a trooper and shows barely any signs of this stuff, but I just want him to live the best life he can live.
I love my little guy.

The picture is Sal at the vet today, he did not want to leave the scale!!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Good weekend times

Friday night: dinner at a local fav seafood restaurant with our friends Maggie and Joe, and some porch sittin' for hours
Saturday night: games with good friends from the garden and neighbors to the wee hours of the night
Sunday morning and afternoon: canoe trip with good friends--including Dallas the cat!!

Maggie and I enjoying taking a break!
Dallas decided to join Ben in the kayak...he ended up spending the rest of the trip by his feet inside the kayak!
Dallas going for his first lake swim with his dad!
Wet Dallas...
Dallas on the search for his departure. Soon after this picture, we were about 15 feet away from land and he took a dive, ran about 50 feet in the forest. Gave everyone a heart attack but was found safe!Dallas just looking cute.

**Pictures by Templeton and Kellie

Thursday, July 10, 2008

A little publicity...

This is in the World Adult Kickball Assoc. newsletter!

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Day 9: June 25 last day of vacation

To make a long story short, I had gotten sick the night before. It started with a headache, then turned to nausea, excessive tiredness and bad stomach cramps. I had missed out on 2 activities (night search of insects last night, and bird clay lick hike today), it was kind of scary, but I got through it. I ended up going to the doctor when I returned to the US and it was a bacterial infection.
I woke up this morning and was excited to go to the canopy tower. I was pretty weak and sick, but my adrenalin got me through this one! We hiked a little ways, then climbed up a 90 foot high staircase to the canopy top. We woke up at 5am before breakfast to see this beautiful site at sunrise. We saw toucans, parakeets, parrots, hummingbirds, etc. The pictures say it all:

the climb up!
these were seeds hanging from the tree branches, they looked like Christmas decorations!
I rested all afternoon, then got the energy to go to the organic farm. This is the farm that provides the food for the lodge. It was really cool seeing the variety of banana plants, mango, pepper, avocado, pineapple, cilantro, oregano, and the list goes on. We got to try the different foods. We especially liked this one banana that was pink instead of yellow, it was good and sweet. They don't have pesticides or anything, so that farm was organic and pretty bug-free. They had discovered a plant that keeps the bugs away from the crops, and also enriched the soil! I had chicken noodle soup for lunch and dinner they made especially for me. I hadn't eaten for 24 hours and was weak.
finger banana tree
the farmer's cat
I ended up losing 5 lbs on this trip due to sickness and constant exercise! The next 2 days we traveled home. Layover in Lima for 8 hours, we made some friends with a Peruvian family. They were so excited to talk to us for some reason! They even were putting their baby in our laps and taking pictures of us! About 15 family members all at the airport to see one girl off to Spain. It was bizarre, but killed about 2 hours off our wait!
Peru was an amazing trip. I enjoyed taking photographs of the locals and the animals. I am excited because my passion for photography will carry over to my photography class this year. I am teaching photography and general art, and I think it will be great.

I definitely practiced my Spanish a whole lot, and would like to go to a non-Spanish speaking country. I have been to Haiti, Peru, Dominican Republic and Mexico. I learned I don't want to live in a busy city, I like having quiet. I love nature, and fancy hotels do us no good. Being in nature makes Templeton and I most happy. We don't like tour groups and prefer to travel and research on our own. (The rainforest group was cool though, more relaxed). I learned you don't need a lot of luggage, we traveled really lightly and did just fine. I had the best travel partner, we are on the same page about everything and it just makes everything so much fun. It looks like Europe is next, along with Asia and Africa! Thank you to the faithful readers!

On top of the canopy tower. Room for 8 people...very small.