February 23, 2016

Watercolour Gift Tags and A Lotus Flower

My mother loves Easter and when we were children she usually bought us pastel dresses etc. to celebrate the season and to ring in spring. In particular, I remember a beautiful multi-coloured pastel dress, sweet white socks and black patent leather shoes, topped off with a wee white straw purse with (you guessed it) an ornate ducks head on top.  So since Easter is not far away, those memories my mother created for me triggered my need to create a little beauty. I opted for these simple watercolour tags. They are pretty and easy to make, although they do take time.
I was hoping to add ribbon but I can't find any 1/4 inch pastel ribbon.  So I may have to settle for pastel twine, although I have my heart set on soft-hued pink, blue, and yellow ribbon. ( I know it's only a gift tag, but, hey, there are standards!)

If you are interested, here's how I made them.  I cut the tags out of watercolour paper using a template. Then I splashed the front of two of the cards with water (two cards--all I could manage at one time) and randomly dabbed on the paint that I had watered down before hand. After letting the water dry a little while or longer, (drying time changes how the salt reacts) I sprinkled the cards with coarse and fine salt. Once they dried, I brushed off the salt and continued on to the other side.  I left a few cards plain on the reverse side, although I do like the texture that the salt creates.
Luckily, I found a forgotten bird punch in my hoard of craft supplies to top off the tag.

Recently off the drawing board and keeping with the pastel theme: a lotus flower. They are such lovely flowers. We have waterlilies in Canada which are beautiful as well. I'd love a pond full! To emerge pristine and  beautiful from muddy beginnings has made the lotus symbolic for many religions, including Christianity. 

 I hope to paint a few more flowery watercolour cards to pop in the mail for Easter. 

And lastly, (well almost)  here's a link for my instagram account. If you follow, I will definitely follow you back.

Thanks for reading along...Have a wonderful week!

February 16, 2016

Inspiration on the Wing

Another doodle that I finished over the weekend. Most of my sketches have a bird in them. They are such delightful creatures--creators of mystery and wonder. 
Recently my son, Jesse, and I were out feeding the birds. When these chickadees, inquisitive and a little cautious, flew down for a seed they did pause to stare at us. Hopefully, when we  go back to visit, they will remember the funny wingless beings bearing hard seeds to crack.

A fuzzy pic taken with my too cold phone in my left hand.

A quick sketch of a Lyre Bird.
 If you haven't seen this short video, it's definitely worth watching. It's narrated by David Attenborough. In case I haven't said it yet, I'd really like to meet him!

"I realized that If I had to choose, I would rather have birds
than airplanes. "
Charles Lindbergh

And to sum up: "I'd like to paint the way a bird sings." Monet

 May your week be filled with wonder.

'Til next time...

February 09, 2016

Staying Alive Series #4

Last week I went to an art demonstration. I never thought I'd have so much fun watching paint dry. Really though, I was captivated by Pierre's technique (he uses oils). I do have a picture of the wonderful painting that he finished in two hours, but since I didn't ask for permission to post it, I won't. It was, however, a great experience and I do recommend going to a art demo if you have the chance.

Below another sketch in the Staying Alive Series #4. I haven't posted #3, but I hope to paint it soon. If you just popped in, I started this series recently.  For an explanation, see this post.

Louisiana Water thrush (special concern), Lakeside Daisy (threatened), Hill's Pond weed,(sc) Karner Blue Butterfly, (extirpated) Laura's Clubtail Dragonfly. (endangered). 
 The Maestro finally flew to the painting board. (You may remember this sketch from an earlier post.) The colour I chose for the harp doesn't quite work, so it's back to the painting board.

A very warm welcome to new members and thank you for signing up. I'll be visiting you soon.

Enjoy a lovely week.

'Til next time...

February 02, 2016

The Blue and White Series ~ Botanical Blueprints continued

I was afraid that it might happen and it seems it has. My blue pen, with a mind of its own, has taken over my sketches. But I've also ordered a sepia pen because I've always loved the old sepia paintings and sketches, so perhaps there's hope for me yet.
Lorraine, who blogs at Paper Vernissage, mentioned that my blue sketches remind her of  blueprints, so she cleverly came up with the name "Botanical Blueprints."  Thank you, Lorraine. I do love that name!

Next up, sketches that I've been contemplating naming The Staying Alive Series because these sketches include or will include birds, plants, mammals, fish, mollusks etc, that are either endangered, threatened, on the special concern list, or have been extirpated from this area. Unfortunately, if I expand Canada wide, I will probably find enough material to keep me occupied for a long time. But I do feel compelled to draw and later paint some of these wonderful birds, plants etc. because they are simply fabulous and do enrich our world with their unique beauty and, in the case of the birds, their wonderful songs.
Of special concern, the Canada Warbler because 90% of their habitat in South America has disappeared and their habitat is shrinking in Canada as well.
Also included on the special concern list the West Virginia White Butterfly, an American Hart's Tongue Fern, and, unfortunately, the glorious wee Bird's Foot Violet is no longer in this area.

An endangered Prothonotary Warbler. And in the picture an elm tree. (Did I mention I love trees?) That innocent looking beetle to the left is the cause of Dutch Elm Disease. The good great news: the elm has been cloned to keep them from extinction by the by professor Praveen Saxena at the University of Guelph.
Someone ask about my latest sketchbook. Its by Alexander Hendry of A Graphic. I am searching for more.

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I have a new server, so if you've noticed a new email subscription from me on your site that's why. I've also re-subscribe in readers.  Also, it's regretful that Google decided to expel anyone that has signed up on Google Friend Connect who doesn't have a google account from our lists, so for those people that I've lost from on GFC, please re-subscribe via email or a reader.

Enjoy the week...
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