Friday, May 30, 2008

Everyday in May #30

This is the image I am probably the LEAST satisfied with...

The subject was good. Only I really didn't have the equipment to hold it still... this was apparent after the leaves moved three or four times while drawing it!
Then there were the shaky hands... I think I need to eat something salty :o

OH well... I live and learn... in this case, draw from the tree unless you can give it water ;)

Just one more EDiM left, then perhaps there will be some Everyday in June or some days in June... :D

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Everyday in May #29

And here is today's effort... another picture of my dinner pepper :)

This time in watercolour and pigma micron ink. I really like the loose quality of watercolours... but my aim is to one day manage to make it look more controlled :D I like the pepper though (except for the location in the center of the page... I wish it had ended up more left ;))

Everyday in May #28

For the 28th, I decided to experiment a little with ink shading techniques. What you see below is a poblano pepper, which will be my dinner tonight (Fajita-taste burgers ;)) and which is another of the artist's staple subjects (the first being the hand you do not draw with ;)). This was kind of fun because I got to try shading with parrallel lines, cross hatch, stippling, contour and a few criss-cross lines. Yes... I was reading Claudia Nice again ;)

Just three more drawings for Everyday in May, and one of those is todays... which I plan to do in a bit...

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

The Home Stretch of Everyday in May

So here I am on the home stretch of Everyday in May... the last few pictures that I HAVE to do everyday... and I am contemplating doing 'Everyday in June' too ;) Once I got over the 'dry well' feeling mid-month, I started to think a little outside of the box and enjoy myself more :) THANKS to the orange studies ;)

This first Pigma pen sketch shows a tree branch and the tops of the vines from which the kids love to swing...

as seen in this sketch :) Down our hill there are some old kudzu vines and the kids love to swing on them. Yes, we also have poison ivy vines... but they are quite distinctive being very hairy- kudzu is not ;)

Can you tell we were outside a lot over the holiday weekend? This is my jasmine blooming... and yes, not all the blooms have the same number of petals on them :)

A more mundane subject from this morning... my morning coffee in my mug :) Don't worry... it's decaf ;)

Friday, May 23, 2008

Everyday in May #23

So far so good :) This is another study with the orange, only this time I messed around with the shading method and retried the watercolour pencils. I figured out part of my problem with the pencils was simply that the orange does not blend very well :-o

There are three pictures here, one large one with some ink contour shading (or an attempt LOL) and watercolour pencils, one ink with contour shading and one pencil sketch. The pencil sketch came about because I was having issues figuring out values in my contour shading and cross hatch sketch. The pencil drawing helped me figure it out somewhat :D I was less than pleased with the initial ink sketch (top right) and used the pencil drawing to figure out the values for it. Then what I learned, I used in the colourised picture on the left. The addition of some yellow and green watercolours seemed to help those pencils blend better this time, when I added water!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

More Everyday in May Drawings

I decided Tuesday, to have a mini-theme... oranges! OK so it is not really a theme. I drew the oranges Tuesday and decided to try drawing them in various different media...

Derwent Watercolour Pencils:

Hmmm... I really need some practise in this medium. Luckily for me, I happen to have just purchased a book to help me with some tricks and techniques!

Pigma Micron 01 and 05 ink:

I was a little reluctant to start the stippling (that's the dotted shading for those who don't know ;)) on this one. Stippling is not something I have done before, but I really loved the effect that it gave to the orange. This is definitely a technique that I will try to use some more... and to think I was afraid to try it!

Winsor Newton Cotman Watercolour:

After reading a Claudia Nice book, I tried out some of the techniques I had learned from reading it. As you can tell, my oranges are all naval oranges, which (as the first journal page tells you) apparently all derive from a tree in California that produces another orange in the tip opposite the stem. I rather enjoyed messing with the watercolours, BUT this one really needs to be taken to watercolour paper for best results. I added some Pigma ink for more definition because I didn't really like the way it looked without. Definitely some more experimenting called for here :D

Anyway, I am having fun drawing everyday in May, and hopefully I will learn to spell EVERYDAY with the Y in the middle soon. I can't count how many times I have corrected 'everday' to 'everyday' this month!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Daybook for Monday 19th May.


Outside my Window skies with white fluffy clouds. Or there were... it looks like more clouds have come over! Lots of birds at the feeder... including woodpeckers taking suet to babies :)

I am thinking... That I completely forgot to get one of the ingredients for dinner :/ And that I need more inspiration for my drawings!

I am thankful for... sweet children who are being loving, and a husband that cares for them and me :)

From the kitchen... ladybird cakes :)

I am creating... more drawings for the Everyday in May Challenge. I am thinking about trying to draw in public this week :)

I am going... to sit at home, with maybe a quick trip to the grocery store to stock up. But considering the grocery store is about 5 minutes from here that is not too far ;)

I am wearing... red sleeveless tee, black skirt. Hair is twisted up on my head.

I am reading... some mystery stories and still working on my Country Living UK. I am reading it slowly ;)

I am hoping... that Friday will be nice... I have visitors coming for a barbecue!

I am hearing... an NPR thing about Lego Star Wars and Indiana Jones. Guess who turned that one up loud?? ;)

Around the house... a freshly painted hall and girl's room... one kitchen to be painted, and one boys room to be painted! I am hoping to do those soon!

One of my favorite things... is watching and waiting for those first peas from my garden. The pods are there and fattening up... I can't wait :D

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week... call evaluator about homeschool evaluation, tidy the house and wash my wool.

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you...

The peonies in the garden. They were once in the house my husband grew up in... we dug them up and brought them to ours after she died and we sold the house.

To join in, join Peggy at the Simple Woman and add your post to Mr. Linky!

Everyday in May #16, #17, #18 and #19

So while enjoying some offline time, I was still drawing, even though I was feeling less than inspired :/
The first drawing was a picture of the ladybug cakes M'Lady and I made for the Mother-Daughter day :) We spent the afternoon in the kitchen, making the cakes together. She thoroughly enjoyed the cooking, she always does... and everyone enjoyed EATING the results! I only managed to get PHOTOS of the cakes afterwards... so no photos of us all (which is probably just as well since my hands were COVERED with food colouring and would have stained the camera!). The little bunny was our garden pal come for a visit. Rebel scared him off before I finished the sketch :o (click images for larger/clearer pictures).

Saturday we ate breakfast in the garden, and while we did that (and while DH did some weed-eating) I drew a rose (one of our heirlooms) and the new solar fountain. The fountain is a delightful addition to the garden ;)

Sunday, I nearly forgot to draw! Late in the evening I remembered, and my spinning wheel caught my eye :) It is one of three, although the other two are antiques, this is an Ashford traveller :)
And yes, it is backwards to me. That was my effort to stop the kids messing with it, but it doesn't appear to be working :o

Then today I decided to draw the old iron pots upstairs in the study (DH's antiques are all in this room ;)) I know I have done something wrong with the three-legged skillet in this drawing, but I cant figure it out :o The skillet was Jacobite's Grandmother's skillet, and the cauldron was his mother's. She either bought it or he gave it to her as a present, I can't remember which (since there are two cauldrons I never remember which is which ;))

So now I am up to date both drawing and posting the Everyday in May series ;)

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Everyday in May #13, #14 and #15

For Everyday #13, I drew my seat on the settee... of course I tidied it up a bit before drawing it ;) but I kept the usual stuff there. My cushion for my back... a book on the arm. OK the book is usually in my hands, but I can't draw and read at the same time! (Click on pictures to get a better view).

On the 14th, I took the kids to the park for the afternoon. 7 Hours later, I was hot, sweaty and tired, so my picture is a small thing I drew while watching CSI New York ;) I set up some grids on my page and drew something in the first one. This time it is a hook from the Hall tree in the living room. I love these hooks... they are on the sides, and this one is slightly reflected in the mirror in the centre of the piece. One day I will draw the whole thing ;)

For today I have two pictures... the first shown is a hatchel or hackle. They were used to comb flax ready for spinning, and the combs got gradually smaller and smaller. This one is mounted on a large piece of wood, and is a very wide toothed hatchel... so probably would have been the first one used when combing flax.

The second is a picture of the view from my living room window. Yes... it is the neighbour's house and no, it is not the best view. I was inspired by seeing another EDM'er's pictures of his home before he moved :)

Monday, May 12, 2008

Daybook for Monday 12th May.


Outside my's dark because I am getting a late start this week :) Today was incredibly windy though... lots of storm tossed branches, and windfall on the ground.

I am thinking...I hope no-one minds reading this late :) I love the daybook entries!

I am thankful for...Family. We had a nice weekend... even seeing a bald eagle on the ground with it's kill... that was a thrill!!

From the kitchen...roast chicken, baked potato and sauteed broccoli.

I am creating...those curtains I mentioned a couple of weeks back! I actually ran them up today and can't wait to hang them! Not to mention all the artwork I have been producing!

I am going... out for the Nature Club monthly meeting on Wednesday. Otherwise we'll be at home most of it!

I am wearing... blue jeans, red striped shirt with a gold pinstripe, cartoon socks (it's cold here today... hope my tomatoes are OK)

I am reading... Country Living British Edition (May)

I am hoping... to get those curtains hung this week :) DH has to drill the holes for me...

I am hearing... paint roller rolling, and classical music. DH is painting the hall.

Around the house... several rooms to paint in the new 'Irish Mist' paint, a drawing for everyday, laundry (although I am up to date thank goodness ;))... schoolwork, we need to catch up on history.

One of my favorite things... is reading my Country Living British Edition and catching up with the at home news through it... and talking to my mother on the phone!
A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week... Prince Caspian comes out this week... so I am thinking about taking the kids to see it, Nature Club, plant my dill herb plant and reading the books I got from the library this week...

Here is a picture thought I am sharing for you...

To join in the daybook, go to The Simple Woman and sign the Mr. Linky!

More Everyday in May :)

So, although I was offline all weekend, I did not fail in my 'Everyday in May' challenge... I actually did draw something everyday!

On Saturday, EDiM #10, a wineglass was drawn. I really needed to sharpen my pencil, but certain children are the ones with sharpeners in this house and they were asleep in bed... so I made-do. And it was not good :/

On Sunday I wanted to draw the carnation I was given in Fridays for Mother's Day. I was not in the right mood for the contemplation necessary to draw a carnation, and I picked a funny angle! Reviewed today however, it was not quite as bad as I thought ;)

Upset by the bad luck the past few drawings, I went simple and drew an earring to make myself feel better. After M'Lady moved the initial setup of BOTH earrings, I decided to stick with JUST one and leave it :o

Today I started a new theme. This week I am going to draw scenes from around the house. Today's picture is a tile from the master bathroom. I love these tiles... there are two, facing in opposite directions :)

Friday, May 09, 2008

Everyday in May #9

Another day in May, and another drawing from the 'Everyday in May' challenge participants. Today mine is a picture of my daughter, portraying 'Sleeping Beauty'. O.K. She really was sleeping, but I could not resist the 'draw' of that cute little face. Unlike her brother a few days back, she was actually quite still. I guess sleep will do that for you ;) Put together stillness and a live model, and I actually got a good resemblance. M'Lady moved before I put the polish on the picture, so I decided to leave it as it was... after all you can ruin a picture, and I was afraid that the likeness would disappear with too much tweaking ;)

She did not seem to be too impressed with the picture when she woke up. I guess she doesn't think that the look of her sleeping is as cute as I do ;)

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Everyday in May #8

Another day in May, and another picture from me. This is a little different. It is still a flower from my garden, a yellow Iris in fact. It is one that used to be at the house my husband grew up in, and we took it from there after his mother died, and planted them in our garden. They occupy the border of our front ditch :)

This is my very first REAL watercolour painting, and I am VERY pleased with the way it turned out! I used my new Winsor and Newton Cotman Watercolours and a couple of my new Derwent Watercolour Pencils for some details. I think it turned out REALLY well, and I very excited!!

Yellow bearded iris in my front garden.

Normally I paint from life, because there are colours and other things you don't see from photos, but today is wet and rainy. So instead, I ran out in a short dry spell and took a photo, then sat down and drew from my photo :)


Marry Ellen said it very well... and you can read about it here.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Everyday in May #7

Some Comfrey from my garden :)

I enjoyed drawing the peas so much, I thought I'd add a little something that is an old favourite. A shame the bumblebee I wanted to add disappeared when I sat down to draw!

"A casual glance around my garden will net you glimpses of old varieties of flowers and herbs.
Some I grow just because, some I grow for other reasons.
Comfrey I grow because it is beautiful, old, medicinal and a valuable garden plant.
Once called 'boneset' comfrey helps wounds and broken bones to heal faster.
Add the leaves to compost and it will aid decomposition and add nutrients.
It is a big draw for the humble-bumble and readily reproduces from the slightest piece of root!"

Some new links

I just added some new art related links to the sidebar if you are interested ;)

Also, the Simple Woman has a new blog about food preservation... hooray for us newbies to the art!!

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Everyday in May #6

Today's picture is from my garden, where the peas are in bloom. I have lots of vegetables growing there, but I always look forward to peas. Peas bring back memories of helping my mother shell the fresh picked pods when I was a child. I don't think we ended up with many to cook as we loved to eat them raw! In fact I still do... and I introduced the kids to the fresh delicacy last year!

Click for a better quality picture!

Thomas Jefferson used to have a race with his friend (and fellow president) James Madison, to see who could grow the first peas. The winner would provide dinner for the other, serving the peas! I have no race here, but I do look forward to the fresh peas :)

Monday, May 05, 2008

Everyday in May 5

The only bad thing about today's picture, is the subject! It is virtually impossible to get an 8 year old boy to sit still, and it is not necessarily a good subject when ALL DAY you have been telling the subject off for not doing his work. Oh well...

Oh well, maybe I'll get faster soon!

Daybook: Monday 5th May 2008


Outside my Window... For a change, it is a beautiful sunny day :) There are flowers and green things and all kinds of spring-like going ons!

I am thinking... how enjoyable it is to be part of the Everyday Matters group... the artists on there are very inspirational :)

I am thankful for... my family and our home. Our house and garden are so relaxing and soothing.

From the kitchen... I have a flank steak marinating ready to make fajitas tonight for a Cinco de Mayo themed dinner ;)

I am creating... drawings and pictures for Everyday in May.

I am going... out into the garden later, to enjoy the beautiful weather.

I am wearing... denim capris and blue polo t-shirt.

I am reading... Nature's Garden Magazine, A Thomas Jefferson Education Companion and various other books ;)

I am hoping... That school will go well today... the kids have been up for ages since they got up early today :o

I am hearing... classical music and a puppet show from M'Lady ;)

Around the house... a load of laundry to go on (maybe two), some curtains to make, a drawing to complete and a floor to clean.

One of my favorite things... is to be expecting parcels in the mail! Yeah!

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week... continue with the drawings, try to get working on those curtains (DH needs to put up the rails for me!) , definitely get the portfolio done and organize the evaluation for Rebel... but No biggies yet!

Here is a picture thought I am sharing for you...
English Daisies... Bellis perennis, not those fake things you see over here in America!

Mum dug these up out of the grass for me, this is the real deal... the original! Sometimes the petals are tinged with pink, and they will dot lawns ALL over England for the next few months!

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Everyday in May #3 and #4

So far, so good. I got them done :) The first is a picture of my hairclip. It is tiny and I love it, even though it is broken!

This one is a quick watercolour pencil sketch of the garden, from my patio :)

I have to say, I really love the inspiration from this group... you should try checking out their Flickr pool!

Friday, May 02, 2008

Everyday in May #2

This time I drew a timer. This is the timer that we use with the kids to let them know their "Time's Up!". I use it for school, and Jacobite and I both use it for tidying up, showering, playing... all sorts! If the kids have a time limit, this is the gadget that lets them know it :)

It is quite a useful tool... ;) I knew as soon as I picked it up in time for school this morning, that THIS would be my EDinM for today!
It isn't quite as good as I would like it... endless chatter from a 4 year old and an 8 year old who wont do as he is told caused a few interruptions in my concentration. I knew I should have done it while they were sleeping, but I couldn't figure out WHAT I wanted to draw until AFTERWARDS ;)

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Everyday in May

Well, I did it! I signed myself up for a drawing challenge on the Everyday Matters group. The aim is to draw or paint something everyday in May. Hence the name of the challenge ;)

My trusty technical pencil, my tiny sketchbook and I sat down early this morning to draw. I chose a small creamer or pitcher that I think once belonged to my husband's grandmother. It is a lovely aging yellowy colour, but I don't have the paints to do it justice. I will remedy that soon ;) It is a lovely and unusual scalloped shape, which prooved to be very difficult to render accurately. I think it would have been much better in colour!

I decided to make a loose theme for the challenge of: "things I see" because that covers pretty much anything I want to draw ;)

ETA: Apparently the creamer was not from my husband's grandmother, but was picked up by my mother-in-law because it matched a large pitcher that comes from my Husband's grandmother. Yes, the pitcher is also scalloped :)