Thursday, January 30, 2014

Poster of 30 Paintings in 30 Days!

Here are all 30 paintings!  And I have a FREE GIFT for the first 20 who comment on this blog!  Just comment below stating your favorite painting of the 30 Day challenge, and then send me your mailing address OR email to:   Do NOT put your email or mailing address on the comment below.  Congrats, you will get a FREE gift.)  When you comment, it won't appear till I approve it, so don't worry if you type it all out and it doesn't appear.  I'll approve them ASAP.   Thanks!
If you've been paying close attention, you'll notice that there is a new one in the mix.  Remember on Day 15, I said that I just grabbed a bird painting that I had already done a couple of months earlier?  Well, today, on the last day of the challenge, I finally made a replacement for that one.  It's up to you to find which one it is!  I honestly am feeling kind of odd now that the challenge is over.  Finally, I was in a kind of routine, painting another bird each day, and loving my time in my studio.  Luckily, I am going to a  5-day Paint-in on Sunday, and I'm anxious to paint abstracts again, in acrylic and mixed media.  That will keep me busy!  I really recommend that you all join me in this challenge next year.  I won't lie.  It's really HARD!  But it's so rewarding when you look at the gallery of paintings from the month!  I would advise that you should prepare meals, etc. ahead of time, and even have value sketches done of your subjects ahead of time.  That will help keep you sane during the experience.  I like to have a theme when I do this, but it's not mandatory.  Birds was a fun series!  One artist took all of her old paintings, and redid them for this challenge.  That might be a fun one for next year!  Another artist did all of her paintings on her i pad, which she barely knew how to do in the beginning.  She really improved by the end!  Whoever said that "Practice makes Perfect" was certainly right!  I did get better during this challenge.  Not perfect, by a long shot, but lots better!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Day 30 of "30 Paintings in 30 Days"

"Dancing the Night Away"  $145  watercolor, collage, acrylic  (11" x 11" image)
Yahoo!  I made it!  Day 30!  I wanted to finish with a special painting, so I decided to collage my wonderful city, Minneapolis, in the background.  And the crow looks like he is dancing, thus the title!  It's odd, but I'm really starting to like this color combination, and I had rarely used it before this challenge.  This painting goes with "Opening Act", #5 of this series.  I used the same napkin for collage and changed the design by painting with acrylic on top.  *Big tip for stripes to use for collage:  Save those pesky renewal postcards that come in new magazines.  The bar code can be cut up and used for collage.
So, what did I learn from this challenge?  1. How to simplify.  2. Limit colors  3.  Don't work so hard.  4.  Enjoy the PROCESS!  5.  I have a new appreciation for birds now. 
Maybe I'll become a birder!  Funny story:  My husband said that my last painting should be titled, "giving you the bird".  Sorry, I just had to include that.  :)   Dick has been an important part of this challenge.  He had great patience with a messy house, only 4 home cooked meals in January, and me spending most of my time in my studio.  He knows how important my painting is to me, so he's been very supportive, but we both are looking forward to more order in our lives.  And I look forward to doing this again, next January!  Thank you, Leslie Saeta, for organizing this challenge.  You all might enjoy looking at all the artist's work on her blog site.  Just click on her blog title, and span down the page.  Be sure to check back tomorrow, when I will post all 30 paintings together!  Most of these paintings have sold, but if you're interested in any, email me with your request.  I can paint commissions! 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Day 29: "30 Paintings in 30 Days"

"In the Pink!"  $145  Watercolor  (11" x 11" image"
Well, you knew it had to happen!  What's a bird collection without a flamingo?  Even when I saw this bird with my very own eyes, I could hardly believe that it wasn't a lawn ornament.  They stand on only one leg lots of times, and one would think that they would just topple over!  Such an odd bird, but actually, very beautiful!  After yesterday's painting being in neutrals, I was so ready to paint in bold bright colors!  So, here it is!  This isn't the best photo of it, since I finished at 10:00 p.m. and I took the photos under bad lighting.  I can't believe that tomorrow is the last day of this challenge.  I'm stumped on what to paint.  Any guesses?  Thanks for visiting my blog.  Your comments mean so much to me!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Day 28- "30 Paintings in 30 Days"

"Love that Dove"  $145  Watercolor and Felt Markers,  (11" x 11" image)
Now I can relax.  The one bird that I really wanted to include in my bird series was a mourning dove.  It's probably my favorite bird.  I love it's gentleness and when it calls, I love it!  Beautiful sound!  We have a pair of mourning doves that land on our deck every Spring.  I love watching them.  In this painting, I challenged myself to staying with neutral colors, something that I usually don't do.  I usually LOVE color!  But today, because of the gentle nature of this bird, and the fact that it's feathers are different shades of grey, I decided on a neutral background. Then, I added lines at the very end, using Tombow markers, channeling another favorite, Frank Lloyd Wright.  I have the full set of 96 Tombow markers.  They work great for my 30 minute sketches- water soluble and double tipped.  I love them! 
I didn't realize until today, that mourning dove is spelled like this.  I always thought it was "Morning Dove".  I don't think of it's sound as mournful, but rather soothing.  I can't believe that I only have 2 more paintings to do in this challenge!  These last 2 weeks have been fun for me!

Day 27- "30 Paintings in 30 Days"

"Laundry Landing"  $145  Watercolor, collage, acrylic  (11" x 11" image)

Yesterday's Blue Jays were so popular, that I decided to paint another Blue Jay today.  It's -8 degrees outside, with all the schools closed, so I decided to paint blankets on the line, to add warmth to this painting.  I tore 2 different napkins in strips and collaged them do the blanket area.  Then, I painted with acrylic to create the quilted look.  I still love seeing laundry hanging on clotheslines.  It reminds me of my childhood on the ranch.  There's nothing like the smell of fresh sheets just brought in from the clothesline, don't you think? 

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Day 26- "30 Paintings in 30 Days"

"Getting the Cold Shoulder"  $145  watercolor, acrylic, and collage  (11" x 11" image)

I actually finished this painting this morning, between 4:30 a.m. and 6:30 a.m!  I babysat my grandsons all day yesterday, so I had to start my painting during nap time.  I knew I wanted to do Blue Jays, because they are one of my favorites.  Positioning them on the branch back to back, made me think that one of them was mad at the other, thus the title, "Getting the Cold Shoulder".  The outside border is composed of torn napkins, that I negative painted with acrylic to create my own design. I can't believe that there is only 4 days to go in this challenge.  I'm anxious about deciding which birds will be in those last 4 paintings.My favorite bird of all is probably the morning dove, so that will have to be one of them.  Keep tuned, and thank you so much for reading my blog, and making comments! 

Friday, January 24, 2014

Day 25 of "30 Paintings in 30 Days"

"The Hen Pecked Husband"  $145  watercolor and collage  (11" x 11" image)
This rooster hits me on so many levels.  First of all, I used a photo from a painting trip to France with Karlyn Holman.  Check out her schedule.  Her trips are so fun!!! My friend, Connie and I were taking a walk near the resort which was located in the country.  There were many chickens and roosters, but this guy was clearly in charge!  I took countless photos of all the chickens there.  Aw.....France, what a great trip that was!  I chose the name for this one, because I wanted it to be a mate for the painting that I did yesterday, and I have to say, I wondered if my husband would want it for his office. Now, I wouldn't call myself a nag, but when it comes to road trips, I have been known to pipe up a few times when Dick is driving. :)  I enjoyed painting this so much, that I may be painting a few more chickens this year.  They really do develop their own personalities as I paint them!

Day 24 of "30 Paintings in 30 Days"

"The Hen Pecker"  $145   watercolor and collage  (11" x 11" image)
Chickens have always fascinated me.  They have so many expressions that make them almost human.  I almost named this one, "Say what?"  but decided at the last minute that she is a bit of a nag, so I named it, "The Hen Pecker".  Tomorrow's painting is a rooster, so be sure to check back to see the companion piece for this one.  I love the feathers of this chicken.   I took this photo at a farm in Minnesota, where they had a big old truck that they had transformed into a flower garden.  Really cool place!   Wish I knew the breed of this chicken.   I'll bet my friend, Sarah Rosedahl would know. She wrote a whole book about chickens.  Click here to see it!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Day 23! 30 Paintings in 3o Days!

"All Dressed Up and Nowhere to Go!"  $145   watercolor  (11" x 11" image)
This painting took longer to design than to paint.  I had this idea before this challenge even started, and so today is the day that the penguins were born!  I learned how to ribbon write in junior high at an art camp.  This brought back such good memories of that week.  I find myself almost hating for this 30 Day Challenge to be over.  I know, this is a totally different person than that person from about Day 6.  Click on this link and read how different I sounded!  I have several birds that I had planned to paint, and now, I'm really trying to get them all in before the 30 days is up!  Today, I was reminded of the value of simple design and limited colors!  Why, oh why, do I make it so difficult for myself sometimes????  A good trick to check up on your shapes is to take a photo of it, and look at the tiny image in your camera preview.  If it doesn't look good there, you probably need to combine some shapes and/or have one value dominate.  Those are 2 rules that I try to go by in every painting.  Anyway, this was really fun to do!  Hope you like it!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days: Day 22

"Pretty as a Peacock"  $145  Watercolor and acrylic  (11" x 11" image)
This was a very ambitious painting for me to attempt for this challenge, but now that I'm done, I'm glad I did it!  I will be painting many more peacocks in the future!  I love to negative paint, so that was my favorite part of this process.  (The white spots are painted with acrylic paint and are the spaces between the feathers, that I negative painted.)  I started this painting by masking out the peacock's head and neck.  Then I wet the whole paper, and laid gauze on top, and painted the feathers through the gauze.  See photo below.
(Peacock in progress)
After it dried overnight, I began to paint the peacock in a traditional manner.  Lastly, I negative painted the white spots that were the background, peeking through the feathers. I could have done more detail on the feathers, but decided that I liked them left to the imagination.  The effect of the gauze did the work for me!

30 Paintings in 30 Days: Day 21!!

"I've Got Rhythm!"  $145  (watercolor and markers)  11" x 11" image
Yesterday, I babysat my granddaughters all day, so by the end of the day, I was pooped.  No painting at all yesterday.  So, this morning, I thought, keep it simple, and get 'er done!  I love elegant writer pens, because you can sketch with them, and then if you put a wet brush on the lines later, it will smear. I like that "out of focus" effect.  I did a contour drawing of another crow, and decided to add doodling within his body.  Keeping the background simple was a "must" against the busy crow.  Because it has piano keys in the body, and because he looks like he's stepping out, I named it "I've got Rhythm". 

Sunday, January 19, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days: Day 20!!

"Looking to the Future"  $145  Watercolor and Acrylic  (11" x 11" image)
Well, what do you know?  I made it 2/3 of the way through the challenge!!!  These last 2 paintings are a set.  I dug out an old painting that had failed, and used it for the background of these silhouetted birds. I wove the dark pathway to lead to the bird, and increased the contrast by adding white acrylic to the light areas.  This painting and yesterday's painting are meant to be a set.  If you are interested in buying both, the set sells for $275.  Redoing old paintings is fun to do.  I may be digging into that pile more often!  So, there you go!  Never throw anything away!  My sister reuses coats and suits to make beautiful computer bags, and handbags.  It must run in the family!  To check out her work, go to  She also has a Facebook page and it you "like" it, you will receive any new posts when she has new products. 

30 Paintings in 30 Day: Day 19!

"Love is in the Air" $145  watercolor and acrylic  (11" x 11" image)
I had no time to paint yesterday, so this morning, I played "catch up" on my 30 day challenge.  I decided to look through my failed paintings and grab one that might make a good background.  The failed painting was too busy (surprise, surprise!) with no focus.  So, I decided to add a silhouette of 2 birds. I knew I didn't want to just paint the birds as if they had been stuck on with construction paper, so I negative painted around some of the lines that went right through them.  I also brought back more contrast in the painting by painting the light shapes with white acrylic paint.  I like the energy of the swirls, which prompted me to name this one, "Love is in the Air".  Now, I've got a card ready for Valentine's Day!  If you're interested in giving your sweetheart this painting, contact me!

Friday, January 17, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days: Day 18!

"Sleeping on the Job"  $145  Watercolor and Acrylic  (11" x 11" image)
I knew that I wanted 2 owls in my series.  One that was wide awake, and one that was getting sleepy!  There is a double meaning to this painting.  I'm half asleep these days too!  Again, I want to thank Sarah Rosedahl for the use of her photo.  Love the way this owl's eyes are half open.  I used the same colors in this painting as yesterday's, just in case someone is interested in purchasing the two of them as a set.  Working on a wet surface is an easy way to get the feathers on the owl, but you must work with thicker paint so that the paint doesn't spread out too much.  This was a fun painting to do!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days- Day 17

"I'm starting to see Circles!"   $125   Watercolor, Acrylic, and Collage  (11" x 11" image)
I've been planning to paint an owl from the beginning of this challenge, and got special permission from Sarah Rosedahl to use her photo as my reference.  She is a fantastic photographer and artist.  Click on her name to see her work.  I knew that I wanted to have circles in the background, to kind of accentuate the eyes of the owl.  But as I was halfway into the painting, I thought, what can I do to make this go faster and simpler?  See photo below.
Half finished painting
So, I took one of my paint jar lids and dipped it in the paint, and wallah.... doing stencils made it lots easier.  I also used caran d'ache crayons and a permanent black marker to add finishing touches.  The branch is made from a circular patterned collage paper, and then I painted back into it, so that the paper would be incorporated into the piece a little better.  I only used 4 colors to paint the background on this painting. (2 main colors, plus white and black)   I learned how to make swatches of harmonious papers from Carrie Burns Brown.  Check out her video if you get a chance.  It's one of my favorites!Tomorrow's post will also be an owl, so keep posted!  Thank you for following my blog.  It really means a lot to me to hear your comments!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days- Day 16

"A Little Tipsy"  $95  Watercolor and Markers  (11" x 11" image)
In honor of the hangover that I had this morning, after a really good time last night (see yesterday's blog),  I decided to paint a crow who is getting into the wine, and he is a little tipsy!  I did a contour drawing of the crow, which gives it the feeling of a caricature!  Then I took an elegant writer calligraphy pen and drew on top of the original drawing.  When I added watercolor paint, the elegant writer smears, which is an effect that I love.  This was a pretty fast painting. 

30 Paintings in 30 Days- Day 15!!

"French Crow"   watercolor and collage  $195   (11" x 11" image) 
Half way there!!!!  Did you notice the explanation points?  I'm very proud of myself that I've made it this far!  Now for a confession.  I didn't do this painting today.  I actually did it back in October, but needed another bird painting, so I grabbed it from my pile.  I took the photo of this crow in Paris, and that's why I named it, "French Crow".  But I digress....  Explanation time.  Yesterday was a full day, with only one hour to spend in my studio.  I did get a drawing done, but that was it.  Last night, I had the pleasure of meeting some friends at a great new place where we all paint the same painting, and drink wine at the same time.  It's called Cheers Pablo, and is owned by my friend, Chriscell and her husband.  Click on the link.  It's located in Woodbury, MN.  The idea is simple.  A group of friends gather to paint a very simple painting, (no painting experience needed!) with TV sets all over the room, so everyone can see every step.  Anyway, this was a BLAST!  My painting was downright horrible, but I don't care.  (Do you think it had anything to do with the 3 glasses of wine that I had?)  But, it was FUN!   And I'm definitely going to go back there again another time.  I really recommend it!  FYI, I will paint a replacement painting for this before the 30 days are up.  I just needed something to post today.  :)  Pictures of Cheers Pablo below:
Chriscell, Pat, me, Georgia, Sonja, and Deb

Our masterpieces!

Monday, January 13, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days: Day 14!

Acrylic and collage    $125
"High Wire Act"   (11" x 11" image)    Acrylic and Collage  $125
My goal with this painting was to make it fun and really easy.  So, I started the painting by covering the whole paper with bright colored acrylics.  Then I sprayed it with a water bottle, held it vertically, and let it drip, so that the colors would be interesting.  Below is what it looked like in the early stage.  It was so much fun!!!
First Step
After that dried, I drew the bird shapes on and negative painted around them to create the birds.  The only collage on this painting is the checks.  Otherwise, it is all acrylic. I actually wanted to go further with this, but slapped my hand, reminding myself that today's goal was to keep it very simple.  :)  Don't you think this would look so cool on a canvas bag?  I might look into that!

30 Paintings in 30 Days: Day 13

"Friends Forever"   11" x 11" image   (mixed media)    $125
Yesterday, I hit a wall.  And I really had many life lessons in the process.  A good friend called after reading yesterday's post, and encouraged me to do what I love!  Make it fun again!  And I thought all day about deadlines, and changes.  I went to get a new cell phone and told the manager that I was really phobic about losing data from my old phone.  She told me that she used to be that way too, but now, is all about minimizing "stuff" in her life.  When it really comes down to it, what's most important?  Our family and our friends!  So, I felt like a huge weight had been lifted, and I painted a simple painting and I really enjoyed doing it!!! Yay!!   I used many deli papers that I had collaged earlier for the background.  I learned this from the Anne Bagby DVD, which is one of my favorite DVD's!  What a blast it is to make all of these papers!  I used the design from one of my 30 minute sketches that I had done many years ago.  Anyway, the moral of this story is to "do what you LOVE", and life will be good!  :)

Saturday, January 11, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days: Day 12

"Happy Feet"  watercolor    $295
This painting wasn't easy, but I'm pleased with the outcome.  I thought it looked as if he were starting to dance, so I called it, "Happy Feet".  The question I keep asking myself, is why I'm making this challenge so hard?!!  Illusionary paintings such as this one are very time consuming.  The good news is that I like it, so it wasn't 8 hours in vain.  The bad news is that I'm not enjoying the "process" when I work in pure watercolor.  I know in the back of my mind, I'm thinking about the Transparent Watercolor Society of America and that their deadline is coming up!  I hardly EVER do pure watercolor anymore, so pickings are slim, if I were to choose to enter.  For those who don't know about it, the paintings are awesome, and it's a national show.  They get close to 2000 entries and they accept only about 90, so it's always an honor to get juried into the show. I'm a signature member, and I love to make an annual trip to see the show personally.  It's held near Chicago, in Kenosha, WI.

Friday, January 10, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days: Day 11

"Time to Reflect"  (Mixed Media)  $125
Today, as I was painting this, I was thinking about how lucky we artists are, that we can call other artists and have "play days" from time to time.  My friend, Jeanne Larson came over and painted all day with me.  We made journals to start with, and it felt so good to not be painting a "real painting" for a change.  Just playing!  The design button never turns off with me, so even when I am painting journals, I still think about dominance, and repetition of colors, etc.  The point is that every now and then, it's important for us all to recharge, doing something that we love.  After journals, I found a half finished painting that I had done on Day 6, so this painting will be a companion painting for that one. Check it out!  I do that often- painting 2 small paintings at once, so that the buyer can hang them either vertically or horizontally.  It's a great sales technique too, since they look really nice side by side in a gallery setting.  So, anyway, I didn't have too much to do to finish this painting, and I liked that way the bird looks deep in thought.  What a great day we had painting!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days- Day 10

"Martini , please!"  Acrylic   $95
This is a funny painting.  I think this bird wanted a martini so bad that he had a little accident!  I laugh when I see it.  The shadow ended up looking more like a puddle, so I thought, I'll just make it abstract by putting stripes through it.  Well, that made the shine show even more!  So I thought, "it is what it is!"  Secondly, I'm not going to tell you what kind of bird this is, cuz I'm not sure what it looks like!  I collaged the top part with torn napkins, and then painted on top of them, using black acrylic.  This painting is almost all acrylic, in fact, beside the collage.  I had to put 2 olives in the martini, because I really like them!

First 9 Days- 30 Paintings in 30 Days!

"First 9 Days of 30 Paintings in 30 Days"
Leslie Saeta challenged artists to paint 30 Paintings in 30 Days, starting on January 1st.  For some reason, this has been a much harder task than last year.  Still I have always been the type to try to finish what I start. This has been fun to try to decide which bird I will do every day.  Tomorrow, it's a seagull! 
I thought many of my followers might want to learn about a fun website.  Leslie taught us how to use this last year, and I love having the ability to make my paintings into a tic tac toe format!  The website is called  You don't even have to download anything on your computer to use it.  It's free!  Thanks so much Leslie, for showing me this great website! 

30 Paintings in 30 Days- Day 9!

"Room with a View" (11" x 11" image)  $125
OK, another busy painting!  But I like it for some strange reason, especially the title.  The only thing I would change about it next time would be to use different colors.  I was trying to limit myself to only 3 colors, but I chose WN manganese blue, which is so wimpy that I really needed to add another blue, but kept to my original goal.  I used a mixture of Davinci Red Rose Deep and WN Scarlet Lake for my red, and WN New Gamboge was my yellow.  At the end, I allow myself a mixture of alizarin crimson and winsor green for the black color.  So, that brings up the question:  When is it good to be naughty and go against the RULES????  Yes!  This is pure watercolor too, so it was time consuming for the many layers.  Tomorrow, I'm going to do an easy one and try the goal, SIMPLIFY!!!  Have you heard that before???!!!  :)

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days: Day 8

"There's Something Fishy about this Pelican"  (watercolor)  11" x 11"  $125
Yesterday, I babysat my granddaughters all day, and so I didn't get a painting done till now.  Good thing I was one day ahead with this challenge.  Now, I have to play catch up!  My oldest granddaughter, Alex, is 4 1/2 years old, so she loves to do anything artistic with grandma.  I knew that I should be painting, so I talked her into painting a pelican with me.  She decided to make her pelican purple.  I sat in awe of her artwork!  So free, no worries, always loving everything that she did!  What a lesson it was for me to just take it all in!  I had the drawing from yesterday as my start today.  I decided to make it playful, like Alex was! I did another painting similar to this with my crazy ladies.  It's pictured below.  It sold right away! If you are interested in purchasing any of my paintings, just comment below.

Monday, January 6, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days- Day 7

"Bird Crossing"  (11" x 11")  Watercolor    $145
Day 7!  One week done!  And today, I got an optical migraine!  I was out when it happened, so I had to drive home with one eye closed.  I get the kind of optical migraines where there are flashing lights for about 20 minutes, and when they disappear, the headache starts.  But, if I take tylenol right when I feel it coming on, it  lessens the headache by a lot!  So, I made it home safely, and laid down for awhile, and then began what was SUPPOSED to be an EASY painting!  What happened????  Why is it that I keep making this so hard?  I see others do really easy paintings, but there's something in me that always wants to do a really good painting.  I guess that's good, as long as it doesn't kill me!  :) I named this "Bird Crossing" due to the look of a railroad crossing sign. 

Sunday, January 5, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days: Day 6

"Trying to Blend In" (11" x 11" mixed media)  $125
Six days into this challenge and I'm feeling really wiped out!  I keep trying to trick my mind by saying that I'm almost 1/3 of the way there, much like when I was learning to jog many years ago.  I wouldn't think that I could go another step, and then I'd say to myself, "Just make it to that next mailbox" and then when I made it, I'd make another bargain with myself.  Isn't that what life is?  Many little goals or bargains, that when you add them all up, they make a great big wonderful accomplishment!  This painting started out as a collage, where I randomly put pieces of collage papers, that were related in color.  Then I painted in a rich chocolate color around the collage papers.  When adding the drawing of the crow, I purposely overlapped it over part of the collage also, so it would seem invisible or ghost-like. 

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Day 5- 30 Paintings in 30 Days

"Opening Act" 
11" x 11" image, mixed media, available for $125.  Some paintings just go smoothly.  Today was one of those days.  Hey, I deserve it, after yesterday's trials!  I knew that I wanted to collage the feathers again, and decided to have the crow sticking his head into a busy section, that would repeat the patterns on his wings.  After collaging on the right, I negative painted, using acrylic so that I could make up my own pattern.  This was fun to paint from start to finish!  I named it "Opening Act" because it looks like the crow is getting ready to go on stage.

Friday, January 3, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days- Day 4

"Bird Brains"
Have you ever had "one of those days"?  Today was that day for me!  I started out the day, intending to paint not ONE, but TWO paintings, so I would be ahead of the challenge, so that when I babysit later in the week, that I could pull one out of a hat, so to speak.  Anyway, I knew what I wanted to do.  I had a PLAN.  Step one, CHECK!  Below is my sketch that I had done, using Tombow markers last year.  And I thought it would be fun to turn that into a painting. I realized that I didn't like the position of the two birds, so I changed that.
Sketch using Tombow Markers
So, I thought I would use pure watercolor for a change.  But, it had been awhile since I'd painted with ONLY watercolor, and I was definitely out of practice.  So, after 4 hours struggling, I finally looked at the painting, and realized that I needed more whites, so out came the acrylics.  Another hour later, I finally finished the painting, and decided to call it "Bird Brains", due to the fact that I felt like a bird brain myself today!  This is 11" x 11" image, and is available for $95.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days- Day 3

"Spring Fever"       
As I look at the temperature outside, here in Minnesota (below zero AGAIN), I long for Spring, so I decided to paint a robin today. I've always loved robins.  Last year, I saw hundreds of them in early Spring, all gathered together, looking at the snow as if to say, "Am I early?"   This was a sight I've never seen before, and probably won't see again.  I again used collage papers for the feathers, just like Day One of this challenge.  I also printed off quotes about birds and robins and collaged them in the light areas.  I've always been a fan of Frank Lloyd Wright, so that is why I put the line work and graphic style in the background.  It was a fun project. Again, this is 11" x 11" image and it is available for $95.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days- Day Two

"Ask for the Moon"
This painting is size 11" x 11" image and sells for $195.  I'm trying to get ahead so that on busy days, I'll have an already completed painting.  This painting was supposed to be a quickie, but it ended up taking 6 hours to complete.  I started by randomly placing collage papers on Arches Cold Press paper.  Then I drew the birds and negative painted around them, using acrylics.  This type of painting is much more comfortable for me than yesterday's painting. I don't like doing detail on the subject matter, as a rule. 

30 Paintings in 30 Days, Day One

"Cardinal's New Coat"
 Happy New Year!  My first painting of 2014!  I'm again challenging myself to 30 paintings in 30 days!  Leslie Saeta proposes this challenge every year, and I did it last year.  Check back to January of 2013 to see all of those!  This is a great way to get back into painting after taking December off for all the parties! Check out Leslie's blog to see all the many artists who are doing this challenge.  There are 360 this year!  Call me crazy, because this is no easy feat!  My series this year will be birds. I've always loved cardinals, especially in the winter when they show up so well against the snow.  This cardinal has a funky new coat!  It is available for $125, unframed.  I used a past simple shape study as my idea for the background.  It is pictured below. 
I hope you will follow along as I bring in the New Year with daily paintings.  Please comment too.  I love to hear what you think!


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