Wednesday, November 26, 2014

AEDM Day Twenty-Seven

Today I finished my homework for the last class of "Seeing" Sketchbook Skool. I'm a little sad to see it finished. I'll have to wait until January to possibly take another course, they haven't even announced what the next installment will be. I don't think I'm going to take "Storytelling" as I'm not any kind of a cartoonist and at least two of the teachers are spectacular cartoonists. Hey, if I were rolling in money, I'd buy the course just to watch those amazing artists do their work and see their sketchbooks. That's one of the most amazing things about these courses. You get a glimpse into the teacher's personal sketchbooks. They show you their favorites and sometimes even their very first sketchbook. It's such a gift to see all that personal drawing.

Our apartment building
So, I did a building. Our building, Woodgrove Pines Apartments. Obviously, the building is round. You get into the lobby through the door in the inner courtyard on the other side. You can see the tree that grows in the circular walkway in the middle of the in the inner circle courtyard. The circular nature of the building makes for interesting shaped rooms, I must say. My bedroom is pie shaped, lol. So's the kitchen. The eating nook is about three feet wider than the other end of the kitchen. It was a hoot to watch mom try to arrange the furniture in a eye pleasing way. Kind of impossible in a pie shaped house. She's a former interior decorator so this frustrated her to NO end. 

Anyway, this goes into day twenty-six of Art Everyday Month. Only four more days to go! I heard that! All of you saying FINALLY, she'll be done posting everyday. Hmmph. ;o)
Best,




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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

AEDM Day Twenty-Six

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I painted my teacup. I have to admit, I wasn't sure I could pull it off. Doing the detailed pattern study yesterday made me realize just how fiddly teacups are and I knew that the pattern on the actual teacup I'd be drawing was much smaller than the larger version I did yesterday. But, I did it. I'm happy with how it turned out. I don't think it has my style to it, i'm not a fiddly teacup kinda girl. You'd have to be a specific kind of detail person to love doing this. I can guarantee Liz Steel, our teacher from SBS is just that sort. She's an architect by trade so she sees beautiful detail in everything. I'm glad I did it though. I learned that I can. that's a good thing to learn. I'm glad I don't own any teacups that I'd want to paint though, lol.

(Both pages with teacup pattern study and actual teacup.)
Talk to you tomorrow, I'm darn sure there'll be more art. November's not over yet. (Entering this into AEDM.)
Best,




If you're looking for this week's APR just click here.

Monday, November 24, 2014

AEDM Day Twenty-Five

So this week with Liz Steel, we're learning pattern dimensions and repetition in both teacups and buildings. As I mentioned yesterday, I have no teacups. But I went online and looked up the Royal Albert pattern I used to have. It was called Jubilee Rose. That's the actual teacup on the left there. I'll be drawing that up sometime tomorrow, probably. Today, I decided to practice the main pattern that's on the front of the teacup. Strangely, I realized why I probably loved this pattern better than all the rest. It really has very little symmetry or repetitive pattern. On the plate, the three floral patterns are totally different. The colors are even different. The only discernible pattern is the six curlicues around each third of the plate. I probably unconsciously liked that about this pattern. It's kinda random and I tend to like colorful, random stuff. So, here's the pattern I worked out. Now all I have to do is learn how to make it smaller. Sheesh, it's already fiddly enough! Oh well, it's just one drawing and I'll have it done up for posterity. 

I'm entering this into AEDM
One last thing, my friend Dion Dior has just launched a new business selling her art printed on objects that you can purchase (like for Christmas gifts!) at her Society 6 shop. She's also doing a very lovely giveaway of a tote with one of her art patterns printed on it. Go here to enter! Congratulations Dion, I wish you incredible success.

Best,




If you're looking for this week's APR just click here.

AEDM Day Twenty-Four

I've had this piece half done for months now. I had done a background using both watercolors and Montana Acrylic Markers an then penciled in both the binoculars and the smart phone. But then I kinda chickened out. I mean, the pieces are black and I thought getting it all done would be daunting. I was right. When I put watercolors overtop of the markers, the paint didn't like to stick. I persevered and "forced" it to do what I wanted it to do.


I'm happy that I'm learning that even if a painting isn't working at all, that if I preservere I'll get something I'll find acceptable. I'll admit, I really had to have faith. It didn't work and kept not working for hours. Yes, hours. It was only at the last minute, when I was adding the highlights using my Sharpie white water-based paint pen that the whole thing finally came together. I actually like it now, which is good. The binoculars and smart phone I drew were given to me from my Uncle. I actually treasure them even though I don't have a use for small binoculars at the moment and the cell phone plan from Rogers is a little expensive so it's not being used. I'm still glad to have these things from him. Thanks Bob. :o)

This is being entered into AEDM. Tomorrow I'll be back to my last class in SBS, trying to watch the rest of Liz Steel's videos. Then I have to start her homework. I think it involves a teacup. What am I gonna do with that? I don't have a teacup. Not a-one. Not even a half of one, or a saucer. Nope. I have tea, both loose and bags. I have tea infusers and I have mugs. No teacups. Oh, I have a teapot. I wonder if that'll count? I think she wants us to study the detail on a teacup. The flowers, ya know? Ya. I used to have a whole, entire set of Royal Albert fine china. In fact, my set called, Jubilee Rose, was really really rare. It was a new pattern when I started collecting in 1980 and the company always promised to keep any pattern going for at least a minimum of seven years from it's inception. Well, about five years in my mom heard that the pattern had been cancelled over a year ago and and there were very few pieces left. I think mom ordered from England. She competed my twelve piece dinner set in about six weeks. 

The thing was, it was never me. The pattern was beautiful and colorful but the delicacy just wasn't me. I had even picked the pattern but delicate teacups and dishes that cannot go through a dishwasher just aren't gonna cut it for me. I finally sold the set several years ago. Funny, I probably got the same price when I sold it as mom put out for it. Maybe I'll look up a teacup and draw it for posterity. Hey, it won't be "live" but at least I can document the pretty pattern.

Anyway, I'm babbling at... eleven-thirty at night. Talk to you all tomorrow, K? Super!
Best,




If you're looking for this week's APR just click here.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

AEDM Day Twenty-Three

Art of
Tracey Fletcher King
Tracey Fletcher King is doing a very cool sale of her original art pieces over on her Official Facebook page for her art. She's selling pieces at really reasonable prices and those prices include shipping too. Here's the link.

Today, I decided to finally draw up my new slippers. My mom and my aunt Mic were out shopping and came home with the most gorgeous and soft, fluffy slippers. I had desperately needed a new pair. My old ones were literally worn through and getting a little dirty. These new slippers have a thick, foamy bottom with rubber on the sole. I absolutely love the little pom-poms on the sides. So cute! Now my tootsies are warm and insulated from the cold Canadian polar vortex that we seem to be in at the moment. 

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Have you SEEN the inundation of snow in Buffalo, USA?? Ya, that's our fault. The Canadian vortex has dipped down into the USA and dumped something like eight FEET of snow onto Buffalo. They say it's the largest snow squall that's ever been recorded in the USA. Geez, sowwies. People down there are up on their roofs, shoveling off all the snow before their roof fall in. Even worse, the temp. is about to go back to normal for this time of year and rain is expected. That'll make the snow even heavier before it melts and floods the city. Sowwies again. :o(

Anyway, I'm gonna go make a cuppa so I can get in and swim around a little. I'm kinda cold. Tomorrow is another day of art. We're almost done Art Everyday Month though. Whew!
Best,




If you're looking for this week's APR just click here.

Book Review: "Dark Digital Sky" By "Carac Allison"

I was contacted by a self published author named Carac Allison on Goodreads and asked if I'd like to review his first book. After reading the synopsis of this thriller I agreed, it sounded like it had an interesting premise. This is what Carac wrote that got me interested... 
"I love the lurid action of pulp. I love the dark urban landscape of noir. And I love hardboiled heroes. It was my affection for Chandler, Hammett, Macdonald, McBain, Thompson, Ellroy, Willeford, Leonard, Block, Pelecanos and Parker that got me writing. Four months ago I thought I’d finally broken through after a lot of years at the keyboard. A UK Publisher bought my debut thriller “Dark Digital Sky” and promised to publish it in May 2015. But a few weeks later they folded their crime imprint and voided the contracts of their crime writers." 
I was glad to hear that Mr. Allison decided to self publish and offer his book on Amazon. Good for him. I hoped that I'd find the book worth reading, it certainly had a great sounding character.

Chalk is our main character in "Dark Digital Sky". He used to be in the FBI until he flamed out in a spectacular way. He doesn't have much of a life, his wife left him, taking their son with her, he has bi-polar disorder and he tends to drink to excess when he gets depressed. He does have one thing going for him though, he is is a very successful private investigator with impressive computer skills. Chalk also has some hard won knowledge about how the most evil in our society stay hidden. He uses his knowledge of tracking psychopaths (learned and honed in his time with the FBI) to help thwart a monumentally scary terrorist who is holding the United States hostage. Chalk doesn't mean to fall into  tracking this monster, all he was doing was helping a eminently dying billionaire find the offspring he fathered years ago when he donated to a sperm bank. He wants heirs and he needs Chalk to tack down the three sons he knows were fathered through test tubes.

I give this book four stars, with reservations. The book can be a little choppy but then I think that's what it truly might be like to be a detective or an investigator. You follow leads, you learn about the person you're tracking and you come to a dead end. You start again and still, dead ends. Everything goes into the file, much of the info is probably useless in answering the questions that need answered. We are so used to watching TV where in one hour the killer is revealed. To watch an investigator go down blind alleys is frustrating but part of reality. Hopefully, as the investigation goes on and the detective follows the bouncing ball of clues, he comes across a good thread. Pulling that thread get that detective closer to the why and who and to answers. The superfluous information collected in the investigation doesn't have to lead anywhere. However, in our fast moving world, it seems redundant. Carac Allison just has to learn how to iron out the creases and make all that chasing around a little smoother.

Carac Allison is a highly capable writer. I look forward to his tweaking this character and bringing his writing into a little more focus. He has created a character that I think about after the book is over. That's exceptional. That's what other great writers do. Allison, with a little seasoning, could be a terrific new author to watch. Lets hope he finds a happy place to land with a good publishing company and gets his next dozen book published because I look forward to reading more about Chalk.
Best,




If you're looking for this week's APR just click here.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

The Artist's Play Room #133

Please scroll down for the newest Artist's Play Room Linky and enter your wonderful, creative artwork throughout this upcoming week.

If you haven't read the rules & guidelines, please go here. If you've landed here after this challenge has been completed but would like to participate in a current or future Artist's Play Room Challenge, just either click on the APR button in the sidebar or click here and you'll be taken to the latest APR Challenge!

Are you having trouble using the Mr. Linky to add your submissions to APR? Well here's some help! Just click on HELP and you'll be taken to my Linky Help Page. Cool, huh? I've got your back!

Best,




REMEMBER: APR will take a hiatus throughout December to make room for all the stuff we all have to do for Christmas!
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Friday, November 21, 2014

AEDM Day Twenty-Two

I had a really productive day today making art. In fact, I haven't even started watching the Liz Steel videos in my last class of SBS. My first page that I completed was the page beside my magnets page so I wanted whatever I drew to go with that. I decided to finally draw up the roller-skates I'd love to own again. I used to roller-skate when I was young. I was good and I loved how the wind whipped through my hair and it kept me cool as I got warmer from the exercise. I really miss that feeling. I actually wore out my pair of skates, the metal between the wheels broke in half. Just too many hours of use I guess.

My next page was used to draw up the pool I dream about. The other exercise I used to love as a child was swimming. I was a fish in another life. I used to do laps, back and forth for hours on end. My relatives and friends thought I was nuts. Why didn't I play in the pool like other kids? I loved the water over my skin and the repetitive movement of my limbs. I'd love to own an Endless Pool. They're compact so will fit in almost any backyard. You can even get a treadmill in the bottom for doing water aerobics. My mom would love that! The best part is the jets that move the water so you swim agains current. I dream of swimming like most people dream of flying.

My final page was really a practice page. On the Sketchbook Skool advertising page there's a piece of art by one of the teachers (I don't know who). I loved the look and I wanted to see if my skills with watercolors had improved enough so I could pull off doing this kind of landscape. I love how it turned out and I'll use this knowledge when I do my own landscapes.

That's it for today. I'll be entering all this into AEDM. We're nearing the end of the journey through November. I'm so glad I already have a plan to continue my own challenge. I wouldn't want to get bored, right? Talk soon. GOD, I need a coffee... and some chocolate wouldn't hurt either. ;o)
Best,




If you're looking for this week's APR just click here.

AEDM Day Twenty-One

Pens as first page in my Moleskine sketchbook
Holy Cow, so much art, so many days, lol. We're all making it through though. Today I did my final piece (for now) in Andrea Joseph's style. It's in my new sketchbook Moleskine that I'll be using for my Art Challenge that I'm starting December first.
By the way, if you are shopping for an artist in your life or even just someone who loves amazing art, Andrea is having an amazing little sale on her Etsy shop. Go look, you'd get her book and a whole lot of other goodies. This ends our commercial portion of this post. (I am not compensated by Ms. Joseph, I just love her work and want to share it with everyone I can, kinda like finding a new author, lol.)
The newest and last class for Sketchbook Skool just started about ten minutes ago. I'm kinda sad that this is the last seven days of learning. I've loved both "Beginnings" and "Seeng". I can't wait to see what the next class they're making now is. Liz Steel is this week's teacher and I'm sure to learn a lot.

This is being entered into AEDM.
Best,




If you're looking for this week's APR just click here.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

AEDM Day Twenty

Quote by PICASSO
Quick post. I'll be doing a version of Brenda Swenson's seventy-five day Challenge starting the beginning of December. Yep, I'll be doing art everyday through Christmas for at least three months. I know that seventy-five days is less than three months but my new Moleskine sketchbook has 104 pages, soooo... You see where I'm going. I can't imagine not finishing the sketchbook. Since I've done AEDM for the past month (or I will have done when November ends), I'll have done art for about one hundred and thirty days after my new Moleskine is full. WOW, that's a lot of art. I'll definitely have a habit after all that time.

Here are the rules I'm gonna use. Brenda's rules are:
  1. NO pencil
  2. ONLY blue or black pen
  3. Draw EVERYDAY
  4. DRAW anything you want, just draw
  5. DON'T quit for 75 days
My rules will be:
  1. Use ANY media you want, including watercolors
  2. Draw EVERYDAY
  3. DRAW anything you want, just draw.
  4. LEARN to use less pencil (so by the end of one hundred days you can go pencil-free)
  5. DON'T quit for at least 75 days
  6. FINISH your new Moleskine sketchbook before you stop
So, the art above is the start of my new Moleskine for the Challenge. I'll be back in a few minutes with tomorrow's art. I have to finish it first, lol. ;o)

Talk very soon...
Best,




If you're looking for this week's APR just click here.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

AEDM Day Ninteen

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This is my final homework for Andrea Joseph's class in SBS. I absolutely loved the process of doing this drawing. I used a Faber-Castell Pit pen in sepia for the shading. Much of the other small details were done using Pentel Slicci micro point pens. I had all these gel-type pens that I'd really never used so now I have a whole new set of art materials to work with. I have to admit though, after four days without watercolors, I miss them. I can see myself working ballpoint drawings into my art now though.

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These are vintage magnets that have been sitting on my fridge, holding all my grocery lists and odd pieces of paper for years. I knew exactly what I wanted to do when Andrea told us that our homework was to do a collection drawing. I actually have several collection drawings that I want to do and now that this turned out better than expected, I'm looking forward to doing these other drawings. it's intensive work, this took me all day, almost twelve hours (minus time for lunch, dinner and bathroom breaks, that is). 

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I'll be putting this into AEDM on Leah's blog. I can't believe it's been nineteen days already. It gives me hope that I'll be able to complete the Brenda Swenson seventy-five day challenge of art everyday. Although, I've realized that I won't be strict about the rules of only black or blue pen. With Andrea's class using ballpoints and being without watercolors for almost a week, I realized there's NO WAY I could go seventy-five days without using color. 

Now, many would say that I should do a
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small piece of black and white art then do something with watercolor as a second piece if I want to. But, see, I make sloooooowwwww art. What may take many fifteen to twenty minutes, probably takes me over an hour so there's not much chance of fitting in several pieces a day, especially over Christmas. I think the point I'm taking from the challenge is to do art everyday for at least seventy-five days. I'll probably be doing many more days as my Moleskine Sketchbook has 104 pages. ;o)


Talk tomorrow? Yes? Great! ... now I gotta go stalk a cuppa before I die of caffeine denial.
Best,




If you're looking for this week's APR just click here.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

AEDM Day Eighteen

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Another quote using Andrea Joseph's handwriting technique, which I LOVE. This one is from my very favorite author, Robert A. Heinlein. He's one of the fathers of science fiction writing along with Isaac Asimov and Arthur C. Clarke. I love how Heinlein thinks so, of course, I'd love the quotes he produced when he was alive. This is one of my favorite...
"Women and cats will do as they please, men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea."
I decided to embellish this quote with some simple dog and cat things. Just a fun and simple page. Hope you like it, sorry about the photograph, it's nearly impossible to get a good pic of a double page layout from my watercolor Moleskine, it's just TOO wide. Oh, and if you want to see yesterday's quote, it's here.

Heinlein quote
Tomorrow I'll be doing a very complicated collection drawing for the Sketchbook Skool course. My final homework for Andrea Joseph. It's gonna take hours and hours to finish. We'll see if I get any finished art up tomorrow, it may be half done, lol. We'll see. Talk to you later, everyone! (thanks for all the great comments, btw, I really appreciate all the love.)
Best,




If you're looking for this week's APR just click here.
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