22 July 2017

a proud lion (?)


This sculpture we drive by in College Station, on the campus of Texas A & M, reminds me of a lion. From some angles, it looks like a simple pile of cut stones. But the two views I drew are more lion-like.

This handbound sketchbook was made by my dear friend Kate (aka Cathy Johnson) and has several types of paper in it. This toned paper is probably Stonehenge. I used a Pentel pocketbrush pen and gouache in the upper sketch, and a purplish brown water-soluble ink I mixed myself in the lower sketches, teasing out a bit of wash with a waterbrush.

The pretty bookmark to the right was also made by Kate: she repurposed a larger sketch by cutting it into bookmarks. I love how the colors repeat in the paper and cover of this journal!

09 July 2017

shadow play


As I looked at Bill's Bible and coffee cup in our discipleship class at church this morning, the multiple-direction shadows caught my eye . . . so I drew the Bible and cup with a Pentel Pocketbrush pen and lightly penciled in the shadows to paint later at home. 

This handbound sketchbook has two tones of paper in this spread, requiring a bit of white gouache. A few years ago I put together this "shadow and highlight" kit, made from an empty proxy-brush container. It holds half-pans of a dark blue (ultramarine or indanthrone?) and burnt umber watercolors, and some white gouache --- handy for just adding a bit of shadow to an ink sketch, or to recover a bit of white highlight to a watercolor. Or for toned paper like this.

05 July 2017

pain free at last!


Since January, Bill has had two neck surgeries --- one from the front to remove two discs blocking the spinal fluid, fusing bone grafts in their place, and a second one from the back, creating more room for the nerve in that area which was being poked by a bone spur. Following the second surgery, he went through many weeks of physical therapy to restore strength and movement to his right arm, which has experienced major pain for 3 1/2 years.

Released from therapy, his arm strength and mobility returning, Bill still had a lot of pain in his arm. So back to the surgeon for more tests . . . They think that the bone spur had poked so long at the nerve (which now has plenty of space away from the spur) that the nerve had been damaged. It can heal __slowly__ so in the meantime, they made an appointment for him with Pain Management. Which would be a nearly two-month wait to get in. So the nurse said "just a minute while I walk down the hall" (where the Pain Management office is). She came back and said "they will see you right NOW."

She must have told them how long he has suffered with this --- and not only evaluated his situation; they went ahead and gave him a spinal injection right then and there! Between that and this new prescription, his nerve should have time to fully heal . . . a Pain Free time! We are praising God for giving Bill favor and relief, and for the doctor and technicians who gave up their lunch hours for him.

04 July 2017

two wee gnomes


Last week I drew two green men who hang on an old live oak tree at the Antique Rose Emporium in Independence, TX. At the base of that same tree lives a village of wee gnomes; here are two of them tending their nasturtiums.

01 July 2017

Lion of Judah


Today I drew this for a close friend . . . He asked me if I would draw one for him around 1 1/2 years ago, after he saw an ink sketch from one of my journals, dated November 2015.


Did I mention how good I can be at procrastinating?

29 June 2017

two green men


These two green men inhabit an ancient live oak tree in the garden of the Antique Rose Emporium in Independence, Texas. And as spell-check just reminded me, I mis-spelled it 'Independance' on the sketchbook page. Oh, well . . .

24 June 2017

Bardie bits


No, Bardie does not hold still for me to sketch him; I drew these from phone snapshots . . .

19 June 2017

random toys


This week we have three grandkids visiting us, meaning there really isn't much focused sketching going on. But I managed to draw a few random toys . . .
(The bluish cast is from taking this photo in afternoon light on our shaded patio. It's actually drawn on one of my favorite papers, Fabriano Artistico soft press, in natural white.)

16 June 2017

a real tea cup and saucer!


As we ate a wonderful breakfast at the Heritage Sunday House bed & breakfast, I laughed because I was finally drinking my morning tea from an actual tea cup and saucer. At home, I drink tea from large mugs. Diane heard me and said we needed to take care of that --- she told me to choose whatever tea cup and saucer I liked in her antique shop, and it would be a wedding anniversary gift to me! I chose this cream-colored set made in England with figures that look like 18th century etchings. Now I can drink my tea in style!

For many years, I have loved other sketchbook artists' sketches of their tea cups -- especially Liz Steel's impressive collection of tea cups! I love how quick and loose Liz's tea cup sketches look! Typical to my own habits, I spent a lot more time on this sketch but I had fun doing it.

15 June 2017

Heritage Sunday House


Nearly 3 weeks ago, after renewing our wedding vows, we went to the Heritage Sunday House, a charming bed & breakfast in Burton, Texas. Built in 1914, the house was once a Sunday Haus, a weekend home for German farmers / ranchers who lived too far from town to drive in for church services. They would travel to town on Saturday, get their shopping done, stay overnight to attend church on Sunday, then take the long drive home.

The innkeeper, Diane, became a friend immediately --- a lovely, gracious lady of German heritage whose family settled in the area. She also found out that I was a sketcher --- she had been wanting to find someone to draw some art for her brochures, as well as for note cards to sell. So apparently I have an art commission! Next door to the house sits an old dance hall, now housing Diane's antique shop. She invited me to sell my work there as well --- I laughed and said I'd have to actually do something outside of my sketchbooks first! But this opportunity has challenged me to move forward with my art. 


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