Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Sketchbookery

The final pages of my current sketchbook are filling up and it's nearly time to put the book away and start a'fresh in a new one! Despite the somewhat lousy paper inside (I think it was made with writing paper--which means that many sketches in the beginning of the book are badly smudged and smeared, leaving me no other choice but to paste in good drawing paper for sketching in the latter half of the book), it's served me well over the past year.
I sketched this coral branch in graphite and then tinted it with red acrylic ink for an old tinted lithograph look. A wash of walnut ink surrounds it.For my new sketchbook, I snatched up one of these (the landscape-style book) from Dick Blick:
I'm a sucker for landscape-style sketchbooks, so it will be nice to once again be drawing away in one. Can't wait for the new year!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

It's The Little Things

What a wonderfully quiet and relaxing Christmas. My family had mutually decided last month to do a really low-key Christmas this year. No presents or last-minute shopping trips. No stressful extended family dinners. I must say, it was great. I had my mom over for a fondue dinner at my place, which was delicious *and* fun. Kinda perfect, if you ask me.

Though, my mom cheated a little on the "no gift" rule and bought me a gift anyway (sheesh!). I've been searching for a new painting desk for well over a year now. For the past four years, I've been painting in my living/dining room and while I've gotten by just fine, it was definitely high-time to move all painting operations into a separate room. Mainly so I could have a dining table again that isn't covered (and boy, do I mean covered) in paint and works-in-progress.

I gave up trying to find a simple, affordable, and chic desk months ago. But my mom found one on overstock.com for a bargain and snatched it up for me last month. I *love* it. Now I can paint in my studio and have a messy-free living/dining room again. Yay! Thanks, Mom!
Since the new year is almost upon us, I also took it upon myself to re-do the inspiration cork board.The biggest change? Black paint. Wow, am I glad I did that. Such a simple thing and yet it really does make a big difference. I just used a satin enamel black paint from the hardware store and it did the trick nicely. One layer on the cork was all it took (and any smudges that got on the laminate frame were easily wiped off with a rag).It's the last week of 2009! Wow!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Endangered

Howdy, gang!After months of work, my pieces are all set for the Seattle show, aptly titled "Endangered"! I'm pretty excited. It's a 3-person show with fellow artists Kevin Margitich and Berry Holz and is entirely themed around endangered animals. How perfect is that?
The paintings I created for it resemble a sort of odd collection of rare and endangered (and in one case, already extinct) species--numbered and exhibited like coveted additions to a traveling side show curiosity museum. Most of the pieces are tiny (only 3.5x5") which I think also greatly emphasizes the fragility of the natural world.The show will run January 2nd-31st at Bluebottle Art Gallery in Seattle. And I just received word that the "Preview Show" is up and posted online for VIP gallery mailing list recipients and...you, of course! Click here to check it out for yourself. All pieces are marked for sale and are very affordable (most being around $100). If you are interested in a piece, you can purchase directly online or contact the gallery for more info. A good way to spend cash Santa happens to give you for the holidays...

Christmas is only days away, which is crazy to me. I feel like December whipped right past me before I could even realize it. I don't have any holiday plans so far, though my mom is coming over for snacking, conversing, and
Gl├╝hwein drinking on Christmas Eve. Very low-key, which is how I prefer the holidays.

If I don't pop in before Friday, I just want to wish each of you a wonderful holiday too and a very happy Christmas!

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Tree. Ornaments. And All The Hullabaloo.

December is always crazy time.

While many folks have been out and about, hitting the malls, fighting over parking spaces, and all that jazz....I've been delightfully holed up in my little home. Painting, drawing, making a few gifts, feeding the backyard birdies, and setting up the tree. I had to trek to the city today to pick up some much-needed gesso and after two hours of fighting the traffic and crazy people, I was quite glad to get back to my quaint and quiet town.

I snapped a few shots of my little tree and a bunch of new additions to the quirky ornament collection:
I think this robot and jellyfish are my two favorites for this year. The 'bot was spied in a small shop here in town and, me being me, I could not resist a glass robot ornament. The glass jellyfish I snatched up from a recent zoo trip. I think I may have squealed a little when I first saw it.A German handmade wooden crocodile (with stopwatch!) from Leavenworth, WA. The gal sitting on a glitzy moon was handmade by the ever-amazing Very Merry Fairies.Teensy glass acorn and birdy made in Poland and bought in Leavenworth for mere pennies.An oldie but a goodie--a Beatles ornament I made years ago from a toilet paper tube. Also, a recently rediscovered Han Solo ornament that had been hiding out in a box of all my old Star Wars geekiness. Han, you do my tree proud.

And here's some tree shots:
I hope you are all doing well during this busy time of year!