Playing With Mud and Cows

Who doesn’t like to play in mud? Probably lots of people, but I found a YouTube video and couldn’t resist gathering the supplies to play in my own mud. Sheetrock mud.

I gathered leaves, kitchen gadgets, buttons, a doily ( my IQ seems to drop at least ten points when I say that word out loud), and other odd items. I was looking at hinges on a door to use, but thought that might be going a bit too far. My husband is very patient, but even I would feel a bit sheepish explaining why the door was on the floor (…and would you please help me put it back?) Maybe I could find hinges without a door attached…

Here is a photo of the textures I created. The dribble of black was from an old library stamp. I forgot to clean the ink off first. It all gets covered with paint.

Sheetrock mud fun

Sheetrock mud on masonite

I’ll post again when they are painted.

Very few people know I carry a secret fondness for cows. Not “country” cows, but real dairy and meat cows. I’ve actually had my husband stop the car to take photos of cows. See, I told you he is patient. Here are some Alaska cows to brighten your day:

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                                                    “Pastoral Care”

A Reason to Sketch

Some people knit, some hike, some read, some play golf. I sketch. I sketch for pleasure, but I also sketch to connect with my surroundings and unwind. For those who are just beginning to sketch, it might not be that way for you yet, but give yourself a break. The first days of learning to ride a bike aren’t mindless, are they? But after you get the hang of it, you are able to take in your surroundings and the bike is part of the experience. So too with sketching.

My husband and I hit the golf course on Friday. The snow and ice haven’t been gone long, but it was warm and sunny and the leaves were just coming out. Lots of spring noises and smells. For the record, I don’t golf. I can’t remember the difference between a bogey and a birdie. It’s hard enough to keep track of the innings. I walk or ride along and sketch. It isn’t fair for the golfers to keep those awesome views to themselves.

Golf 1

The greens were quite yellow. I considered fiddling with them later to add variety, but I decided to opt for the freshness of the moment.

Golf 2

Why should golfers only see this view? This took less than five minutes, then I hurry and catch up to my husband while it dries.

Sketching and Cooking

I found this fun website of artists illustrating recipes. I entered a contest where the artist illustrates one ingredient used in three simple recipes. I got my entry in twenty minutes before the deadline. I’d like to have you think this is unusual for me. Here is my entry:

Carrots Times Three

                                                             Carrots Times Three

Our family loves carrots and Alaska’s are fabulous.

Illustrating recipes is so much fun. In fact, I’m planning on creating twelve of these and giving them to my daughters-in-law for Christmas using Blurb or some other site that prints books. That might mean I need to plan ahead a bit. Maybe a little more than twenty minutes. Please feel free to print this for your own use, but please, don’t share, post, or sell the image. Share this blog site all you want.

More Facebook Friends sketches coming. I’m looking at a photo of the most lovely farm. It’s almost finished.

Here is the website with the contest: They Draw And Cook

Sketching Facebook Photos-Stalking in a Good Way

I must have a stalker’s heart. My Facebook friends post photos which only tempt me to see more. More of that road trip. More of that family (oh, look! they have twins too!) More of that building project. More of those crazy pets. Some of those images reached out and grabbed me by the leg. Well, sort of. They spoke to me in one way or another. Usually it is the lighting in a photo that catches my eye. If it makes me catch my breath, it goes in the file. I’m not going to tell you what images are there, but judging by the contents, I’m eclectic.

This is the first one. My friend, Heather, feeds all sorts of birds. I’m jealous that she has Stellar Jays. She is only a hundred miles and a mountain range away, but those jays don’t live near us.

Stellar Jay Watercolor

Stellar Jay Watercolor

She feeds them from her hand and captured that expression with her camera. How could I not paint this handsome dude? I’m a sucker for electric blue eyebrows.

The next painting is on my painting table. I’m going to send a photo of the painted image to the “owner” and wait for a response. This one has to look just right or it is all wrong. Oh, to be a fly on the wall…

Stay tuned…

Sketching a Lake Before Freeze-up

The lakes in interior Alaska have begun to freeze and the swans are getting ready to take the last flight out before their feet freeze in the ice. I stopped at Eureka Summit and sketched part of the Chugach Range. I could have used two more pieces of paper in this panorama to sketch what I was looking at through the windshield. Snow hasn’t fallen on lower elevations. The colors are from dry grasses and leaves.

Eureka Summit- Mile 130 Glennallen Highway, Alaska

Eureka Summit Mile 130 Glennallen Highway, Alaska

I’m going to post sketches available for sale on this blog and they can be purchased using PayPal. Message me if you are interested. The price will be in the title or it will be marked sold.

On Saturday I took four children to a birthday party fifty miles from our house. After I dropped them off, I escaped to a quiet lake nearby and sketched this view. A gentle breeze was blowing and birds were flitting about in the trees. It was marvelous.

Lake at Mile 143, 7" x 9" $50.00

Lake at Mile 143, 7″ x 9″watercolor/pen $50.00 (postage paid)

Autumn in Alaska

Snow is creeping down the mountains in the North as the earth tips away from the sun. I find myself leaning toward the equator. Mornings are stunning this time of year as the golden aspen leaves sing against the brilliant blue sky.

Anthracite Ridge

Anthracite Ridge, behind our house.

Our greenhouse produced lots of beautiful tomatoes this year. I brought this clump in and sketched them. A red tomato just glows, doesn’t it? I didn’t try to stay in the lines with this one. It sits contentedly in my sketchbook, but I’ll carefully cut it out if you would like it. For sale here, on my Etsy site.

The last tomatoes from our greenhouse.

“How Do You Like Them Tomatoes?” 7″ x 9″ watercolor

Sketching the Change of Season

The Sketch Project was quite an accomplishment and your kind words of encouragement helped so much. Thank you for cheering me on. The sketches will be on display in Cape Town, South Africa during the month of October. They will return to Alaska, then finally land in Kihei, Hawaii where the buyer lives. Amazing how such a piece of art can get around.

Seeing that I was able to sketch every day with such great response, I’ve decided to sell one sketch a week. I haven’t done this before and I will admit I’m a bit nervous. I’m not nervous about sketching, but the commitment of getting the image up for sale on a regular basis. It isn’t really that big of a deal if I look at it one sketch at a time, so with that confession, I’ll show you this week’s sketch. This is an original and I’m not planning on making prints because that is a commitment I don’t even want to look at right now. Here is the link to my Etsy store if you would like to purchase it. I’m going to put it on Facebook tomorrow, but I wanted to give my blog friends first opportunity. I’m going to keep the cost low on these because I want you to have a chance to buy them and it will motivate me to sketch and sketch.

"South Fork Sketch" 5" x 8.5" original watercolor and ink sketch

“South Fork Sketch” 5″ x 8.5″ original watercolor and ink sketch

The leaves are turning and some have blown off the trees. Last week I took this photo.

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