Thursday, January 21, 2010

Stormy Weather

It's been awhile since I was at the the Oregon Coast in real stormy weather, but last Sunday night we had a rip-roarin' storm with tons of rain and gusts to 70 mph!  We took the dogs out in the afternoon, and our little Manzanita town was empty.  Streets were deserted since many were walking on the beach, watching the huge waves, and running their dogs before the storm rolled in after sunset.
Rick and I hunkered down in the house with our "his and hers" flashlights and tons of candles nearby, just in case.  It was so great to have some quiet time after the craziness of the holidays to paint, read a good book, and enjoy the peace and quiet of the Oregon winter. I feel so blessed to live in an area with such beauty.
We had the wood stove going in case we had to cook our provisions for the weekend.  No, it's not the fake Yule Log Christmas shot- we were ready to roll for coffee, tea or soup on a moment's notice LOL.
We were driving north on Hwy. 101 when we suddenly saw a herd of elk walking on the side of the highway! Traffic stopped in both directions for pictures!  Most drivers didn't mind the wait...
We survived the Sunday night storm, even though the winds were so strong that I feared we'd end up in Kansas. We left town on the Monday MLK Holiday just as a series of storms were headed to the Oregon Coast. Below, a shot of Haystack Rock at Cannon Beach. It's hard not to love the quiet beauty of an Oregon winter.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Watercolor Journey - cards

I found some blank postcards for painting that are actually a perfect size for a greeting and miniture watercolor.  I always have a hard time finding greeting cards to send.  I will often stand reading the Hallmark offerings in the racks and finding them too sappy or psudo funny, and end up leaving without a purchase.  I was inspired to paint some greetings when I had thank you's to write and birthday cards to send. 

I'm loving using artist quality paints, rather than the student grade that had been in my art bag. 

The colors are much richer than the wimpy ones I was getting before. See below:

It' always fun to have my Kannie cat helping out.  She tries to contribute to my art projects by laying on the colorwheel!  Note that isn't a mirage that you're seeing. It really is a Christmas Tree in the room in the middle of January.  When I suggest taking it down, Dear Husband says "Oh let's leave it up another night!"  And so it goes....

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Watercolor Journey - warm and cool

A lot has happened on my artful journey since I posted on watercolor painting last summer.  I was surprised at how many people were interested  in my post and in keeping a watercolor journal of their own.  I thought it might be interesting to my blog readers if I shared tips from my classes, and my neophyte paintings. I'm convinced that anyone can paint.  You just have to silence your inner 'critical voice' and do something often-everyday is best, even if it's just a small sketch.  The good thing about watercolor is that it's very portable.  You can take a small sketchbook and paint tin with you anywhere.

I signed up for another class this term and the instructor showed us how you can make a whole pallet from 'warm' and 'cool' shades using three colors.  Six paint tubes total.

Yellow:  (warm)  New Gamboge
               (cool)   Hansa Yellow   

Red:       (warm)  Pyrrol Red 
                (cool)   Quinacridone Red

Blue:       (warm) Ultramarine Blue
                (cool)  Phthalo Blue

Santa brought me a gift certificate from the art supply store, so I was able to splurge on some supplies. However,  it was nice to know that if you want to get started without a huge investment, you can start out with six tubes of paint. I was using student grade paints, and both of my recent instructors pointed out that if I was really serious about taking up watercolor it would be a lot less fustrating if I invested in a higher quality paint like Daniel Smith, Winsor Newton or Holbein, so...  The other thing, is to fill up your paint space and not meter out droplets, or as one instructor said "No rat turds!" LOL

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Gray Days

I got a call from a friend yesterday saying that she'd visited my Blog and since I hadn't posted in a while, she wanted to see what I was up to! Ah, technology!  Well, all I can say is that living in Oregon, many of us hibernate in winter! Think of endless wet and gray days and you you just are grateful if you have lots of interests or a fun job to keep you busy. No point in wasting time waiting for the sun to shine!

Every time I step outside, it seems there's a deluge!

Poor Molly and Lulu.  Everytime I walk near my purse, or the front door, they lift their heads, as if to
say "Is it time  for a walk yet?"

Friday, January 01, 2010

Happy New Year!

Wishing everyone a year of peace, prosperity, good health and happiness in 2010!