Thursday, January 31, 2013

Just Because

I figured out what I did wrong with the little "Step By Step" video of the owl on coffee stained paper. So, today, keeping it short, here is the video.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Morning Brew

I had a lot of response from posting the coffee stained pastel of the falcon on some of the facebook group pages. So, today will be a quick step by step on coffee staining. I did do some more research and did not find much. The best I can determine is that it came along with marbling paper. I would image tea staining was first, since paper originated from China & Japan.

For both tea or coffee, you can brew up tea, make regular or instant coffee and just pour, brush or splatter it over your paper. The technique I use includes the grounds.
Owl pastel on coffee stained Rives BFK paper

Add caption
Start with your morning brew, take the coffee grounds and what ever coffee may be left...

 You can literally throw it onto the paper, drop it on, spread it on, then squeeze the whole filter to have a few odd drops, you can add a little coffee if there is some left or a few drops of water on the filter and squeeze.

Leave the paper to dry, then just shake off the grounds, brush as needed...
rinse under running water - both sides
Lay flat to dry
As it nears completely dry I place it between blotters or newsprint, weight it down over night. By the next morning it should be nice and flat. Do not leave it between blotters for more then a day it could mold.

Falcon pastel on coffee stained Rives BFK paper

Good Luck, enjoy, would love to see what you create!
Coyote pastel on coffee stained Rives BFK paper

Tuesday, January 29, 2013


I had posted the falcon on some of the pastel groups yesterday. Which generated lots of questions on staining paper. So, that made me think who first started doing stained paper? Is there a history to staining paper? I usually do a quick research before I write my blogs but this time all I came up with was How To's...not what I wanted. There are lots of techniques/styles out there but I just wanted a little background information to start with. So, I will do more research later, see if the google-gods are any friendlier and let me find what I am looking for, until then I will leave you with the box turtle and dragonfly. Not sure what the title will be yet, if you have any thoughts please share.

Tomorrow, maybe, I will have a little more info on the history & techniques for staining paper.
Box Turtle with Dragonfly - pastel on paper

Monday, January 28, 2013

Paper Work

Paper Work - working on paper - going through receipts - doing tax stuff - getting finished works ready to frame...all of this is paper work. I work on and with paper, as many know I make paper and use handmade papers for my pastels. So, when I say I have to do paperwork it may not always be the same thing that most people mean.

This week will have all of those paper works. I will spray several works this afternoon. I am 95% finished with the Box Turtle with Dragonfly that I was working on yesterday. People often ask how long did it take you to do that - well 2 movies worth yesterday plus couple other days here & there, along with today, adding in framing, not to forget taking the original photograph and thinking about took awhile.

Off and on this week I need to buckle down and enter all my tax stuff on the computer, the business end of art. Need to follow up with art galleries and customers. Making phone calls and delivering art. Wednesday I work at the AAA gallery from 10 - 5 so if you are in the area drop by say hi. I usually bring something to demonstrated while I am there, more paper work.

Here are a couple small pieces I did this past week, hope tomorrow to have finished box turtle.

"Cat with Attitude" pastel - SOLD at Auction this weekend

Coyote - pastel on coffee stained paper

Falcon - pastel - I did him this passed Sept. in mixed medium for auction in OR like it so much decide to try in pastel on coffee stained paper. I think I may end up doing a larger pastel/charcoal of him.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Fuzzy Socks

I am planning today to be a Fuzzy Socks kind of day - It has been raining here in AZ, a bit cooler then normal, another cold front is moving through. The good side of this winter weather is spring should be amazing. A little rain in AZ goes a long way. So, with a chill in the air, fuzzy socks, coffee in the morning, hot tea in the afternoon, maybe put in an old movie and set up my drawing area.

The cats are usually not thrilled with this kind of day - other then I am home but I am working. Which means I have a drawing board set up on my lap. They feel the lap should be their space. But, I am looking forward to finishing up the box turtle I started this week.

Fuzzy Socks & Whisper

Whisper trying to figure out if that cat will open the door and let him out???

Cat with Attitude - donated to the Friends for Animal Care & Control auction

Rain in AZ - when it rains - it pours

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Two Fold

Okay everyone need your help with this - I am doing lots of new things this year. I generally don't enter contests but why not give it a shot. Plus, the Super Bowl is coming up so my image of the Ravens is right on point! Who's Got Who is entered in Arizona Art Supply Contest and is supporting the Baltimore Ravens in the Super Bowl - I am still connected to the east coast and always will be so got to support the home team...not that I am a big sports person but still home team spirit.

Anyway, if you would be so kind as to vote for me I have the chance of winning $250.00 in art supplies, or other prizes. Go to Facebook and if we are friends already you will see the Ravens, just click on the AZ Art Supply link and vote for me, just clicking the Like button does not count as a vote. So go the extra step and click that link.

While you are on Facebook if you see the Quail he is entered in The Art List artists of the month contest. This is also two-fold as there is the popular vote part of it and they do a selection based on your work and web site. So, just click on the Quail and hit the vote button.

Thanks to everyone that has already voted and thank you to those that I know will vote for me. And you thought politicking was over. Which reminds me on the Quail you can vote every day, so go back often.

Who's Got Who - The Dangers of Love Contest AZ Art Supply

Quail - Artist of the Month - The Art List

Friday, January 25, 2013

Tucson Arts

This week my friend and fellow artist, Karen Budan, took a day trip down to Tucson. We wanted to explore the art galleries of Tucson. From our research we found that the main grouping of galleries were along Skyline and Campbell. So, that was our focus for the day.

Our first stop: Jane Hamilton Fine Arts, a nice space, much of the work was realism a strong focus on women in art by women, still life works, printmaking ( woodcuts & etchings) and some painted small wood furniture pieces.
Just down the street is a alcove with several galleries together. The one that I enjoyed the most was Settlers West Gallery, a good amount of southwest art, but they were in the process of hanging a mini show that opens in February. The pieces were around 8x10, the images included, landscapes, still life and animals. Thinking about going back to check it out once it is all hung. The space was much larger then it appeared from the outside, tucked back in adobe style building.
Around the corner from that little alcove are more galleries that face the street. One of which was Madaras Gallery, most of the work is paintings by Diane Madaras, bright, colorful realistic images with a impressionist touch. She has visiting artist come in and show to the side gallery. Susan Wechsler was that artist, she works in mosacic and had created some glass pieces that were inspired by Diane's paintings. Susan is best known for her Shrines. I took a couple pictures of her work with her permission.
The last space we visited was a Steinway Piano store & gallery. It is a large open space with 2 & 3 D work. Nice work, quite space, one artist I enjoy was Renee Vance. The works that caught my eye were birds with gold leaf incorporated in the paintings.
Next time you are in Tucson, check out these spaces. Let me know what you find.

Susan Wechsler at Madaras Gallery

Renee Vance work at Steinway Piano & Gallery

Thursday, January 24, 2013

The Art of Giving

There is a Art Show & Silent Auction this Saturday, January 26th at the Community Center in Scottsdale Ranch, 100th & Shea Blvd., Scottsdale, AZ. The last few years I had been part of the show and donated works of art for the silent auction.

This past July I taught a workshop for pastels at McDaniel College during the Common Ground on the Hill Event. Two of my students were happy to use some of the photo references I had brought from the AZ Animals Care & Control Org. This was to be one of the charities for the silent auction. I explained why I had these pictures and if they would like to donate the works for the show it would be greatly appreciated.

The two women who created work to donate are: Katherine LaPietra from MI and Sheila Chandler from VA. I have created two pieces to donate too. It is a good cause and since my main focus of art is animals it seemed the natural thing to do. Even though I am not doing the show this year I committed to donate works for the show. And as they say, the show must go on...

If you are local I hope you can stop by and see the artists works on display. Maybe find something you love, bid on one of the pieces at the auction and remember that the artists gave their work to help raise money for these charities, please give from your heart.

Thank you, Katherine & Sheila for giving your time and art for this cause.
Dogs & Cat by Linda HP - graphite

Cat by Sheila Chandler - pastel

Dog by Katherine LaPietra - pastel

For additional information on the show & charity here are the web sites:

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Step by step

For some reason this reminds me of some old movie scene - slowly he turns, step by step, inch by inch...But, that kind of describes how I work, slowly, a step at a time, an inch at a time. Working mainly in pastels, you have to be aware of how you hold your hand, rest your arm. Depending on if you work left or right handed may determine where you start your painting/drawing.

I worked on a screech owl this past week. It is a small piece, 5X7. I had made up some coffee stained paper and thought his colors would work nicely. I do a general pencil sketch to work out the dimensions, then start at the top and work my way down. I lay in dark's, under colors, with birds I then add a layer of white, go back into it with detail work using browns, blues and blacks. Final touches of white and blacks. I use stick pastels, medium hard for under painting and soft for finishing accents. Pastel pencils and charcoal pencils, both black & white, create the fine lines.

I tried to add a step by step video but after 3 tries I must be doing something wrong and will have to revisit this another day. Until then here is the finished piece.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Sunday - a moment of nature

It has gotten to be routine that I watch CBS Sunday Morning. I love that they end the show with a moment of nature.

So today, I am going to head out for a walk in nature, nothing that grand, just a simple walk. When I return I will go back to the studio and tomorrow more on what I have been doing in the studio.

Till then here are some favorite moments in nature.








Thursday, January 17, 2013

Never to late

Just found out that January is National Bald Eagles Month. Need to start making a list of all these special things that happen each month. I have been lucky to see bald eagles in the wild and up close in rescue centers. They are amazing, when you see them so high in the sky you do not realize how large they are, how powerful yet they were almost lost to us.

1782 - Bald Eagle became our nations symbol
1940 - Bald Eagle Protection Act was passed
1966 - Endangered Species Preservation Act - 1967 Bald Eagles were listed
1972 - DDT banded
1973 - Endangered Species Act - Bald Eagle was listed in lower 48 states
1995 - Bald Eagle went from endangered to threatened
2007 - Bald Eagle was removed from lists

In 1963 the lower 48 states had a count of 400 nesting pairs of eagles. By 2007 the count was up to 10,000 nesting pairs.

Bald Eagles can be seen all over North America. In West Virginia there is a web cam set up by the National Conservation Training Center with a nesting pair. Each spring there are babies.

Check out this web site to find out more about eagles, the nest location, map and link to the web cam.

Majestic - pastel - linda

Taking Flight - pastel - linda

North Country Sentinel - scratchboard - Marilu

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

See Horses

Today we have seahorses and other sea critters...The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum just happen to be opening the new aquarium on the day we went to visit. We got our tickets and it was a nice exhibit. Very clean as it is so new and fun with yellow seahorses floating around.

When you think of seeing horses in the desert, seahorses are not usually the ones you think of first. This Museum is a cross between wildlife and plants you would see in the southwest. The Sea of Cortez (Gulf of California) is the home to Pacific Seahorses.

The exhibit includes fish found in the Colorado River, Sonoran Desert Rivers (Rio Yaqui & Rio Sonora). The Museum provides information lists on fish that are over caught and which are safe to consume. They speak on lead levels and endangered species. It is a small exhibit but with a big message.

Pacific Seahorse

Fish found in the Sea of Cortez

Fresh Water fish - I think it was called a Frog Fish

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Hungry - Hungry Hummingbirds

I had a new experiences with the hummingbirds yesterday. Rick had picked up a new feeder since the Gila Woodpeckers had destroyed the last one. It has much smaller holes and is a condo feeder. There are two, one above the other or they can be separated as two small feeders. I wanted to see how the birds would react to the two sacked. I cleaned and filled them was walking out to hang it up to find my arms are not long enough to reach the hook with the new feeder. I had a extension hook on a tree that I could use. I go get it and this tree is a place the hummingbirds go to hide. I am not sure if they could smell the sugar water or what but a Anna comes flying over to the feeder that I am holding, sits on the ledge and drinks and drinks and drinks...took a couple seconds hopped up to the next level to try that out too! It stayed there for what seems a very long time. My arm was growing tired trying to hold up the feeder and not move. As long as I did not move it would take me for a big tree or something. But, finally I spoke, told the hummingbird to give me just one moment, I would hang the feeder and he could have at it. He looked at me like he knew what I was talking about, flew back to the tree and waited. Too funny! Gave me a smile for the day.

Since I did not have enough arms to have a camera too, I will just share some hummingbird pictures I took from our recent trip to Tucson.

Monday, January 14, 2013

New Places

Friday was art walk in Mesa, AZ. We have never been there, so sounded like a fun thing to check out. Rick & I went down had dinner at a nice Thai restaurant. Walked over to check out the Art Museum of Mesa, the Center for the Arts, theater, gift shop, glass studio demonstration and hear some Shakespeare on the streets. All in a very artsy block. The Museum houses a permanent collection, local artists shows, national-international shows and a room design for installation.

The theater area has many wonderful performances going on, something I plan to take more advantage of this year and in the future. On my list of to do's is go to more live performances.

On the second Friday of each month street vendors come out along the Main Street area. There are lot's of nice places to eat, coffee shops, brewery, books shops, galleries and boutique shops. Most are open late. One gallery space has a come in and go in, sit down and paint a picture. Even if you have never picked up a brush you can give this a try. Seeing more and more of these paint and take kind of places.

Each month there is a new theme to the second Friday art walks. It has alternative art, fun art, interesting art, theater art and fine art...a little something for everyone.

Saw this in a little shop along Main Street

Shadow Walk - Art Center - Mesa
detail of cross

Museum of Art Mesa 
Light with prints, paintings, mixed medium
Glass hanging sculptures 

Friday, January 11, 2013

Yearly Bucket List

We all have things on our "Bucket List" - places to go, people to see, things to accomplish. So far this year I am checking things off of my list...Saw the sandhill cranes - check...Get into gallery in Old Scottsdale - check...

Last September I was in Old Scottsdale for Gallery Walk. A friend, Maryann Pranulis, was in town for the day. We had dinner, then walked in and out of galleries. One of those galleries was the Biltmore. They specialize in southwest historic works in one room of their gallery the other room features current artists. Esther was the manager on duty during gallery walk, as we spoke to her, we exchanged business cards. By the time I got home that evening I had a e-mail that Esther had already  looked at my web-site. We kept in contact over the next couple of months. The owner was back in town. I got follow up e-mails to bring some of my work into the gallery. Which I did this week and they now have 3 of my pieces.

Inspiration and motivation to bring in new works to the gallery by the end of the month. With possibility of additional gallery opportunities to come. Time to just go with the flow, work and enjoy these moments of creating. And a thank you to Maryann for coming into town, amazing what one day can change.



Wise Man

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