27 January 2023

drawing with tendinitis

Having tendinitis in both hands which sometimes causes my right hand to shake uncontrollably (I’m right-handed), I find things like measuring ingredients, carrying a full glass, eating a spoonful of soup — or drawing — challenging at times.

I drew the ink lines of this sketch with a Pentel Pocketbrush pen which has an actual brush tip instead of a nib. Fun, unpredictable, and very difficult to control! I was amazed at how nice the ink lines turned out, and I’m a bit sorry that I added watercolor. Especially those crazy too-dark shadows.

24 January 2023

yesterday’s breakfast

Sometimes I really want to draw something but don’t know what. So I draw whatever is in front of me. Yesterday, it happened to be a homemade bran muffin and some fresh blueberries. 

In one continuous ink line (that explains the wonky plate!), some watercolor and white gouache.

21 January 2023

Elegant Writer pen play

Drawings on white paper done with Elegant Writer calligraphy pens, when touched with a damp brush, release unexpected bits of teal and pink in the resulting washes. I was wondering if the same would happen on toned paper. It did not, but I had fun drawing Bill’s coffee grinder and French Press coffee pot.

17 January 2023


Our granddaughter Mikala’s cat, Pumpkin, is one of the most beautiful Maine Coon cats I have ever seen. I just can’t do him justice in a sketch. The second photo shows Pumpkin alongside his buddy, Mocha.

But then, there is my own favorite Maine Coon, Beorn Bearcat, who sadly died a few years ago:

14 January 2023

out to lunch

We ate at Ron’s Hamburgers in Magnolia today — I drew this vintage wall plaque while waiting for our order, then added color later at home. But I chose sweet potato fries instead.

13 January 2023

Crested CaraCara

When we lived in our log cabin, we often saw these gorgeous birds up close, mixing with vultures in their job of cleaning up road-kill. According to one website, a Crested Caracara (aka a Mexican eagle) “looks like a hawk, behaves like a vulture, and is technically a large tropical black-and-white falcon”. From our barndominium, we often watch them soaring high over the tall tree tops.

I decided to sketch the bird in ink only, but have been tempted to add color. They have white markings on wingtips, tail, and neck while their legs are yellow and their faces are bright orange. And they appear to be wearing a badly-fitted black toupee!

11 January 2023

recent sketching

I sketched this lovely teacup and saucer last Friday at a friend’s place. She also gave me a rock she had picked up last year at Loch Lomond — the song by that name has always been a favorite of mine! I often sang it to babies while rocking them to sleep. A time or two the baby would cover my mouth, knowing it would make them go to sleep!

So, over the next few days, I drew the new rock alongside two other rocks from Scotland, from the Black Isle and Loch Ness, to fill out this 2-page spread.

03 January 2023

not exercising

My adorable reason to not exercise, Scottie. After all, I had already chased him from another chair earlier. And yes, he is so black that sunlight hits him as blue! (For the record, he later left this chair and I was able to exercise — while listening to a BBC radio mystery on my iPhone.)

My doctor recommended I use this “desk cycle” to strengthen my knee which had a partial dislocation several months ago. Thanks to Covid, our daughter now works from home (when not at job sites) so she gave us this one that used to sit beneath her office desk.

01 January 2023

really great mint tea

Sometimes a coughing spell keeps me from sleeping so I get up and drink a hot cup of tea. A good friend of mine suggested I try Two Leaves and a Bud’s organic peppermint made with whole leaves — so refreshing and helps me breathe deeply without coughing! They even sell a loose-leaf variety which I’ll buy next time.

30 December 2022

side table art supplies

There’s a nice little art desk set up in our office / library / laundry room (tiny room that functions as all of them). Bill even made me a taboret on wheels that stands next to it. But most of the time I sketch from a comfy chair in the living room while talking with Bill or watching shows on TV. This might explain the smudges that appear on my sketches! 🫣  I usually keep an Art Toolkit loaded with my tools — easy to grab when we head out in our camper. But camping is on hold for a couple of months so I transferred the tools I’m currently using to this wooden box. Much easier to grab what I want!

The second photo was taken “in process”. I added a few colors to this daily palette (colors that show up better on toned paper) so I put a business card sized magnet in the mixing area to hold mixing pans and clip it to my sketchbook page.

(I drew the ink drawing several days ago, but took my time adding color.)

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