30 July 2011

more Texas travel pages

While at Jason's, we went to the Houston Zoo for a picnic. Josiah likes riding with the food; later, Papa Bill took him in the petting area to meet the goats. Over the tree tops, we could see Children's Hospital, where our daughter Kristen now works. (click on any photo to see larger)

Another day, we drove to Rosenburg for some great Tex-Mex cooking (the kind you can't find in El Dorado, KS) --- followed by snoballs around the corner. That's pregnant Carrie in the sketch; our 5th grandchild is due in September.

Like most of the mid-west, Texas is experiencing a very bad drought --- One day I found these leaves under one of the live oak trees in Jason's yard, looking very heat stressed.

On the drive home, I bought a postcard quoting Davy Crockett. Seems to express my feeling towards Washington politicians these days who don't seem to understand the concept of not spending more than you take in.

No matter what time of year, there is always a beautiful sunrise as we drive out of Houston.

Half way to Dallas, we usually stop at Corsicana for a snack, a sample of fruitcake, or some of Bill's favorite coffee. This was the BEST chicken salad sandwich I've tasted, on fresh baked pecan bread. Yummy!

28 July 2011

travel palette changes

It's been a while since I cleaned out and restocked my travel palettes. After returning from Texas, it seemed a good thing to do. Inside, away from this wicked heat!

26 July 2011

our recent trip to Texas

I've slowly been posting sketches from our trip to Texas the first part of July. Some sketches I did on sight; others I drew later from photographs. Click on any photo to see them enlarged.

First we drove to Austin to visit Matt & Misty and grandson Quentin. Extreme heat and drought made us seek somewhere cool --- like the history museum. But first we fed the turtles in a pond behind a downtown market.

I always love a good museum, but was awed by the entry of this one. I sketched part of the circular stair but glued a photo of the mosaic floor (or is it terrazzo?) in my journal. Beautiful!

Ceilidh had already met Maxwell, my former wheaten Scottie who now lives with Jason's family. Now she met 2 more family dogs: Sam in Austin and Peaches in Houston. Both played with her some, then quickly found her puppy energy too much for them. Maxwell seemed to think the same thing. Will she ever calm down?

Next we drove to NW Houston, where Bill took out a bar sink for Kristen & Michael and installed new Formica. Mikala and I found our own fun.

Then off to Richmond (SW of Houston) to Jason & Carrie's. A new baby is on the way -- Bill installed doors, turning an office into a bedroom, and replaced the back patio door for them.

Jeff is staying with them temporarily until he gets into on-campus housing. He'll start college after Christmas; for now he's looking for a job and gathering paperwork needed to establish residency and getting the GI bill to pay for school. And he's teaching Jayna and Josiah important stuff -- like how to shuffle cards.

Still more sketches to post later this week . . . .

18 July 2011

sketchcrawl, 16 July 2011

Saturday, we drove to Kate's monthly sketchcrawl in Excelsior Springs, Missouri. Heat & humidity made us look for somewhere inside --- The Elms was crowded with another event, so it was back to the Hall of Waters, one of our favorite spots.

This is one of the motifs on the elevator doors, though they are much darker in person. I love this lion motif. I like how Kate made drips on hers --- I want to work "splashier" so I tried it too. It definitely has felt HOT enough to melt the gold!

Excelsior Springs was in the humid 90s; Kansas has been in the mid 100s for several weeks. In fact, it was striking how brown & dead things looked when we left home and how green & lush Missouri looked.

 While waiting for others to arrive, I did a quick watercolor sketch of some purple coneflowers growing nearby.

Once inside, I sketched these old gauges from a display case in the sunny water-bar room . . . . then soon moved into the atrium where it was cooler.The old tiles in this Art Deco building are gorgeous, but I wish I hadn't added the edge around them --- keeping it more graphic. Someday I will learn to stop before I think I'm done --- I tend to add too much.

15 July 2011

"new" old palette for primaries

No sketching at church this week -- I only took a few notes . . . . . then later at home, I used my journal to try out colors to go into this palette. I quit using this palette long ago -- I just didn't like the tiny 1/2 pans in such a large box. But recently Cathy "Kate" Johnson posted how her husband, Joseph, modified it to hold full pans, seen here.
So I turned it into a primaries + convenience colors palette. Seems to work especially well, given all the extra mixing places (there's an additional mixing tray that slides out from below).

12 July 2011

Kate's new book finally arrived!

Just in time for our recent trip to Texas! I spent lots of time devouring each page of this fantastic book while away. What a treat to see the works of so many of my on-line friends, as well as the excellence of Cathy "Kate" Johnson's work. I feel honored to be included in such amazing company.
Continued posts from all the artists in this book can be found in the group blog Kate set up here.
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