31 July 2013

updated Bijou box

new color chart in sketchbook based on David Barker's limited travel palette
Several years ago, there was an article in Artist's Sketchbook magazine on artist David Barker's limited palette and how he used it in his travel sketchbooks. What really caught my attention was that he first used only ultramarine blue and burnt umber to establish values and temperatures in his sketches, then added color only as needed.
the original color chart and my Bijou box

 At the time, I worked out his chosen colors in a color chart. Recently, I found the chart while cleaning out old art supplies. I decided to try a similar limited palette in my Bijou box, substituting a quinacridone version of alizarin crimson, goethite brown ochre for raw umber, and quinacridone burnt orange for burnt sienna. I don't usually use yellow ochre or aureolin anymore -- these are leftover pans. When they are empty, they will probably be replaced with quinacridone gold and Hansa yellow medium.

30 July 2013

coloring in church

G. H. gave a devotional at church on Sunday. She likes teaching in ways that get listeners involved, using more than just hearing, so she passed out crayons and had us color verbs on a hand-out sheet. Sort of why I sometimes draw during church -- getting other senses involved help me remember things better.

23 July 2013

20 July Sketchcrawl

This month, our sketchcrawl group met at Kansas City's Union Station --- busy place with a traveling Pirate exhibit from National Geographic, a local art exhibit, all the regular points of interest, and those actually traveling by train. We met under this huge clock, then dispersed in various directions to sketch.

Bill and I drove about 3 hours to get there, taking our youngest son, Jeff, with us --- he has been on summer break from college in Texas. On the way, we stopped for cups of coffee or tea.

I had my ceramic travel mug with me just in case -- love all things plaid! This one is made to look like a paper cup and has a silicone band and lid.

It was so crowded and noisy in the station, I eventually wondered into an old waiting room where several people were waiting for their trains. A much calmer room with these lovely antique lamps --- I wanted to also draw one of the antique benches but ran out of time. We had reservations to eat at the Harvey House, located right in the station.

eating out Cajun

For my birthday last week, we ate out at Red Bean Bayou in Wichita. As many good things as they offer on their menu, I still got my favorite: Firecracker Chicken and Shrimp. I absolutely LOVE the tomato bisque that comes with it!

There are tons of interesting objects hanging all over the restaurant, which is darkened to give the impression of a New Orleans night.

Two years ago, I sketched this taxidermied opossum at the same place. (I think I just made that word up -- would taxidermy specimen be more correct?)

19 July 2013

Oh, how I missed my Lamy's!

Since I was flying to Houston instead of driving, I cleaned out all my fountain pens and stowed them away for the time I would be gone. I mistakenly thought they could not be taken on-board a pressurized airplane without severe leaking issues. (I have since read of Urban Sketchers who flew with fountain pens without problems . . .)

After arriving home, one of the first things I did was fill my favorite pens. I also love my Noodler's Konrad and Hero 86 pens, but the Lamy Safari pens are the ones I grab the most. My Noodler's polar black ink is almost empty (amazingly, the bottle has lasted for 4 - 5 years!), so I replaced it with Platinum Carbon Ink that I've heard so many rave about. I also replaced a couple of steel nibs with the black-coated nibs -- they write much smoother!

On this opposite page, I doodled with each of the inks in the pens . . . the far right section is using the Platinum Carbon with an old dip pen. The swath of wet brush run across each section of upper lines shows whether the ink is waterproof --- a bit unfair test on the Platinum ink as all the others had dried overnight before I did the water test and the new ink was still pretty fresh.

16 July 2013

searching for a home . . .

Bill drove down to Houston to drive me home (I flew there the first part of June). Because his time away from work was limited, we asked all our kids to drive to Brenham to meet us for lunch on Saturday, Brenham being sort of centrally located between everyone's homes. Had a blast eating at Ernie's, a downtown restaurant I found doing a Google search.  They gave us a private room and we could let the little kids run and play. Quen, Jayna, and Josiah also painted a bit in my journal:
After eating, our son-in-law took us driving, looking at homes for sale in the area. Our top three favorites, located out of town near a lake, are sketched above -- two of them are log-style cabins! We would like to find a smaller home with a large detached garage or outbuilding to turn into a woodshop for Bill when he retires later this year -- two of these had such buildings already on site.

So after driving home to Kansas, we called a realtor friend to start the process of finding out what our building would sell for. We renovated a small 1920 apartment building in 2000 - 2001; originally there were four 1-bedroom apartments, but we combined two of them into a large 3-bedroom apartment for ourselves. Rent from the apartments easily paid off our loan in short time, but it's an unusual building to put on the market -- nothing similar in the area. 

This is going to take some time and answered prayer to accomplish! Meanwhile, I'm still looking at possible towns in Texas to relocate to. An older, smaller community that would be an easy drive to Austin, north Houston, and Richmond. Preferably with an H.E.B. grocery store. And definitely with a REAL lumber yard for Bill (rather than a mass-market box store). He's a wood furniture artist, not a weekend crafter.

14 July 2013

a bit more from Texas

Mikala kept a busy schedule during my time with her in June. Junior golf, volleyball workshop, piano lessons & practice, Vacation Bible School . . . .

I did this quick sketch of the entrance to Jersey Meadows Golf Course while waiting to pick her up one morning. The white crepe myrtle were in bloom --- Amazing that what normally grows as shrubs in Kansas become huge trees in the Texas climate. I have seen some that reached 3 stories high.

Kristen and Michael made it home from Scotland, via a layover in Germany, bearing gifts. Among them were several rocks, coins, some blue shells, and a stuffed sheep for Mikala --- she shared some of the first two with me. This large striped rock is from the Black Isle, and the smaller blue-gray one is from Loch Ness. They stayed with friends in a house overlooking Loch Ness --- gorgeous views right from their own front door!

I was given this hand-loomed Harris Tweed bag and a silver brooch with a red heather-gem set in it. Heather gems are made from the stems of the heather plants --- quite a fascinating craft! For my birthday, Bill wants to buy me a tartan stole to wear that I can pin with the brooch. Still wondering what tartan to choose. The Williamson's were typically associated with the Gunn clan, but there are several other patterns we like as well.

13 July 2013

granny nanny journal finished and I'm home

Mikala and I decided to end this wee travel journal with a sketch of her "kitten", Oreo. At 9 months old, this Maine Coon cat is as large in size as my own 11 year old Maine Coon, Bearcat -- who is pretty massive in size himself. Oreo is much skinnier though . . . . he'll add some bulk as he matures in the next 4 years.

Also in these pages are some quick scribbles as Mikala participated in Volleyball Camp and some berries from the day we went to pick blackberries at Matt Family Orchard just outside of Houston. We brought home over 5 pounds, eating all we could and freezing the rest to share with Mikala's parents when they returned from Scotland.

This finishes the second side of my "granny nanny" journal:

The first side was completed in early March, when I was "granny nanny" for 3 other grandkids living in Richmond, TX:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...