Friday, December 13, 2013

Help Me Obi Wan, You're My Only Hope!

I have an opportunity to show ONE piece in an upcoming art show in January 2014. I've narrowed it down to these candidates and there is a poll on the blog that I would greatly appreciate you voting on to help me make a decision.

1. Portrait of My Mother As A Young Woman

2. Moment of Zen

3. skull & Hat

4.Falling flowers

5. I see things that aren't there

6. Blue bunny

Thursday, November 21, 2013

The Creatrix

So back in this post, I started a drawing. And I was starting to get tired of drawing the same skeleton as I've been doing for months on end, so I decided to work on that drawing during art class, especially since I never seemed to be able to carve out drawing time from my daily routine.

I penciled in the details in her cloak/robe
Penciling in-progress. I particularly like the shading that's going on. It will be lost when it's inked.

 and then inked them.

You can purchase a digital coloring page of this image from my Etsy store for $1.25.

I started coloring the piece in Photshop. 

I have a mind to reproduce this as a mural on the side of my garage. At about 6 feet wide and 4 feet tall. Stay Tuned.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Art class this fall

I took another drawing class at the NJ Arts Guild this past fall (the final class was last Thursday), and I got to stretch my creative muscles a bit. It's really nice to have a dedicated time to do nothing but draw, and to get encouragement and critiques from an actual artist, who doesn't give harsh criticism, but makes you fix things that aren't working, and offers some really good suggestions when you get stuck.

So I drew this skeleton a few times in charcoal:

And I broke out my pastels and tried some color work - which added many unexpected dimensions of complexity.

And then, I started to work on the drawing in my sketchbook from February, which will be the subject of tomorrow's blog post.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Bookbinding workshop: "The Art of Artists' Books"

Over the weekend, the Arts Guild of NJ held a series of one-day workshops, and I participated in one about bookbinding.  The workshop was taught by artist Lisa Conrad, who made the process very understandable, and quite frankly, easy. If you have ever done any hand-sewing, these techniques transfer the knowledge you already have working with fabrics to a new medium.

We created 4 books in different styles and techniques. We also did some printing, which I had never done before. We did a monoprint and a block print.

This picture is of the combined output of the workshop participants

The first book we made is a "section" book. A section is a collection of folio pages sewn together. A folio is one piece of paper folded in half to make 4 pages. Your typical hardbound book consists of many sections that are bound together by a spine. My section book has a colored-paper cover and my monoprint.

Next, Lisa showed us how to do Japanese Stab Binding. I see all sorts of potential for doing variants of this book. My book features my block print. I was at a loss for what to make on my prints, so I fell back on my negative-space tuxedo cat for the block print.

Then we made a couple of hard-cover accordion books. These books use basically the same overall technique of folding a long, single piece of paper, and gluing a cover on the ends. Making the book covers using decorative papers is a lot of fun and the papers available rival the fabric selections in any quilt store (and fabric is also an acceptable book covering material, so... ).

This first book is called a "flag" book. The accordion folds are small and paper "flags" are glued to either side to achieve the opposing face designs when the book is opened.

Outside of the book
Inside of the book
The last book of the day is another accordion book, with page-size folds of equal size. The class decided it would be fun for each of us to print our block prints inside everyone's book, so we all have a copy of everyone's work. The order of the prints was different in each book. This one is mine.
Accordion-book cover

The only "downside" to learning all these new techniques is that now I have an excuse to keep the smallest scrap of fabric and any and all sizes of cardboard and mat board... I'm not a hoarder - I'm an ARTIST!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Tax Time Here

It's the time of year for filling out financial aid applications, which means our taxes need to be done and that burden falls onto me, so I"m not really doing a lot of extracurricular drawing.

However, the Sketchbook Project has scanned the right-hand pages of my sketchbook (apparently the left-hand pages will be scanned and uploaded shortly.

So you can take a look at half my book now, if you like:

Monday, February 25, 2013

Started something in the new sketchbook

I recently broke down and bought a Moleskine A3-sized sketchbook. It's huge. The pages are slightly larger than 11"x16". It's been sitting in my study, waiting. Until this past weekend that is. Since I have taxes and other unavoidable tedious and expensive paperwork looming over my head, my brain has exploded in a huge bout of creativity to help me procrastinate.

I started this drawing on the weekend and started inking it while I uploaded a pile of artwork to the printers for my Wendycards product line.

I think this really should be a painting in dark vibrant colors, but it will have to wait until I learn how to wield a brush better. Until then it will have to be happy remaining as a pen & ink sketch. But I totally envision the final versionas something heavily influenced by Alex Gray.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Today was a busy day

Designed some fabric when I got home from work.

with three different backgrounds. Black, white and rainbow. There will be projects made from this after I get my samples and then yardage from Spoonflower.

Then I went to art class where we drew a skeleton. The instructor, JD, encouraged me to draw what I saw when I got done with the rib cage and said it kind of looked like a fish.  This thing isn't done yet. I'm not sure exactly how it's going to end up.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

The Inception of Wendycards

As a child, I was always coming up with business names and ideas. It didn't really stop once I became an adult, either. I've been using the name "Wendycards" for decades now, when I'd make a hand-drawn-and-xeroxed card for a particular friend or occasion, and this month I got the idea to turn it into an actual stationery business. I bought the domain, and I'll be working on the site as soon as I clear a couple of things off my plate.

There will be some themed cards: the Love card that I talked about here, and some humorous get well cards, and cards using other drawings I've done in the past, and a lot of neoPagan-themed cards since that's a market I know pretty well and that is under-served, in my opinion.

I will be selling greeting cards of my own designs and other printed paper products. I have a source for reasonably-priced custom printed Post-It™ notes, so I've been working on 10 designs to produce. In fact, I've just finished them up. And here they are:

I will be taking pre-orders once the site goes live...   I'd love to know what you think!

Friday, February 15, 2013

I've been drawing

I put aside the knitting for a few minutes and spent some time getting ink on my fingers and wrangling pixels. I have an idea for yet another business; this one for stationery products, and I started coming up with ideas to produce. Some of the stuff I'm posting today fits that category, some of it is just playing around. You'll have to check back to discover which.

 I did this last night. The part I was most impressed with was my ability to draw a pentagon within the circle without using a ruler and eyeballing the angles. There were a ton of construction lines penciled in to this. If I used a protractor to do the circles instead of winging it, it would be even more precise. Yes, all I see are the flaws.
Circular knotwork pen and pencil. Sketchbook.
This next piece started as words and a box with lines. I think immediately after I got "My new" written, my granddaughter showed up at the house, and I put the book aside long enough to completely forget the object of the sentence. Oh well.
Doodling with Zentangle influence.
This next one I did on the computer (duh!), playing with the sri yantra. I want to blow this up poster size and just stare at it for a while.

And this one I did for my facebook page, based on a blog post by Neil Gaiman:

Thursday, January 24, 2013


I've been spending the last week, more or less, going through a lot of file boxes full of old papers. I found this "mini poster" that I painted in day-glow paints back in High School, probably in 1973 or thereabouts. I really liked it, so I started to reproduce it in Adobe Illustrator.

It will be a T-shirt option on one of the print-on-demand sites within the next 48 hours. And maybe some other options as well, as I really like it and I think you will, too. I might do some more versions with different or more animals on it. I think one with bears, at least. Stay tuned.

Monday, January 14, 2013

The Sketchbook Project 2013 - Part 1

I participated in the Brooklyn Art Library's Sketchbook Project again this year, and I just put the book in the mail. This is the second time I've  participated in this. Here is a link to my 2011 sketchbook.

The current sketchbook, I'd like to think, anyway, is better than the first one - there are a few really good pieces in there and I gave it slightly more thought than the first one, but this one was really rushed at the end as well. I thought for most of the fall that the start of the tour in March was the deadline, so I was surprised last month with the January 15th postmark deadline. The book will be digitized, but that will take a while. In the meantime, I've scanned it myself before shipping it out, and I'll post some teaser pictures here of some of my favorite pages.