Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Periwinkle and Grey

I went super, super soft today...in fact, the design in reality is so soft that I didn't think I would be able to take a decent photo of it....I really had to turn on the high def on my camera to show the colors....


So mixing blue and purple together created my periwinkle.... and I took a normal, dark grey and saturated it quite a bit to make it as light as possible.

Tiny bits of yellow was added and an even smaller bit of green was added. And that was it.  I created three cards of the same design.


Grey and black are becoming some of my favorite colors to accentuate the other colors that I use.....two things I used to really shy away from were the darker, murky colors.....but I'm learning to love certain color combos as I use them more!

Hope you're all having a wonderful week!!

Friday, April 21, 2017

Inspired by a gift bag.....

It's Friday!! Yay!!!  Happy, happy......so, today, I was killing some time before school pick-up - and I went and browsed around inside some stores and saw these gorgeous watercolor gift bags - not that hard that it caught my eye immediately....and I fell in love with this gift bag below - it just screamed 'my mom' and I knew that I had to snatch it up just for her.

I couldn't wait to get home and paint a matching card to go with it:


To make the background appear bluish like the bag, I, first, smeared some Tim Holtz distress ink onto the background - Broken China.  I let it dry, and then proceeded to start painting the florals on top of it.  Some of the leaves on the bag are a super, dark green and almost blackish, I rarely use deep purple and black together so I wasn't sure how this would turn out on paper.....but I went for it anyway....

All that was used was black, white,  a touch of yellow, dark green, light green, purple blue, lavender, and deep purple.

The only things stamped was a butterfly and the sentiment - from a very old W9Plus set.

Had some leftover cardstock and made another card.....this second one did not have to match exactly like the bag so I went for more of a freestyle design but used all the same colors:


I have a question.....What do you all use for white paint?? Brand? I'm in need of a super white ink that I can paint white leaves.....the problem is, I can't seem to find a white ink that will appear a solid white on cardstock....so hard!  If you have a favorite white ink that works well on watercolor paper...hit me up with the info....would love to know!

Oh, and if you want that bag up above - and there is an assortment of other beautiful, watercolor bags as well - at TJ Maxx (if you have one in your area)....go now, before they are all gone....they ranged from about $1.29 to $2.79, somewhere around there, super pretty!!

Have a beautiful weekend! Cheers! xo

Monday, April 17, 2017

Card sets for my mom and never-before-seen photos of her.....

My sweet, little mom requested a whole bunch of cards from me so that she may give to her friends.....of course, I was happy to make them for her.  Been having a lot of fun swooshing around my paintbrushes and making different designs for her and in a multitude of colors.


The set above I tried to make them all look a like but I mentioned previously that it's almost impossible for me to exactly replicate a flower so I made each one slightly different, the differences are very minimal, but you can tell they are not exactly the same.  I think I've used every color of the rainbow on another set not shown here, and can't wait to give these to her. Hope she likes them.

Anyway, since I'm talking about my mom, it's almost Mother's Day, and what are you giving to your mom or doing for her?? It gets harder every year, doesn't it?? What do you give to one of the most important and perfect person in your life? The woman who has taught you and is still teaching you all about this so called thing about 'life'?  I have not a clue what I'm doing for her and I'm sure I'll make a special card just for her....still undecided.

I try to keep this blog strictly to just my artsy stuff and steer away from personal photos.....but....every once-in-a-while, I make an exception....and since I'm in the mood for rambling and honoring my mom today, thought I would post these photos of her......when she was very little....perhaps 10 or 11. Not really sure the exact age at all.

These are rare and precious and she had thought she lost all of her childhood photos when we fled the war in the 70's.  But, fortunately, her sister had safely hidden these photos of her and years and years later was able to retrieve them and send them to my mom.  Just a few months ago, all the kids finally got a glimpse for the first time of my mom as a little girl.


She is sooooo sweet, if you ever met her, you would fall in love with her....she is hilarious! She is complex, yet simple......I think I get my simplicity from her.....she is traditional, yet she mixes her traditional values into a very modern age of thinking.


This is one of my favorites above, what a smile!

And the last one:


There were so many photos, but just a few here.....love my sweet mom! And of all the great qualities I love about my mom, there is one that stands out...she is.... forgiving.....a trait that I find exceptionally difficult to have, yet she has taught me a lot about love, kindness, and...... forgiveness.....truly a remarkable lady! I can't wait to see you for Mother's Day this year.....

Friday, March 31, 2017

Purple....you melt my heart....

If you know me by now, you know that lavender is my color.....well...lavender and pink....they both rate at the very top.  As much as I am into the softer purples, I rarely work with a deep purple like plum, or eggplant....I usually don't go darker than a magenta....but today, I played around with really bold purples.


To really intensify the color, I added black lines to my leaves to make veins, and it really made the green much darker as well....I normally don't add the detail to my leaves but it was fun doing it here. Have little wisps of wisteria peeking out of my vase.

In contrast -- below is a much softer purple, very pure and simple:


That's it for my week! What a week!  It's officially April.....wasn't it just Christmas??

Have a lovely weekend!

Monday, March 27, 2017

Oh, Hydrangeas.......

.....you are so incredibly complex.....but one day I shall figure you out....but for now, I will consider this some good practice - I think it turned out only a smidgen better than my first attempt in which I posted awhile ago.

Aside from that, my color wheel today made me super happy!!  Playing with only blues, purples, and greens!  Gah, I could seriously stare all day at my floral ink tray. I really love those colors together.


When I went to take the edited photo below - I turned it upside down and I think I like the upside down version better. lol....do you ever do that? Turn your finished product the other way and see if you like it better or not....I do it all the time....fun stuff!


I will definitely keep practicing this flower....have a beautiful, gorgeous, sunny week, everyone!! Go find something deliciously purple!!!

xo

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Psst....I have a little confession

When it comes to pretty, crafty things ....I honestly like to make them for, well.... other people.  That is really the true joy of creating - is to give to someone else. I rarely, if ever (aside from scrapbook pages), make anything for myself...

...like home decor.....for example.

You would think that as a crafty person, one would intensely create to beautify ones home, but I've never made the effort to.

Strange, hah? So, if you walk into my home and expect absolutely gorgeous color splattered everywhere - nope.....all my walls are white and bare, yet mildly functional.....


And yet, why is that? I ask myself what on earth has taken me so long to decorate? Time, perhaps?? When the kids are young? Everything is messy anyways, when you have young children, so why bother? And I would peruse countless hours on Pinterest and whatnot for dreamy ideas - clicking that 'PIN' button faster than lightning....

But lately....life has mellowed somewhat for me.....it's still busy, ofcourse...with everyday things.....but not quite as frantic as say 2 years ago or even 5 years ago. And I'm not saying life won't get busy again....for I know it will.

But for now, I'm being allowed a bit more time for me....and I'm starting to take advantage of that.....

So I finally went ahead and painted my own 8 x 10 wall art to hang up. Eeps! I'm so happy I did. Finished it up and got it framed.  It now gently hangs next to a piece of art that my son made and one of my wedding photos.

At the very end of the painting as it was drying, I really wanted to put an inspirational verse down on the left hand side, just a little below the pink rose.....I thought about it and then decided to leave as is and not touch it any further....

I'm pleased with the finished product...hoping to start up some other items as well soon! Yay~ So happy, and HAPPY SPRING~!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Soft and Delicate


It is raining today.....that's good, so that the flowers outside can bloom faster.  Yay! I sat down and wanted something ultra simple.....downright straightforward, and as soft as possible.

This is what I came up with.


I used cotton candy pink and an almost mint green, I'm going to call it chartreuse though. And I didn't go any further than that. I truly wanted to keep it just like this....it was so faint and soft when I finished it up that I wasn't sure it would photograph well....always a tough one with lighter colors....

Will probably duplicate this design in other colors as well for some quick, 'ready-to-mail' cards.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Peonies

It would seem as I get older, I sleep less....WAY less.....especially during the weekdays....then I crash on Saturday and Sundays and can barely wake up in the morning....anyone else like that?  And yet, somehow, I still -- miraculously -- am able to function....I have no idea how....

I've been modifying my exercise regimen - changing it up from day time to night time to help me sleep better but that has its downfall. I'm too tired and lazy to exercise at night so I do it during the day when I'm most energetic.....but obviously it's not making me tired 'enough' to fall asleep naturally...does that make any sense?

So, hence, here I am...almost midnight....painting and blogging....

Are you getting tired of my flowers yet? I thought I'd give it a try with some detail on a peony....it looks similar to a rose, doesn't it? Hard to differentiate the two on paper, so I tried to give the petals a different shape.


I kept the single flower as the focal point and added just a few flourishes.  Kinda fun mixing up the colors on the leaves.

And earlier in the day, I painted a small blue cacti plant....such the rage nowadays...cactus.....succulents....they're everywhere! This is just a very sweet little number....nothing complicated about it....used only 4 colors, blues, black, white, and brown:


That's it for now....enjoy the rest of your weekend! xo

Friday, March 17, 2017

Calla Lily

Happy St. Patrick's Day!! Did you all wear green? And got a little bit of luck in? Hope so. ;)

I've been yearning to try Calla Lilies - that was my wedding flower - and I absolutely adore the beauty of a Calla Lily.  Trying to branch out and try new flowers and different concepts all the time....

I studied a Level 1 and a Level 4 tutorial on Calla Lilies and painted a few....the one on the left I was going for a more whitish petal and green stem but it turned out yellowish green, and the one on the right was a much deeper, almost blood red color....I also wasn't expecting it to turn out quite that bold. But I'm satisfied with this first attempt. I'll definitely be practicing this flower a lot more.


And more birthday cards I made for some crafty friends - lots of flourishes and more delicate colors:


This one is a fun mix of blues and greens with just a dab of purple:


It's been a great week but I'm totally ready for my weekend.......See you later!

Love and Stuff! xoxo

Friday, March 10, 2017

When the sun is out and you feel like playing....

.........with lots of different colors! Just a few things I've been working on this past week or so....

Purple....this is one of my top colors. It's like a magic potion - I'm drawn to this color....for some reason, when I work with purple/lavender - it's done with simplicity....I don't know why I associate simplicity with this color, but I do....I kept it purposely uncluttered:


And I mention all the time that tulips is one of the most difficult flowers for me!! I keep trying really large sized tulips and never like them so - what do you do when all else fails? You - minimize......I decided to make these much smaller in size and go for a more whimsical-in-nature look:


And I worked on a much larger piece earlier in the week, but instead of an 8 x 10, this one below is a 5 x 7 piece of wall art that I sent off to another friend who requested one.  This one I used only pastel colors, it's super light in tone and made some vertical vines on both left and right sides of the card stock:


And the last one, a small notecard with one large, blue rose on the front:


What a productive week of painting! Can't wait to turn the clocks forward and rejoice in the happiness of spring time!! Yay!!

Sunday, March 5, 2017

An 8 x 10

I finally got to sit down tonight and work on that bigger palette that I spoke of on a previous post.....A very sweet, dear friend of mine requested if I could make her an 8 x 10 piece of wall art for her home - so I obliged.

Was I a little nervous? Oh yes.

Was I scared to death I would make a mistake mid-way through - a definite yes...

But I forged on and finished this in roughly under 3 hours.  It was soooo much fun! After I got going on most of the bigger strokes, I wasn't really too worried:


She requested bold not soft, so I went with pretty much a little bit of every color imaginable - reds, purples, blues, various greens, pinks, oranges, yellows, and even threw in tiny bits of black and brown.  I will give this to her as is and she can frame it however she chooses.

I'm going to do a softer version later - probably just for me to keep - but I really enjoyed working with this much larger surface! I can't even imagine how long it would take to do one of those gigantic boards that you see in painting classes! Gasp!

And here are some regular sized cards I made a few days ago:


And worked with some light and loose watercoloring of Wildflowers on this one:


Ready for another beautiful and sunny week starting tomorrow, can't wait!!

Thursday, March 2, 2017

I may be a little bit giddy......

WHY??

Because I see signs of spring! Awwwwww......

Oh.My.Goodness.

Spring.

I heard birds chirping out my bedroom window this morning and right now I hear them as I sit here typing.....my son also reminded me that we have Daylight Savings in two weeks.....that means at least 2.5 more hours of sunny playtime! ;))

Spring......makes me happy.  You don't even know....my words alone really doesn't tell you the giddiness inside of me....

So I've been wanting to concentrate on details - instead of just the entire look of some of my paintings. I lack emphasis on putting little details on just one flower and I really want to improve on that.


I really want to just look at one single floral and dive into all the little nooks and such and be able to make it look realistic....it's going to be a great personal challenge for me.... it will take a lot of time and patience. I can't wait to practice more.

Almost Friday, hope everyone is having a beautiful day! xo

Monday, February 27, 2017

Soft vs. Bold

I made a card yesterday which was super soft in nature and a card today which was very bold in colors...two totally different looks:


I think red is starting to grow on me.....


Here's my little mess during my creating time today.


Love my little floral ink trays from Daiso, super dirty and grimy (I really don't wash them well), but I love them, really sturdy and re-usable.

Friday, February 24, 2017

Take time to reflect...

I'm really trying to branch out and use more colors that I don't normally lean towards, and I'm trying to play it up with my leaves, learning different shapes and sizes. Different brushstrokes, etc.  For this card, I mixed in yellow with green and soft vs. dark blues. And that's it! Only two colors - great challenge for myself to see how I could spread the colors around.



That sentiment is from a very old stamp set called Zenspirations from Impression/Obsession.  I thought it would go well stamped in the middle of this painting. I think it's quite fitting for so many reasons and so many people!! Everyone is on a journey of their own, no matter what it is that you do.....

If you are progressing in your own journey, that is wonderful! If you are not....then keep trying...never give up!

I'm so excited to start in a couple of weeks, if not sooner, a larger palette....making an 8 x 10.  I've never painted on anything bigger than a 6 x 4 so it will be interesting and a lot of fun!

Have a great week ahead everyone, enjoy! xoxo

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

For no two flowers are ever alike.....

Made this tonight and it will be going out to a sweet lady who is really not doing well.  She's in the hospital....and letting her know I'm thinking of her...... I thought this might bring her some happiness and lift her spirits a bit....


I had a little roughness with my leaves today for some reason but I think they turned out ok....I decided to use only one color for the roses instead of multiple colors...added a touch of very faint yellow as well.....and a few inklings of brown.

And looooook! I saw signs of spring today while I was out! GASP!! And the picture doesn't do it justice how really beautiful it was IRL.....it was more of a purple not pink! And you know I ADORE purple...sigh.....can't wait to see more flowers blooming everywhere soon!