Montana State Bird

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Finished this Christmas commission today.  Hopefully the gift receiver doesn’t see this post ::smile::  I struggled with this technique – where everything is blurry in the background and sharp up front.  Other artist blogs I have followed have taught me that things closer are darker, so I applied that.  Honestly, the colors weren’t what I was initially envisioning, but I think I like the purply back ground shapes.

Things learned.

Winter Succulent Done

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SOLD (24x24in on Stretched Canvas)

Okay, so I couldn’t wait till tomorrow to finish it, here it is!  I was nervous to finish it at night with different lighting, but I think it turned out well.  I might touch up a few things tomorrow once I see it in the daylight, but I was too excited to get it up here.

Here is Summer and Fall too:

Fall Succulents | 24x24in | $200

Fall Succulents | 24x24in | $200

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Winter Succulent

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A few people have asked me lately if i’ve painted anything new – and usually this doesn’t bother me too much because God’s helped me have grace on myself with the baby at home.  But today I decided to do something about it.

We finally got snow here last week, and I managed to snag a picture of the succulent bush in a wintery scene to continue in my all seasons idea.  I didn’t get to finish it today, baby is taking shorter naps these days, but here’s my progress:

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I’m really thankful for the practice using whites I did a few months ago, it is coming in handy for placing all these different shades.  Knowing the end result would be lots of gloomy greys, I did the initial sketch in red-orange in hopes of warming it up a little.  Liking it so far!

I wanted to get this one started soon also because AKINZ is having a winter show and called out for art from local artists.  So if you’re in town look out for that next month!

Teen Girl Painting Night

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As mentioned a few posts ago, the painting night with some teen gals from church was last night and we had a great time.  Each time I do this I’m so inspired by the color combinations they come up with.  They handled the freedom of my teaching style very well too!  Really glad it happened, and really glad it’s over, I was nervous all week!

My demo painting is a bit bland this time, I get so distracted watching them paint I forget to really think about mine.  Maybe I’ll embellish it this week sometime.

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Art Lesson Sketches

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My little “student” is 11 years old now!  This girl is getting so skilled in mastering her drawing.  I wanted to post some things we’ve been sketching lately because I’m just so inspired by her subject choices.

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We sat outside a couple weeks ago, because it’s been so nice out!! – and drew some dried up leaves.  A great challenge for anyone.  Look at all the colors we pulled out of them!

 

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This week she came over and said, “I want to draw something I’ve never drawn before.”  How can you not admire that courage.  Dogs must be on my mind lately as the Christmas dog commissions are coming in – but we have a mutual friend with a Boston Terrier, so we pulled up a picture and sketched that funny face.

Kool Aid and Painting

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(Available through email.  16inx20in on canvas panel)

Next week I’m walking some teen girls from church through a painting and kool-aid night.  I love doing these sorts of things with groups, but I also struggle with how to teach the two different personality types that I see – the ones who love the freedom to choose their own colors and shapes, and the ones that NEED the step by step instruction or they stress out.  In the typical wine and painting class (I’ve sat in on 2 now I think in town) but they have all the paint you’ll need arranged on a plate, they tell you step by step how to paint the display painting, and it’s all broken down very simply.

Now I know this is what people usually need the first time they sit down in front of a canvas…but this is just not how I instruct.  My group sessions like this usually start out really bumpy and chaotic as the gals are stressing which color to pick – because all I say is, “sure, try that one, see what happens.”  And they don’t typically like that. ::smile::

But by the end of the night, and we’re on the final touches and people are getting the hang of it, they tend to relax > and usually enjoy the thing they painted.  Each “class” I learn something new, so hopefully things will go smoothly next week.  I practiced a display painting today and did a little “self instruction” as I went to make sure I’m at least clear and confident for them.  I’m taking the coloring book approach.  Crossing my fingers they’re okay with flowers.

Documenting the Fall Colors

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I remember being inspired by the dried out Hydrangeas across the street all winter last year, so this time when I noticed them I snapped a few photos.  We actually ended up outside during my art lesson with G last week because of the wonderful colors my neighbor had in her yard.  The dried browns, dark greens, light purples, and bright reds just called to me.  Here’s what I have sketched out so far.  Right now it’s lacking a focal point.  Upgrades coming soon.

Maybe I can eventually capture my neighborhood changing through out the seasons!  What a fun series idea.