Friday, February 26, 2010

Silhouette • Katherine

Silhouette 8 x 10" of Katherine.
I am framing this one and the one of Ansley to give my sister for her birthday.
should be a surprise, i think:)

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Silhouette • dancing at the beach

Here is the final outcome. I think the black paper works best because of the contrast. The second picture shows the sketch on top of the black paper-used as a template.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

silhouette process

Here is the photo reference. I sketch the figures and make some modifications as needed. (full picture of sketch is shown in the post below) The left figure: I changed the arm to arch up instead of straight out and made her ponytails more obvious. right figure remained the same, although i think i accentuated the cute chubby legs a bit when I sketched the image.

Then I take the drawing and place it on top of the paper I chose. In this case i picked the orange and blue polka dot. I like it, but it does distract from the detail. So, I flipped over the remaining paper to show the cut out portion on top of a black board. The black shows the detail much better. I may cut another in solid black or just a darker, non patterned paper and frame.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

figure sketch

This is a scan from my sketchbook. I am planning on using this one to create a silhouette. I had to make some minor adjustments from the photo reference. Maybe I'll post the photo/sketch/final cut paper in the next post to show the process. I scanned this in because I have been using the sketch on top of the final color paper. So, the sketch gets cut as well....Maybe I'll come up with a better process soon.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Pastel • Spider Mum

Spider Mum. Pastel 5x7"
on pastelbord.

I really enjoy drawing and painting glass. The reflections become abstract shapes and the colors are unexpected.
Last week I bought a bouquet of these mums and broke them up and placed them in individual glass votives. They look fun sprinkled on the table with little tea lights. Now some are falling apart, so I caught this one this morning.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Silhouette • Augustus

Augustus--my sweet boy.
Gus was my shadow... i miss him everyday. We had to say goodbye last november and Brad and I still feel the loss.
I have many paintings, sketches and photos of him ... a pastel I started just days before his health deteriorated. This contour sketch of him was a little tough to do-hard to look closely at him from a photo instead of real life.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Silhouette • Ansley

8x10" Silhouette of Ansley.

These are really fun to do!
more to come...
I have tons of old scrapbooking papers with wonderful patterns from my product development/ graphic design days with Inque Boutique. This was not one of our papers, but I think it came from a big pack from My Mind's Eye?? I am not sure because there is no label on the pack. This was just a soft textured pink.
Can't wait to do some pet portrait / silhouettes next. ALso have a wedding gift to send, and I think I have the perfect photo for it...

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Happy Valentine's Day ( a little belated) I wanted to do this for Brad's gift over the weekend, but we were so busy cooking and prepping for a dinner party, that it had to wait. I've been thinking about trying my hand at silhouettes and this is my first attempt. I've always loved them and my parents have black silhouettes from our toddler years. There has definitely been a revival lately and I think maybe even a market for these paired with calligraphy?
Next up will be my nieces. Katherine loves purple and I'll do one for her for her room. Ansley's favorite color changes, so i'll have to ask when i see her this weekend.

I researched a little bit about this unique artform and found several folks that do this. One fellow has done it for years, Karl Johnson. He sounds incredible and actually does not draw out the figures, but looks at an image or live model and starts snipping away!! I am not that confident yet.
I am sure there are some that use a computer to create a perfect silhouette, but I decided to use a photograph the same way I would use photos for painting a reference. So, these lines are not perfectly accurate, but you would not want them to be anyways. Editing out the wrinkles in a shirt and designing the shapes gives the image personality and allows me to control the composition.

I sketched the outline on a piece of paper. Once I was happy with the line work, I used the sketch as a template. With an exacto knife, I cut out the shapes in the patterned paper.

I used to love cut paper collages when i studied illustration, so this feels a little bit like a full circle. Combining my love of shape, figure and calligraphy. Can't wait to do more!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Fortune cookies

Homemade fortune cookies in honor of the upcoming chinese new year.
I consider cooking to be a daily creation, so it makes the blog cut.
I find cooking to be a creative outlet. It fits the parameters of creating something from a few basic elements into something beautiful (sometimes!) and tasty.

We are having a dinner party on sunday for chinese new year/valentines day. Six friends are coming over for a full on asian multi course meal. To some, cooking is a chore. But to us, it is fun.

When we planned this dinner, we thought it would be a blast to make fortune cookies and stuff them with funny fortunes. here is the result. they are not perfect, but they taste really good--way better than your average take out. These have ground almonds--actually more ground almonds than flour. so, surely they are healthy:)
We have some extras here, so that guests will get the luck of the draw.
These are not for the faint hearted. Afterall, it is going to be the year of the Tiger...

bracelet 5x7" pastel on pastelbord

I am still not sure about this one. there are some things not working and I will step back and look at it again this weekend. I think the eyes or the length of the bangs are not quite right yet...
the bangs are way too short now that i see this in a photograph – funny how that can really point out some problem areas.
I really enjoy painting people, so I hope to explore more over the next few months.
comments are always welcome!!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

green vases, in more ways than one!

It's good to be green!

These are seriously green vases. Perrier bottles recycled into fun, whimsical vases. red gerber daisies look great in these as well.
The little vase (jelly jar) to the left is also a recycled pc of glass. They make fun little bud/wildflower vases. I always smile when i see them, so they say "smile".

Thursday, February 4, 2010

A new lamp design. I sort of made up the flower. it reminds me of queen anne's lace, thistles and palm fronds. I like the spikey-ness and the movement. I'm calling it:
Tickled. base size is : 11.5" tall and 4.5" diameter

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


pastel on pastelbord 5 x 7".

I love PastelBord! I bought a pack and finally I am trying it. The texture really does grab the pastel and keeps the vibrance of the pigment. I may be hooked on it now.
Once spring rolls around, I will be out taking photos and trying to paint these types of scenes in person as well. This is from a horse park not far from our house. A group of us went out there to paint on site and I was rushed so I just took a bunch of pictures. The goldenrod or whatever the yellow is was all over the place-just beautiful.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


I really liked how the figures showed caution as they made their way in the water. Plus the gray Atlantic often looks a little ominous. Even on a beautiful day, it is just the color that it is.
I extended the height of this one because I wanted the shadows on the sand at the bottom.
So, that makes this a 9" x 8". cropped image shown here.
pastel on paper.