Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Sunset on 2013

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We are not big party people-at least not anymore, so we are home this evening. It was a laid back Tuesday with nothing on the agenda but a movie: The Desolation of Smaug. If I had one critique of this movie, it would be that they turned a single book, The Hobbit, into three [very long] movies. That should be against the rules...one book, one movie. The movie aside, I wish a safe new year holiday and a happy new year. 
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Monday, December 30, 2013

Poppies #3

The weather is gloomy today so I decided to finish some poppy paintings that I started just before Christmas. I sketched them out on left over paper from the cards I made. They are approximately 4"x5". I completed two in watercolor and two using acrylics. In the acrylic studies, I used tissue paper to add texture to the flowers. 

Note: I used a nude color of paper because that was all I had. Next time I need to use white paper so the colors will be cleaner. 

The water colors are on the right, the acrylics are on the right. 
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Saturday, December 07, 2013

Marshmallow Wreath - Cube Decorating Contest

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I made a wreath using marshmallows and gum drops. I bought my supplies at the $ store with the exception of. The foam wreath. I used craft glue to secure all the marshmallows. That took a couple of days because it has been so humid here. After it was dry, I drilled holes for the gun drops. (The foam was too hard to pierce with toothpicks.)
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Sorry for the grainy photo. I shot it with the iPad. 
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Lollypop Forest Complete

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I put the Lollypop forest together so I could work out any problems before I drag it to the office. For the base I used the top of a paper box. I drilled some holes in the top and stuck in the lollies. They were wobbly so I hot glued some foam core on the inside. This added about 3/4" to stabilize the larger pieces. Some of the holes were too large so I compensated with toothpicks.

I covered the base with "snow". I think it looks pretty good. Now I I have to take it all apart :-( to transport it. 
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Saturday, November 30, 2013

Cube Decorating Contest - Lollypop Forest

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To make my lollipops, I used round cardboards from bake at home pizzas that I saved. I knew I would use them for something! I put so e gesso on them to seal the cardboard and then a coat of white acrylic paint. I then painted the pin wheel decoration.
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From a fourth pizza round, I cut some other shapes: stars, circles, and hearts. I painted these in solid colors to make the work go faster. After the paint was dry, I glued popcycle sticks to the smaller cut outs and dowels to the larger ones. Craft glue worked on the small lollies, but I ad to pull out the hot glue gun for the large ones. Then I wrapped all the lollies in cellophane I picked up at the $ store. 
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Monday, November 25, 2013

Cube Decorating Contest - Magazine Christmas Trees


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Up next are the trees for the Christmas Village. I did not want to buy a bunch of trees, so I am going to make some using old magazines. I am sure you have seen some variation of these trees as they have been around for a long time. 
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For the large tree, I selected three magazines of the same size. Two folds are needed for each page. Fold the top corner down to the seam (top photo). Then turn the bottom corner up to the bottom of the first fold. 
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For the small tree, I used a Reader's Digest. Three folds per page to make a flat bottom. Fold the top corner to the center seam. For the second fold, take the long edge and fold it to the center. A triangle will be left at the bottom of the page, fold that up to make a flat bottom. 
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For both trees, fan the pages and glue or staple the backs together. Now, all that's left is to paint and decorate them to match the Candyland. 
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Sunday, November 24, 2013

Cube Decorating Contest - Making the Game Components

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I started with a simple outline of a gingerbread man. He is about 9" tall. I made a cutout using some spongy craft material I had hanging around the house since we went to Hawaii in 2005. I was going to make luggage tags for everyone, but I digress, and that is truly another story. 
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I wanted the playing pieces to stand upright so I also made a cutout from a cracker box and glued the two pieces together. The glue on the back of the spongy craft material was longer sticky. I wonder why?
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After the two gingerbread men halves were glued together I glued some Popsicle sticks to the back. These will be stuck into the 1" think round styrofoam circles I bought at the $ store. I painted them--one blue and one green. I cut the sticks to the proper height, babbed a bit glue to the bottom ans set then into the styrofoam. 
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I have two playing pieces and colored construction paper for the "game board". I created game cards from a stack of old business cards and colored pencils. We are now ready to play! I am hoping I can get my teammates to play a round. I think being interactive will score me some points with the judges. 
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Cube Decorating Contest Prep (1)

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I have decided to participate in our annual cube decorating contest this year. I have some tough competition from previous contenders. One I believe is a three-time winner. My theme is Candyland. The first thing I did was to map out my cube, keeping in mind that I still have to work. I checked out the game info on Wikipedia to decide which destinations can be created without having to spend too much money. I listed the items I would like to have and made a shopping list. Having said that, these decorations can also be used at home when the contest is over. 
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Sunday, November 17, 2013

The Honolulu Weekly Snooper City Guides

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In 1958, my father was stationed in Hawaii at Schofield Barracks. He and my mother lived there for a a year or so and I was born there in December. Recently, while going thru a box of items my mom gave to me, I found this interesting little advertisement booklet. Advertisers include restaurants, tours, rental car companies, and retail shopping. As far as I can tell, the guides were published in the 50's, 60's and 70's and are for sale on E-bay.
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On the back page of this guide was an adversisement for Matson; serving Hawaii since 1882. As far as I can tell, Matson does not transport people anymore and if they did, they would most certainly charge more than $145. They appear to be in the [large container] shipping business these days.
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Additionally, a long distance phone call from Honolulu (capacity 1) to the mainland would cost roughly $75 for three minutes. I guess that is why you had to schedule calls.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Art Journal Calendar Page

I was looking at Pinterest and I came across a page for an art journal and I thought I would give it a try.  Basically, it's a daily calendar in which you can jot down comments about you day. I wanted to creat my own calendar squares so I splashed some paint on some water color paper. 
While my water color squares were drying I painted the background of my journal pages. I used four colors of acrylic paint: red, yellow, tan, and a darker brown. 
Next, I cut some letters and numbers from the newspaper. I have some stamps, but they did not work well with the acrylic paint. I wanted to add some more elements to the journal pages so I painted a tree and did some stencils with an old plastic doily that I got from my mom. I am pretty sure at one time it belonged to my grandma. Talk about repurposing an item. It works really well as a stencil. 
I used matte medium as my glue. I put some on the pages and then I pasted the back of each art square. Next time I will use a less heavy paper or maybe even cut my squares out of a magazine. The watercolor paper was too heavy it took a lot of matte medium to glue them down. 
This is my finished page. I added #s to each of the squares and I am now ready for the month of November. The big question, will I remember to write anything?






Saturday, October 05, 2013

Mobile

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This weekend I made a mobile/wind chime with the beads from an old necklace, sand dollars that my brother in law collected when we were all at St George Island for my son's wedding, and a piece of driftwood. To string it all together I used a natural fiber 'string'. I laid out the design and got started. 
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Instead of having all of the largest sand dollars at the top I changed up the order with 2 strands going from smallest to largest adding beads between each of the shells. I originally planned for a strand of 6, but the smallest sand dollars were too fragile. 
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To weight the strands I added some sea shells to the bottom and they make a nice little tinkle when the air moves. I braided thread to make the hanging portion and tied it on and adding some beads. I also added a bead of hot glue to each strand of string on the drift wood to keep them in place. Because the sand dollars are so fragile, this one will be hanging in my studio space. 


Friday, October 04, 2013

#DearCongress

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Tom has spent 38 years in service to our government. He retired from the military with 20 years of service and has been working for the DOD for 18 years. During his military tenure, we lived paycheck to paycheck. Money was always tight, but that was a decision we made. He earned a Masters degree and works hard in support of today's soldiers. After his personal sacrifice, this is how our government treats him and 799,999 federal employees. So this is a message to the men and women in congress who brought us to this point. You're fired!
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Sunday, September 15, 2013

Another Fountain in the City

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Fountain near Heritage Square from the archives. 
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Saturday, September 14, 2013

This week in watercolor

The inspiration for this came from a photo somewhere in Illinois or Wisconsin. We were on our way to Minnesota and there are a lot of barns along the highway. I like the trees in this one and the light pole. 

This one is my first attempt at a mountainous landscape. I see a few things that need to be differently, such as the trees on the left...less definition (for background) or to pull them closer to the foreground. Also, I should have pulled the mountain on the left all the to the foreground in one sweep instead of stopping at the horizon line. 


Saturday, September 07, 2013

Mini Landscape

Experimenting with letting the colors blend themselves. I was going to put this in the silent auction but TOM claimed it for his office. I am going to try another on...maybe make the mat so it will fit a 5x7 frame. I got a bit too heavy on the tree. Need to give the limbs more 'air'. Happy Saturday. 

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Color Me Rad

The corner of Broadway and 11th Street with the Iron Bank in the background.

Saturday, March 09, 2013

Working on Trees

Trees. I am never happy with trees, so I decided that I need to practice painting them more often. This first is an example of mixing paint on paper using only two colors. The basic form of trees, but none of the details. The exercise was to see how the colors mixed on the paper.

The second examples contain more of the details. More work is in order :)



Saturday, February 23, 2013

Practice for today

From a photo taken at PCB, FL today. Techniques used: wet in wet, wet in dry, glazing.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Atlantic Coast

From one of my photos.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Abstract Garden

I felt like doing something with acrylics today and I found a shot of a painting on Pinterest and used that as my inspiration.