Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Happy New Year!

Being a teacher, I usually make resolutions at the beginning of the school year. This year I do have a few things on my mind...areas I want to improve, things that need to be changed in my life.

On one of the blogs I read today, a young woman outlined about a dozen or so things she resolved for the upcoming year. She wrote that she wanted to get closer to God, make healthy choices (I'm going to guess that means lose weight), volunteer, draw everyday, organize her house, etc. I was exhausted just reading her list.

In my quiet time I reflected on the resolutions I've made over the years and all the prayers I've prayed. I've been blessed to have hundreds of prayers answered and I've kept my share of resolutions.This year I resolve to be kinder to myself. If that means that I need to forgive myself from past mistakes, talk to God more, loose weight, then that is what I need to do.

Tonight I have been working on a few projects. First, I made some personalized cards for my daughter. I hand printed her name and drew a sweet crown on 10 cards and then wrapped them in a pretty ribbon. Here is a sample:

I've been thinking of creating a calendar. Maybe featuring toys and things from the 70s. I turned my practice into a little greeting. 

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

The Great Blue Pumpkin

Every holiday that I can remember I have gotten wrapped up in some kind of craft.  This year the holiday can be defined by dip pens, calligraphy nibs and stained fingers.  I think I've about gotten the process figured out.  I really like the Brause 361 steno nib. I've also tried the Nikko G but it is pretty sharp.  I also like J. Herbin pigmented ink.  It is thicker and more gel like.  I'm probably swayed by the sparkle.

I've created my own "font". I have very shaky hands so a straight up and down stroke helps me have consistent letters.  Take a look at a practice page...

Thursday, December 4, 2014

The Road...Traveled

I have been doing a lot of traveling lately. It seems I've spent more nights in a hotel than in my house.  Christmas break is coming and I will have many days working at home.  I can't wait! I sketched a map of my travels for the last 10 days in my sketchbook.  I still have several more days left before I'll be back home. 

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Practice Makes Perfect...

I am practicing using a dip pen for the first time.  It is pretty interesting that the nib keeps enough ink to write several words or depending on the size of your letters, an entire sentence. I really like the ink I am using.  It is J. Herbin pigmented ink.  When the ink dries it is even lovelier.  It is raised and has a metallic finish.

This would be beautiful on a Christmas card.  I just need to figure out how to write without putting my hand in the ink. 

Thursday, November 27, 2014


So thankful to be able to steal away some time with my girl.  We escaped to the city to protect ourselves from the flu. Unfortunately, half our family is really sick.  My daughter and I spent the day shopping,  going to the World of Coke, and riding Skyview Atlanta. It was a perfect day.
I took my sketchbook along to capture the day.  I can't wait to share my new sketchbook cover from Sula Jane and Earl. It is made from the softest leather.  Inside it has a pocket perfect for my small watercolor kit. A pen, pencil, and  (of course) my sketchbook fit in perfect slots made just for them.  I love having it with me where ever I go!

Monday, November 24, 2014

Updated Sketchbook

Today I had time to update my website with photos from my current sketchbooks. Here are a few of my favorite pages.

Skidaway Island
I like this page because I adore my little painting travel case. It is a vintage train case with adorable plaid cover.

What's In My Painting Kit

Jackson, Georgia

I like the sketch above because I sketched quickly and was able to capture more of the correct perspective than I have before.

Louisville, Georgia
This page in my sketchbook was fun because I only used 3 colors. I decided to do this because I had just purchased 3 tubes of the new Qor (pronounced "core") watercolor paint by Golden. It performed well and I enjoyed using the paint. 

Sparta Courthouse
Last but not least, my favorite of all...The Sparta Courthouse. I really like these pages because of the fact that I completed them a few days before the courthouse burned down. I have this record of the beautiful building that once stood there. 

So it seems I am getting things done during Thanksgiving break. I'm kicking butt and taking names!

Thanks for peeking in my sketchbook!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Sunday Night in the Studio

Seems like I spent more time cleaning up after painting than I do painting. It's Sunday night and I've got to get this mess cleaned up. I've got so many little projects going on in here that I have no place to work. 

I'm creating a backboard for a jewelry sale. The backboard is on the floor where I just put the first coat of paint on it. I had to paint inside the house because it is raining tonight. It is not just raining, but pouring!!!

Once I got out the paint I decided to paint the board on the top of my shelves. It has been "paintless" since I bought it a year ago. I didn't realize how much I depend on this board until I put wet paint on it. I have almost laid my spray bottle, my drink, a handful of brushes, my phone, and my computer on it. I need a "wet paint" sign!

Then I looked over at my other work table and noticed how dirty it looked so I put a coat of paint on it. 

Yesterday I gave away the printer I had in here because I have a much nicer networked printer in the other room. Once I gave it away I noticed that I now had more room for stuff! 

Now I'm left with my desk (which is also covered in stuff) and my painting table which has several unfinished projects on it. 

Despite the mess, I was able to complete a few sketchbook pages which needed journaling and touch-up work. Here is one of my favorites. I really enjoyed sketching and painting at this site but I didn't leave my car because the area is a little "sketchy". I am sure I will sketch here a few more times. 

Warehouse, Macon, GA

Thank you for peeking in my sketchbook!

Sunday, August 3, 2014


Today I set time aside to update my sketchbooks, website, blog, etc. I'm getting a lot of work done but I am now banging my head up against the wall! How could I have made such a huge spelling error...right in the title?!?

This page was already the most frustrating one I have ever done. I had a few hours to sketch on a business trip. I was miles from my hotel when I realized I didn't have my pencil or pen. I pulled out a ball point gel pen and decided to "go with the flow".  Well, it started raining and the pen ran! I found shelter in a gazebo and continued sketching. I was joined by a couple would were smoking and I almost croaked. I had been enjoying the power of the storm and then the quiet was disturbed. 

Here is the corrected page...

Thank you for taking a peek into my sketchbook!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Off to Camp!

Boy, I wish I could have kept my kids little! Magz was home from college just a few days and now she is at camp in counselor training. She'll be there all summer. The worst part of camp (for me) is that she doesn't have Internet or phone. I miss her sweet voice and her cheery attitude. I am so glad she is happy and enjoys her life. She is just like sunshine! The big problem is...I MISS HER!!!

On the way home from dropping her off I stopped at the Ocoee Whitewater Center. This center is part of the Cherokee National Forest and is rich with beautiful plants and great scenery. It was one of the locations for the 1996 Olympics. 

Great day for sketching but a sad day for Mom.

Thanks for peeking in my sketchbook!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

A Colorful Weekend...

I had a nice Mother's Day weekend catching up in my sketchbook...lots and lots and lots of painting! 

The view outside my little office/studio is so pretty with new geraniums. I painted a quick little picture just for fun. The blue jays keep harassing one of our cats so I included a little blue jay. 

Both cats have been very disturbed by something in the corner of my studio. All day long they have been sticking their noses in the corner smelling and searching for some kind of prey. Well, we were all surprised when we discovered it was a chipmunk! Lots of screaming and chaotic moving of supplies resulted in nothing! We don't know where the little guy went!  

So funny...

Monday, April 14, 2014


Today I played with the color yellow. Below are a few facts about yellow...
My yellow things

1. The definition of yellow
"Yellow." Merriam-Webster, n.d. Web. 14 Apr. 2014. <>.
2. Yellow is the lightest hue in the spectrum
3. How the color yellow affects you:
-Stimulates mental processes
-Stimulates the nervous system
-Activates memory
-Encourages communication

4. Shade names for the color yellow:








This blogger claims there are 1,200 shades of yellow!

6. Finally, Cold Play "Yellow"

Yellow makes me happy. Today I saw a whole field of yellow daffodils. It was stunning on this rainy and cloud filled day. Do you love yellow?

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Practice Make Perfect?

This weekend I spent time practicing painting a camellia. I painted these over and over again. Here are 4 examples:

First, the flowers were flat. I did a little research and added shadows in the flower. Then the middle of the flower became muddy. I lighted the shadows and liked the results much better. I learned about layering the watercolors. I worked on a scrap piece of paper and finally applied what learned to the camellia. Finally, I left white spaces and liked it even more. It still doesn't look like I want it but I can see improvement.
Maybe it would look better this way...
The bee turned into a wasp! 

This little bee died right outside my door and sat on my desk all weekend as a prop.  Poor little guy!
Thanks for peeking in my sketchbook!

Sunday, March 16, 2014

An Experiment Mixing Green...

 This weekend I played in the paint! I learned to mix greens. I am enjoying these studies and I believe they are making my paintings better each time I do it. I like the way the greens aren't a consistent color but vary in hue. It adds a depth to my work.  

The paintings below show when I used paint right from the tube. All the greens are flat. 

Now I have to figure out blues! How do you do the same thing with a primary color?

Thanks for peeking!