Sunday, October 25, 2015

Pretty Play Date

I hosted a play date yesterday for my crafty friends.  We started off by creating cute drawings in the style of Danielle Donaldson.  My friend Z took a workshop with her last year at Art is You Petaluma. which is in Santa Rosa this year, a few miles north. She walked us through the steps of pencil drawing, water color, dark lines with a black marker (i used a fine tip sharpie)  then the final touch was to add details and outlines with a white pen.  Z gifted us with these awesome Uni POSCA white pens from Japan which were a joy to work with.
The table was set with random supplies, cute little decorated boxes with treats for my guests, and come painted pumpkins to celebrate the season.
This is the cute girl K made.  Her sweater looks so fluffy and soft!
M decided not to do a girl, but was quite happy to draw these shapes and then colour them in.  Sort of an abstract cactus!  After the lesson and a bit of show and tell, we each went off in whatever direction we chose.
After our lesson, Z got to work finishing up some wool felt coasters she began at a workshop we attended at the Novato Library.  We built a piece of wool felt from assorted colours of roving, using the soapy water and friction method.. To complete her project,  Z cut the piece into circles and added some swirly white wool using the needle felting technique we also learned at the library.  they are the perfect set of coasters for her recently redecorated living room.
Next K started a root veggie art piece on a birch panel. She carefully drew the shapes then painted with vibrant water colors.
M created these intricate beaded stars - part of a future bracelet. wow- that's a lot of fine detail
 I had an idea, that was inspired by a "doll" i saw at the Danville craft show a few weeks ago.  a vendor (sorry didn't get her name) had created a vintage flower frog holder for vintage pins.  she had a doll head on top with a bunch of frilly lace ass a "collar".   since i have a collection of vintage flower flogs, i thought it would be a perfect project for me.  In case you  don't know, a flower frog is used to hold flowers in place in a vase or bowl.  they come in all kinds, but this cage type is perfect to hold the pins.  I had some doll heads and arms - and just needed to create a torso.  Here you can see the two part Aves epoxy drying with some paper propping it up.
once i got started there was no stopping me!  I made three more!
Around this time we stopped for lunch - a mexican buffet.  make a salad, a bowl, or some tacos. Perfect for all your friend's dietary desires.
We had roasted peppers, chicken strips, and ground beef.
an lots of fixin's.
We ate on the patio.
After lunch i started to decorate my dolls.  I have never really been into doll making, but it is kind of infectious.  this one had a gold tone dress with tulle skirt to match, and a dozen pins attached to her skirt.
This gal has a blue gown, with a netting skirt and vintage lace trims.
and finally a pink version with a fine organza skirt and velvet and ruffled organza trim.

what a fun day we had and the results prove that getting together with like minded friends is very inspiring!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Mike Snow Art Retreat pART Trois

 Another day in Saussignac, painting with Mike Snow.  
This is the view through the Studio window in the chateau.
 Our last painting.  Choose a black and white photo. 
 I chose something a little more challenging.
 First sketch
 cover canvas with paint
 Rough in the first layer.  Oh - Bunny ears?  "Where did they come from", said the reader as they scrolled back up to look at the original photo.  It occurred to me that my 4 previous paintings began with B.  Boots, Boy, Ballerina, Babe (or Boobies).  so this girl needed something to make her follow suit.  Hence the bunny ears and Easter basket.
 a little more detail
 lots more detail.  ooh - too much.  looks cheap.  help Mike!
How about you just swish around with a wet brush and soften some of those flowers?
This was as far as i got by the end of the day.  All my paintings are being shipped home to the US, so i can marvel at my accomplishments.  This one needs some additional work on the face. and maybe some details on the grass.
 I asked Mike if he wanted me to bring him anything from the US.  Like his favorite condiment, or whatever.  he asked for peanut butter - apparently next to impossible to find in France.  it wasn't to make sandwiches.  it was to make cookies!
 Here is another project we worked on all week.  We were asked to illustrate "who we are".  i drew myself as a sad blond bombshell, hidden in a fat body (hence the muumuu).  then we had to paint it onto a huge canvas.
 My classmate Joelle said her true self was someone determined to live life to the fullest and move onward and upward.  So she painted herself with and arrow pointing to the sun.
 Everyday, whenever we had extra paint on our palettes - we were told, not to waste it!  
Just add something to this canvas!
 You can see how the freedom to let loose on a large piece of art can be very creative.
 Oh - and we had to mix it up.  not to stay on our own person.  I added the scarf on Joelle.
 Even Mike got into the game.  he painted with us in the studio.  
Quite the inspiration i must tell you.

Here are some of my fellow student Joelle's paintings.

And here are some of Mike's:

 Yeah. Wow.
Well, that's it.  Farewell to Saussignac.  
There are no words to properly thank Mike and Tim for this amazing adventure.
Just hugs and two cheek kisses to you both.

Mike Snow Art Retreat pART Deux

 Welcome to my journey to France to spend a week with Mike Snow, artist extraodinaire,  
Our next art project, like the last, find a blank and white photograph and paint it as you see.  Eliminate the other dancers, change the tutu, and of course add colour.
 First step - sketch
 Missing pictures of painting a solid background, and drawing in the dancer.  this is the first rough coat.
 a few more details.  don't love the background.  need better light/dark balance.
and the final look.  the costume came out looking more like feathers than tulle. i had planned to add some swishes of the brush to give an illusion of tulle, but we liked it the way it was.  (plus as someone with a bird obsession, i mean - they look great!)
And we continued to have delicious meals prepared by the chef, Timothy.
 picnic lunch from the market
 lasagna a la Timothy
 rich gateau chocolat
 feta on toast with tomato relish
 soupe andalousie
 Mike showed us this picture to demonstrate each artist can see a subject differently  - as these paintings demonstrate.
 for our next challenge - choose a subject you would like to paint.
 Then choose an artist whose style you would like to emulate.  i chose Modigliani.
 paint background
 draw subject on canvas
 outline in black.  change angle of upper hand. rethink kim kardashian butt.
 it was a cold rainy day - so here's some wine!
 roughed in base coat
 use purple for shadows?  nope.
 almost there.
 add a bit more depth
et voila!
Stay tuned for more from my week with Mike and Tim....