Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Miniature Daffodils

Suburban Lawn and Garden was full of beautiful blooms on Art Mob day!  Always a fan of daffodils, these miniature blooms really caught my eye!  Standing less that a foot tall, the cheerful yellow flowers top the tall stems, their heads the size of quarters.  I inked them with India ink, following with my watercolor confections.  By this point, my water brushpen was gumming up with the sizing of my journal - and I had to pour a little water out of the brush to actually make the brush work.  If I'd been near a faucet, I could have just washed the brush out, but faucets are not always handy in the field!  This little painting is already sold and heads to Pennsylvania in the morning!  Painting number 1837 in 1837 days.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Sleeping Nolan

This little darling reminds me so much of his daddy!  Tonight, pen and ink are my medium on this handmade cotton paper.  I'm using one of my favorite pens, loaded with cosmic black, which is wonderful to manipulate with pen or brush.  A little water moves the ink, I just need to be careful.  Ink is permanent, so there can be no false marks.  If I'm in doubt, I lay down very light marks until I'm sure of my footing.  This is only my second ink portrait, so in exploring with the marks, perhaps a little looser on this one.  I'm thinking of dropping some lines completely.  There's something to be said for drawing only what is important.  I'll keep playing until I find my way!  Painting number 1836 in 1836 days.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Miniature Cyclamen ATC

After a morning spent painting at Suburban Lawn and Garden, it was time for a little shopping!  I couldn't resist this bright pink miniature cyclamen in the shiny glazed blue pot!  Since I didn't have time to paint it at the nursery, I am painting it today, as I take care of necessary computer chores.  Each time I have to wait on something to load, I pick up my ink or brush and work on this little beauty, turning frustration into joy!  What fun to paint this cheerful little flower!  Painting number 1835 in 1835 days.  Now, back to my chores!

Sunday, January 28, 2018

January Pond

Few places are as peaceful as a pond for painting.  Still waters, birds flying from tree to bank, and the gentle ripple of the surface keep me company as I work.  The wildlife notices me not, so still I am as I capture the landscape. It is restorative to spend time alone, immersed in nature, one with the landscape as I lay down each brushstroke.  Though my painting window is short, it is surely a little slice of heaven in the midst of a busy day.  Painting number 1834 in 1834 days.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Sanctuary Creek

Oh what a day!  From pinewood derby to painting to planting - I have taken full advantage of this gorgeous day!  While deep in the woods in Parkville, I went live with a video of my location, panning to my finished painting, for 30 seconds or so.  Once home, outdoor chores finished, I settle down to post my work, only to find out that I didn't have cell coverage.  And, I can find no trace of the video.  Well shoot.  This is such a cool place to see, but the sights and sounds really bring it to life.  So, what did I learn today?  Check my feed while still on site!  Oh well, it was a glorious day to be outside!  Painting number 1833 in 1833 days.

Friday, January 26, 2018

Paperwhites ATC

I had finished a little early and set my other paintings with the group montage, and realized I had 10 minutes more to paint before lunch.  Well, you KNOW I had to take advantage of that time!  I rushed to where these paperwhites stood, rising gloriously from exposed bulbs.  I could have used a taller paper, but I didn't have one with me.  So, I set those lines down, loose and sketchy and tried to wash that color in fast!  To my dismay, my water brushpens had gummed up with the sizing in my journal, so neither was feeding water.  I almost used spit.......and then thought better of it, digging into my bag for a tiny water bottle I keep for emergencies.  Problem solved, and I didn't have to paint with spit!  Painting number 1832 in 1832 days.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Hydrandea and Daffodils

Painting in the midst of blooms and tropicals, is a little slice of heaven in January.  Suburban Lawn and Garden hosted us today for our monthly Art Mob event - and graciously supplied us with pizza, popcorn and cookies!  I arrived a little early to get a jump on painting, and finished two journal pages and three ATCs before lunch. What a joy to paint spring blooms!  After painting, I did a little shopping, bringing home more hyacinth bulbs, a miniature cyclamen, and the most unusual air plant I've ever seen!  A day well spent!  Painting number 1831 in 1831 days.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Milk Barn Jounalled

Another beautiful sunset - and this time I'm capturing it in one of my favorite journals.  This rough, textured paper compares to 300 lb watercolor paper in the way it accepts the water and paint.  The pen skips a bit, hitting the high spots, but that is part of the charm of working with such tools.  Embrace the different and make it your own, you'll never be bored in your craft.  Painting number 1830 in 1830 days.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Hackberry Sunset

Hours before sunset, I have an eye to the sky.  Will the color be beautiful?  Clouds or no?  Some January days are too overcast for color, but not today.  The skies cleared this afternoon, and I anticipated a chance to paint the sunset!   I took my oils out of the freezer literally on my way out the door, and this time, they were still a little frozen!  I took one brush and my easel, and hot footed it to the pasture.  I found myself trying to thaw my paint with a little friction of my brush - but turned to the other paints when this did not work!  My transparent oils were fine, but those sedimentary ones did not thaw in the 10 minutes it took to paint this!   Perhaps next time, I'll remove my paints 10 minutes early!  Painting number 1829 in 1829 days.

Monday, January 22, 2018

Historic Parkville Inked

Parkville is full of small town charm - especially the downtown district!  I enjoy coming here to paint, and I'm using pen and ink for this street scene.  The pilot varsity is my pen here, and I have a water brushpen in my pocket to move the ink and get my grays. It is fun as challenging to draw that sliding perspective as I look from one side to the other!  Painted during the Parkville in Art event, I just realized I had not posted this one.  Painting number 1828 in 1828 days.... if this Inge posts...... I'm having network errors tonight, and my original post will not post! 

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Home from the Pasture

I scouted all over the property before finally deciding on this vantage.  Calm breezes, warm temps in the 60's and the fabulous light made this a perfect plein air day!  With about an hour before sunset, I set up my easel and got to work. I love the way that golden light streaked across the pasture, bouncing off the tufts of tall grass.  I paint the colors en masse, pulling the brushstrokes about to indicate grasses, rather than painting every blade.  The effect is much more natural, as the eye sees when looking at the whole landscape.  It is so restorative to be one with nature, doing what I was born to do. Painting number 1827 in 1827 days.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Black Capped Chickadees

I almost never wear gloves when painting, but as you can see, I have them on for this ink and watercolor painting.  One of the coldest days of the week, I painted several, finding that gloves don't hinder my work as much with ink as oil.  I can not use them on my  painting hand, I need to feel the brush on the paper.  On the heated ones I've ordered, the tips of each finger are uncovered (with a flap to fold over when needed).  Working fast, I didn't have trouble with the water freezing on the paper - but I wonder..... just when does that happen?  How much time do I really have out there before I have to add vodka to my water brushpen?  Painting number 1826 in 1826 days.

Friday, January 19, 2018


Little Augustus is SO expressive!  His thoughts are written boldly across his face!  After getting a little baby time this afternoon, I take up the fountain pen to render this little darling in ink!  Though I've done many portraits, I've never done them in ink - something about the permanence of it all!  There are no erasers for fountain pens!  So, I made a few tick marks in pencil (like the top, bottom, sides of the face, eye, nose, lip shadow dots) to give me a visual map to start with.  With these dots, I adjusted accordingly as I lay down the ink.  I think I could have done these ticks in ink, and probably will the next time.  I guess I just needed the crutch to get me going!  Once the drawing was in, I used a wet brush to move the ink a little, softening lines and adding shadow planes.  This is a one shot deal.  If I miss the placement of those planes, there's no going back.  No eraser!  I REALLY love the depth of the black ink - I will definitely be doing this again!  Painting number 1826 inn 1826 days.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

January Milk Barn

It was such a gorgeous day for painting - and above freezing all afternoon!  This is bittersweet, though.  As soon as the sun touched that western roof, I could practically see the snow shrinking and dripping off!  Fast painting was in order, so I used only a couple brushes, a knife and limited paints.  I begin by laying in all the darks, then moved to the brightest snowy areas, trying to mark them well before they completely melted away.  The shadows in the snow were very ultramarine today, while the sunlight pushed a little yellow ochre.  I was a little bolder and looser with my color today - perhaps due to standing in the sunlight?  I never even thought of grabbing my hat since I wasn't looking into the sun.  The white of the snow plays tricks with my eyes - I keep forgetting to grab my sunglasses!  Painting number 1825 in 1825 days.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

At Home in the Snow

What a gorgeous day for painting in the snow!  It felt like a heat wave (maybe 20 degrees) compared to the sub zero temps of yesterday!  The long blue violet shadows drew me to this spot, the yummy cool and warm tones playing in the snow.  I was not pressured by the cold at all today, so I could take my time to REALLY look at the colors.  This time of year is always about growth and expressing my feelings of a moment in time with paint.  Each stroke is truth, each passage a connection to the very place I stand.  To reach for that truth each day is a blessing indeed.  Painting number 1824 in 1824 days.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Winter Stand

The light blanket of snow on the landscape is irresistible - even at these temps!  Bundled up in my layers, with a wall to my back and standing in the sun, I made the best of a COLD situation.  Painting fast is key, as are hand and toe warmers. I found myself blocking in masses, and then really studying the colors in those masses, marking them with paint as I worked.  I used quite a bit of raw sienna, which I only seem to bring out this time of year.  My palette needs to be scraped and refreshed, but there's no time for that today.  A little at loose ends, my focus was off, so I just let my intuition take over, allowing the brush and knife to find their own way.  It was hard to tell what I really had until I brought it in, the bright white of the snow playing games with my eyes.  I hope to forge ahead tomorrow on another snowscape - and it is supposed to be warmer!  Yay!  Painting number 1823 in 1823 days.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Sunset in the Snow

Though that sun was warm and inviting, it was SO cold out there in the pasture!  I am painting at home with this lovely blanket of snow on the landscape.  My intention was to paint close, and as many as I could.  We hardly had snow last year, and by gosh, I'm going to take advantage of it!  Well, it was SO cold that I only completed one oil painting!  The brushstrokes are loose (shivering?) and I brought out my old friend the palette knife to assist!  It feels so good to be painting in the oil again, especially for those snowy landscapes to come!  Painting number 1822 in 1822 days.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Cardinals in the Vine

With a light snow overnight, the feeders were swarming with birds all day!  So busy they were, I had to refill them all just before dark!  I found myself watching them often as I entered or left the kitchen, easily visible from the bay window.  I had to paint them, and since I've been using watercolor all month, I stayed in that path.  I think they are more difficult in watercolor and ink!  Never daunted by a challenge, I went in and painted two more - the third I'm very happy with.  Some days it just takes those extra strokes at the easel!  I think I'll be taking out my oils tomorrow, this snow is just too yummy to resist!  Painting number 1821 in 1821.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Dunn's Cider Mill ATC

Many times I have enjoyed hot cider and doughnuts here! Sometimes, my friends and I would gather for lunch - with grandbabies in tow!  On the outskirts of town, it is picturesque with it's winding drive back to the mill.  Here, I capture this place with ink and watercolor.  I zoom in on the barn for this one (zooming out for the next).  I paint from outside the gate as they are closed for the season.  One of the biggest benefits of painting daily - I get faster as the months roll by.  Faster at seeing what I want, faster at getting it sketched, and faster at laying that paint.  It all becomes SO natural.  Want to change your life?  Change what you do daily.  Painting number 1820 in 1820 days.

Friday, January 12, 2018

Winter Creek ATC

This glass dip pen is one of the new ones I ordered before Christmas.  It is much smaller in scale than the first one, which could be a problem for one with large hands.  It is fine for me, though the nib is not quite as smooth either.  These glass dip pens hold an amazing amount of ink!  I simply dip it as far as I like (as long as I don't go above the twisted part), and start drawing.  I choose India ink for this because I am following immediately with my watercolors.  My fountain inks would all bleed, giving the color a definite blackish hue, not muddy but very dirty looking.  I've only tried that once!   Every painting is a lesson.  Painting number 1819 in 1819 days.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Lakeside Retreat

I am putting pen to paper and filling in with watercolor.  This cotton rag paper has a rough texture, so I must use a fine or medium tip pen for the drawing.  The super fine seems to skip around too much, only hitting the high spots.  The paint flows freely on this paper, staying wet long enough to add more colors to mingle into the wet areas.  Each painting is an exploration in the media, pushing and pulling to see what evolves! Painting number 1818 in 1818 days. 

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Stone Pillar Vineyard Inked

This glass fountain pen has 5 interchangeable nibs, from super fine to broad.  Drawing with dip pens may look intimidating, but once you know a couple tricks, it really is easy.  The most important thing is to dip the nib into the ink to the top of the well (or hole) in the nib.  As you pull the pen out of the ink, simply draw it lightly against the lip of the ink well.  You will be surprised at how much you can draw with a single dip!  When finished, disassemble the pen parts and rinse in water.  Now, go explore those inks! Painting number 1817 in 1817 days. 

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Wooded Stream ATC

I adore the sunrise and sunset light and the golden hours, too.  So often I see the light growing in the sky, but I'm in the car or otherwise disposed, and minutes count at such a time.  When the trees drop their leaves, the creeks and streams can really be seen from the roadside.  Positioned in such a spot, I could catch the reflecting light on the water, capturing what calls to me.  The fine tipped Pitt pen I reloaded a couple days ago works just like new!  So glad to find a way to save them, the tip is still like new.  I'm very easy on my pens, always using light pressure - unless I'm running out of ink!  Painting number 1816 in 1816 days.

Monday, January 8, 2018

Kansas City Skyline from Main

For this painting, I am showing my tools!  Both watercolor pan sets are Watercolor Confections, which I have disassembled and reassembled the way I wanted, adding the middle rows which I scavenged from a third set. The water brushpen is by Koi, and the pen is an India ink Pitt pen which I have refilled.  I did a more careful sketch than usual, for no particular reason, and then filled in with watercolor.  I would have blotted a couple of spots, but alas, found myself without a paper towel!  Painting number 1815 in 1815 days.

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Union Station ATC

With Union Station dressed in red for the Chiefs, I knew I must paint this!  The arrowhead banners in the windows are a great addition to this building, adding that pop of red!  This one is miniature at 2.5x3.5, and already has a new home!  First Saturdays are the Urban Sketchers KC event from 10:00 - 12:00, and we met and painted on the glass walkways between buildings.  I could paint there all day, with wonderful views of the city in all directions! Michaela went with me and painted a couple of her own!  Painting number 1814 in 1814 days.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Union Station Interior

I've not painted on this paper much, so the first strokes are a surprise.  The velvety surface quickly absorbs the watercolor, the extra touch getting very saturated instantly.  I adjust as I go.  It is all pushing and pulling, allowing the paint to tell me what it needs.  More water?  Less pigment?  A little more ink?  I just refilled this ink pen last night from a bottle of India ink I've had forever.  This ink actually moves ever so slightly when the wet brush runs over it.  I love it!  It's movement is perfect for me.  My fountain pen inks move too much for use with watercolor.  My Pitt pen's ink does not move at all, even when I add the color immediately.  I have always liked this, but I like the slight move more!  It allows those lines to soften just a little, adding a little mystery to the hard lines of the sketch.  I'm going to enjoy this new India ink!  Painting number 1813 in 1813 days.

Friday, January 5, 2018

Donkeys in the Woods

This cold winter's day didn't bother these donkeys in the least!  They stick together, one never far from the other.  I've used a thin, velvety paper in 100% cotton.  After drawing with India ink, I use my watercolor confections set to add color.  Even as thin as this paper is, I have no bleed through of ink or paint.  Amazing.  I fully expected a little as I dropped in very wet areas of watercolor.  I just discovered that I could refill my Pitt pens - and I tried it with three that were headed to the trash!  It was as easy as removing the end with pliers and dropping in 5 drops of India ink.  I now wish I hadn't thrown all those other pens away!  Painting number 1812 in 1812 days.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Old City Hall ATC

The Old City Hall in Belton is now a museum, with many historic items on display.  I recently walked in during the fall festival to see a large black and white photo of my grandma Frank's (Clarice) barn hanging in the front hall!  I was so surprised!  Barn wood was donated to the historical society by her, as well as various other items. Today is the first time I have actually painted it, and I'm doing it from a block north to capture more of the scene.  This paper is 100% rag, and one of my favorites to work with.  I need to reload my India ink pens - I now have three bordering on empty, and I keep reaching for them!  Painting number 1811 in 1811 days.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Sunset Shed ATC

This January light has been amazing, so crisp and clean.  I can hardly leave a landscape like this as long as the light lingers.  While painting small, I'm fast enough that I don't notice the cold - and it has been cold hovering near zero!  In the four years that I've been painting daily, my speed has REALLY increased.  I can get that sketch done in minutes, and the color added in minutes more.  Nothing hones your skills like doing it daily!  Painting number 1810 in 1810 days.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Outbuildings ATC

Fabulous warm light in the pasture today, though the temps linger at 20 degrees!  It really feels much warmer compared with the 1 degree of this morning!  With such fabulous light, I want to paint some more - but a family dinner is closing in!  Maybe I can get one more in......... food is overrated!  Painting number 1810 in 1810 days.  Back to the light!

Monday, January 1, 2018

Sunset at Home ATC

Tonight I am showing my tiny painting with the pen, brush, and watercolor pans that I used to paint it.  These supplies fit into a pocket, as I switch from pen to brush, letting one stick out as I work with the other.  The brushpen has a well for water, so as I paint I can control the water by my pressure on the barrel.  The watercolor cakes are highly pigmented, and I can mix in the tray that folds out.  There is a ring underneath that I can slip my finger through, allowing me to control it in the field.  It really is perfect for the urban sketcher or plein air artist, where minimal supplies matter.  Painting in the field is SO much more fun when you're not packing your whole studio on your back!  Painting number 1809 in 1809 days!  Happy New Year to you all!