About Me

My photo
Documenting a period in my development that could become pivotal

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Visit to Bond Butte Pond

My husband and I drove to Halsey and then to Bond Butte Pond in view of the I5 Freeway. This is the first time we have visited the resting place of the small logs he cut from our neighbor's wood lot. We were happy to spot a couple of the logs submerged to give fish shelter. My husband is photographing the makeshift fishing platform.

A few branches of the log break through the surface. Below is the lake looking towards I5.

There were many birds including this black bird. Near Hway 99 we saw tundra swan, hawks and bald eagles. Around the lake was killdeer, black birds and geese.
Today was too cold to see the warm water fish in the pond but soon I want to return to the pond in warmer weather. Maybe some of our local artists will want to paint here with me.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Volunteer for ODFW - Bond Butte Pond fish habitat

"Mother Donates Fish Habitat Logs For Bond Butte Pond" might be the one I choose to be exhibited in an Oregon State University Art about Agriculture exhibit this May and June at the River Gallery in Independence, Oregon. The exhibit is called " This Everlasting Valley II: Willamette River Valley Farms from the Art About Agriculture Permanent Collection With Recent Works". The show is exciting me. I can show both the changes in the woodlot next to our home and the development of my painting process. The painting in the University's collection is "Mother Thinning Woodlot." "Mother Donates Fish Habitat" was begun looking out our garage back door but immediately I was challenged by the dry air of the furnace making it hard to move the paint around when it dried too fast. The feeling of outdoors was just inches away so I moved out into the freezing cold to paint the foggy setting for my memory of my husband volunteering to log neighbor Mother who donated the wood to Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife for building fish habitat at Bond Butte Pond, a quarry dug out for the building the I5 freeway. I want to also paint the volunteers working at the pond.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Fresh after Rain Storm

"Fresh after Rain Storm" is acrylic on museum wrap canvas 16" square with painted sides 1 3/8" deep,can be hung with or without frame, for sale $150. Yesterday afternoon the sun came out after the rain then a blue bird sat in the walnut tree for a minute. I watched by a warm wood fire in the shop looking through the windows that I had just cleaned. In the evening the thermometer dipped almost to freezing, there were predictions of snow, and I took my paints to our warmer garage adjacent to the house. This morning there was a skiff of snow on the bare ground and some in the trees.
The snow melted before I finished writing my thoughts on boycotting on Rain's blog. http://rainydaythought.blogspot.com While writing, I had an epiphany. I am going to paint volunteers for government. There is so much anger in the world, I want to celebrate the good hearts and importance of volunteers. I will start painting my husband who has volunteered his whole adult life assisting the government. He volunteered for the Whatcom County Mountain Rescue in Washington State assisting the Sheriff department and boarder patrol for about ten years. Now that he is fully retired he is volunteering for Oregon Department for Fish and Wildlife.
In yesterday's post in regards to drying of paints in our shop, once a barn and very cold in Oregon, I am continuing to research different paints. I am waiting for answers to my questions from several other paint manufactures including Grumbacher and Stephen Quiller. The different manufactures have different paint properties. Grumbacher requires a varnish to make the paint have integrity. Quiller has acrylics with body similar to oils. I have always liked the intensity of Lascaux Aquacryl. A small amount of color goes a long ways. Liquitex Super Heavy Ivory Black is light for a black. Hair driers can be used to dry Liquitex but Golden paints can crack if exposed to strong air flow. Reading all the information on acrylic paints is a real eye opener for me. I'll be writing more about what I am learning.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Researching Acrylic Paints

I am learning about the differences between Golden Acrylics and Liquitex. There is no latex in Liquitex and only a small amount of amonia. Golden has other additives and also requires 40o F to dry. I am still working on finding out temperature requirements for Liquitex.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

View of Siletz Bay from Nature Walk at Salishan

"Nature Walk View at Salishan" is acrylic on cradled wood panel 12" square, with 45% edges so the picture can be hung in the corner of any room or appear to float an inch and a half in front of a flat wall. For Sale, $100.
My memory painted fresh of walking the Nature Trail at Salishan Resort gives me joy on a cold rainy day.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Painting Out of the Rain

"Painting After Rain", acrylic on stretched canvas, 16" square, For Sale $150 plus postage.

I am painting acrylic again today. Although it is pouring down rain the north east side of the shop doesn't get the rain. This was a favorite resting place for our sheep when we had them. Here I am between the rat poison and the lawn mower. Instead of starting a fire or turning on the electric space heater, I used a hair drier. The paint should be dry enough that I can go back and finish the painting. I love fit when the sun comes out after the rain as it is doing now.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Moving my acrylic painting studio

To help out my husband who is allergic to acrylic paint fumes, I have quit using Golden Acrylics in the house. Today my husband cleaned the shop and we moved a paint supply cabinet next to the wood stove. The problem my husband points out is that the paint will freeze.
Two solutions come to mind. Buy a space heater or move the paints into the garage every time freezing temperatures threaten. Here in Oregon we could have a freeze as late as May.
Tomorrow I am looking forward to painting on some new canvases.
Another problem is the shop is filled with a mower, hand tools, wood working, and metal working tools. There isn't any wall space. So while I will paint in the shop, I must store and look at my work elsewhere. The painting gallery will be in our motor home because my husband says the paintings are still wet and give off fumes long after they are dry to the touch.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

APE at Albany Carrousel Workshop

Original one of a kind watercolor on hot press Arches paper , 4 1/4 x 10 1/2" folded like a card, For Sale, $12.00

Thursday The Albany Painting Enthusiasts painted at the Albany Carrousel Workshop. The wood carvers have been busy at work making fragile animals for a future carrousel in a new building that will be built on the workshop site. I sketched in an accordion folded watercolor paper.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

What I learned from being commisioned to illustrate J.H. Sweet Foo and Friends books

My vision for illustrating Foo would have been somewhat better informed if I had actually seen this sculpture. This spirited ceramic garden sculpture was at the Classical Chinese Garden in Portland, Oregon where I saw it for the first time yesterday. My own clay model didn't have cheeks, or the characteristic ceramic treatment of eyebrows and mane. Another problem with my Foo is that people in Albany, Oregon cannot tell my illustration is a dog let alone a ceramic one. To my knowledge Chinese brush paintings are of nature not of ceramic images of imaginary animals like their lion sculptures. And I agree that a traditional Chinese rendering is not suggestive of a modern neighborhood in America. A different medium like pastel would show the ceramic quality and be compatible with the location of the story.

When I started, I was elated at first. It was a thrill to have a chance to illustrate a children's book with the main character being the Lion-like dog guardian ceramic sculpture. I could make animated expression for a dog that comes to life at night when the people in the neighborhood are sleeping. The commission was also a great way to have a project with a cousin who I just met through the Internet. The books were free for downloading on the Internet with the promise that someday they would be published.

The first book was very exciting for me, but the second one was more complex and I was not as happy as JH Sweet seemed at first. Soon after the illustrated book appeared on her web site I was itching to rework it. JH Sweet didn't want me to work on it any more. furthermore and more importantly, I felt I was tweaking her story with my illustrations. The bronze gorilla character turned out to be more like a chain saw cedar carving. I began to be more and more bothered by problems with the targeted age for early chapter books. I was illustrating for a picture book level. It occurred to me that JH Sweet needed to own her own story by making the illustrations herself. She did to my delight. http://www.jhsweet.com/ Her WISHING WELL and GARAGE SALE are early reader chapter books with just enough visual imagery introduced at the right places in the chapters to spark the imagination of seven to ten year olds.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Valentine Gardenia Tango

11 1/2" x 8 1/2" mixed water media on paper, now framed and selected for my exhibit at Sam's Station in Corvallis, May, 2009. $290 each.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Three Wearing Allbany Water Department Hard Hats

Unknown to the water pipe layers today, their yellow rain gear caught my eye. Now I am trying to analize if there is any hidden meaning to three workers and a big screw. The painting is gouache on paper 12" x 9".

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Painting Again

I am over joyed to share a change in our neighborhood. For 20 years, ever since the city took over our private road, we complained because the road needed resurfacing. We complained because of the constant mending of our water pipes were inadequate. Well, the economic stimulus plan must be the reason we are getting a good water pipe and a newly paved road.

Here is Tango Painting #1 completed today even though I feel very sick with the virus that is going around. The painting is gouache on watercolor paper. 12" x 9"