Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Here's where I'm up to...

Thanks to the Meet Me at Mike's blog for this idea. Pip uses this every now and again to share what's happening, and I really like it. So here goes...

Watching :: The Amazing Race
Reading :: The Six Wives of Henry VIII by Alison Weir (I just finished reading her book on Eleanor of Aquitaine and it was fab)
Making :: a scarf out of the remnants from the cotton dishcloths I knitted for all my family and last Christmas (and have just recieved some new cottons to make new/replacement dishcloths for everyone again this year!)
Eating :: Chocolate and Iced Vovos for supper with a cup of hot Milo
Feeling :: Tired and ready to go to sleep as it’s nearly 11pm, but also happy as I finished the greyhound painting tonight at art class
Thinking :: that Christmas is coming a tad too soon for my liking (bought some Xmas cards today)
Hoping :: I have a good day tomorrow even though it is chore day
Wondering :: if I can create a really great newsletter for my local art & crafts group (I volunteered)
Hearing :: the bath running
Liking :: the box of pooki that arrived today from Catch of the Day - I blame hubby for this one.
Wanting :: a clean desk (but that won’t happen unless I include it in chore day tomorrow!)
Playing :: with the cats. Whenever I sit down at the PC now, one of them appears out of nowhere to claim my lap.
Wishing :: it wasn’t school holidays next week, but also glad it is
Enjoying :: lamingtons from the new bakery that just opened a few minutes down the road
Coveting :: a pastel carrying case from the US which I would love for my birthday – hint hint

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Greyhound Pastel Painting on Velour - WIP#4

I spent the day at the Pam Green Exhibition at Blacktown Showground today, which is a display day in honour of the lady who founded the Blacktown Art & Craft Group. I didn't get as much painting done today as I hoped, but it was still a fun day. Quilts, crafts, paintings and drawings /paintings by the kids in the children's art classes were on display as well as for sale. I spent a fair bit of time catching up with the craft ladies who I hadn't seen for a while as well as volunteering to prepare the quarterly newsletter for the group.

There was also a gymkhana on at the showground, but because of the windy weather not as many horses were shown - but I did get to take a few photos of some lovely horses. Also, had interest in a commission of a cat, a Russian Blue, so that will be great.

Here is the latest pic of progress of the greyhound.

The throat is pretty much done - it looks like the dog has fur now. Just need to do the same detail work on the head. And need to add some value/colour into the background to finish that off too.

I received some really lovely comments on the greyhound and on the pictures of some of my other paintings, which were nice to hear. Feedback is always welcome! :)

K. had a painting of Ernie from Sesame Street (her first still life) in the display and she has received an Encouragement Award for it - her first one!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Dust storm in Sydney - red sky in the morning

I woke up early this morning for some reason. There was a weird glow coming in through the blinds so I looked outside.

I have never seen an orange sky before.

We had gale force winds last night and they have blown in a red dust storm as well. The airport is closed, visibility is really low and there is a lot of dust in the air. I can smell the dust inside and we haven't any windows open.

I already have hay fever and K. is snuffly too - I think we will just have a play day at home today. A good excuse not to go grocery shopping!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Greyhound Pastel Painting on Velour - WIP#3

After a week off sick, I'm back to art and continuing work on the greyhound painting.

Have painted in a rough background, fixed up the nose and started getting some more contours on the snout. Lost a bit of detail on the throat but that will come back as I progress. I hope ! :) Still a lot more work to go!

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Greyhound Pastel Painting on Velour - WIP#2

So this is now looking like an underpainting of the dogs coat. Not sure how I feel about the way the velour is taking the pastel at the moment. I think it works really well when using pencil but I'll wait and see how it goes as I move on to adding more layers of pastel.

Tried to decide what colours to use in the background but a little stumped with that. The person who owns the dog loves purples, but not sure if I can work that into the background or not. So that quandary will have to wait for next week (although I will mull it over until then).

This looks so much better in the photo than in real life, which is so weird. (And the photo was taken under fluorescent lights at night so even that quality is not the best.)

Monday, September 07, 2009

Greyhound Pastel Painting on Velour - WIP#1

After some success drawing Amy the Greyhound with pencil, today I decided to start painting her in pastel. I am using Hahnemuhle Velour paper for the first time with this. Quite a few animal pastel painters use velour paper for their animals and I wanted to see how it works for myself.

Most of the artists recommended drawing the outline of the animal on paper first and then transferring it to the velour. I wanted to get started on this today so I didn't do that - I just drew the outline directly onto the velour with very light pressure. (I may live to regret this - we'll see!)

Once again, I started with the eyes first. The velour really grabs onto the pastel. It was really interesting to feel the way it almost absorbs the pastel.

I moved onto the nose and then started mapping out the colours that I see in her black coat. (To me black is never all black on an animal especially where the light touches.) Amy has a similar colour coat to that of the Australian Cattle Dog I painted earlier, so some of the colours I see in her coat are green, mauve and blue.

Tomorrow night, I will continue to block in the colours of her coat and will start putting some colour into the background as well.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Pencil sketch - Amy the Greyhound

I didn't feel like painting tonight so I sketched from a picture I took of a friend's greyhound. I am going to do this in pastels at some stage but I just wanted to draw tonight and not worry about colour. I think it will also help me to grasp values in paintings a bit more if I work in pencil sometimes instead of always in pastel.

The snout's not right yet and she has one crazy eye which just needs to be increased in size, and of course I am still working on light and shade to get the contours of her face right.

But it was so relaxing just to lose myself in the drawing tonight. Just what I needed.