On Day 88 I drew precious objects on my desktop, actually, my grandmother's desk that I inherited from my mother. Tonight I began a painting of the same objects by drawing with turpentine. I laid a neutral ground on the board as a wash which included ultramarine, alizarin, cadmium red light and viridian. I leaned it a little more ultramarine to the left where the window is and a little warmer away from the window. I aimed for a value about 3.5 on a 1 to 5 scale with 5 the darkest. I wiped the wash in, then used a clean brush with solvent to wipe away only the areas in light. By making accurate marks, the composition is showing without the application of any paint beyond the initial wash, and the values are already in place. (The green on the board is from a prior exercise, so try to ignore... I will eventually cover up.) In any places where I was too exuberant with the turps, I could use another brush to add the neutral wash back in.
You can see the completed painting as of January 1, 2018 on our Girls Just Wanna Paint blog along with our group's other interpretations of December's theme, "luxury".
This is Day 90 of my daily drawing endeavors! Thank you for looking and for your thoughtful comments.
|Day 88 - "Desktop"|
I love my Christmas break from school. My daughter and I spent some time in Boston doing a little shopping, enjoying the feel of winter festivity and some wonderful hot chocolate, despite the single-digit temperatures. We are hearty New Englanders, bundled against the cold. I am a fan of the cold as long as I can get out of it when I need to.
This is an even tougher time than usual for Boston's homeless population. We contribute to Boston's Rosie's Place, the first women's shelter in the United States, founded in 1974. Check them out.
This is day 89 of my drawing-a-day endeavor. Thank you for your thoughtful comments.
I have some favorite things on top of my grandmother's desk, which I inherited from my Mom. They are standing in front of one of my mother's paintings from her graduate student days in Florence, Italy. Can you tell neither clock is wound? I love the family connections, and I am loving my gray markers these days.
This is day 88 of my drawing per day efforts. Thank you for your time and interest.
We spent a lovely Christmas afternoon at my mother-in-law's home. Here is my drawing of Nana's Christmas table with color added. She has a Dickens Christmas village on the bay window sill, windows lit. When our daughter was little, she and Nana would set the houses up, decide on the arrangement and the careful placement of all the characters. The sun pours in through Nana's curtains across the table. It was a fun day, great food, thoughtful gifts. Thank you for looking. This is my 88th daily drawing, technically, my 85th reworked with marker, color, and colored pencil. I like thinking about how to create the illusion of the backlit table. Thank you for looking, and for your thoughtful comments.
We headed into Boston today, an appointment for my daughter. I waited in the car while she had the appointment, then we spent some time shopping, walking in the cold Boston afternoon, having hot chocolate at Burdick Chocolates and enjoying the sights of this beautiful city as the late afternoon light shifted. When I did the drawing, I felt the eye was drawn to the top of the steeple of the Church of the Covenant, because the lines were heaviest there. That isn't what I wanted, so I added some emphasis along the street by adding some value to the people on the street and the window behind. It moved the viewer's eye down lower, away from the steeple. You can shift the focus of your design with minor adjustments to value, which create a change in interest.
This is my eighty-seventh daily drawing. Thank you for your continued interest.
We have a church across the street up a small hill. Tonight I looked out the window (the window with our crazy santas on the sash) and saw the church outlined in the last light of dusk. I completed a quick sketch, then blacked in the church silhouette with india ink, then laid in the blue dusk with pencil and pastel.
The crazy santas on the windowsill are made of a couple of silver christmas balls, some red felt, and white cotton and glue. I found them years ago in a bag in a consignment store. Someone put a lot of effort into their creation decades ago. I'm a firm believer that somethings are so tchotchke that they become beautiful again. Many times it has to do with the time and effort expended. The crazy santas are the product of a lot of time. I intended to put them on packages, but couldn't let them go... they are too sweet.
This is my 86th daily drawing. Thank you for looking.
We have been very busy, as most are this time of year. School was out Friday with a half day. All our middle school students complete a math portfolio each year which is several weeks of work incorporating a lot of math concepts and creativity. Their presentations were this week and all their grades are finished!! Crazy busy week, along with Christmas preparations, etc. Everything has come together in a few minutes here and there... sort of how I paint.. an overall plan, some attention here, a little attention there, measuring progress, reevaluating strategies and objectives, a little more attention here and again there... stepping back to evaluate multiple times, then done. Last night I spent a few minutes in front of our Christmas tree drawing a vignette in the branches with some of my favorite ornaments. Some work here and there and eventually, we're done. Merry Christmas.
A sketch of the warm last glow of light by the Scituate Lighthouse one night last summer. Every evening nature cooperates, people gather to watch the sunset across the harbor from the lighthouse. I loved the silhouettes against the warm sky.
This is my 83rd daily drawing. Thank you for your continued interest.
Boston's Downtown Crossing has been a pedestrian-only shopping area in downtown for a number of years. The arrangement of tall buildings leaves space where the sun peeks through and makes a variety of shapes that shift with each few steps you take. It is beautiful.
This is my 82nd daily drawing. I love the city. Thank you for looking.
I enjoy walking through Boston's North End, looking at the interesting architecture. This corner has a lovely restaurant where we've eaten a few times. Good food. In the background is Boston's iconic Custom Tower. If you round this corner to the right, you wind up at Paul Revere's house, surrounded by brick and taller buildings. It has beautiful lilacs in the spring.
This is my eighty-first daily drawing. Thank you for your attention.
When I am on Monhegan Island, I like to sit out on the Fish Beach jetty lat in the afternoon. The sun pours over my shoulder before it sinks behind Manana for the evening. Often, families are paddling about in the water of Fish Beach, and others are in the water at Swim Beach, laughing and crowing from just behind the rocks. The island is quieter because the day visitors have departed. It's lovely.
This is my eightieth daily drawing. Thank you for looking. I love your thoughts and the feedback I have been getting.
I am enjoying exploring old photos for my daily drawings. I captured this image of one of Monhegan's cottages along the harbor, with an unknown gentleman looking out at Manana and the harbor beneath him. His silhouette intrigued me. I added only a hint of color to the buoys in the foreground to move the eye around, but otherwise, all color is in or through the building.
This is my seventy-eighth daily drawing. Your feedback lets me know you are enjoying this exploration. Believe me, I am having a wonderful time exploring. Thank you.
Most days this time of year I work until after dark. This afternoon was no exception. A number of students work in my room after school each day, then I spend about an hour grading and getting ready for the next day. As I was finishing up this afternoon, I decided to do my daily drawing at my desk. I have a couple of bulletin boards with pictures of my homerooms from past years, a few bumper stickers I choose to display, the daily and yearly schedules, next to an algebra poster. My desktop displays a Colin Page painting that I love. Often, when I am not working on the computer, I'll display a painting I enjoy as a backdrop. I got in the habit when I had a classroom without windows, essentially providing my own window.
This is my seventy-seventh daily drawing. Again, thank you for your time and attention.
I passed this house the other night, and loved its warm sparkly lights against the last blue of dusk. I experimented with a few different media, drawing in ink, then laying in some 50% gray for the shadows in the house. I added ink pencils for the blue, added water to enhance them, then used black ink for the silhouettes of the trees and roof, then laid in some pastel for the lights and a few other areas. Overall, I need to lower all the values even more so the lights can be the stars. I'll try again. This is my seventy-seventh daily drawing using ink as at least one component. Thank you for looking, as always.
It's been cold... and I love the brisk air on my face and the beautiful blue dusk through the bare trees. But, it also makes me think of summer. I love the shapes in a stand of black-eyed susans. Carol Marine paints them strikingly. This is a value study using some of her shapes. This is my seventy-sixth daily drawing. It's been a very busy week, so not finding much drawing time. Thank you for looking.
This waiter caught my eye one day as he waited for the restaurant to open, or for the crowds to arrive. This steakhouse is in Amsterdam along one of a number of picturesque streets. He waited peacefully, before, perhaps a busy night ahead.. this is my seventy-third daily drawing. I am enjoying exploring my photo collections from my travels over the years. Thank you for looking with me.
Our cat, Cookie, was a sweetie and picturesque. She loved our wood stove, and parked herself on the hearth rug given the chance. I love this image of her in front of the stove. I designed the drawing to emphasize the sense of the space, with Cookie staring into the depth of the stove where I added the only color in the picture space. Her gaze, the structure of the stove, the brick arch, and the color choice all build the sense of depth in the drawing.
As always, thanks for looking at my daily drawings. I appreciate your time and attention.
One of the qualities I love about Hull, a few towns north of us, is that the view of the water shifts constantly, through porches, over hills and rooftops, in and out of buildings The topography lends itself to a plethora of beautiful vignettes to paint or draw. This view is along Hull Bay, somewhere just north of A Street.
This is my seventy-second daily drawing. I appreciate you taking the time to look.
One morning this past summer, we had breakfast at a nice little cafe a couple of towns over. While waiting on the street for our table, I saw this trio eating outside and was drawn to their silhouettes against the summer backdrop of colonial architecture and bright sky. Initially, I designed the drawing without any indication of the overhead canopy, though I had it in my photo reference. It didn't really make sense to have the diners in the shade while the street was in the sun without explanation. I know it could have been the sun behind the building, or some type of overhang but decided to add my version of the awning. One of the things I like about constructing drawings is that I can arrange the elements as I want. I purposely organized the buildings behind the diners to bring the attention down and around the diners, to keep the design from looking like two separate environments. I also moved the angles and intersections to avoid any unintentional tangents.
This is my seventy-first daily drawing. Again, thank you for looking.
Most Sunday mornings I head to church early with my pastor husband, and have an hour more or less, while he readies church, and I don't need to be there. Sometimes I read, or grade quizzes, or read the paper, or draw. Today I spent some time on a side street drawing the skyline ahead of me; a church, a parish hall, the Square Cafe, and a few lampposts. It was a beautiful New England winter morning, sparkling air, no wind, about 35 degrees. Reminded me that years ago I was visiting a friend in San Diego in February. It was about 60 degrees. I said, "why don't we bundle up and walk the beach?" He said, "That must be a New England thing"... um. Yup.
This is my 70th daily drawing. Thank you for taking a look. I appreciate your time.
Here are six versions of the New North Church Steeple. I posted about the upper right four recently. My goal is to create a larger version which will be scanned and scaled up as a banner at the church. I used some tracing paper to transfer the smaller version of the steeple, trying four treatments, then scaled up mathematically onto the larger paper. The ratio is 2 to 1, height to width. I came up with a scale of 1 inch to 2.75 inches small drawing to larger drawing, then used that to divide the smaller drawing and the bigger each into seven horizontal bands. My seventh graders have been working on proportions, so this would be a nice problem to popse to them.
The larger steeple is currently rendered in a couple of colors of blue watercolor pencil. I'm going to apply water to make the color more uniform, then should be finished. This is my sixty-ninth daily drawing. I am getting a lot of satisfaction and a lot of positive feedback. Thank you for looking.
Scrolling through my old photos, I found this one of a sunflower garden taken from under the cooling leaves of a tree. I remember it was a hot day out in the sun, but the tree was accompanied by a small water feature which provided cooling through sound and temperature. Nice spot over on the corner of the Marshfield Fair Grounds here in town. I drew it in pen and ink, then added some warm gray marker, colored pencil, crayon and then white conte pencil. This is my sixty-eighth daily drawing. Thank you for looking.
One block off Hanover Street in Boston's North End is Bova's 24-hour bakery, great place for a late night treat. It has a welcoming glow a block or two off the main drag, and is literally a sweet spot.
This is my 67th daily drawing. Thanks for looking
Long day... took the car in to the shop early after a hairy ride home last night. Good half day with students, followed by parent teacher conferences this afternoon. I had a pretty full dance card, and spent the afternoon talking with interesting, interested parents. Then, dinner with my daughter and friend and friend's mother in Boston.... then a quick drawing of the corner of the kitchen to close out the day.
This is my sixty-sixth daily drawing. Thank for you continuing to check out my view of the world.
I spent this afternoon with my Girls Just Wanna Paint group at the Providence Art Club. What a magnificent facility, a grouping of three buildings in the heart of Providence with large gallery spaces, a beautiful and spacious classroom, several dining rooms a lounge and some studio spaces. It is a rabbit warren of smaller rooms through which you wander, emerging into big open spaces. There is art in every nook and cranny, hanging in the hallways, the bathrooms, the dining areas, over the water fountain, tucked between two windows, etc. The space is sumptuous. We spent a leisurely afternoon, looking at art, talking business, critiquing each others' work, and enjoying one another's company.
This is my sixty-fifth daily drawing. Thank you for looking, as always.
Loved this image of sunset in the side mirror. Interesting angles and depth. I may make a painting of this one. It's a fascinating puzzle, which I like.
This is my sixty-fourth daily drawing. Thanks for your attention.
Today was busy. Church, a birthday visit to Nana, and a stop into the SoWa Winter Festival in Boston. Our daughter was working the Boston Globe Santa booth and we stopped in to surprise her in the last two hours of the weekend craft festival, held in the SoWa Power Station, a big, hollow, shell of a beautiful building. Cold, and festive, with loads of vendors. This was our first year there and we will certainly go again.
This is my sixty-third daily drawing... a quick study of the entry. I have more plans for studying this interesting juxtaposition.
Have you ever had an urge as you are walking or driving along... an insistent urge to stop, mid-thought, or mid-sentence, or mid-stride, to pause and look because the beauty of the moment takes your breath away? I feel these moments in the city, out here in the suburbs, when traveling, and sometimes stepping out my front door to begin the day. They come with a sense of peace and inner quiet and thankfulness for being alive. "September Dusk" captures one of those moments, the moments just after the sun has set but before dark settles, along the river near my home. These moments are especially important for me these days because the world feels even more unsettled to me. I pray that we can each help our world to move in a constructive, rather than destructive direction. "Peace" is the November theme for Girls Just Wanna Paint. You can all our paintings here. As always, thank you for looking.
Last summer we watched the Fourth of July parade in Hingham, MA. I am going to do a few study sketches of the floats and attractions against the trees behind. I need to add some dark green behind these firefighters to highlight the light on them, and the fun of the day.
This is my sixty-second daily drawing... thank you for your attention.
The fishing and lobster boats of Maine are fascinating angular shapes against the backdrop of water and sky. I like zooming in on them where they create abstract shapes and rooms in the ocean. The shadow shapes are strong and provide a respite from the sun. It is hard, hard work.... and so beautiful from my point of view.
Pulling Traps is my 61st daily drawing. As always, thank you for looking at the world from my vantage.
I am exploring some designs based on the steeple of the New North Church in Hingham. I added two more incarnations tonight. Are you partial to a particular one? Yesterday I drew the first two, and made a few minor changes to the blue one in the upper left. The design may be reproduced as the backdrop for a large display board. I don't want anything too stark, nor too detailed, nor too overpowering, yet graphically strong. Hmmm. Almost there, I think.
This is my sixtieth daily drawing.
I am exploring a few design ideas using the steeple of New North Church in Hingham. I am adjusting the design slightly each time... and will try a couple of more. I can see by looking at the two side to side that I'll make a couple of the following changes. The blue steeple has a ragged edge up top intended to be some of the light hitting the ridges of the dome edge. But, it doesn't really convey the curve, and looks more like Godzilla took a nibble from the dome. I'm getting there... a few more iterations and we'll see where I land.
This is my fifty-ninth daily drawing. Thank you for looking.
Another image from one of my favorite spots on the Maine Coast, the Kresge rocks on Pemaquid Point. I am standing out on the rocks, looking to the north.
In fact, here is a photo of me painting joyfully on those rocks a few years ago. I remember then, a friend asked if I was worried about falling off the rocks. As artists, we know we can get completely absorbed in what we are doing. I guess the worry is that I would become absorbed, step back to look at my work and fall into a crevasse. It's not going to happen. I DO get completely focused on what I'm doing, but stepping back to look at my work is part of the absorption. I'm pretty careful.
This is my fifty-eighth daily drawing. This and yesterday's post are both sketchbook drawings of a couple of my Maine coastal paintings. Thank you for looking.
A quick study of the Kresge rocks on Pemaquid point, Maine. The striated rocks angle away southward. It is a beautiful and rugged spot off Muscongus Bay at the base of the Damariscotta River. The western side of Pemaquid point is quiet and often isolated while tourists fill the rocks around Pemaquid Lighthouse, just a half mile to the east.
"Southern Vista" is my fifty-seventh daily drawing. Thank you again, for looking at the world from my point of view.
This morning, I made a quick sprint into Boston to drop our daughter off near the Public Garden for work. This beautiful city is just coming alive around 8AM on a Sunday. Sun shining, dog walkers appearing; friends and family gathered for a long Thanksgiving weekend are out, finding coffee, and relishing perhaps their last hours together before people go their separate ways. I had a little time before needing to be back in the suburbs for church so I pulled up next to the Public Garden. Have you ever taken a close look at the perimeter fence of the Garden? I did today. It is spectacular! There are three different post designs which you can see in my photo here, and referenced in my drawing. The three designs are related, but each is distinctive. There is beading along the horizontal rail, and where each of the medium-sized posts intersects, the beading is accentuated with a bow-like addition to the beading.
One of the joys of sketching the city is in discovering these sumptuous details in functional structures. The Public Garden is filled with sculptures and monuments nestled in groves of trees and landscaping designed to highlight the art and to catch your eye. But, the functional fences, gates, benches, lampposts are equally beautiful.
As I draw the profiles of local buildings, my pen reproduces a cornice or ledge, or molding, which, on further inspection, reveals a beautiful detail, maybe stories above the street, where only birds have a close view. I love the aesthetic. I love the opulence. I love that my drawing gives me the time for discovery. My senses are activated. As my eyes explore the shape and nuances of these structures, I feel as though I am touching them.... sort of visually tactile. Is there such a thing?
So, I did a little research into who designed the Boston Public Garden fence. I'm still not sure, but an architect named Meachem won a design competition in 1859. The Garden itself was in disrepair in early 1970s when the Friends of the Public Garden and the Boston Parks Department worked to revive it. At that time, the fence was recast from the original design, and replaced. Here's a link to an article about the Boston Public Garden's History.
This is my fifty-sixth daily drawing. As always, thank you for looking.
Today's sketch is an exploration of a window, a reflection of a window and a painting of a window. There's a lot going on here visually, but within the busyness, I find the stimulation very satisfying. I like a lot of activity within my sight, though there is a fine line between visual stimulation and visual exhaustion. Our house is old, with few large wall spaces, lots of windows, and we have a lot of art... which we hang salon style, in every space. It tells the story of who we are.
This is my fifty-fifth daily drawing. Thank you for looking into my world.
Sitting in the local cafe recently, I saw this family backlit while having lunch. I liked the way the windows and furniture broke the space behind and in front of them. This is my fifty-fourth daily drawing. Thank you for continuing to look at the world through my eyes.
I am working on a silhouette of the New North Church in Hingham. This is close to what I'm aiming for. I drew the church in pencil, carefully delineating the black and white areas. Then I painted it with India Ink, which is such a lovely flowing medium. I like the design. It is the proportions I am looking for. I'm on the fence about the edge of the clock, not sure if it reads as I intend. I'll think it over, and there may be another iteration.
This is my fifty-third daily drawing. Thanks again for checking in on my view of the world.
It's pie-baking night here. Our daughter is home for the holiday so she and I shopped together, then baked and laughed tonight. We made apple, pecan, apple crisp, and a pineapple pie tonight. First time for the pineapple; we await the verdict. No mince pie this year, which I have made for years just like my mom made it for years. However, I'm the only one we're dining with who would eat it and I don't need an entire mincemeat pie... a little sad, but the right choice. Here's our beautiful selection.
This is my fifty-third daily drawing, a quick pie sketch due to all the baking activity.
I have loved the Zakim Bridge, officially, the Leonard P. Zakim Bunker Hill Memorial Bridge, since it opened. It is a gorgeous and open backdrop to the beautiful city. I find the contrast of the modern and traditional very pleasing. The Zakim Bridge is lovely as you cross it, the view through the cables shifting constantly, forming a variety of vignettes. A few years ago, my family and I took a Boston Duck Tour. The Duck Boat meandered through a number of small roads in Cambridge, eventually entering the Charles River near the base of the Zakim. I remember being thrilled that I could see new views of Boston framed by the Zakim's cables. This is a view of the Zakim while driving into Boston from the North, and is my fifty-second daily drawing.
Thank you for looking again at my take of the world around me.
Trying looking at some interesting angles of New North Church in Hingham... this one is a challenge, but I like the presence against the sky, which was crystal blue. The clock works now! It is one of four clocks in the town that were put in place around 1848. Back then, the town was responsible for providing timekeeping for the town, and installed clocks in the town. This clock was restored this spring; and I was lucky enough to see up in the steeple. Beautiful gears and mechanics.
This is my fifty-first daily drawing. Thanks for keeping an eye on my work.
There is a special, quiet time by Monhegan's harbor as the sun sinks below Manana. Birds start settling down, people drift back to their houses, and the dark begins to descend quickly. It's a lovely time of day, and as I climb back up to the house we rent, the last glimpse of light disappears and the sky glows. Ahhhh.
This is my fiftieth daily drawing. Thank you for looking.
I used last night's image of St. James Street and rendered it in some pastel on a ground of india ink. The original scene caught my eye because of the light on the side of the Boston Public Library coming in between the buildings. I certainly need a few more pastels, and some practice, but I like it as a study.
This is my forty-ninth daily drawing. I appreciate your thoughts and attention.
When I am looking for parking in Boston, I have a few streets where I make a quick pass before heading into a garage. St. James is one of them. Once in a while I find parking down here and it's always worth the beautiful view of the Boston Public Library with the backdrop of the modern rectangular buildings. Flags are flapping at the hotel on the left, the sun is sneaking through from the left and people are walking in the shade, huddled against the cold. It's a lovely vista. This is my forty-eighth daily drawing, and another of my beloved views of Boston. Thank you for looking, as always.