Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Day 296 "On the Rocks" ink & watercolor 4 x 9

 Today I tested my knew knee by walking down to the Southern tip of the island, to one of my favorite spots past Lobster Cove.  You can climb out onto the rocks here, leaving all traces of people and green behind you, and become absorbed in the waves, rocks, birds, sounds, and salt.  I love it, have not been able to visit since the summer of 2016, and made the trek down and back today.  It was a joy!!  I'm a bit rusty painting the rocks, but here is today's sketch and the contour drawing I completed while sitting in my favorite spot.

This is my two hundred ninety-sixth daily drawing.  Thank you for joining me in this exercise each day.  

Monday, July 30, 2018

Day 295 "Triple Overview" 9 x 12 watercolor & ink

Today I sat half way up Horn Hill on Monhegan and drew what was below and then what I could see in the woods to my left.  Then I added another sketch of Manana from our deck to fill the page.  I decided in the upper sketch only to add color to the parts of the view that nature made, not man made, making it an exercise in near and far greens in different combinations of blue/green and neutralizing reds and oranges.  

You can see my drawing in progress below.  
This is my two hundred ninety-fifth daily drawing.  I am enjoying my travels around Monhegan these two weeks.

Thank you for your continued interest.

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Day 294 "Over Eider" ink & watercolor 9 x 9

Another beautiful day here on Monhegan.  We went to a Chowder Festival to benefit the Monhegan Memorial Library, then I headed over near the church under a shady tree to draw lovely Manana, through the cottages.  The cottage to the left is called "Eider Duck" and sits on Fish beach.  I love the back drop of Manana behind and above the structures.  While I was sitting there, a nice couple in a golf cart stopped to ask directions. We wound up talking for about 1/2 hour about art, the island, their journey here and mine.  It was a very sweet exchange and lifted my heart.  Thanks, Joanne and Ed.  
This is my two hundred ninety-fourth daily drawing.  Thank you for your continued interest in my day to day activities.  

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Day 293 "Eye Practice a la Charles Reid' 9 x 12 . watercolor & ink - Step by Step

I began an oil painting this morning, and within a half hour, the island was fogged in.  Not in the mood to paint fog, I broke out my fabulous "Portrait Painting in Watercolor" book by Charles Reid, Watson Guptill, 1973, inherited from my mother's library.  I need a lot of practice with portraits, using watercolor wet in wet, and drawing the features of the face.  So I spent the afternoon following Charles Reid's steps for painting the eye.  
I began with an ink contour drawing, put fifteen of them on the page and here is the result.  As you can see, I have a lot of inconsistency in value and edge control but can see some successes. Below you can see my progress from the initial drawings, and I added Charles Reid's step by step illustrations below.  Very interesting exercise!

Fifteen Contour Drawings
This is my two hundred ninety-third daily drawing.  I tried Charles Reid's steps for painting mouths back at Drawing 229 and certainly need more practice.  I am enjoying the exercise!! 
Thank you for your continued attention and interest.

Add a wash over each

After the first six

Here are Charles Reid's steps.  I added a note to myself after the third.  

Friday, July 27, 2018

Day 292 "Among the Rocks" ink & watercolor 12 x 5 - and a visit with some artist friends

Social media is an interesting thing, and sometimes very beneficial.  Yesterday I saw some beautiful photos of the Monhegan sunset from down in the village as we watched it from up on our deck above the village.  Turns out they were posted by an artist friend of mine.  We didn't know the other was here, so happily connected this morning over coffee! She and her husband are Monhegan artists now living on mainland Maine, and are over for a few days.  
Check out their work:  Amy Williams Beers, and Kevin Beers.  
After catching up, I walked over to Dead Man's Cove to sit on the rocks and paint.  I love it there, the views are spectacular, and there is a small rocky island were the birds congregate noisily.  Their chatter makes a nice backdrop.  You can see from the photo below that there are lovely vistas including my favorite, Manana.  Today, however, as I sat down, I saw this intrepid weed.. maybe a thistle, not sure.  It grew straight up among the rocks, and cast a beautiful shadow beneath, and it caught my eye. The crispness of the shadow is a reminder how strong the sun is.  If I had this plant in a studio with a lamp casting the shadow, I would expect the shadow farthest from the plant to be softer-edged than the shadow closest to the plant as ambient light invades the shadow.  Not so with the sun; 93 million miles is the same as 93 million miles 8 inches, give or take.  
View from Dead Man's Cove
This is my two hundred ninety-second daily drawing.  Thank you for looking, as always.

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Day 290 - "From the Harbor - Two Views" watercolor and ink

There has been intermittent sun during our first five days on Monhegan Island, fog, rain, sun, clouds, wind... beautiful New England weather.  And, we can hear the surf from the south end of the island, crashing into Christmas Cove due to the weather.  My new knee won't carry me that far yet, but I am determined to visit my favorite spot before we finish our two weeks.  This morning I could see the waves crashing against the southern tip of Manana, Monhegan's tiny island neighbor that provides the sheltered harbor here.  I walked down to the rocks, found a place to perch, and spent some of my favorite type of time here on Monhegan, surrounded by the sounds, smells, occasional spray and the view of wave upon wave crashing and tumbling over one another.  The first is a watercolor of the southernmost end of Manana and the rock called "Washerwoman".  For the second, I turned to my right from the same seat, and drew the village in the distance beyond the rocks and scrubby vegetation on the shore.  Interestingly, the vegetation seemed to come in three  distinct layers as it receded.  First, some small, low plants that looked like they may have had berries on them at one time, then Queen Anne's Lace with some beach grasses, then some yellow-topped weeds, among a different beach grass.  I added color only in the vegetation, and like the effect.
This is my two hundred ninetieth consecutive day drawing and posting. Thanks for following along.   

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Day 289 "Fishing - Three Generations" ink & watercolor

We walked down to the dockside coffee shop today, The Barnacle, to see off our friends' daughter and her fiance.  There is a a lot of choreography to the arrival and departure of the ferries here; arrival of passengers and friends, pick up trucks backing onto the dock to transport luggage, hugs hello, hugs goodbye, occasional jumpers from the dock into the frigid harbor waters as a send off, riders tossing wildflowers into the harbor as they pull away as a sign they will return.  It is fascinating.  Before and between all of that, there is quiet time on the dock for fishing, or sitting with a sketchbook, or listening to the waves lapping.  Today, these three generations were fishing on the dock together, comfortable.  I grabbed a quick sketch. 
This is my two hundred eighty-ninth daily drawing.  Thank you for continuing to look.  I appreciate your time. 

Day 287 "Village Sketches" - walking and sketching on Monhegan

 Today's goal on Monhegan was to walk farther than yesterday, to find a spot among the rocks to settle in and draw.  So, I walked down to "Swim Beach", interestingly named, because it is mostly too cold for swimming, found a way up onto the rocks and did some drawing.  My physical therapist and I have been practicing stepping up with balance onto a surface about a foot off the ground.  In fact, his parting words to me before vacation, after 30 of these step ups, were "Don't you think there are a LOT of rocks on Monhegan about 12 inches high?"  Hmmm.  Feeling listened to... So I drew for awhile, watched the visitors, then headed back to the local coffee shop for more sketching and people watching.  A family had a couple of dogs with them, who mostly hung out under the table, although the spaniel was on alert every time the door opened.. never confrontational, just watching.  You can see below how I began my drawing.  
This is my two hundred eighty-seventh daily drawing submission.  Thank you for looking.  

Day 286 "Rainy Day" 6 x 9 ink & watercolor

We are back on Monhegan Island, where we spend a couple of weeks each summer.  Doesn't matter the weather; it is just wonderful to be here with friends and family.  This is an interesting year for me as I have a new knee.  Although we rented a golf cart in case, I am determined to use the walking here up and down hills as part of my physical therapy.  Last summer, my recently discovered arthritis prevented me from walking almost anywhere.  So, each day, I am setting a goal for myself.  It rained day 1, but slowed to a drizzle in the afternoon so we walked down the large hill on which our house resides, into the village to the coffee shop. It was the destination for a number of people.  We grabbed one of the handful of tables, watched visitors, listened to chit chat, had coffee and hung out.  What a treat!  I made a couple of alterations to the original painting.  You can see them below.  I differentiated between the Mom and daughter (playing backgammon) in the foreground.  In the original sketch, it was unclear what was happening in that human shape in the foreground.  I darkened the hair on the gray-haired woman in the back, because I felt her head was grabbing the viewer's eye... and why?   I added some warmth below the chins and necks of some of the people because it added depth, and I added a little indication of shadow here and there away from the light.  

Then we walked back up the hill!!!  Goal one achieved, and my leg felt tired but strong.  
This is my two hundred eighty-sixth daily drawing.  Thanks for your continued interest.  You know I love your comments.

Day 284 "Get Your Hotdogs Here!" 7 x 9 ink & pencils

Our daughter gave us Red Sox tickets as an anniversary gift.  Though we have been to some Sox games over the years, I have not sat in the bleachers in decades.  It was a blast. The sun streams low over the left field wall for the 7:10 game time, and the spectators in part of the bleachers are lit by its golden glow as the rest of the park sits i shadow.  The hawkers caught my eye, scrambling up and down the stair selling pizza, hotdogs, popcorn, ice cream, water, and lemonade.  The last time I was in the bleachers, the most popular hawkers were the beer sellers, who could empty a tray of watered down cups of beer very in a blink.  They don't sell beer in the stands anymore; spectators have to leave their seats and travel down to the concourse. Makes for a much more reasonable night in the stands, but sometime this past week, I was describing our seats to someone who bemoaned the tame, dull bleacher seat experience available these days.  I loved being out there; beautiful, crisp summer evening... where you debate putting on the sweater you brought, but resist, knowing how great it will feel later when you finally don it; just like those late afternoons at the beach. 
This is my two hundred eighty-fourth daily drawing.  Thank you for your continued interest.  

Day 282 "Humarock" pen&ink 8 x 9 - deserted beach, and a little history

If you walk our local beach, you may find this view familiar.  Our local beach is separated from the mainland by the South River which you can see below in the map.  The South River joins the North River and the ocean in a very turbulent mash of currents and tides.  A little history:  The Portland Gale of 1989 shifted the mouth of the North River, separating Humarock and Scituate's "Fourth Cliff" from the rest of Scituate, and eventually the mouth of the South River moved there as well.  This drawing is from the location of the "old mouth" of the South River, now beach.  You can see the old and new below, a familiar contour to those familiar with the local landscape.  The seawall and beachside homes come to an end at the old mouth.  I wonder if someday the old mouth will open again to the sea.  

  This is my two hundred eighty-second daily drawing.  Thank you for your continued interest.                                                               

Day 281 "Party of Eight' ink & marker 6 x 12

A couple of good friends and I have a standing dinner date once each month.  In our busy lives, it's wonderful to have the date on the calendar each month so we need to communicate if we have to change it.  Having the date on the calendar as default means we get together about eight times each year, missing the monthly date only when we are away, or over-booked.  If our default was to see each other only when we made plans, my guess is the frequency would drop significantly.  
The other night, we ate at a local waterfront restaurant, always busy, reliably fresh, good seafood.  The next table had an extended family dinner, diners aged about eight to eighty.  I loved their varied conversational poses across the generations.  
This is my two hundred eighty-first daily drawing.  Thank you for your continued interest, and comments.  

Monday, July 16, 2018

Day 280 "Train a Comin'" 7 x 9 pen & ink with pencil

This morning I drove my daughter up to the T to start her new job.  On my way back, I stopped at an intersection for the commuter rail to pass.  It moves fast, the kind of fast that creates a vacuum so you can feel the air move as it passes.  I like the arrangement of lights, barriers, poles, intersections, and activity.  How complex this one little intersection is, and how reliant we are all on the lights working as intended.   We take some things for granted.
This is my two hundred eightieth daily drawing.  Thank you for continuing to look at my view of the world.

Day 279 "From Wessagusset" pen&ink 9 x 12

Today, my daughter and I meandered our way north along the coast on an errand.  We found ourselves above North Weymouth's Wessagusset Beach, looking out over the Fore River Bridge.  Such a beautiful spot, on a beautiful summer afternoon.  I had never been here before.  After we left, we learned on the news that a police officer and a woman from Weymouth had both lost their lives this morning in a shooting, and that "Wessagusset" was the original name for the Weymouth Colony, as depicted on the Weymouth police badge.  We have prayed for these two families today in the face of their tremendous losses.  
This is my two hundred seventy-ninth daily drawing. 

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Day 278 "Trivia Time" ink and pencils 9 x 8

Last night we had an impromptu gathering on our porch with a few friends.  A drink and some snacks evolved into pizza and trivia later, that went on, as Trivia can, for hours.  We played in teams, using our friend's original edition, first published in 1981.  So, there are a lot of general knowledge questions, but the 20-somethings among us had no shot at questions about Gerald Ford, Dobie Gillis, Jack Benny, and Jack Paar.  They were very strong in literature, history older than Gerald Ford, science and geography.  It was a lot of fun, and we laughed.  As the game moved on, I needed to get my daily drawing completed, so I drew the corner of the board as we were playing. 
When we upgrade to a newer version of the game, I expect the 20-somethings to crush when the Jack Benny questions become Beyonce questions... but we shall see.   
This is my two hundred seventy-eighth daily drawing.  Thank you for your continued interest in my visual daily journal.  

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Day 277 "Pre-Game Fenway" 12 x 9 pen, ink, marker

Last night, we went to the Red Sox game, and spent a little time underneath, in the food concourse, before ascending to our great bleacher seats.  You can see last night's post here, drawn at the game, during the inning in which Mookie Betts hit a grad slam.  
I am fascinated by the structural shapes beneath the stadium, light pouring through.  It is a beautiful park.  I loved the evening, and love Fenway Park.  
This is my two hundred seventy-seventh daily drawing.  Thank you for your continued interest. 

Friday, July 13, 2018

Day 276 "Mookie - Grand Slam!" 6 x 9 pen & ink

Last night we went to the Red Sox game, an anniversary gift from our daughter.  It was a beautiful July night in the bleachers, big sky, sparkling air.  We haven't been to a game in a few years, and haven't sat out in the bleachers in decades.  A few observations:  I could see home plate from the bleachers a lot better decades ago.  Social media is fun at the baseball game! We discovered several friends who were at the same game via social media.  I still like to keep score at the game which helps me follow each batter.   The bleachers are more friendly than I remembered them decades ago.  There were no drunken brawls, no one throwing open mustard packets down through the crowd, and no fights!  There was an interesting interference call with two men at the bleacher wall leaning over and deflecting a ball that was going to bounce of the ball.  We saw them bounced from the game.  The wave is still a thing.  
I asked my husband to keep score during one inning while I began a sketch as you can see here.  He got the busiest inning, in which Mookie Betts hit a grand slam after fouling off seven pitches.  Very exciting!!!
The finished sketch is above.  I added the sense of the crowd, and a hint of the ever present red of the Red Sox.  This is my two hundred seventy-sixth daily drawing.  Thank you for your continued interest.  

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Day 275 "Royal Palace - Madrid" 7 x 9 pen, ink, markers

Several years (just counted, more than several years) ago my daughter and I joined a school trip to southern Spain.  It was a blast, and she got hit with the travel bug.  It was her first flight, and a long one, as tour companies may sometimes provide more circuitous routes to a destination to save some money.  We flew to DC, then to Frankfort, then to Madrid, with a delay or two along the way.  Thank goodness she loves to fly, which we did not know until the moment we took off.  Whew!  We spent a few days in Madrid, moving on to Seville, Granada, Salamanca, Cordoba. It was a wonderful trip.  This is from a picture I took within the Royal Palace of Madrid.  It is lavish, opulent, with these airy curtains billowing while allowing a hint of the view across the courtyard.  It's a nice reminder for me of our wonderful trip.
This is my two hundred seventy-fifth  daily drawing.  Thank you for allowing me to reminisce and for your continued interest. 

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Day 274 "Brooklyn - Taking a Break" pen & ink 9 x 12

As you have seen in a couple of recent blog posts, we were in Brooklyn recently for a family wedding.  I love the vignettes every where you look, whether a street corner, a great neighborhood taco bar,  or an  interesting sidewalk view
I saw this young man, leaning casually against the edge of the shop window under a tree.  I may add color to this drawing; the silhouette of the man against the lit street behind him is striking.  
This is my two hundred seventy-fourth daily drawing.  Thank you for your continued interest in my view of the world.  

Day 272 "Jason" pencil 14 x 11

Once a month, I meet with several artist friends to work on our figure and portrait skills, practice I really need.  The first time I went, we took turns posing for short poses, each finishing with a 15 or 20 minute pose.  I posted my best drawing from that session back in April.  I appreciate the time together, and the practice is so beneficial.  This week, we had a model, Jason.  He did a great job, and we had time for a couple of drawings.  This was a approximately an hour pose.  I spent a lot of time measuring, and feel that I captured some of his essence, but made him a little younger than he really is.  More practice!  You can see all our drawings here as well.  
This is my two hundred seventy-second daily drawing.  Thank you for looking.  I appreciate your comments.   

Day 271 "Consignment Treasures" pen & ink 6 x 9

Once each month I work at a local consignment shop.  It supports the Clift Rodgers Free Library, a small public library in town that supports itself through its consignment shop and fundraisers.  A few weeks ago I painted in the Library's garden tour, another fundraiser.  The shop always has a great collection of clothing and items, and is a nice place to catch up with neighbors when they stop in.
I drew the contour drawing inside the shop during a lull in the usual traffic, then added some shadow later using a Prismacolor warm gray marker.  I think the comparison is interesting, and am interested in your thoughts.
This is my two hundred seventy-first daily drawing.  Thank you for your continued interest in the world through my eyes.

Friday, July 06, 2018

Day 270 "Lincoln & Franklin - Brooklyn" pen & ink 12 x 9

I love examining the buildings on city streets.  They cut into the sky and descend in a variety of shapes, repetitive, and varied.  There is so much detail above the ground.  It is luxurious to sit still and observe all the nooks and embellishments.  This is the corner of Lincoln and Franklin in Crown Heights, Brooklyn.  You can see how I began the drawing yesterday.  
This is my two hundred seventieth daily drawing.  Thank you for continuing to look at the world through my eyes.  

Wednesday, July 04, 2018

Day 268 "I Love a Parade" 6 x 9 ink, watercolor, pencils

We watched a local parade today from a friend's yard. She holds a drop-in brunch/parade-watching morning in her yard on the route.  It is great for families, kids table of breakfast outside, table for adults inside.  This is the second time we've gone.  I meet interesting people, watch the parade and the children and the excitement. It's great fun.  I love parades and they always remind me of my Dad.  Last year, we sat by the street in our lawn chairs, but this year, it was too hot!  Our friend thoughtfully had a pop up canopy on the lawn from where we watched in shade along with a couple of nice families with overheated children. The yard has a hedge and gate so it's easy for toddlers to run around, not under the wheels of a float.  
I did the drawing on site at the parade, moving people where I needed them for the design, including the little brothers in matching stripes lower left.  I added watercolor back at home, from my head, then used a little colored pencil and a china white pencil for some accents.  My first thought was to only color the flags, but I rejected that idea, because i had intentionally added a number of flags and it would have been spotty.  I love painting crowds of people, the busyness, the color, the activity.  There's always a lot going on.  I am working on simplifying the shapes and looking at groups of people as  masses rather than individuals.  
I designed this sketch with everyone looking to the right, the biggest flag to the right and a little girl in Dad's arms pointing off the page to the direction the parade is coming from. Rather than leading the viewer's eye off the page, the design brings the viewer's eye there, and then carries it back into the page, where the two little boys are in the opposite corner,  then around through the crowd.  By the way, this is a parade painting without any parade.  It tells the story through the crowd. 
This is my two hundred sixty-eighth daily drawing.  Again, thank you for looking and Happy 4th of July.   

Tuesday, July 03, 2018

Day 267 "Gueros" 7 x 9 ink and pencils

Another image from this past weekend in Brooklyn, NY.  Yesterday I posted the view from our wait outside Gueros taco restaurant.  After we ordered, we stood outside on the street to wait for our order.  As you can see, there is a line of customers working their way to the counter, where an efficient and personable couple of employees make sure your order is just right.  We waited on the street, had a nice conversation with a couple who arrived on their bikes.   They encouraged us to wait with one of Gueros 20 ounce margaritas, especially on a hot night. There was also a young woman who came out of the deli next door (see yesterday's post), dropped a bottle of iced tea, which exploded across the sidewalk.  She sighed, picked up the scraps and moved the glass against the building on the edge of the sidewalk before she moved on.  She became the subject of intense discussion between two tables of diners on the sidewalk 20 feet from the breakage.  One table was pleased that she picked up what she could and moved the rest to the side.  The other table was disgusted by the fact that she left broken glass on the street.  The discussion was heating up and I was fully engaged in eavesdropping (hey, open air, tables on the street...).  A few minutes later, the woman came back with brown paper bag, cleaned up all the glass, and disappeared into her building to applause from the two tables of diners.  So entertaining.  
This is my two hundred sixty-seventh daily drawing.  I was fascinated by the warm interior visible beyond the outdoor diners, and the complexity of the activity indoors as well as outdoors.  I chose to only color the interior because I loved the beckoning warmth and activity.  
Thank you for continuing to look at the world through my eyes. 

Monday, July 02, 2018

Day 266 "Prospect and Franklin" pen&ink 6 x 6

We spent last weekend in Brooklyn for a family wedding at the Botanical Gardens.  What a beautiful venue.  We stayed a couple of nights in an AirBnb in Prospect Heights.  We walked around the neighborhood the first night looking for dinner, and found Gueros Tacos.  What a spot... counter service, a few tables, and a line out the door for a variety of terrific tacos.   We ordered, and walked back to our apartment with take out, after waiting for a few minutes on the street, watching the city evening, including the train passing overhead.  This is the nearby street corner, Prospect & Franklin, and is my two hundred sixty-sixth daily drawing. Thank you for your continued interest and comments.

Day 262 "Scituate Harbor Dusk Block In" 9 x 12 oil

 I have begun converting some of my daily drawings to oil paintings.  You can see my reference drawing here to the left, and read its blog post here.  It is an interesting exercise, using only the daily drawing as reference, and thinking about how to convert those renderings into an oil painting.  Before I begin, there is some thought about how to begin the process.  In this case, I covered the entire board with a neutral ground, about value 4 on a 1-5 scale.  Then I carefully wiped out all the lights using a clean brush, clean towel and my solvent of choice, which is Gamsol. This is my two hundred sixty-second daily drawing, and only the second not using ink in some way.  I will post the finished painting on my blog later.
Thank you for your continued interest.