In January I love to pull out my tan paper and practice on the toned surface with white ink. However, I tend to be recovering from a 3 month push on Inktober and then holiday painting and crash instead.
This year I did do an image of Grandma’s kitchen. She had steps leading down into it and I remember sitting on those steps with this very view many times as a child. I never thought about it, but she had an old stove, and then the new one in the corner. But with the huge extended family, both stoves were put into service during the holidays. I think of how small that kitchen was. Her whole house, really. And she raised 10 kids and a lot of grandkids there!
I also did a tribute to Cassidy, a little mini-hini that ran with the mustangs at Skydog Sanctuary. He passed and it was a great loss to even those of us who never met him in person. This made me want to spend more time drawing horses and donkeys!
I put out a call to my Facebook friends for pets to practice my line work and inkwash on this year. I was planning to pull out of a hat, lottery style, but I could not do it. How can we reject any of these precious pets? Fortunately the submissions were manageable and I have been working on these Inktober submissions until all are done. Here is the final one and rounds out 2022 on a lovely note.
I chose to do more line and a large brush wash on her.
Sweet Lily appeared on an ornament commission a few years ago! It was fun to revisit her cute face in another medium.
These 2 cats were watercolor memorial gifts for a friend. Her dog was an Inktober image you may have seen months ago. It is always such a pleasure and an honor to do these.
I know my art has always been about gifting and bringing joy to another human being. Finding that special image that helps heal their heart and show some kindness and gentleness in the world. Pet portraits do just that, so it is no surprise that I gravitate to them as a choice of expression.
I am finally getting caught up on my Inktober pet portraits, interrupted by some final ornament orders. This is Fergus, joining Boo (who was completed in October) on their trip to the East Coast, compliments of the US Postal Service.
This was the year for one customer to order ornaments for her kids and their spouses. The theme was from the country song “The House that Built Me” by Miranda Lambert. There is also a new house purchased last year in this mix.
I took this first round of orders in stages and it seemed to go faster. Mark up, blocking the layout, laying down the first layers, then finalizing.
I did a few portraits – my brother, Ron, above. His birthday falls at the end of October.
Then a lifelong best friend and mentor, Phyllis, and again, my baby brother who passed 2 years ago this month. A way of commemorating those I love as I practice portraiture.
I did Aaron’s picture with a large brush and quick strokes. Time does not heal the pain of loss. It eases the sharp edges, but they are still there and I think time teaches us how to step around them without doing such raw injury to ourselves. Time gives us the ability to remember the softer, gentler, happier times.