A Hummingbird Bulb

A Hummingbird Bulb

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I have broken out into a whole new phase of my ornament painting. Realistic nature!

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Remember the Inktober drawing I did of a hummingbird? The photographer of the “model” for that image contacted me to commission an ornament. Something I had not contemplated before.

I had never painted a hummer in oils, and certainly not on a curved surface. I started it then panicked, “I can’t do this!”

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However, I know my process pretty well by now and panic is part of it. So I broke state, went shopping, then came back and was in a much more steadied state to finish the first layer. I began to breathe again.

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After a couple of days to let that dry to a tacky surface, I began shaping the next layers, pushing paint around and making tiny little touches. Finally, today I finished it and feel like I have had a tremendous breakthrough in my art. This will always have a special place in my heart. I plan to use this little Rufous Hummingbird to help me push through some watercolor practices in the next month. He is very inspiring.

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Urban Sketching

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A commission for a graphite drawing of an office building as a gift for the owner turned into a watercolor, which they chose.

First I figured out which vantage point to take with this long, low building. Then I mocked up the basic lines to make sure I was good with that decision. Next, the pencil drawing. I am not a fan of my pencil work. So on to ink and watercolor, urban sketch style. I was happy and so were they.

Thanks, Moser team, for pushing me into doing some urban work in the middle of my oil and Christmas season. Fun!

That Time of Year

Painting the love in peoples life – preserving memories for their tree.

I was looking at the magnified detail that can not be seen with the naked eye and it hit me that it is impressionistic.

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I push paint around and create the impression of their pet. Often with a 000 sized brush and a cat’s whisker (the cats participate via donations throughout the year.)

 

Inktober is Over

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This year I did not finish out the month strong – 2 things happened. I began volunteering for Providence Wildlife Rehab and I started getting more Christmas orders than was in my plan, so any creative activities need to go that direction. And I can not show those.

However, I did do some warmup exercises that I thought you might like. The subject was one of our Educational Ambassadors, a Screech Owl named Red.

So goodby, Inktober! You have given me some wonderful projects for the upcoming year. Now if life will just give me the time.

Inktober Week 3

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Day 16 – Angular – I was just starting to draw a Great Egret I photographed at Eagle Creak this month. As I was playing with the lines (in nature they so often replicate, lending a beautiful symmetry to the animal or bird), ta da – Angular happened by accident. I think it has the most likes of any on my Instagram.

Day 15 – Weak – I could not get the image to work, so I started doing my quick 10 second drills to loosen up my hand. I was flipping through Google images and when I was done, these made me laugh so hard that I shared them.

This was a hard work week, so I went off script in order to keep inking. Other than these first two, I did not follow the prompts and just had fun and used the time to loosen up.

Hispid Corbis Rat / Red-Breasted Nuthatch study (saw my first one on our feeder this past week! Had to commemorate a “lifer”. The rat was from Google images.)

Below is my first ever fan art. Then the ravens took 2 days with the first being for the initial sketch.

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I love James and Margaret, who have made a backyard habitat in CA their home. The “caretakers” of that space give this loving pair of ravens food puzzles on their deck and interact with them in very fun ways. I have been wanting to sketch these guys for some time and took this opportunity. I think they would look very great in paint! Next project!

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Corvids are extremely smart birds and I have learned so much from James and his only love, Margaret. It is amazing to watch their story unfold. You can follow them and their fellow inhabitants of that backyard on Instagram or Facebook.