Thursday, July 26, 2012

Watercolour Washes

Before I start sharing a few process shots of a painting I'm creating (for a very exciting trade!!), I thought I'd show you the small studies I created. Testing ideas, materials and colours I whipped up a few quick paintings.



I created a few thumbnails of my ideas in my sketchbook then started adding splashes of water and paint onto the small sheets until something interesting formed.

I've rarely done studies or tests before painting. I'm more of a jump in and wing it kind of girl. I'm pleased with what I was able to figure out with these small paintings and it's been handy to have a colour reference right in front of me while I draw or apply layers of wash.

What about you? Do you plan ahead or wing it?


Thursday, July 12, 2012

From Tea to Storage

Over this past winter I became a regular tea drinker. Every Wednesday night I would brew a pot of Calm Tea and drink it all while catching up on Downton Abbey. Next to my Friday night bottle glass or two of red wine, it was my favourite part of the week.

Once the tin was emptied I tried to peel the label off to use it for stamps and stickers but quickly realized it wasn't going to be an easy endeavor. The solution was to slather on some glue and stick some of my origami paper onto the label.

Cardinal & Owl admiring the pretty tin

The best part, other than having pretty storage for my collected stamps, is the smell of lemon and mint that wafts up every time open it up.

On a slightly related side note, I looked at the list of ingredients in the tea and I have many of the plants growing in my garden. Perhaps I'll try my hand at saving leaves for tea.

Have you reused a coffee or tea tin for storage? Send me a link, I'd love to have a look!


Friday, July 6, 2012

4x6 Trade: Sedna & Landscape

Remember my 4x6 trade with Marcus at Lucky Jack Press? Well, I'm happy to report that there is another set to tell you all about.

A blanket of trees over the mountains.

I replied to Marcus's glimpse of the North with an illustration of my new surroundings as well as the landscape that I am much more familiar with, the prairies. The larger half is 4x6 and the smaller, folded bit was around 3 inches. I split up the scene by using only ink on one side and marker on the other.

I find the mountains covered in trees to be comforting in the winter as it looks like a warm blanket of green. In contrast, it also seems crowded and compressed, and limits the amount of daylight we see.

Mostly sky

It has taken me nearly 20 years to truly appreciate the large sky and limitless horizon I grew up with. Seeing a thunderstorm brewing miles away while sitting in a spot of sunshine. The crunch of the dry grass and the smell of sage in the air.

It's not that I don't love my new surroundings, it's a true treasure to live so close to the ocean and the rainforest. It's simply taking a bit of time for me to settle. I imagine an islander would be equally perplexed during the long Prairie winter.

A gorgeous collection of texture. Excuse the thumb placement.

Marcus kept his promise and rewarded me with some amazing Sedna imagery. The mythology is fascinating, but I prefer the version in which her father is trying to help her rather than intentionally sacrificing his daughter. Perhaps I'm biased as a mother of two daughters.

The trade came in the best envelope, SHIPS! There was also an amazing aerial texture postcard with a note attached.

It's my turn to send a reply. I've been stewing on my ideas for a bit, but I think I may have something in mind shortly.


Monday, July 2, 2012

Mail Art Monday: Swaps and Space

The lazy days of summer have officially begun around here. With the end of school, we find ourselves moving through our days at a slower pace and not realizing we're still in our pajamas at 2pm. My list of mail art replies is growing, so I will have to carve out a little bit of time away from my garden and back in the studio.

In their postbox...

Emily received a few more of my origami envelopes full of stamps, prints clippings and punches.

Kelly put on a paper swap recently and I put together a package for Jodi full of postcards and bits of paper from my studio all nestled inside a sea otter envelope.

In my postbox...

Belinda's package arrived with a piece of art from her son (with a note that he is charging $0.20), stickers and a collaborative piece. I'm to draw on the watercolour image and send it back. I think I'll nick that idea and send one back in my next reply.

Jessica's adorable change of address postcard arrived from sunny California.

Jodi's package to me for Kelly's swap was stuffed full of of wonderful bits of paper, stickers and stamps.

Sumi's sea and space themed package was a delight! The ship illustration on the magazine is stunning and the old watch faces are intriguing. The best bit was the 3D paper with glasses!

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