Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Project Next . . .

Project Next : Miniature watercolor on teabags
Yeah, I know.
You're saying, 'lynn, you haven't completed your 30 paintings in 30 days, yet'.
True, I have not.
But this is prep work for the next challenge.

Drinking a lot (and I mean a LOT) of tea lately.
I'm saving the bags and drying them on the back of the sink.
So attractive in the kitchen.
Who cares.
It's an art sacrifice.

Once dry, I cut the top of the backside where the staple is,
shake out the used tea and glue stick the top back together.
With a dried paper empty teabag, I will paint miniature watercolors.

Objects, landscapes, patterns and designs.

I was hoping to put these all into a little notebook.
A Moleskine.

Maybe framable as little works of art?

I have a friend who is a framer in a small shop and it will take his eye to help out here but I'm thinking they could turn out kinda cool.

We'll see.

Until then : Merry Christmas, kids! 

Monday, December 14, 2015

Love, the Locals Show . . .

 This little show was a sweet surprise!
Organized by a group of four crafty friends and carefully curated to include
the freshest, hippest work out there,
it attracted young modern people who appreciate
well done work and things that they would love to have in their homes.
I was beyond impressed that Lincoln was home to any of these folks!
Lots of young families
(I've never seen so many little ones and pregnant moms!)
and it was just exciting to see.

The venue? Gorgeous!
It was held in the restored Wyuka Cemetery Stables. Brick courtyard with inward-facing stable doors (garage doors now) so you had an open center breezeway with huge stable doors opening into the courtyard. There were two big rooms on either side that held 23 artist spaces.

Beautiful. I want to move in.

I'll bet that next year they find bigger digs. 

There were over 1000 people in attendance and with the popularity of this show, they'll need it!

My work fit in (altho' I think I was the oldest artist there - freaky) and keeping it fresh and light will be key

Exactly my style.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Days 15 and 16, Fire and Architecture . . .

Day 16 : Architecture
Okay, this is more house than really architecture and I even gave the old girl
a different paint job.
This was a farmhouse down the road that was torn down last summer.
I had taken a picture of it when a pair of coyote pups were playing in front.
Before you feel sad that the house went away, it was an abandoned mess.
So it's okay, y'all.

Day 15 : Fire
From a photo I took of a neighbor's controlled burning of their fields in the Spring of 2014.
There are crews that burn fields and it's really lovely to watch.
Very methodical and, well, controlled.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Today's little masterpiece before I get back to my last 15 for the 30 Day Challenge . . .

I'm finishing up a few more pieces for a little one day holiday show this weekend.
This is an expansion of a smaller ACEO piece I did earlier.
Measures 4"x4".
I know. Can I get any smaller? Yes I can.
I like the grey skies and no tracks in the snow.
I wish I could tell you that I have a formula for these little paintings
but they seem to come from my brush as I paint.
I work a composition as I go along and I think most of them work.
The muddy ones are at the bottom of the wastebasket, sure.
But almost all have survived.
Hoping they all find loving homes on Sunday.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Follow-up 'behinder' . . .

Day 11 : Detail
Here I used masking fluid over a first wash of the
dried petals of this wildflower rimmed in frost.
I use the term 'fluid' with reservations.
More like painting on elmer's glue - not as easy as I had imagined.
Once that was dry, I painted the greyed out background,
removed the mask, and touched in the details.
Sure, this technique will require more work and trial and error
but for a first attempt, okay.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Getting behinder . . .

I'm so ding-danged far behind on this 30 Day Watercolor Challenge.
Frankly, I'm behind on more than the Watercolor Challenge
but I'll save that for another day.

Yesterday I started on the frosty flower from a friend's blog when I decided
that in order to make the frosty part crisp and white, 
I needed to use my masking fluid.
Great - except I wasn't going to use my GOOD brushes to apply that gunk.
Surprise. No crappy brushes.
Today 1. Buy cheap brushes
2. Paint 'frosty'

But I did finish this one:
Day 10 : Detail

Monday, November 30, 2015

Day 9 Watercolor 30.Day Challenge . . .

Day 9 : Storm

I do believe I overlooked Day 8 : Workspace

I'll get right on that.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Days 6 and 7 of the 30 Day Watercolor Challenge . . .

Day 6 : Shadow
 I'll be real honest here.
Not all of these are the first attempt.
The ones that don't make first cut are in the wastebasket.
Day 7 : Light

But from time to time, I get some keepers.
It would be fun to frame all of these alike for a show sometime.
Display them together in order.

We'll see how that idea turns out.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Daily watercolor challenge . . .

Day 5/30 : Food
Oatmeal in my Favorite Mug
I've set out on another 30 Day Challenge, this time watercolor.
I came across a list on
Pinterest the World's Greatest Time Suck
and challenged another friend (hi, Lorrie!) to paint with me.
The list is easy and it works so we don't have to look around and decide what to paint.
Step one checked off with that list!
I also found a little meme that I think should be printed and framed
and hung in all studios, if not just mine.
"Draw something every day even if it sucks"
True. Lots of sucky material here but brain-expanding and hand-warming.
Day 4/30 : Simple lines
Sumac across the field
This gets my blood flowing over my first cup or tea
and organizes my thoughts in the morning.
Love starting the day like this.

Day 1/30 : Anything
Martin house in my yard
Day 3/30 : Zoo
There is a bar in Lincoln called
The Zoo Bar
Famous folks drop in here
just to jam and hang.
BB King - Buddy Guy

Day 2/30 : Explosion
My hand
Mmmmm . . . splotchy

Friday, November 13, 2015

Watercolor miniatures . . .

'Tis the season . . .
. . . and here we go

Two shows on the horizon for now and I'm busy with these little watercolor cards.
Quick, fun, easy, and I'm in love with the way they are turning out.
I'll be offering these as individual cards that are completely suitable for framing.
What better way to own a tiny piece of original artwork than this!
See? I make it so easy for you.


Tuesday, October 27, 2015

In the Nick of Time . . .

In the Nick of Time

I'll just leave this here and come back later for details.

I'm back! Details.
I'm not sure where my reference photo came from but I loved the fresh cut wheat in rows.
The little town in the distance is from a photo I took while driving
back from Brainerd, Minnesota last month.
So iconic here on the Great Plains.
The white houses, a few steeples, and
grain elevators.
The storm on the horizon is nothing out of the ordinary for folks
out here in the middle of the country so to add it to
this painting was natural.
Always trying to stay one step ahead of Nature.
And with that, I need to head out to take in the last
of the garden, pull up tomato plants and okra and chop
out the invasive chives.
Who gave me that evil clump of chives, anyway?

Detail : 10"x10"
Oil on canvas

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Back at it . . .

Ashland Road

I'm finally back at the easel after a couple of rough weeks.
With our garage finished and now extended to nearly twice its original size, 
it is officially bigger than the house.
I know, right? 

And with that project complete, we cleaned the workshop on the south side of the building and set up my shop studio in one side, 
complete with my lapidary equipment,
saws, stones and slabs, easel and all of my oil painting accoutrements.
LOVE it. Totally.
Warm, bright, spacious.

I picked up this unfinished beauty yesterday and dug into it with gusto.
I like the way it turned out and have more to learn about
structures, buildings and houses and how to make them look realistic in the setting.
Sometimes they look like they're floating. Not grounded.
More work.

Details : 10"x10"
Oil on canvas

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Gourd takover . . .

On a whim this Spring I planted two packets of gourd seeds.
One is gooseneck and the other is bottle.
I made a nice trellis out of some fencing and carefully nailed it to the overhang post.
You can see the tiny bit of vine that trained itself up the post on the right.
Then it decided to make a break for it and have a life in the wild.
Free! Free at last!

Off it went to the west of the barn, determined to not be held back by 'The Man'.
It made its own way, forged its own path, marched to its own drum.

Baby gourd.
So cute.

So now I have about 15+ of these little guys all over the place and frankly, I am wishing I had more.
I have started pinning on 'Pinterest the World's Greatest Time Suck' all kinds of cool baskets and work you can create with gourds and I think I'm hooked.
This year I'll just gather and dry them and see how involved this waiting process is.
Then next season, I'll have a better plan.
I'll plant what I want and somehow find a place where they can ramble.

I mean, look at this!
It's about the size of a watermelon.
Very happy gourds.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Roadside daylilies . . .


Ah, yes.
I just can't tweak the foliage any longer.
At some point, I will paint this again.
When my hand gets looser and more confident, I'll try the daylilies one more time.
For now, I still have the essential barns and outbuildings
that I see all day every day.
And that's good.
Figuring out how to release the flowers will be my challenge
for now and in paintings to come.
Still, I like the composition and color.
It's coming. It's coming.

Detail : Oil on canvas

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Pennington Mine Lake . . .

Pennington Mine Lake

Have I mentioned this week what a wonderful weekend I spent
in Brainerd, Minnesota, last week?
I have?
I did.
Lisa toured me around the area that is covered with
mountains of iron ore and deep lakes 
all created by the mining in that area
not so long ago.
Rocks - rusty red rocks. Some with blue flashes and lots of quartz embedded.
It will be fun this winter to hole up in the shop and see what polishes from these.
In the meantime, I painted this picture from a photo I took of
Pennington Mine Lake at Ironton.
Lisa told me she takes her kidlets here in the summer for picnics
and swimming off the rocks.
You can see that this evening it was particularly calm.
Now I wish I'd taken more pictures but there WILL be a next time.

Details : Oil on canvas

Monday, September 21, 2015

Time to start over . . .

On the Way to the House of a Friend

Yes, I admit it. 
I didn't quite make the 30 Oil Paintings in 30 Days. 
Life just gets in the way of plans sometimes.
But with the last of my Big Push things now out of the way,
I'm ready to get back to the easel and paint.
Maybe not 30 in 30 but as close as I can come.

Love the way this painting turned out, I'm happy to say!
Taken from a photo when I was on my way back from Brainerd, Minnesota, last week.
I finally got to meet my long-distance friend Lisa Jordan at the Crossing Arts Alliance in Brainerd where she is the Executive/Artistic Director.
I taught a workshop in torchfired enamel, 13 fun, artsy women, and we had an absolute ball all weekend. Can't wait to do it again. Soon.

The Crossing Arts Alliance is hosting a fundraiser the weekend of 10 October
and asking their artists to take an 8x8 canvas and produce
a piece of art in their own styles to donate for purchase.
All works will be $50 and all monies will go to the CAA.
Great idea and I love challenges like this. 

Details : 8"x8"
Oil on canvas

Post Script : The Process
I love this 'feeling it out' part.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Day 25.5 : An Oil a Day 30 Day Challenge . . .

Day 25.5 : Yep, interruption again

I really needed this.
Harbor Freight toolbox with space for my thinners below deck.
I had a coupon.
And what I was using just wasn't cutting it.
Poor, old Cosco utility cart from 1955.
Yeah, they're real treasures now but totally worthless in the stability department.
And I need stability.
Tomorrow, find trays for paint tubes and brushes.

But if you look at this photo, you'll see that I actually DO have a new painting in progress!

Give me until tomorrow.

I'll finish it, I swear.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Day 25 : An Oil a Day 30 Day Challenge . . .

Day 25 : Sunrise Seward Airport

From a photo I took this summer just before dawn at the Seward Airport in Nebraska.
Looking north, the sky was the wonderful hazy pink,
the shadows long, and the distant farm misty.
Every June our aerobatic club stages a contest there and every summer,
Ed and I tow my '63 Shasta trailer out and stay in that so we don't
have to get up pre-dawn to drive the 20 miles to the airport.
Every year I marvel at the gorgeous sunrise, the quiet calm of the airport,
the surrounding misty farms, distant freight trains.
So here are two hangars making long shadows as the sun comes up.
Before the hubbub begins.

Details : Oil on canvas

Friday, August 14, 2015

Day 24 : An Oil a Day 30 Day Challenge . . .

Day 24 : Salt Marsh Evening

Okay, so this challenge has turned into 30 paintings without
regard for the 30 days.
24 paintings and well on my way to 30!
This is from a photo reference that I've taken some liberties with.
I am trying to improve my grass technique and my trees seem to be improving.
I'd give anything to be able to take a class with Carol Marine.
I so envy her brushstrokes and try to copy them in my own work.
When I've been painting for as long as she has.
Maybe there are people who say that about my metalwork.
Get 15 years under your belt and come see me then.

Detail : Oil on canvas

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Day 23.5 : An Oil a Day 30 Day Challenge . . .

Day 23.5 : Clean and Prep Day

A 30-day challenge is turning into a 60-day challenge.
Next time I'll be a bit smarter and give myself some breathing space.

Once in a while you need to stop, clean brushes and prep more canvas.
I found that if I am going to challenge myself to a 30-day painting promise,
then I need to prep 30 canvases.

Murphy's Oil Soap and water, burnt umber ground applied and drying, ready to begin again.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Day 23 : An Oil a Day 30 Day Challenge . . .

Day 23 : Platte River

Just south of Columbus, Nebraska, August 2015.
Shallow enough to wade across in most places.
And wide.
This painting took less than 30 minutes to complete.
Quick and impressionistic.
Dark blue ground with is what you see in the scumbled background
and in the vegetation here and there.
I just let it show through for a little depth.

Details : Oil on canvas

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Day 22 : An Oil a Day 30 Day Challenge . . .

Day 22 : Milkweed

Since we live in the middle of farmland, it's only natural that it is my first choice for a subject to paint.
Just up the road a ways is this neighbor's field.
Very soon it will be dusty golden yellow from harvesting corn and beans but for now,
this field is blooming with milkweed throughout.
And summer haze.

Details : Oil on canvas

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Day 21.2 : An Oil a Day 30 Day Challenge . . .

Day 21.2 : Home

I still suck at trees but I am getting better.
I think.
Practice and all that stuff.

Our house on Rock Creek Road.
I took liberties, of course, and changed a bit of the background.
Because, well, trees.

Detail : Oil on canvas

Day 21.1 : An Oil a Day 30 Day Challenge . . .

Day 21.1 : Our House

I suck at trees.
I only had a few minutes to work on this last evening and have decided
that I am having an 'issue' with trees.
I'm not the only one, I know.
Thinking I should paint all foliage as big green lollipops and call it a day.

Details : Oil on canvas

Monday, August 3, 2015

Day 21 : An Oil a Day 30 Day Challenge . . .

Day 21 : Yellow House

No way will this be finished in a day but I wanted to get a good start on it.
Impatience. I had to start it.
This is our house and I love it.
Steady progress. Don't overwork.
Lay the color in.

Details : Oil on canvas