They’ve already been married 3 1/2 years, but the wedding quilt is finally done. This thing is mammoth, 108″ square and all hand quilted. It has now gone to it’s home with my son and daughter in law. Every stitch was done with love, but I can’t say that I am sorry to have the last stitch added. Perhaps now will be the time to do one in Caribbean colors for my own bed.
We are having a specular Autumn. Deep blue skies, weather in the 70’s and truly gorgeous color, the best I have seen in years and we are not at peak yet. And I have been moping around because I have been sidelined with a knee injury and can’t get out with my camera to enjoy all this beauty. Then I realized that I was letting all this beauty pass me by, and I could start to open my eyes during my drives back and forth to work and to physical therapy and just be inspired by all the color I see. Minnesota is so beautiful, that even just driving on the freeway there is plenty of gorgeous color to see, and all of the businesses have gorgeous trees and lovely mums..
I am also taking a class with Laure Ferlita right now called An imaginary Visit to Autumn so my artwork is full of autumnal images. I have much to appreciate and be thankful for. The pages above are from the assignments in Laure’s class. Her classes are full of fun and learning and wonderful support, If you get the chance I recommend you take one.
Well, I took the plunge and have completed the cover of my journal. I used watercolors for the background, including an iridescent gold that gives it a subtle shimmer in person. Then I dragged out my foam stamps and acrylic paint from my scrapbooking days and stamped the word autumn, roughly outlining it with pitt pen. The leaves were done with walnut ink and a stamp. I just have to find a bit of ribbon to cover that left edge where the paint bled under the tape and it is done.
Below you will find my first assignment from Laure Ferlita’s Imaginary Visit to Autumn class that I am taking. I had to laugh at myself a bit as I was totally disconcerted by the idea of painting a white pumpkin. I had never even seen a white pumpkin before. I got the light areas a little too dark so it reads more as a grayish green pumpkin than white, but here it is.
A post on Laure Ferlita’s Blog led to a comment I made about ordering a custom made journal and being afraid to use it for fear of messing up the pristine white cover.
I started to think about the issue a little bit more. First the journal– As I have become a little more proficient in watercolor, my paper of choice has been Fabriano Artistico 140# cold press. it works the best for me with the least frustrations. I don’t make my own journals, and haven’t found one using that paper. I came across a wonderful etsy shop Elvie Studio where I could order a custom journal. It arrived and it was so well done I was very pleased, but afraid to use it. I am a very messy watercolor painter especially when doing background washes, and I always end up with paint everywhere. I didn’t want to get random paint on that pristine cover so it sits on a shelf and hasn’t been used and really, how silly is that? What good is it doing me there?
So Laure’s post today led me to the determination to use that journal. I am currently taking her Imaginary Visit to Autumn Class and this would be the perfect journal. I am going to start by painting a wonderful mottled wash of autumn colors on that cover and if it doesn’t turn out the way I want it to, well then I will collage over it or make a slip cover for it. And if random messiness ruins it, then I have the same solutions available to me. Tomorrow I will post a picture of that cover and my first lesson. Fear has been dumped into that trash bin in the corner.
For a bit of color, I have posted one of the layouts from the travel journal I am making from our trip to the badlands in South Dakota.
There seems to be a theme running through many of my sketches this month, and that is RED. I seem to be reaching for the same red pencils over and over. There is just something about red. It is so bright and vibrant. I think my love affair with red started as a teen when I figured out that if shopping with my mom I stood a much better chance of getting her to buy me something if I picked out something red. Two more of my Every day in May sketches and hey— They are red!
Continuing on with the challenge. Everyday is not something that has happened but my drawing skills are slowly improving and I can more accurately draw simple shapes. No tracing clipart or photos for these drawings.
Occasionally I have to beat back my inner critic when I see the lovely complex work being done by others in this challenge with creative layouts and backgrounds. It can be hard not to just throw in the towel. I have to remind myself, that I am doing this to improve my drawing skills which is actually working and there is time to worry about colorful backgrounds and complex, detailed drawings later.
I was inspired by Liz (Borromini Bear) whose art journals I just love to join her in doing the first 31 EDM ( Every Day Matters) challenges in May. It will be a great way to get in some drawing practice everyday. I still struggle so much with my drawing skills and haven’t put the practice into it that I really should. I am sure I won’t post every day but hopefully at least once a week. I am doing these sketches in a brand new moleskine used just for this.
The first challenge was to draw a shoe. At first I was going to draw my beat up sneaker that I wear for work, but then I decided that just because I have awful feet which don’t allow me to wear cute girly shoes doesn’t mean I can’t draw one.
I am learning so much from Laure Ferlita’s Visit to the beach class, and trying things that I would never have tried before, like this flamingo.