Monday, June 29, 2020

What is Going to Catch My Eye?

I organize a group of sketchers that meet once a month for what we call a SketchCrawl. We meet at various places around the Bluffton-Hilton Head area and sketch what ever is in front of us.  For the last several months, our Sketchcrawls have been virtual. 

I've been sketching a lot of plants in my yard.  But in June, the plants weren't speaking to me.  I hopped in my car and drove around.  One thought was to sketch at the vegetable stand, but there were way too many people for me to feel socially distanced enough.  Back into the car and down the road I went.   I then remembered a rather good sized drainage pond around the building where my dentist has their office.  It was a good choice. 

I found a tree lit by sunlight against a shaded background.  And, I was able to paint it from my air conditioned car - an extra bonus given it was one of our first humid days.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Salute to the Redbay Tree

Painted plein air using the direct watercolor method.  Text and line work added in the studio with Faber Castell markers.  Journal:  Stillman and Birn Alpha, soft cover.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

The Ever Lovely Horse Sugar Tree

Drawn and painted from life.  I'm fortunate to have these lovely trees in my backyard : )

Ink drawing and lettering done on 5.6.  Painted on 5.9. 
A page doesn't have to be completed in one sitting - Create when you can.

Friday, May 1, 2020

My Way to Play

For years I gave playing the game of golf a go.  I loved the scenery and happened to see a lot of the courses we played with my particular game...  I came to look on golf the same way Mark Twain did - a good walk spoiled.

Then, the last 5 years I played, I began to bring my sketchbook and watercolor pencils with me.  My husband and I would always play with 2 other men.  I had time to sketch little bits of things when they were on the tee box.  I immersed myself into what I loved and would forget the last lousy shots made.  This practice helped me take 10 strokes off of my game!!!

I no longer play the game, but do join my husband in the cart with my plein air setup.

These two small studies were started while the foursome finished one hole and teed up on the next.  I finished them from memory as we rode along.  
My little lap desk was purchased at an office supply store.  They also come in a light aluminum.  Their original use is for workers in the field that have forms to store inside.  When closed it acts like a clipboard.  I use blue tack to hold my brushes and small mixing palette.  Lots of clips to hold things in place.  It can be a bouncy windy ride around the courses!

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Celebrate Earth Day! 50 Years and Counting

Twelve years ago today I began this blog to celebrate Nature in my newly adopted home in the lowcountry of South Carolina.

Fifty years ago today I took part in the first Earth Day celebrations.  Me, my good friend Jane, our Mothers (organizers of this clean-up event) and a few more kids and adults that my mind has now blurred, cleaned up an off-road spot on Farley Road.  It was a dirt car path into the woods that was frequented by young adults to park and drink.  I remember groaning at the thought of cleaning up all the bottles and cans  thrown by those with no respect for the land or other people's property.  Now what stands out in my mind is the feeling of accomplishment we all had at bringing this lovely little spot back to it's former beauty. 

My prayer continues to be for each person to do their small part to keep our Earth whole.  Little steps lead to such big things.  Not a chore at all.  We can do this!

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Conversation / Covid-19 Style

When we took our dogs for a golf cart ride the other evening, this was the scene at the end of our street.  When we returned, the conversation was still going on.  This sign of the times just had to be captured in my sketchbook.

Fountain pen with water soluble ink, platinum fountain pen, white gouache, water soluble tailors chalk.

Monday, March 16, 2020

Honoring Bloodroot IV

It's a good thing this pot of Bloodroot was in my office and I could check it frequently or I may have missed out on the plant's quick growth!

In just eight days seedlings went from barely popping out of the soil to blooming!

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Honoring Bloodroot III

This year my friend gave me a pot of bloodroot seedlings to monitor.  I so love documenting the growth of spring plants.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Honoring Bloodroot II

Back in 2013, I drew my first Bloodroot found in the lowcountry of South Carolina.  They seem much smaller than the Western New York variety. 

Bloom time is a lot earlier, too.  This plant was in a sheltered area and we were experiencing warmer then normal temperatures.  They normally bloom in mid to late January.

I used a brown Sakura Pigma Micron Pen in a Stillman & Birn Epsilon Journal.  I love using ink on this paper!

Monday, February 17, 2020

Honoring the Beautiful Bloodroot - 1

 I saw my first Bloodroot in 2005 when we were living in Western New York.  I was smitten with this plant on the spot.

I loved the way one very large leaf enveloped a single stem with a delicate white flower.

There was a patch of plants, all in various stages of growth.  So delicate.  Such a wonderful delight for the eye.

There were so many beautiful wildflowers that spring, I decided to start a journal to celebrate each one.  The journal I chose had been a gift and for years it remained blank, as the paper made me nervous.  It is thin and filled with  long fibers.  I had no idea how it would work with watercolor.

Thankfully, I left the first journal page blank.  Then after two pages of trial, error and removal, the third page was the charm.  I first drew with a black Sakura Pigma Micron waterproof pen, then added watercolor.  The paper is so thin that I had to put a blank sheet behind the page I was working on to protect the following pages. 
It's been years since I had looked at this journal.  I love how the watercolors traveled through to the back side of each page, creating wonderful abstract designs.

There are more blank pages within the journal.  I hope to fill with them with lowcountry wild flowers.