Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Love Notes for Valentine's Day

Greta's teacher asked the parents to write a Valentine's letter to their child.  We sent it to her in a sealed envelope to be read as a surprise during class on Valentine's Day.  What a beautiful idea!  Sadly, the kids were home for a snow day today but they will get to hear about their special unique gifts when they go back to school. 

I try to remember to write little notes to the girls and slip them into their lunchboxes, under pillows, or in books they are reading.  So often I get caught up in correcting the little things they do wrong and forget to praise their good choices or beautiful spirit.  I was excited about this project and decided to make something  on chipboard that they could keep and enjoy.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Winter Days - a watercolor painting

I saw this picture on Pinterest and thought it would make a beautiful watercolor painting.

Lately, my main interest has been mixed media paintings but my favorite medium is watercolor.   Watercolor paintings can barely suggest a thought or they can be more structured and show as many details as the artist puts in the painting.  Plus, they involve a certain commitment... you can't go back and erase.  Where ever you put the paint is where it will stay, like it or not.

I have been wanting to experiment with masking fluid, which I really haven't used before.  I love it.  I always took the inexpensive route and used rubber cement to mask the areas I wanted to keep clean and free of paint.  It is amazing how much easier the real stuff is to use.  Masking fluid goes on like paint and stays where you put it but then it rubs off easily.  Rubber cement is a thick glue and goes on globby and is difficult to control.  It is also tough to remove.  I am sold on masking fluid!

Here is the initial sketch of the picture with the masking fluid applied (it is the yellowish areas on the paper).

It is almost finished.  I wish I would have taken a picture sooner but when I am painting I get in the zone and nothing else exists around me.  Hours go by and I don't even notice.

Here is the finished painting.   I didn't paint on watercolor paper (not too smart).  The sketch book I used was rated for lightly wet medium, uhmm, that's not watercolors.  So, the final picture was fairly warped so I... wait for it... ironed it flat.  It worked and nothing was scorched.