I was surprised at how clean and organized my studio stayed during the 30-in-30 Challenge. The photo above was taken at about Day 23. I was certainly glad I had a drying rack and lots of supplies on hand before the challenge started. With that said, I really didn't plan ahead very well. I knew about the challenge and was tossing around the idea of doing it early in December but despite Leslie's suggestion, I did not check to make sure I had enough. I never ran out of anything I desperately needed but that's only because I'm a bit of a supplies-hoarder. I was most surprised at how many tubes of paint are now down to almost nothing, especially White. Before the challenge, I had one and a half large tubes (150 ml) of white paint and now I'm down to less than a quarter of the last tube.
My Poinsettia is still hanging on but she has seen better days. I had a tiny one before Christmas but that one died within a week. Apparently Poinsettia prefer cold, dark basements to warm, light kitchens. I had no idea.
I am so thankful for doing this Challenge and for Leslie Saeta who encourages all of us to keep pushing and keep improving. I have so many more paintings swirling around in my head, just wanting to be done and that is definitely a good thing. My visitor stats have jumped significantly this month and I have sold more art in one month than I did all of last year. I have taken a couple of days off from the studio but have spent a huge amount of time amassing reference photos for future paintings.
Later I will do Leslie's collage of the month's paintings. Looking forward to that. But right now, I need to get to the factory... yikes! I'm late.
I found a drawing of this dress on Pinterest but could not find who the artist was (I tried).
The 30-in-30 Challenge is complete. I'm surprised that I finished. Surprised, relieved, exhausted, proud. February is nearly here and January is a blur. But in a good way. My mother said she gets a little down in January since all the holiday festivities are over. I told her to try a 30-in-30 Challenge. She would not be bored.
Tomorrow I will be back to let you have a peek at my studio after a 30-in-30 Challenge and give a tally of all the supplies used.
Something bright and sunny for a cold winter morning? Yes, please! Just an inch of snow (or so) for us overnight. School was closed anyway for the end of the mid-term so it should be a decent ride in to the factory. I was watching the Weather Channel last night, feeling for all those people in the South who have no idea how to deal with all that snow. Hopefully few lost power and today will be warm enough to melt all the snow. Crossing my fingers for them.
Just one more left after today. It's a good one. Come back and see it! :D
Day Twenty-eight! I am so close to the finish. My personal goal was 20 paintings but I made it past that. After I got past the first week, I had to stop thinking about the goal of 20 and just focus on painting. I know myself enough that if I only focused on the short goal, the long goal would not happen. I have enjoyed this experience and have learned so much.
I have enjoyed painting a lot of abstract for this 30 in 30 Challenge. Some of them were very quick. This one, with all of the geometric shapes was not one of them. Even with a palette knife, the edges and angles were much more difficult than I anticipated. I keep feeling like this one is unfinished but then I look at it again and think, "No... this is good. I like this just as it is." I hope you abstract lovers enjoy it too.
I'm tired of the cold weather and yesterday I saw no less than SEVEN Robins on my roof. Boy, did they look mad that I was keeping all this snow in my yard! I hope they have somewhere warm to shelter. It certainly is not in my yard. Not for a couple more months, anyway.
Six days left of the challenge. I'm glad the weekend is coming up. Next week is a busy week for me outside the studio. I host the Girl Scout meeting and we're making a quilt for Project Linus. Excited for this but I have no idea why I volunteered when I knew I would still be doing the 30-in-30 Challenge. Just a glutton for punishment, I guess.
Staying with the abstract for a couple of days, just because I love it so much. I look at a ton of photos and artworks and often save the ones I love to my phone for reference later. This came from another piece of art, but I have no idea whose art it was, or where I saw it so if you know it, leave me a comment. I will post a link here. On the other hand, the original artist might look at this painting and say, "Eh, it's not like mine AT ALL!" heh.
As promised, something different. Abstract. I love abstract. Some people don't love it and sometimes, it's just not really very good. I try to keep my not very good out of the public eye. But they do exist, believe me. This one is soft and simple and it evokes some feelings and perhaps some wondering. Those are good properties for an abstract to have so it's a keeper.
It is a snow day today so I'm getting in lots of painting. I wasn't able to paint much over the previous weekend and got a little behind. I was thinking, if I do a 30 in 30 Challenge again in the future, I may do all 30 before it starts. I keep trying not to put a lot of pressure on myself. I do want to keep up but life is busy!
The flowers have been fun but tomorrow brings something different, again. Hope you'll stop by to see what's behind Curtain #22.
I call this one "Success" because that's what it is, in a couple of ways. First, it is the first Sunflower that I have been really happy with how it turned out. Others in the past have just been okay. But this one, I really like. Second, it is my catch-up painting, after I got behind in the 30 in 30 Challenge.
Trying some different techniques, here. Some are working great! I'm learning so much with all of this painting, and that's the point. The more I paint, the more inspirations I get and I probably have about 500 photos saved to my phone that I wish to work from. Yay!! Yes, I use the tiny screen on my phone to work from so I stay loose don't get wrapped up in the details.
I am past the half-way mark but I'm now in a tight spot. I used up all my buffer paintings (painting ahead so if something comes up and I can't paint, I have one to fall back on) so I'm flying by the seat of my pants. I'm nervous. I will be away from home all day Saturday with a family event and if it turns into a stay-over, there may be a lapse in my 30-in-30. Yikes! Maybe if I'm super lucky, I can knock out two paintings tonight, huh? HUH? Oh the pressure! I hope you come back to see if I fall flat on my face. ;) Oh well that's what second chances are for.
I hope you are laughing. I'm laughing. Even if I do miss a day, this has been such a wonderful experience. I don't know if I will jump at the chance next time, but I might. I certainly am learning a lot and I don't feel so much pressure with each painting. Each one doesn't have to be a masterpiece. It's just interim work.
What better time to do a bit of experimenting than a time when I'm doing a bunch of paintings? Up to now, most of my paintings have been very bold with strong colors. This time I wanted to do something really light and I think this turned out great. I will definitely try this again.
Outside the studio, I am just learning how to ride horses. Last night was my fourth lesson, but the first one after three weeks off (they just happened to land over Christmas and New Year's Days, then last week I was a bit sick). Some others in my class were out this week so it was myself and one other rider. I was telling my instructor about being apprehensive after a few weeks off. She is great and she wants these lessons to be fun. "Breathe." She kept telling me. "Just relax and breathe."
A little peck on the cheek. Perhaps to say, "Goodbye. I'll never forget you." They come from different worlds, these two. Their families do not approve so they must part. They have just a moment of tenderness to remember. Lemon and Orange. Romeo and Juliet. We love a good love story.
I think I need more sleep.
I hope I can make you smile. Art should be fun. Sometimes artists are too serious. At least in the movies.
Sometimes the challenge is not so much the painting, the subject matter, the composition. But rather, what to name it when it's finished. Some people are especially good at choosing a name that evokes emotion or some kind of response. I keep trying to do that. A name like "Today's Coffee" is a bit lame. The name for this one pleases me.
I don't smoke anymore, hardly drink, don't do drugs. Just coffee. That's the one.
With this challenge, I am learning so much. Learning how to critique my work so I am not feeling, "Something is wrong with this, but I don't know what." Of course, once I post the photo, I always see something that could have been tweaked to make it better, but it's usually something minor that I can live with. Paying attention to the composition from the beginning helps to keep it all feeling right to the end.
Another busy week coming up. I can do this. I can.
Some people go crazy for Meyer Lemons. I haven't seen the appeal (a-peel...ooof!). They are sweeter than regular lemons, which just makes it not a lemon, to me. Typically, Meyer Lemons are quite a bit more expensive than the regular variety but this day at the market, the Meyer Lemons were the prettiest, so they came home with me.
A lovely landscape for today. I was successful in getting ahead in painting yesterday and with all my appointments next week, I need to continue the trend today. However, there are many shows I want to watch on TV. Such a dilemma. I guess if I paint really fast I can do both, right? HA!
*sigh* When I wasn't blogging, I had no trouble with Blogger at all. Now that I'm trying to blog every day, it wants to get finicky and cause me headaches. Anyway, it's here. A new painting.
I suppose even with headaches and hiccups in the system, it's still kind of fun to learn more about painting and blogging. (There... now I'm an optimist.) ;)
I had a light bulb moment when I was reading Leslie's post about getting by for a few days with only her large palette knife. I have taken Leslie's workshop so I know how much she loves that large knife and how she uses it even for areas that are quite small, where you might not think a large knife would fit. She does it. She encourages her students to do it too.
Large palette knife + small canvas = really fast paintings! There is the light bulb! Now if only I could get my husband to take care of all the appointments for the kiddo, I'd be all set. (HA!)
Not to be confused with a pear, Quince is quite different and wonderful, in its own way. Quince are not good to eat off the tree since they are extremely sour. Extremely sour. Quince are most often cooked with plenty of sugar and become a beautiful pink jelly that tastes very much like very fragrant honey. Here is a recipe I have used in the past, in case you happen to have a Quince tree lazily dropping fruit for you to find.
Sometimes I have a plan for my abstract and sometimes things just happen on the canvas that make me think, "Hey, I like that!" This is one of those "Hey, I like that!" kind of paintings. Abstract are not everyone's cup of tea, I totally get that. If you're not a fan, it's okay. I'll have something more mainstream tomorrow.
"Eye Of Giant Squid"
14" x 18" oil on canvas board
This painting is not currently for sale but if you love it, let me know. We might work something out.
Still pining for warmth and sun when it's grey and cold, I found a beautiful ceramic plate at a local shop that made me think of the soft, lovely colors of sea glass. To go with it, some oranges that come of course, from Florida and Mexico.
The name of this one is fun, and I hope it gives you a little smile. Use your imagination. As with human cousins, some are eager to get close to the baby, while others hang back and wait to see what will happen.
For the first time ever, my Poinsettia seems to be living more than three days. Shock and awe! I have a feeling that it likes the cool basement (the location of my studio). I don't normally keep them there and that seems to be the only thing I'm doing different than years past.
For variety, I will be doing some abstract paintings and other fun things. 30 Poinsettia paintings is probably too many for anybody.
Today's snow makes me want a warm beach. Don't worry, more Poinsettia paintings will come later. But today my cold bones need a gorgeous beach sunset. Which beach this was, or who took the photo, I don't recall. If this is your photo that I lifted from FaceBook, let me know and I will be happy to credit you.
I survived Day One of the 30 in 30 painting challenge. And lived to tell the tale.
Day Two is again a Poinsettia. Maybe this will be a theme. I seem to have terrible luck with Poinsettias though, so this may be a progression of sadness for the Poinsettia.
8" x 8" oil on Gessobord.
This painting is available on Daily Paintworks.