And so I begin a new book…

The first step is reviewing my notes. Typically I’ll be among my usual and idea comes begging to be written. Sounds crazy I know, but Elizabeth Gilbert describes this so well in her book. It so true! Any way I’ve had this story for months and it’s the one I want to work on. These are a few of the animals.

I’m thinking of so much right now but animals from the most beautiful color to the rarest of the world intrigue me, spark my curiosity really. I’m always left with a notion that beauty before me is purpose. We all have a purpose and in that purpose we are bound by love. Yeah deep stuff. BUT I see a book that children of any age can read. It must be read.

Oh Friday I begin my fall workshop. On various days I’ll post fun fall projects. I’ll also post on my book process ,Tuesday through Thursday. I’ll be painting some fish. Yes I have great ideas for mixed media fish. I hope you got my Road Trip e-book. If you haven’t there’s still time. It’s available for free till Friday October 11th.

Sennilier Swatches and Free E-Book

This weekend I tried my new Sennilier 24 color pan set. I’m happy. Not bad for a student set. The colors are smooth and easy to work with. There are a few colors that aren’t as warm or vibrant as I’d like them to be. I can fix these with a little India ink or mixing. The first three rows are pan swatches. The fourth row is premium paint swatches. There are a few differences. This is a good set to practice mixing various tones and for painting earth/nature tones. The blues and greens are beautiful. Some of the browns are too. My E-book will be available for free until Friday Oct. 11th. The Fall workshop will begin Friday. Every Monday and Friday I will post a fun project idea.

Creative Exploration: Animals

Now that I’ve explored textures with water and brushes it’s time to paint some animals. No sketching just paint or what ever it is you have. Project rules are to choose one animal and explore various ways you can draw it. We can change the mood, character and emotion with various elements. There are many ways to draw.

Bird ( This was the warm-up which involved painting a bird with watercolor pencils and marker.

I really had to work through the bird. I had an idea of a flying bird yet it has a fish tale. Not to worry. I may have a story about a bird who looks like a fish. I’m going to seriously think about this. I’ll write about it tomorrow.

First bear on botton left

I wanted to test out some of the textures I created. I messed up on the mouth but this is practice. The importance is I now have a bear who seems sad. Why?

Scary Bear

I love this one. I was instructed to take the brush and spread some paint on the paper. then observe shapes and form a bear. Maybe this bear is misunderstood becasue he’s a bear and unusual.

Draw a bear using geometric shapes (bottom right)

I should have used a better contrasting color.

Use an unusual color and observe changes

Pink makes the bear seem goofy and maybe this could be a story about a bear who changes color.

Big Orange Brown Bear

Love this bear. Here I was able to fully use the texture I discovred with the 1/4 angled Princeton Brush. I believe I have a smaller size brush.

Here are my bears. I admit that I was tempted to give up and call some of these bears faliures. Instead, I let Adolfo’s words guide me. This is practice. Experiment and play like you are a kid. See what happens. You never know where ideas will take you. There’s no perfection. Don’t think.

Hope you enjoyed this. I’ll keep posting and working. This weekend I have a couple of projects planned. I’ll be swatching my new paint palette. I have an fun paiting project to test out my new paint. I’ll be planning the fall workshop. As always, I invite you to create with me.

Oh, I used colored pencils, markers and a little watercolor.

Happy Friday!

Creative Exploration: your brushes

The creativity continues with exploring paint brushes. I like to stamp with ceramic things, q- tips the back of a paint brush handle and what my curiosity demands. The brush makes some cool textures for animal hair. I bought a five pack of Daiso mixed media brushes for $1.50. They work good with acrylic but not with watercolor.

Another surprise was the size 8 brush. Some of these textures work well for bear hair. I painted backwards up instead of upward down.

The idea is to see what happens. You never know what you’ll discover. I have some cool textures for some animals I want to paint.

I used watercolor and acrylic. I’ve got lots of brushes and some random things. Go around the house and see what you can find. Paint with a leaf, stamp with a soda cap, crunched up paper, the back of a lip balm and …

Creative Exploration: Get to know your tools

It’s Otober 1! I need to get going on the fall workshop. This week I will be sharing my creative exploration projects for a class I’m taking. I’m building a creative journal for texture, technique and color exploration. The first part is is to gather up tools. Everything you can think of. No need to go out and buy new tools. Use what you have. The idea is to see what your tools can do for you.

I painted over glue, used a blush brush ( it’s an old brush that’s no longer used for make-up) to create different textures. The idea is to play like you did when you were a kid. You explore because your curiosity demands it. Without perfection.

The green leaf was made with a stamp. While the stamp was wet I applied water. I forgot about using marker like watercolor. When I’m out of a color I could use markers. Or markers would be an easy way to watercolor on the go. I just realized that my bamboo brush is great for hand lettering.

You see that’s the point of getting to know your tools. By the way, I am using a Canson XL 140 Ib. watetcolor pad. I’ll be making it look more like a journal book. Tomorrow I’ll explore even more by using a few colors.

If you are interested in the class click here.

Looking through my portfolio

I scanned this beautiful watercolor background before I painted the quote and stars. It took a while to let the layers dry before adding the next. I didn’t want to mess up and waste my beautiful galaxy. Would you believe it, I made some more revisions for the book, the intro.

I’ll be thinking about my favorite doodles of the book and all the books I made. I’ll probably do that on Friday.

Hope this print made you feel loved.

Lunch Time Doodle

Today I sat with a few students. We drew and these are the moments I live for. He’s nonverbal and yet I drew. He followed. I should have taken a picture. Here’s mine. Now I want Crayola Super Tips.

We drew pumpkins. My inspiration was a resent Hallmark post on Think. Make. Share.

I will be adding this activity to the fall workshop. My goal is to explore color, texture and build on my creativity.

Road Trip: lessons for life the e-book available soon. Subscribe so you’ll know when you can get your free copy.


Looking at my old work and gathering my favorites for my portfolio. You know that feeling when you get an idea and you simply create. Yeah…

Ok I made a few more edits to Road Trip, for real the book is finished. I’ve been working on ideas for the fall workshop. More to come.