Friday, June 28, 2013

ICADs 21- 26 and Summer of Color, Lime Green & Purple

Just a quickie post to get these out into the cyber world.  Here are my last few days of ICAD's.  Funny story before I rush off to get my kids to the pool (rough life, I know!)  Last weekend I brought my doodling supplies to my friend's Summer Solstice party.  The kids were instantly intrigued and I passed out index cards and they all had a great time, some trying to copy mine - I was working on day 21 below - and some doing their own thing.  Pretty soon the moms joined in and before long we had a bunch of us doodling at the picnic table.  My friend A is so hooked that she already has her own supply of card, art journal and pens.  She sends me texts all the time of her latest doodles.  She was artistic to begin with but I get a kick out of being her inspiration for her latest creative outlet. 

Day 21
Day 22
Day 23
Day 24
Day 25

Day 26

Summer of Color.  I did another greeting card.  Lime Green and Purple.  It photographed bery yellow, didn't it?


Friday, June 21, 2013

Index-Card-A-Day, ICAD 17-20

Wow, it's been a busy art week.  I'm doing some art every day which is awesome.  I am addicted to index cards, I find myself using them for all sorts of things all day.  There are some in my purse with a few pens at all times.  I've found out that I really, really enjoy the tangle style doodles, can you tell?

Day 17, I tried some real Zentangle patterns.  I'm addicted!

Day 18, doodled at the golf course while I waited for kids golf camp to end.  I was on my orange and hot pink kick for Summer of Color.

Day 19...I've been doing bootcamp and really watching my calories and have lost some lbs but the weekend is coming and that's when I tend to forgot all my goals and it all falls apart.  I really want to make it through this weekends Summer Solstice festivities and still like what I see on the scale Monday morning.  So I made this index card as a reminder.

Day 20.  When I'm stumped, I doodle.

Check all the other wonderful ICAD's at Daisy Yellow. 
You will astounded by the talent!

Flowers & something old

For a few years now my kids and I have been avid monarch stewards but last year all my milkweed died.  Occasionally I see a Monarch butterfly flying around our front porch and I am sad there is nowhere for her to lay her eggs.  I've held off buying new plants because I am trying very hard to stick to a budget and buying flowers is low on my priority list.  This morning I just couldn't help myself and bought three milkweed plants.  One plant at the store had a great big caterpillar on it and I was tempted to bring him home but is that stealing?  I'm not sure so I left him there.

I hope it's OK to share something old.  Buying the milkweed plants reminded me of the this pen and watercolor piece I did about a year and a half ago.  It was one of my first blog posts, only 35 people saw it so it will be new to you!  (hoping my dry sense of humor is apparent.)

Yay for new milkweed plants!  Can't wait to see some caterpillars again.

Can you believe this dahlia?  It had to come home with me, too.  The flower is a good 8 inches across.  I'm sure this will end up posted in the future as a painting or drawing. 
 Happy Summer Solstice!  It's a big deal here in Santa Barbara. 
Tomorrow will be a huge parade with parties in the park afterward.

Paint Party Friday

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Orange & Hot Pink for Summer of Color 2013

Summer has finally arrived here in Santa Barbara.  It has been hot and today was in the 80's, even at my house by the beach.  I've had the A/C on in my car full blast so the very hot colors of hot pink and orange for Summer of Color 2013 seem perfect.  And lucky for me it's one of my favorite color combinations.

Here's my "official entry."  Hungarian folk art flowers are traditionally in bright colors...sometimes all blue...but aren't they great in hot pink and orange?  I drew this free hand with Prismacolor markers, Sharpies and Micron on a blank 4 X 6 greeting card (which is white but photographed funky.)  If your birthday is coming up don't be surprised to see this card!

I am so in awe of all the amazing artwork being shared on Facebook in this challenge.  Sometimes when I see more abstract styles of art I wish it was something I could do.  It looks easy, doesn't it?  Chose a few colors, some shapes and slap them into a pleasing composition, right?  Well!  I decided to try some more abstract things this week.  I'm sharing them with you even though I find them slightly ridiculous.  It probably doesn't help that it's been a hectic week and I wasn't able to put much time or effort into these.  All are acrylic on canvas sheets.

Clearly I need to put some more work in them, I think I can do something interesting with the top two.  This bottom stripey one?  Yuck.
My ICAD yesterday was orange & hot pink, too. Doodled at the golf course waiting for my kds golf camp to finish.
And a few from the past...I really do love these colors!
A watercolor I painted for Illustration Friday last year which my daughter loves so much that it's framed in her room.

An ICAD from last week.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Citron & Turquoise for Summer of Color 3 and ICAD Days 13 - 16

Just a quick post so I can make the deadline to particiapte in Summer of Color.  It's my first time participating.  I've so enjoyed the ICAD's and the interaction with other artists posting our cards on Facebook and I noticed a lot of posted mentioning Citron & Turquoise.  I discovered Summer of Color  and decided to give it a go.  This is also my Day 16 ICAD.
I drew this in bed this morning, Father's Day.  As soon as I was done we went on a two hour walk along the harbor and beach.  A quick lunch and then off the play golf for Father's Day.  It was crowded and slow, lots of families playing.  Golf can be challenging at the best of times and with an 8 year old and 10 year old there are even greater challenges...some aspects of golf etiquette are very difficult for kids to understand.  I started playing golf when I was dating my husband (to impress him!)  He is passionate about golf and I enjoy it (most of the times) but it's not my thing.  I've been really trying to get the kids involved, though, and so far they love it.  I think it's a great way to spend family time together.
Now I'm squeezing in enough time to write this post before I begin preparing our Father's Day dinner...bacon cheeseburgers (mine wrapped in lettuce), grilled vegetables and roasted potatoes.  I'm glad I got so much exercise this morning!

Here are more of my latest ICADs:

Day 13 Zentangle style doodles.  I was going for ocean, land, flowers and rainy skies.  I really like the way it came out.

For Day 14 I wanted a monotone look.  I used was coffee grounds, watercolor, Sharpies and brush pen.

 Day 15 and I wanted to try a more colorful varation from Day 14.  This one is Purple Allium.  Watercolor, Prismacolor markers.
I'm also sharing at Sunday Sketches. 

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Index-Card-a-Day 2013, ICAD, day 9-12

Well, another week and 7 more index cards.  Here are 9-12.  I've really been enjoying doing a bit of art every day.  The fact that it's a little card makes it so much more do-able.  Sometimes I am too busy to get all my paints our and start on a canvas.  A little paper card is easy!

This was day 9.  What a Hungarian postage stamp would have looked like if I had designed it.  It's Micron pen on white card but I wanted it to have a vintage, already-gone-through-the-mail look so I dumped old coffee grounds on it.

Day 10.  I ripped up pages from an old music book and used Modge Podge to collage them onto the card.  Then I drew over it in Sharpie.  At first I was worried that the Modge Podge left the surface too slick but in fact it made for some interesting blending.  I'd like to try this again with less black to see how the colors blend without the black.

On day 11 I wanted to use a prompt so I went with "map."  More Modge Podge.  I had hoped the black lines would look like another map on to of the paper map but in the end it kind of looks like a zebra to me...which is funny because last week's prompt was "zebra."

And finally, because I should share something I PAINTED on Paint Party Friday...Day 12 is watercolors and acrylic ink.  I finished it up with colored pencils.
See more of my ICAD's here.
Paint Party Friday

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Healthy Changes, part 1 and ICAD, day 8

When I first started this blog I would often talk about fitness and my diet and post recipes.  Lately this blog has been mostly about art but recently I've been making several healthy changes and wanted to document them here.

First, I've gone to a strictly gluten free diet.  I had been mostly gluten free for a couple of years but I would fall off the wagon at least once a week.  My friend A's coconut cake, Chinese food, something yummy at dinner...I cheated a lot.  Several months ago a friend was diagnosed with Celiac Disease.  I've eaten many meals with this friend and had a general idea about her health habits and complaints and I don't think we are that different in our eating and healthy lifestyles.  I realized that whether I have a real issue gluten or just feel better when I don't eat gluten, it's important for me to stick to it.  Since I quit gluten all together I have not had any sore throats, stuffy nose or gassy stomach pains.

I've also stopped my daily intake of alcohol and just so you know, I LOVE wine.  There is almost nothing I looked forward to more than a glass of wine.  Sometimes I caught myself watching the it 5 yet?  Some days I was really good, I filled my glass to the exact 5 ounce fill line and stopped after that one glass.  But most days I snuck another splash here and there.  I'd finish my glass while making dinner and then want more with my meal.  And on weekends I could easily have 2 or 3 glasses every day...because it's the weekend!  I found myself feeling bad about the amount I was drinking.  When I drink more I don't sleep as well and I definitely feel it the next day.  A couple of glasses will give me a headache for sure.  And even when I have the best intentions, once the wine starts flowing it's really hard to put a cork in that bottle.  I decided that I would only drink on very special occasions but my daily wine had to go.  I drink sparkling water in a wine glass now.  It was not easy, especially the first week, but it's been 3 weeks now and I am AMAZED at how much better I feel.  No foggy head.  No headaches.  I'm sleeping better, my overall mood is better.  And, not insignificantly, my perimenopause symptoms from which I have suffered for the last 8 months (I'm only 43, kinda young for hot flashes!) HAVE DISAPPEARED.  Not one hot flash since I stopped drinking.  And, for the record, I have had wine.  Once at a party.  With my in laws while they visited.  But not every day.  Not even every week.

I'm also sharing one of my favorite recent ICADs so there is a little art in here, too.  This is day 8. 
Micron pen on an index card.  Inspired by something I saw on Pinterest. 
Click here to see my other ICAD's for 2013

I've mentioned recently that I started a bootcamp.  I have been in an exercise rut.  Time constraints, a young dog that needs lots of long walks/runs, my yoga practice and a desire to cut back on my monthly expenses all contribute to the fact that for the first time in my adult life I don't belong to a gym (oh, how I miss spinning!)  I go to Bikram Yoga once or twice a week but the rest of my exercise needs have been met outdoors with my dog.  In theory it's great, but running too often results in recurring injuries for me.  While I love walking but some days I need a more intense workout.  On a whim I decided to try a bootcamp.  Good God, it's hard but I love it.  I joined the 6 week session during week 4 and I've been doing it for a little over a week.  Because I am paying for it I am forcing myself to go as often as possible.  I've gone 5 times now.  I love being pushed after such a long time of feeling blah about my workouts.  I have 2 1/2 more weeks to go.  Although some of the people seem to be regulars going back all the time, I like the idea of challenging my body and then backing off.  Too much of a good thing is not always good and our bodies get used to the same exercise.  It's good to mix it up.  Ideally I'd like to join 2 or 3 sessions a year.  For my birthday and Christmas I'll be asking for bootcamp gift certificates!

I'm writing all this down here to share with you because of the three things I listed above, giving up gluten, giving up daily alcohol and starting a more intense exercise program have all, at different times, sounded utterly impossible to me.  And yet, I have done them all and feel so much better. 

Can you do one thing that you know will be hard but will make you feel better?

This post is called part 1 because I have also embarked on IF.  Not Illustration Friday, which I need to get back to...but intermittent fasting.  It's too soon for me to write about it so stay tuned...

Learn more about the super fun challenge of creating one index card a day for June and July but clicking below.  Join anytime.

Friday, June 7, 2013

ICAD, Index-Card-a-Day 2013, day 7 and a Birthday Painting

It's time to celebrate my friend A's birthday so here is a little 5X7 watercolor and ink piece to give her as a birthday card.   Last year I painted her a little peacock

Yesterday was the last day of school here.  My kids are fully booked with camps for the month of June.  Even though I work from home and don't really need to send the kids to camps, I find them nice in that I get a little break to run errands, exercise or work while they are busy.  It's a balancing act, though, because camps are EXPENSIVE around here.  I try to send them only to a few that they will really enjoy and/or learn from.

On a whim I joined a 6 week bootcamp style exercise class last week.  This is the 3rd week so I will just do it for the last 3 weeks.  I went to 3 classes this week and I am so sore.  Sore as in can barely move sore.  I'm hoping it gets easier but I already feel leaner and stronger!  It's amazing how mental exercise is because it's too soon for me to have lost weight or gained muscle but I really feel like I already have.

 Still managing to keep up with the index cards.  Here is today's.  I looked in an old Hungarian folk art pattern book for inspiration and realized that a lot of the instructional drawings look a lot like zentangle patterns so I tried to do a whole card of Hungarian flowers in tangle fashion.

 See more of my index cards,here and here.
I've really been enjoying the index card a day challenge.  Learn more about it by clicking the cute button below:

Sharing at Paint Party Friday.  Check out all the lovely art!
Paint Party Friday

Thursday, June 6, 2013

ICAD, Index-Card-a-Day 2013, day 2 - 6

I've been having lots of fun creating an index card every day.  It's been great to share these on Flickr and Facebook.  I love seeing what everyone else is doing and I love all the comments that go back and forth.  Some people do very painterly cards or amazing collages.  For me, I find the cards the perfect opportunity to doodle with pens and markers.   Here are my last several days of cards.  All are 3X5 index cards.

Day 2. 
Faux stitched flowers.  I've done something like this before.

Day 3.
 What I call my high school doodles because this is what covered all my high school folders, book covers and margins.   In rainbow, which was one of the ICAD prompts. 
Here are my "rules" for high school doodles.
 1. Each loop has to come back and connect with it's beginning, they can be tiny, like a little circle or take up the entire page, as long as it loops back to itself.
2. No lines can touch, if you can help it.
 3. Not too much white space, add little circles to fill in where necessary. Viola!

Day 4.
I've never tried zentangles or tangles or doodles of this sort (apparently some people are annoyed that these are often refered to anything other than "doodles.")  Anyway, I've never really tried them in a conscious way and I can tell you there definitely is something "zen" about repeating lines and pattens like this.  I really enjoyed it.  The yellow bars are already on the index card (you can see them faintly peaking through on the flower card above.)
 I love black, white and yellow together.

Day 5.
I was on a doodling roll but wanted a change from black & white (& yellow) so tried something new in rainbow.

Day 6.
Back to Hungarian folk flowers for today.  Using the color obviously.  And my adorable little stamp.  Although I regretted the stamp as soon as I did it...