Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Zen Doodle Coloring Book

I was notified by F&W Media (North Light Publishing) that they published Zen Doodle Coloring Book this past month and included some of my artwork in it! I do not know which Zen Doodles they included, as I have not yet received my complimentary copy. But it is exciting that my work has been published in another book.

This coloring book is built of lovely Zentangle®-inspired art  and coloring in these inspiring and unique designs will help you relax and relieve stress. You'll clear your mind, you'll have fun, and you might even have a pretty piece of art to frame when you're finished! Find more than 100 Zen Doodle illustrations selected from some of North Light's bestselling titles, including Zen Doodle: Oodles of Doodles, and Zen Doodle: Tons of Tangles

If you would like to buy a copy of the book, please order through my blog, so that I receive renumeration. You can click on the link in the right-side column to order your copy.

Also, North Light is offering the book as part of a coloring kit. It includes the Zen Doodle Coloring Book, the Zen Doodle Summer 2015 Workshop (a book that has great ideas, easy techniques, and step-by-step projects for your doodling, as well as techniques for shading, adding drama with dimension, incorporating color, and drawing eye catching patterns), and a 5-pen marker set of Earth Tones Chameleon Color Tones. These color-changing alcohol-based markers will change the way you doodle! You can change the tone of your marker from very light or no tone at all, to a deep vibrant shade. This unique transition enables you to add great depth to your art and is especially suited for Zen Doodling! You'll have the ability to create stunning effects including smooth transitions, highlighting, shading, gradations, and blending, all with one pen. The 5-pack Earth Tones set includes these colors: Spring Meadow, Bark, Seville Orange, Hot Cocoa, and Olive Green.  If you would rather buy the kit, you can click the appropriate link on the right-side column.

Thank you for your support and encouragement!

Keep creating!

Week 25 - Weekly Art Challenge - Old Paintings

I'm going to post a couple of paintings that I did some time ago for this week's challenge. Babysitting grandchildren keeps me busy and leaves me exhausted, so I do not have as much time for creating as I would like to. Also, since I'm behind due to life and computer problems, this is an easy way for me to work on catching up with where I am supposed to be (I believe on Week 27 - so I'm getting there!) Thank you for your patience!!

Grandchildren - 14" x 20" colored pencil on hot press illustration board. I drew this for my mother-in-law of all her grandchildren. The seven older children had spontaneously posed themselves for a photo that I used for the drawing. I added the 2nd youngest working from a photo of her standing against her grandfather. Before I had the painting completed, the youngest grandchild was born. I rearranged the arms and had one of the girls hold the baby. It was fun to have everyone ask me how I managed to get all nine grandchildren posed at the same time!
Grandparents - 11"x14" unframed colored pencil drawing on hot-press illustration board. I worked from a photo of my grandparents taken when my grandfather turned 90 years old. Unfortunately, my grandmother passed away the following month. I painted this for my grandfather as a surprise. I had never seen him cry, until he unwrapped this painting. I am so glad that I made this for him. 
Carrie, 11"x 14" unframed hot press illustration board, double-matted and framed (14" x 20"). This is a black and white colored pencil commission that I did for my husband's cousin. He surprised his wife for her birthday with it.

I enjoy working with colored pencils. They blend nicely and can be layered many times. They are transparent, so layering adds a richness that is hard to achieve with paints. I love the challenge portraits bring. However, I would like to improve drawing portraits without working from photos. 

Keep creating!

Week 24 - Weekly Art Challenge - Faces

This week I continued working with Jane Davenport's Drawing and Painting Beautiful Faces,  This week the exercise worked with "latitude and longitude". Davenport treated her simple faces (or Draw Happy faces) as globes with latitude and longitude lines. Using these as guidelines makes it easier to draw faces that are tilted, rather than looking straight on. These are my results, with the "globe" I used as a guideline in the lower right-hand corner.

3/4 view - 4"x 4", Pencil on mixed-media paper.

Tilted up, 3/4 view - 4" x 4" - Pencil on mixed-media paper

Tilted down-3/4 view - 4" x 4" - Pencil on mixed-media paper.
Tilted up - 4" x 4" - Pencil on mixed-media paper.

These has been an eye-opening experience for me. I had never thought of thinking of the faces as a globe and using latitude and longitude lines to determine the placement of the facial features. Even though these are fairly rough sketches, I learned much creating these. The next section of the book starts working on the details of facial features. It's exciting to think I can start getting a fairly realistic looking face without working directly from a photograph.

Keep creating!!

Week 23 - Weekly Art Challenge - Blended Photos

I blended photos this week using my favorite photo-editing app, Pixlr, to create these compositions (except for the first one).

I bought a new Smartphone - my first one - Whoo-hoo!! In taking photos of my granddaughter (4 months old in this photo), I found this photo in the gallery! I don't know how I managed to get a double exposure without trying! But I love the way it turned out, so I had to share!
This photo is the brick work of our walkway beside our driveway, covered in Mesquite tree flowers and leaves. This is one of the original photos I used to create the blended photos this week.
I used filters in Pixlr Express to create this collage of the brick work.
My friend, Lynn, took this photo of wood in their barn.
I blended the original brick work photo with the barn wood photos.I added a green overlay. I think this would make a wonderful fabric for quilting or a background for mixed-media artwork. 
Another photo of the brick work and barn wood blended, but with an ombre overlay. Again, I think this is a great starter for mixed-media artwork or for digitally-printed fabric for quilting or fiber art.

I enjoy exploring photography editing with the Pixlr app. I love to see what I can create!

Keep creating!

Week 22 - Weekly Art Challenge - Cactus photography

I'm still trying to catch up on my weekly art challenge posts. I'm at week 22. An online art group I belong challenged us to take photos of something close by. I chose to photograph the cactus garden in our front yard.

New growth from old. The texture the dying cactus arm captured my imagination.
The main trunk of the cereus cactus died, but new branches have sprouted.
The red cacti fruit  contrasts nicely against the green branches. 
Water trapped on petals of a Wandering Jew plant.
 The bright green of the philodendron contrasts nicely with the dark
purple Wandering Jew and it's delicate pale lavender flower.

I'm trying to improve my photography and composition skills.  Digital cameras are a god-send, since I can take as many photos as I desire without worrying about film and developing costs!

Keep creating!!

Friday, June 26, 2015

Week 21 - Weekly Art Challenge - Other Artwork

For Week 21, I didn't get anything new completed to post. So I'm posting a couple pieces that I finished some time ago. 

Dad's Hunting Dog - 20" x 16", oil on canvas
 This is an oil painting I did for my father-in-law of one of his favorite hunting dogs that he lost too early. He was very pleased and it hangs in the dining room of his home.

Mom and Dad - 20" x 16", oil on canvas
I painted this portrait of my parents from a photo I took of them when they stayed with me in Florida one year while I had surgery. My parents had fun figuring out when I photographed them in the clothing they are wearing, as they couldn't remember having any such outfits! I had to laugh and tell them it's artistic license! (Mom is an artist, so she should have guessed this!). Dad had a white T-shirt with a wild print on, so I painted it as yellow. Mom wore a bright, printed button-down shirt. I painted a plain blue jacket over her brightly-colored top. They were very surprised with the gift and it has a prominent location in their home, overlooking photos of the rest of the family.

I no longer work in oils very much, as the smell bothers me more and I'm starting to react to the oils if I get them on my hands for any length of time. It's a shame, as they are easy to work with and so forgiving if a mistake is made!  However, water-soluble oils are now available. I don't know if I would react the same to these, since I wouldn't have to work with solvents. I might have to give them a try.

Keep creating!

Week 20 - Weekly Art Challenge - Faces

For this Weekly Art Challenge, I worked on the next exercise in  Jane Davenport's Drawing and Painting Beautiful Faces. (See previous posts here). Jane described drawing and shading spheres; then explained how the face can be represented by spheres to help create dimension with shading. Working with the "Draw Happy" faces, she added spheres for the cheeks, nose, chin and lips.  These are the two faces I did in this style. 

"Baby face" - 4" x 4" - charcoal and 0.005 black Sakura micron pen on mixed-media paper.
In this sketch, I started with the guidelines and eyes. I added spheres for the nose, lips, chin, and cheeks. After adding the shading, I saw a baby's face, so added just a few tufts of hair.

"Young girl" - 4" x 4", charcoal and 0.005 black Sakura micron pen on mixed-media paper.
Again, I started with the guidelines and eyes, adding spheres for the various facial features. This young girl still needs work, but I think I got the concept Jane was illustrating with using spheres to help add dimension to a face.

I'm enjoying Jane's book and learning more about how to draw faces. However, for me, it's tough to get a good face without a photograph.

Keep creating!