The garden is done, the produce canned, frozen, eaten.... Now some time for some fun. I entered these three paintings in the Rochester Fair in NH and won first place for the Crab Apple Blossoms, second for the Alpaca, and judge's choice for the Scotsman.
I am now working on some Christmas Card ideas and will post those as soon as they squish from my brain, through my hand, and onto some paper.
No painting to post for now.
Spring has taken my painting time away. We have a rather large veggie garden that is finally planted. Now on to the weeding. Last year we lost all of our potatoes to cute little field mice called Voles. Voles from hell! I have never wanted anything so cute so dead. The potato plants were beautifully full and as high as my knees. Then, gone! Cut off just under the soil. Next to go were some of the string bean plants and many of the squash and melons were chewed from underneath. The nasty little buggers would tunnel up and snack without being seen. I purchased a repellent to mix in with the soil, which the scent didn't seem to bother them as much as it did me. This year the hubby bought two stake like devices with batteries in them that emit a little humming noise every 30 seconds, or so, that are supposed to repel the varmints. We have set traps and are keeping the perimeter of the garden weed whacked so they have no place to hide. We have also been searching through catalogues and online to see what else we can do. At least, this year we know what to expect from them.
Hubby has a hernia so, the yard work, lawn mowing, cleaning stalls and the paddock, have become more mine then ever. You would think that with the physical work I could lose some weight. NOPE!
My son has RP and his vision is getting progressively worse. I played tag team with him and my daughter at the eye doctor's office this week. I will remember not to make their appointments the same day again.
My Mom had to have a driving test to renew her license at the end of May and my daughter passed her driver's ed course the same week. I make five trips to the DMV in one week! Mom didn't do too well on her first try so she was allowed to come back a week later and did pass. Thank goodness. I drive Mom and Dad to all their Doctor's appointments etc., but she still gets out to do her own groceries and errands. The first trip with my daughter to the DMV lasted about 20 minutes. I had warned her that the lines were long. She talked me into letting her skip her morning classes and when she saw the line told me that she had 3 tests that day. Back to school we went. The second trip we waited in line only to be told that I needed her original birth certificate and not a copy. The third trip she took her written test and passed, but we were told they didn't have time to give her the driving test that day. The fourth trip was the driving test and she passed. Funny thing is, I renewed MY license on line the week before, so I wouldn't have to wait in line.
My hubby's Mom passed away last week in CT. She was the sweetest, most loving, gentle lady I have every met. I was sad that I only knew her for 7 years, but glad at least I knew her that long.
I do have a painting in progress and hope to be posting it soon.
Thanks for letting me unload.
This is Molly. Isn't she cute?! Molly belongs to my sister or, my sister belongs to Molly. Molly is very energenic and somewhat of a clown. She has an extensive list of tricks that she can complete for FOOD. Her favorite thing. Molly has taught my sister to give her a treat every time she turns in circles, barks at the treat dish, or comes in the house. Yes, she is very spoiled. Molly shares her dog space with Bessie, a fox hound and equaly spoiled.
I had such fun painting Molly's velvety coat, long ears, stubby legs, fat feet, and hound dog eyes.
This is part of my sister's, Pam, birthday gift. Her birthday was the 22nd of April. For 21 days we are the same age! Poor Mom, two children under the age of one!
I hope Molly made you smile.
Another art class example. I had the kids use watercolor pencils for the turtle spots and the turquoise areas. They were fascinated with layering blue and green watercolor pencil then adding water to turn it turquoise. I was very pleased when one second grader came up and asked for the burnt umber pencil. He remembered from the brown color of the bunny! That made me feel really good and I let him know. I had them use a prussian blue wash for the bottom section of their turtle picture and then told them to turn their painting upside down and work on the spots some more. I got some really funny looks until I explained that this way they wouldn't get their arms in the blue while it was drying. After the first layer was dry, I had them add a second layer leaving the top with only one. I love watching their faces going from confused to - Cool! We had blue everywhere, but it was fun. On to the next idea!
The class had such fun with this guy. They had to paint the bunny first and save the eggs for last. That was pretty hard for some of the six year olds to do. They could paint their bunnies any color they wanted. Most choose the burnt umber and orange that I used, but there were some more daring. Casey choose green for the ear on the right and spots for the body. He called it his evil bunny with chicken pox. :) Each egg was painted seperately a color of the child's own choosing. I showed them what happened when alcohol was dropped on a damp egg and what happened when salt was added. I also used crayon resist, showed them how to blend colors by dropping a color on top of the original and what happens when irredescence were added. Lots of oooos were heard. It was very strange when I realized that people walking in the hallways could hear these first and second graders asking for alcohol.
I signed up to teach an enrichment class in our local elementary school. I received notice about a week ago that I would have 10 first and second graders for an hour watercolor class. It has been so long since I have been around first and second graders that I wasn't sure what their capabilities would be, so I thought I would start with the color wheel. My next thought was, what fun is a color wheel for that age group - none! Ok, fun things, fun things - dragons! I went online for some clip art dragons and found one that I like the face of and another I thought I could make the body into a, sort of, color wheel. I sketched until I came up with one I thought would work. Here he is, The Primary Dragon. I traced my sketch, transfered it to some inexpensive watercolor paper and then used a permanent black marker to out line the Dragon. I painted this Dragon at home as an example and painted another as a demonstration at the class. After the little darlings got their seats and quieted down, I handed out the prints, paintbrushes, water containers, and three small jars with not very much paint in them. I was hoping the paint would last for all eight classes, but I am pretty sure now that won't be the case. One boy used most of his already. I tried to explain, lots of water and little dabs of paint. After the primary colors were painted, we started the secondary colors. It was so much fun to watch their faces as the colors mingle to creat a new color. Some of the children knew what was going to happen, but not all. My 16 year old daughter came to be my assistant and was a very big help when the water got to dirty, someone had to go to the bathroom, paper towels ran out........... She wants to be an elementary teacher and this class is giving her a try. She does so well with the younger children, I am sure she will make an excellent teacher. When the fins were all done, I told them to wet the middle of the dragon and dab colors on to mingle as the wanted. Some children followed that suggestion and others just want one solid color, which is OK to. One little girl was upset because she made a smudge on the outside edge of her paper and I told her there weren't any rules to follow on "her" painting. If she wanted to paint the outside, she could. I know how it feels to be young and expected to "stay in the lines". I don't want to convey that feeling to any of these children, I want them to have fun. The next class is tomorrow at 3:15, guess I had better start getting ready!
My husband and I visited Sanibel Island, FL a couple of years ago. We took a kayak tour into the Gulf of Mexico. Not very far into, which was fine with me. I am not a fan of being in or on the ocean. Big stuff that can eat me! This fellow was waiting patiently at the entrance to the bay making sure that we all understood what this sign meant. By the looks of the sign, I had a feeling I knew what his punishment would be for offenders. I have sold a couple of prints; the original is still available.
These guys are called black skimmers. We saw them on the beach in the Keys. They fly in groups, land in groups, and all seem to face the same direction while on the sand. They look like the are wearing little tuxes with a splash of color on their beaks and legs. Their eyes are set in the black area on their heads and are hard to see there. We had such fun watching them and hubby kept chasing the group from one place on the beach to another to get a shot of them. He made me laugh even more than they did.