Thursday, December 30, 2010

Scenes from Christmas...

Me, Eamonn, (my youngest) and Santa who we found just waiting for us at our favorite breakfast spot!


Beautiful Amira with Santa


Santa, Eamonn, Papa and pretty Rayne


The living room decorated for a festive holiday!


Can you tell I love RED!!!

...and I love to bake...These are Lemon Poppyseed Muffins with lemon glaze...Yum!



Several batches of these delicious holiday sugar cookies were baked up by the kids.  I think they did an amazing job too!





My oldest daughter, Brittany, (above) and the two little boys and I made this fun gingerbread house.  I got it from Costco and LOVED it as the house was already constructed, something I have such a hard time doing!  We just had to decorate it, and that is the fun part!

What a wonderful holiday this was for my family. We feel so very blessed! I hope you all enjoyed a relaxing, love-filled holiday with your family. I looked out at these seven children as they tear into their gifts Christmas morning, and I realize there is no comparison to the joy my family brings me. Craig and I are so rich in this regard. No matter what happens, my children soothe me, challenge me, feed my soul, and inspire me on a daily basis to be a better person and a better Mother.

Wishing you all a wonderful New Year! 

Smiles,

Julia

Friday, December 24, 2010

Amira and Rayne - and Happy Christmas (and Sunday Sketches)

I did not find time (again!) to sketch something specifically for Sunday Sketches over at Sophia's place.  So I decided to share this piece that I finished this past week. 

If you haven't had a chance to visit all of the other talented artists that participate, head over to visit, or better yet, just link up, and share a sketch with us!





Happy Christmas Everyone!

Had to share this picture I just finished for my daughters Amira and Rayne!  It is totally copied / inspired from the lovely work of Lisa Lectura, and if you haven't had a chance to see her gorgeous big-eyed girls do stop over and look at them soon.  This picture is a combination of two of hers named 'A New Dawn' and
'Mother Earth'.  Look for them on her sidebar and you'll see the similarities right away. 
I wanted to do a mixed media painting for the girls room, and was looking for ideas. 
I certainly found it at Lisa's!

This is one of my favorite things about art blogs.  I have a really difficult time coming up with poses for some of my work, and I am continually inspired by the artists I find through blogging. 

So I have to say thank you to Lisa for this inspiration! This will hang in the girls room for a long time hopefully!  And thank you so much to all of the incredible people I have met this year through blogging.  I learn something about life, love, friendship, art, struggling, coping, soaring...you name it, every time I visit you all.  And each comment you leave is like a visit from a good friend, treasured, savored, really appreciated!

Hugs to you all, and I just wish you such a Merry Christmas

Thursday, December 16, 2010

New zen doodle portrait - 'Eliza' and Sunday Sketch



Update:  I posted this earlier thinking I would have time to come up with something else to share for Sunday Sketches, but this is going to have to be what I share for this week. 
Not really a sketch, but I'm eager to hear what you all think anyway.

If you want to join all the fabulous artists, just head over to Sophia's place and link up!  It's lots of fun to see all the great art out there!





Hello my dear friends - I feel like I never get to come see you all lately, just so darn busy still adjusting to the new house and Christmas and five kids at home and you name it!  I miss you all and really look forward to visiting whenever I have a few spare moments.

This is a zen portrait I am working on for a friend's daughter.  I just do these for fun, and as you can see I couldn't get the whole picture in the scan cause the paper is too darn big!  I try to capture the image of the child and do a long interview to find out what things are important to him or her at this specific age.  Then I add those things in text at the bottom of the portrait. (you can see that image below)

These scans are really crummy, but you can at least get the idea.
I continue to find these to be very absorbing, and I can lose myself for a couple hours or more at a time!

What do you think?  Do you think she'll like it?

I would be really remiss if I did not mention that the real pro at these portraits is Rebecca Anthony, an amazing artist that inspires me every time I visit.  She actually offers her portraits on a custom basis, and it's pretty wonderful what she does!  If you haven't visited her, do take the time to stop over and say hello and check out her inspiring work.



Saturday, December 11, 2010

Sunday Sketch

Happy Sunday Everyone!


This is a little doodle done tonight after decorating our Christmas tree with the kids - relaxing and you all know how I love my 'Smile Campaign'!

Hugs to all my blogger friends and wishing you a wonderful holiday season!

You can find more great sketches over at Sophia's place.  And feel free to join us - it's tons of fun!



oh...and of course...SMILES :-)

Monday, December 6, 2010


Here is the finished version of this lovely lady...I posted her beginning a while ago and wanted to share how she turned out.

Hope you are all enjoying this holiday season!

Hugs

Thursday, November 25, 2010

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

                                                                         PHOTO CREDIT



Wishing All a very Happy Thanksgiving today!  Hugs of thanks to all my wonderful blogger friends and I wish each of you a very  special day.

Smiles
JuliaChristie

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Sunday Sketches


Happy Sunday Everyone!

This is a work in progress that I am having a lot of fun with.  I am thinking about toile as I pattern the background, headpiece, and some of the flowers...I love black toile especially, so this is a fun experiment for me.  Hope you are all having a wonderful weekend and a restful, creative Sunday.
You can find more fabulous art over at Blue Chair Diary.  Be sure to say Hi to our lovely hostess Sophia - a very talented and interesting woman.

Smiles to All :-)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Sunday Sketches - Sara

HAPPY SUNDAY SKETCHES ALL!

THIS HAS BEEN ANOTHER BUSY WEEK, BUT LOTS OF FUN CREATING THIS LITTLE PORTRAIT FOR A FRIEND'S DAUGHTER 'SARA'.  I DID SOMETHING DIFFERENT THIS TIME AND ADDED COLOR, AND I THINK I LIKE THE RESULTS.  UNFORTUNATELY MY SCANNER TURNED THIS OUT A LITTLE BLURRY, BUT HOPEFULLY YOU CAN STILL PICK UP THE DETAILS....
I CONTINUE TO LOVE DOING THESE LITTLE DOODLE PORTRAITS, REALLY RELAXING AND FUN TO INDIVIDUALIZE THEM!





HOPE YOU ARE ALL HAVING A FABULOUS WEEKEND AND FINDING TIME TO RELAX, CREATE, ENJOY YOUR FAMILIES, AND ANYTHING ELSE THAT MAKES YOU SMILE!

You can find more incredible artists at our lovely hostess, Sophia's place.  Be sure to stop over and have a look.  And if you have a yen to share your doodles with this great group, post a sketch of your own and link it on Sophia's site.  Everyone is welcome!


S M I L E S

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

'HIM' Short story - part three





Copper colored leaves swept gently against the glass of my bedroom window, and the early morning light, that wonderful fresh-washed light you get after a good storm, streamed in steadily, waking me in the best way. I sleep with my window open year round, so my bedroom smelled of late Autumn; fresh, frosty, almost spicy.

I lay very still in my deep, velvety bed, my eyes closed, and let wakefulness steal over me slowly. If he had been here, there would have been a leisurely morning snuggle to look forward to, followed by a walk together down to the coffee shop for a latte and a paper. Before last night, this thought would have left me absolutely miserable for the rest of the morning, but today was totally different. This morning I was finally able to accept what my instincts have been telling me every day for the past two years. He is still alive.

I could barely breathe as I lay there and let that realization percolate slowly. I don’t know where he has been, I don’t know what happened to him, nor why he has been so long in coming home; I don’t need to know those things. I just know that he has finally come back to me.

The morning that followed was surreal. I rose and showered, a small smile as I washed my hair with his favorite pear scented shampoo, and shaved my legs, something I had neglected to do more often than not since he had left. I dressed, slipping into my long-legged jeans, the faded ones I’ve had since college, the ones he says make me look so tall and slender and elegant. Donning one of his flannel shirts over my soft grey long-sleeved tee, and thick wooly socks, I padded out to the kitchen and started the coffee pot.

I spent the morning going through the things they sent me when he went missing. The official notice that he was Missing in Action Presumed Dead, delivered by his Commanding Officer on a sunny Fall day full of brittle heartbreak.  I pulled his dress uniform out of the closet and slowly unzipped the black plastic bag I bought to store it in, black so I wouldn’t have to see it hanging crisp and white every time I walk into the closet, black because they told me he was dead. Crushing the jacket to my face I inhaled deeply, searching for any remnant of his unique smell, his spicy after-shave, his integral ‘maleness', but no matter how many times I’ve done this, it still smells like the dry cleaners have just finished with it. His kit bag unzipped, I repeated the ritual laying out of his things, things he would have used every day that he was away from me, serving our country. It used to send me into near hysterics to picture his strong thick fingers wrapped around the razor or toothbrush that I was holding, but today, by touching his things, I just feel even more connected to him.


By late morning I am tucked in the wicker chair on the deck, wrapped in a thick grey sweater, onto my third mug of creamy coffee. I feel quiet inside, like what I imagine the center of a storm must be like. I should feel stormy, shouldn’t I? But there is such a peace with this Knowing, no rush, no sense of urgency, no feeling that I must rush about town, hunting for him. I Know and that knowledge calms me like nothing else could. My mouth has become possessed overnight; secret smiles work the withered muscles of my face, and it feels so alien that I cannot stop myself from repeatedly reaching up and touching my cheeks, feeling the smile lines, which only makes me smile even wider.

He’s coming soon.

In the trees the squirrels jump from branch to branch, stashing their hard won winter forage into every nook they find. The late birds are happy today, and sing especially for me. They know this is a special day.

I feel like I have awoken from a long dream and am fully awake for the first time in a long, long time.
I need to be busy so I bundle up and head outside. I cut the grass, probably the last cut of the year, it grows so slowly now. 

And I wait. 

I barrow the cuttings up the drive and into the compost heap.

Still I wait. 

I rake leaves fallen from the Japanese maples that line the drive into a giant pile and add the branches fallen from the storm last night to the pile. I start a smudge fire, inhaling the sharp, smoky aroma, loving the snap and crackle as the branches ignite and perfume the area with scents of sap and evergreen. Leaning on the rake, I stare into the fire. And wait.

And then it happens.

Everything stills expectantly. I raise my head, and for the last time, I gaze down the curve of the drive, straining to see around the bend, searching. There is a rushing sound in my ears, and I realize I am holding my breath.

I see the copper top of his hatless head first, as slowly, unevenly, he walks around the bend. Head bowed, he’s watching where he walks carefully. He’s limping quite badly, enough to warrant a cane, something I did not notice last night. I’m so quiet, still holding my breath, willing him to raise his beautiful head. When at last he does, he sees me and stops abruptly, teetering a bit. We pause, eyes locked, and with a slow smile, he continues towards me. It’s everything I can do not to rush over to him but I stay where I am, just as I always have, waiting. When finally he reaches me, I see that he is much thinner than the last time I saw him, making him seem even taller than he is, and his face is very much more worn.

“So,” he says and his smile stirs me as no other’s. I can barely contain the fountain of emotion that washes over me, as I slowly reach up and place the palm of my hand on his rough cheek.

“You’ve been a while,” I say smiling up into his eyes. His free hand comes up to rest in a similar position on my face and with his thumb he gently brushes a smudge of dirt from the tip of my nose.

“Yes.” His deep voice catches and my eyes fill. “But then, you knew I’d be back, didn’t you my love.”






If you missed the first two installments of this short story, you can find them here:
part one
part two

This story is dedicated to all the men and women who risk all to serve our country, and to those who wait paitiently, hopefully, at home, risking just as much.  Never Forget.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Sunday Sketches - At last!

Hello to all my lovely blogger friends!  Finally back in a place where I can participate in Sunday Sketches again!  Yeah!  This is a quick sketch done on the couch last night just so I'd have something to submit and it feels so good to be drawing again!

Can't wait to take my hot cuppa and head over to Blue Chair Diary, Sophia's place, to see all the other wonderful participants this week. 

If you have the time, I am also dabbling in a little writing again, so go see the two previous posts for my latest short story and do let me know what you think.

Finally, I realized yet again, after this long absence, how much you all mean to me, so thank you each and every one for taking the time to stop by and say hello!  It really makes my day!

Smiles

Saturday, November 6, 2010

'HIM' Short story - part two



I saw him.


Everyone was so kind about it, sure that I was just wishing him there, sure that I had imagined it, sure that I was having a little ‘episode’, much like those I had after he first left me.

But I know I saw him.

In the middle of Sable’s funny tale about her doorman and her neighbors’ rabid Pekinese, while trying to focus on her story and find the part of me that not so long ago would have laughed uproariously, I looked up from our table by the window just as he hurried past.

Even with the rain on the glass, the well-lit interior of the bar illuminated him completely, head bowed, shoulders hunched against the rain, thready thick sweater and bare-headed as always.

I must have made some audible sound of shock, because everyone at our table turned their focus on me in unison, all heads swiveling at the same time. That should have brought me to, but all I could think of was ‘I have his slicker and he’ll get soaked in this downpour!’

He had barely passed and I was up out of my chair, weaving through the other diners, muttering ‘excuse me’s’ as I made my way to the coat rack just inside the main entrance. I tossed coats left and right frantically in an effort to find his slicker, finally did so, and ran out the door and up the direction he had been headed when he passed.

Sheets of rain coursed down my neck and quickly soaked me through. I felt none of it. Like a woman possessed I raced up the street in front of me. There were few people out in this weather so he should have been easy to spot, but there was no one headed in this direction. Thinking he may have crossed the street, I swiveled in a half arc, scanning the sidewalk opposite and finally looking back down towards the bar. Nothing but an elderly couple getting into a car outside the bar, and a mad jogger running up the sidewalk opposite.

He was gone.

I think I really must have lost it for a brief bit then. I remember the brick wall of the building behind me, a firm support that I slid down slowly as I collapsed into a soggy pile on the sidewalk. By now my worried friends were into their own coats and headed in my direction. Someone kept moaning ‘no, no’ and the pitiful sound of it filled my head. As if through a long tunnel I recognized my own agonized voice.  Sable’s husband Michael efficiently scooped me up and deposited me gently into the passenger side of my car; Sable was already in the driver’s seat.

For the second time that day, I pressed my feverish forehead against a cool rain-spattered glass. My eyelids closed slowly, like a curtain coming down after a bad dinner show, shutting out the cruel lights and empty streets, the familiar trees and houses as they rushed by on the journey home.

My mind was racing, analyzing what had just happened. I know I saw him. I also know that there was not even a remote chance that anyone else would believe me.

The next hour was spent allowing Sable to dry me off, put me to bed, bring me a hot restoring cup of mint tea, and generally flutter about trying to console me.

When she finally left, after numerous assurances from me that I was fine, that yes, I must have been mistaken and after just as many promises to call her the next day, I fully exhaled for the first time since I’d seen him outside the bar.

Then I did something I hadn't been able to do in forever.  For the first time in two years I snuggled down into my bed, on my side, and I slept the night through.


The rain never let up.

Friday, November 5, 2010

'HIM' Short story - part one

   All day the rain beat relentlessly against the wall of windows at the front of the house. By late afternoon the powder grey sky had descended over the entire island, and the pounding rain eased, as though a giant atomizer was disbursing a heavy misting over the gardens and the winding lanes, leaving everything chilled, but crisp and fresh as well.


I thought about him in the morning as I sipped my coffee, scalding from the pot and sweet with heavy cream and sugar. Leaning against the French doors, watching the rain, I ached to be out in it, to let the steady droplets wash the memory of him from my being, from my soul.

I busied myself with home chores ~ laundry and beds to be made, supper shopping to plan, and still he filled my thoughts, intruding like the heady aroma of a cloying perfume, musky and insistent, sliding around my ‘busy work’ and searching me out. I am not sure he will ever leave me completely.

Habit is a plastic friend, unrecyclable, more brittle over time, and dull with use. All day, my fingers checked my phone expectantly, waiting for contact, any contact. Our habit of constantly checking in with each other had shattered when he left, but I couldn’t reconcile myself to this truth. His messages never came. They would never come again.

I feel feverish today, most days. There is no cure for this hot, intense aching, no pill that will cool my head and numb my heart. No elixir to still my racing thoughts, no tincture for my soul, to anesthetize it and leave me capable of moving on. Two years are like two hours to me.

Morning eased away, and the early afternoon found me with my feverish forehead pressed against the rain-tattooed glass. My fingers splayed around a hot cup of sweet tea, as I peered down the drive all the way to the curve where it winds out of sight, willing him to appear, willing his tall lanky form to stride purposefully around the very curve where I first saw him. He’d be hatless in this downpour, heedless of the rain with another casual comment tossed to me like, “What’s a little rain on a day?” and one of his reserved smiles that hid so much about who he really is.

By most late afternoons, I am fairly despondent, unless I plan some sort of mini-date with my friends. Then the knowledge that I will have to perpetuate the charade for my friends that I am healing, that it is getting easier to live without him, that I am nearly ready to move on, stops me from sinking completely into despair.

Tonite is such a night. I am meeting my friends for before-dinner drinks at a small bar in town. I have to keep it together.

So after a long scented bath and a careful run through my closet to choose just the right dress, not too morose, hopeful perhaps, if clothing can convey hope, I slide rebelliously into my favorite slicker, his slicker, and head out to meet my friends.

I have no way of knowing how my life is about to change.





http://farm4.static.flickr.com/   Photo credit

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Moving and out of touch...

Hello to all my lovely blogger friends!

So sorry to have been absent for the past several days, but we are in the midst of moving and so have been without internet for quite a while. 

I will be continuing the settling in process for the next couple weeks, so will try to get by and say hi to all of you as soon as I can, but it may take a while.

Miss you all!  I will post pictures of our wonderful new home as soon as I can.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Sunday Sketches - Brittany


This week I have had hardly any time for art.  We are still getting ready to move and signing on our new house tomorrow!  Very excited. 

So this is a 'just started' sketch of my oldest daughter, Brittany, as she looked when she was much younger.
Still enjoying these 'Zen Portraits' a lot and I find them very relaxing.

Hope all of you are having a relaxing and wonderful Sunday!

Smiles
Please head over to Sophia's place to enjoy more great Sunday Sketches.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Sunday Sketches


'I walked into the forest and found a bower of flowers...
I twined them in my hair and let their spicy fragrance wash over me...
NATURE, you are my constant companion, YOU soothe me always...
A lifetime spent in YOUR company will teach me more than an eternity
without ever having known you...
Oh, carry me on your knarled boughs, escort me through your waving grasses, lay me down with a bed of blue 'forget-me-nots' beneath me.'


You can find more wonderful artists at Sophia's place.

Friday, October 1, 2010

A bit 'Much'...

                                                                                                                                                 photo credit


Sometimes life gets to be a bit much, don't you think?

This past two months has been like that.

Much much.

We have been attempting to buy a home for the past 4 months.  In this economy, it is tough enough to accomplish that unless you are bringing cash to the table, which we are not. 

The regulations and restrictions have tightened so significantly that you basically have to explain every single aspect of your life to your mortgage broker.  That would be ok as we really don't have very complicated finances in our family, but add to that a somewhat shady Seller, who did not disclose all that was wrong with the property, and what you get is a long, drawn-out mess!

After negotiating and renegotiating and signing extensions and anxiously watching as yet another deadline comes and goes, we were poised to close on this property this week. 

In steps the regulators to tell us that the Appraisor THAT THEY HIRED did not do his job correctly and they are unwilling to accept his appraisal.  Even though it came in at the sale price.  So now a mandatory second appraisal has been ordered, another extension signed, the moving crew for this weekend put off yet again, and the box of LIMBO that we have carried around with us for the past four months unpacked and set back up in the middle of our lives.

You would think this would be enough 'Much' wouldn't you?

There's more.

We have also been in the middle of some custody issues with my step-daughters, as well as getting five children settled in three different schools, and trying to manage our business around court dates, property inspections, meetings with contractors, realtors, mortgage brokers...you get the picture.

This is life.  I accept that there are times when the ride is challenging to say the least.  And I'm a driver for sure.  I am out front with Craig, juggling all of the different aspects of raising these children, loving them, guiding them, and supporting them, helping with homework, practicing cartwheels, cheering on as they embrace each day with that wonderfully contageous childish exhuberence that I love so well.

I find the best way to handle the 'Much' that life can steer your way is to look each day for the little things; a cup of hot tea and a freshly baked cookie, while snuggled under a cosy blanket with my sweetie.  Pushing my 2 year old on the swing and laughing as he shouts with absolute glee.  That incredible feeling of comraderie that I get when Craig walks in the door at the end of the day and it turns from 'Me' to 'Us'.  A hard-won B+ from my step-daughter who has had a tough time with schoolwork in the past, but who is really working hard this year.  Watching my other step-daughter as she just charges into reading, one of my lifelong loves, and catching her with her younger brothers, all snuggly in the rocker, reading together.

Life and family and history and baggage and challenges - it's all there.

But it truly is 'the little things' that make it work.  I remind myself continually, that NOW is where it's at.  That moment I am in or that just passed, that is the one to savor.  And in doing this, I find the 'Much' recedes a bit into the background, and 'Life', sweet, rewarding, sometimes painful 'Life' is given wings.  And what an incredible journey!


                                                                             photo credit

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Boys in the Punkin Patch

SOME GREAT PICS FROM LAST YEAR OF ME AND MY LITTLE BOYS IN THE PUNKIN PATCH...
THIS HANDSOME YOUNG LAD IS LIAM - HE LOVES GOING TO THE PUNKIN PATCH EVERY FALL!
LIAM AND EAMONN PLOPPED IN THE MIDDLE OF THE PUNKIN FIELD
EAMONN HAD A REALLY DIFFICULT TIME DECIDING WHICH PUNKIN WAS THE BEST FOR HIS JACK O LANTERN...

MAMA AND HER BOYS ~
WITH THIS PICTURE I LATER DID A BLACK AND WHITE / COLORED COMBINATION DRAWING ~  YOU CAN TAKE A LOOK AT IT HERE.   
LIAM JUST COULDN'T BE HAPPIER THAN HE IS ON A FARM...HE GETS THAT FROM HIS MAMA!

I WILL BE SURE TO SHARE THIS YEARS PICTURES AFTER WE HAVE VISITED OUR FAVORITE PUNKIN PATCH IN A FEW WEEKS.

SMILES ALL AND THANKS FOR SHARING THIS SPECIAL MEMORY WITH ME

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Update on prize winners...

An update on the three lucky winners of my giveaway a couple of weeks ago...I finally mailed out your prints yesterday!  I am so sorry for the delay in getting these out, but we have been really busy preparing to move and school starting and a couple other major things. 

Sooo...they are now on their way to you and I sincerely hope you all enjoy them!

Smiles

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

More zen portraits...


Hello Everyone - this is another zen portrait I did  last night of my 10 year old son Vidal.  It turned out with him looking quite a bit older than he is, but I still had fun!  I find these sooooo relaxing.  I haven't tried doing one from a picture yet, I just have the kids sit for  about 10 minutes while I sketch their faces and the shadows real quick and then I lose myself in the doodling.  I give all credit for the inspiration for these fun portraits to Fabulous artist Rebecca Anthony over at Daisydolls Gypsy Caravan.  If you haven't had the chance to see what she is doing with these portraits, please do head over and say hello. 
For now, these are just a really relaxing way for me to spend the evening.  Rebecca mentioned she can get a lot of thinking done when she is doing these, and I find that is so true too. 
Now each of the kids wants one for their room so I will probably be sharing more as I get time to finish them.  We are just about to move, (finally) and that will have me very busy for a good bit.

Hope you are all having a wonderfully creative week!

Smiles

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Sunday Sketches





Welcome to Sunday Sketches!  You can find more great sketches over at Sophia's place.  These are the pieces we have been working on this week. 

Amira is crazy about horses, so drew this wonderful fellow looking at a plastic horse the boys have.  I think it turned out amazing!

My piece is another attempt at creating more 'Smile Campaign' material.  If you are not familiar with my 'Smile Campaign', I am a firm believer that the world would be a better place if we all just shared a smile with each person we meet during our day.  It's Free after all :-)

I am thinking about putting a hot pink border around this drawing and printing it on a lime green t-shirt for my girls.  What do you all think?

Looking forward to visiting all of the other participants!

Have a super Sunday!

And of course...

S M I L E S

Thursday, September 16, 2010

First attempt at a zentangle face


I've had so much fun watching Rebecca Anthony do her zentangle portraits, that I couldn't resist trying one last night as I watch Amira do her homework!  This is the result, and it was very relaxing and fun!

If you haven't discovered Rebecca, do head over and check out her always fabulous work! Smiles!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Sunday Sketches

Happy Sunday Sketches Everyone!  This is a new piece I am working on and having a lot of fun developing.  I seem to be having as much fun with the clothes as the girls these days.  I have been thinking about developing a series of paper dolls with several of my gals to offer for sale.  You know the kind ~ with several outfits that you can change out.  I would love to design the clothes around a theme for each gal.  I'd love to get your feedback on that idea...

This is a gal Amira just finished and we are both very proud of it!  We have been working really hard on eyes, noses, and mouths and I think this gal shows the progress Amira has made really well! 







This is more of Amira's work. She took the pen and ink drawing I did of this girl several weeks ago, and added her own flair to it with colored pens.  I absolutely love how she turned out, so much so that I don't think I will do anything more with the original myself!







And this is the gal I showed you last week mounted on red paper.  I still have more to do to this piece, but I am not sure where to take her...Any suggestions?

You can find more wonderfully talented artists over at Sophia's place ~ Be sure to head over there and click on each link to enjoy all of the other participants art...or join us if you'd like!

Smiles and hope you are all having a wonderful weekend!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Trying new things...


I found a wonderful set of drawings over at Lavennzosy's place (see her post for Monday August 30th)  and it seemed like the perfect opportunity to try to draw a girl from the back.  This gal is not finished, but I couldn't resist sharing her with you all as she is now!  The skin color did not come through at all - she is a very pale peach, but my scanner did not pick that up.

I used part of the back, the hand and arm, and the tilt of the head from the drawing below as a guide to block in the back of my drawing above. I also really paid attention to how the mouth was rendered, as I did not know how to draw it from this angle.  I did not look too much at the nose below,
but I see they turned out very similar as well. 

I didn't like that the girl in the drawing below looks a little young to be striking such a provacative pose, so I tried to make my gal look more mature.   Be sure to head over to Lavennz' place to look at her take on this piece by Audry Kawasaki ~ It's really lovely! Lavennz has a really unique, soft style that is fun at the same time.


Aisai 1 by Audrey Kawasaki

So yet again I find inspiration, and learn by a little bit of copying, and a little bit of my own imagination.  The next time I attempt to draw a piece from the back, I will be that much closer to figuring out how to do it without looking at someone elses work. 

Love to hear what you think always!

Smiles

Sunday, September 5, 2010

SUNDAY SKETCHES

Moongazer

Hi everyone!  hope you are all having a fabulous Sunday so far!  for more wonderful sketches head over to Sophia's place and check out all of the other talented participants.

This is Amira's first attempt at a still life - a plate of different veggies. 
I think she did a great job!
I'm off to visit the other participants, coffee in hand!  Have a great day!

Smiles

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

And the Winners Are...!

Drumroll Please....

Yeah! The winners of my giveaway are:

Kristin @ Twinkle Twinkle! If you haven't checked out Kristin's super cute and fun blog, be sure to head over there and say hi.

Millie @ the Laurel Hedge is a wonderfully intelligent and funny woman writing about life in the Adelaide Hills in Australia. Pop over and give her a big hello!

Elena @ Bicocacolors is an incredible artist from Spain that does really tremendous things with texture, embellishing, and lots of detail work. She often uses pieces from real life and pairs them in groupings with art that they inspire. Check out her wonderful blog!

Congratulations to all three of you! I will be getting these prints out to you by the end of the week. Please contact me via email with your mailing addresses. (you can find my email info on my profile page) I will be sure to keep your contact information private.

Smiles to all of you who entered and thanks for sharing so much inpiration and encouragement with me!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Progress on Moon Gazer


Here is stage two of 'MoonGazer'...I am still laying in color, but so far I really like how she is turning out. I couldn't get away from the mermaid so I decided to embrace it!
Hopefully finish and post her all done tomorrow or the next day.
Smiles

Moongazer

Good Monday Morning!
This is a new piece I started yesterday. I call it 'MOONGAZER'.
I am loving it in black and white, so I will preserve a copy at that stage, but I can't resist adding color, so that will be the next step.
This is done in indian ink with a .005 tip.
At first she sort of looked like a mermaid, but that is not what I was going for - we'll see if color changes that.
I always Love to hear what you think -
Smiles
If you haven't checked out my GIVEAWAY, be sure to take a look and enter! Good luck