* Carmen Beecher * Cindy Michaud * Carol Schiff * Denette Schweikert * Donna Vines * Mary Warnick * Kathy Garvey *Fay Picardi

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Collage Day

Thursday was my day to lead the group and I thought instead of painting it would be fun to do a collage.  We hadn't had a collage day in quite a while.  I have a basket of papers I use.  Some of the papers are tissue, some designer , some hand painted.  I even have pages from books in different languages, sheet music and odds and ends I have picked up along the way.  I only keep as many as will fit into my basket so I can carry everything I need in one container.
I brought in several photos, acrylic paints for the under paintings, brushes and the binding medium.  The panels I brought were small but because we were doing an under painting then the collage I thought we might need a few weeks to complete our projects.  Although we made a lot of progress we didn't quite finish so next week I will post photos of our final results.
When I got home I decided to keep collaging.  I wanted to finish my group project with the group so I looked around for something else.  I found a photo Kathy had given us awhile ago to paint and I decided to collage my little bird instead.
The first photo is the one Kathy gave us, the second is my under painting and the third is the start of my collage.

Donna Vines

Original photo
The under painting

starting the collage background

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Beautiful flowers of North Carolina

Last month we were enjoying our condo in North Carolina, trying to get it ready for visits from family and friends.  It is so beautiful here during at least three of the four seasons.  I have not been here in winter and cannot speak to that, although I imagine the snow covered mountains would be a sight to behold.

On this trip, there are flowers blooming everywhere.  Each morning, I set out for a walk, with my trusty camera in hand.  Come along with me.......

A garden of hosta
Calla Lily
Rose abound!
A cute little playhouse, or maybe a gardening shed?
Sit for a moment and enjoy the scenery.
Mountains surround the area,
Who knew day lilies grown wild?
I love purple flowers.  Do you know their name?

My goal is to interpret many of these scenes in oil in the comming months

Thanks for reading my blog today.


Sunday, June 28, 2015

Experimental Flowers

by Kathy Garvey

I haven't blogged in a while, but I have been busy - just not with as much artwork as I would like. Many of my fellow Pieces are authors and I'm helping one with the editing and layout of a book that I can't wait to tell everyone about - but it's still in progress!  However, I did take some time recently to convert a quick doodle in my sketchbook into a post card in Illustrator. (I had just determined that I hate my new soft cover sketchbook. So, I decided to just fill it up with whatever came out of my pen in order to use it up quickly and replace it with a hard cover sketchbook.)

I scanned the page and placed the scan in Illustrator.
This was the sketch!

Then I started drawing and filling the shapes. I used a line with three different strokes - one of them dashed - to create the checked borders.
This was what I had after about an hour and a half!

I had planned on red being part of the design all along, but it's kind of fun and easy to experiment in Illustrator so I saved to a new file and replaced the red with shades of gray. I liked that version better.
This was my final! Actually, I should never say that! I'll probably tweak it again!
Every time I use Illustrator I fall in love with it all over again. It's such fun software for creating graphics!

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Floral Still Life on Linen, Daily Painting, Small Oil Painting, "Mary's Vase" 9x12" Oil

I did this painting a few weeks ago with my paint group, Pieces of Eight.  Mary brought in a set up of fresh flowers and her favorite vase.

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 I wanted to keep it free and loose, so I started painting with both and palette knife and a brush.  I was painting on a linen covered panel, and left much of the background unpainted for added texture and interest.

I have never seen a mum in this colors before, white petals and a purpley blue center.  This is where the knife action came in.

Thank you Mary, for bring these beautiful fresh flowers and thank you to all who are reading my blog today.


Friday, June 26, 2015

Whitewater Grannies by Carmen Beecher

Donna, Carol, Denette, Carmen
One year when we went on our artists' retreat to Carol's house in North Carolina, several of us decided to go whitewater rafting on the Nantahala River. After a very brief briefing, we set forth (no one told us that helmets would be a good idea). Off we went, gaining confidence with each stroke and completely forgetting our one admonition was to "stay to the right." We were gloating about being the only grandmothers on the river, and commenting about a boat that kept getting in our way. We were way down the river when we forgot to stay to the right and went into the "Slot," which stood our raft on end.

The laws of physics being what they are, we flew out of the raft, and Donna and I were on the wrong side of the river and had to be rescued by--of course--the folks we criticized earlier! You can see below that though we looked like drowned rats, we were very happy. Getting to live another day is always worth smiling about!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Spring Bouquet, 6x8 Oil on Canvas, Floral Painting by Carmen Beecher

The Pieces of 8 ambitiously painted this still life during one of our sessions. It was a lot of fun. I am trying to get it into my head to simplify, along with all the other disciplines in art that I am trying to get into my head. People always ask, "How long did it take you to do that?" They should be asking how many successes and failures, trials and errors, immersing oneself in values, composition, drawing, color, brush strokes, perspective, form, lighting, subtleties--it goes on and on. That's why there are so many aged artists. Doing art is a constant striving for improvement, and if "artist" is something you are, not something you do, you will do it for as long as you can hold a brush.


Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Abstract Seascape | Daily Painting | "Tropical Blues" by Carol Schiff | 6x8" Oil SOLD

Living close to the sea, I find it turns up in my painting in both a representative and non-representative form.  I guess this little daily painting falls somewhere between the two.


 I painted this with a palette knife.  I like texture and feel it adds additional interest to my art.  I was thinking about the beautiful greens and blues of the tropical waters off the coast of Florida.  Further south they turn the most amazing shades of azure, but that will be another painting.


I almost always show my paintings in black frames.  It would be hard to find an artwork that would not work well with black and it just makes the colors pop.

Start planning that tropical vacation today!


Don't forget to pin it on your vacation board.