Wednesday, February 19, 2014

A Loose Style for the Venetian Carnival

Last weekend, the Portland Art Museum held a Venetian Carnival to herald the new exhibit: Venice, The Golden Age of Art and Music. Attendees were encouraged to wear masks, so some friends and I held a mask-making gathering the day before. I decided to make a mask on a stick and used feathers and glitter and sparkly things to give it a frosty, wintery look. The art museum also provided masks, so the smaller blue one is my souvenir.

The third floor ballroom glowed with gold and red lighting against a backdrop of Venetian architecture.  There were  huge centerpieces and bouquets on the tables. A non-Venetian dance band played...

and kept the many celebrants dancing.

There were acrobats, including some that mesmerized the audience by climbing and hanging from fabric draped from the very high ceiling.

 My friends and I danced and dined and drank...and took the opportunity to get in some sketches while being incognito. It was a lovely and very fun night, even if some of the participants did get a little fatigued...

With all the music and festivity and dramatic lighting,  my sketches were quick and very loose. Later, at home, I tried to add some of the glorious color and dark shadows that cloaked the evening.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

First Snow of the Year in Snowlandia

Here in Portland, after three days of snow and one of ice, we're watching it begin to melt. The snow was beautiful and fun; the ice is also beautiful, but not so fun. Luckily, we've kept our power and no huge ice-laden branches have fallen on our house. We have everything we need, so all is well. 

This morning, my eye was drawn to these diagonal icicles on the rhododendron outside the living room window. I couldn't figure out how some of them were diagonal until we realized that the branch had broken or bent after the icicles formed.

I really haven't had much practice drawing snow and ice scenes, but I was inspired to give it a try.

 I haven't had much practice drawing dogs either (as noted by the extra large head), but we're happily dog sitting this weekend. Paisley was a willing model as she napped in her vest.

I hope everyone is warm, cozy and as relaxed as this dog. And if not, here's a little glimpse of what is ahead for us this spring...

Saturday, February 1, 2014

A Fun Recipe

I've been taking an online watercolor lettering class, with the idea that I might add more lettering to my journals or sketchbooks. Besides doing the letters, we also make curlicues and branches and various types of ornamentation. I've always enjoyed doodling and adding flourishes to things, so this is right up my alley.

Last week we had a lesson in painting rosemary among other things. My friend, Heather had recently told me about her crazy invention for roast potatoes with rosemary, so I decided to illustrate her recipe. She had the idea to insert the rosemary in the potatoes and her husband and son helped out by taking the potatoes to the workbench. The recipe has a become a family favorite and now you can try her tasty treat!

Here are some of the other things I've done for the class:


and lots of curlicues...

and scrolls--all very fun.