Tuesday, January 31, 2017

No. 31 in 30 day Challenge - "STAR CITY"

Hey Friends, If you look closely you will see the black and white grid this paper started life as.
You just start laying down pieces of painted papers and something will usually show up.  You don't glue until you have something that seems to be calling you.

After the initial layer of papers are glued that's when you start embellishing.

I had forgotten how much I enjoy doing this, before this challenge started.

And I thought the challenge went through the end of January but NO it ended yesterday on the 30th.  That's OK I'm publishing this anyway.

I took my 2 beautiful Gran-Babes to the circus Sunday evening, even though it was freezing and blowing a mix of rain, ice, snow !  I took about 400 photos and have already deleted a bunch and not finished yet

Hoping I can get ideas and photos for collage paintings.

Thanks for traveling with me and hope you continue to visit.

Happy Trails

Monday, January 30, 2017

No.30 in 30 Day Challenge - " HOMEMADE GOLD"

Hey Friends,  This really did start life as a black and white page out of a scrap book paper pad.  Just rubbed a gray acrylic all over and then added the faux gold leaf.  I made a post earlier in January and told you I wanted to see how gold paint acted on deli paper.  I like it and love how easy it is too handle as opposed to real gold leaf.  See it HERE.

Added a bit of brushwork, some spattering, a dribble and "thar she be".

One more day!

Thanks for looking.

Happy Trails

Friday, January 27, 2017

No.27 in the 30 Day Challenge - LAUREL

Hey Friends,  Wanted you to see this one because I took a few process shots.  As you can see above, it really did start off as black and white (that was supposed to be my theme for this challenge)

And then I started braying (is that a word?) on some pale aqua.

And then here, I got out the alcohol ink.

And the finale!  painted the donut shapes, cut some sticks and stamped on some circles and finished off with scribbles.  "Tis FUN.
Some pieces just seem to take own their own attitude and help you with the details.
Some are nothing but a struggle from the get go.

Happy Trails

Thursday, January 26, 2017

No.26 in 30 Day Challenge - SHEETROCK

Hey Friends,  Again I forgot some process photos.  There really wasn't much to show anyway.  Used some of the tape stuff they put on sheet rock and cut out some circles of it and scribbled circles around the circles with acrylic markers

Yep, It's an ODD one.

This Challenge will soon be over and I think I will miss it a little.  But I also feel like I'm ready to move on to something bigger.

Happy Trails

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

No. 25 in the 30 Day Challenge - PURPLE MOONS

Hey Friends,  It is Day 25 !!   This piece has been sitting there looking at me for a week.  I finally added what you see below.  One small purple moon.

Sent the image to a friend for a critique.  She thought I needed a more obvious focal point.  DUH.....How obvious can it get.

So after another couple days, I changed the one purple moon to white and cut out 2 larger purple moons.  Not sure they are what it needed but there she is in all her glory for ALL to snicker at.  
In the end I think she will make some good collage pieces for other works.

Thanks for stopping in.  Hope Mother Nature is being kind to you.

Happy Trails

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

NO.24 in the 30 Day Challenge - ' DONUTS'

Hey Friends,  I'm tickled with how this one turned out.  I started with the cut out circles and it occurred to me then, that they could be donuts.

Then the red swirly thing looked like an old fashioned stove burner which lead to the HOT COFFEE. 

This has been a fun ride and hope you have gotten a spark or two out of it.

If not, just go to You Tube.  That ought to get your motor going.

Until tomorrow,
Happy Trails

Monday, January 23, 2017

No.23 in the 30 Day Challenge - WHITE DAISYS

Hey Friends,  Here is my latest experiment.  Using my new acrylic markers.  It feels a bit like going back to childhood days of coloring in the lines only.  Out lining the leaves gave it an entirely new look  And I like the worn out use of alcohol spots.

Have really enjoyed all my studio time but still anticipating painting out doors.

Happy Trails

Thursday, January 19, 2017

No. 20 in the 30 Day Challenge - DEATH DEFYING KNIFE ACT

Hey Friends,  This piece started out black & white but became monochrome, I guess that is the correct term.  The white background just did not look right.  I think it looks dusty, dirty, smokey now.  Like a real old timey carnival.

I have only seen such images on TV-Movies.  Like American Horror Story, with Jessica Lange.  She was the manager? of a crazy carnival and they had a spinning wheel with someone attached.  Guess I'll have to watch it again!

Do you think the little glints of light shining off the knives is a good thing? or should they be erased?

I love that nervous little rabbit myself.

And there is a circus coming to Salem, Va. next week.!!  Yay.  Hoping to get some good photos.  Wouldn't a circus series be fun?

Hoping more to come.

Happy Trails

No. 19 in 30 Day Challenge - MAGNOLIA

Hey Friends,  As usual, I was looking for a title.  I bought a box of junk (candy making stuff) at a Goodwill and some papers in it were for ordering more supplies and it was a store called MAGNOLIA.  How Neat.  Well, it is if you think about all the chatter about Magnolia, Gaines, Joanna, etc.

I have always loved Black, White and Red.  So the red touches set off the word Magnolia in my mind.

Still have about 8-12 paintings to go before the 31st.
Happy Painting

Happy Trails to You

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

No. 18 in 30 Day Challenge RARE BREED

Hey Friends,  I was agonizing over the title for #18.  Black, White, and Gold Abstract....what in the world could I call it?

This photo is one of the in process shots I took AND there it was.  The title.
Why not, sounds as good as B & W Abstract.

Anyway, it has been a fun challenge for me.
Hope you are enjoying the posts.

Happy Trails

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

No. 17 in 30 Day Challenge 'ONE TOO MANY'

Hey Friends,  No. 17 staring at ya.  What a title, just went blank on this one.
I enjoy these black and white works.  Would love to do a room in Black & White.

I spent almost the entire day in the studio, prepping black and white papers for what will happen tomorrow.  There are at least the same number on a table drying.  I may have ruined a few black papers with fluid matte medium applied with a sponge roller.  When you use a sponge roller a lot of air gets incorporated and can make the surface look dull.  It's OK.  They will be mostly covered over anyway.
That didn't take long but I was also painting more colorful pieces for the bin at Goose Creek and maybe 2nd Helpings.

It has been another dull, gray day.  Really dull.  So I did my best to brighten things in the studio.
I wish I had some of Linda's Pasta Salad for supper.  Sigh

Happy Trails

Monday, January 16, 2017

No.16 in 30 Day Challenge 'GOLDFISH'

Hey Friends,  I love flamingos (the way they look, never have had one) so I love to use them in art.  Had a hard time figuring out what to embellish this bird with.

So added a paper chain of goldfish behind her.  Did not add any thing as far as I could see.  So I made them pinker.  Top Photo and that satisfied me.
What do you think?

And I thought I'd show you my newest purchase.  Found these at Michaels.
They are Golden's Hi-Flo Acrylics which I read are the same as Air-Brush acrylics.  And this set came with empty markers.  Just fill the markers with the acrylics.  Not sure I want to do that but will test it soon.
I'm wondering what alcohol inks would do in these markers.

Happy Trails

Friday, January 13, 2017

No. 13 of the 30 Day Challenge - NERVOUS WRECK

Hey Friends,  No. 13 already.  Keeping with my Black and White Theme, the black is just a little gray.  This would be toad-ally boring if it didn't have the other colors in the red block.
Since I take the weekends OFF, I will be helping my sister pack for a move.

Have a wonderful weekend and may we stay Snow Free.

Happy Trails

Thursday, January 12, 2017

No.12 in 30 Day Challenge - LOOKS ORIENTAL TO ME

Hey Friends,  Not much to say today.  This piece started with an old clothes pattern tissue.  You can see a bit of the lines on the right side.  I laid one of the homemade Hot Glue stencil things on the left and sprayed with the homemade black alcohol ink.  Did not like the shape so squirted fluid white following shape.  It was really thick so took a few days to dry.
So after looking at it a few days, I couldn't come up with anything beyond Oriental Shape.  So spritzed red ink on it, added the little monk fellow and there she is!
Some things should not see the light of day, I know.  But when ya gotta have SOMETHING, you do the unthinkable. (At least no puppies were harmed in the making of this ugly art)

Thanks for stopping in.  Hope I got a chuckle/snicker out of you.

Happy Trails

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

No. 11 in 30 Day Challenge - 'SAD SONGS'

Hey Friends, the Eleventh day is upon us.  Jan. is ticking right along.
This gem above started life as a real mess.  Every ugly color you can imagine was on it.  A heavy coat of black and white fixed that.  The rest of it is one of those games, where you keep moving stuff around until you like it.  The umbrella finally came to mind.

I tinkered with several other small pieces.  Started this 20 x 16 when I came to a road block.  Started with a dull khaki green and added some light areas so the intense colors to come will look clear.
You never know, I might fix it with a coat of black too.

I will venture out today and have a school lunch with my sweet little GranSon.
Then another lunch with my Sweet Daughters.

Hope life in 2017 is Treating you Well.

Happy Trails

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

No. 10 in 30 Day Challenge - "ONE IN A BUSH"

Hey Friends,  Here is my 10th creation.  Today was a struggle.  Why?  I just could not figure out what to do with any of these 5x7's.

Maybe I just needed more sugar.  I love these cool Tropical colors.  These are sprayed with my homemade Alcohol Inks.  Love them.

Here they are laying on the floor, drying, heater to the right and they still are not dry.

Here is the piece from up there that I sprayed with my alcohol inks.  I set the cup of Pantone's color "KALE" beside it.  I was thinking of smearing some of that color around.  Then I thought of a fish silhouette somewhere.

Last shot shows an 8x10 panel that I glued an old clothes pattern onto several years ago.  Just found it again.  I already put yellows on it with a brayer.  I have found out why so many artists put paint on with a brayer.  You simply can't get that kind of texture with a brush or a knife.  Love it.
Now if anyone has any advice for any of these little guys, just give me a holler.

Thanks for stopping by. 

Happy Trails

Monday, January 9, 2017

No. 9 in 30 Day Challenge "HOT GLUE"

Hey Friends,  Day nine !!! Glad I decided to take the weekends off.  Seems to make this so much easier.  I didn't have my Gran Babes over the weekend because of the SNOW so when I do have them next weekend, it will be extra nice with out that pressure.

I still played in the studio yesterday.  I made some free form stencil, mask thingies out of Hot Glue.  If you don't get the timing just right you can't flatten them.  They must be warm.  Hot glue sets up pretty fast.

Hopefully if you look hard enough you will find the almost clear thingies.  Also showing you the deli papers I coated with gold and silver.  I think it might work.  I intend to play with them today.

This shot is to show you my mess made with a kitchen fatigue mat.  It felt squishy in the store and I thought it would work.  Not squishy enough.  Plus it has a texture that you can't see with my naked eye.  The 2 little canvas panels are what I will play with today.  One in front has an old tissue pattern I found at goodwill, years ago.  And the other has some paper I made years ago.
And the top photo of #9 started life with tissue that I stitched on with a sewing machine.  Even though it is small (5x7) I was pleased with my outcome.

Happy Trails

Saturday, January 7, 2017


Hey Friends,  I decided to take the weekends off since there are NO RULES.  I bet if you had this job you would take the weekends off too.  Making art and marketing and photographing and editing and updating websites and displaying and shipping and blogging and trying to keep up with social media is really a full time job IF you want to buy more supplies and keep the electricity on so you can see to paint.

Anyhoo, I made myself some alcohol inks today.  and yes, you might say I did not take a break today but this was Play and it was fun.  All you need are Permanent Markers, like Sharpies, and 91% alcohol and spray bottles, 4 0z. are best size and a pair of pliers.  And nail polish remover seems to clean up the mess better than alcohol. (top photo)
The photo above, I decided to put silver and gold paint on deli paper to see if it would act as good as goldleaf in collages.  Gold & silver leaf are really frustrating, like trying to glue down spider webs.  And finally tried the beautiful turquoise paint Mary Anne gave me for Christmas.  My favorite color, Thanks Mary Anne.

Over on the right are some papers with the alcohol inks sprayed on them.  But I thought this little heater was funny enough to show you.  Last year I bought this heater hoping it would heat my studio.  What a Joke.  This year I bought a jet engine that runs on propane!  And it works great! 

Until today I could run the new heater for 15 minutes and the studio was HOT.  Then I could turn on the electric joke and it maintained it for hours.  But last night, today and for the next 2 nights, it will be single digits, like 9 tonight and 7 tomorrow night.  So the jet propane heater had to run longer.  But I'm thrilled with how warm it makes the studio.  Maybe I'll give a review on my weekend days  Snow is beautiful for about 2-3 hours then I want summer back.
Don't you feel sorry for me NaNaCat?

And since I took the weekend off I didn't even bother to look for my hiking boots to sweep the snow.  I just tied on some Kroger bags and they kept me dry.

I hope you have a wonderful little brother that will keep your driveway cleared just like mine.  I tell him over & over, I don't want to get out anymore.  One perk of being retired is you don't have to go out there at 7am and clean the car and shovel the driveway to go to WORK.  

Happy Trails
Shovel Wisely

Friday, January 6, 2017

No. 6 in the 30 in 30 Challenge

Hey Friends,  No. 6 is here already.  This piece is 10x8 inches and as you can see, it started it's life as a black and white paper covered canvas.

My initial thought was a flamingo torn from a painted paper.

But I didn't want it to represent anything so I just started adding colors that Pantone says are the top choices.  Yarrow Pink, Niagara, Greenery, Kale.  And I scratched with a knife and scribbled with a pencil.  FUN.

The last element was part of an acrylic skin.  And it hung overnight by the wood stove and the gloss gel never cleared up.  Have not used gloss gel very much so I'm not sure if this is a usual behavior.  If anyone out there in cyber land knows, please leave a comment..  And I decided the title will be LAMBCHOP.

We have NO snow yet here in SW Virginia but maybe tonight.  Sorry school kids.  I know you love your snow!

Happy Trails
Drive carefully

Thursday, January 5, 2017

NO.5 of the 30 in 30 Challenge

Hey Friends,  This Piece was easy and fun.  It is on watercolor paper so it needs to be matted and framed.   I decided to title it  COSMIC INTENTIONS.   Why??
I will need to sleep on this question but mostly 'cuz I like the sound.

Once it is matted, I intend to send to Goose Creek Gallery in Bedford, Va.

So I look forward to doing more on paper.

Hope your New Year is unfolding as you anticipated.

Happy Trails

Wednesday, January 4, 2017


Hey Friends,  Still having fun with No. 4  "He Swims with the Fishs".
I know an odd, male choice of a title.  But that's all I could SEE in this one.
Do you see the body bag floating behind the fish?
Maybe one of the Saprano's will use it in their bathroom.

Some process shots that actually make a little sense.
After getting some black on the canvas, I used the squares from the kitchen sink mat I showed about 4 days ago.  Put white on them and pressed the design onto the canvas.

I like squares and circles.  The squares could represent the cinder blocks.

Here are some strips of Paper I found in the trash.  They could represent the lines holding the body underwater.

I can remember my Dad or maybe Uncles using washers if they didn't have the little lead sinkers for their fishing lines.  So the circles represent the weights also.

All of my challenge pieces are available at my website HERE.

Happy Trails