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Monday, June 20, 2011

Pomeroy Falls



Today I went to Pomeroy Falls in Platte Clove, and did a watercolor sketch for The Sketchbook Project 2012. It was an absolutely beautiful day out there! I'll go back soon to do an oil painting, perhaps from a different vantage point.

Here's a photo I took holding up the sketchbook, with the scene in the background.



There are 15, two-page spreads in the sketchbook they send for this Brooklyn Art Library project, so I'm about 30% done already. I'm thinking that I just might be able to finish before the bitter cold weather sets in, which would be great! I'm a total wimp when it comes to painting out in the cold.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Half Moon --- Replica of Henry Hudson's Ship


Today I went to paint the replica of Henry Hudson's ship, the Half Moon, but there was no good vantage point for an oil painting of the full ship. So, I painted something else, and then did this little sketch of the stern portion of the ship.

If you're interested, you can see the oil painting I did here.

Materials:
Noodler's Lexington Gray in a Lamy Safari fountain pen
Winsor Newton and Holbein watercolors
Stillman & Birn Delta sketchbook

Monday, June 13, 2011

Eurasian Eagle Owl and Emu at Discovery Zoo


This two page spread features "Hoot", the Eurasian Eagle Owl, and "Freddy" the Emu. I never saw such huge feet on a bird as that emu has! I guess if you can run 31 mph, you need big feet to do it! This is my favorite border so far, done with red and gold acrylic paint. The birds were sketched with ink and wash, and some watercolor added after that for a bit of color. 

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Merlin the Chimp and the Peacock and Tortoise friends


The challenge of sketching the chimps was that they were in the shade and so dark that it was hard to distinguish features. They presented as large, dark masses, so that's how Merlin was sketched!

This peacock seemed to be best friends with Tonka, the African Spurred Tortoise. He was in a large, concrete enclosure, and although the peacock could come and go, he mostly stayed. He spread his feathers in exquisite display several times. (My friend Gretchen got a great sketch of that!) Tonka had a wonderfully sculpted shell, with interesting shapes and peaks. Next time I go back, I'd like to do a two page spread just on him.

Materials:
Chimp: 0.5 Preppy filled with Private Reserve Velvet Black and washed with a waterbrush
Peacock and Tortoise: Sakura Koi Watercolors and a Niji waterbrush
Sketchbook: Stillman & Birn Delta
Writing: 0.5 Preppy with Noodler's Purple Wampum

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Camels and Macaws at the Discovery Zoo


Camels seem to be in perpetual motion, so a portrait attempt was no easy feat. Not only do their heads move continually from side to side, but also from ground level to about nine feet in the air! I'd wait patiently, popping in a couple of lines each time he looked straight at me.

The pair of macaws was a riot. In spite of the fact that the zoo owner kept putting them up on their tree stand, their will proved stronger. With clipped wings, they waddled around wherever they pleased, occasionally flying up to a low perch. They were especially interested in watching me sketch the camels. One came over and literally sat by my feet almost the entire time, saying "Mama". I figured they were waiting for their turn to be sketched. I did a few quick watercolor gesture sketches of each of them. Here's a photo of one of them with the sketches:


Materials
Camel sketch: 0.5 Platinum Preppy fountain pen filled with Private Reserve Velvet Black, washed with a waterbrush
Macaws: Sakura Koi watercolors and waterbrush
Sketchbook: Stillman & Birn Delta
Borders: Golden Fluid Acrylics and F&W Acrylic Inks

Friday, June 10, 2011

Great Day at the Discovery Zoo



Life as an artist is sometimes too much fun to be legal. I had such a great time at the Bronx Zoo a couple of weeks ago that I started wondering if perhaps there was a smaller zoo closer to me. It turns out that there's one only four miles away from my house upstate! So, today I went with Gretchen to check out the Discovery Zoo in Catskill, New York. We brought our sketching stuff and bug spray and hoped for the best!

The zoo actually exceeded our expectations. It is small and they don't have a lot of animals, but one can only sketch so many beasts in a single day! The people were friendly, the habitats were inviting, and we were able to set up to sketch wherever we wanted. There were lots of nice, shady spots, and the owner went out of his way for us, telling us about the history of the little zoo and the names of all his "pets"!

These two camels are named Christopher and Serena. They are among the few animals who came to this zoo from the old Catskill Game Farm, which closed five or six years ago.  I did a bunch of sketches and got some great photos too. In fact, I had such a good time there that I got a season pass! I figured with it being less than 10 minutes away, I'd surely get there a few more times before the year is out.

Sketch: Sakura Koi 24-color watercolor set with waterbrush, 0.5 Platinum Preppy loaded with J. Herbin Cacao du Bresil
Sketchbook: Stillman & Birn Delta 6x8"
Writing: Noodler's Purple Wampum in a 0.5 Preppy
Borders: Golden Fluid Acrylics and F&W Acrylic Inks

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Two More from the Bronx Zoo


Watercolor, painted across a two-page spread in a 6x8" Stillman & Birn Delta sketchbook. The pages were prepared in advance with diluted acrylic paint.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Hiking in Kaaterskill Clove to Inspiration Point


My husband and I hiked out to Inspiration Point, which overlooks Kaaterskill Clove to the east, west and south from South Mountain in Haines Falls, New York. This is the view facing west. When visiting these locations in the northeastern part of the Catskill Mountains, it's easy to understand why the Hudson River School Painters made this area their home base. The land speaks to you here, and you can feel the presence of all who came before you and admired its beauty.

This is another sketch in my "Travel With Me" book for the Brooklyn Art Library's "Sketchbook Project 2012". 

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Tree by the Lakeshore in Ink and Wash

If you're interested in ink and wash materials and techniques, check out my guest blot post today for the Goulet Pen Company on their Ink Nouveau blog site!



I sketched this last week at the lakeshore using a combination of Private Reserve Chocolat ink mixed with about 25% Private Reserve Velvet Black to cut the red a bit. After doing a line drawing, a waterbrush was used to form the midtones and shadows, using ink from the lines. The paper is a Stillman and Birn Beta sketchbook.