Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Watercolor Wednesday

Since I have fallen in love with watercolors I've decided to do a post once a week on my progress.  This way if you aren't interested you can just move on.  
There will be more junk, Grands and Annie pics soon!

I'm obsessed!
Really! 
Watercolor is amazing!
Since I started the online lessons I've not stopped.  I think I'm improving but I do know I have a long way to go.  I'm learning about paint, paper and brushes!
BRUSHES!
This has been the hardest for me to find one's I really like.  I started with an inexpensive set since who knew if I would pursue this hobby for very long.
They worked, but as I practiced I could tell I wasn't getting the same brush strokes as the teacher.  So last week with a coupon I splurged on a good watercolor brush.
A Winsor Newton brush and 2 tubes of watercolor paint.  Using coupons from Hobby Lobby and Michael's! 
WOW!  I could not believe what a difference a good brush made.
A practice page and using the splatter so many teachers show to add color to the white areas of your paper. 
Honestly the one brush made all my other brushes seem even worse.  So I decided to buy a set one of my online teachers recommended.  
Aqualon Royal and Langnickle short handled brushes.  I found a set on Amazon at a good price and ordered.
After some practice I used one of the smaller brushes to make this little flower on a card.  I'm so happy with the control these brushes give me. 
I really enjoyed this little wreath and will try painting more of these
Supplies can really add up so I've been using more Michael's and Hobby Lobby coupons.  40% off really helps the price of paints especially.  Hobby Lobby had all their art pads on sale for 40% off (no coupon required) so I loaded up on their store brand paper in several sizes.  So economical and the paper is great for practice and my beginner skills. Michael's had Strathmore brand at 50% off so I bought one spiral bound book.
Learning about layers on this practice page .  Oh and yes I love flowers but I'm going to try to do a butterfly soon.  So stayed tuned for more Watercolor Wednesdays! 

Wishing you JOY,

Linda

Friday, March 10, 2017

Thrifting & Other Things

I once again have been missing from my blog.   Last week Scout was sick and I spent two days taking care of her.  Thank goodness I did not get sick again but it wore me out!  Friday was a day of rest and reading.  This week I've had 3 days in a row of Dr/Dentist visits for my Mom.  She is doing well but we needed to catch up on some appointments and they came all in one week! 

I did manage to slip into a thrift shop or two (or three) and while I didn't buy much I do love my thrifty finds.

This tiny little nativity was .25 and I love it!  Already stored with the Christmas decorations.
I think this little shelf is going to see a makeover and the hold more of my orphan S&P collection and only .50

The next three items were only. 25 each!
I haven't bought an egg cup in a long time but this was so sweet and made in France!
This crazy cat mug will go on my art desk to hold pens or brushes!
A very cool cork screw with a bakelite handle will be a gift for a friend who makes wine (good wine)!

A quick stop at Goodwill
I have been looking at these magnet boards but the price of $10 has stopped me, I'm cheap er thrifty I tell ya, so for .77 this one jumped in my cart! 
Two strong pieces of foam board .77 will hold my watercolor paper down while I paint

This little ceramic dish was also .77 and is wonderful for mixing a batch of watercolor for a wash.  My new watercolor hobby has dictated some of my recent finds! 

A last stop at Habitat for Humanity
This lovely serving dish
Bordallo Pinherio and only $2.99

I have made a few purchases using coupons at Michael's and Hobby Lobby
It is really important to find my supplies as cheaply as I can.
A small watercolor pad for making cards and a paint pallette all bought using 40% off.  I also bought a white ink gel pen. 

All these goodies are for my newest passion!  Watercolors! 
I am still in the practice and learning phase and try everyday to at least paint a little bit. 
(now is a good time to leave if you are tired of my new hobby...I totally understand)
Different techniques and using an ink pen for details on some of the paintings.
 Learning to mix colors
Practice with different brush sizes
Textures (my least favorite exercise so far) and finally a little painting
Lupines from a tutorial
I have some new tutorial's I plan to watch this week and paint more flowers.  I really do love them.  I'm having quite the good time with all of this. 

Alas, I did not return to Junk in the Trunk to see if the pink and black vase from last post was still there.  It is out of my normal path so maybe soon.  If it's there good, if not I seem to be ok with that also.  

Wishing you JOY,

Linda

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Treating Myself!

I had a little bit of time the other day so I stopped into one of my favorite Antique Malls, Junk in the Trunk!  I gave myself $10 to spend.  So can you pick the item I bought?
Pink McCoy pottery but $15 will I splurge? 
Vintage pottery and only $4
More McCoy pottery but also $15
I love these glasses, a set of 8 for $10 but I already have some in green so should I buy these?
A fur collar and only $10??
Pretty hobnail glass (it's pink but didn't show up well in photo) $10
Even more McCoy 
and this one is only $5!!
Art Deco looking pottery vase, black and PINK and .... only $10

So what did I buy?
Well I didn't buy this adorable thing
It is a baby tub, the lid comes off!
Only $85 but I wanted to share the photo because I thought it was so sweet!

So after much looking and thinking I brought home...

The yellow McCoy planter for $5
I love how it fits in with my other McCoy yellow pottery and is so Springy! 

I've also been doing more with my watercolors (I'm obsessed I tell ya)
First flower.  It was an exercise using only one color and I was to try and get different levels of transparency.  It's only OK but I'm learning so much.
I really like this one.  I used a wet on wet method to get the more blurred images and it was fun.  
An exercise using only 4 colors.

I must tell you I am loving watercolor painting so much!  I had to order some more watercolor paper and I got some great deals from Amazon.  I also got a fun set of brushes I'll play with and share soon.  
My beautiful daughter Sara turned 35 yesterday.  I love this photo from when she was 5 years old.  She still has that smile and yes, Tiger looks just like her! 

So now my only question for you...
Should I got back and see if this vase is still there?
I really do love it!

Wishing you JOY,

Linda

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Almost Well!

How is that for a blog title? 
I am 'almost' well.
Still a little stuffy and coughing some but I am oh so much better.  I got out of the house a couple of times this week.  Took my Mom to the Dr and to the store for some groceries.  Yesterday I went out and got the Grands some Valentine things to surprise them. 
Did I take photos?  No!
I'm a bad blogger.
I did play with my watercolors a little bit this week.  It is fun.  I purchased some new pan sets, not the most expensive one's but some middle of the road paints.
This is a small set of Winsor-Newton Cotman watercolors.  Highly recommended in the videos I've watched.  
This is the practice page with my $5 Michael's paints,not bad at all.

 Jeanne from The Marmelade Gypsy is a watercolorist and said she likes Prima pan sets.  I bought a classic set on Amazon and really like the intensity of the colors.  I also did some brush control exercises.  The one below is using two different brushes and experimenting with what I can do with them.
  I also did some washes in the 3rd column.  
I'm about ready to move on to my first try at painting 'something' as I've done several exercises and watched most of the lessons in the class I'm taking and now I want to try painting something. Flowers?
I'll share with you next week even if it's a disaster.  I hope I'm not boring you with my new interest!

I have been good about staying out of the thrift shops.  Getting sick helped!  Still I did find a couple of cute things early February.
The only Valentine decor I put out this year.  The pink plate, little girl at the mailbox and the red heart (made by my Dad) that I've had a few years.  When I saw the red and pink thermos, I knew it had a place in my home.  It's rusty but for $1 very very cute! 

I have added two new items to my flower frog collection.  Both found at thrift stores for just a few dollars.  These are both marked made in Japan and I love the shiny glaze.

Annie has really been enjoying the sun puddles lately.  

I hope you are having a good week!
Wishing you JOY,
Linda



Tuesday, February 7, 2017

The Best of Times, The Worst of Times

Last week both of the Grands got very sick with the Flu.  Fever, coughs, runny noses.  Sara and Blake had taken off many days already this year so last week they needed help.  Grandma to the rescue.  I washed my hands, got lots of sleep and took all my vitamins.  BUT...I still got the flu! UGH!
I'd love to say I looked this cute in bed, but I do not!  The fever is gone but now I've again lost my voice.  It is my progression to healing.

Also as I lay in bed yesterday I cried a few times while thinking about my Charlie.  It was one year ago that he crossed the bridge.  I miss him so much!
So enough of the Worst of Times

I thought I would update my goals for 2017 since we are in February

~I got lots of things out of the house to the thrift shop.  More boxed for a friend and lots for the church rummage sale.

~Started organizing the craft supplies.  Much more still to do on that but I have a box full of things for a young friend who loves to craft and scrapbook

~Taking better care of myself has moved up the list.  I've got to get well and get my immune system back up.  So far my Mom hasn't gotten sick and I'm so thankful for that. I started probiotics and hoping that will help.  The flu has run through the school system here twice so I'm on track with that, but I don't want to be!!

~I finally took some time to work on lesson one of my watercolor class.
It's not much but learning how much water to mix to get different color values and how your brushes work is fun.  I'll do this exercise at least one more time before moving on to the next lesson.

~I'm a little behind in the book reading.  The fever made me so woozy I slept a lot and then just binge watched some TV shows.   I did read a book I highly recommend
It is about this lovely family that has five boys, only the last boy is transgender.
The way the family deals with this is so true to life.  I cried, I got angry and I rejoiced. The author has a transgender child and states clearly that it is not her child's story, but it has certainly given her much insight into how hard it is to navigate this path.  She is living it and so am I. Many of you know this and those that don't well it's scary to put things out there like this for the haters to attack.  I didn't plan on writing all this but it just poured out of me.  I emailed the author and told her how much this book meant to me and she emailed me back.  We are a special group of parents who have a transgender child.

~Still not blogging as often as I hoped.  I've been thinking I want to change back to my old D10 camera and see if that helps me enjoy taking photographs more.  I'll let you know how that goes.

I hope you are feeling good and I'll see you soon.

Wishing you JOY,

Linda