Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Shaggy- complete

Here's the final product! Enjoy!

Making progress..

I am working on some shading and shaping but I wanted to give you a quick update. I think Shaggy is coming along quite nicely. I'll let my mama be the judge though.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Shaggy- just beginning

Here's a pic of the beginning of a sketch of my mother's dog from long ago. I'm just starting so I'm working out space planning etc. I will let you see the progress soon!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Lizzie- almost finished!

I still have some correcting to do and additional shading, but I wanted to share the progression....enjoy!

A New Sketch- It's just the beginning

This sketch is of a picture of my little cousin Lizzie. I just started it today. It always looks so scary when I first start, but now I am in the process of beginning the shading and it is amazing how it starts coming to life! I can't wait until tomorrow to see how the drawing evolves. I post an update soon.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Almost done.....

I have finished the shading of my grandmother and father (shown here). Still need to do some work on my uncle so I hope to be finished by tomorrow.

Forever Dodger Blue

Just before my father passed away this past July, he told me that he wanted to see Hogwartz at the Harry Potter Park inside of universal studios. I wanted to honor that wish, so we went, with the blessing of Hospice and the help of my cousin Chris. It was a wonderful experience and it is a time of great memories that I will always hold dear in my heart. This drawing of my Pop is a captured moment from that trip. It serves as a reminder of our last, fun adventure before he passed on to greater things. One sweet day, I'll see him again, but this time it won't be at a theme park for one short day, it will be on the streets of gold...forever. I love you, Papa.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Still working....

So here is an update to the sketch I am working on of my uncle Sonny, grandmother and my dad when he was a little baby. I have finished the background (almost) and have begun the shading of the clothes and faces. I haven't even started on my dad really. I am working from left to right, simply because I am right handed and it's easier not to have to remember to not rest my hand on the charcoal. I should be posting the final product in a few days.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Spring in PA

A friend of mine posted a picture of her mother's house on facebook. The picture is of the front yard, flowers and trees up in Pennsylvania. It struck me as a beautiful possibility for an acrylic endeavor. So, I decided to give it a try. At first, it didn't look as if it was going to be very realistic looking. I guess paintings never start out that way, they take form as one paints. I didn't become discouraged, rather, I purposed to recreate the scene as best I could. When I sent a picture of the painting to my cousin in LA, she asked me what kind of tree was that one in the middle. I told her that I wasn't sure, that it was a painting of a picture. She did not believe me....she thought it was an actual picture... WOW, what a compliment!! It was fun painting this one, so I am looking forward to do some more like it; more scenes, more nature, more realistic views. The possibilities are endless....

Saturday, March 12, 2011

I was moved...

Some good friends of mine adopted a newborn baby a year ago. I was looking through photos that celebrate their adoption finalization which were posted on facebook and fell in love with one in particular. Knowing that their son's first birthday was rolling around, I decided to see if I could draw a person, so I started sketching and at first, I have to admit I was a little intimidated about drawing a person. As the drawing took form, I began to see a strong likeness to the original photo. After working on this one for quite a while, I finally finished. Another sketch completed. I gave the gift last week. So, not only does this sketch commemorate a wonderful event in a family's life, it also marks the first sketch of a real person for me. What's next??

Friday, March 11, 2011

a sketch in time

Here is a piece I am currently working on. It is a sketch of photo taken of my uncle sonny, grandmother and father when he was a baby. I am sketch planning in graphite. I haven't decided yet, but I might go full pencil sketch on this one. We'll in progress.

a whale of a tale...

Little Skull "Before"

 I was at Michael's Crafts shortly after Halloween and found this great little wooden skull in a bin outside of the front door. I decided to pick it up with the intention of painting it with a random design for a friend who likes skulls.
After pondering it for a while, I decided that it would be cool to actually paint a scene on it. I know that my friend really likes Pirates, Skulls and the book Moby Dick, so I decided I would paint a scene on both sides of the thin wood- a hole at the top makes it an easy hanging piece so that both sides can be seen. I wasn't really sure what to paint on there that would be cool and I had no idea what Moby Dick was portrayed as other than a big whale. So I started looking online to get some inspiration and found a few pictures that really gave me some ideas. I decided to sketch a pirate ship, a sword and some skulls on one side and a couple of scenes from Moby Dick on the other. One of the pictures I sketched was actually adapted from one of Rockwell Kent's pen & ink drawings that actually appeared as one of the illustrations in the 1930's edition of Moby Dick. The other painting is a beautiful picture of a whale coming up out of the ocean with a small boat in the foreground. I found the picture all over the Internet on Google images, but no where could I find whose original work it was. Be that as it may, I decided to use it to help me with this birthday gift. To both the front and back I added an excerpt from Moby Dick to add the extra connection. I used acrylics on this painting. I was thrilled with the way it came out for a first acrylic attempt, so that bolsters my confidence to work on future, original works.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Elvis has left the building....or has he?

During the process drawing the last two my cousin said, "Hey, you need to draw a picture of Elvis!" Sure, I'll try! Send me a picture.So I sent her "in progress" pics of Elvis from my cell phone and she can't wait to have the original.

So, very soon, Elvis will be making his way to LA so I will have to say good-bye to another art piece. Hope you enjoy it as much as I have, Cuzin!!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

A second try..

After the success of the first drawing, I decided to give it another shot. I decided to draw another friend's dog who had recently passed (the dog, not the friend). This dog was like a part of their family, so I decided to see if I could draw Macintosh, a Wheaten Terrier. I started to sketch and found that it came very easily to draw this second dog, even though there was a greater complexity to his coat compared to Jeep, the boxer. I was delighted to see that Macintosh came out very true to life, as well!

I gave the picture as a gift for my friend's birthday. She was so happy and I was relieved that she thought it looked just like him. (There is always that bit of fear that just maybe, when the person sees the picture, they say..."um, who is this?"  Another good day of drawing and another day of me being amazed at what I can now do. Like I said before, it is so weird...

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

It all started with this...

Right before Christmas, I got an idea that I wanted to do something special for a friend of mine. My father passed away in July of 2010, and this friend, who used to be the pastor of the church where I used to attend, now works for Hospice and was the chaplain for my father. Not only was he my dad's chaplain, but he and his wife have been a part of pretty much every major event in my life over the past 10 years. He was there for me when my grandmother passed and he spoke at my great aunt's funeral. To say that this family is special to me would not even put enough emphasis on how I feel about them.

So, back to the idea. I thought it would be nice if I could draw a picture of Jeep, my friend's white boxer. Now, keep in mind, I have never really drawn anything before, let alone use charcoal. I have always wanted to, so I bought some meager supplies about 5 years ago, but never put them to use. I have been feeling crafty lately, so I thought I would at least see what I could do (no high expectations here..). As it turned out, after about 2 hours of sketching and shading, the doggie came out very, very true to life- which surprised even me.

Since that day, I have been drawing and painting and surprising myself along the way. I ask myself, why now? I am 38 years old and now this happens? I'm not complaining, I am just amazed that this talent took so long to surface. Sometimes I wonder if when my dad got to heaven, he sent the ability down to me. I guess I'll never know, but it is nice to imagine. Whether it is a gift from God or my dad, or both, either way it is a gift from heaven, and I am grateful.