Archive | May, 2011

Eared Grebe

22 May

Today I painted a picture of my friend the little eared grebe. You can see his photo on the last post. Here he is in watercolor, hot pressed paper, 6″ x 4.”

Eared Grebe

Three Aspens

21 May

I painted today in my yard! Hooray! It was supposed to rain, but it was breezy and kind of sunny once in a while. Chilly, though.  Anyway, my first plein air of the season, used my new “French” easel (made in China) and had to keep yelling at the dogs because they wanted to eat our little visiting Eared Grebe. Here he is:

Eared Grebe

I started to try to draw him, but he noticed me looking at him and wouldn’t come close. Or maybe it wasn’t me; maybe it was the dogs. He’s been here for more than a week now. The pond is very small, but he’s a very small grebe, so maybe he’ll stay a while. He must have gotten separated from his group. The bird book says they travel in huge flocks and fly as little as possible except for their migrations. He’s so cute and fluffy. I want to cuddle him, and so does my daughter, but I don’t think that’s going to happen.

Since my little buddy declined to pose for me, I decided to paint trees. Trees are good, reliable models and they never complain or even need a break. So, here’s what I painted today:

Three Aspens

It’s watercolor, 9 x 12″ rough pressed paper. I have recently been tempted by beautiful oil paintings and oil painting books, but I don’t have any oil paints. I have lots of acrylics and acrylic retarder medium, so maybe I’ll try something with that one day soon.

First Watercolor Portrait

14 May

I’ve been taking a watercolor class (as I think I probably mentioned in my last post). Here’s a portrait I just completed of my daughter. There are always things one would change, but I’m pretty happy with it. The saddest thing about it is she’s all grown up. (sob)


Sylvan Lake Watercolor Paintings

5 May

Sylvan Lake is a beauty spot in the central Black Hills of SD, and one of my favorite places (not that I’ve seen anything like all my potentially favorite places!) For more images of Sylvan Lake and more beautiful Western South Dakota scenery, you can visit my Journey Into the Black Hills blog. How’s that for a shameless plug?

That said, I’ve been taking a watercolor class for the last several months along with my daughter and now, my mother as well. It’s kind of a cool class in that we do pretty much what we want and the instructor wanders around, asks and answers questions, and gives tips and advice where needed. Here are a couple of paintings I’ve recently completed:

Sylvan Lake Dam, Lakeside View

This one is about 13 x 22, on Canson cold press watercolor paper from a photo I took last spring (2010) I’ve been wanting to paint this photo ever since, and have only just now gotten around to it. Yet another good reason to take a class; to make myself do the things I want to do.

Sylvan Lake Overflowing

This painting is smaller; about 8″ x 13″; again, on Canson cold press watercolor paper. From another photo taken on the same day as the one above. I really enjoyed making these paintings. Perhaps I’ll do more soon. I certainly have enough pictures on the computer to keep me busy, even if I never painted any other place. 😉