Sunday, December 26, 2010

Sunday Sketches

Hope all had a good Christmas. Spent boxing day shoveling iced over snow. So far I think it has been an extremely over productive winter where the white stuff is concerned :D
Today I was working on Valentine day stamps, and I remember also that today is Sunday so our darling hostess at Blue Chair Diary is hosting Sunday Sketches - yeah.- so this is my sketch for sunday :)
The stamp was sketched then redrawn in illustrator which was then printed and coloured with watercolour pencils. The dog has been bugging me a bit, as the pose is a little strange as I am not sure if it really works :( maybe I should make the body sort of be lying bending like behind the boys shoes instead of being straight back and not seen ..hmmm


.....updated version with the dog body visible :)

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Merry Christmas

Just popping in to say "Merry Christmas, Seasons Greeting, Feliz Navidad, and of course from my adopted country (if I ever learn the language) Priecīgus Ziemsvētkus un Laimīgu Jauno Gadu."

Saturday, December 18, 2010

IF - Mail

ahh an Illustration Friday word that rolls of my tongue :) This is something I did a while back. It is digital watercolour using corel painter.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

a book review? Drawing lab

A bloggie friend asked if this book was worth buying, and as I started to reply the answer got a bit too long and I thought a POST   - yeah  :).
Last week my long awaited  "Drawing Lab"  book arrived. Once I took it out of the mailbox and gazed at the cardboard envelop I was a little concerned as it looked a bit small for the book, which while not overly expensive it was not cheap either. Ripping open the cardboard envelope (that's the only way to do it :) ) I saw a 8.5 x8.5 square formated book, which while a bit smaller than normal was also VERY thick. It has 144 pages, semi-hard cover, beautifully put together and bound. If the binding last (I only say that because it is printed in China and I am guessing assembled there) it should be able to handle my household's little fingers pawing through the pages without to much wear and tear.
Now to the actual content. The cover illustration is wonder. I like the author/artist Carla Sunheim style of writing. It is like listening to a friend chat about art.  There are 52 exercise dvided into 7 overall themes. Each exercise has wonderful illustrations and clear instructions. Some of them include some educational/ historical information about the exercise, and others show how the exercise can be developed into an actual piece of art. The exercises vary in the materials they use but most will be easily on hand or could be gotten from an art and craft shop.
The thing I like best about the book is that while all exercise are for adults, children can easily do many of them. A kid may not get the same results as an adult, but for example in one exercise you add random watercolour  brush strokes to a piece of paper and when dried you look at it and see what you can see. Once you see it you then use a pen to draw the outline of what you see. Of course an adult can take it a step or two further but what a great exercise for a kids imagination. Also Carla's illustrations in the book are so beautiful that kids will just love to look at them and want to try draw them (as my 5 year old did).
Cons... honestly I have not found any yet, the only one is that is a bit pricy but if you got $22.99USD (reccommended retail) to spare and are looking for a great inspirational art book go for it.  I got my from  for €11.74 (shipping included), its looks a bit more expensive than but the latter kills me on shipping .

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Scribbles for Sunday

It's Sunday the day so  I try to stay away from the pc ( kids are thrilled about this :) ). Here is my version drawing lab's  scribbly drawings and it Sunday - so yeah Sunday Sketches. 

Started out with a blue ballpoint pen and then it was kidnapped. Then I found a black one. This is done on just simple printer paper.
The blue scribbles are our 2 dogs. The small one likes to rest on the big one. Daughter dear put a head kerchief (bandanna) on the large dog;  In the right upper corner is daughter day busy doing some type of  art. And the lower left with the misplaced ear ( this is why I like pencil it can be erased) is solemn son - he was doing home work.
Pop by Blue Chair Dairy to see some fantastic Sunday Sketches

Drawing lab.

FinALLY it has arrived. It was super long in getting here as it had to by pass obstacles such as the local post office being closed, mail being direct to us through another town, snowstorms, blizzards,  and snow blocked road. Yesterday,  I dejectedly walked out to the mailbox, after the bulldozer finally managed to clear the gap to our area, and peeped in I was thrilled to see a flat square parcel from the Book Depository :) Upon opening the parcel it was confirmed - Drawing Lab by Carla Sunheim has arrived :) 
It looks like rather a good book. I  read the intro (nice and short) and skipped through it and it seemes interesting. Nutty at Facets and Fractals is hosting a drawing lab challenge, if you got the book check it out.
p.s  yup my desk is a mess :( Sometimes I am amazed at what sketches I find  and presents from the kids :)

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

IF- Prehistoric

While searching through the attic I found this paper wrapped in oilskin in an old battered trunk.

Colour pencils on paper and then photoshoped.
My thanks to Diamo for the paper texture and photoshoprangerstock for the coffee splotch.

Friday, December 3, 2010

December's yahoo group

I seem to be stuck on patterns at the moment :) I decided to do a little continuous pattern for my embroidery digitizing yahoo group. The pics here show the pattern repeated 3 times and with just different colour schemes.
I now need to work out how to make this a digital stamp and that will be wally :)

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

a very wooly sheep - art every day day 30

Today is day 30 of 30 of the art every day challenge hosted by Leah of Art Every Day blog. I joined the challenged about day 7.
I would like to thank Leah first for hosting such a wonderful event and I hope that she will do it again next year, and second of all the other bloggers I have met over the month. This month has prompted me to pick up my art brush, get the pliers out to not so gently persuade, my not used in at least 6 years, tubes of paint and to do some actual non-digital painting, as well as to explore the new medium of watercolour pencils.

Today I wanted to so something a little different but alas I now have a fresh cold and feel rather rotten, and my concentration was all over the place as is evident in my wool sheep.  The wooly sheep is a rather confused piece on plywood, with a layer of newspapers, then acrylic paint and some textured paste. yes it is rather a mess. To console myself I am considering this a draft piece... ah my cold medicine is working.
It has been a wonderful month. I am glad I took part. Thank you all for coming by and visiting and commenting.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Monday Corners

My day 29 Art Every Day art are a couple of corners doodles that I did when I got a moment of peace and quite.  The plan is to vectorise them for embroidery designs.

If you got a moment pop by Art Every Day to see some rather cool Day 29 art.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Saturday Frames

"I must, I must do some art" was my mantra today and I had about an hour to do. I had started a little frame which was not going so after popping down stairs and sorting the kids I went back up and covered the frame in blue and this is what evolved. Nothing like what I imagine. So on day 27 of  Art Every Day for a month my daughter has a new frame and is now busy and happy making colouring a picture of a Christmas tree with presents to put into it. Yes she is a bit Santa (Christmas) obsessed. I have managed to get her not to save the cookies I made today for Santa, but I am sure come December 1st we will be decorating for Xmas :)


A snowflake on Friday

Not much behind this. It was snowing outside and she appeared :)
Watercolour pencil on paper - wish I could remember if this cold or hot-press paper but it is rather good quality and lets the watercolour pencil really be manipulated when water is added.

Pop by Leah's site,  Art Every Day, to see some other cool day 26 art :)

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Art Every Day day 25 ...5 more to go :)

This is actually post AED day 23,24 and 25 :) I seem to do a little something everyday but do not manage to turn my chair to the scanner and turn on Photoshop (PS). I swear my scanner and  PS have a serious love-hate relationship.

On day 23 I did some sketches and vectorised some birdies; on day 24, I did one of those close your eyes and see what happens - the dog and the elephant and vectorised some more birdies. I had hoped to colour the dog for whimsical Wednesday but real life has not been cooperating this week; and today so far I have done some sketches.
The sketches are raw and rather clique as I am thinking of valentines for my little shops.

However if you wish to see some rather stunning art drop by Art Every Day to see some super art!


p.s it looks like winter has come to stay. The snow is falling and falling. I love the snow. I just hate to drive in it.

Monday, November 22, 2010

IF- Sneaky & AED day 22

Did you really think Bow-peep lost her sheep?:)

Playing with watercolour pencils and white acrylic as the medium on paper.

Had a time trying to scan it, and then tried to photo it but in the end I gave up and was reminded why I use the pc to do illustrations. The blue sky did not reproduce at all.

If anyone has a good suggestion for was a scanner that would be super.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Sunday Sketches - Dancing and sneaky

Today was dance dress rehearsal as the show is on Friday night - yeah. I thought it was a full dress but it was not , just skirts, vest, sock and shoes ( the clothes are some seriously heavy wool). My monster dancer is one of the youngest in her group and she had a great time at the rehearsal. It was funny to see the kids all standing up straighter, point stronger with a larger audience. The show will have groups from 5-7 to  the "mature dancers have members that are 50+.
I will try and take some photos if permitted to post later.

The other part of the sketch is a sketch to deal with this weeks IF (illustration friday) which I hope to be able to complete this week. The sheep are being sneaky :)

Pop by Blue Chair Dairy to see some fantastic Sunday Sketches

And Art Every Day to see some super day 21art!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Catch-up Saturday :)

well all I can say is "Thank God tomorrow is Sunday Sketches!" :) My, what a week it has been and here we have had a 4 day weekend which means the kids are home and concentration time is low.
For art today I worked on the website to match this blog. Basically it was just changing some colours, background and pics, and then newsletter and I am happy that I  have done it. I have wanted to change the sites for a while for after a couple years its sort of grows stale - if you know what I mean.  Anyway below is a screen shot of the site. The birds got to be a little christmassed up :)
Hope you are having a productive Saturday.
Remember to Pop by Art Every Day to see some funky day 20 art.
Day 19 was a rather art less day as I did some boring site things.

the home page

the shop page

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Thursday Blogger

My art for today is meant to be saving the patterns I worked on early this week in various formats, but I got side tracked as one of them caught my eye and inspired me to change my blog (I hope for the better) ( yes I am not a procrastinator but a side-trackers :)). So my art for today is my blog. Not sure if it is too much but I guess time will tell. Hope you like it lol

Pop by Art Every Day to see some funky day 18 art

p.s the pattern I liked in the "ribbon" flowers and my son says that birds do not have long legs :)

p.p.s the left hand side seems a bit bare but not sure what to put there as yet.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Wednesday whimsy :)

I am not sure if the idea got translated in the colour version - I find sketches sometimes lose something  when they are done neater :(  but the flowers are meant to be cosying up to the bird adoringly :)

Watercolour pencil on paper.

  Pop by Art Every Day to see some super day 17 art
 and whimsy art at Whimsical Wednesdays!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Pattern Tuesday

Maybe today should be called Pattern Monday-Tuesday :) On Monday I decided I'd better attend to my shops and after much sighing and doing put-off chores eg cleaning,  some patterns and sketchs of birds emerged, which I will redraw on the pc this week. Today's pic is one of the patterns I tested to see if it could work as a digital stamp. It is coloured with watercolour pencils on paper.

To see some really cool Day 16 art pop by the Creative Every Day blog :) 

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Sunday Sketches - Tautas Deja

Daughter dear had dancing practice today and I was allowed to watch as it was an on stage rehearsal for a concert (we are normally not permitted to watch), so I sketched a bit :)

They "folk dance", which in Latvia is almost like how ballet is in some other countries. Most kids here grow up doing some form of folk dance. The shoes, when they were when in costume, remind me of cross between Indian moccasin and ballet shoes, and they wear thick wool socks with symbols. At Gabs age group 5-7 there are about equal number of boys and girls.

Pop by Blue Chair Dairy to see some fantastic Sunday Sketches

And Art Every Day to see some super day 14 art!


Saturday - a thought

Was working on daughter dears room and discovered that darling hubby's architectural design does not lend itself to whimsically feminine (well so much for the choosen wall paper) :( SO back to the drawing board to to figure out how to make a rather beautifully sterile room reflect my daughter's feminine and girly personality, and then hopefully she would desire to move back into it.
She does like the knobs which are now on her cupboard and there is talk about sleeping in her room- no action yet but there is hope glimmering.

This painting is a quickie exploring a character thought. I think Illustrations Friday's theme - Burning - got into into some how, can you guess where? ;D
Painting is acrylic on wood.

To see some really cool Day 13 art pop by the Creative Every Day blog :)

Friday, November 12, 2010

Knobby Friday

One of the things about Art Every Day is that it is motivating me to do something artsy everyday and not put it off for another day i.e it will get done tomorrow.
This afternoon I took out some cupboard door knobs and painted them to match the wall paper I hope to sew onto some roller blinds this weekend for my daughter's room ( yes that will be my art that day and I hope a successful project).

First I got the knob and lightly sanded it to (I hope) remove the varnish.
Then I got some acrylic paints and tried to match the cupboard door colour more than the wall paper.

Here are the knobs with the base coat. Then I decided which flowers to paint and painted them on using acrylic paint and a hair dryer (it was taking forever to dry in this temp we have here hence the hair dryer:D)

A section of the wall paper and the knobs.

To see some really cool Day 12 art pop by the Creative Every Day blog :)


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Baa - Thursday

A 3am sketch of a sheep I should have been counting.

Pop by the Creative Every Day blog to see some really cool Day 11 art :)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Woeful Wednesdays.

It has been one of those days. Finished some digital stamps and was testing them out. Not overly happy with any of the results :(.
This is a pic of one of them.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Skating on Tuesday

Oh dear yesterday I did a doodle but was not able to put it up, but I managed to do it- in a bank no less as I waited and waited for my turn.
Today however I am home and here is a completed little ice-skating bird.

Watercolour pencils on paper, with a white acrylic as snow.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

A beady Sunday

Art every day month.. I hope this counts:) My daughter wanted to do something to give her friends, so after a bit of thought I came up with us using white clay to make some simple beaded bracelets. To do this she pinched off some clay rolled it into balls, then I used a thin stick to make a hole and then we let balls(beads) dry.Once dried she painted them - well she did the detailed work while I got to do the grub base colour paint :). When this was finished we strung the beads together and got a bracelet.

Pro- this is a rather nice project to do with your kid(s), and is simple enough that they can take part in almost all stages.
Con - a 5 year old has a limited attention span, so best to do the project over the weekend in parts.

Art Every Day for November

I read about this on Missy's blog and it seems rather cool and a good way to help get the juices going and something down on paper.So here we go... we , mean I, am committed. Will do and put something up today..later.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

IF- Afterwards

The IF topic this week was rather apt when it came. Thursday was an emotionally unsettling day when I discovered my son missed the school bus and had left his mobile home. When I got to his school he was no where to be found. I was at my whits end as I drove the 5km home thinking that if I did not spot him on the back road home the next stop would be the police. About 1 km from our house I spotted him walking coolly along the road. Besides wanting to throttle him all I could say is thank God he was okay, and knew the way home.
On Friday I was still shell shocked and hence the art therapy.
We had a long chat with him about going to the teachers, school guard or security guards for help instead of being so self-reliant. The teacher actually gave the whole class of 7 year olds a talk on what to do if one is left behind.

Watercolour pencils on paper.
p.s. not my usual style but this is what came out, and yeah there are lots of errors. had a problem getting one of the eyes of focus :( but alas ....

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

IF - Spent

Ahh what an interesting word "spent". It can be interpreted many ways...
Exhausted after days of hormonal warfare, Boris finally succumbed to another biological urge.

Watercolour pencils on paper

Saturday, October 30, 2010

while away from the desk

I decided to try and take a photo of a digi stamp (i.ea drawing) I coloured in the vain hope that it will come out fantastic ...yeah right! As I was downloaded my card I discovered that my little photographer had been at work. She snapped the penguins while they were in the process of being coloured for the clipart set.
And here she is with her favourite photo subject :) (sorry for the back view:) )

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

A breast cancer angel gift from Inspiration Mutz Embroidery

This is the digitized and sewn custom angel for breast cancer which I designed for Inspiration Mutz Embroidery . Isn't she gorgeous! I was blown away when I saw how the clipart was transformed. This angel is stitched on Mylar over a lace-like base. As part of the grand opening of Ursula's new store, she is now giving this design as a Gift on a Purchase of any value.So click on by the the store and get your angel :)

Saturday, October 23, 2010

IF - Racing

And they are off, on the waddle of the century, Who will come first? Will number 45 keep his balance? Watch out for number 2, as he comes up on on the rear.

Water colour pencils on paper.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Digital Stamps

After many weeks (months actually) of toying with the idea, I have finally decided to separate my digital stamps from designs I create for embroiders, i.e I will have a separate websites. This has resulted in 4 days of absolute fustration and eye ache as I try to copy the outline ( of the nice thing-a-me-bobs eg points reward system etc) of one site to another, and as fate would have it, it has almost worked but for one little thing - my catalogues of product list are not reading where the products are located on the site ince they are click one :(- all else so far see to work but that!!! urgg!
Anyway I am way over my allowed number of script manipulations or something ( I was playing blindly with databases for 20 mins) and now have to wait a day before I can go in and attempt to solve my problem - or I may get a nasty bill - I am not sure if I will still not see it.
So in the mean time I drew a little digital stamp with christmas in mind and then used some not very good watercolour pencils.But I really can't blame the pencils to much as they are from the supermarket and are sold for kids for school, so I should not have been to surprized when the blue, purple and green colours did not want to "blend" or move when I gently applied the paintbrush to them as instructed. In the end I took one of my harder bristle brushes and scrubbed it about lol. The pic is the digital stamp coloured and photoshoped to try to get the colour to match what I did on paper.
Does anyone know why when I scan I get much lighter colours?

Saturday, October 2, 2010

A little cucake card :)

I just adore this cute birthday card made by Tazza of My Everyday Gifts. She uses one of the cupcake doodle line art/digital stamps set which can be found here.

Friday, October 1, 2010

IF: Old Fashion

I got an assignment this week which fitted into the Illustration Friday theme - Old fashion :) I am doing some illustrations for the old nursery rhyme Three Little Kittens. So here is a painted sketch of the first scene where they have lost there mittens. It is also done the old fashion way - with a real paintbrush and paints :) The pic below is why I paint digitally at present :)When I was out of the room my daughter decided it was time to practice writing her name :) Thank God for photoshop!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A day at the doc

Well it wasn't a real day, it just felt like it. I arrived just in time for my appointment and had a lovely 2 hour wait till my turn to get a spot checked out. While I was sitting in the cancer polyclinic my eye filled as I spotted the most good natured looking 4 year old with his dad waiting for their turn to see a doc. I hope I jumped to the wrong conclusion as the kid is a kid and bad things like cancer should not happen to kids.
Anyway a day or so ago a request for some angle kids clipart came up and I decided to take my sketchbook and try to sketch while there, and the little boy's hair style was so cute it featured in my sketch, Actually I feel rather skittish about drawing children as angels..sort of silly I know.
Yeah the left wing is kind of not right :)

Monday, September 20, 2010

Not too sweet

Don't you just hate when you sort of know about something and then there is a problem and because you don't know ALL about it, you can't figure out the problem and if you think what you think is the problem in order to correct it, it means a whole lot of blasted work!
This a little cupcake image I did this weekend and then applied an embroidery filter. It came out fine, BUT when I apply it to other images I get parts where there is no embroidery. My thought is that is that the filter program is not acknowledging the crossing of the lines in those images and I am having a coreldraw vs illustrator conflict. Cool I can live with that, but what makes me want to bang my head is that I do not know if it would truly effect the end result in an automatic digitzing program. Below is the little set where bears the cupcake.