Back to Sketching

30 01 2013
Victorian era peeps. Except the person on the right. I don't remember where I got her from...

Victorian era peeps. Except the person on the right. I don’t remember where I got her from…

peeps from work

peeps from work


I’ve made a point of keeping my serious personal and general professional life out of this blog, but these are all real people I work with…except for one that was supposed to be me. Ha! Anyway no one in this picture would be happy about it. Terrible sketches. Cray cray busy this week.

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Swan in a Bottle

23 01 2013

For weeks…weeks!…I have wanted to make a tiny polymer clay animal to put inside one of the glass bottles I bought. At first I tried fish but couldn’t get the fins skinny enough to fit through the neck. Then I thought – swan! But swans, neck to tail, are wider than fish. So finally I bought bigger bottles, and here we are. 🙂

Swans: formed, baked, and painted. Used Sculpey clay, acrylic paint, and Modge Podge for sealant.

Swans: formed, baked, and painted. Used Sculpey clay, acrylic paint, and Modge Podge for sealant.

My attempt at a clay pig in the background...

My attempt at a clay pig in the background…

Fish to add to the swan bottles. I could not get them smaller than this for the life of me.

Fish to add to the swan bottles. I could not get them smaller than this for the life of me.

Used a pigment dye for one of the bottles. When it fully dried, the tone changed from a bit greenish to actual blue.

Used 2 small drops of pigment dye for one of the bottles. When it fully dried, the tone changed from a bit greenish to actual blue.

Swan finally in bottle!...with a really huge fish, in relation

Swan finally in bottle!…with a really huge fish, in relation

Fish in the bottom. For a third bottle I included pond gravel instead of a fish.

Fish in the bottom. For a third bottle I included pond gravel instead of a fish.

It's like Lake Eola in a bottle.

It’s like Lake Eola in a bottle.

These are bigger bottles than I’d normally like for necklaces, but they’re worth doing…I hope. The swans are great fun to make. I didn’t follow any pattern; they’re pretty intuitive. Tonight I wire clipped eyelets and resin-adhered them into the corks, then resin-glued the corks into bottles. I’ll put the finished products on the Etsy site (see sidebar button).

Been making more time for art lately and therefore have sketches, etc. already lined up to post here, but there are only so many hours in the week!





Le Recipe – Last Night’s Cupcake Post

15 01 2013

So I typed this entire recipe into the post, but every time I viewed the post, it wasn’t there. Then I’d go back to “edit” and could see the whole thing. How do you even fix that? I’ve liked this blog, but if WordPress continues this crap I’ll have to stop. STRESS. Anyway, here’s what this post missed regarding Apple Betty Cupcakes:

“Sorry for bad cell phone pic. Anyway, super easy to make:

– Box of Betty Crocker cinnamon struesel muffin mix
– the eggs, milk, and vegetable oil that the box tells you to get
– 2 apples, peeled and finely chopped
– granulated sugar (1/4 cup for filling, close but less than 1 cup for icing)
– 1 1/2 cup heavy cream (whipping cream)
– 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
– cinnamon for topping

1) So first, you bake those cupcakes according to box directions. IGNORE box's directions regarding struesel (not sure of spelling; you’ll see what I’m talking about inside the box though.) Do not mix with butter, and do not sprinkle. Save it for later.
2) While cupcakes bake (about 16 min), peel and chop apples. I used 1 1/2 red delicious apples. Place in a small saucepan and heat up on medium with some of the granulated sugar. Stir.
3) Take cupcakes out, let them cool, then "core out" the middles – dig out and place on a plate. I like to put the tops back later.
4) Add some of the struesel (how much is up to you) into the apples. This adds cinnamon and a bit of corn starch for thickening. Once pie consistency, take off heat. I cool in fridge.
5) Make icing. Mix the heavy cream, about 1 cup sugar, and some more struesel in bowl. Beat with electric mixer until thick.
6) Place cooled filling into cupcakes, replace cupcake tops, finish with the icing. I added a sprinkle of cinnamon on top. You could use the struesel topping, but it's lighter in color. ”





Meditative Doodling (and cupcakes)

14 01 2013

NOTE: Cupcake recipe to come tomorrow. WordPress will not properly display post from my home browser.

So I’m volunteering with an “Arts at the Bedside” division of a Humanities in Medicine program. This particular program is carried out within a Jacksonville hospital, where volunteer artists make creative projects to share with patients to give them a positive distraction from their medical issues, and to enhance the health of the mind/spirit while the hospital works on the physical stuff. 🙂

Will have more posts on this program and what we do in the future, but for now I wanted to share one of the things we just did at our weekend workshop: zentangling (click on link for main site). This is a style of “meditative doodling” that’s very free-form, effortless (anyone can do it), and pattern/repitition oriented, which is what gives you that calm feeling while doing it. A micron pen is perfect for this, plus a gray copic marker for smooth shading.

Here’s my starter zentangle:

sample zentangle sketches

sample zentangle sketches

ALSO! Fernandina Beach used to have this awesome cupcake place called Patty Cakes Bakery. Unfortunately, I learned this weekend that Patty Cakes is no longer there, which means no more apple betty cupcakes. 😦 So I decided to make my own:

finished cuppycakes!

finished cuppycakes!

Post-filling, pre-replacing tops and adding icing

Post-filling, pre-replacing tops and adding icing





Grimes

10 01 2013

Just discovered Grimes. Don’t know if I like or dislike her, but her wild animal/free spirit vibe in live performances interests me.

Grimes paint sketches

Grimes paint sketches

Irritating week. My scanner, as usual, takes a normal painting and gives it an undetailed, washed out look. Computer keeps crashing. In happy news, am newly obsessed with the BBC’s Sherlock. Having something to obsess over for a week or two always infinitely improves my mood. This:

Yes

Although last night WordPress kept crashing, and is now showing everything in code or whatever it’s called, so I have no idea how this will look to you readers. Actually, just previewed it. It is refusing to show the Sherlock picture; I am sad. Though at this point, I am kind of over angsting about this.





Good things from Georgia

5 01 2013

5 days into the new year, and I’ve already overcommitted to a million things. Not ready to get into 2013 yet here, so here’s a wrap up of the end of December:

Quartz landscape

Quartz landscape

Rock collecting is a good artistic hobby to take up if you’re bored in the new year. My father and his sister have always done this, so I was raised on it (although am still terrible at remembering gem names.) Here are some pics of my aunt’s collection during Christmas:

atlanta1

Not sure if this is chrysophrase, turquoise, or smithsonite

Not sure if this is chrysoprase, turquoise, or smithsonite

Either wulfenite or something in the color of wulfenite

Either wulfenite or something in the color of wulfenite

Anyway, we were wandering around this Georgia town and decided to check out an art gallery. I was so suprised to see a painting in a very distinctive style – the same style of artwork at the local Red Elephant restaurant in Jacksonville. The artist calls himself Cornbread. His work is very rustic and simple, folk paintings of animals, but also very cute! See his bio here: Galerie Matilda, from one of the Georgia galleries his work displays at. 

A Cornbread painting, from the Galerie Matilda site

 

Check out this link for a cute raccoon picture: thecrayonlab.com

Lastly, here’s a pre-New-Year lizard photo, just for fun:

Yard lizard

Yard lizard

 








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