Sunday, October 19, 2014

"RED-ORANGE ANEMONE", AUCTIONED "BLUE POPPIES AND BUDS No. 4", AND AN UPCOMING TUTORIAL

Today, I finished a petite, 5 x 5 inch watercolor of a red-orange Anemone.  I love to learn the history of flowers, and legend says that this little beauty was created when Venus sprinkled nectar on the blood of her dead lover, Adonis.   

Interesting. 

  I love one of its other known names, Thimbleweed.  These flowers are slightly cupped, the petals are delicate and sheer, and the stems are thin and straight, much like poppies.  Best of all, the Wood Anemone is a native wildflower of Wisconsin and gets its start from a nubby, brown bulb.  How can such a beautiful flower come from such a homely little nugget?  I'm going to have to order some of these for next summer's garden.


You can find this original watercolor in my Etsy shop by clicking below:

"Red-Orange Anemone"
5 x 5 inch watercolor

And one other bit of news!

Last night, the school where I used to teach held their annual dinner auction.  I donated one of my framed botanical watercolors to the auction and now . . . .



"Blue Poppies and Buds No. 4" 
18 x 24 framed

 . . .  is off to a new home!  It was an honor to be included in this great fundraiser for our awesome school - Our Redeemer Lutheran in Wauwatosa, WI - a nationally recognized Blue Ribbon School!

Last of all, as the title of this post suggests, there is a tutorial coming.  A friend suggested that I change the name of my blog,"YOU COULD MAKE THAT", since I have gotten away from craft projects.

So, I changed it to, "YOU COULD PAINT THAT".

Well, then she informed me that, no, she couldn't paint that - so with a name like that, I would have to include tutorials now and then.

So, coming soon, a quick little tutorial on making your own little pen/ink/watercolor flower that could be added to a gift tag or piece of stationery.

Thanks for looking!
-Nan





Friday, October 17, 2014

THE DOORS OF CEDARBURG EXHIBITION

THE DOORS OF CEDARBURG EXHIBITION 
will be held at the Cedarburg Art Museum from November 19, 2014 - February 22, 2015. 

The entries were to be based on the following idea:
"Artists working in a variety of media are invited to explore and interpret the diverse architectural heritage of our community with artworks that have, as their predominant subject, a doorway found in the city or town of Cedarburg." 

I love this little community that we visit several times a year for a day of lunch, shopping, and just looking around.  So, the last time we were there I took some photos.  This is a little watercolor sketch I did from an old stone building on Washington Avenue - and it was accepted into the exhibition! 

Accepted artists are invited to be at the museum to demonstrate and/or talk with the visitors during one of Cedarburg's Festive Friday Eves, and are also able to bring along 4 additional pieces of work to display and sell during their time at the Cedarburg Art Museum.

All in all . . . pretty exciting!

"Windows on Washington"
12 x 12 inch watercolor (framed)

Thanks for looking!
-Nan


Thursday, October 16, 2014

HEIRLOOM ORANGE POPPIES - 8 x 10 (sold with mat)

I guess my participation in the 30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge took a lot out of me.  I was surprised to see that my last post was on October 3rd - almost 2 weeks ago.  I have been painting during that time, just not blogging about it.  My main project was a portrait of a beautiful home, which was shipped to the buyer a few days ago.

Now it's back to botanical illustrations - my favorite kind of painting!  Today I worked on some poppies that are the color of an orange popsicle.  These heirloom poppies are warm and sunny. They are done in brilliant oranges, with a color block of yellow set behind.  Loads of detail right down to their hairy stems!  After 4 days of heavy gray clouds, and nearly 3 inches of rain, I felt the need to paint something bright and cheerful.  These really did the trick and by the time I was done, the sun was finally coming out!  It's amazing what surrounding yourself with the right colors can do to change your mood.

These poppies are painted with archival Sennelier French watercolors and 140 lb. cold pressed watercolor paper.  They will arrive on your doorstep, safely and creatively packaged, in a cellophane sleeve.  Included is a white mat that has been cut to fit the painting making "Heirloom Orange" ready to slip into your standard 11 x 14 inch frame - no need for custom framing services.

"HEIRLOOM ORANGE"
8 x 10 inch watercolor


Click below for purchase information:


Thanks for looking!
-Nan


Friday, October 3, 2014

THE OLD EBLE BARN IS NO MORE

A beloved old barn in our town of Brookfield, Wisconsin was torn down this week.  About a year ago right now I spent a beautiful and warm autumn day on the grounds, sketching this stately old barn.   Nothing fancy or frame-worthy - just a simple watercolor sketch.  


From my sketchbook on 11/11/13: 

"The Eble Barn was built in 1936.  The barn and 31 surrounding acres were donated to Waukesha County for the purpose of a park.  Florence Eble, unmarried grand-daughter, had hopes that this green space would remain on Blue Mound Road, for use by children."



"Mrs. Eble made dinners for all during the two days of the barn raising - creamed onions, meats, and bread.  Pitcher after pitcher of lemonade, water, and coffee," said Dorothy, daughter of Della Eble.

Two days of teamwork and fellowship produced this barn in 1936.  

Now, 78 years later, it took one day to bring it down.  

It's been a landmark on Blue Mound Road since long before I was born.  Next to the barn stood the old farmhouse and a huge flower garden surrounded by a white picket fence.  Such a pretty and unexpected sight in the middle of all the big box stores and restaurants that have been creeping up on it for years.  So, one more reminder of days gone by has vanished.  

As the article states, "The Eble Barn is no more."

Now there's nothing left to break the monotony of Best Buy, Chuck E. Cheese, and Babies R Us.

:-(


Brookfield — The Eble Barn is no more.
The historic structure that has been a part of the Bluemound Road corridor for decades was demolished Tuesday, bringing an absolute end to a long debate regarding the future of the barn.
Family members had previously argued against Waukesha County's decision to demolish the landmark, stating that Florence Eble's 1987 donation of the barn to the county was on the condition that it remain standing in Eble Park.
But, county officials said there was no evidence that such a condition existed. Waukesha County Director of Parks and Land Use Dale Shaver noted that rehabilitating the barn and bringing it up to code for event rental would have costed hundreds of thousands of dollars.
The county has not settled on a definite plan for the future of Eble Park; however, officials have stated intent to erect a structure, such as a gazebo, made from materials leftover from the barn.



I think I may need to take another look at my photos from that day and take another shot at painting the old Eble Barn.




Thanks for looking!
-Nan


Monday, September 29, 2014

THE PURPLE CLEOME - A FAMILY FAVORITE

Day 29
of
3 0   P A I N T I N G S   I N   3 0   D A Y S

Today's painting is another botanical - this time the Purple Cleome.  I have fond memories of the Cleome, or Spider Plant, from 50 years ago!  When I would visit my grandparent's house, one of my favorite places to hang out was in their backyard where my grandfather kept his garden.  My family has a long string of great gardeners and he was one of them.  Grandpa used to brag about his Cleome plants saying, "They get so big by the end of the summer that I need to chop them down with an axe!"

The Cleome does grow to be quite tall - sometimes as high as 6 feet in my garden.  The seed pods that burst out on long stems, dry out, and crack open in September and October leaving thousands of seeds for next year's growth.  It's quite an amazing and enormous plant with relatively shallow roots,  and all coming from one very itty-bitty seed.  They take no effort at all to grow and faithfully return year after year all on their own.







You can find my watercolor illustration, "Purple Cleome" on Etsy.  Just click the photo below.


Also available:

               


           

Thanks for looking!

-Nan







Saturday, September 27, 2014

PURPLE IRIS and BUD

Day 27
of 
3 0   P A I N T I N G S   I N   3 0   D A Y S

I really enjoyed painting another purple iris with bud and leaf.  We finally got some of these in our garden, but this year's blooms were few.  Now we can look forward to next spring when our bulbs will feel a little more situated and hopefully will produce a large crop of this beauty!  The flower, with all its intricate details, is a challenge to draw and paint.

This painting, a 9 x 12 original watercolor of the purple iris, is one of my absolute favorite flowers.  Done on Strathmore 140 lb. paper with Sennelier watercolors, this watercolor will arrive on your doorstep creatively packaged and then slipped into a cellophane sleeve.  Ready for your mat and frame.







9 x 12 inches and done on 140 lb. cold pressed paper with Sennelier watercolors.

Available on Etsy:

Thanks for looking!
-Nan

Thursday, September 25, 2014

PURPLE LOTUS AND SPOONFLOWER

Day 25
of
3 0   P A I N T I N G S   I N   3 0   D A Y S

 One of my goals is to frame and hang a block of 6 botanicals and I want them all to have purple and green tones.  As I was searching around for today's flower, I came across the lotus.  So, today's (and yesterday's) flower is the Purple Lotus, which happens to have special meaning for me.

Last fall we drove to Sandbridge, Virginia for a palette knife workshop with Leslie Saeta.  While on our way out to our condo on Sandbridge Beach, we came across this unusual looking pond, and later learned it's called Lotus Garden Park.  Beautiful, and like nothing we'd ever seen before!  So, in memory of a great trip, today's flower is the Lotus.



The original PURPLE LOTUS watercolor illustration is available in my Etsy shop.  Just click the picture below to access that site.



Also, I got a fun package in the mail today from the website, Spoonflower.com.
Spoonflower is a company that takes images of your own artwork and prints them on fabric.  You can have your design printed on any of 16 different fabric types - from silk faille to cotton to faux suede.  I thought I'd try it out with my first painting of the Artichoke Thistle printed on linen-cotton canvas and it arrived today.  I can tell it's a high quality fabric and the detail is great!  


You can upload your own graphic/drawing/artwork, or buy any of the designs that others have created.   To access my design, or look at hundreds of others, click the picture below.  


Thanks for looking!

-Nan




Tuesday, September 23, 2014

ARTICHOKE THISTLE No. 2

Day 23
of
3 0   P A I N T I N G S   I N   3 0   D A Y S

Here is the Artichoke Thistle again, done in watercolor and ink on 140 lb. archival quality cold press paper.   Barely getting this on today before the day is done.  I think I'm ready for this challenge to go away, but I made the commitment so I'm going to finish!

While reading about the various types of Thistles, I came across the Artichoke Thistle.  It has been declared an invasive weed in most areas but I think they're beautiful and interesting.  Kind of dry and unfriendly looking until you get to that pretty tuft of purple at the top.  They're also really fun to draw and paint!  

The original watercolor of Artichoke Thistle No. 2 AND a print in the same size are available for purchase and will arrive on your doorstep creatively packaged and slipped into a cellophane sleeve, ready for your matting and framing.


Thanks for looking!

-Nan



Monday, September 22, 2014

ARTICHOKE THISTLE No. 1

Day 22
of
3 0   P A I N T I N G S   I N   3 0   D A Y S

The Thistle, symbolizing nobility and austerity, is the national flower of Scotland.  I have painted the Artichoke Thistle, noted for it's spiny base, which is thought to protect it from being lunch for animals.  The thistle, with its crown of purple, is a member of the sunflower family.  


This listing is for the original, 9 x 12 inch, watercolor.  It is done on 140 lb. paper with Sennelier watercolors.  Will arrive creatively packaged and in a cellophane sleeve, ready for your mat and frame.



Thanks for looking!

-Nan



                                        




               

Sunday, September 21, 2014

THE SWEET SCENTED FREESIA

Day 21 
of
3 0   P A I N T I N G S   I N   3 0   D A Y S

Freesia grows from a bulb (corm) and is a heavily scented flower.  The scent, along with it's graceful, curved habit makes it a favorite in bouquets.  The leaves are shaped like a sword and the flowers bloom in a little bundle at the end of the stalk.  I have painted this one with an example of the freesia bulb alongside the flower stalk.  Freesia is symbolic of innocence - a great meaning for a delicate and sweet-smelling flower!



Freesia For Innocence
8 x 10 inch watercolor


Available on Etsy 

Thanks for looking today!
-Nan

Thursday, September 18, 2014

PURPLE IRIS, BUD TO BLOOM

Day 18
of
3 0   P A I N T I N G S   I N   3 0   D A Y S

This time around with the 30 in 30 challenge I've been behind the eight ball every, single day!  Today is no exception as I'm just beginning today's painting.  I need to paint ahead, or break it up, or piecemeal it, or something!  Because my house needs cleaning and I have laundry to do!

First, a photo of the start of the purple iris.  Such a fun project for a cool and cloudy September day!  This subject was suggested to me by a friend who has a nostalgic tie to purple irises.  I love suggestions for drawing and painting because it gets me to try something new.

 So here are some photos beginning with the ink drawing . . .


to gradually adding color.




And, finally, the finished piece!


It's so interesting that so many flowers have symbolic meanings and many are used in weddings and other events because of their meanings!  I have read that the Purple Iris is symbolic of wisdom and compliments - love that!


To purchase the ORIGINAL botanical, click below:

To purchase a print of the botanical (3 sizes available), click below:

This little adventure is going to count for about 3 days of my 30 Paintings in 30 Days.  I knew this when I saw my husband come in the door with 4 shirts, freshly cleaned and pressed, FROM THE CLEANERS!

 That is NOT supposed to happen - I'm retired!!!

It's time to do some laundry.  

Thanks for looking.  I'll be back on Monday!

-Nan







Wednesday, September 17, 2014

A BLUE POPPY AND TWO BUDS - 9 x 12

Day 17
of
3 0   P A I N T I N G S   I N   3 0   D A Y S

From a zinnia binge to a poppy binge . . . I wonder what will be next?  I still have more blue poppies to get out of my system before I'm done.  And I love those hairy buds!  It was especially fun to paint one with the tissuey blue petals just beginning to poke through.  

For this one I used a softer edge for the outside of the petals.  I think that this, along with the more brown-green of the stems and leaf, made this botanical illustration look more formal and elegant.




(Pictured in a suggested mat and frame)


This original watercolor/pen/ink is available below:


Thanks for looking!
-Nan




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