Saturday, January 12, 2013

30 in 30 Days, Day Eleven

I woke up this morning with today's 30 in 30 days painting clearly in my head.

'Grandmother Dream Weaver'. 9" x 12" Acrylic on Sheet Music.
Prints and other merchandise available for purchase at
I grew up with dream catchers.  I have three that hang from the ceiling in my bed room.  And each of my boys have one in theirs.  When they were little, I would tell them the story of how dream catchers would catch and hold their bad dreams and fade away with the first rays of the morning light.  I can count the combined number of times they've had nightmares on one hand.

This morning, before waking, I dreamed of dream catchers and a garden spider weaving it.  It was fascinating to watch it work.  And garden spiders are both beautiful and non-poisonous.

As anyone whose read my previous posts can attest, I have a bit of a thing about spiders.  I don't mind them a bit when they're outside...but it's a completely different story when they're inside...and they surprise me. *shudder*  It's the surprising me that's the hardest!

Maybe last night's dream was just my mind coming up with today's painting, or maybe it's my minds way of reminding me that spiders are actually pretty awesome.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Advice From A Caterpillar, A Pay It Forward Project

I have 20 days to finish my last three 2012 Pay It Forward's.  Today's is for my friend Melanie.  She's a college professor who majored in Microbiology.  When I started to research microbiology, I came across a word that leapt out to me:  Fungi!

I know that one (:

And there are only two associations I immediately make with mushrooms. 1.  Piggies and truffles (eh.  She doesn't strike me as a person inclined to put pigs up on her walls.) and 2.  The Caterpillar from Alice in Wonderland-- and she absolutely! seems to me like a person who enjoys Lewis Carroll (:

And so today's 30 paintings in 30 days challenge is a tribute to Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and a present for a friend.

'Who Are You?'.  9" x 12" Acrylic on Sheet Music.
Available for purchase in a variety of projects at

I hope she likes it!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

30 in 30 Days- Day 9

For today's 30 in 30 Days painting, I decided I wanted a dragon.
But I'm still not ready to leave real critters.  So...

I made a sea dragon (:

'Dragon of the Sea'. 6.5" x 9.8" Acrylic on dictionary page.
Prints and other merchandise available for purchase at

When my oldest was a year and a half old, we saw our very first sea dragon at the Pittsburgh Aquarium.  They're impossibly delicate, extremely fascinating and it would be easy to spend hours watching them dance and float through the water.

They're also so intricate and involved all by themselves, I decided not to pair it with anything else in today's painting.  I love the feral look in its eye, but I might play with its colors in photoshop to see if other colors would have suited it better.

...Okay, so I've played with it and come up with these:

Which of the 5 colors do you prefer?

Wednesday, January 9, 2013


Today's 30 paintings in 30 days is inspired by Jackie and the Magic Dandelion by Daniel J. Moore.

"Making Wishes" 8.5" x 12" Acrylic on Sheet Music
Prints and other merchandise available for purchase at
One of my all time favorite flowers is the dandelion because as I've said before: Dandelions are little flowers, that never fail to come back, no matter how hard they are squashed.  It is a flower of determination.  And optimism.  And hope.  And wishes.   

“The miracles of nature do not seem miracles because they are so common. If no one had ever seen a flower, even a dandelion would be the most startling event in the world.” - Anonymous

Which is actually a fantastic quote to tie in to Jackie and the Magic Dandelion, as it's about seeing the world through new eyes.

Jackie and the Magic Dandelion

"Jackie's old life ends and her new adventure begins when an ill conceived wish to be as tiny as an ant sends her spiraling through the stars and into an amazing world she never expects. She spends the next week riding dragonflies high in the air, sailing homemade boats past hungry goldfish and giant frogs, fighting battles to save underground ant cities, climbing tall trees on the backs of huge wooly caterpillars and searching for deadly black widow spiders, all in her quest to find the "magic" she needs to get back home. Things turn nasty when Stinger, a deadly wasp, and his minions show up and cause trouble for everyone. Jackie must team up with her new friends, Drago the dragonfly, Anton the ant and her reluctant hero, The Mantis, if she is going to stop Stinger from taking over the park and if she hopes to have any chance of ever making it back home again."

I received a copy of Daniel J. Moore's Jackie and the Magic Dandelion free through Goodread's First Reads.

A Few of My Favorite Things

From the Artists Helping Artists 30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge, hosted by Leslie Saeta.

Around 200 artists are participating in this fun and fantastic challenge!

I'm not being paid to endorse anyone, but the art work being created for this challenge is so diverse and wonderful that before I get started on my own Day 8, I wanted to share with you a few of my favorites (so far!) in no particular order (:

Cindy McDonough, over at three little birds is working in watercolor portraiture that I find myself looking forward to seeing every day.

by Cindy McDonough.  watercolor 4" x 6"

Roger Brown at Art of The Wild is celebrating life in Africa.  His subtle muted colors today and the look in the eyes drew me to 'Lorato'.

"Lorato" by Roger Brown. 
Crystal Cook at Art by Crystal Cook is working in breath taking color and high lights.  Her pieces have caught my eye every day and I'm looking forward to seeing what else she's going to create!

"Wild Kitten" by Crystal Cook
And Dawn Kinney Martin is working in bright, exciting colors with fantastic results.  Her pieces tend to make me happy (:

"Blue Flame" by Dawn Kinney Martin
If you'd like to see more of the fantastic art work being created for this day by day challenge, check out Leslie Saeta's Slice of Life (:

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

30 in 30 Days, Day 7

They say that laughter is the best medicine (outside of, you know, -actual- medicine).

Today, I'm fending off the first ear infection of 2013.  Bleh.

I also happen to be a fan of puns...and Paul Simon.

While taking a try-to-feel-better nap, I woke up with Paul Simon's '50 Ways to Leave Your Lover' running in my head and knew exactly what I wanted to paint for today's 30 in 30 days Challenge.

"No Need to be Koi, Roi" 6.5" x 9.8" Acrylic on dictionary page.
Prints and other merchandise available for purchase at

And I'm going to leave you with a link to one my all time favorite Paul Simon Music Videos, because it makes me happy (:

Monday, January 7, 2013

Pay It Forward Project 5 2012

While I was working on "Roll Tide", I had an epiphany for one of my remaining Pay It Forward projects.

See, I have a friend (okay, I have a LOT of friends) who're die hard Saints fans.  So I decided that I would make Erica a special fleur de lis.

"Black and Gold"  6.5" x 9.8" Acrylic on dictionary page.
But I also wanted to continue my trend of experimenting, so I played with it in photoshop and came up with these:

All of the Fleur de Lis are available for purchase in a variety of products at
It has me feeling very ready for Mardi Gras (;

Drawing it out.
The finished piece.  Believe it or not but there are 6 layers of paint in the golden section of the fleur de lis-- I did 3 different designs in all golds that I didn't like before I decided that what it really needed was some black...and that some of the black out of the fleur needed some gold (:  It was a happy accident and I like the final result much better.
I hope she does too!

Roll Tide

In honor of tonight's BCS Championship game, I decided to dedicate today's 30 in 30 days painting to the Alabama Crimson Tide.

"Roll Tide" 6.5" x 9.8" Acrylic on dictionary page.
Prints and other merchandise available for purchase at
Drawing it in and choosing my colors.

Starting to add the details.

And the finished piece (:
And good luck in the game tonight!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Quoth the Raven "Ever More"

I'd be lying if I had said "Nevermore" as this isn't the first time ravens have shown up in my art work and I'm certain it won't be the last!

Today's 30 paintings in 30 days came at the suggestion/ request of my husband.  Everyone has an affinity to particular animals.  And his is with ravens.

'Quoth the Raven'.  8 5/8" x 12". Acrylic on sheet music.
Prints and other products available for purchase at

I find I'm partial to perched birds, but my husband prefers them flying, so today's experiment was in capturing the critter in motion.  What I discovered (which in hindsight is perfectly obvious) is that there is a lot more area to paint that way.
Filling in the basic background shapes and outlines.

And the finished piece.
If you haven't already, you really should head over to the 30 in 30 days challenge and see some of the other fantastic work that people are making.  I have greatly enjoyed seeing the vast diversity of what everyone is doing!