There Are Angels

There Are Angels
Colored Pencil Drawing

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Gift- overload

In the past 2 weeks I've made 25 scissors cases as gifts for my guild members (our dinner is Tuesday & we won't meet again till next year) and 7 recipe card holders for teacher's gifts & I haven't even begun my regular shopping yet!! There's not many in my family, so shopping will be short, but there's the never ending question of what to get everyone. I have my son & daughter-in-law's gift finished & part of one of the grandson's done. I have an idea of that to get hubby & brother, but not what to get the other two grandchildren. I did know what to get my daughter, then she up & changed her mind, at least I hadn't bought anything for her yet. Oh well, its all part of the holidays. Two batches of cookies are in the freezer ready to be baked & I have two more batches to go. I'll get through it, I always do.

Friday, November 20, 2009

What's in my studio and what's not.

I have many toys & trinkets in my studio. I call them supplies and equipment.There is the sewing cabinet, the sewing machine (one of 5), all the fabric, the cutting table, the drafting table where I sketch or paint, the dress form I affectionately call "Sally", a wall of books, cutting implements, paints and so forth. The one thing I do not have is my studio is a clock. In my studio, time may pass but I take no interest in the hour of the day while I'm there. I simply enter the studio, become engrossed in my latest project & I'm swept away into another place, one where time does not exist. It is not until I hear the notes of "when's dinner" or the sound of my little dog scratching at the door that I realize there is another world outside of that room, the world of reality and i must return to it again. Yes, there is no clock in my studio-- on purpose.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Still here . . .

I haven't fallen off the face of the earth, just been very busy. I'm setting up a baking schedule for the holidays. We bought 24 lbs of both flour & sugar today, in hopes of doing lots of baking in the coming weeks.

I've also been busy quilting. I finished a holiday wall hanging that grew to around 6 feet square & have another in the works that should be about the same size. I need to find time to take photos & post them here (coming soon).

We also have a new quilt shop in the area. I visited it the other day & I love it. Its very spacious & the staff is exceptionally friendly & helpful. I plan to shop there a lot in the future. The fabric I got there reminds me of a design I'd paint. Its folk artish looking with lots of paint stroke work in it. That's the quilt that's in progress as of this writing.
Fall is in full splendor here in KY, but the leaves are falling fast. Cold weather lurks around the bend. Stay tuned for more later.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Strange Sighting

I saw the strangest thing tonight. I glanced out the window & saw what I thought was a big dog or maybe a small wolf. My hubby saw it & said it was a coyote! In town! It just trotted down the sidewalk. We think it came from a railroad that is a block or so away from my house. Its just odd to see a completely wind animal in the middle of a suburb. Once, a few months ago, there was a bull meandering down the middle of the street-- a big, black bull. Weird -- and its not even Halloween yet

Monday, October 12, 2009

Funny Photo

Here's Sylvester the cat (really) "Pasted" to the window. It looks like he's saying "HELP ME!!".

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Flood Report

Its rained nearly 10 inches over the past 3 or 4 days here in KY. Of course, everything's flooded - not to the extent of Georgia last week, but its a mess none the less. Several roads are covered with water, even I-75, a major interstate highway is flooded between Richmond and London (KY) & I've never seen that before. I'm not sure how long the rain will last. Everyone hopes it ends soon. Believe me, a flood was not what I wanted for my birthday - Did I mention my birthday is today? One year, on my wedding anniversary I went through a tornado (I was in the building when it got hit) then another year there was a bomb threat at the same building as the tornado. Now I have floods on my birthday! There's just no end to the "excitement" I find on what should be happy celebrations. Oh well, this too will pass. I hope your day has gond better than mine.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Very NQR, Stress Filled Week

Dear reader, forgive me for venting here, but its very necessary to rid myself of the tremendous stress I've incurred this past week. I've endured my daughter-in-law's surgery, the hospital visit & its aftermath. There was the ongoing problem with my special needs grandchild getting her meals at school, that problem is still being attended to & investigated all the way up to the state level.I had to confront the cafeteria manager & school principal about this. All that added to the ongoing & constant stress I endure at home has consumed me this past week to the point of exhaustion & numerous headaches. I can only hope for a quick solution to these problems & quieter times ahead. I will attempt to return to quilting & art, one place where I can escape it all.

Monday, August 31, 2009

A new Camera

I jumped in & bought a Canon SLR camera & telephoto lens. I paid big bucks for the system, but I doubt I'll ever buy another, its a once in a lifetime purchase for me. I'm learning how to use it & I've decided that the only other lens I'd like to get is a macro lens. But, according to what I've read they cost big bucks too. Maybe for C
Christmas or my birthday coming up soon. The camera does take nice pictures & it can be fully automatic, for us beginners, then, as I learn to use it, it can go manual. I plan to use it in my art, taking photos of things to paint or paintings & quilts I've already done and so forth.

I made the jump into the world of professional art. I put up 2 pictures of paintings I'd recently completed on a site for art shows. We'll see how that goes. It took several tries before I got the photos set up correctly to go on the site (they're picky about format), but I did finally succeed. I have, however, gotten some of my art published in an online community called Elfwood. Its about sword, sorcery & magical beings, all in the name of fiction. Its in gallery #824 if you'd like to look.
Gotta go, the mail just came & I need to separate the bills from the junk. Stay tuned, more later. . .

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Behind the Art

lately, I've posted more paintings than quilts. I thought I'd tell you how I got into painting, or how painting led me to quilting. Anyway, I've tried all kinds of media, short of print making, I don't have the set up for that. I've settled on 2 types of painting, watercolors & colored pencils. Both are relatively simple in procedure & supplies, and its non-toxic too. The techniques are similar too, both use build up colors through layering techniques. Colored pencils can be used dry or with a blending medium, depending on the type of pencil, water soluble or wax/oil based.
I've been using colored pencil since the late 1980s when an artist friend introduced me to real, artist quality colored pencils instead of the cheap ones used for school projects. I use a variety of both wax.oil based & water soluble pencils, usually one type per drawing. I even use colored pencils on quilts. I came across a technique whereby the design is first quilted, then colored with wax based colored pencils, then sealed with textile medium. Its pretty cool. I've done a couple of small quilts & hope to do some larger pieces soon. The thing I like about colored pencils over other art mediums is that they are clean to use, need a minimum of equipment, are portable and need not special surfaces to be applied on, just paper or cloth. I use a variety of brands, Swiss made, German made, British made, just whatever I can find that suits the purpose. And I get as many colors as possible, making sure they are available open stock to replace what I use.

I've painted & drawn since I was a kid, even learned to draw with a pencil held between my teeth while I was sick with a nerve disorder as a child. Anyway, art is something I've done all my life & probably will continue to produce for the rest of my life, baring any complications. So stay tuned to see what comes from my pencils or my brush & I hope you'll enjoy the art.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Look what I found . . .

I was going through some older drawings that I had stashed away & found these colored pencil paintings I'd forgotten about (the first 3), the angel is a new piece that is till in progress, I think. Its one of those things you have to look at a while to see if it is truly finished or not. At this writing, I'm at the "looking" stage.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Paper Piecing Class

Today was quilt guild meeting day & we had a class on paper piecing. The instructor, who's normally very good, cut the fabric pieces in the provided kit too small to finish the project. We spent 2 hours becoming frustrated with the whole thing. I've done paper piecing before & its tedious at best. I got part of one part of the project sew together, but left shortly after I finished it. We'd though about putting the finished blocks from this class together to make a raffle quilt for a fundraiser next spring. However, there weren't enough people taking the class to make enough blocks for a quilt, & those who took the class were completely confused & may not finish the block anyway. We'll look elsewhere for designs for a fundraiser raffle quilt. Perhaps a "house" block quilt, who knows. Otherwise, I'm working on a quilt for my son for Christmas, once I figured out that pattern, it hasn't taken long to put the blocks together. As it looks, I'll have it finished before Christmas.

More Later . . .

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Life, Art, & School

This week was crazy, getting Emily in first grade. So far, she likes it. And we discovered she car read, how much we don't know yet, we'll find out. I now enjoy most of my daytime hours free from Elmo & Dora, the quiet is sometimes weird. I've begun a quilt that will become my son's Christmas present. At least, I hope to have it done by then. I'm still doing colored pencil work & have discovered how to apply colored pencils to a quilt, sort of like fabric painting but the quilting is done prior to applying the color.

I bought Julia Child's book on french cooking, inspired by the movie which I haven't seen yet. I've made a couple of things from it & liked them. The problem I have is translating the arcane methods she calls for into use of modern equipment, For instance, I used my blender to puree the potato leek soup where she used a food mill. I got the same result with 1/10th the work. I'll plug on.

Speaking of cooking, with Emily back in school and holiday season approaching, I will be making stuff for school goodies. That's always fun, but the kids in the special ed class might have food allergies so I'll check with the teacher on it, if so, that means I'll have to modify the recipes to fit the need. That could be fun.

Anyway, here's the latest colored pencil painting I've done.(top of page) Its in Caran 'd Ashe Supracolor water soluble pencils. The photo doesn't do the actual painting justice, I think the light source was off. My photography skills are lacking somewhat.

More later on life, cooking, art, quilting, whatever . . .

Monday, August 10, 2009


I'm slowly getting back into quilting, I have 2 in the works, the early stages on both. I've been getting my autistic granddaughter ready to go back to school. She's in first grade this year which means a new school and going all day for the first time. Tonight we attended the open house which was a near nightmare. Everything was fine until she had to give up the cards (her current obsession) & go to another room. She quickly exploded into a tantrum, which ended a minute or 2 later, after everyone in the crowded hall starred at us. School begins Wednesday, so I'll have a whole day, almost, to myself. Understand that my daughter also lives with me & is primarily responsible for granddaughter's care, but most of the time it takes all 3 of us (hubby, me & daughter) to keep up with her. I'll be grateful for the break anyway. By the end of Sept. daughter will be going to school during the day & I'll have the whole house to myself. I won't know how to act with all the time, its been years since I had the house to myself during the day.

My guild is planning a fall show, the first Saturday in October, 10 am to 4 pm at the same church we hold the spring show. the minister was so impressed with the spring show that he's asked us to do one this fall. We took him up on it.

I took a recent art quilt class with local quilt artist, Sheril Drummond. We learned the stained glass technique. Her blog is "" if you'd like to see her work. She's just beginning to win at national shows.

I've begun reading the Julia, Julie book (movie of the same name.) Its interesting with colorful language I didn't expect. I guess I'll wait till the movie is on dvd to see it. I can't seem to get to the movies any more.

Gotta Go, awaiting heavy storms- again, later tonight. Its been a very wet summer here, not too hot until yesterday. More later, stay tuned. . . .

Sunday, July 26, 2009

More Colored Pencil works

The first two paintings are done in colored pencil on sketch paper. The third, "prey" (red dragon) is done in watercolor pencils on cold press watercolor paper. All 3 are for sale. If you're interested in a purchase, email me privately.

Friday, July 17, 2009

More Art Work

The first is a fantasy piece, done in colored pencil on Stonehenge paper, titled "Tending the Elderly" & depicts a fairy tending an elderly dragon at its cave home. The second , also done in colored pencil, if a portrait of my granddaughter.

New projects include a quilt which will be colored in colored pencil. I've come upon a method to do this & I'm doing a small quilt to test the method. If it works as its supposed to, I'll post it here once its finished.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

July Colored Pencil Challenge

This is my rendering of the "wet Canvas" colored pencil site, July Challenge. Its 71/2"x11" in size, done in Prismacolor pencils on Stonehenge paper.

Monday, July 6, 2009

A Better Photo of the New Painting

Here is a better shot of the latest colored pencil work.

Inspired by July 4th

This colored pencil "painting" was inspired by July 4th celebrations. I was thinking about all those soldiers who are overseas at this time and this image popped into my head. So I decided to draw it. It's on regular drawing paper & is done with Prismacolor pencils. The size is 14 x 17, unmounted. It is for sale if anyone's interested, just email me.

I've done some family portraits of my kids & grandkids, and a couple of small challenges, but look for more CP work to come. I've decided that watercolor & colored pencil will be my mediums of choice for art work along with art quilts. I'm not abandoning them at all, just taking a break.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

A new "Painting"

This is a colored pencil "painting" done in answer to a challenge on a site called "Wet Canvas". It's on vellum finish bristol board. Don't worry, I haven't abandoned quilting. I'm working on a silk & cotton piece with a painted horse. I'll post it once its finished.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Still Painting

I got an order of watercolor paper in this week, along with several yards of silk & some silk paints. I finished the horse painting. I'll post a pic once its completed as a quilt. I'm trying a new "board" to stretch watercolor paper. Its actually a piece of Homosote insulation board used in home building. We cut it in half (it comes in a 8'x4' sheet) & I'll tape a piece of wet paper to it & hopefully the paper will dry flat & tight,just as if it was on a wooded board. The homosote is much lighter weight & cheaper than plywood & therefor, easier to move around. We'll see if it works.

We had a pretty intense thunderstorm on Thursday about noon. We've had quite a bit of severe storms in the area lately but this one nearly formed a tornado in my back yard! Fortunately, there was no updraft so the tornado didn't form, but the spin was there, we saw the swirl in the clouds. Pretty scary. I've been 3 tornadoes, of too close for comfort, in my life & I don't want to go through any more. As of this writing, more heavy storms are in the forecast. We'll just have to see if any happen. On top of the heavy weather, the temps have turned hot all at once. Yesterday it was over 90 degrees & it was the same today,& for tomorrow too. These sudden weather changes are the pits. I'm never ready for them, but they arrive just the same. It'd be better if it was a gradual change, but no luck. That's just the way it is. That's all for now.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Watercolor Pieces

Here's a flower I painted as a practice piece. I'm working on a silk painted piece & will post it once finished.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Watercolor Tricks

I also learned that applying rubbing alcohol with a q-tip to wet watercolor makes the color dissipate in a circle, giving the look of a bubble with a bit of color in the middle. Along with the discovery of using a reducing glass to see the whole picture without standing back, that's two things I've learned this week. What's next? Stay tuned . . .

Friday, June 5, 2009

Back to the Art Part

I've gone pack to painting instead of concentrating just on quilting. I'm doing watercolors & am working on a silk painting (done with textile silk paints). The later is not turning out so well. Maybe I'm just rusty at it. I know I'm rusty at watercolors. I bought some videos on watercolor just as a refresher course. I'll keep working at it. Its been a long time. . .

Today is the last day of school for the season. Granddaughter is home & husband go off early. Its thrown my whole schedule off too. But, just as I get used to it in a few weeks, it will change again & it will be time to go back to school. I think I'd like my life to stay on the same schedule all year around, its much easier on us older folks with little change.

Later . . .

Wednesday, June 3, 2009


This is a 7" by 10" watercolor of the cabbage growing in my garden.

Here's a watercolor painting of a cupcake on a pieced placemat. It's 9" by 12".

Saturday, May 30, 2009

New Painting

This is a watercolor painting of a neighbor's house. The second painting is also watercolor called "birth of a dragon. It was painted a few months ago. I've returned to watercolors for a while. I'm just taking a break from quilting.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Glue Resist Works

This painting is done on silk using Elmer's clear glue as a resist (white lines) and is machine quilted. The glue is applied using a fine metal tip on a squeeze bottle and allowed to dry. The silk paint is applied, salt added for mottled effect. Once the paint is dry & heat set the glue is removed bu soaking it in room temp water for 10 minutes or so. The piece is allowed to dry & is pressed with an iron, then machine quilted & finished. This painting is about 15 inches square. There will be more of this type of paintings to come.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Painting again

I've taken some time, temporarily, off quilting and am once again working in watercolors. Painting is something I've done since I was a kid. I've tried many mediums but the one I like most is watercolor. It's relatively safe & doesn't take too many supplies. The one thing I'd forgotten is just how expensive the supplies are, nearly $20 for a sheet of good watercolor paper (22x30 inches, Arches brand, 300 lb paper)and Winsor Newton paints at between $8 & $15 per little tube. At least it goes a long way. Nothing's finished yet, but as soon as I complete a painting I'll display it here. As far as topics, I paint anything except portraits. They always look like someone, but exactly who? I just can't seem to get a true likeness of anyone. Oh well, there's plenty else to paint.

As far as the quilting, I'm experiencing a bit of burn out I think. I just need a break. Over the past 10 years I've made so many quilts that they've piled up around the house. I plan on only doing about 4 to 6 quilts per year and making them very, very good ones. We'll see how that goes.

More later . . .

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Another Painted Quilt

Here is the latest painted quilt I made. Its 34" x 36" & is an original design. Its completely painted, whole cloth piece.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

New Quilts

Here's some new quilts, recently completed. The Horse quilts are hand painted, the fairy quilt is an original design with beads & the Quilt Diva piece is not necessarily a self portrait (grin).
See these & more at the Piece Quilter's Annual Spring show, May 16, Saturday, 10 am - 4 pm at Nicholasville Christian Church basement, Maple & Second streets, Nicholasville, Ky (google location). Join us, won't you.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Horse Quilts

Here are two new quilts with hand painted elements, made in anticipation of the World Equestrian Games to be held In Lexington, KY next year. There's also a couple of pics of the detail of the quilts. They represent horse events of the world games, the quilt with the earth in the center has a background of different national flags & a red, ehite & blue border to represent this country's colors, the other (with the red x ) has a horse print background.
The panels are hand painted with textile paints & the quilts are machine piece & machine quilted.
They will both be shown at my guild's annual show May 16, 2009, Nicholasville KY
from 10 am - 4pm at Nicholasville Christian Church, West Maple St. Its just south of Lexington (if you're interested in coming to the show). Next year's show will be "horse" themed.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Tribute to Laurel Burch

This king sized quilt is made from 6 panels originated from artist Laurel Burch. (now deceased) and borders & drops from coordinating fabric, also Laurel Burch. I had it quilted (king sized is a little big for me to do), although I did make the pillow cases to go with the quilt. The black & white cat on the bed is real, one of my 6 total.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Journal Quilts

A couple of years ago I began doing Journal Quilts, little 8 1/2 by 11 inch pieces that reflect my life at the moment, its trials & triumphs. Here's a sampling.

This Blog . . .

Is about art in many forms, paintings, drawings, sketches, art quilts, and so forth. Welcome to my world, come with me & enjoy the journey.