Friday, October 31, 2008

Field Notes: Common Merganser

I LOVED this project and may take off on a tangent of my own using this idea!

Very hard to narrow it down to one creature. We have 2 large beaver dams near here on Johnson Creek and I've been beaver spotting a lot lately. So I thought about featuring them, then there's the wonderful Great Blue Heron I see regularly. The more rare Belted Kingfisher and Little Green Heron, Lesser Scaup with the lavender blue beak and the funny Hooded Merganser couple flating the Brookside Pond.

So many candidates up for this local art election . . .

And the winner is . . . The Mergus Merganser

So I finally settled on this wonderful creature who I've never glimpsed in real life, but hope to one day. . . . and so many more to study and drawn.

Technique: Traced the different images onto tissue paper, glued to canvas board with gel medium, over painted with acrylic paint, gesso, pen and ink, water soluble oil pastels.

What Fun!


Art and image copyrighted 2008 by Suzie Wolfer

I Was Observing and Taking Notes on the Natural Wonders of the Desert...

When I saw that the theme for the month of October is 'Field Notes', I immediately thought about the small notebook that I used to sketch the incredible forms and textures of the cactuses and succulents at Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix, Arizona.
The sketches were done on October 6, 2006 at the same time I was attending the weekend visual journaling workshop in Tempe, AZ. Each time when I went to Phoenix, I made a point of visiting that botanical garden. I had to content with taking pictures early in the morning, as it can get very hot later during the summer days. But because I was there during the cooler month of October, I was able to stay there longer and do the sketches right on the spot.
The photographs of the cactus were taken last summer of 2008, and I converted them into black and white. I later colored them with a mixture of acrylics and glaze medium. The "trees" at the top of the board are duplicated three times from one sketch that I did on the other page in the small book. These trees are not palm trees but I believe they're Joshua trees.

Art and image copyrighted 2008 by &rew Borloz

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Northern Flicker

This months theme was definitely a challenge for me. I researched the theme with the information Tracie sent out and knew I would be going completely out of my comfort zone. I draw with my students all of the time, but to do a complete piece without all of my funky colors and design? The thought caused heart palpitations! But I dove in yesterday and here is my study of a little Northern Flicker using acrylics, pen & ink and colored pencil. I hope it fulfills the requirements of the theme. I was already so far out of my box, I couldn't travel any further.

Art and image copyrighted 2008 by Traci Donahue

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Field Notes from the Columbia River Gorge

I spent last weekend at Menucha, a beautiful retreat in the Columbia River Gorge. The weather was perfect - Indian Summer in all its glory. The deciduous trees were aflame with yellows and reds and the grounds covered with chestnuts, pine cones and leaves. I saw squirrels, deer and rambunctious Steller's Jays. Many flocks of geese flew their "v"s overhead, migrating to warmer climes before the first hard freeze. As I wandered the grounds, I sketched what I found and determined the species and name. The view of Crown Point is looking east down the river. This is a pen and ink sketch highlighted with watercolor. Enjoy!

Art and image copyrighted 2008 by Jan Harris

Monday, October 27, 2008

Notes of the Empty Nest

Art and image copyrighted 2008 by Marylin Huskamp

The birds of the forest are calling for thee,
And the shades and the glades are lonely;
Summer is there with her blossoms fair,
And you are absent only,
No bird that nests in the green-wood tree,
But sighs to greet you and kiss you,
all the violets yearn for your safe return,
But most of all I miss you.
Harry B. Smith

This piece helped me realize that when the young ones leave the nest it is NOT an ending but a beginning. There is evidence left as their tiny feathers stay safely in the nest but they have flown to new heights and experiences.

The tiny creatures begin an new adventure filled with excitement and exploration.

Perhaps they will someday return.

This is constructed of fiber fusion and paint.

Copyright: Marylin Huskamp 2008

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Lilies in the Pond

I am so very sorry it has taken me so long to post September's challenge - I overbooked myself these last two months and have struggled to meet my deadlines, this one included. I took a photo of this lily at my friend's home in her pond. I added a fish, for effect. I covered the canvas with absorbant medium after trying this technique in Lisa Kaus' class at Art and Soul. I then drew the design with pencil and colored the painting with Golden Acrylics. After the painting dried, I went back in and used Titanium White and water soluble crayons to heighten the color. I then waxed the surface and polished it. The wax does not photograph well, so the color is more muted in the photograph than on the canvas.
It was great meeting those of you I had not met in person before and wonderful to catch up with old friends at our Nature Gathered meeting at Starbucks. I look forward to our future challenges together, even more enjoyable now that I can put a face and a name together. Enjoy!

Art and image copyrighted 2008 by Jan Harris

Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Hiding Place

Hi everyone.....sorry...I've had the artwork done since BEFORE Art&Soul and just plain forgot to post. I tried to stick to just flowers....then just leaves but it just didn't feel right for me. Trees and tree tops have always been a safe haven for me so I guess this piece just comes naturally if you'll pardon the pun. The quote written in the background is as follows....

To live content with small means, to seek elegance rather than luxury, and refinement rather than fashion, to be worthy, not respectable, and wealthy, not rich, to study hard, think quietly, talk gently, act frankly, to listen to stars and birds, to babes and sages, with open heart, to bear all cheerfully, do all bravely, await occasions, hurry never, in a word to let the spiritual, unbidden and unconscious, grow up through the common, this is to be my symphony.
William Henry Channing

Hope you've enjoyed this entry.....Bee.

Art and image copyrighted 2008 by Bee Shay

Sunday, October 12, 2008


Inspired by Art and Soul, I tried a different approach using Marshall's Photo Oils and water soluble oil pastels to hand color a photo. I used a high end 100% cotton rag paper for inkjet and sealed it with Hahnemule photo preserver. I used the diffused glow setting and sepia toning on the photo then colored it. What fun!

And thanks again Traci for a great class at Art & Soul!

Art and image copyrighted 2008 by Suzie Wolfer

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Under the Canopy of Leaves

I like to take a daily stroll through a small park at the end of the street where I live. Sometimes I would stop in the middle of a group of trees and look up. This piece below shows what it is like to walk through the woods and enjoy the intricate patterns formed by the trees' leaves and branches.
Every time when I walked through this suburban park, I often felt like I was deep in the mountains or large forest. While many people would find it to be intimidating or too isolated, I enjoy going through the larger forests as I often find them to be peaceful or uplifting.

Art and image copyrighted 2008 by &rew Borloz

Friday, October 10, 2008

Flowers From My Garden

Background is fiber fused bits of fabric and yarns. The botanicals are from my garden. The tall light green/grey leaves are "dusty miller" and the flowers are petunias. I had pressed them so decided to use the real thing in my creation.

I used a purple fine point permanent marker to outline the flower petals and to make distinquishing markings where the petals had pressed over one another. Although the glitter looks silver it is really a very light pink glitter.

The tiny birds are punched from cardstock and glittered with the same pink glitter as the centers of the flowers.

I am at a loss for the name.

Art copyrighted by Marylin Huskamp 2008

Flower Power

For our flora challenge, I layered decorative paper, acylic paint, one of my line drawings and a collaged tissue paper flower. The flower is much brighter and a deeper rose color in person. I like the combination of line drawings and collage. I enjoyed getting to know many of you at Art and Soul.

Art copyrighted by Paula McNamee 2008

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Flora by Cynthia Mooney

Art copyrighted by Cynthia Mooney 2008

Monday, October 6, 2008

Nature Gathering

On Friday, October 3rd, seven members from the Nature Gathered Art Challenge shared a few brief moments face to face. It was an INCREDIBLE experience!

What started out as a somewhat daunting task to come together for such an early morning meeting, turned out to be a wonderful occasion, and a fond memory.

Jan and I appreciate those members that were able to make it, and truly missed those individuals that could not attend.

We want the entire group to please keep in mind that we will be having our art show at the 6th Street Gallery in August of 2009. There will be an artist reception, and it would be SUPER if we could all be together!

Below are a few photos that were taken while we enjoyed coffee, and each other's friendship.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Flora challenge

What beautiful, clever and artistic flowers you all have created. They make me smile.


Flora challenge

We're in the middle of remodeling our kitchen.I had a friend cut some pieces of the old birchplywood cabinet doors to use in this 8" x 8" challenge. It was heartbreaking to see so much of the great old wood go into the dumpster to be replaced with particle board and veneer.

My "Flora" piece began wilth previously prepared paper with a circle of free-form"iris folding." The petals were formed from old postcards and the whole thing was attached to the birch board with gel medium. I used my new digital camera to take the picture and I learned to get the photo out of my camera and upload it to Nature Gathered for the first time (mostly) by myself.

Art copyrighted by Judi Stack 2008