Tuesday, February 19, 2019

What's in a Bookshop name?

Sketch based on my local bookshop, Left Bank Books

Have you seen the illustrated books 
Books & Mortar:
A Celebration of The Local Bookstore
by Gibbs M. Smith?
Footnotes from the World's Greatest Bookstores 
by Bob Eckstein? 
(There is also a box of postcards of his illustrations.)

This is some of  what I found in these books & 
in the What's Next brochures
that are given away at independent bookstores:

One More Page Books, Arlington VA
The Dog Eared Book, Palmyra NY
Bookbug, Kalamazoo MI
Once Upon a Time, Montrose CA
Hooray For Books! Alexandria VA
Red Balloon Bookshop, St Paul MN
The Corner Bookstore, NY NY
Politics & Prose, Washington DC (of course!)
Books & Books, Coral Gables, FLA
The King's English Bookshop, Salt Lake City UT
Page & Palette, Fairhope ALA

Is your local bookshop listed here?
What is the name of your local bookstore?
What would YOU name a bookshop?
Leave your answers with a comment!

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Valentine's Day Fun

I tried printing this Valentine Girl
with my printer.
 But the colors came out badly.
So I did a black & white version 
& added just a few colors by hand.
Valentine Girl's source was a small, 
super quick sketch 
I did last summer
when a woman zipped past me 
while I was sketching a church.

 I led our Library Art Group this week in making
non-adhesive, folded gift boxes. 
Valentine's Day has been a fun inspiration 
for me since childhood.
I used the January page from a 
beautiful letterpress calendar for this box.
I've had a lot of painted snippets around, 
great for adorning boxes.
Happy Valentine's Day!

Friday, February 8, 2019

Exploring Rather Than Wandering

Sketchbook Wandering. 
I've done it here for almost 7 years!!!!!
Change is coming...
Sketching & writing still bring me joy & comfort, 
as when I took a pause from last Saturday's winter festivities
at a café on Main St. 
I sat by a wall.
My sketchbook made the scene feel like interesting theater.

There are people who appreciate my sketches, 
& some have learned from my process.

A new blog might be forming...
expression, discovery, exploration, reflection, 
& who knows what else!  

Perhaps it's a little chaotic at the moment.
Above, my 1st time making marks with a brush & 
 "high flow" acrylic paints.
(Thanks, for introducing me, Beth. Go to Sew Sew Art.)

My marks turned to shapes & my shapes 
arranged themselves.
Aaaah, order...but maybe not too much...
And so many possibilities!!
Back to basics: My experimental lines 
turned into rectangles that felt stuck.
They wanted to be cut out so that they could...

More will be revealed...

Sunday, January 27, 2019

What to Do? Sketch!

What to do when you go to a meeting
& no one else shows up?

You could

1. Get angry

2. Feel disappointed

3. Sketch! And feel lucky that you're getting
some bonus sketching time
while waiting to see if anyone comes.

4. Oh, and be glad that you have your
traveling sketch kit with you.

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

The Skeletal Views of Winter

Out the living room window on a cloudy, post snowfall day. 
In summer hummingbirds frequented the azalea bush.
They & the blossoms are gone,
but skeletal scenes of winter are very much here!

Stage 1 of the sketch. The minimalism of winter!
Sketchbook Wandering close to home...

Friday, January 18, 2019

In and Out of Lines

My tiny holiday Zumba Girls have changed to Winter Girls.
When I'm watercoloring their fashions, I'm reminded of
my hours of coloring in childhood. 
Later coloring books were shunned by everyone I knew
as being detrimental to creativity. 
Now they are tremendously popular with adults,
& are sold as meditative activities. 
Are coloring books good or bad or neither?
My Prismacolors have replaced Crayolas.
Making this chart also felt like childhood coloring days.
I've been thinking about staying in lines, or not,
sharp edges verses soft, tight verses loose. 
Punching out colored penciled stars from my swatches creates sharp, 
manufactured edges and shapes.
Is this good for creativity, or bad, or neither?

What are your thoughts?

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Colored Pencils with Rubber Stamp Printing

Accordion fold card, using a Rubber Stamp "0"
and colored pencil.

 Our Library Art Group had a presentation 
of Rubber Stamping, by one of our participants,
a retired art teacher & awesome artist.
She laid out a beautiful assortment
Stamps, inks, papers, &, what caught MY eye...
a tin of Ticonderoga Colored Pencils! 000000H!!
I started randomly printing with an "0".
 Then played with the accordion format.
 Something about the repetition with variety, very satisfying.
Something about being minimal when I could have chosen
a lot of different materials.
It seems to be my theme these days: 

Leslie showed us no models, and barely gave a demo.
Therefore, every one was free to follow their own themes.
All processes & works were different from one another.
 I love my old Prismacolors, but seeing the new set of
Ticonderogas was very exciting!! A brand new toy!

After, I made some color charts. 
My Prismacolors remain my favorites, 
but the Ticonderoga's are fun! 
They got me to re-explore my own colors. 
Thanks to Leslie & to our monthly Art Group for 
lots of inspiration & fun!

Monday, January 7, 2019

Mini Zumba Greetings

I failed to send Christmas cards this year. 
But I have promised myself that I will send winter cards.
I did make up some mini-cards to give to a few local folks,
some of them being fellow Zumba enthusiasts.

 And a card for my Zumba teacher. 
I have enormous gratitude for her. 
This dance & her exercise classes have enriched
my life & my health tremendously!!!

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Sketching While Waiting

One of my favorite rewards of sketching:
At the grocery store I had fun instead of impatience
while waiting for J to shop. 
I remembered to bring my new 7 X 9" book 
(previous post) & my Extra Fine LAMY pen!!

PS. For those of you on the coast of Maine:
Artist & Craftsman in Portland 
now carries LAMY fountain pens!
And Molly over there is an expert!

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Sketchbooks. End of 2018: Bring in the New, Continue the Old

 I have a new, larger sketchbook!! Paper Blanks, 7 X 9"!!
I use these for journal writing, but I got an extra one on sale
so I turned it into a sketchbook.
LAMY AL STAR fountain pens. I have "a few."
In the Wyeth Center at the Farnsworth Art Museum. 
The annual model train village, "Share the Wonder."
Sketching the mini buildings & cars is a fun way 
to work with linear perspective.
On the left: I sketched a line drawing that Jamie Wyeth
did when he was very young. Part of a series featuring
a Christmas wreath as a "character" in a medieval Christmas.
NC Wyeth's large painting: "The Morris House: Port Clyde". 
Can't do it justice with a quick sketch 
as the colors are so beautiful!!!
But sketching gave me the opportunity 
to scrutinize it more closely, & to gaze longer.
The Wyeth Center is only open a couple of more days.
I went to say good bye to the NC Wyeth paintings upstairs.
When they are back on display sometime, you have to come to Maine to see them in person!
And to see the Maine coast on which they are based!

I've been sketching in my usual 4 X 6" 
Pentallic Traveler Sketchbook.
It also doubles as my Art Learning Journal. 
Both live sketches & notes from books, 
museums, etc. go in there.
 Earlier in the month I went to the Farnsworth 
with an artist friend who wore an adorable felted hat
that she'd found at a thrift store. She sketched 
the gold dragon in the Chinese Zodiac exhibition.
She made a lot of people happy with that hat!
 Waiting in the small town post office line before Christmas.
A relatively small line in a relatively small town.
We enjoyed good natured conversations while waiting.
And for me, sketching made it go very fast.

At the Belfast Saturday Indoor Farmer's Market.

It is my Saturday morning ritual to go there. 
The vendors are not just farmers.
They are artisans, artists & musicians too.
They are local.
 LL Bean, the flagship store is like a theme park. 
There are these real stuffed animals on display.
While waiting for J to try on clothes, I sketched 
"The Three Headless Men of LL Bean." (my title.)

 Trip to Boston in November. QUICK sketches! 
It was my very fist visit to
The Granary Burying Ground. Boston's 3rd oldest cemetary
where many notable men 
from the American Revolution are buried.

 I guess the live people interested me 
more than the dead ones, though it was impressive.

 A quick stop to the Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University. "Animal-Shaped Vessels from the Ancient World."

Subway Sketching, 
The Red Line from Cambridge back to Boston.
 Thanks for browsing through my sketches.
I wish you the happy pursuit of your passions
& pastimes in 2019.