Painting Purple Posies

Purple Crocus Spring Watercolor 10x14" 300 lb Arches Cold Press

Purple Crocus Spring Watercolor 10×14″ 300 lb Arches Cold Press

Painting Purple Posies.

Though I could never create the beauty Mother Nature does…

especially in Spring when the purple crocuses pop up and  remind us once again of the hope of life and rebirth and renewal…

I couldn’t resist painting my impression of these beauties I captured and posted yesterday.

It was good to splash some Winsor Violet and Opera Rose and Prussian Blue and Cadmium Yellow with a touch of Perylene Green.

And instead of trying to recreate them, my goal was to paint how they made me feel.

I struggle with stopping here or filling in the details to make them look more realistic.  But ultimately, my love for impressionistic painting wins, and I stopped.

Before I ever ventured into this amazing joy of painting, I would have thought this way easier than exactly duplicating or painting more realistic representations, but the urge to “fiddle” and “replicate” typically leaves me feeling less satisfied.

To restrain….

To stop “before…”

To leave a bit – even if only a teensy bit – to the imagination…

is a challenge…

But a crazy and totally fulfilling, joyful experience when it works.

Not convinced I hit it with this one, but the joy  in the journey might just be as satisfying as the ultimate goal.

Kinda like life – huh?

It’s a journey – meant to be embraced and expressed and felt – all along the way.

Once we reach the destination – then what?

Cheers  & Hugs,
Jodi

 

A “New” Easel for My Art Studio

A “New” Easel for My Art Studio.

Yesterday, I was gifted with something very special for my new art studio.

As many of you may recall, my brother passed away two days after Christmas – just a few months ago.  He sadly took his own life.  He was a troubled man who struggled with alcoholism, but was once a bright, highly intelligent boy and handsome young man who lost his way due to the disease that took over his life.

I came to find out he went through a period where he had a passion for art and tried his hand at painting.  Though I have not seen any of the work he did, his friend generously offered his art easel to me as a small remembrance of him.

And so I placed it next to my current one hubby bought me when I decided I wanted to try my hand at painting almost two years ago.  He has been so supportive and encouraging, and even made me a room (though he will tell it much less romantically stating he was tired of my art stuff all over the house!).

How couldn’t one enjoy and feel loved spending time in a room made for me by my hubby and with so many beautiful things from so many wonderful friends and family members.

And now this special remembrance.

Finding joy in the ordinary

Cherishing the moments

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

To see some of my artwork (as well as my daughter-in-laws beautiful rustic hand-painted signs) for sale, feel free to visit us at McKinneyX2Designs on Etsy.

March Madness Ambiguity

Earth, Light, & Wind Abstract Brusho Watercolor

Earth, Light, & Wind Abstract Brusho Watercolor

Like the ambiguity of the weather in March,
do you ever wonder why…

there is no ham in hamburger,
or no egg in eggplant?

Do you ever wonder why…

Chili is hot
and being hot is cool?

and if we say, “She sees a lot,”
does she see much or a piece of land?

Have you considered why…

when the stars come out, they are visible,
but when we turn the lights out, they are invisible?

The ambiguity of this existence
we call life.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Abstract Watercolor done with Brusho Crystal Colours:  Earth, Light & Wind

 

The Best Things in Life

Abstract Gold Flower 8x10 Arches 140lb Hot Press

Abstract Gold Flower 8×10 Arches 140lb Hot Press

The Best Things in Life…
aren’t things.

The Best Things in Life are..

Hugs -real, authentic, tight bear hugs,

Family – and friends who are our chosen family,

Smiles – the kind where your eyes and cheeks and whole face smiles,

Laughter – from the belly that can’t be contained,

Happy memories – of cherished moments,

Love – the verb, the action, the undeniable, overwhelming choice and joy.

The Best Things in Life
aren’t things.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Daniel Smith Watercolors:  Quinacridone Gold, Perylene Green

Something about Sunflowers

Sunflower Loose Watercolor 11x14 on 140lb Fabriano Artistico

Sunflower Loose Watercolor 11×14 on 140lb Fabriano Artistico

There’s something about sunflowers
that draws me in artistically again and again.
I’ve painted several versions in the past year or so
since I’ve taken on this challenging and fun journey of watercolor.

I saw several loose and similar to this on Pinterest while perusing
and had the urge to paint sunflowers again.
There’s just something about sunflowers!

For this one, I wanted to work on creating lots of layers of greens from Prussian blue, so I created this little mixing tester sheet ahead of my painting to see what colors could be created from mixing it with yellows and browns.  Look at all of these amazing colors.

Daniel Smith Watercolors used:  Prussian Blue, Quinacridone Gold, Burnt Sienna, Yellow Ochre, Cadmium Yellow Light Hue, Raw Sienna

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

 

PS  This original painting, as well as prints and cards are available at our Etsy Shop:  McKinneyX2Designs

A Special Happy Birthday

Watercolor Birthday Card in Prussian Blue and Burnt Sienna

A Special Happy Birthday.

Every year on this day
is a very special day to me.

27 years ago
on a Saturday at 1:57 a.m.

a perfect and chubby 10 pound
baby boy blessed my life.

That sweet little boy
grew into an even sweeter man.

Thank you for the joy and happiness and love
you bring to my life.

May this year be the best…
until the next.

When I wish that it is the best,
like I feel being your mom.

Every year was the best – until the next,
and they still continue to be.

Happy Birthday NIck!

With so much love,
Mom

Snowstorm Stella & Perky Portulacas

Perky Portulacas in Pink & Orange – 8×10 Watercolor on Saunders 140 lb Cold Press

Snowstorm Stella & Perky Portulacas.

Last night
when all the talk was about Snowstorm Stella

that is supposed to be coming our way…
(could a snowstorm have a lovelier name?!)

I thought of my Grandma –
my Stella Star.

And as I painted what started out to possibly be poppies,
they seemed to emerge as perky portulacas.

When I think of Grandma,
I think of portulacas.

Grandma had a next door neighbor and best buddy
who grew the most amazing portulacas.

I remembered hot, lazy summer evenings
with Grandma and her friend and the talks we had.

I remember all the things I learned about life and love
from these special times.

So as I smiled at the snowstorm with the most beautiful name,
I fondly reminisced about my Grandma and portulacas.

And these wild and loose and crazy
pink and orange flowers grew on the page

With joy and happiness
and gratitude and love.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Watercolor Paint:  Daniel Smith Cadmium Orange, Winsor & Newton Permanent Rose, Daniel Smith Lemon Yellow, Daniel Smith Cobalt Blue

 

Mixing Basics in Watercolor: Blue, Red, & Yellow

 

Mixing Basics in Watercolor:  Blue – Red – Yellow.

Going back to basics with my new watercolor palette and realizing all the colors that can be created by using three simple basics.  For all three of these simple, loose, impressionistic flowers, I used the same colors:  Cobalt Blue, Permanent Rose, and Lemon Yellow.

For the first I mixed Permanent Rose with just a drop of Cobalt Blue for the flowers and Cobalt Blue and Lemon Yellow pretty equally for the green.

For the second I mixed Cobalt Blue with just a drop of Permanent Rose for the flowers and Cobalt Blue and Lemon Yellow with an emphasis on the Cobalt Blue in places nearer the flower.

For the third I mixed Lemon Yellow with just a drop of Permanent Rose for the flowers and Cobalt Blue and Lemon Yellow, but only a tiny bit of Cobalt Blue to lighten up the green.

And there are likely hundreds more color combinations in various shades that could be achieved by simply using these three basic colors.

It’s fun and easy and creates such clean, bright, un-muddied results when you keep it simple.

I also used one brush for everything – the Rekab 320S #2 Squirrel Mop (which I could only find by ordering from Australia, but LOVE it – also recommended by Debi Riley),  It is so versatile, but I really had to learn to use it after using inexpensive synthetic brushes at first.  This brush holds a lot of water and paint.  It also can come to a fine point and do small lines with a light touch, and can make fat, wash strokes too.

So if you are even thinking of giving watercolor painting a try…. three colors, one brush (you don’t have to order from Australia – but find a nice natural hair medium sized brush to achieve results you will really enjoy) and some paper (I recommend you start with Cold Press 140lb Arches) is really all you need to create some beauty and experiment with this wonderful hobby.

Thanks to the inspiration of Debi Riley on Watercolor Basics!  So much to learn from such talent!

Enjoy the journey!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Every Bunny Loves Some Bunny Sometime

Funny Bunny 8×10 Watercolor

Every Bunny Loves Some Bunny Sometime…

Every Bunny falls in love somehow…

Well – I’m surely not Dean Martin, but I do love painting bunnies…

especially funny bunnies this time of year with Spring and Easter right around the corner.

And Remember – in case you doubt…

You Alone are Enough
You have nothing to prove
to Any Bunny!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

I used only three colors to create all of the colors in this silly critter:  Cobalt Blue, Permanent Rose, and Quinacridone Gold, which also also created purples and greens and a dark “mud” to be almost black without looking too black.

 

My Favorite Watercolor Subject

clara-3-months-old-watercolor-painting-8x10-140lb-saunders

Baby C Watercolor 030117 8×10 140 lb Saunders

I had fun a couple evenings this week playing in my new Art Studio painting one of my favorite subjects.

Wonder what she will think of these one day?  Laugh?  Cry?

Hopefully there will be more, and they will be sweet memories to her of a grandma that adored her – right from the start.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi