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

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

My Favorite Color

color-palette

My Favorite Color…

My favorite color is yellow
for sunshiney summer days
and chirpy gold finches
and the tartness of lemons.

My favorite color is blue
for the beauty of the sky and the ocean
and robin eggs
and star-shaped bachelor buttons.

My favorite color is red
for hearts
and raspberries and strawberries
and dark, dry wine.

My favorite color is pink
for lipstick
and nail polish
and my granddaughter’s cheeks.

My favorite color is green
for springtime grass
and soft, feathery hemlock trees
and arugula.

My favorite color is black
for yoga pants
and nighttime skies
and patent leather peep toe pumps.

My favorite color is brown
for the smell of the earth
and rich, creamy gravy
and the color of my morning coffee with cream.

My favorite color is purple
for sweet smelling lilacs
and intricate irises
and Barney the dinosaur.

My favorite color is white
for the first blanket of snow
and the stars that twinkle in a midnight sky
and marshmallow fluff.

How does anyone choose one favorite color
when there are so many reasons
to love every color?

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

PS  It was so challenging for me to choose only 20 colors to fill my new watercolor palette from the 55 colors I have in my stock.  But oh how fun it is to start fresh with a new clean palette and all the possibilities it can create.

Do you have a favorite color?  However do you choose?

 

 

I’ve Got the Blues

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“I’ve got the Blues” Watercolor 8 x 10 Impressionist Floral

I’ve got the Blues….

The watercolor blues…

creating shades of purples and greens by mixing Phthalo Blue with Permanent Rose and Hansa Yellow.

Yep – I’ve got the blues…

The Happy Blues.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Colors Used:  Daniel Smith Phthalo Blue, Hansa Yellow Medium, Permanent Rose.  Fabriano Artistico 140 lb. Cold Press Paper

Purple Irises in Watercolor

purple-iris-2-black-border-matted

Single Purple Iris Watercolor Loose 8 x 10

Purple Irises in Watercolor.

Continuing on my kick of violet and crimson and gold
and thinking floral…
and thinking Spring… (it continues to be in the 60’s and sunny here this crazy February of Spring in Western Pennsylvania!)

I created a couple iris paintings.

They are both very different, but I kinda love them both.

I painted these on Sunday after dinner on what was such a beautiful sunny, warm day.

I have to admit I gave purple irises a try on Saturday (in the midst of “construction” work on another project in the house).

I painted four or five different versions.  They were all terrible!

I hate days like that.  It makes me feel like I’ve “lost it.”   Not to say I’m anything magnificent in the whole big world of amazing watercolor artists.  But I’ve finally come to a place where I feel like I have some bit of my own style and can often appreciate the beauty in some of my work.

When I did this first one, I was so pleased.  I felt like I finally achieved what I was going for.

I thought I’d try another version, and I like it too.   In fact, I can’t decide between the two.  I wish the photos better represented what they look like – or maybe it ‘s just me, but they look so much better in real life.

purple-iris-1-black-border-matted

Single Violet Iris Loose Watercolor 8 x 10

Wishing you a day filled with simple little victories and moments to feel good about yourself!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi