Painting a Path – Preserving a Memory

Cliffs of Moher Pathway, Ireland in Watercolor – 11×14

Painting a Path – Preserving a Memory.

On our recent trip to Ireland, I took over 1,000 photos!

I narrowed that thousand down to about 100 that I chose to preserve in a photo book for hubby as a final gift for his birthday and memory book of our amazing trip.

One of my favorite photos is of this stone-lined path along the Cliffs of Moher.

I decided to try and paint it in watercolor – though I’m not a great landscape artist.

Hubby knew right away what and where it was, which made me smile.

I prefer to paint loose, rather than realistically, but sometimes that is even more of a challenge.

Maybe you see another spot or special place near a beach when you look at this painting?

No matter what you see, my hope is that it evokes joy and a sense of peace and happiness.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Distant Memories

A Distant Ship from Shore Watercolor

A Distant Ship from Shore Watercolor

Distant memories.

I’m not much of a landscape artist.
I try, and I struggle, but I’m going to keep on trying.

One day I was practicing skies and clouds as a warm-up,
and came up with this super quick, simple little study.

It just kind of turned into a beach scene
with sea and sand and tall grasses.

It reminds me of lazy summer family vacations spent
when the boys were young (and so were we!)

It reminds me of Nagshead and Corolla and the Outer Banks in North Carolina.
It reminds me of Myrtle Beach and Hilton Head in South Carolina.

It reminds me of Ocean City, New Jersey and Maryland.
Of hot sand and cool breezes and refreshing, salty water.

Distant, joy-filled memories
like this distant ship from shore.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

#WorldWatercolorMonth

Blue Heron Taking Flight in Watercolor

Blue Heron Taking Flight Watercolor - 8x10 140 lb Saunders Cold Press

Blue Heron Taking Flight Watercolor – 8×10 140 lb Saunders Cold Press

Blue Heron Taking Flight in Watercolor.

It’s been a busy week and weekend, but I found a little time Sunday evening to do a some painting.

I saw a photo my blogging friend Jenna took and posted on The Painted Apron that really drew me in.  I mentioned to Jenna the photo looked like a “painting in waiting.”

Jenna doesn’t prefer to paint birds or people. (She says she can’t, but I’m sure that’s not true!  She is a very gifted artist!)  She told me she would love for me to paint him.  So here he is Jenna.   I could probably do a bit better with another try, but no time left this weekend.  That’s okay…  I’m still an artist taking flight, and I’m going to reach for that soar!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Painting Punta Cana

Punta Cana Ocean Beach Palm Tree Watercolor 10x14

Punta Cana Ocean Beach Palm Tree Watercolor 10×14

I found some time the other evening to splash with some Cobalt Teal and Prussian Blue, Yellow Ochre and Burnt Umber, Quinacridone Gold and Green Gold watercolor to try to recreate the wonderful feeling of being on our recent little “rum-away” to Punta Cana.

“Landscapes” are a challenge to me.  After a couple of attempts at this first one, I decided to just splash these colors into an abstract.

Punta Cana Ocean Abstract Watercolor 10x14

Punta Cana Ocean Abstract Watercolor 10×14

I then tried turning my 10×14 portrait page to landscape and creating a scene with a few trees recalling how we discussed how amazing that some of them were still alive bending and swaying in the breeze.  There was one like the one below right in front of  “our spot on the beach” where lots of people stopped to lean on and pose for photos.

Punta Cana Ocean Beach Palm Trees Watercolor 10x14

Punta Cana Ocean Beach Palm Trees Watercolor 10×14

All of these paintings were done on 10 x 14″ sheets of Arches 300 lb cold pressed watercolor paper.

Hoping they help you to “feel” the ocean breeze!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

What a difference a day makes

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Last week Hubby and I went on a little week-long vacation to paradise.   (And it’s not a vacation to the beach unless I take a toe picture)

Away from a week of rain and unseasonably cold weather in Mars to a week of sunshine and warmth and sand and sea at a lovely resort in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic.  (And yep – this is what my hair looked like the entire week- curly and blowing in the sea breeze …  I gave up trying to do anything with it after about two days.)

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Riu Palace Bavaro was a lovely treat.  (The pool basically flowed toward the beach and into the ocean like magical liquid.)

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The colors of turquoise and teal and blue and green against the white sand might be the most beautiful I have ever seen.  (I can’t wait to find time to try to paint them!)

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We found the most perfect spot on the beach that was on a bit of a perch under a few palm trees where the breeze made even 84 degrees feel cool and comfy.  (And our little flamingo clips from our daughter-in-law before we left held our towels on the chaise lounges and made it easy for us to find our “saved” seats.)

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My view looking UP…

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It was fun to come back to the room each day to see what the staff had created out of bath towels (and fresh flowers ever day!)

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And the food was so magnificent!  (some healthy…)

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(and some just delicious!)

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If we walked far enough down the beach, we found some fun little shops (that seemed to just continue right into the ocean.)

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We ventured away from the resort for a couple of excursions.

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We loved the Outback Safari Adventure with Angel as our funny, informative, and engaging tour guide and Leo as our amazing driver who took us through tiny villages (this was an elementary school)

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and up into the hills of the “real” Dominican Republic to experience the culture.

We toured a home.  (the natives love colorful homes)

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The main part of the house had a living room (shown below), two bedrooms – one for the parents and the other for the five children, and a storage room.  (bathrooms are outside of the house)

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Of course I was interested in the kitchen.  (It was a separate building in this home)

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This family grew coffee and cacao and made their own coffee and cocoa butter (which I bought some of).  This is how chocolate begins…

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We also got to see a gentleman who hand rolled cigars as his profession for the past 30+ years (bought some of these for my boss).

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We saw beautiful flora  (bird of paradise plant below)

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and fauna (I think this Peacock is the REAL bird of paradise!)

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and experienced some of the natives and other creatures… (Hubby is a brave one – eh?!  Brave or CRAZY…. or possibly full of rum! wink!)

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As if the snakes weren’t enough…. Yes – that is a TARANTULA on this man’s FACE!

We ended this tour with a visit to a beach that was NOT occupied by resorts and where the natives hung out.  (It reminded us a bit of Hawaii)

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Another excursion took us out on a party catamaran boat which began with snorkeling in a small spot off shore with sting rays and nurse sharks!  (this time I was even brave!)

and ended with (more) rum and music and laughing (and extremely bad hair – thank goodness for this hat!).

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There are more stories…   but some things that happen in Punta Cana – need to stay in Punta Cana!  (or only be told in person… 🙂 )

It was an amazing week and wonderful vacation, but there really is no place like home.  (even though we left at noon in 84 degrees F sunshine and arrived late afternoon to 44 degrees F and SNOW showers in Mars!)

It was especially wonderful to come home to celebrate a belated Mother’s Day with Jake and Nick and Colleen who made a lovely Sunday brunch for us, brought plants and flowers (in real life AND in a surprise Debi Riley painting!)

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What a difference a day makes (or seven!)

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

 

 

Let’s Get Beachy

PP258 Wetlands Beach Theme

This week’s theme at The Paper Players is to make a “Clean & Simple” Beach-Themed card, so for my #PP258 design team inspiration card, I used a watercolor abstract I had made when I was at the beach recently.

I stamped some cute little seagulls on it from the StampinUp Wetlands Stamp Set.  Then I simply added a black die-cut “hello” greeting, matted the scene in black, and put on a crumb cake card stock.  Voila – a clean and simple “Let’s Get Beachy” card.

PP258 Wetlands Beach Theme

Hope some of you will join us this week at The Paper Players with your interpretation of “Let’s Get Beachy!”

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Watercolor from the Beach

sea turtle watercolor card

It was fun to do a little dabbling in watercolor painting while at the beach last week.  And it was hard to think of anything besides the beach to paint while there!

One of the highlights of our little trip, however, was seeing a nest of endangered sea turtles hatch and make their way to the ocean.  72 hatched from the nest of over 100 eggs, and only about 1 percent will make it to maturation.  There was a group of volunteers that guarded the nest and helped them make it to the ocean safely without being scooped up by the birds waiting nearby.  Chances are many will not make it in the sea as so many predators await, but those that do make it to maturity can live up to 80 years.  It is quite fascinating actually, and you can learn more about sea turtles here and here.

So one of my paintings is of a sea turtle making its way into the ocean.

sea gull watercolor card

Another is a very abstract sand, sea, air  painting with a sea gull silhouette flying.

ocean sail boat watercolor card

And the other is just a simple seascape and sky with a sailboat.

I made these three little paintings into note cards to send to my three chicas to thank them for a great GFC week.

Hope you have a great day wherever you are and whatever you are doing.

Cheers & Hugs,

Jodi

Thankful

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I am thankful for…
nights that turned into mornings,
friends that turned into family,
and dreams that turned into reality.*

As I spend time this week with some bestie friends that have become like family…
and got to experience this sunrise yesterday morning on the beach…
I thought it apropos to share this quote I found that resonates so deeply with me.

Wishing all of this and more for you as well.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

*source:  http://bearandlionmama.com/2014/01/a-new-year.html