Mason the Pickle-Loving Monkey

Mason the Monkey 11×14 Watercolor

Mason the Pickle-Loving Monkey.

Mason was a monkey that many considered fickle.
Instead of eating bananas, Mason loved a sour dill pickle.

He would often pay a nickel,
and sometimes even triple

for that tart, tangy prickle
of a pickle on pumpernickel.

On tasting leaves and seeds, he was truly noncommittal,
for his taste buds and his palate, they simply did not tickle.

He loved the pleasant pucker, and he would often stickle
over anything that was even remotely artificial.

Dilled cucumbers he claimed to be the official
absolute favorite and most nutritional.

 

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Mason the Pickle-Loving Monkey is another in a series of paintings and poems I am working on for a new children’s book.  This new book will be special because it is going to feature characters that are based on the grandchildren of my best friends.  Mason is the grandson of Joyce, son of Nikole, and brother of Ella.

Prints and greeting cards of all of these paintings are available in our McKinneyX2Designs Etsy shop, where you can also order a customized painting and poem of or for someone dear to you. 

Other fun products, like pillows, canvas prints, tote bags and much more are also available at our Mx2D Society6 Shop.

I will begin putting my book together soon and let you all know about it!  If you are interested in my first children’s book of watercolor animals and silly poems, you can find it here:  Klaus the Mouse and Other Silly Animal Tales.

Harper the Happy Hippo

Harper the Happy Hippo.

In a lazy, shallow river just outside of Ethiopia
lived Harper the happy hippo in a heavenly utopia.

The sun was always shining
while Harper was oft reclining.

Flamingos and pelicans and even a rare crane
shared and reveled in the balmy tropical terrain.

Harper loved to sing and play.
She smiled and chuckled and snorted all day.

She started a band
since her voice was in such demand.

She was surely the star of the show,
for who wouldn’t go

to see a purple singing hippo with pink painted toes
smiling and singing to the most beautiful prose.

A zebra was on the drums
while a cheetah’s guitar strings strummed.

Cymbals were clanged and clashed by a lively red-throated gazelle.
She was Harper’s closest girlfriend, and her name was Adele.

There wasn’t a happier hippo across the sea or land
than Harper the happy hippo and her Ethiopian wildlife band.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

PS  Harper the Hippo is the second painting for my dear friend Pam (namesake, by the way, for Klaus’ friend Pam the Lamb).  Harper is the baby sister of Lucas – Pam’s two grandchildren.   If you’d like to learn more about my process or sales of paintings, poems, cards, pillows, and books, visit Sunday’s post here.

Harper the Happy Hippo Pillow

Lucas the Lucky Lion

Lucas the Lucky Lion OriginalWatercolor Painting – 11×14

Lucas the Lucky Lion.

In a faraway land that was known as Zion,
lived Lucas, the exceedingly lucky little lion.

No matter the game – played morning or afternoon,
Lucas the lion was always the most opportune.

He seemed to be blessed
with the very best success.

And never did he possess
even the teeniest bit of stress.

Lucas knew he was king
of kickball and juggling.

This extremely lucky lion was tops at kicking balls and batting.
He even stole the show when dribbling, dunking, and passing.

But the thing that made Lucas the luckiest of all –
the skill that made him so very exceptional…

Was Lucas the Lucky Lion’s quintessential charm.
For there wasn’t a friend or foe he couldn’t charismatically disarm.

************************************************

Lucas the Lion is a special surprise for one of my BFs.  I was looking for recommendations on what to paint after taking a little break for the holidays, and she requested a Lucas the Lion and Harper the Hippo for her two grandchildren, who are fans of Klaus the Mouse.

I thought you might like to see a bit of the process I go through for a painting.

First I draw a pencil sketch.

Once I am happy with a design, I either redraw in pencil on watercolor paper or use a light box to trace the basic outline.

If the pencil markings are too dark, I then use a kneaded putty eraser to lighten up the lines.  If needed, I use some masking fluid to preserve any areas I want to assure stay white.

I then consider colors using my watercolor swatch charts, choose a few brushes I may use, fill my water bucket, and assure paper towels and a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser sponge are handy.

I am then ready to put on my first wash of paint.

After the first wash is dry, I rub off the masking fluid, and I begin adding layers, allowing to dry as necessary until I am happy with the painting.

Once my original is finished, I take the best photo I can of it for printing.  Most all of my paintings are available in our McKinneyX2Design Etsy shop in prints (sizes 11×14, 8×10, and 5×7 – matted or not) and greeting cards, like below.  For those friends who are local, my daughter-in-law (who makes beautiful rustic wood pallet signs) and I also have our art on display and available at Berry Vine Gifts in BradfordWoods, PA.  You can find all of our information here.

  

Look for Harper the Happy Hippo in my next post here at The CreativeLifeInBetween, which is scheduled to post Tuesday.

By the way, if you are interested in a custom watercolor painting of an animal character for a child you love, you can order via our McKinneyX2Designs Etsy shop at this link.  Let me know the child’s name and the animal you would like.  It will be an 11×14 original watercolor painting.  If you would like an original rhyming poem to go with it, that can also be ordered for an additional charge.  It will come printed on an 8.5×11 sturdy cardstock sheet that can also be framed.  Please allow two weeks for any custom orders.

My artwork can also be made into pillows and clocks and coasters and mugs and tote bags and a lot of other fun things – all available at Society6.  Let me know if there is a piece you like that I should add there.

Lucas the Lion Pillow

I hope you are all enjoying the beginning of this new year and settling back into your normal routines after the busy holiday season.  It was good to undecorate from the holidays yesterday and find time to paint again.

Happy Sunday!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Getting Ready

Bunny’s First Woodland Christmas Watercolor – 11×14

Getting Ready.

My DIL and “biz partner,” Colleen, and I have been busy getting ready for an event this coming weekend for McKinneyX2Designs – the Mars Craft Show.

For those of you not from Mars :), it’s really a bigger event than you can imagine, and we are fortunate to be a part of it!

Colleen is been busy making these adorable little trees and festive holiday signs.

While I’ve been busy painting

Dancing Penguin Watercolor 11×14

and printing

and folding

and boxing.

We are excited to share our joy!  The Mars Craft Show features hundreds of local artisans spread out between the Mars Middle School and Mars High School (where you can find us – in the Auxilliary Gym).  A shuttle bus runs all day between the two buildings between 10am and 4pm on Saturday, November 17, 2018.

In addition to this event, we have two special birthdays coming up for a Pap Pap and granddaughter who share the same birthday.  I also have a short overnight business trip this week, so a lot going on.

I’m going to take a few days off from blogging, so if you don’t hear from me, know I am just busy and having fun and will be back soon.

If you like what you see here and are local, we hope you will visit us at the Mars Craft Show or Christmas in the Woods at Berry Vine Gifts this weekend.  If you are not local, please visit our Etsy shop or our website for more information.

Back to getting ready!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

A Bright Poinsettia

Bright Poinsettia 11×14 Original Watercolor

A Bright Poinsettia.

I so enjoyed painting this bright and happy poinsettia recently.
(And it’s nice to think bright and happy thoughts with all the dark and sad news of the past few days.)

Using my dagger brush (which I need to use more often),  it was fun to just let this painting evolve and happen on the paper.  The dagger brush is “floppy” and loose, yet also allows for wonderful control changing wide strokes to points.

I’m really pleased with how it turned out!  It actually makes me smile to look at.

I’m also thrilled that my new printer is able to produce gorgeous 11×14 prints that look so much like the original, so this option will be added to my paintings in our McKinneyX2Designs Etsy shop.  I also added this design to the Society6 shop, so it can be made into pillows and mugs and other fun stuff.

Wishing you a bright and happy day!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

PS  Only 55 days until Christmas  😉   and only 2 1/2 weeks until the big Mars Craft Show  (Saturday, 11/17/18) AND Christmas in the Woods at Berry Vine Gifts (11/16-18/18)

Under the Sea

Under the Sea – Dolphin Watercolor 11×14

Under the Sea.

It seems like such a magical place to me.

So when I was trying to decide what I could see

in the splashing I created so free…

A fish… a dolphin… a magical creature came to be.

I recently bought a new printer – A Canon Pixma Pro-100, and I was anxious to see how it worked creating prints and cards.  I am so pleased!  Above is a shot of the original with a mat and frame loosely placed on it to see what it might look like framed, as well as an 8×10 print and cards I printed on my new printer.

If you are looking for me…
under the sea is where I’ll be dreaming to be.

Cheers & Hugs,

Jodi

I Spy a Deer

I Spy a Deer.

This past weekend, I pondered a watercolor page I’d done one evening the week prior, where I simply brushed and splashed.

Sometimes that is all I want to do…  just wet a piece of paper, drop in some color, and let the magic happen.  It is a great stress reliever to unwind for me.

Then I carried it around on Saturday – – just having it in within sight in the room with me wherever I was while I went about other things around the house.

Before I could do anything more with it, we had a birthday party to go to, so I just let it simmer in my brain.

On Sunday morning, I couldn’t wait to wake up and paint.  At 6am, I hopped out of bed, poured a cup of coffee, and tip-toed up to my art studio while hubby and Charlie remained in bed.

I knew what I was going to do with it.   In the close-up below, can you see my inspiration?  I had contempleted a bird…..  I considered a lamb…   I almost decided on a giraffe.  Then I saw what I had to paint.  A deer!  A handsome buck was peering at me as clear as day.

Do you see it?  I started with the eye, then the nose, the ears and horns… just adding enough detail to allow the brain to fill in the rest.  It’s a bit inspired by the Jean Haines technique I so adore!

I love how it turned out!

So in addition to adding to our McKinneyX2Designs ETSY shop, I added it to our Society6 page as well, so I could see what it would look like on pillows and iPhone cases and all the other fun ways they convert art into products!

What will you spy in the things you come across today?  Keep your mind open, and you never know what you might find!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

 

Pumpkin it up around the House

Pumpkin it up around the House.

The heat wave finally broke yesterday around here, and it is beginning to feel like Fall!

This year I added a few new pumpkins to my collection in the form of pillows with my watercolor artwork on.

I decided to add a few of my art pieces to a McKinneyX2Designs Society6 shop to see how it would turn out.  I’m pretty thrilled with the quality of the pillows and pouches I ordered.

Besides that are some of my collection through the years, including signs and rustic pumpkins made by my DIL for our McKinneyX2 Etsy Shop and on display at Berry Vine Gifts in Bradford Woods (which by the way is holding a Fall Festival this weekend where I will be working this afternoon!)

I have pumpkins at the front door…

and at the back door.

There are pumpkins here..

and there…

and everywhere!

I’m hoping to add a few more to my collection today at the Fall Festival,

because I still have some pumpkin-less spaces!

If you would like to see more of my art on pillows and pouches and cups and mugs and notebooks and iPhone cases, and even furniture, check it out here:  Mx2 Society6.   There’s even a great Fall sale going on.  We also have some super new stuff added to our ETSY shop so you can Pumpkin it up around the house!

Happy Fall Y’All!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

 

Jenna’s Roses in Watercolor

Jenna's Roses in Impressionist Watercolor 8x10 Saunders 140lb Cold Press

Jenna’s Roses in Impressionist Watercolor 8×10 Saunders 140lb Cold Press

Jenna’s Roses in Watercolor.

My super-talented, creative, artistic blogging friend, Jenna at The Painted Apron reached out recently to ask if I was interested in a “crazy idea.”

Jenna asked if I would be interested in both of us doing a floral watercolor from the same photo and sharing them to show how every artist interprets differently and has their own unique style.

I immediately said “Yes!”  Initially honored and excited, then doubtful and nervous, I waited for Jenna to provide the photo.

When Jenna sent this photo of gorgeous roses, I said “Let’s do it!”  Then I thought…. what did I get myself into?!  Roses are so complex and intricate.  And look at all of the detail in this photo.  My first painting was an effort to replicate.  It was ok, but it wasn’t “Jodi.”

I then decided to just create the beauty I felt from the photo, and I came up with my version.  Still not sure I love it, but I like it… and I really, really enjoyed creating it.   I painted it this past weekend during a sunny afternoon on the deck.  It is fun and completely different painting outdoors when the air and sun dries the paint much faster than while inside in the studio.

Here is Jenna’s painting of the rose photo.  Isn’t it beautiful?!   She is a real artist!

Jenna is my blogger “soul sister” in so many ways.  We both enjoy being creative with art and recipes and decorating and entertaining.  Be sure to check out her blog, The Painted Apron.  I’m sure you will enjoy!  Jenna also sells her art at www.society6.com/paintedapron where her art is made into tote bags and mugs and pillows and iPhone skins and many other beautiful things.  Hope you will check it out.

Thanks for the fun challenge, Jenna!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi