Saturday, September 27, 2008

Painting up a storm

The chair's not done yet.
I did another small painting anyway.
Here it is.
Hope you like it.

Friday, September 26, 2008

DIY ~ frugally

Over the next while, I plan to highlight some of the cool blogs that you can find on the right hand side of this blog under the heading Blog Favourites of Mine.

If you know me at all, you know that I have pretty good "frugality skills". I do appreciate any new inspiring resources that can that can assist me and my family economically. Some time ago, I discovered an intriguing blog called Frugal Upstate. The author of the blog, Jenn, is a stay-at-home-mom and a self-confessed "frugalite". She offers scads of practical ideas, and her site's dedicated to helping readers (are they called blogees?) to save moolah while still living a good life.

One of the gems she shared in one of her posts was how to make homemade laundry detergent. It's super simple (only 3 ingredients) to make, it's incredibly cheap, the clothes wash beautifully and smell wonderful! See the little cup next to the bar of soap in this photo? That's how much you use of this soap per load. I'm impressed. Good bye Tide detergent!
By the way, you can see Jenn demonstrate Detergent Making on YouTube too. Obviously folks are looking for ways to save money these days, so I encourage everyone to check out the Frugal Upstate blog and tell her ART of Humungous Proportions sent you. Oh! And try out homemade laundry soap. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Panel 3 already?

I know, I know. What happened here? Panel two isn't even finished yet, and here's another drawing on the chair? Well, it's like this: my son Zachary made me an offer I couldn't refuse. He volunteered to draw panel 3 for me today, so all I have to do now is paint it!

As you can see the painting I chose for panel 3 of my Faux Gogh chair is Noon Rest from Work, painted by Van Gogh in January 1890. I've always loved this painting. The intense colour, the subject matter, everything. Everything, that is, except for the man's face. I've often wondered if the man's face was ever finished or not. To me, it seems somehow of lesser quality than Van Gogh's usual standard. Not to worry folks, I shall try to improve upon it! *Wink*

Zach did an awesome drawing don't you agree? It's a very detailed drawing, so it's going to be fun painting this panel. I wonder if he'll offer his "sketching services" for the back of the chair as well! Can anyone guess what I've chosen for the back panel?

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Chair on the 4th day of painting

Here's a little coup d'oeil of the second panel of my Faux Gogh chair. I just love the poplar trees in Van Gogh's Two Poplars on a Road Through the Hills (1889) painting. I find some of the original painting a bit boring visually though ~ sorry Vincent ~ so I'm improvising quite a bit on this panel.

Don't you love the autumn colours, and how they look, juxtaposed against the dark blue sky? This is my favourite time of the year and I think it's appropriate that I'm painting this autumn-ish panel while the leaves are turning brilliantly outside my window.

Most of panel two is finished, but there are a few more details to paint still. This Van Gogh sure had talent; did I mention that before?! Stay tuned ...

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Chair Day 3

It's kinda late for me cuz I've got to get up at 5 a.m. so I have time to just post a photo for you, so you can see how my Faux Gogh chair is progressing.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

A glimpse of things to come ...

I had bought a wing back chair a few weeks ago. This chair is for our home. Yesterday, I started the adventure of painting my second Faux Gogh chair.

After a rather lively family discussion, it was mutually decided that I should try something other than Starry Night on the front panel and seat, because I had been there, done that (ie., Arlene's Faux Gogh chair). So my task was to pour over Van Gogh paintings to try to figure out what would be the best choices for our chair.

One painting in particular caught my eye, which I think fits the style and proportions of the $19.99-Salvation-Army-Special that I'm painting this time round. It's called Wheat Field with Rising Sun. I love the colours, the movement and the title ~ which I shall rename Wheat Field with Dawn. (Note: there are mountains in this painting too, and since I'm a native British Columbian, it seems even more appropriate).

In case you're wondering, I'm not trying to paint an exact replica of Van Gogh's work ~ just my impressions of Vincent's impressions.

Anyway, here's a glimpse of the chair. This is very rough looking still as there will be a few more layers that need to be added before it's completed. However, I can see already that I'm going to really enjoy this project.

Also, I'll "re-realize" what an absolute master Vincent was. His work was powerful, dramatic and uniquely imaginative. Pure genius.

One must work and dare if one really wants to live. ~ Vincent Van Gogh 1853-1890

Monday, September 15, 2008

Inspiration strikes

Sometimes, it's a hard thing to find.
But I admit, it's much, much easier when you spend time in a book like this one. Look at the treasure that Arlene gave me the other day.
Van Gogh ~ The Complete Paintings. What an awesome book!
I spent ages looking through it with my piping hot cup of Passion Tea the other night.

And then yesterday, I painted what this Gladiola & Sunflower Faux Gogh acrylic painting. It will go up for sale at the Wild Blue Yonder Gift Show, hosted by the ever-lovely Bessie & Bea on October 24th & 25th.

I'm no Vincent, but it's fun to play with some of his techniques.

Next, I need to start thinking some inspiring ideas for my 12 Days of Christmas Swap contribution. Mail out day for that swap will be here before I know it. I also want to start painting on my chair THIS WEEK.

All this and looking for a new job ~ Methinks I need a 72 hour day!

Sunday, September 07, 2008

New painting to show off!

I just had to show you what my son, Zachary painted over the weekend.

He's been thinking that he wanted to do some experimenting with oil paints and the sunflowers I had on the kitchen table for the past few days seemed like the perfect subject matter.
I think the painting is beautiful.

He picked up on the vibrancy of the yellow and red sunflowers, didn't he? I love the swirling background ~ almost Van Gogh-ish, I dare say. It's going to look so beautiful on my gallery wall in our livingroom.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Speaking of food ...

Just to let you know the homemade salami I talked about in my last post was a big hit. I used half the salt that the recipe called for and yet it was really tasty.

And speaking of food and tasty, I must direct you to the Creative Sandwich blog. The ladies who write it ~ Bessie and Bea ~ talk about food a lot. Food and art. And often their take on food, art and life is hilarious. Wander on over there, and tell them I sent ya!