Category Archives: Art

Finally a Sweater


My First Sweater!

My First Sweater!


I’ve been working hard at learning to knit this year.  My first lessons were in April and I’ve working on cowls, some lace, shawls and hyperbolic crochet (for the Washington DC area Coral Reef Project at the Smithsonian).

This is my first sweater.  I’m very proud of it, the pattern is the Gathered Cable Pullover and it’s sold through Interweave.  I used Silky Wool which feels like a washed t-shirt after it’s been blocked and washed.  Very very nice!


Friday Night Class

Grasaille Demo, Robert Liberace

Grasaille Demo, Robert Liberace

Fibre Space, a local yarn store that I love has been selected as the flagship store for designer Jared Flood’s newest endeavor, Shelter.  Shelter is a beautiful yarn that is processed and spun in the states and it’s simply yummy.  I stopped by there yesterday after work to see the loveliness.   I left there with five  skeins of the red (long Johns) and a lovely pattern for a shawl called Terra.

Afterward, I headed to class with Robert Liberace.  I’ve decided that for the next 4 weeks I’d work on silverpoint drawing instead of painting (its a logistical problem).

Once I arrived I found out that the model hadn’t shown in one of the classrooms.  So I told Rob I’d love to model for his demo.  Yes I am evil, but I adore his work and its fun, and modeling gives you a very tiny sense of what a professional model has to endure for his/her job.

So this is the study Rob did.  It’s an initial grasaille, with sienna, black and white used.  He toned his canvas with the sienna and once dray started painting using a #6 brush and black.  I couldn’t see what he was doing, but he said that he was using the black in the manner of Howard Pyle (early 20th century artist and illustrator), like he was drawing with it. and he used it for the shadows.

Rob then went back in with a mid-tone mixed with the white and black to model all the mid-tones and soften the transition between shadows and mid-tones.

Once done to his satisfaction he added more white and captured the light and then used an even brighter light tone for the highlights.  He created this painting in two sessions a total of about 40-50 minutes.

Isn’t it beautiful?

Another Year Older

My sister is in town visiting, we had our birthday recently and its been wonderful celebrating with her. She used to claim to be the oldest, but once we hit 40 (which hurts when it hits back!) but since she’s in my timezone she’s once again older than me. So order is once again restored to the world!


Friday Evening Class

Egg 26, Duane Keiser

Egg 26, Duane Keiser

Last night was an odd one for me.  I worked some on my silverpoint class from last week, mainly evening out the shadows.  I did add some background shadows but not much.

I went to a new page in my moleskine and tried several portraits.  None of them worked well so I gave in and watched Robs amazing watercolor sketch demo.

I also brought in several of my Duane Keiser paintings from his One Dozen Eggs paintings.  Rob spent about 15-20 minutes talking about them with the class.  It was really interesting to see through his eyes four paintings that I love so much.

Duane your work is well loved!


Silverpoint 6 Aug 10

Silverpoint drawing on prepped surface (moleskins)

We had a great model for class last night.  He was placed in an awesome pose that reminded me of a spanish bullfighter, cocky and so very proud.

I was to his right so most of his back was in shadow and his torso was in profile.  The majority of his chest and arm are in shadow and the arm is foreshortened as well, so what might seem like is lower belly is actually his forearm and hand.

Not certain how well this will read but figured I should post it.

A Port in Any Storm?

Yesterday afternoon a storm hit the metro DC area that was brutal.  I’ve lost a huge limb of the tree out back of my house and I think I’m going to have to have the tree cut down, I post a photo in a bit.

There is a huge limb that fell from my tree and slammed into my neighbor’s fence, shed and is occupying his entire yard.  A tree across the alley shed a huge branch with totaled my neighbor’s truck as well and his next door neighbor’s car as well.

When I say huge, I mean these branches weigh between 300-400lbs at least.  Several were tossed 20-40 feet in the air.

I was at work when all this happened.  I noticed it had gone grey/dark and looked out a window,  At first I thought it was snowing.  Turns out I was looking at small hail flinging about sideways.  When I checked the weather forecast on the net it said max of 37 mph winds.  Yeah, 37 mph my Uncle Bob.

So I had no power and my street looked like a war zone.  It took well over an hour just to get home on the metro.

Today was cleanup day, I took my truck into the back alley and two neighbors and I loaded 4 truckloads of limbs into my trusty Toyota.  I then drove to the front of the house and left them curbside so the city can deal with them.  We cleaned out as much as we could of our yards and even the pain in the butt neighbor’s yard so she wouldn’t have to deal with it.

I was a good citizen today.

Friday Night Class

Finally made it to class this Friday.  I’ve been fighting a summer cold on and off this month and last.  Thank you random traveler on the flight home from Denver.  Your willingness to share a ton of germs with me caused me to miss more than a week of work and a ton of misery.

Ok back to class.

I always have a hard time shifting from painting to drawing and back again.  Maybe it was the fact that I’d missed the first two classes, but I was able to settle in pretty quickly.

We had a new model (in every sense, he’d never modeled before) and he did a great job. I liked that he had a build like normal people, so that made it more difficult to render what was going on with his abdomen but made it kind of fun as well.

I decided to work in silverpoint but did make a few quick gesture sketches to warm up.  I also made a conscious decision (after one false start) to focus on one area of the body for the evening.  This turned out to be the way to go.

My drawing wasn’t the best thing going, at the same time it didn’t completely suck.  Silver point is hard to photograph but I will try to get a better picture/