Having a green thumb is NOT one of my talents...thank heavens for good friends who plant too much! I chose this cuke to draw because it had a lot of interest in the coloring. Obviously it had been shielded from the sun by its' leaves, so there was more white than green. My big challenge was to give it a subtle light shine at the top of the picture. I actually used a bit of grey ink wash for that. It was fun, undemanding, (it didn't move once!) and the cats were completely uninterested in eating it. A plus for a still life...
Saturday, July 28, 2012
I know it is a bit odd, but I was sitting in the Dr.'s office with nothing to do but wait, wait, wait! I bring pens with me everywhere, and took the opportunity to draw the nearest thing available, a man's ear! He was snoozing (thank goodness! How embarrassing to get caught drawing someone's ear!) and sat very still, so I was able to capture the true essence of his ear...do all men lack earlobes??? No wonder so few of them wear earrings!
Posted by Rose Altom at 5:34 PM
Thursday, July 26, 2012
I have been doing a bit of scrapbooking this week, catching up with my children's baby pictures and trying to remember all of the sweet and wonderful things that they did and said. To save them a bit of embarrassment, I have NOT drawn my own babies, as they are now too old to be happy about having their faces on the web. I saw a sweet face and drew it with thoughts of my own lovely children in mind. I used a light grey pen with washes, and a dark ink pen for the details. Hope you like it...the look of complete trust and love is not often seen!
Posted by Rose Altom at 5:28 PM
Just a quick update on an event coming up...
The Taste of Jackson
is July 28, 2012 at the
Jackson, TN Fair Grounds,
beginning at noon, going until 6 p.m.
Several local wineries will be featured, along with 10 of the top artists in the area. That includes my hubby, who is a sculptor, and myself. Also included is my dear friend, Seedybeader, who does the most intricate bead weaving you will ever see. Some of the features at our booth will include some of hubby's latest ventures...a treasure walking cane. The cane has a hidden compartment with raw diamonds, silver and gold inside! He will also be bringing some of the beautiful woolly mammoth ivory jewelry that he carves, and a couple of his granite carvings. I will be selling some original ink drawings, and some art prints from my original paintings. Wish us luck!
Posted by Rose Altom at 4:19 PM
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
As always, I find the drawings that have the most wrong with them are the ones I learn from...darn it! This is one of the last strawberries of the season, and it was a bit squishy, not as full of bright contrast and life as it might have been earlier in it's life...rather like me, I guess! I got the shape right, chose not to get too detailed in the leaves, and completely forgot to think ahead, and leave some white paper for the highlights! The only way to rescue that lovely shiny fresh look is to dig out my white gel pen. Since this was only a study, however, and I am getting ready for an art show at the end of the week, I let it go...let it go...(I try so hard not to let the little things bother me these days!) My art is very connected to my psychological emotions, so if I suffer from silly things, like hurt feelings, or a squabble with my mother-in-law, my art suffers along with me. Sorry, everyone!
Posted by Rose Altom at 5:20 PM
Monday, July 23, 2012
Despite the drought conditions across most of the U.S., my little piece of Tennessee has been getting quite a bit of rain this week. Because of that, fungi have been popping up all over the woods. This mushroom is a wonderfully perfect specimen of fungi-tude, and I was in heaven getting to draw it. Don't know why I am so excited by such a normal growth, but I have always had a fascination with the varieties of mushrooms. I went hiking in Glacier National Park, and the family groaned at my count of all the different types I found along the walk...(16 on a 2 mile trail!) I used ink, and kept it delicate with a minimum of detail.
Posted by Rose Altom at 4:08 PM
Saturday, July 21, 2012
Hot Peppers! I chose the wrong type of media for this particular drawing. For one thing, it doesn't show the beautiful green color of the peppers. For another, it is too heavy handed to make a good sketch. I am certainly having my creativity issues this week! Review: 2 out of the 3 peppers are floating in mid-air. That would be wonderful and creative and amusing, IF I had meant for it to happen. I will experiment with that....however, today it is simply a mistake. I did this drawing from memory while sitting in the emergency room. NOT condusive to good art work! I am also sure that most hot peppers don't have creases that remind you of plumbers' (dare I say 'derriere') cracks! I think that I must have been looking at that nice doctor walking down the hall....
Posted by Rose Altom at 4:02 PM
Thursday, July 19, 2012
I am really off my game this week! My mom broke her foot, and I spent a few days in a panic, trying to make things better, and traveling about to doctors and hospitals. I lost a bit of focus and momentum, anyway. I didn't have much ambition today...artists have a high percentage of depression, according to the media - and I certainly cannot contest that! I dug out a few puny carrots and a radish to draw, not even considering an actual composition. It really shows, and I will try to do better next time...I promise! On the positive side, I did learn a lot about laying in shadows. Out of everything on this drawing, I am pleased with the interest that the shadows brought to the sad little grouping! Every drawing should be a learning experience, and a happy one!
Posted by Rose Altom at 3:55 PM
Monday, July 16, 2012
I have a butterfly bush next to the window of my tea room, and spend a lot of hours sipping tea and sketching butterflies and moths. This butterfly had such a graceful stance, and even though it isn't one of my better drawings, I was especially pleased with it's ballet leg positions, and proboscus. I thought it interesting that the eyes were patterned...is that normal??!
Posted by Rose Altom at 5:11 PM
Saturday, July 14, 2012
How exciting to find baby birds in a small tree next to the house this week! I am pretty sure it is robin babies. This one was all wild-hair pretty, and full of curiosity...I peeked into the nest, took a few pictures, and then left really fast, because the mama was getting very vocal in the next tree. I guessed at the position of the legs with the drawing, and used sepia pens and a few grey ink pens for darker areas. Baby birds make me feel a bit better about life in general...how do you people in the city get your connection to Mother Earth?
Posted by Rose Altom at 5:06 PM
Thursday, July 12, 2012
Sometimes, you feel like a nut...I was bored this evening, and the only thing I could find of interest to sketch was this hickory nut. I am sure that there were other things lying about, but I was being lazy and just wanted clean, simple lines and a chance to use my new sepia pens. I like them, but was a bit disappointed that there wasn't a lighter color, rather than just nib sizes. Guess I will have to do a bit of experimenting with a sepia ink and lots of watercolor paper!
Like everyone, I take a gazillion photos when I go to the zoo. Fortunately, I have been able to visit a real variety of zoos, from the famous San Diego Zoo, to the tiny zoo in Minot, North Dakota. Digging through old photos this week, trying to avoid going out in the 107 degree heat, I came across a really bad photo (done with an instamatic camera through several inches of plexiglass) of this sweet-faced cub. This is my interpretation..I had to guess at the bit of color I added. I used grey brush pens and yellow and orange color pencils.
Posted by Rose Altom at 10:30 AM
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
I was drawing this apple while watching scary movies last night. (Freddie VS Jason) and thinking about some of the wonderful contemporary artists that I have seen lately in the magazine High Fructose. If I were more contemporary, would I draw this apple a different way? Like some horror flick, would I have the apple bursting open with a hand reaching out? or create a face beneath the skin? It reminded me that I have to think a bit more out of the box, become less predictable, quit 'practicing' and start doing!
Posted by Rose Altom at 10:22 AM
Sunday, July 8, 2012
I was just doodling this morning, bored, bored, bored!!! I invented this little scenario, having not used a ball point pen in quite a few years. They do give an interesting line...the cheap pens always skipped and plugged up, and wouldn't work, even though you could still see it had plenty of ink!!! Ah, nostalgia! I used a felt tip pen to draw this ball point....
Posted by Rose Altom at 10:17 AM
Friday, July 6, 2012
It is just too hot to do any outdoor drawing, so I am doing some still life pieces indoors. This is a tiny tea pot, probably a creamer from an old silver tea set. I just love getting out there and treasure hunting at the flea markets! When we lived in Albuquerque, they had the most wonderful flea market, selling roasted chili peppers and beads from Africa. In L.A., they had the Rose Bowl Flea Market, miles and miles of cool treasures. I would love to go to the Paris Flea Markets...anyway, there is always something interesting to draw, and gain inspiration from!
Posted by Rose Altom at 10:12 AM
Tuesday, July 3, 2012
Wierd looking, huh? Sometimes I get stuck, and can't think of anything to do. Doodling helps me to get back into some creative thinking. This is a bowl of soup from a magazine, and I started doing some silly drawing on top of it, eventually making it into a strange sunflower. What I like about this kind of doodling is you don't have to start with a plain white paper (when your creativity is already low) and you can come up with some wonderful ideas that could eventually become a great and significant piece of art! What do some of YOU do to break through the 'art blocks' ?
Monday, July 2, 2012
This weekend was the 'Meet the Artist' and demonstration for my art show in Missouri. I had so much fun meeting the variety of people who were interested not only in my art, but in nature itself! They shared their own experiences with nature, and I discovered that many people find our world as mysterious and unpredictable as I do. The Missouri Conservation Department provided several 'mounts' of creatures, some of which I used in my demonstrations. I was especially delighted to talk with children about them, and allow them to touch a 'bird' for the first time! The fish was one of my demos, from a mount of a crappie. The unfinished bird is from a mount of a merlin hawk.
Posted by Rose Altom at 7:59 AM
Sunday, July 1, 2012
I am on another diet, nothing new in my life....but this one seems to be liveable, including lots of fruit and veggies as opposed to 'complex carbs'. That means lots of interesting things to draw! It always amazes me that as many times that I have drawn or painted an apple, each one is different. This one has funny green freckles, and a hint of color on it's mostly golden skin. I have been getting more interested in doing some watercolor pieces lately, and thought this one would be fun to do some wet in wet technique. I love how the color bleeds into the water and leaves funny, blurry 'flowers' of negative space! If you notice some pencil strokes in there, I did use a bit of colored pencil to accent certain areas. I am not good enough at watercolor to know how to do it without 'help'. Though, I rather like the mixed media. Wonder what else I can add to the mix.....!
Posted by Rose Altom at 4:51 PM