WordPress alerted me that this week marks the sixth year since my first blog post, aka a blogiversary. The first few years were dedicated mostly to my beloved card making papercraft, and while I still enjoy making cards, I now spend more time working on my watercolor skills and techniques.
Because this blog began with card making, it seems fitting to share what I made last week at a craft retreat.
These cards were made with stamps that are pieced together to create little vignettes suitable for card fronts. They are “inked” with waterbased markers and then “watercolored” around the edges of the images with a damp brush to give them a painterly look.
Really, these stamps were probably a gateway into my wanting to paint on a bigger scale, and it’s fun to go back and use them every so often.
Thanks to everyone who follows my blog and especially those who have taken time to leave a like or a comment.
I’ve found that followers/bloggers are some of the sweetest, most encouraging and passionate folks and am glad to have gotten to know so many of you over the years. Here’s to a seventh year of blogging and creativity!
Here are some quick sketches completed in my new sketchbook over the past couple of months. We have a local, 23-acre, county park very nearby in which we take many walks. Even though it is on the corner of two very busy streets, once in the park you forget all that hustle and bustle. The park is also unique in that the majority of the trails are paved and handicap accessible, complete with braille signs and waist-high gardens. Other features include a pond, wildflower prairie, a small bamboo forest, and a barn for park programs.
This is a sketch of the old homestead at the nature preserve, and the house now serves as a gift shop. This is a view of it through the trees near the entrance.
Here is the fire pit area where many programs are held and where naturalists cook maple syrup during Maple Sugar Days each year. When the kids were small we took many family walks at the park, and because not much was happening at the fire pit on weekday evenings, my kids took the opportunity to use the area as a stage and would perform “shows” for us after our walks. Note part of the bamboo forest in the upper right corner of this sketch.
We saw this cute little guy hopping around, and this is a female cardinal sitting on her speckled eggs. We also see deer, turtles, snakes, frogs, many varieties birds, and all the other usual critters that live in this area.
One section of the park is home to numerous sassafras trees, which have an odd twisting characteristic to their trunks. They really are quite fascinating. I remember learning about sassafras trees when I was in grade school because a teacher said the leaves look like mittens.
I’m looking forward to the fall weather and watching all the changes take place at the nature preserve, and I’m glad we have such an extraordinary place so close to home.
I am participating in a Paint Along Series hosted by Sandy Allnock, an incredibly talented, generous artist and papercrafter, who first came known to me many years ago as she was the founder of Operation Write Home. Since the time OWH became “mission accomplished” a year or so ago, Sandy has freely shared her journey and knowledge of many mediums, most notably watercolor. Last week she hosted a Paint-Along series on her blog, but because I was out of town I am just now getting to Day 1. Here is my finished work.
Although I mixed the colors a little differently and put my own spin on some of the areas, it was so informative and inspiring to listen to her thought process as she explained and painted. What a fun way to practice and learn!
Now to catch up with Days 2-5. I can’t wait to get started on the next picture!