Monday, July 28, 2014

Summer Sketches


Hi everyone, Dion Dior here.  I've been fortunate enough to have enjoyed back to back summers this year.  I spent the Southern Hemisphere summer Down Under, then headed back to the US and have been reveling in the most glorious mid-western summer I can remember in a long time.



My favorite subject to sketch while on vacation is by far nature, specifically flowers.  Every day there is something to capture.  So, over my endless summer of 2014 I've been sketching simple flowers and leaves at every opportunity.  My sketchbook is filled with them, gorgeous reminders of my extended summer vacation.




Even though many of you are in winter right now, I hope you are enjoying the season nonetheless. 




Thanks for checking in. xx

Saturday, July 26, 2014

sketchbook from France ~ Jane LaFazio

from my sketchbook ~ Jane LaFazio
Jane LaFazio here. This summer I had the pleasure of teaching "Sketching and Watercolor: Journal Style" along the French Riviera. These are some of my pages from my sketchbook, painted on location in France.
from my sketchbook ~ Jane LaFazio
from my sketchbook ~ Jane LaFazio
from my sketchbook ~ Jane LaFazio
from my sketchbook ~ Jane LaFazio
I adore traveling and teaching! Next year, I'll be teaching sketching and watercolor on a River Cruise down the Danube. Join me! details here.
from my sketchbook ~ Jane LaFazio



Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Summer Sketchbook Activity

Hi everyone!
Carol here.

I have been doing a variety of things this spring and summer.
One of them involved trout fishing.

I live near the Blue Ridge Mountains in the northwest corner of South Carolina (USA).
They are a part of the Appalachian Mountains- which is the oldest mountain chain in the North American continent (about 350 million years old).
Needless to say the scenery is breathtaking any time of the year in this area.

My husband and I hike and trout fish in several places in the mountain rivers.
I am always amazed at how beautiful these fish are.
I decided to spend a little time sketching and painting them to familiarize myself with them even more.

It's true that we can simply look at something and think we know much about it. But if you spend a little time drawing it you know so much more about it. Add paint to the mix and you will be amazed at how much you missed when just looking at it.

I started out with the brook trout.
They have dots, specs and halos of an orange/red color on their sides that are so interesting.
It seems like everyone paints the rainbow trout but I love the shock of color on the brookie just as much.

I took a few photos for my own information then searched for clearer ones online and in books from the library. It's much easier to draw something when you have a really good photo, isn't it?

After my research and visual study, I came up with this sketch.

I darkened this sketch in PSE.


My original plan was to familiarize myself with the subject enough to paint a few small pieces as Christmas gifts.
I created a simple thermofax screen with the front 1/2 of the drawing since I knew that I was going to be painting more than one.
Then I pulled out the paint.

Here's a look at two pages in my sketchbook - one study is complete and the other three are "in work", all of them were started with a thermofax screen. You can really see the lines of it in the second page of my sketchbook studies. (I just noticed that I used two different screens for the fish.)

The painting on the bottom has been completed.
The upper one only has 2 or 3 layers on it.

The top trout has almost been completed.
The bottom one only has a couple of layers of paint applied.

I took the practice from these two pages in my sketchbook and created several small paintings.
I didn't use the thermofax screen on these paintings though.
Here's a scan of the simple drawing that I made in order to get started.


This wood block (it is actually a free sample block of wood flooring from a local Home Depot!). It measures 3 1/2 inches x 5 inches.

This is the completed painting.

I may have taken a little "artistic license" with this...


I love using the small blocks from the big box home improvement stores. You have to sand them before covering them in a layer of gesso. Sometimes the paint will still fleck off a little if it bumps up against something but they are fine for the most part.

Here's another one - even smaller than the one above.
It measures 2 1/4 inches x 5 inches.



The lesson in this long post is to really study whatever it is you are interested in.
Draw it.
Paint it.
Practice it.
Repeat.
Repeat.


Head over to my blog - I have other posts about drawing, painting and creating fiber art.
I also have an Etsy shop with tons of thermofax screens.
Maybe you'll find one that will help you with your painting!


Monday, July 21, 2014

Summer Vacation-ish ~ Jane LaFazio


from my sketchbook ~ by Jane LaFazio
Jane LaFazio here! I just got back from a sort of summer vacation at Kings Canyon/Sequoia National Park. (I taught 1/2 days and played the rest of the day.) Here are some of the sketchbook pages I did, on location.
from my sketchbook ~ by Jane LaFazio

from my sketchbook ~ by Jane LaFazio

from my sketchbook ~ by Jane LaFazio
 I'm teaching an online, "Sketching and Watercolor: Journal Style" that will start September 1. Hope to see you there, click here for details.
from my sketchbook ~ by Jane LaFazio
Jane LaFazio
While I was in the park, I took ukulele lessons! Gotta try ALL the arts!


Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Italian Sketchbook ~ Jane LaFazio


from my sketchbook ~ by Jane LaFazio
Jane LaFazio here. This year I had the pleasure of teaching "Sketching and Watercolor: Journal Style" along shores of Lake Como, Italy. Sadly, we did not see George Clooney! 
Here are some of my sketchbook pages, painted in Italy on location.
from my sketchbook ~ by Jane LaFazio
from my sketchbook ~ by Jane LaFazio
from my sketchbook ~ by Jane LaFazio
from my sketchbook ~ by Jane LaFazio
I'll be teaching in Massachusetts, Sept 12-15th, not quite Italy, but it should be lovely! Hope you join me. Details here.
from my sketchbook ~ by Jane LaFazio
from my sketchbook ~ by Jane LaFazio
from my sketchbook ~ by Jane LaFazio 
from my sketchbook ~ by Jane LaFazio
from my sketchbook ~ by Jane LaFazio



Sunday, July 13, 2014

making books

Sue B here...

Since we're taking a little vacation from themes this month I thought I'd share what I've been working on.  Instead of working on paper, I've been working on canvas fabric...

I started out by laying down blocks of color onto plain cotton canvas fabric and then once it was dry I screen printed some images over it using Jacquards Screen printing ink  in opaque white.


 The writing on the fabric you see above was done by using an ink filled craft syringe. 
 


The screened image of the buildings was made by drawing the image onto a silkscreen using the Jacquard drawing fluid.  Love this stuff!  You can draw any image you like on the screen and then use it to print on fabric or paper.  

  





I turned a few of the painted surfaces I made into some journals:




And I filled the insides with  hand painted pages, fabric pages with papers,folders and envelopes and pockets stitched to them.




I'm going to be teaching a three day workshop on creating these fabric journals in San Diego in October.  Click here to visit the San Diego Book Arts website for more information on the workshop.