Archive for the ‘drawing’ Category

Snow Days!!!

February 12, 2014

We are about at the end of the second snow day of the second snow storm Georgia has seen this year (although you couldn’t really call this snow, it is basically ice).  My toes are cold but the rest of me is fairly comfortable…we have been lucky and the power has stayed on.  Burying power lines helps keep power on when you have icy snow days.  I remember days long ago, of having icicles hanging off our house in Georgia that were 12″ long!  And my sister reminded me that we would get ice on the inside of the single pane windows!  Energy codes are keeping us warmer, I guess…

I occupied my time scratching black off white.

Yesterday’s …

scratch art from waterhouse's sketch smaller res

She was copied from a Waterhouse sketch.

And today’s…

Mama and Pop Snow Day 2 Scratch art copyThis was done from a photo of my grandparents, looking a bit like an urban American Gothic.

Wonder what tomorrow will bring (tonight will bring several inches of real snow, so they say!)…


The Twins

February 2, 2014

I recently scanned and posted on Facebook over 200 photographs that my grandfather, T.J. Eubanks made of his 8 children.  He would photograph them and develop the photos in his darkroom.  I know that every generation venerates the generations before them, I certainly have.  Seems dying takes away all bad and leaves only good.  (I pray my descendants feel the same about me!)  These photos are very small only 1 to 2 inches by 2 to 3 inches, he created larger copies of those he felt were the best and those are well known among the family,  but after spending time with these small images, I am convinced they are the most honest  portraits of his children.  Some may not be focused, or one of the kids may have moved, or the composition was not his best (and T.J. was good at composition!) but they tell the story of childhood and I am so happy to have them!  And…now they are inspiring me.  Those last couple of posts on this blog were based on these photographs as is the one below… my twin aunts, T.J.’s baby girls.

IMG_20140202_0004This is done in pencil, image size about 4×6 inches.  I scanned it at 600 dpi and reduced the scale for posting, this boring information given in an effort to ask for help.  How do you get pencil to scan at a good quality?  Anyone know?

My grandfather would say “take a photograph with film instead of using digital!”


February 26, 2013

I spent the evening reading old journal entries.  I couldn’t keep a journal until I decided I would write it for one special person, my future (maybe?) great grandchild.  That made it easy to think of what to write.  I wrote things that I wish I knew about my great grandparents.  My aunt recently told me that she wrote her memories of her children and grandchildren and gave them as birthday gifts this past year.  How clever of her to think of such a wonderful gift!  I am always surprised that my kids don’t remember things from their early days, or when their memory is flavored with the telling and retelling of stories.  But isn’t that the way it is for all of us.

My mother talked a lot of memories during her last months.  She didn’t share memories (she shared plenty over the years), rather she talked of  what memories were, of how our perspective of an event so totally affects a memory.   My memory of an event from childhood may be very different than my sister’s memory of the same event.  But both of them are true, who is to say your memory is wrong?

The other writing I do is note taking while listening to sermons in church.  Those notes include lots of doodling.  Sometimes a sermon inspires very visual notes, other times not so much.  I am not sure what inspired this fish!  Can’t remember from the notes!


Here is another watercolor portrait I worked on last weekend.  Added some finishing touches tonight, mainly to keep me up past 9 pm!


This is on aquabord, 8″x8″.

‘Til the cows come home

January 13, 2013

Have you ever heard the phrase “’til the cows come home?”  I haven’t heard it in years (or even thought about it and now you are thinking if that is what’s on my mind, I have a very boring life indeed!  And yes, I do.)  Seems to me that we used to have and use more idioms than we do now but maybe the idioms have just changed and I am no longer “with it.”

When I was a kid, my parents would “drag” us up to Ellijay, Georgia every weekend.  Drag was the word we used then, now going to Ellijay is a pleasure as it was for my parents back then.  Ellijay is in the mountains of Georgia, a back woods kind of country.  At least back then.  Lots of family lore and land, dirt roads, barn cats, corn rows, snakes, grassy meadows, stinky hogs, swimming holes and cows.  We would hear my great-uncle Glen calling his cows home each evening.  That is a sound I would love to hear again.


This is an 8″x8″ watercolor with some white acrylic ink in the background.  I was trying to make the cows pop.  Can you imagine someone with limited knowledge of English wondering about why I wanted the cows to pop?  Or any of the strange idioms we may use/used to use regularly?  But don’t they make talking and listening much more enjoyable?

Friday Drawing

September 28, 2012

In between doing stuff I had to do today, I managed to do something I wanted to do.  Here is the result.

back to basics

August 19, 2012

Used crayons this evening just to have something to do with my hands.  This was done like the old fashion scratch art we did as kids, cover your whole crayoned drawing with black crayon and scratch it off.  Then burnish the wax in the crayon until it is very shiny.  I like the technique…looks like a block print.  Sort of.

Can you believe I was able to place -ed on the word “crayon” and spell-check overlooked it???  Think I could use it in Scrabble?

Irene and Katherine

August 17, 2012

At the risk of being maudlin, I am showing you a pencil drawing of my mother (as a young child) and her sister two years (to the day) older.  I realize I am immersed in Mama and her family at the moment, I did the same thing after my father died 26 years ago.  I don’t know if it is healthy or unhealthy, but it is what I need to do right now and the book on grieving told me to do what feels right!  So…

Irene and Katherine, pencil, 8″ x 10″, done from an old photograph

I don’t normally look at a painting and start thinking,  this makes me feel (insert emotion), or doesn’t she/he/it look (insert adjective), but looking at this drawing, I am doing just that.  Irene died at such a young age (six) and when I look at her photograph, I see such innocence.  I don’t see that in Katherine even though she is two years younger.  I see intelligence in her.  And I know I am projecting my feelings into my subjects but… I see it in the photograph, also.

I think my pencil phase is over (after only two drawings!).  Looking at the above, I want to put color on these girls… just a touch somewhere.  I am not as pleased with my technique as I was in the last drawing…

You may see this again!

Keep your HB pencils for test taking…

August 12, 2012

My son has discovered drawing and is quite good at it.  Well, he really has always been good at it but lately he has been drawing more and doing more of most anything makes you better.  Looking at his drawing made me want to draw using graphite alone, something I don’t do much of.  Here is the result…

Another face with some weird hat done from an old black and white photo.  Image size is 8″x8″, done on bristol board.

I have lots of pencils.  Every art/drafting class I have taken since college days, I would buy more pencils.  My father-in-law would give us pencils from his pickings at farm/estate sales.  Some pencils somehow found their way into my studio.  I drew this using two of those pencils, a 4H (about the hardest lead you can find) and an Ebony (about the softest lead you can find).  So why do they make all those in-between pencils?

Back in the days of board drafting, we didn’t use pencils.  We used lead holders and leads.  The leads were thicker than those in mechanical pencils and required a little “lead sharpener” to sharpen them (which you constantly had to do).  Most old school drafters will still have their lead holders and lead sharpeners tucked away in some drawer, now useless reminders of days gone by.

One of the most memorable compliments I ever received involved pencil work.  A drafting professor told me I should not be using pen and I was using pencil.  What kind of compliment is that, you say?  It meant I was getting a crisp, smudge-free, even line and I took that as a compliment.  I said memorable compliment…not necessarily best compliment!

move over Mona, make room for Bianca Sforza

February 9, 2012

Looking through the latest National Geographic, I came across the story of a drawing that is purported to be a lost Leonardo da Vinci portrait of the illegitimate daughter of a patron in Milan (why can’t I have a patron???).  This kind of story excites me to no end.  Discovery, art, intrigue…turns out this undiscovered masterpiece was done for a book!   You can read all about it or better yet go watch the episode on Nova.  As of writing this, it was airing online.

I was inspired to make a copy of it with easily gathered materials I could use on the couch while watching television.  No sheep or goat-skin parchment around this studio and a pen nib and ink might have been messy between me and two cats, so I used paper (my sketchbook) and pencils, then I added some nu-pastels.  It was a fun exercise and I am rather pleased with my result.

The image is about 5×7.

I have been fascinated by book binding since I was a kid, sitting on a pew in church on Sunday, studying the hymnbook’s construction.  That was the first book I took note of  a book being sewn together.  (Captive that I was and nothing else to do!!!)  I wondered how that was done.  Now I know and find it satisfying to do.  Not so, my 88 year old friend, Pam Windham, who became a book-binder after her stint in the Coast Guard during WWII.  She was called into the office one day by her boss who told her she was wasting her life binding books (no way!!!) and that she needed to go back to school to do something worthwhile. Like binding books isn’t worthwhile, but  she did and became a worthwhile teacher.

Don’t bug me!

November 19, 2011

Do you ever feel that way?    I remember one day  in the car with husband and two youngish bickering kids, I closed my eyes and put my hands over my ears and wondered how Helen Keller got to be so lucky.

It was a fleeting moment.

Here is the bug that made me think of that moment.  I drew him this week in pen and ink and then used colored pencils.  This is in my latest Moleskine.  The paper is the most wonderful receptacle for colored pencils.  They were so fluid and blend-able.  Makes me wonder exactly what the paper is.

This evening, I drew a butterfly, put some watercolor on it and then collaged paper all over it.  The paper came from the 4th holiday catalog this month from Pottery Barn.  I can’t believe that they can’t come up with a better advertising campaign than to send out un-requested catalogs but I guess it is keeping the printers and mailman employed.  And that is a good thing.  Hope the paper is recycled though!

I have never really liked doing collage (I have never really “understood” it altho’ I have liked many I have seen) but I had so much fun last week doing those faces I wanted to do more.   Always good to push yourself, right!?

This butterfly is about 7″x11″.  I wonder what a layer of beeswax would do to it…