Sunday, May 31, 2015

Two for Show One to Go

Two for Show One to Go
9 x 6
Pastel on Mi Tientes Touch
Sanded Board (Indigo)
This is the butter yellow bi-color iris in my yard. It blooms all summer. It has a narrow thin blade like leaf and grows in a big clump - somewhat grass like. What I like most about these flowers is the three little touches of dark dark purple with orange. It's a simple and delicate beauty  - but she's tenacious. 

Two blooms and one flower on the way seem like a mirror of two suitcases and one day to go. Tomorrow we leave for the biggest pastel party on the planet - the IAPS  convention (International Association of Pastel Societies). I'm super excited about my workshop with Sally Strand and learning about the "Color of Light". I'm excited about the vendor booths and just the learning in general. Mostly, I'm looking forward to seeing and spending time with all my artist friends. 

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Magnolia Pearl

Magnolia Pearl
10 x 9.5
Pastel on Mi Tientes
Sanded Board (Indigo)

Here's another Magnolia from my neighbor's tree. I'm enjoying exploring the colors of white. Notice I used a plural colors. I'm getting excited about my upcoming workshop at the IAPS (International Association of Pastel Societies) next week. I'll be taking a workshop with Sally Strand called "The Color of Light". In the case of this painting, I'm working on capturing the color of white in the petals of the magnolia. White has so many colors...as it reflects and absorbs light from adjacent leaves and the sky. I realized as I was putting this one up in my studio, I've been on quite a white and yellow kick lately. Seems painting moods go in flows....I'm just going with it.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Monday Magnolia

Monday Magnolia
9.5 x 6
Pastel on Mi Tientes
Sanded Board (Tobacco)
Before the storms hit earlier this week, I was able to get a few photos of my neighbor's magnolia tree blossoms. I went out again yesterday evening and got a few more photos. This is the first of what will likely be a series of magnolia. I have some cousins who live in the south, and they are truly beautiful magnolia level women. So, when I saw the tree in bloom, I knew I had to paint them.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Repose

Repose
9.5 x 6
Pastel on Mi Tientes
Sanded Board (Tobacco)

Rushing, buzzing, dodging other birds, darting from flower to flower - the life of a hummingbird is very busy. Yet, even the hummingbird has a moment in repose. This little lady is taking a moment to herself. This is so much a mirror of my own life sometimes. Rushing about, darting from task to task. 

Today is a day for recharging my batteries - and for me that means painting. Painting is my soul work, my heart work, the closest to heaven I can feel in the moment. (Listening to the Goo Goo Dolls - Iris). I watched Kung Fu Panda again last night while I did some paperwork for my art. it's one of my favorite movie especially the parts with Master Oogway. Master Oogway tells Po, "Yesterday is history, tomorrow is  mystery, but today is a gift, that's why it's called 'The Present'". Live in the moment - it's the only one we've got!


Sunday, May 24, 2015

Cascade

Cascade
9.5 x 6
Pastel on Canson Touch (Tobacco)
This lovely cascade of white orchids is a reminder that beauty is all around, even in the floral department at the grocery store. All we need do is stop and look. I'm planning a large painting, I haven't done one in quite some time. Cascade is a test drive of this subject on this support color and type, as well the choices of pastels. I'm looking forward to exploring this cascade of orchids.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Poppy Pulchritude

Poppy Pulchritude
10 x 9
Pastel on Mi Tientes Board (Blue)
Recently, after a trip to visit some baby goats, we stopped at our local grocer that is known for their stunning flower department and excellent organic foods selection. I couldn't resist getting a few shots of some of their beautiful flowers. Among them were red poppies. 

Seeing them reminded me of a time decades ago - back in the late 1980s. I was on a drive near Martindale, Texas which is Southeast of Austin (due east of San Marcos). There were alot of rainy days then, like there are now and the landscape was lush. We had crossed a river and came up from the dip of the bridge and there was this field of wild red poppies. Absolutely stunning. We stopped so I could go sit in this field, and of course, I picked a few being young and impetuous.



I think that pleasant memory helped this painting to just flow out onto the paper easily. I love those paintings, when the flow is there. It was almost like that day, the flow took us to that beautiful field and a beautiful surprise. Life is like that sometimes, when we flow and don't fight...we find so much beauty in the moment. I hope you have some flowing moments today.

Thank you as always for reading. Your social media shares of my blog are welcomed and appreciated.

Namaste!


Sunday, May 17, 2015

Doodle Bug

Doodle Bug
11 x 8.5
Pastel on Archival Card Stock
This is a favorite cactus flower of mine - Claret Cups. They are not really claret in color which is really more red. And yikes - I just did a thesaurus look up on claret and blood and gore came up! Maybe these are claret because those spines will draw some blood? Anyway - I digress - no surprise there. These guys bloomed recently, towards the start of April. I stopped and took photos on the side of the road. 

When I came home and looked at the photos on my laptop, I realized that some of the flower images had a lady bug within. I didn't have my glasses on when I took the photos, so this was a nice surprise.

I did this painting on the weekend during my self imposed break a few weeks back. I had ordered a full set of CarbOthello pastel pencils and wanted to play. There is nothing like a new set of colors. Just as exciting as an adult to have new colors as it was when I was little. (okay- I hear those of you that know me personally saying - "But - you're still "little" - - yeah yeah - and shrinking.) It was more of a doodle than anything. So, doodles - and bugs....well, you get it - "Doodle Bug". 

Thanks as always for reading! Facebook or other social media shares are always welcome!

Friday, May 15, 2015

Colum-bee

Colum-bee
12 x 9
Pastel on UArt 600 Sanded Paper
I visited my sister in law's garden recently - okay, I guess it's my brother's garden too. They are my garden heroes (as was my mom). It is ALWAYS such a magical place. I love going over and just strolling around in the gardens to see what's new and what wonderful creative things she's done lately. This last time we were over in March (early April?), I spent some time taking photos of the blooming flowers like this Columbine. In this case, I got to see a VERY special visitor - a bee!!! 

I've been thinking I'd like to learn more about bee keeping. There are some bee keeping classes coming up. I remember our neighbors had bee hives when I was a kid (maybe - you know how childhood memories can be sometimes). So, when I read the post about upcoming bee keeping classes, I thought I'd do up another painting with a bee tribute. My last painting with a bee was Purplicious, named because the flower was a mountain laurel which smell like grape bubblegum - so I was thinking about Bubblicious. 

PS - HOLY COW! I just googled my Purplicious post and found a children's book called Purplicious! Too fun - and the subject matter sounds wonderful: Pinkalicious loves the color pink, but all the girls at school like black. They tease her, saying that pink stinks and pink is for babies. But Pinkalicious doesn't think so…that is, until her friends stop playing with her. Now Pinkalicious has a case of the blues. But could she ever turn her back on her favorite color? In the follow-up to the bestselling Pinkalicious, a young girl remains true to herself and discovers that pink isn't only a pretty color, but also a powerful one.

That story line makes me think - BEE True to yourself! Someone very important to me often reminds me to practice as a Human BE-ing not so much a Human DO-ing.

As always, thank YOU for reading and following my blog. Your social media shares are ALWAYS welcome and appreciated!

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Milk and Honey

Milk and Honey
12 x 9
Pastel on UArt 600 Sanded Paper
This is a weed..."just" a weed. Amazing and beautiful. Antelope Horns Milkweed in central Texas where I live is so very important in our ecosystem for our Monarch butterfly populations. For years I've had some growing near our pond and I'm ashamed to say that I pulled it up repeatedly. It was fuzzy and prickly. I had not seen it bloom until about 2 years ago. Thank goodness it fought me repeatedly until I learned what it was. 

I find this flower simply astonishing. It looks artificial it's so beautiful. It's a creamy greenish white bloom has an almost waxy appearance - hence the artificial appearance. When you get really close to it, you can see the beauty of the pattern. The purple and lilac extensions of the star points (stamens perhaps?). The center pistil/ovary area is green and brown and the stripes correspond perfectly with the star points. Symmetry in nature is a beautiful magical thing. I suppose that's why I like painting botanical specimens and animals. When I paint, I look - REALLY look at the source. It is then that I amazed by the details of beauty- even in a weed.

I think sometimes we perceive ourselves as less than the perfect children of the universe that we are. But we have a purpose and a beauty - especially in our imperfection. It's all about our progress not our perfection. This 'imperfect' weed has a very special purpose for the butterfly. I'm so taken with the idea of imperfection that I'm considering ways to add an intentional surprise in all of my paintings. Something that some may not see as beautiful. See if you can find this one. There is another one in "Lotus Contemplation"

XOXO KK - we'll be missing you. See you on the other side....


Sunday, May 10, 2015

Prosperous - and Happy Mother's Day!!

Prosperous
12 x 9
Pastel on UArt 600 Sanded Paper
I often use a thesaurus when I name paintings. Prosperous comes up when searching for golden. Being that this cactus has a plethora of golden blooms, it is indeed prosperous. I really liked the light on this flower and corresponding buds. I also liked that the cactus pads were not straight on but rather edgewise. It makes the focus go to the floral elements.

My lovely friend Lilly sent me this photo. Her daughter took it...how appropriate that it's a post for Mother's Day! Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there! There are not enough words to convey how much I love my mom and miss her every day. She worked so hard to provide for us. How I wish I could share my garden with her - the flowers, the birds, the koi. A friend recently shared a thought that cardinals represent our loved ones coming to visit. I have several pair in my yard - I think perhaps one set at least is my mom and dad!

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Opulent Opuntia

Opulent Opuntia
12 x 9
Pastel on UArt 600
I'm BAAAACCK!!!! So glad to be back! So good to be painting again. It was a crazy busy April with shows and other art related activities, and my day job too. After the Belton show April 25th, I took a weekend off. Boy did I need it. I feel revitalized and filled with ideas and creativity and am ready to get them out on paper. It was a frenzy of painting today......my fun meter is pegged and my foot is still on the gas.

I think that is why the title of this painting came to mind - opulent. Yes, there are alot of flowers on this Opuntia (also known as beaver tail), but I also feel it is opulent in it's color as well. My friends Casey and Lisa took this photo and I just LOVED it - of course. I am a color addict and a botanical addict. When I get both together I'm in heaven. Of course, I do pump up the colors quite a bit...it's my heritage I suppose - though that's a bit stereotypical.

The other cool thing about this painting is that I reused a piece of paper that I was doodling on for upcoming commission. It was mostly shades of green. Here's my reference photo (before cropping) and the base reused paper.

Put your seat belts on, there will be a flurry of work coming! As always, thank you for visiting my blog, for reading. Shares on Facebook and other social media are always welcomed and appreciated!