Saturday, May 12, 2012

American Heroes

    Time to update at least a little. We've had a busy couple of weeks and more to come the next few. Lots of family activities and other fun things to attend. Today I want to devote my post to some of my favorite American heroes. Firefighters. My husband is a retired firefighter and he is so humble about it. It was just "something he did". But the reality is that he at times laid his life on the line. They all do. They are such good, brave men with really very little recognition for what they do. We were at a retiring firefighters dinner last weekend and they just outdid themselves with the jokes, the skits, the awards (the Boot award goes to the one who created the most damage with the firetruck - accidentally. This year's fellow somehow managed to "remove" the rear tires and axle completely from under the truck! We saw the photos- we could NOT figure out how he did it! :O With all the funnies they had come up with they had us laughing the whole night. But part way through- the ones on call had to leave- some sort of emergency. This is their life. No matter where they are, what they are doing- when the call comes they drop everything and run. They get up from family dinners, they get up at 3 or 4am from a warm cozy bed, they leave a movie, they leave... their family. The wife and family also are never seen and applauded for their part in this. They have to put up with him leaving at all the odd times and just keep functioning as a family. It is very, very hard on them.


 My husband was part of the Lake Johanna Firefighters here in Minnesota.  I am VERY proud of him and all these American heroes. 
          Here is the link to "his" unit:

                                Lake Johanna Fire Department
The Lake Johanna Fire Department, organized in 1943, is a non-profit organization providing fire protection services to the cities of Arden Hills, North Oaks, and Shoreview, Minnesota. In addition, the Department provides fire protection services to a private government contractor located on the Twin Cities Army Ammunition Plant property in Arden Hills. Lake Johanna Fire Department is a private or industrial fire brigade organization serving Shoreview, MN. Lake Johanna Fire Department operates out of 4 fire stations.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Scratchboard updates

Just a quick update. I worked a bit more on this fellow. I'm working on getting the iridescence in, but there is more scratching and coloring to do.

I also worked on the hippo, but he looks like I'm just repeating over and over again, altho I can see some progress. It is difficult to get the inks smoothed out without streaks.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

A Day Out!

Dear hubby and I were out and about yesterday enjoying some time together. We went first to the Swedish Institute in Minneapolis to see a Scandinavian woodcarving exhibit which was SO much fun to see. Hubby said- "Makes you want to get out your knives, doesn't it?" People new to the former mansion the museum is housed in don't always realize WHAT they are seeing. Just to go into the former home is phenomenal. The woodwork is everywhere and EVERYWHERE is carved! (That's NOT the carving exhibition.) Just the music room has I don't know how many cherub angels around it, each different! For a pair of carvers like us it is just breathtaking to go in and see. OK, so then on to Como Park Conservatory to see the Sunken Garden room. It wasn't as spectacular as it was a couple of weeks ago, but given a few more days will be again- some areas had "bloomed out" and been replanted. Here are just a few shots for you. Hope you enjoy.

I always try to get a photo of Dear Patient Robert waiting for me to take my photos. This time he was doing some "people watching". :)

This is always such a beautiful spot to come and enjoy.  We had a fun and relaxing day.  Hope your get to do something like this- it's good for the soul!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Peonies- my first floral/still life

I love peonies and I have a few plants that I got from my grandmother along with several others I have purchased. I can never wait for them to bloom each spring and they are gone all too soon. So a year ago I decided to take some photos, and recently decided to try painting them. Here is my first attempt. I think I will be cutting more this spring for more photos. :)
The background looks nearly black in real life. I can't seem to get it the correct true color here.

The size is 2 5/8's" x 2" - inks on board

Sunday, March 25, 2012

New Fun

I've started "playing" with my paints and ideas of sewing and embroidering- so I can work at nights or when going somewhere. I've been having fun with it, altho I have no idea what I am doing. I've been purchasing books to learn some new things- I LOVE books. :-)
I have my own library of art books and now I'm starting one on sewing and embroidery! Even if I never really do anything with it I am finding it fascinating. Some of the work I am seeing is just beautiful. It has opened up a whole new world for me to explore. I always love learning new things. I've always felt one can never end their learning experiences no matter their age. It's what keeps us young and interesting. I'll try and update this assuming I can figure this all out! It may end up in the scrap bin! It will be a slow progression because this is play for me so must happen when I have a bit of spare time.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Long, Cool Drink

Just finished a colored pencil piece I will be sending off soon to one of the miniature shows. The piece is 2.5"x 3.5".  I really enjoy the cp's and intend to do more in the future.

I saw this lady along with a number of others in Illinois on a motorcycle ride with my husband. I nearly always take my camera when we ride if we're going where I may find "reference". :-)

Saturday, March 3, 2012

I just finished this fellow last evening.  It's done in casein on white clayboard.  3.5" x 4".

Sunday, February 26, 2012

A "miniature" wall and some new work

I ran across some small plate holders at a huge discount and thought they would work well for my miniatures when they are home between shows and for my tiny new miniature art collection. It will grow. :-) We had the eagle all alone above the couch and he's HUGE, but that wall still needed more. He always looked forlorn and lonely. I am much happier now. I think I will go and see if they still have any long ones left and put up 2 more. :-)

I've also been working on a couple of other new pieces. This eagle has been sold to a collector but he's still with me waiting to finish curing so he can be varnished and go to his new home.

Another eagle...

A miniature raccoon done in casein and scratch on white clayboard (WIP)

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Eagle mini, hippo scratch WIP's

I have 2 going at once, the eagle is nearing completion, the hippo is in the UGLY stage! LOL.

The eagle is 4.5" x 4". It's done in caseins on board.

Here is the under-painting start.

More layers.

Starting to refine things.

Now for the ugly stage hippo- done in scratch and acrylic inks.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Coyote WIP

I've been working on a large scratchboard that I had started a long while back. He's been sitting there "howling" at me to finish him. I'm finally getting there! I have a few WIP's for you to look at to see some of the progression. I don't have any early ones I'm afraid. You have to look closely to see some of the changes perhaps. I paint thinly, then scratch back.

I hope to have him finished in the next day or 2 if possible. But, I generally think I'm nearly done and always find more to do!!!