Thursday, March 26, 2020

First Daffodils of Spring!

I saw daffodils blooming in the city several weeks ago, but out my way in the country, they've just started to open their sunny blossoms.  It's worth the wait!  These blooms cheer me and make me want to start planting my garden. And their fragrance never grows old.

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Nature Journal: March Green!

You can cancel the St. Patty's Day parades, but you can't cancel nature's greening.  Right around St. Patrick's Day every year near my home, the grass awakens from its winter dullness and flushes with vibrant green.  What a feast for the eyes! This morning, I decided to try to capture the colors I could see out my south windows.

Saturday, March 21, 2020

Figure Drawing Update: Osher Drawing Class

I taught my first Osher Lifelong Learning Figure Drawing Class and was preparing to teach my second when the COVID-19 closures began, so we had to stop meeting.  Luckily, my husband David is also a model, and he happens to have a background in television production.  He set up our home art studio with a webcam, and we were able to produce our first live online Figure Drawing class.  I appreciated the students who logged into the Zoom platform to join our meeting, and the Osher staff who made the online class possible.  Doing anything normal feels so comforting during our sheltering in place time.

The students' artwork is displayed on a new page: Osher at CMU Figure Drawing Class.  I hope you'll stop by and check it out!

If you find yourself in need of an online drawing lesson or figure modeling session, please get in touch with me via the Pittsburgh Artist Registry and we will set something up!

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Figure Drawing Update

I had the privilege of drawing a wonderfully creative and athletic model named Zach today.  He invented dramatic poses full of negative space, using a few simple props.

I minute gesture

1 minute gestures

5 minute gesture

The Weary Warrior

15 minute pose

Monday, March 9, 2020

Hiking Day

Doak Field is still dressed in winter colors.
Saturday afternoon the clouds cleared from the sky, and I had free hours to slip on my backpack and traipse out to the woods and fields.  I carried two nature journals -- one is 9" x 12" with plenty of white paper to fill up, and the other, 6" x 8", is filled with brown paper.  The little, brown journal is my primary nature journal -- small, friendly, and easier to balance as I walk and sketch, it provides a midtone starting place to work lighter and darker into the drawing.

From my journal:
I wander Doak Field realizing that this time in the sunshine under the Bluebirds' sky is precisely what my soul needed.  A Song Sparrow's call bids me welcome. Wish I had my tea thermos like I had back in my Oak Openings days.  
Sitting in Doak Field watching the bluebirds hunt.  Perched on a low limb of a cherry tree, their impossibly blue wings catch the sunshine as they sail to the mowed earth after their prey & then flutter back up to their branch. 

Bright sunlight made every line crisp and had me reaching for pen and ink to capture the scene. 

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Spring Report

The first glimmers of spring have been interspersed with cold, snowy, windy weather.  These are the times to brew up a mug of tea, make notes on the week, and sketch nature indoors.

Friday, March 6, 2020

Hike with a Friend

The day was lovely, and I had a few hours open in my schedule, so I called my friend and we went on a hike, swapping stories , and making discoveries -- like the pile of little bird bones perfectly bare and white, and the Ringneck Pheasant feather with the clean-snapped shaft.  Crisply cut by the beak of a hawk most likely.  I scooped up samples and brought them indoors, where I could sketch and linger with them.