Sunday, May 30, 2010

Potty Chair - EDM #30 - Draw a Chair


This is not your grandmother's potty chair. It has sensors in the bowl that detect wetness and play a tune. Alas, nothing but silence today. It also has a flush handle, toilet paper holder and a clear blue plastic lid. Potty chairs have come a long way since my day.

I'm guessing this is the only potty chair in all the chairs that have ever been drawn for this EDM challenge.

Potting training attempts with the triplets go something like this:

(6 hours since last wet diaper; plus cup of juice, cup of milk and a nap.)

Do you need to tee-tee?

(30 minutes later)

Do you need to tee-tee?

(30 minutes later)

Let's go try to tee-tee. Listen....listen....listen for the tee-tee.

(10 minutes of sitting on the potty chair)

Did you tee-tee? Do you need to tee-tee?

OK then, let's pull up your big girl panties.

(3 minutes later = 3 wet Pull-ups)

Apparently somebody doesn't grasp the concept, but I'm not sure if it's the babies or the adults. Hummmm.....

Triplet Attack!


The triplets showed up unexpectedly at noon for an overnight visit, so the attic work order is on indefinite hold. All three of us spent every moment herding babies for the rest of the day and night. I drew their shoes after they went to bed because that was the only part of them that stayed still.

Poppy grilled teriyaki chicken (special request from me) for an early Memorial Day cookout. He also grilled huge portobello mushrooms and zucchini spears. Yum! The trips didn't care for the zucchini and all the pieces got handed back to Nana.

The trip with the snotty nose showered me with a sneeze. Joy.

Gratuitous triplet photo:

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Nana's Attic - Day 1


Nana finally got the new roof she's been wanting for so long. Gone is the buggy cedar shake, replaced with new decking and architectural shingles.

Lots of buggy cedar bits fell into the attic so cleaning and vacuuming was first up on the work order today. We also replaced several flooring panels that were rickety or missing.

Progress was slow today due to the unexpected repairs to the floor, but we should be able to finish up tomorrow. The left side doesn't seem to be as nasty as the right side.

I dread lugging the dozen or so big Christmas tubs back in here. Makes my back hurt just looking at them.

Nana culled about 8 big tubs to be donated or to go to the storage unit. That will make it much easier to find what she needs in here without having to move a bunch of stuff first. Yay!

Pointy arrow notes:

<--This side (left side) still icky. Start here tomorrow.

<--Ancient suitcase containing Daddy's scrapbooks

<--More cooking stuff

(middle back) X-mas stuff goes along the back; now in upstairs bedroom.

(middle) Cooking stuff to go on new shelves plus lots more in bedroom.

-->(right side) Cleaned and organized

--> 45 years (or more) of memories all neatly boxed & labelled.

--> two bags of trash

Friday, May 28, 2010

Eating Indian for the First Time


Nana, Poppy and I went out for Indian food tonight. It was a first-time experience for all three of us. I am so turned off by the smell of curry I was prepared to just pick at my dinner and eat a ham sandwich when I got home.

It was all wonderful and I scarfed down everything placed in front of me.

PAPAD - A lacy, fried tortilla chip thingy made with lentils and black pepper. The dipping salsa was bright green with a cilantro flavor. There was another one that looked like soy sauce made with tamarind.

TEA - Made with cinnamon, ginger and two other spices I didn't catch. Wonderful change from ordinary iced tea. Could have drunk a gallon of this stuff.

GARLIC NAN - A soft bread that looks like a pizza crust. The owner told us it was made by sticking the dough to the side of the oven. The hot air across it made it puffy.

BASMATI RICE - Long grain, fluffy and delicate. I've never seen this type of rice before.

PALAK (SAAG) CHICKEN - Chicken chunks with spinach and other spices. It was an evil dark green and looked for all the world like dog poo. Poppy tasted it and declared it to be "complex" with flavors. I could taste cilantro and about five other flavors I couldn't identify.

The waiter explained that all the entrees on the menu listed as "curried" didn't necessarily contain curry. Curry in Indian is the equivalent of "gravy" in American and just means the dish has a stew-like consistency.

The waiter asked if I wanted my dish mild, medium or hot. I just shrugged and told him to pick. He picked medium. I took the first bite and it was so spicy hot it took my breath away. My eyes watered and nose ran. It was good but I don't think I'll ever order "hot" Indian food. Whoa!

The name of the restaurant was Amruth which is a Sanskrit word meaning, "Nectar of Immortality with Magnificent Flavor."

Aptly named.

Home to watch the 10:00 news and hit the sack. Tomorrow I start on my work order for the attic.

More Art Supplies


Hubby took one of my sketches to work still attached in my watercolor pad. The sketch was a gift but the pad wasn't. It never made it home. A good excuse to buy more. (Strathmore Windpower watercolor pads, 9 x 12 and 6 x 9, 40% off.)

Needed some disposable palette pads for use with acrylic paints. On sale for $1.00 each. A bargain!

A new set of Staedtler Pigment Liner pens. My current set is running dry. I love how these pens glide across the page. They are so much better than PITTs or Pigma Microns!

Pigmented ink stamp pads. All I have are little tiny stamp pads about the size of a quarter and two of them four have dried up.

Oval stamp. I'm thinking about using this on any sketch that is an EDM challenge. I'll write EDM #XX in the oval so they can be easily identified.

Also got three more photo keeper boxes, not to keep photos but my ever-growing collection of art supplies.

A DAY IN WHICH I ADD TO MY ART SUPPLY HOARD. I love those kinda days!

Off to find some supper. Poppy asked me what I wanted to eat and I replied, "Something different." Oh boy, did I get different.

Lime Green Bug & World's Ugliest Lamp

Off for a week-long visit to Nana and Poppy's house to help Nana with her home improvement projects. Arrived Friday and we were soon off on Friday night "missions."

I'm breaking this day up into several posts because we did a lot of livin' between 5:00 and 10:00.

First stop was a meeting at the community center. Neat old building with lot of interesting things to draw. I didn't make it inside because this lime green bug caught my eye. Had to draw.


Cutest little car you ever did see. What attracted my attention was the huge sunflower attached to the steering wheel.

Also liked the way the shadow of the building fell along the curves on one side and the sunlight fell along the curves on the other side. The front bumper actually had a boo-boo and part of it was being held together with a bungie cord. I opted not to draw that part.

Went inside to escape the bugs. All new furniture since the last time I was here. All the furnishings in the lobby are donated and are ever-changing. This time a pair of the world's ugliest lamps caught my eye.


This was donated to the community center, one of a matching pair. I would have been 'shamed to donate them because then somebody would know I had paid good money for them. Ack!

I would have tossed them in the dumpster instead of donating them to hide my unfortunate lapse in judgement in home furnishings.

After that we went cruising around and found the Duggar's temporary digs while little Josie is in the hospital. No signs of life there, just a limo in the driveway.

Poppy loaned me his cell phone to take a photo for Uncle Buck, the Dugger's biggest fan in Chicago. Haven't gotten it yet but it should be coming.

Pssst! Nana! Send me that, will ya?

Off to oogle art supplies.

UPDATE: 6-10-2010

Here's the pic of the Duggar digs; thanks Nana!:

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Out on the Porch - EDM #27 - Draw a Book


Was feeling rather uninspired with this challenge since I seem to be drawing lots of square boxy things lately. Found this book and thought about my grandmother.

As a kid I would porch sit with her in the early evenings sipping sweet tea from heavy, chunky glasses. Her wide porch spanned the entire front of her house. The squeaky porch swing was on one end, a row of white rockers on the other, and lush ferns hung along the length.

The western end was protected from the scorching sun by a stand of kudzu she carefully cultivated and trained up several strands of cotton clothesline rope hanging from the eave.

She would call out to the evening walkers passing by. "Hiya! How y'all doin'? Care for some tea?" Usually no takers on the tea as they had just finished supper, but many would come up the walk, plant a foot on the bottom step, and chat about things for a while. As darkness fell and the skeeters descended, they would say their goodbyes and continue on.

Other times we would just sit and swing, listening to the sounds of sticky summer...tree frogs, katydids, crickets, children playing somewhere in the distance.

When the lightning bugs appeared and the street lights came on I knew I had to go home.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Wisteria - EDM #26 - Draw Anything You Like


Poppy wanted some wisteria clippings to plant in his yard. I thought he was crazy. That stuff is invasive like kudzu.

Oh well, it's his yard.

These are his clippings rooting in a vase.

Process notes:
I picked this little scene to draw because of all the reflective surfaces. Once upon a time I would have shied away from something so challenging, but lately I seem to seek out tough draws just to see what I can make of them. Willingness to suck, that's what it is. I like it.

Speck and the Pergola

Miz Dee sent me this with the message "touché." Since I posted a picture of her she thought turnabout was fair play.

So, this is me, painting away, sans red striped shirt and pigtails.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

McKinney House

Went out sketching with Miz Dee all day today. We met at the Henry Crawford McKinney House in El Dorado, listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It is a magnificent old mansion built in 1925 just after the South Arkansas oil boom. It has expansive grounds with a carriage house, pool house, reflecting pool, pergola, vineyard and stables.

It sat vacant for decades and was taken over by vegetation. In the last few years it was given to a local historical society and they are slowing bringing it back from near ruin. The grounds are still rather decrepit but I think it makes them more interesting than if it was all newly manicured.

There are still traces of its former glory here and there even though the grass has taken over the tennis courts, the fountain is growing weeds, and the swimming pool has been filled in. There are several huge outdoor tables made from a single slab of flagstone. There are enough flagstone pavers on the property to pave a Wal-Mart parking lot.

The estate must have been magnificent in its heyday with roaring parties until dawn. I can imagine F. Scott Fitzgerald driving up in his yellow Rolls Royce.

So, enough about the history. Here are the sketches:

East wing,view from the reflecting pool
I was quietly sketching away when a big ol' bullfrog croaked right next to me in the reflecting pool. Scared the peedoodle outta me.

Old fountain with vineyard behind.
The only thing growing in the vineyard now is poison oak. That little figure thingy in the top of the fountain is a pudgy little boy holding a goose. The goose's head is broken off.

Miz Dee Painting
The Ninja Sketcher strikes again. After I finished the fountain I turned to talk to Miz Dee who was, as she said, "spraddle-legged" on a bench. She thought I was sketching the pool house behind her. I was, kinda sorta, but that wild looking orange sketching hat was begging to be drawn. It had a personality all its own. I need me one of those.

This is the sketch she was working on. She had just started blocking in the first color washes in this photo.

And here is the final

Off to lunch for an hour to cool down, then one more sketch for the day.

The Pergola
I probably should have sketched this from a different angle to show the striking architecture and shadows, but in the humid Arkansas summertime you have to pick the view from under the big shade tree.

This was a wonderful, wonderful day!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Monkeytoes - EDM #23 - Draw Your Foot


I have big ol' long monkey toes that I can move independently. It's rather disturbing looking now that I think about it.

I can pick up almost anything off the floor without having to bend over. That's come in very handy as I've gotten older.

I also have impossibly high arches. Never have found a pair of cowboy boots that fit correctly.

Nana told me today that one of the triplets was sitting on the floor and picked up a Froot Loop with her toes and put it in her mouth with her toes.

That monkey toe thing definitely runs in the family.

Bugs On My Windowpane


Saw these mating bugs on the window and liked the shape their bodies and legs made. Had to draw.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

EDM #22 - Draw a Piece of Clothing


My Nightshirt

I think this was my grandmother's originally. It showed up in the massive yard sale we had after the final clean-out of her house.

It looked brand new so I snatched it up and have been wearing it ever since*. Got a matching one in blue too.

Yes, I'm pitiful, wearing my dead grandma's hand-me-downs.

*Ever since - My 10th grade English teacher just cringed.

The Yellow Snake Dream


I had just checked in to a hotel for another dreaded two-week business training seminar. I was with Randy, my old partner, and another (unfamiliar to me) female co-worker. I was in a panic because I had made the hotel reservation for only one night, not for two weeks.

Construction was going on behind the building due to a flooding problem. They were digging up the ground to install a drainage system.

When I opened the door to my room, the carpet was flooded and soggy and snakes were crawling out from everywhere - from under the bed, under the baseboards, and under my pillow. All the digging was driving them out of the ground.

The snakes were yellow with a diamond pattern. They reminded me of snaky yellowjacket wasps. I was trying to remember the rhyme to determine if they were poisonous. Is it black and yeller, kill a feller? Or is it red and yeller kill a feller? I can never remember.

A couple of the snakes were solid black like chicken snakes. The largest one was a black one and about three-feet long.

I knew I had to rescue my cat from the room who inexplicably I had brought with me and was already in the room.

When one of the snakes crawled up to my foot I woke up.

Had an attack of sleeping sickness today. Went to bed at 10:00 last night and woke up at 11:00 this morning. Ate a bowl of cereal and went back to sleep.

Woke up around 5:00, ate some supper and went back to sleep again. Finally woke up around midnight. Now I'm wide awake and drawing.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Kitchen Radio - EDM #21 - Draw Something Vintage


These "Draw Something Old" challenges are killing me since I've gotten rid of almost all my old stuff. Had to draw this one from memory.

This radio sat on the kitchen counter for eons getting all fly-specked and thick with grunge. I attempted to scrub it once when I was a teenager but it didn't look any better.

I'm guessing Mom and Dad bought it early on in their marriage, probably with S&H Green Stamps.

The only time I remember it being on was early in the morning on school days when the weather was bad.

Mom and I would listen for the announcement that school was cancelled, but first we had to endure the Farm Report and Swap-N-Shop. People would call in telling what they had for sale, wanted to give away (lots of puppies and kittens), or what they were hoping to buy. It was the 1960's version of Craigslist.

All the little pointy arrow notes:

-Bakelite case
-Institutional mint green walls (HA-TED them)
-Masking tape repair (to the cord)
-Brown cloth cord
-No tuning dial window
-Only picked up the local A.M. station that went off the air at dusk

Art Book Score


A lady was moving and culled her 20-year collection of art books. She took about 75 books to the Tuesday Open Studio group telling them, "Take all you want and DON'T BRING THEM BACK!"

By the time I looked through the stack there were about 20 books left. I took these eight plus a stack of "The Artist's Magazine." Had I bought all these they would have been at least $200. Woot!

When I'm finished with them I'll pass them on. I don't need an art book collection either!

The stack, itemized:

  • Painting Watercolor Portraits that Glow, Jan Kunz

  • The Watercolorist's Guide to Painting Buildings, Richard Taylor

  • The Watercolorist's Essential Notebook, Gordon MacKenzie

  • Texture, Martin Davidson

  • Practical Watercolor Painting, Gerald Woods

  • The Encyclopedia of Calligraphy Techniques, Diana Hardy Wilson

  • Basic Oil Painting Techniques, Greg Albert & Rachel Wolf

  • Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Oil Painting, Edited by Marian E. Appellof, Watson Guptill publishers.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Lunch Bucket - EDM #20 - Draw Something "Dad"


I love this old school photo of Daddy, circa 1934. He's so cute with his big, innocent eyes and faded overalls. I'm guessing he probably doesn't have on shoes.

I have Daddy's eyes, a babypoop brownish-green color.

Daddy always signed cards and emails like this--> DaD; big D, little A, big D.

Daddy's Lunch Bucket, 1950-1982

Daddy carried this lunchbox with him every day for 30+ years. The finish on the top and around the latches was worn shiny from use.

The black plastic handle broke so he milled a new one from a strip of aluminum.

His ID badge was riveted to the end. It was lime green with his ID# engraved in red numbers.

The lunch bucket lived on the dryer by the back door for my entire lifetime.

Daddy always called this his lunch bucket, not lunchbox. That's probably a throwback to his childhood when he took his lunch to school in an actual bucket.

Dare to Suck


Miz Dee loaned me her copy of An Illustrated Life, a gift from her son a few months ago. Tucked inside was his note about the book, ending with, "I want to encourage you to 'play' more."

I smiled at that since I had just dubbed Miz Dee my new playmate. Between the two of us she'll be making mudpies soon!

I read the first four or five artist's interviews and was struck by how they viewed their sketchbooks. None of it is supposed to be finished artwork, just a place to play and dream and meditate and escape from or delve into their world.

I got to thinking about that and how stiff and formal my journal seems to me.

Then I read a blog post of Maggie Stiefvater (Hi, I Suck; April 27, 2010) about how to become good at something. She said besides practice, you have to be willing to suck.

Commenters said things like, "I will embrace my suck," and "I dare to suck!" Had to laugh. I get it.

So, with all that buzzing about in my head, I think I will adopt the Dare to Suck attitude and loosen up on these journal pages...letting things just flow across the page without so much mental pre-planning. I think too long about *what* to draw. I should just snatch up the book and start scribbling what's in my head.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Lee Michaels 1971

Been 14 days since I don't know when
I just saw her with my best friend
Do ya know what I mean?

Up late at night reading blogs. One had a link to a music video on YouTube. I never can watch just one YouTube video. I have to watch lots and lots and re-live the halcyon days of my misspent youth.

Ended up singing along and dancing in my chair until dawn.


There's four hours of my life I'll never get back.

One of my favs is Lee Michael's "Do You Know What I Mean?" from 1971. I have to listen to it several times with the volume cranked up to 11. Dude knows how to rock a Hammond organ.

The most memorable lyric:


Comes right in the middle of the song surrounded by total silence on either side. That little quiet woo speaks volumes.

EDM #19 - Draw Something You've Made


It was tough to find something I had made that wasn't two-dimensional arty stuff or dinner related. Then I spied this old basket tucked in the bookcase.

I remember making it. A lady I worked with conned me into taking a basketmaking workshop her friend was hosting. I really didn't want to learn how to make baskets, but I went, had fun, and bought some split oak to make more at home. I don't know what became of the others, I remember one was an egg basket. Haven't seen it in decades.

I was trying to remember when I made this basket, then I turned it over. I had signed and dated it (1984) along with the location and the note, "My First Basket!" (Had to laugh at that. How very typically anal-retentive of me.)

I hang on to this basket because it keeps me in touch with the survival skills of my ancestors. I figure if I survive the aftermath of a nuclear holocaust, basketmaking might be a handy skill to have.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Oh Little Playmate

Oh little playmate,
Will you come play with me,
And bring your dollies three,
Climb up my apple tree?

Slide down my rainbow,
Into my cellar door,
And we'll be jolly friends,
Forever more.

Journaling: I am delighted to have found a new playmate in Miz Dee. There's something special about a playmate that isn't found in a "friend, acquaintance, buddy, or hot partner."

A playmate is willing to go on new adventures, to poke in dark places with a stick, to find pretty rocks in the creek that will go home to live in the treasure chest.

A playmate has the sense of wonderment and delight to explore the world with new eyes every day.

A playmate can cause your soul to sing a happy tune.

Everybody needs a playmate and now I have one in Miz Dee!


Giant Lunar Moth


Cheezburger the Porch Cat brought me a hunting trophy - a giant brown moth. And my little brain went immediately to this futuristic scene with it.

I brought the moth inside to study.

Cheezy was hot.

Today's EDM Challenge was "Draw the view from a window of your house, apartment, office, etc." I should have titled this post as such and let people wonder about me.

I ain't right.

Strathmore Visual Journals

Just stumbled upon this new product from Strathmore. From their current promotions website:

New Strathmore® Visual Journals are engineered to meet the intense demands of the artist's creative process. They provide greater freedom of expression, offering a full range of paper types and weights requested by artists themselves. The wire binding allows the journal to lie flat and open up 360 degrees. Journals are available in three sizes, in Drawing, Mixed Media, Smooth and Vellum Bristol, and two weights of Watercolor.

The colorful paper cover is removable leaving the solid brown textured cover.

Specs for all books:

- Spiral wire-bound on the long side
- Non-perforated pages
- Acid free

Sizes & wholesale prices
- Small, 3.5" x 5", $5.00
- Medium, 5.5" x 8", $8.00
- Large, 9" x 12", $14.00


Drawing 100 lb (163 g/m2)
Heavy-weight drawing paper is excellent for pencil, colored pencil and charcoal. Also good for pastel, marker, pen and ink, light mixed media and collage techniques.
Medium surface, 84 pages/42 sheets

Mixed Media 90 lb (190 g/m2)
Medium-weight paper is great for wet and dry media including watercolor, acrylic, pen and ink, pencil, crayon, charcoal, marker and collage.
Vellum surface, 68 pages/34 sheets

Bristol – Vellum 100 lb (260 g/m2)
Vellum finish is great for any dry media including pencil, charcoal and pastel. Also good for pen and ink, marker and collage.
Vellum surface, 48 pages/24 sheets

Bristol – Smooth 100 lb (260 g/m2)
Smooth surface is excellent for traditional and specialty pen and ink techniques, marker and collage.
Smooth surface, 56 pages/28 sheets

Watercolor 90 lb (190 g/m2)
Medium-weight paper is great for watercolor, acrylic and collage. Also good for pen and ink, pencil and marker.
Cold press surface, 68 pages/34 sheets

Watercolor 140 lb (300 g/m2)
Heavy-weight paper is excellent for watercolor and collage. Also good for acrylic, pen and ink, pencil and marker.
Cold press surface, 44 pages/22 sheets

I'm not a "visual journal" kinda girl slathering gesso and collaging things into my daily journal, but several aspects of these books caught my eye.

1.) The pages aren't micro-perfed for easy tear-out. THANK THE SWEET BABY JESUS AND THANK YOU STRATHMORE! Micro-perfed pages are just stupid. If I want to remove a page from the binding I can work an X-acto knife and scissors just fine thankyouverymuch.

2.) BOUND watercolor paper not in a casebound journal, in portrait format, and at a reasonable price, with plenty of pages that are not micro-perf.

3.) BOUND vellum and Bristol papers. I searched and searched and could only find this in single sheets or tape bound pads.

So, added to my art supply wish list is a medium Bristol-Smooth and a large 90lb Watercolor. Woot!

Hopefully Michaels, Hobby Lobby or Dick Blick will carry these. If not, they're just another pipe dream for me.

Oh, and Strathmore, if you find this post, update your website. I couldn't find a direct link to these journals. NOT. GOOD. BUSINESS.

Monday, May 17, 2010

EDM #17 - Draw a Musical Instrument


This guitar showed up the the corner of the living room about three weeks ago and hasn't moved since then. I'm kind of afraid to ask why. Sometimes it's better not to know what Hubby is up to.


I've been doing very well with the Every Day in May challenge. I've drawn something every day this month! (happy dance) Only 14 more days to go.

However, I've fallen behind on the Every Day Matters challenges I was supposed to be drawing for the Every Day in May challenge. OK, that all sounds very confusing.

Anyway, I was busy drawing and painting other stuff on the 13th through the 16th and didn't draw the EDM challenges for those days. I decided to skip them for now and keep up with the group. It's more fun when everyone is drawing on the same challenge on the same day.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Happy as a Clam


After three days out of the house drawing multiple detailed sketches, I was ready to stay home and draw something quick and easy. Carol C. (cacollieotr) inadvertently became my muse.

Under my Relay for Life sketch I wrote, "I and my little introverted self retreated to the solitude of the high bleachers with Implements of Sketchification while my extroverted playmates worked the crowd on the field."

Carol commented, "I can see you in my mind, huddled up in the bleachers, happy as a clam!"

Yes, yes, yes! I could see it too, the clam part I mean. Had to draw.

Clam is such a fitting description of little ol' introverted me hiding behind a sketchbook. Thank you Carol for the inspiration!

Decided to add the iconic Speck pigtails and red striped shirt.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

World Wide Sketchcrawl #27

Today was World Wide SketchCrawl #27 where sketchers across the globe get together and sketch their little piece of the world. This sketchcrawl I didn't have to fly solo and drag poor Hubby along. I had the pleasure of the company of the intrepid Miz Dee, my new-found sketching buddy. Yippeeeee!!!!

We met at the Museum of Natural Resources in Smackover, Arkansas. It is part of the Arkansas State Parks system and is dedicated to the history of oil, brine and bromine production in southern Arkansas. We didn't get to wander about on the grounds because it was drizzling rain. We both decided we weren't that intrepid.

First sketch was the circus carriage of the Goat Woman of Smackover.

All the journaling down the right-hand side of the page is the story of The Goat Woman copied from the museum's website. You can read that here.


Dee and I spent two hours sketching this. She's as much a detail addict as I am. That was way too long. After two hours we just quit and went in search of lunch.


Smackover, Arkansas is out in the middle of nowhere. We asked at the front desk if there was anywhere we could go for lunch. The only three places were truck stops with day-old fried chicken. We didn't think we could handle that so we made do with stuff from the snack rack in the gift shop. Vienna Sausage is a second cousin to fried bologna, but I was desperate.

I had hoped to get four sketches done today for the sketchcrawl, but it was 1:00 pm, I was fading fast, and I only had one sketch in the book. I took a few minutes to warm up on some speed sketching with the brush pen and sketched the remains of our meager lunch.

I have *got* to quit getting so zenned out on details. My brain is happy but my back screams that I've been sitting in one spot too long!


Miz Dee spied this old telephone in the Horseshoe Cafe exhibit that she wanted to draw. There were actually two phones but I opted for just one and other stuff on the shelves. There was a table and chairs in there so we settled in to draw.

Part of the exhibit was an audio tape of the sounds of a cafe: low murmuring voices, the clink and rattle of dishes being cleared from a table, and a guy coughing. Cough, cough, cough, cough, cough.

After a while I felt like I was sketching in a TB ward. The tape looped about every two to three minutes and the cough started to drive me nuts. "Get that man a Ricola!"

This is one of those instances where taking the time to sketch an event will permanently imprint it on my brain. Had I merely taken a photo and continued on, I wouldn't have experienced the dreadful repetitive TB cough. Yep, I'll remember that and this day for a long time.

The lighting in the museum was dark and moody and after squinting through the gloom for four hours my eyes were beginning to ache. My spirit was willing but my body wasn't able. It's hell getting old.

At 3:00 pm I closed the sketchbook and told Miz Dee I was done for the day.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Friday Night Highlights

I actually got out of the house two whole days in a row. It's a record!

Went to the Ashley County Relay for Life event. I, of course, took Implements of Sketchification to occupy my time in the solitude of the bleachers while my companions ratted and chatted in the crowd.

I was struck by the shear number of people in the stadium. At one point you couldn't see the track surface due to all the folks walking. (I grew tired of drawing all the little stick figures, so please use your imagination to fill up the track.) It appeared that all of Ashley County had turned out in a show of support. It was pretty awesome.

I could have stayed and sketched all night. Having live, willing sketch victims still awake at 2:00 am would have been like manna from heaven. But alas, no, Hubby declared we had to leave in search of grindage.

We ended up on the town square in Hamburg, a nice spot with cool old buildings and a gazebo. I saw lots of things I wanted to draw but it was dusk, the light was fading and supper at the steakhouse beckoned.

Sawyer's Steakhouse is in a neat old building with high tin ceilings and lots of old fixtures. There was a grand mirror behind the antique marble soda fountain, along with several of grandma's fancy cake plates and parfait glasses. I could have sketched all night in there too.

We waddled out an hour later, all full as seed ticks.

I definitely want to return to the square and this restaurant for more sketching. Woot! Must dream and scheme a road trip in the near future.


2:00 am - Still wound up from drawing today. Brain is hung up on whirled peas. Had to poop them out so I can get some sleep.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Courtyard Fountain


A wonderful afternoon of sketching and visiting in a quiet courtyard downtown. The weather was perfect, the company excellent, and the drawings divine!

Met Miz D. for the first time today. It was like we had known each other all our lives and just had to catch up on the last 30 years. She draws and paints beautifully but it's hard to convince her of that.

She is passionate about illustrated journaling and is trying to spread the gospel. Well, now there are two of us. "For where two or more are gathered together..."

Squee! We might be on to something big! Woot!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

EDM #12 - Draw Your Dinner


Cranberry Glazed Pork Loin

  • Slab o' pork loin w/ cranberry, apple & BBQ glaze
  • Yukon Gold mashed taters -n- gravy
  • Greek seasoned French-cut green beans
  • Sourdough garlic toast
  • Salad with lettuce, tomato, croutons, cashews, and Ranch dressing
  • Pepsi

It was Experimental Cooking Night at our house. My sister sent me the recipe and I've been planning, discussing and dreaming about this meal for days.

Hubby inhaled it without taking a breath, then started talking about all the possibilities for leftovers.

It was a big hit!

You bet I drew this from a photo. I wasn't waiting around letting it get cold while I sketched it!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

EDM #11 - Draw Your Glasses


#1 - The Distance Pair

- stylish, sleek, slitty
- bifocals
- expensive

Can't see for sh*t wearing them. Discovered they give me headaches.

#2 - The Reading Pair

- clunky
- single vision
- cheap; $40 total

Love these and wear them 98% of the day. I can see the TV across the room better with these. That ain't right!

I kept telling myself that I just needed a little more time to get adjusted to the new bifocals, but I'm pretty sure something is just wrong with them.

I sit about twelve feet from a big screen TV and the scrolling channel guide lettering is fuzzy. I don't think I should be squinting to see that. Plus, if I wear them more than an hour I get a headache.

I should have painted them yellow because they are lemons.


Monday, May 10, 2010

EDM #10 - Draw Some Hands

These are the hands of my triplet great-nieces who just turned 2-years-old. Their little hands are into everything these days!

Gratuitous triplet pic:

The girls need some little gay minions to help them out with hair and wardrobe, doncha think??? Those dog ears could use some product.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

EDM # 9 - Organized Chaos


Computer Nest - Art Space - Business Office - Supply Closet

When you live in a little bitty house, all spaces must be multi-functional, and they must be organized.

This is the most chaotic spot in the house. Everywhere else is spartan by comparison.

There was so much stuff in there I got tired of drawing and left things out. Then I got tired of painting and just called it done. Sheesh!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

The St. Christopher Saga - EDM #8

EDM #8 - Draw your watch or other piece of jewelry


In idle conversation with my mother-in-law (she seems to make an appearance in my journal quite often, doesn't she?) I mentioned I was looking for a St. Christopher necklace but couldn't find one I liked. They were all small with delicate, dainty chains. I would destroy a dainty chain in a matter of days because I'm hard on my jewelry.

The next time I was at the farm, Mammaw Speck said she had a surprise for me.

Squee! A beautiful, chunky St. Christopher!

That night I took off my new St. Christopher when I took my bath and left it by the sink in the bathroom. That was the end of my new St. Christopher.

Mammaw Speck noticed I wasn't wearing it the next time she saw me. She was worried I didn't like it.

"Oh no," I said, "I liked it just fine. It's hanging around your son's neck. He stole it from me the day you gave it to me and he won't give it back."

...and she smiled a little smile I didn't understand at the time.

A few weeks later she said she had another surprise for me. Squee! Another St. Christopher! This one was larger and more intricate.

She told me she had liked this one better but her buddy had talked her out of it, saying it was too large for a girl.

She was most happy to have a reason to go back and get it.

I put it on right then and haven't taken it off since*. Hubby's not getting his hands on this one.

*Except to draw it tonight. Hubby is safely in bed.

Friday, May 7, 2010

EDM #7 - Draw a Bottle, Jar or Tin from the Kitchen


Looked for something interesting to draw. Most of the stuff in my kitchen was boring.

Found the olive oil in the back of the top cabinet. I don't use it much for cooking, only for making salad dressing. When I cook with it the food has a weird taste that just seems wrong. Maybe it's the cook that's wrong, not the olive oil.

Next to the olive oil I found this little squeeze bottle of honey. Oy vey. I have no idea how long it's been up there. I have no idea how it got in my cabinet either. That's a scary thought.

It's going to live in the trash can now.

If I revisit the EDM challenges each year, I'll work back around to this one and clean out my pantry cabinets on a regular basis. A win-win situation.