I rarely watch television ….. except during the Olympics.

Coptic Bound Watercolor Sketchbooks

I’ve been accumulating my bookbinding projects knowing that I would be a couch potato, watching the athletes’ amazing performances.  These are the results of hanging out on the couch on Sunday night til midnight.  I love watching the Olympics, both summer and winter.  Such an inspiration to “never give up” and to push a bit further until I am out of my comfort zone.

The cover of the largest sketchbook is hand-dyed paper.  The other covers are wrapping paper.  The papers are glued over chipboard.  I used either waxes bookbinding thread or dental floss.

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Yesterday I attended the first of four sessions of a printmaking workshop taught by Sheila Goloborotko. Inspired by the process of creating a monoprint, I created an abstract ghost image on my paper prior to drawing the oil cans.

pencil drawing over ghost image wash

I felt my brain thinking along a different path as I painted the oil cans.  My anxiety level rose, finding myself in slightly unfamiliar territory.  What a great experience of expansion!

Family Treasures No. 20, Oil Cans

As a final touch, I drew into the snake extension with a white gel pen.

There will definitely be several more paintings of my father’s oil cans in the future.

Color Scheme: Analogous with split complements    Dominant Color: Violet.  The split complements are yellow/green and yellow/orange.

Hollyhocks always make me smile.

Hollyhocks in bloom

In 1995, the first summer in our home in Lebanon Township, we were treated to garden surprises.  A peony plant appeared in the middle of the backyard.  Bleeding Heart bloomed in half a dozen locations, scattered about.  For me, the greatest delight were the red and pink hollyhocks blooming all along the south side of the house.  Over the years, we lost many of the hollyhocks.  Only the pink remain.  They were always my favorite.  This year they are exceptionally beautiful.

Sketchbook painting: Drawn first with fountain pen in ink, followed by pink ink for the blossoms and watercolor for the leaves.

The yellow card in my post office box announced the arrival of a surprise package.

Tea Parties and Butterflies

The package was from a new friend, the woman who owns the house and garden where I painted during the Keyport Garden Walk earlier this month.  In the small box I found a smaller, round box.  A piece of cloth embroidered with images of flowers and tea sets protected a butterfly my friend made from a shell she found on the beach.  I couldn’t resist making a drawing of the thoughtful gifts.

A tea party is planned for early next month.  I’m bringing homemade scones!

Sketchbook drawing: Drawn first with ink, followed by watercolor.

Yesterday I completed the last of the 100 drawings / paintings in the Trumpet Parts Series.

Trumpet Parts No. 100 with the felt ball I made for Baer’s 3rd Birthday (today).  The roving was from Tari’s sheep.

The last three drawings are ink squiggle drawings.  I will keep only my favorite piece, T2-R2, from the box of bent and broken trumpet parts.  I enjoyed every moment of working on the series.  The series began in April of 2011.  It documents the passage of time, the change of seasons, my interests, my experiments with a variety of media and styles, as well as the development of The Color Scheme Game.

Trumpet Parts No. 98

Most of the series was done in sketchbooks, helping me to fill the remaining blank pages of at least seven of the sixty-six incomplete sketchbooks on my bookshelves.

Trumpet Parts No. 99

The series acted as a mirror, making me aware of my work habits, my style preferences, my color preferences as well as the consistency of quality (and absence of quality) that is directly connected with the level of focus on the work.

The entire series (minus a few that were horrific) may be viewed in the Trumpet Parts Album of  my facebook page Chris Carter Artist.

Moving on …….

Sketchbook Drawings:  drawn with Noodler’s Neponset fountain pen (fabulous pen!) filled with Noodler’s Heart of Darkness Ink.

Fabulous visit with an old, younger friend this afternoon. I feel like a proud mother.

Flopped Over Peas in Bloom

As I recall, today is really Memorial Day, May 30th.  I thought more today about the men and women who died serving the United States Armed Forces than I did yesterday as I ate my deviled eggs during the legal holiday.  I believe all, or at least most, legal holidays now fall on a Monday or Friday for the convenience of a three day weekend.

Back to feeling like a proud mother.  Beth Brader, after going through a terribly scary episode in the local hospital, has awakened her artistic soul.  She covered her hospital room walls with drawings when she wasn’t catching flying tennis balls. She begins every day and ends every day with drawing using a bic pen and markers.  The work is incredible!  Klimt, Beardsley and Matisse all come to mind, yet her work is not derivative. Her drawings are uniquely Beth Brader.  Had Beth not made it through her crisis, the exquisite drawings I saw today would not exist.

I returned home, drank half a bottle of wine on an empty stomach and drew my pea plant monsters in my sketchbook, still feeling the thrill of Beth’s return to her art.  I think about the tragic loss of musicians and artists who died fighting wars.  I think about the loss of all those whose lives were cut short.  Yes, they died fighting for our freedoms.  A greater contribution than one’s life cannot be given, yet I wonder …… what art, what music, what inventions do not exist today because the inventor, the creator, died in combat before the contribution could be made.

Sketchbook drawing: drawn first in ink with fountain pen, followed by watercolor, followed by white gel marker, followed by dip pen in ink.

Summer is a perfect time for Art Parties.

Justine Gardner, Musician

You supply the food and drink. I bring the art supplies!  What else do you need?  Maybe a kitchen table … or card table … or lawn chairs …. and, of course, guests. Bring the joy of art into your life.  You’re never too old, you’re never too young.  Schedule an afternoon party or an evening Art Party. We will play The Color Scheme Game and guests will take home a small sketchbook, dice and the rules to the game.  Beware!  Drawing and painting the everyday places and things in your life can become an addiction, one that is good for your heart, your brain and your soul!

Pink Hollyhocks

I usually bring dip pens, ink, watercolors, brushes, lots of paper and little sketchbooks for everyone.

Contact me for details.