Traveling and drawing

I recently returned from a trip to London. It was a great trip. I feel very blessed that I was able to spend this time traveling with my mom.  When I left I had planned to spend a lot of time painting and drawing. In reality, I only did a few doodles in my sketchbook. I think it was because we were traveling and sightseeing so much that we hardly stopped to eat! The times when we could have taken a few minutes and painted or drawn, it was cold or raining.  One thing we had planned that was such an awesome experience was sketching DaVinchi's Virgin of the Rocks at the National Gallery. That was fantastic!!! Happy travels!

Motivation and art work

I have a totally different day job.  I teach first graders.  I've been teaching for a long time.  I know how kids act and I know what to do to teach them.  I know my strengths and my weaknesses.  Art is so different than teaching in some ways.  In doing artwork, I feel so vulnerable.  As if I have painted my heart and soul into something.  I have to push myself to share my work sometimes.  After I've painted or gone through a process with a piece, I am so happy with the piece but there is always something about the piece that I can't get quite right.  Each time I do a drawing or a painting, I figure out different things that I hadn't even thought of before.   Sometimes, I will complete a piece and not be satisfied with it.  I have to hang on to it until I can go back and figure out what I need to do to rework the piece.   It is truly a way to go and stretch yourself.

Saturday morning sketches

I love sketching people. So on Saturday, I headed to my favorite coffee shop for some sketching. I just started a new sketchbook. I've been watching YouTube videos of CalArts sketchbook submissions.  I have gotten some great ideas from these videos. My new favorite thing is to use post it notes to add a colored background. I also used black ink to make a background. I spent almost two hours sketching and I got a few pages of people sitting and talking, lining up to order and working on their laptops. 


Watercolor wasn't my favorite.  I couldn't control it. It was too wet or too dry or not the right color.  It's taken awhile but I finally like watercolor. In the midst of a crazy week at school, I have found that I am craving getting that brush in my hand at the end of the day.  My brain doesn't get to rest from the day but a different side of my brain clicks in.  I can hear my inside voice trying to make sense of my work. I think my left brain is trying to verbalize what my right brain is already doing. Is the paint the right shade? Do I need more shadow? What if I try a little white? It's so fun!  And in a short time I have a little watercolor doodle.  Check them out on Instagram at cb4drawing 

Nests and Van Gogh

I've had the chance to see Van Gogh's special exhibit at the Art Institute of Chicago twice already.  I love it.  It is a great insight into the artist and his work, especially focusing on the three bedroom paintings.  One thing I learned from the exhibit is that Van Gogh did a lot of drawings and paintings of birds nests.  An interesting concept for him to be painting since he lived in 37 different places in his 37 years of life.  I'm that age and I can't imagine moving that much!  I've only lived in three places.  He used to pay kids to collect nests for him to study.  Have you ever really looked at a nest?   They are very difficult to paint and draw.