Monday, September 30, 2019


Image size 16.5" x 6.5"
Watercolor, rice paper
I found a piece of paper that had an interesting feel to it so I tried painting some watercolor on it.  It was immediately evident that it was an unsized paper, but I thought I could still get a good result.  Some of my favorite paintings have been done on unsized paper.

As I was working on it, it began to pill.  That wasn't good!  I found this fanciful rice paper that I've always wanted to use and attached it over the fragile paper using matte medium.  The medium seals the paper and along with the rice paper, it is now a sturdy substrate.  After it dried, I added darker colors and different colors than the underpainting which gave it a nice depth.

I'm continuing to work on the tile mural.  The weather has cooled off so it's much nicer working in the garage now.  I've probably got a third of the large side to cut still.  I can move my extra tables to the other side of my large work tables now and hopefully, I will finish cutting the large side within a few weeks.

I've started re-drawing the smaller side, making the fish larger.  I am able to use about 35 of the original pieces I cut for that side.  I've placed then on the pattern and will draw around them, then create the rest of the pattern around them.  By using them, I will save a lot of time and clay.

So far, I've used 175 pounds of clay and am estimating that I will need about 75 pounds more to finish the project.  Of course, a lot of that ends up as scraps as I cut around each pattern.

Monday, September 23, 2019


Image Size 12.5" x 17.5"
Acrylic on TerraSkin
I'm painting on TerraSkin again.  I'm so glad that I rediscovered this surface.  Working with acrylic on this surface is perfect for me.  I thin the paints down and use them like watercolor, but unlike watercolor, the colors don't lift off of the surface when I add layers.

I'm diligently working on my clay mural.  It is taking forever, but now I'm getting to the skinnier part of the mural so it feels like I'm progressing more quickly.  I'm cutting everything on one side of the mural and then I will work on the other side.  With my two tables put together, the surface is 16 feet long.  I've set up a couple of skinny tables to use for rolling the clay and cutting the pieces since there is no room on my regular work tables.  Once I get everything cut on this side, I will move the skinny tables to the other side to finish my cutting rather than having to walk from one side of my table to the other.  It's a long way!  Also, the space between the tables is so narrow that in one area I have to step side to side to get through.  And another point, I'm too lazy to make all of that extra work for myself.
Here is a picture of my progress and you can see the skinny tables and my cramped working space.
From this picture, it doesn't look like I've done much, but those clay pieces that are cut are taking up the length of an 8' table.

Monday, September 16, 2019


Image size 17" x 24"
Acrylic on TerraSkin

I decided to play with TerraSkin again this week.  It is such a fun surface and painting multiple layers with the thinned acrylics gives a wonderful sense of depth.

I'm still plodding along with the clay mural that I've been working on for a couple of months.  It's really still too hot to work much in the garage, so not much is being accomplished at this point.  I did get the practice clay painting fired and it is really to glaze, but I am going to wait until I'm ready to glaze the large mural so that I can remember exactly what I did and what I need to change.

Monday, September 9, 2019

Scattered Thoughts

"Scattered Thoughts" diptych
Image size 9" x 10"
Acrylic on TerraSkin
I had so much fun creating the textures in this painting.  I haven't worked on TerraSkin for a long time and had forgotten what a wonderful surface it is.  I painted this as one painting and then cut it in the middle because there was a crease in the paper.  I think it is more interesting as a diptych, so a crease that could have been a mistake made a better painting (in my opinion).

I'm still working on the clay mural.  It is slow going.  I will probably start firing the pieces for the "practice" painting tomorrow.  I am cutting the clay for the larger side of the mural.  Here is how far I've gotten.  The extra pieces on the side are some that needed to be recut because they were too small.  I'm sure I will save them to make another project.

Monday, September 2, 2019

Palette Knife Clouds

"Palette Knife Clouds"
Image size 6" x 6"
Here's another palette knife painting.  I've decided that clouds are hard to do with a palette knife because they don't look very fluffy.  It was fun to try though.

I'm still working on my clay project.  I have finished cutting all of the pieces for the 18" x 36" painting that I'm doing as a practice project.  I was out of town for a few days this past week, so I didn't get any of the clay pieces cut for the real mural.  

Right now, the weather is in the 90's so working in my garage is pretty uncomfortable.  I can only stand to work for about an hour at a time before I'm sweating profusely... not a good feeling (or a good look).  It is supposed to be cooler by next weekend, so then it will be more comfortable to spend time working in the garage.

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