Sunday, January 11, 2015

Art with Friends

Even though 2014 had some horrible moments, there was one thing that saved me... Art with Friends.  
There were new friends, who I shared fun moments brainstorming Mizzle ideas.  Some were "adult" Mizzle ideas, which were fun to draw because they pushed me past my comfort zone. 

These were a few sketches that I played with for the Lucky Seven art show I participated in.

These small watercolor paintings came about from a fun conversation that began with stripes.  Somehow stripes turned into a neon Mizzle safari, where Larry rode a neon blue zebra.  After I created the first painting, my friend came up with idea that the Mizzles needed to hang out with elephants.

But my favorite thing has been my monthly paint and wine nights.  Last August, I turned my garage into my art studio.  Each month I come up with a theme and find paintings by a variety of artists that fit that them.  Then, we create our own versions of them.  Sometimes we create a nice replica.  And sometimes... well... we don't.  The fun thing is that my friend, Jenn, and I are the only trained artists that are there.  The remainder of the group is made up of friends who just love art... and at the very best, trust that I will help fix their painting if things go wrong.  We all look forward to this night.  Here are some photos provided by friends of some of these nights:

Definitely my favorite night each month! I think this has been the most healing time of my life... sharing my love of painting with a great group of people, who have been supportive in every aspect of my life... new friends and old friends sharing art, food, wine... and tons of laughs!

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Commission Portrait

2014 was a horrible year for me.  It ended just as it had begun.  I found myself not really in a giving or "holiday" mood.  I'm told it is understandable considering the year I've had, but it felt wrong.

I tried to get into the spirit a little with a few sketches, but they didn't really help.

One thing that was a good distraction was the commission I obtained.  My workout partner had seen my Frida Self portrait in the members art show at the Huntington Beach Art Center.  He originally wanted me to do a Mizzle painting for his office, but then he decided he wanted me to do a painting as a Christmas present for his wife.  I absolutely adore his wife, and was thrilled to do this for him.  It was one of my favorite projects to work on. 
I used this as an opportunity to try out watercolor ground.  I had read about it, but never used it before.  I painted on a thick layer of watercolor ground onto a 16x20 canvas and allowed it to dry for 72 hours.  I used my Derwent Inktense Watercolor pencils to create this painting.  I was surprised how the watercolor ground felt like watercolor paper when it was dry.  It was very easy to work with.  It's a little expensive for my taste.  I think for this size I'd prefer to work with watercolor board, but I felt for this gift it needed to be on a canvas.  

I also created a painting for my mom, which was a difficult decision.  I almost didn't do it because I wasn't sure if I should.  I create a drawing or painting of a family member every year for my mom.  After talking it out with my little sister, we decided I should go for it.  It was a painful, yet rewarding experience.  I decided to do a painting of my mom and dad about to kiss.  I won't lie.  I cried every time I worked on it.  But, it was something worth going through.  

I think the look on my mom's face when she saw it was the best.  And my little sister loved it too.

I'm hoping 2015 turns out to better year all around.  So far it hasn't disappointed.  There is a possibility of more portrait commissions in the works.  *Fingers crossed*

Friday, January 9, 2015


At the beginning of the school year, I was inspired to put Mizzles in famous paintings.  I am calling this series "recreations."  It all began with Frida Self portrait I did last year.

I thought it would be fun to create more using colored pencil.  Of course, I don't want to derail my original goals or projects, but sometimes you need another project to alternate between.  It helps prevent boredom.

So, I decided I would begin with sketches.  This way I could see if it would be a successful piece for the Mizzles to recreate.

Can you identify these famous paintings?

Not all of these will make the final cut into a colorized version, but they have been fun to sketch out.

Here are a few that I turned into color versions: 

 I'm hoping to get about 10 color versions done by the end of the year, but we'll see how that goes.  :)

What paintings would you like to see the Mizzles recreate?