Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year

Wishing you a 2014 full of peace, love, family, and friends. Thank you all so much for sharing your time with me this year. I appreciate all the encouragement and support of my fellow bloggers.  Thanks also for sharing your wonderful artwork with me. I love seeing what you are creating...it often sparks a bit of creativity here.

This is a sketch I did of downtown Sayville the other day. The Christmas decorations were still up, and the crowds were in town. 
This was done in my Stillman & Birn Alpha Sketchbook and is about 4 x 6.

Have a wonderful New Year's Eve and New Year's Day.
My prime rib is almost ready to come out of the oven and my popovers need to go in to bake...and I'm ready for another glass of wine. Cheers!!!

Monday, December 30, 2013

Long Island City

On Saturday when we were going to the Museum of the Moving Image (see below) Susan and I left early to do a sketch in the area. The museum is on the border of Astoria and Long Island City. There is a spot that we pass in LIC on the way to the Queensboro Bridge that Susan always says, "We should sketch this view some day." LIC is a mostly industrial area and being a Saturday we were able to park fairly easily. This is about 5 x 8.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

The Museum of the Moving Image

The NYC Urban Sketchers met at the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria yesterday. I wasn't sure it would be a good spot for sketching, but it ended up having more things to sketch than I expected...it was just different than sketching outdoors.

The museum has all sorts of old artifacts of anything related to movies or television.
I found an old projector. I should have copied down the date it was manufactured but I didn't think of it at the time. It was one of the older ones in the room.

In another room they had all sort of memorabilia from movies.

There was a reproduction of Yoda.

I am not a fan of horror movies but there was a razor glove from "Nightmare on Elm Street" as well as an oversized sweater from "A Nightmare on Elm Street and the Dream Master." In my sketch it doesn't look very oversized because I stuck it next to the glove which I made mighty big.

Another room had costumes, but my favorite room had all these toys, puppets, lunch boxes, games, and anything you could think of that went with some very early televisions shows. Some of the shows I hadn't thought about in years!

I sketched the Howdy Doody puppet c. 1955. I loved that show as a kid.

There were also some mutoscopes from 1899 which were movie viewers where you turned a crank and it flipped book inside to make the picture move like a movie.

At this point we left the museum and went to lunch. I sketched a few people at another table.

When we went back I headed for the same room. 
This time I sketched the Pebbles Flintstone doll, c. 1963.

They had a fun theater called the Jungle Theater. Right inside the entrance they had a fake candy counter. For some reason they had it decorated in Egyptian motif not a jungle motif. 
It was fun to sketch.

I think we all enjoyed sketching there and it was a good winter location.

Saturday, December 28, 2013


I made these as gift cards for Christmas checks. This is one of the ornaments on my tree that is from my childhood.

This is one of the OLDEST ornaments that I own. There are a few of the fragile old ornaments I can always remember having on our tree...sort of makes them ancient. lol

Friday, December 27, 2013

Christmas Trees and Wreaths

On Christmas Eve I went out to do some errands and took along my sketchbook. I found a local place that was selling trees and wreaths. It amazed me while I sat there how many people stopped to buy trees at the last minute. My tree has been up for a few weeks, and OK it is artificial so I can do it way ahead of time. But I don't think I would want to be decorating a tree on Christmas Eve.

It seemed so strange yesterday when I drove past a large Christmas tree lot and saw them loading the unsold trees back onto a truck. I wonder where they were going.

I keep forgetting to attach this photo. When I was sketching with the Urban Sketchers last week we sketched indoors for a while. We were in a very upscale mall at Columbus Circle and downstairs there was a Whole Foods Market. There was an area near the escalator with tables. One of the other sketchers came into the building, looked over the railing by the escalator, and saw all of us below busy sketching. I thought it was such a fun perspective to take a photo from. My thanks to Lance for the photo. I am in the red sweater along the bottom of the table.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Pre-Holiday Meal

No, I won't stop at anything. Jerry and I had lobster the other night and I just had to do this.The lobster wasn't very cooperative, he kept pushing the ornament away. lol I used some non-waterproof ink and watercolors for this.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas if it is a holiday you celebrate.
We had a great day, with too much good food. lol

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas!

I would like to wish each of you who are celebrating a Merry Christmas!
This is the image from my Christmas card this year, based on one of my small paintings done in Kilmore Quay when we were there in April.

May you have the peace of this season in your heart, the love of family and friends to surround you, and the joy of creativity in your life. Thank you for being a part of my life.

Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Saturday Sketching in NYC

Even though I didn't get home until after 9 on Friday night and was exhausted, I wanted to go into the city and sketch with the NYC Urban Sketchers on Saturday. Because it gets so crazy in the city at this time of year, my friend and I decided to go by subway instead of the LIRR or by car...smart move. That gave us the opportunity to sketch on the subway.

We met the other sketchers at Columbus Circle. I think there were about 12 of us who showed up at various times during the day, which was surprising since it was the last Saturday before Christmas. Who knew so many people had time to come in and sketch? We even had someone from Melbourne, Australia join us for a while.
Here is my sketch of Columbus Circle which is on 59th Street.

We moved on to the Hurst Building on 56th Street.

Next we moved over by the Holiday Market at Columbus Circle.
We had lunch and continued sketching. Here are a few members of the group in action.

I sketched one of the booths before a few of us broke away and shopped a bit.
Who could resist shopping? But it was a madhouse especially in the aisles between the booths!!!

Later we ended up indoors at Whole Foods to get warm and continued sketching.
Mark and Svetlana were busy sketching people.

I sketched some people too.

At about 4 o'clock people started leaving. Susan and I decided that before we went home we wanted to go over near Radio City and sketch. For anyone who hasn't been to NYC at Christmas time, this area of the city is nearly wall to wall people, often pushing and shoving as they try to get where they are going or trying to line up a good shot of their family or friends with the colors behind them. Radio City was in front of us, and a colorful lit Christmas train (with a tooting horn) was behind us in the middle of a pool that is normally a fountain. People were coming over to take photos there too...right next to us on the wall. We were probably in half of the photos. lol Susan and I ignored everyone and set up our painting chairs across the street from Radio City Music Hall. Of course people were constantly blocking our view and the sun had gone down and it was getting dark. But we rose to the challenge and sketched anyway! I think this was the most crowded location I have ever sketched in. lol
This was the view we had.

I was able to get most of the view sketched on location and had started painting when I decided it was  getting too dark for me to see what I was doing. So I packed it in and finished painting this at home. In addition to watercolors and regular ink, I used some metallic gel pens to give it a shine.

We didn't sketch on the return trip on the subway since we weren't able to get seats and it was so crowded. I hope this view of Radio City brings you a little holiday cheer!
(I hope you saw my city sketches posted yesterday.)

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Friday in the City

On Friday I met two friends in NYC to see the decorations. I went in early so I could sketch a bit. I sketched on the LIRR on the way into the city. This is a young girl that was with her parents. It doesn't look very much like her.

I walked up 34th Street and came to a small park in Herald Square that was decorated.

Next I headed to the NYC Public Library on 42nd Street. This was what I wanted to sketch. Outside the library are two massive stone lions. I believe this one is named Fortitude (the other one is named Patience). At Christmas they usually decorate them both with wreaths around their necks.I only had time to do the sketch before my friends, Maureen and Rhea arrived.

But I did finish it at home.

Around the corner from the Library is Bryant Park which has a tree and a skating rink, but what we wanted were the small stores that are set up for holiday shopping.
Here is a photo of the tree there.

We had lunch, shopped some more and then headed over to Rockefeller Center to see the tree.
It was so crowded and crazy...and it wasn't even dark yet. 

We really wanted to see the tree at night, so we went to have coffee and dessert.
The tree and the lights around Rockefeller Center are just amazing...and the crowds are too!

Here we are in front of the tree.

Maureen and I walked back to Penn Station to catch our respective trains. I had a bit of a wait so I sketched someone buying tickets.

I did one final sketch of a woman on the train going home.

This ends another long, exhausting day in the city!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Winter Scenes

I was in Center Moriches the other day and the street lamps were all decorated for Christmas. Of course I had to stop and paint. This was done in my Stillman & Birn Alpha Journal.

We had a little snow this week. Near me it changed to rain and was washed away quickly but up at Sunken Meadow State Park there was some on the ground. The grass did show through in some spots but I liked the way it looked. This was also done in my Stillman & Birn Alpha Journal.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Holiday Sketches

This week I did get out a few times to sketch local holiday activities.

This first one was done from the comfort of my car parked outside the Bayport Flower House.

I was at the Smith Haven Mall this week and stopped to sketch Santa.
This is the same mall where I sketched him last year and nothing changed. lol
Santa looked the same as did the setup they had for him.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Surfcasting (SOLD)

A friend of mine asked me if I would have any small beach paintings at the show this past weekend that she might be able to give as a gift to her husband who loves to fish. I did have some beach scenes, but decided to play around and see if I could do a small painting of a fisherman (without having a photo to work from). Thank you internet!!! I researched images of people surfcasting and sort of combined them into a figure. Her husband usually goes fishing way before dawn down at one of the beaches I often go to..and he fishes nearly every day. If he catches enough he shares some of the fish with my husband and another friend of ours. 
I made the painting look like Smith Point Beach where he usually fishes and did it with a sunrise look to it. She was absolutely thrilled with it! I saw her this morning and she told me she is so excited about the painting that she is going to give it to him for his birthday which is this week...she can't wait until Christmas to give it to him. lol I hope he loves it as much as she does. She said it looks just like him except that he doesn't wear a hat when he fishes. 

Happy Birthday, Dave!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

PALS Show Weekend

This was a busy weekend for me. It was the weekend of the PALS Plein Air Limner Society's 4th Annual Painting Long Island Show. This is the plain air group that I paint with every Tuesday morning. We usually paint beginning in April and continue until the beginning of December if the nice weather lasts. Here is our invitation.

Of course Saturday was snowy and cold here on Long Island and very few people stopped by, but we made up for it today when we had a lot of visitors...and quite a few people who purchased paintings, cards, etc.

I took a few photos of the paintings.
This wall is PALS On the Go and the work was done by some of the artists while they were traveling or vacationing. I have one hanging from Venice, one from Maine, one from Ireland, and one from France.

Some of the paintings below were done completely on location, some finished in the studio, and some done completely in the studio from references from our locations. We painted at some wonderful places this year!

Here is a photo of most of us that were at the gallery today for the show. From left to right are Liz, Jeanne, Chris, Susan, Marlene, Laurie, Rita, Rosamaria, Mary, Laurie, and me.