Sunday, April 18, 2021

Water Lily Pads and Koi


This is another painting on mineral paper.   I think I took the reference photo at the National Arboretum.  I used Caran D'Arche Neocolor watersoluable wax pastels for the lily pads and the koi and then did the water with water color.  Because the paper is so slick, the water really flooded and looks like water.  

I'm planning on doing a couple of paintings more on mineral is fun to use, but I will probably go back to regular watercolor paper soon. 

Monday, April 12, 2021

Macarons! Thank you Peter!


Peter surprised me with a pack of macarons from the Sweet Lobby! enjoy with my tea from Paris.   I thought my favorite was chocolate, but now I am thinking one that was raspberry.  I have two left....they are all good.

Friday, March 26, 2021



This painting was quite a challenge.  It is watercolor on mineral paper.  The surface of the paper is very slick, so it takes some practice to balance detail and broad areas of color.

Although this was done from a photograph, it was nice to think back to what a beautiful area it is.   It  is open for visitors, so maybe I can go sometime soon.  There are acres of formal gardens and I don't think I've seen all of them.  

Hillwood Estate, the mansion, was bought by Marjorie Merriweather Post (daughter of Post cereals founder) in 1955 and she used her money to make it a museum.  The collections are amazing.  I particularly remember real Faberge eggs.  She died in 1973 and it is now operated by the Post Foundation.     

Friday, February 19, 2021


I posted a version of this paper doll on Facebook a few days ago....actually, on Valentine's Day.  At that time, it was a printed doll that I printed front and back and then pasted together.  It was not going well as I could not get them to match up.  I switched my process and traced the front of a doll onto watercolor paper, cut it out, painted the front and then the back--single ply.  I made eight, so each one was a little different.  I lined them up on the mantle before sending them off and this is what they look like:

As you can see, I outlined one with a pen and she really stands out!

This is the back of one of them:


Sunday, February 7, 2021



One of the unusual things I got for Christmas was a journal from Sophia.  It's not like any other journal I've ever had.  It is titled "Wreck This Journal" and each page has a prompt for something do "wreck" it.  Some are things like tearing up a page or pasting one page to the next.  Others are things like using the page as a napkin or composting it.

It is a good challenge.   I have a tendency to think of my sketches and writings in a journal as "precious."   This journal is forcing me to get over that.  It is a work in progress.

Thursday, February 4, 2021


 It's February and I am still doing my thank you notes.  It is fun for me and a challenge to decide how to visually show my gifts.  For instance, Griffin gave me two containers of ice cream--one peach and one raspberry with chocolate chips.  I didn't want to paint ice cream containers, so I made the decision to do a little painting of peaches.  I can think about doing the raspberries another time.  Griffin knows I love ice cream!    

Griffin also came over to help me with "winterizing" my patio furniture and sweeping the patio.  I don't have a storeroom, a basement, or a it is a challenge,  A painting of my cleaned-up patio wouldn't be very interesting actually.  The peaches were, I think, a good choice.

Thanks Griffin....I never pass on a chance to eat ice cream!   I haven't even shared it!

Wednesday, February 3, 2021



Every Christmas I get a special gift of Moravian cookies from Clemmons, North Carolina.  My sister-in-Bobby and her husband George send them.  They actually live in Woods Hole Massachusetts. Bobby is Howard's little sister and they grew up together in Clemmons and in the Moravian faith.  Oh, by the way, Bobby is really Catharine, but is called Bobby because, when she was brought home from the hospital as a baby, he called her Bobby.  The name stuck.

Mrs. Hanes is famous for the Moravian cookies which are very thin, hand rolled, cut and packed.  The ginger ones are spicy and the sugar ones are just right on sweetness.  I think there are other flavors, but these are what we like.  They are a special part of our Christmas festivities.  This was from a photo on the cookie tin, but I think I made Mrs. Hanes much younger than she actually is.

Thank you, Bobby and George.  The cookies are always welcome.