Linda Halcomb's Blog

Just another weblog

April 28, 2010 April 29, 2010

Filed under: Daily Post — lindahalcombfineart @ 7:29 am
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Well, I am preparing for a big weekend. My second grandson gets married on Saturday evening. This is a special event because he is in the Army Infantry and May 8th he leaves for Germany and then will be deployed to Afghanistan in August. We are having lunch with him today. I know next week he will not want to spend time with “Grandma Honey Bunny” so I am grabbing time with him whenever I can get it!

The ATC’s continue to be a source of joy. One of the WordPress bloggers completed her first abstract recently and it contained the universal symbol for “fish”. I wanted to do an ATC by coloring with my watercolor crayons. A different approach than the one I have been using. I started thinking about cave art and wondering if I had ever seen a fish as an element in a cave painting. This little painting is the result of that cogitation.

Fish Symbol - ATC

I began by coloring on an underpainting with almost all of the colors in my set. I then continued to apply layers of color. In between each layer I would paint the layer with clear water. This paper is heavily sized so I just pushed the paint around. It did not really absorb.  When I got the background the way I wanted, I drew the fish and colored it in. By then the color was so thick and had been worked enough that it was creamy and I just colored in the body without applying much water.

Learnings: 1. When working with rough paper the color settles in the low spots and is very hard to dissolve. 2. I purchased a set of of “wet” brushes as part of my last order from Cheap Joe’s so I tried out a medium size brush. I filled the shaft with clear water and used the brush to make this painting. It worked very well. The crayons with a wet brush would be very convenient for travel and plein air. Not much to carry or clean up.


April 27, 2010 April 28, 2010

Filed under: Daily Post — lindahalcombfineart @ 7:41 am
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Last  night I was a multi-tasker to the MAX. I watched NCIS, Dancing with the Stars and painted a new ATC…all at the same time! This little painting is of my absolutely favorite blooming tree, the pink dogwood. I fell in love with the color of these blossoms when I was very young. A neightbor had a large, old dogwood that was covered with large pink blooms every Spring.  In my young eyes it was a thing of beauty. It was magnifcent! Today, in my neighborhood in Indianapolis there is a fungus that kills dogwood trees. I have tried to start a dogwood tree and after three failed attempts I have given up. Luckily there are several robust, older trees nearby that I can still enjoy.

Pink Dogwood - ATC

Again, this was done primarily with my new watercolor crayons with a little watercolor pencil trown in.


April 26, 2010 April 27, 2010

Filed under: Daily Post,Uncategorized — lindahalcombfineart @ 1:17 pm
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Lasy night I completed another ATC size painting using the watercolor crayons. Before I used them I took off the layer of wax the coated the tip of the crayon so they were a little easier to use. So far I think they are very convenient for using while I am sitting around watching TV in the evening. I just spread out my crayons, get a class of water and a small brush and go to town. I have only used them for ATC’s and I don’t know if they would work well for larger paintings but I will continue to experiment. I used a digital photo shot this week for my painting. It is of a white dogwood blossom. Right now I am still inspired by all the beautiful flowering trees in my neighborhood … but I am afraid that short season is about over.

Dogwood Blossom - ATC


April 25, 2010 April 26, 2010

Filed under: Acrylics,Daily Post — lindahalcombfineart @ 7:21 am
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Last week was again a very busy week and yesterday morning I was going through my internal, whiny dialogue. Then I decided to quit whining and get busy painting. I set up a full sheet of Yupo, got out my acrylics and got started. I have always appreciated color field paintings and wanted to do a painting of a square. As many of you know, I love geometric shapes as subject matter. I chose purple and yellow/gold as my color palette to give the maximum energy and interest. I finished last night and the painting is in the “living with it” phase. The main question I am debating is whether to leave the edges of the square rough or make it more clean and crisp.  Opinions? Here is The Square #1.

The Square #1, Heavy Body Acrylics, 20" X 26" Yupo

Richard Naughton (see his blog on my Blogroll) has proposed a second virtual paint-out with the lighthouse as the subject and the posting to be June 21. Take a look. The last one was really fun. Won’t you join us?


April 20, 2010 April 22, 2010

Filed under: Daily Post — lindahalcombfineart @ 9:09 am
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I had fun doing another ATC on Tuesday. The ATC’s are nice because they are small so the materials are cheap and they don’t take a lot of time to complete. They are a great for experiementation. Since late last year I have been trying out new materials for my watercolor paintings. I recently bought a set of Cheap Joe’s Watercolor crayons. A friend of mine used a set from Daniel Smith during a plein air workshop last summer. They seem easy to transport and like they might be useful for plein air so I bought the smallest, simplest set to try out. I did this small ATC of tulips from a photo I took in my yard.

Spring Tulips - ATC

I scanned the painting and also shot a photo. This is the photo but neither the scan nor the ATC captured the softness in the actual painting.

It was fun but challenging playing with the crayons. I had a horrible problem with the outer wax that coats the crayons. I had to scrub the tip of the crayon to remove the wax and then dip a wet brush into the hole I had rubbed in the tip. When I tried coloring on the paper I thought it left too much crayon and it was hard to dissolve. It probably still had outer wax mixed with the color on the paper. Suggestions anyone?

I’m off to work on a study report on Jean Baptiste Carpeaux for my study group at the IMA. We have his bust The Negress that I find moving and incredibly beautiful.


April 19, 2010 April 20, 2010

Filed under: Daily Post — lindahalcombfineart @ 6:43 am
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I had a productive day yesterday. We had a Watercolor Society of Indiana Board meeting and I presented the status of our new Scholarship program. I have received applications from 11 applicants and I think this is really wonderful for the first year. The applications are full of creativity, technical skill and innovation. I LOVE working with activities that help young people grow.

I finished my painting of apple blossoms (actually crabapple blossoms to be transparent – isn’t that the current fad word?) and it is in the “living with it” phase. I am very happy with it at this point and can’t immediately see anything I want to improve but…you never know.

Apple Blossoms, 140# Arches Paper, Transparent Watercolor, 5" X 8"

I worked from two really good digital photos taken in my yard. I like the nostalgic feel of the painting. Today I will be out in the neighborhood walking the critters and taking photos of the dogwood that are in glorious bloom. I hope you have sunshine and enjoy a beautiful day my friends.


April 18, 2010 April 19, 2010

Filed under: Daily Post — lindahalcombfineart @ 6:14 pm
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Last week was very busy and I had only a little time to paint. Very frustrating! We had lovely, cool weather on Sunday so I did another small ATC painting of one of the toys belonging to my grandsons. This one did not turn out very well. The toy was small and the size of the painting was small and every time I moved I changed the perspective. Everything is a little “off”, a little askew. I like the colors in this toy and the BIG wheels. Can’t you see it going Zoom! Zoom!

Zoom Zoom 2

I am almost finished with a 5″ X 7″ painting of apple blossoms. Hope to have it tomorrow!


April 12, 2010 April 13, 2010

Filed under: Daily Post — lindahalcombfineart @ 6:59 am
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Yesterday was beautiful…I planted pansies and sat at my patio table to paint ATC’s. I decided to start with an ATC of the blossoms from my crabapple tree. They are in bloom for such a short time I thought I had better be quick or I would lose my chance. I may work on a slightly larger painting today. Maybe…

Crabapple Tree Blossoms - ATC

Then I decided to do another ATC of a toy belonging to my grandchildren. This one was really fun…thinking of my rowdy, all boy grandsons, I called it Bam Bam 1.

Bam Bam 1 - ATC

Both were painted on Strathmore Watercolor ATC paper with transparent watercolor and to the music of the birds in the background.


April 11, 2010 April 12, 2010

Filed under: Daily Post — lindahalcombfineart @ 7:06 am
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We had a lovely day in Indy yesterday! All of the flowering trees are covered with profuse blossoms. I have four different types of trees within a few steps of my back door that were too tempting to ingmore. While watching the Masters so I decided to do some sketching. I started with a decorative plum tree and a red blossomed crabapple. Flowering Trees I cut the tip of a branch from each and did several small graphite sketches of each tree to learn how the tree grows…how many blooms, how many leaves, opposite or alternate… then I did the drawings in colored pencil in my small sketch book.

Crabapple Sketch

Now I have to decide what to do next…ATC’s or slightly larger paintings. Sounds like I have my plan for today!


April 8, 2010 April 9, 2010

Filed under: Daily Post — lindahalcombfineart @ 6:47 am
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Several of you have been showing ATC creations lately. I did 9 ATC’s that I send to family members with their Christmas cards last December. I thought this might be a meaningful tradition and they could build a collection of original art. I thought I would start early this year – no last minute rush during December. I decided to start by working with the toys my grandchildren played with when they were little. Today my grandnieces and nephew play with them. To start I picked out a selection of toy trucks. Here is the first of the Zoom Zoom series. This is on WC paper, ATC size and I used watercolor markers. I’ve started a little rough but I hope you enjoy it.

ATC - Zoom Zoom 1