One Last Hurrah, a final ATC trade.

We decided to do one last ATC trade on WetCanvas.com before it evolves into it’s new form. (the forums will be archived so you can still look up tutorials and such on it). The theme of the forum was basically a free for all, artists choice, with the title “One Last Hurrah”.

Of course we may be able to do trades on it’s new reincarnation but I’m not sure what that’s going to look like.

I decided to do some houses and trees that I had been meaning to do for awhile. I did these all in ink with a touch of watercolor (most of which did not show up in the photos!).

Here’s a couple of them. These are all of course 2.5 x3.5 inches.

This last one is me paddling away on my kayak!

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2021

Abstraction and impressionism

This whole year has been an abstraction and I’m not impressed with it but I hope it’s finding you well.

I did these as part of a challenge over at WetCanvas. I got right in there with fingers and palette knives and large brushes. These all started out as innocent sheets of 12×18 watercolor paper, they ended up being various sizes depending on how much I tore the paper. I ruined a couple of brushes and one shirt but it was thoroughly entertaining.

These are some of my favourite places.

“The landscape”
“Water’s Edge, Niagara”
“Horseshoe Falls, Niagara”
“Sailing”
“The beach”
“The field”

Let me know in the comments what you think. If you’re on Instagram, give me a shout over there, so I can follow you, I mean that in a general Instagram way not like a deranged stalker or anything.

Stay safe and healthy.

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2021

Some odds and ends

I’m still getting used to the new editor on WordPress, It’s been around for while but I’ve been using the Classic option which seems to have disappeared. I have to say, I very much dislike this block editor.

Anyway, I’m still missing Sammy. I think I probably always will. My sketchbooks are full of small sketches of him. I turned one into a small embroidery.

While I’ve been crocheting more than anything, I have also been having fun collecting Victorian drawing books. Many of them are out of copyright and some companies have been reprinting them or pieces of them. I love looking at the old drawing prints. I tend to leave a good bit of white space or implied backgrounds, you know a few squiggles here and there. It’s a bad habit. The Victorians are the opposite, looking at their prints reminds me to fill things in, not every thing but some things.

I started this, which is a fairly small drawing, in a fairly small sketchbook. It’s a tree, thought I’d tell you that in case you didn’t recognize it as such. (I think I’ve using emojis too much, I so wanted to put a little face with it’s tongue sticking out there.) (oh no and then I wanted to follow that parentheses with a rolling eyes emoji!) Anyway, I digress, this tree is enormous, It’s one of the biggest trees I’ve ever seen. You can see in the background what I mean by an implied background, a few squiggly things here and there. There’s nothing wrong with that, it’s only that I tend to do that every time.

I’ve also been on twitter too much this last year. Now it’s not what you think, I do occasionally get sidetracked by the political drama for sure but mostly I follow the museums and archeologists and such. They put such fascinating things out into the twitter world. Lately I’ve been looking at old Roman coins. It’s interesting how modern and stylized the designs are.

This is a drawing from a coin that was minted in Lyons around 330-337 BCE. It’s the Wolf with the twins Romulus and Remus (the founders of Rome who as infants were sent down the river in a basket to drown, instead they were found by a wolf who suckled them and a woodpecker who fed them until a shepherd arrived and took them in as his own).

I’m going to make an embroidery out of this as well.

I hope you are all safe and healthy.

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2021

Sammy Sampson

It’s been a month since Sammy suddenly passed away from an aneurysm.

He was stolen so quickly from us, it came as a complete shock. He had been playing and chasing his toys that afternoon and when he laid down I thought he was simply enjoying the sun. Tallie let me know that something was wrong and he passed away in my arms that evening.

I am distraught and yet I know that as much as he liked Tallie and enjoyed playing with her, he was never the same after Zeus passed away. He loved Zeus and missed him so so much. Zeus was his feather, Sammy could always be brave and big when Zeus was around. After Zeus passed, he was inconsolable. Tallie’s friendship brought back moments of the old Sammy but he never really recovered from his loss.

I am grateful that his suffering wasn’t long. That he had no lingering illness. That his last day was spent playing and tossing toys around and generally making a big mess. That he was able in his last moment to know I was there and give me one last doggy kiss.

When I look at this photo, it makes me smile every time. He was so joyful and charming and stubborn and funny. And that smile. I loved that smile.

I know in my heart that in his last moments, he was at peace and that gives me peace.

But I miss him so much.

Sammy Smile

My eternal gratitude to the staff of our local Animal Emergency Hospital. They were indescribably caring, kind and honest on a horribly difficult day.

Hello..it’s me..

I was wondering if after all this time
You’d like to see my blog…

I have been neglecting the old blog, there’s all sorts of cobwebs and paintbrushes laying about in here.

Sampson the purple dog is doing well. He is 13 now.  He had to have surgery on his leg to remove a tumor but it was benign, thank goodness. It was a ruff operation but it didn’t take him long to get back into his yoga routine.

He’s been pretty lonely since Zeus passed away. He grew up with three cats and Zeus of course was his nonstop companion. He was having fits every time we left him alone and let me tell you terrier fits are very very loud so in March we got him another friend.

This is Tallie, she’s a little girl lab. She loves Sampson so much even though she finds his chipmunk obsession bewildering. He seems to find her entertaining too.

She’s growing quickly and is already bigger than Sampson. She won’t get as big as Zeus was but she’s big enough now that she can reach the countertops and that has been loads of fun.

Arts and crafts wise I was so sure, I’d have all sorts of time with the quarantine to do stuff but nope, Life was like “Hey! You! Busy! Busy!”.

I did make a few animals. This is from a pattern on “All About Ami“. She has such great patterns. Check her site out.

This turtle is a combo of a few different patterns.  I really wish I had written down what I did but I think it’ll be easy enough to redo. The hat I made up with scraps.

I’ll be back soon with some experiments and such that I’ve been doing. Until then pass this lemon Bundt cake around and I will talk to you soon.

Recipe from King Arthur Flour’s website. Check out their advice on making Bundt cakes, if you’ve never made one before. I doubled the icing recipe because why the heck not.

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2020

 

 

 

 

 

Return of the eagles.

The eagles are back!

I live in an area where bald eagles flock to breed. They come back every year in the hundreds.

I haven’t been taking too many photos as my camera’s shutter seems to be wearing out but I did take these while I was walking Sampson. This one seemed very interested in Sampson.

This one did too. His claws are in such sharp focus.

I was playing with some white ink on black paper. The paper seemed a bit soft, it wanted to absorb and absorb which ended up working in my favor, I was able to put many layers. Now in my first eagle here which is about 5×7, I went a little too crazy with my top layer and lost some of the shading.

This one is better. I would have continued down the shoulders but it ended up in a card frame for a friend who likes eagles. The one thing I love about ink, is that it tends to look complicated but it’s all just little dots and lines. Pretty relaxing to do.

I used a dip pen with a G nib on it. I buy the ones that are marketed towards anime online. They flow well and you can make thick or thin lines depending on how much pressure you use.

Since I mentioned Sampson, here’s a quick one of him in white ink on card stock.

I also did a squirrel in the white and grey ink who looks a bit of a know it all.

I did a polar bear too but had to weigh down the paper afterwards as it buckled. He looks like he’s fretting, given that the icecaps are melting fast, I can’t say I blame him.

If you have questions, please ask in the comments.

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2020

Ink ink ink…

I recently bought some dip pens and have been playing with them. I love the G Nib though for some reason it’s hard to find in my area. I ordered some online since I’ve already killed the one I had.

A fish.

A quack.

A grrr.

A hedgehog with a little teeny tiny woof and a flower.

The sausage woof that I live with.

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2019

Odds and ends

…from my sketchbook. The sketchbook itself is 5×5 inches.

Ink Spider

Watercolor donkey

Pencil, Watermill Ruin

Sammy in pencil.

A lopsided acorn in ink.

The Alamo, in ink with my finger making a surprise appearance in the left bottom corner.

A squash which has long since been eaten in ink.

 

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2019

 

Some Acrylics.

Hmm, one minute it was August and now it’s almost December!

It’s time to get a sandwich and buckle down to the blogging thing.

I did this on leftover matting, the beauty of acrylics is that you can pretty much paint them on anything.

I did this ATC sized painting of roses on a small canvas. 3.5 by 2.5 inches.

This a 3×3 inch canvas.

This is another ATC size that is 2.5 by 3.5 inches.

 

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2019

Zinnia Madness

And wouldn’t that be a great band name..

I love to plant zinnias. They’re beautiful, they’re easy and best of all they attract these beauties.

A white garden butterfly, some call it a cabbage butterfly. They are so fast!

Another speedy one, a Silver Spotted skipper which is a pretty fancy and deceptive name. I would say that that spot is white but who am I to rain on someone’s parade.

Another kind of skipper, it’s either a Sachem Skipper or a Zabulon Skipper, I don’t know enough about them to tell the difference but both are super fast and surprisingly cuddly looking.

My, what big eyes you have…

An American Lady Butterfly, what a beauty. She’s a subtle one but stunning nevertheless.

It was a big difficult to take a photo of this Red Spotted Purple Admiral. As you can see her wing is damaged and she was quite rightly spooked. They mimic the Pipevine Swallowtail which are poisonous but someone grabbed her. She still flew quite well though.

This is not on a zinnia, this is a hummingbird hawk moth on a lilac. The colors on this one were so cool and again very cuddly looking. Maybe that is why they are all so fast, everyone would hug them to bits if they could catch them.

This one is not for hugging, they can bite when annoyed. She’s also not on a zinnia but such a beautiful color and she looks so wise, I think that’s known as the Jiminy Cricket effect.

Green Katydid.

Please don’t spray!  And please watch out for caterpillars and worms, many of the creepiest and ugly turn into these beauties.

 

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2019