Art by the Foot Project

We are still reeling from the unexpected loss of Zeus. We have lost family, friends and pets before as many of you have but this loss was such a shock. We still find ourselves reeling from it. We all miss him terribly.

Poor Sampson is of course devastated. They hadn’t been apart in over ten years. We know it will take him some time to adjust but for now we are taking extra care with him, the poor guy.

I did this acrylic of Zeus, it’s a foot square and will be on display at the Figge Museum in Davenport as part of a community art project.

This piece is also on display. It is again on a one foot foam square. The museum gave each artist two to paint on. This is a mixed media piece with acrylic, a linoprint and pen drawing.  It is the lino print of the north wind but reversed from the one I showed you in a prior post. I added it to a stormy acrylic sky with a pen and ink drawing of the man that the Sun and North Wind were toying with.

I did it at the last minute over another painting so I hope that it holds up on display. I’m a bit nervous about it.

If you’re in the Quad Cities area,  The Art by the Foot exhibit is open and it displays art made by artists of all ages and abilities from the Quad-City area. The works were collected this spring and were required to be made on boards provided by the Figge. All of the works will be on view in the Mary Waterman Gildehaus Community Gallery from June 20th to September 1st.

I have to say, I love this idea and I thought it so clever of the museum to give artists this chance. I also love that it ranges from professionals to small children. That sort of encouragement is priceless!

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©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2019

 

 

 

 

 

Painting from the Masters.

I recently did an ATC trade on WetCanvas.com. The theme was “Painting from the Masters”. We weren’t  picky on what master/artist it was as long as the work we were copying were made before 1923.

An ATC is an artist trading card. They are 3.5 x 2.5 inches, the size of a traditional playing card.

This card is based on Berthe Morisot’s “Woman at her Toilette”. Morisot was an impressionist. She studied with landscape painter Jean-Baptiste Camille Corotin and in Paris under the tutelage of Joseph Guichard who had her copy Masters at the Louvre. I’m sure she would enjoy knowing that people are copying her! My version is in acrylic on 300 gsm watercolor paper.

This card is also in acrylic on watercolor paper. The original by Canadian, Helen Galloway McNicoll, was called “Buttercups”. McNicoll studied under William Brymer in Montreal. She also painted in Britain as a member of the Royal British Society of Artists and was vice-president of the Society of Women Artists. She was one of the few impressionist who was able to make a financially secure living from her art. She was deaf since childhood and died young from diabetes at the age of 35.

This card is based on a wooden panel painted by John La Farge simply titled “Fish”.. He was a member of the Arts and Crafts Movement and was noted for his stained glass windows. He designed windows for the Trinity Church in Boston and Memorial Hall at Harvard.

To make this card look like wood I first did a ocher undercoat. When that was dry I painted over it with a thicker coat of an ocher/red mix. When that was almost dried, I gently scratched out wood grain like patterns with the edge of a palette knife and let it dry before adding the fish and decorations.

It was interesting copying the works of others but I have a tendency to change them to how I would like them to look, very cheeky I know but I can’t seem to help myself!

 

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2019

 

December Acrylics

These are some cards I made for a trade. They are all acrylic and in various card sizes, all smaller than 5×6. The first five were done with palette knives, some have a bit of brushwork.

It’s a challenge to use a knife on small pictures but it is entertaining.

This deer makes me laugh, he looked rather affronted at being painted.

“Deer Interrupted”

painting acrylic deer

“The Tree and the Icy River”

“Red and Gold Berry Christmas Tree”

“Snowy Path and Tree”

Palette leftovers.

The following are brushwork.

“A Small Fir”

“The Birches”

“Under a Purple Sky”

“The Firs”

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©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2018

The Lion and The Mouse

On WetCanvas (a forum for artists) there was a challenge to create something using Aesop’s Fables as a theme.

The Library of Congress, has each story in full (click link).  The illustrations alone are worth looking at. Many of the illustrations are interactive, I was charmed by them. Such a great site and resource, check it out!

Using ink and gilt,  I chose the Fable of the Lion and the Mouse. The following text is from the Library of Congress’s site. My original illustration follows it.

The Lion & the Mouse

A Lion lay asleep in the forest, his great head resting on his paws. A timid little Mouse came upon him unexpectedly, and in her fright and haste to get away, ran across the Lion’s nose. Roused from his nap, the Lion laid his huge paw angrily on the tiny creature to kill her.

“Spare me!” begged the poor Mouse. “Please let me go and some day I will surely repay you.”

The Lion was much amused to think that a Mouse could ever help him. But he was generous and finally let the Mouse go.

Some days later, while stalking his prey in the forest, the Lion was caught in the toils of a hunter’s net. Unable to free himself, he filled the forest with his angry roaring. The Mouse knew the voice and quickly found the Lion struggling in the net. Running to one of the great ropes that bound him, she gnawed it until it parted, and soon the Lion was free.

“You laughed when I said I would repay you,” said the Mouse. “Now you see that even a Mouse can help a Lion.”

A kindness is never wasted.

All text and images other than Aesop’s Fable are

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2018

 

 

 

 

Odds and Ends of the year.

This is a horse with tattoos, everyone has them now.

Ink and marker, 8×10 inches.

This is a lino print with Brusho (a watercolor product). 5×7 inches.

A quick drawing of a guy named Steve.

A cat that I embroidered on my apron because I like to be fancy when I’m cooking. This design is an original and is about 5×7 inches.

A photograph of a shadow from a lamp that looks like the Eiffel Tower.

A sepia self portrait, titled “Closer than she appears.”

The Chicago Waterfront.

And the Wells Fargo Bank reflected in the windows of the Figge Museum in Davenport, Iowa. My favourite painting ” Blue Horse” by Marc Chagall lives at the Figge.

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©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2018

 

 

 

 

 

My favorite acrylics of the year.

And yes to my Canadian relatives, I did spell “favourites” the American way.

A hot air balloon, 4×4 inches.

A still life, 5×7 inches.

A zombie that for some reason ended up looking like Patrick Swayze, 8 x 10 inches.

Another still life, 3×6 inches, I forgot to finish the lemon the left..ignore that please.

A sign for my house, 22 x 8 inches.

Some pizza, 3×3 inches

A fancy colorful sheep.

acrylic sheep animal colorful painting

And my favourite, an Ode to VanGogh and Space.

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©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2018

 

 

 

 

 

 

My favorite watercolors of the year.

I haven’t wrote on here in awhile. I don’t know if people read blogs much anymore but I do enjoy writing so I’ll keep on keeping on even if I’m only entertaining myself. 

To catch up, with everything I meant to post this year, I thought I’d do a couple of year blogs to showcase my favorite creations of the year.

These are some ATC’s, that is cards that measure 2.5 by 3.5 inches. These are all done with watercolor. These were done for a trade. watercolor painting Virginia Spencer vmrs ATC

This is also a watercolor but is a little bigger at 7×4 inches.

Here’s a warmer watercolor,  also a miniature at 4×6 inches.

And here’s a watercolor of a leaf and acorn. I think this one was 5×4 inches.

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©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2018