A beautiful ghost and a rather silly swan.

Over on WetCanvas in the Fantasy/SciFi forum, there was a challenge for the month of January. The theme of the challenge was to create something, in any medium, that had to do with a song.

Mine is from a Canadian singer, Loreena McKennit. She wrote and sang a song called “The Bonny Swans”. Loreena McKennit has such a beautiful voice!

The video is a bit long but the gist of it is that a girl is drowned in the river by her jealous sister. Her sister wants to marry the girl’s love. The body is swept around where the swans swim and eventually is laid out by a miller who thinks it’s a swan. A harpist comes sees the body and makes a harp of it. He is invited to the sister’s wedding to the girl’s love. At the wedding the harp sings the story and tells everyone what the sister did to her.

I’ve been looking at tapestries and have been on a medieval binge so I did this, in a naive medieval style in material ~ embroidery floss and linen. I did a quick sketch on paper and then pretty much free styled this as I went along.

It shows the sister in her wedding dress as the ghost comes out of the harp to tell of her murder and a swan is attacking the sister as well.

The swan cracked me up, it’s a silly thing.

Please ignore the fuzz by the swan, I didn’t realize it was there till after I took the photo. (and can I say how much I loathe how long it takes and the manner in which Windows 10 downloads photos)

This is on a 12 inch hoop.

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2018


Merry Christmas!

I was involved in a Christmas card trade on WetCanvas with a few other artists. It was so much fun and I received some beautiful cards from all the world. 

These were the ones I made. They’re ink and metallic watercolor. The metallic are so much fun to work with but they are hard to photograph!

christmas art painting watercolor ink

I also did a Science Fiction ~ Fantasy Christmas trade. I made this dragon for a wonderful friend of mine,  who is a guide on the Science Fiction & Fantasy forum on WetCanvas. She does monthly challenges there that are so much fun and very clever. If you like scifi or fantasy, check it out!

This is watercolor, ink and a whole lot of glitter. 

I hope you have a happy holiday whichever one you celebrate!

Much love and good wishes to all!



©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2017


The Pumpkin Dragon

Through triangle eyes

He glared at the night

He stared at the night

He dared the night


To try and break through

His stalwart candlelight

He had read

Of a serpent

On a medieval page

Who loathed all pumpkins

And in a serpentine rage

Would crush the life

From innocent gourds

Leaving pieces scattered about

For the rampaging hordes

latin dragon medieval

He heard the leaves rustle


And break

Oh no! It was that

Evil and Ancient old snake!


It wrapped round his midriff

And he started to shake

He found it surprisingly fuzzy

For a centuries old snake

And in that moment

As it started to lean

He realized it was only Dummy

Dressed up for Hallowe’en!

Happy Hallowe’en

From Sammy

And Zeus

Medieval Pumpkin Dragon ~ Ink and metallic watercolor, 11×9 inches

My rather shabby Latin reads “Beware the Pumpkin Dragon ~ It will eat your Eyes ~ Your Heart ~ And steal your breath ~ Beware!

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2017



In the garden.

A hummingbird

A Monarch.

A finch, checking out its feet.

A swallowtail.

Another swallowtail.

And  of course, a Lesser Blue Warted Toadgon, native of the Indigo Forest of Cerulean.  It is one of the prettier invasive species though it’s a bit of a pest, stomping about and getting bluing everywhere.


©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2017



A couple of small paintings.

“Rolling Pins in a #3 Jug”

4×6 inches, ink and watercolor.

ink watercolor art.

“Top Hats and a Camera”

5×4 inches, ink and watercolor.


Thanks to the people who put their photos into WetCanvas’s Reference Image Library for all members to use.

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2017




How did that happen?

I took a little break and somehow almost two months went by!

Funny how that happens.

What happened was that I was kidnapped by a sea monster.

(“Octomonsteria” in ink)


Ended up in a pretty cool town under the sea, where Octomonsteria was promptly arrested for all sorts of misdeeds and general shenanigans.

It’s all very interesting but our storm alarm just went off and there is much thunder and lightning so I will tell you about it later!

Take care and keep your heads down and your umbrellas up!


©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2017








Ahh… Spring

Smells delicious.

In the plum tree..


and among the tulips.


©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2017