Thursday, June 28, 2007

I'm Thinking About a Series

I know a lot of artists work in series, creating a group of paintings that deal with one subject. I've never worked in a series before, but I've been thinking about it this week because there is a series of images I know I want to create.

copyright 2007 Stacy L. Rowan

I grew up in a small town. My high school graduating class had 150 kids in it. Kids walked to school or had their parents drive them because there were no buses. When the furthest house in town is only two miles from the school buses aren't really necessary.

copyright 2007 Stacy L. Rowan
Picture in your mind small town America and that is basically where I grew up. I would like to paint a series of images from my small town. I think a lot of people would identify with these images and, of course, they are special to me because I love where I grew up.

copyright 2007 Stacy L. Rowan

copyright 2007 Stacy L. Rowan

For sure some of the images will be based on the annual Fourth of July Celebration. Our town has it all, a beauty pageant, a Fun Run, a parade and fireworks. What more could you want? Every year my husband, kids and I go stay with my parents for the Fourth. And every year I take loads of reference pictures. This year I will do it again. Maybe this year will also be the year I actually start painting from them?? I'm thinking of drawing some thumbnails while I wait for the parade to start. Michael will be so proud.

copyright 2007 Stacy L. Rowan

One of the images I am itching to paint is the tradition of the chairs. I couldn't explain it better than my sister did so click the link to see what I am talking about. I only hope someone put out a chair for me! After all, I am bringing my art canopy so the whole family has shade!

Friday, June 22, 2007

My Newest Adventure

My family knows that I am good at keeping secrets. If you tell me something and then say, "but don't tell anyone", I really won't tell anyone. I also like to try out new experiences quietly and only talk about it once I see how things are going. This drives my mom a little crazy. Maybe because my sister tells everything right away. When we were teenagers, my friend Trish used to to tell my mom things too. Sometimes things I hadn't told Mom and that I didn't really want her to know. Luckily in addition to being good at keeping secrets I'm also pretty good at forgiving my chatty friends for spilling them.

Recently, I filled my family in on my latest adventure. That means I can
now share it here. (I couldn't let Mom hear my latest secret by reading it on my blog, now could I?)
In May I signed up to be mentored by Michael Newberry. I met Michael when he taught an online class on Wet Canvas. After that class, some of my fellow classmates signed up for mentoring. They spoke so highly of Michael and are producing such wonderful work that I couldn't miss the opportunity of working with Michael too.

So far I am extremely pleased. Michael is a professional artist living in New York City. He is very knowledgeable, a super nice guy and easy to get along with. But don't be fooled, he knows how to make you work. The thumbnail I posted a couple of weeks ago was done for the mentorship. So were the two in this post. My next assignment is to develop a very similar thumbnail into a large charcoal drawing. I will also be working on some thumbnail sketches in watercolor.

So, if you don't see me posting much artwork, have no worries. Michael is cracking the whip and making sure I am working, I may just not be ready to share yet. You know, I like to see how it's going first. I wouldn't say I'm about we use the word patient instead.

thumbnails copyright 2007 Stacy L Rowan

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Did You Miss Me?

Hi all! You may have wondered where I wandered to since things have been so quiet here. Sorry about that. I took off with the family for a week at the shore and was without internet access. Not that it was much of a hardship. Who wants to be working on the computer when you can be lounging on the beach?? I love the beach. There is something reassuring and calming about the sound of the ocean and the feel of sand under your feet. Ahhhhhhh...

The weather was a mixed bag - everything from the perfect beach weather to cloudy, windy and cool. Not that it bothered us too much, since we found plenty of fun things to do. But the windy weather combined with a full moon did cause some troubles. Tides were higher than I have ever seen them and came right up to the sand dunes. As the water ate away the bottom part of the dune, the sand above it would come crashing down and be swept away by the waves. The high tides also caused flooding in the streets as the water backed up the drain pipes. The power of the ocean is pretty amazing. Here is a picture I took of the waves lapping at the dunes.

Now I am back home and settling back into normal life. Hopefully that normal life includes lots of art and regular blog posts. Although, you never can tell when the ocean will call me for a visit again.

Friday, June 8, 2007


I don't have time for a proper post today, but I will put up a recent thumbnail sketch that I did. It is of a pot of Gerber daisies on my window sill. I had moved them there to make room on the counter when I was preparing dinner. The next day the sun came streaming in that window and illuminated the daisies. I'm a sucker for dramatic lighting and couldn't help trying to capture a quick sketch of this. My favorite part came near the end of the sketch when I noticed the reflection of the daisies in the window. More inspiration for the someday file!

Saturday, June 2, 2007

An Experiement

Hi all! I know I haven't been posting much, but that doesn't mean I'm not hard at work creating. It just means I'm not ready to share yet. Unfair, I know.

But I thought I would share this work in process which has been on the back burner for a few weeks. I am interested in learning how to do watercolor and colored pencil works on supports that don't require glass when they are framed. This is my first experiment and it is with colored pencil.

The support I am using is Ampersand Pastel Board. It is a rough support that feels a bit like sandpaper to me. Prior to this I have only worked on smooth paper. This surface has a very different feel, making it an experiment on several levels! I also have some Ampersand Clayboard to try out with my watercolors, but I'm still decided on a subject for that. In case you can't tell yet with this, I am drawing one of the daffodil pictures I took earlier this spring. Don't worry if parts of it look a little strange. I promise it will all work out in the end. You can find the value study for this drawing here.