Sketchbook Skool held their first sketch convention called Sketchkon this past week in Pasadena, California, where sketchers from around the world got together to listen to demos, presentations, go on sketch crawls and more. It was a fabulous time meeting and hanging out with fellow sketchers. The teachers and students were amazing and so friendly. I was also able to hang out with two of my mentors Brenda Swenson and Roz Stendahl. I have been blessed in the past to take a few in person classes with Brenda Swenson. She is such a delight and beautiful person inside and out. With Roz, I took her online course about sketching from life. She has taught me so much about sketching live animals. After Sketchkon Roz hosted a sketch out to the zoo. One of my dreams has always been to sketch at the zoo with Roz and she did not disappoint. She was so giving with her time and knowledge.
It's CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) Season! May 18th our produce deliveries are going to be starting. Interested in joining a CSA and receiving weekly fresh organic produce? Check out Local Harvest's website to find a local farm in your area. Below are a few Journal sketches I did last season.
An Art Retreat on Bainbridge Island with two of my favorite Artists? What could be better?
Being a supportive husband he said "Book it!". I immediately messaged Serena and found there was still room! Since taking my Utah art trip, I dreamed of going on an art retreat that lasted more than a day. This was simply providential. The perfect teachers and the perfect location. We have family in Washington state and were in desperate need of another road trip.
I didn't document the retreat like I should have, because I was so involved in all the artsy fun. But I did manage to take a few photos along the way.
This was the trip of a lifetime! Christy and Junelle were delightful teachers and Serena spoiled us rotten. I even met a few friends along the way. If you ever have the chance to go on one of Serena's retreats, take it! You wont be sorry.
My grandmother's sister Flora Belle Reece will be honored on New Years Day. She will ride atop the WASP's float in the Rose Parade. Our family is so excited and proud of her. My grandmother, who passed away 15 years ago this December, would be so proud of her. According to my Aunt Flora Belle, grandma was her "biggest supporter in what ever she did."
When she told her father, my great grandad, she wanted to be a pilot, he told her "That's not something women usually do, Flora Belle. But if you can figure out how, more power to you." Having the courage and spunk my aunt Flora Belle has, she figured out how and I am so proud of her. She is a woman of integrity and faith. I love her dearly.
She helped pave the way for Women's equality. She is one of my heroes.
She has had many interviews this month and one of them will air New Years Day on the nightly news with Brian Williams. Also, check out this awesome news article the LA Times wrote in honor of the Rose Parade float and featured my aunt along with a lovely video. You can find it Here.
When visiting my great aunt Flora Belle a couple years back, I was able to scan many of her WASP photos and i'm so excited to be able to share them with you.
Come take a peek inside my Art Journal......
This little Nature Art Journal makes me so giddy. It's just a "little fellow" made from a 5X7 vintage book that nobody wanted. Poor little guy. He is now very wanted and much loved. I usually gesso my books as I create, but because this is going to be my little travel book, I pre-gessoed all the pages. Now every page is a blank canvas ready for my art.
When I don't have room to carry my travel journal with me, I make sure to at least carry a couple pieces of gessoed book paper in my bag. It takes up little room in my purse so I can watercolor on-the-go and paste it in my travel journal when I get home. It also takes the pressure off of perfection because if I don't like it then it doesn't go into my book.
It's so fun to have an art journal with a theme. What I love about a nature theme is that it can carry over into every season. What will your next art journal theme be?
Its not very often one gets to meet their inspiration. I had the privilege of meeting mine this weekend: Susan Branch. I have admired her art for as long as I can remember. I would buy anything I could get my hands on that she created. During my dating years, I used her stickers to create love notes and gifts for my Harrison. I have always loved art, but it was Susan Branch that lit the fire for my love of watercolor. She even shares my love of vintage delights. Kindred Spirits!
She is such a down to earth and friendly soul. I adore her. Harrison and I drove down to where she was signing for her new book: A Fine Romance at the Remnants of the Past Antique Show. Her new book is a handwritten diary of her trip to England. Inspiration at every page!
I even made a simple little watercolor picture to give to her. Susan started watercoloring at age 30, which happens to be my age. I am just a beginner in watercoloring, but maybe one day I can be as talented as she is with watercolors. There is something so special about creating art that touches peoples souls. Susan Branch's art touches my soul and this dreamer's imagination.
If you find yourself in San Luis Obispo you must stay at the hotel we stayed in: Apple Farm Inn, Restaurant and Gift Shop. Don't forget to try their warm apple cider! It just doesn't seem like fall until I have a cup of their apple cider and watch "By The Light Of The Silvery Moon". Have you seen that movie? I highly recommend it! Doris Day and Gordon MacRae are delightful in it.