Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Thought for the day!

I was asked to do some costal, beachy things and I am not having much luck since my head is full of Christmas! I did this little sketch and made it into this card, kind of how I am feeling about the assignment.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

A new painting for the series-Pears

I did this one to go with the others but need to move on, although this is such fun!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Thanksgiving Day 2011

Sketch of our Turkey this year! LOL
 This year we decided to cook a turkey although we have been vegan since March, we decided that no one would come for dinner unless we delivered meat!
We started our Thanksgiving celebration the night before with brining our turkey for 16 hours, Randy was anxious to get up and get the bird onto the rotisserie the next morning.  I was ready since I was doing mostly fresh vegetables and potatoes. Even though we have been vegan since March we decided that no one would come for Thanksgiving if I didn't do a turkey so we decided to cook for the masses and make some things that would work for everyone. The morning came and Randy jumped out of bed to get the turkey out of the brining solution and get it on the spicket.  We tied up the legs and the wings nice and tight so that it would turn without anything dangling and burning. Happy with our sewing job we got the bird onto the barbecue. Since it was so early, I asked him if he could help me do something that would only take a minute. He agreed and came inside. While inside, I guess the grease from the bird caught fire and when Randy looked outside our barbecue was on fire! He ran out to put out the fire and save his bird! Finally, with most of his arm hair now gone, the fire was out. The tile behind the barbecue was black, and there was a lot of smoke. When we opened up the lid of the barbecue we found a blackened, charcoaled turkey shaped briquette! Oh my gosh! He decided to take the bird inside to be cleaned up. He began to run water over the burn victim in hopes of saving it. Most of the skin had to be removed and he then decided to take it off of the spicket and put it in a pan on the barbecue grill to cook. The metal running through the bird was hot and burned his hands as he tried to removed the burnt bird. Finally, in the pan, covered in aluminum foil the bird was back on the barbecue cooking. He then decided that the turkey might taste burnt so he ran to the store and bought a fresh turkey and paid top dollar for it. I decided to take control of this bird and got it ready for cooking inside, in a real oven. No more man-turkeys. At the end of the day, both birds turned out perfect, and as far as being vegans we now had more turkey meat than anyone else on our street! We ended up sending a whole turkey home with my son! Randy is threatening to cook another turkey for Christmas but I am going to give the fire department a heads up this time! A fireproof apron and gloves sounds like the perfect Christmas gift for the hunter/slayer in my family!

Turkey after being cleaned!
So Thankful that everyone is safe, healthy and we could enjoy the day together.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

International Postcard Exchange

I belong to an amazing group of artists that live all over the world, the group is called sketchersize. The idea is that we are supposed to send sketches from our walks. We have been sending postcards to each other over the past year and I have collected a wonderful assortment of artwork depicting the everyday lives of people and locations I only dream about. The postcard I sent out last month was from my San Diego Zoo trip. The weather was so amazing, the big cats seemed to lay right up next to the fences, begging to be photographed or sketched. It was a great day to enjoy living in Southern California.

Monday, November 21, 2011


I am working on a series of fruit and vegetable paintings. I did this layout and challenge originally on the DPW site with my persimmons. I really have enjoyed painting these, photographing at different stages. I am using watercolors so the first scan I do is while the paint is still translucent and softer. Since I like them looking older and more weathered I continue working the paint and applying layers to achieve the look I want. Here is my newest one, strawberries.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Playday with the girls

After spending a few days in LA it was so nice to get home and have a day with the girls. They were so happy to see me,there is just no better feeling than being loved! The house turns into a cluttered mess with the whirlwind activities that seem to fill every moment while they are here. It makes me wonder how I ever kept a clean house when my kids were all so young and so close in age. Here is some of the fun,quick sketches I did. Can you recognize the crazy little sketch I did of Megans wacky haircut?! We are still trying to get it long enough to style.

- Desiree

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Fall bush covering the hills in gold and oranges

I set out to paint with my plein air group. I waited in the car for the rain to stop but it just seemed to get stronger so I decided to paint while I waited. It went a bit like this,paint,turn on car,windshield wipers,defroster,heater,paint. This went on for sometime,my painting slow to dry,but still some magic happened as I do like the results. Tired and cold I left early,I think just about the time the sun came out and the rain stopped!

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Our First Retreat!

Our First Retreat! by ddhabicht
Our First Retreat!, a photo by ddhabicht on Flickr.

Well I must admit our first retreat went great. Ann and I both got together and planned three days of techniques then followed up with a challenge. We did a spin off from iron chef and called it iron quilters, starting with a "basic ingredient bag" they had to design and make a 15"x15" quilt for our theme underwater. Then every 45 minutes or so we through in another ingredient that they had to be used in the quilt. They also had to make an accessory! Everyone did amazing work, here is my little quilt.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Art quilters Retreat!

Art quilters Retreat! by ddhabicht
Art quilters Retreat!, a photo by ddhabicht on Flickr.

Our art quilt group, Sub Q, is about to embark on our first retreat. Ann and I have been busy organizing activities, awards, gifts and games in preparation for 3 days of fun! We will be doing demos and mini workshops in preparation for the big event Saturday afternoon. Hopefully I will be able to post from our location and share the fun with everyone! Here are some of the things I am packing to go tomorrow!

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Christmas Cards 2011

Well, its that time again, Christmas cards, and I am actually a bit late. I like to have them done in Oct but this year I am having a Christmas Card Class so I was trying to work it into that. I love designing my cards every year. It is more expensive, harder work but I feel as though I am sending a bit of a gift at the same time, not just a card. Every year the biggest struggle is figuring out what to paint, this year, after my workshop I had it all figured out! Berries and greenery will be the theme this year! I am working on several and will pick my favorite but need to work quickly so I can take advantage of a sale at Shutterfly. I love painting berries for some reason so I will love this chance to play around.

I took the girls to Oak Glen yesterday, fall seemed to fill the air and the trees had started to turn. The farms were all starting to close down for the season but we found a pumpkin patch with a few small pumpkins that no one wanted and the girls were happy. Oh such wonderful days with them! I am getting hundreds of pictures of our adventures. I am babysitting them two days a week while mom finishes school, the time is racing by and will be over too soon.

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

I took a workshop in Pasadena!

I decided to take a workshop,it was just wonderful. Sometimes I get all wrapped up in teaching and creating and I lose touch with what's happening outside my little world. In my sketching class we have explored some negative painting and had a lot of fun. Brenda Swenson has taken it too a new level and I love how exciting and loose her paintings are. We began with a black and white value painting so we could get familiar with value changes before jumping into color. I found the students liked to get too dark too fast and lost some of their mid tones quickly. Because we had done many pieces already I knew where this was going. Everyone,including myself was anxious to jump into color but as I really got into my value study I found it hard to stop when the time was over. The next part of the class was taking a photo and doing a contour drawing, making sure to define the negative shapes. We then worked on triad paint combinations, using all Holbein watercolors and that was very exiting. I haven't used all their colors and found so many new colors I had to have! She also went over how to read the paint tubes which will be so helpful going forward in choosing watercolors in the future. Next year I am going to treat myself again,it was stress free and so relaxing. I hated having to leave before my piece was finished.

Taking classes is wonderful as long as they are a spring board from which to grow,learn and move forward. I listened to many of the students there saying they had taking 5+ classes during the show! Wow,that's a lot to take in and you only get better by taking what you learn home and applying it over and over . Practice is still the answer not millions of workshops. There are invaluable lessons we learn during that private time applying principles whether we are sucessful or not! Someone in class said that it takes 13,000 hours to master something. No one can afford that many workshops so i hope your all painting! I finished my piece when I got home although miserable from my sinus infection,tissues in one hand and a paper towel and brush in the other. Here are my two workshop paintings.

- Desiree
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