Saturday, August 14, 2010

leo ~ oil pastel and watercolor on old book page

i had such a great time on my trip... i feel like i'm in love with this summer weather. with the trees, the plants growing in vegetable gardens; berry bushes and fast moving water -- everything! on the yardstick of the trees around me, i can see the sun getting lower and lower each day. i want to soak up every bit of these last summer days...

on my way, i sat here and painted 'leo' with water from the river...

the trees were big - i was happy! i left two stitched 'flags' here. when i packed up to go there was a heart rock under my bag...

seven days later, on my way home, i sat by this river and gazed at the wondrousness of this clean, green water...

the sky! it took an hour to go three miles at one point, but everyone seemed to have a great attitude. maybe it's not possible to be grouchy and impatient under a sky like this...

i drew some in my moleskine, too, while i was gone - this was an experiment using oil pastels and colored pencil. i found out that oil pastels don't smear around well in moleskine sketchbooks, especially darker colors...

i did look for more old books to paint in, but none seemed as perfect to me as these pages. and i asked myself why i'm looking for more books when i still have a couple hundred pages left in this one...

when i got home there was a book about the life and art of ben shahn waiting for me. i love his paintings; i love that they tell a story. and he paints wonderful beasts, which made me want to paint my own.

here's another beast that inspires me...

i have a lot of ideas about things i want to make. a few days i bought my first sewing pattern since high school. i want to use muslin and do some stitching, maybe use some silk sari ribbon... this jacket by agnes richter totally sends me (thanks, kathy). and i'll continue getting rid of stuff that i no longer need or want, which i've been doing for most of the summer. and until the sun gets so low that the creek is in deep shade, i'll keep sitting in the creek and painting...

* * *

'spring' ~ ben shahn

"Those who take it upon themselves to minister to the human spirit shall themselves be moved primarily by things of the spirit."

~ Ben Shahn



  1. Wonderful drawings, as always. Your using the water nearby reminded me of a young man painting, in Peru. He was sitting on a rock, mixing the soil in a plastic cup, with water and painting in his journal, with it.
    One thing Agnes said in her interview that always stayed with me was how she is an empty vessel and "inspiration" comes to her and tells her what to paint. She, Agnes, stays out of the way. I think to many times, we, the artists, like to "talk over" inspiration. :)Bea

  2. ahhh i love ben shahn .
    i too was looking at patterns today.
    i have not sewed any clothing in a long time. do you remember folkwear
    patterns ? i think have come full circle since taking jude's class. lol!
    i love all your new work .

  3. What a beautiful, tranquil spot to sit and paint. Intrigued by Agnes Richter's jacket and drawn to your little beastie with the tail and claws.

  4. You are a Wood Nymph, that's what you are. But then YOU knew that already. Beautiful work with something a little different in there - 6th picture down. Love it.

  5. I love your Beast too Lynne,,,those ruby red claws! Thanks for the link to Kathy's beast from Judes class, so quirky and wonderful. Love that acid green background.
    And...Ben Shahn, love his work. Thanks for introducing me to his art. I am going to check out Amazon when I get home and get a copy.
    What a wonderful trip you had. I love that you sat by the water and painted 'Leo' with nearby water. Beautiful art and beautiful trees.
    Inspiring the jacket by Anges Richter. I havent seen that before either ... great post.

    Jacky xox

  6. oh lynne, you're back! :) thank you for sharing your journey.. i look forward to see what sewing projects you make.. regards adding silk? a friend of mine added some recycled silk to a raw silk cloth and after washing.. the silk still had a lot of colour in it and it made the raw silk look grubby.. she didn't pre-wash it obviously but..

  7. Lynne--what a great post this is today! I checked out all the links. Love the jewelry at KVK's site, the one of the jacket with all the stitching on it, and then from that site I visited some of her links. You can get lost in this blog world, can't you! I see a face in the blue sky photo you took. A winking eye in the left-hand side, then a nose and a mouth. A happy face. This water looks incredible. Just which river is it? Is it here in Calif? Love your faces, as always and that photo of the chair at the water's edge: dreamy! It seems so peaceful there; so quiet and non-populated. I can't find that here at our river. Too many people. So, I just stay home where it is peaceful and quiet. Sewing is my passion so these projects you speak of make me excited. Can't wait until my summer work schedule is over and then I can sit at home and create stuff again. Thanks for the great post. Love it all!

  8. always inspiring. love your wonderful soulful faces, love the jacket. And love the idea that water from the river went to nourish Leo. Now all you need is some earth and air and fire to ignite the next works.

  9. I love what you're doing with this book so much--you are definitely inspiring me!

  10. A lovely spot....and the river looks temptingly refreshing. (if a bit swift!)

    Apparently I'm not alone in my love of the little tailed guy!

  11. hey bea, yes, i agree... we can get in the way for sure... and i do love the idea of painting with soil... must do that. sending you summer love... xo

    kathy, i'm gonna have to write and ask you about those folkwear patterns. are they still around? i was amazed at how much smaller the pattern books are now! they used to be so big - like wallpaper sample books! xo

    hi robyn... yeah, i think that jacket is magnetic...

    thanks, loani... that 6th picture down was drawn from a magazine pic that looked *entirely* different. and then of course the oil pastels wouldn't smush around - i was just about deflated, but i persevered until i she sorta made my eyes smile. : )

    hi jacky, thank you... i believe mrs. mizzle would adore ben shahn. ; )

    heya viv! so happy to 'see' you! as for the silk, i better test some out in the washer first, huh? thank you for telling me about this... xo

    hi teri, been thinking about you! one of the rivers is the santiam, and the other is a branch of the willamette - both in oregon. i swear they have some beautiful water up there. hee, yeah, one can get lost in the blog world!! as for stitching, i'm enjoying it so much. it's really calling me... xo

    carole, i'm thinking about this earth, air, fire thing... just let me see what i can do... : )

    thank you so much, diane!

    lol, judah, yeah, swift for sure. i didn't walk out in it because i think it would've been hard to not get swept downstream. xo

  12. Looks like you had a fun and creative adventure. Loving all your people. And I totally get looking for new materials even when the old ones suffice. I guess it is just what we do!

  13. Lynne, I am so happy you are home, and that you loved your trip. Your joyousness is spilling off the pages of your book and out from your words... I love Ben Shahn too, his pen and inks, his details in his textrures. I love your little guy with the claws and the blue(!) hat... happy summer dear friend... i will write! (maybe we can get together next week?)
    love, roxanne

  14. Yes, very nice indeed. All of it. -J

  15. Hi Lynne,
    not much words today but I love your beast and it's always a pleasure to have a look at your blog and art. Hope you are fine ...

    :-) Nicole

  16. Hi Lynne, I've been an occasional reader of your blog and this post just made me a fan. Whenever I read, you inspire me with new ideas, information about things I've never considered, and a deep craving for artistic expression. I love the painted sticks you plant in the woods and think I should do that too, but living in a complete urban setting just doesn't lend itself to the same opportunity. Hundertwasser and Shahn are two artists I learned about from your blog. I could go on about how much you've given me but really? All I can say is Thank You!

  17. Hi Lynne,

    I have just become a new fan of yours. You know when someone can sing to your spirit and lift you up out of the ordinary....well you have done that for me today!!

    Thank you!!

    Love your wonderful paintings and the chair by the river...using
    the water with your paints reminds me of when I was at the ocean last summer and I was in my chair at the beach and used some of the sand for the sand in my painting...ahh wish I was there again, well just thinking about it transports me there once again.

    Delight in the Day!!

    Art of Mine

  18. I'm more relaxed now, myself, just looking at the gorgeous photos and reading about how relaxed and happy you were on your trip.

  19. I love that end quote...
    and each piece of your art is grand to take in. The blond lady really got my attention, I just like looking at her and her spirit. Then the beasty guy with the blue cap, just wow, I love that piece. So glad you had a wonderful time away. I also went away. Canada this time. Just 6 hours north west of where I live. Just gorgeous.

  20. what a gorgeous tree - love the perspective you shot it from! and i love the continuation of this series of drawings you're doing on the book pages-really adds interest and fun to the surface. ben sahn is new to me, great painting!! fun post, glad you had such a nice trip. xo k

  21. Lynne--Let me ask you this: would you think that if I put Gesso on fabric (say muslin or canvas) that it would work well for a purse/bag painting? I want to create a hand-drawn bag for a friend at work but want it to be strong and secure. Muslin comes to mind since it is easy to use and draw on but not quite so strong...hence the Gesso idea. Have you done anything like that? How pliable is it if so? We have a friend who used to have a cabin on the Santiam. They have since sold it. We visited once on our way to Sisters. Love that area!

  22. lol, seth, yeah, i guess it's just what we do. on the other hand, i'm looking at buying stuff in a new light these days... it's a time of paring down for me, and to just keep adding more to the pile doesn't make sense... : )

    thank you jayne, angela, tammie, and karin... sending love to you...

    nicole, rdn, susan, and teri... i've written you... susan and rdn, you know how much your words have meant... teri, i'm going to put my response to you here so others can see the answer to the gesso on muslin question.

    "gesso on muslin will work well - i put acrylic paint on muslin for my muslin books, then sand the pages. the result is a strong, flexible, smooth surface... it's very pliable... i put a coat of paint on each side."

  23. adore your beast with the claws and tail... and love your sweet spot to paint... ah I am in love with summer too... a few precious days left for me here in the mountains and then fall hits hard!! so I am APPRECIATING IT ALL THE MORE! xx's

  24. What to praise first? Such suchness all over spilling bounty. Every thing I say YES.

    That embroidered story is yesyesyes. Etc.


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