Thursday, May 11, 2017

My Myrtlewood Memories

Around 20 years ago I was busy creating art on gorgeous myrtlewood plates and plaques. They were wildly popular with tourists along the Oregon coast, and I had a hard time keeping up with the demand. 

Imagine my delight to find an old cache of photographs from "the old days"! 

Sorry for the poor photo quality, but I sure had fun with memories of trying to design images to fit with all the weird and lovely grain of the natural wood.

The design was first burned on with a woodburner. Next color was added with colored pencils, which were then burnished to make the colors richer.

Here are a few of them (can click images to enlarge):










Hope you enjoyed seeing these as much I did rediscovering them!


Retta

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Finally, she's flying high this year!

I finally was able to persuade my Knight in Shining Armor to include my Kitty Angel in this years decorations. Yay!


(can click pics to enlarge)


I plan to (hopefully) paint a manger scene to go with her, for next year. Yes... a Cat Joseph, Cat Mary, and Kitten Baby Jesus.  It's okay, roll yer eyes at my hokiness. Me not care!! LOL!



I wish everyone out there a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and a blessed what-ever-else-you-celebrate. And Happy New Year!



Happy painting,

Retta

Saturday, October 22, 2016

39 Years and counting!

Last year artist Jessilyn Brinkerhoff was commissioned to paint some beautiful mural art in my hometown of Medford, Oregon.

Today was the first time I got to see it in person, and my, oh my, it is gorgeous! 

Today Jim and I are celebrating our 39th wedding anniversary, so we went out to lunch and then visited this beautiful art.

It was painted on the pillars holding up a freeway overpass, in Hawthorne Park. There are 12 mural in all. Here are some pics I took, plus some from Jessilyn’s website, which is HERE.








Oh, and while we were there, we were attacked by Zombies!! Well, actually, it was a run called the Running Dead 5K, with proceeds going to Southern Oregon Goodwill. And all the runners were dressed up as various gory zombies. It was hilarious!



Happy painting,


Retta


Thursday, June 30, 2016

Virtual Paintout 28: Medieval Castles in Napa Valley!

For the month of June the Virtual Paintout gang visited Napa Valley, California, USA. I fell in love with this gorgeous castle, called Castello di Amorosa.

This 12th century style medieval castle is a fully functioning winery! The building began in 1994, and has become world famous. Dario Sattui, the owner who fell in love with medieval castles while touring Europe as a young man in an old VW van, is the great grandson of Vittorio Sattui, an Italian immigrant who founded V.Sattui Winery in 1885 in San Francisco. 

The whole story is fascinating, and I loved reading it and touring the castle via Google street view.


Here is the original location (as always, you can
enlarge any pics by clicking on them):



I dinked around in Photoshop, playing with color ideas:



The line drawing on the birch wood panel:



First I painted the values underpainting. I wanted an old, aged effect:



Here is a crummy photo with glare, showing the blues being added. I used Ultramarine blue. In Medieval days it was a sign of wealth to use that blue, it being an expensive color to create from genuine Lapis Lazuli.




Some close ups:






And here is my finished castle, complete with actual images from inside and outside the castle. The gargoyles sit atop stone walls, guarding the entrance to the castle drawbridge. The iron dragon is outside, hanging from chains. The rest are painted images from inside, most on the walls of the Great Room.


"For the Love of Castles"
Castello di Amorosa
Napa Valley, CA  USA

8x10 acrylic on
birch wood panel



I hope you enjoyed visiting Castello di Amorosa.


Retta

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Virtual Paintout 27: Ducking in to visit Maine, USA!

Last month in June the Virtual Paintout gang went to Maine, USA. What a gorgeous state! 

As my habit has been lately, I kept my eye out for an animal to paint. Say what?? Not one animal to be found along Route 1 in Maine. 

But then... aha!! I spied this Duck in the window of the Siren Song Tattoo Parlor, in Rockland, Maine. A duck! How cool.


Here is the original location. See my little duck on the very left?


I had blast researching tattoos from the Old School, traditional American tattoo styles. Being a coastal town, I wanted to make my design fit the theme. Hence the lighthouse, compass, waves, roses, anchor, North Star symbols, etc. Those were all tattoos used in Old School tattoos from years ago. And I left some of the birch wood showing, and gave the painting a weathered "old" look, as though exposed to the salty sea air.


First some quick thumbnail sketches I did to try out some ideas:
(can click on any pics to enlarge)






After drawing out my final design and putting it onto the wood, 
I lined it using an acrylic paint pen:




Ack!! The paint pen smeared when I went to seal it. 
Don't know what happened; used this same technique last painting.






I stuck with it, and started the underpainting:




Here it is with the value underpainting:




And finally, it's finished. First here are the sides, 
which each have their own little motif going on:








And the finished painting "Siren Song... aka Ducking In For A Tattoo"

"Siren Song aka Ducking In For A Tattoo"
8 x 8 x 1 5/8 acrylic on
cradled birch wood



Hope you enjoyed this adventure from Maine!

Retta

PS: As always, anyone is welcome to join the Virtual Paintout. It's free, it's fun, and each month you can choose to participate or not, as your schedule allows. For this month of June, the destination is Napa Valley, California, USA. I have my spot all picked out! Join me??

Visit here for more details: http://virtualpaintout.blogspot.com/

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Virtual Paintout 26: Sri Lankan Princess!

Yay, I finished in time!

This paintout was irresistible. How could I NOT paint an adorable little elephant I discovered along the roadside in Udawalawe National Park, Sri Lanka.

That's where the Virtual Paintout gang went for the month of April: to Sri Lanka. It was a blast! They revere elephants there, and even decorate and beautifully paint them for festivals. 

In light of that, I imagined my little Asian elephant was on her way to a Festival, and gave her a leg bracelet with turquoise stones and golden bells.

Here is the original location where I found her (you can click on any pics to enlarge):


The design surrounding our Princess was influenced by the traditional style of arts and crafts in Sri Lanka, and I left some of the birch wood showing in the finished painting.

First layers and linework:



Starting to add shading and hints of color:



 Working on grasses and the Princess:







"Sri Lankan Princess"
Sri Lanka
acrylic on 8x8x1.5  cradled birch




I hope you enjoyed meeting our Sri Lankan Princess!


Retta