Friday, May 30, 2014


St Marks Episcopal Church in downtown Glen Ellyn, Illinois.

The title of this show will be "Consider the Lilies".

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

so many flowers so little time

All the flowers are blooming all at once now. This old paint spattered sweatshirt could sum it up with a one word adjustment. I feel overwhelmed right now this minute with the urgency to paint every flower I see.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Water into Wine

Drawing during church is a way of worshiping for me. Yesterday as I listened to the sermon I thought about the analogy of the grapevine bearing fruit and the remnants of a vine planted years ago in my next door neighbors yard. The man who had planted that vine has passed away and his children and grandchildren allowed the house and property to deteriorate until it was condemned and torn down. Now the land is flattened and mowed over yet that old grapevine continues to sprout new leaves every spring. But since it hasn't been maintained and pruned in so many years there will be no fruit.
From my android phone app SketchBook for Galaxy.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Sunday, May 18, 2014

and dearest

Another page from the portrait selection in my traveling sketchbook. This time the subject was sketched in action lecturing to an audience in Houston. He is a professor of philosophy and I chose to surround him with the colors of an overcast sky although the fiery scarlet could also have been applied for those who know him well.
This professor really does wave his hands about, thrust and jab them vertically while he speaks. I think I caught the spirit if not the reality of the subject.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

lakeview from 17 stories above

Early May I visited a friend who has a Lake Michigan view high rise apartment. I was looking out at the lake and the city of Chicago from 17 floors above and the colors were stunning. The water was a most intense aquamarine. And the word aquamarine does not describe that color when the sun is glinting off the little brilliant wavelets below. The water seems to be glowing from inside as if we are looking through a window with a green light underneath.
Oh Chicago, You can fool us all in the month of May into thinking what a lovely place this is to live. But we still remember how we barely survived February. 

Friday, May 16, 2014

some of my nearest

My sketchbook is full of my nearest and dearest people. Here is one, a portrait that I drew of one of my best friends while we talked all afternoon in a sushi restaurant. The sushi was amazing to look at, next time I will sketch that too.
I chose to add a scarlet wash to the drawing because this lady is a redhead and full of passion. Those who know her might not recognize her in a still pose such as this because she is most always very animated.

My day of jury duty went better than I expected. I only managed to work on a couple of sketches that I wanted to finish, before they dismissed us early. I was never called into a court case for an interview. We were told that the presence of us jurors waiting in the jury lounge caused the litigants to re-think the whole thing and settle out of court which saved the system a lot of money and gave us all permission to go home.
It was a pleasant day. I could have brought all my art supplies with me to the jury lounge and spent the day looking out the window at a retention pond with two swans and a willow tree to contemplate. I actually didn't get the chance to do all the drawing I wanted to do!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Can I draw all day? *

I have a summons to appear for  jury duty service. I haven't done this "most important duty of citizenship" before so I don't know what to expect. Will they let me bring my sketchbook? This sounds like a great day for me to have time to observe people and sketch all sorts of interesting faces and details. Kind of like being trapped at the airport all day, I look forward to a good sketchbook time.

*I should have said it this way, "May I draw all day?"

As I look at the website with my instructions, I am worried. Sketching might be something they frown upon. They don't want cellphones or cameras in the courtroom. Will they let me bring a book to read? I could hide my sketchbook in a book, maybe something innocuous like zombie fiction.

A day where I am not going to have to do my usual tasks at home, where I am stuck somewhere between being busy and not busy seems ideal for drawing all day.

Monday, May 12, 2014

My mother's day mango

Another sketch on my android phone app. SketchBook for Galaxy.
My oldest son brought me a lovely yellow mango. He knows I like the yellow kind that are called manila mango, because I grew up in the Philippines.
He had two of them to give me, but his dog ate one! Grabbed it right off the kitchen counter. We didn't think a dog would like a mango, now we know.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

what I asked for

I am grateful for the flowers (of course!), and the card, but I asked this child of mine to please pose for a sketch this morning.

 Thank you to all my kids for being willing to pose for me all these years past.

my favorite Mother's Day poem

Here is a Geranium.
To ease the pain in your Cranium.
Happy Mother's Day. Adam Wood 1991

Drawn on the ipad using ArtRage and the Zen brush app.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

waited all year

Today's lily drawing, colored pencil on arches paper. May 7, 2014

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

every year

Today's lily drawing, colored pencil on arches paper. May 5, 2014
Every year I draw or paint Easter lilies from life. I buy as many pots of them as I can fit in my little car. My studio is a fragrant forest of tall stalks and waving white flowers.
I also feel extremely pressured to get some quality drawings from those lilies. It is my only chance to observe them from life during the brief moments that they stay alive.
 I wait all year anticipating the arrival of these plants in stores. Some years I have time and draw a lot of new compositions, some years I have no time between other projects.
This year I am clinging as hard as I can to have my life-drawing sessions with my beloved lilies. A lingering bout of a nasty virus has slowed me down but I am still looking and appreciating while I can.
Perhaps I have waited too long to draw from these. The petals are beginning to curl. Although I do like the extra character the flowers get as they age a little.

Monday, May 5, 2014

fiesta time

Everyone is making a fuss about fiestas today. I am well aware that Cinco de Mayo is actually about defeating the French in Mexico. But here in middle America? Seems to be an occasion for parties!
I made this illustration for Scott Foresman Publishing. It was part of a poster about families and culture for a division called Tec-books. Because this was to be on a large poster with maps and other information, I did a bright flat color treatment.
If anyone is interested in my technique for digital art, I show here my line drawing which was scanned at high resolution and then "painted" in Photoshop.