Saturday, February 25, 2017

Because. Deadlines.

Yesterday I typed that I'd planned/hoped to have three new pastels finished by two P.M. today. Because today is the deadline for a pastel show.

It is now 7:11 P.M. The three pieces are finished enough to have zipped their images to the person in charge of jurying the show. i am guessing that one or two of the photographs could have been a tad "sharper" - but with how I how with pastels it is hard to tell. Fuzzy edges on actual work will create fuzzy edges on images.

This is now in the past.

But these are the three things that took up the day - along with finishing the audio book of "The Maltese Falcon" - 

1) "Happy Here." A pastel that's been in the works for almost a year. It was much more "normal" before, and I know more wacky color could have ben pushed throughout the composition. (I might still go back and tweak it - so easy to do with pastels.) But because of time constraints I managed to think of it as finished for now.
Like so many others, this one is soft pastel on velour mat board.

2) "Freddie." Another messing around with soft pastel on velour mat board. This is the piece I'd started as a pastel society demonstration. Tonight I am pretending that he is done. The juror for the show is the inspiration for his name. I do not know if this will have any - no pun intended - bearing in whether "Freddie" will make the cut. If it does, that's O.K. with me. Whatever works!

3) "Elemental 1." This is what happens when I have no idea what might happen. Playing around was my only plan. On the weird black paper from a garage sale that I then treated with clear gesso and acrylic paint. I LOVE working on this surface. The paper if tough on its own - and the gesso gives it a medium tooth - that will take lots of pastel but won't bloody one's fingers when blending colors. I simply sectioned the paper into four areas, and each section got a bear. I was thinking both "retro" and contemporary. And more importantly - Don't Do Normal. I kind of like these. Now we will see what others think.

So that is how the daylight hours and some evening ones were spent. I am now craving a McDonald's Hot Fudge Sundae (please don't judge). I have been "stress eating" all day. Funny how one can both eat and hold pastels. No, not at the same same. And, yes, I washed my grubby fingers before handing snacks. Most of the time... We have a McD's WAY too near our home. And hubby might fly if I buy.

What does tomorrow hold? Well, The Daytona 500 for one thing. Other than that, I have no idea. But probably not finishing three more pastel paintings. Whew!

Today WAS a Lesson is Pushing On and Pulling Through.

Sue the Tired and Dusty

Friday, February 24, 2017


Sometimes Deadlines are the only things that will "force" Making Stuff.

By Saturday afternoon I  plan/hope to finish three pastel paintings for an exhibition I'd forgotten I'd planned to enter.  Eeeek!

Here is unfinished "Freddie" - 

He started as a Lake Country Pastel Society demo piece. Soft pastel on velour mat board. No plan. Just a few circles that turned into a bear. A few hours of work. And then set aside. Enough of his sitting on the side-lines. "Freddie" needs finishing!

On to finding good music - 
On to stretching of the fingers - 
On to the adding of layers!

Best of Luck with your quests of the day!

- Fare-thee-well,

Monday, February 20, 2017

When Making a Something When Is It Done?

Much of the month of February for hundreds of model horse hobbyists has been been taken up by NaMoPaiMo - or National Model Painting Month.

We were invited to join Jennifer Bray Buxton to join her in finishing a customized model horse sometime during the month. She'd hoped for one hundred painters to join in the adventure. Instead over six hundred brave souls from all over the world have signed up - either by the official deadline (eligible for prizes) or later - as inspiration to start, keep going, and/or finish work on a particular model equine.

Instead of working on pastel or acrylic or other kinds of bears I have been"treating" myself to re-living a life I lived many years ago. Painting in oil over acrylic I created the most basic of customized model horses - the simple "repaint." No parts moved, sculpted, or changed in any way. Because I used to use Breyer horses as the base for more customized models - living in a world of grinding bits, epoxies, primers, paints, and mohair, working on my little guy these past weeks seemed both easy and hard. Easy, because I did nothing to prep him but a little sanding; hard because I know how far the the best artists in the hobby have come.

Nevertheless, I started in, kept going, felt emotions I've not felt in many years, and finally have a little Appaloosa colt that, although may never win a ribbon in a show ring - does have a place in my heart.

Welcome to the herd, Sunshine's Phillip Under the Influence!

Because I was once a model horse judge - at national level - I do look at this little lad with critical eyes. But I won't for long - because now I prefer to try doing a few things just for the fun of doing them. THIS IS SO HARD!

And because my judge's eye and artist's heart are never satisfied I know little Phillip will have to be a different kind of model horse for me. I have not figured out what this is yet. He is less than a job but more than a hobby.

And I still don't know if he is done. His eyes are glossed, but he is not signed - silent LOL. Sue the Uncertain will let him sit for another day or two before entering him in the "I Did It!" Album on the NaMoPaiMo Page.

And then I will get back to the bears. Spring is coming. They are getting restless.


Friday, February 17, 2017

Heart Power

People and Hearts are making me re-think the February Personal Challenge.
A recent CBS News story reported on one ambitious and amazing high-school student who made 1300(!) hearts. She and a few pals then attached them to every locker in their school - so every student got a Valentine on February 14th!

1300 HEARTS!!
(I have made about 30...)

Here are a few:

Paper, acrylic paints, some paint pens, and regular pens.
And lots of "Yes!" paste.
Nothing fancy.
But each is unique.
And holds its own power.
I hope.

And as stated previously -
Making Hearts Makes Me Happy.
Receiving Hearts Makes Some Others Happy.
So this heart-making WILL go on.
Some will be made for next Valentine's Day.
But most will be made for any day and all days.
Why not?

May we all get to do something that makes us Happy today.

Adding to the blog totals is helping my little brain. (Because of a deal it has made with itself, but forgets every few days.)

Morning not-really Light is starting to peek into the backyard.

Mosaic-making adventures await.
New makings for me.
Mud and shiny things? Oh, yes, please.

Facebook Page: Sue-Rowe-Studios (not the acting one)

Thursday, February 16, 2017

More makings -

This month's
Personal Challenge to Me
has been met!

It was: Make 25 Valentines

Done and done.
And still being worked on.

Because Playing with Hearts
and paints and paper and glue and stuff
has been FUN.

In fact I should be working on Real Art, organizing the work desk, applying for art fairs.
But just the Joy of Making weird one-of-a-kind Heart-themed Things
gets "working" in the flow brain happy,
and being Happy is such a good feeling 
that I am ignoring some other tasks
simply to keep feeling Happy.

Today I am playing with new ways of marbling papers.
Perhaps some of these papers will turn into bears.

I do not know.
Right now I do not care.

After weeks in mental doldrums 
it just feels wonderful 
to feel Joy while working.

So, back to Studio B for another hour
of Hearts AND cleaning/organizing.

ART is starting to be FUN again.
Thanks to Hearts!

If you are feeling not-so-creative 
go back to that basic 
"Captain Kangaroo"
supply box.

Paper, scissors, paint, and glue.
And no worries about having ping-pong balls
being dropped on your head!

Life is O.K.


Friday, February 10, 2017

Ambitions and Art Events

Ambition: I don't have any.

Art Fair: Banbury Art Crawl, Friday and Saturday. Eau Claire, WI

On to the adventure!

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Keep Posting.


It isn't that I forget to post.
I think about typing throughout the day.
Early and often.

Then a block of hours goes by.
And another.
And another.

And then I wake up.
It's Tomorrow.

And again no typings.


but it is The Fact.

Today typing is happening.
And here is a report.
Stuff has been made.

Much stuff.
Over twenty five Hearts started.
The starts of three more tiny books.
More painting on the tiny plastic spotted horse.

Several drawings that might become Real Art.

And more.

Here is a tiny bit of evidence:

A Playing with Paper and Paint.
That will go away soon.
Out into the universe.

As will these words.
Back to making.


Saturday, February 4, 2017

Making More Stuff

February Makings - 

Since last post:
A little rodent for Groundhog's Day - nothing fancy, but has a point - 

Started to paint on small model horse, as part of the NaMoPaiMo Facebook Group. Over three hundred people from around the world - really - have signed up to attempt finishing at least one one model horse during February. All skill levels; many different approaches. I have been out of the hobby for so long that this is scary fun. It is how I used to make a living. Now I am almost a Beginner again. It is O.K. to be a Beginner any time. Here is my little horsie so far:

There is much to learn and do. I am having fun! So far.

Thursday night I made something I have not made in over five years - a batch of chocolate chip cookies! I'd told Todd I would do this - so while he was off bowling I had to re-learn how to bake cookies. I loved to bake - but tinnitus put brakes to much of this sort of thing. Just the creamed butter and real sugar (I took a tiny sample...) was SO delicious... I made only a single batch - but amazingly, we still have some left. I plan to freeze a few - as little treats. yes, I can eat HALF of a cookie. One cookie takes two days to eat. Sad, huh? But better than no cookies. Todd will have to figure out how to measure his cookies, 'cause I don't know when I'll bake again.


Other real work has been accomplished, too. It feels good to have some ambition again. Almost strange. But good.

On to tomorrow. I hear there is a football game on Sunday.

Yes, too many "I"'s in this post. What are YOU making?


Time to get back to the Valentines!

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Making Stuff -

Welcome to February, 21017. 

Personal Challenge? 
Make/Finish Stuff
Be Accountable

Doing #1:
An Hour Making Hearts

The Christmas/Holiday Season goes by in a blur. It is filled with too much of everything except time. 
January is most taken over by re-cleaning and re-organizing and re-hoping that things will be different next January.

And then there is Valentine's Day.
Important to me since first grade, red construction paper, crepe paper, and glue. Seriously. I LOVED making Valentines, and I still do.

So the past few years I have asked friends if anybody would like one. Well, yes, a goodly bunch would! 

It's Fun to have a real reason to create a little something.

Here is glimpse at the messy start - as you can see there aren't many "rules":

About 7 A.M. I made another cup of hot tea, headed to Studio B, put an old Stan Getz jazz album on to the turntable, and set the iPone timer for one hour.
Nothing mattered except making stuff out of paper and paint. We have LOTS of acrylic paints and LOTS of paper. Often what we need is a little more Fun. Jazz music helps. Me, at least. You are free to work to the music of your choice. Or in peaceful quiet.

Throughout the year I often save the dried acrylic paint that globs up on the little plastic covers I use as palettes. These colorful pieces are peeled off and put into a small container. Thus, the paint does not go down a sink drain, nor get tossed out on the lawn. It helps add quirky colors and shapes to a particular Valentine. Not all of the hearts sport these little scraps, but many do.  Yes glue is used to press the paint onto the paper. It seems to work the best, although I  have used other adhesives depending on situation.

The plan is to finish at least twenty-five heart-themed somethings this month. No, not all will be mailed by February 14th, but a number will be. And why not keep the Love going throughout the month, and maybe into Spring?

Tomorrow is coming soon. Another morning. Another making. Another heart.

Facebook Page: Sue-Rowe-Studios