Journaling the DAR Washington State Flag

In my other life (the one that pays the bills), Mitchell and I own a conservation business which conserves (restores) antiquities, both private and institutional.
I do a lot of finish (painting, shellacking) work in our business,
as well as cleaning, needlework on textiles.

The DAR approached us to recreate the First Flag of the State of Washington in order that the historic flag which hangs in the Reception Room of the Legislative Building be preserved.  The saga of the flag is posted on the business blog,
I thought you might find this interesting… My other identity!
If you want to read about the prep for the drafts, below, go here.

I sketch in our business a lot and don’t think to share that,
but I recently did and you all enjoyed it, I thought to share these personal notes.
I don’t know why I never thought it might interest my readers —
especially as I am a studio and journal voyeur!
Throughout a painting project I take notes for myself…
Thinking out loud… journaling… reminders!


I can think without a pen in hand but it is not the same.
Having pen-in-hand makes me remember everything,
ties together my visual/auditory/kinesthetic memories!


Not sure why, but sometimes I write the music or
audiobook I am listening to in the studio.

I also take notes for future and for clients and the business blog posts,
but I usually do those in a separate journal that is only for studio notes,
something that a client could peruse and not run into personal items.
Sometimes I even image them and send them along to the curator/owner.
The painted notes accompany the text pages.

Working green George I became much more comfortable with the paint colors
and the techniques to create his likeness.  His face needs to be a bit thinner and
his hair is a bit wildly curly still.  Painting George has prompted me to review other
images of Washington, because really, while I am creating a likeness of the flag,
I am not a forger and have come to realize the painting will have my hand and strokes
no matter how I attempt to reproduce it.  What I want is his eyes to look at you in the manner of the flag and his smile (which has degraded) to be accurate to his personality.

This has been an honor and adventure so far;
really nothing I’ve done to date has been quite like it.
I will post the final when it is complete.

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A Prayer


Need I say more?

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VSW: Basílica de Guadalupe, 1


This month, we are painting the Basílica de Guadalupe in Mexico city, with images from Margaret Metcalfe (and a little help from Google maps).


I am also trying, with resistance, the no line work first.
I place a couple of watercolor pencil lines in for guidance.


I find I end up liking a little bit, a piece of the whole, but never the whole!


You can see I gave up on this one…
I rarely do that — they are like my kids, I am committed once I start!

Images graciously offered for use
to our Virtual Sketchwalk group by
Margaret Metcalfe.

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Posted in architecture, art journal, challenge, color, landscape, painting, sketchbook, timed painting, virtual sketching, watercolor | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Lojong 36: Don’t be so Predictable

I’ve studied through the slogans a dozen times in my life;
these are my musings on the slogan currently, not a formal interpretation.
For that reason they are less about straight Buddhist teachings,
and I think able to be shared with most practitioners of other faiths or no faith
(unless yours doesn’t allow you to read any other tradition.) 

If you have time and the inclination, I published the WHOLE  thang here!


#30.  Don’t be so predictable.


Often said while reading the newspapers…

The news media jerks us around for ratings, so they can sell ads and make money.
They don’t produce news anymore, or else we would know what is really going on instead of constantly hearing some stupid thing Trump said, or some stupid thing a celebrity said, or yet another shooting and how sorry the congress is…
We’d hear of toxic dumpings and rising waters and
rising levels of pharmaceuticals in our rivers and oceans and
the torturous things that the USA is doing to children in immigration camps and
the truth about the opioid crisis.

Instead they yah-yah-yah on endlessly about
how two men or two women committing to one another hurt YOUR marriage….
about Trumps latest tweet…
about how a small group of stupid people don’t believe in science…
The media will say what they KNOW will piss you off.
Distract you with bright shiny objects while taking your wallet from your pocket
or killing your children, slowly making sure they have NO future.

How can they do this?
They know exactly how you will react.

And this can be applied to so many things…

Got teenagers?  Wow they know how to push your buttons!
Parents put the buttons there so they also know where to find them!
Boom!  We are off and running to an argument!

The point is, don’t have knee-jerk reactions.
Think about how your respond to mom and dad and child and sibling…
Decide what you want to know about and find information on THAT…
talk about important stuff in the coffee room.

Don’t be so predictable.
Think for yourself.
Reflect.

Easily one of my favorite slogans.

Okina Journal, with Pilot Metropolitan with Platinum Cassis Black ink.

Posted in art, Buddha, journal, lojong, meditation, pen & ink, ritual, tonglen, watercolor | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Pink Posies on both Hahnemühle Post Cards

Loving the options of the two types of Hahnemühle Post Cards!
Cold pressed on the left, above, and rough on the right.

I found a way in to painting without line-work
through a fellow painter, Tom Brudzinski… His is more my style than Marc Holmes!
He articulates graphic shapes not lines…. And color!
I tried the posies and felt good about them…

The rough texture or the smoother cold press offer options!

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Posted in cards, creativity, drawing, painting, review, watercolor | Tagged , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Lojong 37: Staying Present

I’ve studied through the slogans a dozen times in my life;
these are my musings on the slogan currently, not a formal interpretation.
For that reason they are less about straight Buddhist teachings,
and I think able to be shared with most practitioners of other faiths or no faith
(unless yours doesn’t allow you to read any other tradition.) 

If you have time and the inclination, I published the WHOLE  thang here!


#28: Abandon any hope of fruition.

When you are hoping for this or that, your mind is future, not present.
Hoping is not problem solving.
Hoping is thinking about outcomes based on action or on non-action.
I am in such a place on several fronts right now.
I find I have to let go of futuring and hoping for outcomes because it is consuming.
I’ve taken all appropriate actions; done what I can do…
I am present to be able to step in if there is an opportunity to  do this or that…
But there is NOTHING for me to do presently except what is necessary
and in front of me now and now and now.
My work, play with the cats and Mitchell, watch a movie, make marks, and meditate.

*now if I can just practice what i know to be true…
turn it over to god/dess, the isness, the universe…
i have to remind myself daily, as worrying is a part of MY futuring…*

Okina Journal, with TWSBI ECO 1.1stub with Rohrer & Klingner Alt-Goldgrun ink.

Posted in art, Buddha, journal, lojong, meditation, pen & ink, ritual, tonglen, watercolor | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Tools: New Cold Press Hahnemühle Post Cards


Loving Hahnemühle Post Cards as I do, I am thrilled to have the cold pressed option!

Fabulous!  Perfect!  I am in love!!

When I started with the first batch of post cards, highly textural,
I loved the size/shape but struggled with the paper, 250 gsm rough texture.
As I worked with it (I am on my third tin), I began to love the texture.
I’ve always loved texture when painting, and this provided a complexity.
Above, you can see a detail of the textural versus the cold pressed.
(Review of Hahnemühle Textured Post Cards here.)


Painting on the cold pressed postcards, I do it just as I have before,
I still secure the edges on a stiff board.


Now bear with me, as I am also playing in
the crazy #30x30directwatercolor2018 challenge… above…
NOT happy with direct watercolor; I miss inked or penciled lines!!!!
Yet look at how lovely the colors look on the image above!
*mind my markmaking not the best*

Great layers, bold colors pop on the cold press post cards!

The cold pressed is soooo smooth, but not smooth like hot pressed,
which would not be interesting to me.  Just enough tooth!

No ink above…. but below…


Ah, back to heavenly linework! 

This is a real test of the post cards, as the ink from the scratchiest fountain pen
glides on the smoother surface!  The paper also takes many layers, as I
dropped and plopped color everywhere, and even removed a wayward run…


Here I used an underlayer of Fineline Masking Fluid,
and the paper worked well with the masking fluid, staying strong.
Look at how deep the Primatek mix appears!
The Da Vinci paints show well on this paper.

I am thrilled to have this option, and will probably buy more of this in the long run than the textural, just because of the linework gliding onto the smoother cold pressed surface.

How do I use them?
I know from experience that peeps LOVE getting a hand painted post card.
I admit to sending them in an envelope though… I don’t want to risk the weather!

Thumbs up, as usual, for Cold Press
Hahnemühle Post Cards!

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check out my new and improved dkatiepowellart.com
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Posted in cards, creativity, drawing, ink painting, painting, pen & ink, review, tools, watercolor | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments