“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.” ....Oscar Wilde

Friday 28 November 2014

Wonderful Workshops

I can't complain that I haven't had time to paint this week because I've seriously indulged not once, but twice! (GASP!)
Well for a start how could I clean the house when it's been so dark? 
At 3.00pm I've had to turn on lamps for goodness sake.
I dread to think what I'll see when the sun eventually does shine, but apparently that's not going to happen until at least next Tuesday... if we're lucky. 
So for now all my guilt is shut up tight into the broom cupboard. 

But can you guess what the subject matter was for my art group this week?
A Rainy Afternoon!!!! 
As you can imagine I was thrilled Emoji
I have to say I struggled with this one, not only for the subject, but also trying to keep my piece loose.
I nearly freaked out trying to get a little precision on a building whilst using the palette knife.
I apologised to all my fellow desk mates but they seemed to think it was a giggle... so they're now off my Christmas card list!  
I definitely need more time to work on this... so I'm not going to show you it this week.
I wouldn't wish that on anyone never mind my arty friends. 

I'm still attempting to catch up after being away and had completely forgotten that I'd signed up for a workshop.
Thankfully I'd entered it into my phone diary so didn't miss it. 
I had a great time which was organised by the Jack Tierney Gallery in Cults, Aberdeenshire.
The very talented visiting Russian artist Sofia Perina-Miller gave incredible demo's (four in all) and her enthusiasm was infectious, so we all had a play too.
Her work is so incredibly vibrant and free flowing. 
No pencil in sight. 
Here she is painting a poinsettia
Sofia sees everything in intense colour and transfers that to her paintings.
If you'd like to see more of Sofia's work... click here or visit her Facebook page here
Her energy was tangible and listening to her talk about all of her projects, plans and future work left me feeling a little dizzy. She apparently only has about three to four hours sleep a night. 
(I knew that's were I would find some more time... now I just have to try sleep deprivation... although somehow I don't think it'll be for me... I'm a dizzy blonde already at times) 

I now have an extensive art supplies wish list for Christmas, but unfortunately I don't think I've been that good.... I'll have to work on it!
St.Petersburg White Nights Wooden Box Set
Shin-Gansai watercolour pan
600gsm cold pressed paper 
to name but three...

Here's a painting I managed to do within the time restraints.
I always like to outline in pen so was thrilled when Sofia said that we needed to do that on our finished paintings. 
Yay... I knew I liked her 
This second piece isn't finished but I'll maybe have a play with it using the paints I already have. 
It's so dark here so photographs lately leave a lot to be desired...soz!
I'll certainly be looking out for more workshops to attend and Sofia says she will return in the spring.
Roll on spring for so many reasons...

And finally and more appropriately my sincere apologies if you have visited me recently and I haven't returned the call.
I've been away twice in the last few weeks and there's still two little trips planned (although these aren't cast in stone) I will be revisiting my posts to catch up with replies as and when I can.

In the meantime why don't you nip over to Kristin and Eva's Paint Party Friday there's always lots to see.
Paint Party Friday
I'm also linking to Dion Dior's Friday Sketches... click here to visit Dion
Dion Dior
And the Artist's Play Room over at Jenn's Just Add Water Silly blog
Happy Friday everyone... have fun and hopefully I'll see you again soon
(I'll be concentrating on the Christmas festivities after this weekw)


  1. Love your paintings Neesie and your work in progress. You have so much talent. Happy PPF, Annette x


    1. Thanks Annette,
      It's always great to have you pop by and not just because you always leave such lovely comments ;D
      Have a wonderful weekend.
      Happy PPF to you xoxo

  2. Everything looks fabulous Neesie! You make me want to sit down and have a play with my watercolors even thought i have no idea what i'm doing... and all i have is a cheap set.... I wonder if thats why mine feel kinda chalky when dry and you can rub the color off? Or is all watercolor that way?? We are super foggy this moring.....so nice i don't have to get out in it.... Hugs!deb

    1. Aww Deb thank you so much for your kind words,
      I'm not sure about the chalky feel but maybe someone else might read this and know the answer.
      The paints that Sofia used plus the fantastic quality paper made such a difference... I'm beside myself wanting to purchase them but Christmas is coming and I've got lots to buy for others so maybe I'll just try to keep going until January when I'll put out a request for my birthday! ;D
      I won't describe the weather we've had today Deb, because it was truly grim. It's hardly got light all day. Enough said!
      Enjoy your weekend and I'd love to see what you produce if you do have a watercolour playtime xoxo

  3. Wonderful watercolor pieces- awesome.... have a great weekend Neesie and happy PPF!

    1. Thanks so much Susi,
      Have a great weekend too ;D
      Happy PPF to you

  4. These are wonderful paintings, Neesie. We are always our own harshest critics, aren't we?! Enjoy your 'work' the dust bunnies will wait. :) Hugs

    1. Hi Nan,
      You are so right... I always have trouble saying I even like my work and I noticed that virtually everyone in my art group has the same trouble.
      Maybe it's something I'll try to change for next year! I'm planning on creating lots more so it will get tiresome if I keep knocking it.
      Anyway... have a wonderful weekend whatever you have planned.
      I'll be popping over soon so put the kettle on ;D
      Hugs to you too

  5. Looks like a fun course, those leaves are gorgeous! Thanks for visiting my blog! Hugs, Valerie

    1. It was brilliant and just what I needed... she just encouraged me to grab the brush, dip in the paint and go for it! It was really refreshing and not my usual way to paint.
      Thanks for visiting and your lovely comment ;D
      Hugs to you too
      Happy PPF xoxo

  6. Beautiful work, I love the second one as it is as the leaves that are not outlined contrasting with the outlined ones create a wonderful feel of movement an d tension. Have a great week, you always make me smile!

    1. Thanks so much for your comment Sharon,
      The unfinished piece is actually growing on me (which is surprising to say the least)
      You've certainly made me smile too ;D
      Have a great Friday and wonderful weekend

  7. I love how your personality shines off the page even in dismal weather! Love the leaves and can't wait for the wip!! Art on my friend!!

    Hugs Giggles

    1. Aww bless you Giggles, what can I say through my blushes ;D
      I love the idea that no matter what... my personality shines through because that's what I'd wish to happen. I'm a happy bunny now and grinning like a Cheshire cat.
      I hope to paint for the majority of the weekend in order to get some work ready for the exhibition coming up.
      I then need to start thinking about Christmas!!!
      Have a wonderful weekend and hugs backatcha

  8. BLOGitse

    I have St.Petersburg White Nights colors, I love them! Pigment is really good...
    I like your touch, how you paint. Great colors, good feeling...well done!!!!
    ps. it's dark here too at 3 pm...

    1. Firstly I apologise that I've had to tweak your comment to be able to publish it BLOGitse, unfortunately I pressed delete instead of publish...
      I really must stop trying to multi-task constantly.
      Anyway... I nearly turned slightly green when I read that you have the St Petersburg White Nights. I just HAVE to have some but I'm not sure when ;D
      I couldn't believe the difference they made to my painting.
      I think today was the worst dark day I've ever experienced. It surely can't carry on for much longer.
      Let's hope the weekend is better for us both.
      Have fun and Happy PPF to you

  9. terrific painting Neesie! SO glad to find that you have time to paint again. Good for the soul. Keep warm and I know just what you mean. It gets dark here at 4:30 today. Sheesh. I had to turn on the lights this morning because the light coming in the big picture window and the christmas tree wasn't enough. hugs from Canada.

    1. Thanks Jenn,
      I'm really trying to maximize my art playtime especially now that I can't get out into the garden. It's hard to do gardening in the dark! ;D
      Today we had to put lamps on at 2.30pm. I really didn't think it could be so dark in the daytime.. I feel I'm hibernating but without the sleep!
      No Christmas tree up here just yet. I plan to get the decs out of loft this weekend.
      I'm not sure about having a 11ft real tree in the hallway as we did last time we lived here. For one it would cost so much and for another we're having a new wood burner put into a lounge on 15th December! I can imagine the tree covered in dust instead of snow... so the jury's out on that one for now.
      I've just added to your linky so will visit everyone soon.
      Hugs to you too xoxo
      Muffy sends her love too ^..^

  10. Your nature watercolors are really loose and you have a wonderful lightness of touch. It is hard to make leaves really look like leaves but here you have created an evocation of the damp forest floor in your work. Happy PPF

    1. I really have a problem with painting loosely or so I thought until Sofia helped, so it's great to hear your lovely comment. Thank you so much ;D
      Happy PPF to you too
      Have a great weekend and thanks for stopping by my place.

  11. Oh, Neesie, those leaves are simply beautiful. You did an outstanding job capturing the autumn shades. Blessings, my friend!

    1. Aww Arnoldo, thank you so much. I really enjoyed painting the leaves using a different technique and paints.
      It was so enjoyable ;D
      Blessings to you too

  12. Happy Friday Sketches - I love your loose water color style! I like the texture of your leaves. I have such a hard time with leaves - maybe I need to go looser than more details - they are always look contrived to me - but YOURS are lovely! Have a great weekend!

    1. Hi Telva,
      This loose water colour style is all new to me... I normally try to be so precise so it was very interesting to have this end result after the workshop.
      I adore trees so to be able to paint their colours and texture is something that I hope to create more.
      Your comment has made my day start with a huge smile ;D
      Thank you for visiting and I hope you have a great weekend too

  13. I absolutely adore your leaves! and the pen lines are necessary :)

    1. Oh how lovely of you to say you adore my leaves... I'm smiling from ear to ear. Thanks for starting my day with a smile
      Enjoy your weekend whatever you have planned.

  14. OMGosh! I love the way she uses color!! And your paintings are marvelous!! One of my favorite things to play with is ink & watercolor. Wow! I hope you get to take her spring class, too. :)

    1. It's a feast for the eyes isn't it Rita,
      I had such fun at the workshop and will certainly be looking out for the spring class.
      I was thinking about you yesterday, so it's lovely to have you pop over.
      I'll visit soon so get that kettle on ;D
      Have a wonderful weekend and I hope your enjoyed a special Thanksgiving.

  15. November in Finland has been rainy and grey, have to have lights on all day, not ideal for working, I don't like to paint under lamp light. But I see that doesn't bother you! Your leaf is exquisite, such fine lines and the earthy color just takes my breath away!

    1. Oh I don't like living and working by lamp light but what can you do?
      I am particularly struggling with the light (or lack of it) this week but hopefully the sun will find us again soon. I'm even hoping for snow because that would brighten things up a little.
      Thank you so much for your lovely visit and comment. It really means so much to me to read your reaction to my painting ;D
      Have a wonderful weekend

  16. Wonderful leaves, I love how you have managed to create the autumn in your painting!

    1. I was pleased with them too... now I need to do some more using the same technique but with lots of colour.
      Thanks for visiting my place.
      Enjoy your weekend ;D

  17. What a wonderful painted leaf and a good tip to outlline the watercolour.
    I have these paints (the 24 set), they're really good with lovely colours, hope Santa is listening for you.

    1. Oh you have the paints too. (sigh) I really feel my painting was so much better using them and the high quality paper. (600gsm)
      I'm not taking any chances with Santa... I'm going to write him a letter ;D
      Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.
      I hope you're having a wonderful weekend

  18. I think that people that live in dark gray places have a special gift of using vivid colors to brighten their lives. Your paintings here are a great example of this...lovely!

    1. Thanks Susan,
      I hope that the dark gray won't stay for much longer. I'm even wishing for snow now in the hope that it might brighten things up a little.
      (in a whispered voice) .... I believe that we might see a little sun light tomorrow, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed just in case
      Whatever the weather I hope you're having a wonderful weekend

  19. These are so beautiful, they have such a great effect, I can really feel and smell Autumn as I look at that leaf!

    1. I now need to carry on and paint some colourful bright pieces especially as we are having some really dark days just now.
      Thanks for your lovely comment Kat... I really appreciate your time to stop and natter.
      Have a wonderful weekend ;D

  20. Oh yes, those dark and gloomy November days .... I know what you mean ;-) So much fun to see the bright and happy colours Sofia uses, and your versions from the workshop are amazing as well. It does look so much better with the pen outlines. Great work!

    1. I've had enough of dark and gloomy denthe, I'm going to go for a colourful vibrant subject next. I'm even wishing for snow to brighten everywhere up so it's that serious!
      Sofia using amazing colours... it's a feast for the eyes.
      I agree that the pen outlines work so well. It's something that I've always loved to do. I never feel it's finished until I add some outline so I was happy that Sofia agreed too.
      Thanks for your lovely comment... I hope your weekend's going well no matter what weather you have. Enjoy!

  21. Replies
    1. Thanks so much Abigail.
      It's great to receive everyone's encouraging comments.
      Apologies for my late reply but it's a little crazy here just now (well truth be told it always is a little crazy!)
      Enjoy your week

  22. That Christmas list is quite something... I looooove 640gr hot pressed paper, and couldn't do any of the perfume bottles without it, and any paints are good paints... And maybe you have been that good... Nah... Who are we kidding you are a naughty minx, but I think you deserve them anyway... And so do we because I want to see you working on more watercolours like these...xx

    1. Hi Trace,
      Apologies for my late reply to your lovely comment... but you know how it is!
      Nuf said!
      I'm busting a gut trying to be super dooperly good in the hopes that I get those paints but we shall see. I'm not holding my breath because as you've just told everyone... I'm a minx and sometimes just can't help myself!
      I plan to get them myself one way or another if Santa's not listening because it's my birthday in January MMMMmmmmhhhhhhaaaaawwwww! ;)
      Have fun this week and I'll be across for a warm soon

  23. Fabulous painting this week!! I love the luminosity you achieve with your watercolors - beautiful!

  24. Your paintings are so beautiful! I have the same problem: darkness. Only try to use laps as much as possibly. Happy PPF!

  25. You are talented and taught! Good for you! I just get silly with it!
    (ツ) from Cottage Country Ontario , ON, Canada!

  26. Beautiful work. I too outline in ink unless the piece is intense enough. Your colors are vibrant and right on. I too am unable to work my art in the dark (lighting is so artificial), I need daylight/sunlight. When the days are shorter, there are not enough hours to do my work. Blessings, Janet PPF

  27. your art work is amazing. I am in awe every time I visit an see what you have been up to.


I get so excited to see you here and love to read your thoughts and comments.
I always try to answer each one personally (I think it's only polite)
...♥...I truly appreciate your precious time here so thank you ...♥...

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