Friday, December 26, 2008

Roses in the Snow

We're still buried in snow up here on Maple Hill though the temperatures are rising and the rains have taken over. The chains came off the car today and I just might venture out alone tomorrow after 12 days of snow and cold. I don't mind being homebound because I'm never bored. There's always something to paint, glue, cook, stitch, draw, write, read, or photograph... and there's the long winter's nap, too, that restores my creative juices.

I just got a note from my friend Leslie Miller who has a wonderful blog that you all will just love. I met Leslie in a hot tub in Taos many years ago when we were staying at the same B&B the night before starting a weeklong workshop. We hit it off right away and have been friends since. She's such a fine collage artist and makes beautiful non-objective paintings. Do have a look at her work.

You'd think that with all my free time I'd have a sparkling clean house, a tidy studio, an organized basement storage, and lots of new artwork. I don't know where the time went but not into those activities. I did get some Christmas gifts made and our family had a wonderful time together celebrating Christ's birth. Now it's boxing day and the boxes and paper are on their way to the dump and I'm working on plans for the coming week when I intend to get some art made.
Roses do indeed bloom in Oregon in December, even in the snow.
Red blossoms bend low
Weighted by winter diamonds
Snow and ice and cold

Monday, December 22, 2008


Here's a page from my daily Moleskine journal. I draw and write with a Gel Xtreme pen by Y&C to make and add watercolor from my little recycled Altoid's tin which is now a handy paintbox.

Making little paintboxes has become a bit of an obsession. I collect flat, lightweight containers such as makeup compacts, vintage metal cigarette boxes, vintage aluminum soap boxes, children's watercolor sets, mint, candy, and cough drop boxes can be converted into little paintboxes. I spray the inside of the boxes with white enamel so I can use this as a mixing area. I order empty half pans and full pans from Daniel Smith and adhere them to the bottom of the box with doublestick carpet tape, fill them with a warm and a cool of 3 basic colors, add a tiny Koi waterbrush, and I'm set to paint wherever I go.

The face is a handcarved rubber stamp that I made from a tracing of a photograph. It was very difficult to carve the details but it's close enoough so that I don't feel the need to re-do the carving.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Open Studio report

Last month's Open Studio was a success, so much fun that I'll definitely do it again. Around 100 people came sometime during the 2 days and several who couldn't make it during the weekend stopped by later in the week, and some returned later to make purchases. My sales were much better than I thought they'd be, considering the economy, but the most important result of the show was that quite a few people were inspired to go home and dig out their packed away art supplies and get back into working. We had such good conversations about art and process, and for a few hours I got to be a teacher again.

I couldn't have done it without help from friends and family. My dear husband pitched in with setup and was a wonderful host. Joanne, Saundra, and Marilyn took charge of the kitchen and sales Friday night, leaving me free to talk to my guests. Then on Saturday I relied on Linda and Marnie with some assistance from my granddaughter Amy and her friend Kelly.

It was such fun to show art that I've created to friends who didn't know that side of me, and many of them turned out to be my customers. I think it's because buying art from the artist is sort of like buying a little piece of the artist. I know that's true for me. I have always made it a point to meet the artists who made the paintings in my collection, and I've succeeded with one exception. I enjoy having authors autograph their books, too. This personal connection adds perceived value.

One thing I'll do differently from now on is to catalog each painting as it's finished. Although I own the Working Artist software I had not used it to catalog my work so much of the month before the show was spent cataloging 146 pieces of finished work. Whew.

Sketchbook Journaling

For years I've kept an art journal of one kind or another and I've often made the books by gutting a discarded book and rebinding it with my preferred papers. But right now I prefer coil bindings over sewn bindings because I can fold the pages back on themselves for more comfortable working.
My journals aren't sketchbooks although they contain many sketches. They aren't diaries although they contain many personal observations. They could more accurately be called repositories because this is where I keep notes, lists, art ideas, workshop notes, sketches, web addresses, gallery show announcements, images from magazines, and pictures of my grand kids, among other things. They're quite colorful and once I get a few pages done in a book it compels me to keep going. Sometimes when I'm painting I'll swipe some color across a blank page so the page isn't so difficult to mess up with something else... it's my way of getting around the fear of the blank page.
I'm not alone in this love affair with the blank book. I'm currently devouring Danny Gregory's newest book about journaling, An Illustrated Life. Danny features the sketchbooks of 50 artists, illustrators and designers, giving them each 4 to 6 pages to showcase some of the pages from their own journals and giving each of them a voice to tell the reader when, where, why and how they journal. If you keep a sketchbook or journal I recommend that you buy this book and read every word. The book has "meat", heft, real content and if you aren't inspired to spend more time drawing I'll be very surprised. Danny's original book, Everyday Matters, emphasizes that anyone can draw. I believe that. It just takes practice, every day practice, because you see, drawing everyday does matter.

Monday, December 15, 2008

How to subscribe

I know from experience that figuring out how to subscribe to a blog can be confusing. I still don't have all the answers but maybe what I DO know will help someone out there. If you're reading this blog in your browser look up at the top right hand corner of the browser window for a square red icon with some radiating white lines on it. If you click on that red icon you'll be directed to a subscribe page. Simply click on "subscribe to this feed" and you're set. Then whenever you open your browser (Internet Explorer) look at the top left hand corner of the browser window, on the same line as the red box but on the other side, and you'll see a big yellow star. Click on that star and you'll get a drop-down list of the blogs you've subscribed to through feedburner. The newest posts are in bold. Just click on the title. The trouble with this is that you don't get to see my blog with all its bells and whistles, so you need to then click on the title, One A Day, to open my pretty blog which I spend so much time on to make it just right.

Or click on the Subscribe to button at the top of my blog and choose your feeder. The other way to subscribe is to scroll all the way to the bottom of the page and click on "Subscribe to posts: Atom".

If this didn't help a bit you're on your own. That's all I know right now. One of these days I'll figure out how to let you subscribe via email.

Oh yes, and then there's comments. Bloggers LOVE comments. at the very bottom of each post you'll find "0 comments". Please don't leave it at 0. I'm looking for lots of comments, friends. Click on that comment word and then leave a comment. You'll need a Google ID unless you want to leave an anonymous comment. Go ahead and get your Google ID. It's a good thing.


Winter on Maple Hill Lane

It’s a cold morning on Maple Hill Lane. It started snowing at 7:45 yesterday morning and probably 5 inches were dumped before it was over. Our daughter and her family came for a birthday lunch but couldn’t past a driveway at the bottom of my street. SIL worked to put chains on while the others walked up the hill to Grandma's house. The new Les Schwab chains were the wrong size! So he-who-drives-in-anything decided that they’d better go right back home while the getting was good. I put half the uncooked meat in one container and ¾ of the potatoes in another and sent them home to cook their own food. They made it.

But it’s not over up here with the wind whipping and blowing around the house and sounding like some screaming banshee on the loose. We’ve battened down the hatches and plugged any gaps in windows and doors and are staying relatively toasty. Periodically one of us has to take a heat gun outside to melt the ice where water drips through a pipe from the furnace because when it freezes the furnace turns itself off. Pipe insulation doesn’t do the job so now I’ve covered it with a plastic box to keep the wind off. I didn’t cover the Phormium planted between 2 big rocks in front so it’s probably history along with a few other barefooted plants.

A big fir tree just fell in a yard up the street and they're out with chainsaws. Ours is at the farm so we can't offer any help and are glad of the excuse. However, the sun is shining, I have company because DH wasn’t needed at work this morning, and there's a project on my desk to keep me happily busy. Life is good.

Here's a recent watercolor painting:

Summer in Venice


Friday, November 28, 2008

My Artist's Statement

Lift Me On Angel Wings
12" x 16"
Mixed media on board
I wrote my artist's statement for my recent Open Studio. I'll write up a report of the event soon.


Gathering and hanging art work that I created has been so interesting and informative, revealing just where I’ve been and hinting at the direction ahead. Seen together on the walls of my home this work from the past 4 years reflects my interests, both in the seen world and in the spiritual. There are works that tell a story of how I look at my environment as well as how I relate to God and his creation.

Artwork like the Pear series and the Flower Vases are practice pieces and yet are among my personal favorites because they are so much fun to make. It doesn’t matter if a line is right or if a shadow is off or if the color just isn’t very realistic. What matters is that I do them, that I get paint onto paper, and in this practice I grow. Like a pianist learning scales before she gets to the melody I paint my little practice pieces so that I will get to the place where I can paint whatever is waiting within me to be expressed. That’s what painting is to me… an expression of who I am and what I’m thinking about.

I started being an artist when I was four years old. My grandmother was teaching me to embroider and I insisted on making the flowers brown and the stems red… present things my own way. I grew to use embroidery to create fiberart, things that hung on the wall rather than pieces that were functional. I still remember the evening I saw embroidered art on display in a gallery setting and recognized that I knew how to make art even though I didn’t know how to use a paint brush. I studied with creative embroidery in London, England and stuck with using the threaded needle, art quilting, surface design, sewing, and pattern design until 1998 when I turned off my sewing machine, put away my embroidery hoops and leapt into fine art making, knowing that there were paintings deep within me that wanted to get out. I refined my drawing skills, took some painting classes, and practiced and practiced. I continue to work at learning by reading, watching DVDs, taking workshops and classes, and talking art with like-minded friends.

My favorite way of working is what I call collage painting. Several times each year I prepare papers to use in my work. I apply dye, ink, watercolor, thinned acrylics, to thin paper working with layers of color to create interesting collage papers that are uniquely mine. Then I collage these papers to heavy paper, canvas, or board and add paint as needed. It’s like my cooking…
I sort of follow recipes but mostly I wing it based on my past experience of what works together.

I love books, reading them and writing in them and I usually create my own sketchbook/art journals in which I make plans, journal about art and life, and often even create art on the pages. When we travel I take along a little sketchbook, paint and pens. Ask me about these journals because I love to share them.

I enjoy painting with acrylic paints. They are water-based and fairly non-toxic, unlike oil paints whose fumes I don’t much like in my home studio. Oil is fun to paint with; smearing buttery oil-based color around on canvas is so satisfying, but the cleanup isn’t as easy for me as with acrylics. I also like to use pastels, both dry and oil. Well, perhaps you’re on to me by now… I love to use anything that will help me put color on a surface, and the more color the better I like it. Many people paint with neutrals, but even when I start painting with umber, sienna, and other neutral colors it isn’t long until the piece has mysteriously turned red or orange. That’s just me. I like to paint happy.

Jo Reimer, November 21, 2008

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Open Studio

Sauvies Island Pond
Oil on board
5x7" available

I'm preparing for a party, an Open Studio, a show and sale of my own work here at my home. For years I've visited other artists studios on the Portland Open Studio Tour and have considered joining them as a participating artist, but haven't, not wanting a lot of strangers treking through my home. But friends continue to show interest in my work and where I do it so I decided to throw the front door open for a weekend. Come if you can... Nov. 21 from 5-8pm or Nov. 22, between 10 and 5pm.

I wasn't prepared for the work this has been. I'm been merrily working away, having fun painting and making books and collages without doing all the archival work that a working artist keeps up with such as photographing and cataloging each piece as it's completed. I just add the work to a stack over against the wall and start on the next piece. Now it's all catching up with me and I've spent day after day photographing and scanning work, determining a fair price for each piece, cataloging it in Working Artist software, making labels with Avery. Just when I think I'm nearly finished I complete another painting and have to add that to the mix.

I've taken down my collection of other people's work from my walls and am hanging my own work, and I must confess, I think it looks really good. Even my husband is surprised at how much I've done over the past couple of years. There are a lot of different directions that are revealed when all the work is hung together, abstract, landscape, collage, work done from photographs that I've taken, and work done from my head. It's interesting, to say the least, and I guess that's good enough, to produce interesting work. After the party is over and done with I might just settle down and concentrate on just one way of working for the next few months and see what happens.

Saturday, November 01, 2008


Collage on Paper
It's been over a month since I've posted and this morning I decided that it's high time I wrote a bit to assure you that I have been working and that I intend to continue with this blog. I've just been being myself: housewife, gardener, friend, wife, mother & grandmother, artist, reader, traveler, worshiper... and that all takes up my precious time. And all those roles are important enough that they share pretty much equally with my role as artist and are the reason that I don't pursue a full time art career. I am content and pretty much joyful all the time.

A friend visited my studio last week and noting the piles of paintings adorning every surface in preparation for an Open Studio, commented: "you paint happy". I guess I do. I use intense color, lots of warm colors, and lots of color. I keep trying to paint with quiet neutrals but somehow the stronger colors win out every time. Even back when I was doing contemporary embroidery I turned to hot colors when I chose fabric and thread.

My husband and I spent the better part of a week on Washington's Long Beach peninsula last week while I attended a 3 day workshop with Eric Weigardt in Ocean Park. It was called "Painting Loosely". We worked with watercolor and I learned a lot. I tend to tighten up and go right for the detail whenever I work so I'm on a quest to reverse that tendency with whatever media I'm using. I'm not a watercolorist although I do use watercolors, especially in my journals, and I want to understand it better.

What I got from this workshop was an understanding of the importance of using a planned range of values in my work. Oh, I knew, intellectually, about value studies, about making little sketches of my subject using at least three distinct values, light-medium-dark. But I rarely do the value study and I didn't accept that in order to make good art I must incorporate this notion in every piece, especially if I'm drawing the landscape. Here's an example of a photo I took in France and the value study I did from the photo. I'm really slow but I know that practice will speed up and improve my skills.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Two Girls and a Ball

The two little girl images are from the first pattern I ever used to make something... a purple cotton dress for my favorite doll which I still have. I also made a purple sundress for myself... when I was 9 years old.
Two Girls and a Ball
5" x 5"
Collage on gallery wrap canvas

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Romans 1

Another in the Sermon Notes series, Romans 1 features a photo I shot in Israel. It represents Paul as he composed his letter to the band of believers living in Rome in AD 57.
Since I had such an appropriate photo this Note is different from the others. The text was printed on thin paper and then glued to the painted paper. The acrylic medium I used gives the paper a translucent quality.
My plan is to do a Note for each of the chapters in Romans, 16 in all. Our pastor is teaching Romans on Sunday morning and he goes verse by verse so this project will stretch over many months; don't expect to see one a week, though I have to play catch up since we're already up to Chapter 4.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


Here's another collage from my traveling compost box. I like the looks of torn edges but there's just something about the way my hands and mind works that insists on straight cuts and 90 degree angles. Perhaps it's all those years of garment construction when even being a half inch off-grain can make a skirt hang crooked and certainly is the difference between a smooth collar and one you'll never wear.

I started sewing when I was 4, when I'd sit in my grandmother's lap and learn embroidery stitches. That led to my making most of my clothes in high school and college, and then for most of my adult life. I no longer make my clothes except for the times when I can't stand another shopping trip. No longer is it a lot cheaper to sew one's own clothes, although I have such a big stash of good fabrics that if I used what I have then my clothing budget would hardly be dented. Hmmm.

Friday, September 05, 2008

More Collage

Yellow Headed Amazon
7.5 x 7.5
This is another collage made from my compost box of painted and commercial papers. The parrot image is from an ancient encyclopedia... remember when we opened a book to do research, way back before wikipedia?

Wednesday, September 03, 2008


7.5 x 7.5

I took a box of collage compost with me to use while on vacation at the beach, not realizing how appealing making a simple collage would be to my grandchildren. I took only enough supports for my own work but of course I soon realized that it was more important that I share with these budding artists.

The first girl to have a go was my 8 year old granddaughter who created a masterpiece right off the bat. Granted I kept control of the glue spreader (I had YES! paste with me and a broad plastic palette knife) so the work was neater than she normally produces but it was amazing. See for yourself...
Sarah's House

6.5 x 5

Soon my other granddaughter joined the fun and made this

And by week's end we had a gallery lining two windowsills...
Charlie's Chasing the Green Flash.
Jill's Tree
And the rest are mine.

Monday, August 11, 2008

At the Edge of the Forest

At the Edge of the Forest
Acrylic on Paper

Mondays are busy for me but I managed to find time for some painting this afternoon, done from a photo by my friend, Nina Bagley. I'm noticing what happens at the edges of natural things... the contrast of light and dark at the edge where meadow meets forest, the glow at the edge of a rose petal in the morning sun, the prism of colors on the shell of a soap bubble, the light edge on the tree trunks that I see out my studio window, the shadow edge on the house siding created by the sun shining on an overlapping board, the dark edge of my friend's cheek as light glows behind her. And I realize that I don't stop to look, not often enough, at this beautiful world that God created for us to enjoy. I hope you stop for awhile today just to look and wonder at the beauty around you.

Friday, August 08, 2008


I've been just thinking about all those questionaires where you're asked to list your hobbies and I realized that I never list photography which is crazy since that's one of my major activities. I'm hardly ever without a camera. My uncle and my father loved to take photos and Dad let me use his fold-up bellow camera when I was a youngster. It was way better than a Brownie although he bought me one to shut up my whining because "everyone" had a Brownie. I got my first SLR in 1966 and have progressed through lots of others. Hmmmm... I still have most of the cameras somewhere and they'd make a nice display on my fireplace mantle. My current favorite is a little Camon PowerShot SD700IS because I can stick it in my pocket or purse and have it with me wherever I go.

Yesterday we went to a friend's cabin on the Wind River just above the Columbia in Washington. We climbed down to the river through the puckerbrush and out onto these massive rocks that line the river. It's so beautiful there with the quiet interupted only by the water as it pounds the rocks and the occasional bird, including a rather lusty-sounding raven.

As I was eating lunch on my back deck I noticed some interesting leaf shadows on the umbrella.

Have I painted today? No, but I have made a bit of art with my camera, and that counts.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Plaster and Board

Several weeks ago I took a 5-day workshop from Pat Wheeler... called The Architecture of Memory. I completed 4 paintings in class and finished 2 more in my studio. I'm most pleased with these two.

Here are a couple of details:

These paintings are on 2" deep cradled 12" X 36"panels which were first painted with a dark color. Then limestone clay was troweled on and allowed to dry completely, and sanded. At that point I laid in the landscape with watered down acrylic paint, and after it was dry I went back in with a big nail and carved the trees. Then I sanded the pieces smooth and added the details with more paint. The colors extend around the sides and the surface is finished with a layer of cold wax medium and buffed.

Will I do more of these paintings? Maybe, but the process is quite labor intensive and my hands were killing me after the carving and sanding, so I may be wise and find something that isn't so hard on my body, even though I do like the process and the results.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Hillsboro Plein Air Paint-Out

Participating in the Hillsboro Plein Air Paint Out last Saturday was a first for me. I've painted outside but never in an organized event and never with so many people watching. Cowardly me chose a rather quiet sidewalk in front of the courthouse, set up my equipment, and got to work. I've heard experienced outdoor painters advise "find a comfortable spot and paint what's in front of you" so that's what I did. There was a blue tent nested beside a path among the trees so I chose that as my subject.

I worked with Holbein acrylics and wasn't happy with the paints at all. The colors are wonderful for my splashy studio work but didn't work well for me that morning because I couldn't mix my greens to suit myself. My fault, not the paint. I need to practice mixing greens. And I didn't get the tent right which threw everything off.

Yes, I was doing way too much self critiquing and I knew it so I quit that painting and found another comfortable place, on a bench in front of The Candy Basket and behind a flower seller. The next painting came rather quickly and I was done in perhaps 30 minutes.
We turned in our 2 paintings for judging and I won an Honorable Mention in the Figurative classification for Flower Seller. What a surprise! I was participating because I thought it'd be fun to do and give me good experience. I gave no thought to winning anything. The judge mentioned the simplicity of the work and knowing when to stop. I didn't tell him that it was better about a dozen brushstrokes before I finished.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

White Vase with Purple Flowers

I've been working with acrylics this afternoon and as long as I remember to make a statement with my painting and not get too realistic I'm okay. This was fun.

It's 12"x14".

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Painting with oils

I got out my oils last week and decided to just play without any self critique and I'm presenting them in the same spirit of no critiquing allowed. One thing I decided is that I need to do a LOT more work before I'm comfortable with the medium. On hot days when I first put out the oil it's quite slippery on the board and then a few days later it becomes a bit tacky as it starts to dry on my palette and I need to squeeze out more paint. No wonder some of the old palettes of the master painters are several inches thick with dried paint. They didn't clean off their palettes; they just kept adding more paint to the drying mixture.
Three little paintings reinforced for me that no matter the medium I prefer to paint an abstraction of an image rather than try to represent a more realistic version with my brush. I have my camera for copying the scenery.

Sunday, July 06, 2008


No, I haven't been to Italy lately. I finished this painting today but it was started in a workshop last month that I took from the Australian painter John Lovett . I don't call myself a watercolor painter, not having put in nearly enough time and effort to control what I'm doing. I usually beat the paper into submission, scrubbing layer after layer of paint onto the surface until I have a muddy mess. My hand is too heavy for this lovely medium even though I have fun doing it. This painting is like most of the rest that I'm not showing you but I rather like it. It's half-sheet size: 11" x 15".
John's a good teacher and I took his workshop for the purpose of improving my style of drawing and painting in my sketchbooks. I've always taken lots of photos, many with the idea that they'll imform my artwork but I stumbled when I tried to paint from them, lapsing into copying the photo rather than using it in a thoughtful way. Something happened to my thinking during this class, something I can't explain at all, but I think I get it... I finally get how to pick element from a scene and making a painting about them rather than trying to put everything in the scene into the painting. I'll have to work at it for awhile but I can already feel my thinking shift.

Friday, July 04, 2008

Note Cards are available

Sometimes I make things harder than they need to be. I've been selling my Note Cards for awhile but kept stalling going ahead with online sales. Now it's done. I'm offering them in lots of 10 with envelopes through Pay Pal. I can't personally take credit cards so this seems to be the easiest way for you and me. Just click on the Add to Cart button and place your order for 10 or multiples of 10. The inside of the card is blank. These Fine Art cards are suitable for framing in the frame of your choice and because they are Giclee prints they should last years on the wall, out of direct light. Email me with any questions or if you have trouble with your order by clicking on the email link at the top of this column.
Sales are going very well. I've sold nearly 1000 cards and they're being reprinted. I expect these will be most appealing to the community of Jesus-followers who will use them as a way to encourage the recipient or as a gift on a special occasion. The cards titles include Who Are You?, Lowly (humble), Servant, Truthful, Loving, Obedient, Optimistic, Gracious, Forgiving, and Victorious.

Sunday, June 29, 2008


I've uploaded most of the pages from the sketchbook I worked in while we were in Israel. It's just a little book, 3.5" x 5.5" and about an inch thick. It's just a bit more than half full and is already one of the favorite things I own... my own little treasure, full of little drawings and notes to myself about things I saw and did.
I'm so amazed at the power of sketching/drawing while out and about in my world. Because I take time to SEE, to take in the scene with my eyes and ponder what's before me, the moment is captured in my memory and sticks like glue forever.
For example: my husband and I visited Australia in 1994 and I remember one part of that trip like it was yesterday... because I took time to sit and sketch some country houses. Even though the sketch is pitiful when I look at it I can remember where I was sitting, the sounds of the schoolyard down the street, the stone church behind me, and especially the fact that I left my camera behind which led to a wonderful Lost and Found story that was published in International Travel News.
Looking at my photos doesn't recall memories like sketching does. Sometimes I look at old photos and think, "where in the world did this batch of photos come from; surely I wasn't the one who took them because I can't remember a thing about it".
One teaches oneself to sketch; it's not something you learn in a class nor is it something that you're born to do. Perhaps the desire to learn in inborn or bred, and I do have the desire to make art. But if you've ever thought that you'd like to learn to draw or paint then I KNOW that you can learn to do it well enough to enjoy the process.

Friday, June 27, 2008


Two weeks of traveling in Israel infused my thinking with a completely new to me symbol... stones. The country is made of stone. The countryside is very rocky from the Mediterranean Sea to the Dead Sea and the Sea of Galilee. Rocks are everywhere, and consequently all the buildings are made of rock, whether they are 2000 years old or built yesterday, and they are a uniform color... sort of yellow ochre-ish. Blocks of stone are cut and piled to make the walls of buildings and stones gathered out of the farmers fields are piled to create terraces and walls on the land.

One day we were poking around in the lowest reaches of a church in Jerusalem and found hundreds of little crosses scratched into the foundation walls. Were these messages of early Jesus-followers or simply an early form of graffiti? Whatever, they've already made their way into my artwork. Around the edges of this piece I've carved names of some of the places we visited. This piece is 16 X 12" and is on a cradled panel which is 2" deep.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Sketch Crawl

Once a month three friends and I meet to sketch. It's part of a global drawing marathon called SketchCrawl. Anyone can participate and anyone can organize their own event... it just takes a couple of people who're interested in improving their drawing skills. Mine need help! I've taken drawing classes and I've drawn a lot but I don't draw daily, and that's the key. Draw every day. There's bound to be improvement.

You won't hear from me for a couple of weeks... we're leaving in the morning for a 2 week tour of Israel. I've been obsessing for weeks about which art supplies to take and I've finally decided on just a simple set of drawing materials and my little watercolor paintbox with a waterbrush. We'll be doing lots of walking and will be too tired at the end of the day for me to want to do much in the way of art-making. I know that I "see" better when I draw so that will be my goal... to see and draw a lot. I'll collect ephemera and take lots of pictures and store up lots of memories from which to make art after I get home.

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