Arlene Powers Bird Art and Discussion Site

Posts tagged ‘Blog’

I Owe,I Owe, so Off to Blog I go!

In case you haven’t noticed, it has been a while since I have blogged. Well one of the protocols has caused me to develop neuropathy. They do not know if it will go away in 6 months or be permanent. It involves, numbness, tingling and pain all at the same time and has affected my hands and feet. Hubby and I have been stocking up on soft towels, and looking for some comfy socks.Most of the socks I have tried have a grain which irritates my feet. Also have started ANOTHER protocol which is oral tablets, two weeks on and two weeks off.  We go to get a blood draw tomorrow and see the oncologist a week from tomorrow. The main side effect of this protocol is abdominal pain. It is a lot milder than some of the other chemo treatments.

Even though I have had a lot of hand pain, I have tried to work through it and make some art. The first is a white charcoal on black paper. It is Ophelia from the Oasis, she is a black Lorikeet. The second one is a metal embossing of Sunny.






Stay tuned!!!!



Time out for Photos

Eagle Owl

Eagle Owl

So many projects… little time….we recently visited Bearizona, watched the flight show, and got a photograph of this beauty(Eurasian Eagle Owl) who is the subject of the current WIP. There should be an update soon, as the background is in, but I have to find a few spare moments to get some current pictures.

Those of you on Facebook probably saw photos of the Feathered Friends Festival at the Gilbert Riparian institute. For those of you who did not catch it, here is a photo of a couple of the celebrity parrots who attended the event. A good time was had by all!

Celebrity Parrots

Celebrity Parrots

Then it was on to “Wishes For Wildlife”, the annual Liberty Wildlife fundraiser. It was a fabulous event, ending the night with a Great Horned Owl being released. The owl flew like a champ, never looking back, and we all wiped a little tear from our eye and sighed, thinking, “This is what makes it all worth it!”

The next event, which was also chronicled on Facebook was the lunar eclipse and “Blood Moon”, which involved staying up into the wee hours of the morning with camera on tripod, remote switch in hand, and LOTS of caffeine on hand. It was definitely worth being physically trashed for a couple of days after and trying to catch up on all that lost sleep. Weeeeellllll…..see for yourself…here is my favorite from that night.

Blood Moon

Blood Moon

There are supposed to be three “Blood Moons” over the next 18 months, so I may get a lot of practice staying up ’til the wee hours of the morning with the company of the camera. It is interesting being surrounded by all the snoring while gazing upon such a dramatic scene. The parrots were producing some beak grinding noises and I think I even heard some cat purring in all that cacaphony.

Several spring projects are underway, but I think they will be good for a blog all of their own, so more about those in a future post!!!

This weekend, my son and daughter get to care for the zoo here, while hubby and I take a little time out for photos. As an artist I prefer to use my own photos for reference material, so we are heading to Southern Arizona to see what birds we can find with our cameras. I am hoping for nesting birds and babies, but who knows what we will find!!!!!

Happy Easter, hope you are able to take some time out for photos!

First WIP Continued

OK, we are baaaaack! Just don’t tell hubby how much stuff I brought home from the art store. (We will just keep that between us bloggers!)  Does the phrase “art supply junkie” run through your head?? SO since this is going to be a watercolor, first I draw Birdie on tracing paper. Now the question going through your mind is “WHY tracing paper?” The next question is probably “How do you get him to hold still while you draw?” The reason for tracing paper is that occasionally I mess up, LOL, you read it first right here folks, I have to use an eraser and it really messes with the nap of the watercolor paper, so I do all of the messing up on tracing paper where it doesn’t interfere with the actual artwork. SO the paper is a little folded, sorry, forgot to take the photo before I folded it up to put away:

Now as far as getting Birdie to hold still, I have tried several techniques, glue, staples, velcro, but most of them are too messy and the bird still does not hold still, so I reverted to taking photos. Bet ya didn’t see THAT coming.

SO after drawing the bird on the tracing paper making sure it is PERFECT, I use graphite transfer paper and draw the image onto the watercolor paper.

Depending on the subject, at this point I have to decide whether to do the subject or the background. In this case we will go for subject being the good English students that we are.

Once that decision is made,  the next decision is “Where do I start?” Good question. With Birdie, seeing that there is going to be a lot of “negative painting” to do, it will be easier to start at the bottom and work up.

      SO here you see that the base painting on Birdies tail has been done and  as the painting progresses, many washes may be added to show shadows and add balance. Painting is a continual juggling act. WOW, it is really a good thing that juggling is a required clown skill……..wait, I wasn’t so good at juggling as a clown……hmmmmmm well  Ok, maybe we should say it is a balancing act……ummmm, not so good at that either. Well, I am certain that some clown skill has helped with the painting, just not quite sure which one. BTW, can you guys in the back keep it down a little, I can’t hear myself painting. Hey who let Debi and Dina sit next to each other…….SECURITY!!!!

Now that we have that situation taken care of …….back to painting. Just would like to point out a little piece of bird trivia here. Notice that there are TWO toes in front. Parrots are zygodactyl, no that is not some kind of dinosaur, it is a fancy word that means that two toes point forward and two toes point backward. Most people think of birds as anisodactyl (three toes forward and one toe back) and though it is the most common toe configuration, there are several toe configurations and if you want to be a good ornithologist, you should learn them. If you are going to be a good artist, you do not have to know them, but you should learn to observe carefully. The brain will make up things if you are not careful enough to observe. BTW, woodpeckers, owls, cuckoos, osprey, most parrots and a few other birds have this toe configuration. If you are ever on Jeopardy and miss this question, I will know you were sitting in the back having a food fight instead of paying                                                                                   attention.

This is a photo of the negative painting which will start the feather work on the Birdie’s body.

OK guys, the snoring is getting a little loud………who came up with the idea of putting two chairs together for a bed….NO I AM NOT GOING TO BRING BLANKETS NEXT TIME……………Birdie, quit chewing on the paint brush ……………….. ……………………Hey who threw that popcorn at me???? Melissa can you please get your Aunt Debi under control. No Charlie, I already did your painting, it is too late to do a WIP………..Yes Sunny you can have a nut……Loki, please talk softer, the screaming is driving us nuts!

Whose idea was it for me to do another WIP, I thought after the catastrophe at the Art Papa Forums we would never be allowed online again. No Beenie it is not time to do the background yet. Jon did you take the trash out yet. Oh Hi Mom, Oh nothing just writing my blog. No nothing new here.



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