>Sketch Every Day: 6.30.11

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When I was pregnant with Isaac (over five years ago), before I knew we were having a boy, I did some research on names and came across this quote by French writer Émile Zola. If we had a girl, we were planning on naming her “Zola”…so I was curious about the meaning and of any historical figures with that name. I originally got the name from Zola Budd, the Olympic runner who twice broke the world record in the 5,000 meters, and was famous for running barefoot. As a former long distance and cross country runner in high school and college, I admired Zola Budd…and I’ve always liked “Z” names. Besides Zola Budd, Émile Zola was the only other name that came up in my searches…and that’s how I found this quote that I’ve sketched today.

The quote resonated with me…and since then, I’ve kept it in my “back pocket” of sorts…a motivational, yet humbling reminder of what I do and why.





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>Sketch Every Day: 6.29.11

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I’ve been asked to do a mural in a client’s living room of a Guidonian Hand, which I’m really excited about!  It’s something so different…and I haven’t painted anything like this before. I’m thrilled to have clients with such unique tastes and who are willing to do something so intriguing and bold (and out of the norm)…we’re talking a huge painting of a hand, smack-dab in the middle of their living room wall! 
I’m familiar with the imagery (vaguely recall seeing it in some Medieval and religious artwork from art history classes or museum tours), but until this evening I did not know that it was called the Guidonian Hand…or why…or what it represents.
Now that I know, it makes me appreciate the image (and the project) even more. You can actually find murals of this diagram in some Spanish Missions (here in California and throughout the U.S.), the “visual mnemonic device” was used to teach those who could not read music to “sight-sing.” Very interesting!
So here’s today’s sketch, referenced from the “Franciscan Guide for Novices, 1725” found via Texas Tech University’s Special Collections Library. P.S. I tried posting this last night, but blogger was having issues.

And for today’s kiddo sketch, “Waterfalls” by Mason.


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>Sketch Every Day: 6.28.11

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My boys love going on nature hikes and looking for little critters…they are fascinated by how they look and move, what they eat and especially how some of them “transform”. Their favorites are tadpoles and caterpillars. A few of weeks ago, they came home with a mason jar full of tadpoles…eager to see them grow legs and turn into frogs.  We have two healthy pet toads (Jelly and Belly) that started as big tadpoles from Petco (over a year ago when Mason lost his first tooth, he decided he wanted to use his tooth fairy money to buy tadpoles as pets…who knew they’d do so well and we’d now have toads)

Yesterday, the boys came home with the prettiest caterpillar I’ve seen around here. Usually, we get the fuzzy, black spiky or black/orange variety…still very pretty and it’s amazing to see them go through metamorphosis. But this one was different…green and black with bright yellow spots, looks like a Swallowtail, perhaps?



And speaking of “transforming”….the boys (yes, Daddy included) and I are SUPER excited to see Transformers 3…hopefully tomorrow if I can get all my work done in time to catch a matinee.


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>Sketch Every Day: 6.27.11

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>Sketch Every Day: 6.26.11

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>Sketch Every Day: 6.25.11 & Quick DIY Painted Sandals

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I just scored another pair of $15 summer shoes. Yay! A couple of weeks ago, I got a cool pair of sandals at Target for $14.99…and last week I found this super cute pair of espadrilles-wedge sandals at Payless. They were originally $26.99, but on sale for $14.99. They’re very sweet and pretty, with a light-buttery-yellow canvas and adorable, striped-fabric bow embellishment. But when I got home, I realized I really didn’t have anything light and airy or summery enough to wear with them…which means I would need to go out and buy an outfit (and that kind of defeats the purpose of getting a deal on shoes). Besides, I’m not really a pastel and soft, light colors kind of gal. 


If you’ve seen some of my Pinterest pins, you’ll notice that I have an obsession with mustard yellows (especially combined with navy, fuschia, gray or camel/brown). So, I decided to paint the espadrilles the yellow color that is more “me.” I already have the paint (understatement)…and well, if I screwed it up…I could just paint over it…no biggie, they’re $15 (yeah, so I’ll refrain from three lattes and we’ll call it even).  


At first, I thought I’d do some crazy pattern, maybe some retro-mod geometric in teal over the mustard yellow. But I don’t have time for all that (I always have work to do, a business to run, and wedding deadlines right now are crazy), so I just wanted a quick fix. I figured I’d make a “stencil” using one of my decorative paper punches. I have this really lovely scalloped-edge-lace-eyelet patterned punch by Martha Stewart that I found randomly at Marshall’s a couple of years ago (I think it was $3). I’ve barely used it, so I thought…sure why not?

Materials: Tulip brand matte, soft fabric paint in Gold Tan, paint brush, a Martha Stewart decorative edge paper punch, some cardstock and tape.

To make the “stencil” I punched some scrap pieces of metallic cardstock (metallic or glossy stocks work great for this type of small-scale stenciling since it resists absorption of water or paint a little better than matte).

Using a clothespin to pin up the bow, I painted on the fabric paint.
The paint needs to dry for a little bit (4 hours is recommended, but I only waited about 30 min….til it was dry to the touch), and then…
…I taped on the stencil and filled in with white paint (using a small brush) and outlined the shape of the stencil.

I cleaned up some of the lines and added dots using a tiny brush…using a fabric pen or squeezing on dots with a fine tipped applicator of 3D or puffy fabric paint would probably work nicely).
Done! So cute and unique…more “me”…
I’m thinking I may change the bow color…hmmmm, maybe teal or turquoise would be fun.  We’ll see.
I always let the kids use my leftover paints…no paint gets wasted around here!

Check out these beautiful tulips I spied at Trader Joe’s last night.  A mauve-coral pink with mustard yellow…so different!  Told you I’m lovin’ mustard yellow right now!
Posted in About Me, Blog Series, Color, DIY, Fun Stuff, Just Because, Paint, random projects, Sketch Every Day | 1 Comment

>Sketch Every Day: 6.24.11

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Tonight was supposed to be a “Mommy-Daddy-Shuggie” date night – dinner out at a place chosen by Shuggie (the nickname everyone calls our 4 year-old, Isaac), a quick shopping trip to pick up some things for tomorrow’s family dinner, and then home to watch a movie, have popcorn and snacks…and some snuggle time. Big bro, Mason, is at Cousin PJ’s for a sleepover…so tonight was going to be all about Shuggie. 

He chose Panda Express (that kid luvs him some orange chicken, and since Mason does not like PE at all, we had a feeling it would be Isaac’s first choice). I was kinda hoping for Indian or Thai, which Shuggie loves too (my kids are pretty good about trying different things and they’ll eat anything: Korean BBQ, Indian curries, Vietnamese and Thai noodles, Taiwanese “snacks” – but they especially love sushi and Dim Sum)

And for the movie, he wanted to watch “Rio.” Sounds good to me! I was excited to get home and start our movie night. At the store, I felt a little nostalgic for some freshly popped popcorn….remember the way popcorn was made before microwaves? My dad would pop popcorn for my slumber parties, sometimes he used Jiffy Pop, but most of the time he did it old school, with oil and corn kernels in a big metal pot. And he would season it with butter and salt…and perhaps some Lawry’s seasoning or some Cajun spices…SO yummy!



We ended up just getting some microwaveable kettle corn packets, but I really do want to try homemade popcorn one of these days with the kids…for sure this summer.

And by the time we drove up to our house, Shuggie was fast asleep in his car seat, exhausted from a day of playing with his neighborhood pals. So now it’s turning into a “Mommy-Daddy” date night, with a “grown-up” movie (or maybe we’ll catch up on Game of Thrones). I feel a bit sad, I was looking forward to some snuggle time with my Shuggie – sharing a big bowl of kettle corn, laughing and giggling at those silly birds in the movie, eating molasses cookies with ice cold milk, holding him close as he fell asleep…my sweet little boy.


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