Tag Archives: words

Where Are You Going?

In 2014, I took an online art class that suggested we choose a word for the year.  My word was SOAR!  It seemed appropriate as I was into birds – even then!  Here is the collage I created:

Soar - word for 2014

It is the first face (ever) I painted with acrylics.  I added some collage elements that had a lot of symbolism for me.  Can you find all my winged teachers?  An owl for wisdom, a bird and it’s nest for keeping my eyes open to nature’s beauty, a fairy for humor, a butterfly for beauty, a dragonfly for balance and a hummingbird for joy!  There are other symbols such as a map, feather, flowers, leaves and roots.  I really enjoyed creating this piece but it took me a long time to complete it!

On January 2nd of this year, I posted that I was going to keep a daily sketchbook for the year and weekly post my progress on my blog.   I discovered that I need more of a FOCUS!  I need either a weekly or monthly idea to keep me focused on drawing, sketching or painting.

Do you give yourself a weekly or monthly focus for your sketchbook?

I completed 3 days but then I got distracted.  This got me thinking about my word for this year and I have decided on… yep!  You guessed it, “focus!”

So today, I did a journal page on my word for 2016:

2016-1-6 Word for 2016

I still have room to write things on my page.  Maybe you have some gems to share with me?

I am hoping that 2016 will be the year that I can figure out where I want to be going with my art and the mediums I want to explore in greater detail.

Do you give yourself a word for the year?  I’d love to hear what it is!

Happy Creating!  🙂

What Do You Love?!

I finally got a few moments to START Lynn Whipple’s new online class, WORD PLAY!  I love playing with words so I know this class will be a so FUN!

I created this in an old dictionary using white chalk paint, water soluble wax pastels, Tombow markers and pencil:

I love art - wordplay for Lynn's class

If you could choose one or two WORDS, what do you love?

I would love to hear from you!  🙂

Happy Saturday!

As Luck Would Have It…

Luck bird

As Luck would have it, Bill showed up just in time…

Bill Bird

To help Curly!

Curly bird


Bill felt

Bill Bird

Luck led him…

Luck bird

To meet Curly!

Curly bird


Curly knew…

Curly bird

She had Luck in her corner…

Luck bird

When her Bill was paid!

Bill Bird

I started my birds by choosing random dictionary words from my pile of scrap paper:

pile of scrap paper

I used other scrap papers for their background and just started gluing with a glue stick.  No thinking.  Just spontaneous fun!

The words in each bird gave me a clue to their name.  And then I just started creating a story.

I find this random play of words, birds and scrap paper to be a great way to relax after a long day!

Happy Creating!  🙂

That’s Just Malarkey!

Word of the Day:  Malarkey                                                                              Definition:  Speech or writing designed to obscure, mislead or impress.

Here is my Malarkey Bird!

Step 4 - Malarkey

I started my bird in an obscure way:

Step 1 - Malarkey Bird

Using these 2 squares of paper, I then drew the rest of a bird:

Step 2 - Malarkey

I basically just connected the lines.  Next I added some color with Aqua Markers:

Step 3 - Malarkey

You hardly notice the 2 paper squares anymore as the bird emerges.  Lastly, I added color pencils:

Step 4 - Malarkey

This is a fun warm-up exercise and that’s no malarkey!


A friend of mine suggested this word for a blog post.

Since I have been learning to draw horses, I thought this was the perfect opportunity to use this word.

Horse study

I have been sketching horses for over a week to get to this drawing.  I’m taking a drawing and painting class from Val Webb.

I added a horn to make it a unicorn:

Unicorn Study

This would be a great place to interject the word, “horsefeathers!”  It means:   rubbish; nonsense; bunk (used to express contemptuous rejection).  It comes from 1925-30, Americanism; horse + feathers, as euphemism for horseshit

I know you are wondering about the feathers part…

So I colored one of my Zentangle feathers from the other day.

colored feather on yellow gelli-print

And photographed it on one of my recent gelli-prints.

Here is another photo from a different angle and background:

colored feather on blue gelli-print

It is interesting how the colors of the feather changes depending on the background.

Sometimes we need a little nonsense in our life!  HAPPY Friday!

Word and Bird Jumbles

I like to do the word jumble in the newspaper.  It looks like this:

word jumble

Jumble means to mix together in a disorderly heap or mass, a confused mixture; a medley.

I kind of think my one-liner bird stacks are a jumble of birds:

Bird stack with orange owl

Using a black micron pen, I start my drawing at the bottom of the page.  Without lifting my pen from the paper, I draw a bird or a branch and then draw the next bird on top and so on.  The goal is not lifting your pen off the paper and to draw quickly without much thought.

Then I like to color them.  I used color pencils for the one above.

bird stack with flamingo

On the above medley, I used watercolor pencils to color my birds.

These are fun to do in front of the TV because they require little thought.

Bird stack with pink & blue bird

It is fun to see what turns up in my stack!  I colored the above with Copic markers and color pencils.

I like to use my bird jumbles as bookmarkers.  They are a fun way to use up scraps of paper.

Enjoy your day!

The Cat Bird

Is it a cat with a tail or a bird with a beak?                                                                       I can’t tell you really until I hear it speak!

The Cat Bird

But this bird can sound like a cat mew I’m told…                                                        So listen on my link and tell me what you think!


Enjoy your day!

Mood Rings, Butterscotch and Spring

The Word of the Day:  Switcheroo – which means an unexpected or sudden change or reversal.

This word’s definition triggered my memory of Mood Rings – popular in the 1970’s.  The stone supposedly changed colors according to your mood.  I discovered it has more to do with a person’s body temperature.  To read more about it:  http://chemistry.about.com/od/chemistryfaqs/f/moodring.htm

The word itself reminded me of my husband’s favorite cookie that his mom makes called Scotcheroos.  They contain Rice Krispies cereal, peanut butter, chocolate and butterscotch chips and LOTS of sugar!  They are great with a cup of coffee for breakfast!  Here is a recipe if you are interested:    http://www.ricekrispies.com/recipes/chocolate-scotcheroos

Spring is upon us where I live in the Pacific Northwest.  The sun will be shining one minute and then Mother Nature performs a switcheroo and it starts snowing.

This brings me to my bird for the day:  A Switcheroo

Switcheroo bird

The beak is multi-colored like a mood ring, the body a butterscotch color and my bird is perched on a Spring flower.

Enjoy your day!

Letting Go of Expectations

Yesterday, I dug out an acrylic painting that I had started but did not like.  I decided to experiment with different techniques.  So I added more paint, created texture with syran wrap, added some collage papers (birds of course), blew  High Flow acrylics with a can of compressed air, stenciled, splattered dots and wrote on it.  This was the result:

Letting Go of Expectations

I photographed my piece as I added layers.  In doing so, I was able to see a figure emerge.  It also helped me to remember what I did.  Here is a close up of the birds I collaged:

Hidden bird 1

Hidden bird 2

These also help you see the depth I created by adding so many layers.

This is what I learned from creating without a goal:

written words of wisdom

It says:  Letting go of expectations, Freedom to play with color and Experiment with techniques.  I don’t know if my painting is complete but I enjoyed having fun!

This painting reminds me a little of my life.  When I’m willing to let go of my expectations, amazing things can happen!

Enjoy your day!

The Brolly Bird

Under your umbrella,                                                                                                             Is a handsome bird fella,                                                                                                       Come rain or shine,                                                                                                                 He’s there to cover your behind!

The Brolly Bird

Word of the day is Brolly which is a British name for umbrella.

There actually is an Umbrella Bird!  To see it go here: