Tutorial Tuesday! ?

February 14th, 2012

A strangeness abounds with the arrival of Valentine’s Day. In last week’s Tutorial Tuesday I included you as I jested my husband with subtle reminders of V-day’s rapid approach.  Now that it’s come, and people all across the world have long-since woken and come awake to celebrate in their respective ways — this depending on whether the holiday strikes a melodic or dissonant chord — I was pleased to rouse from slumber and find that nothing about this day differs from the one previous.

My husband’s clothes still lay in a pile on the floor in the bathroom, his toiletries strewn about on the counter. The Dear Prince wakes at 5:30 each day for work, and I consider it my blessing to follow the breadcrumbs he’s left for me upon his soporific trek through our bedroom.

I texted my girlfriends, wishing them a wonderful day and telling them that I love them. Something I do nearly every other day.

My sweet pup was no more or less excited to see me this morning, ascending onto her hind-legs the moment I released her from her cave — IE: the bathroom — as she was on Sunday.

My coffee was where it always is: beside the stove with the filter and grounds still suctioned to that thingy you pour the boiling water into. It is no special occasion to find my coffee made every single morning — only very special.

I still took fifteen minutes before beginning my day to read over the greatest love letter ever written, scripture, and thanked Him for another day to bless and be blessed.

What I’m saying is, that while Valentine’s day provides another opportunity to share your love and affection with those dearest to you, it should only be “another” opportunity. Gifts, candy, flowers — those things are nice; however, they are but sugar cubes, welcomed sweetness into a cup of acrid coffee or pungent tea, but left on its own, all too cloying and unsavory. I love me some sugar, but I love me some meat, more.

Thank you for listening. I thought about creating two separate posts for today, but if you’re anything like me, you enjoy and take pride in getting around to everyone’s posts to leave a thoughtful comment, and two in one day can feel a little overwhelming.

Onto the tutorial!

Today is a little different, so I’ll ask you to maybe keep an open mind. Normally the things I show you how to do, in my humble opinion, I am fairly proficient at; this, not so much. You see, last week as I prepared to work on editing the book, I quickly realized that it just wasn’t happening. My brain was fried, and as much as I wanted to make progress, I was spending nearly 5 minutes on 1 gosh-darn sentence. Begrudgingly, I closed up shop for the day, but soon thereafter remembered a project I had stowed away in the back of my mind for a day such as this. I was aching for some creative outlet; it simply wasn’t going to involve prose.

I would not consider myself an artist. Artistic, perhaps, but not a proverbial artist. However, and I could be wrong, but wouldn’t you agree that the varying mediums of art tend to somersault into one another? For example, is it not uncommon to find out that someone who writes, also enjoys photography as a hobby or profession? Someone who dances often times designs jewelry or perfume? Those who use textiles and color to create masterpieces also dabble in writing scripts or theater workshop. Those who draw do so while singing. There is a indisputable connection among art-forms, wouldn’t you say?

So, maybe it wouldn’t be all that surprising to learn that I sing? I do. I sing.

This is the album cover for a CD released this last Christmas entitled “Coast Highway Christmas” I sang harmonies on two songs: “Do they Know it’s Christmas” and “The First Noel” If you’re interested in listening click here http://www.coasthighwaychristmas.com/products.html and you can listen to a sample for free. A while ago I posted about this awesome project, but I think had about 4 followers at that time. I’ll say only that Jim Hitchcock, the man behind the idea to fully fund a CD venture and donate all the proceeds to cancer research, is an amazing musician and man.

I am not going to sing for the tutorial, just in case you were wondering. Though, I may just try my hands at vlogging one of these days.

Today  . . .  today we paint! Again, let me reiterate and say that I do not consider myself to be a painter. There are those that follow this blog that I would be abhorred to claim such a thing in your presence. This was just for fun, and I want nothing more than to share my step-by step process using ridiculously shotty, unprofessional materials. And, to encourage you to break outside your comfort zone. Nothing wondrous and inspiring ever happened from people who uttered those four tenebrific words “I can’t do it.” You can do it, but you have to try first.

My materials:

Canvas (I believe its 12×14)

Paint (I had 8 or so colors from previous projects — I made due)

Paintbrushes (I bought this set for downwards of $5)

Pallet (I actually use this to display my eye-shadows. A plate will work fine.)

Cotton balls

Paper towel

Rinsing Cup

I apologize that the pictures are a little dark; I wanted to be outside and enjoy the art going on right outside my door.

After searching around on Pinterest, I had a vague idea of what I wanted to paint. First I would need to color the entire background. I chose this royal blue, using a cotton ball to saturate the canvas. I liked the effect — streaky, and it left clumps which I found added to the depth and dimension of the piece.

Behold! A blue canvas!

Next, I took a moist paper towel and dipped it in gray paint, smudging it along the edges.

Using the same paper towel, I added splotches of green paint, then created land with brown paint.

Let’s play a game! Can anyone find the incongruous item? I’ll give you a hint: it’s yellow and purple, and a size 9.5 🙂

My tree begins to take shape.

Kinda pretty, yes?

I love Cherry Blossoms, and so it was decided that I make a Cherry Blossom tree. This hot pink is fabulously vivid and worked perfectly. My method of implication: Globbing.

I got hungry. Cinnamon Toast Crunch to the rescue. Yup, that’s a Yogurtland spoon. I have many vices.

The finished product? What do you think? I’m actually quite pleased with how it turned out. My plan — hope — is to give it away. My friend George and I were discussing the other day how giving gifts is often times twice as fun as receiving them. I’m just waiting for someone to come along and say “Oh, that’s a pretty picture.” And then I can shout in exultation “It’s yours!”

Thanks for hanging out with me today.

Until next time . . .

36 thoughts on “Tutorial Tuesday! ?

  1. Happy Valentines Day Little Light. Take this into your mind and heart, if your own man does not appreciate you, there are many of us who are single, who would LOVE to be your surrogate “Man” on this day of love & romance.
    You are one talented & F.I.N.E. woman.

    • Jueseppi,

      Happy Valentine’s Day to you, too. I apologize if perhaps today’s post was confusing. If anyone is undeserving, it would be me. The man I married is like no other; he cherishes and adores me, and I consider myself a miracle to have been and be loved by such a man. I wish you the same in finding a worthy woman. 🙂

  2. I LOVE your cherry tree! It’s beautiful.

    I too, paint. I also do shell art with the shells I collect from the beach. Speaking of which, it’s about time for another Sarastoa/Sanibel Island trip. Thank you for sharing such a wonderful tutorial and your views on Valentine’s Day. I couldn’t agree more.

    • Jenny! Thank you 🙂 If we lived closer, I would drive it over and help you find a place to hang it.

      Ooo. Shell art sounds very cool! I would love to see something you’ve made. Sarasota . . . That’s along the coast of Florida, yes? I suppose it’s all coast, though, right? LOL.

  3. I think Juliet would love this blog today for so many reasons. I am going to send it to her. I did not know you sang. I love to sing probably more than anything I do and If I was half as good a singer as I am anything else I would have long abandoned the rest to do it.

    • Please do! I hope it brings a smile to her face 🙂

      Hm. Maybe a duet is in our future among good wine and scenic views? I couldn’t have said it better myself. For YEARS, Michael has tried to get me to try out for American Idol, to which I tell him.”Sweetheart . . . I wouldn’t make it past the first-round.” This is not self-deprecation; it’s the truth. I can sing — not amazingly well, but good enough to carry a melody, simple harmony, and keep tears from the wee one’s eyes. Lol.

  4. Thank you for the wonderful reminder that today is only a shadow of the love that we get to share all year round! And, I love how modest you are about your artistic abilities because there is no way that, should someone ever dare to give me a canvas, paint, brushes, and a cotton ball, that it would end in anything close to this little beauty. Thanks for another great tutorial and for a Christmas CD recommendation. I am one of those crazies that will bust out a christmas CD in June, because I’m having withdrawals. And it makes it even better if I know my level 5er is singing on it 🙂

    • Yay! A comment from my Bestie 🙂 First, thank you and I love you. Second, whatever! I may be able to slather some paint on a canvas, but need I remind you of the abomination that was my line-dancing a few months back? I seem to remember a certain stunning brunette taking to the art-form as if it were no more difficult than hopscotch! I think I just started twirling . . . like a drunk lady.

      Oh, and I have extra CD’s. I’ll give you one! You’re already supporting Crafting Water!

      LOVE JU!

  5. Hey, that came out great!

    And btw I was a Yogurtland FREAK….until I met Pinkberry that is. They have everything a tart-loving girl like me could want, and no high fructose corn syrup! A still likes Yogurtland better. He misses the corn syrup. 🙂

    • Aw, Tina! Gosh, what a nice thing to say 🙂 Thank you! I would hardly say I do it all. For starters, I do not cook and I kill plants with a passing glance. LOL. I shall take your compliment and tuck it away for a day when I need be reminded of my talents!

  6. I agree with all of the above. I especially liked the description of your mornings! The “gobbing on” of the cherry blossoms produced perfection. I really liked the “vein and root” effect of the white on the tree trunk. This is such a simple and striking image. I am always drawn to the simplicity of everything…paintings, words, ideas, emotions…on and on. We make life so complicated that we can no longer see.

    My child-who-grew-too-tall is learning to draw and to paint. He is fascinated by it. I will show him the process here. As young as he is, he will understand. You make life clear enough to see.

    BTW, Purple and Yellow…my favorite combination for shoes…and other stuff.

    • To answer that question, maybe I should let you decide 🙂 I thank you, Ms. Totsy Mae, for wishing me a happy Valentine’s day. I am feverishly editing the last couple pages of the chapter I’m working on, then it’s off to yogurt and conversation. I wish you a happy V-day as well, and do hope the uncertainty and concerns of established anatomy will soon be put to rest. 😉

  7. Oh, that’s a pretty tree!

    Yup. That was a test. 😉

    You make it look so simple. Just get the paint and let your imagination take you where it will. Lovely!

    I’ll take on the challenge. And, I’ll post a picture of my painting when I do. Whoop! I’d better wait until Sherry dissects my ROW80 goals on Friday before I commit to a date for project completion.

    I sing, too! I just don’t sing in public. For good reason. I can, however, do one heckuva rendition of Oh Holy Night while driving alone in my car.

    And, yes, I noticed you used some of those obscure words from the book you teased me with in your seven book post. I MUST get that book.

    Happy writing, Cara. And, thanks for the happy, creative reads before I call it a night.

    • *with exultation*
      It’s yours!! What time would you like to come over and pick it up? We can have tea or coffee, too, if you like. 🙂


      You are too funny. I read all your comments last night and continued to cackle all the way through. It will be that zany, witty personality your readers fall in love with, I’m sure.

      I won’t lie; the tree took about 3.5 – 4 hours to completes from start to finish. It wasn’t “easy” but it was in the realm of possibility for someone who never paints. I am not the least bit doubtful that you could make something equally as lovely.

      Okay . . .I’m just going to ask: what is ROW80. I think you speak another language and don’t know it. As I think about it, though, it’s likely a well-establish writing term that I SHOULD know, but don’t for whatever reason. Teach me!

      LOL. Well, yes, you see I have this issue with modern day language. There is abundant potential in the English language, yet we make due with all the banal and mundane words because they are easier. Laziness, is what it is. I mean, jargon is jargon, and there’s nothing wrong with keeping things simple. But occasionally it’s nice to hear words like elated inside of happy, or weary instead of tired. I just love words. I do.

  8. You sing, too?! Can’t wait to hear! Love your picture and am jealous you are outdoors without a zillion layers of warm clothes. 🙂 We still have mucho snow here. Ok, off to listen! Happy Valentine’s Day for about 30 more minutes. (It’s 11:30 p.m.)

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