Saturday, April 17, 2010

Outdoor work and more drawings

The fine weather has kept me outside alot. The seeds planted at the beginning of this month have sprouted and just today I planted tomato plants and more onion sets. The tomato plants have covers made from plastic bottles to protect them, despite the fine weather, April is a bit early.
This has been a dry April so far and extra watering is needed. Today I spent several hours outside. We advertised giving away extra water lilies and other pond plants and had people over to take them away. Still have lots left over. Some even promise to call back in a month and take fish also.
This drawing is done in Derwent Drawing Pencils on gray Stonehenge paper. It is a very nice combination! The source photo is from a series I did several years ago in May. This will make the fifth drawing based on this site! I go back to look over the series of photographs and get more ideas. Which is why it is a good idea to take as many different photos as possible if you can. The pictural possibilities aren't always obvious.
The squirrel drawing is based on photographs taken at a friend's cottage last spring. This curious squirrel was checking out the activity inside. This drawing is also done on gray Stonehenge paper but with Prismacolor pencils. The Prismacolors have much brighter greens and as a rule I don't much mix the varieties of colored pencils.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

End of winter, spring has begun!

We managed to get through March without any more snow here in La Crosse. The weather has been warm enough to encourage me to get outside and do some gardening. One of my garden beds got a plastic cover and water-filled soda bottles to encourage the soil to heat up faster. After a probe thermometer showed the soil had warmed up to 50 degrees fahrenheit, I planted radishes, carrots, chard and peas. The kale from last year is growing and I have been munching on fresh kale leaves as I work. The left over onions from last year and chives are also growing. Weather forecasts will have to be monitored for the nights when the garden needs to be covered to protect it from frost.
The warm weather has also put an end to wanting to do winter-themed drawings. I started one of a barn, trees and snow patches but lost interest. I will put it away for later. No point in doing something when I'm not inspired.
What did inspire me was a complete set of Derwent Tinted charcoal pencils! Along with ordering a print rack and clear print envelopes from Jerry's, there was a sale on a set of 24 tinted charcoal pencils. This set had some red and green colors which were not in the set of six which I have been using. To try them out I did a drawing based on a photo we took on one of our Western driving trips. This cross-bedded sandstone cliff is somewhere in Utah.