Scavenger Hunt from Life #97: Dec 30- Jan 7

Joan, Ned, Ai and Jo Thanks for the kind words.

Ned - The cove and cow are nicely done but the cactus in turtle pot is my fav! Well done.

Ai - Like the shading on the orange. The mug is cute. Neat that you show the style and theme but use some artistic license. That is a clever little portable palette. How many travel palettes do you have? Seems each photo is with a different one. Next question is do they all have same colors? Thanks for info on the super sponge.

#2 Orange - Multiple grades of graphite in a pocket sketchbook.

Keep sketching
Fletch, you are a master at shading. The orange looks so real.

I sketched in the living room with a Micron 03 in the BookFactory sketchbook.
Number 3 comfort - Gene in his chair, doesn't look much like him!

Then I played in the dust in my studio. On some new paper LuxArchival, 8 x 10 inches, white, sanded. I put some pastel and spread with alcohol and it did great, no buckling and dried very quickly.
Number 4, cactus - the young Christmas cactus. It is growing well.

Set up

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Jo: Lovely Gene sketch on the lazyboy. Beautiful pastel plant pot. Love it !!!

Fletch: lol... actually I have too many paint tubes (3 major generations)... 1. the first set I brought back with me to Thailand in 2001 after my Grad. school graduation ... it has some mix of DavinCi and W&N 2. Later around 2005 I bought another big round of W&N from Ebay when we were visit our US folks and 3. A major round of inheriting DanielSmith paints (40 more tubes) from our late Hunt's friend, Kivrin. These make me have too many items... and I have no time to curate them all and sort them all (esp. by color family scheme)... a month ago I threw away some tubes that harden. This means I often reach out some of them and squeeze into my empty palette (which I have collected over the years)... really bad habbit ... but I don't have quite time to sit down and curate everything and I hardly paint big anymore... so the paints I have will last me forever... I now only buy just a small tube here and there to replace my usual paint I use often like Payne's gray (for help in darker my other colors)....And If I go on sketch trip, I often pack for the event (which I may change the colors combination... or trying out new paints)... All in all I want to try to declutter and slim down my paint (but I cannot part with them...). I would say the best all around palette that good for me for most trips is the one you saw with the TukTuk sketch (I got it from Amazon ). Sorry for rambling... but I need to explain why things happen this way for me... hahaha ... and by the way your orange sketch is superb !!! I believe Joan may give us a better organized ideas and samples of her art style, esp. for plein aire on the go.
Fletch, somehow I missed commenting on that great buffalo. Only you would have one hanging around as a model. Great texture on the orange peel. Wow!

Ned, nice rocks in the cove. Your cow looks like she needs some company out in that field. Love the turtle with the little succulent! Nicely captured details.

Jo, I see you had fun "playing in the dust." Love the Christmas cactus. Did you get a new one or did you take a cutting? Gene looks very content in the chair.

Ai, I like your DIY mini palette with the limited colors. I have an empty palette just waiting for me to do that. Good job on the details to the mug decorations. I may not have as many paints as you have, but I don't really have a good system for keeping track of them either. I try to keep the tubes separated by color family but there are some that are hard to place. Someone suggested that I store my paints in one of those hanging plastic shoe organizers, but I don't have any place to hang it that would be practical. And yes, I have a lot of palettes...some of which I've never filled.

5 - cool (water and air) - watercolors and ink

I bought an amaryllis bulb kit that arrived the other day. Now I'll have something inside to watch as it grows. I will sketch it as it changes.

6 - blossom - watercolors and ink
Joan: Awesome glorious waterfront scene, plus the beautiful glow bulb and pot. Love them. Thank you for your paint tube insight...I'm glad to hear that you have many empty palettes too.
Joan -- thanks! I had to walk away from the cows because they noticed me and all ran over to see me... there were about 50 cows all crowded at the fence 10 feet in front of me :) That pier is great. Painting that amaryllis as it grows is a fun idea... we have a few from 4 or 5 years ago that still regrow and bloom every year.
Jo - Gene looks slim and relaxed even if not a perfect likeness. Christmas cactus is beautifully done. Had same question as Joan.

Ai - Thank you for such an honest detailed answer. I read a lot and have been obviously reading a lot about watercolor as well as watching videos. Every author/ instructor talks about color palettes but colors and how many colors vary. I started with a set of six colors from Daniel Smith and then the colors you shared from Kivrin but have added a lot as each class recommended different so am now at point if trying to create my own color palette and it helps to hear the 2 best watercolorists I know seem to be in similar places. Thank you

Joan - I also have a statue of a White Buffalo as well. Thanks for adding your comments on colors and palettes. Love the bridge sketch especially the grasses. The Amaryllis painting is nicely done and a great way to keep the instructions. Will be watching it grow along with Ned and others.

Joe1, Ned *waves

#3 Yellow - turns out there is not a lot of yellow around my house so settled on a chunk of Orange Calcite which is yellowish. (was down to Calcite or a cap on some vitamins) Started this with graphite but after completing a contour sketch an the background decided it really needed color. Used very light washes of watercolor crossing my fingers that it would not bleed through


Looking side by side with the photi the proportions are off. 😟

Keep sketching
Ai, it is good to know other artists have the same problems. lol Thanks for your comments.

Joe 1, thank you.

Ned, I don't really have any place to plant the amaryllis once it finishes blooming. I'm only allowed plants in pots outside. I guess I can bring it to one of my friends that have big gardens. Cows are such strange creatures. I had to cross through a field filled with them when I was in Ireland. I was determined (as nervous as I was) not to let the fact that they were there stop me. At the time I thought it was the only way to get to a lighthouse in Dingle. Later I found out that there was a parking area I could have gone through too, but I didn't see that on my map. lol

Fletch, you nailed the look of the irregular color in the chunk of calcite! That is much better than a yellow cap from vitamins.

I played a bit with Procreate sketches.
7 - bangs

8 - orange (actually a clementine)

Ai, you have watercolor sets like I have pens. Way too many but fun to see and use occasionally. ha. You do great with them.

Joan, I got a new cutting from the old cactus back last spring I think. It hasn't grown enough to bloom yet. Each piece was just like three leaves high. I love your cool water, the grasses are amazing. Your amaryllis idea is great. You sketched it beautifully. Your digis are very nice. Love your bangs!!! The clementine looks real. We had some for Christmas, need to get some more.

Ned, I don't know why animals don't pose for us. Heh, heh. I love cows and would like to see more!

Fletch, thanks so much. The cactus has a loooooong story. But it is young. My sister has the original which was my grandmother's. It is older than me because it was always around and big when I noticed it. Mom had it in a tub about 24 inches in diameter. Sat in a north window bloomed beautifully. I got this piece from Joanna's friend in Oregon. It's been around the world. I took some to South America in my purse so we've had some everywhere we've lived. What a beautiful "yellow" you found. Your rendering is super fine. We don't have much yellow either. I usually do a cleaning cloth or a tool with a yellow handle. Ha.
Joan -- Our amaryllis are in pots indoors. Now I have to remember to try to draw them! On some of the country roads I walk on, I think me walking by is the main entertainment of the day for the cows.

We're going over to the central valley to hopefully see Sandhill cranes tomorrow. I'll be with my wife and daughter, and it's harder to stop and draw with other people but maybe I can do a quick sketch. Birds are hard to get the shape! Crane on the hunt list the same week we're going there!
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My semester break will be over in a week, so I try hard to go out sketching often recently.

#11 sub. Cottonwood with Tamarindwood (shown as row of topiary trees)...scene at the entrance of the Grand Palace, Bangkok....about 1 hour done in directwatercolor..amidst so many intetnational tourists hovering by



#12 sub. manor with a part of our Grand Palace our nationsl treasure with gazillion international tourists each day... about 1 hour directwatercolor


PS. Here is my DIY wc travel palette I made with 8 colors (though I have a smsll tube of bright pink tucked aside) ... I save my tiny face lotion clear plastic bottles and cut them and glue them into my palette.


Joan - You have definitely mastered Procreate! You may not know all the bells and whistles but you use it like a pro.

Jo - Thanks for info and kind words. Only cactus I have is plastic. Can’t kill it…supposedly.

Ned - If California Sandhills cranes are as noisy as Florida cranes bring ear plugs!

Ai -Doubt I will ever get to visit Thailand, but your paintings of the beauty there make me want to be part of the gazillion! Your homemade palette is a clever idea. Thanks for the info and the pictures.

Keep sketching
#4 Blanco - White Buffalo Many thanks to Joan for reminding me I have a second buffalo. Played with brushes and layers in Procreate



Keep sketching
Thanks for the comments, everyone!

Jo, I love the story about the cactus from your grandmother and it being so huge! What was so special was that it has been shared by so many people and taken so many places. That's such a special plant that connects the past and the present so well.

Ned, how nice of Jo to time this hunt so that it coincides with your trip to see sandhill cranes. How lucky!!!

Ai, those sketches at the Grand Palace are so great. I love your use of color. Nice palette. Good thinking for the paint wells. I once made a palette with bottle caps. I see the little tube of pink. I never bring tubes with me except for one tube of white gouache. It comes in handy.

Fletch, thanks for sketching the white buffalo too. I like how you were able to show his curly hair. Is the statue stone?

At the beginning of the week I had gone up to a town on the north shore and sat outside an ice cream, nut, coffee, etc shop that had these huge toy soldiers out front. There was a different one attached to each post of the shop. I really liked the sketch except for the fact that my proportions on the soldier's chest & arms were off. It bothered me and I thought it would be a good scene for next year's Christmas card. So I decided to go back up there and redo it. Guess what?...They took down the decorations in front of the shop and all the soldiers were gone! The town still had their Christmas tree up so I sketched that while I could.

9 - holiday tree - watercolors and ink
10 - posts
Fletch: Cool white buffalo in a digi.

Joan & Fletch: I just got your Xmas cards yesterday. They are amazing... thank you for sending them my way.... I'm sorry that the past two month had been super busy for me... so no Xmas card this season from me. I'm sorry that the post mail service in both USA. and Thailand have been slower than usual.
Ai, I'm glad the Christmas card arrived. I try to send my international cards out earlier than the USA cards so they arrive at the right time. I guess they take longer to get where they should.
Ned, hope you got to see the cranes.
Ai, wow the Grand Palace is amazing and your drawings/paintings are perfect. I love them both. Thanks for sharing the ways you work.
Fletch, I could probably kill a plastic cactus. I broke 2 bowls and a glass over the holidays and Gene broke the lid to one of my Corning ware pans. Hadn't broken anything in ages. I hate using plastic, but should have. This buffalo is so "cute". Not sure real buffalo are cute. Geat digi.
Joan, sorry you missed the toy soldiers. I thought your original was great. This tree and the eagle sculpture are so good.

I walked to the pond while Gene rode his trike. I went to the closest bench and sketched the crane or egret, whatever it is. It was far and mostly holding its neck out straight. I went and got the binoculars so I could see the curve in its neck. In the large Canson mix media sketchbook with a fine line Sharpie. Quick gesture sketches.
Number 5 Crane
Number 6 Cove, the side of the pond



#13 Princess Mother Memorial Park, Bangkok... done in directwatercolor


FYI --- Thank you Joan and Fletch for these holiday cards. They just arrived to my Bangkok home yesterday. They are so beautiful.