Monday, October 16, 2017

A Long Overdue Update!

Wow, this was a long break from blogging! I was going to start again in September, but then we were preparing for a hurricane evacuation and Daniel's start of school. We ended up being able to stay home during Hurricane Irma as it had weakened to a tropical storm, but we didn't know until the last day. Luckily, we had no damage at all except no power for four days, which was nothing compared to what others experienced and are still experiencing.
I also spent the summer trying to understand the mind-boggling political situation in this country and the world. I will continue to keep my blog free of politics, but I did want to mention it here since it defined my summer to a large extent.
The paintings above and below were really fun commissions I worked on during the summer.
It made me feel quite powerless and so sad and angry to read about what this current US administration is doing and undoing. And then came the unbelievable natural disasters that were happening too fast and were too destructive to fully comprehend: incredibly strong hurricanes, earthquakes and now the deadly fires in California.
There was and is so much suffering so close to home and all in places we have visited. They are all places we love. And I have to say, this year's hurricane season was so unbelievable and so much more stressful as we often didn't know if we were going to be directly in the path. I'm so glad the season is finally winding down and the communities affected can heal and rebuild.
I noticed over the summer how my art was changing. At the beginning of the summer I still liked working loosely with acrylic inks and acrylic paint. I liked the element of surprise. Not so much later in the summer. There had been too many surprises that I had no control over and I noticed how I craved taking my time with my art and drawing more intentionally and realistically.
I found a wonderful young British artist on Patreon whose tutorials have taught me so much. Here's the link if you are interested. The golden retriever above I drew with charcoal pencils and my nephew I rendered with graphite and charcoal.
What I really want to learn is how to draw realistically with colored pencils. I followed Kirsty's tutorial for this kingfisher bird using colored pencils and solvent and absolutely loved it.
I used to think I wasn't patient, but that's not true. I am so enjoying these drawings that take me many hours to complete. I'm working on one right now that's going to take me a few more days until it's done. Again with colored pencils.

Thank you for sticking with me. I have missed our interactions. I'll do a few more blog posts with all the photos I've taking over the summer in our garden and a few knitting projects I've finished or am still working on.

In the meantime, I hope you are all doing well!!



  1. Thank you for sharing your recent projects. I've been following them on Facebook and am always excited to watch you explore new media, especially since you do it so successfully! The classes sound fascinating. (And isn't it nice to get another person's skill and perspective to pull us out of our comfort zone?) These are beautiful. [JB]

  2. Silke, yay, nice to visit your creative world again. wow, such gorgeous artworks! I love the woman's bewildering eyes, she is powerful. And all of these gorgeous animals, so enchanting. Sounds like she is a wonderful artist to learn from,and so cool to use the solvent with the colors. Your Kingfisher is magnificent, I can feel the soulfulness so powerfully!
    Have a most beautiful October and enjoy Autumn! It was so fun to see your art again.

  3. I've always wanted to learn to work with colored pencils too. Alas, I don't have the patience. Or talent really, but what the hey!

  4. Hello Silke!
    Lovely to see your post today!
    That first painting of the young woman with dark hair? My son's girlfriend could have been the one to pose for it! She is from Armenia and has that lovely dark hair and fair skin.
    Also, I love the one of the dog and of your nephew, AND that kingfisher, all so lovely!!
    I will follow your link to the British artist now. THanks for telling us!Glad the storm passed you by! x

  5. Welcome back, Silke!
    Can we ever really comprehend such things as disasters (natural or manmade)? I don't think so. We can only find ways to cope with them. Some choose to ignore it all, not watching the news anymore. Others feel they need to know what's happening and keep informed as much as they can. But it is difficult, no matter which way one turns.
    Your drawings look perfect to me! What a gift to be able to make something like that!

  6. Wundervolle ausdrucksstarke Bilder, liebe Silke, einige von ihnen machen den Herbst noch bunter.

    Allerbeste Grüße


  7. I'm happy to see you posted this week, as I've missed seeing your artwork! I enjoy the colors; and I find the other media also beautiful. Thanks so very much for sharing. Glad to hear that you came through the hurricane safely.

    ---Jean Marie