Saturday, July 18, 2015

Adding Pops of Color and "Water-Wise" Garden Flowers

Welcome.  I am so happy that you stopped by.  My garden gate is always open for you to stop by and sit and relax with a cup of tea - yes - we are still drinking tea in the garden as  I live near the ocean and our summer mornings are usually cool with a little cloud cover that burns off by mid morning - perfect morning tea weather!  

Bentley, my Studio Assistant, is waiting to show you some of our new "water-wise" plants and ways that we are adding color to the garden and at the same time helping us continue to reduce our water consumption by 35% by saving household water and using "grey" water from the shower and kitchen to water the container plants.

My garden and home are inspirations for many of my paintings with primary colors.  Since we are in the midst of the worst drought in California history  I am always looking for ways to add color in the garden without adding necessary watering and  the red and white strip umbrella added a much needed pop of color.
                                 The addition of colorful pillows also add much needed color.

Birdhouses, a vintage wooden flag and a few pots of "water-wise" flowers add summer pops of color to the kitchen patio - by using drought tolerant plants that do not need much water we are able to save our precious water to water the pots of herbs used for cooking.

The rusty blue watering can adds a pop of color to the pots of drought friendly Geraniums.

We are allowed to water twice a week with timed watering  and the Geraniums and "water wise " plants are doing great with twice weekly watering and our "grey" water additions.  By now about 98% of the containers in my side garden are drought tolerant.  Since we only have so much water we decided to focus on the side garden where  we spend the most time. The grass,  Roses, and Inpatients  in the front yard are not doing well with limited water and the Roses and Inpatients are fading  and grass is starting to turn brown.  The positive side is our small space side garden is thriving.

I like to plant the Martha Washington variety Geranium as they like to spread and do well with twice a week watering and trail so nicely from the vintage bicycle basket.

Most of the flowers are in containers so I can move them around for inspiration for a painting.  All flowers in this photo are "water wise" - Geraniums, Rudbeckia, Lantana and Salvia.

By changing the colors and pots I can create a different look to paint - this time I added the pink Echinacea and white Pentas - all "water-wise".

Adding a pot of Echinacea to the vintage blue box is a simple way to add "water-wise" color to the garden.

                               All are "water-wise" container flowers  in the photos below.

Yellow Rudbeckia adds a bright pop of color and meet our twice a week watering goal.

The Rudbeckia blooms remind me of small Sunflowers and I like to use them in a petit garden painting to brighten a grouping of Succulents.

The addition of my small paintings on canvas or wood blocks throughout the garden next to drought tolerant potted plants, birdhouses, etc.  add color and a touch of whimsy and do not need water!

Different varieties of Geraniums do very well in pots as well as planted in the ground.

                        I am also starting to plant Succulents . Using them in combination with  vintage birdhouses, colorful pots, boxes and small paintings on wood  are a simple way to add pops of color to these water-wise plants.

Thank you for stopping by.  I sincerely appreciate you visits, e-mails, comments and those of you following my blog.  I will be on a mini blog break for two weeks getting some paintings ready for the "Postcards From Europe" art show at the Showcase Gallery.

Have a lovely week.  Blessings, Erin

                            " For we walk by faith, not by sight."  Corinthians 5:7

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Painting Silk Scarves with East Side Art

Welcome.  I am so happy that you stopped by.  Today you are invited to come into my studio with our East Side art group for a fun day painting silk scarves and relax with a cup of tea on a beautiful mild California day.   Bentley, my Studio Assistant, is joining us in the studio to share the fun with you (he was attempting to sit in  my lap showing off his new "short summer hair cut" when Linda Bucci snapped our photo!

My studio very quickly my studio goes from this . . . . .

to this . . . . .when our very creative and talented East Side artists  start creating their magic.  We gather each month and take turns teaching a class or going on a fun art filled road trip. I taught a class on painting silk scarves with permanent markers and spraying them with alcohol which causes the colors to run and create the look of watercolors based on Suzanne McNeill's amazing  book Creative Dying.

Libby Williamson is a fabulous fiber artist and painted one of her scarves to use to cut  the individual pieces and turn into a quilt type wall hanging or something lovely.

                                   Some were stenciled, stamped or drawn free handed.

The designs and colors matched the artists personalities  and were all different and beautiful.

                                       Sherrill created this delightful black and white scarf.
Jacki Long painted whimsical ladies on a scarf  called "friends".

Using white butcher paper under the scarf when applying the alcohol created the beautiful designs on the paper below - even the rubber gloves, paper plate and test scarf  were beautiful. 

Thank you for stopping by.  I sincerely appreciate your visits, e-mails, comments and those following my blog.

Have a lovely week.  Blessings, Erin

                             "The meditation of my heart shall be understanding."  Psalm 49.3

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Painting Fourth of July on Balboa Island

Welcome.  I am so happy that you stopped by.   I am going to take you on the ferry with me to Balboa Island where I went yesterday to paint on the island with friends before the holiday crowds .  Bentley, my Studio Assistant, went with me and we will share with you some of the charming cottages all dressed up for the Fourth of  July.

The sun is shining, the flags are flying and it is a beautiful Southern California day. The 100 year old historic Balboa Pavilion is a landmark and I paint it often in the back ground of my art. This scene is one of my most popular requests and I have painted it for 2 different customers that live on the island. This time I added flags to the Sunflower bouquet.

The sidewalk goes around the entire island.

The charming cottages start decorating with flags on Memorial Day and add even more flags and decorations for the Fourth of July!

The residents of some streets fly flags from house to house to celebrate Fourth of July.

The blue whales on the gate are one of my favorites.

This painting has the Newport Harbor Yacht Club in the background and  is another popular requested scene

Back at home and getting ready for Fourth of July in my garden.

Wishing you and your Family a Happy and Blessed Fourth of July.

Blessings, Erin

"Rejoice in hope, be patient".  Romans 12:12