Selling Christmas Wreaths While Abutilons Bloom

Wreaths for Sale, ink & watercolor, 7x5

Wreaths for Sale, ink & watercolor, 7x5"

When the sun is shining I find it hard to stay indoors, painting in the studio, so I take a break for a walk and some “sketchercize.” I headed to the Farmers Market to sketch but got seduced by Trader Joe’s display of wreaths for sale instead.

While I stood and sketched, using a tall planter as a table for my watercolors and water, volunteers were collecting signatures on a petition to end the death penalty in California. I signed.

Abutilon Blooming in December, ink & watercolor, 7x5"

Abutilon Blooming in December, ink & watercolor, 7x5"

On my walk home I spotted a beautiful, wildly blooming abutilon with wonderful red and yellow patterned blossoms. I would have liked to snip off a few flowers to take home and draw in detail, but I recently read reports of flower thieves in my neighborhood, stealing whole plants as well as taking cuttings and ruining plants. I didn’t want anyone to think that thief was me!

Eight Dollar Eggs!

Eight Dollar Eggs, oil on panel, 6x6"

Eight Dollar Eggs, oil on panel, 6x6"

I’ve been trying to eat a healthier diet and choosing produce and meat that has been sustainably grown. Unfortunately, while the farming may be sustainable, often the prices aren’t.

I bought one dozen eggs from a Marin County farm at the local farmers’ market. The vendor explained how the chickens were totally free-range and so got to eat greens and bugs along with their organic vegetarian feed.

“In fact,” he bragged as he took my money, “the chickens follow the cows around and eat the maggots from their dung!” Yum! Protein!

Despite their fine, buggy diet, these eggs seemed neither fresher nor tastier than the free-range organic eggs I get at Trader Joes for less than half the $8.00 I paid for this dozen.

To try to get a little more value out of my investment, I made one of the pretty light blue eggs pose for a still life. I like the way that the lighting coming from below gives the painting a slightly spooky look.

Painting available here.

Farmers Market Friends (Work in Progress)

Farmers Market Freinds
Larger

I’m really happy with the way this painting (from a photo I took at the Farmers Market) is progressing and since I couldn’t finish it tonight and it’s back to the office tomorrow, I decided to share it as a work in progress.

Questions for you:

  1. Can you tell that the woman on the left is resting her hands on her shopping cart handle and that there’s a plastic bag of stuff in the cart?
  2. Is the way her hands are mostly one light shape confusing?
  3. Is that area of hands/cart handle/plastic bag distracting? (Before I pointed it out.)
  4. Do you think I should leave their shirts alone or add the patterns that were really on their shirts?
  5. Anything you see that needs fixing (other than the list above and below)?

I still need to add paint to the truck in the background to get the color right, paint in the lettering and add some contrast to the lady on the right (and maybe adjust her face a bit).

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