Thursday, April 19, 2018

A Place that's About to be No More

The trailer or mobile home park that sits off Lake Eustis near Ferran park now basically sits empty of their occupants.  I learned that the property is being purchased for a new gated community called Eustis Lake Club.  There will be 86 single family homes (what they are calling bungalows) built on 11.5 acres of land and will have a Key West style with soft colors.  They plan to have a pool/ club house and lakeside boardwalk, as well as cobblestone and sidewalks.

Thought I would capture this scene before it no longer exists.

Fabriano Venezia sketchbook and Sharpie pen

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Crow? Blackbird?

After spending hours on the last bird, I worked this quick sketch of a black bird seen at Ferran Park.  It was about the end of our time out sketching when we walked over to the museum to check it out.  I didn't find it all that interesting so while the others were inside walking around, I went out taking photos.

I loved the cerulean blue look on the back of this bird.  Was it from a bluish sheen shining in the sunlight?  I have no idea but it grabbed my attention and I took the photo.  Technically you couldn't see the eye due to his head being in shadow but I decided to suggest one by lifting a bit of pigment.  I'm not even sure if it's in the right

Strathmore Visual WC Journal with Sharpie pen.

Anhinga Procreate Sketch

This one is also from our sketchcrawl at Ferran Park.  This Anhinga was sitting on a post right outside the Eustis Art Museum that is off Lake Eustis.

I tried adding a background of water lilies and didn't like it.  To me I just couldn't get the water lilies placed without making it look too busy and competing with the bird.  Next a created a layer of water behind him.  At this point I'm not sure which I like better.  Maybe blur the background a bit more but then maybe not.  I'll come back to this in a few days with fresh eyes and go from there.

Monday, April 16, 2018

Last Week's Sketch Outing - Ferran Park

I'm a bit slow uploading photos from my camera.  Finally got around to doing so this morning.

It was a gorgeous morning........sunny but a bit breezy.  Not so bad as it helped keep the bugs down.



Sunday, April 15, 2018

Another of our Feeder Visitors

Today's ink and watercolor sketch after finishing another fabric journal.  It's been stormy off and on today and after running out of eyelets to continue with my project, I decided to grab my journal and sketch.

Strathmore Visual Watercolor Journal and Sharpie Stylo Pen

Friday, April 13, 2018

Last of the Loquats for the Season

Thought I would work a sketch of our Loquats that grow in the front yard near the driveway and main street.  Most are turning brown or have been pecked at.  A few remain that are ripe and Terry brought in several for me to sketch. 

I've tried to like them but don't.  I find them bitter that causes my tongue to feel strange.  There is another growing in a neighbor's yard and there are a couple folks who have permission to take all they want.  They make preserves out of the loquats.  Maybe that tastes OK but I'm not exactly in a hurry to try it out. 

Frankly the birds can have at well as the squirrels as I've seen them up in the tree as well.

The tree itself is pretty with the dark green leaves and bright orange fruits growing in clumps.

Worked in the Fabriano Venezia sketchbook using the Sharpie Stylo marker pen (fine point).

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Today's Custom Cover

Today besides sketching, I also completed another fabric cover.  This one was special with my Leesburg "sister" picking out the material she liked.  We stopped off at JoAnn Fabrics after the sketch crawl and I came home and immediately got to work making it from start to finish.

Inside has an insert of regular paper (20 pages front and back) with a cover and a six-pocket folder.  I made an extra band for her to use to add her watercolor paper.  Inside I included a printout of how to cut her sheet of watercolor paper to fit this size cover.

I absolutely love the material and pattern on it and my dear friend loves the results.

Making these are

Today's Sketch Outing

What a gorgeous day today for meeting up sketching together at one of the nearby parks.  There were five of us this time out......Lee, Lyn, Susan, Shari, and myself.

The first page is in the Strathmore Visual Watercolor journal and I actually painted on the spot.  Normally I wait until I get home to mess with the paint.

This second is worked at home in the Fabriano Venezia sketchbook.  I didn't have quite the problem with pigment being grabbed like I did with the woodpecker.  I'm wondering if it's because the woodpecker was painted on the backside of a page whereas this one is the front of a page.  There might be a difference in how each side handles wet.  Anyways.....I prewet all my areas to help give me time to move the pigment around. 

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Outside My Window

It feels great getting some sketching in after two weeks working on my faux dori journals.  I ran out of thread so that helped motivate me to pull out my sketchbook 😄

I sat and watched this guy trying to find a way over to the seed feeders.  He's tried climbing the shrubs but the limbs are too thin to hold his weight.  He tried getting up on a solar lamp but sticking in sand, it just fell over.  Next he came over to the hummer feeder pole which is only a few feet from the other pole.  He climbed up where the Shepard hook bends and stared upwards.......I figure trying to determine if he could make it without sliding back down.  He tried a couple of times and managed to get to the very top.  From there I watched him stare at the other pole.  You could tell with his body language that he was contemplating if he could launch himself over.  His tail flicked like I've seen them do before jumping; however, I guess he decided it was a no go and climbed back down......back to looking for fallen seed on the ground.

Watching him captivated me and decided he would be my next subject to sketch.  Worked in my Strathmore Visual Watercolor sketchbook using the Sharpie Stylo Fine pen.

Watercolor Sketch - Red Bellied Woodpecker

Today I worked from the same photo reference as I did with the digital sketch on the Ipad two days ago.  I'm using the  Fabriano Venezia sketchbook that has drawing paper in it.  I failed to add enough water to the background to keep the paper from grabbing the pigment.....resulting in brush strokes I couldn't work out.  Also used the Sharpie Stylo marker pen I'm checking out.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Sketch - Red Bellied Woodpecker

With me working on the journals, I haven't done much in the way of sketching.  I did manage this one yesterday taking a break from everything else. 

This guy has been coming around quite a bit here lately.  And what's funny, he doesn't let the bullies chase him off.  I watched a dove try to chase him off and he wasn't about to be intimidated. 

The one question I have that I've not found an answer to that satisfies my curiosity is WHY is this bird called a Red Bellied Woodpecker.  Red is on his head (and this guy had red eyes).  I haven't seen red on their bellies.

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Yet Another FauxDori Cover / Step by Step

With each one, it's getting easier and easier to include operating my sewing machine and how to line up the Crop - A - Dile Big Bite hole punch/eyelet setter.

Out of all the YouTube videos I've watched, this one is the one I found to be my favorite and the one I'm basically following to create my own covers.

For the video version on how to make these, I found this one to be my favorite and the one I'm basically following with the exception of how she folds the finished cover.    Brandy Michelle Plans  She's very thorough in her presentation.  She also shows how to handle placement of center hole and eyelet for those who do not have a long reach punch / eyelet setter like I am using.

For those who are interested, please feel free to right click on images and "save image as" for your own reference.

Thursday, April 5, 2018

My Second Fabric Fauxdori Artist Travelers' Notebook

This Fauxdori turned out nicer than the first........although there are some things I learned with this one not to do next time.

This one includes an insert section with mixed lined, graph, and dot paper I printed off so I'm not having to carry an extra little notebook for notes and reminders when our group gets together.  The insert section has a piece of Bockingford watercolor paper as a cover only because that's all I had strong enough.  I went shopping last night and now have some nice patterned card stock I can use for future insert covers.

This one also has the pocket folder I made and shared in my last post.  I have several business cards tucked in one of the pockets that has contact information about our sketching group for interested people who check us out when we're out sketching.

And as you see from the photos, I'm now getting into adding charms and beads to hang just to dress the notebook/journal up a bit.

Notice my eyelets are lined up better than my first but could still be improved upon with lining.  I'm finally getting a "feel" for the crop a dile big bite gizmo.

I found cone bead caps that work perfectly for the bottom strands of the elastic bands made to hold everything in place.

**Now if I can just find a better way of attaching the closure loop without having to use a big knot to keep it from slipping out the center eyelet hole.

Folder Pocket Inserts for the Artist Fauxdori Travelers' Notebooks

This post is about folder inserts for the covers I'm making. 

First I tried using a letter size hanging file folder.....idea from Poketfulofvintage on the YouTube channel.  It turned out OK but not really wide enough to go with the size Fauxdoris I'm making.  But this can still be used and gives me an idea for narrower sized covers in the future.  Legal size would have worked better in my case but didn't have any.

I cut the bars off and then what was remaining resulted in this.

There are six pockets total.  Folded here are two pockets front and back......4 total

Than on the inside there are two additional pockets.

This measures:  4.5 x 8" closed

When I finished this one, I looked around to see what other material I might have to try another hoping for the 5 x 8" size I wanted.  I came across a pocket folder.  It ended up working out beautifully and they come in various colors as well.

What I like about using these for the pocket folders is that it gives me three different type of pockets instead of two using the file folder.

Measured Size:  5 x 8"

Two pockets both front and back (four total) looking like these and inside gives me two more deep pockets things cannot slide out of.

And here are two sheets showing how I went about making these:

SPECIAL NOTE:  After I posted this, I opened a new package of pocket folders and discovered the center is attached at the fold (unlike two older folders I had on hand which were not attached).  You still have to make the slit along the sides as mentioned below in Step 2; however, skip Steps 3 and 4.

Instead, work on through until you have finished the steps BEFORE gluing the pockets and cut the corners like this.  Use a small cutting mat and place it as you see in the photo.  Using a sharp blade (box cutter, xacto knife, etc.) cut off the corner.  Do this for both sides.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

First Fabric Sewn Fauxdori Travelers' Notebook Cover

For days now I have been looking into an alternative method of making my own artist journals.  I've made accordion and hard bound hand sewn journals.  And I have made a couple leather Travelers' Notebooks.

My new venture is learning to sew and create hand sewn fabric covers along with adding various inserts and embellishments.

I've spent days and days viewing various videos on the subject getting a feel for the different methods people use to create their own.

The following is my very first sewn cover.  From this I've learned quite a bit:

1)  How to set up and use my sewing machine (this was a BIGGIE for me);
2)  What 72F Pellon is and how to use it plus the best way to cut so the fold looks better when cover is folded in half;
3)  How to size material and pellon for the dimensions I wanted my cover to be compared to the size cut watercolor  paper signature insert I wanted (a big thanks to Laure who helped me with that);
4)  How to trim seam allowance edges and corners to look right when material is turned right side out (after making a pocket);
5)  How to get those inside corners to fill out nicely;
6)  Getting a feel for different diameter elastic cords providing enough HOLD and yet not be too tight;
7)  How to better use a Crop a Dile Big Bite hole punch/eyelet setter.  Mainly gauging how to line it up is the trickiest for me but I'm getting better (as my next post will show); and
8)  Where to mark and cut a sheet of watercolor paper for the size pages I wanted making sure the folds were parallel to the grain.

Closed with loop finished cover.  I've left the cords long at the bottom as I haven't decided yet what I'm going to do with them.  Either cut off short or maybe add beads or something.

Would love to find a better way to attach the cover loop rather than having to make a huge knot so it doesn't slip through the eyelet.

Need more practice lining up the holes with the crop a dile punch/setter.

I don't think I did too badly for my first one :-)

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