View Full Version : Monthly Scumble November 2013

Shirl Parker
10-31-2013, 11:21 PM
Hi everyone! Welcome to the Scumble, our monthly chat thread where we share the happenings of our everyday lives! I hope you will all chime in and look forward to hearing about them.


11-01-2013, 12:50 PM
Hi all! I'm new to WC but have been lurking for a little while. I'm brand new to the art world - picked up a brush and tried watercolor and acrylic painting for the first time four months ago in late June of this year, fell in love and quickly decided I wanted to try ALL the media! So I bought a little cheapie set of soft pastels in September to try my hand at that and fell in love again. I did get some slightly better ones just yesterday so am looking forward to a busy weekend.

As above, I'm still very VERY new to painting and drawing so am too embarrassed to post any pictures just yet, but hopefully one day soon - especially with all the great advice I've found on this website and from all the very helpful artists out there who are so generous with sharing their expertise. Thank You so much! I look forward to learning more about pastels and am really enjoying looking at all the beautiful works on here. :)

11-01-2013, 06:19 PM
Hello Tammy...welcome to the Pastel forum and well done for coming out of lurk mode!! http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/01-Nov-2013/33616-34523-0_lurking.gif Nice to meet you here. As for not posting yet...it's never too early to start posting pictures...especially if you'd like some input from the other pastelists... probably easier if you do it as a WIP, work in progress, so you get help as you progress...if you want it - ask for C&C...otherwise, you might not get it - just kudos/ encouragement . And you know, of course, to post pictures and WIPs in the Studio section.

CM Neidhofer
11-01-2013, 10:26 PM
My Grandaughter, Saundra (now three years old aready!) as Princess Rapunzel, with her superheroes, Uncle Will as Batman and Daddy and Spiderman!


11-02-2013, 12:38 AM
Purr, hi Shirl! Thanks for hosting again!

Christine, Saundra is great. I think it's the freckles that make it perfect, love those painted-on freckles. Great costume and fantastic Halloween coolness. Nice collie and beautiful ginger-white cat posing with her too, I guess they went as themselves.

Tammy, welcome to the Dusty Side of the Force! Ari purrs and sheds Cat Hairs of Inspiration at you! Deirdre is right, it's never too soon to start posting your art, especially if you're embarrassed about it. I can't count the number of times I posted pieces I thought were horrible only to find out that the artists I admired most were saying "Rob, that's one of your best, I love the way you loosened up in it" (or composition or colors or balance or textures). When I try something new I sometimes think it's horrible when it worked, and it takes other people to sort that out and make me see that it worked well. Without that vital feedback I wouldn't have grown as much and as fast as I have. I look back now at some of the ones I thought were Perfect and laugh - because my friends were right, the looser livelier one is a better painting and the Perfect one was painfully stiff and awkward. It's very hard to judge your own work and the compliments mean something. They are often very specific feedback as useful as negative critique. Mine always are, i never just say "I like it" but will point out something real and good about it.

You get it right once by accident, the second time because you know what you're doing. So there's my second argument for posting your art.

My third is that after your first pieces are posted, your next ones will look even better and a few weeks later you'll look back and see how much you've grown. You'll understand it better, mistakes that are understood are a lot more tolerable than that miserable feeling nothing about it came out right. You might even see how to fix one or two of those mistakes, pastel is a very forgiving medium and some people like reworking more than redoing. Most of all, posting regularly starts to give me trust in my learning curve.

Every now and then everyone gets a moment of finite perfection. A piece larger or smaller where everything came together just right, the painting is a thousand times better than you thought you could do. You stand back awed, thinking, did I do that? Did I just get possessed by the Muse? I can't believe that's mine.

And it is yours, it is true. They come at random. No matter how good anyone gets, that's not Every Time. Those are just little gifts of the Muse that happen now and then. But the more you paint, the more often they come and the richer and more glorious they are when they do. It can be anything from a serious painting long sweated over and planned to a single object study done for the heck of it on a day you were bored and felt like doing something colorful. But those special moments are worth posting too.

The more you participate, the easier it gets to get past the lows and strengthen the highs. Jump on in. It gets fun. Don't ever be intimidated by the amazing good artists here or the professionals, they are the best teachers and wouldn't be that good if they didn't love pastel and do it for years and years. You won't stay a beginner long.

You're at kind of a cute fuzzy-kitten stage right now but it won't last. Soon you'll be up where I float, comfortably helping new beginners and looking up in awe to folks like Colorix and all going wow, I want to paint like that, getting closer all the time and finding out I paint like Robert the closer I get to painting like them. It comes out your own, right from the start, and it's easier for everyone to see the more you do it.

LOL - forgive my Harley Brown moment but I couldn't resist, you got shy. Please post.

Well, the biggest thing in my not-painting life is Nanowrimo. November is National Novel Writing Month. I have participated ever since 2000. I am well underway with two chapters done. I got my Midnight Start today and did one chapter, went to bed, got up, goofed around online, did another chapter, ate lunch and back to bed.

If I keep that pace I'll reach 50,000 words (the Winner circle) on November 8th, serious Overachiever territory. The goal is to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. I do "3 Day Novel" contest entries so Nanowrimo is my fun run, lazy amble, month to set aside for writing new novels. Sometimes more than one. But I bought the t-shirt and it just shipped, so I won't put the Winner t-shirt on till my word count is over 50,000. The book is likely to be longer and more complex.

My little literary lion is posed like a library lion, looking up at me with his beautiful blue eyes. Okay, he went from dignity to cuteness flopping on his side and folding his wrist back to Flat Lazy Cat look instead.

I have non-pastel art toys to play with too, 18 new Prismacolors to chart. That's another thing to play with between chapters, always chart new colors. Once again, after two long years, I have All The Colors, plus a significant handful of Discontinued Colors in the set too. I rarely have the patience for colored pencils painting any more, too spoiled with the instant gratification of pastels.

But there's still something deeply satisfying about having all the Prismacolors and none of them worn down too far to use comfortably. They were the medium that got me hooked on color back when I was sixteen. I got a little ATC pad to use with them too so that I would play with them. I might make bookmarks or something this month too, that'd be fun.

11-04-2013, 11:24 AM
Robert - Thank you for the encouragement! You are such a wonderful teacher and infinite source of helpful advice and inspiration. :)

I picked up a slightly better set of soft pastels and have been playing around trying different techniques, so hopefully will have something I'm not to afraid to post before long. :crossfingers:

Hi to Ari!

11-05-2013, 04:42 AM
That should help a lot! I remember when I first got good pastels instead of the Alphacolors, it made an enormous difference. Ari purrs at you and sheds Cat Hairs of Inspiration!

I'm still down with the Wretched Cold, it sort of comes and goes and leaves me drug out. Third source of medical fatigue has got me sleeping like my cat but I'm still writing. Got over 10,000 words on my novel so far. Keeping up on that in spurts.

11-05-2013, 10:30 PM
Robert - I just reread your very inspiring and encouraging post and it struck me that right now I'm really enjoying being at that "cute fuzzy-kitten" stage. :) Having been a former highly competitive mountain bike racer for so many years, there is something so comforting and joyously liberating about allowing myself permission to be a total raw beginner in my art journey. I'm having a blast just taking as long as I need to learn while basking in the knowledge y'all are so kindly willing to share, and I truly appreciate it!

Oh, and the soft pastels I picked up were the 60-color set of the Mungyo Gallery Extra Fine Artist round ones since I think I remember you giving them a positive review at one point. So far, I've really been enjoying them a lot. Of course, the more I paint with them, the more I keep wanting more and more colors! :eek:

I hope your cold clears up soon. Congrats on the continuing progress with your writing!

Sarah Rose
11-07-2013, 11:25 AM
Welcome to the world of pastel addiction :) I started last fall and have become sort of obsessed. I work at home so it is easy to push real work aside and indulge this compulsion while at the same time thinking of ways to need less $$$ so I can do it more. It feels like a refuge to me, a place where I am free and things speak Ina language I understand. When you are ready to buy more pastels I will pass on to you what a pastel painter friend of mine told me, get the Thunderstorm Gray set from Mount Vision, a good half stick set of Senns, some NuPastels, and some 600 grit sand paper and go for it. I have never felt led astray by her recommendations. Of course it is up to you, though, there are so many choices and so many colors.

11-07-2013, 03:38 PM
Sarah Rose - Thanks for the advice! Art of the Carolinas is coming up starting tomorrow and I'm so looking forward to it, and plan to come home with some new colorful goodies!

Robert - As always, you've inspired and encouraged me again, this time to even go so far as to post a couple of my little practice paintings on my blog, even an attempt at a real live animal! :eek:

I hope everyone has a lovely weekend, and I just hope I don't crush my entire budget at the art expo...!

11-07-2013, 07:40 PM
Tammy- Welcome. This is a friendly bunch and very helpful. I keep learning new things.

Christine- Glad to see you back. I hope things turn around for you, it's been a rough couple months. I'm glad you have your grand daughter. I miss dressing my son for Halloween. He was even a grasshopper one year! Enjoy her.

Robert- I shudder to think of writing 50,000 words. For me that would be torture. I admire anyone that can write well. Good luck. I hope you feel better soon.

We finished cutting firewood for the season, I think. That was sort of all consuming since we started so late in the season. The cutting, splitting and stacking isn't bad, it's the cutting and carrying it from the woods that really tires me out. We had more wind damaged trees that needed taken down including a big 70+ foot double cherry that split. Always glad when the dangerous part is done. now to get rid of about 2 square feet of poison ivy rash.

I haven't painted much in the last few weeks. I ended up with Lymes disease and all the joint pain seems to have settled into my hands and wrists. I'm starting to turn the corner on it, I hope I don't end up with additional problems.

hope everyone is doing well and painting a lot.

my big 4 foot square canvas hasn't been worked on, but sits on the easel by the TV waiting for me.

CM Neidhofer
11-08-2013, 01:12 AM
Cataract surgery for the first eye is Nov. 18! Then I'll only be wonky eyed in one eye! Hopefully squeeze the other eye in after Thanksgiving and before Christmas. What a Christmas present! Couldn't ask for anything more than my eyesight back. :)

11-08-2013, 03:38 PM
Christine, sending good thoughts your way. After cataract surgery my mother's vision was better than before developing cataracts and the lens they put in took care of her astigmatism, too.

CM Neidhofer
11-12-2013, 09:30 PM
Christine, sending good thoughts your way. After cataract surgery my mother's vision was better than before developing cataracts and the lens they put in took care of her astigmatism, too.

Thanks, Peg. I'm not getting the lens that takes care of the astigmatism as well. I have to pay out of pocket for this, so I'm getting the basic lens. I'll still need glasses, but that's ok. I've worn them since I was eleven. I will just be happy to see clearly again so I can get back to my pastels!

CM Neidhofer
11-12-2013, 09:33 PM
This is Gadget, my granddaughters favorite pet of the menagerie that they have! They found him along the side of the road while taking a walk. He was just a little bitty baby. Now he's huge! He loves his human and is, obviously, very patient with her! Her Mom says he's the best cat ever! lol


11-13-2013, 11:26 PM
Gadget certainly is a very patient, tolerating cat. Looks a lot like my Yoshi (found him in the middle of a group of rose of Sharon when he was tiny) Now he is on a diet....trying to get from 21.4 lbs to somewhere closer to 12 (He's down 1.2 so far)

11-14-2013, 02:59 AM
Christine, I am so glad you're looking forward to your eye surgery. I'm surprised it costs that much more to get corrective lenses when you do, I'd think the main cost would be the surgery itself. Gadget is a wonderfully patient cat! I'm so impressed at that photo. He is certainly amazing and a sweet boy.

Peg, wow! Yoshi has a long way to go, that's some serious weight loss. Bet he'l feel lots better the closer he gets. Ari is fifteen pounds but he's not fat, it's all muscle. He's just a really big cat, he always had a thick neck, heavy muscled legs like a panther, solid muscular body under very thick fluffy long hair, which made him look like a fat cat till you touch him. Big feet too.

After more days of wrestling the cold-bronchitis, it's finally easing up. I've still got a bit of it but I wrote yesterday and wrote more today. I've goten caught up and I'm now two days ahead. This is a vast relief.

The basic challenge is to do 50,000 words in November. My book needs to be more like 80,000 or 90,000 to be its proper size, your basic paperback book size. Not a super wide like a Stephen King book but not scrawny either. I guess that doesn't matter on ebooks, but I've got enough plot that it will need that size. Two main characters whose stories interact also have something to do with that.

Getting two days ahead on "par" is a huge relief though, because it means I'll have the time to get the extra chapters in to actually finish the book before December. Also my editor loves it and I seem to be succeeding in doing better, creating an easier job for myself editing.

11-17-2013, 08:19 PM
Christine- I hope your surgery goes well. Sending good wishes.
I love the name of your cat.

Getdusty- How do you put a cat on a diet? To me cats always seem to decide what they want, not their people. Sort of like arguing with electronics.

Robert- How's the writing going? Hope your cold is gone.

11-18-2013, 12:43 AM
DB, He's restricted from the area where the other cats eat during feeding times and gets only a specific amount of food. He is as unhappy about it as I am when I am trying to lose some weight. However, if someone would just come in and give me my food and I had no access to any other, my weight loss might go a bit easier...lol

Shirl Parker
11-18-2013, 10:11 AM
... if someone would just come in and give me my food and I had no access to any other, my weight loss might go a bit easier...lol

CM Neidhofer
11-19-2013, 10:36 PM
Had my cataract removed yesterday morning. It went very well. I had to be at the hospital at 7:30 a.m. and was back home by 10 a.m.! Vision is getting much clearer this evening! Colors are bright again and I can tell dark blue from black again! I will most likely only need reading glasses after this. Hoping to get the second eye done soon. This was a piece of cake! :clap: :clap:

11-20-2013, 01:30 AM
Congratulations, Christine! That is so wonderful! Yay for seeing dark blue from black. Must have been maddening. So glad it went good and easy!

Cold is gone and now I'm catching up for all the lost time. Still very little energy because November is one of my worst months of the year now. San Francisco makes all the rest of the year easier but what used to be my best month is now my worst. I wouldn't swap back if you paid me. All it means is that Nanowrimo stopped being a cakewalk and I actually have to work at it like all the rest of the participants. lol

I'll get to 50k in time, just doing it in sprints and rests. Next good day I owe myself at least a chapter, maybe two.

11-21-2013, 03:56 PM
Christine- I'm so glad it went well. That's great news. ENJOY!

GetDusty- I guess all of us would loose weight that way. I am having the opposite problem with my older dog. he's 9 now and is slowly loosing weight even though I'm feeding him more. He's down from 128 lb to below 110lb. He's getting a boney for a labrador.

Robert- glad you're feeling better. Nov, Dec, Jan are my bad months. It hasn't gotten super cold here yet, so I'm hating Nov less than normal. I miss the long days and sun. Glad you've gotten back to your book.

11-21-2013, 08:04 PM
Hooray, Christine!
Robert, glad you've recovered. I'm heading into my bad season days shorter, colder and that frozen precip. will be coming soon enough...
DB, add February to that list....

CM Neidhofer
11-21-2013, 08:20 PM
Tentatively scheduled for second cataract surgery on Dec. 2 or 16. The lady was supposed to call be back today and didn't :( She was quite hesitant about a second surgery the first time I talked to her. They set me up on an affordable payment plan to begin with and I couldn't understand why the second one would be a hassle if I'm already paying! I talked to the doctor on Wednesday and apparently he made it clear that I will have the second surgery! And I do only need reading glasses now. My distance vision is absolutely wonderful now, which is what I always had a problem with. I picked up a pair of readers last night. Only thing I really need them for is reading shelf labels when I have to put out freight, or very light print on white paper. That's very hard to see! And I got a pair of cool sunglasses today. I've hardly ever worn them because I had to get the "over the glasses" kind, or the funky clip ons. Now I can wear regular sunglasses! I'm a gonna be a cool 'ole grammy now!! LOL Back to painting very soon. Looks like a wonderful new year coming my way. This year has been a rough one, but I keep trying and things eventually work out.

11-22-2013, 05:39 PM
Christine- It's been a Yo Yo year for us too. Up down, up down. glad it's on an UP trend. Glad they're doing the second surgury. Hope the UP keeps going, you deserve a break. Hope you can paint soon.

Had an UP and a DOWN here. Up, my sister's surgery seems to have cured her newly diagnosed cancer. All clear. Good luck and a prayer caught it early.

Down side- my son just broke 2 front teeth and messed up a third. Still not sure if he's going to need root canals/crowns on any of them, but the dentist (God bless him) was able to patch him together today and will finish "touching up" and double checking for damage in 2 weeks. him smiling at me missing parts of his teeth just about took me over the edge- he looked like a veteran hockey player. This after thousands of dollars with braces and dental work. Oh well, at least its sort of fixable...

I want to be bored.

11-23-2013, 02:18 AM
Christine, good news about your second surgery! It sounds wonderful. I have to use reading glasses now and sometimes forget to take them off, which is silly. But they're lightweight wire rims so not too bad.

Sounds rough, DB, at least he can get them fixed. Great news your sister's surgery worked though!

Me, I'm still under the weather but the cold is quite over. I need to write more. Been basically a slug, lots going on in my head and not much work on the novel.

CM Neidhofer
11-26-2013, 12:44 PM
We had our Thanksgiving yesterday, since I and my two room mates all have to work on Thanksgiving.

Not the best of situations, but I am very grateful for many things. The past 1-3 years have been very rough. Looking after Bruce with his illnesses, not taking care of myself as well as I should have, given my health issues as well, not being able to find a job, not wanting to find a job because I didn't want to spend that many hours away from him when he wasn't well, uprooting myself to Nebraska, almost losing my vision, not being able to paint....well, most of you have heard all about all those things.

But, in moving away and relocating in a totally different environment, away from the busy, and usually unsafe city life, many good things have come my way. I found two wonderful friends in my room mates and co-workers. We support each other and together, we manage to maintain our happy little home, pay our bills and keep food in the fridge. My vision will be back to normal soon. I have lost 28 lbs. since returning to work at Walmart, even with it's negatives at times. I'm at peace with Bruce's passing.

I will be another year older soon, and Lord only know what the future brings, but at this point in time, I am happy and thankful for friends, family and pets! We three are a very diverse little group of people and we all have our own trials and tribulations, but we make it work and we have fun and laughter in our home. For that I am the most grateful. And for all of you here, who read and respond to my posts, critique my art and lend me valuable information.

Thanks to all of you, and may you have a blessed, peaceful and happy Thanksgiving!

11-26-2013, 02:08 PM
Hi all, - Chris....so pleased to hear your news especially re your cataract surgery! Glad to hear you're coping now, and have come to terms with Bruce's death. I know you worked so hard and for so long, so the fact you're getting your life back in shape, as well as your figure ( green with envy...but well done you!) bodes well for your future...and I hope you'll get those arty fingers around your pastels soon too!:heart:

11-27-2013, 08:47 PM
I wasn't sure if this would be a good place to ask, but if I wanted to post several of my pastel paintings to show what I've done and get constructive criticism, where do I post them?

11-27-2013, 09:25 PM
I wasn't sure if this would be a good place to ask, but if I wanted to post several of my pastel paintings to show what I've done and get constructive criticism, where do I post them?
It's the right forum to ask...and if you need more info you'll find it here (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=814221)

But basically this forum is split into pastel talk...and pastel Studio (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=149)...and that is where to put your work for c&c....but it might be easier to put a few in one thread - if you have a lot...and ask for C&C! Hope that helps:)

Shirl Parker
11-30-2013, 11:52 PM
Time for a new chat thread. Click here. (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?p=19878281#post19878281)