Friday, October 26, 2012

Photo Friday from France: Halloween Candy in Limoges, France

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Just in time for Halloween ...

Candy Pumpkins in a Chocolatier's Window
Limoges, France ~ October 2012
photo copyright Judith Nijholt-Strong. all rights reserved.

Saw these delectable little marzipan pumpkins in Limoges - didn't buy any though. Oh so tempting, but I resisted! :o) 

The green studded candies,(bottom left, under the pumpkins), are made to look like horse chestnuts popping out of their casings. They had what looked like chocolate praline centers, but I resisted those as well. Although, I might have to take a trip back up to Limoges before we leave; these candies are just too beautiful to pass up.

When I return to Holland, I'll post more pics from our trip and some of my drawings & little paintings of where we've been this time. The autumn weather has been great and we've been discovering some beautiful areas of the Limousin and the Languedoc.


Au revoir,
Judy
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Thursday, October 11, 2012

Fall Vacation ~ sketching tools at the ready!

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For the rest of the month of October, I'm off to Limoges, France. Fall vacation time!. As always, I'm taking my Moleskine(s) and my sketching/drawing/painting tools ...

Sketching Tools 2012
Moleskine sketchbook, Niji waterbrushes, 
Winsor-Newton pan watercolors in my little travel tin, 
various brands of colored pencils, Pigma Micron ink pens
photo copyright Judith Nijholt-Strong. all rights reserved.


Since I'll be missing 'Halloween in Holland' this year, my cat, Sacha, will be taking care of  the Halloween festivities at my house. (uh-oh!). ;o) She's already chosen her pumpkins ... 

Sacha, the "kat in klompen", with her pumpkins.
photo copyright Judith Nijholt-Strong. all rights reserved.

Not sure if I'll post to the blog while away, but I will be drawing and/or painting in my Moleskines - that's for sure! We plan a trip down to Carcassonne (in the Languedoc-Roussillon region) as well. 

So until sometime next month when I'll return with drawings/sketches, I wish everyone who visits this blog a lovely rest of October and an early  "Happy  Halloween".





Au revoir,
Judy
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Monday, October 8, 2012

3 Turbans ~ shells in watercolor with pen & ink

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"3 Turbans"
watercolor on paper with pen & ink  ~ size approx. 5"x 8"
Utrecht, Netherlands ~ October, 2012
painting copyright Judith Nijholt-Strong. all rights reserved.


This past weekend, I was painting little treasures from my shell collection - they make me smile. These turban shells also make me think of the sandy beaches of Florida, while it's raining here in the Netherlands. ;o) 

For this little painting, I used:
Winsor & Newton artists quality tube watercolors
Daniel Smith extra fine tube watercolors
Bockingford watercolor paper
Sakura Pigma Micron archival, permanent, ink pens


Plus, I did some more work on the colored pencil drawing of strawberries - but I'm still not there ...

close-up of strawberries in colored pencil
copyright 2012 Judith Nijholt-Strong

By the time I finish this piece, I fear the strawberries will be very much "out of season" - perhaps that will be the title! :o)



doei,
Judy
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Friday, October 5, 2012

Photo Friday: Fall leaves in Holland & an old poem.

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"Fall Leaves in Holland "
Utrecht, Netherlands ~ October, 2012
photo copyright Judith Nijholt-Strong. all rights reserved.

"Come, little leaves," 
Said the wind one day,
"Come over the meadows 
With me, and play;
Put on your dresses 
Of red and gold;
Summer is gone, 
And the days grow cold."

Verse  from a 19th c.  American children's song, "Come Little Leaves". 
Poem/lyrics by American poet George Cooper (1838-1927).
Music by Thomas J. Crawford.


While I was walking along the streets of my neighborhood here in Holland, I took some pics of the leaves along the sidewalks. I love October when the streets and yards are filled with beautiful piles of autumn leaves, sometimes swirling in the wind ; they remind me of the old children's song.

 Here's the lovely little poem in full :

Come Little Leaves
by George Cooper


"Come, little leaves," said the wind one day,
"Come over the meadows with me, and play;
Put on your dresses of red and gold;
Summer is gone, and the days grow cold."

Soon as the leaves heard the wind's loud call,
Down they came fluttering, one and all;
Over the brown fields they danced and flew,
Singing the soft little songs they knew.

"Cricket, good-bye, we've been friends so long;
Little brook, sing us your farewell song-
Say you're sorry to see us go;
Ah! you are sorry, right well we know."

"Dear little lambs, in your fleecy fold,
Mother will keep you from harm and cold;
Fondly we've watched you in vale and glade;
Say, will you dream of our loving shade?"

Dancing and whirling the little leaves went;
Winter had called them and they were content-
Soon fast asleep in their earthy beds,
The snow laid a soft mantle over their heads.

:o)



tot ziens,
Judy
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Monday, October 1, 2012

Different Strokes ~ moleskine sketch of tangerines in colored pencil

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Practicing some different drawing strokes with the colored pencils, just to see if I like the look. The tangerines were lined up on my desk ...

3 Tangerines
colored pencils in Moleskine sketchbook
October 2012
drawing copyright Judith Nijholt-Strong. all rights reserved.

It's wise to try things out in a sketchbook or sketchpad, before you commit yourself to your good paper (or even canvas). That's what I was taught long ago, when I was getting my art degree - and I still do it, even  after all these years. 

Many times I see beginners get frustrated or disappointed when they 'dive right in' without first trying things out on scrap paper. Testing or practicing strokes, ideas, and/or color combinations, or color choices on scrap paper (or in a sketchbook) is simply a good habit to get into and it saves hours of angst - that's my 'advice'. :o)

Here is a close up of the somewhat 'circular' stroke I was trying out on the tangerines. I used Faber-Castell Polychromos colored pencils for the drawing.

image ©2012 Judith Nijholt-Strong

I'm not 100% sure if the full sketch/drawing above will ever find its way onto good paper, or if I will use this 'circular' stroke again, but the practice drawing is there in my Moleskine - should the 'spirits' ever move me!



tot ziens,
Judy
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