Plein Air Painting

It was nice to be able to relax and do some plein air painting while I was on vacation. I very seldom paint outside, so it was good to challenge myself to work outside and to paint some landscapes in watercolors.

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Watercolorist Glenn Blue

Sketches12S_Melinda_FabianI had the pleasure of listening to Pennsylvania watercolorist Glenn Blue as he discussed some of his drawing and painting techniques.Over the years, Blue has traveled throughout the world, including Venice, Rome and Salzburg, and took classes with many talented artists during his travels. Blue creates marvelous watercolor paintings that have a realistic quality. Creating atmosphere and capturing the scene in a way that only Blue can imagine – whether he is bringing in bright sunlight shining through the trees on a wintry morning or that misty, foggy scene in the city. Through his vision and imagination he creates beautiful, realistic, watercolors full of atmosphere.

One of the things Blue talked about was the importance of continuing to practice your drawing and sketching. He will sketch any object from cars to evergreen trees to people walking down the street, filling up sketch books. He also discussed the importance of creating shadows, lights and darks and a range of values as you are practicing your drawings. Continue reading

Goldilocks and the Iguana

Iguana_Frames_FabianThis week I felt a bit like Goldilocks from the popular children’s storybook, Goldilocks and the Three Bears. It has been a bit of a challenge trying to find a shadow box picture frame that my 3D paper sculpture iguana would fit into. Every time I found another frame it was — no, this frame is too small; no, this frame is too thin; no, this frame is too big. And finally, the fourth frame I found is… just right!

Initially, when I started working on my iguana painting, I thought I had the right size shadowbox frame already on hand- a wooden 8” x 10” x 1.5” deep shadowbox frame. I imagined the iguana would come out of the paper about an inch or so, making that frame a perfect fit! Well, I am in the middle of this project, and realize, he is developing and growing in size! So, I started searching for other sized shadow box picture frames. I purchased a couple different frames–each one deeper than the previous one! I couldn’t find another 8” x 10” frame that was deep enough where the glass wasn’t bumping into the poor little iguana’s head. Now he is about 3 inches in depth. Alas, a frame the iguana will fit into! I had to move up in frame size-from an 8” x 10” to a 10” x 14” x 4” inch frame.

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Vote: Which safari would you rather?

One of the difficult things about being your own boss and working out of your own studio is you rarely get to hear feedback from people. Without feedback and constructive criticism, it is nearly impossible to improve or continue to create and deliver what people are looking for, so I need your help! Please VOTE in the comments section on which of the following you like better!

The two below paper cut illustrations are “Safari Paper Cutting Silhouettes”, and the “Safari Paper Cutting Silhouettes with Watercolor background.” Please vote as to which paper cut illustration you prefer–the black and white silhouette or the one with the watercolor sunset background.

Safari Paper Cutting Silhouette

Safari Paper Cutting Silhouette

Safari Paper Cutting Silhouettes with Watercolor Background

Safari Paper Cutting Silhouettes with Watercolor Background

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L>M: Small works in a great space

Less_is_More Friday night, I attended the Artist’s Reception for their L>M (Less is More) miniature art show at the Mitchell Gallery in Annapolis, MD.  The weather was gorgeous, the art was amazing, and the food was delicious. It was refreshing to see so many people attending this event.

The show consists of 269 works of art from 185 artists. The show had a wide variety of art – paintings, drawings, photographs, ceramics, sculpture, and jewelry. Realistic or abstract-there was something for everyone to enjoy and to be a part of. One of the most important stipulations to the show was that the artwork could not be any larger than 8” x 10” x 4”. I also think it’s great that the proceeds from this event will support other educational programs at Mitchell Gallery. It is a nice way to give back to the community.

Two of my watercolor paper sculpture illustrations titled; “Seahorse Surprise” and “Summer in the Meadow” were selected to be a part of the exhibition.  As an artist, it is very exciting to see your work hanging up in a gallery amongst your peers.  It was a pleasure to create my paintings and my hope is that visitors to the gallery will also see and feel the same excitement I do, and hopefully make them smile.

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Seaside Art Gallery Miniature Art Show

My two paper sculpture illustrations, titled:

“Bushel of Blues”


“Seaside Treasures”


…Are on display at this juried exhibition in Nags Head, NC.

23rd International Miniature Art Show
Seaside Art Gallery
2716 South Virginia Dare Trail, Nags Head, NC 27959

May 3, 2014 to May 31, 2014

Artist’s Reception:
May 24, 2014

If you’re in the area, come take a look!