Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Art and Fun!


Hi Everyone :)

Here is my watercolour painting for the Scribble Picnic this week. I felt very sad as I painted this...I saw a similar image online and this started off as a couple walking down a path together, but then it kind of became this lonely old man walking away from a park bench...I couldn't help but think of my grandfather's sadness after my grandma passed away as I painted this and I got quite emotional! Made me want to hug Alex. :)

I'm calling this painting "Love Lost". Sigh. :)

Anyway... back to the art! Michael's theme today is "Fill in the Blank" and the inspiration is a rectangle. (See the details here).

I know that my rectangle (the bench) in the painting might be a bit wider than his, so I tried a few drawings to make up for it! :) And to cheer myself up!!! :)


Can't go wrong with Snoopy and Woodstock! :) I can't wait to soak up some summer sunshine! :)


This piece was very new for me! My friend Dianna sent me a photo of an illustration that she found particularly creepy! It's from the Stephen King novel "Needful Things". The artist is Bill Russell. When I saw it, I thought it would be fun to try out my shading, using only the black pencil. But I did add some white highlights with the white pastel. I figured there would be plenty of rectangular shapes in this drawing to join the picnic :) Here is the original:


This was done using a method called "scratch-board illustration". It's a method where you cover a panel of cardboard with ink then scratch out your designs using a sharp tool. I think this is something I would love to try!


Alex and I went out on Monday for a walk and it was snowing beautifully! It was supposed to rain all day but we were happy with the snow because we went for a little slide!


A few blocks from where we live, there's a really tall ramp type of thing where you can slide down. We rarely go there because it's overrun with people, but the village was empty on Monday so we gave it a go! I screamed the entire way down...you'd be surprised how much velocity you have when you are in slippy snow!

Here are some of the drawings and pastels I've done the last week. :) Thank you again for all of your support with my art adventure! :)

Sunset at Blue Cabin

Hoping that February Showers Bring March Flowers

Piano Dreams

My Tribute to The Scream (or "How I Felt Turning 50 Years Old") ;)

True Colours/Strut Your Stuff!
🎂🎈🎂🎈🎂🎈🎂🎈🎂🎈🎂🎈🎂🎈🎂🎈🎂🎈🎂🎈



Look at the presents I got from Alex for my 50th! :) I got the hat and the aromatherapy diffuser early, but the rest was a nice surprise! The Kit Kat was a joke lol...my favourite chocolate bar! :)


We watched movies pretty much all afternoon, drank special coffees and he took care of dinner. He made me a Smoked Cheddar and Apple Fondue...(yup! another fondue!!)...this one is particularly good with the smoked Cheddar and apple flavours mingling so well, my favourite of all the fondues we've tried so far! And look! He used my potato for the bread! :) I have a little obsession for dishes shaped as food lol...



Did you notice he put more Kit Kats on the cake? :) This is a Ferrero Rocher cake...talk about yummy! This one definitely won't go to waste, guess what I'm having for breakfast!!! :) We opened the 10 year old port too, what a treat! Thanks to all of you guys for the birthday wishes this week as I so SUBTLY mentioned I'm turning 50 lol! :)

66 comments:

wisps of words said...

WOW!!!!!!! What a Birthday Cake! And 10 year old Port!!!! Yessssss!!!! And all the Birthday presents. Happy, Happy, Happy Birthday!

So nice to see the both of you!!!!!!!!!

Oh sigh, not gonna' talk about the first picture, cause it's very sad. -sighhhhh- But the others are cool, especially "Sunset at Blue Cabin." That looks "like" your Dream Place.

Oh mercy that cake!!!!!!! Oh mercy!!!!!! -gigggggles-

Lots and lots of Happy Birthday hugs...

Terry said...

Looks like you had a great birthday Rain. Being with somebody you love is plenty. I used to like kitkats too. They’re really great to eat. Your artwork looks nice. I very much doubt you’ll have to do it with all those books you got. I don’t really know your part of the world but i’m sure it’s very nice.

Susan said...

What? I missed your birthday?! I love the photograph of the two of you on the slides - I would love that! I used to slide down a big hill when I was small until I was wrinkled and blue - they had to drag me away. Happiest of all birthdays, to you, Rain!

jack69 said...

WELL HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! I enjoy your art work and WOW and CCCCOLD the slide! LOL
Love from sunny Florida!

Wanda said...

Happy Belated Birthday. Your cake is to die for. Sent me a sliver please.
Love seeing a picture of you and Alex.

I felt the sadness in your first painting. Years do help, but I lost my Dad back in 1967 at age 57. Cancer...how I miss him. And my Mom was widowed at 54. So young. At the time I thought they were old as I was in my 20's. But now at 76 and married 56 years...I know how hard it was for my mom. She never remarried, and she passed at 79 in 1991.

Thanks for the reminder that we need to treasure every day we have with those we love.

All the rest of your sketches made me smile. The best of both worlds.

Love and Hugs dear Rain,

Jenn said...

Happy Birthday week!!!
Love the photo of the 2 of you on the slide!
The 'Lost Love' photo is emotional. Make me think of my grandma, who visits my grandpa almost everyday even though he no longer knows who she is.

Pam Jackson said...

Loving all your art work. Great job on all of it. Hoping you had a great bday...looks like it anyway!!! The sliding looks like a BLAST. I would love doing that. And look at all your snow. Temps dropped here today. Mother Nature has no clue what she is doing to us all!! Thinking she had two days of hot flashes and today is the cool down! Yikes....wishing she would just not cool down so fast after two amazing days for us.

MrsDuncanMahogany said...

Look at all the lovely prezzies!!! What a fun birthday that was! Oh I would eat that whole cake! My family (except me) are not cake lovers so a cake is a treat in our house. The pic of you guys on the slide is adorable!! And look at the Hollywood snow! ;)

Oh your art! I want to buy all your pieces!! :) So, so beautiful!

Kristina said...

Your artwork is very nice. Happy Birthday too! That cake looks very good.

Christine said...

Happy Birthday! Your first piece made me sad and the 2nd made me happy! Lovely art this week, you are a prolific artist.

laurie said...

happy birthday!!!! Such a wonderful post,, full of beautiful art,yummy food
( that cake that cake that cake !!!!!! ) and beautiful happy smiling people! Thank you so much for sharing with us,
oh and yes that is a bit spooky how you painted that bench painting,, so much like my photo!!!

Sandi said...

Oh...I am just going to have to imagine he is walking to something, not away from something...

And I love Snoopy! :)

You want to scream about turning 50? Look up Halle Berry's photo of turning 50: "What 50 looks like."

Mama Pea said...

The instant I saw your first photo, I was enveloped in a feeling of sadness. To be able to create emotions like that . . . wow! Then I went on to the other pictures thinking, "Oh, I have to tell her I like this one best." Then the next one changed my mind to the "most liked one." And on and on through them all! I love that you let us see your art work.

When in grade school art class, we took crayons and filled the whole sheet of paper with multi-colored, random splotches. Then heavily colored over the whole thing with black crayon. Next took a sharp instrument and scratched out a picture so that your illustration showed through the black with all the rainbow colors. (Did I explain that well?) Anyway, your scratch board illustration made me think of that.

The slide looks like it was made of all wood? All I could think of was slivers in your livers!!

When we had been married only a few years (in the 60s), we lived in a smallish town. In the town's bakery there was a shelf going around two walls and on that shelf was a myriad of cookie jars all made to look like articles of food! I remember a green pepper (I wanted that so bad), an apple, an artichoke, a lemon, etc. You would have loved them. I did and would have bought two or three but at that time we had no money for two or three cookies jars!

Now I see I've written a book. So I'll stop. :o}

jaz@octoberfarm said...

scratch board illustration! i never knew it was called that! i haven't thought about that in years. i loved doing that when i was young. i should start doing it again! what a fun birthday with great food. i would love those slides. the scream has always been one of my favorite works.

Debra She Who Seeks said...

I really like your copy of Bill Russell's illustration! Plus I like your piano keys art too. Guess I'm a sucker for black-and-white art!

Sunnybrook Farm said...

The blue cabin has a nice Van Gogh look about it, you might get a large painting out of it some day. I had fun using yellow, if you darken yellow enough it becomes what people call brown but is really yellow.
More snow, I guess it will continue for a few more months, say hello to Santa!

Anonymous said...

Happy birthday Rain. My first time to comment on your blog. I love your Snoopy drawing. Harry sent me to your blog and I am glad he did. I have been enjoying all your cooking and artwork. Your cake is just plain decadent-yum! Jana

Martha said...

Hi Rain, I am loving all your artwork! And it's wonderful that you're having such a great time with it. It's been on the backburner for me. My motivation is down. But I'll get back to it soon enough because it's so much fun.

It looks like you had a beautiful birthday. I'm really happy for you! And I love that photo of you and Alex. It is precious!

Harry Flashman said...

I liked the pictures of the two of you, out for your walk in the snow. Life is good.

I liked the picture of the old man walking you painted, it didn't make me sad, just some old fellow out enjoying the evening is how I see it!

You do good posts, Rain.

Toirdhealbheach Beucail said...

You can never go wrong with Snoopy. And Happy Birthday!

Lorraine said...

First things first - HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! Looks like you were treated very special. I'm craving a slice of that cake! I love your blue painting. It reminds me of a scene from the movie about Van Gogh - Loving Vincent. Very, hauntingly beautiful. I'm loving all your artwork actually - you are really honing your skills wonderfully.

Serena Lewis said...

Belated birthday wishes! Sounds like you had a lovely day.

You really captured that sad mood with your blue piece....it is quite sad to think of the lonely, old man leaving the park bench. You are doing so well with your art pieces. An art friend of mine here in Brissie does some beautiful, realistic pieces, mostly animals, using scratch-board. She gave me a small board to try one year but I still haven’t used it yet.

I could go a glass of port right about now. :)

joeks said...

I love that your artwork is so varied. We never know what you'll come up with!

Oh, that cake – perfect way to celebrate a special birthday! And the slide looks like great fun, too.

Cozy Thyme Cottage said...

Happy Birthday Rain! Looks like you had a very nice one with Alex. I love the picture of you two and sliding down that slide sounds like so much fun. Art is a mystery to me but it looks like you are really going to town on yours! Have a great day!d Nancy

Andrea Priebe said...

I missed all of it ... so sad, my computer died and is in the computer hospital. But 50 years old ... oh you are on the leading edge of the best years of your life. And your husband is a dear ... all those presents and that CAKE! OMG, I can just feel the delicious calories clamoring to get on your body and every bite would be worth it. All of your art is wonderful, Rain. You are an amazing person and your art reflects your wonderful depth. I hope I will be back functioning soon ... I hate being on the outside looking in :( So Happy Birthday a bit late ... and that slide, now that is scary!

Andrea @ From the Sol

Magic Love Crow said...

Where to start! The first painting, even though you felt sad, I think it's quite beautiful. You can truly feel the emotions in it! Very well done with your art pieces! You have experimented with so many different things! You are doing great! I want to go on that slide!!!! You and your man are so cute!!! That cake!!! I want that cake!! LOL! Big Hugs!

Toni said...

Wishing you a happy, happy birthday and a wish for many, many more.

Your art is impressive. It's cool that you are not married to any one style but open to trying new things.

No Ruts for Rain!!!

Michael said...

Well, there's so much to talk about here, I am not even sure where to begin! I mean, look at that cake, for starters! Wow. Yummm! HAPPY BELATED BIRTHDAY, Rain! i 'm so glad you celebrated in style and took the day jsut relaxing, watching movies and enjoying foods, etc. It's a big day after all. Since you live so remotely, not sure how you got the photo of you two but I love it!! Great to see Alex AND you! you look perfect together. So great!!

now, as for that slide, did you check the bottom of it first to ensure there was nothing sharp sticking out to slide into? :) What a thrilling ride otherwise!

Must admit, didn't get the bench as the shape initially until looking at it this time (unlike the snoopy and black and white brill revised version of that original etch. Well done on all three. I love on the park bench one and the latter, how you manage to imbue emotion into your paintings. Fab job and good uses for the rectangle on all three. Thank you so much!

BTW, your drawings are fabulous too. That piano!

Trina said...

I like your shading with the black pencil, looks good, I'm sure that can be challenging sometimes. I also like your pastels, makes me want to try out mine again.

baili said...

OH my God this is MAGICAL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

i am afraid that i may forget so first of all thank you soOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO much for sharing the most precious photo of both of you dear Rain!

you guys are awesome and your faces have childlike innocence and attraction .and this is because of you have beautiful souls and make wonderful couple together ,imagined listening your screams while slipping lol too much fun!


Hearties Happy Birthday my friend ,i have two years to join your club :)
may you see much happiness and serenity in life with your dear life partner!!!

you amazed me with your art ,you are incredibly GOOD at this Rain and the gloomy effects of first painting and the memories you shared made my eyes wet .As i mostly suffer with diseases and think if i die hubby will be so alone and then i say him to marry with a nice woman who can lookafter kids too with love and care :)

sunset at blue cabin is enchanting and flowers ,yes i start having them in my garden as construction work is finished for few months .

your imagination is cute with rectangle .
Loved the birthday cake and your fav kitkat ,my boys love it too .

wishing you a happy peaceful life ahead my friend ,hugs!

Rain said...

Thanks Wisps of Words :))) We have a few little slices of the cake left, that'll be gone tonight! :) The port is a dream. It's so smooth and it has a little smokey flavour! I love it! We're trying to keep some for next month, it'll be our 5 year anniversay in March so we want to have some then too. :)

Rain said...

Hi Terry :) It was a fun few days, Alex had lots of fun things planned and surprises. :) Made me feel really special. Kit Kats are long gone lol...I can eat those things TOO fast!

Rain said...

Hi Susan :) Thank you :) The sliding was fun, but my gosh, when did I become such a chicken lol...

Rain said...

Thanks Jack and Sherry :) I think my fear of sliding down warmed me up and I didn't even feel the cold ha ha! :)

Rain said...

Thanks Wanda :) I'd send you a sliver, but it's nearly all gone! :) I know it's been a long time, but I'm sorry about the loss of your father. It's hard when people make such an impact in our lives. I have to be careful because every time I look at my painting, tears come to my eyes!! I didn't think I'd be able to finish it actually. I'm glad the other sketches cheered you up! :)

Rain said...

Thanks Jenn :) Oh, that is sad about your grandparents. My grandma had a stroke and she didn't really know who anybody was most of the time near the end. My grandfather did the same, visited her every day in the hospital. Sigh. :)

Rain said...

Thanks Pam :) Ha ha ha...Mother Nature having hot flashes, feels familiar hee hee. That's a great way to put it! The slide really was fun though it took some coaxing for me to do it lol...

Rain said...

Thanks Dianna :) You're so supportive. :) Ha! Hollywood Snow! I told Alex about that when we were walking!!!

Rain said...

Thanks Kristina :) It was a really nice day :)

Rain said...

Thanks Christine :) That's very sweet of you to say. I'm glad I was about to show my emotions in the art this week. :)

Rain said...

Thanks Laurie :) Isn't it odd how close my painting is to your photo??? That kind of took me aback! The cake...I could use a little more right now lol! I'll have to exercise an extra half an hour a day for a week though! :)

Rain said...

Hi Sandi :) Well, I ain't no Halle Berry lol...but I know what you mean. I actually feel okay being 50, it's just weird to think I've lived that long already! I like that interpretation of the man walking. :) Thank you. xx

Rain said...

Hi Mama Pea :) Oh thank you xxx! What you did in grade school is scratch board illustration I guess too, I'm sure more than just ink can be used as a medium. When I was doing oil painting, I often used the knives to cut through the oil to make branches on trees and things like that. I love that, and I will be trying that next when the budget allows!!

Ha ha ha ha...slivers in our livers, or worse eek! LOL...Trust me, we checked it out. The slide was covered with a type of sheeting on it...like those slippery slide type of roll-up plastic things crazy people use as sleds...we FLEW down! Oh I would have LOVED those cookie jars!!!! Every time I see something like that at the thrift stores, I always grab them (as Alex's eyes roll up again lol)!

Rain said...

Hi Joyce :) Oh that's cool that you've done scratchboard illustration! I hope you start it again, I'd love to see your work! I definitely want to try it one day too. I love the effect!

Rain said...

Thanks Debra :) I love the black and white art too. I looked up more Bill Russell illustrations and they are fantastic, very inspiring!

Rain said...

Thanks Gill :) I know what you mean about the yellows. One day I really would like to have a big enough studio to make some big pieces. It's so much fun. Santa says hello back, but warns you to be a better boy this year, or more coal! :)

Rain said...

Hi Jana :)) Thanks for visiting! And thanks for the birthday wishes! You can be sure that there will be art and food pretty much on each blog post, those are my passions!!! :) Sprinkled in with some pet stuff and gardening too :)

Rain said...

Thanks Martha :) I hope your motivation comes back! I loved seeing your drawings, and the more you do, at least in my case, the more you WANT to do. I hope you get the pastels out, just don't wear white...lol...ask me how I know that! ;) Alex and I are having a great time lately, the "winter blues" seem to be over for this year. :)

Rain said...

Thanks Harry :) And thank you for that interpretation of my painting. I really like that, it lightens my heart! :) Life is pretty good lately, I'm very grateful! :) And thanks for mentioning my blog to Jana :)

Rain said...

Thanks TB :) Snoopy will always bring a smile to anyone's face! :))

Rain said...

Thanks Lorraine :) I appreciate your comment! I do love Van Gogh's work, maybe that really does influence me! I was lucky enough to visit Le Louvre way back in the 80's and I spent so much time with the impressionist and post-impressionist artists...they really are inspiring!

Rain said...

Thank you Serena :) You are one of my inspirations for my art, you may not know that, but you are. :) I think you should try the scratchboard, you'd probably rock at it, like with all of your art work! :) I'll have a glass of port with you, a virtual toast! (clink!) :)

Rain said...

Thanks Jolene :) I'm so glad you are enjoying the art! :) I don't think in a straight line that's for sure lol...the cake was so good, and the day was memorable! :)


Rain said...

Thanks Nancy :) We had a lot of fun on the slide, actually I was convinced to go down twice lol...it was terrifyingly fun! :)

Rain said...

Thanks Andrea :) Oh no!!! I hate when the computer dies!!! I'm VERY lucky that Alex knows about all that stuff...he's fixed my computer when it's died or froze on me before. I LOVE that you said I'm on the leading edge of the best years of my life, and I think I already agree with you! :) You're so sweet! I hope you get back online soon too! I want to see more of your drawings!!! xx

Rain said...

Thanks Magic Love Crow :) It's nice to know that others can feel the emotions in the paintings...ha ha ha...the cake was the star of the show! The slide was so much fun, we were lucky that nobody else was around because we felt so free and relaxed. We're both a little phobic of crowds and we would have likely not gone up if there were people there. I'm glad we got to do it though! We've been here 3 winters already and this was a first! :)

Rain said...

Thanks Toni :) xx No ruts!!!! At least I'm trying! :) All of the different styles are so exciting, I think my favourite right now is still the watercolours, but the pastels are a close second!


Rain said...

Thank you Michael!! :)) It was such a fun time! The photo of the two of us is actually a "selfie"! Alex is a pro at holding his phone while taking a photo, I can't do it, mine get all blurry or it ends up being a shot of one eye or one limb lol... Ha ha ha...you can be sure we checked the slide! There was ice forming at the bottom and we chipped it away first JUST in case lol...Thanks again, I'm enjoying your prompts so much...I've challenged myself to a painting and a drawing for each one. The Bill Russel drawing was really interesting for me to do. I want to try more of that style when I can! I used to play piano when I was younger. When we settle down, that is something I want to add to our home for sure. I miss it!

Rain said...

Thanks Trina :) I wasn't sure about the shading because I don't have that "in" me...I don't think I get shading all that much, but I have a nice resource for drawing on You Tube and I'm learning! I hope you try out your pastels, I'd love to see your work! :)

Rain said...

Hi Baili :) Oh thank you for your sweet comment!!! Did you see any fear in my face in that photo? Lol...my heart was skipping as I looked down ha ha! It was fun though. You are a spring chicken lol! I think that we ladies who are of this age really are enjoying life so much, we know what makes us happy don't we? I'm so glad your flowers are starting to bloom! That must help during the renovations! You have such a big heart for your hubby. xx

Mary said...

So sorry I'm late with comments and birthday greetings dear Rain - can see you had a wonderful time though. Seeing the pic of you with Alex was certainly a treat - what a lovely couple you make. These upcoming years will be the best ever - enjoy every moment.

I'm rushed to get ready now for the big trip next week and sadly yesterday we heard my BIL in AZ has hd a heart attack and is hospitalized for major surgery. Bob is very close this older brother so we are very upset but hoping for a good outcome. As I said dear, enjoy each day and make every moment special.

I'll be unable to comment or participate in Scribble Picnic whilst on the expedition - but will keep you and all my blog friends in my thoughts.
Hugs - Mary

Rain said...

Hi Mary :) Thanks for taking some time to stop by! I know how you're in "prep" mode now...I'm so sorry about your brother in law, my gosh, how awful. You are so right, we need to live for each moment, you just never know when we might lose our happiness, our home, or worse. Take care of yourself!!!

Stefanie said...

The ramps look fun; how neat to have that for the village. Happy belated birthday, Rain. I'm sorry I missed it, but I'm glad you had a lovely celebration. Your husband is very thoughtful and sweet to you. Love the perspective drawing of the piano keys and what patience you had to draw all of those peacock feathers.

Rain said...

Thanks Stefanie :) That's funny you mention the peacock. When I first sketched it out, I figured, okay...this will be a drawing meditation because my hand might get sore a little...I kind of zoned out doing it lol! :)

Nicole Thomas said...

Looks like u had a wonderful birthday. Sorry I missed all of it but I've been sick for about two weeks and am just bow getting better ... the weather helps ... getting out, getting some energy. Now I will eventually catch up on everything :) so happy to see that you got apoiled. Happy 50th 🎂💜⚘

Sam I Am...... said...


What wonderful drawings and artwork! When they say practice makes perfect they aren't kidding. You just get better and better! What a wonderful celebration for your birthday Alex put on! I'm sorry I missed the day but I'm so glad you had such a great one. Mine was not so fun...I got in a car accident and my furnace blew up! But it could have been worse! LOL!