Enjoy life now... it has an expiration date.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Keep it simple...

Keeping it simple hasn't always come naturally to me, although as I get a little older the concept becomes more and more attractive. Sounds rather inviting and relaxing doesn't it?

So, with simplicity in mind, I recently gave myself a very short time period in which to sketch and color something. I chose a foxglove that was in bloom in my garden and decided to do the sketch digitally (using Corel Painter and a Wacom tablet). I worked with pen and ink and digital watercolor.

I've got mixed feelings about the result. Looks a little untidy to me but at least I stayed within my time limit... and away from the details!

Friday, May 23, 2008

The Sketch That Started a Blog

Here's the original image for the Virtual Sketch Date (Tripod the Cat).

Image courtesy of Jeanette Jobson.

And here's my sketch of Tripod

A new venture (or, how another blog came into being....)

A couple of months ago I discovered the world of blogging.

I was immediately amazed that (a) there was a whole new world out there and I had remained ignorant of it for years - even though I work on a computer 5 days a week-, and (b) there were lots of really nice folks busily blogging away who were kind enough to share their knowledge and offer encouragement.

After discovering blogging, I signed up for a dozen or more art blogs and enjoyed the colorful postings. But the idea of having my own blog never occurred to me. Actually it was suggested to me. By Rose of Rose's Art Lines. Rose initiated a Virtual Sketch Date in which one person picks a photo, emails it to all the participants and after a week each participant uploads their sketch to their blog so that we can all see each other's drawing. Great idea. And of course everyone participating in the Virtual Sketch Date had a blog.... except yours truly. Rose was kind enough to upload my image onto her blog, giving me the thrill of seeing my work on the net for the first time ever. (Ask my husband.... "Honey, my sketch is on the net!" I said as I dragged him over to my computer for a look).

The next sketch date is June. I considered starting a blog. Nah. I know nothing about a blog. I don't have time for a blog. Nope. No blog for me. But the blog idea wouldn't go away. I remembered Rose posting on how a blog motivates you to make more art and knew that I needed to make more art. Plus, if I had a blog I could upload my own sketch for the Virtual Sketch Date and could share recipes, quotes, a good book I'd found. Might be fun? Is this how we talk ourselves into something?

So, here we are. I'm not sure how often I'll post or what will be in the posts. You might get a quote, a recipe, a sketch or painting or just a little chat. And, of course, I'm new to all of this so bear with me as I experiment and learn my way around.

Thanks for stopping by!

Blueberry Pie Recipe

Blueberries aren't just for summer around here. Every July and August finds us spending many hours perched on ladders and crawling through bushes to pick the fattest, sweetest berries. We freeze blueberries by the gallon. Throughout the year we enjoy them on cereal, ice cream, stewed and... the hands-down favorite.... Blueberry Pie!
Here's my recipe for Southern Blueberry Pie (makes 2 pies)
4 deep dish pie shells, thawed (2 for the pies, 2 to make the lattice top)
3 cups white sugar
10 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons cinnamon
12 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
1 stick butter or margarine
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Mix sugar, cornstarch, salt and cinnamon.
- Place butter in large boiler and allow to gently melt. Add blueberries. (If using frozen blueberries allow them to thaw before adding the sugar mixture). Add sugar mixture and stir well. Bring to a low boil then immediately reduce heat to a gentle simmer. Stir regularly and cook for about 5 minutes. Allow to cool slightly.
- While the blueberry mixture is cooling, prepare the pie shells. Remove two of the pie shells from the foil pan, place on wax paper sprinkled with flour and cut into approx. 1" strips.
- Place the blueberry filling in each of the pie shells. Use a little water to moisten around the edge of the pies, then make the lattice top using the strips of cut pie dough.
- I usually place a pie edge protector on each pie to keep the edge of the crust from burning.
- Bake for approximately 50 minutes. Allow to cool.
- Enjoy.... especially with vanilla ice cream!
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