Saturday, September 27, 2014


One of the reasons I like working with watercolor is the juicy and dramatic effects which can come from floating pigment across wet paper. I found a series of internet tutorials by Linda Baker using a technique of pouring and splashing that really made the process fun. I used a photo I’d taken of our front porch as a reference, worked it into a sketch, decided where the darks and lights would be and transferred the outlines to a piece of watercolor paper.

I used masking fluid to cover the areas I wanted to remain the color of the white paper and then dropped in the primary colors of red, yellow and blue on the rest.

When the paper was completely dry, I again masked out everything I wanted to stay a light shadow and added more color to the remaining painting.

The process is repeated again with more mask on the middle darks and more paint.

This time I used mostly blue to cover the areas not masked out.

Finally I added a dark blue, with a few areas of red and a bit of yellow, to the deepest shadow areas. I let it dry overnight, peeled off the masking and added in the details for the final painting.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014


A tree full of plums. Fresh plums, boxes of plums, buckets of plums, plum fruit leather, dried plums, plum jelly, plum cobbler, plums for the neighbors until they wouldn’t answer the door when they saw us coming. Still there were more plums.

And there were those wonderful last-of-the-season peaches as well. Well? How about peach-plum pie?

 So I pitted a dozen or so plums and put them in a sauce pan to simmer while I peeled and sliced the peaches. I added a little bit of apple juice to the mixture and let it cook on low while I made the crust. Then I drained off the juice, thickened it, sweetened it, added some cinnamon and stirred the fruit back in.

The filling looked yummy and tasted pretty darn good. Ha!

I put on the top crust and put it in the oven to bake.

Still there was more filling and enough pie dough for a small pie.

They both baked up just fine, although the big pie looked like it had been in a fight when it came out of the oven. The little pie went down the street to the neighbors who just moved in a few days ago. I had a fine visit with them and made some new friends.

Big Peach-Plum Pie was delicious! I’m thinking the squirrels and birds are going to have to help us finish off the last plums on the tree.