Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Rembrandt Tulips in Colored Pencil... another work in progress ...

Sacha here, turning this particular post over to "mom" ... she's a lot more boring than I am! Prepare to be bored ... *cat giggling*

A work in progress - colored pencil piece.

The subject(s) of this work in colored pencil is one sort of the heirloom tulip bulbs that I grow in my garden - the Rembrandt "Insulinde".

© Judith Nijholt-Strong
"Looking up at the Rembrandts" work in progress
14.5"h x 8"w
colored pencil on paper

In April & May of this year, I was more often than not outside sketching and drawing the heirloom tulips that I grow in my garden here in the Netherlands.

These are Rembrandt tulips, "Insulinde" - known for the broken color pattern in the petals. The broken color pattern is caused by a virus in the bulb and I have to say that last year, they did look a bit different, so I guess the virus continues to change over winter while the bulbs lie dormant ... but what a lovely virus! , imo.

These tulips were initially sketched from life and then from several of my sketches - from that point on, I drew directly onto my paper to begin a finished work. I really do not like tracing my sketches or tracing from a photo and then having to transfer it all to another piece of paper. I find all that tracing and retracing just a big pain (besides being painfully boring) and honestly, I think it makes an already sometimes tedious medium (colored pencil) even more tedious. So, I just go straight in with a drawing, fearlessly right onto my paper. I use a Col-erase gray pencil when I do that in order to set out my initial outlines of some areas... you can easily erase it without toturing your paper. I do not map out the entire piece though - that's just more tedious work, imo.

Before you wonder....
Yes, I am aware that a lot of people endlessly critisize folks who trace their images onto paper and they claim that it isn't creative or it leads to stiff results - I'm not making those claims because I don't really care what someone else chooses to do, or not to do...it is none of my business and honestly, who really cares ? Not me. However, I do care what I choose to do and for me, it's just a boring, painful , task to trace and transfer. I am confident that I can draw what I see and how I see it (and I'm not looking for perfection, even if it appears that I might be). I can also make it as stiff and boring as I want it to be too without tracing - so I see no point ... LOL !

Back to what I did to prepare for this piece:
I cut three of my tulips from the pot I had them growing in and brought them indoors to study the patterning and color of the petals, which varies from petal to petal and from flower to flower. This type of Rembrandt tulip, the "Insulinde", starts off as a creamy yellow-green bud with dark maroon/purple stripes and a very dark maroon stem. As the bloom opens, it becomes a white to very pale cream color and the stripes on the petals darken a bit, while the stem goes into a pale green color. It also seems to me that as the "Insulindes" grew, their heads became bigger and in the end they were an extremely tall tulip as well. I found it a very intriguing, always different, tulip - very lovely.

Here is a bud of the "Insulinde", you can see how creamy-yellow it is at this stage and the dark purple stem:

Rembrandt "Insulinde" tulip bud
image copyright, Judith Nijholt-Strong

A little fruther along in opening up, less yellow in the petals now and the stems have gone more green.

Rembrandt Insulinde tulips
image copyright, Judith Nijholt-Strong

In my drawing, the view point, (upwards or ant's view), was accomplished by holding a tulip in my hand as I drew it from that angle... a bit tricky, but I enjoyed the challenge. I'm hoping this view is working ...

© Judith Nijholt-Strong
"Looking up at the Rembrandts" work in progress
detail, colored pencil on paper

Not wanting a totally boring, single color, background, I decided to invent a sky to go behind my tulips. Based on several other studies I've done in my sketchbooks of skies and clouds, I came up with this one ... so more or less, invented.

Materials used:
Paper used: Stonehenge
Colored Pencils used: ( yes, it is possible and perfectly fine to combine the following pencils in a piece. There is no problem in mixing the different brands, even though some may be wax-based and others oil-based)
Caran d'Ache Pablos
Faber-Castell Polychromos
Bruynzeel Full-Colors (this brand has been discontinued, but I have a couple of sets)
Prismacolor (only: dark grape, black cherry, white, cream)

Well, that's all I have for now. I will have to scan another update sometime next month .... this is, of course, yet to be finished .... to be continued.



Monday, June 16, 2008

Holland's next top model ... a cat?

... that would be me, Sacha!

image of Sacha copyright Judith Nijholt-Strong
not sure where the app. came from..can't remember.

;-) Just being silly, as always, but not bad for a little cat, eh?!

BTW, If you came to this blog looking for serious, pedantic, boring, bullet-posted stuff ... uhh, you came to the wrong place! For that, you'd have to pay us, dearly. If you came to have fun then enjoy, look around, have a cookie ( or a sardine, lol ) because life is way too short to be serious all the time! So says I, the gorgeous little cat from Holland!

heh heh heh .. Looks like the "Random Silliness" category of this blog is going to take the lead soon... LOL

doei, doei (bye-bye)

Saturday, June 14, 2008

and the winner is ...


Netherlands 4 - France 1

With the win last night, Friday the 13th, the Netherlands advances safely to the Quarter Finals of the European Cup Soccer Tournament. "Papa" is happy!

We ate orange pastries for good luck!
:o) :o) :o) :o)

Tot ziens!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

European Cup Football (Soccer) - Random Silliness in Utrecht

It's European Cup Football ( Soccer) time again .... even the mannekins in this Opticien's window in Utrecht are in the "orange" spirit!

photo copyright Auke Nijholt
"Hup Holland! in Utrecht, 2008"

The Netherlands is in the tournament this year (in Group C), along with 15 other European countries (but not the UK countries or Ireland... oops! didn't make it this season... heh heh ).
Holland did win their first game against Italy this past Monday night. The Dutch lads will face France in a game tomorrow night.

This year's tournament is being hosted by both Austria and Switzerland - with games being played in both countries. There is a truck load of soccer/football (voetbal) games in the next, I don't know how many, weeks (goes on forever, imo) until we get to the final game for the championship/cup. As a cat, I'm pretty bored with it all (except for the balloons around just waiting to be popped! lol), but my human "papa" loves it - so if he's happy, I'm happy. :o)

National team spirit and random silliness go hand in hand (not paw in paw, mind you)... with loads of oranje /orange (the Dutch national team's color) to be seen around town and lots of random silliness. I really don't like the fireworks or the fog horn blasts everytime a goal is made -but I do like the orange colors though and uhmm, salmon is sometimes sort of an orange color ... LOL

Link to the Dutch team! :o)
(you can change the language to suit your needs)

Hup Holland! (Go Holland!)
Sacha, the kat in klompen

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Busy, busy, busy! ~ ~ ~ Druk, druk, druk!

.Everyone is busy! Iedereen is druk!

The bees are busy in our Campanula flowers.
De bijen zijn druk met onze Klokjesbloemen.
photo copyright Judith Nijholt-Strong, "Bumblebee in the Campanulas"

The ducks are busy in the water behind our house.
De eenden zijn druk in de sloot achter ons huis.
photo copyright Judith Nijholt-Strong , "Dutch Ducks 3"

"Mom" is busy with her colored pencil drawing of a Clivia.
"Mam" is druk met haar kleurpotloodtekening van een Clivia.
art work copyright Judith Nijholt-Strong "Light in the Clivia" (work in progress)
12cm x 16cm, colored pencils on d'Arches 400gm cover paper

I'm busy gardening! I'm clipping things ... really.
Ik ben druk met de tuin! Ik ben aan het snoeien ... echt waar.
photo copyright Judith Nijholt-Strong, "Sacha the Gardener"

Oh!, I'm also on pest control duty.Yesterday, I caught a mouse! :o)
O, ik doe ook nog aan ongediertebestrijding. Gisteren heb ik een muis gevangen! :o)
I must go now ... I'm busy!!! Ik moet nu gaan ... ik ben druk!!!
Doei! (bye!)


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