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Stonehinge: My Own Little World

May 19, 2014

Yes, that’s “Stonehinge” with an “i”.  Something about it just seems funny to me.  And that fits what I’m doing.

We’re sitting still in Houston while Nell heals from her broken leg surgery.  She’s recuperating well and even taking little baby steps without the walker.  Meanwhile, I’ve found myself wandering into new territory. stonehinge sketches 1

Sitting in medical office waiting rooms with a sketchbook has produced some fun results.  Sketches like the ones above have sprung from my pencils and taken on a life of their own.

no 7a no 10 on easel These quirky, whimsical little sketches are being produced at various small sizes.  Those above are on 3″ x 3″ canvas on wood stretchers.  So far, I’m discovering that a very sharp graphite pencil is the best thing for the base sketch.  The paint is acrylic, which allows me to use washes without lifting the layers below. tree commission amber hutchins 8x10

One of the smaller pieces on canvas was purchased on Etsy within hours of being posted.  Before it was even shipped, the buyer commissioned the piece above, which is 10″ x 8″, pencil and acrylic on illustration board.

no 26

The piece above is 6″ x 6″, pencil and acrylic on illustration board.  I’m pretty sure this is actually my first nocturne ever.  This one has already received some interest.

no 23

The piece above is 7″ x 5″, pencil and acrylic on illustration board.  From the standpoint of color, composition and just plain nutty fun, this is one of my favorites so far.


And, although these may not satisfy the purists, you have to admit:  I’m still doing landscapes.

Actually, I was reaching a bit of a saturation point with the work I was doing.  I love the subject matter: hills, fields, rocks, trees and old buildings, but I was beginning to feel like I was doing the same thing as everyone else, albeit without bringing much creativity to the work.  Since throwing myself into these whimsical little pieces of colorful art, I have felt more creative than I have in a very long time.

And besides… it’s a heck of a lot of fun.

10 Comments leave one →
  1. Margaret Quin permalink
    May 20, 2014 8:45 am

    Love your whimsical art!

    Margaret Quin,
    Sent from my iPhone


  2. Marilyn permalink
    May 20, 2014 5:57 pm

    These are just wonderful! They may take you in a whole new direction!

  3. May 20, 2014 11:40 pm

    I love these-they’re fun and colorful!

  4. William R Moore permalink
    May 21, 2014 9:27 am

    Glad to hear Nell’s recovery is going well. Ralph, you might have missed your calling as a children’s book illustrator. Have fun, let the imagination run

    • May 31, 2014 7:39 pm

      Thanks, William. I started an illustrated book several years ago, but backed off from it. I’m really having fun with this. We’re talking about trying something different with this. We’ll see how it goes.

  5. May 29, 2014 12:32 pm

    I found your blog while searching for info on gouache – and it is a trove of info – but these little paintings are the ones that made me stop and comment! The pencil sketching is so lively and fresh. They really express the sense of playfulness and creativity that you mention.

    • May 31, 2014 7:40 pm

      Thanks, Susan. Glad you found the blog informative. These little sketches are really a lot of fun to do.

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