Thursday, August 31, 2017

Flowers are Hard

I like this guy's YouTube tutorials:  Jay Lee Watercolor Painting (blog) or Jay Lee Watercolor Painting (Google+).

He makes it look easy. I mean, he has a baby strapped to himself while he's painting (soooo cute BTW)! 

I've been trying to copy this.

I'm still practicing. 

Water control . . . that's the key. But how in the world is he able to make the stem so fine and straight??!! You need to be really calm and at peace, yah? 

I breathe deeply and close my eyes. I hold my brush out in front of me and I draw a stroke in the air. I do this over and over.  

Zzzzzzz . . . 


Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Loving Hut Vegan Cuisine

Landon picked these up awhile back when we were full-on veganning. It's from Loving Hut Vegan Cuisine. I was really surprised at how tasty everything was. 

Lan took a little break and is back on as of today. And me? Except for dinner at Roy's and Mitch's Sushi, I'm still not eating meat, but I do have cream in my coffee and eggs once in awhile.

Spicy Moana ($12.95)

Sweet and Sour Hapa ($12.95)

Brocco Pua ($11.95)

Fabulous Pho ($12.50)

Rainbow Sandwich ($10.50)

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Basket of Sunflowers

I had the bright idea to paint a stamped image. But I soon realized that my watercolor paper is too bumpy for stamping. So I had to pencil-sketch and then ink a copy instead. I actually made several. The one below is the best. The rest were kinda ugly.

I painted a light wash of color on first, then painted more darkly over it. That's called layering. 

Some of the adjacent colors bled together because I wasn't patient enough to wait and let the paint dry first. Luckily, I had a paper towel on hand to blot out the bleeding in time for most areas. 

I tried to leave white spots because one tutorial said to do that, but it turned out to be easier said than done. Like shading, I didn't know where is good.

Lastly, I wanted to add in a funky color somewhere (like Mindy Lacefield), so I painted some fuchsia into the basket. I actually had too much water on my brush, and the fuchsia started spreading out more than I had expected. I had to quickly blot that too. Phew! Paper towels are my friend.


This is the brush I used.  I love it. It's a very thirsty brush which is good for watercolors. 

It actually looks too big for my small painting, but the tip is pointy enough so that even the small petals of the flower were no problem. I got it from Hawaiian Graphics. Regular price is $22.95. At 40% off it was $13.77.  The sale is still on this week. If you go, maybe you'll get free David Smith sample dots!

P.S. I went back to Hawaiian Graphics yesterday and got a similar brush but of a smaller size.  I had the same cashier as the last time so I hinted that I just looooooved the David Smith dots that he gave me. Made him smile. And that's all I got . . . one smile.

Monday, August 28, 2017

La Tour Falafel Banh Mi

I learned about this sandwich from Kat of Adventures in Japan. It's from La Tour and was super, super ono!

Falafel Banh Mi ($11.90) - Falafel, Harissa Hummus, Firecracker Sauce, Pickled Carrot & Daikon, Cucumber, Cilantro

Sunday, August 27, 2017

My Whistle

I bought this whistle awhile back. I had always feared that if I ever was unexpectedly attacked that I wouldn't be able to scream or draw attention. 

I usually hold it in my hands while I'm walking on the street, but I'm still not sure that I won't just be frozen. Maybe I should keep it dangling from my mouth just as a deterrent. At the least my attacker might think that I'm crazy and won't bother me.

I got it from Amazon and you can find it here. It came in a two pack so I gave the other one to one of my sisters. She walks a lot.


Saturday, August 26, 2017


The cashier at Hawaiian Graphics gave me these two sheets of sample $$$$Daniel Smith$$$$ watercolor dots. I was so excited because no way could I afford to buy the paints. A tiny little 1/2 ounce tube costs at least $10.


The paint is of such good quality that a little goes a long way. Aren't these candles so cute?  I copied this card by Mary McBride of betrueoriginals.

I painted enough to make nine greeting cards. From sample dots! How cool izdat, yah!

Friday, August 25, 2017


Yup, we went to Roy's. I can't even remember when we last went fine dining. 

But we were celebrating Landon's birthday so yah, we splurged . . . and every single thing was good . . .

including the service.  And vegan eating?  Out da window . . . 

Here's the customary complimentary edamame. 

Landon knew quite a few people who were working at Roy's that night, so this Spring Roll was comped . . . 

as well as this Kim Chee Tofu Wrap.

This is a Godzilla Roll . . .  I think . . . shrimp tempura and unagi.


Yummmmm! The bread was da bomb too!

My Green Goddess Salad and . . . 

Miso Butterfish.

Wendell had the Sunset Pau Hana Prix Fixe which included this Furikake Ahi Tataki . . .

Filet Mignon and Garlic Scampi . . .

and Pineapple Upside Down Cake with Ice Cream. 

Landon also had some kind of Prix Fixe which included this Appetizer Sampler . . . 

Braised Short Ribs,

and Chocolate Soufflé with Ice Cream.

He was also treated to this Coconut Panna Cotta. 

Thursday, August 24, 2017


I got the idea for this card from somewhere online. Unfortunately, I can't remember which site so I'm unable to give proper credit. 

I love how the colors came out! And guess what I used. IMG_7280

Ink from stamp pads! As you can tell by now, my drawing skills are limited, but I can copy simple things. I made the cats 1/2 inch wide with a 1/4-inch space in between. You should try! It's fun. This project really helped me learn how to control the amount of ink and water on my brush.

Here's what I did to get ink from the stamp pads. I squirted some water onto the pads and then brushed, brushed, brushed the pad with a paintbrush. Then I dipped the brush into water and dripped the water into a well of my pallette.  I did this several times to get a pool of ink. I found that you actually don't need much ink for the cat. The bottom portion of the cat is painted with mostly just water.

Just a heads up in case you might be interested. Hawaiian Graphics is having a Back to School sale right now. Keep in mind though that the regular prices are on the high end, but still . . .  25% to 40% off is a good deal. 

This is the only brush I used to paint the cat card. It's a 1/2-inch angled shader. I got it at the sale. Normally it's $9.25 at Hawaiian Graphics. At 40% off it was $5.81. Looks like it's $7.99 on Amazon right now, so that is a good price.

It's kinda overwhelming looking at the brush selection. But if you're interested in the watercolor brushes, they're on the left side of the brush display close to the check-out counter, and this particular brush is on the bottom shelf.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Insulated Bags

I cleaned out a kitchen cabinet last week. Except for one crock pot, it was filled with insulated bags. 


I gave away around half. Hopefully I won't be tempted to buy more. 

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Latest Greeting Card and the Aha! Moment

This is the card that I made using the failed background wash. The flowers are not painted. They're stamped.


My attempt at actually painting the flowers is on the bottom. Stamping was easier and looked better.

Here is my second try at making a "blended" background. Even though I wet the paper first, you can still see the separate sections. According to the tutorial, you shouldn't see any demarcations when done correctly. I couldn't figure out what I was doing wrong.

I decided to try something else. Do you remember the whale video? Remember how the colors spread out and then kinda blended together? Try look. My colors didn't blend at all.  


I googled "watercolor not blending" or something like that and found this. It says that there is transparent watercolor paint and there is OPAQUE watercolor paint. Opaque paints don't mingle well. AHA!! No wonda!! My paint from Ross must be OPAQUE!

And so I dug this out. I actually bought it from Fisher the day that I got the paint brushes. It was on sale for half price . . . $13. I was saving it for . . . you know . . . when I get good. But looks like I'm gonna have to bust it open even though I'm still junk. 

Monday, August 21, 2017

Arts and Craft Scores at the Swap Meet

I got a few extra-good deals at the swap meet this past weekend. I went on both Saturday and Sunday. But let me tell you . . . the heat was brutal. I only lasted 1 1/2 hours on Sunday. I left at 9:30 a.m. and the thermometer on my dashboard said 98 degrees!!!

Yarn for my mom . . . $1 each!

These pens were in a ziploc . . . $1 for the whole bag. 

These were in the same bag, but were dried up so I tossed them.

10 cents each for these pens!! Surprised me because the seller is a regular there and is usually not cheap. He admitted that he had no clue on the value.

These stamp pads were 50 cents each. I already have choke pads, but I was thinking of experimenting with these to see if I could somehow use the ink to paint with.

Not real sure how I'm gonna use these but it was only $2, and the girl was really nice.

This set was $1. 

Here's my next project. It didn't come out as gradually blended as I had wanted. I think I was supposed to wet my paper first. Next time.

See the fan in the foreground? I got it awhile back. It's a small Vornado. The blades are made of fabric so if you accidentally touch it like I always do, it doesn't hurt. I think I paid $3 for it.