Thursday, May 28, 2009

Yellow Chicken with Blue Eye

Title: Yellow Chicken with Blue Eye
6"x6" digital interpretation
©2009 Christine Pierce

I was busy checking out the plants in a hip, urban boutique/garden store in North Portland, when this busy little chicken came pecking by. I was so surprised! I went inside the store and discovered a crate full of baby chicks peeping away and warming under a light.

The owner explained that he supplies baby egg-laying chicks to dozens and dozens of customers. Apparently urban chicken farming is becoming quite popular in Portland!

Here is another version:

Title: Multi-Colored Chickens
12"x12" digital interpretation
©2009 Christine Pierce

Purple Silos with Red Poppies (2 Versions)

Title: Purple Silos with Red Poppies
in Watercolor

7x7 inches, micron pen and watercolor on 140-lb cp
©2009 Christine Pierce
(please click on image to enlarge)

Title: Purple Silos with Red Poppies
digital interpretation

24x16 inches
©2009 Christine Pierce
(please click on image to enlarge)

The paintings done for the Different Strokes from Different Folks challenge are supposed to be done with traditional media. Digital interpretations are not allowed. So, I pulled out my micron pen and watercolors, painted the top version, and submitted it to the challenge.

And then I pulled out my computer stylus and did the second painting, based on the first. I guess you could say, "Different Strokes from the Same Folk."

All in all, I enjoyed creating both paintings. Surprisingly (to me), the watercolor version took much less time than the digital version. And I can see what a difference cropping makes. I am very partial toward the square format, and may end up cropping the digital painting so that it, too, is square.

You can see the reference photo here and the other artists' terrific and varied interpretations here.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Hoedown Sisters

Title: Hoedown Sisters
5" x 7.35" digital painting
©2009 Christine Pierce
(please click on image to enlarge)

This month's Virtual Sketch Date features a photograph of two young sisters dancing at a hoedown. The reference photo is really small, but I think I captured the essence of the image. And I had great fun smooshing around the colors for the background!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Steller's Jay

Title: Steller's Jay
12x12 inch digital interpretation
©2009 Christine Pierce
(please click on image to enlarge)

A couple of weeks ago, my husband and younger son and I took a day hike in the beautiful Columbia River Gorge. We saw lovely waterfalls, wildflowers, and birds, including this very blue Steller's Jay.

West Highland Terrier at Farmer's Market

Title: West Highland White Terrier
at Farmer's Market

12x12 inch digital interpretation
©2009 Christine Pierce
(please click on image to enlarge)

We walked to the local farmer's market Saturday and were happy to see a doggy day-care set up for the event. All of the dogs were carefully attended, and we had the opportunity to see some very cute animals, including this little West Highland White Terrier.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Saucy, Bernese Mountain Dog

Title: Saucy the Bernese Mountain Dog
12"x12" Digital Interpretation
©2009 Christine Pierce
(please click on image to enlarge)

I created this digital painting for my friend. Her sweet dog, Saucy, died a couple months ago, and I wanted to give her something to remember her by. I was given a close-up, head-shot photo of Saucy, which I then adapted with a somewhat untraditional color palette.

I hope I captured her likeness!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Warhol Asparagus

Title: Warhol-style Asparagus
22"wx28"h Digital Interpretation
©2009 Christine Pierce
(please click on image to enlarge)

I took a picture of our asparagus before dinner last night and used Corel Painter 11 to make this digital painting. It is based on a tutorial found in one of my favorite "how-to" books: Digital Painting Fundamentals with Corel Painter X by Rhoda Grossman.

How much do I like this book? Well, let's just say I took it with me to read while I got a pedicure today. I found it more compelling than People magazine. Need I say more?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Beach Huts and Apricot Sky

Title: Beach Huts and Apricot Sky
46"x32" digital interpretation
©2009 Christine Pierce
(please click on image to enlarge)

This is based on a reference image for the Creative Challenge 14 in the Corel Painter Official Magazine. As soon as I saw the photograph, I knew the painting needed to have an apricot sky!

I created this digital painting in Corel 11 and then used the Poster filter in Photoshop to give it a somewhat edgier look. As with traditional painting, it is always challenging to know when to stop!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Jester Pug

Title: Jester Pug
©2009 Christine Pierce
7"x5" digital interpretation
(please click on image to enlarge)

Yesterday, we went to the Oregon Humane Society's Pug Crawl. There were hundreds of adorable pugs in costume for this fun annual fundraiser. It was a beautiful, sunny afternoon and I took tons of pictures as references for future paintings.

The little Jester Pug, above, caught my eye because he seemed so confident and poised as he marched down the runway.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Horse and Red Poppies

Title: Horse and Red Poppies
Digital Impression 20"x24" ©2009 Christine Pierce
(please click on image to enlarge)

This week's Inspiration All Around Us challenge features a beautiful horse standing in a field. The horse is so magnificent, but the wire fence seemed too jarring, so I took it out. You can see the reference photo here.

Thanks for another great photo, Dana Marie!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Rainbow Boxer

Title: Rainbow Boxer
©2009 Christine Pierce
21"x24" Digital Art
(please click on image to enlarge)

On a recent urban photo shoot in Portland, my friend Jenny and I met this very bouncy white boxer. He was so wiggly, I forgot to ask his owner what his name was!

But I did manage to take a picture of him. Then I played with the photo in Photoshop and Corel Painter 11 and came up with this piece of digital dog art.

I must say, creating modern digital art is more fun than I could ever have imagined!

Friday, May 8, 2009

Different Strokes from Different Folks Challenge (Week 32-34)

Title: Man in Orange Shirt
6"x10.5" watercolor and micron pen on 140-lb CP
(please click on image to enlarge)

Karin Jurick's challenge at Different Strokes from Different Folks (week 32-34) is a photo of Madison Avenue, New York City. Although it features taxi cabs and lots of tall buildings, my eye was drawn to the person standing on the edge of the sidewalk. I think he lends a bit of humanity to the busy urban landscape.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Kreativ Blogger Award

I was surprised and delighted to be given the Kreativ Blogger Award from the wonderful artist and fellow blogger, Christine Regan. This award is such a friendly acknowledgment and I am very honored to receive it. Thank you, Christine!

As part of the Award requirements, here are seven random things that I love:

  • pink tree blossoms;
  • gardening with my husband;
  • iced soy lattes;
  • drinking the aforementioned iced soy lattes in the company of good friends;
  • listening to my younger son practice his electric bass;
  • watching "Arrested Development" reruns with my older son;
  • geeky computer technology that allows me to play with art in new ways.
And now, I present the Kreativ Blogger Award to seven other bloggers. Visiting these artists' blogs always brings a smile to my face and a lightness to my day:

Beautiful Blossoms in Portland

Title: Crab Apple Blossoms
Nikon D40 (please click on image to enlarge)
©2009 Christine Pierce

My husband and I took a walk around Northeast Portland last Saturday, and the blossoms were blooming with gusto! I had thought cherry blossoms were my favorite tree flower, but the crab apple blossoms and pink dogwood blooms are giving them a run for the money!

Title: Pink Dogwood Branch
Nikon D40 (please click on image to enlarge)
©2009 Christine Pierce

This little pink dogwood blossom looked so demure, with its little leaves crossed just-so:

Title: Shy Pink Dogwood Blossom
Nikon D40 (please click on image to enlarge)
©2009 Christine Pierce

Upon further reflection, I guess my favorite blossoms are whatever flowers are blooming at the time...

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Digital "Major"

digitally adapted in Corel Painter 11

Recently, I read that one of my favorite artists has gone digital. David Hockney, age 71, has embraced digital technology and has created some phenomenal pieces for his current exhibit at his gallery, Annely Juda Fine Art in London.
“It’s probably only in the past year that the computer’s got quick enough to keep up with the draughtsman,” said Hockney. “It’s a very new medium and it’s turned out to be a fantastic medium.” (To read the rest of the TimesOnline article, please click here.)

I love that this renowned and seasoned artist is continiously experimenting with new media. He has even begun creating art on his i-Phone!

Inspired by Hockney's embrace of digital art, I have spent the last two days learning how to use Corel's Painter 11 program. As my subject, I used a photograph of Major, whose watercolor version you can see here.

The picture of Major, above, is the result of some doodling around with Corel Painter. The picture of Major, below, takes the above picture into Photoshop and adds some plug-in filters.

further adapted in Photoshop PS4 with Cutout Filter
and Topaz Adjust Filter

I am VERY new to this, but I am already hooked. I won't be hanging up my micron pen and watercolors any time soon, but it is nice to have some new artistic toys to play with!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Dog Sketch of "Major"

Title: "Major" ©2009 Christine Pierce
3x5 watercolor, micron pen and PS4
on 140-lb cold press
(please click on image to enlarge)

The other day, I went for a walk with my dad and his two dogs, Major and Ellie. I had my camera with me and was able to catch a calm pose of Major for this sketch. He is a two-year old rescue dog who is part border collie and part unknown.

It was so much fun watching Major and Ellie romp and play together in the park! If I can ever catch Ellie in a quiet moment, I will draw her, too.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Happy May Day!

Title: Lily-of-the-Valley (du Muguet)
4x4 watercolor and micron pen
on 140-lb Arches cp

In some parts of the U.S., we celebrate May Day (May 1st) with small floral baskets surreptitiously left at doorways. The giver places the bouquet on the doorstep, rings the door bell, and runs away.

In France, May 1 is la fĂȘte du muguet (the festival of the Lily of the Valley), a celebration of friendship, good luck and the arrival of spring.

The sketch above is loosely based on the lilies-of-the-valley which bloom outside our front door every year at this time.

Below is a video clip of Le Temps du muguet as sung by legendary French actress and singer Danielle Darrieux – who was born, coincidentally, on May 1 (hat tip to Alliance Française de Portland).

Happy May Day!


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