The “Skin”ny on Skin

Forgive the title…I’m kind of a dork…

Yowzah it’s been a long time since I posted! So long that I forgot my password to log on to my site! I have been very very busy with things that I will share with you at a future point. However, for the moment, I’m STILL busy. I do want to show you a piece that I finished a few months ago, though, that I’ve yet to share. It’s a diptych (which is a fancy way of saying that it’s on two panels). I had so much fun with the colors in the skin tones-greens, violets, reds… To anyone reading this who is not a (totally obsessed with tiny details, value shifts, and color changes) realist artist, that statement probably sounded weird. I mean, caucasian hands should be painted in caucasian flesh tone, right? Yeah right, and grass is green and apples are red. Ok, well, those last two are true even though much more goes into those than meets the eye as well. But skin… how can I begin!? Skin is an organ, right? The largest organ of your whole entire body. It is a living thing with blood flow, covering muscles, tendons, ligaments, bones. And because it’s translucent, those elements underneath affect the color of the skin on top.  So, take that complexity and add to it some other factors like form, light, shadow, the hills and valleys that make it look like a hand instead of just a lump of peach or brown clay and it gets pretty colorful. Your amazing brain is so amazing that it takes in all those details and processes them without you even noticing, then says simply to you, “That? That’s a hand.” So, take a minute. Look at the back of your hand. Wiggle your fingers and notice how the shape of the shadows changes as you do so. Pretty cool, huh? Now tell me, what color is your skin?

Tug of Love

Tug of Love, detail

Watercolor Journaling Workshop

As you’ve probably noticed, I love my watercolor journal. I often post pictures on here of watercolor journal entries from special vacations,image

periods of time I don’t want to forget, imageor just mundane moments from my life.

Even if the picture doesn’t turn out perfectly, I think that just the attention and care put into that moment, that event, that item, imbues it with a certain honor that says, “I was here and this was important enough to me to try to record it.” A picture truly is worth a thousand words.

So, I’m excited to have the chance to share my fairly simple watercolor journaling techniques with all of you in the Birmingham area with in an upcoming workshop.

NEXT Saturday, March 19 from 9-2 I’ll be teaching a workshop at Samford Academy of the Arts. The cost is $175 plus supplies (my supplies are fairly minimal- a watercolor notebook, a travel watercolor set, a permanent marker, and a water pen are the only items you may not already have laying around).

Follow this link: Samford Academy of the Arts  , click on the painting tab, then scroll down to my workshop “This is Your Life Watercolor Journaling Workshop” to register.

Hope to see you there!!

 

 

 

Out with the old… eventually

 

Christmas 2014 when my daughter was 3, my father-in-law and his wife gave all the grandkids boots. What a hit! My little girl wore hers constantly- I even had to talk her out of wearing them on the beach- and they quickly became her trademark. But, like kids tend to do, she’s growing. Quickly. And by this past Christmas it was time for a new pair. They were replaced by a pair of brown boots with colorful stitching on the sides. She took to them immediately. It took a little longer for me. They were so grown-up and I wasn’t ready.

She’s getting so big, so fast. The 4-year-old in brown boots is so different from the 3-year-old in pink boots. So different and yet the same. I love watching her grow up. I love watching her change. But it also breaks my heart a little. So when I requested she pick out some things to give away and she brought me her pink boots, I almost cried. The sentimental packrat in me wanted to hold on to them… just because. She’s right, though. It’s time to move on. But not without commemoration and one last look.

Pink Boots- watercolor journal entry

Sometimes Love Means Not Complaining

 

I love my husband for a zillion reasons. He can make me mad faster and laugh harder than anyone I know, sometimes simultaneously. He makes a mean hamburger, pot of chili, poached egg, margarita, or whatever else he wants. He’s solid. He’s trustworthy. He’s generous and loyal to those he loves almost to a fault. He’ll make you mad. He’ll drive you crazy. But when push comes to shove he’s got your back if you’re one the ones lucky enough to be called family or friend.

The reason, though, at this particular moment I so love my husband is the mess in our house. It’s my mess. It’s art mess. Our house is not big. My easel is. Currently three rooms of our house hold canvases that may not, under any circumstances, be moved. There’s an easel in our “dining area” right next to his chair. There’s a reference drawing tacked (literally tacked) to the wall beside the window. However, my husband (whose hyperbolic diatribes regarding annoyances inflicted by the rest of humanity are almost legendary) doesn’t say a word about the art supplies taking over our house. He just turns scoots his chair over, looks at the painting, and complements my day’s work.

Behind every artist is someone willing to overlook some mess.

Waiting for Spring 

  
It’s cold. Our flannel sheets make it hard to leave the bed. The air outside makes it hard to leave the house. This southern girl is spoiled. I know that Bostonians and Minnesota natives would laugh at me huddled here in my soft Black Crowes sweatshirt, hugging my coffee cup and longing to turn up the heat. Laugh away. I’m ready for spring. 

Flipping through my journal this morning I found this watercolor I painted last summer of my little girl and me at the water’s edge. I can feel the warm sand between my toes and the setting sun on my back. For just a moment I am there, and I am reminded that spring will come again.

Upcoming Classes and Workshops

Erin Hardin- Winter WarmthIs your New Year’s resolution to learn a new skill? If so (and you’re in the Birmingham area) here’s your chance! I have a few classes and workshops coming up that may interest you.

“Luminous Oil Painting”

In this class we will focus on the classical technique of glazing which artists have used for centuries to achieve depth and luminosity. Come join me! You can register at https://www.samford.edu/academy-of-the-arts/

 

Thursdays, 12-2

January 7-February 18

OR

Thursdays 6-8

March 3-April 21

 

“This is Your Life- Watercolor Journaling”

Ever feel like days are slipping by without attention? Would you like a way to record moments and feelings- whether momentous or everyday? Consider watercolor journaling. Using a combination of simple drawing, watercolor, and journaling techniques, artist Erin Hardin will help you start a lovely keepsake of your life. Register at https://www.samford.edu/academy-of-the-arts/arts

1 day workshop- March 19, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.