Thursday, January 13, 2011

Long Lashes and Soft Cheeks, and one year blogoversary


Long Lashes and Soft Cheeks
6" x 8" acrylic on canvas

This is my second acrylic portrait (if you're not counting the two or three disasters that I scraped off on my first try, which I am not) and it went much better than the first. I felt like I had a better understanding of how acrylics worked and also I was able to mix colors that are close to what I use with my watercolor portraits, which for some reason seemed impossible with my first one (which explains the monochromaticness of Emerge).  My favorite part are his lips, they were so fun.

And. . . . tomorrow is my one year blogoversary!

Huzzah!

I never imagined all of the benefits that would come into my life from starting this blog. I've found motivation to paint more often, I think I've really figured out a lot of things about why I paint and how I like to paint and what it means to me in my life right now. And probably most importantly, I've made friends and found support from so many amazing people that I never would have even known existed without starting this blog.

It's been a crazy fun ride, that's for sure.

Thank you so, so much to all of you for following along with me. I hope you feel welcome and appreciated here, because my good friends, you truly are. :)

I thought I'd leave you with my first ever blog post, just for kicks. (And talk about a wierd coincidence that this piece is SO similar to the piece I've posted today.)


January 14, 2010
Beautiful to Me
20" x 24" pastel on toned paper

Hello, I'm Crystal Cook welcome to my blog! I'm a full time mother of three and part time artist, whenever I can fit it in. I specialize in portraits of children in watercolor, but also use pastel, charcoal and colored pencil. I just finished this pastel in black and white and was pretty pleased with how it turned out. I was very drawn to the child's concentrated expression along with those full cheeks and lashes. But the thing that inspired me the most was the strong back light that framed that sweet face and caught the soft hair that only babies have. This was a fun piece to do, usually I work in watercolor which requires me to plan more in advance and usually takes me a while to finish. But this time I just sketched it out fairly quickly and tried to be as expressive as I could with my marks while still capturing a likeness. I think I need to break out the pastels more often it helped me get out of a rut I was in and inspired more creativity in me. Who knew a few little sticks of powdered pigment could bring such a change in my perspective?


Note to self: I've learned so many things since January 14, 2010. Including that it pays to break up your text a little bit. Paragraphs are your friends. Oh, oh and maybe think about titling your blog posts Crystal. Just an idea.

Have a great day everyone!








35 comments:

  1. Happy Blogoversary!!!!!! Congrats on the 1 yr mark:) I didn't realize we started our blogs around the same time. It is amazing the difference a year can make. Your work is stunning!!! I look forward to this years posts. I'm thrilled that we support and motivate each other. This is our year my friend:)

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  2. Oh, and your painting is beautiful. Congrats on mastering acrylics. And why do little boys get those long lashes, my boys have the same long lashes. Beautiful work!!!

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  3. Congratualtions on your first year Blogoverary!

    I've only blogging since October, and I know exactly how you feel about the community... it is wonderful and remember you are a part of it too Crystal so Hurray for you!

    I've only been a follower for a short time, but I enjoy looking at you beautiful and moving art. As I have to you before I have never seen an artist work with watercolors the way you do.... they're breathtaking.

    You've seemed to master acrylic now. it evokes almost the same feeling, but there is more of a lucidity in your watercolors.

    Have a wonderful day. I'll look forward to your next creation/

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  4. Both paintings are wonderful. I'm always amazed at the beauty of your work, Crystal. And Happy Blogoversary! I too have found so many of the benefits that you mention. Here's to you in 2011!

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  5. Lovely post, Crystal. Happy anniversary!!!

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  6. Happy Anniversary! Painting looks good...art blogs are a positive force in the cyber-universe.

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  7. Congratulations on your blogoversary! You portraits of children blow me away...one word awesome!
    :-)

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  8. Happy anniversary, funny how the 2 paintings are so similar and what a sweet face it is.
    I went from water colours to acrylics and they took some getting used to, same as when I switched to oils.

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  9. Aww, Happy Anniversary Crystal! Congrats on a stellar first year : ) Your work is so fresh and tender, very strong. Thanks for all of the joy it gives me! And hey, you've mastered acrylics pretty quickly! That's crazy!
    Have a great day.

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  10. Happy Blogoversary! Love this painting, too. Very nice.

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  11. One year.. Huh.. Time flies really.. And in this year you have given us all so much to look forward to. Keep it coming.
    And this is really great and really you.

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  12. Congrats on a year! Isn't blogging incredible?? It really is amazing the support you find--the people you connect with that otherwise you'd never have known!!

    And we all get to see your awesome talent--you inspire us too! :)

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  13. Happy Blogoversary, Crystal....love the acrylic portrait. As you know I enjoy working in both watercolor and acrylics, too. Not a master of either by any means but continuing to grow myself every day. You are a great inspiration to me and I continue to learn from you with every blog entry you post. I hope 2011 brings you much success with your art and joy with your family.

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  14. What a lovely painting! I think you are soon going to be a master in acrylics as well as watercolors. Congratulations on your first blogoversary. You surely have come a long way.
    Best wishes,

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  15. Happy blog anniversary! As always, your portraits are beautiful!

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  16. I absolutely love your portraits. Happy anniversary at Blogger, Crystal! It's been so great getting to know you.

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  17. I like the eyelashes. :)

    It's your 1 year mark? Wow. I think it's almost mine too. I better check!

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  18. Congrats for blogging for a year. Isn't it fun to look back and see how your writing/blogging style has changed? Paragraphs are definitely your friend. And I love that the two pieces a year a part are similar in composition!

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  19. Great job on the acrylic portrait and a very Happy 1st Blog Birthday!!

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  20. Happy 1st :)
    The acrylic painting is stunning - you must be thrilled with it - as I am thrilled to have found your blog and watched you paint! xx

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  21. Happy One Year Anniversary, Crystal. Your talent and skill shines through, no matter the medium.

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  22. I see you are getting the hang of working with acrylic. I love working on canvas because it is much less expensive in the long run. Keep on pushing your boundaries. You can only get better and better.

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  23. Happy Blogoversary! I'm very happy to be following you...you are a talented artist and a good blog friend. With every painting you do..you do it better!

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  24. Congrats on your one year anniversary...your portraits are amazing!

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  25. Congrats on your one year blogaversary! I was moving during mine and I didn't even notice I passed it! Thanks for your posts on your process. I love to reading artist's blogs. They are always inspiring.

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  26. Congrats Crystal on the completion of one year of blogging.Thanks for sharing all your wonderful work and words too.

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  27. Well Done and congratulations on reaching a year old in the blogging world! You are an inspiration to me and wish you an abundance of happy moments here in blogland!

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  28. HAPPY, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!!!!!! Your blog has always been and continues to be very beautiful and special too :0)
    The painting, as always, is just mesmorising (did I spell that right?) and I am very envious of those eyelashes!!!

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  29. Well done, Crystal. Keep up the wonderful work and the inspirational posts. You open your heart to your followers and I for one, am glad.
    All the best to a great second year.

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  30. Happy 1st :) and wishes for many more!!!! Looking forward to seeing your adventures and experiments in the coming year.

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  31. Happy Blogaversary and thanks for stopping by mu blog to comment. You're very gifted.

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  32. Congratulations on reaching the one year anniversary. And doing all of this w/ three kids! Great job!

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  33. A wonderful work!. Congratulations!
    Recently I met your blog, your works that I find wonderful, but I've also discovered the great person behind.

    Happy blogoversary!

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Thanks so much for taking the time to leave a comment they really do mean so much to me! Because not all bloggers have their email enabled so I can reply directly through email I will try to reply here in the comments. If I don't please forgive me, life must have been hectic that day! :)) Huzzah!!

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