Welcome to my Art Blog! I paint or draw most weekdays and sometimes finish a painting a day. I fondly call them my "Postcards from Paradise" because it's such a beautiful place the Lord made here for us.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Nude Figure Studies, Longer Poses

These were drawn from our live model at Open Studio.
©2010 Diana Moses Botkin

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Life Drawings: Short Poses

Our most recent model for our life drawing sessions is fairly lean and muscular which makes it easier to see muscles and bones.

©2010 Diana Moses Botkin

Friday, January 22, 2010

Charcoal Life Studies, Longer Poses

Twenty minute poses by our patient model gives us enough time to be careful with form and develop the drawing.

©2010 Diana Moses Botkin

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Charcoal Torso Studies, Shorter Poses

Five minutes is enough to get the form laid out with some shadows and lights to build a solid shape. Ten minutes gives a little more time to develop some detail and in fifteen minutes, some facial features can be added.

©2010 Diana Moses Botkin

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Short Poses

These are three minute studies; the pick of my short studies from this year's drawings so far. After doing the 30 second studies, a few minutes to capture shapes, shadows and gesture seems like a long time!

These and others are for sale unframed for less than you'd pay for a dinner out. Let me know if you want them.

©2010 Diana Moses Botkin

Monday, January 18, 2010

Bare Necessities

Have you ever tried to draw the figure in thirty seconds?

It's not enough time to get much down on paper: just the very simplest shadows or lines of gesture.

I really enjoyed the challenge of these warm-up poses at Open Studio. You can see how I start the longer poses which begin with the thought process evident in these brief sketches. They almost look like nothing... but if you look closely, you can see the forms.

©2010 Diana Moses Botkin

Friday, January 15, 2010

Our January Challenge: Apple, Glass and Spoon!

Our January Challenge was chosen by member Vicki Ross, who asked us to incorporate a spoon, an apple and something glass in a still life.

I admit I probably would never have thought of putting these objects together. That is one of the fun aspects of doing this as a group; painting someone else's suggestion for subject matter makes us stretch a little!

I did have a lot of fun trying to figure out how to make some sense out of these things, and create a pleasing arrangement. Sorry to say those friendly little toy figures from my other Challenges were nowhere around when I set this up, so they missed out. But I guess they showed up for all my Challenge pieces in 2009, so I'm going to take them to the movies or make them some cookies.

"Kitchen Lovelies"
Oil on hardboard
©2010 Diana Moses Botkin


Two of our Challenge Group members could not participate this month due to family responsibilities, but here are the rest of the very interesting and fun paintings.

Our newest Challenge Group member, Jeanne Illenye, graciously agreed to join us after my invitation to her only a couple of weeks ago.

(left above) "Aunt Bea's Morning Glories" 5"x5" Oil on panel ©2010 Jeanne Illenye
(middle above) "Wooden Spoon and Friends" 10"x10" Oil on canvas ©2010 Suzanne Berry
(right above) "Spoon Bridge" 6"x6" Oil on Board ©2010 Michael Naples

(left) 'Baked Apple Reflection'
8x10" Oil on panel
©2010 Vicki Ross

(right) "Apple, Spoon and Glass"
8x10 Oil on paper
©2010 Robin Cheers

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Figure Drawings in Charcoal and Chalk: Longer Poses

During the past month I've been busy with family and day to day chores that happen when lots of people are at my house who want to eat regularly and sleep in clean beds. I love having my family home, but it does change how much time I have for creating art and documenting it.

I'm just now getting around to photographing and inventorying some stacks of life drawings that were made in November and December at our model sessions.

These are my favorites from the group: charcoal and chalk sketches on 12x18" paper, drawn from longer poses. That first one may have been 15 minutes. I think the other two were 20 minutes.

Let me know if you'd like any of these or want more information. They're $75 each, plus S&H. Drawings are still a great bargain for original art. I usually ship works on paper unframed and rolled in a tube, as they are pretty safe that way. It's then fairly easy for you to take them to your local framer to get them matted and framed under glass to match your decor.

©2009 Diana Moses Botkin

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Recent Gesture Drawings

Three minutes is not long to capture a pose, but it's enough to block in shapes and gesture. This is how I start a drawing and for longer poses I use the added time to develop definition and detail.

Actually three minutes seems like a long time to put something down if you've ever tried doing 30 second warm-ups!

These quick studies are drawn in charcoal on 18"x12" grey paper. Please contact me for more information or to purchase.

©2009 Diana Moses Botkin

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Recent Figure Studies in Charcoal and Chalk

I have a stack of recent figure studies from Open Studio that still need to be sprayed with fixative, photographed and catalogued in my inventory for 2009. Here are a few of my favorites from the group. I'll show some more maybe tomorrow.

All are charcoal and chalk and 12"x18". Please contact me to purchase, or for more information.

©2009 Diana Moses Botkin

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Some Drawings From Almost 40 Years Ago

My cousin Sue sent me pictures of these old drawings. I had sketched her and sis Becky one time during a visit a long time ago.

In 1972 when these sketches were made, I was in college. I drew a lot during those years, even though I was doing freelance commercial art to pay bills and trying to learn to paint realistically at an art school which, at the time, emphasized abstract art. I learned the most from simply carrying a sketch book and also enrolling in a lot of life drawing classes. Even though there was little instruction from the "teacher", having the model to draw from was worth a lot.

It's fun to see these small studies which really do look a lot like my cousins. I always did enjoy faces and trying to capture a likeness.

These were totally forgotten until she emailed me the photos. It's fun to see them

We must've had fun making Sue's smooth 'do into something so wild and curly.

©1972 Diana Moses

Sunday, January 3, 2010

New Year's Musings

With the passage of the old year and the arrival of a new one naturally comes some self evaluation for most of us.

Rather than make New Year's resolutions, I'm more prone to ask New Year's questions. Among the important examinations are queries about personal and family issues... and naturally I've been thinking a lot about my art.

For several years I've had as my goal to do a daily painting. I started this Painting a Day blog in 2005. Each successive year I've come closer to my goal of actually making a complete work of art every weekday. In 2009, I made close to 300 new original paintings and drawings.

It's been fun, frustrating, frightening, fatiguing, and has also provided opportunity for growth and change, and some sales to boot.

So... tell me what you think... send me your comments by January 5.

Should I keep doing the Daily Paintings? Or concentrate more on commissions and larger work? And WHAT should I paint? Or should I concentrate more on getting back to drawing or return to sculpture?

Now.... I'm going to do what I think is best but I'd love to hear your thoughts! I'm hoping this little jam session will be fun for all of us!

If you could stand over my shoulder and tell me what to make, what would you like to see?