Finding Sweetness

This is the last year my youngest daughter will have a winter break from school, so I got to spend a few days with her in north Georgia relaxing at a cabin, enjoying the outdoor hot tub and hiking to DeSoto Falls.

This same week also happens to be when my hubs and I celebrate our anniversary (25 years this time!) So I was fortunate to go on another quick getaway the last part of the week to north Georgia again. First we stayed in Tiger, GA, where there actually was a bit of snowfall, and then celebrating another night at Valhalla Resort near Helen and hiking at Raven Falls. 

Both trips to the woods allowed me to enjoy the quiet while soaking up my natural surroundings. This is where I began a series of drawings featuring bears.

I decided to bring along a pad of charcoal paper, charcoal pencils, black Conte and a handful of Stabilo colored crayons. Little did I know that charcoal drawing was exactly what I needed to be creating with in woods. Drawing was a mainstay in my illustration days, but painting and using color took over for many years. Even though I loved the idea of incorporating line drawings in my work, the paint would lure me into trying to "finish" the painting. 

Much of my work lately has been incorporating line to begin, even if it's an abstract scribble. And then the paint comes in to play using color blocking. A series of layering begins, both opaque and transparent colors, and then more lines to start creating recognizable shapes.

But during this time away, the basics were calling my name and I started with just the lines on paper. With no paint around, it forced me to develop the composition using very limited materials. This. This is what is getting my creative juices going again. These 9x12 studies are going to expand the way I work going forward and looking forward to see where it takes me next.