Sunday, December 30, 2007

Office orchid

The District Manager at the State office I work in has an awesome green thumb and he often decorates our office with the orchids he grows. They are always SO beautiful! As I stepped out of the office on Friday, I took a picture of these gorgeous flowers with my handy camera, thinking if I had time, I would paint it and post it to bring in the New Year!

Happy New Year everyone! See you next year!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Illustration Friday - Horizon ... and Fact #2

When I heard about the new Illustration Friday topic, this incident came to mind so I'll share it as my second random fact. A few years ago, while fishing off the island of Molokai, all we could see on the horizon were choppy waves and of course we couldn't see any fish. Then suddenly, the area around our boat turned crystal clear at the exact moment a humungous manta ray swam under our very tiny fishing boat. Needless to say, I had a "little" freak out.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!

Let us be grateful to people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” Marcel Proust

Merry Christmas everyone!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Happy Birthday Kate!

This is a little something something that I made for a dear friend Kate (Kathleen Rietz - Artist) who is celebrating her 40th birthday today (12/24). It's a drawing of Sunshine, her little pup that loves her like something fierce. Happy Birthday Kate!

Check out her website too ... I assure you will be treated with incredible illustrations!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Random fact #1

Ok, I've been meaning to post 7 random facts about me for at least a couple months now, thanks to Sharon (Flat sound of wooden clogs) and Robyn (Have dogs, will travel) who tagged me back in October. Talk about procrastination! LOL. I honestly am not a very interesting person so coming up with a couple is hard enough!

So, I'll start slow and share this one fact: One of my absolute favorite movies is Star Wars. Ok, I admit it, it's my favorite. I have fond memories of sitting with my father who kept uttering, "Wow!" through the whole movie. Back then, lines wrapped around the theaters like never before. There was no such thing as the computer graphics of today ... those space fight scenes were different scenes spliced together! It is pure genius and a movie worthy of all the "Wows!" ever uttered. :) Do you remember the first time you saw the movie?

This postcard is on its way to an awesome art blogger, generous gifter, and fellow Star Wars fan.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007


"God has created us to love and to be loved, and this is the beginning of prayer; to know that He loves me, that I have been created for greater things." Mother Teresa

Monday, December 17, 2007

Buddha on black

I haven't worked on colored paper since my Freshman college art class way back in the 80s! So, this was a fun and exciting drawing for me. I have been dying to try out this 5.6mm Cretacolor white charcoal lead and feeling a bit adventurous today, visited my neighborhood art store and found this great Strathmore Artagain black paper. This is 6"X9", drawn from a stock photo from istockphoto [dot] com.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

ATC Giveaway!!

#1: Reed's Bay, Big Island, Hawaii

#2: Wailoa State Park, Big Island, Hawaii

#3: Ironworks Building, Bay Front, Big Island, Hawaii


In the spirit of giving ... and to follow up with Steve Loya's (Go Flying Turtle) own giveway in which I won a beautifully created ATC (and perhaps some other things (?)) by Steve ... I'd like to offer three ATCs (above) that I created to the first three visitors that leave a comment. And to carry the tradition, I only ask that the winners hold a similar giveaway of art-related pieces that they've created, sometime soon.

These three Artist Trading Cards or ATCs are just 2.5 inches by 3.5 inches. I began drawing with these cards because they were small, quick to do, and jogged my long-lost creativity from its slumber. I did these cards earlier this year and it feels good to be able to give them to folks that might enjoy them rather than have them sit in a box next to my computer. I will give out the cards in the order I receive the comments (e.g., #1 for the first person to comment, #2 for the second, etc.). I'll contact the winners by email. Thanks everyone and good luck!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Get lost! (Everyday Matters Challenge #139: Draw something with a handle)

Tonight, I got lost in this drawing. I used my Pigma Micron 005 so it took a little longer than usual but it was a nice distraction. I might work on it some more later but I'll stop for now.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Illustration Friday: Little things

A collection of leaves and debris is a little thing worth stopping for and taking a second look.

Work shoes (Everyday Matters Challenge #103: Exercise equipment)

Another quick sketch of my other pair of boots. If I were to draw a pair of work boots daily, I would have enough sketches for a week and a half!

I'm not much of a gym person but I am a hiker and admittedly, this is my favorite form of exercise.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Nifty gadget

What is a niftier gadget than a ratcheting pipe cutter? Maybe an iPhone, but not much else.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Toilets and miracles

This must be the season of miracles. My miracle happened last Monday, after my toilet blew out. I took my toilet apart, thinking I would replace the parts myself. Well, as you noticed from my last post, I really needed help because I couldn't take this dang piece off the toilet tank (I drew it so you'd know which part I mean). It was so tight on there that I couldn't budge it at all. I tried everything and I got close to cracking the tank. I called all the plumbers in town, but no one returned my call. I felt pretty dejected and quite helpless. It is quite a serious matter when you only have one bathroom.

Then, I heard a car horn toot in my driveway. This strong-looking fellow with very kind eyes drove by the house and noticed that I have a cast iron tub in my garage and stopped to ask if I'd consider selling or refurbishing it because he does that sort of thing. I wasn't ready to refurbish it yet but we talked and I found out he's a plumber guy! I sheepishly asked if he'd take a look at my toilet and of course he said, "Sure!" After applying his plumbing know-how and with some difficulty, he got the part off!

What a wonderful thing to happen on the exact day, the exact minute, I needed help! Just before he left, A.J. (Angel James, as I call him) mentioned that he drives by my house often and never noticed the tub before, but he did that day. :)

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Bathroom fiasco

What do ya do if your copper overflow pipe breaks and your toilet runs all night? If you're an Aries like me, you'd consider taking apart your toilet and fix it yourself! I can't proclaim that I actually fixed the thing although I now have a zillion nuts, bolts, washers, and unidentified pieces strewn across my bathroom floor! I think it's time to call the plumber. *wink*

Saturday, November 24, 2007


Fabulously dee-lish melt-in-your-mouth cookies from Kate ... My special afternoon treat is these cookies with a nice hot cup of green tea (pic).

Lazy Saturday

On lazy Saturdays I sit on my porch with the pooch and a cup of Joe. Sometimes I sketch and sometimes I just sit and listen to the birds or admire the flowers. This is a view from my porch, looking out onto the street. The large stone lantern was made by my neighbor's father, given to my parents when they built the house.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Subconscious reflection

The first page of my watercolor moleskine ...

Ever notice how artwork reflects your mood, whether you intend it or not? The way lines are placed, the colors you choose, the intention by which they are laid down, are like little reflections that seep from your subconsciousness. I wonder how others would interpret this painting. Any thoughts?

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Travel Sketches

Here is my last installment of my travel sketches. As you can imagine, I was busy with wedding festivities in NC and didn't have much time to draw ...

But, I leave you with these images of my trip that reflect feelings of excitement, boredom, exhaustion, and also wide-eyed wonder. I had fun!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Misc. travel drawings

Some misc. drawings from my trip to North Carolina. It is such a beautiful state of so many wonderfully warm people! The shrimp boat was parked across the house where we stayed. Being next to the ocean, we were treated with gorgeous sunsets and watched these boats meander the canal every morning and night.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Air Bear

Don' t ask me what an Air Bear is but I found this massive sculpture in the Craven County Regional Airport in New Bern, North Carolina this morning. It is amazing to me that I was a zillion miles away from here, at the start of my 24+ hr journey home.

Delta's in-flight magazine ad

I guess it has been a while since I've posted anything. I just got back tonight from a trip to North Carolina to visit with an old friend Karen who got married this weekend. The wedding was beautiful! I didn't have much time to draw, except for quick sketches in the many airports I visited both going and coming. I'll be sharing some of those in the coming days. Hope you are all well!

Monday, November 5, 2007

Fern fiddlehead

I spent the day botanizing with friends in the wet forest on the north part of the island. I forgot how fun it is to take the time to appreciate the incredible flora we have here. This is a little pencil sketch of a fern fiddlehead that I saw today. It reminded me of an alien.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Visit my new blog!

WOOHOO! Check this out! I've teamed with Kathleen (Kate) Rietz (children's book artist, designer, crafter, and all around awesome woman) on a collaborative blog called Potluck Sunday. It is where we share our creative odds and ends, including photos, stories, artwork, and other things under the sun that did not make it onto our personal blogs .... just a little of this, a little of that. :)

Friday, November 2, 2007

Everyday Matters Challenge #137 - Something to turn on and off

My new camera ... It's wonky! :)

Everyday Matters Challenge #54 - Draw someone

Children are the coolest beings. Their sense of wonder and excitement over the smallest things is fascinating to me. Here, a friend's son is watching his sister dig a hole in utter fascination. lol.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

EDM #8 - Watch or other piece of jewelry

A beautiful bracelet I bought yesterday from Pam. Gorgeous crystals and silver butterflies! I love it!

Sunday, October 28, 2007


Some mornings, it is enough to sit on the front porch with the pooch and a cup of strong hot coffee, watching the clouds float by.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Tagged ... :)

Thanks Robyn (Have dogs, will travel) and Sharon (Flat sound of wooden clogs) for tagging me. I really enjoyed their 7 facts ... I encourage you all to check them out! Plus, they are wonderfully creative artists too so it's a special treat to visit their blogs!

I will be posting some facts about myself in the next few days. I have been swamped with work and haven't had much spare time to draw so I leave you with this scene from my home town. This photo was taken at Wailoa River State Park and that's a monkey pod tree on the right and lots of coconut trees in the distance. Thanks everyone for your recent comments. They mean a great deal to me. I promise I'll be back to visit your blogs soon! Cheers!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

A fan's tangerine

I work in a lovely office with incredible staff. They are so fantastic that they actually have fans. I mean, they seem like fans because whenever I visit the front office, there are boxes of donuts, chocolates, cookies, fruit ... just about any gift imaginable ... that folks from the community have brought them for a job well done or just to say hi. Isn't that such an incredible thing?

I'm not sure if this is from a fan or from one of the staff ... but I found this with the rest of the fan gifts. It's delicious!

Thursday, October 18, 2007


... and then the Funny Man lived happily ever after ... THE END

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Funny man

I am in the middle of reading Stephen Colbert's "I am America (And So Can You)." I've been chuckling for days.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Vroom vroom

Ok, I've been benched. It's been a long day. It's dark out and it's raining. So, what do I do when I'm stuck indoors? Draw my vacuum cleaner!

This vacuum sucks! I mean in a good way. It takes care of all my doggie dirt like a Bissell ought to.

Monday, October 15, 2007

First for Joan (EDM Challenge 30: Draw a chair)

This is my first new piece of furniture ... to be eventually accompanied by a couch and equally cool standing lamp.

It's brown and accentuates the color of my eyes when I sit on it. :) Can you tell I love it?

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Milos, Greece

"This church is next to the house we're staying at. Today is Sunday and services are in progress. The worship is broadcast over a PA system so all can hear from this high point. The invocation is both enlightening and inspirational."

- Milos, Greece 1993

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Laua`e ferns

I was missing graphite this week so thought I'd try my hand at a quick study of values using my Cretacolor ecologic with a super duper fat lead. What a challenge that was! I loved it because it forced me to work in sweeps. I don't know if I like this at all but I had fun with it. This drawing is a patch of laua`e fern.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Hop on up

I suspect all you women are cringing at this drawing. The stirrups were not extended yet although it would have been great if the speculum was out ... I think that would have been cool to draw.

I drew this in "the room" waiting for my doc this morning. Thankfully, I didn't have to wait too long and didn't have time to draw the sink and napkin dispenser. I finished the drawing at home.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Everyday Matters Challenge #37 - Some keys

Today, at work, I mentioned my blog to the office staff and was told that they would be looking out for a new post tomorrow. Talk about pressure! So, I decided to draw my set of keys, complete with my office set, which comprises the bulk of the weight I carry around everyday.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Orange dream

Somebody please tell me what kind of car this is! I was at the grocery store, parked my car, and looked up across the parking lot to see this gorgeous orange car parked in front of me. Time stood still, I swear! The skies even parted and a ray of light beamed down onto the car from where I knew not. I coulda sworn I heard a chorus of angels as well. I don't have a camera so I grabbed my nearest sketchbook and furiously sketched it using the only pen I had, my sharpie, before the owner came and unceremoniously drove it away. *Sigh* another lost love.

Note: The Volvo 240/240DL is my first lost love ... France of Wagonized drew it best (here and here)

Thanks to blogging friends Brian, France, Andrea, Tracy, Juj, and my little brother Bruce, we have an identification: A 1962 Ford Thunderbird! A beauty!

Saturday, October 6, 2007

10 min sketch

A 10-min quickie of my blown out boot ... Time for a new one. I would have added the date if I knew what date it was ... at least I know it's October!


Mamane (Sophora chysophylla), a member of the pea family ... only found in Hawaii ... vulnerable to predation ... food for endangered palila birds ... just a beautiful plant ... precious in its own right.

Friday, October 5, 2007

Mouth watering

Ohelo berries are related to blueberries! I drew this quick sketch of my favorite plant at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and colored it when I got home. The wonderful thing about these berries, besides being delicious for us humans, is they are food for endangered nene (neh-neh) geese that live in the area.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Caught him!

Tested and proven equation:

2 [(glass of Pinot noir x 3) + (pizza slice x 2) + flashlight] x patience/time = SUCCESS!

P.S. Jennifer caught him. She's quicker than I am.

Frog-catching kit

To be adequately prepared to catch those loud-chirping coqui frogs* in your front lawn, one needs the highest quality frog-catching gear. They consist of many glasses of red wine, flashlight or headlamps (one per person), and a large pizza for sustenance. Frog catching nets are optional as a quick hand may be adequate. (Jennifer wants me to mention that it's raining out as she is the one on frog duty as I post this ... I think she deserves some sympathy).

*coqui frogs were inadvertently introduced to Hawaii and are spreading like wildfire. Their calls are the same decibels as a lawn mower at the same distance. Hard to believe, huh? But I can attest, it's true!

Monday, October 1, 2007

Colorful explosion

I bought a bouquet of flowers from Volcano this weekend ... a massive bunch of assorted dahlias. These are a few. Whenever I look at these, I can't help but smile. Ever notice that flowers have a way of making a blue-y kinda of day a very bright one? I believe they're God's aspirin!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Mokuleia tribute

When I lived on Oahu, I used to drive home after work, pick up my pup, and drive out to this beach in Mokuleia on the North Shore and swim until the sun set. After being totally exhausted and covered in salt water and sand, she and I would head to Pizza Bobs and share a veggie pizza in the car (sans onions). I have fond memories of wolfing down the pizza as the car windows steamed up.

This is a very quick sketch of our swimming area that I revisited this past weekend. It was a nice spot to sit and reflect and pay tribute to a dog that loved pizza and the ocean as much as I did. Here is a pic of her with a coconut she found floating in the water.