Saturday, January 19, 2013

Beverly Hills Chihuahua

Here's a painting of a pint-sized beauty that I had the privilege of painting for a client.

She hasn't seen the finished result, so please pray that she is happy with it and can recognize her lil' dog.
If anyone is interested, I probably have time to do another painting before the end of January. Who am I kidding? I DEFINITELY have time to do another painting before my hiatus. Because, if I had time to watch Aquamarine last night, I have WAY TOO MUCH TIME ON MY HANDS!

 Leave a comment if you would like to order a 12x12 oil painting or follow this link to my facebook page: Pet Portraits by LaPine Design for more options.

Or leave a comment if you have a better movie suggestion for me to watch ;) I've set the bar pretty low so...Do your worst!


Journal to the Center of the Earth

Do any of my readers keep a journal or diary? Double points if you keep it between your mattress for safe-keeping.

I sometimes do, but mostly don't. I know that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was a vigorous diarist, one whom I aspire to be like, but my journal entries are far and few in between mainly because I infrequently have anything of significance to record. ("Dear Diary, Today I purged my documents folder and sorted my e-mails." or, "Dear Diary, Today I sat on the couch with Hannah and Katie, while we watched Sarah purge her documents folder and sort through her e-mails.")  I'd like to make a nice habit of keeping a journal during the next few, potentially adventurous months ahead. So, I'm going to ask that my readers hold me accountable.

It can't be that difficult because even Michael Scott keeps a journal. Then again, that could actually be strong case as to why someone shouldn't keep a diary...especially one of the incriminating kind.

"Tan all over...Jan all over. Oh, diary, hehe"
But, based on a graph that my dad printed out from Dan Hanger's facebook, it says that Successful people keep a diary and Non-Successful people say they keep a diary, but actually don't.

Dan Hanger's informative formula for success also says that Successful people keep a list of goals, whereas Non-Successful people fly by the seat of their pants.
I assume, most of my readers would like to fall under the Successful side of that graph.

So, let's all journal! Let's all make goals!

Not that I am living the dream and should ever be giving advice on how to live the dream, but I can see some progress from journaling and goal keeping.

For instance, in one of my journals that features F. Scott Fitzgerald's signature gilded in gold on the cover, I discovered that I had made a list of goals about 4 years ago. To my delight, a couple of those daunting goals were actually coming to fruition. It's great because at the time, they were really outlandish, and obviously weren't fulfilled over night, but it cemented the significance of making goals and maintaining a record of our everyday thoughts.

Eventually, there is victory.

So, make some goals today. Pick out a decorative journal that is dying to be written in and get going.

I'd love to hear your success stories!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Must Love Dogs

No one should be too surprised that dogs fill the pages of my notebooks and sketch pads.
I. love. them.

 My voice even changes uncontrollably when I talk to them. For instance, I call them "Chuckiecheesesssss!" in a really obnoxious way. Trust me, it's annoying.
My affection for dogs probably developed as a kindergartener or around the time that I formed a Dog Club--the first in a list of the many lame clubs I have establish over the years (i.e. The Beanie Baby Club, The Nancy Drew Club, D.S.L (I couldn't even tell you what D.S.L. stood for anymore, but I can confirm that there was a club called that.), The Blue Stocking Society, etc...)
Back to these "Dog Club" meetings...The Club was maintained because I unflinchingly enforced two strict rules.
Rule 1. Movies and books where the dogs die were prohibited. ("Old Yeller", "Where the Red Fern Grows" and the likes were DEFINITELY not allowed in the Dog Club), I guess that limited us to watching Pound Puppy movies and Beethoven.
Rule 2. Keebler Fudge Stripe Cookies were acceptable snacks to eat during meetings.
That's it. I have no idea what the second rule had to do with dogs, but it had to be followed or banishment would ensue.

Seriously, wasn't life simple as a kindergartner?!
I love the character of dogs. I am so blessed by them.
I also find them individually really they are fun to draw and I feel like I am making artistic progress when I sketch them.
You also have to be really quick if you are trying to draw a dog live...that's why most of my sketches are of sleeping dogs.

Well, here are a few of my favourite canines and my attempts to sketch them. Enjoy!

Here's a little guy named Sawyer that belongs to my friend's daughter.
Here's Keeli. I never met her, but enjoyed sketching her with her owner.

Okay, so I know this looks like garbage, but it is a contour drawing
 and it was done in 1 minute without lifting my pencil or looking at the paper! And, I love that I can totally recognize my Snick.
Oh, so much love for this German Shepherd.
Here's Puppers! Bay-Bay!
 I've always liked this sketch of Lucy.

Here's Soy Boy!

I can't wait to get a picture of him where he isn't a white blur...Then I'll sketch a more lively pose.

Here's the the sketch for a painting I hope to show you soon! Isn't this one a cutie?
Stay tuned!
To view more of these little sketches, visit my facebook page at Pet Portraits by LaPine Design.

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, January 5, 2013


 I had an assignment in November to make something out of origami.

My first attempt was a little crow. He bobbed his head and that was the gist of it.

Then, I started to experiment with spray paint and revisited a design for an origami fish that I learned several years ago. As with all origami, there is an element of surprise when you are finished. I was really pleased how the fins were often different colours than the body of the fish. I hot glued some scraps of bubble wrap to both sides and two sequins for eyes. Oh, and I couldn't forget the glitter!

I was able to get the Martha Stewart 24 pack of glitter last winter. It's so choice. Sometimes I catch myself just starring at the bottles. They're bea-U-ti-ful!

 I love the leaf green glitter the most. I try to save as much as possible so I use it the least. The turquoise is the perfect mermaid colour too! It would be fun to make some origami mermaids next!
 Yup. I must have been so bored that I got carried away with all those pictures of glitter. Back to these feeshes.

The orange and black paper wasn't a perfect square, but I used it anyways. The result was that the tail curled around. It just proves that sometime the imperfect features of a project end up adding character.

Okay, and then I started to make a origami Titanic...How could I not?

It's terrible. If I had more time I would have made a little Jack and Rose. I think I already threw away the maybe it was always going to be a tragedy.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Dabbling in the Arts

In this post, I will take you on a tour of some my projects that were developed in 2012.

I rather liked how they turned out, therefore, I will share them with my readers.
So, first stop is a little bit of graphic design that I did for fun.

This was a design of a schedule that was quickly abolished, but I was happy with the result. It was inspired by an add for Ruche's dress contest that they hosted this fall.

Okay, brace yourself for another self-portrait (CAN YOU BELIEVE ANOTHER ONE!?!) in gouache. I made the scallopped dress out of the samples of discarded Bagallini purse material and glitter...naturally. (Thanks for helping me with the material K-trix!)

The photograph in my left hand is of a 3D self portrait I made when I was 6. I find it funny I dressed my 3 dimensional portrait in blue polyester trousers AND a Jets sweatshirt (I couldn't even tell you what city the Jets are based in---San Diego Jets? Denver Jets? ...Honolulu Jets? Las Vegas Jets? ...hopeless...I could always google it, but frankly, I really don't care.)

As for the German Shepherd behind me is none other than, my Snickers.

Unfortunately, my face in this self-portrait currently looks less human, more y'all are gonna have to wait to NEVER SEE IT.

So, I call this next photograph,

"So exhausted that I poured my cereal into my coffee."

 I'm clearly not a morning person.

And here is an aerial view of Candy Corn Stonehenge, c. 2012  On the Plains of the Dining Room Table

Next is a door that a really talented artist named Erik Pearson painted in Superior, WI.

And, this is me trying to mimic his brilliance with cray-pas.

To view more of Erik's work on his site, click here.

I had a blast with the bold lines, only problem is my version just looks like Gabe from The Office.
COME ON!!!..Say you can see it!
"Here are your cheeses."

This isn't the first time that I have accidentally portrayed a character from The Office. In 2009, I had to draw one of my co-workers for a project and instead of it looking like the co-worker, it looks more like Jim Halpert.

You be the judge:

Next is scribbled sketch of the Woman from Brassempouy.

And, these are some birch logs I thought were pretty. My mom seems to really like this one...I wonder why;)
 I tried to make this drawing resemble a beautiful rock I saw at work. In the end, it looks like a map, but I enjoyed the attempt to blend mediums and experiment with organic shapes.

Okay, that's all for now.

Thanks for reading!

Hope everyone is still making progress on those New Years Resolutions!

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