Contact: karenhetzer@gmail.com

Mr Pelican Goes On The Market


Mr. Pelican is back on ebay, sometimes it seems I can't give my work away.  Anyway, I started the bidding at $100.
                                           
  Its one of my favorite paintings.


Formal Training vs Experience-An Age Old Debate

I answered an ad on Craigslist this morning for a position that involved teaching art to seniors.  Although I didn't qualify because of 'no formal art training' and a lack of knowledge in 'art history' some of you may.  They have several locations here in the northeast and this is the website where you can get more information www.edu-tainers.com. Good Luck!  

I'm still waiting for input on the last sketch I did so meanwhile I'm going to post a couple of my small paintings on ebay and I'll put links to the auction here in case anyone's interested ;-)  This will be one of them.....
 

Fine Tuning


I worked on a third sketch (of four) today.......no picture yet.  Then took a break and did a little extra painting on my bed........painted the wood above and below the 'doors' and then added a bit of decoration.


More Work On The Bed Design

I'm not sure about this new blog design....why do some pictures center and others don't?

Its a cloudy rainy day today, no money to spend, no where to go.  So I decided to do a re-do on the plywood that holds my bed.  And notice below I finally got rid of the clothes rod and moved the shelf down.  I still have some patching and painting to do where I removed the old shelves.....need to find a ladder first.  Oh and I brought the bed forward to the edge of the alcove, it looks more like it belongs there now.

I used brown, black and white all on my brush at the same time and just quickly covered the board.

 

Then I mixed up a dirty light blue color, put that over it and used a graining tool to get a distressed look. A little trompe l'oeil ...........perfect.

Once I can afford to get some great baskets for on top and below I think that area will look really nice.

Pet Portrait Done-Second Sketch Complete


The pet portrait is done...
 

 as is the second sketch for a larger painting after some requested changes.....

The Details Count and Wrestling With Modern Technology

I am having to make adjustments to the pet portrait.......needed to be darker and no red ball (done)..
And I have to remove the tag on his chest and add foliage on the left.

I have to laugh....I had such high hopes before moving, seemed there were so many options and the near certainty of a steady job. None of that is true today and to add to the stress the Net 10 wireless website is on the blink and won't take my ccard to buy more minutes, my airtime due to run out tomorrow. So I called to buy the airtime over the phone, just before finishing up with the service person the phone went dead. Now it says I'm out of airtime.....so I can't call for the minutes and I can't buy them online.....and they shut me down a day early.........damn!
I did do another silly/fun sketch today. Same model, different setting.

Always Check With The Client

Waiting for possible color correction on the coat and final approval so I can get this sent off to its owner.
Today I'll be working on some more silly/fun animal designs.
Working on some sketches for some silly fun paintings.....sketch one....

A Dad And Son-A Father's Day Gift

This one's done and going out in today's mail.
I'm waiting to hear back from Heidi to see if she still wants her pet portrait done.....its been a while since she requested it and circumstances can change..........I should know ;-)
Next week I'll be painting a castle bed.

Never Assume

Well, this is just great. I mentioned in a previous post that I'd been communicating with a woman here about a job since last October. I finally met her last week and it went really well, I spent an hour with her. The job involved shopping, errands and cooking for them three days a week.....perfect. They're both busy doctors so I'd be working independently........perfect. Enter a previous employee wanting to come back.......the perfect job has suddenly disappeared........perfect!
FOCUS

Elementary Trompe L'oeil

Taking a break from the painting, I'll finish it tomorrow. Meanwhile I decided to do a little elementary trompe l'oeil on the plywood I used for the bed project.
I need to redo that shelf up there but tearing out these old shelves makes such a mess and I need to get some plaster cause the last one I removed left a nice little hole in the wall. I imagine the other one will be the same.

OK...its not gorgeous, but its better than the bare plywood and it didn't cost anything :-)

A Small Father/Son Portrait

I started on this yesterday and will continue through the day today.
11:00am progress
1:00pm...........
Just some bits and bobs now....

Sleeping Nook Update

Sleeping nook update. I went downstairs this morning and saw that my foam mattress had arrived already, with free shipping I wasn't looking for it until next week. Its early arrival was quite timely as I woke up this morning needing to fight my way out of a nearly deflated air mattress! It will be my most favorite thing to throw away.
When I first spotted the foam in the hallway I was a little skeptical, it didn't seem like a very large package for 4" thick foam.
But once unwrapped it puffed up proudly.
I went over to Bed, Bath and Beyond and bought a mattress cover and found this perfect size storage unit to put against the side wall when the bed is up.........and pulling it forward a bit it will nicely support the bed when it is down....PERFECT!
At last a good nights sleep :-)

Little Brother's Portrait Finished

Finally! I'm about to call this finished.

He'll be sent off to join his big brother........I did this one a couple of years ago.

Trying To Get Organized

Anyone else?........I find it very hard to focus when I'm surrounded by disorganized clutter. And as true as that is, it was also a good excuse to run out and finally purchase this piece I've been watching on Craigslist for weeks. I just couldn't stop thinking about it.....one, I knew it would be a great candidate for a makeover and resale....and two, it would perfectly house the remaining bits of clutter piled in the corner of my main room. Now my hope is that I get enough work for the remainder of the month to get my rent together! Looks like its going to be a ramen noodle month.
Ok, she's a bit beat up, but oh the possibilities........which actually are going to have to wait, not a dime left for paint and materials.I love multi-functional furniture....this top drawer is a desk.

And here it is cleaned up as best I can for now and pressed into service.....no more clutter on the floor :-)
Oh! And look what I got for five bucks...........
Remember when I traded my truck for a car?.......a convertible car? Well I'm missing that truck every day. Hauling furniture around in and on a convertible is a true test of skill and determination. I mentioned to the guy I bought this from that I was going to have to take it in two trips and that I needed to buy a hand truck because I couldn't afford to keep paying young men (cute as they are to watch ;-) to carry things up to my second floor apartment.......and taa-daa......he sold me his old hand truck for $5. The wheels are a bit wobbly so I need to take a good look at them and see if I can't fix em or replace them. It got me up the stairs leading to the apartment building and up one flight of stairs inside, but then I decided it was easier to lay the thing on its back and drag it up the other two flights (the inside stairs had a lip that kept catching the wheels). But how cool was that, a five dollar hand truck!
Hopefully I can tag it and store it in the basement of this building.
So my next organizational challenge.......the closet. This is the only closet in the entire apartment. And again, it requires a no cost solution.
I discovered some wasted space inside the closet........
There use to be shelves in there, and on both sides. So what do I have?...........left over plywood from the bed project!
And I have a jigsaw. Perfect....new shelves it is!

Listen To Your Gut-If It Doesn't Feel Right....Change It.

Its back to work today. I'm going to finish up this painting today. If you go back a few posts to compare you can see I've made some changes and there are still a few adjustments I need to make and more background to add.
When I finish this I'll start this one, it will be a smaller painting.......
I got an email yesterday from someone looking to have some artwork done for a tattoo......The Four Horsemen of The Apocalypse that would go on his entire back........pretty ambitious.

Remember this project I did for someone a while back........
....well she'd like to do a series of them incorporating other animals. I've suggested because these will be for the So Florida buying public that maybe the theme be changed to something more beachy, using this perhaps as the main backdrop..........
I'm still waiting to hear if she likes the idea.

Finding Inspiration Online-Creating a Sleeping Nook

How long does it take to get over sleeping on an air mattress?........ about this long. Today I decided I HAD to find a way to tuck a bed in here somewhere.....anywhere! I spent all day yesterday online looking for clever ideas......correction, clever cheap ideas.
I saw this inexpensive wall bed on a DIY site and got an idea.
It looked simple enough to construct, but could it be even simpler? Yep. See this barely used space in the tiny hallway that leads to the bathroom..........perfect!
A quick trip to Home Depot for a bit of plywood and some 1"x 2"s, some hinges...............
I didn't want the bed to be on the floor like in the pictured wall bed so I attached the 1" x 2"s up 20". I put part of the shelf I removed in place. I had the 1x2's come out to the front edge of the alcove so they would give support to the plywood when its laying open.

I brought in two of my hand made stools to help hold up the plywood while I attached the hinges to the shelf and the plywood.
I'm thinking maybe I'll just use them to lower the bed onto, its good support. I'll decide later whether to just leave as is or add something for legs. Next I need to find a good place to buy foam rubber for the mattress...that's going to be pricey, but so far I've only invested about $35 :-) Now to pretty things up.
Well this will do for now....hey.....its a NEW drop cloth :-) I'll give it a good washing to loosen it up and get a cool basket for the top.
Great! Just found some well priced foam rubber online... 4" thick for $67 and change with free shipping! I called a local shop on fabric row in Philly and it was $110. For a $40 savings I can wait a few days for it to arrive.

Hope and Happiness

Well I realized this morning that I feel happy. That probably sounds strange but its been a long time since I've been able to say that. I'm all settled in at the new apartment in Philly/Narberth (not having much has its benefits sometimes:-) and I'm thrilled to be back, it feels like home.
Last night I met with a woman that I've been communicating with over the last couple of months about a job working at her home and it went very well, although I still need to meet her husband before final approval. The job would be three days a week and involve doing their shopping and errands, doing bits of laundry, and cooking for them........no cleaning, no serving......its perfect, and she's delightful. I will be learning all about Jewish cooking and traditions. It was fascinating doing a walk through of the kitchen and hearing about the kosher lifestyle. The job wouldn't start for another two weeks so I have this time to finish up some painting projects......that child's portrait for one! So better get to it.