My Paintbook Pochade Part 1

I’ve been thinking of painting in oils for some time now . The only time I tried was when I was sixteen and hated it because of the smell (not only the paint thinner but the linseed oil that is the binder for most oils back then). Now, in our modern age, there are more options in oil paint. Oil paints available now are made with walnut oil, safflower oil, poppy-seed oil, and water-soluble oil to name a few. Despite my not having worked with oil, I always liked the look of oil paintings. because of this, I started to do some researching and found that I needed a palette of sorts.

I wanted the palette to be closable so that the wet paint is not disturbed (ie. accidentally dunk my arm in it). I also did not want it to take up too much space and be able to support small to medium size paintings.

I found the perfect palette called Paintbook from Edge Pro gear:

Paintbook from EdgePro

This baby is sleek and compact. It is closable like a laptop with a glass palette. It also serves as an easel with a lid that stays open in position so canvas or panels can be supported. Sadly, it was way above my price range ($400+ USD, I live in Canada so it’s more like $600, a little exaggeration, but not by much). It is a thing of beauty, but it was not to be.

So, I decided to make my own and came up with my paintbook pochade box (approx. 60 CAD$):

My version “Paintbook”

I’m satisfied with the way this came out though it took a bit of finagling. Things are simple to make in theory, but when you don’t have a woodworking shop with all the tools set up, things can get a little tricky and sometimes a little frustrating. If you are in interested in the process of making this box, stay tuned…


Here’s my husband’s birth sign:
img_3798 He requested to incorporate his favorite colour: green. So I complied with his request. It was used predominantly in the centre of the painting.

Then the green is extended by subtle edging on the sides:
Finally it was used as an iridescent highlight layer over for the star-sign :

Heres another detail shot:
Originally when I thought of doing these pieces, I wanted to do the star-signs in gold or silver metallic paint. I guess I could have done them here, but I thought it would be more harmonious if I kept the signs themselves white (since, they are going to be grouped together). Instead I chose to incorporate small variations, in the subtle highlighting of the signs via iridescent overlay. I guess we’ll see if it was a good decision or not when they are grouped.

Stay tuned for the last of this mini series featuring my star-sign😀
Have a good weekend!

Geode in wood

Hi everybody, remember the plum-tree way back in this post: craft fodder?
Well here is it as a geode via pouring medium:
I told you it would come in handy some day. I really like the look of it in this application. Here’s another shot showing the bark of the plum-tree slice:
I’m thinking of doing a few of these in a set to be displayed in a shadow box. I love that it mixes beauty in nature with beauty achieved though art.

Weird doodles


Sometimes I just make some weird doodles. I don’t know where they come from or why but they just emerge, it’s the same with some faces I draw. Sometimes I’m embarrassed at the silly things that come out but I decided to post this image anyway for the very reason that I didn’t want to. In fact, this blog is very hard for me because I’m a very private and introverted person. However, I am trying to step outside of my comfort zone in order to connect with others through my art.

I’m back (sort of)

Better late than never: as I promised in my previous post a WHILE ago, I said I would be back in September. Today is the last day of September.

I have some unexpected news: while I was on my long-awaited vacation in Europe, I broke my ankle. It was a shock to me and my family to have this happen in our vacation. It was the first bone I ever broke in my body.

To make the long story short, I had surgery to fix my ankle and was hospitalized for a week. Our vacation was cut two weeks short. I felt awful and guilty for having done this to my family. But in the end, my own pain, exhaustion and discomfort put an end to the guilt, and I just wanted to get home quickly.

It was a gruelling two days of travel for us and myself, who needed to have my leg raised at all times.

Since I’ve been home, I have been trying to recuperate and deal with other personal and family matters. I just wanted you, my readers, to know that I will be resuming my blog, but slowly.

I hope you all had a great summer and I leave you with a picture of a pretty town in Switzerland called Thun:


Posca patterns


In my last couple of posts, I was fooling around with Akashiya Sai brush pens. The pens produce transparent colours. This time, I wanted to try opaque colours on a black background. I think the effect is quite vibrant.

I used Strathmore artist tiles for the black paper and Posca paint markers for the coloured circles. Posca markers are made by the same people who make my favorite white pen, Mitsubishi Uni. The markers are water-based, odorless and opaque. They are fun to work with, the colours pop and produce a graphic look.

In this pattern, I used the white pens to accentuate the jellyfish look of the circles. I usually paint jellyfish motifs with transparent watercolours. It is interesting to illustrate them in this opaque manner as well. It kind of looks like an underwater nightscape.

In others news, I wanted you, my dear readers, to know that I will be on holidays until September. This holiday is long overdue and I am very excited to go. This will be my last post until then.

Wishing you a great summer!



A little while ago, I went kayaking for the first time in my life. Above is a picture of where we paddled and what it looked like in my mind, afraid of the unknown.

While I wouldn’t consider myself an ‘outdoors’ girl due to a fear of bugs, but I do appreciate the beauty of nature. However, I am scared of being on the open ocean, even though I know how to swim. The vastness of the open water, and being in the middle of it, freaks me out. So when I promised my husband that I would go kayaking with him, I made a promise with good intentions.

In reality, I was scared, but I never go back on a promise (except for the time I promised my brother I would bring him a dinosaur toy from the museum when I was in grade 5, I still feel guilty about it to this day). So I HAD to go.

When I actually bit the bullet and went into the kayak and onto the sea, I was so stressed. My husband did everything he could to calm me down, as I tried to I paddle frantically to reach the nearest piece of land. Soon, I realized I wouldn’t sink sink. We tried some manoeuvres like squaring up against the waves created by the wake of powerboats, and didn’t sink or tip over. After a while, I began to relax.

As we paddled further, we came upon a formation that was like a little cave, and my husband asked if we should paddle in. Somehow I felt a sense of adventure and agreed. It was so wonderful, I felt like a kid discovering something new. Below is a picture of the ‘cave’ we paddled into and how beautiful it was with the light at the end:


You might be wondering about what I am trying to say in this post. I am merely reminding myself not to forget the sense of adventure in life once in a while. There is a lot to discover if you allow yourself.

Patterns II

The other day, I had a lot of fun making patterns. Today, I painted the same watercolour circles again, but this time I used white outlines instead of black ones:


This change to white outlines does give the piece a different look and a lighter feel. The white was done using my favorite white pen, Mitsubishi Uni Signo. I found that the same patterns can look very different depending on lighting and colour.

Below are examples of my patterns after they have been put through different digital filters:


There are so many different looks and possibilities!

Wishing you a great weekend.