Tag Archives: Drawing

to Grid or not to Grid – Day 28 & 29, daily painting challenge

I’d like to start this post with a sincere apology to my husband. He is the most beautiful being in my eyes and someday I will be able to get that on paper – but that wasn’t yesterday or today!

Some paintings are SOOOOOOOO bad you have to contemplate banking as an alternative career choice (sorry bankers, it would be just as bad for you if I was handling your financial transactions, trust me!) That was yesterday’s daily painting. So I got up this morning and decided to try again. Not much better, but I think I am seeing the lesson in all of this.

To Grid or not to Grid – a grid helps place features where they should be on a face, keeps arms from getting too long, etc. Using one helps the eye see accurately, not what the brain thinks it sees. A grid takes some time to layout and get on the reference image and then the drawing phase takes longer. This is not how I normally work. I spend time planning a piece in my head, sometimes I do a small version to work out composition and color, but I do not spend much time drawing before I paint. This works great for landscapes, I get to dive right into painting – get pigment all over quickly. That is what I love! However, landscapes may be the only subject matter that I have the technical skill to be able to do that with at this time.


After 26 days of still life’s I thought it might be time to mix it up a bit and although still life’s are still a top priority, it was time for some faces and figures as they are a priority for me too. I want to be able to go to the bar on Friday night and draw the people sitting on the stools, the people dancing and laughing. Currently, I don’t have that skill set, my faces are clownish caricatures and my figures are stiff an other-worldly.  I try to draw faces and figures while watching TV in the evening, but it is stressful because I don’t have the skills – vicious circle! Yesterday and today have proven that I desperately need to spend some time in the circle chasing my tail!

Like I said my goal is to drink and draw – with no fear! The question is how to get there. Practice, certainly, and drawing with a grid is a good option.

I will try this painting again tomorrow with a grid.

To be continued…

second attempt, 5×7, pastel on pastelmat, 8 January, 2019


Epic Fail, 5×7, pastel on pastelmat, 7 January, 2019

Love the Process update

I began a Love the Process challenge 13 days ago. It is a challenge to create art everyday, but love creating, not the product. It has been an incredibly fun and freeing challenge so far. It is my goal to make sure that continues, and hopefully my skills will improve along the way too!

Here are some of the pieces I have created.

I am posting my artwork everyday at https://www.instagram.com/stacymayou/

Hydrangeas, 7 x 12, pastel painting, November 2017


Gold Heart, 5 x 5, colored pencil, November 2017

The Bass Player, 8 x 10, pastel painting, October 2017

Stella – self portrait, 9 x 12, pastel painting, October 2017

Lou, 6 x 12, colored pencil, October 2017

Sunday Morning, 14 x 11, acrylic paint, October 2017

A Little Lace, colored pencil, October 2017

Mom’s Tulips, 7 x 5, pastel painting, October 2017

Love Birds, 10 x 4, Markers, October 2017

Change of perspective

Needed to get out from under the leaves today! I have been drawing from inside the leaves for days now.

We took a walk along the river to the spot where we make phone calls. Spent a few hours catching up with the family and took a picture. Then I was able to spend the entire afternoon painting a different landscape than I have in a while. Changed the medium I used as well. Instead of the soft pastels I got out my colored pencils. So much fun! I would like to do this scene in pastels, but it was a good change.

Tried to layer and blend the colors; will need to work on it to get a good feel for the pencils. Probably surf the web for some techniques and ideas, but it is a start.

Painting by the fire

Painting by the fire


Allegheny River, near Shull Run 9 x 12 Derwent Pencils on Strathmore Drawing Paper

Allegheny River, near Shull Run
9 x 12 Derwent Pencils on Strathmore Drawing Paper

Weekly Drawing Challenge – Week 8

Enchanted Camp Adele, a magical place my father bought me years ago ( ok, not just me, but…) I was fortunate enough to spend a quiet weekend there last weekend. Just my father, my husband, Lucy and I.


lucy swimming in the creek


Pop and jim

We got a lot of work done on the camps and I got a chance to do a fast drawing.


stone arch bridge rockland station pa

I love this image, but found it frustrating that I still didn’t have all the colors I needed, but mostly that the pastels wouldn’t do what I expected them to do!

I spent about an hour wondering if I had decided to jump back into the world of creating with the wrong medium. Then I decided I just didn’t have the right tools.

So today I purchased some tools that are the next level up! I’m excited and terrified to see what this weekends drawing looks like!

What soft pastels do you use, love, recommend?

A Two Week Adventure

I know, I have missed two weeks of drawing, but I would like to report what a wonderful, crazy two weeks it has been! I have had the opportunity to Marshal and Wing Walk MD88 Aircraft into the new Eisenhower National Airport in Wichita! They are so much more massive and impressive when you’re standing under/in front of them as they approach!


I would also like to report that 97 campers have been safely returned to their parents after and amazing week at Camp Discovery! Camp Discovery is a residential camp for youth from 4th grade through 12th grade with diabetes. It is an amazing opportunity for them to experience camp in a safe environment where they are normal for 5 full days.

For me it is an eye-opener every year of how hard it is to live with diabetes, never a break, always thinking about what they are doing and how it is affecting them. Best description I have heard is that some people are built like an automatic car, they put it in drive and go, others are manuals and if you drive a manual everyday (like I do) you know you need to pay a lot of attention to the road, speed, RPMs, traffic, amount of fuel left. Unlike a car, however, you don’t get to park diabetes in the garage.

Anyway, camp was hugely successful and I am honored I got to share in a little of the fun.







Ranger Rick convinced me that these critters would go down easy – not so much, but they went down and stayed down!


P.S. I did start a drawing, not much done and not crazy about it, but still pencil on paper!


My Resolution

This is the time of year every year that I get to slow down and remember the past year, bathe in the happiness that was and look forward to the happiness to come. I am so grateful for all I have. I have an amazing family that loves me. They love me in spite of my imperfections – sometimes I think they love me for them – a few of them anyway! And despite how I often judge myself, I love me.

I am not a great thinker so I won’t bore you with cute sayings and quotes I have found on Pinterest. I would merely like to say that I am so happy to be alive and every day that I am I will try harder to be a better me than I am today – I will try as hard in June as I did in January! If however, when we meet next year at this time I am the same me I am today (full of good intentions and not good follow through) I promise to still be smiling and trying!

Happy New Year World!