Tuesday, July 21, 2015

EASY AS 1 . 2 . 3 . ..

When I see a beautiful flower,
 I can look at it
 and see the contours and the shading 
and, in my head,
 it seems as though I could paint
 what I see. 
 But, put a brush in my hand
 and the doing of it 
is non-existent.

The sky is fascinating to me. 
 I see a cloud 
and it shows me the exact formations
 and how the coloring could be achieved
 but, again,
 if I were to take brush to canvas,
 the concept would
 elude me.

I did, however,
 back in the late 80's and early 90's,
 hand paint sweatshirts
 that I sold at craft fairs 
and I did sell a lot of them
 they would never
 have become a reality
 if I couldn't trace the picture first
 onto the shirt
 and then follow the exact placement
 of colors and shading 
that were shown in the example.

When I was a young girl 
the paint-by-number concept was born.
  What excitement there was
 when I could pick up a brush
 and create such a beautiful scene.

  I did a few 
and I seem to remember
 a lot of oranges, browns, and teal
 colors used 
but have no recollection 
of the actual finished subjects.

  The pictures have all gone 
the way of a lot of things 
that are a part of the past
 and remembered fondly.

A few pages from Country Living magazine
November, 1992, when the magazine was much thicker and cost only $2.50

Another fond memory I have
 is of the magazine, Country Living.

 I know the magazine
 is still being published,
 but I suppose that I just have
 an "old school" mentality 
and much prefer
 the magazines of old
 when they weren't 
so slick and shiny looking.

 Back in the day,
 Country Living had a page entitled 
"Simple Country Pleasures". 
It simply told little tales
 of by-gone days
 that were folksy
 and had a very specific meaning
 to the author,
 Jo Northrup.

They all were
 charming and delightful

Over the years,
 I suppose it might not have been
 sophisticated enough 
for the new look 
and it was dropped,

 For the last while
 the page has returned 
with a single photograph 
in the vintage vein
 and each wonderful photograph
 is available 
as a paint-by-number kit.

 The kits are $35
 and supply the art on a stretched canvas
 with all the paint and brushes needed
 to turn the picture 
into a masterpiece.

 The kits are provided by:  www.easy123art.com/countryliving

 I am not now,
 or ever have been,
 compensated by this company.
 All of the thoughts
 are entirely my own.

I have just completed this 
Christmas cow. 
 It was fun and easy to do
 and will be a great little addition
 to the festivities
 this year.

I also have this kit,
 featured in the current magazine,
 which I plan to start soon.

This kit just arrived yesterday
 and I am anxious to see how it goes.

 I sent one of my photos of the Cottage,
 into the company
 and a kit was made up for me.

 The cost for this was $60,
 which I thought was not a bad price
 for what I considered
 a sweet little keepsake
 of the Cottage.

This is the original photo
 that I sent in.

There were, I think,
 three different choices 
for how the kit could be printed. 
 The one I picked
 was 'detailed'
 because who wouldn't want
 an exact replica of the photo?? 
 I think I might have made
 a horrible mistake,
 because look how many colors
 and how tiny they all are!!

 I may have a different opinion
 before I finish,
 but FINISH I will!

 It will be fun to see the outcome.

I will keep you informed.


"I adore simple pleasures.
They are the last
 refuge of the complex".

Oscar Wilde

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  1. My oh my, the Cottage picture does look quite detailed; but I am sure you will do just fine making it a treasure. The Christmas Cow looks great. I agree too that magazines are just not what they use to be. I use to enjoy sitting and reading and keeping them for looking at again over the years. Now it seems like most magazines are filled with more advertisements and they just don't hold the same charm. I look forward to seeing the progress of your paintings.

  2. I love the cow picture and thanks for the info on ordering them! You did a great job on the cow picture too!
    Country Living used to be fantastic and I loved all Jo Northup's articles especially Christmas ones!
    I'll be back to see the great you will do on the cottage one!


  3. I loved that feature in the magazine too - but have long ago dropped my subscription. When they went to plastic pages (as did Better Homes and Gardens) and cut the content by about 75% I gave up. One issue I counted 27 pages of nothing but ads for medications and warnings of how the medications would hurt you. Then there were a few pages of stories about people who have had their houses decorated professionally - not that interested in that.

    I do love your cow - very clever kit. Your sweatshirts are adorable too. You would be surprised how many "good artists" trace there design on the canvas before painting - many are not any better at painting "by eye" than most of the non artists around. You could make a tracing of that lovely poppy and put it on canvas and then paint it - give it a try - it is not unlike paint by number.. Can't wait to see the finished house picture.

  4. Oh, I so miss the "old" Country Living magazines! Each time one would arrive in the mail, I would pore over every single page till I got to the last one. It has changed so much that my heart just isn't in it anymore.

  5. Wow Judy you go girl that cottage painting looks pretty intricate. Love the Christmas cow. So sweet!

  6. I love the Christmas Cow - it is beautiful. I used to paint by numbers also when I was first married, in a strange town and knew no one. I see that coloring book are the rage now for adults to use. It helps them relax LOL I loved to color.
    I am anxious to see the Cottage painting and I am sure you will do a terrific job on it.
    I will get the sunflower seeds off to you in a couple of weeks as there a lot of different ones and I want to send you some of each. I will be in san Jose from Friday until next Tuesday celebrating my Bday with son and granddaughter.
    Have a great weekend.

  7. I have always wished I could paint but like you it just doesn't happen when I put a brush to the canvas! My mom painted quite a few paint by numbers when I was a little girl. My dad still has a set of the cats she did hanging in his living room. I miss the good old days of the magazines, so many good ones are now gone. I love the cow you painted....so cute!!! I can't wait to see how the one of the cottage turns out :o)

  8. Ok... this is just cool! Love the paint by number options!! I had no idea that you could get a picture of your house.
    Love the paintings that you used to do too... very sweet.

    Looking forward to seeing how your picture of the cottage turns out, in the meantime, I need to check this paint by numbers thing out. Thanks for the link.

    Have a great weekend, and happy painting :)


  9. I love that old(er) magazine and paint by number was so much fun! But Judy, you sure to have your work cut out for you when you start the cottage! Whew, but I bet it will be a treasure when it is complete! Enjoy! Blessings, Cindy

  10. How wonderful to have a painting of your cottage! I have never done any painting but my daughter is a wonderful artist!

  11. Hi Judy, Love this post and the past works you did on the sweatshirts. I also painted and sold them back in the 80's and early 90's. Your work is beautiful and such a talent you are.
    The paint by number is a challenge and I love the ones your share along with your own cottage you will paint. Wow the details but it will be gorgeous when done and framed for all time to enjoy!!
    The cow painting is adorable. Wishing you a wonderful weekend. Blessings, cm

  12. Judy that is one crazy painting job you are about to embark on! I bet it's going to be beautiful when it's all finished. I can't wait to check out the after! :)

  13. Oh, I LOVE your beautiful house...just beautiful
    and I love the cow,too. I am talentless and could never do this kind of thing.

  14. Oh Judy, how fun! I had no idea you could make your own paint-by-numbers picture. I would love to have some made for my son since he loves doing that kind of thing :) You are incredibly talented, my friend. Thank you for sharing with Roses of Inspiration.

    Hugs to you!

  15. I do love the cow. I have always liked paintings of cows.
    Painting by no. is fun and when one is started it's hard to put it down until finished. I have only one that I have framed hanging upstairs, the rest get tossed somewhere.
    Can't wait to see your cottage when it's finished, a great idea. Looks like a gazillion little numbers on that - gonna be gorgeous.

  16. I love the cow, but you had me at the reference to Jo Northrop and "Simple Country Pleasures". I loved her stories, and cried when she passed away. I felt like I knew her , since I had been reading about her life for so many years. I also liked Karen Weir-Jimerson, who wrote for Country Home..... I think she is still writing, but alas the magazine is gone :^(
    Thank you so much for your great post, and good luck with the painting.....I don't see well, so those days are gone for me. Thankfully I can still see to play instruments and do some sewing on the machine!! Thank heaven for coke bottle lenses :^)
    Blessings to you,


Your comments are so special to me...Judy