Wednesday, September 30, 2009

It has finally cooled off - and it's wonderful!!

Oh, my, it is so nice outside right now! Please remember this is Florida and to get temps in the 60's in September is highly unusual! But we were in the 60's this morning, the humidity has dropped and it only climbed to the low 80's today - absolute heaven!

My apologies for the lack of posts here lately - I am still trying to sort myself out after the computer crash. It's getting better day by day. Finding lost files, reconnecting to lost info, etc. It amazes me as well as scares me how dependent I am on a computer. It truly is a lifeline to a much bigger world than I realized. Of course the flip side of that is it's a major time hog - if I let it, it will take over all my time!

The trip to Paris is now in it's second week and it's absolutely gorgeous there! So far we've had perfect weather and everyone is having a great deal of fun! I haven't had much time to paint other than for the class, but I wanted to put up something to celebrate this gorgeous weather we're having! I just LOVE Fall! In honor of the season, I present to you:



First Pumpkin of the Season
Watercolor ACEO (2.5" x 3.5"

Purchase information available here.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Happy Fall, Y'all!!


Wow! Can you believe it's already fall?! I am stunned at how fast the days are flying by! Before the "great crash of September 16th" I had grand plans to relaunch my blog and web site with an Autumn theme. Weeeeeellllll, since I'm still awaiting replacement software to arrive, it doesn't look like that's going to be happening. Oh, well, at least I have an good excuse/reason this time!


Since I can't do the actual update - yet - I thought I'd share some Fall foliage with you instead. Some, if not all of these, have appeared on the blog before. I'll be sketching some new leaves when the Imaginary Trip through Autumn launches at the end of October (which will be here before I know it)! I know most of you are not looking forward to Fall the way I am, but I am oh, so ready for cooler temps. We're still well in the 90's with high humidity and another month (at least) of it to go! Okay, I'll quit whining now! ;•)


And this is a friendly reminder that the solstice is a great time to check in with your goals to see if you're still on track, need to course-correct or update. I know my goals have changed radically since the first of the year, but I am adjusting on the fly and keeping on track. There are a few things that have slipped here of late that need some attention, but these will be taken care of shortly. Had I not checked in on my goals, I'm not sure I would have caught the slip until it was a bigger issue.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Meet the Newest Member of the Ferlita Household

I have to say that yesterday was one of the wildest days I've experienced in quite some time. It's a tale of woe and redemption. I went over to the Apple store yesterday with my Mac for my one-on-one appointment. When I arrived with my desktop computer on a rollie cart, they couldn't find my appointment. Being that it was 9:00 o'clock in the morning, this was not a good sign.

Turns out the ditz had struck again - I had scheduled for the 23rd and not yesterday, the 16th. Argh! Jessica, the young woman that was helping me, rescheduled me for noon. Yay! I went off to run errands - which is another story for a different post - and came back at noon to work with Carl. Carl's expertise is video and that's where I needed help. We worked through some of the issues I've been having with my computer and came up with a work around - working on the video files from an external hard drive.

Carl had to move on to his next appointment, so Ben was going to help me set up the external drive. He asked me to power up my Mac so we could map the new external drive and . . . . . . . . . . the internal hard drive would not mount. Now Nick enters the scene - Nick is one of Apple's technicians, an outstanding one too, in my opinion! He worked his magic and was able to get the drive working again. Checked some directories and arrived at the opinion was probably a software issue that was causing the problems.

He stepped away and we fired the computer up again because we still need to set up the external drive. No drive. Nada. Nothing. This time, they had to take the computer in the back and pull the drive out of it to extract my data, but extract it they did. Whew! CLOSE CALL! My entire business is/was on that computer. Do I back up? Yes, but. We've been having a whole lot of storms lately and I had turned the hard drive off to protect it and had not turned it back on since late August . . . . .

Long story not so short, we are now the proud owners of a new 15" MacBook Pro! And she is sooooo sweet! I would never have chosen this to have happened NOW, but it did, and the folks at Apple, especially Ben and Nick, were outstanding! So, let me just say - if you are in need of a computer, consider an Apple. The Apple products are superior and they're superior for a reason! The Apple personnel are even better than the products! So, without further ado, here's the new baby . . .  .
 

What do you think I should name her? Suggestions?

Monday, September 14, 2009

Daily Practice - Updated Waiter


Watercolor Sketch 

Okay, now our waiter is beginning to look like a collage instead of a few random pieces thrown together. Which is what this sketch really is, but no one need know that! There are always going to be cool things that catch our eye that don't really make a complete sketch by themselves. Combine them! Create a collage out of a lot of different vignettes to form a larger, pleasing whole by repeating colors and shapes.

The shape of the bistro sign repeats the colors and shape of the metro sign. These colors are repeated in the waiter. The colors in the cat are repeated in the wall. If you look closely you will see there is green in the background of the black bistro sign. Another repeat of the green in the metro vignette. This is artistic license at it's best - moving items, deleting items, changing colors, re-sizing objects, adding things that aren't really there!

p.s. Forgot to mention that by overlapping elements - the waiter and the bistro sign - they are more cohesive and appear to go together.

Please note: Our "Imaginary Trip to Paris" is leaving on Monday, September 21st! The final date to sign up will be Friday, September 18th. There are still a few spots open so please join us! Please click the logo on the right to visit the web site for more informaion!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Drum Roll, Please!

A quick thank you to everyone who entered into the drawing (and sent happy birthday wishes my way)! I am looking forward to another fantastic year and I'm hoping that you will all be part of it. So without further delay, the winner of the ImaginaryTrips.com journal and band is……














……Ms. Claire M! Congratulations, Claire! The journal will be on it's way to you tomorrow!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Daily Practice - How to Be a Cool Dog!

Imagine my surprise and delight when I stumbled upon this lovely dog fountain! I just had to sketch it - for himself and for the 3 girls at home* that would've loved to have had a drink from it!
Hmmm, knowing Susie, she would have submerged herself in the fountain!

This is a watercolor sketch with black and white gel ink added in places to give a bit more definition to the water and to the cracks in the wall. Some of the colors are added in to The dog's head to make the rendering more vibrant and interesting. Otherwise, he really would have been a cool bluish colored dog!

This is one I will probably revisit in the studio once I get home* as I think there is more to this guy than what my sketch captures.

*This sketch is in preparation for An Imaginary Trip to Paris starting September 21st! The "trip" will be a sketching and painting holiday for those who join me! (I'm not really in Paris, darn it!) More information can be found at ImaginaryTrips.com!


P.S. Don't forget about the giveaway! Click here for more info!

Monday, September 7, 2009

It's A Very Special Day, Here at Painted Thoughts!!

Today’s my birthday!! And I'm giving away the presents!! I am giving away a Folded Accordion Journal made of Arches 140 lbs., cold press watercolor paper AND an ImaginaryTrips.com Journal Band!

(You can see some of my birthday cards in the background!) Above, you can see the journal folded up - it's approximately 5.5" x 7.5". Below is a close up of the journal pendant. This is a wonderful way to keep your journal secure when it's not in use (not to mention extremely stylish! ;•) )

This the type of journal that I will be recommending students use for our Imaginary Trip to Paris!” And for the students who have registered, you have already been entered to win, but you may enter again if you would like. Also, I am thrilled to say that we have reached the halfway point in the class registrations and it's not even a week yet! Thank you so much for your interest and support!
If you would like to be eligible for the giveaway, please leave me a comment or several - I will use the “random number drawing mechanism” in my household - also known as himself - for the drawing on THURSDAY evening, around 8:00 pm and will announce the winner after that!

It has been a fantastic year for me with the next one shaping up to be even better and a lot of it is because of all the wonderful, kind, funny, thoughtful, and encouraging folks I've met in the blogosphere. This is my way of saying thank you for the friendship, support and fun!

Friday, September 4, 2009

1st FLOOR FLAT: PINK SATURDAY - MAKING BLOGGER BLOGGING A HAPPIER EXPERIENCE

1st FLOOR FLAT: PINK SATURDAY - MAKING BLOGGER BLOGGING A HAPPIER EXPERIENCE
Hey, everyone, I want to direct your attention over to Susie's 1st Floor Flat post (link above) about all the cool changes Blogger has made (in case, you're like me and haven't made the time to stay current). Susie does a great job of explaining all the new features and some of them are outstanding!
As always, thanks Susie!!!

Daily Practice - A "Pretty" Wrong Turn

Watercolor Sketch of Parisian Planter*
by Laure Ferlita
Copyright © 2009 Laure Ferlita

I never did get to where I was trying to go* - but then, that was okay because I kept stumbling upon these lovely hidden treasures I probably would not have found any other way! (Click on image to read the story!)

One of the things necessary to paint successfully on location is a mindset shift away from the "Altar of Details." And for those of us that worship at that alter, the mindset can be a little more difficult. Details become rare and precious things rather than a dime a dozen. Used sparingly, they make a sketch sing. Too many, and the sketch doesn't get finished - at least, not on location!

*This sketch is in preparation for An Imaginary Trip to Paris starting September 21st which will be a sketching and painting holiday for those who join me! (I'm not really in Paris, darn it!) More information can be found at ImaginaryTrips.com!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

WOOHOO!! IT'S LIVE!!!

We are on our way to Paris!! I am so very excited to announce that the web site, www.ImaginaryTrips.com is now live! The links in the upper righthand corner of the site will direct you to the Paris trip class page. Please let me know what you think of the site and/or if you have any issues or problems or questions!