When I watercolor paint, I have two favorite glass jars to use for water (yes, I have favorite jars).  They are reincarnated pickle jars.  I love pickles and a while back I ordered some pickles from Rick’s Picks.  Once I promptly ate all the pickles, I washed the empty jars in the dishwasher and began using the jars when I watercolor paint.

Both pickle “flavors” I had were delicious, but the Kool Gherks were my fave.


Buca Re-do

February 10, 2010

I was not really happy with how Buca’s portrait turned out when I first painted her back in January, which was in large part because the photo I worked from was adorable as a photo, but not as a watercolor portrait without a background.  Buca’s owner, Patrick, also thought the first portrait I did could really use a background (I appreciate honesty from my clients SO MUCH).  Well, I took Patricks constructive comments about the background and decided the first portrait of Buca was not worthy, and not up to par with the rest of my work, so, I got some new photos from Patrick, and painted a new portrait of her.  It was well worth it, because I am 1000% happier with how Buca’s new portrait turned out, in fact it is one of my personal favorites. I am particularly happy with how the nose/muzzle/mouth and bust turned out in this new portrait.  If you remember back to the first portrait I did of Buca, I struggled with the fuzzy, furriness of Buca.  Well, this time, I think I nailed it.

Ta-Da! The new, improved Buca portrait!

Right after I decided Buca's portrait was finished and ready to dry for the final time.

I still don’t know a whole lot about Buca (other than she’s adorable when she smiles) … so look for a follow-up post with more about her in the future.

Today True Religion Photography featured MOCHIE-ROO in its new “The Featured Artist” series.  True Religion Photography is owned by Chelsea Valach, a very talented photographer here in Durango, Colorado.   As part of a new series to spice things up on her blog, Chelsea is interviewing local artists and photographing their work.  These interviews and photos are then showcased in a blog post.

Well, MOCHIE-ROO was lucky enough to be the FIRST featured artist and the post went up today!  Perhaps even more exciting, Chelsea and I are offering a prize drawing for a FREE watercolor pet portrait of YOUR pet!  To enter, go to Chelsea’s blog post and after reading the post, simply leave a comment in the comment section.  Everyone who leaves a comment will be entered to win a custom pet portrait; and that one lucky winner will be announced on February 15th. (***Only comments left on CHELSEA’s BLOG, not here on mine, will be entered to win the watercolor pet portrait.***)

Enough talk from me… go check out the blog:

True Religion Photography presents the Featured Artist

My chocolate girl, Mocha!

February 5, 2010

She was very patient, and it paid off, I finally painted Mocha’s portrait!!!

My Mocha aka Mochie-Roo aka Mochie aka Mocha-roney and Cheese aka Pretty Girl!!!

It is ironic that it took me so long to get around to painting my chocolate girl!!!  But it was a pleasure to finally paint her portrait.  As you know, MOCHIE-ROO was inspired and named after Miss Mocha Marty, my chocolate lab.  Mocha is my FIRST dog and since we got her 2 1/2 years ago, she has become my constant companion.  She is going to be 7 years old in March, so although I call her my Pretty ‘Ittle Girl, she is actually a middle-aged woman.  She gets mistaken for a puppy all the time because of her high-energy, enthusiasm, puppy-like face, and fit physique!  What middle-aged woman doesn’ t mind being mistaken for half her age???

Mocha loves running, mountain biking, and hiking with me.  She also loves a good game of fetch, as well as prancing and bounding through the snow.  She is a very active girl!  As you know from my “About” page and previous blog posts, Mocha is a comfort whore (pardon my language) and loves green beans, carrots, apples, pears, and of course, peanut butter.

I am SO happy with how Mocha’s portrait turned out!  The photo I worked from had the sun hitting the right side of her face, so for the portrait, I washed out that side of her face even more.  The washed-out right side turned out awesome, in my opinion; and I love the graphic, color-blocky-y feel of the portrait.  The white spot on her chest was supposed to be her bone-shaped collar tag, but it is now a rectangle (oopps! should have used masking fluid!).  If you read my post yesterday, Mocha was a little POed at me, but as soon as I got home from a meeting I had last night, she was over it (I chalk it up to short memory more than anything else).
Let me know what you think of Mocha’s portrait by leaving comments; I love hearing feedback and opinions!!!

I am FINALLY painting my MOCHA today!!! I am so excited and I am really thrilled with how she is turning out.  One awesome part about it: I get to keep this portrait!

Anyways, Mocha is actually a little peeved at me because I made her take a bath today (well, actually she showers with me).  She doesn’t mind getting clean, but it had been A LONG time since her last bath, and I think she was liking the dirty dog feeling.  So, she sulked and then napped on the couch while I painted.  Her portrait has a graphic-y, color block-y feel to it that I am really diggin’!

The painting is drying, but here is a sneak peek of the eye/ear portion of the portrait:

MOCHIE-ROO loves Etsy!

As you know, I am hard at work at getting my MOCHIE-ROO website up.  It will, of course, be mochieroo.com.  However, in the meantime MOCHIE-ROO has opened up a shop on Etsy.  If you have never visited Etsy before, oh my are you in for a treat.  Etsy is kind of like an eBay for people to list their handmade, painted, crafty, and/or vintage works (Etsy doesn’t have auctions, though, just listings and stores).  Etsy, like eBay, is a site that you could get lost in for hours browsing around…

However, I want you to go straight to MY MOCHIE-ROO Etsy store, then you can browse around.

Some other really fun Etsy stores/items to check out are:

Kay’s K9s – minature kneedle felted dogs and cats

Books Print by The Black Apple


Tour de Library bookplates

A fun way to shop and explore is by Pouncing … try it!


February 3, 2010

Frankie is a Boston Terrier puppy belonging to TiAn and Justin who live in Fort Collins, Colorado.  Frankie is TiAn’s first dog (like me and Mocha!) so she was pleasantly surprised to find that she could love a non-human little being so much (that is how I feel about Mocha!).

After much research regarding which breed of puppy to acquire, TiAn and Justin settled on Boston Terriers for their loyalty, affection, high-energy, and because they are known to be good dogs for small homes.

As Frankie approaches 6 months old, his personality has really started to show … TiAn says he is so funny,  just cracks her up, and she’ll be the first to admit that Frankie is adorable, but also a little funny looking.  Frankie is very in tune with TiAn and he can cheer her up and make her laugh just when she needs it, and that is her favorite thing about him.  Even Frankie’s trainer found him to have the most sensitive soul of all the Bostons she’s met.  His big eyes help with that whole expressive, sensitive thing.  In fact, Frankie uses those eyes to get what he wants!  TiAn says that when Frankie wants something and she won’t give it to him, he squints his eyes and tucks in one side of his upper lip.  I am sure that face is no match for TiAn at that point!
Frankie is still learning and he has his “imperfections” too.  He is still afraid of older dogs, but he loves other puppies.  He is still not quite sure what to think of babies and little kids (“What is wrong with that human?  It is small, unpredictable, and shrieks a lot!”).  He is a LOUD snorer, which TiAn informs me is not uncommon in Boston Terriers (check out this little noisy Boston boy on YouTube!)  And while you’re on YouTube, TiAn says another good way to understand Frankie is to watch this video, but picture little Frankie instead.  Frankie’s last imperfection is his passing gas; TiAn says he can clear a building!  How does something so smelly come out of something so cute and small?
Frankie’s favorite toys are Justin’s ice hockey skates and roller hockey skates.  Frankie drags the ice skates, which are as big as he is and weigh just as much too, around by the laces.  Frankie chews on the roller skates’ rubber wheels, but since this is the only thing Frankie chews on (no furniture, cords, etc.), TiAn considers herself lucky.  Frankie also likes to roll down hills (now there is a YouTube video I want to see!).  Much like Mocha, Frankie is a comfort snob; he likes to sleep on laps and behind the couch cushions.  If your lap is not up to his comfort standard, however, he’ll let you know!

It was a pleasure to paint Frankie!  I knew he would be fun to paint when I saw all the amazing photos that TiAn and Justin have taken of him.  I had so many cute photos to work from and the one I chose really showcased those big, goofy, expressive eyes.  Frankie’s ears ensured there was no monotony of black and white as they were pink and purple all the way (kind of like the kitty, Rizzo)!

Looks like Frankie has a little mischief in his eyes!