Painting vacation

This post is late due to a serious case of Being On Vacation In Japan. It was absolutely fabulous! I took my watercolors and painted my way around Kyoto. The goal was three a day 🙂  I am happy to report that it went very well. I hope to turn some of the art into embroidery designs of my own. Here’s a flower from Koumyouiin temple:image

This one is Daikakuji temple:


Rokakkudo Temple: image



Dolls in the window at the Beijing airport:


I’m hoping to find time to photograph my work and set up an artist homepage for it sometime soon. My portrait painting is really coming along too. I will be sure to let y’all know!

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Dragon Scales: Part 3


I finished the scales and spikes on the first segment! Plus I added some details, like the red around the snaggle tooth. This dragon only has one tooth – he stabs you once and then gums you to death.DSCF3103

There’s now an outline around the crystal ball.


And some red to make the antennas pop.


Here’s one more photo of the many many scales I stitched. One set down, two more sets to go! Maybe next time I’ll count scales before signing up for a project 😛


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Dragon Scales: Part 2


I am plugging away on the scales and spikes. The play of the light between the various silk colors and the metallic threads is really flashy. All the under stitching and padding gives the edges a raised effect, so the whole thing has a lot of texture.DSCF3071 DSCF3074

Today I’ll also show you the back of the piece! It’s staying fairly neat. Not much to say this week except that I am still working away on it. Onwards!

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Dragon Waves: Part 1 of Lots


So in today’s post I update y’all on the progress of the waves! I am couching down lots of silver thread and will soon be overstitching splashes in various parts of the ocean. This work was inspired by the audiobook for Dorothy Sayer’s novel Unnatural Death – I really enjoy Lord Peter Wimsey’s detective skills. I think this dragon is going to require several more novels before I’m done. All these little curves take a lot of tiny work. The overall effect is going to be stunning though, see below! I couched more lines for the rest of the scales, too.


I also twisted up some special threads for the flames. They’re 2 or 3 strands of twisted silk wrapped around a half strand of silk to get a very dimensional twisted effect. It’ll be in various shades of red-orange blended into each other.


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Dragon: Crystal ball


The crystal ball looked small and quick but it turned out to be a multi-stage process. All the talons were stitched first, then a foundation layer of flat silk in solid colors. Then all the boundaries and the flat silk had randomly placed accent/holding stitches added in tiny thread. I believe it’s supposed to have an additional spiral stitched on top, but it looks good now. So I’m still debating.


Here is is in the larger work!


Next week: Will the scales ever end? Seriously…

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Dragon Scales: Part 1


I added a second horn and a whole lot of scales and spikes. At the top right you can see that before stitching each scale or spike I have to outline first so the edges are padded and have a smooth curve. You can also see that I have an awful lot more scales to go.


And here is your closeup for a better view! Includes bonus ear-whisker.


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Dragon Tooth


This dragon has a gold tooth now. But only one! He’ll gum you to death.

Then I worked away on the waves at the bottom. They’re all in silver. I’m about to reach the splashes at the top now.


They all had to be carefully couched so they followed the swells and tapered off at the end. I knocked them out, though! Next week: Exhausted from all the swimming, I go work on stitching millions of scales.


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