Monday, December 29, 2008

To Achieve your Dreams in 2009.....

”Happy are the painters, for they shall not be lonely. Light and colour, peace and hope, will keep them company to the end of the day."
-- Winston Churchill

As another year comes to a close......I like to spend time
de-cluttering my office and studio. As I was going through one of my files, I came across the following article on achieving your dreams .... I'd like to share it here.

To Achieve Your Dreams...Remember Your ABCs
Avoid negative sources, people, places, things and habits.
Believe in yourself.
Consider things from every angle.
Don't give up and don't give in.
Enjoy life today, yesterday is gone, and tomorrow may never come.
Family and friends are hidden treasures, seek them and enjoy their riches.
Give more than you planned to give.
Hang on to your dreams.
Ignore those who try to discourage you.
Just do it!
Keep on trying. No matter how hard it seems, it will get easier.
Love yourself first and most.
Make it happen.
Never lie, cheat or steal. always strike a fair deal.
Open your eyes and see things as they really are.
Practice makes perfect.
Quitters never will and winners never quit.
Read, study, and learn about everything important in your life.
Stop procrastinating.
Take control of your own destiny.
Understand yourself in order to better understand others.
Visualize it.
Want it more than anything.
X-celerate your efforts.
You are unique of all God's creations. Nothing can replace you.
Zero in on your target, and go for it!

Thank You for visiting my blog,
Laura Leeder


Monday, December 22, 2008

*New Painting Added - Reflections Of Summer

It is -12°C today.....I haven't been out for my daily walk for 2 days now and longing for warmer weather. The sun is popping out from the clouds, so I will bundle up and get outside for a short walk later this afternoon.

"I'd rather have a Rose on my table than diamonds on my neck!"
-Emma Goldman (also.....Laura Leeder! HA!)

This "small gem" was completed recently. The cranberry glass bowl and delicate lace, along with the shade's of pink in the rose, just say "Merry Christmas" to me. Ironically, the painting is titled, Reflections of Summer .....perhaps, I should have titled it, Longing for Summer.

"Reflections Of Summer"
Image Size: 7.75" x 9.5"
Framed: 10" x 11.5"
Retails for $105.00

This painting has been UV Varnished, no glass required.

Thank You for viewing my site: Your comments are welcome!


Sunday, December 14, 2008

On The Easel, Still Life Demo, Step 3

Happiness is not in the mere possession of money; it lies in the joy of achievement, in the thrill of creative effort. -Franklin D. Rossevelt

Step 3: Added 2nd layer of glazes to the table top. Adding darker brown and blue mixes to back of table top - help's to push that edge back. Added color to table edge, starting to build form on lace cloth by defining folds and painting out lace holes. continuing to glaze rose -building depth and form. Holding off on adding any more color to pottery until the rose and lace are further along. With all the color's and texture in this piece of pottery, it would be too easy to overdue it! Hope to have this one finished by Christmas......we'll see!

Thank You for viewing my site!
Yours in art, Laura Leeder

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Painting with other Artists!

"You did then what you knew how to do,
and when you knew did better!" - Maya Angelou

(Instructor Eileen Gidman)

Over the weekend I attended a watercolor workshop given by Eileen Gidman, an accomplished watercolor, mixed media, fabric artist and long time resident of the Creston Valley.
The workshop was fun & informative. Some of Eileens' work can be found in the Painted Turtle Gallery, Creston, BC.

Our Poinsettia paintings in various stages of completion.
I'm always amazed at how each artist can interpret a plant, flower, item so differently!

Taking a workshop from time to time,or joining your local Art Club can benefit you in many's inspiring, chances are you'll improve your skills, expand your knowledge, and build your confidence as an artist. I have found that painting with other artists is not only fun, but stimulates creativity.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

On The Easel, Still Life Painting Demo, Step 2

The aim of every artist is to arrest motion, which is life, by artificial means and hold it fixed so that a hundred years later, when a stranger looks at it, it moves again since it is life. -William Faulkner

Step #2

Raku Pottery with Rose and Lace

Added a 2nd layer of paint's to the background....added 1st layer of glazes to pottery, rose and starting to work on table top. Have masked the holes in lace that are overlapped by the folds draped over table edge. Starting to add color to table. Will continue to build & deepen color of rose with several glazes and start adding color to the lace cloth.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

On The Easel, New Painting Demo, Nov. 27,2008

What lies behind us and what lies ahead of us are tiny matters
compared to what lives within us. Henry David Thoreau

I enjoyed the first painting I completed last month with this pottery vase, so I'm painting another! Same Rose, have added lace to this one and made it a larger size.

Step 1: Added 1st layer of paints to the background. Colors used are: Verditer Blue, Blue Apatite Genuine and Ultramarine Blue, all Daniel Smith Paints.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

On The Easel, Peppers & Lace...Completed!

"For man, autumn is a time of harvest, of gathering together.
For nature, it is a time of sowing, of scattering abroad."

Title of Painting: "Salsa Line Up"
Image Size: 7.75" x 11.5"
Retail Price: $150.00
(This painting has been UV Varnished, no glass required)
This painting will be on display at the Painted Turtle Gallery, as part of the "Small Gems" show.
Nov.28 to Dec.25th, 2008
*If you are traveling through Creston, stop in and visit the gallery.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

On The Easel - Peppers & Tomatoes, next step.

Continuing to build color by glazing layers of transparent paint on the red and green pepper. Dropping in more light washes of color across the lace falling over the table edge. Starting to build the cast shadows of the vegetables and folds in the lace. I have strengthened some areas of the background. (disregard upper left corner, this is a shadow of my notepaper!) Moving slowly on this one, as I find the green peppers shape tricky!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

On The Easel - Peppers & Tomatoes

I helped a friend make "Salsa" in September. As we chopped the tomatoes and peppers, I was intrigued with the different shapes, size and colors of the peppers. I decided to create a painting with the few peppers and tomatoes left from the garden. I wanted the background colors to reflect those of fall leaves, so I used the following colors - Quinicidrone Gold, Sap Green & Anthaquinoid Red, all Daniel Smith Watercolors. So far, so good!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Raku Pottery Painting - It's Finished

“Creating a painting is a journey and returning with discoveries worth sharing and exploring, makes the journey worthwhile.” ~ Terry Gilecki

Raku Pottery Painting -It's Finished!

Title of Painting: "Strike It Rich"

Image Size: 8" x 9.5" Framed: 11.5" x 13"

Retail Price: $150.00

(This painting has been UV Varnished, no glass required)

I confess, I was not happy with the first painting. Upon studying it, I found the table with it's underbar made the lower half of the painting too dark, distracting from the beauty of the pottery, that I wanted to capture. So, I finished the painting and tucked it away......then I started a new piece shown here. I like the simplicity of this painting. The slimmer table edge, creates a better overall balance. Bringing the background's blue tones below the table edge, helps the rose to shine. What drew me to paint this set-up, was the richness of colors & textures in the pottery vase. Also, I was very much drawn to the "masculine/femine" balance represented in this piece. In the vase, (the upper half ... soft & smooth, the lower half, rich, dark, textural, heavy looking). And also in the vase against the rose, (the rose being pretty & delicate, with a light femine scent).

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Painting in Progress-Raku Pottery with Rose

Step 3
Added more glazes of color to the table, working on the rose, still more glazes of color to add, building depth, need to add the shadow of rose across table edge. Will leave the Raku Vase as is until all else is brought to a satisfactory level. It is almost complete and far too easy to overdue it at this point! The background will also receive some more color in selected areas, after rose is complete.
Need to be real careful from here on in and go slowly and thoughtfully!
So far, so good!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Painting in progress - Raku Pottery with Rose

Painting Step 2

I am using some new Daniel Smith watercolor paints that I ordered specifically to try painting this pottery. For the background, Ive used Ultramarine Blue, Verditer Blue and Blue Apatite Genuine*. For the vase I've used Quinicrone Gold, Burnt Sienna, New Gamoboge, Sap Green, Verditer Blue, Indanthrone Blue, Moonglow, Perylene Violet & Zoisite Genuine*. For the Rose,I've used New Gamboge, Prryol Orange, Q. Rose, Q.Red and Opera Pink. It's coming along!

Painting Step 1 (untitled)

Using Saunders 200lb c/p watercolor paper. Painting this pottery is such fun! The colors are never quite the same. I am using transparent watercolors only. The challenge is to keep the sedimentary colors from pooling around the edges of the vase and the rose. I found that if I keep the salt more towards the center this also helps. (I was liberal with it in my demo)

Monday, September 29, 2008

Raku Pottery Painting - Septembers' Demo

Having featured a "Raku" Artists work for the Painted Turtle Gallery this month, I decided to try my hand at painting a piece of "Raku" pottery as well. I borrowed this beautiful piece of pottery and used it in several still life set up's along with flowers from my garden and pieces of lace. Some of these will appear as paintings in the future. I selected one to paint now, starting first with just the vase itself. *How to paint this piece? I'm drawn to the colors and textures in this piece and want to depict that.

This demo is full of first's for me. *New paper, brush and paints! I am
using 200lb coldpressed watercolor paper by Saunders. Some of the colors are: Burnt Sienna, Quicidrone Gold, Sap Green, Ultramarine Blue,*Verditer Blue (new), *Perlyene Violet (new), along with some other very special and unique colors,also new to me, that I will talk about more later. *All paints are Daniel Smith. I varied the strength of each color,
pre-wet areas and added salt to help with the granular texture of this piece of pottery.
This demo is almost complete. Need to darken the cast shadow on the right hand side of the bowl and deepen the colors in the table shadow. Overall, I am satisfied with the colors I've chosen, as a demo, I think it's accomplished what I wanted it to.....can't wait to try another, so I'm jumping right in and starting another small piece. Practice, Practice, Practice! The more I use these color's, the more familiar I will become with their mixing qualities and the way they settle in and on the paper.

Friday, September 5, 2008

The Painted Turtle Gallery-Feature Artist

Beatrix von Allmen - Raku Artist

1961 Born in Switzerland
1983 First interest in clay work
1985 Established my own clay business, called Rainbow. Created and designed jewellery made from stoneware and porcelain clay, which I sold for years at markets, fairs and private shows.

1991 Needing a change from the fine work of jewellery, took art classes in sculpting at the College of Art in Bern. At the same time, got interested in raku. This was a major change in my career. Raku was the perfect technique for my sculpted birds, cats and chickens. Raku brings them alive, gives them character and and uniqueness.2001 Emigrated to Creston Valley, BC Canada.

2006 Returned to Switzerland to attend workshop with raku teacher. Creativity is essential in my life. If I spend too muchtime away from the act of creation,a part of me dies. To work with clay and textiles is my passion; over 20 years of creating in these mediums is in each piece.

I love living here in the Kootenays, continuing my journey as a free artist, creating my vision of Clay and Cloth Art.

Bea's Birds can be purchased through the Gallery, 9:30am-5:30pm - Tuesdaythrough Saturday
Phone: 1-250-428-5141 Owner: Win Dinn

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Peppers and Lace-Painting Update

3 Peppers and Lace
(not yet titled)

-this one is coming along....middle pepper needs more depth, as well as the center of the green pepper, and perhaps more depth on the upper part of the red pepper.

-will add a bit more color and detail to the lace over the edge of the table and I think this one's close to being done. Ive said it before....I love the background on this one!

Yours in Art, Laura Leeder

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Hummingbird Sculpter - Thank You Rose!

Recently, my sister Rose, along with her husband Perry,and children Bennie and Katie came for their first visit , (all the way from small town, Wetaskiwin, Alberta), to my new home, here in Creston, BC. They brought "mom" with them, making the visit extra special! Ivor & I so enjoyed seeing all of you and showing off just a small bit of our beautiful Creston Valley! (This is our 4th summer here, having moved from Edmonton, Alberta)

As a parting gift, Rose gave me this pretty metal sculpture of a "hummingbird with hibiscus flower". I have several hummingbird feeders on the decks and they are a great source of entertainment and wonder all summer long.

(Rose...Here is where I hung it!)

Here is a close-up of this piece:

This metal sculpter along with many other fun pieces was crafted by local artisans and can be purchased at the "Painted Turtle Gallery" in Creston, BC! The gallery is located at 1132 Canyon Street. Phone: 250-428-5141. Stop in to say hi to owner Winn. This place is loaded with many fine pieces made by artisans and crafts people of the Kootenay Region.

Thanks again Rose! Oh, and please say a "special" hello to Maryke!
(don't work too hard ladies!) Hugs, Laura

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Simple Pleasures!

Quote of the Week:
"I adore simple pleasures. They are the last refuge of the complex." - Oscar Wilde

My newest painting: "Simple Pleasures"
Image Size: 10"x14"
Framed: 16"x20"
Retail: $250.00

*This painting can be purchased at the "Painted Turtle Gallery" in Creston, BC.
If you are driving through Creston....please stop in. The gallery features many talented artisans/crafters from the Kootenay Region.
*Please visit my website: to view all of my paintings! Thank You! Come again....

Yours in art, Laura Leeder

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Welcome! 1st Blog Entry

This is my first blog entry, and I must admit...I am a little nervous about doing this. I am passionate about painting and hope that through this blog process, you will come to love the medium as I do and find pleasure in my work. I will use this blog to post, track & share, some of the steps and techniques, I use in creating my paintings, which I call, "Natures Jewels".

The following are paintings in several stages of completion. I will post updates as I work on each one. My goal is to make a journal entry at least once a week. Please visit my website: to view more of my work and learn more about me!

Yours in ART,
Laura Leeder

I Love the background colors on this one!
Not yet titled....

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