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The “Can-Do Girl.”


When I was in nursery school, the teachers would call me the “can-do girl,” as a response to my frequent proclamation, “I can’t!” They would retort, “Yes you can, you’re the can-do girl.”

Now I am 29, not 2.9, and I cannot believe I am back here with all of you kind readers who’s comments are essentially calling me the “can-do girl.” I guess most of us need some “rah-rah” on occasion. Thank you dear readers for showing me the support I needed.

Like at the gym, where I promptly learned not to say, “I can’t” because when I utter my naughty mantra, my trainer tacks on 5 more of whatever it is I just proclaimed, “I can’t” do, I have now learned to stop saying “I can’t” with my art as well.

I bought my notebook for my first art journal. My intention with this journal is to learn about using pigments so I can explore mixed media more comfortably. My first page was really just an exercise in learning a bit about gesso – a product I only know about from books, not from experience. I gessoed, if that is what one does with gesso, the top half and not the bottom half of the page. I actually preferred to paint on the plain half, but I can see how when you start getting gloopy and gloppy that it is a good idea to prime the page.


Then I just winged it, and painted a little doodle to see what the colors I have in my Liquitex Classic Beginner 6 set. I did not mix anything, I just painted free hand and then labeled all of the colors for future reference.


For my second page, which I did this evening, I decided to sketch out an owl and then paint him. My subject came about because a few weeks ago, a friend suggested I draw an owl for a project and I proclaimed, “I can’t!” I have spent over a decade pronouncing my inability to draw and paint. Apparently I was wrong. I can. This may not be some masterpiece of Audubon proportions, but I am quite happy with my little friend. I played with paint and brushes and brush strokes then I used gel medium to make a wash and I added a some cut-outs from a magazine I had on hand. All in all, I’d say a job well done.

I did learn that you cannot draw with a number two pencil and then just paint over it with acrylics. All I own are those automatic number two pencils. More experienced acrylic folks – what should I use to sketch something that I am going to paint over? Any tips would be super appreciated!

2 Comments leave one →
  1. 04.11.2008 11:42 pm

    What happens when you use your mechanical pencil? Do you mean you can still see the lines through the paint? Or becuase you can’t write on the gesso??

    I am not sure about the pencil question…since I don’t use it very much, but when I do, I use the turquoise 2B (Prismacolor)- available at Michael’s or Joanns…or regular art store.

    Either way…I love your owl- SUPER GOOD JOB!! Congratulations on starting your journal..I hope you have a great time with it!

  2. 04.12.2008 4:53 pm

    I love the owl…. and the bright Gesso design. They should use it as their logo 🙂

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