Day 8, 9 & 10 of 30×30 Challenge

I’ve squeezed in painting three small whales: one yesterday after standing outside for 8 hours at the market, one in the morning before I met with the Hobart Sketching Group and then the other upon my return home, before I go out again.  I haven’t got to the echidna and ants yet but hopefully soon.

This is the first whale I painted, adhering to the no-pencil rule, of course.  It is painted on paper made from 100% recycled cotton rags that is approximately 15 x 15 cm square.  I haven’t had a chance to flatten any of the paintings yet.

June 9 whale
Yesterday’s whale

This morning’s whale, also painted on paper made from 100% recycled cotton rags.  It is approximately 20 x 20 cm in size.

June 10 whale
Today’s whale, painted in the morning

Then I went off to urban sketching and it was so nice to hold a pencil and then an Artline texta again.  Upon my return home, it was back to direct water colour for this whale, painted on 310gsm watercolour paper.

June 10 whale2
Today’s afternoon whale

I may add some waves, or bubbles or sea weed to one of the paintings.  I am undecided at this point.

Thanks for visiting and wishing everyone an enjoyable weekend.


PjPaintings at Salamanca Market June 9, 2018

It was a fun and interesting day at Tasmania’s Salamanca Market.

A couple from South Australia bought a whale print and then they saw ‘Surfing Clifton Beach, Tasmania’ print, which made them laugh aloud, so they decided to add that to their day’s purchase.

Surfing Clifton Beach, TasmaniaPNG
Surfing Clifton Beach, Tasmania

Another couple, from Canberra, chose ‘Weightless’ and ‘Tu-whit &Tu-whoo’ to accompany them in their travels.

Tu-whit & Tu-whoo

A local stopped by to tell me that she has ‘Retail Therapy, Stockholm’ hanging up at the end of her hallway that she sees every morning.  Her husband bought it for her because she loves shopping.

Retail Therapy in Stockholmsml
Retail Therapy, Stockholm

Another local told me that she sent a ‘Duck Crossing’ card to her father living in New Zealand, who is in his 80s and lonely since her mother passed away.  He phoned to thank her and started the phone conversation with “quack, quack, quack”.

Duck CrossingsmlPNG
Duck Crossing

A ten year old girl from Nepal, bought a small card from the Cheer ‘em Up series to take home with her to give to a relative.  A young lady, from Stockholm, Sweden, purchased ‘Weightless’ and another young lady from the UK, doing her PHD in Marine Science at the University of Tasmania, purchased ‘Entanglement’.  She said that she loves Hobart and wants to live here permanently.


Two ladies visiting Tasmania together, one from Cairns and the other from Adelaide loved ‘Thunder’ and ended up buying an A-4 size.

This week’s most popular prints were ‘Weightless’ and ‘Suspended’.

A thought to ponder:  “I dream my painting and I paint my dream.” ― Vincent van Gogh I can definitely relate to this.  Many times my painting ideas wake me up and the excitement they stir up in me makes it difficult for me to fall back asleep!

Wishing you a week filled with smiles,

from the Pjpaintings stall #30 at Salamanca Market.

Day 7 of 30×30 challenge

Another echidna for another day of the month of June challenge, painted directly with watercolour paint, abiding by the no-pencil rule.  I didn’t get ants in this painting.  I will use higher quality paper for day #8 so that the paint moves across the paper better to try my ant ideas.  I got so excited about my three separate echidna and ant ideas last night that I hardly slept!!   🙂 🙂

June 8 echidnasml
A Short-beaked echidna

Thanks for visiting and wishing everybody a lovely weekend.

Day 5 & 6 of 30×30

I can relate, in a small degree, to marathon runners asking themselves, “… and I’m doing this because….????!!”  I don’t really get the no-pencil rule of this 30x30directpainting challenge.  I don’t usually draw things out in detail but I find a few guide lines really, really, really helpful.  Direct painting is supposed to help you produce looser paintings, but I don’t think that is really working for me.  If I have a few guidelines then I feel I can put the paint on with a lot more ease because I basically know the shape that I need to paint.

Nevertheless, I try to remind myself, when I’m asking myself “why am I doing this?” that even though a pianist could be highly accomplished at playing the piano and reading music, if you hand them a flute (and they have never played a flute before) they are not going to produce great music initially.  Direct painting is a new style for me and it’s going to take some perseverance.  So, I’ve given myself the temporary middle name “persevering” to try to help me finish this race (I can give myself random and new middle names all the time because I don’t have a middle name, so I view it as fill in the blank space).

I had another go at Grinder, one of the grizzly bears housed on Grouse Mountain, Vancouver, Canada (no pencil used).  I’m not that happy with this painting but I can take some satisfaction from his face.

This is my day two painting of the challenge.  I quite like it and I think the matting sets it off even more.

June2 echidnamatted

I thought I’d attempt an echidna again (no pencil used).

I think I’ll try an echidna again and try to incorporate ants into the next painting!  That should be fun. 🙂


Thanks for stopping by and I hope that the rest of your day is enjoyable.

Day 4 – 30 x 30

Today I had a go at painting Grinder or Coola.  I’m not sure which is which.  They are two grizzly bears housed on Grouse Mountain in Vancouver, which I have visited and photographed several times. They were rescued as orphans in 2001, in two separate incidents; one in Bella Coola and the other in Invermere, BC.

Coola, found in Bella Coola, was orphaned, and the only of three cubs to have survived when his mother was killed by a truck. Grinder, was found wandering alone on a logging road, dehydrated, thin, weak and weighing only 4.5 kg.  His mother was never found so we don’t know why he ended up in this situation.

June4 grizzly bear
Grinder or Coola?

I used no pencil in this painting, just started directly with watercolour paints.  A different style for me and a little scary but stepping out of your comfort zone helps hone skills. I was planning on doing some splattering but I completely forgot! I suppose I was in the “zone”.  I think I’ll leave it as is…  and if I try to paint another grizzly bear, I’ll try to remember to splatter.

Thanks for visiting.  I hope your day hums along nicely.

Day 3 of 30×30

My friend asked me to paint a picture of her cat, Smokey.  It was tough going because it was difficult to see the detail in the photo that you need when you are trying to paint something you have not seen before.

My friend’s favourite colour is purple, so that helped give me the confidence to use that as a highlight colour in the cat’s dark fur. I hope she likes it.

June 3 Smokey

Now with the painting for day three done, I can give myself permission to have a little fun gardening!  The sun is shining here and I hope it is your part of the world.

Thanks for visiting.


Day 2 of 30×30

Here’s my day two painting for this month’s challenge to paint 30 watercolour paintings in 30 days.  I want to try to paint an echidna again on different paper.  I think the splattering will work better on less absorbent paper.

June 2 echidna
A going-places echidna

It was fun to paint so I’m looking forward to trying again.  I’ve seen several echidnas in the wild.  I don’t like seeing them trying to navigate across roads but thankfully all the ones that I have seen have made it safely to the other side.  Their waddle-walk is so cute.

Thanks for visiting.

PjPaintings at Salamanca Market June 2, 2018

It’s winter, so there are less people visiting the market. Next weekend there may be more because it is the long weekend – the Queen Elizabeth’s Birthday public holiday on Monday, June 11th. Why around the world her birthday is celebrated on so many different days, I do not know?? Most of Australia will be celebrating her birthday on June 11th, but for the state of Western Australia it will be September 24th and Queensland, October 1st.
Early in the day, a young lady bought a framed ‘Kiss me Please’ print for her friend who is frog mad and has frog everything.

Kiss me pleasexsml
Kiss me Please!

A family visiting from Newcastle, NSW bought a print for each daughter. Little Mia chose ‘Off to the Races! II’ and the youngest one had ‘What the Devil?!?’ chosen for her. She was a little too young to make decisions about anything.

A lady, visiting from Brisbane, dressed in full winter gear, bought 5 x 7 inch ‘Tu-whit & Tu-whoo’ and ‘Double Date’ prints. Four women visiting from Hong Kong decided ‘Who, Who, Who are You? II’ was the print for them.

Who, Who, Who are YouIIPNG
Who, who, Who are You? II

Two young ladies from Taiwan, one translating for the other, were quite intrigued with my art and Tasmanian marsupials. They asked many questions and wanted to know the size differences between Quokkas, which don’t live in Tasmania (I think they were thinking of Quolls), Pademelons, Wallabies, Wallaroos and Potoroos. Then they asked if they could become Facebook friends with me, so we did that. They decided to buy a card each and then asked if they could have a photo with me. They were really lovely. I showed them my folder of originals too, which they seemed to thoroughly enjoy.

A family of five bought ‘Family Outing’. They asked me to add their surname to the title. I came prepared and had a 9B pencil in my pencil case, so I was able to oblige.

Family Outing IPNG
Family Outing

This week’s most popular prints were the owls and whales.

A thought to ponder: “Art is a line around your thoughts.” – Gustav Klimt

Take care, enjoy your imagination and the art around you,
from the Pjpaintings stall #30 at Salamanca Market.

Now I’m off to paint my painting for today for the 30×30 challenge (trying to paint a watercolour painting every day of the month of June). You can follow my efforts here on

30 x 30 Challenge

Hello everybody,

In the past few years, I have taken up various drawing and painting challenges.  I find that despite the pressure and time-challenge they involve, it helps me improve my skills and at the end of it, I usually have developed a few really good ideas that I want to pursue.

Marc Taro Holmes has launched a new watercolour challenge for the month of June – #30x30DirectWatercolor2018.

You can read the official announcement on Marc’s blog but here are some of the guidelines:

  • What is #30x30DirectWatercolor2018?
    • PAINT 30 watercolors in 30 days, from June 1-30 2018.
    • POST your paintings in our new Facebook group: <HERE
      We’d like to centralize the discussion around this group, to spare our usual sketching clubs all the extra traffic this might create
    • HASHTAG your work on any other social media (twitter, instagram) with the hashtag: #30x30DirectWatercolor2018.
    • Any size, format or subject is ok.
    • Our goal is experiencing sustained daily practice. If it’s better for you to do seven paintings on the weekend instead of one a day, that’s totally ok. Same with posting progress. One a day makes a good story – but do what works for you.
    • It’s also completely normal if you fail to make 30! Or to need a few extra days. Like any marathon, just participating is the first reward. 

Here’s today’s painting. Twenty-nine to go now.

June 1 2018
My first painting of the 30×30 challenge

During this challenge, I’m hoping to experiment more with splattering and painting.  The splattering with this fox helped me to approach the painting more loosely and sped up my painting process.  Often I spend 20 to 30 or more hours on a painting.  I would have no hope of successfully running this marathon with that turtle pace!


Tomorrow, I think I will attempt to paint an Echidna with a splattering approach.  Is there anybody else doing this challenge???

Thanks for stopping by.  Happy painting everybody.