Monday, November 23, 2009


I've been missing in action. The semester is coming to an end and my plate is seriously full! Projects, presentations, homework, finals! It's all good.

Today, I'm sharing my experiences with Acrylics.

My teacher, the great Marc Romano, came with a completely different approach. He was like "no funny abstracts, no funny creative stuff! WE'RE GOING TO PAINT WHAT WE SEE! Period!" And I was like, okaaaaay.......

So he showed us some work from the great masters and that was what we were going to do! After my ethereal experience with watercolors, this was quite scary, because I didn't think I had it in me, but, I was surprised at the results! I still have a long way to go, but I think 'there's something there'.

You be the judge.

Still Life

I've never liked the idea of still life, I thought it was boring, but after I painted this, I became anew! Looking forward to more compositions of still life in all media!


I love Dubai, just love love Dubai. I think I love Dubai because of the sense of 'possibilities' it presents, being there makes me feel like anything and everything is possible, so when it was time to choose something architectural, I chose the almighty Burj-Al-Arab. And I'm so happy I did!

Once again, I must say, I didn't think I had it in me!


Hmmm, this one was scary. The first two gave me the confidence to do this. I had never, ever, ever painted a face before, much less even drawn one. At this point, I was wishing I could run from the class, but Mr. Romano wasn't going to let me go anywhere. First of all, he taught me the basic rules of drawing a face and we took it from there. This was the last project of the semester and I know it needs some fine tuning, but I'm not touching it! One day when I become a pro, I want to be able to look back and say, this was my very first! And as far as I'm concerned, it was great!

It is my pride and joy.

And just so you know, I painted this long before the portrait I posted a while ago,of my BFF Selasie. This was my very first!

Color chart

How could I forget? Before we started painting all these beauties, we had to go through the grueling process of creating this color chart. It was painstaking and one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. As you can see, I didn’t even finish, I was in a hurry to start painting! But it was worth all the trouble!

I would never have been able to achieve any of this without the skill and patience of my teacher. He brought it all out. Thank you Mr. Romano. I can't wait for more lessons with you!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


I almost forgot!

Before I took the watercolor class at Victor Valley College, I took some classes; just about three, at the Rancho Cucamonga Community Center. This was my very first experience with water colors.

And these classes were free!

Anyway, I’m happy I remembered. I have to get in touch with my teacher Melanie and show her the progress I’ve made!

She taught me how to ‘doodle’. Just staying busy with small pieces of watercolor paper anywhere- car, kitchen, bedroom and at anytime, because sometimes you just don’t feel like formally sitting behind the easel or table and painting. That’s exactly how I felt this weekend, but I still wanted to paint. So, I stayed in bed and ‘doodled’!

Here are some things I did in my first class, about a year and a half ago.

And here’s what I did in bed this weekend!

No earth shattering works of art, but I had a nice relaxing time with no expectations and I love what I was able to produce!

Take care!

I’ll be back with more ‘serious’ stuff!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

My Own Little Gallery

Here's my little gallery.

Maybe one day, I'll have an art show!

That would be a dream come true!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Watercolors, final part.

I was so happy when my friend Aicha told me that by my sharing of my lessons at school she was learning about watercolors. You know how sometimes you can be all excited about something, and it feels like you're just going on and on? Well, hearing that from Aicha has given me the encouragement to continue. Thank you my dear!

The next project I have to share is my all time favorite! "Essence of Flowers". We were to bring some flowers to class (that was enough to make me happy!)

Criteria: To loosely paint an interpretation of flowers. Using the wet-into-wet technique and double loading painting techniques, drop paint and roll brush to create a very fluid interpretation of flowers. These paintings are not descriptions of realistic flowers; rather they become residual evidence of an idea or essence of an expressive impression of them.

So basically, we painted these 'interpretations' all over the page and then we used a viewfinder to create individual compositions.

Did I say this was my favorite?!

I have used other media to paint-acrylic, gouache, pastels (I'm yet to embark on the 'oil' journey and I can't wait!), but what I just love about watercolors is the unpredictability! You can drop some paint on a wet surface and you have no idea what it's going to become, but if you can just let go and allow it to lead, following that lead becomes such a wonderful experience! That's the biggest lesson I learnt from this project. So here are my compositions.

The next project was "Surrealism".

This assignment is about having access to our subconscious mind; dreamscape. The key word is "Escape"

Initially, I struggled with this project. I researched other surreal artists such as Salvador Dali, but still, there was no connection.

The night before the assignment was due for critique; I searched and searched inside of me for an idea, but no show! So, I went back to the project page, looking for an answer, and I locked my eyes on the word 'escape'. Where would I want to escape to?

And then it just clicked! From my narrative, I said 'I wish I was a flower' and then we had just finished with the 'essence of flowers', (by now you know how obsessed I am with flowers!), so, I thought, I would love to escape into a flower!

I started drawing and painting around midnight and I was so enchanted with the idea that I ended up making 4 paintings of the same composition! I didn't even want to sleep!

Here they are...

Final project; "Pluralism"

In this project, we were to combine three different subjects;

Man made architectural elements
Natural organic living things
Decorative patterning

The assignment eclectically brings several subjects into one composition. Additionally, Pluralism consists of creating a picture that deconstructs traditional compositions and uses mixed media.

This was also quite difficult because we really had to think 'outside the box', but I came up with something, eventually.

Let me explain, the columns are my architectural element and I painted them pink, because, that was my way of deconstructing the normal perception of columns. The other man made element was the shoe, but at the same time, the petals on the shoe were the organic element. And to confuse myself even further, the petals are clouds which should have been found on at the top of the columns not the bottom. Finally, the black and white pattern to flatten it out.

So, that has been my 'foundation' in watercolors, the rest I believe is up to me.

I would like to thank my wonderful teacher, Sharon, who gave me the tools to bring forth all that is inside of me; during the duration of the semester, and for the rest of my life. Thank you Sharon. I have one more post about watercolors, and I will speak more about my wonderful teacher and the beautiful friendships that I experienced during this class.

Thank you for reading.

Work in progress.....

Did I mention that I started blogging when I was sick in bed with the flu? Well, yes, that's the power of forced idleness and the beauty of 'the world at your fingertips!'.

I'm well now, I've been well for a week! And back to school 5 days a weeks, so I haven't posted anything much. But I won't give up!

I mentioned that I had a few paintings in the works, honestly, none of them are done and I only like one of them, so, this is my work in progress, I hope to add some more before the end of the weekend.

I'm focusing on painting African women for starters and I hope to diversify as I go along. It's very tempting to paint only the perfect hourglass figure and that is probably why this is the only one I approve of for now. As I mentioned, it's not done, but this is the silhouette of a dress I've seen worn by Senegalese women.

I realise the image is quite dark, which is a good thing since it's not done, I'll make sure the finished painting is much brighter.

Hmm, just as I was writing, I decided to google 'Sengalese fashion/dresses' and oh boy, I have my work cut out for me! Big time! So much inspiration! I was able to copy one picture.

But you can have a look at this page out on flickr here.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Watercolors- Part Deux


I'm back, with more from my 'watercolor journey'

I was sharing my lessons from my watercolor class. We started with Synchronism and then the color wheel- Mandala.

The next project really started the action going. It was titled "Narrative". We were to write a poem or story and illustrate it with a picture or a series of pictures. We were also to 'mentor' with an illustrator who's work had been published. Our story or poem was to be original and we were to use the mentors artistic style.

I was excited and so I started searching,I went to the bookshop and I searched and I searched but I couldn't find anything that really spoke to me.

Finally, I decided to look online and I searched and searched and then, I found her! As soon as i saw her work, I just KNEW I wanted to paint like her!
Her book was titled "La Belle Ballerine" and I just knew she had to be my mentor. Please have a look at her beautiful work at her blog Perugina Art. Initially, I only focused on this particular set of paintings to mentor me. Later, I researched some more, found her blog and I was blown away. There was this sensual fluid quality to her paintings, especially the watercolors and I knew she was going to be my mentor for life, not just for this particular assignment, but for life. And I suppose that was the goal of the assignment, to help us identify the style that appealed to our senses the most and to have a point of view to start from. I even sent Perugina an email,and she replied. Here it is dated May 19 2009

Hello Patricia,

I'm just writing to let you know how beautiful your work is and how much it has inspired me. Let me tell you how I found you.......

I live in California and I'm going through a "pre-mid life crisis" (smile) and so I've taken some time out to rediscover myself. In the process, I decided to take a watercolor class. One of our assignments was to "mentor" with a children's illustrator who's work we identified with, I searched and searched the bookshops and libraries but I couldn't find anyone who's work moved me. So then I went online and continued to search and then I found 'La Belle Ballerine' and I just knew there was something about it that made me want to paint in the same 'style' so I continued to research you and I found more of your work and I just love it. And then, when I found out your star was 'Cancer' it even made mores sense because I'm cancer too. Isn't art wonderful? It communicates in ways that words will never be able to express! On my journey, I'm just looking to create simple beautiful expressive work, I don't want to shock or to become this complicated artist, I'm just looking to create simple, inspiring maybe even passionate beauty.
So, you're my watercolor mentor!
I'll let you see some of my work when I'm done ok. Thank you for inspiring me and for your beautiful work!

Shirley Ann.

And here is her lovely reply

Hi Shirley Ann,

Your email has left me speechless stating that i am your mentor, and that your were taken by them to have gone to the trouble to contact me. Thank you!

I would welcome your emails showing me your work in watercolour when you commence.
It is an exciting and frustrating medium to work with - well in my opinion anyway.

I am a fledgling in this medium and am still learning about it and making new discoveries each time i paint.
You have stated..
"I'm just looking to create simple, inspiring maybe even passionate beauty."
It is a great thing to at least be able to identify what it is that you want to do - a great first step in the direction you want to walk in this 'your journey'.

Wishing you all the best and keep me posted, perhaps you will want to start your own blog.. to record your progress as i have done. An online journal!
Your email in turn has inspired me.. :)

A journey starts with just one small step.


It's not because I want to put TMI (too much information) out there, but this was an experience that I really needed to share.

I am ashamed to say that I haven't shown Perugina anything,simply because, I think; the time wasn't right, I wasn't confident enough. But now I am. Another reason why I'm so happy that I've finally set up an 'online journal' for my art. And now I can show Perugina my work and share my journey.

So thank you Perugina, for inspiring me so!

I'll ask permission and if I get it, I'll post some of her wonderful work on my blog.

Ok, I went a little of track, but the details of this journey are very important to me.
Flowers have always inspired me. So here's my poem and illustration (and remember, this was at the beginning so it's not very skilled, but I love it all the same!), I also intend to write the complete book one day!

The next project was the "Personal Project" and ohhh, I had big plans! It was a project where we could paint anything we wanted. I was going to design and paint something spectacular! Something in fashion, or maybe a painting of a room filled with all the things I love.

It was not meant to be.

Here's what happened.One morning, I was inspired and I decided to paint some flowers from the 'Essence of flowers' project which is coming up. All these projects overlapped each other. So, I started and I was painting away happily. In the middle of the painting,I received a very disturbing phone call from my parents,the kind that makes you forget to put your make up on before you leave the house. So I was completely disoriented. I tried to go back to painting,but the more I painted,the more I was messing it up. And so I gave up. However, I still decided to take it to class. At the end of class, I stayed over to paint because I really didn't feel like going home to be alone. I don't know how it happened, but I showed Sharon the painting and she thought it was beautiful.She said it looked like watching two ballerina's twirl around in their tou tou's from above. So then it became very personal.To think I could attempt to create some form of beauty even in my darkest moment. And so this became my 'Personal Project'
It wasn't about the painting itself but about the experience, and it really was personal.

One more project for today.

Our next project was 'Pen an Ink'

We were to find a black and white picture, and use the method of stippling and mark making with a ink,a quill and pointed nib to reproduce the picture. I was terrified!News papers were the ideal source. As usual,I searched and searched but I couldn't find anything. Then my friend Carolyn (there's going to be a whole post, in fact many posts about dear Carolyn, we have embarked on this journey together and it's been amazing!)said she had some pictures. As soon as I saw it,I knew it was the one! How I was going to reproduce it, I had no idea, but I was surely going to try!
This whole period to this day has bee a very trying time in my life. And at a point I shut the whole world out and felt like I was in a cocoon. That is why I was so drawn to this picture and why I had to re create it.

See for yourself......

I'll be back with part trois....

Asante Sana

With love from

Asinti Sanaa

Still painting......

I've been painting all weekend! I should have about 5 paintings to post very soon, I'm only putting this here so that I am held accountable!

In the meantime,I didn't want to slow down my momentum so I'm posting a painting I made of my dear BFF and soul sister Selasie a while ago. It doesn't really look like her, but I'm a work in progress! And a friend of mine said I had captured the 'essence' of her and that we should leave realism to photography. Hmmm.

I'll get it right someday, in the meantime, I'm very proud of my painting, even though I messed up a little, I overworked the paper and ended up having to patch her nose. Ouch! Sorry my sister!

I'll be back!

With more from my painting classes too!

Thank you J!


This blog is barely a week old but it's been something I've been thinking about for a long time. Putting myself 'out there' as an artist has also been a very big step!

I have this friend. J. We were best buddies! BFF's in primary school- North Ridge Lyceum- but when we finished, life got in the way and we drifted apart. Thanks to facebook, we've been able to reconnect and it's been wonderful. J was a fabulous designer in Accra too and she also left to start life all over again when she got married. She's been giving me some very sound advice lately because she has walked the same path that I am and I'm so grateful!

The reason why I'm posting this here is because the issue of motherhood came up and it got me thinking. In my dreams I would love to be a stay at home mom and paint for a living. In my dreams....

Although fashion is what I know best, art affects me on a whole different level. I've told many a friend including my honey (my best friend!) that if I had the guts, I would leave everything and just be an artist, but alas! I don't have the guts, at least not yet.

So this blog,and putting my art out there is kind of a testing ground to see if I have what it takes, and who knows?

Just wanted to let you know.

Thank you so much J.