Friday art date

by | Apr 25, 2017 | a slice of life, Artistic Endeavors | 33 comments

I’ve shared about my friend, Katie, who is an amazing artist with formal training.  Well, we had an idea to sketch/paint together once a week on Friday afternoons.  Life has gotten in the way a few times, because we’re both busy, but each time we have gotten together, it has been so amazing.  Last time, we were just sketching an egg.  This time, we were sprawled out on the floor, painting landscapes in oil.  It’s rushed and disorganized and we make it up as we go along, but it’s two friends spending time together doing something we love.  It’s good for the heart.

So, I’ve been wanting to get into oils and I have never used them.  It made me laugh when we both pulled out our supplies.  Her paints are well used and her palette is seasoned…

All of mine were brand spanking new in stark contrast.

Well, mine will get all seasoned and crusty, too!

Katie taught me how she puts together a palette and we worked on building tonal scales…

We selected a fine art painting from an art magazine to use as an inspiration picture.  Katie talked through her process.  She’s very systematic.  I was looking at her canvas board, trying to follow her steps.  We only had about 20 minutes to paint and I just had some cloud shadows and patches of blue sky on my canvas, so I went rogue.

“I’m just going for it!”

I started just working the paint, trying to stay loose.  It honestly felt like a bit of a mess and, aside from basic composition, it really didn’t look anything like the inspiration painting.  When I took a minute to step back, though, I actually liked some of what was happening.  It’s my very first oil painting ever, so there is a mountain of room for improvement, but I loved working with oils and I can’t wait to work on the next painting.

I put it in a gold-leafed frame, because that makes anything, even an amateur first-attempt at an oil painting, look important!

I’d like to try some more muted greens and blues next time, because this one is a little bright.

And I need to go back and sign it!  I don’t know what is with me and not wanting to sign things.  I’ll sign it, though.

I’m going to be traveling this Friday, sadly, so I’ll miss my art date with Katie, but I’ve packed my sketch books and watercolors and am looking forward to the next time I can get my oils out.

PS – My love of art supplies is totally out of control!!  An intervention may be necessary.


  1. jacqueline pankuck

    Love it…I’ve been wanting to try oils for so long…only used watercolor. Seems like the “opposite” process in terms of starting with lights versus darks. Thanks for the inspiration!

  2. Monica

    I’ve taken a couple Bob Ross classes at a local art store and really enjoy working with oils but have not gotten up the nerve to invest in the supplies. You’re so lucky to have a friend who shares your interest in art – Fridays must be so fun! Would you or Katie be willing to share with all of us the colors to set up a good beginner’s palette? A simple list of colors and mediums would be great. Thanks for sharing all your creativity. For me, your watercolors and now the oil painting have been so inspiring.

  3. Brenda

    I’m not an artist ( as far as paints,drawing, etc. are concerned ). I’m a quilter. That means I have a fabric stash, a LARGE fabric stash. I understand your love of artistic supplies. For me I love the colors and the possibility of what can come from a pile of beautiful fabric. I’ve heard of quilters making arrangements to go to a fellow quilter’s home and retrieve the stash of fabric in the event of the others demise. It’s to save the bereaved family’s having to learn that their loved one was a fabric hoarder! I guess that would be intervention. Congrats on using the new medium!

  4. Sandy

    For many years I have taken a Thursday art class and my classmates have become close friends – everyone knows not to call me or ask me to do anything on a Thursday morning 🙂 Make your date and keep it as often as you can – you will find it’s cheaper than therapy, those art supplies!

  5. Jo

    I simply cannot believe how talented you are! It seems there is nothing you touch that doesn’t come out beautifully, even the first time. What wonderful gifts you have. I think that painting is absolutely beautiful and certainly does belong in a gorgeous frame.

  6. Nancy

    Very pretty! My mother-in-law is a wonderful painter and I would love to have time to sit with her and paint. We live too far apart. I’m not as talented, but it would still be fun. It’s great you can paint together. You have such an eye for a rustic quality to your paintings that make them filled with ease. Not overdone. Love it.


  7. Krista

    What a cute painting!

  8. Tracie

    Really beautiful – I liked it out of the frame too 😉 My oldest son could draw better than I could in the 1st grade; Must of skipped a generation or two – haha!

  9. kay

    Nice job Marion. It’s a great idea to paint with someone “better” than you – this way your skills improve – like dancing or tennis. Keep up the good work and remember to have fun with it!

  10. JD

    I love to see you getting into oils! This is a great start, Marian. 😀

  11. Pamela

    I am loving my oils classes as well. I am staying with bright colors, no muted tones or grayed down colors. My tubes of oils already look like hers. You are right, yours will not take long to look like that at all. 🙂

  12. Karen

    It’s so pretty Marian!

  13. Faerie

    You know what, Miss Marian? You need to add painter to your description of yourself! Once again a gorgeous work of art…so inspirational to all of us! You go, girl!

  14. Lori

    I love your painting, especially for your first time with oils. Isn’t it wonderful challenging your self to new areas?
    I’m wondering if you don’t sell all of your ironstone plates at your next show, will you be offering them on line?

  15. Gilda

    beautiful painting! Hard to imagine it’s your first, HOWEVER you have had tremendous art productions on your furniture pieces and throughout the years, so this doesn’t surprise me one bit! I would’ve expected a great start…now let’s see you do more!!!!! and sell some of them, please!

  16. Peg

    You are the best! Thanks for a great idea. One Friday at a time to get back into painting! Very nice landscape painting!

  17. Sherry Nerreau

    I think the painting came out great Marian! I really liked it. I know what you mean about supplies though. I am a crafter and I like to do different kinds of crafts especially upcycling things now like I get at tag sales etc. (which I love!) You can just imagine. I have all kinds of ‘supplies’! It may be too late for an intervention for me though. 🙂 Love your sense of humor! 🙂

  18. Becky

    It’s a beautiful painting. Oh, how I wish I could paint. have fun with your new art form. You are very talented.

  19. Elizabeth

    Very nice painting. I can’t believe it’s your first effort in oil. You interpretation of the sky is not only creative, it works to balance the sky with the ground. Thanks so much for sharing this. Your art dates are an inspiration for me.

  20. Dionne

    Talent runs deep with you, young lady!!

  21. Cynthia Brocato

    Are you going to sell it at Lucketts?

    • Miss Mustard Seed

      You know what? I think I will! I’ll probably do some more to sell at Lucketts, just to get them out in the world. 🙂

  22. JNY

    Looks GREAT mad talent for first time with oils !

  23. Marjorie

    Love the beautiful painting. It brings joy to me. Cherish your art dates and the shared love of painting. You are making wonderful memories in addition to your art.

  24. Marianne

    What a beautiful painting ! You could paint for a living ! Not just furniture ! 😊

  25. Naomi S.

    Well, now, that’s quite nice, Marian. For a twenty-minute initial painting session and the first time using oils, I’d say you did a wonderful job. Just think what you could do if you had an hour! Seriously, it’s a really sweet little landscape and I think it deserves a gilded frame!

    My mother and her mother both painted with oils and I did a few things myself. What I always loved about it was the smell of the paints! Mmmmm. Remembering that might make me want to play around with them again!

  26. Sandi

    Great painting! Just a tip for making a landscape show even more perspective, cool colors will make mountains and trees recede and warm colors will bring objects closer. An example would be to use more blue-greens in the background even gray blues and more warm greens and red-orange in foreground.

  27. Anya

    Oh my gosh, this is beautiful. Just my style – I love it!

  28. Cindi

    Love it! I would buy that for sure if I saw it somewhere. 🙂

  29. celestetial

    This is so beautiful! Marian, you really have the eye for proportion, balance, and color, and to achieve this in your first go is amazing. I’m floored that your major was music and not visual art…it is kind of like reading James Herriot’s books and realizing that on top of being a veterinarian, he was a true wordsmith.

    I have a question on the really dirty pieces of furniture that you come across. Do you ever have asthma issues when cleaning them? Does the top coat really coat everything so that they are safe to have food on plates in contact with them? Do they have lead paint on them? I grew up with pieces like that cast off in the woodshed and garage, and the idea of ever having them in the house again was considered absurd, primarily because of their condition. I have seen Pinterest photos of chicken feeders on kitchen tables and believe me, if you have ever had chickens you do not want their feeders anywhere near your food! I’m not being critical, honest. I’m just wondering about this because I was in science for a long time.

  30. Tammy

    Looks like you’re ready to begin painting the landscape of Adams County!

  31. Heather

    I love your painting!

  32. juliana

    They are very beautiful paintings, congratulations.


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Marian Parsons - Miss Mustard Seed

I’m Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, paint enthusiast, lover of all things home and an entrepreneur, author, artist, designer, freelance writer & photographer.  READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business…


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