Here are better photos of the latest work in oils. I guess I should mention some of the motivation for the two.

The volcano…. it was the colors. The reds in stark contrast to the blues and greens really drew me. The still-life was another student work with the instruction from Eduardo Chacón. (Please go by his site and take a look at his work)

During the student work, I uttered (outloud) how difficult this medium is and with that in mind, I commend those who do it well.

Please stop by again and again, thank you for visiting!


Questions and Progress

Tonight band practice was canceled so I was at a loss as to what to do. After a great amount of roaming around the house, stoking the fire and general shuffling around, I decided to get the pencils out and work on the latest project. I took a picture of it and as you can see, it continues to darken as the pencil strokes continue to add up. (Note: The actual drawing isn’t as dark as this photo makes it appear.)

I was questioned recently as to the reason I do the type of drawings I do rather than something that would readily sell to the general public. In a word, passion. When I choose a subject, it is because there is something that draws me to it. As I worked tonight, I studied the eyes of my subject so deeply that I found my face two inches from the paper, only separated by reading glasses and a magnifying glass. Every line, every shade of the skin I attempted to extract and place onto the paper. This drives me. To watch, almost from outside me, the unfolding of the image over time from a few lines to something that pleases my eye, to get lost in the image as it continues to unfold then coming to the realization that hours have passed, these are the things that soothes my soul.

On the contrary, to slap  something onto paper that would generally appeal to everyone holds no motivating power over me….. money or not.

Little Progress

Well, 2010 is done. I didn’t get as far along in this project as I wanted but then there have been other things that have demanded my attention, all of which really does take precedence over this. But I did do a little to it tonight and thought I would share it. Funny how long these things take………..

This was shot with the camera rather than scanned so the overall page seems a lot darker than it actually is. It’s gonna be fun when I really do get to the scanning part because this is one of the biggest pieces I’ve done. (I usually stay around a 17×14 or so…. okay, so I’m stepping out of my comfort zone.)  Hopefully, I will get crackin’ on this and get it completed in the next few months…… maybe before wintertime is over.

Thanks for stopping by and please check back again.


Well, since the cat is out of the bag on this little project, I thought I would share it from time to time to show the progression. It is beginning to take shape. I started with the basic outline of the subject and now am working on the all-important shading. For now it doesn’t look like much.  The image you see is not a scan but a photo and as you know they just don’t look like the real thing.

I’ll be back at a later time to get you an update. Until then, please keep coming to visit and feel free to comment.


No, I didn’t fall off the face of the earth, just been suffering a case of pencil-interuptus. I’ve had some ask me if I’ve thought about doing a self-portrait….. since I take such lousy pictures, no. But because of the requests of some of my favorite fans here is what I am working on right now.

I’ll add a good scan to the site when this gets finished (and scanned). Until then, keep coming to visit!!

The Secret Revealed

When I began this portrait, I had envisioned what I wanted it to look like. It started out rather slow and there were times I was in doubt as to whether I was going to be able to do it. But eventually it came together and I was happy with it.

The reason that I chose to do this portrait was because of  my love and respect for the subject.  He is my dear, dear friend and he was so kind as to allow me to adopt him as my Dad.

So, as I was completing the project, I had it all planned out on how I was going to give it to him as he had no idea I was doing it. He lives quite a distance from me but I wanted to present it to him in person and I looked forward to the surprise in his eyes when I unveiled it.

But things happened that threw a few monkey-wrenches in to my plans. Some were the results of poor decisions on my part but there were also sudden (and frightening) health issues for him. Eventually, I had to just ship the portrait to him as it appeared that I would not get to present it to him in person as  I had hoped. The day after I shipped it I learned that his wife was terribly ill and in the hospital. It sounded really bad. So instead of a wonderful surprise arriving at his door with sweet memories to enjoy later on, the memories that will be associated with that piece will be ones of tragedy and sadness.

So now I present to you, my readers, the revelation of the Secret.

jess portrait sm

Copyright Desiree Hodges, All Rights Reserved

In Oil

Yesterday I had the pleasure of working with a still life artist, Eduardo Chacón. He has work in various parts of the world as well as in this area of New Mexico. He has been telling me that I should do some work in oil. Now, I’ve been resistant because the last time I worked in oil has been about thirty years ago and I didn’t much like it then.

Yesterday I did a still life with him. I still don’t much like oil but it was fun and I’m sure that I will do it again, perhaps doing a landscape. Below is what was produced by his fine instruction.


Copyright Desiree Hodges, All Rights Reserved


I think I finally reached the point on this project that I can say it’s finished. I spent a lot of time scanning, stitching and cleaning the final scanned product. Hopefully, the print will turn out to look like the actual drawing.

As you can see as you compare the last blog with a scan of the progress, I made some changes as the work continued. I’m fairly happy with the results but again, after it sits some more, I’m liable to make further changes. Then again, maybe not…………



Copyright Desiree Hodges, All Rights Reserved

Coming Around Again

Today I am confined to the house as I have a brutal case of bronchitis. So, I decided to work on the computer as well as to start work again on some past due projects.

One of which is a portrait of my little brother. I had been given a really cool black and white photo of him a couple decades ago and did a portrait of him from it. I gave it to my dad who had it on his wall until his death a few years ago. Now it hangs on my wall.

After my renewed vigor with the pencils, I’ve had a desire to re-do this portrait, to give it more life. While I won’t change the original itself, I did start a newer version of it. It should prove to be a challenge but fun. I’ll keep you posted on its progress. Here is a copy of the picture itself.