Flower Studies and what not

I've been busy doing lots and lots of studies for a lake painting this past week-- I'm trying to get some control of various wet into wet techniques.  Before that it was various paintings of a snowy mountain using Raw Umber.  Before that it was various paintings building on the older Mare Island series.  So, lots of work, but not quite stuff ready to show.  I'll be sharing all that when I hammer out some 1/2 sheets I'm satisfied with.

In the mean time, I've also been doing some smaller 1/8 sheet studies of flowers.  I can see that I'd like to blow these up and get more wet into wet.

This first one is freesia-

This second one is from our plum blossoms-

Beyond that, what's a painter do when he's got 40 minutes to spare and wants to practice?  Use the back of bad paintings to practice straight lines I guess.  ;P  I did a set of lines, then attempted to do a second set of straight lines inbetween each of them. I then attempted to connect the tips of two specific lines (like telephone wires) over and over, using various ones.  One wants a consistent width too, so I tried different brushes with different volumes of paint, using different levels of pressure.  This is tougher than it looks! I still wasn't particularly satisfied.  Clearly work to be done. 

uNothing like screwing up a nice painting because you can't make a simple straight line.