Wednesday, August 27, 2008

'Wool in the Rough'

"Sheep #1"
Oil on Panel

I am adding to this post on Labor Day Monday.....just to let anyone reading know that some events have occurred since last week to keep me from my paints. Besides the circumstance described below with my daughter's little cocker spaniel, my (ancient) Dad fell last Wednesday. This fall resulted in the skin scraped completely off of the back of his left hand. Seriously. All day in the ER on Wednesday. We were fortunate enough to have a spectacularly talented Doctor who spent hours stitching what skin was left back together, like a patchwork quilt or a jigsaw puzzle. There is still a place with no skin, so we are now going to the plastic surgeon tomorrow to see about a skin graft. Taking care of him and also nursing Lucy has kept me and my husband very busy these past days. Lucy has now gone back to my daughter's house for the rest of this week, but I am having to jump in and do more for my Dad, plus arranging for some in-home health care for him for the coming weeks. I am hoping to get some time to paint in between all of I will post whatever I can come up with as I find the time. Thanks for staying tuned!
About the painting above:
Where knitting begins....with this little beauty! I look at that coat and find myself amazed of the gift of all of that wool. Maybe some of you don't know that I like to knit. My mother taught me how when I was very young and I have loved making sweaters for myself and my family all of my life. Now that I live in the South, wool sweaters are saved for only the coldest weather. There are other types of yarn to use for other seasons such as cotton, acrylic and blends thereof. But I do love wool yarns and a great love of the sheep who bring us such a wonderful textile with which to work.

Update on Lucy, (see below) she will be coming home from the hospital tomorrow and, from the look of things, she is in for a lengthy recovery. She cannot yet use her back legs and that is going to take time and therapy. She is as sweet as ever and we are looking forward to getting her well. Thanks to all her sent me concern and hope for her. It is much appreciated!

Friday, August 22, 2008


"Lucy on a Book"
Acrylic on Panel

There she is. I painted this a couple of years ago, but am re-posting this picture because #1. Lucy is the reason I don't have a new painting, and #2. Lucy is at this very moment under the knife! There is a whole long story about Lucy. The short version is that four and a half years ago we found her near death as a puppy on our street,covered in thousands of ticks and starving, we saved her and my daughter took her as her own to keep. Lucy has not been feeling great lately. (I have been keeping her at my house for several weeks..another long story that I can't elaborate upon right now.) A few weeks back she developed an inner ear problem. Luckily that resolved in about four weeks. She seemed to be O.K. though not her peppy old self. Then a couple days ago she started whimpering and moaning and wouldn't eat and, by today she could barely walk at all. I fed her from my hand and finally got her to drink a little....we all, my daughter, her best fellow, my husband and I, met at the vet with Lucy this afternoon. We have an awesome vet!...who sent us right away to a veterinary neurological specialist. (You can just see the dollars flying out the window as fast as dust in the wind...can't you?) Low and behold, our little Lucy had a ruptured disk in her back and needed surgery to fix it. And it will be the tune of a small fortune. How much is a little stray Cocker Spaniel worth? Lots and lots! We love Lucy.

So no new landscape to show you today, and tons of other interference, but it will be coming. I have my ancient Dad to feed Sunday, a dreaded jury summons for Monday, a Dr.'s appt. Tues., a meeting on cookbook illustrations for the Battered Women's Shelter on Wednesday, my own husband and dog and house, and will probably have Lucy recuperating at my house also by Tues. Are we having fun yet???
Ya have to is never boring!!!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

'Riverside Cramerton Park'

"Riverside Cramerton Park" / Cropped Version
Oil on Canvas Panel

O.K. Trying to save face...I first posted the entire painting and absolutely hate the thing so much that I decided to just take the part of the painting I really like and ditch the what you are seeing here is just a part of a painting. The big version is just awful. Maybe just a bad composition on the whole...but this part works, so I am going to make an effort to start over and just do a painting with this view.
This was from a "plein air" outing that was organized by an art guild friend a few weeks ago. More than twenty artists arrived at the park to paint. I don't paint "plein air," so I came to take photographs and observe. The day was horribly hot and, after sweating for more than two hours, I decided to head home. My favorite part of the whole painting is the reflecting of trees in the water, so that is what I am showing here.
I am determined to get past this landscape block I have!!
Thanks for visiting!

Friday, August 15, 2008

'Roll in the Grass'

"Hayroll & Barn"
Oil on Gessoed Panel

Contact to Purchase

As promised....landscape! This was late afternoon, hot August, an overgrown field with a barn that caught my eye due to the blue cast on the roof against the gold colors in the hayroll and surrounding grasses. Remember I am a studio painter....and to that point, I want to quote an artist who does gorgeous landscapes in his studio. His name is Peter Fiore and there is a wonderful article on him in the most recent Artist's Magazine. In the article he says, "Some plein air artists profess their works are somehow more valid because they were painted on location." Continuing, he says, "If you're a musician inspired by nature, does that mean you have to create a symphony out in the field?" You can check out his work by clicking on the link. Very impressive.

And that is how I feel about landscape painting. I think the snobbery of "plein air" painting has gotten way out of hand. My paintings are inspired by the beautiful scenes I see as I go about my area and travels. And they are of the places I think are beautiful that I wish to share with anyone who takes a moment to view my work. I can easily get overwhelmed when working on landscapes by the awe I feel, the diverse plant and animal life, the wide vistas, the love I have of the countryside. That is what motivates me to do landscape, but also intimidates me. I struggle with trying to live up to all of that beauty. Anyway, I will be concentrating on landscapes for a while, so we'll see what I can accomplish.
Thanks so much for visiting my blog!!!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

'Bluebird Equals Happiness"

Oil on Gessoed Panel
$250.00 framed

Contact to Purchase

I have the perfect frame for this one. (either wall or tabletop) And it is an opportunity to give 'the Bluebird of Happiness' to someone as a gift. (maybe that someone who has everything else, but makes you happy!) They will think of you every time they look at it.

We have families of these gorgeous North Carolina Bluebirds around our neighborhood. They love to visit us in the fall when our Pyracantha bush yields its reddish orange berries. We love to watch them, but they are shy and fly off easily if people are too close by.

My husband and I love having the birds flying in and out of our feeding areas. He is the one who keeps the feeders full and I swear they know him and look for him to come out there with the seeds.

I did get several photos for landscapes while I was away in the mountains, so my intentions are to try try again and see if I can master the genre to some degree of satisfaction. That's what I'm up to next....stay tuned! :-)

Friday, August 08, 2008

'On the Road'

"Nursery on Rte. 321" Oil on Canvas Paper

This is a painting from a trip we made up to Blowing Rock, NC. a little while ago. We are heading up there again this weekend and I am so looking forward to the cooler air and the scenery, camera and sketchbook in hand! :-) The nursery is obscured now by looming industries encroaching into the countryside, so I am very happy I captured the scene when I did. The field on the right now is nothing more than a big tan colored box of a building.

I've been struggling with myself over landscapes. I love landscape paintings and have been admiring several other artist's work, some plein air and some studio painters. So when I sit down to try to do one lately, I am filled with inadequacy and trepidation and can hardly pick up the brush. I am determined to get myself past this bug-a-boo I am having, so the intention of this trip is to get some photos and sketches from which to work. Not to mention getting away from the oppressive heat we have been suffering through this summer. Believe me, one small weekend is not enough! But I'll take it!!

Have a great weekend!!

Monday, August 04, 2008

'Jack Russell on a Red Rug'

"Jack Russell on a Red Rug"
Oil on Gessoed Masonite

I wanted to share with you this sample of what I can do regarding commissions of dog (or animal) portraits. The owner took this picture of his Jack Russell resting on their oriental rug and it just happened to be a terrific pose and photograph from which to do this painting. If you have really good photos, I can use them for painting. Believe me, the photo matters. I also work from my own photos by appointment and I like to do that locally, but the owner is in a unique position of capturing the dog (animal) in all kinds of circumstances that I would not necessarily see. If you are considering having a portrait made from your photos, get out that camera, keep it handy, and take lots and lots of photos to increase your odds of getting that perfect shot.

An oil painting of your pet is a keepsake to last for generations. It's really fun to have. Great for Christmas or Birthday presents, too! If you are thinking Christmas present, now is the time to schedule it. (please don't wait until a few weeks before Christmas) It's also fun to do a collection of favorite pets on the wall, as one of my clients has done with all of her white boxers that she has rescued. The collection is a treasure for her and for her family to enjoy from now on.

For pricing and more information, you can contact me at