Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Acorn Thief

Oil on Canvas
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I must admit I'm feeling a little nuts lately, so I guess this is an appropriate subject reflecting my state of mind. This little guy represents all of those little rascals running around and having fun in my backyard. I am lucky enough to have some really big Oak the natural habitat is terrific for these guys. Some people find them to pains in the neck, but I just think they are acrobatic entertainment. Admittedly, an occasional raid of the birdseed in our garage is not helpful and they do dig up my pansies on occasions. But that's the price for Honestly, I do think they are cute and glad to have them happy here.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Pansies and Periwinkle

"Pansies and Periwinkle"
Oil on Linen Panel

My pansies are having their last hurrah before the Peonies show up next month. I plant pansies in October and they sort of hang on in a lazy kind of way until March when they explode with glorious bounties of blossoms. This painting is of some antique variety of pansy that our local nursery has every year. And to be honest with you, since my Dad is still taking up nearly every day of my life lately, this is a painting I did a while ago. It sits in my studio, framed and on an easel, and it is one I especially like having around to remind that I can paint.

I did take a day excursion last week to Reynolda House in Winston Salem, the home of the R.J. Reynolds family, that is now a gorgeous museum home for tourists to enjoy. Attached to the house is an exhibit center. The reason for my visit was a current exhibit of American Impressionists' paintings. What a feast for the eyes! John Singer Sargent, John LaFarge, Childe Hassam, William Merritt Chase, Glackens, and was truly a collection to savor. You can stand right up to the paintings and study the brush strokes. And then you can stand back from them and take them in for as long as you like. I hated to leave that exhibit hall...just wanted to look and look and look at them over and over. Very stunning. So that was my brief indulgence. If you get a chance to go see this collection, do it. You won't be sorry.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Tess, Finished

Oil on Board

Finally had time to finish painting Tess today. She is really a charming little lady and I enjoyed painting her very much. White on White or Black on Black are always challenging fur colors to paint. You have to just put more color in there than you think you see in order to get the textures and the shadows. I really loved the soft green background and the red pillow bed she rests on with the whites and blacks of the dog and the foreground. It made for a really nice painting and I have to thank the owners for such a good photo from which to work.

This painting was a donation I made to the Cancer Society Auction. Tess' owners were so kind to bid and win, so this painting has a lot of meaning for everyone involved! Fun for me to do...good for them, and hopefully, someone somewhere will benefit from Cancer research.

Now on to the next one...still pondering what it will be. Stay tuned...

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Tess, Work in Progress III

"Tess" Work in Progress
Oil on Gessoed Board

I worked on her head mostly today...focusing on the details of her face, eyes, nose, etc. The blessing of great eyesight is that you see every hair....the curse of having great eyesight is that you see every hair. LOL Being a detail person, I have to force myself to not over do it on the tiniest details. But it is in the smallest details sometimes that you see the uniqueness in each special creation of God. So I have these conversations with God sometimes while I paint this hair or that hair. Which hair makes the crucial statement of shape? Now that you know I am stark raving mad...I'll leave you to ponder this phase and tomorrow I'll get onto the next hairs.....
Stay Tuned...

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Tess, Work in Progress II

"Tess" WIP
Oil on Gessoed Board

Slower than mud...molasses, or however you'd like to put it. My Dad is having radiation treatments every weekday for three weeks. This and his other care is throwing me off so much that just keeping up with life in general is really a time squeeze you would not believe. I'm exhausted. So Tess is coming slowly. I was able to work on her some last evening and today....the background seems too loud at the moment and I will be trying to tone that down. Her eyes are so pretty..I've been having fun studying them today. Long way to go...but I'll get there.