Saturday, April 07, 2007

April 7 - Vincent van Goat

In getting ready to go to my sister's for a day-early Easter dinner, I painted this 9 x 12 oil of Vincent van Goat from reference material taken yesterday. Betty is just as good with a camera as she is with a brush, and the close-up reference shot of Vinny was just too good to ignore. I know I will treasure this painting of "my boy", one of the friendliest and willingest Saanen wethers I've ever known. He was born in Spring, and fell into my hands. i had Tappy, his mom, as a milk goat. He seems to be looking back over his own life, with many trails and places. New life begins in the spring--I discovered a nest of house sparrows in the electrical box of my camper today! But along with new life, comes the loss of old life.
House guest Betty Billups received news of the death of someone close to her, and she's heading north to the funeral. The mural will be on hold for a few days. So many people seem to die in Spring...I think that is purposeful, to get us to move on into summer and get on with our own living, and to rejoice with all the new life in the cycle of the seasons.

Many have asked what I'm going to paint tomorrow--but I have no idea yet, except to say it will be from my heart. Thank you for joining me on this journey.

Friday, April 06, 2007

April 6 - Plein Air as a Diversion

I finally pried Betty Billups away from her mural commission and said, "We need to go paint!" She listened, and we headed out with the pack goat loaded with our gear. Up the mountain behind my studio we went, and had a wonderful afternoon of painting--just enough time for her to regroup and we both painted while Vincent van Goat lay in the shade of one of the many rocks strewn around the landscape. After about an hour, we headed back another way, through the riparian habitat below the house--keeping Vincent away from the poison oak!

This is an original oil, 8 x 10 inches, for sale for $120 through my ebay store.

Congratulations to Debbie Sullivan--the first signup for the Georgia Workship in September!

Thursday, April 05, 2007

April 5 - Gateways, Passages and Light

This 16 x 20 oil came off my brushes today and is called "Passages #3"; there is just a great load of symbolism in it for me. I travel the road in the lower portion never quite soaring though life, but with beautiful sights to see along the way. The fence represents the limits we place on ourselves, preventing us from doing more, sharing more, enjoying more. Notice how flimsy it is? It truly is a flimsy reason for not getting out there "off the beaten path". I am headed for the gate at the end of my life, and I know I will slip through that little gap when my time comes, and go into the area I can't see right now. That's where we all will be some day, and the misty blues of that distant place ought not to scare nor keep us from our journey. For me, I know I will meet my mom and dad, and as I age, many more friends and family will be there.
"Passages #3" is for sale from my ebay store for $400.

Congratulations to returning collector Cindy Jaeger of Quail Valley on adding "The Studio Cat (head study)" to her collection!

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

April 4 - My Journey Begins, Mom

Last year on this date, I painted a small 5 x 7 of an Oahu sunset, having heard from the doctor that Mom probably wasn't going to pull through this. My sister has that painting now. It's here. If you're interested, you can find the complete month ofApril 2006, and you can scroll down to the bottom to see the series. I don't know why I'm reliving that week, but I must, so the paintings are showing how different the perception is now that time has passed, and how I've dealt with the grief of losing such a treasured advisor and friend. I know I did some of my most powerful paintings during that week, especially this one.

Today's painting was done in a very short time, from no reference other than a small toddler in a dress throwing something--a photo I took ages ago--that started the process. The rest has come from my memories--Lake Barcroft in Virginia, where I spent age 8 through 12, being a tomboy. That's Beach 3 across the water, and that's me about age 11, complete with glasses, a totally outdoors kid. I'm tossing petals of memories from the basket out to float on the water, sharing some of them with you today and through this week. This 12 x 9 oil painting is not for sale.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

April 3 - The Studio Cat 5 x 7 acrylic

The result of today's painting session is a closeup study of Pesto, one of the studio cats. She is a calico, and has the most gentle nature, but in this image, she is gazing with that typical "cat intensity". I'm painting her to celebrate the cover of the American Veterinary Medical Association--I've had many nice emails from folks out there who have seen the cover. I need to put it on my web site!

On a sadder note, each time I put in the date in the title, Blogger remembers what i last typed. And last year this time began the week of ministrations to my mother as she declined and died finally on the 8th. I wonder what I will paint on that day, this year?

This acrylic for today is SOLD, but was available through my ebay store here.

Monday, April 02, 2007

April 2 - Finished the backlit Pasture Scene, and April Fools for yesterday!

I finished the lesson painting in acrylics, spending most of the work on the details and glazing over to create the illusion of atmosphere and dust. These horses are in a drylot, which means dust and no grass--just hay in the feeder. I enjoyed making the highlights on each of the horses a slightly different color, and then unifying the complementary colors with the glazes using gel medium and thinned colors. I hope you enjoy it!

In other news, I received my advance copy of the American Journal of Veterinary Medicine, with my painting "Lesson Cat" on the cover. You can see the painting in September 2006 of my site! It's sold, of course, and I even had some folks trying to buy it again! Oh dear. Maybe I need to paint more cats... I do so love them!

Yesterday's silly Photoshop'd image of that celebrity had a few of you going for a while... April Fools!

Complete blog here.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

April 1 - Portrait Commission!

I am so excited to share with you some really incredible news--I have been working on a portrait of a famous celebrity... can I possibly hold it in??? I could just die with the excitement of it ! I don't know why I've been so lucky, but her publicist has been on the phone with me for hours over the last few weeks. Sometimes things just happen the way they are supposed to, and this event is no exception. I'm presenting the finished painting here for you to see first, since it has been under wraps for the last few weeks. Yes, I can finally share! She's coming to pick it up tomorrow, and my husband is just BEYOND excited to actually get to meet this star when her limosine comes up the driveway. It has been quite a day! Now I don't want you to be envious... but all these daily paintings have finally paid off! I have to tell you that getting the chihuahua "just right" was a bit of a challenge, because he just wouldn't hold still for the photo session. However, I think I've successfully captured his manic look.

I imagine that this work of art will go down in the annals of history as a contemporary example of exemplary portraiture, don't you think?