Friday, February 26, 2010

Just Time for a Sketch: Happy Hour

Happy Hour sketch
8x8, oil on canvas
I did this quickly from a photo I found on the website WetCanvas. What a great resource for us artist-types. This girl looks like she could be one of my twisted sisters. Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Bliss Following Indeed

Self Portrait with Freesia
12x16, oil on canvas
$190, email for info
Well, I wiped this one so many times that, by the end, "Self Portrait with [Full-Blown] Freesia" might have been a more accurate title. The longer those poor flowers sat under the light, the bigger they got. But what a beautiful morning of painting: in my newly spiffed-up studio space, The Penthouse Radio, surrounded by windows, and the snow falling outside for hours with flakes the size of salad plates, piling up on the palm trees around the pool. And later, watching school-got-out-early teenagers Sharkboy and Lavagirl catching snowflakes on their tongues just beyond my windows. How great is life?

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Settling in to My New Old Space

Still Life in New Studio
9x12, oil on canvas
$125, email for info
Let's get back to the 'how lucky am I?' catagory. I casually mentioned to Mr. Right that I'd like to reconfigure the "art room" and create a more functional painting studio space. Just pillow-talk really. We chatted about this idea and that... more storage here, a place to put paintings there. Then one day last week he twinkled his nose and Shazam! I'm in new digs! I won't spend a bunch of time explaining his studio solutions but, suffice to say, Mr. Right can make a project happen!! Naturally, this led to much cleaning, sorting, tossing, etc... It feels great!!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Sunshine Award, alla prima

Is There a Title That Doesn't Include a Tequila Reference?
16x20, oil on canvas
email for info
This was my set-up in Laurel’s alla prima still life class last week. We’ve been learning different blocking-in techniques – this one is used by artist Kevin McPherson and it’s my favorite. Our classmate Stephen Parker explained this method quite eloquently on his blog - click on his name for further reading. I’m sad that class is coming to an end.

The For the Love of Art show at Austin Art Space kicked off to great crowds at the reception Friday night and will continue through February 27. There are wonderful artists represented in the show - visit AAS website for days and times. Also… hee, hee, hee… I got a small mention in a Daily Texan article yesterday.

Finally, my thanks to my artist/classmate/inspiration Trish Siegel who has given me the Sunshine Blog Award for creativity and positivity in blogging. Funny, I thought that blogging helped me stay positive and creative – not the other way around. Plus, as I travel through the blogosphere, “meeting” other creatives and being influenced and informed by them, I find you get so much more than you give… no matter how much that is. In that spirit, I will pass along the Sunshine Award, with my gratitude, to 12 other artists who contribute mightily to my creative life – go check them out!

1. Ann Gorbett
2. Ann Rogers
3. Carol Nelson
4. Claire Carnel
5. Dana Cooper
6. Dreama Perry
7. Leslie Saeta
8. Liz Holm
9. Liza Hurst
10. Mary Sheehan Winn
11. Susan Carlin
12. Vicki Shuck

The rules for accepting the award are: put the logo on your blog or within your post; pass the award onto 12 bloggers; link the nominees within your post; let the nominees know they have received this award; link to the person from whom you received this award.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Karin Jurick Thank You Project

Thanks Karin
8x8, oil on panel
Karin Jurick is an amazingly gifted artist. Simply put, she renders the human figure to perfection: accurate yet sympathetic, simple yet complex. In a way like Norman Rockwell, Karin rarely paints a person the viewer doesn't immediately connect with and feel a kinship to. Part of this is just plain talent and, I think, part of this is Karin's work ethic. Both attributes should be recognized and honored.

That said, one of the great projects Karin has done as an artist has been her Different Strokes for Different Folks blog. I've talked about DSFDF many times (click here, here, here, and here for starters) but basically, she posts one photo with an open invitation to artists around the world to interpret that photo in their own way. She offered a new image at 2-4 week intervals for several years and in the process, Karin created a vibrant and close-knit community. And once a year, at Christmastime, members of the community painted each other's portraits. Remember? This was mine.

This year, after the portrait-swap project was posted, artist and DSFDF participant Jill Polsby secretly asked all of us to paint a portrait of Karin. This was a huge undertaking on Jill's part as I believe well over 100 artists participated. Jill has compiled these portraits into a coffee table-type book and sent it to Karin today, with our thanks. Click here to see the portraits. Jill has a link on her blog to see the actual book via Snapfish.

This comes at a good time because DSFDF has grown to become more of a project (read "work") than I imagine Karin ever guessed it would and so she has announced that she is - at a minimum - taking a break from the blog with no return date specified. She wants and needs to, you know, paint and work. Completely understandable. So, thanks Jill. And thanks Karin. It has been a pleasure!

Friday, February 5, 2010


The Dog Ate My Primroses
8x8, oil on canvas panel
This would be when my [wonderful] teachers' words, repeating like a refrain in my head, "paint what you see - not what you think you see" might have gotten away from me. Everybody sees the dog, right? Well, I didn't until I took the photo. And now I like it. Could be the lively music I've been listening to this morning going to my head. How embarassing when Mr. Right came home unexpectedly and [almost] caught me twirling around the house, dancing and painting.... Happy Weekend!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Three Shows Not to be Missed

Hot Property
8x8, oil on canvas panel
Rain again today thrwarts another good intention to photograph recent work. Luckily, I've got exciting news to share - Hot Property has been juried into the annual Austin Art Space For the Love of Art exhibit. Wahoo! The show will run from February 8-27. Click here for gallery address, hours, etc. Just in time for Valentines... if you live in Austin, do try to stop in and see the show.

Another great tip for these grey, drizzle-y days: a fabulous BBC miniseries called The Impressionists. The story is told as a flashback by an 80-year-old Claude Monet and chronicles the lives, friendships, and struggles of Renoir, Degas, Manet, Cezanne, etc. The miniseries is beautifully produced and has just made my week... I've watched it twice! Three episodes plus a bonus bio feature on Monet, it comes on two seperate discs. You can buy from Amazon but I rented it at Netflix. Highly recommended!

Finally, I got to see Carmen at the New York Metropolitan Opera last night. And never left Austin. Am I the last to know this? The Met does a program called Live in HD where shows on stage in NYC are simulcast to movie theatres all over the world. Now, I am a complete opera-newbie and confess to being a bit intimidated. Ha - I was hooked in 30 minutes. Not only do you see the stage performance from the best seats in the house, but you go (the magic of Hollywood!) backstage, into the orchestra pit, and see interviews with the cast members. It was incredible! Click here for information and tickets.