Sunday, July 23, 2017

Bird Nest With Three Blue Eggs

"Let's paint with pink!" she said as we got started, and I'm so glad she did.

I love it when my niece texts to ask if we can paint together.  Painting is brand new to her, and it's fun to watch her work through the frustrations then reach success.   

I think that painting together lends itself to relationship building.  Because we're each facing our canvas rather than each other and because our eyes and hands are occupied, it's a good set up for real conversation.  

She begins her first year of teaching soon... lucky students!
Original Oil Painting on 6"x 6" Canvas Board.
Click "Bird Nest with Three Blue Eggs" to purchase this little painting... mine, not hers. 😉

All Things Were Created

What a fun project!  

Painting with 20 middle school kids was kind of an experiment for me, but it was great... just great.

These were my examples.  

At the beginning of the week, the kids didn't think they could do it.  
At the end of the week, they were so proud. 

I hadn't worked in our church's Vacation Bible School week in many years.  I'm so glad I did this year.

Original Acrylic Paintings on 16" x 20" Wrapped Canvases

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Your Move

Every so often I decide it's time to paint a human again... I guess to see if I can still do it.  Luckily I have about a dozen beautiful and handsome nieces and nephews who have about 30 little ones between them.  That gives me lot of cute little models to choose from.

Meet Gentry... cute, Cute, CUTE!!!
Meet Pistol  Pete.... happy,Happy, HAPPY!!!

Full disclosure, no... the dog did not sit quietly and play a game of tic-tac-toe with him. Pete doesn't sit quietly or wait patiently for anything for more than a second or two at a time. Gentry's nana, my sister, played with him while Pete waited for the opportunity to grab a concrete X or O to carry off to bury.

Happy Birthday!
Enjoy "It's Your Move!"

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Daddy's Cap

Sometimes it's simply an honor to get to do a painting for someone.
Instead of me telling the story for this little painting, I'll just use a few excerpts from some of the 108 texts between Jack and me.  Jack was my fourth grade student two years ago, and he's the son of my dear, dear friend and teaching partner, the one I painted "It Is Well With My Soul" for.

JACK: Hey, Mrs. Eaton. This is Jack. I don't know if you know this, but my mom's dad died.  I was wondering if you could make a painting for my mom.  I'll have to get you a picture of him, and no matter the cost, I'll pay you for it.  Just please can you paint a painting of her dad?
ME: Oh, Jack, I'd love to work on something like that for you.  We'll talk.  I am so sorry. I love you.
JACK: I love you too.
JACK: Just text me whenever you have time for the painting.
JACK: This is probably too soon but it there any way I could get the painting done in two weeks. That's when my mom is going to celebrate her dad's birthday.
ME: Well, let's think a little bit.  I looked on his and your mom's Facebook.  He didn't seem like the kind of guy who liked to have his picture made much.  Also you want something that REMINDS of him not necessarily a portrait.  You want something that will make her smile not make her sad.  So what about a painting of something he really loved?  What would be a symbol or reminder of him?
JACK: He loved birds (except black birds), but he hated squirrels.  He loved his garden.  He loved nature. He loved old western movies (John Wayne and the Lone Ranger.) He loved his family more than anything.
ME: Yeah... I know... family...
ME: I'm going to send you some ideas.  See what you think. I took some photos that he'd put on his Facebook... cardinals, a fire pit, his garden, tomatoes...
ME: He seems to have on a cap in every photo.  Especially the camouflage one.
JACK: Yeah, he loved that garden.  What do you think my mom would love the most?
ME: The cap... It just says... him...
JACK:  Yeah, that would be cool.  It really does.  Do I need to get you a cap, or can you paint from the pictures?
JACK:Thank you, Mrs. Eaton.  Tell me your progress and if there's anything I can do.  Love you.
ME: I was thinking of using a really fat canvas then downloading all the photos of him in his caps and with her and gluing those on the sides.  What do you think?
JACK: That would be great.
ME: I think it's pretty special.
JACK: Me too.

Original Oil Painting on 9"x 9"x 2" Wrapped Canvas.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Apple Slices IV

These two beautiful young ladies used to be my students as fourth graders,  but soon they'll be off to middle school where I know they'll thrive.
I thought when I said goodbye to them on the last day of school we'd had our last lessons together, but no!  We spent an afternoon having an art lesson and each ended the day with a finished painting to be proud of. 

Love these girls so!  

And aren't their first paintings gorgeous!
Original Oil Painting on 5"x 7" Wrapped Canvas.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

He Is All You Need

It's such an honor when a friends says, "I have something I want you to paint for me." 

Tina has been a dear friend for... my goodness, how does time get away so quickly... 25 years!    

Words that come to mind when I think of her are strength of spirit, perseverance, patience, acceptance, common sense, joy, and loyalty.

*I need to give credit for the words here to Ann Voskamp.
This is a modified version of one of her quotes.

Original Acrylic Painting on 16"x 20" Wrapped Canvas

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Homestead Cabin

I've been thinking about style lately. I think painting style is like writing voice.  There's something recognizable or familiar about a writer's words or an artist's paintings.  I think it's why we say, "I love her work." 

I've been thinking about my style.  What is it that makes my paintings look like... my paintings? I don't want everything I do to look the same, but do I really want to change that much? Hmmm... I have purposefully done some things differently lately...
      ..... Time Out...
Full disclosure... I think I know where this began... Recently I had someone I really didn't know well say, "Your art is all so smooth. It's good. But I like paintings with lots of texture, that use more paint."  Uuhhhh... what's the correct response to that? "Thank you," or "I'll try to do better," or to just smile and nod?

Maybe she was simply making conversation. Maybe she was trying to help me. Maybe she was just rude. Whatever the reason, I have been thinking a lot about my style lately.

My two painting buddies and I decided to give ourselves an art lesson.  We took a (very old) Walter Foster painting book on Clouds and decided to follow the steps and color guides exactly.
Shouldn't they have all turned out the same??
Well, no they did not.

Jolene has that fabulous light on her hills!
Julie has those gorgeous billowing clouds!
Look at the differences in mood!
I am NOT saying that any one is better or worse; I'm just fascinated by the different styles.
As I was being intentional about varying my style (softening edges, giving texture), I was unintentionally returning to my comfortable style (colors, shapes). 
Right now I am intrigued by style. I'm actually (kind of) grateful that someone gave me reason to consider my style.
I love Jolene's.
I love Julie's.
I love mine too.

Oil Painting on 12"x 16" Wrapped Canvas.