Wednesday, June 12, 2019

The Color of June (Orange Lilies)

I think of each month in spring as having its own color.
March gets yellow with all its daffodils and forsythia.
April would be pink and white with blooming dogwoods, Bradford pears, red buds, and azaleas.
May takes purple of all shades with irises.
And, June gets orange.

I used this thought as I planned a flower bed in our backyard.  My idea was to create a long row stretching from my garden to the chicken coops. In this long row, I'd plant daffodils in the front to be beautiful in March.  (Yes, I have dogwoods and azaleas for April, but those don't really fit in a bed of bulbs.)I'd plant irises in the back to make May beautiful. Then I'd plant tiger lilies and day lilies for a pretty June.

Let's see how that worked out.
This is the third year, and the daffodils put on their show beautifully!
The irises have gotten thick and beautiful.

Hmmm... Where is the picture of all the lilies I planted?  And why does it look like there's a blank row down the middle between the irises flags and the daffodils? What could have happened?

Here's a picture of the lilies before I dug them up
from my parent's last home to transplant them to my row.
Now you'd think that if I'd planted them incorrectly (Ummm... poking the root in the ground and watering) that a few would have survived. But not even one single lily appeared.

I found a picture of the row just after I'd planted it.  You'll see it there in the background... behind that aggravating pest gorgeous doe  who's probably teaching her babies how to search for my delicious lily bulbs guiding her precious twin fawns across our yard. The ungrateful thing can't just enjoy the corn we put out and leave our other plants alone.  We adore our deer and never fail to get a thrill each day when we see them.

Since I don't have any beautiful orange lilies of my own, (Insert my sad face here.) it was a pleasure to paint these.  I did this little painting to participate in the Paint and Draw Together Artist Challenge.  Every few weeks there's a new image for artists to use.  I'm fascinated by the varied artistic styles.  Every painting is both exactly the same and completely different at the same time.

Original Oil Painting on 8"x 10" Wrapped Canvas
Click "The Color of June" if you'd like to purchase this little painting.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Lake Catherine Lodge

My friend Sarah asked me to paint her family's special lake house.  Sarah was one of my grade-level teaching partners.  They were so over-the-top good to me during my last weeks and days.  I told each of them that I'd do a painting for them whenever they found an image they wanted me to do.  That was two years ago.  Last week I got a message from Sarah. She had the picture she wanted.  So, I got to work.
There's always some pressure when working on a commissioned piece, a little anxiety until I know the person receiving it is pleased. She was. 
"The Lake Catherine Lodge was built by my granddaddy back in the 60s on Entergy Power Plant land. It's a special place where all my family gathers each year. I remember swimming off the dock with my cousins and staying up late talking when we were just kids. Now our kids are doing the same thing. The painting is perfect and will be a great memory my family cherishes for many years."

It was a pleasure to work on this one because I love painting images that have a story and that I have a connection to.  She gave me the story, the family memories tied to it.  As for my connection... Well, just one lake over from Lake Catherine is Lake Ouachita where my own family has almost the same memories, and it even looks so similar! I was painting her story and my own at the same time. The first time we went, our daughter was a toddler and we were expecting our son.  This year will be our 29th year, and this time we'll have a little granddaughter and grandson with us... Full circle...
Click back and have a look at Lake Ouachita 2017

Original Oil Painting on 12"x 16 Wrapped Canvas

Wednesday, June 5, 2019


I don't know any peacocks personally, but I do have a couple of turkey friends.  When they open up those feathers, they're so beautiful and obviously they know it!  They strut around acting so proud and pompous.  I looked up the definition - "irritatingly grand, solemn, or self important."  Yep, that's just about right.
But, I wonder... when no one is around, do you think one peacock looks at the other and says, "Hey, Chuck, I'd give anything to take these feathers off for a while, wouldn't you?" 
 "Yeah, it's really exhausting to be this beautiful all the time."

Honestly, what's more striking than a peacock with its vivid blue and gorgeous feathers all fanned out? Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful.  I suppose "pompous" isn't very complimentary.  How about "regal" instead.  That has a better meaning  - "magnificent and dignified."

I saw a picture of a table with a peacock painted on the diagonal and thought... Hmmm... I wonder if I could turn a canvas catty-corner... This one was awfully fun to paint!

Original Oil Painting on 12"x 12" Wrapped Canvas