Wednesday, February 26, 2020

You Can't Miss It!

"Barely There"
photo by Sara Harley 
When I first saw Sara's Inspiration Image for January's Inspiration Collaboration, I thought, "Wait... I don't see anything!" Then I looked closely. There's so much to notice, but it's "Barely There."

There's a shoreline with trees and other vegetation.  There are so many houses. Everything is subtly reflected in the water. Sky and water seem to be one in the same but they are cut in half by the strip of life.

Oddly (or maybe naturally), my mind went in the complete opposite direction.  

I'm fascinated by people who choose to paint their houses loud colors. (By the way, my house is a calm khaki tan that blends in with the trees.)   I'd recently seen a show about the brightly colored houses in Scandinavia where so much of their year is colored white. It reminded me of the bright blue beach we stayed in which was next to houses of every color. Then I thought about the random orange or purple house I might drive by on an otherwise fairly normal-colored-house neighborhood street.

If you know me at all, you know that the next place my mind will go will be to some children's book that I love. Have you read The Big Orange Splot by Daniel Manus Pinkwater? (If not, click the link right now, head to Amazon and spend the $6.99 to get it!) 

Mr. Plumbean lives in a perfectly perfect neighborhood where all the houses look nice and tidy and perfectly alike... until... You'll just have to read it to see how that big orange splot gets on his house and how he decides to fix the problem!! 

I think that Mr. Plumbean would LOVE Inspiration Collaboration where creativity and individual style is recognized and celebrated!

Click the link and go have a look.  
You are welcome to join in.

Original Oil Painting on 6"x 12" Wrapped Canvas

Tuesday, February 25, 2020


Someone new will be joining our family in a few months!!
We can hardly wait to meet our little Josie!
**FYI - Her middle name, Avis, means "bird."

So fun doing these little name paintings!!!

Original Oil Painting on  6"x 12" Wrapped Canvas

Saturday, February 22, 2020

Self Portrait (Painting #500, 13th Birthday as a Painter)

I'm Helen.
I love purple and green. 
I love old comfortable tee shirts and jeans.
I love wearing silver swirly earrings.
I have brown eyes that have been turning green over the years.
I have brown hair that has been turning gray over the years.
I'm an artist. 

My art mentor and friend,Cheri, said that every artist should do a self portrait at some point.  I tried to argue that I already had... sort of.

This is me...
...back when I still painted my hair brown with some gray mixed in.
The swirly silver earrings are there.
There's a big pink smile, and I'm wearing green. 
It's a self portrait.
This is me...
 I'm a VW Beetle kind of girl...
I drove this red one for 10 years.. Now my VW is deep jade green.
It looks like I'm wearing purple in this one.
It's a self portrait.
This is me...
 Dear, precious Sweet Blossom the Possum...
She was the main character of hundreds of bedtime stories for my kids.
The saga of her life, stories, family, and friends was pretty much a

 retelling of my own, only in her forest home. She was me.
It's a self portrait.

None of these, however, was what Cheri had in mind when I went for a lesson in her Oklahoma studio.  
I painted my first painting with Cheri on February 22, 2007.
Cheri and I painted together again to celebrate
my 10th year as a painter on February 22, 2017

It was fitting that I'd begin my 500th painting with her guidance... and she was determined it was time I did a real self portrait.

Original Oil Painting on 8"x 10" Wrapped Canvas
[Not For Sale]

Friday, February 21, 2020

Favorites #7 - Paintings I'll Never Sell

I've finished 499 paintings since my first lesson on 2/22/07.
I want to share some of my favorites this week.
Paintings I'll Never Sell
(If you'd like to read the story behind the painting, click its title.)

Summer Trees

Flower Girl & Her Kitty

In the Tree

My Boys

Beauty and the Beach

Sweet Blossom the Possum

Ten-Year Tree

Thursday, February 20, 2020