Tuesday, July 28, 2020

George's Miss Conduct

Sometimes the hardest part of a painting done as a memorandum is choosing just the right image... one that reminds... one that causes a happy memory to come to the surface... one that brings a smile.

A dear friend asked me to paint two of this type of painting recently.  I asked her if she'd like to write the post for them.  Click HERE to see the first.

Here is the second:

Since the pandemic began months ago, life has seemed more fragile than ever before. Finding a gift for a special family member or friend has become a quest. I "need" to give a gift that will be a lasting symbol of our relationship or a treasured memory. Helen's willingness to listen to each story attached to my photos has provided a way for me to satisfy this need. 
I have a loyal, longtime friend, Rita, who has survived two recent losses of loved ones. I wanted to give her an image to spark a positive memory for each of them. Helen suggested painting an object reflecting a life passion for each. Perfect! 
The red whitewater boat named Miss Conduct was built by Rita's long time partner, George, and a friend of his. The passion of rafting big whitewater rivers out west is shared by Rita. Helen did justice to the photo by carefully gathering information on each part of the photo. What color is this or that? Whose truck is in the background...what model? Revisions, revisions that led to just the right image. Creativity coupled with patience and a desire to get it right led to an amazing memory painting.
It was a pleasure to work with her to make these gifts just right.

Original Oil Painting on 6"x 12" Wrapped Canvas

[SOLD] 

Monday, July 27, 2020

A Sister's Gift

Sometimes the hardest part of creating a painting done as a memorandum is choosing just the right image... one that reminds... one that causes a happy memory to come to the surface... one that brings a smile.

A dear friend asked me to paint two of this type of painting recently.  I asked her if she'd like to write the post for them. 
Here is the first:

Since the pandemic began months ago, life has seemed more fragile than ever before. Finding a gift for a special family member or friend has become a quest. I "need" to give a gift that will be a lasting symbol of our relationship or a treasured memory. Helen's willingness to listen to each story attached to my photos has provided a way for me to satisfy this need. 
I have a loyal, longtime friend, Rita, who has survived two recent losses of loved ones. I wanted to give her an image to spark a positive memory for each of them. Helen suggested painting an object reflecting a life passion for each. Perfect! 
In March, Rita's sister lost her battle with Covid 19...just as most of us were beginning to pay attention to the warnings. It was a devastating loss for family and friends. For Rita to lose her older sister, traveling companion and friend, not long after George was incomprehensible. I learned that Patti was multi-talented as an artist, a gardener, and a designer of floral arrangements. Helen captured the beauty of this design for Patti's son's wedding perfectly. Another memory painting to be treasured!
It was a pleasure to work with her to make these gifts just right.

Original Oil Painting on 6"x 12" Wrapped Canvas
[SOLD]

Friday, July 24, 2020

Harvesting Sunflowers... For the Chickens? or the Squirrels?

Sunflowers are the best.
I love them. I've painted a few.
I think row of sunflowers belongs in every good-sized garden.

My sister had a great row of sunflowers this year, so I thought I'd harvest them.  The chickens would be so pleased!  Right? 

Such a pretty row!
When they droop, it's time.
That should fill the three buckets I brought.
Rub the prickly fuzzy off.
Rip the petals off.
I wonder how many seeds are packed into each head.
(Google says about 1,200.)
These little ones get to keep their petals and get
to come live in a vase in my kitchen for a while.
The hens came running.
They took a peck... and said no thanks.
What!!! Ungrateful chickens!
But the squirrels had a fine time!
"I'll have 1,200 seeds, please. 
I'll leave 2,400 seed shell halves for you."
They'd eat all around the edges from the outside in.
"The purple ones are smaller. I might need two."
No need to share.  There was enough for everyone. 
And, they called their relatives.
The squirrels were also ungrateful.
No one cleaned up after themselves.
My whole backyard looks like this.
Sunflower middle surrounded by seed shells.
So funny!  They'd carry them around to a good spot.
Some were bigger than the squirrel eating them!

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Sunflower Shine

At midday, when the sun is high in the sky, the color shimmers off each petal as it reaches upward.  All day long, their faces follow the sun's path across the sky.  I stand quietly at the edge of the garden and watch their silent nods, a show that gives me pause, reflecting on a season well spent.

Photo by Sara Harley
I was inspired by both the image and the writing from this month's Inspiration Collaboration image.  Sara wrote, "Late in the day, when the sun is lower in the sky, the light bounces off our small outdoor fish pond and into our home. For a short time, the glow dances across our living room ceiling in shimmering aerial ballet. I sit quietly in my chair and watch the silent performance, a shape shifting show that gives me pause, reflections and afterglow of a day well spent."

Original Palette Knife Oil Painting on 10"x 10" Wrapped Canvas.
[SOLD]

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Daisy

He loves me...
     He loves me not...
He loves me...
     He loves me not...
He loves me!

Daisies are such happy flowers.

Until this one, I'd only painted one other daisy.  It was the fourth painting I ever did.  Although it was only my third lesson and way back in March of 2007, I have a clear memory of it.  We were to learn about seeing the color in black and in white. My teacher gave me a calendar page with a big white daisy on it. "Look at all the beautiful colors in that flower!"  Oh, dear... something was wrong.  I only saw a white flower.  She said, "Yes, it is white, but look closely and notice the purples and yellows and reds and browns and blues!"  Wait, did I get the wrong picture? Mine's just a white daisy!  She said that her goal was to help us to see the world differently, to notice the subtle variations in the colors of nature. Clouds weren't just white. Trees weren't just green. Water wasn't just blue. I tried. I tried to pretend I saw more than just white. 
The background was black... wasn't it?  "Yes, it's black.  But black has no life, so we won't open the tube of black paint." Oh, dear... Should I quit now? Will I ever "see the world differently" like she wanted me to?
Yes.
Yes, Over time and through practice, I would learn to see the world differently, through artist eyes.
Photo by Sara Harley

Sara's Inspiration Image for July's Inspiration Collaboration gave me the idea to give painting a daisy another try.  And, yes, it was much easier to "see the color" in the white flower on a black back ground.

You can see my painting along with several other works of art inspired by A Touch of Sunshine.


Original Oil Painting on 5"x 7" Wrapped Canvas.
Click Daisy if you'd like to purchase this little painting.

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Inspiration Collaboration - July 2020

We want to see YOUR art this month!
Whether it's a quilt, a sculpture, a photographic collage, a painting, a drawing, a poem... it belongs!
Whether you're a returning participant or a newcomer... you belong!

Four new Inspiration Images are up for July!

It's easy to be a part of this creative community.
  1. Click over to Inspiration Collaboration to get a better look at the four new Inspiration Images and read the stories behind each one.
  2. Choose one that inspires you to create.
  3. Make it!  (Make it with paint... or wood... or yarn... or fabric... or words... or a camera... or clay... pen and ink... or... )
  4. Take a picture of your art and send it to us!
You'll find everything you'll need to know  when you click Instructions for Submission.