Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve Day

Looking through my pics and the best I can find is Santa's reindeer. A wish for many children, to be visited by Santa. But the true message of Christmas is that we were visited by Emmanuel, God with us.
"Christmas is love tugging us back to God with the powerful clasp of a tiny hand reaching out from a bed of straw." Unknown

Friday, December 18, 2009

Art Biz

It was fellow artist Shirley S. who turned me on to Art Biz back in '06. Author Alyson Stanfield sends a weekly email newsletter to encourage artists to promote themselves. Alyson always has some timely advice but this week she sent a inventory list of yearly accomplishments. I was really encouraged that I had actually accomplished several things on the list, like: How did you promote your art? Answer: Two art shows in two states. How did you enhance your online presence? Answer: Creating this blog. What workshops did you attend? Answer: Jerry Varnell & Pat Dews. She lists about 20 questions to ask yourself and record the answers in your journal so that in 2010 you have a record of where you need to concentrate your artistic efforts. Thanks Alyson for providing the push to keep us artists motivated.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Our Lady

Our Lady of Guadalupe: her day was celebrated yesterday. She brought a message of hope and promise that is in line with the teachings of Christ. I have a shrine in my home set up around her image; compassion is what I see in her image, and the world could use more of that.

Sunday, December 13, 2009


Murals are such a treat when you come upon them. This one I found on a side street off the plaza in Santa Fe. But then art is everywhere in Santa Fe, and in all forms.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Still Life

I started shooting these shots on my first trip to Santa Fe in '92, when the desk in my room became cluttered with fliers, brochures, ticket stubs, souvenirs, etc. I could be called the "clutter queen" because I seem to have the knack of covering flat surfaces. As the stuff accumulates, a still life is born and is ready to be photographed. I wonder how Cezanne would have interpreted this arrangement of red & green tomatoes.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Sign Sunday

Valdes Art Studio, the location of the mixed media workshop I took last summer in Santa Fe. The folks at Valdes were super; they went above & beyond at being great hosts. The location made a great workshop even better.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Mixed Media

Mixed media was the source of great fun & frustration last summer at the Pat Dews workshop I attended in Santa Fe. Pat has been teaching her techniques for years through workshops, her two books and video. She is a master of creating form by adding layers of paint and ink. It all is such a great experiment; that's where the fun comes in, wondering what will happen if I try this? It's also where the frustration comes in because you don't know where all this will end. I have to keep reminding myself to enjoy the process.

Thursday, December 3, 2009


Masks on the brain! That's where they are; thousands of them. All waiting to get out. Mask ideas fill sketchbook pages, and then I find more like this one I spotted in Santa Fe last summer. Four of my masks are visiting galleries/museums for now, and their absence has left holes on the walls. Masks will be making a regular appearance on this blog.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


In October I took an art workshop with Jerry Varnell. He was at the Dumas Art Center. Jerry paints a lot of wildlife which is not my choice of subject matter, but he paints with acrylics. Acrylics are the greatest art media on the planet(my blog, my opinion). I am positive that if the "old masters" would have had acrylics they would have painted with them exclusively. The colors are wonderful and the paint is so versatile; acrylics can be thinned with water and used like watercolor or applied thickly like oils. And they will probably never crack or discolor(we'll have to wait and see on that point). Jerry demonstrated some great dry brushing techniques that produce impressionistic effects. And one of Jerry's "tricks of his trade" is to replace white with gesso. Of course Jerry preaches, "Don't piddle, play, or putter"; get serious and paint! Good advise from an artist that has been making a living at it for 25 + years.

Monday, November 30, 2009


Bauhaus by Frank Whitford

I first heard about the wonderful place called Bauhaus as an interior design student in the 1960's. Artists and designers who's work I was just discovering were part of this great experiment. Painters like Paul Klee and Wassily Kandinsky, designers like Marcel Breuer and Gunta Stolzl, and architects like Hannes Meyer and Mies van der Rohe were just a few who's presence and work influenced the school as the school influenced design in the 20th century long after its demise. I am sure that my own work has been influenced by the ideas to come out of the Bauhaus (pictured : Summertime, mixed media, collage).

Mr. Whitford gives an interesting factual description of the evolution of the school as it struggled to find it's way in the hard economic times and turbulent political times of post war (WWI) Europe.

Rating: 3 1/2 stars (5 stars the highest rating).

Sunday, November 29, 2009


Does thankfulness stay with us passed the holidays? It should be an attitude of the heart. Am I thankful? I mostly feel excited. Why? Because my work is now on display in two states. As a member of the Dumas Art Center in Dumas, TX, I am showing in the Christmas Show; the opening reception is on Dec. 5th.

The Day of the Dead Show at No Man's Land Museum comes down on Tuesday. The Frida display was one of the three I set up. It is such a fun show. And thanks to the Goodwell Art Students and their teacher Ms Methvin for their colorful skulls.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


Wow! Look at that color. The colors of the garden are so inspiring: the red tomatoes, the orange carrots, the green peppers, and there were purple flowers on the basil. God's visual treat for us to enjoy, all the colors of nature. What an awesome mind thought of the concept color.

Saturday, November 21, 2009


Making art tends to be a lonely business. Each piece that an artist "creates" is a successful dialog between only the artist and the art material. Because of this, I love to find places to show my art. This gives me the opportunity to say, "Look here, see what I did." It doesn't matter to me if the responce to my art is approval, disapproval or indifference, at least I've gotten it out into the world to be seen. BUT, then there is the added dimension of sales. Making a sale gives me a terrific sense of gratification. Someone liked a specific piece of my work well enough to pay hard earned cash for it. And gratification is what I felt when one of my collages was sold at the miniature show opening on Wednesday evening. Here I am in a gallery full of well respected local artists, artists whose work I admire, and one of my pieces sells. Wow! I'm basking in the afterglow!

Sunday, November 15, 2009


It never even crossed my mind that it would snow on Nov 15, but snow it did, starting around 4:30pm. The temp dropped by evening so I decided to curl up under an afghan and read my latest art book find: The Creative License by Danny Gregory. I certainly don't want this blog to turn into a book review, but I have come across some good ones lately.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Positive Reinforcement

Wow! I walked into Wild Horse Gallery this afternoon to deliver my three pieces for the show, and was greeted by the curator who went GaGa over my masks. Yes, they are different, but I had no idea that they might actually sell. I should have priced them higher. I'm not even sure that I'm ready to part with my "babies", I only wanted to show. Deborah H. will be proud of me for "letting go".
I'm sticking with masks; I have only begun with all that I can really do with them. There are more masks floating in my brain than I could ever produce.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

New Work

It is always exciting to have an opportunity to show my work, but then comes the challenge of getting my pieces framed and read for display. I completed two new collages for the miniature show at the Wild Horse Gallery in Guymon, but find it distressing to have to buy mats; it's discouraging when the mat costs more than the frame. Galleries should supply the service; there's an idea!
I'm considering the need to acquire a kiln. Let's see, mat cutter or kiln? Oh, the decisions.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


I have just finished reading (for the second time) Susan Vreeland's historical novel Luncheon of the Boating Party, and I am fighting a strong urge to hop on a plane to DC to see the painting in the flesh at the Phillips Gallery. Thanks to Ellen G., a Houston artist who I met in Santa Fe in July at a Pat Dews Workshop, (aren't I a name dropper) for recommending this interesting read.
I see Renoir's work as painted snapshots of life. Photography was still a complicated process in 1881, but Renoir seems to have the ability to catch people "in the act" mostly of having fun. Ms Vreeland portrays each model at this luncheon with a real history and personality as she gives her slant on how this painting might have happened.
In May of 2007 I finally got to see Gustave Caillebotte's Paris Street, Rainy Day in Chicago after a twenty year wait. Caillebotte was also an Impressionist and good friend of Renoir, and has a important role in the novel. And now I have another reason to visit DC (I have never been to the National Gallery). We are very blessed in the USA to have so many fine examples of Impressionist art in our galleries.
I give this book 3 STARS

Friday, October 9, 2009


We are learning about blogs.