I painted with the Alabama Plein Air Artists in Gadsden last week, and since the weather wasn't cooperating, we were given some wonderful choices for indoor painting. I went to The Stone Market and chose to paint one of their many Christmas ornaments. If you're looking for a unique gift for Christmas, this is the place to go
On Saturday I traveled down to the town of Pike Road, close to Montgomery, Alabama, to paint with the APAA (Alabama Plein Air Artists). It was a wonderful event carefully planned by the Pike Road Mayor Gordon Stone, Patty Payne, and Charleston Art Gallery owners David and Ashley Owen. Everyone was truly wonderful to the artists and we felt very welcome. I absolutely loved the little town where the folks all were outside sitting on their front porches, walking their dogs, the kids were riding bikes and little dogs were chasing them. It was like a modern day Mayberry. At night they had hay rides for the kids. Oh, yeah, the speed limit... 18 miles per hour.
Another wild and crazy painting. I appreciate you folks that bear with me during my rabbit trail adventures. My husband came in yesterday and saw this and said, "Well that's just crazy. I love it." So maybe someone else will love it, too. I was imagining a painting of a flower within a flower, and this is what come of it.
One of my favorite Van Gogh quotes is "I dream of painting and then I paint my dream." I have this quote at the top of my blog and I also wear it around my neck on a silver charm that was given to me by my friend Shelby. I love this quote because it really defines a part of me. So often at night as I'm drifting off to sleep, I see beautiful paintings in my head... splotches of colors and images that I wish so badly I could put on canvas. I've decided to try to do just that. This isn't quite what was in my head... but it's moving towards that direction. I don't know how many of these I'll attempt... but it was a nice challenge as well as escape from the commissions I just completed.
Last weekend I took another workshop class with artist John Guernsey. I consider John a good friend of mine. I first met him back in 2009 at the first Southeastern Plein Air Festival in Gadsden, Alabama. John is one of those artists that I highly respect for his hard work and talent. He has recently won some very prestigious awards for his work and I'm so happy for him. Above is one of the paintings I completed at the workshop. If you look at John's work on his blog (click here) you can see how he loves subjects with strong light and shadow. One thing that I've learned from other artists is that one should never stop learning. I think that's what keeps me going... I'm always trying to get better. John is even humble in his teaching by saying he's still trying to figure things out and try new things. If you get the opportunity to take a workshop with him, I highly recommend it.
Why do people love rabbits? I think I know. They're so soft and cuddly, and take us back to our childhood... at least that's what they do to me. I remember as a child begging my Daddy for a rabbit. He had this cruel joke he'd play on me... he'd let me out of the car when I'd see a wild one in our pasture, and tell me, "If you catch him, you can keep him." I never could catch him. But my Daddy would always laugh and laugh when I'd get back in the car. Eventually though, one summer... Dad came home with three white rabbits. My favorite one was white with a brown stripe down its back. I named her "Trixie." My cousin, sister and I would sit them in a large black inner tube and play with them for hours.
A few years ago, my daughter wanted a rabbit for Christmas. For some reason, I was very reluctant about getting one for her. I just kept thinking about the negatives and never the positive. The thing is... that's the ONLY thing she wanted. So we bought her a dwarf rabbit. I remember on Christmas morning, when she pulled the paper off the cage. She was speechless. She turned around to my husband and me and had huge crocodile tears in her eyes. And then I remembered how badly I once wanted a rabbit.
We now have two rabbits.... Thumper and Lincoln. And guess what? My daughter wants more. I can't say I blame her. Thank you God, for rabbits.
This is a recent commission I just finished for the mother of the bride to give her daughter. Below you can see the photo that was given to me to paint. If you're looking for a unique wedding present, please email me for more information.
A line from one of my favorite poems. Everyone told me not to take "Dr. S" in college. They said he was incredibly hard and the worst of human beings. I dropped his class the first time before I even met him... I was scared of the man I'd never even seen. And then it worked out where I HAD to take him. But I absolutely loved him and his class... so much so that I took him twice. Because of him, I was shown the beauty of poetry.
I heard a singer/songwriter this morning on the radio talk about how he could somewhat be his true inner self through his music... and that really hit home for me. I realized that's what I do with my paintings. Sometimes I feel like I don't express my true feelings through the spoken or even written word... but I can be exactly who I am through my paintings. That's my goal...
Another painting that I made larger from a smaller version that I really liked...
This one is also available at Anne Irwin Fine Art in Atlanta.
The opening reception was wonderful at Anne Irwin Fine Art. My husband and I drove over Friday afternoon for the event, and was amazed at the turnout. Below is a photo of my four paintings (to the right) in the show.