"One ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and if it were possible, to speak a few reasonable words." Goethe

Friday, November 22, 2013

It's Been a Long Time

On June 1, 2013, I went down to Charleston, SC, to take over for my sister, Wanda, and help out my parents, especially my mother who was becoming disabled because of a sudden onset of arthritis.  She was in the hospital when I got there with a somewhat routine lung infection.  On June 10, she passed away.  Everything changed.  I stayed most of the summer to help my father adjust, and to adjust myself.  I have learned that my mother still truly cares about what happens in my life, and I love her even more now.

While my sister and I were doing around the clock vigils with my mother in the hospital, my sister brought up to the room a local magazine she found in the hospital.  In it was an advertisement for an art contest sponsored by the Charleston Artist's Guild--a very old art club.  I decided that if I could, I would enter it.  It had to be a painting of Magnolia Gardens, and I happen to be working on one before I left Kansas.

I came home and did a larger version of the one I started.

Magnolia Gardens Bridge

I decided I could not enter it because, even though no one else touched  my canvas, I did work on it during my class at Mark Weber's and did ask for advice.  So I painted another one at home from a photo I took while I was home for the summer.

Summer at Magnolia Gardens

I got a rejection letter, that made me feel really bad.  But not forever.

I also painted a tree in my bathroom.  When I was little I admired as unusual and exceptional a tree that my Uncle Wilford had painted on his living room wall.  I have always wanted one of my own, and while this is not as colorful as his, I love it.  I modeled it after a tree in an ancient Chinese scroll I saw in the Nelson-Atkins Art Museum.

I put in a mama bird caring for her babies because that is still how I feel about my children.

 I decided to enter a painting contest of Yosemite.

Yosemite in Blue and White

Although I've never been to Yosemite, I've been watching the Ken Burns documentary on The National Parks, and have enjoyed learning its history, particularly about John Muir.  I want to go visit.

I am currently sending in some paintings to the David Bown Competition.  I'm going to send in my Summer at Magnolia Gardens, my Freesia and these:

Dots in Space


I figure, why not just try anything.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Bonfire of the Vanities

Recently I googled images of Magnolia Gardens in Charleston, SC, because I thought I would like to do another painting of the azaleas.  To my  horror, the painting I did of the bridge in the gardens almost a year ago was in the page of images.  It is so primitive looking.  I was embarrassed, but also relieved that I've improved.  I've learned from Mark Weber and Lynette Hayes, and I'm grateful I've had the opportunity to do that.  I've put several of the paintings I've done in the past year in a pile to be gesso-ed over and used again as canvases.  Here are a few things I've done lately.  The Pineapple Gates and Reflections are the finished paintings that I showed in progress earlier.  Maybe in a year, I'll look back at these and think, "Oh, that's embarrassing."

Pineapple Gates, Charleston, SC

Hawaii Temple

Reflections and Fallen Leaves
Mt. Timpanogos Temple

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Poppy Field

I never did like the paintings I did of Mt. Timpanogos for my sister, LaNell, so I never gave them to her.  I just finished this poppy field for her that I like much better.  I'll deliver it to her when I go to Utah next month to get Meredith from school and into the Missionary Training Center.  She's going on a mission to Norway!

Thursday, February 28, 2013

An Exhibit in a Hurry

I was scheduled to exhibit for the LCAA in March, but I really did not have enough pieces ready.  So, I thought," I'll add photography."  I have been taking some pictures around town for a book project, so I digitally manipulated some of them, added pastels (so now they are multimedia pieces!), and put them with some paintings I had or have been working on, and I had an exhibit featuring Leavenworth.  It was too easy.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

So Many New Things to Learn

I did another painting based on a photograph from the Hubble Telescope because I saw some that Mark Weber did and hoped that  he could teach me how to see it his way.  I learned so much about applying a ground, under-painting, applying paint thickly to the surface, and brush stokes.  I wish I had a picture of the gesso-ed ground, but here is the under painting and the finished work.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

I Just Kept Doodling

I kept thinking of all the things that I could doodle on, and I ended up with a "collection" that I am going to put in the shop at Scrivners.  I have gift tags, cards, a bowl and I framed a couple of the original pieces. It was fun, and will be a little experiment in marketing.

Monday, January 28, 2013


This year started almost exactly as last year.  The kids left after Christmas--including Meredith who went back to school--I was was left wondering what to do with myself.  This time it is for real because Joseph and Megan--and Matthew--all have jobs that will keep them busy where they are, and Meredith will be going on a mission to Norway for 18 months as soon as the semester is over.  That means I cleaned out the basement, again, and organized my workspace so I could start all over again in the new year.

 I'm working on two very different paintings right now.  Neither of them is finished, but I'll post them in progress just to see what I've got going.

I'm working on the Pineapple Gate in Charleston, SC, for my class in Kansas City,

and I've started an abstract painting in a workshop that Lynette Hayes (from the local artists association) is offering.
Hopefully, I'll be able to post the finished works soon.