Thursday, March 7, 2019

29 Years


Vic and I are celebrating 29 years of marriage March 10.  It is so hard to believe how much time has passed.  It has gone fast, yet it feels we have lived 10 lifetimes too.  So many changes.  So much life. To spend so many hours with one human being is no small thing so we celebrate with grateful hearts knowing we have beat many odds thus far.

I took this sweet photo in selfie style while on a hike at the end of December.  It was a happy day and the weather could not have been more perfect.  We had lunch perched on a bench overlooking Roxborough State Park in Colorado and we even built a little snowman like a couple of kids.



To celebrate I am having a sale of 30% off on my original paintings when 2 or more are purchased on Etsy.  Coupon code ALMOST30
Link is HERE

Happy Anniversary to us!


Monday, February 25, 2019

Great Grandma's Kitchen and Around Here Lately



Great Grandma's Kitchen
oil on panel 16 x 20 inch

A while back I painted an image in my sketchbook of my great grandmother's kitchen from memory.  All I really remember is that there was this very bright red and white checkered floor that felt like you were stepping into some sort of candy land or something.  I also remember there was a dark back room where there was a bed and coat rack that always had a hat on it and it scared me enough that I never went into that room.  My older siblings said that my memory was pretty close to the real thing so I decided to do an actual painting of it.  I did not make the back room a scary one though.


Gabriel's

Yesterday was my birthday and Vic surprised me with a dinner reservation at the most romantic and quiet restaurant I have ever been to.  It is called Gabriel's and it is only a 15 minute drive to the small town of Sedalia, Colorado.  The food was amazing.


Chandin's cows

A couple of weeks ago I went back to Kansas to watch over my grandson for a week while his mom traveled.  I took him with me on a photo shoot with one of my friends and loaned him my little Powershot camera.  My friend and I like to roam around in her truck looking for interesting things to photograph, hopping in and out each time we see something.  After giving my grandson a quick lesson on the rule of thirds, finding interesting subjects, and paying attention to light, we meandered along backroads all the way to Douglas, Kansas.  He really got some great shots.  Once we got home he picked his favorites and edited them after I showed him how to use a simple program on my laptop.  He is only ten years old and is very artistic.  I asked him if he enjoyed photography and his reply made me laugh:  "yeah, but it really isn't my thing".  He prefers to draw marvel characters.  :)

I love this kid.  He was a trooper for going along and joining in the fun.

Chandin's woods
Chandin's closeup  of growth near the river
(his favorite)

Here are a few of  the photos that I took.  It was a very cold day.





Until next time!
♥ Lisa

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Art on the Mesa Art Show

My wall at the Gold Hills Mesa Community Center

The Art on the Mesa Art Exhibit at the Gold Hills Mesa Community Center in Colorado Springs opened on Thursday February 7 and it was a great night.  A lot of people braved the cold and dark to come out and see the show.  I was so happy to be feeling up to it as I had oral surgery that turned out to be more extensive than I thought and it had been a rough couple of weeks.  This is my first time showing publicly in Colorado since moving here last April.



I took very few photos during the evening because I was so busy visiting, but I did get some of the beautiful venue the day we hung the show which are shown below.   It was a joint show with artists Phyllis Davis and Lelia Davis (mother and daughter in-law), and I have really loved getting to know them a little more.  The show was curated by artist Carol Naylor who teaches watercolor batik.  Phyllis, Lelia and I plan to take her class which we hear is an absolute blast.


Lelia Davis' work, hanging in progress

Phylis Davis

The views at the community center are spectacular.






I loved the comments I received during the evening.  Words like "unique", "primitive", and "story telling" were said repetitively.  For any painter, it is always encouraging when people respond to your work and take the time to study the paintings.  At this showing, people seem to like my interior paintings the best, which I am standing in front of.  (You can see them in the first photo of this post).  There were also a several that questioned the meaning behind They Have Come to Bring Us Spring and I was pleased to know that most had guessed it correctly. 

The show will be hanging until May 1, so if you find yourself in Colorado Springs you can check it out.  It is free and open to the public.

 Gold Hills Mesa Community Center
142 S. Raven Mine Road

Until next time!
♥ Lisa

Monday, January 28, 2019

Geese and Downy Pillows

Geese and Downy Pillows
oil on canvas 11 x 14 inch
I am so happy this one is finished.  It was a little more involved than the alpacas and the cows.  As I look at this I can see that the Arkansas River in Kansas inspired this.  I took many walks along that river.  People complain about the mess that geese leave everywhere and it's true it can be a big fat mess, but it always washes away with the rain eventually. 

Lately I have been really enjoying John Dalton's podcast Gently Does It.  The interviews are often very informative and inspiring.  You can see a list of all his episodes here.   I was excited to see so many artists on there that I have admired and followed for years...Andrea Kowch, Brad Kunkle, Katie O'Hagan, Zoey Frank, David Kassan and Ali Cavanaugh. All of them are realist painters which I have always been facinated with even though I have no desire to paint realistically.   I really enjoyed learning about Jane Filer and looking at her fun, colorful, intuitive style..what an inspiring human being she is, so much joyful energy.  Now I want to attend one of her openings and dance around in one of her heads!

This week I watched the documentary called Everybody Knows Elizabeth Murray.  She paved some new ground as an artist and was really up against some odds.  I thought her story was very moving.  Here's the trailer.  I rented mine on Amazon, but it may be available elsewhere.


Have a great week.
♥ Lisa

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

A Lot of Snow and What I am Working On


I am sitting here on a cold day recovering from some oral surgery I put off way too long.  I am full of pain medications, so I hope whatever I write here makes good sense.

We have had so much snow here in Colorado and the locals tell me it is just getting started.  Most of it occurs in February and March.  I love snow, but the late ones take some getting used to for me because in Kansas it starts to feel like spring in those months.  The birds are starting to show up, the days are longer and warmer and the air smells like spring.  Not that Kansas never gets snow in those months, but the usual is what I just said.  I am pretty sure I will adjust just fine.  It is lovely here.

I am working on a painting containing geese and another surprise in the composition.  The surprise is the fun part and I don't want to give it away.  It's taken a long time because I have been layering the oil paints and glazing quite a bit, so it all needs to dry between the layers otherwise it becomes a muddy mess.

In the meantime, I've been sketching a lot with acrylic paint in my hardback sketchbooks.  The above was done after a neighborhood walk.  The one below was done while cooking dinner.  I love olives and munch on a few while I cook...along with a glass of wine-yum!  The olives on the left were painted with care and the ones on the right were blobbed on with my fingertip.  I think I like the one on the right best.  Friends on my Instagram said the same thing.


I have enjoyed sketching these so much, I decided to try to do this more regularly.  It feels more free to paint in a sketchbook where you know it will not hang in a show or sell online.  


The above photo was taken last year and I just came across it.  The painting is one I did called They Have Come to Bring Us Spring and it's going to be shown at the Art on the Mesa show at Gold Hills Mesa Community Center in Colorado Springs.  The opening reception is February 7,  5-7 pm and the show will be up through May 1st.  This will be my first Colorado show so I am very excited to be participating with two wonderful artists:  Lelia Davis and Phyllis Davis.  I met Phyllis at Julie Ford Oliver's workshop years ago and it was Julie who helped reconnect me to Phyllis so that I could be a part of this.  I am so grateful!  I will share photos of the show after it happens.


This is a view from our backyard deck.  Snow snow snow!


But isn't it beauitful when the sun is shining?  This is a scene on a neighborhood path I take during my daily walks.  Sometimes I just can't believe what I am seeing.  The mountains have such a presence.  So quiet, yet so rugged and wild at the same time.  I am enjoying leaving footprints everywhere I go here. :)


I hope you are having a good month of January.  I am going to close for now and take a nap!  

Until next time!
♥ Lisa

Monday, January 7, 2019

Cows and Chairs, Horace Pippin, and Past Paintings

Cows and Chairs
oil on canvas
11 x 14 inch
I have been enjoying doing these paintings with playful combinations.  I started on another idea, but it will be the last for a while because I want to get back to painting rooms and figures.  I am sure the inspiration for this one stems from growing up in Kansas and my love for chairs.  A friend said she can now imagine cows being like spotted leather chairs out in a field.  I love that.  

Recently I discovered the work of Horace Pippin.  I love the intimate family rooms he composes and his use of patterns, particularly in some of the women's clothing.  

Horace Pippin's "Domino Players" 1943

Horace Pippin's "Asleep" 1943
I bought the book I Tell My Heart:  The Art of Horace Pippin and it is a gook one with plenty of colored photos of his art and a lot of information about him.  He was self-taught.

I like to revisit old paintings from time to time and these two are from January 2014, five years ago.  My style has changed in ways, not in others.  I used to work in a lot more mixed media than I do now.  I prefer oils these days because I think the colors come out more vibrant when I use them.

Bree in a Dreamweaver Coat
mixed media

Winter's Blessing
mixed media
I hope your new year is off to a great start!

Until next time!
♥ Lisa

Monday, December 31, 2018

Alpacas and Chandeliers

Alpacas and Chandeliers
oil on canvas 11 x 14 inch

When we first moved to Colorado last April, we stayed temporarily on a ranch in a loft apartment above a barn.  It was primarily a horse ranch, but the owner had a small herd of alpacas.  Ever since staying there, I have wanted to paint them and I finally did.  Why the chandeliers?  No other reason other than I thought it was a funny idea and they were fun to paint.  Alpacas themselves are funny looking creatures.

This is my last painting in 2018 and boy did the year fly by.  So many changes, so many activities. I am not as prolific a painter as I used to be, but I sure did explore our new state.  Vic and I love to take hikes on New Years eve, but this year it's 12 degrees and snowing which is why I am doing a blog post instead today.  I love walking in snow, but the temperature isn't hiker-friendly, so we did our hike yesterday.  It was a fun day...seven miles, lots of just taking it in.  Here's a couple of scenes from our time in Roxborough State Park.



I am looking forward to 2019.  May there be more days like yesterday in the coming year!

Thank you for following this blog and I want to  wish you a very Happy New Year!  May the year be all you hope for.

♥ Lisa