Tuesday, November 2, 2021

October Paintings and a Bit of Life

Bedroom With Starry Walls
acrylic on wood

 October was a beautiful month in Kansas.  There was a nice mix of warm and cool days, and I spent as much time outside as I possibly could taking long walks in various local parks, sitting on the porch sipping coffee, sketching at the Botanical Garden and on my own patio in the evenings.  It has been a month full of activities and time spent with family and friends either in person or virtually.  Life is good.

acrylic on wood
available on Etsy

There is Beauty in Fading
acrylic on wood
available on Etsy


After spending time at the botanical garden, I am even more fascinated by spent flowers and leaves.  There is a beautiful elegance in the way they curl and their faded color.  I tried to add this fascination in the above painting.

Morning Light
acrylic on wood

Mornings are spent inside now, cuddled beneath a fuzzy blanket with a cup of coffee and Hurley at my feet, and sometimes Mitsou in my lap.  Peet does his own thing pretty much all day.  He's earned the right to in his 17th year as a cat. 

acrylic on wood
available on Etsy

As I scroll through the pictures on my phone I am reminded of all the wonderful things that happened this month.  I took the initiative to get really active with all the events and places my city and beyond has to offer.  Trying new food, exploring museums, gardens, shops.  I went where I could, when I could and it filled my heart and inspired me so much.  I get in a rut sometimes, and exploring my own area always does the trick to pull me out of it. 

Bartlett Arboretum
My first visit to this beautiful place.

One of the events I attended was a symphony concert in a small town nearby.  I was telling my son, who is a musician that it would be great to find a podcast that discusses specific pieces of classical music for people who want to know more of the history about it.  Of course in this world there IS one that exists and I found just the perfect one in my search.  It is called Classical Classroom , and Dacia Clay does a wonderful job interviewing different musicians, directors and such about various topics, pieces of music, composers and instruments.  It is really educational and so interesting.  I started with episode 72 about Beethoven's Fifth.  Eye-opening!

Until next time!


Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Music and Paintings


My son is a pianist and he recently posted this lovely work on his YouTube channel.  I wanted to share it here.  I think it is so beautiful and one I had never heard before.  His style of playing is so expressive.

The Daughters of Elise
oil on cradled wood 12x16 inch
available here

This one of my more recent paintings.  It was inspired by a vintage photograph of a group of women.  I wrote a poem to go with it, something I have enjoyed doing lately, and I also created a short narrative video as well.   You can click on it to play.  

The Daughters of Elise

Elise had six daughters

All so close in age

She raised them to be strong women

Without a helping man's wage

The oldest had the most beauty

The second the purest of heart

The next three were closely knitted

The youngest the purest of heart

Elise was stoic, but friendly

Tired, but full of peace

And once her daughters were raised and gone

She folded her arms, closed her eyes, and embraced her sweet release

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Paintings and Poetry: Mama Had Strength


Mama Had Strength
oil on wood
available here

This is my newest painting and it is based on an old photograph from a very large collection a friend gifted me years ago.  I pull them out from time to time to use as inspiration and this one in particular is a new favorite.  The photograph has so much power and I found myself haunted a bit by the souls reflected in the image.  I want to know more about them.  

The inspiration led me to make a "Painting and Poetry" video for my YouTube channel.  Here is the short video with a poem I wrote.  The poem is also called Mama Had Strength.  I hope you enjoy it.

Mama Had Strength 

Her eyes buried deep within their sockets
Dark circles like a trodden path from the footprints of the past
Life had hit hard, and fast, and it was cruel at times

Yet, look at her again
There is a sparkle of joy in her eye, and a slight upturn of her lips
There is power in the grip of the tissue that holds her tears

I know this power because it was witnessed by my brothers and sisters and I
Day after day, night after night
Mama had strength

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

Some June Paintings

Separation Anxiety
mixed media on wood 


   June has been a prolific month of painting for me and it did not really register until I uploaded these images.  We have been in our new house for four months now and being settled has had a very positive effect on my time in the studio.  Somehow I managed to plant flowers in a few pots too.  How about that? 

Man Wearing Green
oil on wood

Summer is off to a wonderful start.  A friend of mine visited last week from Colorado.  We had an amazing time of walking, talking, eating, and laughing.  She is Dutch and it is always so interesting to hear about her culture and customs.  She loves America and never wants to leave. 

Meditation (sold)
oil on linen panel

I have been bouncing around a lot on subjects.  I paint whatever I am in the mood for.  Painting freely suites me because I like change.  I get can get bored easily, so I try to vary my life and my life in art as much as possible. 

Roses in a Blue Pot (sold)
oil on linen panel 

Flower paintings are a great way for me to explore color without having to think as much as I do when I am painting figures.  My figurative art requires a lot more concentration, but flowers are just color and shape which makes it easier to play around. I use a palette knife a lot for my flowers. 

Dream Sleeper
oil on linen panel

Dream Sleeper started out as a small landscape, but ended up being a whole lot more.  I love it when that happens.

Little Red Bikini
oil on linen panel

Little Red Bikini was going to be a portrait of a woman in a dress.  It went in a different direction too.  I like that it did.  I don't want to be shackled to any style or preconceived ideas in my painting.  This one is a subconscious testament to that I believe. 

Life is a Peach
oil on linen

 Life has been a peach lately.  For this I am grateful.  

Until next time.

Paintings are available for purchase in my Etsy shop.

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

The Humidity in Kansas and Some New Paintings


Home is Comforting
mixed media on wood 11x14 inch
available here

I have been painting quite a bit, but I am a little bit delayed in posting anything because the humidity in Kansas has been so high.  It feels like a very long time from the time I finish a painting to the time it is dry enough to handle.  I am not complaining though.  We need the moisture and everything is so green right now.

Who Rescued Who?
oil on wood 11x14 inch
available here

This one changed colors so many times before it seemed to finally settle in with this vibrant palette.  I felt inspired by so many things subconsciously with this one...a love of dogs, people I know who have rescue dogs, a love of boats and water, and Monet's water lily paintings - I think.

We have been back in Kansas one year as of today.  With Covid, time seems so distorted.  Somehow, even with the pandemic I have found some rhythm with painting and living.  I am grateful for that. 

Until next time...

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Painting Food and Exploring a Little Realism

 Last Year I saw a wonderful painting of salad done by Aubrey Levinthal and it made me want to paint food.  I know that sounds funny, but I am serious.  I wanted to paint food, and in particular, salad.  So I started with a photo of a salad  that was made by my friend, who makes the best salads you a have ever tasted by the way, along with a glass of wine.  Painting the salad was the easy part, but the glass of wine was difficult.  Making it look like glass...wow, tough.  I sure enjoyed painting food though!

After that, I felt even more adventurous.  I painted a meat and cheese platter from a photo I had taken while out one wonderful evening with my husband.  We had gone to this old castle near Denver and they had live music, food, wine and dessert.  The music was done by a male vocalist and he sang these gorgeous ballads while playing guitar.  I think it may have been one of the most romantic dates of my life, and the platter was one of the best I had ever tasted, so painting it was the perfect way to capture the memory.  

This semi-realistic style is a huge swing from my usual style and I have thought many times about exploring this type of painting more often.  I hesitate though because I can see the potential for becoming obsessive about details and the fight there might be trying to arm wrestle things into the right shapes.  With my usual style, I can be imperfect and that suits me the best.  

So perhaps from time to time I will just paint food I want to remember.

Thursday, May 6, 2021

Painting and Poetry

They Have Come To Bring Us Spring is an oil painting I did some time ago.  It recently went off to a new home, so I decided to take a short video of it.  It has always been a favorite.  And then a poem came out.  And then this video.