Sunday, December 29, 2019

Bird Watching and the Story of Mitsou

Bird Watching
mixed media on cradled board
available here

My cat Mitsou likes to bird watch.  There is a place near a window on the back of the couch where she will bird watch nearly all day and sometimes she can be found stubbornly waiting by the window at night even though the birds have long gone to bed.  She is a mischief, a funny girl, a crazy cat, a ninja, and then she can be absolutely still and sweet.

She was abandoned by her mother as a kitten along with her siblings on my friend's property in the country and when my friend texted me a photo of her asking if I wanted a kitten I was hooked.  Absolutely adorable kitten cuteness.  I had lost my mother only months before, so I had a moment of weakness.  I say weakness because we already had our Golden Retriever Hurley and our other cat Peet.  But I brought her home anyways and there has never been a shy bone in her little cat body.  She made herself right at home and thinks she runs the place.

I love telling the story of how I got her name.  The year before I was in New York City with my sister at the Metropolitan Museum of Art seeing a Balthus exhibit.  Part of that exhibit was Balthus' 40 original drawings of his childhood cat Mitsou.  He drew them when he was only 11 years old probably to process his grief after she ran away.  In the drawings it showed her cuddled up to him when he was sick in bed, his frantic parents as she dashed across the dining table, and himself with a lantern in hand out in the street looking for her.  Their family friend was so moved by his drawings he published them into a book.  I was  moved too and promised that the next cat I took in would be named Mitsou.

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Bird Shop, a New Job, Backyard Birds and a Christmas Sale

Bird Shop
oil on wood panel 16 x 12 inch
Can you believe it is already December 4?  I sure can't.  I have been busy busy.  I have two part time jobs and one of them is at a nature store here in Colorado.  I have always loved feeding our backyard birds and we often sit and watch them from the kitchen table.  We even have a bird book and binoculars nearby just in case we have any unidentified visitors at one of the feeders.  Anyways, I ended up taking a part time job at the store where I buy our birdseed.  I have to tell you that people who spend the time and money to feed the sweet flying creatures make some of the nicest customers and interesting folks to talk to.  It is a physical workout on some days when a truckload with 2,000 lbs of seed shows up and we have to carry them into the store and put them away.  Each bag weighs 20 lbs.  I am pretty tired on delivery days, but the job is NO stress.  I love this job.  

So as you can probably guess by now this painting is inspired by my new job.  I will tell you about the other job later on.  I have some paintings brewing in my head that are inspired by that job.

photo by Lisa Graham
These two doves are often seen sitting together in our backyard and they are often on the SAME branch.  Isn't that precious?

photo by Lisa Graham
This is the first year seeing Northern Flickers!  My heart skipped a beat when I saw one on the railing of our deck just outside the kitchen.  They are so beautiful.  This one is a female.

photo by Lisa Graham
I believe this one is called a Lesser Gold Finch.  It's all puffed up trying to stay warm.  

Brick House
oil on panel 6 x 8 inch 2017

Other news is I am having a Merry Christmas sale on select paintings including this one.  They are 50% off through December to say thank you and celebrate a wonderful year.  The link to the sale section is

Thank you always for following my art.  
Until next time!