Tuesday, December 18, 2012

...a simple light... (a Christmas message)

 I remember as a small child, I would often wonder how was it that those wise men could follow that star to find that beautiful baby Jesus, born in the manger on Christmas Day. I could never quite understand how they could pick one star out of the sky and knowingly find that precious gift that was given to all.

I suppose it is only natural, that as one grows to become an adult, these questions are forgotten and such.  It was He who remembered, and answered when the time was fit.  You see, it was very late one Christmas Eve, some years ago.  After finishing the things a parent of 6 might do, admiring the stars seemed a perfect fit on that blessed morn.

What happened next, a miracle to me, a message confirming that God does answer- in His own time.
As I sat there,enjoying the brisk air, a light shone on the road at the end of our drive.   Glowing from edge to edge as though every pebble was shown.  I thought this beam perhaps to be from a car,  I waited, while looking to the left, and then the right, there was none to be found.  Soon the light began to fade, obvious now the beam was cast down from above.
How beautiful that moment was, a sign to me, that His simple grace message is indeed pure and true. Have a very blessed Christmas as we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Fun With Frames...

SOLD/ Fort worth Texas

SOLD/ Fort worth Texas

SOLD/ lafayette, LA
..... Just thought I would share a few photos that were sent today... It is always fun to see how customers frame them.  I just love the framing on the three 6 inch pieces!     I am hoping I will see how Betwixt is framed ... which will reside in Lafayette LA, at least for a while. (click on images to view full screen)

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


BETWIXT  16 x 16 3/4 inches  oil on masonite

*click on any image to view full screen

Betwixt... between.

The greatest challenge as an artist, for me, is simply revealing myself.  Blame it on my Finish heritage. Some claim we cling to a bottle rather than open up.  No, I can't say that I cling to a bottle,
 I guess one could say it is replaced with a brush. 

As time goes by I find it increasingly difficult.  Perhaps it comes out in form of a picture.

Today is a difficult day.  When I hit a rough patch I try remember simple words of inspiration.... usually ones I was taught as a child.  Things like 'with only a grain as small as the mustard seed'...

When I began painting 'Betwixt' I was in a mood set of not looking forward to the cool Minnesota winter.... Again, I remember words that my mom always said, ..' It's a good thing there is only one winter in between two summers.

This morning I went to my studio to work on my new painting ... but this picture kept hounding me.  Well, maybe not exactly the painting.. but the whole picture.

One of my friends, who is also a mother of 7 young children, the oldest is in 9th grade, has been at the U of M since early September battling Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia.   The family lives in our town which is about 4 hours from the U.    It crushes my heart when I think of it all...  Simple words I so want her to be able to tell all her children, words they will remember down the road.  I feel so helpless, all I can do is pray.   She is for certain- Betwixt.   Life will get better and it does, with only a grain.

'Betwixt' will be on auction for 10 days with all proceeds donated to her family.  (link to auction)

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

.... The Berry Boys..

click on image to view full screen

... this is going to be one commissioned piece that I am feeling a bit attached to... and don't want to part with.   Many of the elements tug at me... finish heritage, berry picking etc.  I have to say that I really do love it even though I may go back in and add a few more details.     I also love the emotion..note the boy on the left doesn't look so pleased with his empty cup while the boy on the right is almost proud as punch.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

'Lady Lay'

detail view
'Lady Lay'  (click on image for full screen view)
.... just a bit more fun... this little 6 inch sweetheart is on auction with again a super value 1$ start bid! (+ shipping)  Check it out if you like...    I used the same process as shown in this demo.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

6 inch study... 'Twirly Girl'

 *click on the image to view full screen*  
Colors in painting most similar to 'close up view' (first image)

... I did a few paintings today and thought I would share my favorite of the day...  a 6 inch oil on linen mounted on pane ..sorry about the glare - still wet and gping on a daring auction with a start bid of only 1 buck!       ... click here to link to the auction   

Speed painting demo...

..ok, I agree... the title is a bit misleading.  This is actually an attempt at demonstrating how I start a an oil painting without use of visual aid or markings....  and more importantly an attempt to learn some tricks of technology....whew... I have been trying to figure out how to speed up the painting portion for a few hours and then whallaa... it actually isn't that difficult.  Hopefully the next video (which will be for a much appreciated and special gang of friends) will be WAAAY better!  ... you can check it out and see what you think.  *note- to prevent choking, eating while watching is not advised!  

Friday, July 27, 2012

.... in progress...

.... Giving myself a breather from commissions is something I need in order to be able to make sense or sort the process of commission work.  This piece is a 24 inch oil on gallery wrap... photos taken with my phone , sorry- they are poor quality..... a few closeups...  thinking the title will be 'A Matter of Interest" ... clip shown is about 1/5 th of the painting.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Midsummer show and a note...

       ... Beep beep..someone stop the bus!
I photographed these a few weeks ago and just now am finally getting to posting!  My ma in law nicely set up shop for showing during the midsummer festival, thought I should share.

 I can't believe, well I can, how crazy busy this summer has been!
Paperwork, commissions,  kickstarter projects, kids, summer fun....  and more to come :)

I told a very kind lady that I would post some images for her to view....  Maam.... please view the photos below... to expand any of the images just give them a click...
ex. a

ex. b
same frame as shown above but with a matted interior frame.... I will have to catch a better picture of this for sure.


Thursday, May 24, 2012

'The Curve'

                                         'The Curve' finished... a bit of trouble photographing the colors!

..a bit of trouble photographing these colors, colors may vary due to your monitor settings.

 ...photos posted below are 'in progress'... click on any of the images to view full screen... 'The Curve' is available with at my DPW site

                                            'THE CURVE'
                                                 24 inch oil on gallery wrap canvas 1 and 1/2 inches deep ready to hang complete with backer wire and professional varnish, no need to frame.


The process that I like to use most when painting is a bit like drifting at sea... I have my paddle and oars, and a sense of direction, getting to the island is another story.

I don't mind throwing in an experiment every now and again, to see where it takes me... in fact, that is what I love most about painting.  I can stay right in my studio and make the sun shine, or not.  

One of the things that bother most about painting is the lack of satisfaction.  While I am painting I am completely taken by the lull of the waves, but quickly this feeling comes to a crashing end when I am finished with the piece. 

                                          'Adrift'     oil on gallery wrap canvas, 24 inch square
                                                             (click on image to zoom)

I don't quite understand it all yet, but somehow the paintings seem to connect with my feelings.  It is almost as though I wouldn't need to use words to express myself, but still I do, so that I can figure out what it was that kid inside was trying to say.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

The Inspirational Duckface.....

                                                          16x20 oil on gallery wrap
                                                         (click on any photo to zoom)

                                *LINK TO THIS PAINTING ON CURRENT AUCTION*

... While admiring some masterworks of previous years I couldn't help but take notice that several of these lovely portraiture style works seemed to be of seated women crafting a needle work piece or some such 'hobby' of the time.   I had to then wonder, what is it that we do today, that wasn't a passion of the past.

It doesn't take a rocket scientist (I am not a rocket scientist)- to figure out that computers have taken hold of generations today.   Most non-rocket scientists who have surfed the net may also take note of the method that the generation today uses the internet to make connections for social purpose.  One seems to be by taking 'plumped up' photos of oneself while standing in front of a mirror- (some define this as duck face) or perhaps a friend will take a photo so you can share the great time you had with anyone else who happens to bump into your picture on the net. 

The rocket scientist who might occasionally browse my blog would know I love to paint faces.  That said, chances are good they might have to be an artist to understand exactly how the process of  inspiration works.  I really shouldn't assume that a scientist might be on another plain than an artist, just making an uneducated, but somewhat experienced guess.

The easiest way to explain how inspiration works for me would be to tell you what I can't do.

I am sure you have all heard similar expression such as 'creating from the soul', right?
Every once in a great while I get this hair brained idea to try something different, maybe abstract, or a folk painting (which I have did a fair amount of  in the past) ....  Have you ever tried to get lemonade from a cow?  It just doesn't work!

To make a long story shorter, the rocket scientist who realizes that I love to paint faces, would then put two and two together and understand why I might be inspired to paint 'duck faces'.   Hmmm.... sort of like someone who has lived on the plains of North Dakota... and gets the chance of a lifetime to see where the rolling hills take them.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Defiantly Green ...... Backers Update link

                                                               (click on image to zoom)

 It just felt right to name this piece Defiantly Green- and yes, it is a bit personal. 

Have you ever experienced a moment like you have hit one of those bumps and havn't landed yet.. all in slow motion....ready to start rolling and then thunk... the stars come, lights go out... start flickering and then the answer stares down in your face.... dangled from the arms of an angel?  I am there.  The feeling is so strong that I hesitate to share the moment because I am not sure that is a moment anyone wants to share.  To work thru these bumps I try remind myself savor the sweets ... and am happy with the result of the painting.

BACKERS -  a link to a overdue post....... message me if you need the pass code .  Thank you for your patience as I work these bugs out.    Also.. if you contributed without using the kick starter site... contact me and I will forward you the code.

Monday, April 23, 2012

...A Sailor Man.....

                                                            (click on photo to zoom )

I was a bit bored the other day... having a bit of a block... so I decided to monkey a bit with some acrylic paints that I have at home.....  often as it does happen, my 12 yr old son was a bit bored too.... So I gave him one of my old partially painted canvas's ... which he could then paint over.

The thing that most excited me... (I only took a photo with my phone... the blue doesn't look quite so brilliant in person) .... was the similarities in method of creating.

First he started layering some blue on the canvas.... and then some red... and some yellow... and before I knew it... he had a sailor man.     The process part that I am relating to is the unplanned portion... often I want to just start painting and see what comes out... which is exactly what he did.  

Now I know Matt always likes to find a way or two to make a few extra bucks and would love to create to sell... but between you and I... I may have to buy it myself ...although mothers day is coming(hint, hint- maybe he will see this post)...  there is something about this painting that really hits my spark... and the part that irritates me is, I can't quite explain what that is.  

(will update with better photos later)

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Week one... Scottsdale

....One week down, one left to go...
I am having a bit of trouble doing any postings- as I am working with an ipad rather than my laptop. In no particular order ...(I am not able to rearrange / delete any pictures...and had to have my daughter post the pitures to my blog) ... are pictures from my first enjoyable week at the Scottsdale Artists School in Arizona.

Several of the photos are demos in progress by Kobayahsi as well as some finished works of his. There are also a few photos taken at the wonderful home of an art collector.

Each class day starts at 10 am with a demonstration that runs until around noon. After lunch the students paint with live models ... (some are shown below)... class time ends at 5 pm.

The hotel that I am staying at is directly across the street from the school, an easy walk.

I am not sure how many galleries there are in Scottsdale... it seems to be an endless amount. I am quite sure I will not make it to all of them. The highlights of my gallery hopping today included wonderful Russian and Ukraine artworks, Renoir works (both drawining and sculpture)... original Picasso works.. (and was tempted to bring one home at 1.5 million,... just not too sure where I would put it... darn, had to leave it there.) I also got to see many Warhol and Rockwell artist proofs, which were fun to see.

Temperatures have been in the high 80's to low 90's... not as muggy as back home... The weather has been wearing me out a bit... as I am a bit forgetful to fill up on water.

I am looking forward to continuing my studies next week, though I am getting anxious to get home and try evolve my work a bit and put some new ideas that I want to try to the test. I will have to save that for another week or so.

p.s..... had to share the photo with the 'robes'... as I seem to remember them in some of Milts work... they were fun to see and recognize.