Saturday, June 30, 2012

The Settling Point and It they Smile and Wink...

Yesterday I put the last layer on the third large painting I am working on and as usual I went through the typical stages of oil painting.  The first stage is this is fun!  The second stage is this is getting difficult and I am running into problems with the composition and color contrast because I am paying too much attention to the colors.  The third stage is I am determined to arm wrestle this thing down and the fourth stage is, not exactly what I was going for but I am ready to settle for what I got.  Now I will work in a few areas and put them away after I add them to my portfolio.  The fourth stage is the best.  A long time from now I will look at it them, be impressed with the results, and try real hard to remember what it was that I didn't like.  I have learned over many years how to let a painting live.  I never get exactly what I want but I get very close because I work so hard at it!

My husband and I were discussing food and drug regulations and how certain things get passed only to be banned later.  He decided that if the rats drink it all, smile, wink and don't keel over right away the product is safe.  Just kidding around!  I don't want the FDA to come after us!

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Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Bringing the Shore Inside and The Mute Button

As I have mentioned before I have spent a lot of time at the beach and I am mesmerized by the ocean and the beautiful shore atmosphere.  Two of the paintings I am working on are shore scenes from the Isle of Palms.  One of them is the shore and the other is of the canal area that circles around to the sea.  I am pleased with both of them but the one with the shore holds my attention the most.  I feel like I brought the ocean into my home and I just want to walk into the picture.  I guess that is why I am a representational artist.  I love nature and I want it in my house and eventually placed in other homes.  I am in nineteen states, Washington D.C., Canada, Germany, and Australia.  I want to greatly increase the number of locales where people can feel what I feel. Hopefully, next week I will be posting these new paintings.

There is a commercial on TV that has been running forever regarding back problems.  I ruptured a disc when my son was two so I know how painful a back injury can be.  A back problem is nothing unless you have one.  This commercial has been shown so many times it has become quite aggravating.  The first line is I have so much trouble getting out of bed in the morning.  When my husband hears that he says I have so much trouble getting to the mute button fast enough!  So glad there is a mute button.  It is my favorite button on the remote.

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Saturday, June 23, 2012

The Cable Guy Finally got us and the TV Blew up...

We finally gave in to cable when we couldn't get any channels in without the bleeping in and out reception.  After all these years I was not happy about calling for cable.  The guy got here at 8:30am yesterday and didn't finish until 1:30pm.  I had to clean out my refrigerator and clean off the front bulletin board to keep occupied.  He hit a stud outside and hammered his finger.  I didn't catch the specific words but he later apologized for the language.  The Gestapo mini dobermans were squealing the whole time and one especially small one squeezed through the fence to harass our old dog.  I called the dog catcher because I know the neighbors will just prop up things by their fence which doesn't work.  She took the dog off and asked me how I could stand all that barking and squealing.  The neighbors wouldn't come to the door when she knocked.

This morning when I was trying to keep the ting in painting my son was watching the TV with cable and it went completely dead. I called the cable guy because I thought that it was too coincidental that it died right after the cable was installed.  He assured me that the cable hook up would not break a TV so now we have to buy a new one. 

In the above paragraph I was trying to be funny in a slightly grim way but when I ran it past my writer husband he didn't get it.  If you take ting off of painting you have pain which is what can be the word that sums up a frustrating painting session.  I won't get into the details because it won't make any sense but today's session was not pleasant.  Sometimes painting is a mountain top experience and other times it is much, much lower.

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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Glad I Paint Standing Up and Didn't I Just Call you Stupid...

Painting is a lot of work as any painter will tell you.  A lot of people think it is done sitting down and finished in a few hours.  Actually, most painters stand up so they can walk back and forth and see how it looks from a distance.  Artists want people to get the full effect of their work in a room without having to get up close.  We want out work to carry into the environment.  I remember when I was a student I only stood up once in a while because the professor said I should.  I can't image sitting now and since I have developed some soreness in my hip I am glad it is done standing up.  Many people are finding out that we shouldn't sit that much.  My husband says some of his co-workers have put their computer up high so they can stand and work.  Older bodies sure do need a lot of maintenance.

The other day on The Bill Cosby Show he was discussing with his son the pet names he and his wife had when they were dating.  He didn't want to admit it at first but then with a big smile he said his was Baby Cakes.  I turned to my husband and said didn't I just call you Stupid?  His reply was, yes and I answered to it.  Now that's a big lie!  My husband may have his faults but I would never call him Stupid.  Before I look anything up I ask him first, and unlike the panel of experts on the Red Green Comedy Hour he almost always has a correct answer for me.  It is nice to live with some one who read the Encyclopedia and still remembers what he read.

Just one day left on my large canvas print specials on some of my most popular paintings.  They are on page two and five.

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Friday, June 15, 2012

How to Get an Artist out of the Studio and Could be Baboon Butt

As I have said many times, I live to paint.  The more time I have to paint, the more time I spend painting.  It is difficult to tear myself away and sometimes I think I am too obsessed with my work.  I have a friend with a boat who lives on a lake and she likes to have a swimming buddy.  I hadn't heard from her since she was sick with some sort of stomach problem so I wrote on her Facebook wall and said I hoped we could get together soon.  Some one has to to get me out of the studio before I asphyxiate myself with mineral spirits.  Got a call right away and now I am taking breaks on the lake!  Now that's the way I like it!

My husband and I were discussing hot dogs tonight.  I haven't had a hot dog in many years.  In fact I can't remember the last time I had one.  They don't agree with me and I have always been concerned about what is in them.  I'm not real big into health food but I try to stick to eating things that haven't been tampered with.  I told my husband that when I bought them I bought chicken hot dogs because I figured they were better for you.  He asked how do you know they are really made with chicken?  For all you know, after they monkey around with them they could be made with baboon butt.  I seriously doubt that but it makes for a good joke!  No offense to all you hot dog lovers!

Be sure to check out my Limited Time Promotions on Fine Art America and be sure to like my page.  I will have three large canvas prints listed tomorrow.

Also, check out my sale on Small Gem paintings on Etsy!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

I Think I am Turning into a Computer Part and I can Stump Jeeves...

I think I am becoming an extension of this computer which is not something I had planned to be but it is the way to get my artwork out there so I am typing away and working with sites for much more time then I would like to be.  When computers started to take over I stepped back which I regret.  I didn't grow up with them so  I should have gotten with it right away.  I am still confused much of the time but the one great thing about computers is you can ask them anything! 

My husband used to joke about the Ask Jeeves feature.  Supposedly Jeeves can't be stumped.  You can ask him anything.  My husband claims he stumps Jeeves all the time. He asks Jeeves how much money he makes, where he lives, and what he really does for a living.  I wonder what Jeeves thinks about those questions. Maybe I should ask Jeeves if I will do better with my sales this year.  Sure am going through a slow period right now.  Hope things pick up soon. 

I am having a great time with my paintings right now.  I have never gotten this close to exactly what I want before.  I never get exactly what I want which is why painting is such an exciting experience.  If I knew exactly what I was doing and could do the same thing each time it would be boring. It is always an adventure and I will be pleased to post these new works but it will probably be about two more weeks before they will be ready.

Be sure to check out these 40% off large canvas paintings on Fine Art America in the Limited Time section!  The sale will be over in two more days.

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Saturday, June 9, 2012

A Naturalist's Legacy and If you need Chocolate...

There is only a little over a month left on the show, "A Naturalists Legacy", at Zeppolis in Blacksburg, VA so I wanted to plug it again.  If you didn't read the promo before, here it is.  I am very proud of this tribute to my husband's conservation efforts.

A Naturalist's Legacy is a new show by award winning artist Kendall Kessler.  This show is centered around the achievements of Kendall's husband, Clyde Kessler, a well known naturalist in Virginia and North Carolina who has been studying the bird and butterfly populations and migration since 1975.  He has participated  in Christmas bird counts for the National Audobon Society since 1973.  His discovery in Virginia of the endangered Mitchell's Satyr in 1998 led to efforts to protect the species in the state.  It was unknown in Virginia at the time. It is considered to be one of the most important wildlife finds in the second half of the 20th century. Clyde has also led hawk watches since the mid 70's at Rocky Knob and other locations, and has surveyed Wildwood Park for plants and animal species for the city of Radford.

Clyde is also a poet who publishes twenty to thirty poems every year in print and online magazines.  He currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Blue Ridge Discovery Center. This organization offers innovative education programs in southwestern Virginia that include studies of the natural world, art and writing. These programs are for children and adults of all ages.  Clyde is hopeful that the efforts and programs of BRDC will encourage future generations to enjoy and protect the environment. For more info about Blue Ridge Discovery Center:

Clyde is a regional editor of Virginia Birds, and also leads bird watching tours for Radbird, a local tour company started by Catherine Van Noy.

A Naturalist's Legacy will have a new, symbolic painting taken from an old photograph of Clyde and his son Alan who is one of the many young people Clyde has taught over the years about this beautiful mountain region.

Now, for fun, a commentary on commercials. Last night we saw a commercial about a cereal with pieces of chocolate added to it.  My husband quipped that if you have to have chocolate at breakfast, then you will probably be scarfing it for lunch and main lining it at supper time.  I think he may have something there.  I love chocolate but I think I can eat cereal without it.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

The Plot Thickens and What did the Leftover say...

In another blog I swore I would not give in to Cable TV.  We finally gave in to cell phones when land lines started to disappear in public places.  I didn't mind giving in to that one since there are great deals on the internet for people that mostly just use them for emergencies.  This Digital Conspiracy is wearing us down.  Either our antennae is messed up or it is getting harder and harder to get a signal from the various channels.  Now we can't get most channels even when the weather is cool and there are no storms around.  I mostly watch DVDs but there are a few programs we like and I am missing PBS more and more.  I may have to eat my words and get cable.  I come from a family of stubborns.  As my sister said, "Two big stubborns make four little stubborns,  Yuck!  Another bill!

My writer husband, Clyde, is kindly trying to come up with some humor for my blog since I certainly am not a writer.  I really appreciate it.  We all need humor.  This time he came up with a riddle.  What did the leftover say to the other items in the refrigerator when it was put back for a second time?  Curses, foiled again!

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Saturday, June 2, 2012

My First Text Scam and Portland Oregon?

A few days ago I received my first text scam which was a big surprise.  I have been getting frequent scams on the internet for years so at first I thought this was a legitimate local buyer who really wanted to see more pictures before deciding to purchase the painting.  I actually took two more pictures - one with the frame and one without.  I took great care to get them exactly right and then sent them to the scammer.  He didn't answer right away so I thought he was not happy with the pictures.  Then I got the standard scam letter in which he said he was completely satisfied with the pictures and he would pay $20 more if I took the ad off, and, of course, he would send a check and a private shipping agent to get the painting.  I am always polite with these people but I would like to cuss them out big time. What a bunch of creeps!

A day or so ago my husband and I were watching Let's Make a Deal which my husband likes after work to relax.  We were both surprised when the contestant won a trip to Portland, Oregon. My husband said, "What if he is from Portland, Oregon?"  Of course, he wasn't but he didn't look that excited and the audience didn't seem that impressed.  The picture showed the city in front of a volcano.  My husband said if he had won the trip the dormant Mt. Hood would probably go off as soon as he arrived.  No doubt!  Just kidding around!  I'm sure Portland is a great place to visit!

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