Here is my new painting, Floating Mermaid. It’s feels good to be back to painting as I have had a long break. In early May, I took a road trip with my twin sister up to New York City. We met up with my two other sisters in New Jersey at my aunt’s home and had such a great reunion, also enjoying visiting with cousins and my aunt. It had been over ten years since we had all been together. We then took the train into Manhattan and got to spend time with my daughter who was finishing up her freshman year at NYU. She loves being in the city and it was reassuring to see how she was thriving.
Once she came home for summer break, an opportunity opened up for her to spend five weeks in China teaching English and visiting with Chinese friends she had made at school. It was all very sudden and with me helping her get ready for her adventure and having her home I found it challenging to focus on my art.
She’s been in China a week now and is enjoying herself and I am back to painting. This floating mermaid is the result. In life there are times we have to let go, relax and trust. As a mom, I was nervous about my 18 year old girl traveling on her own half way around the world. At this point, part of my journey as a mom is to let go and trust my child’s own path in life. In this painting I wanted to show a mermaid relaxing in the water as the sun shines on her with the white dove of peace soaring above her, knowing all is well.
I hope all are enjoying summer, whether you are home relaxing or off on exciting adventures!
Running Gazelle is a new painting in the African animal series for my Heni’s Happy Paintings Etsy Shop.
Images of gazelles have been showing up in my life lately. I looked up the symbolic meaning of gazelles, they symbolize graceful feminine energy. That made sense to me, they are such beautiful graceful creatures running with ease in groups. I also love their dark curved antlers which are so striking. I wanted the painting to have the bright sun with lots of color to enhance the joyful feeling of running.
It’s a busy season, our daughter gets home next week for her winter break; we so looking forward to seeing her. My wish is for all to have a joyous holiday season!
Gray Squirrel Among the Autumn Leaves is my newest painting. Here in Atlanta the fall has been pretty pathetic with the endless rain taking many beautiful leaves down too soon. We’ve had a few sunny days but this fall has not been as vivid as usual. During the rainy days I felt like painting an autumn scene with brightly colored foliage to brighten my spirits.
When I worked as a park ranger in Brooklyn and led tours with the inner city school children, if we spotted a squirrel they would squeal in delight. In the South with all our trees we tend to take our squirrels for granted, in fact my dad used a bb gun to shoot at them if one got near his bird feeder.
Squirrels are pretty amazing when you think about it. They are beautiful creatures with their bushy tails, sleek build and so agile as they scamper through the trees. They are also helpful to nature with all their gathering of nuts, some of which turn into trees. I’m pleased with my squirrel and hope you like it too.
Woman with Dove and Lilies is my most recent painting. I’ve worked on it off and on throughout this rainy week. It’s pouring now as I write. Next week they say the sun will be coming back, I think everyone here in Atlanta is more than ready for that. I’ll put this print up in my Circles Round the Sun Etsy Shop under my portrait section. I’m off now to start a new painting, hope all are enjoying the weekend!
Crow Visits a Girl in the Gardenis my most recent painting. After painting the Girl and Wolf, where the girl’s face was so small, I felt the urge to paint a larger portrait. The crows are back in our neck of the woods so they’ve been on my mind. I thought it would be interesting to place a crow with the girl in a garden scene. I’m fairly pleased, it was a fun challenge.
It is quite chilly this morning and the leaves are just starting to turn, feels like fall now. The sky is bright and it will be warming up shortly, It’s great to have such a beautiful weekend after the past few dreary, rainy ones. I plan to go visit a local art festival this afternoon. Hope everyone enjoys their weekend!
The Girl and the Wolfis my most recent painting for my Heni’s Happy Paintings Etsy Shop. After finishing my light dove painting I felt like creating a more solid painting. During my adolescent years in my journals I would often draw a lone wolf sitting atop a mountain. Around that time some challenging events happened within my family which frightened me and I handled those fears by turning inward and becoming a bit of a loner. In some ways that helped me to be independent, which is why it was easy for me to leave home and travel and live in many places. Over time I’ve learned to face and integrate those fears. In this painting the girl has made friends with the wolf. They are not alone, they are in a rich forest and the sun will rise as it always does.
Mom and Baby Elephant is a recent painting for my Heni’s Happy Painting’s Etsy shop. Several people have asked for an elephant print. I love elephants myself and so I decided to paint one. I’ve chosen an African savannah scene with a mom and baby which will go nicely with the lion paintings.
I have been thinking of Africa lately as my sister and brother in law were in Nairobi for a few weeks earlier this summer, she sent back photos and wrote about her amazing experiences there. One day I hope to travel to Africa also. I chose to paint a mom and baby for a couple of reasons. My other mom and baby painting of dolphins is the best seller of my shops. Moms love it for young children’s rooms and so hopefully this one will be popular also.
I’ve been thinking about motherhood lately as my daughter recently graduated from high school and will be off to college soon. It’s been such a privilege for me to be her mom as she has grown from a baby to child to young adult. I’m excited for her next phase in life. My husband and I will be empty nesters, a big change for us too. This painting will serve as a memory for me of this time.
Jack Rabbit at Dusk is my most recent painting, I’ve been working on it for a couple of weeks now. Jack rabbits are well adapted to their dry grassland habitat with their large ears, long lanky front legs and big powerful rear legs. I find their looks strange and striking.
Years ago, my twin sister and I bicycled across the country. We left in early June just after my sister’s college graduation, it took us two months to bike from Georgia to crossing over the Golden Gate bridge into San Francisco. Until this adventure we had never been west of Alabama. I have been thinking about that trip lately. I love biking, the slow pace and being out in the elements. I remember traveling through the country roads, enjoying the feel of the sun, the wind, the sounds, smells and sights of the places we traveled through. On our journey as the days went on, we began to realize that dusk and dawn were magical times when all of nature came alive with the birds and insects beginning their serenades against the backdrop of the orange sun low in the sky making long shadows that stretched across the landscapes.
One late afternoon having made it into the Idaho countryside we began to set up camp in a potato field. As dusk approached suddenly out of nowhere several jack rabbits started appearing in the fields around us. They came from all directions. We had never seen a jack rabbit before, they didn’t seem to be bothered by our presence. They were huge compared to the eastern cottontail rabbits we were used to seeing. It was such a surreal moment, and so beautiful with the low sun and shadows dancing on the jack rabbits. I will never forget that experience. This painting doesn’t really do it justice but I wanted to try. I am fairly pleased the him and hope you are also.
I’ve just completed Pegasus, a new painting to add to the mythic creature series for my Heni’s Happy Paintings Etsy Shop. Instead of painting a white Greek Pegasus, I thought it would be fun to paint an Native American born appaloosa horse flying over the southwestern mountains at sunset. According to Greek mythology, Pegasus was born from the blood of Medusa as she was beheaded by Perseus. He guarded sacred places. As a spirit guide he represents the creative power in all of us. He symbolizes the beauty we bring to ourselves and others.
I’ve just completedLemons in Mom’s Antique Yellow-ware Mixing Bowlin honor of my Mom’s birthday which is on January 27th. It was fun to paint a formal still life that I think she would have liked. She had several antique yellow-ware bowls and used them daily in her cooking. I remember mixing many batches of chocolate chip cookie batters in her large bowls.
Mom loved to cook and so did Dad. These days they would have been known as “foodies.” Our life growing up revolved around food. Together they made breakfast every weekend which varied from waffles or corncrakes to homemade biscuits, scrambled eggs and grits. It seemed like most weekends they had dinner parties at which Mom tried out new recipes from her women’s magazines and cookbooks.
The holidays were always about the special meals. From black-eye peas, greens and cornbread on New Years; leg of lamb and mint sauce on Easter; and barbeque pork from Dad’s big smoker outside on the 4th of July. On our beach vacations we had seafood feasts nightly. Christmas was all about the food. From the oranges, special cheeses, plum pudding and Virginia ham that arrived on our doorstep to all the special dishes and desserts that mom and dad would prepare. I have fond memories of going with Dad to the seafood store to pick up our yearly bushel of oysters. On Christmas Eve we had oyster stew, which my sisters and I hated when young but grew to love later. The big event was Dad making the traditional Virginian eggnog in one of the big yellow-ware bowls.
Mom was a northern girl and she served cow tongue, corn beef and sauerkraut, and ham with spoon bread and lots of casseroles and steamed vegetables that still retained their color. My southern friends all thought our food was weird. I was not a picky eater and loved it all. Through Mom I learned that cooking is fun and to enjoy all kinds of food. Thanks Mom!