Beloved Sam is a new painting that I just completed for a birthday gift for Lauri Shock. Her husband, Billy Howard contacted me after receiving a note card of mine with the image of Adele’s Cats from a mutual friend. Billy asked if he could buy the original since one of the cats reminded them of their Sam who had recently passed away to give to Laurie on her birthday. Since I didn’t have the original I offered to do a new similar painting for him. He liked that idea and sent me his Medium Post, Sam the Cat, which has some lovely photos of Sam.
It was my first commissioned painting and I was a bit nervous, but Billy said that they liked my style of using bright colors so I went with it. I chose my mom’s stangl pitcher that looked a bit like one in the photos. With Sam, I accented his green eyes and white patch that they loved about him. I put a painting behind the flowers of birds flying as a symbol of Sam’s spirit being freed.
Sam showed up one day and became theirs when he was about a year old and for 15 years his quirky personality brought them joy daily. It was a pleasure painting Sam. I was touched by Billy’s thoughtfulness of wanting to do this for Lauri’s birthday gift. What a wonderful idea in helping them to honor Sam’s memory.
I am pleased to be the Artist of the Month for May at the Phoenix and Dragon Bookstore here in Atlanta. It’s given me the opportunity to honor my Mom. Every year around her birthday I do a painting in her memory and some are showcased in the show. As the years go on I realize how my Mom’s creativity inspired me to become an artist. I am happy that I can honor her in this way. The poster and photos of the opening are below. The show is going on through May. Happy Mother’s Day!
This week I felt like creating a more painterly painting. I chose to do a floral still life and then layered lots of paint on the paper and played with texture and color. Daises in a Blue Vase is the result. I’m fairly pleased with the result.
We are looking forward to our daughter coming home for spring break on Monday. She is spending the weekend in Chicago with friends, it’s very chilly there and snow is expected on Sunday. So far it doesn’t look like it’s going to be a big storm so hopefully she won’t get snowed in.
Enjoy the weekend and good luck with springing forward an hour tomorrow!
I was feeling happy and upbeat last week and felt liking painting a bluebird. I painted one a few years ago that was loosely based on a vintage post card. We have bluebirds in our neighborhood and I love watching them soar about on my walks. The bluebird symbolizes joy.
Here in Atlanta like much of the country we are already having mild spring-like weather, birds are chirping and beginning to pair up and flowers are blooming. I even mowed our lawn last Wednesday. A Facebook friend of mine posted a picture which said “What a lovely spring we are having this winter,” which brought smile to my face but at the same time I wondered what kind of summer we are going to have in Hotlanta. Regardless, it’s hard not to be happy with this wonderful spring-like weather.
In Bluebird in Flight the joyful bird is flying over the meadow with the sun shining above. I so enjoyed painting it, layering the various colors on and seeing what came about. I hope that joy is reflected in the painting.
I felt drawn to paint a lotus this week because of it’s meaning. The lotus flower symbolizes rising from a dark space into a place of beauty and rebirth. Lotus flowers grow out of muddy and murky water and produce beautiful blossoms. They are a symbol of strength among adversity. It’s been a couple of tough weeks for me emotionally but I’m starting to feel better. The lotus reminds me that sometimes when we go through a dark period something beautiful can come about in time.
Pink Lotus Flower is my fourth lotus painting and with this one I wanted to emphasis the flower coming up from the dark with the the light shining from above. I am pleased with it, I like the contrast of the lights and darks. I tried to capture the way the lotus seems to glow in the sunlight. My hope is that all will feel more uplifted as we enter the December holiday season.
In the last few months I have been sorting through my father’s coin collection. Most of the coins are from the United States, including several early American ones. What struck me is that the early coins all have the image of Lady Liberty on them. One of the earliest from the 1700’s is named the Flowing Hair Liberty. There is another later coin where she is walking with the sun rising behind her. These Liberty coins are all very beautiful to me. Lady Liberty symbolized the freedom from tyranny – a nation free from cruel and oppressive government rulers. Her image stopped appearing on coins starting in the 1930’s as presidents and other male figures took her place.
With the shock that went through the world last week as it dawned on all that Trump had won the United States presidential election, it got me thinking about Lady Liberty. My ancestors fought for freedom in the Revolutionary war and I don’t know what they would think about our current time period. I feel we need a new revolution, one where we unite and heal our differences and work toward a future where all can thrive, including the beautiful planet that we live on.
Flowing Hair Liberty is the result of these feelings I have.
Harvest Maiden is a new painting of mine celebrating the beauty and bounty of fall. Here in Atlanta, the days have been unseasonably warm and sunny unlike last year when the wind and rain quickly took the leaves away; this year we are witnessing the beauty of fall as the colors slowly unfold. In the late afternoon when I look out my studio window to the backyard wooded hillside, the vivid leaf colors against the blue sky with the sunlight streaming through are breathtaking. The view inspired me to do this painting.
It feels good to be back to painting. I had been spending time matting and framing prints for the Flying Biscuit Cafe at their new location in John’s Creek. I also took a marketing class for artists which was helpful. I’ve never been business oriented but at this point it is an important skill I need to develop . The class was interesting, informative and fun; I realized that marketing takes creative thinking which is helping me to see it in a more positive light.
I also have a new friend that I met at an art fair I was in who has tons of experience in corporate creative marketing. She is helping me get more directed and focused. Focus is something that has not come easy for me, I tend to get scattered in a lot of directions. My husband and daughter are both focused and directed. I can see it serves them well and they both inspire me so. I plan to both paint and keep up with marketing, it will take time but I’m trusting the process and feel it will pay off.