Thursday, April 30, 2009

Tiny Turtle Take a Bow

Hubster found this turtle in the grass today.  I remember having them as pets in a little plastic dish, with a little ramp and a little plastic palm tree.  I think they do better in the wild.  Mom would agree…



Calves are cryin loudly today, they must be weaning them…sounds like someone cut their tails off they are so upset…

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Genre Portrait


“Impasse at Pier 39”

8” x 11” pastel on velour

Maybe you’ve been on a vacation with a young person or adolescent that could care less about where you go or what you do. 

(Not so in my case…but I have heard of it…)

Monday, April 27, 2009

Carousel Trio – Finished

horseyride“Horsey Ride”

8” x 8” pastel on Canson paper

Newest addition to this threesome..

goatride“Ride the Golden Goat”

8” x 8” pastel on Canson

The hope is to creatively line these all up in one frame.  Can’t decide if they will look best side by side or be placed vertically?

That’s the next fun part of today.. 

and as a reminder, this is the first one done a couple of days ago.

zebraride “Zebra Ride”

Sunday, April 26, 2009

WIP – Carousel Stallion


I have a little more to do on this one.  I am doing this series because the other day a wandering thought came to mind.  I vividly remembered standing along the carousel at (old) Elitch Gardens in Denver trying to think about what horse or animal I would run to and try to snag…before someone else got it once the ride came to a stop.  If I didn’t get one that went up and down, I got off until the next “go round”.  The stationary ones were for “sissies”.  I loved carousels (and still do – although I haven’t seen one in a long time)! I am working on these in pastel.  There will be three.  The third one is a surprise!

Do you have a carousel close to where you are?

Where I Stand Sunday

whereistandvegplantsShopping for little starter plants for your vegetable garden shouldn’t be that difficult, unless you would rather get better quality and price, so I picked these up in Grand Island on Friday. They are in the studio, keeping warm…it got very brisk yesterday and has been raining since last night..they will have to wait for their garden debut! We have tomatoes, peppers and strawberries, everything else is being started from seeds. (And there I was waiting for the real spring..hmph.)

Where I Stand Sunday is an ongoing photo essay examining the different places I spend my life standing.
Too often we take for granted the everyday places we spend our lives walking on.
The ground we tread on has its own stories to tell.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Number One in a Series


“Zebra Ride”

8” x 8” pastel on Canson paper

I have done the first one of a series of perhaps 3 or 4 carousel animals. For me, the challenge in this series will be making them look like they go together – I plan to mat them in one frame. Now that I look at it, it needs a little work on profile edges and looks like I missed a spot on the mane. In a fog??

Yesterday I left for my trip to Nebraska at 7:00 AM and encountered the neatest looking fog close by my house. Where ever there was a low spot, there was this immensely dense fog, so I stopped on a hill and tried to capture it…the sun may be too bright to appreciate it so put your sunglasses on. If you enlarge this one and look real close, you can see the elevators of my little town under the sun. That's how far I live from "town".


Oh ya, one more thing. I have these wonderful Richeson suitcases for my pastels. Once you spread the trays all out, you need twice the space of my drafting table surface. I decided to sort them out into three "banker's box" lids by value today and had a much easier time using them. I put some of that rubber shelf paper in each one, so no rolling pastels. I had been thinking of getting some Heilman boxes, but they are sooo darn expensive. The lids work just fine!!


Sunday, April 19, 2009

Where I Stand Sunday

It's not WHERE I stand today, but it's HOW I stand...notice the "flip flops" - YAY! They feel funny between my toes - it's been a loooong time!
Where I Stand Sunday is an ongoing photo essay examining the different places I spend my life standing.
Too often we take for granted the everyday places we spend our lives walking on.
The ground we tread on has its own stories to tell.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Cheer Up…


“Bourgeois Bulbs”

18” x 24” (big) oil on canvas board

The news is so full of woe and funk, I thought it would be uplifting to paint some flowers.  Found this at the bottom of my stack of “to be painted” photos. 

Thursday, April 16, 2009

A Trip Around the Neighborhood

We took a long trip, over 250 get a TV antenna tower. In the meantime, we drove into some areas we had never seen. We went from here to McCracken, Kansas (south of Hays) and back through the Wilson Lake area, Lucas and Luray. A nice, but windy day. My camera was buzzing out the window, most of the trip, got some good photos and lots of blurs...but I paid attention and saw spring ever so gently raising it's little's going slowly right now. By this time last year, we were in full swing of spring.


This was a strange looking tree near Wilson Lake. I can’t tell what kind it is. It would be interesting to see it when the leaves come out.

Our biggest friend, Bailey the Weimaraner, came with us. He loves to ride on the backseat floor of the truck. I think I disturbed his peace and quiet…but had to get that look.


Hope to be back in the studio tomorrow!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Where I Stood


dressupcherrytree elmtreebricks

This is my outdoor project. I am recycling the bricks we took out of our house from the 100+ year old chimney, so they need the mortar chipped off of them. That pile is on the bottom right. The cherry tree is already done, bottom left. I have the elm tree to finish with fabric, mulch and bark like the cherry tree. The trees around here haven’t had much TLC in their lives. In fact, the elm has a chain from a long ago swing embedded in it’s trunk near the bottom. Trimming the younger trees in the Fall I found that many were so misshapen and many branches had sort of grafted into one another – poor things. So this is my little touch of landscaping and a reaching out to my trees in a place that hasn’t seen that – ever. It’s also been a way to call to Spring, so it will maybe get here quicker. Or you could call me a “tree hugger” (if you want). It is drizzling today.


Saturday, April 11, 2009

Work in Progress – Grain Bin


Today’s rambling around on the canvas.  Have lots to do, still.  Working on the snow and shadows...there is a bare tree in front of the bin, you can see its placement.  Going outside to do outside stuff. Supposed to snow or rain tomorrow. 16” x 20” needs lots of paint.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Down to the Knitty Gritty

jessdaythreeDay three – down to the knit picking part of portrait painting. You step back, you see a little something, you work it, you step back, you see a little…well, you get the idea. I learned something very important to me. In the studio, I have color correcting fluorescents…in the kitchen I have good old yellow light casting bulbs…you can see the difference and I couldn’t Photoshop out the yellow cast. If the wind weren’t blowing so hard, I would get it out to the studio and take a correct photo, but once inside, I am here for the rest of today. Now it’s on to the landscape for tonight's painting frenzy.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The Midway Co-op Grain Elevator at Bellaire, Kansas

This was the progress of three days worth of work, thought I would put it all in one post, so there would be no need to flip back and forth between days. I thought about making the sky a little bluer in contrast to the gray of the buildings. I want the painting to dry a little before I put the lettering on the top part of the 6 siloed structure. The more I live here, the more I learn about and appreciate the use of these monoliths of the flatlands. For me, this one is way more detail than I usually get in to.
Tried the lettering today and discovered I needed to maybe do it right away, before I had been painting all day already...I might do a better job. I want to obscure the words a little, so it could be any Midway Co-op grain facility, but that will take more work and planning, than I did on today's try. I am on to another landscape - the toning and the rough sketch, so far. It's the grain bin on my property. I don't think it has ever been used. It just sits there and I refuse to get rid of it, cause I like to look at it. It has character and it's right out the north studio window. It'll be a snowscene. Sorry, for those of you who are a little tired of that stuff....

I am in paintaholic's heaven today, 7 hours at the easel!!

Portrait – Day Two


“Jessica” – day two…had to move the nose and mouth up the face plane…she has an amazing smile, I am not doing it justice, plus the canvas was used and there is some brushstrokes from the last painting right where the texture isn’t helping me. As I take a photo, I see where I need to go next. Skintone needs some warmth. The success today was the darks against the lights at the hairline. The placement of the features and better on the eyes except she looks cross-eyed in this photo, but not standing in front of the painting…stay tuned.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Portrait Beginning for Today

 You never know who will just reach out and steal your photo off of Facebook or the internet…however, I know this person.  She is the daughter of my sister-in-law and friend, Andrea – she won’t mind.  I liked the intense light that was coming in a restaurant window.  So I thought, how do you paint this without that stark white light…so you see where I started…A long way to go….it’s just the beginning, Day One.  Onward.


Sunday, April 5, 2009

Where I Stand Sunday…

It has been THREE + weeks since I have touched a paintbrush.  It is of my own choosing, but all the will never happen again, by choice. 

I stand in my studio, where I have stood on many photo, you have seen it before.  Frustration hit a new “high”.  I painted one, wiped it off, painted another, wiped it off…then – knowing I always can depend on a familiar subject matter…painted our neighbor’s horse eating his supper.



12” x 12” oil on wrapped canvas

Happy 17th Blogiversary to ME

 I would like to admit, it's still here, I'm still here and it's still worthy of my attention - although sporadic.   Here are a ...