Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Years Candlelight 6" x8" crayon on paper

I had great intentions of going out tonight  but instead Al and I are staying in and watching "The Hangover "on pay per view.  I meant to bring the new year in with a spiritual candlelit service at the Vedanta Center, but instead it's tv in my house! I am exhausted and its just wonderful to put the jammies on and veg out. I seem to do this almost every new years eve- I will be lucky if I make it to midnight! This is my flower, with a pretty glass snowflake candle given to me by a dear friend.

Happy New Year to all of you- knowing that you all read and look at my art is so gratifying- it truly keeps me going! I really appreciate all your emails and comments and thank you and wish you all the very best for the new year.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

anticipation 8" x 8 " oil on panel

I got these paper-whites from a co-worker- a great gift!
Something to look forward to...
and you can't see it but thats my amaryllis in the background- it's about 8" now.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

happy gerber 8" x 8" oil on panel

Here's a little warmth for a freeeeeezing cold day!

Monday, December 28, 2009

breakfast cookies 8" x 8 " oil on panel

My girls and I baked these snowflake cookies on Christmas eve- they were a lot of fun to decorate, and they are delicious. I am going to swear off all sweets after the first.
Ya right!
 The coffeepot is what we use now to brew our morning java in- with the old school Melita method- as our fancy machine bit the dust last summer.
I actually love the flavor of the drip coffee and don't mind standing over the grounds savoring the smell of the beans as I pour hot water into the cone filter. It takes time, and thats kind of nice.

The "flower" is baked into the cookies. Get it?
I was a bit rushed this morning so there is going to be some "tweaking" tomorrow!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

shower flower 8" x8" oil on panel

Another tropical theme here- must be the season!
My Dad took this picture of these orchids that are blooming in their outdoor shower-there is nothing better than washing up in the balmy  fragrant tropical air.
I struggled with this one- lots of subtle greys and the ambiguous background, but it was a lot of fun to paint.
While I was painting this Sunday morning I listened to the WERS broadcast from the UU church in Boston- the sermon was titled- "Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain"
I thought it was a great sermon-
The minister said so beautifully that we should do what it is that we are meant to do ,  what we already are doing.
I have struggled over the years with my art not really knowing if I was ever REALLY good or not- it seems that so many others have it all going on and it's so easy to look at someone else's stuff and go MAN! I wish I could paint ( write, sing, look, be) just like that! I attempt to a lot of different types of art and I love variety, but I am finally enjoying sticking with something longer, to fully explore its potential.
We, like the characters in the Wizard of Oz, already have what we are looking and striving for.
I am left with these thoughts-
"Want what you have,
do what you can
be who you are."
Thanks WERS, for bringing the service to me this morning as I painted my flower in my cozy studio. I am finally feeling like I am where I should be, and that is a beautiful thing .

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Hawaii Dreamin' 8"x8" oil on panel

In early spring I am hoping to visit my Dad and his wife Jan on the Big Island of Hawaii. They live on Maluhia Farm in Honakaa. Beautiful wool products from their large herd of sheep and lovely fresh eggs from their chickens are sold at the farmers market in nearby Wimea. Jan dyes, spins and knits wonderful woolen creations. My Dad is always busy with some project around the farm- he can build anything. I love to go to the farm and paint the sheep and flowers- it is so relaxing and peaceful there.
It's great to hang out with my Dad and his wife-
It takes me no time to slip into the Aloha mode. I am excited!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas rose 3"x3" oil on canvas

Another tiny painting for a tiny time slot- from a photo of my friend Carol's pretty rose in her office. It was for her birthday- Christmas Carol! One of my favorite things to do is to run into the Duxbury Library to visit my dear friend Carol- it is like a super dose of fun and positive energy- she is the best!
And as I promised a better shot of last nights painting...with my painty hand to show the scale..
I hope you all have a wonderful day tomorrow...
I am taking the day off from my blogging to be with my family!
Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

cozy spot 3" by 3" oil on canvas

Another teeny weenie painting- matched the teeny tiny amount of energy I had after work today - I was SO tempted to stay on the couch and watch tv, but I did want to paint, so I did this little guy just out of my head.
The glare is awful, Im sorry for that, but with these short days and my basic photography set up this is what I got.
Ill try to re-shoot tomorrow in the daylight.
Tomorrow is Christmas eve and I am not sure I'm ready, but it will be what it is- for sure!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Baby Daisy 3" x 3" oil on canvas

I picked these Gerbers up for a special girl on a special day- my youngest girl was accepted at UMass Amherst.
Congratulations Maddie!
This is a teeny weenie canvas.. and a lot of fun to paint.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Solstice Light 8"x8" oil on panel

Today is the shortest day, the longest night.
Light your fire and burn it bright.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

"snowbound!" 10" x 10-" crayon on paper

Stuck inside today- we must have about 20" on the ground! Of course I am in heaven and
loved being grounded ( although my family went to the mall with out me- brave souls)
I always make bacon and eggs or pancakes on the snowdays- its tradition.
The little lamp (with flowers on it!) on the table is being held up by a Santa statue- not sure it reads. In the foreground that is a bowl of ornaments with a candle in the middle.
I like drawing a lot- need more of it. I think I need to edit some of the clutter so it reads better.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

"time to bake" 6" by 10 " crayon on paper

I felt like drawing today so I did this little one of my apron I got in Hawaii...they are predicting a lot of snow here- yipee! Gotta get baking!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Real Beauty 8" x 8" oil on panel

I thought about what it means to be beautiful as I painted my trusty cosmetic bag. We are constantly inundated by the  standards of how we are supposed to look from the media, and it is not hard to feel inadequate when comparing ourselves to these models.
From a book called "Lit from Within" by Victoria Moran ( a gift from a true beauty, my friend Sue Sheehan)
We see the beauty in others the same way we see it in ourselves- by looking beyond appearances to the person living in the body and the spirit that animates both. Conversely, you've never been more beautiful to another person than when you regard him or her in this light. This is how people look  at us when they love us very much. It's also how people of true spiritual depth look at everyone. It's happened to you, I'm sure: someone looks at you with such pure love, such positive regard, it goes straight to your soul. A lovely ideal is to behold all people, friends and strangers in this way.
Very good and wise words. I hold them true to my heart.
However- I don't like to go out without applying my mascara first- nothing wrong with that!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

summertime Maddie (work in progress)day 3-12"x12" oil on panel

Still working on this one-struggling with the mouth but maybe one more session. I find working from photos difficult  because the expression captured in a photo somehow looks contrived in a painting...
I had fun putting her in a field of flowers .
I sold the Circle Furniture piece to the owner of the store- touched it up and will deliver tomorrow!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

summertime Maddie (work in progress)day 2-12"x12" oil on panel

I fiddled around on the face off and on all afternoon. Maddie had her wisdom teeth out this morning and was in a lot of pain in the afternoon- I was in and out of the studio and wishing I could take her pain away, staring at her happy face was good for me.
The trouble with these little portraits is that one little flick of the brush can make or break it- and the color is a challenge  to get from a photo.
I hope to get it to a better place tomorrow.
Bad light on the picture as well- just shot it tonight-under the lights.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Summertime Maddie (work in progress) 12"x12" oil on panel

This is an underpainting-washy thin oil paint.
I am not a fan of working from photographs but this picture is so sweet- Maddie just looks so happy and summery here.
I'm not sure if I will finish tomorrow- I have two commissions going, but I will post it's progress.
Here is my source material...she is a summer girl through and through!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Dance of the Flowers 8"x8" oil on panel

Saturday night I went with my daughter Maddie and her friend to see the South Shore Youth Ballet Company's production of the Nutcracker at Derby Academy in Hingham. Maddie's friend Brianna was the principle dancer in the Marzipan act- she was fantastic! It was an effort to get myself there-totally exhausted from the demo but I am so glad I went. The girls did an amazing job and it was a joy to watch.
Its easy to miss out on stuff this time of year-it's just so busy! Take the time to sit and watch something even if it's someone else's kids- this is what its all about. The tiny little girls from the audience in their fancy dresses dancing in the aisles during intermission was worth the price of admission- they were adorable and so excited! I just made this painting up-it was a lot of fun to do.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

"When Pigs Fly" 22'x30" acrylic on canvas

From the archives- i actually did this last spring after an amazing retreat with the fabulous Jane Filer in North Carolina. I stumbled upon Jane in Art in America magazine and was instantly hooked- her style is so unique and her completely intuitive approach is refreshing. I spun out about 6 or so paintings like this after the retreat- and then I lost the thread.
I will return - I'm on a different path-and who knows where it will lead me! Thats what is so fun and addicting about art- its endless.
I had my family over to the house for a holiday dinner- we were getting the house ready and cooking all day- and no time to paint- so there you go. I feel great about my house though- it was looking so neglected!
Good thing I have back up paintings! If you are looking for the flower -it fell off the stem and left only the leaf. HAH!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Circle Furniture 12" x 12" oil on canvas

I had a fun day painting at Circle Furniture store in Pembroke . Inspiring colors, beautiful furniture and wonderful people working and shopping made for a pleasant afternoon.
If you are looking for great ideas and fresh luscious colors for your home go there.
You will be inspired!

Friday, December 11, 2009

quick study 8" x 8" oil on panel

I had almost no time this morning to paint.
Painting every single day is a challenge- no doubt about that... and with a messy house, half decorated tree, entertaining and hundreds of my collectable ornaments to glitter I wonder how I can even do it. The joy of sitting in front of my easel beckons me each day- I must do it faithfully regardless of the undone chores.
When I set out to do this and sent it out to just family, my dear brother Chip wrote  these words to me.

"I hope you find the discipline required of this to be healing and calming. There will be times when you are not in the mood, or miss a few days and you
will feel compelled to catch up and be stressed about it, but instead I hope you allow yourself the luxury of a few  mulligans or missed days now and then.

I believe the flower represents new beginnings, hope and promise, but we have to be aware of its short life and our need to appreciate it now. In many respects it’s similar to our lives which are short from an eternal
perspective and when times are tough we have the mental ability to always create  new beginning and regain hope for good things to come. What a great
alternative way to think versus, worrying, unfinished business, broken relationships, and internal self-doubt.

People need to be constantly energized to lift themselves out of their current path and create a new mindset which is positive and productive. I think you should think of your 365 Flowers project is a way to help people do that, and recognize the power it can have if they can see your struggles and triumphs each day. The flower is the focus, but in the background envision everyday, current, things like stacks of bills, broken furniture, piles of laundry or broken car, the overriding theme of your live at that moment. The background being the struggle and the flower being the cure. "

Thanks Chip-I could not have put it better than this- he it right on the mark.
I have yet to miss a single day.
I am afraid if I do I will get lackadaisical about it and slip.
So I will keep going.
Also- if you are in the Pembroke area I will be demo painting at Circle Furniture 
at a festive holiday marketplace event from 12-4. You can also visit Norwell Clayworks for more wonderful items to benefit Kate DiSantis.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

morning sunshine 8" 8" oil on panel

My daughter Madeline thought this one up- a pretty clementine blossom! I love how you get the adorable wooden crate with endless uses free with purchase. We enjoy these little
juicy treats in the winter. Santa always put a tangerine in the toe of our stocking when we were little-I remember being amazed at how he had the time to stop in Florida on the way to our house.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

"Happy on the Outside" 8'x 8' oil on panel

I think a lot of us put on a happy face but inside feel sad- and the holidays can make it even worse. I hope we can all find a little peace and happiness this season.

Crying is a good thing- we all need to do it... but sometimes its hard, especially for MEN...

Why Crying is Good?
  • It relieves you of your tensions
  • It manages stress
  • Form of communication. One can express one’s feelings through it
  • Conveys love for another person. It brings people closer. We cry for our loved one. A baby cries for its mother
  • Crying helps you get over a hurt. By crying, you forget the seriousness of the event
  • Crying indicates deep feelings. It can reflect anger or happiness
  • It releases frustrations
  • Crying is a safety valve to pent up emotions
  • You feel relaxed after a good cry
  • Crying cleans the eyes. Dirt is removed
  • It reduces blood pressure. Since your are relieved of stress, your blood pressure levels come down
  • Crying can also indicate some illness. When you are in pain you cry
  • Crying can express what words cannot.

of the ornament IS! drumroll.....

(Maddie and Winnie picking)

Kathleen Young!!!!

My wonderful beautiful yoga goddess- congratulations Kath!
And thanks to all of you who emailed me-it was a joy to hear from you all.

  On my 200th post I will give away a painting.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Winter Rose 8"x8" oil on panel- for Gail

Today is my 100th post.
I walked my dogs on this frigid morning in search of a rose- I had remembered that there was  rosebush still in bloom  in my neighbor Pam's driveway- even after the snow we've had recently there was this small, still unopened delicate pink flower.
I snipped it and cradled it my pocket to safely bring it  home.  (thanks Pam)
I wanted to paint a rose to remember Anjuli today. I never met her, but her mother Gail is a good friend of mine.
I asked my friend Kim Arouca to write this .

Anjuli Marie Hunter
January 5, 1983 – December 8, 2006

A name shared with an Indian Princess
Hindu meaning:  Blessings/Unconquerable

Donned with brilliant golden silk, bluest blue eyes and an impish joyful smile she lived up to her name – Anjuli was by all standards as beautiful as any princess.  She was a blessing to all who knew her and a very strong and accomplished young woman.

She was intellectually bright, although her mom, my dearest friend Gail, would tease her telling her that she was the smartest dumb blonde she ever met whenever she lacked common sense.  She never lacked determination, however – she met the challenges she set for herself and those the world threw at her with great success.  She was a gymnast and soccer player.  She worked hard and took pride in her academic achievements – graduating among the top in her class at MHS.  She received a BS from Villanova and received her Masters in Accounting from Northeastern while working at a top accounting firm in Boston

Her truest talent was connecting with people and uniting others.  This is so evident by the incredible number of genuine friends Anjuli left behind who continue to celebrate her life and their own lives in her memory.  She was a peacemaker, an organizer and a lover of sharing fun.

I cherish my memories of visiting Gail when Anjuli and her friends would be at her house readying for a night out.  Never having girls of my own I would marvel at the conversations, the laughter, the sharing of clothing, jewelry, make up, suggestions, love and the beauty – Anjuli at the center making sure there was room for everyone.

She was in love with a beautiful young man, Dave, who also passed in the same auto accident.  She was at the crown of her life, when she left us. Anjuli will always remain in our hearts and minds as the beautiful life-loving person she was and we ask that she continue to guide her parents, family, friends and all others in remembering to embrace life each day as she did.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Christmas Bulbs 8"x8" oil on canvas

We got our tree up and put a few ornaments on it last night- we have a lot more to go!
Its always fun and magical to pull out the old favorite ornaments . My mom and Al's mom and gave us some sweet homemade ones we cherish, as well as these vintage bulbs. The kindergarten pictures of my girls mounted on metal juice can tops always bring me to tears. We let our oldest don the tree with the golden glittery angel she made as a child.  It is tradition that marks the time and brings us together.
Tomorrow is a big day for me- it is my 100th post and to celebrate I am doing a GIVEAWAY!
If you email me  by Wednesday, Dec 9, by 9 PM- I will put your names in a flowerpot and do a drawing. I will send the winner a replica of the ornament I made for the White House Christmas tree last year.
Good luck and Happy Holidays- whatever it is you celebrate- CELEBRATE!

Here are the two sides of the ornament- from photos of the ball. I replicated it as a flat two sided ornament.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

red alstroemeria 8" x 8 " oil on panel

IT SNOWED LAST NIGHT! I got my wish!

I started this in the morning and had to finish it about 1/2 an hour ago-I am a bit tired! Todays sale went really well- the line was so long- lots of sales all around! I am happy so many people turned out to support Kate. I enjoyed seeing a lot of my old friends there....thanks everyone!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

One last hurrah 8"x8" oil on panel

This has a bit of glare( it rained today- tough photo shoot)
I loved theses irises but they only last a couple of days...
I was out straight today getting stuff ready for Kates Sale. If you are anywhere near the Pembroke area please come by- I have 21 flower paintings for sale, there is a fabulous raffle and lots of incredible artisan goods. All this will help Kate and her family as she recovers from a brain tumor. It is December 6, at 145 Plymouth Street in Pembroke.
Hours are 1-5.
Hope to see you there!

Friday, December 4, 2009

iris bouquet 8" x 8 " oil on panel

I wasn't sure how to fit this large bouquet on a small panel- my trick was to put it on a low table and view from above and using my viewfinder I made it fit! I liked the pattern of the shadow on the rumpled cloth.
 For some reason this reminded me of one of my favorite artists,Wanda Gag. She made shadows and atmosphere as much a part of the picture as the objects- and they had a wonderful way of undulating and creating a story.(She wrote and illustrated "Millions of Cats".) I am lucky - the museum where I work has several Wanda Gag lithographs in the permanent collection. I enjoy looking at them a lot.

(above: Wanda Gag, American, Winter Twilight, 1927, zinc plate lithograph on paper, 10 1/8 x 12 inches, ed.100. Gary and Dolly Harm Collection)


Thursday, December 3, 2009

Iris 8" x 8 " oil on panel

My friend Judy gave me a bunch of these gorgeous irises last night. I struggled with the center-its interesting how the more you look at something the more it slowly reveals itself to you.
Unable to spend the amount of time I needed to really delve into it- this is what I came up with...

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Happy Birthday ( after Wayne Thiebaud) 8"x8" oil on panel

My oldest daughter turns 21 today- a milestone. Happy Birthday Markie! She is an interior design student at Syracuse University - shes got some great style!  Next semester she will be in London at the Syracuse design school there- I am so excited for her! I am very proud of my girl.

Markie in Martha's Vineyard- June 2009

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Cozy morning nap 8" x 8" oil on panel

Its December-I can hardly believe it! I have LOADS of ornaments here to glitter-so its getting tough to get the painting in! But I am determined to do it. I have to paint first thing- and somehow everything else gets done(well ALMOST- not a lot of cleaning went on here today and I did not get to my bulb planting- running out of time there!). I find that if I wait its much harder. Here is my old boy Oliver- he's 13- and he loves my studio couch.

These pictures are taken under lights so the color is way off-oh well....