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Friday, January 30, 2009

Got Love? 4x4 Oil

"Hey You", "Get Real", "Awesome" and "Got Love?" are the words on these - and I think I discovered the deal with the 'modern' words - these are made by Brach's.... My usual Candy Hearts were made by the local company, Necco. So at CVS today (picking up the new Dog Show photos) I found the Necco Hearts - and will paint them soon, too. Also I'm going to update my Studio Blog soon, with some larger paintings I'm working on, and almost done, as well as my "Daily Painting" wall in my studio....

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Candy Hearts, Oil, 5x7

I bought these yesterday at the supermarket, thinking it would be sweet to explore these little pastel shapes. When I opened the bag today I got a little shock - they've 'updated' the words, so, yes there are still about 1/2 the usual 'Kiss Me', and 'My Boy', etc., but now there are... "U GO GIRL", "GOT CHA" and "E-MAIL ME". EMAIL ME? Well, I guess I'm getting old... but there were a few others I'll try to get in tomorrow, as well as the sweet ones. I just had some more dog show photos printed and would pick them up except today (Wednesday) there's a bit of a storm here, so maybe it'll be tomorrow. Oh, and you guys should check out blogs of some of the folks that have been commenting here, Melissa And Emmet, Manon Doyle, The Pug Posse, Nancy and the Fatties.... um... I hope I haven't left anyone out! Oh, and get your kleenex out when you visit Nancy and the Fatties, which I recommend you do!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

It's The Real Thing, 8x8 Oil

I've been saving a couple of small bottles of Coke since a holiday. I won't say WHAT holiday, but it was a long time ago! I loved the taste of the soda from these bottles when I was a kid, and I thought I'd like to explore the way the light hits the greenish glass bottle, then goes through the brown liquid, turning it red, orange and gold. Then, throw in a shadow (on a polka dotted fabric)... and you've got a loooong Daily Painting session! But I love a challenge, and loved doing it.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Lovebirds, 8x8 Oil

I didn't think about Valentine's Day when I painted this, but it really is just about 2 weeks away, so start thinking! My own Valentine thinks this day was dreamed up by the Hallmark Company to sell cards, and the Florists to sell flowers, but after 31 years of marriage has really gotten past that and treats me to a fabulous day anyway! My buddy Joan Brancale visited my studio today and she wanted me to demo what I learned at Carol Marine's workshop (which I highly recommend) last Fall. So this is what I did, even though it turned out to look a little monocromatic. I was trying to put in the most saturated color first, and work out towards the shadows & reflections, and to keep the edges in mind always, and to load up my brush and lay down the paint, not over working or over 'smushing' the brushwork. I've painted this subject twice before. This one's the best, I think, so far.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Two Lemon Slices, 6x6 Oil

This was harder than I thought, but not for the reasons that I anticipated. I thought the hard part would be portraying the water, or perhapsthe lemon slice through the glass. What caught me up were 2 things: the inner rind of the upright lemon (couldn't get it light enough) and the base of the glass (what a myriad of lights and darks - like painting a diamond!). Well, I thought I'd intersperse regular paintings between my dog show paintings - as painting from life is what sharpens your skills.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Stacked, Oil 6x12

And now for something a little different, for me, anyway. I'm a mug collector, and liked these color together. I'm really envying all you people who are in Florida - I don't care that you're complaining that it's 50 degrees - we are battling chunks of ice that I think will never go away! These cups were challenging, but I tried to keep your eye roving up and down the stack.

Friday, January 23, 2009

"You Are The BEST Dog" or "Pug Hug", Oil, 5x7

I just couldn't decide on the title of this one. The pug pictured had won a ribbon (first, I think) and her owner/handler was SO thrilled with her she got down on the floor and the dog jumped into her arms - soooo adorable. I made the choice to focus more on the dog and make it larger, and I like it much better. Can you even tell it's a pug? My husband said it was confusing because the girl's bangs were hanging down straight, blocking her whole face. But I left it like that, like it actually was, because it was the embrace that was important, not her face, or even the pug's face.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Mom's Gravy Boat, 6x6, Oil

I can already see where I need to touch up the dark background in the 'handle' area on this one. What a joy to paint. I think, were I to do it again, I'd 'neutralize' the violet in the cloth. Let the very subtle blue be 'the' color in this image. This was such a fun piece, I may do more pottery. I still have some dog show paintings in me, but I think I'll take a small break - or at least put other things in between them. My mom, gone now 13 years, still missed sorely, would like this one, I think.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Doing Their Puggy Best, 8x8 Oil

Still working off my 500+ dog show photos. I would rather paint from life, but that would be a little difficult at a Dog Show ("Excuse me... #29, could you and your pug just hold that pose for about 45 minutes?"). I put all the DS (dog show) paintings up on the wall, from first to this one and it was astonishing to me how I have let the dogs get smaller and smaller, and the paintings are more about the 'scene'. I think here and possibly the last couple I was trying to show the relationship between owner or handler and dog. In this one there are even some bystanders. I think I'll go back to a closer-up look at the dogs.

I love the pug ring. These dogs are SO into pleasing people, (well, and those doggie candies that the handlers keep wetting - in their mouths - ugh- mmMmmm). This is diametrically opposed to something called (eurphamistically) "Pug Obedience". This is when the person tosses a ball or doll and encourages the pug to go 'fetch' it. Pugs, I think, view this as a competition WITH THE PERSON.. an opportunity to convince that person that THEY should go get it and bring it back, if it's so much fun..... When my husband and I watched this 'competition' a few years ago we had to leave because we were SNORTING laughing. Most of the time the people ended up 'fetching', by the way. ;)

Monday, January 19, 2009

Inaugural Colors, Oil, 6x8

I think I'm a bit stressed out today. On my way to a long overdue visit with a friend this morning I noticed that this little teeny crack I've had in my windshield was growing in leaps and bounds across the whole space of the windshield. So... I pulled over, called my friend and canceled, called Tim and told him to be on 'standby', and grabbed a coffee to console me on my ride home. I noticed that the coffee shop was decked out in red, white and blue, and even the pastries were all decorated. Consumed with having to pay for a new windshield (not covered by my insurance anymore), I couldn't figure out the whole motif. I thought "Does Martin Luther King Day have colors associated with it?" DUH - the inauguration tomorrow! So, here's my Red, White & Blue salute to Inauguration Day, my big tubes of Utrecht paint!

I've seen other artists paint their paint tubes before but always thought it would be too hard. Now this is not saying this is a great painting or anything, but it was fun! I'm taking tomorrow off to watch the Inauguration, but don't be surprised if I end up bored after a while and drag my pochade box out to paint and end up posting something anyway!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Stocking Up On Conditioner, 8x8 Oil

Dogs hate to shop as much as men and kids, I think. This German Wirehaired Pointer is impatiently waiting for it's ownder to decide between dog hair care products. I love the colors of these dogs, and their expression is so beautiful.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Winter Bouquet, Oil 6x8

Lest you think I only paint sugar packets and dogs.... I got this bouquet at the supermarket a couple of days ago and I just had to paint it. I dread painting flowers, I simply cannot tell you how much! And Charles Sovek told me I had to paint what I fear - until I am not afraid anymore! I hate failure, and when I get caught up in petals.. **shiver**.. well, I'm doomed. I tried, in this little painting, to let the shadow colors define the flowers and then just add the hits of 'light' on the tips of the flowers where the direct sun was hitting them. I'm not sure that it worked, but I think it's a good direction for me to go in. Dogs again tomorrow, brace yourselves...

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Sugar Jar, Oil 6x8

Although this is kind of 'tonal' and lacks a lot of color, I enjoyed it because it was such a challenge. I realized when I got to the studio yesterday that in our round robin of car assignments in our family, I had the car without my backpack with my dog show photos in it! So I had to find something to paint that was already IN my studio. Now you've already seen my cell phone, so I had to come up with something else. I keep sugar packets in a little jar that has 'handles' on the sides - just sculpted glass, but it's cute. So with this on a creamy background at first I said "NOOOOOO!", but then I said - let's just give it a try and see what happens? So this is what happened. I wanted to keep it kind of loose and not get into the words on the packets - you can go either way and still have fun with it.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Two Hot Dogs, One With The Works, One Plain, Oil 6x8

Two Dachshunds with their owner/handler at the Dog Show. Today I painted with Sally Dean at her studio in Marshfield. It's so wonderful to hang out & paint with other artists sometimes. I love to have my intense alone time at my own studio, where I can just dig in and let it all flow, but it is important, too, to spend some creative time with other artists that you respect. I'm trying to do this every week or so. Anyway, while I was painting I kept backing up right onto Sally's 2 corgi's, Ollie & Winnie, who are adorable in the extreme. I think I rushed this painting a bit, because I didn't get the face on the dog on the right to be what I wanted. I think it was much more complex, and expressive. Sometimes I feel the 'end' of the painting coming and I just make a dash for it.... got to learn to slow d-o-w-n.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Just Washed My Hair And Can't Do A Thing With It, Oil, 6x8


This chocolate brown Standard Poodle is ready for her hairdo. I will not comment on what I think of all the 'hairdo dogs', Poodles being the most extreme. I will thank you all for your comments and encouragement in the Dog Show series - - I'm looking at this image and seeing it might be a little blurred - but I don't have time right now to do a new one - we are in the middle of a plumbing emergency (oh.... toilets!) and I'm supposed to be running off to get some vittles while the water is off ....

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Jefferson Monument, DSFDF, Oil, 5x7

This little painting was submitted to Karin Jurik's Different Strokes From Different Folks Blog. As I mentioned before, she posts a photo, and everybody sends in their interpretation. This nocturne was my submission. Be on the lookout for a few new dog show paintings this week. Thanks for all your comments and encouragement - boy, it matters like you couldn't even imagine!

Friday, January 9, 2009

Me & My Baby, Oil 8x6

The title here can go different ways - referring to the woman and her dog, or the dog and his owner... or the dog and her doll. Fresh from the doggie restroom, this long legged lady, quite chic-ly dressed for a the dog show, gave a long leash to her baby, a young mastiff. And very pet-like, the dog HAD to carry it's 'baby' around. I think it calms the dogs in this crazy, hundreds of new doggie scented place, to have something from home. A nearby crate of pugs had two pugs curled up in donut-type beds on top - no leashes! Their ownder said as long as they had their beds they were not inclined to wander off into the jungle of other dogs.

Unrelated story to go with the mastiff painting... Once I was walking in downtown Hingham, and this shopkeeper had her mastiff laying on the sidewalk while she sat outside enjoying the sunshine. As I walked by I said to my husband - "That's the biggest Pug I ever saw!" The lady pursed her lips and rolled her eyes - I think my brand of humor is restricted to a very small segment of humanity...;)

On to art... this is a 3rd attempt at getting this scene. Two wipe offs - although the dog I got on the 2nd try. So even though sometimes these Daily Paintings are short work... sometimes it's a total day's work.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Wash, Trim and Blow Dry, Oil, 6x8

Waiting for their time in the ring, this Scottish Terrier and a little Norfolk Terrier are having their 'Spa Time'. The Norfolk had this 'do' where they combed his 'beard' out so it looked like a real beard! The Scottie said "No." to that. Maybe one more Dog Show painting?

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Big Fat Jelly Donut, 6x8 Oil

Bad glare, sorry about that - I couldn't find a way that this background wouldn't almost 'glitter' with reflected light. I used only transparent colors to make it and I think that makes a big difference. Next time I'll try to remember to throw in an opaque color to stop the light dead. I think it was almost a year ago that I started my first jelly donut series - when I first discovered Emily Eveleth and was inspired by her. I think this donut is much better than the earlier attempts, whether that is because I've done about 200 paintings since then or because I've just learned to see a little better... I don't know.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Hold That Tail Up... Atta Girl! 8x8 Oil

In the Scottie ring at the dog show, it's important that they keep their tails pulled up high. Scottie handlers spend an awful lot of time coaxing that tail tilted up over their backs. Another odd thing I notice is they like to pick up these dogs (and Cairn Terriers, too) BY their tails and their chins - I asked about it and apparently the reason they don't crop the tails short is that these dogs sometimes (originally) had to be pulled out of the holes they chased prey into - handy to have a nice length of tail to tug on. I love the dignity of the Scottish Terriers, and their endearing expressions. I loved this lady at the show - all pink suited up with her sensible shoes :)

Sunday, January 4, 2009

How Am I Doing? Oil 8x8

Corgi's in Ring 10! When I went to the Ladies Dog Club show at the Bayside Exposition Center last month, one of my favorite events was the Corgi's (Pembroke). This sweet girl was looking up at her handler constantly, wanting to know if she was doing a good job. I don't know if she actually won anything, but she was a winner in MY book. I tried to keep it loose and simplified (it's about the dogs, not about the shoes, after all), and I had a LOT of fun doing this.

If interested, this is $100 through Paypal, simply email me at

Saturday, January 3, 2009

In Winter's Hold, 6x12 Oil

New Years' Eve brought a storm to Rhode Island, and kind of put a damper on plans people might have had to go out. Me? I grabbed my camera and Tim drove me around Tiverton, Little Compton and Westport trying to get some good 'snow' shots. This painting came from a photo taken as we passed Pardon Gray, a land preserve here in Tiverton. Snowy, blustery weather is wonderful, and I think although this painting LOOKS gray, in person you can see every color in the rainbow, which, mixed together, comes out gray! I love this lonely looking tree. I have more... and will paint them soon.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Is That My Phone? Oil 6x6

Today I got a little studio time in - Tim has been on vacation for a week and when he's on vacation... so am I! But today he and Conor (our son) went gallivanting around Providence and they dropped me off in my studio for a few hours of bliss. Of course I knew I wanted to do a Daily Painting, but for the life of me couldn't decide what to paint. So ... here's my cell phone. Harder than you'd think with all those little notations and buttons on the front, but I enjoyed the challenge. I'm going to try to post another one and schedule it to go out tomorrow morning, but that didn't work last time, so there may be two new posts today! Anyway, have a wonderful weekend, guys!
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