Friday, August 30, 2019

The young upstart

The young upstart is another of the poured background pieces.
In case you can't tell, I am in love with this method!
The backgrounds are adding another dimension to the pieces that is so fun to watch happen.
My husband watched me do the pouring the other day on these brown, grey, 
and gold pieces and even he was fascinated!
It's so hard to imagine covering the backgrounds of so many canvases in so little time.
Much like the bubbles in watercolor, there is very little control in how the pieces will turn out, 
but it is still a fun process.

Today found us driving across the bay to pick up pieces from a show at Southern Art and framing.
I love the girls that run the gallery, and they are always easy going.
I was very surprised though when we walked in to see a few pieces have actually sold!
There were empty hooks from at least 4 of my elongated canvases from the spring.
There is also a possibility of a shadowbox sale as well.
All is good in my Art world!

We also visited my Aunts at the nursing home.
 They were delighted with the visit and I was equally delighted to see them. 
Both of them are very dear to me and we don't visit often enough! 
I must make more of an effort to go over there. I brought them a copy of the Sandpiper post and they loved it as well. I also gave them each a print of the Jesus vision painting that my Aunt Margaret had after her accident two years ago. I was very nervous about painting it, but she was absolutely delighted with my results. I will not, and have never have claimed to be a portrait painter, but the piece turned out lovely enough for her. They both loved the prints I brought them in the nursing home.
We talked a lot about my Africa mission too!
Aunt Margaret is progressing beautifully after her stroke a little over a week ago, talking is hard, but she is determined!

The trip to Mobile was an adventure to say the least.
There was a  major accident on I-10 on the bayway. When I saw the car, I prayed for whomever had been in it. The car appeared as though there may not have been a survivor and sure enough I found out later that the woman was thrown from the vehicle and drowned in the bay. I am praying for her family and the trucker that hit her by accident as her car was disabled on the side of the road. 
I know I would be devastated if I caused someone to die, even by accident.
Because of this accident, all traffic was bypassed onto the causeway, causing major traffic jams.
Even though we spent several hours in Mobile, we went North and over the "Dolly Parton" bridge to get to 225 to go home. 

The sea turtle is today's painting!
The picture below is just a small part of the turtle team at the excavation of the green turtle nest last week.
I am in a blue hat and Chris is behind me to the right. (My left)
We are a happy bunch, but sad turtle nesting season is over tomorrow!

The young upstart, Acrylic on canvas, 4x12 inches
Day 60 of the 100 days~100 paintings 2019

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Are you a sandpiper?

Are you a Sandpiper?
Am I a Sandpiper?

Today was my last day for this year to walk the beautiful beach looking for a sea turtle nest.
You think about lots of things while walking a mile in the darkness just before dawn.
I was alone with my thoughts today as Chris was having a tooth pulled later this morning.

My thoughts wander a lot while walking.
This morning though I felt as if God was speaking to me about the beauty 
he provides in this world we live in and he created.
This morning it was sandpipers, seagulls, and Blue herons providing the background for my thoughts.
I was on the first leg of my one mile walk, and I had my sights focused on the sand above the wrack line, looking for sea turtle tracks. 
However, the sandpiper was just ahead of me, in my peripheral vision.
I glanced off and on at the little bird ahead of me, rushing with the edge of the water.
He occasionally poked his beak down, searching for the mussels that could become breakfast.
He passed up lots of little fish that were getting washed up along the shore.
In the meantime though he kept a wary eye on me, looking furtively back every few seconds.
His feet moving so fast, he rushed on ahead still looking back frequently.
He dipped his beak searching for a meal and I got too close for his comfort. 
The bird decided to change tactics and ran into the water toward me, 
then cutting past in a brown and white blur.
His feet were moving so fast, I could not even see them.
I snickered to myself, that he was so worried I was going to hurt, eat,
 or possibly kill him while he was rushing along.

That's when God spoke to me.
His human creation (us) are the sandpipers.
Stick with me here.
We rush along, searching for the next big thing.
We miss the little things he places in our lives every day.
Searching for the next big thing. 
We are constantly running along, instead of taking advantage of the  obvious.
Meanwhile, we are running, looking back to make sure that something doesn't catch us.
We run first in one direction, then the other trying to escape.
Sometimes we miss the big waves, or the tangled fishing line that the devil throws in our way.
We are constantly running, scared to death that life is going to catch us and throw us for a loop.
We are looking back at our past lives instead of focusing on the here and now.
We also forget about our future life, what we were created for.

But what if God is the one chasing us?
What if he is working so hard to catch you, but you won't stop.
We all think we can fix our lives, our past, our present, our future.
Be still and listen for him, he will talk to you.
His son Jesus (your brother!) is right next to you, pleading for you to just stop and give God the time of day.
We were all created for a purpose, to love and serve God in whatever capacity he chooses to give us.
Give him the time out of your day.
To Pray.
To Walk with him.
To listen.
To learn.

Are you a sandpiper?
I'm pray I am not!
I constantly listen for him to speak to me.

Are you a sandpiper? Acrylic on poured background, 4x12 inches
Day 59 of the 100 days~100 paintings 2019

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Today is a two for one!

Today is a two for one because last night Chris and I went on a date instead of posting.
I finished the painting of course, just did not post the turtle that was completed.
We went to go see "Overcomer", the new Christian Movie that just came out this past weekend.
It did really well this weekend, I think it may have surpassed their expectations.
The movie is really worth going to see, very heart wrenching and humorous at times.
The story line was good, and as usual the acting was very well done.

This little turtle was so fun to paint.
I really enjoyed him a lot!
The paintings are flowing now, much easier now and quicker.

The seahorses were a blast to create!
I love them and painting them was a breeze.
I do love these poured backgrounds as well, they make the transition easy from pour to completion.
The gallery owner was extremely excited to have me put them in the gallery too!
Time will tell if they sell, I know I'm excited to see the results of the fruits of my labors.

"Sea turtle flying" & "Seahorses together", Acrylic on canvas, both are 4x12 inches
Days 57 & 58 of the 100 days~100 paintings 2019

Monday, August 26, 2019

Octopus Changing II

Another octopus!
I am really enjoying these little works of art!
I hope you are as well!

The days are going by so fast now, my show schedule is coming together nicely too. 
I am in the studio every day now, getting back in the groove after my Africa mission.
The routine is simple for me, get up, greet the husband, get coffee and read the bible.
If I don't start the day this way, it feels disjointed and "off".

I love starting my day with God's word speaking to me on so many levels.
My Scripts & Strokes class pieces are coming to me as I read the word as well. The small group starts September 9th for me and I am excited about the new series of paintings we are going to create.
New people to meet, old friends to greet!
I am looking forward to this semester at Celebration Church.

Any way, back to the studio!
My friend Linda Scott joined me today with a large paint pour. She is curious about the process and we both learned a lot about the beauty that is a poured background. She brought 6 canvases, we mixed paint and I got out extra canvases just in case. 
Glad I did! 
She ended up with a lovely bunch of extra 4x4s and three 4x12s.
A grand total of 18 canvases covered in beautiful colors and so quickly.
She is nervous about painting on top of them though!
I will have to guide and push my friend down that road as well.
Love ya Linda!

I also took several of the new pieces to the Artists gallery in downtown Fairhope today.
I was nervous myself about the gallery owner liking them or not. 
Mind you, I am still true to my realism, but the abstract backgrounds are very different.
I needn't have worried.
She is in love with them!
Here is what my space looks like after dropping them off today!

The wood turning is my husbands. He has started a  new series of bowls with lids. 
We are both curious to see what the new pieces will do in the next month.
I have a lot to do this week as well. Shepherds place is in the morning, I love working with the seniors!
Thursday morning we walk for turtles the last time this season.
Chris also gets a tooth pulled that morning too!.
I get to drive to Mobile after turtles to pick up pieces from a show at Southern Art and Framing.
A busy day!
A blessed week!

Octopus changing II, Acrylic on canvas, 4x12 inches
Day 56 of the 100 days~100 paintings 2019

Sunday, August 25, 2019

Octopus changing

I simply love to paint these guys!
They are so fun to paint on these poured backgrounds.
The backgrounds seem to give a movement and beauty to the pieces.
I am having a great time painting them while Pandora plays in the background 
filling my studio with music and giving my brush a beat.

I can only pray you are enjoying the series as much as I am!

Today found us going to church, our son coming over for a visit, and new lights in Chris's Workshop.
Our son is an electricians mate in the Coast Guard Reserves and he is quite handy with our electrical needs. He put a meter on his dads truck and determined that the fan was the problem with his AC. $60 later for a fan, and that was repaired. Our son also got his wife one of Chris's new wooden bowls in exchange for the lights in the shop. It was definitely a win for everyone involved.

I love having adult children now, our relationships are on a whole new level!
They are fun to be with, and I think we did an all right job as parents.
At least they don't mind being with, working alongside, and talking to us!

All in all, a wonderful day.

Octopus Changing, Acrylic on canvas, 4x12 inches
Day 55 of the 100 days~100 paintings 2019

Saturday, August 24, 2019

Lionfish I

I know I say this a lot, but this was so fun to paint!
I did my third series of  pours in preparation for my girlfriend 
coming over next week to learn the hows and whys of pouring backgrounds.
This pouring process allows you to get multiple backgrounds done extremely quickly.
There is no control over what the paint will or won't do in any given pour.
I don't own a butane torch so I cannot open cells on the pieces as much as I might like. 
I tried my heat gun, but it's not the same. The 36 oz pour that made this background covered a 16 x 20, 
2 -10 x 20's, 1 -12 x 12, 6-4 x 12's, and 9 -4 x 4's!
Lots of beautiful greys, ivory's, and golds.

They can be a challenge to create on top of the poured paint, but I am up for it wholeheartedly!
I already have plans for several of the others in the grey range.
Some of the new pour pieces will be at the Artists gallery (18 S Section St) in downtown 
Fairhope for the upcoming Artwalk on September 6th.

In the meantime. 
I am mentoring an Artist in Zimbabwe, Africa.
We met at the Grace School on the Thursday I arrived, and we instantly bonded. He is a delightful teacher as well, lending a helping hand at several art classes with me at the school. I have taught him some techniques that are different from his college days and I am amazed at his age. I was stunned to find out he had retired from teaching after 20 years! I guarantee you he does not look over 40 years old. 
He retired, wanting to teach only art in a school. 
On the second day of helping me, he was offered a job at the school teaching Art!
He is eager to learn, and as usual I am eager to teach!
He has a show in Bulawayo (sp?) in November and I am pushing him to start working on it now. His last experience for a show was not good, waiting until the last minute to try and
create. He admitted it was not his best, and the gallery owners were not real impressed.
Anyway, I am in touch with him almost daily.
Gently pushing him to hopefully greater things than he could ever imagine!

I am always creating and or thinking about creating.
Getting ready for fall classes for ESILL as well as teaching for Shepherds place every other week.
Food, fabric, or canvases all are a part of my thought process on a daily basis.
All a part of being an artist I guess!

Lionfish I, Acrylic on canvas,4 x 4 inches
Day 54 of the 100 days~100 paintings 2019

Friday, August 23, 2019

Multiple mermaids

Multiple mermaids is another bit of a series.
All nine of them are painted on top of poured paint backgrounds.
I have learned a lot about pouring in the past few days. 
It really is a satisfying process, and the backgrounds you get are so beautiful.
Some of them are not so pretty though and I may have to pour over them.
All a part of learning I guess. 
Anyway I have learned the process, 
and I am now ready to help my friend next week to make her own.
She will be using them as backgrounds as well.
As artists we are given several special gifts.
God wants us to enjoy them and it is only right for us to share them with others.

Tomorrow is another day.
I will of course be in the studio!
I once read where it takes 10,00 hours to become a master of something.
I'm still working on my "Master".
 I figure I'm up to about 7,000 hours so far!

Multiple mermaids, Acrylic on canvas, each canvas is 4x4 inches
Days 52 & 53 (and some of the ones missed while in Africa!)
!00 days~100 paintings 2019

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Middle Bay Lighthouse

Middle Bay lighthouse sits in Mobile Bay. It began it's work as a lighthouse on December 1st, 1885.
It was decommissioned in 1967 and was slated for demolition in 1971. 
Public outcry was so great, they decided to leave it where it stands now.
23 children have called it home.

One cow lived there for a few months, the lighthouse keeper's wife had a baby that would not nurse.
They moved the cow out there to provide milk for the baby.
I've talked with someone that said it was a black and white cow. I have also conversed with one of my friends that said her father brought hay out to the cow. I've always wanted to depict the cow, but I can not find out for certain where it was kept. Some historians say it was on the gallery, others a barge. 
I can only only imagine a herd animal being forced to live on the ocean by itself. 
I have read somewhere that it lowed constantly.
Anyway, the cow, wife, baby and light keeper were evacuated 5 months later when a hurricane threatened our stretch of the coast in 1916.

Middle Bay Lighthouse, Acrylic on canvas, 8x8 inches
Day 51 of the 100 days~100 paintings 2019

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Siren, or Mermaid?

Siren or Mermaid?
The question lingers, but I am certain she is a mermaid. 
You see, Sirens were so beautiful, and sang so well
 that they lured sailors to their deaths upon the rocks.
Sirens also are not really female in form though, 
in Greek mythology they were depicted as beautiful birds.

Can you imagine a beautiful bird encouraging you to dash your ship onto the rocks?
I imagine sailors saw lots of things on the ocean that really were not there. The mermaid depicted here is actually painted on a canvas that we placed into the paint left over on the table. 
I really like the effect!

I also experimented today some more with the "pours". 
I fashioned a tray out of cardboard and plastic bags. 
I managed to research the proper way to do the pours as well. 
Turns out the  glue is unnecessary and is also acidic over time.
Since I am concerned about longevity and archival, glue is out!
So is the Silicon oil.
Or any oil for that matter. They leave a residue and the paints may not properly stick over time.
So After reading several blog posts, listening to very good and very bad you tube videos, I finally settled on my process to use. I am still using the Floetrol, but in a 1 Floetrol to 1 Paint ratio. 
Then, I am adding 91% alcohol as my thinner. 
I also discovered a kind of formula for figuring the amount of paint needed for a project. One of the artists I listened to said to prepare 1 ounce of mixture for each 16 square inches. So a 16 x 20 canvas is a total of 320 square inches. Divided by 16, I needed 20 ounces of mixture for the project. (I mixed 4 ounces of 6 different colors, giving me 24 ounces total.)
After mixing up several colors of paint, 6 to be exact, I was ready for my first solo pour.
I laid out a 16 x 20 canvas with two 12 x 12 canvases underneath in an effort to catch the paint dripping off the edges. I also placed four 4x4 canvases along the edge. 
Tilting and gloves helped the paint along the edges.
All the canvases have some beautiful effects, some more then others.
I am looking forward to adding my paintings on top of them.

Things are going great here in the studio, I just need to be in here more!

Siren or Mermaid? Acrylic pour with painting, 16 x 20
Day 50 of the 100 days~100 paintings 2019

Monday, August 19, 2019

Pride and Pours!

Well, I've done it!
I've allowed myself to "play" and pour!

Celebration Church located in Fairhope, Alabama had a Pinterest group meet last Saturday. 
I don't know the exact count, but I think there was at least 25 to 30 women there interested in learning how to paint pour.
I was one of them.
I went really and truly to learn what all the hubbub was about this method of applying paint.
I am not an abstract sort of artist, and at best I hoped to have something that might be pretty to look at, 
but not really something to add to my painting process.
I was proud of my process in laying paint with brushes on canvas.
I helped others with their pieces, thinking carefully about the paint colors I wanted to use on mine.
A couple of the ladies had also made too many cups of the pour mixture, 
so I grabbed them and  used their excess to mix mine.
It is a very interesting process to see unfold, the paints flowing and spilling over the edges in beautiful ways. Once I finished with helping, it was my turn to turn my cups into something, maybe something beautiful!
Carefully mixing my colors and layering them into cups, I took a deep breath and flipped them onto the canvas. I then tilted the canvas to cover the edges, making a mess with the excess paint. 
(I am very concerned about the amount of paint wasted with this process, 
and am thinking very hard about how to do it differently.)
Once I was satisfied with my piece, I carefully transported it to the garage with the others.
We filled the garage with our pieces, laid all over the place on pieces of cardboard. I could not stand to see the leftover paint all over the table and asked for another canvas to try and create another background.
The garage was an amazing display of beautiful abstracts, in a gorgeous array of colors and neutrals.
I had to wait like the others for it to dry overnight. After church, we went by the house and picked up the canvases. Taking them home, they were still very tacky and 
I put them in my studio and turned the ceiling fan on. 
I could not wait until it felt dry.
I knew what I wanted to paint on the top of this abstract watery looking background.
The turtle you see is the completed work!
I could not be much happier than I am right now.

Look out, I am hooked, and there will be several pieces in the future, 
once I figure out the process without the silicon oil.
I also have a friend that is going to coat several canvas using this process.

"Incredible beauty" , Acrylic pour and painted canvas, 16 x 20
Day 49 of the 100 days~100 paintings 2019

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Magnolias & Maintenance

The studio was full of activity today. I am still putting away things from the 
Africa trip, Summer classes, and Shepherds place.
This photo shows the large table in my studio covered 
with 19 beautiful shadowbox canvases ready and waiting for sketching.
In the meantime, all I want to do is paint, paint, paint!

I have been juried into the fall shows I've entered, 
so there is a need to create some inventory to offer at various venues.
There is a total of 5 shows, running from Destin, Florida to Ocean Springs, Mississippi. 
We'll be on the beach in October for the National Shrimp Festival in Gulf shores. 
On top of this, I am already entering 4 shows for January of next year!
I've also received notification about the Gulf Breeze show for April 2020. I won an award last year, so I basically get to skip the jury process. I just had to accept and use a code to enter.
Now I have to pay a booth fee! 
Then there's the one woman shows, first at the Audubon Center next summer 
as well as the show at the Sway Gallery in December.
The Sway show will feature Steampunk pieces and my usual marine life offerings.
Already getting filled up for next summer as well with another planned trip to Africa!

I love my Artist life!
Can't you tell?

Today found me finishing up these magnolias in an effort to catch up from the Africa mission. They are painted from photographs taken all over Fairhope, with my husband grabbing tree branches and holding them steady for me to get a photo. They actually took the 4 days to create.
I painted while I was there, but nothing really sellable as I am listed as an Acrylic painter when I enter shows.
There are some nice watercolors though, and I may put them at the gallery here in Fairhope.
The Magnolias are each fairly small, easily completed pieces that usually sell fairly quickly.

It's the Artists life for me!

Magnolias & Maintenance, Acrylic on canvas, each 6x6 inches, $45 each
Days 41-44 of the 100 days~100 paintings Fall 2019

Monday, August 12, 2019


Just too fun to paint!
This seemed like a great way to begin to get back into the groove of painting 
after coming home from my Africa mission. 
While eating dinner with the grandchild last night, 
I asked him what he wanted painted for his birthday piece.
He giggled and said a dolphin and a turtle. Puzzled I said, you want them together?
Yes YaYa!
Thus this playful piece was born.
It seems like just yesterday we were rushing to the hospital,and your first painting was done as you were being born. His collection now is at a total of 7.
When he moves into his own home, he will have a collection of pieces, 
each painted on the day of his birth.

I am finding my place in the studio again, creating. It seems there are so many things to do that get in the way of the studio lately. I have a LOT of painting to do to catch up from my mission to Africa.
I also spent time entering several shows taking place the first of the year in Florida.
We really enjoyed our time down there last year, and I hope to go again!

The fall shows are in place now, all accepted and paid for!
September 28th & 29th Jubilee~Daphne. Al
October 10th-13th National Shrimp Festival, Gulf Shores, Al (my 13th year!)
October 26th&27th Mattie Kelly Festival of the Arts, Destin, Florida
November 2nd & 3rd Peter Anderson, Ocean Springs, Mississippi
There are a couple of  "fill in shows" as well.


Playtime, Acrylic on canvas, 12 x 24inches
Private collection, Day ? of the 100 days~100 paintings Fall 2019