Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Goodbye 2014.... Hello 2015 !

One of the wondrous unexpected surprises this past Christmas was watching the space station orbit right over our house on a clear Christmas night.  As it turns of the astronauts orbiting as we watched grew up right across the lake from us here in Tennessee.  So as he was taking a space shot of Nashville from the station...we were looking up at him. Thanks to Will for making sure that we were out there at the right time....we didn't miss it.  What an awe inspiring Christmas gift from space. 
Here is the shot that astronaut Butch Wilmore took from the ISS on Dec. 25....... 

Wishing everyone a fresh new year ahead full of all sorts of experiences......Wishing you all kinds of unexpected happiness, big and small in 2015. 

Monday, December 8, 2014

Merry Christmas to all.....

It's December 2014 and all the celebrating has begun!  Midtown Gallery had their holiday open house a few weeks ago and the gallery owner, Gary, asked his artists to bring him some very small sized that might be of interest to his customers.  I had so much fun making some miniature paintings that were seasonal in theme.  It reminded me of sitting at my Mom and Dad's dining table and working on all sorts of Christmas inspired art when I was a kid.  Thanks Gary....glad you sure got me into the spirit of things. These are all 3x4 or 4x4 in size...framed in 2 inch black frames....Some are still at Midtown if you're looking for original art oils as a gift idea. 


Here's wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas and wonderful New Year!

Monday, November 17, 2014

A November update

It's been a while since posting my mom's picture on my last blog post.  Honestly, I didn't want to replace that picture....but time moves on and I have that picture of her on my desk now.  I would click on my own blog just to see her face whenever I would log on to my computer. So it's been a few months of activity and it's about time I caught up.

September brought a great week in Austin, Tx. at a Scott Waddell portrait painting workshop.   I posted about Scott's workshop last year and was very happy to have had the experience of continuing education under his tutelage again this year. SO very worth it.  I heartily recommend Scott's workshops.  I can feel my understanding improving with time and practice thanks to his encouraging and patient teaching methods. Here is a shot demonstrating the poster sketch as a preparation for the actual portrait.

Having a chance to have an Austin Weekend with my family all together at the end of the week was again a happy time just being together and practicing "not postponing joy".

 September and October brought the opening of three art shows, the American Academy of Equine Art's Fall open show in Georgetown, KY. and the "Season of Equine" art show at the Clarksville Customs House Museum in TN. and Belle Meade's annual Juried show at the Plantation.  The following paintings where sent to the above shows in the following order:  "Sweet Shani" to the AAEA juried show...."Hartsville Horses" to the Customs House Show.....and "Good Morning Bob and Bonnie" to the Belle Meade local juried show, winning 2nd place of most honorable mention.


 Early November brought a trip to Vicksburg MS with my friend Elese to photograph Chula Homa Hunt's opening weekend. We were thankful for safe travel ( with Stanley, Elese's thoroughbred in tow ) fantastic weather and warm and friendly hospitality ( as usual ! ) from the members of Chula Homa Hunt.   Alison and Jim Crew's beautiful property "Tilda Bogue" in Canton was the fixture for the opening day festivities and the guests were treated to horses, hounds and the beautiful delta landscape.  You've seen clips of this property in movies such as "As I lay dying" and " Oh Brother where art thou". After over 20 years of leading the hunt, Sue Skipper passed the horn onto Beattie Williams to take over as Huntsman.  The hunt photo here shows Beattie and her horse "Royal" setting out on the Sunday hunt after the opening.

The winter blast will keep me happily painting in my studio these next weeks through the holidays...stay warm and as my friend Catherine posts at the bottom of all her emails... 
Don't Postpone Joy !

Thursday, July 31, 2014

A Goodbye to Mom

Last week, my family gathered and we lay to rest our beloved “mom mom”. 
She was a huge part of our lives and we are all struggling with the reality of having to say goodbye to her. 
Her grandaugher, Joni, found a beautiful verse by Edna St. Vincent Millay that helped with what feelings we are all having these days. It goes as follows:
"I shall think of you whenever I am most happy,
whenever I am most sad,
whenever I see a beautiful thing.
You are a burning lamp to me,
a flame the wind cannot blow out,
And I shall hold you high in my hand
Against whatever darkness."
My mom was there for us at every turn in our lives and we tried to be there for her as the tide turned in her life.  Illness could not completely steal that spark in her eye and that feisty spirit.  She never stopped telling us that she loved us even when our names where locked away and hard to retrieve…..even when the days came when she could only muster a whisper at best. 
When I think of how lucky I was to have her as my mother I can hardly verbalize my gratefulness.  Her last years of illness do not overshadow the many years of love, dedication and vitality she showed all of us since the days we were born. The memories of her life with us are now and will always be a comfort in years to come. Her example of a faith filled strength and capacity for love was seemingly boundless and we are all the better for it.  Mom is gone from our arms but not gone from our lives and she will forever be alive in our hearts. 

Friday, May 30, 2014

2014 Music Country Grand Prix for Saddle UP !

Saddle up is a therapeutic riding facility located in Nashville, TN.  I have the privilege to volunteer with this organization and have seen the hardworking dedicated staff and volunteers tirelessly make this a top notch program of which Nashville should be very proud.  This year I was happy and honored to create the oil painting that was used for the 2014 Music Country Grand Prix fundraising event being held at Brownland Farm in Franklin this Saturday, May 31. The painting shows last years winner of the MCGP, Laura Linback  and HH Dauphin , during their victory gallop. This image was used for advertising and invitations and will be auctioned off at the event.  Come on out, support the cause and have a wonderful afternoon watching these talented horses and their riders.  Click on the poster image below to gather more information about the event..............

Monday, April 21, 2014

Coming soon...Spring Art show at Belle Meade Plantation

Here's an example of one of the 15 new paintings that will be hanging at Belle Meade Plantation's Visitor Center Art Gallery during the month of May 2014.  It's titled "Whispers" and is a 9 x 12 oil on linen canvas board.   I would love to see some friendly faces visit at the opening of the month long show on Thursday, May 1st at the Plantation on Harding Road in Nashville.  Artist Mary Veazie will also have her new work hanging at the gallery. Wine and hors d'oeuvres will be served thanks to West Meade Wine and Liquors and the Harding House Restaurant.  The opening reception is from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm. 

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Commissioned painting of "Grace and Tanz".

This was my last commissioned painting of 2013.  Many thanks to the Gil Netter family of Malibu, CA for surprising daughter Grace with an oil painting of her competing at a horse trial with "Tanz". 

Friday, January 3, 2014

Welcome 2014!

 Shown here is one of the last commissions that I worked on in 2013.  It is a painting for a lovely client that wanted nothing more than a painting that reflected the wonderful memories of her childhood growing up with horses.  We talked and created an idea that would gather some of the images that were in her imagination.  We worked on an idea for a pastoral view with a southwest Virginia feel to the landscape.... particular horses represented, a blond haired young girl and a homestead that looks like it could have been in the family for generations.   This is the result and she was very happy. 

 Welcome 2014 !!
As my husband and I sat and watched the sunset on New Years Eve we made a list of all the good things about 2013.  The list was long and full of so many events for which we are so thankful.
It was like a Christmas letter to ourselves and we filed it away and decided that it should be a yearly tradition. Not a letter that we send out in cards, but just for our own memories so that we don't take for granted the wonderful times with family and friends.

One thing that we noticed were the number of things that happened that we had not seen coming when the new year started in 2013......things that were such blessings in both our work and personal lives.  There are challenges ahead in 2014 , no doubt......we will face them head on.... we hope to face them without forgetting that life is more good than bad.   When our kids were growing up we joked about keeping our list of "happy thoughts"..... a list of moments in time that just make our blood pressure lower and our stresses melt away.  I wish all of you reading this a long list of happy thoughts for 2014.  Get started...right them down.... 2014 has left the starting gate!