Friday, September 19, 2008

Fertile Ground Exhibit

This year's exhibit at Skyline Farm and Carriage Museum is called "Fertile Ground" and includes Maine artists whose work is inspired by farm life and the rural landscape. The opening reception was a tremendous success with many sales that night.
"Going green" is the new catch phrase and more people have become (re)introduced to buying locally grown foods and products so this show should be of great interest.
Sculptor Pat Plourde of New Gloucester uses found metal objects and incorporates them into his exquisitely crafted work of flora, fauna and furniture. Mary Cupp finds inspiration in the people who make a living selling at the farmer's markets that have cropped up all over the state. Ann Stein paints old New England homesteads with surprising energy and character..her bold work breathes with life. Neil Wyrick's surreal landscapes are infused with subtle shadows and delicate color that just catches the magical light of evening and sundown. There are many other talented artists in the show as well. Here's the link to Skyline's on line catalog. . Check out the silent auction pages of items donated by the show's exhibitors and others who are passionate about preserving the farm's open spaces for the public to enjoy. These wild areas will become more precious to all of us as the world gets smaller and smaller...
I have the privilege of being co-curator for this show with my very special friend and accomplished artist Kathi Peters. Kathi specializes in equine and animal paintings and is included in a new book by Vicky Moon called Equestrian Style. Vicki is famous for her books about the rich and famous and this beautiful publication features international architecture, fashion, and homes inspired by the horse. Click here to view Kathi's very unique take on the horse. I particularly like her Shades of Black series.

Here is one of my very first pastel portraits... seems like a life time ago that this was done....This is Kathi's Tennessee Walker gelding Duster who is 22 years old this year...

Monday, September 15, 2008

Portrait of a young Havanese

This is a recent commission portrait of a Havanese puppy named Guapo. A bunch of great photos of this little guy were sent to me and I chose this pose because of the energetic expression and sparkling eyes.
How could you not love a mug like this?..He's just a pup but my understanding is that he is socializing very well with other dogs and learning to be a gentleman in public. This breed is known for it's endearing personality and undying loyalty. They also are a good choice for allergy sufferers. I'm sure he'll be a joy to his owners for years to come.
This painting is 5 x 7 size, suitable for desk top display and done with acrylics. I used all edges of a large flat brush to complete most of the image and was able to get all of the detail except for the eyes, nose and mouth which were finished with a small liner brush.
I thoroughly enjoyed working on this and was disappointed when it was done.. looking at him made me smile!
I have another commission coming soon and can't wait to get started on's a completely different subject.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Maine Discovery Museum "Save Me A Seat " Auction Bench's been a while since the last blog but the bench for the MDM auction is finally DONE!
As promised it is.
I chose a theme that appeals to a lot of people, Man's Best Friend, the family dog. We love our dog Koda, the Golden Retriever central in the portrait on the bench back. By her side is Baxter, our youngest son's treasured Jack Russell, and Mocha the Chocolate Lab, who passed away several years ago and belonged to a friend.
Under the seat lid is a little surprise...Addie the Welsh Corgi, who is a trusted and much loved companion to my very best friend and her husband.
I've used the art of Trompe l'eoil(fool the eye) to paint objects in three D on the seat lid and the frame around the portrait..the ball, dog biscuits and leash are all Koda's things. I added the pillow covered with paw prints to finish up the grouping with a touch of whimsy.
The bench is 65" high, 32"wide and 23" deep. Storage under the seat is suitable for hats, mittens, boots, or any canine food if you wish!
The Trompe l'eoil is acrylic for durability and the over all finish is Behr latex enamel..two coats over primer for easy clean with soap and water.
Here is the link to the Auction....bids will close in November..
I hope the winning bidder will enjoy this bench as much as I enjoyed doing it..
It's been a very busy month with deadlines all coming at once. My next blog will feature a new commission and the Skyline Farm and Carriage Museum show, "Fertile Ground", opens Sept. 12 so I must get to framing new paintings for that. More on that show in another blog...