Artist's Statement

A quote from Grant Wood describes a condition from which he and many of us suffer: taking too much for granted. Wood said, "...To my great joy, I discovered that in the very commonplace, in my native surroundings, were decorative adventures and that my only difficulty had been in taking them too much for granted." Woods' words ring with truth. My goal as an artist is to capture the wonder of the often overlooked ordinary, the commonplace beauty around us, those little details that make all the difference in our daily lives. The rough hue of rocks, lush blue woodlands, weathered wood grains, and distant meandering dirt roads never cease to appeal to me. I attempt to share the beauty from which routine blinds us. My work can be purchased on ebay or by contacting me personally.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Best Buds 16x20 70.00

One of the benefits of living in a small, rural town is farm life is ever present. Although I live in the city limits, I often hear a rooster crow. The sounds of cattle lowing and donkeys doing what they do is ever present, and I do love their racket. My neighbor's donkeys have provided me with many painting opportunities and countless moments of pleasure. In my daily walks, I observe their antics, best show in town. These two were roadside under a shade and we had a staring contest. They won.

Break Out 16x20 90.00

I hope that my recent fascination with goats has no correlation with any personality traits. They are so whimsical and comical to me, a lot of fun to paint. The hyper movements of the goats at the prospect of escape was the appeal to me in this scene.  The additional stark contrast between bright light and shadow made for an interesting arrangement.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Open Window 3x5 40.00

 Miniature paintings were one of my many marketing Christmas gift ideas that never took off. One doesn't know until he/she tries, right? Maybe my timing was wrong. Seemed like a good idea at the time. This is one that I did for myself as a trial piece that I kept as a pet. I always wondered what was inside the window.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Moose at Sunrise 12x16 $80.00

A friend was recently showing photos of an Alaskan trip; in the shots was one similar to this. Needless to say, I found theme irresistible.  In the light, the blues and lavenders danced on the snow. Their silhouette was priceless.  Who could not love them? They deserved to be in a painting.

Sunrise in the Smokies 10x20 85.00

Sunrise in the Smokies is an event; actually, sunrise anywhere is an event. Sunrise and sunset are the best shows in town.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Blooms on the North Ridge 7x14 50.00

...Just finished yesterday and the wet paint glares. ( I don't know what to do about that.) Does anyone have a suggestion? Anyway, I'm posting anyway. I love the eye-level perspective and the color, of course.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

The Watering Can 14x18 80.00

Watering cans have always appealed to me. The idea of leisurely wandering through a flower bed pouring water on thirsty flowers with such a artful container has a certain flair. Over time, I have accumulated some and painted several pieces containing them. In reality, however, I do not use them. They just make for a good painting subject. The bucket and hose is my equipment of choice, so practical, so plain, and so much FASTER.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Landscape with Palette Knife 8x10 50.00

A good practice for those of us who have a tendency to "detail a painting to death" is to paint a subject with a palette knife only. The exercise forces the painter to concentrate on blocks of color and values. Seeing the scene as a whole rather than in parts is difficult for someone like me. "Loosening up" and softening lines is painful for those of us who have the mistaken notion that our task is duplicating the scene. No, our task is interpreting the scene. Remember this, self.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

The Man 11x14 Sold

Like many people, I am being reminded of fathers this weekend. However, seldom a day passes that I don't think of him, always with a smile. You are missed, O.B. Thank you for being and living on through those left behind. You are always close at hand.
 One of a kind---

Friday, June 19, 2015

Aspen Glow 12x16 80.00

Aspens are a favorite of those of us who paint landscape. In light, they seem animated, a shifting dance of color. Add fall foliage, and the celebration is complete. I can not imagine growing tired of the sight, but doubtless there are those who live in the midst of aspens who are oblivious to them, familiar to the point of indifference. The poet William Meredith observed that the worst that be said of a man is "that he did not pay attention." I tend to agree.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Teapot With Onion 11x14 60.00

This teapot, goblet, and onion were set up as a class study one night in art class. I was not happy with the results I got. I brought it home and "mulled" over what it needed. As a result, I changed some colors and added the spoon in the foreground. We're happier.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Hanging with Mom 11x14 50.00

As a long time horse admirer, I consider newly born colts one of the sweetest animal babies on the planet,  UNTIL I saw a newly born donkey. However, that is another painting and story. I sometimes return home from work by a longer route. The sole reason for doing so is because I drive past a home surrounded by fenced pasture which contains horses. Recently, I spied a foal and fell in love. The sight was worth the drive. My thoughts returned to that new one as I painted this in art class one night recently.
. I was intrigued by the light play and the freshness of new life.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Spring Fever 9x12 70.00

-sister piece to yesterday's image. Everytime I paint two images intended to be a pair, one deserts the other. The painting I downloaded yesterday sold last year leaving this image standing alone. There are pink geraniums in this image. That's interesting... Maybe that's a subconscious foreshadowing of the color switch to which I referred yesterday.  Immediately after school is out for the summer, I work in the yard in a frenzy trying to get "caught up." This summer was no exception. I painted this during last summer's frenzy. I'm trying to purchase/plant only perennials these days in an effort to simplify.   ...not as easy as one would think.

sy as one would think.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Blooming Hats 9x12 Sold

I have a long standing custom of buying red geraniums each spring for the front yard. Geraniums are sun-lovers and thrive in those "hot spots" that receive mid-day and afternoon sun. Red as always been the color of choice. However, this year for some explainable reason, I changed colors. I went pink. Geraniums are fun to paint because the value change is so easily detectable in the petals; take note of the distinction in the blooms in this painting. Blooming Hats has been sold for quite a while, but it has always been one of my favorite floral pieces. Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "Earth laughs in flowers." Maybe that's why they make us feel better.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Tools of the Trade 6x8 $60.00

A mediocre financial analyst could determine my interests in a heartbeat. Personal values are reflected in what we do with our money. Jesus said a LOT about the human heart being attached to the purse strings. Don't take me to a candy store, the mall's shoe department, jewelry counter, or sporting department to "ring my bell." An art supply store will do the trick. A towering rack of shiny, new brushes make me dizzy, and rows of oil paint arranged in varying shades of color bring me to tears. I consider failing to clean brushes and other supplies a moral weakness. Failure to clean brushes is a cardinal sin in my estimation. Just ask any Central High School art student. 

Thursday, June 11, 2015

W2 11x14 50.00

W2 is an odd name for a painting, but this is an "odd" painting. While discussing Shakespeare's Macbeth with a fellow English teacher,  this painting came to mind. The Elizabethan theater did not entertain the idea of women  playing the female roles. Only men were allowed to perform, men or young boys. Hence the infamous witches and even Lady Macbeth were played by men.  The "weird sisters" as Macbeth calls them were assuredly weird. One of Macbeth's lines actually mentions their beards. This depiction of Witch #2 is definitely flattering; she would have been a lot different. Just use your imagination.
       (Witches in unison as they dance in a circle) The Wierd Sisters, hand in hand,\
Posters of the sea and land/ Thus do go about, about, /Thrice to thine, and thrice to mine,/And thrice again, to make up nine./Peace! the charm's wound up.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Little Guy 5x7 $50.00

I am a quote person; inspirational quotes have always "inspired" me. Three little volumes of quotations have a reserved spot on my classroom bookshelves. From time to time, students will journal on selected quotes. One of my favorites is an anonymous one: "Three essentials for happiness are something to love, something to do, and something to hope for." The poet Emily Dickinson used the metaphor of a bird to describe the effect of hope. Thanks, Emily, for this lovely image. Hope is "the thing with feathers that perches in our soul-and sings the tune without the words--and never stops at all." ...Right on, Emily.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Rainy Day 7 x 20 $70.00

Rainy days get a bad rap. Typically rain and rainy weather has a negative connotation, associated with depression, hard times, etc. Rain is certainly not bad, just wet, which is needed. I have memories of playing in the rain in the absence of lightning and thunder. Those were certainly good times. This painting was painted in acrylic by the art classes at school. I liked the image, so I tried it in oil. This painting reminds me that rainy days are what I make them, good or bad. My attitude calls the shots.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Coffee In Your Face 8x10 $75.00

I am an addict, a coffee addict, have been for years. I love the look of coffee, the smell, the ritual of morning coffee. I admire the accouterments of making coffee: cups, saucers, mugs, coffee makers of all designs, and the endless array of coffee products. The coffee section is one of my favorite sections of the grocery and a coffee SHOP; well, I am speechless... I blame my early years, of course. As a youngster, I was weaned on coffee. We didn't have JUICE or MILK as a breakfast drink. Coffee was the drink of choice, the only choice. That or water, I suppose. It was a given. Coffee was a staple of life, like bread. The blame does not rest entirely upon formative years. I am an accountable adult with volition. I could go clean. I could... yeah...

Sunday, June 7, 2015

The Sugar Canister 8x10

My mother loved food, loved to cook it; hence, she was a good cook. The center of our home was the kitchen and the "den,"which included a big table.  Family gatherings always involved good food and a lot of it. Her kitchen was always "in process," meaning something was on the bar, on the stove, in mid-preparation. Things were always happening in the kitchen. Bowls were out, ingredients were staged on the bar, and FOOD was being called into existence. Her brownstone canisters were a mainstay of this culinary landscape. In contrast, I don't even own a set of kitchen canisters. I enjoy clean counters, NO CLUTTER. If I want something I get it out, use it, and back it goes. How this contradiction of genetic code happened, I don't know. I consider kitchen canisters a nuisance, something else to clean and deal with. Sorry Mom. You gave me so much, but the canisters went with the wind.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Girlfriends 16x20 $200.00

...another photo I saw on Facebook. Being a horse lover from way back, this I could not resist. I loved the relaxed pose and the play of darks and lights in this setting. A picture of contentment and controlled power, the relationship between a horse and rider is an fascinating dynamic that only another horse lover can understand. Growing up, I always wanted a horse. Begging my mother and presenting her with various carefully conceived strategies for the animal's upkeep, went ignored UNTIL she presented me with a sewing machine one summer for my birthday. THIS was my horse she said, adding that it did have four legs. I did put a lot of mileage on that sewing machine. In fact, it's still stabled in an upstairs bedroom in perfectly good running condition. Her name is Singer.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Work's Done 14x18 $150.00

Art is all around us, even at our feet. A good painting can be of anything, preferably a simple arrangement. Most of us try to crowd too much into a painting; hence, the viewer's eye is distracted with the details and has no where to "rest." I loved the simplicity of this piece, yet there is a narrative quality. Where have these boots been today? What is the story here?

Thursday, June 4, 2015

All Things Pretty and Pink 14x18 $150.00

This painting is my first official installment of Operation Summer Strokes, although I painted this before summer was official inaugurated. (I'm making the rules to this project as I go along, like my grandson does when playing monopoly). I saw a photo similar to this on none other than Facebook and took advantage of the download. Anything downloaded to a social media site is fair game, which does have some advantages. The arrangement was so light and airy, so inviting that I attempted to paint it. When painting from a photograph, the idea is NOT to duplicate but use the basic idea, tailor to suit the goal of the artist.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

FBC mural

My summer goal is to spend unprecedented time at the easel. I call this project "Operation Summer Strokes." By that title, I am referring to the thousands of paint strokes to be made, and my inability to think of a  better s word associated with painting.  Anyway...I started today with  simple wall lettering I was asked to do for the church nursery. I began and finished today. I spent six hours meditating on Jesus' love for children. As one of those children, I thought of the traits of a small child and the relationship between that child and a loving parent. Thank you, Father, for such a lovely image of my need for you and  your fathomless love.