Miss Moon Was A Dog Governess. Lesson Nine: With A Little Creativity, The Impossible Can Become Possible. 11″x14″. Sold.
I just wanted to take a moment and thank my supporters for the kind emails and comments. There was a fair resolution and I am pleased.
And continuing with the good news….My Miss Moon series is going to be turned into a French language children’s book! Miss Moon is about to become Mademoiselle Lune! I’m very excited about this and relieved that her name translates nicely as that could have been a disaster. So there will be plenty more lessons to be taught over the next six months as I rush to meet a deadline! This painting is a good representation of how I feel right now- particularly the little spotted dog with the orange helmet who’s really peddling his heart out.
I was really trying to capture the feeling of September with this one. I call it the ‘sad light’ when the summer light starts to die and the autumn light takes over. September is also a strange month and feels a little unsettled. Of course, this year it might be because I have my trial this week. Remember those horrible Chinese knock offs of my work? Well, unfortunately it has lead to legal measures. I’ve kept it under wraps for the most part but I’m hoping that when it’s all said and done I will be able to share my experience more publicly in hopes of helping other artists who might find themselves in a similar situation.
So how about those magic miniatures- right? I know it got a little wacky and I’m very sorry to those of you who tried to snag one but couldn’t. There seemed to be quite the drama surrounding the event- including ‘cart stealing’. Technically not stealing I suppose- but apparently your order isn’t safe until paypal has taken the money- before that, what you had in your cart can be taken right back out of it and sold to someone else. Imagine that happening in real life….rude!
There will be more miniatures but not for a while. I threw my neck out while painting them. My whole body is made of thread or something- and when something is pulled the wrong way, everything spirals out of control. I had my neck bent at a funny position as I painted them (they’re too small for my easel) and so I just held them in my hand and well, I had a bad case of stiff granny neck for a week. Then, John and I went to see that ‘Pacific Rim’ movie- yes, the one with the giant robots that battle the giant alien sea monsters (I enjoy sea monsters) and there was something about the way the IMAX seats slanted back that really helped the granny neck. The fact that the entire theater smelled like a sweaty fourteen year old boy and the fact that I lost my hearing for two days was still worth it .
From alien sea monsters to cats that enjoy crepes. Daisy (my cat) eats Christmas cake whenever the opportunity presents itself. Therefore crepes with orange sauce is not that far fetched.
I’ve been working on some teeny tiny paintings lately and I’ve taken to calling them ‘Magic Miniatures’. They are little (palm of your hand little) and pretty quirky. I have so many ideas for paintings and quite often these ideas go nowhere. Either they don’t translate well- from brain to canvas or their stories aren’t really stories- rather only a sentence or a blurb. So I decided to see if they worked better on a tiny canvas and much to my surprise they did (I think). I have around fifteen on the go and the subjects range from kidnappings, ghosts, cats, teachers, and other odds and ends. If you are interested in acquiring a ‘magic miniature’ then please check my etsy shop on Wednesday July 10th at 4pm EST when I will be listing the lot of them. They are roughly 2.5 inches square and will likely be around $50 each.
And now for a painting with a much shorter and simpler title. Personally I feel that Polly is actually a shy girl who has a tendency to overcompensate for her shyness by wearing bold dresses and walking wild animals.
An Aspiring Actress Arrives In Hollywood. Pictured Here In 1948 Holding Her Good Luck Charm. Oil on canvas, 10″x12″. Sold.
I didn’t exactly do much research on the time period for this particular painting and I’m fairly certain that her hair and blouse may be completely wrong for 1948, but it’s all about ‘make believe’ and I was being lazy. She also looks like a hybrid between Scarlett Johansson and Katherine Heigl and I have no explanation for this- although this pleases John a great deal. I actually saw him sneaking into my studio on a few occasions to take a look at the painting in progress. As he did this, he rubbed his hands together. Not quite creepy villainous hand rubbing- more like what you do on a really cold day. Actually I stand corrected… because no matter how you describe it, unless it is a really cold day, hand rubbing is very creepy.
Beatrice In The Garden On Her Sixth Birthday, oil on canvas, 10″x12″. Sold.
And that’s where I’m heading right now. Except I’m not bringing Finnegan with me. He digs at things, then eats sticks, then has digestive issues.
I should also mention that I really haven’t ventured into my garden beyond the safe zone since last summer. The safe zone is an arm’s length away from plants and trees. There was an incident last year when I tried to start an herb garden. I have a little old white park bench in the garden (very shabby chic) and I put all sorts of pots of herbs on it. It looked very pretty, and I loved going outside to pick fresh basil for my tomato sauce. That was until one day when I went to cut some fresh chives, and my fingers grazed something that at first glance looked like a tiny spaceship. But when I examined it closer, I discovered possibly the ugliest bug that one could ever dream of. It had all these ridges and wings and parts that seemed like they were made out of steel. I tremble just thinking about it now. I haven’t seen it since, so I’m hoping that the coast is now clear. I’m sure the winter killed it off.
Atticus Bailey Takes A Day Off, oil on canvas, 16″x20″. Sold.
Atticus Bailey is the character in the snappy white suit and smart yellow bow-tie. I think he was a workaholic until one beautiful spring day he came to his senses and took a day off to see what he had been missing. Apparently, he had been missing quite a lot. I was going to call this painting ‘Spring Maidens’ as an homage to spring which at the moment seems to be hiding somewhere. I wanted to capture that first warm spring day when the air makes you dizzy with excitement. Perhaps if I paint it, it will come. Oh, and the name? A mix of two of my favourite characters of course: George Bailey and Atticus Finch.
Tallulah Shaw Rehearses Before Her Final Show. 1959. Oil on canvas, 16″x20″. Sold.
Who is Tallulah Shaw? I’ll give it a whirl. I suspect she was a well brought up young lady that became bored with the limitations put upon her from an early age. In her early twenties she opted not to marry and instead she ran off and joined a circus, or some sort of traveling side show. The equestrian classes that she took as a young woman came in handy when she decided to move beyond her position as a magician’s assistant and become a star herself. Unprecedented success followed and she wisely decided to retire from her career while at the peak of her stardom and move down south to raise rare long-legged birds. That is my best guess.
This is a slightly larger piece than normal. I just felt like being a wild woman and painting beyond my usual little comfort zone. Don’t ask about the mouse- she (or he) just decided to make an appearance and gnaw on the phone cord a little. Remember crackly static phone cords? Those were the days. I had a super duper long one that could probably wrap around my bedroom twenty times. Of course, it used to crackle like no one’s business and drive me nuts, but never stopped me from talking. Now, I don’t even have a cell phone.
By the way, if you received a weird email from me on Friday, please disregard it, as it wasn’t really me. My email was hacked and used for spam. There was an upside to this though as many friends contacted me who I hadn’t heard from in ages to tell me that my account had been hijacked and we managed to get caught up. See, there’s a bright side to everything.
Also, a special thank you to Frankie magazine for featuring my work in their March/April issue. Yay!
I’ve been wanting to post about this for some time but with things being rather hectic for the past few months, it has been really put on the back burner, or perhaps even worse, buried in the bottom of my closet- a terrible terrain where certain things disappear and are rarely, if ever, seen again.
Last year I began working on a book. It started off as the book for my ‘Black Walnut Manor’ series but morphed quickly into something else entirely- as things often do with me …. I start off painting a duck and it turns into a woman pirate with three strokes of a brush. I think the book is best described as illustrated fiction- possibly magical realism, and to be truthful, it likely has no place in the publishing world. It is not for children- although, possibly suitable for twelve and up and it contains almost as many pictures as text, but it is not a graphic novel- so it would occupy a funny place in the adult book market- that is if one even exists. Do adults read picture books?
The story is told through a series of vignettes and character profiles that all interconnect. It is whimsical, a little dark, and according to those who have read it, humorous as well. Perhaps it is more a piece of visual art than a book. Whatever it may be, I have really enjoyed working on it and I hope to return to working on it soon. In fact, this random post is likely a kick in my own pants to get myself to finish it, so that I can reveal more about it aside from the one character, ‘Elaina Of The Everglades’ who I will only say, possesses certain magical gifts.
My apologies for those who have been waiting patiently for new original work to appear. My time is really divided right now- but I’m hoping to have a still life completed in the next day or two. Something spring-like and cheery.
I thought that the star of the piece would be the gold shoes, but it was the socks that I enjoyed painting the most. I had no idea I would get so involved in the little lumps and bumps in the material. All I want to do is paint socks now. I’m quite obsessed. I suppose you had to be there.
There is something very quiet about this piece- soft spoken and peaceful. You can almost hear her slip the jeweled clips into her hair. And if you could smell her perfume it would smell like violets or lilacs I would think.
Under the Mistletoe, oil on canvas board, 8″x10″. Sold.
Here is a little more Christmas for you. Thanks everyone for another great Black Friday Event. Hopefully it helped some of you get a jump on the festive shopping season. I spent last weekend doing a little etsy shopping myself. For me, this Christmas is all about quirky calendars, animal stationary, pencils with weird sayings, books, books, books, food and plenty of delicious wine.
Here are two simple gesture paintings of a couple of ladies enjoying their sweaters. Seems like a good way to spend some time before this terrible storm settles in. A week of rain ahead-yikes! As if there hasn’t been enough of it already. I may not get out of bed.