Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Food and Culture Magazine

"My" new gallery, Art on the Avenue, is running this ad in the January issue of a really fine middle Georgia magazine, Food & Culture. The painting to the right is "The Bird Bench", so I thought I would give y'all another peek at it here.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Portrait Swap for Jan '09

Portrait Swap Jan '09
Different Strokes from Different Folks Challenge
9"x12" oil on canvasboard

I have no idea who she is! That was the whole idea behind Karin Jurick's challenge for us. This way we could view the photo reference objectively and use it the same way you would use a reference for oranges or apples in a still life. I took some artistic liberties with it, as with any reference, but stayed true to the lovely fellow artist that was in the photo. Hope she likes it! Keep a look-out on Karin's blog for the portrait that this artist does of me... and the names will then be revealed. What fun!!!
Update!!! The mystery artist is Kate Merriman... check out her blog and see the terrific portrait that she did of me. Look at all the wonderful use of vibrant color in her paintings and you'll see an obvious zest for life reflected in her work. I feel lucky that she got me to paint!

Friday, December 26, 2008


11"x15" acrylic on gessoed birch panel

Daisy belongs to Karleen, my 8-year-old granddaughter. . . or should I say that Karleen belongs to Daisy?! She has a sweet disposition and has grown up with the grandchildren, so she is a terrific playmate. That said, know also that nothing gets past her keen eyes and she knows instinctively when something (or someone) does not belong!

Merry Christmas, Karleen!


9"x12" acrylic on canvasboard

This painting now belongs to my 5-year-old granddaughter, Evie. Her sweet little kitty, Callie, has a great personality and was a pleasure to paint, but don't let her cuteness deceive you... she is the birds' nightmare! Merry Christmas, Evie!


9"x12" acrylic on canvasboard

This portrait is of my granddaughter Brooke's new best friend, Gabby. A mixed lab, she was a shelter pup and is still a little shy but is warming up fast in a home with four children who love her. Merry Christmas, Brooke ... I hope you enjoy Gabby for many years to come!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Eve

Painting most of the day today... pet portraits for three of the six grandchildren. Will post them later as time is precious right now. Lots of cooking yesterday and tomorrow. I feel so blessed to be able to have all of my children and grandchildren celebrating Christmas together at our house! I do hope you are able to be with family, too... in your heart if not in person.

My wish for all is health and happiness...


Saturday, December 20, 2008

Art on the Avenue Gallery

I am so-o-o-o excited!!!
I am now being represented in Macon/Middle Georgia by Art on the Avenue Fine Art Gallery! They are located in the Ingleside Village Shopping Center at 2368 Ingleside Avenue in Macon, GA. I would be so pleased for you to check out their website and visit their gallery to see ALL the great art. Owners Debbie Anderson, Ginger Concepcion and Mary Jane Venrick are extremely talented artists with a real gift for helping their clients find that special piece of art to express the personality of the home or office. Other special services they offer are commissions and art classes. There is also a frame shop on the premises for your convenience.

Monday, December 15, 2008

When are we going?

"When are we going?"
Art on the Avenue Gallery SOLD
11"x14" oil on gessoed masonite
in rustic barnwood frame

This painting is another in the "Different Strokes from Different Folks" challenge by Karin Jurick, where many artists take the same reference and make it uniquely their own. In this case, the photo was of a worn pair of boots that looked remarkably like mine! My dog, Spaz, knows when I pull them out of the closet that he is going to get to share time with me... either in the garden or hiking through the woods. He can't wait for me to put them on and gets so rambunctious that I have to tell him to "WAIT!" This is his 'waiting' expression... ya gotta love him!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


16"x20" acrylic & oil on canvas

My sister-in-law, Robin, died this past Sunday from cancer. I painted this for my husband, her older brother, to help him deal with her loss. It was a healing day for me as well as I tried to capture her likeness. At first I envisioned a pastel color scheme, but any woman in her fifties who would ride a Harley through the North Georgia mountains is simply not a pastel personality! So I painted Robin as vividly as I remember her.

The left-hand portion of morning sunlight coming through the pines represents her birth in middle Georgia, which is where she spent most of her life. The right-hand portion of the sunset over the mountains represents the last decade or so that she and her husband spent in North Georgia, with the chapel depicting her belief in Jesus Christ. The lower portion is a soft depiction of Robin's hands as she applied lotion to my husband's hands in the hospital as a way of consoling him and wordlessly letting him know that "All is well with my soul".

Friday, December 5, 2008

Time Spent

Time continues to be spent on family and renovating the little rent house. Somewhere in there I need to squeeze in a few small paintings for my own Christmas gifts, so the blog will be slow between now and New Years.

Please continue to pray for Robin and her family. Sadly, the chemo treatments were ruled out and she is in hospice at the hospital in Blairsville, GA.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

My days are filled with children and grandchildren...and I'm so thankful! Family is what Thanksgiving is all about for me. I pray that you and yours have a happy one!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Brooke's painting of Daisy

"Daisy" by Brooke Piceno
24"x24" acrylic on gessoed panel

I am so proud! This painting was done today by my granddaughter, Brooke. She turns 10 on Thanksgiving Day, so her birthday present from me was her first set of professional paints, brushes and panels. I did a lot of pointing and helped her with color mixing, but she did the drawing and painting... and a superb job she did!!! I was so pleased that she had the patience to stick with it through the instructions on layers of painting. She is very talented and loves, loves, loves dogs... especially Daisy, my other granddaughter's German Shepherd.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

" TAG.... You're It !!! "

We artists seem to never tire of games with each other. It's one of the wonderful things about the on-line artist community. I have been tagged by super artist Kari Tirrell.
Here are the rules:

1. Place a link to the person that tagged you
2. List seven unusual things about yourself
3. Tag (and link to) seven other artists at the end of your post, and post on their blogs to let them know they’ve been tagged.

The hardest part is thinking of stuff about myself. I think this is a common problem with artists and why we have difficulty marketing ourselves sometimes. We tend to want our art to speak for us as we look down while shuffling the toe of our collective shoe and say "Aw, shucks!" Problem is... search engines can't see pictures, so we have to use words that don't come easy for a lot of us.
Here goes:
  1. I've always drawn. Drawing comes so naturally to me that I fear I discount its' value as an art form by itself. Some of my first drawings were found by my mother on the under-surfaces of tables and chairs. She'd told me not to draw on the walls but she said nothing about the furniture!
  2. I envy GOOD abstract painters.
  3. I have a weakness for images of Pegasus although I don't care for unicorns or other fairy-type images.
  4. I can finish a dream even after I'm awake as long as have never opened my eyes.
  5. In dreams I can be an animal and see my surroundings from their viewpoint, such as running through the woods as a fox, seeing through the fox's eyes. How is that possible?
  6. Sometimes I "fall in love" with a certain stage of an unfinished painting and have difficulty finishing it for fear of screwing it up.
  7. I have a life size concrete statue of a male angel with stained glass wings that I have needed to complete for 2 years! I was within a few handfuls of concrete to finish the hood on the robe when I ran out of the right kind of sand to mix it. Two days later I bought more sand but have never done it. Why? Weird.
OK, I've tagged seven more artists and challenged them to fess up some little known facts about themselves. They are: Kip Decker, Harlan, Debbie Anderson, Celia Henigman,
Joe Callahan, Lee Billings, Jackie Ivey-Weaver

Friday, November 21, 2008

Bunn Road

Just a note to let y'all know that I have been painting... not on canvas, but on walls and trim! We bought a little house on Bunn Road to renovate/rent out and its' progress has been S-L-O-O-O-W, especially with me taking time off to complete 30 new works for the last show. So hang in there with me... I shall return to the easel!

Also, thanks for your many prayers concerning my sister-in-law, Robin. She's still a very sick puppy, but we've had encouraging news that her type of cancer usually responds well to chemotherapy. Please continue to keep her in your thoughts and prayers.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Integration Curbside

"Integration Curbside"
14"x22" acrylic on gessoed panel

This painting definitely had a mind of its own! It started out as a traditional representational painting and turned into pure symbolism. I guess we have all been affected by the recent political scene with history being made as Obama becomes our first African-American President-Elect. As I was laying in the base color of purple, it occurred to me that shadows do not care what color the skin, the religion, the political party or any other personal attribute. Shadows are indiscriminate. Then the pavement striping reminded me of our flag. If you mix the colors of our flag or the colors of our two major political parties, you get purple... so the symbolism continues. This painting represents that the sun is rising on a nation that has reached a new milestone in reflecting the people that make up our population.

Note that these are observations... I'm a Ron Paul supporter, myself.

Please check out the 'different strokes' link to see all the other interpretations of the photo reference that Karin gave us this week. What a great learning tool this is!

What's up

What's up? Just taking a breather and catching up with family after the art reception last Thursday. My grandson, Joseph, and I went on a photo outing Friday and took some cool pictures of fall leaves, a bamboo forest, hay bales and the animals at Dauset Trails Nature Center. That evening my sister, Pam, and I did a quick tour through the Music Hall of Fame and then visited with artists Sam Zellner, Doug Fromm & others at The Arts Exchange during First Friday in downtown Macon before catching a late supper and 'sister time' conversation.

Saturday was busy with my grandaughter Karleen's baptism, church potluck and afternoon football games. Sunday my dad and Pam came out for lunch and visiting until mid-afternoon, then it's time to prepare for the upcoming week again. I did manage to sketch out the basics for a new painting that night, which I refined yesterday morning before delivering paintings to Macon Arts and the fox stone to Celia Henigman.

Celia owns ATG Studio, a fabulous stained glass creation/restoration business, with attached Gallery 51, Forsyth's best-kept secret art gallery. You walk through the double red doors of a plain Jane old brick textile mill building and BAM!... you are in SoHo! She has taken in new artwork for winter and rearranged... it is a definite must see!!!

The only downer was the news that my sister-in-law is ill and may have cancer. My husband took a day off Monday while she underwent tests to try to wrap his mind around the possibility that his younger sister could be dealing with such a horrid thing. I cleaned up half of our garden plot and planted collard & cabbage sets that I bought three weeks ago. Digging in dirt is my greatest stress reliever! We still don't have definitive news about the results of her tests. We ask for your prayers for Robin, please.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Reception at Forsyth Frame Shop

Many thanks to all who attended my reception last evening at Forsyth Frame Shop & Art Supply. Your enthusiastic support means so much to me! I took the camera to get pictures, but folks started coming in before we even got the refreshments out and the time simply got away from me. So I went back today and snapped a few of the set-up... minus a couple of items, but that's GREAT! It was so nice to see old friends, reconnect with some artists that I haven't seen for a while and meet some new folks that I hope will become familiar faces.
The response really made all the work of the last 9 weeks worthwhile!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Georgia Red

"Georgia Red"
Monroe County Art Alliance Gallery
30"x40" acrylic on deep wrapped canvas

Please see description of painting in yesterday's post below

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Always Wary - companion stone to Georgia Red

"Always Wary"...SOLD
10.5"x21"x1.75" acrylic on blue shalimar stone
included with painting

First I painted "Always Wary", a piece in my 'Spirit in Stone' series. These stones are painted exactly as they are found in nature... no chipping or shaping of any kind. I incorporate the shape and texture of the stone into the painted image. Then I got the idea to make a companion painting to go with the stone. "Georgia Red" is a large painting of three red fox kits with their parents. Mama fox, the same one depicted in the stone, is now trying to catch a little nap outside the den while Papa takes over guard duty. The name of this painting is as much a reference to the red clay Georgia soil as it is reference to the species of fox. The deep woods scene with bright filtered light is very much like the woods behind my house where both red and gray foxes roam.

Work in progress

It's been almost a week since I've posted... boy, how time flies! I've been getting ready for this Thursday's Artist Reception at Forsyth Frame Shop & Art Supply. The show is all set up except for a empty spot on the wall that is reserved for this large 30"x40" fox painting that I'm working on. As you can see, it's still very much a work in progress! I thought it would be finished by now, but I've had some major changes take place in it along the way. There are still some design elements that need attention and it's been hard to stay focused. I'm hoping to post the finished piece by the end of today... tomorrow morning at least. Wish me luck! And plan on coming to the show!

Thursday, October 30, 2008


16"x20" acrylic on canvas

This docked shrimp boat on Jekyll Island off the coast of Georgia was so still and peaceful and seemed to just be waiting... waiting for her owners to rest and return... waiting for her nets to be dipped into the ocean... waiting for her engines to break the silence of... waiting.

Update: This painting was chosen as "Art of the Day" on EBSQ's website for Wednesday Nov.4th. It was e-mailed to 11,229 AOTD subscribers! Wow... talk about exposure!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Exploded View

"Exploded View"
8"x24" acrylic on visual edge canvas

"Exploded View" is the name of this gorgeous thoroughbred racehorse that I had the privilege of working with for about a year. I was helping a close friend, Gayle Rawlins, whose duty it was to caretake the mares and foals on a small thoroughbred farm near my home. The fun part was handling the foals and getting them to trust people and have good 'ground manners'. The day pictured above was bittersweet... it was time to send "Exploded View", a two-year-old colt, to South Carolina to the training stables. Gayle and I had polished him until he 'was plum shiny' so that he would make a good impression. He knew something was up when the big transport trailer came to pick him up. He could hear and smell the other horses already loaded in the trailer from other farms. His days of growing up and playing were to be replaced by learning the ropes at the track. And we had three new foals to follow in his footsteps.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Alabama Cow

"Alabama Cow" SOLD
4"x12"x1/2" acrylic on visual edge canvas

Karin said to have fun with these 'different stroke' images... so I did! A flat green background and lots of color give this bovine a whimsical feeling, yet the realistic drawing and brushwork prevent her from being cartoonish. I really like the feeling of the two treatments mixed together with this subject matter. M-M-Moo!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Little Blue Heron

"Little Blue Heron"
Art on the Avenue... SOLD
4"x12" acrylic on canvas

The whole family of herons and egrets is fascinating to me... their body movements, mannerisms, intensity and patience... then there are the many color variations! No wonder that bird watching is America's favorite sport.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Three Muscovies

"Three Muscovies"
8"x24"x3/4" acrylic on visual edge canvas

The reference photo for this painting was taken on the same day as the last three paintings posted here. It was such a clear, crisp day and the shadows were awesome. Ducks on water are always interesting subjects, but add that terrific shadow cast by a tree across them and you've got that extra depth and contrast that really makes them special!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Reserved Parking

"Reserved Parking"...SOLD
8"x24" acrylic on visual edge canvas

These seagulls had parked in the space next to my car. I think that they must have chosen the parking lot instead of the beach to help soak up some of the warmth radiating from the asphalt, as the reference photo was taken on the same chilly winter day that you saw in yesterday's beach painting. I can't help but chuckle when I see these birds with one leg tucked underneath because of my youngest nephew's comment to my sister. . ." Look, Mimi! Chicken on a stick!"

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Forecast: Clear & Cool

"Forecast: Clear & Cool"
24"x36" oil on gessoed masonite

This is Panama City Beach on a very crisp, cool day in early winter looking down from the pier. The tide was low, leaving hard packed wet sand perfect for walking or hunting for shells. My goal was to capture the clarity of the air and the "temperature" of the beach at this time of year.

Saturday, October 18, 2008



8"x24"x3/4" acrylic on visual edge canvas

I lucked up on a small exotic species zoo in Panama City one fall during one of my husband's business trips where I was able to tag along. I just had my Minolta 35mm and I'd already been to the beach, the pier, the shipyard... all the places you go with a camera. I only had twelve shots left, so I took all of them on the big cats. I've never been able to be so close to the cats at larger zoos. It was almost closing time, which must have been their feeding time, because they were all up and pacing close to the fences looking toward the center building.
There were two jaguars... this one and a black coloration. What impressed me most was the fact that, though not very large, these cats were extremely thick and muscular. I'd seen many images of the jaguar's lovely rosette coat but I was pleasantly surprised when this one showed me what beautiful patterning is on the underside. That contrast of black and white just POPS!

Friday, October 17, 2008

One Paw

"One Paw"
Art on the Avenue Gallery...SOLD
4"x12"x1/2" acrylic on visual edge canvas

One Paw, the raccoon, lives at Dauset Trails near my home in Georgia. All of the indigenous species animals at the Rehabilitation Center cannot be returned to the wild, usually because of injuries that would lessen their ability to survive. In One Paw's case, he lost an arm but none of his charm! At the Nature Center, children are taught to preserve habitats and wildlife and to respect the animal's wildness... no matter how cute they are.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Congress Avenue Bridge Bats

"Congress Avenue Bridge Bats"
9"x12" acrylic on canvasboard

EBSQ's Member's Choice Award

The Congress Avenue Bridge spanning Lady Bird Lake in downtown Austin is the spring and summer home to some 750,000 Mexican free-tail bats with up to 1.5 million at the peak of the bat-watching season. It's the largest urban bat colony in North America. Each evening around sunset the Congress Avenue bats emerge like a black cloud from the crevices under the bridge. Covering the countryside in search of food, it is estimated that the bats consume from 10,000 to 30,000 pounds of insects. Giving birth in June or July, the bats and pups hang around til October when they head back south. Watching the nightly forays for food is a favorite evening activity, especially in late summer during Austin's Batfest.
This painting is my entry into ebsq's October Bat Show to raise awareness of truths about bats as opposed to myths. I chose to give the static elements crisp edges and hard colors in opposition to the moving bat's softer treatment, lending a friendlier feel to the often maligned little creature.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Feather Dancer

"Feather Dancer"
Art on the Avenue ... SOLD
9"x12" acrylic

The object of this painting was to capture movement, energy and color. This was one of the Indian dancers that I photographed several weeks ago when I was on an outing with my daughter. We had no idea a festival was being held at The Village at Indian Springs and they were doing their last dance when we arrived. The batteries were low in my camera and I was so afraid the pictures wouldn't take... I only got four! My husband and I went back this past weekend to their Indian Museum to have arrowheads identified and discovered that we have one broken projectile that is paleo-Indian... approximately 13,000 years old! Wow! They scanned, measured and cataloged information about it. They also suggested we might want to donate it to a museum later.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Black-eyed Susan

"Black-eyed Susan"
Art on the Avenue...SOLD
4"x6" acrylic on visual edge canvas
EBSQ's Patrons Choice Award

This sweet little painting is my entry into the ebsq 'Flower of the Month' contest. Normally, when rendered this up close, a butterfly takes center stage. I wanted the rudbeckia to be the main focus, so I muted the butterfly somewhat so that it would be more of a design element than an eye-catcher. The coneflowers in my yard reseed freely and this one popped up under a lavender butterfly bush. I really like the color combination.
Be sure to see all the entries this month at ebsqart.com and check out my fuller portfolio while you're there!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Sketching from live model

"Valerie"... nfs
14"x18" pencil on paper

I had the opportunity to sketch from a live model ... always a good thing since I paint a lot from photo references in my studio. Valerie was a wonderful model! I couldn't believe that she could maintain that mischievous twinkle in her eye. I've modeled before and it's NOT easy. Sometimes it seems hard to squeeze these purely learning/practice times in. Glad I got to this day.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Blue Ram

"Blue Ram"

4"x12"x1/2" acrylic on visual edge canvas
EBSQ's "Art of the Day" Nov. 22, 2008

My reference for this Dall Sheep ram was typical winter grays against a busy rock backdrop of more grays. Knowing how brilliantly blue the upper sky can be in winter, I chose to pretend this proud ram was on top of his mountain overlooking his domain. With this small format, he is edited down to the elements that interested me most, which are the swirling texture of the horns and the intent expression in the eye. Limiting my palette to only four colors helps intensify the editing.

Friday, October 10, 2008


"Buddies"... SOLD
8"x10" acrylic on gessoed masonite

Buddy is my son's part-Siamese rescue cat who has a delightfully smug expression. Sitting in bright winter sunlight in our south-facing windows, he is the perfect subject to explore all the lovely variations that can be expressed in the color 'white' and the shadows cast by such strong light. Sunlight shining through his ear gives a strong punch of warmth to an otherwise cool color palette. I used two poses of Buddy to double the fun, so the title has a double meaning, too.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Forest Floor

"Forest Floor"... nfs
11"x14" mixed media on paper

This painting is a combination of pencil, colored pencil, oil sticks and watercolor. I created an embossed effect by tracing around the leaves in pencil after applying the watercolor. I like the variety of textures the mixed media achieves which reflect the difference between the dead leaves and the ones that are alive. Nice!