Tuesday, September 27, 2011

A BIG Milestone - 11 Paintings Selected for the New Cottage Hospital

This will be my most recent milestone and my biggest one yet!  Last year I was one of the artists selected on the Central Coast to have my paintings grace the walls of the new Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital that is currently under construction.  Its doors will open in late December 2011, if all goes as scheduled. As I write this my paintings are currently being reproduced into large Giclee prints that will be beautifully framed and hung in the lobby, corridors, patient and conference rooms.  
To have my work on public display and have the recognition and all that this may lead to could be significant.  To have my paintings on display and to be a contribution of evoking messages of hope and healing for patients, visitors and staff of this institution for so many years to come (even after I’m gone) is the greatest gift of all for me.  It hasn’t all completely hit me yet, but at the end of this year it will be one of the happiest times in my art career.
In the following are eleven Santa Barbara scenes that were selected.

Barnsdall Rio Grande Service Station

Spanish Hacienda

Santa Barbara Airport Terminal

Courtyard at the Santa Barbara Mission

The Courthouse of Santa Barbara

Cabrillo Boulevard

Sailing in Santa Barbara

The Arlington Theatre

Mission Fountain

Meridian Studios Reflections

The Mission of Santa Barbara

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Artshow on the Beach

Since 1993 I have been at the Santa Barbara Arts & Crafts show here in Santa Barbara, California where I live.  I have only missed days when it is raining or because I've taken off on a trip.  That's been some serious dedication.  The show runs every Sunday all year-round.   I call it my “other office”.  I meet people from all around the world who come to this tourist attraction and I’ve shipped countless paintings all over the world back to them.

In the following are some pictures of me and other artists in the show with me who have shared and continue to share this "art show life" with me.  Some are still here and some have moved on to other opportunities or have retired. I can see myself still down here when I'm old, since I love the social aspect of it too.  And, what is there not to like?  I’m sitting next to the palm-lined ocean and boardwalk and the views are wonderful.  When I pack up my booth late in the day, I'm enjoying the sunset on the ocean.

Below is me at my art booth in 1999 or so.  I confess,  my hair has never been this long. I had on a pony tail hair extension. From one Sunday to the next I would either have really long hair or my regular length and really confuse people. I enjoyed the reactions and compliments I received on my beautiful long blond ponytail.

Here I am in the late 90’s with three fellow artists in the show with me.  I’m the one on the left wearing my John Lennon glasses.  What was I thinking? Then we have Mirella, Kay and Barbara.

Here I am with James, Kooki and Tom 2002.  Tom Styvinski is a great photographer and is still in the show.  James Malia does characatures and is so great at it. He left the show years ago and now has a steady clientele of celebrities and just to busy for us anymore. Not only does he draw caricatures, but he kept us all entertained during the slow times with illusionist tricks he performed. Kooki who's a painter left the show years ago but remains painting.   And yes, she could be "kooky at times".   Look at the view behind us of what we enjoy while showing our paintings.  Now can you understand why I've been down here so long?

Here’s Hussein in 2000, sitting just to the side of his art booth. He’s a really great oil painter and wish I had a photo of his work to show you.  You’ll just have to come down to the show to see for yourself. His work is an old classical style and so very realistic. I believe he’s right up there with the masters with his incredible skill as a painter.  He loves feeding the pigeons after he gets all set up in the early morning for the show and before all the customers come rushing in. He’s still doing it today and he’s well into his 80’s now.

Here’s my very close friend Erin Williams who is in the art show with me. This is actually a picture of her at a different show we did together.  She’s a top-notch watercolorist, and I’m not just saying that because she’s my friend. www.erinwilliamswatercolors.com/

Here’s me in my booth with my new “Zen Works”  If you visit my website you will see a portfolio of these works. This was around 2007. I’m still going more in this direction as of today, although if you see in my other portfolios I have a completely different style too, which I know, confuses some people. Maybe someday all my work will blend into one look and style, but perhaps not.  I love growing, discovering, experimenting and evolving. That's exciting to me. 

Here’s my booth today in 2011 with some of my more realistic scenes of Santa Barbara. I left the Zen Works at home and try to display them separately so customers don't get confused. When there's more than one style then some think I'm representing two different artists. I'm hoping that over time my two styles will blend into one recognizable style of mine.  If not, that's okay because for me it's more important to explore and experiment and enjoy the process than to have a "brand" that they say is so important in order to be recognized. But, I think by now people recognize me.


Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Paintings from my Rockport Days

Here was one of my projects when I was attending Montserrat College of Art back in the late 80’s.  I used gouache paint for this one. It was my first hand as Trompe-l'œil, pronounced “tromp loy” which in French means 'deceive the eye'. It's a technique involving extremely realistic imagery in order to create the optical illusion that the depicted objects appear in three dimensions.  It might look like a real wooden box with objects in it, but it is not. It’s all painted on a flat poster board. I included a bunch of my objects from around the house. I still have the sheet of music and can play half of the tune by heart.  And, funny looking back at that shoe I used to wear.

This painting in pastel was inspired by a very frigid wintry sunset.  I kept this image in my memory after my walk there and came back home to recreate it.

Also done in pastel I created this one after my trip up to Vermont.  I do miss the trees in the fall, with their bright red, orange and yellow leaves. I’ve never seen trees so vibrant in color. The colors were amazing.

I frequently drove by these two mailboxes in Rockport to and from my house and finally stopped to take a photo of them. They have that New England charm about them, don’t they?

Last but not least this mansion that sits at Good Harbor Beach in Gloucester, Mass. I have painted this place from so many angles as a series of paintings for an exhibit. I’m just now realizing that even back then I was attracted to painting architecture. First, here's the photo that I used to do the painting.

And here’s the painting also done in pastel.  Part of my daily morning jogs were along this beach, around this mansion and over to the other side to Goucester, and old shipping town and back to my home in Rockport.

And, here I am with my kitty named Dillon. You will notice in the back of us is a large painting which is of this series of large paintings of the mansion above. All of the large series were done in oil.

And here's Dillon all covered in soot after pulling him out of the chimney.