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Sunday, May 20, 2018

All About the Clouds, 9x6 Oil Painting on Canvas Panel, Daily Painting Skyscape


This painting started out to be a cardinal (the bird, not the church office).  I went to my painting group, Pieces of Eight, with my palette all loaded with colors for painting a cardinal, and found I didn't have my photo of that cute little bird. I shifted gears and painted a cloud scene instead, using my palette of colors meant for painting a cardinal. 

Where is the red, you ask? It's there, helping make the brown. It's also in the purple of the clouds. 

Don't miss our group challenge on our blog on June 1st. It's very different from anything else we've done.

Carmen

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

At the Movies, 30x40 Oil Painting on Canvas, Transformations Exhibit


Several years ago I participated in an art show called Transformations, in which each team consisted of an artist and a poet who collaborated to produce a painting and a poem. It's amazing how well-paired each team was, because many never met before this project.

My poet partner, Jean Shepard, lives in Jacksonville, so we met in Ormond Beach to toss around ideas for our collaboration.  When I was born, we lived in an apartment inside a movie theater, and my father managed the theater. She was fascinated by the idea of living inside a movie theater. She wrote her poem from my father's perspective and also made interesting observations on time and motion. All of this gave me the idea for a painting with my mother in the center, sitting on a crescent moon, surrounded by movie stars.
Here is Jean's poem, "At the Movies."


Being two with the hope of three,
it was all they could afford,
an apartment above the cinema
where for hours each day he was a god
at work, turning day into night,
night into day with a flipped switch.
Where he revealed moments
snatched out of time
and run through a light
for believers who sat in silence below.
When two became three,
they ascended the narrow stairs
carried a pink bundle to an empty crib
watched with fascination
the arms waving, the legs kicking,
the unknowing, introverted face.
But others waited below.
He descended to darkness and the machine,
the sour smell of celluloid,
its tiny pieces of the past
curled on themselves like a  shell.
As he turned the switch on
and watched the relentless streaming
he suddenly saw how we move in the world,
how we run forward while
looking back over our shoulders
caught up in continuous flight.
Then he thought of the pink bundle above him,
the new skin, curled fingers,
the tiny feet that had not touched earth
and he was afraid.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Oil Painting, Twisted Sister, 6x6 Oil on Canvas Board, Sedona, Arizona Landscape


This tree was on a trail that goes up from the Airport Vortex in Sedona, Arizona. We walked the trail until it became so narrow and hazardous that we wisely turned back. The view was breathtaking, and so was the thin air. Below is my husband enjoying the view from the wide part of the trail.



Saturday, May 5, 2018

Nashville Days, Fun in Music City

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I feel like writing about our trip to Nashville instead of promoting a painting, so I posted my past little painting of the front of Tootsie's Orchid Lounge. Tootsie's was a hangout of Patsy Cline, Willie Nelson, and George Jones, to name a few. Below is a picture of Hap taken this week in front of the same honky-tonk, camouflaged in his orchid shirt.


I used to spend summers in Tennessee, and when we sold our house in Knoxville I felt very sad, because Tennessee is in my blood. There is something about being where it seems that everyone is nice to you; there is comfort in the kind of Southern drawl that is like warm syrup surrounding you. It's very exciting to walk down Broadway and hear good music coming out of every doorway or big open window.

Is there a state more identified with music? Bluegrass, Country, Blues, Broadway and Beale Street. Graceland, for goodness' sake. I heard a country singer say that when she was a child she assumed everyone grew up like she did, with the whole family pickin' and singin' on the porch. Growing up like that would have made me want to stay home!

Of course, the first thing we did was go to the Grand Ole Opry, and that is always a hoot. We had lunch with songwriter extraordinaire Bobby Braddock and his lovely daughter Lauren, and I'm beginning to think he is the hardest-working man in show business, at least on Music Row. We are collaborating on a big project, which I will tell you about later.

We visited Cheekwood Gardens, and in the mansion's art gallery are two significant paintings contributed by Jamie Wyeth and Andy Warhol, who painted portraits of each other. Jamie's portrait of Andy is awesome, with the most intriguing skin tones and brush strokes. Andy's portrait of Jamie is a big blown-up photo with a lot of pink acrylic over the skin. Both are very arresting, but of course the one I couldn't take my eyes off was Jamie's portrait of Andy. The images below don't do either one justice. Jamie used a lot of green in Andy's skin and got a beautiful translucent glow. Unfortunately, the photos I found online make him just look creepy, and my closeup photo at right isn't great either, but you can see some of the beautiful skin tones.


Carmen



Monday, April 30, 2018

Happiness II, Original Oil Painting, 5x7 Oil on Canvas Panel, Girl on Beach

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 This is my input to the monthly challenge on the Pieces of 8 Blog. We are copying the Fifth Avenue Gallery's idea to paint a favorite part of a previous painting. The painting I chose a portion of is below.






Carmen

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

My New Children's Book, "Dibble the Dragon," Now on Amazon

 

In my spare time I finally wrote and illustrated this little children's book that I conceived many years ago. My friend Kathy Garvey urged me to get it going, and she helped me with the icky technical stuff, so all my thanks to Kathy, one of the most generous people I know.

Carmen

Thursday, April 12, 2018

The Harpist, 11x14 oil on canvas, Figurative Art

 NFS

This young woman was so beautiful, playing such a graceful instrument, with the light shining through the window. It's so much more attractive than a woman playing, say, a cello or a trombone. However, I do love cello music in spite of the awkward knee placement of the cellist.

This beautiful musician was playing at my beautiful niece's beautiful wedding.

Carmen

Saturday, April 7, 2018

The Lacemaker, 16x20 Gouache Painting, after Vermeer

Well, looky here! I was cleaning out my studio and this lady turned up. I painted her in a college class over 30 years ago. I think the assignment was to copy a master and change the color scheme a bit, so I copied Johannes Vermeer's The Lacemaker and warmed it up colorwise. Why I used gouache, I don't know. It is not the most accommodating medium. 

Vermeer and his wife had ten children, and during an economic downturn he was unable to sell his paintings. His wife said that the stress of the situation killed him. I can understand it; if I had to live off my art and had ten children, the stress of it would probably do me in as speedily as it did poor Johannes. Below is the original of The Lacemaker. I am awed by it.

Carmen

Saturday, March 31, 2018

The Breakfast Table, after John Singer Sargent


NFS

When our painting group, Pieces of 8, first began painting together, we agreed to hone our skills by copying the masters. I love the work of John Singer Sargent, I so I copied this rather complex piece. I really identify with this woman--eating and reading at the same time.

Here is my favorite copy I did of a Sargent painting. 


Carmen

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Beach Paradise, Oil Painting on Canvas Panel, 9x6 Seascape Daily Painting


I'm running out of titles for these beach scenes. How many ways can you describe such a beautiful place? I worked on this while getting windows installed and pavers put down in the driveway. My easel was really the only place I could be out of the way, so the drills were drilling and the saws were sawing, and I pretended I was back on North Captiva Island listening to the sound of the Laughing Gulls.

Carmen