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Sunday, December 31, 2017

Roseate Spoonbills, Giclee Prints on Canvas


This is the painting I did for International Artist Magazine's March 2012 issue. I sold the original last year, but I now have giclee prints available in my Etsy Shop at varying sizes and prices. These beautiful birds were hanging out in the Everglades, feeding in the mangroves. They are such a contradiction, with their funny spoon faces and their exquisite plumage. Perhaps God didn't want them to be too vain.

Carmen

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Suzanne and Laddie, 11x14, Oil on Canvas, Original Painting

Not For Sale

My daughter Suzanne lost her beloved horse, Laddie, this year. I know this painting will make her smile and cry at the same time. Laddie is deeply missed.


Carmen

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Lining It Up, 11x14 Original Oil Painting on Canvas Panel

Not for Sale

This is our grandson Reece, age 14 when the photo was taken, lining up a putt. His father and son activities have always included ATV racing, hunting, fishing, baseball, etc, but as far as sports go, he fell in love with golf and is really good at it. His dad is the golf team coach. What a good dad.

Carmen

Monday, December 18, 2017

Original Oil Painting, "Cowboy," 11 x 14 Oil on Canvas, Mexican Vaquero


20% off and Free Shipping! Sale ends December 20th.

This cowboy was in the center of San Miguel de Allende, Mexico with his horse, watching the celebration going on in the plaza.

Carmen

Sunday, December 17, 2017

SALE 20% off and Free Shipping, Oil Painting on Canvas Panel, Stepping Stones, 5x7 Landscape


I love the play of light and shadow on this scene. This is a wonderful memory from our artists' retreat in Boone, North Carolina. North Carolina enticed our member Cindy Michaud to move there, and Carol Schiff is soon to follow. I love to visit the mountains, but when winter comes I like living here by the beach.

Carmen

Friday, December 15, 2017

A Happy Memory of the Pieces of Eight, Feminine Mystique, 2008

Our painting group, Pieces of Eight, formed in 2007. In March of 2008 we had a sale to benefit the Women's Center of Brevard. This is a montage of a project we had been working on, paintings of past masters in art.

Our artists were, clockwise from top left, Suzanne Pieffer, Denette Schweikert, Jini James, Carol Schiff, Carmen Beecher, Mary Warnick, Cindy Michaud, Donna Vines.

Copying the masters is a wonderful exercise. For our big auction item we collaborated on "The Kiss" by Gustav Klimt. Each person painted a section or two.

 The event was held at Alla Prima Salon on Highland Avenue. We have had several changes of members since then, but we look back fondly on this lovely benefit for the Women's Center.




Sunday, December 10, 2017

Original Oil Painting on Canvas, Ocean Clouds, 8x10 Seascape


There was a heavy cloud in the foreground as I stood on the beach, and bright stripes of sunlight farther out to sea. Colors in the ocean are all about what the sky is doing, and I love when it takes a dramatic turn.

Carmen

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Natchez Trace, Original Oil Painting Landscape of National Parkway, 6x6, Beautiful Highway , FREE SHIPPING in US


The Natchez Trace runs from Nashville to Natchez, and its history goes back to prehistoric times. It is a wonderful way to travel through beautiful country, and there is little traffic. 

This painting is part of my 20 percent off, free shipping sale on Etsy. Sale ends December 20th.

Carmen

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Everglades Spoonbills, Prints, Giclee on Stretched Canvas, Roseate Spoonbills


When winter comes to Florida, I get that urge to go to the Everglades. Sometimes I get really lucky and get a picture like this. I love Spoonbills, with their luscious pink plumage and their comical faces.

This is a high-quality giclee print on archival canvas, from an original oil painting.

Carmen

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Crossed Palms Giclee Print, Florida Beach Scene


I'm always painting seascapes, but I like this one where the water is secondary and the dunes and palms are prominent. I'm so lucky to live by the beach.

This painting is sold, but I am offering giclee prints on stretched canvas in my Etsy Shop. Various sizes are available. The prints are on archival canvas and very difficult to tell from an original oil painting.

Carmen

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Oil Painting, St. Johns River, 9x12 Original Oil Painting on Canvas Panel


This is how the St Johns River looked after Hurricane Irma. The river rose to such a high level that the airboat we were in could go to places that were usually inaccessible. This is a 9x12 original oil painting, signed and ready to frame.

Carmen

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Christmas Sale, All Original Artwork, Oil Paintings and Collage


I am having a sale in my Etsy shop, and I want to use words like "HUGE," "PRICES SLASHED," and "NOT SOLD IN ANY STORES," but all you really need to hear is the magical: "FREE SHIPPING." Those are the words that always make me jump to attention. Not only that, but I am discounting all original art 20%.

The sale starts November 20th and ends December 20th. Just remember 20-20-20, the dates and 20%. These are one-of-a-kind paintings and you can shop in your jammies and avoid the crowds.

Carmen

Friday, November 17, 2017

Original Oil Painting, "Horse Country," 18x24 Equine Oil on Canvas


I was driving with my daughters on a back road near Ocala, Florida when I saw this scene. It was so peaceful, and the hanging moss gave it even more of an air of serenity. Some of the best horses in the world are bred in Florida's horse country.

Carmen

Monday, November 13, 2017

Hot Air Balloons, 8x10 Original Oil Painting, Skyscape on Canvas



I decided I wanted to just paint clouds. When I was done it looked like it needed something more, so I added hot air balloons to punch it up. I'm happy with the result, but I think the balloonists had better head home, because the weather doesn't look so good.

Carmen

Friday, November 10, 2017

Elbow Cay, 11x11 Watercolor Print, Sailboat in Seascape

Elbow Cay in the Abacos Islands is spectacularly beautiful. Scenes like this are common, and even the pastel-colored houses and electric brightness of the bougainvillea are breathtaking. I could happily spend a lot of time there. Another plus is: no cars. You can go everywhere in a golf cart. To top it off, the food is delicious. Elbow Cay is a little jewel of an island.

Carmen

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Whitewater Grannies, 11x14 Pen and Ink Drawing, Cartoon of a Real Event


This is the tenth anniversary of the first Pieces of Eight artists' retreat, when we went to Carol Schiff's home in North Carolina. The highlight of the trip for Denette, Donna, Carol and me was our whitewater rafting adventure in the Nantahala River. We had some trepidation at first, but soon became confident and--truth be told--smug. We had a great time until we hit something called The Slot, which is a little waterfall that eats rafts. I saw Donna fly by me and reached out to catch her, not realizing I too was airborne. We were rescued by a kindly man in a boat we had earlier complained about going too slow! Shame on us! As we met again on the shore, Donna said, "We have bonded over a near-death experience!"
Below are our Before and After photos. Notice we have no helmets? Safety precautions were sadly lacking but we were clueless.
I had one of those cheap underwater cameras sold in drugstores, so we got to commemorate the moment. 

Carmen

Friday, November 3, 2017

Free Range Rooster, 6x8 Original Painting on Canvas Panel


This rooster was observing me while I was painting a building. He proved to be a more attractive subject than the building, and I really loved the colors in his black feathers where the light caught them. He reminds me of the traditional Portuguese Roosters done in ceramic.



Carmen

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Ghost Ship, 20x20 Oil Painting on Canvas


After Florida was hit with Hurricane Irma, this sailboat was found washed up on Melbourne Beach. Authorities eventually discovered that the boat came all the way from Key West, hundreds of miles away. Aboard, oddly enough, were two mannequins, a large velvet rose, and a sign that declared, "beatings will continue until morale improves." 

Carmen

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Windmill, 6x9 Mixed Media on Paper, Bronze and Black


I painted good-quality watercolor paper with bronze acrylic paint, then used liquid medium to transfer the windmill from a magazine print. I added the tulips to make it more interesting. It's too bad that the metallic effect of the bronze can't be fully appreciated when looking at it online.

Carmen

Monday, October 23, 2017

Mixed Media Artwork, "Mantilla," 8x10 Matted


This is a mixed media piece on watercolor paper; the art measures 5x7 inches, and with the mat the outside measurement is 8x10. I used liquid medium to transfer pictures to the paper, and pen and ink to finish getting the effect I wanted. The background is metallic gold acrylic. 
 
After finishing a big illustration job that has taken almost a year, it was fun to try some new art techniques. Some succeeded, some failed, and now I'm ready to get back to squishy oil paints. 

Carmen




Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Oil Painting on Canvas Panel, "Orange Blossom Special," 8x10


I grew up in Central Florida, where the orange was King. There was nothing like walking through a grove in bloom, with the lovely sweet smell of blossoms filling the air. Most adults in my town worked in the citrus industry, including my grandmother, who would walk the half-block to the packing house every day during the citrus season. She had the world's shortest commute. She also had a small orange grove, and in our yard grew avocados, limes, tangerines, loquats, and cherries. I wish I had those things now, especially our huge avocados. We didn't even know what guacamole was back then.

Carmen

Friday, October 13, 2017

The Farrier, Watercolor, 20x28


This is a blast from the past, one of my rare watercolors. I still like it. Working people make wonderful subjects; in fact, I did a whole series of them as a commission once. I think this is my only painting where the rear end of a horse figures prominently, but I hope your eye is drawn to the hardworking farrier.

Carmen

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Statue of Liberty, "Mother of Exiles," 9x9 Pencil Drawing


We are all familiar with the words," "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free...," but here is the whole poem, identifying the Statue of Liberty and America as Mother of Exiles:

THE NEW COLUSSUS

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame

Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
MOTHER OF EXILES. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.

"Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.

Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

--Emma Lazarus 

In view of recent events, this is my interpretation of the Mother of Exiles.

Carmen

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

O My Papaya, 5x7 Oil on Canvas, Landscape Daily Painting

SOLD

If you want something easy to grow, buy the biggest, nicest papaya you can find and plant the seeds. Just throw them down if you want, some will sprout. I ended up with too many trees, and let them get too tall, and I had fruit I couldn't reach. If only I could grow tomatoes that easily! I am a complete failure with tomatoes.

I like the light in this painting; there was a storm approaching and the sun was shining on the trees, making them a very bright light green. 

Carmen

Monday, August 7, 2017

Home from Vietnam, 9x12 Graphite Drawing, Portrait of Father and Child


This was absolutely a labor of love. Our dear friend Ben was terminally ill, and his daughter Debbie posted this photo from her childhood, taken when he had just returned from Vietnam. I loved everything about the photo and just had to draw it for her. The week I finished, Ben left us. I'm so glad I could portray this happy moment in the life of this wonderful man.

Carmen

Monday, July 31, 2017

Small Still Life, "The Last Azalea," 3x4 Oil on Wood, Framed, Floral Painting


 We were at Bok Tower in Lake Wales, Florida as Spring was waning, and this flower was stubbornly hanging on. I painted it as a tiny painting in a dramatic frame. 

Bok Tower is on Iron Mountain in Central Florida. Florida is very flat everywhere but that area, and folks from Tennessee would laugh at Iron Mountain being called a mountain; however, it is an anomaly in such a flat state, so deserves a dramatic name. Bok Tower used to be one of the Big Three tourist attractions; the other two were Silver Springs and Cypress Gardens. Every drugstore had postcards with those three displayed. That was before Disney came and changed everything. Cypress Gardens is now Legoland, Silver Springs is a state park, and Bok Tower is still as beautiful as it ever was. A side attraction near Bok Tower is Spook Hill, where you can put your car in neutral and it rolls uphill.

Carmen

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Sunrise on the Dunes, 6x8 Original Oil Painting, Seascape with Sunrise


Florida sunrises are amazing, and seem even more so during thunderstorm season. We get all sorts of weather phenomena this time of year, and the rain is a welcome relief from the awful heat. Our pool was 90 degrees the other day, but after the rains it is 80 degrees. A big difference!

Carmen

Monday, July 17, 2017

Caricature of Dave, 8x10 Pastel Portrait

I've been through all our closets now, so I don't think I'll be finding any more new art forms. This one is Dave Schotter, Air Force NCO from Indiana, who regaled us in the Graphics Shop with stories about the Shoe Tree and the Squirrel Hunting Convention. Those days were my best memories in 31 years of government service.

Carmen

Monday, July 10, 2017

Caricature of Lamar, Pastel, 8x10

This is another blast from the past, a caricature of Lamar Walker, my friend and coworker at the Air Force Photo Lab in the 80s at Patrick Air Force Base. I really got into caricatures for a while, but I eventually got over it. This was a farewell gift when Lamar was transferred to another base.

Carmen

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Caricature of Suzanne, Pastel, 11x14

Due to our closet remodeling, I recently discovered some caricatures I did years ago. This is my daughter Suzanne in her poofy blue dress in the 80s. I was still working for the Air Force then and I did many caricatures of retiring VIPs. I moved on to oil painting, and now, to book illustration. Since I'm too busy to paint much, I'll be posting more of these "oldies" for a while.

Carmen

Thursday, June 29, 2017

The Old Folks, 5x7 Oil Painting on Canvas

Sold

These little people were gifts from my son when he was stationed in Okinawa. They are two of my favorite things, and so cleverly done. I really enjoyed painting them. 

Carmen

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Storm Watch, 6x8 Original Oil Painting on Canvas Panel, Seascape



One of my favorite dramatic lighting conditions is what we have been having the past few weeks: a dark and threatening sky as a backdrop, with a bright, sunny foreground. In this case, the sailboat might want to get to port as quickly as possible. After our big Florida drought, we should be thankful for all the rainstorms.

Carmen

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Halie and Bunny, 12x16 Oil Painting, Portrait of Child


My granddaughter is an adult now, but I painted this when she was a child and very attached to her bunny. It went everywhere with her. She was so funny and so happy-go-lucky, she kept me laughing. I miss those days.

Carmen

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Natchez Trace, 6x6 Original Oil Painting Landscape



The Natchez Trace is a beautiful highway that once was a trail tracing back through 10,000 years of American history. We discovered Meriweather Lewis's grave on the Trace, at the site of the inn where he died. There is little traffic and no big trucks on this road that stretches from Nashville to Natchez. It is an American gem.

Carmen

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Watermelon and Iced Tea, 14x11, Collage on Canvas Panel Still Life


This collage is made entirely of paper torn from magazines and fixed to a canvas panel with liquid medium. It makes me think of a summertime barbecue. I must thank my friend Fay Picardi for finding all those beautiful pink pictures in a fashion magazine. They were perfect for my watermelon.

Carmen


Friday, June 2, 2017

The Gondolier, 8x10 Oil Painting on Canvas Panel, Scene in Venice


One of my favorite places I've ever visited is Venice. Its ancient beauty is the stuff of dreams. The only vehicles are boats, including fire, trash, buses, and commuter vehicles. Where else do you see office workers carrying briefcases and standing in a gondola?

Carmen

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Ready for my Closeup, 24x30 Oil on Canvas, Portrait of Woman

 
This is my dad's cousin Florence Chumbecos, who was a chorus girl on Broadway. I had a couple of her publicity shots but didn't know her last name. My cousin Vicki, who lives in Virginia, discovered our side of the family a couple years ago. She never knew we existed, and we have been solving genealogical mysteries via emails to each other. Neither of us knew Florence's last name, but Vicki found it through some detective work, and she found an article written by Florence about dancing with Fred Astaire. It was just like the movies: the lead dancer got sick, Florence filled in and danced in the role for a year. Mr. Astaire was just like you'd think--the nicest of men. Here is the article: http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/23