Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Sweet peas taller than trees

My grandma, Verl, was the most talented gardener I know. Her garden was a work of art that could rival Monet's water lilies. And she mastered it every year. Every. Single. Year. Gunnison is cold and dry and growing anything at all in that climate, including children is a challenge. Grandma grew a wide variety of both flowers and vegetables in this arid area. And I'm telling you, her sweet peas were taller than trees! Her sweet peas grew with reckless abandon, always reaching up and out and every direction they could. They danced all over her garden with a grace of chaotic glory.

Sweet Peas taller than trees (2015)
Acrylic on canvas panel 6x12

Sweet peas will always remind me of my grandma (with pansies being a close second). They were always on her table during the summer to introduce the salad from her garden, summoning all the wild beasts to dinner.  

I can only hope to live my life like that of a sweet pea.........or like that of my grandma, Verl.  


Monday, March 30, 2015

Who are you?.....Who, Who, Who, Who.

During my walk to work, I noticed these very fragrant flowers that were recently planted on 14th street. I am not a gardener (yet) so I had no idea what these were. I tried to find out what they were using the Google machine, but I had no luck. All I knew is they smelled good and looked like a lilac off a bush. I had no luck with my search (which lasted all of 2 minutes before the children demanded that I feed them, pay attention to them, you know, parent them). Then yesterday, a break in the case. I was grocery shopping (by myself, YIPPEE) and noticed them in the floral area. I ran up to the florist and asked them what these flowers were.
"Oh, I know it, but it's on the tip of my tongue."
(The tip of your tongue? I need this info now, I have not time to search Google again)

"Who are you? Who, Who, Who Who. (2015)
Acrylic on canvas panel 8x8

I then lifted up the pot, looked at the sticker on the bottom.....
Well, hello Hyacinth, so nice to officially meet you. 


Sunday, March 29, 2015

Mom, I think you need to start over again.

I can always rely on my son to be brutally honest, not only with me and my art, but he's honest to everyone. The below picture started off as a rose, and ended up as poppies. Why? because as I began the rose, my son frequently interjected his honesty throughout my process. My son is the back seat driver for everything. He offers his opinion whether you want it or not.
"What is that mom?"
It's a rose.
"Ahh, it's a bit abstract. It's not so good. It doesn't look like anything.....and it's really messy."
Okay.....how's your movie?
"It's Good, I think you need to start over again, it's just really messy."
Thanks. Now watch your movie please so I can fix this. 

Poppies (2015)
Acrylic on canvas panel (8x6)

I love his honesty. I started over; scrapped the painting 3 times and then said screw it, I'm going to paint some poppies. 

"Mom, that's really good. I can tell they are flowers."
"But it's still kind of messy."
Brutally, organically, Honest. 


Saturday, March 28, 2015

Do Not interrupt a Badger game.....ever!

For those of you living under a bridge, we are now down to the elite 8 of March madness. And let me tell you in our house the Angry Peacock is intense. The Wisconsin Badgers not only have a #1 seat, but they are still in it. When the badgers play (really at any time during the year), the peacock needs no interruptions or distractions, he must use all his energy to connect & channel Bo Ryan (the coach of the badgers) to assure the Badger win (Bo and peacock are cosmically connected apparently). I really do not understand this obsession, but ALL Badger fans have it. Below is a completely accurate portrail of the look I get during a Badger game when I ask the peacock what would you like for dinner? How was your day? or Did you know the children are playing in the hallway (outside of the condo)?

Is this important? The Badgers are in OT  (2015)
Acrylic on canvas panel 7x9

What I've come to find out after being married to my wonderful husband for 7 years is that NOTHING else matters when the badgers are on.....NOTHING!!! For my lovely devoted UW peacock, Let's Go Bucky!

P.S. "If the children are already in the hallway, can you ask them to go across the street to Sam's and get me some dinner?" 


Friday, March 27, 2015

Water off a duck's back

Not too long ago, I was having a hard time, as we all do at times. My friend, Michelle, gave me great advice when I was struggling. "It's just water off a duck's back. Every time someone pisses me off or one of my patient's family members yells at me, I just tell myself it's water off a duck's back and move on. And that's what gets me through the difficult situations."

This one is not only inspired by my best friend, Michelle, but also from my new friend, Pence, who has spent just as much time listening to and encouraging me.

Water off a Duck's back (2015)
Acrylic on canvas panel 8x10

It's not always easy, life, but if I keep the image of a duck who continues to go her way; I'm pretty sure no one will drown. 


Thursday, March 26, 2015

Gumball Anyone

I found this gumball and candy machine in the Almont Resort restaurant/bar. I loved the colors of this bright candy machine in a dark bar setting. I couldn't decide if this would be a hazard for a drunk patron, chewing a large gumball, or if it would be sheer entertainment for the staff.

Gumball? (2015)
Acrylic with palette knife on canvas panel 5x7

Either way, I found joy out of it and it's location. 


Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Let's do it again....(ferris wheel revised)

I took this picture of the Ferris wheel at Elitch Gardens, almost 3 years ago, while my son & I were having a "Mother/Son" day. I had recently given birth to his sister and his entire world was shaken, flipped and stirred (not to mention my own). He had been an only child for 5 years. He had been the center of my world, the focus of my days and the point of my attention.....and now he wasn't. My time with him was split. My time was to be shared. And sometimes it was frustrating. Sometimes it was unfair and sometimes we both wanted off the ride.

As we waited for our turn, I really wasn't sure he was actually going to go on the Ferris wheel. Although, he loves a good thrill, his thrill seeking adventures has always remained solidly grounded. He is very afraid of heights. I asked him several times if he was sure this was what he wanted to do. He insisted that it was and that he wanted to get to the top and see the city. Because we were together, he was going to be alright. Because we were together, every thing would be alright.

Up We Go (2015)
Acrylic on canvas board 8x8

So, we got on with death grips held tight to each other; around & around in circles we went,  getting nervous & excited, laughing & screaming...over & over again, until the ride was over.....

 "Let's do it again mom"

Funny thing, the clouds became a part of this painting, when I accidentally dripped some tea on the painting and had to fix it....Whallah, Clouds!

Originally this blog entry was about my own journey as a novice painter, but when I revisited  this painting, I felt the story did not fully fit the picture, so I reworked the piece. 

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Crested Butte: spring visit

We recently traveled to Crested Butte this past weekend. I took my paints with me to continue with my new daily routine. I am completely inspired when I go to Crested Butte. It has a large art community, slow paced lifestyle, and I swear NO ONE ages there. This has to be where the young at heart live. Walking around the town I found these 2 restuarants tucked back behind the main strip. Next visit I will plan a date night for the angry peacock and me to check this out.

Quaint (2015)
Acrylic on Canvas Board  6x6

Another great thing about Crested Butte are all the townies. I'm not talking about all the eclectic people (which are great) but rather the main mode of transportation. Bike, as in townie bikes. 

CB Townie (2015) 
Acrylic on canvas board  7x9

And lastly, Crested Butte and the Gunnison area is inspirational in all seasons for the aspen trees.

Spring Trees (2015)
Acrylic with palette knife on canvas board 6x6 

There are many more CB pics to come. 


Sunday, March 22, 2015

So......I started a Blog. Now what?

Well, I'm only about a decade late on the blog thing. 

For the past week I have been getting up at 4:00-4:30 in the morning to paint for an hour or two before the children get up. I haven't painted since high school, 20 years ago. I recently picked up some paint, paint brushes along with some canvas and let loose.

I definitely have a few cobwebs to dust off, but overall, I love the quiet in the early morning, painting, drinking tea, and setting my mind for my day.

Pre Daily Painting: This was a painting I did for my friend, Amelia, for her 40th birthday. She is a self defense instructor, creator, mother, feminist, a true inspiration, and my first "mommy" friend. This is one of the 3 ideas that got me back into my art (the other 2 are on the way).

Beautiful BadAss (2015)
Acrylic on Canvas Paper 8x11

Daily Painting, The Adventure begins: Here is the very first painting I did for my journey into daily painting. This is the clock tower I see at 4am while I'm painting. This is the view from our balcony in downtown Denver, 27 floors up, 900 square foot living space, 2 kids, 2 cats, 2 adults. It's an unconventional adventure, it's fun, frustrating, exciting, beautiful, it's my life and it's pure joy. 

4am Clock Tower (2015)
Acrylic Palette Knife on Canvas 9x12

Sam's: Our functional kitchen, otherwise known as Sam's no.3, on the corner of our street. Living downtown, I don't cook that much. 

Sams (2015)
Acrylic Palette Knife on canvas board 8x10

On Base: I found this picture online, while I was checking on what to expect from the Rockies this year. I painted it for my son's room (He's a Rockies extremist).   

On Base (2015)
Acrylic on canvas 9x12

And now rookie, let's play ball.