Monday, March 25, 2013

What's Your Style?

What's your style? I get that question quite often when talking about art. Honestly, I really don't know! I think that the best answer would be "Happy". I love Jane Austen and Lucy Maud Montgomery because both writers chose to write stories that had difficulties in them but resulted in happiness. They both acknowledged the sadness around them but decided, that in their work, there would be happiness. I prefer to look at life that way. I feel that there is plenty of sadness to go around in this world so when I paint I wish to put happy on the canvas.  There are a lot of artists that choose to put angst on the canvas and I respect that, it is moving and cathartic for so many. It's just not my personal style. But, what is the style you paint in? some ask. Again, I really don't know! I know that what goes on the canvas is not how I wish to paint it. I wish to paint like Renoir or Monet or so many of the incredibly talented artists I see out there everyday. What ends up on my canvas is a fantasy version of the real world.

"The Nanny McFee Tree"(sold)
It took many years for me to come to terms with my particular way of painting. It was learning to really appreciate other artists painting style that helped me . I love how one person will paint one way and another a different way. They are all beautiful in their own way. I also learned that it doesn't matter if someone doesn't like your work, because it doesn't speak to them and that's okay. Everyone has different tastes. Is the desert more beautiful than the ocean? The answer is, that they are both beautiful!

"For Karen"(sold)

The piece above, for example, was a struggle for me since it was commissioned by a dear, dear friend. I didn't want to disappoint! It is from a picture of Buffalo Mountain in Colorado. I wanted it to look just like the photo but that is not what it became. Mine is a fantasy version of the mountain. She was happy with it, but I wasn't pleased with it at the time. Now, since I have learned to embrace my own style I am happy with it. Once you accept your own style, your work significantly improves because you can relax and really paint in a happy place.  I believe that the attitude you have while working on something shows thru in the work.

The picture above is one of the pieces I am working on this week. I usually work on two pieces at a time since once the background is painted it has to dry before I can continue, then I can work on the second piece while the first is drying.  I also work on two pieces at a time because sometimes I get stuck on something and have to think about it before I move forward or at times I tire of the thousands of leaves that I may be doing in a particular piece. I need to start a second new piece. I am also going to begin truly pushing myself by working on art for a childrens book I wrote about 17 years ago but never had the courage to take on the art! I will keep you updated as I work on that! I wish for you a really happy week!

"Ski Bunny!" available at


Monday, March 18, 2013


Its Monday again! Time for an update on my projects! The one  below is finished. I finally figured out how to get the right lighting to photograph it! Celebration!

I was rather amazed because it sold as soon as I put it up in my store. I am thrilled to have it sent off to a new home already. When I was working on it my husband asked me where this painting was. I thought that was humorous because he has figured out that each painting I do comes from a place I have been. This one is Montana but I added a horse who was my friend in Georgia, so this is a well traveled piece! If you were wondering where my store is...

I'm sure you've noticed that I paint alot of trees that are bent from the wind. That's because out in the west it is common to see trees leaned over in one direction from the constant wind at their backs. Then there will be others who have not bent in the wind because they are a more flexible tree. I find this fascinating so I paint it!

"Anyone Have the Time?"

I actually never picked up a brush to paint artistically until my son was about 2 years old. Up until that time I had only drawn pictures but one night I was feeling restless and slightly distressed so after Avery went to sleep in my bed, I snuck out and found all the house paint I had in the house, then with that paint some house brushes and some kid art brushes I started mixing paint! I started a mural in his bedroom. I fell in love with painting! I painted all night and felt so much better in the morning. On top of that I got the benefit of making my son very happy! He was thrilled with his jungle in his room. I really didn't plan it out at all and when I was finished I realized I had painted plants and trees from almost everywhere I had lived without looking at any pictures. I still didn't try to paint on canvas for many years after that but I would add things to his mural now and then.

"For Jack"
  The painting below is the largest piece I am working on right now. I started it before we moved into a smaller place so it had to be put off for a bit. For now it resides at my folks house and when I visit them I work on it a little at a time. I have really enjoyed working on it. I will be just a bit sad when I finish it!

I haven't decided on a name for this one. I am going to have to think on it a bit! Thankyou for stopping for  a moment to see what is happening in my whimsical world! I hope everyone has a really great week!

Monday, March 11, 2013

My whimsical world!

Hi! If you have been following my art work for the last year or so you already know that I love to live in a whimsical world!

I thought I would use a blog to show that work as it progresses and to explain why I paint what I do.

This is not something you would catch me doing a couple of years ago! I was very shy about my art, I didn't want anyone to see it except for my husband and son. Why is that you ask? Well there are  two main reasons. The first one is that I didn't feel confident about my talent. I had never gone to art school or even took any art classes in my whole life. The only instruction I remember getting was in third grade when we still had art classes in schools. I remember drawing some birds and the teacher telling me that I had some artistic abilities. I remember that, because it seemed that I rarely had a kind word of encouragement in school so it really stood out for me.    

I spent most of my life daydreaming away. I didn't realize that it was a coping technique that I had developed. My dad would always ask me what I was 'thinking over there' and I would always say "nothing". However, I was usually drawing something in my mind and imagining a different little world or telling myself a story. We traveled alot when I was a kid since my dad was a traveling salesman and his territory was spread across most of Colorado, Wyoming, parts of Montana and at one time most of New Mexico. This gave me the opportunity to see so many interesting sights which I quickly turned into stories and pictures in my head. Which leads me to the second reason why I was uncomfortable about people seeing my art. You see many of the things I put on canvas are a part of me, they are the stories and pictures I have had in my head for a long time and when you put part of yourself out there to be seen, it can be a scary thing!    

  I have always found trees to be fascinating, they are like natures sculpture to me, they are also like a metaphor for life to me as well. They survive no matter what hits them. I have seen them grow straight out of a rock. They are twisted from the wind, rain, ice, snow and they even survive lightning strikes and sometimes fire. As I am sure you have noticed I love to paint trees! 

Here is a piece that I have been working on ...

a few more changes

and just about finished.

I struggle with photographing the art work. We just moved and I have not found the best light to photograph  my art yet. I will keep working at it! Hopefully soon I will find the right lighting!   Have a really happy week everyone!