Thursday, December 18, 2008

Dancing Tree

Hello, everyone! More threads have been added to bring out the texture of the tree and we have two dancing rabbits to carry along the theme. They are really hooting it up and having a jolly time! Could you ever imagine what fun could be had with an old, worn out towel!?

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Ruffles is doing much better now and is resting well, so I have time in the studio today. More branches and roots have been added to the Dancing Tree, as well as more texture on the trunk. Now, we'll be getting to the good part...making this a piece that you'll want to reach out and touch! The towels are being dismantled, sometimes a thread or two at a time, to make the delicate branches, and long strips are crimped and rolled to make larger textural parts. I'm using gloss medium diluted with water as the "glue", and the resulting piece will be sturdy and touchable. I saturate my threads or drop medium onto the surface and then lay the threads down, coaxing them into ribbons and shapes. Out of habit from working with oil pastels (very messy), I usually work in medical gloves. Hope you're having fun watching this piece come to life, and that you will click on the image to enlarge the photo and see the details better.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Dancing Tree

Hello, and sorry to have left you hanging for a few days. Ruffie, my littlest Corgi, got stepped on by one of the ponies and had surgery to repair a broken back leg. She's doing very well and is on bed rest for three weeks. Of course, I'm doing the Florence Nightingale/butler/cook/porter/maid/masseuse/dog toy provider/entertainer/potty assistant/bandage changer thing, so I haven't had as much time in the studio. However, here is the next step on the Dancing Tree. I've started incorporating the finer threads for branches and grass, and more roots are next. I think this tree is doing the Samba! How about some dancing critters in and around, and I think the branches will extend outside the edges of the canvas. If you have an old favorite garment or piece of fabric that you just can't bear to throw away, give it a new life as a piece of art on your wall! Send it along and I'll do a truly unique commission for you... you'll smile whenever you see it!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Dancing Tree

Hi, everyone! I've started a mixed media piece that, so far, is cotton threads (from old, worn out towels) on canvas. It's about 24" x 30", and I actually love the white on white, but it will probably change several times and you'll be in on those changes. I like to work in a variety of media as it keeps me fresh and open to new ideas that I can use in my more realistic paintings. I attend many workshops, given by top artists around the country, but no one teaches my main medium, oil pastel, so I extract from these wonderful teachers what I need to translate into my own medium and style. Keep the comments'd be surprised at how much they help!

Thursday, December 4, 2008


Oscar is now finished and has been happily approved by the client! The photo doesn't show the painting's true colors, I'm afraid, but you can get an idea of where the changes were made. I added warm yellow to the grass and softened the background. The shadows have added layers of cooler, softened colors and I muted the blue spot/shadow on Oscar's tongue. This has been a lot of, on to the next painting, which I hope you will also enjoy seeing come to life. Thanks for your comments, and please keep them coming!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


It's almost finished, and I hope you will point out any glaring mistakes or places where things could be tweaked a bit. The color you see isn't the true color as everyone's monitors will be different, and some colors that jump out at you are hardly noticeable in the actual painting. Anyway, please tell me if something is distracting, or the contrasts aren't right, or I need more soft edges. I softened the edges that are furthest away from the viewer, but maybe you don't like that.
I love having a panel of "critiquers"! What would make this painting better? By the way, it's 18" x 24". oil pastel on gesso board.
Many thanks!

Monday, December 1, 2008


It's December 1 and here is the next step with Oscar. I have added more layers and am still trying to get his expression just right. I hope you will send me comments, especially if I forgot a leg, eye or someting else that is obvious to you and not to me! I actually forgot to put in a horse's leg one time, but caught it at the last moment! The painting is getting close to being finished. This is when I get nervous that it's not what the client has in mind, or the colors aren't right, or the setting isn't right. A cliff hanger!
My new, bumper-pull trailer has arrived and tomorrow it goes for lettering that will announce that it's the traveling art studio of Little House Productions. It has living quarters in the front and removable horse partitions in the back. I designed it as a mobile studio and exhibition space for taking to horse shows or other venues. It even has air conditioning in the back so patrons can view art in comfort, and has a very wide entrance door from the front quarters to the back exhibition space. What fun!'s winter and cold here...Florida is sounding very nice about now.

Friday, November 28, 2008


Oscar is starting to look like he's romping, but I still haven't quite got his expression right yet. I'm confident that I will get it, however, and that he will come to life! A little too much green right now, but we'll see how I can resolve that with some complementary colors. Some shadows have been added, and the layers are building on the grass.
I'm so glad you could visit, and check back again!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


A few more colors and textures were added today and the background is starting to have some shapes. Again, these are layers and there will be many more to come. I want to portray mischief and energy in this wonderful little dog, so the eyes and posture keep getting worked on. Sometimes, I realize that the changes I've made were not good choices and that I need to repeat what was there before. This is all part of the creative process...problem solving, and trial and error. There is so much that I learn from each painting!
I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving...we have so much to be grateful for. Personally, every day, I feel like I'm the luckiest girl in the world to have the gift of another day and another opportunity to do my best and to give love, light and gentleness wherever I can.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Today, you see the facial features coming and the first layer of the background. Oscar's "person" requested greens and blues as his favorites, so I'm incorporating as much of that as I can while still allowing the final wild colors that I love to come at the end. The spirit and personality are what I most want to capture.
The heating repair people came and found that they had ordered the wrong part, so my little cocoon of a studio will have to proceed with little space heaters.
I've been asked if I listen to music while I paint and I do! I have Serius satellite radio in my studio and I'm usually tuned into Marguaritaville for prancy and lively music, with a lot of Jimmy Buffett thrown in.
Thanks for tuning in!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Oscar's Progress

Today you see more of the underlayers being laid down. It's a bit odd to see a painting at this stage, but have faith that it will make sense as more is added.
I appreciate the feedback I have received, and I hope this will be a fun part of your day to check in and see how each painting comes to life. This is also an opportunity to see new paintings before they are listed on the website for sale, so if you see a piece that you like, email me to reserve it. Oscar is spoken for, but there will be many other opportunities with new paintings coming along.
It's not too cold today, so the little temporary heaters are working well. Tomorrow is studio heat repair day! Time to take a break and go play with the two little furballs, Shetland ponies Little Richard and Butterball, who are chestnut with flaxen manes and tails, soon to be subjects of paintings.
If you have friends who would like to share in the cheerfulness, and sometimes silliness, of watching paintings materialize, please give them the blog address. I welcome all viewers!
I look forward to your comments, and thanks for watching!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Painting of Oscar in progress

Hello everyone! Today is November 23 and I am showing you a painting of Oscar in progress. Please come back often to see the updated painting as it comes along. You can give feedback and comments at, and visit my website,, to see more paintings. The heat is off in my studio so I have little electric heaters going while I work. Hopefully, the repair people will be here soon. The dogs come in to check on me, they plop down to stay a while, and I have to step over and straddle them to paint! Would I make them move? Of course not!