Friday, July 17, 2015

660. Gift of Love

My husband is one of a kind.  He buys flowers for me each and every week, taking great care to select flowers for the bouquet.  He encloses a little note with something pertinent for the day/week.  I particularly loved this combination of coral roses and lavender roses, and liked how it looked in the red dining room.    Yep, he's a keeper!

"660.  Gift of Love"
acrylic - 8x6 in

Thursday, July 16, 2015

659 Old Fashioned

More of Vicki's beautiful hollyhocks.  They are all beautiful!

"659 Old Fashioned"
acrylic - 8x6 in

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

658 Vicki's Hollyhocks

I've really REALLY enjoyed painting these hollyhocks, and I am sure there is at least one more painting in my future.  There are so many exciting learning opportunities to paint the lights and the shadows caused by the bend of the delicate petals.

Vicki has them in such a perfect place for passers-by to see in her cottage style gardens---simply beautiful!

"658 Vicki's Hollyhocks"
acrylic - 8x6 in

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

657 Reminiscence

My neighbor, Vicki is a fabulous gardener and I just realized today that she has hollyhocks growing in her garden!  Hollyhocks remind me of my childhood as we had them growing so tall in the alley behind our house when I was growing up.  I remember the bees especially liked their nectar.  Their beauty has stood the test of time.

Side note:  I painted this entire painting upside down.  Don't ask me how that happened, I don't even know, but it did.  I just know that I signed it and something felt wrong....could be that the pollen defied gravity. 

"657 Reminiscence"
acrylic - 8x6 in

Saturday, July 11, 2015

655 Public Enemy Number Two

Oh, they look so cute scurrying to and fro, don't they?  HA!  Not when they are in your kitchen!  Yep, Alvin somehow made his way into our house, and scared the living daylights out of me.  Neighbor Larry came to the rescue, but admitted he was beginning to think I was imagining things, because he didn't actually see the little guy at first, who wasn't so little, by the way.  From my vantage point of standing on the kitchen chair, I saw the chubby guy squeeze his body through the pet gate grid.  It was like a cartoon.  If only I was composed enough to take a video.  Alvin enjoyed his meal of peanut butter and Italian bread stick and was let back outside later that evening. 

"655 Public Enemy Number Two"
acrylic - 6x6 in

Friday, July 10, 2015

653 Public Enemy Number One

Okay, maybe the title is just a little dramatic, but mention rabbits to my gardening friends and they turn crazed.  My bachelor's buttons and liatrus didn't have a chance and my swiss chard and marigolds are chewed to stubs. 

"653 Public Enemy Number One"
acrylic - 6x8 in

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

653 Frilly Lily

I saw this lily in Chicago, not your standard day lily, as it has more petal layers. 

"653 Frilly Lily"
acrylic - 7x5 in

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

652 Karen's Lilies

My neighbors across the street have a beautiful rain garden.  Something is always blooming, except in Winter, of course.  Karen loves the color orange, and so do I. 

"652 Karen's Lilies"
acrylic - 7x5 in

Monday, July 6, 2015

651 Around the Block

"651 Around the Block"
acrylic - 7x5 in

Friday, July 3, 2015

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

649 Girlfriends

I'm sure at one time or another, every artist is asked, "How long did it take you to paint that?"  Very wise Jean Leigh of The Leigh Gallery in Chicago suggested to say, "Thirty-nine years (my age, HA! wishful thinking) because it has taken a lifetime to get to the point where we can paint as we do.

For many months I have been studying sky/water/boats, boats being very foreign to me other than through casual observation.  A dear friend put forth Herculean effort and many, many hours to help me revamp and organize my Penthouse (attic) studio, and she would not accept a penny for it.  She suggested she might like my little Door County plein air painting of the Fish Creek Harbor, which was so awful that it is now gessoed over and a different subject.   I've wanted to give her something I can be proud of and that she will be happy to hang in her home.

Yesterday I went back to the Harbor near the Sailing Center looking for more lessons and inspiration.  The sailboat in this painting was oddly floating this way and that, even in circles, seemingly with no real purpose or guidance.  Upon closer look, it was clear that in that boat were five women without a care in the world, just laughing and floating around within the boundaries near the North Gap lighthouse.  I came home and spent hours studying the photos and drawing the different images I had taken, carefully studying the angles.  I got no painting done, other than to correct Pepper's eye from the previous day's painting and I was frustrated.

Today, I decided to try once again and as I was painting,  I thought about those women who were having such a wonderful time on a beautiful June day, and I was disappointed that I allowed myself to get so frustrated over sails, water, and sky.   That was the real lesson I learned yesterday at the Lakefront.  I know this is not a perfect painting, and I may have more work to do.  Honest husband critic says, "Nothing special."  It has the elements that say "Milwaukee," and in this case, the amount of time it took me to paint it was incalculable, yet worth it in my mind.