Tuesday, December 29, 2015

753 Teddy

This is my neighbor dog, Teddy, and a commissioned painting for a Christmas gift.  Teddy is camera shy, so this photo took some effort on Teddy's owner's part.  I couldn't have asked for a better photo to work from.
"753 Teddy"
8x8 in


Monday, December 28, 2015

752 Avery

This is Avery's official portrait, given as a gift to a special family for Christmas.
"752 Avery"
acrylic - 9x11 in


Saturday, December 26, 2015

751 Joon

"751 Joon"
acrylic - 8x10 in



Friday, December 25, 2015

750 Beatrice

This is Beatrice, one of the commissioned pet portraits that I painted as a surprise this Holiday season.  Happy Holidays to one and all!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

749 Three in a Row

I love these three trees along Lake Drive overlooking Lake Michigan. 

"749 Three in a Row"
watercolor - 4x11 in



Monday, December 21, 2015

748 Lakefront Sculpture

I am fascinated by trees of all sorts.  I consider them Mother Nature's sculptures.  I wish I knew the name of this conifer, but there are several of them at our Lake Michigan lakefront and they are so interesting and beautiful, especially the graceful nature of the branches.  I used white and black ink on this painting and made shades of grey.

The frame shown is optional and available for a very good price.

"748 Lakefront Sculpture"
ink on canvas - 8x10 in


Sunday, December 20, 2015

747 August

"747 August"
acrylic - 5x5 in



Saturday, December 19, 2015

746 The Eldest Daughter

In a family with seven children, she was the second child, the eldest daughter, born to Lebanese immigrants who came to the United States to chase the American Dream.  Throughout her life, she was faced with great responsibilities, and always fulfilled them with grace.  She was beautiful and lovely and sweet.

"746 The Eldest Daughter"
acrylic - 6x6 in



Friday, December 18, 2015

745 Welcome to the Gullah Grub Restaurant

Chef Bill Green prepares a menu filled with Gullah family recipes that will make your mouth water.  Choose from barbequed ribs, fried chicken, seafood gumbo, shrimp and grits, corn bread, peach cobbler, with lemonade and swamp water to drink.  Anthony Bourdain visited the restaurant several years ago and that put  Gullah Grub on the map.  Not only does he cook, he welcomes you at the door, and may even serve you your food.  He's quite a character and I enjoyed painting him, except for the teeth.  His salt and pepper beard gave me a little trouble, but as I have said many, many times, each new day brings a new lesson.

"745 Welcome to the Gullah Grub Restaurant"
acrylic - 6x6 in



Thursday, December 17, 2015

745 Helpful

The Art Ladies visited South Carolina a few years ago to paint marshes.  One of the highlights of our trip was to visit Beaufort and St. Helena Island, where we visited the Gullah Grub Restaurant.  The Gullah are a people rich with history and culture, living in Sea Island and the coastal regions of the South Carolina, Georgia and Northeast Florida.  Bill Green, owner of Gullah Grub welcomed all of us and not only was the food delicious, but the hospitality was warm.  Bill's young granddaughter happened to be helping out at the restaurant and was very serious about her responsibilities.  She had a face I knew someday I would want to paint, and it took some effort to get her to smile.  I wish I remembered her name. 

"745 Helpful"
acrylic - 6x6 in



Wednesday, December 16, 2015

743 Beautiful Bride

I got to thinking today that it must be a little scary for my family now that I am painting portraits, because they will never know when they will be the subject of my learning attempts.  Poor things.

Again there is much to learn and despite warnings about painting teeth, I just had to experience it.  This lovely young woman has a big smile in nearly every photograph I have of her, so I thought I'd give it a try.  I'm not going to lie, it was difficult, but I tried not to overwork or get too fussy.  Not sure I'd want to make a habit of painting teeth.

"743 Beautiful Bride"
acrylic - 10x8 in



Tuesday, December 15, 2015

741 More of Myself

This morning I woke up with a strong urge to correct what you didn't see in this painting yesterday. Although I feel a little awkward posting "myself" two days in a row, I had so many thoughts about portrait painting today that I want to share.  Just a slightly off curve or a fraction of an inch in the spacing of the eyes can blow a portrait because a likeness will be missing.  And one little thing can affect all of the expressions in the face.  For example, my husband, who has never had any creative training, yet always seems to know just what is wrong with a painting, thought I looked sad in the painting, so back to the studio I went to make myself look happier.  A little up turn of the mouth, more pouf on the cheeks and a little something to the eyes made "me" as happy as possible without starting over.  He then commented that my eyes still look sad.  Oh well.  I still learned a lot through this experience.

It occurred to me, too, that portrait painting is a powerful position to be in.  I could have given myself lips like Angelina Jolie's and a beautiful nose like Adele's.  HA!

Tomorrow a new adventure:  I will tackle painting TEETH!

Monday, December 14, 2015

741 Selfie

I suppose the title of this painting should be "Former Selfie" since this is a reference photo taken 5 years ago.  I wish I could say I haven't aged since then, but that would be a lie.  I thought it would only be fair to paint a self-portrait since I have bombed a few family portraits.  I wondered if it would be easier or more difficult to paint myself.  It was just as difficult, even though I see that mug in the mirror every day.  I need to make some adjustments to the larger painting but will do so tomorrow.

"741 Selfie"
acrylic - 6x4 in


Sunday, December 13, 2015

740 A Moment in Time

Thirteen years ago, during a summer vacation, my family visited a beautiful gallery with a lovely courtyard and gardens.  My daughter couldn't resist plucking a flower from the garden and I snapped a photo of her.   I felt so welcome there at that inviting and peaceful place, but little did I know that I would be represented by this gallery many later.  I have always loved the photo of my daughter, but now I appreciate it so much more.  I enjoyed painting her with her look of happiness and joy over such a simple and sweet little pansy.

"740 A Moment in Time"
acrylic - 8x8 in


Saturday, December 12, 2015

739 Woman With Pink Hat

A dress-up box provides lots of  photo opportunities for paintings.

"739 Woman With Pink Hat"
acrylic - 8x8 in


Friday, December 11, 2015

738 Innocence

"738 Innocence"
acrylic - 8x8 in


Thursday, December 10, 2015

737 Avery, a study

It is strongly recommended that artists paint a study of a scene portrait to get colors and proportions right.  I tend to be impatient and often skip this step, but I have learned that it takes much more time to correct errors in the painting, so the study is a very valuable tool.  This is Avery, my best friend's granddaughter. Although she looks sweet and innocent as can be, she is a feisty little girl and gives her parents a run for their money.  I just love that about her!!!

"737 Avery, a study"
acrylic - 8x10 in


Monday, December 7, 2015

736 Tightrope

I have been working tirelessly on portraits to the point of frustration.   Portraits are very tricky because if you know the person, you will see subtle errors in the painting that no one else would pick up on.  So it behooves a person like me to paint portraits of people that no one else knows.  Hmmm....

I desperately needed a break from portraits, so when Whole Foods had mandarin oranges complete with leaves, I bagged several of them with such fragile care and was eager to set them up to photograph.

Thanks to all who visited the Tall Tree Gallery Gift of Color and especially those who brought donations for our charity, Addulum Outreach, and to those who purchased gifts of artwork and cards. 

"736 Tightrope"
acrylic - 8x6 in


Saturday, December 5, 2015

735 Fifth Grade

There are some people who will always bring warm thoughts to you.  My kids' fifth grade teacher, Mr. H. will always be that person.  I was his first parent volunteer in 1993 and worked for him until he retired many years later.  For all these years, he has remembered me at Christmas with a beautiful poinsettia plant.  He is the type of teacher who adults credit with their success, having had him as a teacher in the fifth grade.  Although he is retired now, he still substitute teaches.  He is a master teacher, and a dear friend.

"735 Fifth Grade"
acrylic - 6x6 in


Wednesday, December 2, 2015

734 Best Baby on Earth

This is my daughter at 3 weeks old.  Yes, you read that correctly---she came home from the hospital with a pony tail.  The nurses thought that was cute.  You can see that her eyes had not changed color yet, which was very interesting to paint.  A baby's facial structure is different from an adults, so that was another learning experience. 

She was such a good baby, even had a hat that said "Best Baby on Earth."Today, (Thursday) is her birthday.  If you know her, wish her a happy day.

"734 Best Baby on Earth"
acrylic - 8x10 in


Tuesday, December 1, 2015

733 Loyal Friend

This painting is a gift for our son-in-law, so shhhhh.....don't tell.

Aeris is an old dog, so beautiful with her shiny black coat, and a pleasure to paint.
"733 Loyal Friend"
acrylic - 6x8 in