An artist's journal.
Here you'll find my paintings and musings, where the featured subjects could likely cover just about anything.
The last 4+ years I've been caring for my best buddy B during his courageous fight to live through cancer and it's complications. I'm tickled to report, he's getting better and I'm finding small bits of painting time again.

Looking forward to a daily celebration of life's gifts by using the brightest, happiest colors in the box!

Visitors looking for 'B's Journey', click here.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Oh Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas tree, whose lights now shine so brightly!

I started painting these trees in 2008. 
At that time, I was playing with heavy texture on canvas. I was also doing a lot of textured tree paintings.  
With this one, I sculpted the trees, sky and snowy foreground with a sculpting medium. 
I then added layers of glazed colors, coaxing the texture out of the canvas with these layers.  I started with a dark ultramarine blue/black under-painting over the whole canvas. Then I highlighted the texture with lighter layers of turquoise and white just softly skimmed upon the raised portions of texture. 
I used warm highlights on the main tree and foreground reflections. I also painted colored lights on the main tree, and dappled some of those colors in the foreground as well.

It ended up a simple, snowy winter scene, featuring a softly lit Christmas tree glowing in the snow. 
I liked it okay, but I set the canvas aside, thinking that someday I'd like to try to add real Christmas lights to the main tree. 
Well, someday came today.

Because B's Bone Marrow Transplant is just around the corner, I knew we wouldn't be able to put up our normal Christmas tree this year. (Follow B's Journey here)

I found myself thinking this last week "Wouldn't it be nice if I had a painting of a Christmas tree to hang, so at least we'd have a tree of some sort up for this holiday."
I was lamenting that I didn't have time to paint a Christmas tree painting from scratch, when I remembered this painting I'd started so many years ago. 
I found it in my studio this morning, still waiting patiently to be finished, so I set about lighting it up. I had purchased a mini light set several years ago with this idea in mind and was delighted to find I had conveniently stored them with the painting.
The texture on the canvas was really thick, which worked out great for holding the lights. I punched holes through the textured canvas and pushed the mini lights through. I then used some gel gloss medium to attach a few shiny stars in front of the tree to mimic the lights reflecting in the snowy foreground.

Okay, so now it's far more artsy craftsy than fine art, but I still like it. It will help make our home feel more festive and I have to say, it's the easiest Christmas tree I've ever put up.

This image shows the unlit mini lights poking through the canvas. The 3-D effect looks sort of neat unlit, as well as lit. You can also see some of the heavy canvas texture in this image too.

Here's a short video of the finished painting with the lights on. 

I had a frame on hand that suited the finished piece well and now, after a few hours of fun playing with this painting,  it's hanging in our home, doing it's part to help make our season a bit brighter.
And, for the first time in almost 9 months, I got to spend some time playing in my studio.
Neato deato.

Friday, February 10, 2012

My husband, my hero.

 'You've Got A Friend'
16 x 20
Acrylic on Canvas
Detail of a work in progress.

I've always thought that the kids in this painting could've been me and Brian as kids, if we'd known each other back then.
He's my best buddy in the whole world.
And he's in a fight for his life right now.

I started this painting years ago and set it aside, unfinished. Perhaps because Brian didn't want me to sell this one, and I needed to be painting things that would help pay the bills.

I'm currently still unable to paint at all (as many of you already know) because of Brian's need for full time care. There was a nano second last month, where it looked like he was getting better and I thought I'd be painting again soon, but that was not to be.

He's really, really sick right now with a disease called Myelodysplastic Syndrome. He's transfusion dependent, unable to make blood on his own because of chemotherapy induced stem cell damage to his bone marrow.

He's also the bravest, toughest person I've ever known, facing each adversity with determination and grace.

So, I thought I'd send out this request, to all of my artblog friends and others who might wander in here for a visit.

For those of you who pray, I'd sure appreciate it if you could put in a good word for our Brian. Please pray that his bone marrow starts working again.

And, also, please ask that the painful peripheral neuropathy in his fingers, that's taken away his beautiful guitar playing, also heals.

We'd sure appreciate it. 

Sunday, January 1, 2012

We make plans... and the universe laughs.

'Winter Trees'
15" x 30" x 3/4"
Acrylic on canvas  
Livingstone collection- Tucson, AZ

Happy New Year everyone!
2011 was a doozy, with many twists and turns we least expected.

My Brian got sick early in the year. So, I put away my paintbrushes and spent much of the year helping him through some really difficult stuff.

B's Journey is chronicled here.

December started out with Brian seriously ill in the hospital, but these last few weeks he's been improving rapidly.

He no longer needs constant care.

That being said, there's even a chance I may be painting again within a few days.
First I have to clean my very dusty (and somewhat cluttered) studio.
Then squeeze some paint on palette and dive in.
I'm sort of nervous and excited about that. I literally haven't painted a single stroke in over 4 months.

What if I've forgotten how?
I'm sure rediscovering painting will be quite an adventure and I'm curious to see what changes this 4 month hiatus may have created in my approach to painting in general.  I've got a ton of ideas I've been chomping at the bit to paint. New subjects, different cropping, and maybe, just maybe I will try oils for the the very first time. Oooh, scary!
I'm hoping to recap my 'Year in the Life' accomplishments within the next few weeks. I did get a lot done before Brian became ill.
I'm also taking the optimistic approach in making my New Year's list of Art Goals for 2012. I believe Brian will continue to improve and I will find more and more time for painting and marketing. I've got a ton of new ideas to help get my art out there and look forward to getting those ideas up and running.
Wish me luck.... and...
Happy Painting!!

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"There are days when I feel I could've painted the Sistine Chapel and, then, there are the days when I'm not sure I could trace a stick figure.... the only difference between these days is my state of mind"~ Jenna Millward Corkill