I recently completed a series of new, fun florals. Five of them are in acrylic and one is oil. I have coated them with with resin for a very contemporary look! They are all 30x40, on a birch cradles board. Below is a picture of one of my paintings showing the reflective qualities of a resin pour.
For the past 5 years, I am proud to say I have been juried into a prestigious Art show called Art Comes Alive. ADC, Art Design Consultants, Inc. in Cincinnati, OH sponsors Art Comes Alive, an annual fine art contest & exhibit that awards the best emerging and professional artists working in North America. The selected artists who are showcased in a final exhibit here in Cincinnati and are also awarded prizes including: purchase awards, gallery contracts, publishing contracts, solo/group shows, publicity, and cash prizes. This year, I won two awards; gallery representation and a group show. The invitation to the group show is above. I am very happy to be exhibiting with Bonita Williams Goldberg, Diane Seeman and Helene Steele at the YWCA Women’s Art Gallery. The YWCA Women’s Art Gallery was established in 1993 to empower local women artists. Although primarily serving the Greater Cincinnati area, the gallery has been proud to host several shows featuring women artists from around the world. As a forum for women’s issues relating to important YWCA programs and services, the gallery has sponsored photographic exhibits on the topics of domestic violence, breast cancer, and women and aging. It is the only gallery in Greater Cincinnati exclusively for women’s art. Admission to the Women’s Art Gallery is free and open to the public Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. For more information, call the YWCA at 513-241-7090. The opening reception is Friday, January 19th, from 6-8pm. I hope you are able to join me for the opening but the show runs through April 16, 1018. If you get a chance to see the show, please let me know what you think!
Yesterday I painted in the main hallway at the Cincinnati, Art Museum. It was a full circle moment.
I painted in front of a work of art created by Curtis Goldstein and Matt Lynch. The piece was made totally out of Formica laminate.
My favorite job long before I became a full-time painter was as the Advertising Manager for Formica Corporation. The world headquarters is in Cincinnati. I loved that job. I was able to work with great graphic designers, photographers, international magazines, display companies and printers. So the fact that the art that my painting was inspired by was made out of laminate was fabulous. Full circle moment #1.
The image, (one of 6 pieces) was of the Verdin Bell and Clocks. The Verdin Company is the landlord of the Pendleton Art Center which houses 175 artists under one roof. My studio is on the 7th floor of that building. Full circle moment #2.
Art in Bloom is a multi day event paring floral creations to works of art. I worked with Robin Wood Flowers, the premiere florist in Cincinnati.
Robin also had another career before she became a master floral arranger. Many years ago, she was the morning DJ on the hard rock station, WEBN. When I decided to leave the management side of business and go into sales, so I could have more time freedom to do my artwork, I took a job as an account executive at WEBN. Robin was part of the Dawn Patrol morning show during that same time. Robin didn't really know me, I was just one more AE in the procession of Account Executives. But when I wanted someone to be inspired by a painting and create their own work of art in flowers, it was Robin Wood that I wanted. Robin's creation was incredible! I heard many people say it was the best in the whole museum. I was amazed at how beautifully she interpreted the painting. Full circle moment #3!
I created a whimsical piece in 4 hours that was auctioned off with the money going to the Art Museum.
I also brought two pieces to display near my easel and I am happy to say that both pieces sold!
I am so excited to announce that I am going to be a part of the Let’s Face It - 2018 Team! LET’S FACE IT is a course created and hosted by Kara Bullock. It is for anyone that wants to practice creating portraits and figurative art, but is especially designed for those of you that have felt scared or intimidated to do so at some point in your life. Together, we want to share with you our strategies, tips, and techniques that we use in order to create our faces and portraits. You will leave this course feeling confident enough in your skills to never feel intimidated again! In 2018, we will be studying the different art movements and master artists from those periods!
Click here to find out more about LET’S FACE IT - 2018.
This course is not open for registration yet! However, you can read more about this course and bookmark this page so that on October 2nd, you can come back and register. What is even better is that if you register by December 4th, you will get a discount on the price! YES!!! Awesome, right!?!?
I am thrilled to be a part of this amazing team of teachers and guess what else!?!?! I get to give away one free spot in this course to one of you!! To enter the give away do the following: Sign up for my newsletter in the right hand column or the bottom of this page. Put "Let's Face it" in the comments and you will be entered!
I will announce the lucky winner on Sept. 29th - during Final Friday!
In the mean time, click here and book mark this page so that you can come back on October 2nd and sign up!!
I can’t wait to begin this journey with each of you!!!
I am often asked questions about being an artist or about my artwork. I thought I would answer the top five.
How can I bear to part with my paintings when I sell them?
I feel like I haven't painted my best painting yet. I always feel like my next painting will be my best painting so I am able to let go of a painting to make room for the next!
How do I know when a painting is finished?
For me a painting is finished when I don't see anything else that I want to change. But that doesn't mean in a month or two or a year later, that I won't put it back on the easel and give it a face lift!
How long does it take to do a painting?
I paint 6 days a week and have for many years. When I am in the zone and painting well, I always say paintings fall right onto the canvas. It can be a day or two, three days, a week. Those are my most successful paintings. Spontaneity can equal magic. There comes a point where you are working it to death. All the life of the painting is gone. It would behoove me to stop sooner!
Was I ever a dancer?
I love to paint the human form. Most buyers of paintings cannot wrap their head around putting a figurative painting on their wall that is someone that they are not related to. Even though if you walk into any art museum you will see tons of figurative paintings where the subject matter is the artist's lover, mother, muse. However, I have found that dancers cross over that mindset. No, I was never a dancer unless you count one semester of ballet, freshman year at college. But I do love to paint ballerinas. So it is often assumed that I dance.
How do I decide what to paint?
I never run out of ideas of what to paint. I have so many things that I want to paint that I am always looking forward to finishing what I am working on so I can start my next painting. Starting paintings is my favorite part of the whole process.
If you have a question you would like me to answer, email me at email@example.com and I'd be happy to answer it. Maybe even feature it in a future blog!
I have painted many ballerinas and dancers over the years. I love to paint them. In my opinion, there is no more beautiful figure than that of a dancer. I have done photo shoots with dancers that I have hired to model. I also shot 2,000 photos of the Cincinnati Ballet. But I need new material! I am about to take a figurative workshop in Portland, OR and I would love to have new dancer photos to work from. If you are a dancer, know a dancer, married to a dancer, mother of a dancer, whatever, I would love to see your photos. You can email them to me here. I encourage you to forward this post to other people you may know who dance. I will post my work after the workshop and give you photo credit! I can't wait to see your pics!
My new favorite app isn't really an app. It's a Chrome extension. If you're like me and you have the best intentions to stay up with deleting your email, but don't and day after day, the emails pile up, this is the app for you! Thanks to Tim Ferriss, I am now using the email game to sort through and quickly eliminate emails. You can do up to 100 at a time and the little emoji will let you know with it's facial expression when you are taking too much time. I'm still whittling mine down. But I started with over 4,000 in my inbox!
Headspace is an app that you will love if you've ever tried to get a meditation routine into your life. Even if you only use it at night to go to sleep. There are different meditations for health, relationships, performance, etc. I think you start off with a free version. I have upgraded to the paid version which is a yearly subscription.
I also like Sleep Fan if you need to turn your brain off and go to sleep but you are hearing the neighbor's dog bark, ambulance sirens, house settling, whatever. You can set a timer for it to turn off. It's a free app. There are lots of them for sleep. This one is considered pink noise instead of white noise. Pink Noise is random noise having equal energy per octave, and so having more low-frequency components than white noise. Yea, I looked it up! Another pink noise you might like is Rain, Rain.
For my artists friends out there, you might like value viewer. It's a paid app - $4.99 but it's worth it. Whether you are a pleine air painter or a studio painter, it comes in handy to see a notan (black or white image of your photo), a full value view and a view in 3 values. You can take the photo with the app or upload one from your phone or ipad. It's a great way to check a composition, start a painting or to take a photo of your painting to see where you have the values wrong! It's a few years old and every time I open it on my iphone 6s, it says the app needs to be updated. But it works just like it ever did. Mark Putnam, if you are reading this, time to update!
My Husband and I live in an area of Cincinnati with a lot of restaurants within walking distance. Whenever we don't have plans on the weekend, we walk to a local restaurant, sit at the bar and watch sports. The TV Guide app has a great sports tab that not only tells you what time the game is on, it lists all of the stations by cable company. Very helpful!
From time to time, when I have another group to add, I'll blog about this again. What apps do you love? Leave me a comment, so I can check them out.
I do the one thing that "they" tell artists never to do. I change my style all of the time. Last spring, I did a whole series of florals. Colorful, happy, mixed media florals. I enjoyed every moment of them.
I also have done many, many ballet oil paintings over the years...more on the realistic side.
And lots of ladies on the beach. Also oil.
Now I am totally focused in two polar opposite different directions.
Direction #1 is doing very colorful fluid acrylic paintings in larger sizes. (36x84, 36x72, 48x46 and so forth.) They are scary and much harder than I ever imagined. They are unforgiving and have a mind of their own.
Direction #2 is very textured, much looser mixed media (gesso, charcoal, acrylic inks) on half and full sheets of watercolor paper (15x22 or 30x22). They are then mounted to cradled birch.
It's so fun doing bipolar artwork! There's no rules in my world! Which do you like the best?
I loved this post from Huff Harrington. And, no they don't rep me...Yet!
Recently, at the kind invitation of one of our artists, we gave a presentation to a large group of artists, collectors and art enthusiasts at a prestigious club in Atlanta about breaking the rules when you’re buying art. We know there are lots of preconceived notions that people have about buying art, and we love to stir them up! Despite our initial jitters about speaking to such a grand audience (and a looming fear that some of our personal emails would pop up on the big screen while we were shuffling through slides!), we had a great time breaking the rules for this nice audience and decided to share the presentation with you.
So here are the top 10 rules we love to break when buying art — and the one overriding rule that we will never ever break.
Old Rule: A large room needs a large painting (and a large painting needs a large room). Wrong! Look how impactful it is when you put a large painting on a small wall, like hung between the two windows below:
Be impactful! Huge painting fills space between two windows, designed by William McLure, from Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles.
Be daring! Huge painting in small room creates drama, from The Minimalist blog
Set the tone, like this beautiful painting does in a Suzanne Kasler designed entry
from Elle Decor.
Old Rule: A small space needs a small painting, or small paintings need to be in small rooms. Wrong again! You can add visual interest by building around the painting, creating a collection of smalls on a big wall or hanging the painting alone on a big wall:
For a big space and a smaller painting, fill in around it! Painting by Andrea Costa in
Michael Ladisc’s home , from AH&L.
Have fun with it! Small painting creates drama and humor, from State of the Art blog
Layer groupings of small paintings or photographs on a shelf to create their own visual painting space, from State of the Art blog
Old Rule: Paintings need to be hung, over mantels, or consoles, or on walls. Wrong! You can have so much more fun and flexibility if you don’t limit yourself to just hanging art.
Who says you need to hang paintings on a mantel? Layer them, like William MclLure did
(from his website)
Or stack them … even in front of a window! From AH&L.
Or lean them on the floor, as Alabama designer Betsy Brown did (image from her website)
And by all means, hang them on a book shelf.
From Design Magnifique blog on Pinterest.
Old Rule: The style of the painting should match the style of the room, i.e. traditional art in a traditional decor and contemporary art in a modern decor. Really? That’s our favorite rule to break, because nothing looks better or creates more energy than a dynamic mi
Mix it up! Here we mixed 1950’s with a gorgeous 19th Century French chandelier (cut off from the pictures) and a beautiful floral painting by Nancy Franke. From Huff Harrington Home, Emily Followill photo.
“One makes the other sing.” – The wonderful mix of Louis mirror, Louis Philippe chest, and gorgeous modern abstract art from Theresa Girard and Angela Nesbit. Emily Followill photo.
The perfect marriage: Traditional art with a beautiful abstract painting by
Melissa Payne Baker, in AH&L.
Old Rule: Paintings should work with the theme of the room. You mean, nudes in bathrooms and still life paintings of fruits in a kitchen?
We love the mix of the 19th C. landscapes in a pretty, modern kitchen. From Country Living Magazine January 2016
And we’re crazy about the unexpected portrait of Uncle Herbert, among the kitchen utensils! From State of the Art blog.
Or the refreshing painting by Charles Ross, in this beautiful bathroom (belonging to Meg, and published in AH&L, photo by Erica Dines)
And why not turn your ‘loo into a shrine to art with floor to ceiling paintings, for the captive audience to enjoy? From Apartment Therapy blog.
Old Rule: Groupings should be of similar paintings or “Objets.” No again! We love the mix, and the more elements, the merrier!
Look at the fabulous mix of paintings, sculpture, mirrors, sconces, bas reliefs and other “objets” that fill the wall of designer Stephen Shubel’s previous apartment in Paris?
From Stephen Shubel’s website.
Or check out this wonderful grouping of paintings and objets from Atlanta designer Bob Brown, robertbrowninteriordesign.com
… and we love the humor and fun that accompanies this eclectic colletion of frames, creating a huge tableau of art. From Apartment Therapy.
Old Rule: Keep gallery walls symmetrical. We say, why?
Surprise ! There’s nothing symmetrical about this collection of disparate plates that create a warm and welcoming front hall statement in this home from “My Desired Home” blog.
Ditto for this impactful grouping of paintings by Bob Brown, again, from robertbrowninteriordesign.com.
Or check out the growing display of paintings from Bloglovin’. No excuse for running out of wallspace here! Just keep adding on organically to the wall and let it grow and grow.
Old Rule: You can’t match the sofa! Aha, gotcha. You know we’re supposed to tell you not to match the sofa, but guess what: There’s nothing wrong with it! We like our colors to work together, so whether the art drives the sofa (our preference of course!), or if the sofa drives the art, we’re good with matching — as long as you keep our number one rule that we never break in mind.
We love the way William McLure let the painting drive the color of the accessories
in this room.
Which came first, the chicken or the egg? We’ll have to ask William McLure again — but whichever it is, it’s fun, bright and stylish
(and what a great piece of art!). From WilliamMclure.com
And this interior from Brown Davis Interiors shows how much fun you can have matching colors of your room to a beautiful bold painting, pulling in unusual hues
like purple, orange and saffron.
Old Rule: If you don’t buy it now, the artist can always paint another one like it. Don’t believe that for a second! Just talk to any artist about how they feel about repainting a painting, and you’ll get the answer to that rule. Remember the paintings that got away from us? We’re still haunted by our desire to have them!
I’m still regretting Nancy Franke’s beautiful painting Clementine, that got away in 2008!
And the painting of “I Wish” by Lorraine Christie.
Those are our top 9 rules we love to break … and the one rule that we’ll never
Buy what you love! Because when you buy the art that you love:
Check out their website, https://huffharrington.com/. They are a great gallery and they rep two of my art friends...Nancy Franke and Charles Emery Ross. Enjoy!
When leaving my studio yesterday, I noticed a paper attached outside the studio door of Nelle Ferarra. Nelle is a wonderful painter who does lively, colorful abstracts. It's probably been there a while but I've never taken the time to read it. In the last year, I have started doing abstracts. I have always loved them and I own several. But I have always struggled to define abstracts to people who don't understand them. When I read the article, I loved the part that says, "Abstraction is part poetry, part music, part mathematics, and philosophy...". That, to me, sums it up. That is abstraction.
I would love to know your definition. Please reply and I'll post it to the comments.
As we welcome the new year with new goals of improving ourselves and our lives, why not consider ways to refine our surroundings as well? For so many of us, our home is our resting place where we hope to find comfort, relaxation, and happiness. In the confines of our home, we seek solace from the stressors of the outside world. We strive to create space in our abode that positively impacts us and our friends and family whom we invite into our home. I was recently intrigued by an article on mydomaine.com that features Mary McDonald, star of Bravo’s Million Dollar Decorators. In the article, McDonald shares her opinions on new décor trends and old trends that should be put to rest. I found the article to be inspiring, as it quite simply demonstrates how we can freshen up our personal domains as we dive into 2017.
My Biggest Takeaway...
My biggest takeaway from McDonald’s expert advice is the idea of building off of a basic, classic palette when decorating a room. From here, you can pepper in current trends by adding a few statement pieces, such as a unique piece of furniture or a vibrant painting. By using a classic design, you can avoid dated décor by swapping out these statement pieces.
What's In? What's Out?
Below is a quick rundown of McDonald’s trends that are in and those that are out. Now, please excuse me while I go roll up my chevron rug and toss it on the curb.
OUT: Hollywood Regency
It’s heavy and gaudy.
IN: European Style
For European Style inspiration, McDonald looks to history, the current design world, and people who are combining ideas in a new and edgy way.
OUT: Overkill Brass
Not everything has to be brass! Choose only a couple of items to be brass or gold in a room.
IN: Natural Elements
McDonald is drawn to bringing natural facets into a room. This provides a unique experience where lines are not necessarily clean and imperfections in pieces are cherished.
Chevron is everywhere, and McDonald is over it.
IN: Bold florals
Combine floral patterns to portray modern elements.
OUT: Edison Bulbs
Like chevron, Edison bulbs are overexposed and everywhere.
IN: Smart Technology
Incorporate pieces that save you time and energy in your smart home, and are clean and chic-looking to boot.
Add some color to your palette this year.
IN: Jewel Tones
Spice up the driftwood and grays with jewel tones such as Benjamin Moore’s color called, Shadow.
I hope to feature many different interior designers in my blog in the future. (If you're interested, please fill out the short survey on the right of my blog.) So, for my first post on this website, I want to paraphrase an article written by Sacha Strebe from MyDomaine.com. If you'd like to read the whole article, click here.
Strebe interviewed Charlie Cosby, head of creative at Farrow & Ball. I've always loved their paint colors since I discovered them many years ago when the Taft Museum in Cincinnati remodeled. The article starts by saying that we know what colors are out, which was in an earlier blogpost of theirs. Here's the short list, Lilac, Mint, Grey, Blush, Navy, Firey Red & Pewter. "While 2016 was all about Black, Gray and blush, 2017 is dialing it up. Expect bold, intense hues and vivid brights."
Her five bold paint color trends for 2017 are...
Studio Green, "There is something almost defiant about the use of botanic Studio Green on walls instead of the ubiquitous charcoal darks. It is unapologetically clubby and has a fantastically timeless old-world quality but can be used in the most modern of rooms."
Raddicchio, "Pink has been at the forefront of decorating for the last year, and there is now a natural progression to stronger reds, with their spirit of bold optimism. Radicchio feels exuberant, romantic, and sensual rather than clean or graphic, due to its complex underlying blue tone."
Hay, "Understated Hay feels soft and familiar. Its quiet quality creates rooms that have a hushed atmosphere as well as an unmatched depth and gentleness. It is not a hot or sunny yellow (although it becomes rawer in bright light) but rather an aged, whimsical tone with an underlying green."
Drawing Room Blue, "Drawing Room Blue is a strong, clean blue and reflects the nautical references we have seen on the catwalk, but with a more graphic feel. Our increasing desire to be surrounded by the humbling, calm of the sea brings serenity to the home."
Pelt, "There is a big feeling for 'rock' at the moment, with leather prevalent in homes and fashion. Luxurious Pelt is the perfect choice to add some color to a rock 'n' roll scheme."