Friday, August 29, 2014

A Quick Trip

Before the long Labor Day weekend begins, Rick & I took a quick trip to Lexington, VA. Just a half day, over night but a nice little get away. Lexington is a small historic town, you will see Stonewall Jackson's name everywhere. We stayed at a Hampton Inn, but none like you have seen before. The original governor's home was kept as the main entrance with lobby area, breakfast area and some bedrooms. One of which we stayed in and then additional rooms were added to the back of the house. The entrance as you drive up to the hotel is filled with old trees.

We went into town and checked out a few of the shops, several were closed on Wednesday but open for weekends. There was a very nice co-op artists gallery, a new gallery about to open, nice shop with sporting gear, a few antique type shops and a couple unique shops. We stopped in Southern Inn for a little afternoon refreshments. Later that evening we went to The Red Hen for our anniversary dinner. They are small and reservations are recommended. We spoke to the chef and his wife briefly, they did a beautiful job at making our celebration memorable.

Looking forward to exploring that area again in the future. Plus, I got some great tree reference photos!

The Red Hen

The Red Hen, Lexington, VA

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

What's Up Next

As September is quickly approaching so are several art shows and deadlines. What's coming up next, two shows, one going up and the other a closing reception. Next week driving a few hours to Richmond, VA area delivering two small works to: For Art's Sake Gallery, Pastel Society of Virginia show. The opening reception is Friday, September 5th, unfortunately I won't be at the opening as I have another out of town adventure. I was pleased to see my image of the "African Elephant" made the cover of the postcard.This show runs through Sept. 26th if you are in the area stop by and check it out.
September 4th is the closing reception of my solo show at the Holtzman Alumni Center, Art Gallery, Blacksburg, VA, from 5:00 - 6:30PM. The show has been up throughout the summer and will come down September 22nd. Sometimes it is better to go for a closing reception depending on location and population. When I hung the show the campus was wrapping up graduation and faculty head out of town for the spring/summer. Now that everyone is back in town we hope to see a few folks drop on by to see my work before it closes.
Duck Pond Reflections, VA Tech, Blacksburg, VA oil on canvas

Monday, August 25, 2014

Somewhere In-Between

The other day as the storms kept us guessing as to if they were coming or going. We not only saw a double rainbow but as we went around the mountain side we saw the other side of the rainbow. The middle was missing so somewhere in-between the left side of the road and the right side of the road we lost part of the rainbow.

It seems like there should be a deep philosophical meaning in-between those rainbows. I guess for now it will be up to the individual to follow their own rainbows end - or - tween.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Thursday Theme

The theme for today is elephants. Since, that has been the theme for the month. We will keep: Throwback Thursday going with that same feeling of support for the elephants.

In doing my re-organizational stuff this past week, I came across two monoprints. What is a monoprint? A hand-pulled print, usually done by the creating artist, me. They become one of a kind prints that use a matrix (not the movie) as the base for the print. What makes them mono or one of a kind is they are printed with different ink, on different paper or the image has been adjusted from print to print. Sometimes after the print has been pulled it can be manipulated by adding to it with hand made papers, Japanese papers, or hand-tinting. Each print becomes one of a kind.

The monoprint today was pulled at the beginning of the day, it is simple and with no additional work done to it, another day I may have the other print. The second print I want to play with, adding a little more depth to the line work.

The technique used was silicon intaglio. It is taking the etching/intaglio technique to a less toxic way of printing. No acid was needed to create the image. A silicon layer is applied to ball-gained aluminum plates, baked, line work is done with sharp tools, rolled with ink, paper applied and sent through hand cranked printing press.

The date for this print, way back, 1993. Special deal for the month till September 1st, 2014 is double $19.93 x 2 = $39.86 plus S&H $12.00 total $51.86. Print only, paper size 13X20 inches allowing a couple inches around the image. It is printed on Rives BFK acid free paper using burnt umber ink, Title: "Vanishing" (Asian elephant, Nancy, from the Smithsonian National Zoo, Washington, D.C. was the model)
If you are interested in purchasing this monoprint please send me an e-mail at:

"Vanishing" monoprint 13x20" sale price $51.86

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Making Lemonade

Some days, weeks, it feels like life is giving out nothin but lemons. So like any good artists what can you do with lemons? Make lemonade, maybe do a painting of lemons or just put some lemon in a cup of tea and think about what to do next. Of course all three work too.
I have been trying to find a way to make my studio and work space come together. Moving between east and west has a few challenges. Having the equipment you need and the breathing room to create. 
I am one of those that works well in clutter and chaos. But the physical running around up and down stairs gets old - fast. It also puts a stop to the create spirit. 
So, this week I re-created a room of my own. I cleared out things I won't use again, filed, packed, and stored materials in their very own container. 
I even have several pieces of art work in progress ready to finish. One by one and lots of new ideas for the future. Sometimes the little things can make the biggest problems or nicest pleasures. Good thing I like lemons.

Monday, August 18, 2014


The last couple of days I felt like I was going in three different directions. As I am wrapping up the re-organization of the work space I ran across a poem that I had stashed away. It was a good time to find it and take a moment to at least remember a walk in the forest.


Being is like a forest.

It has no need of doorways
because it is its own portal.
It allows entry anywhere
without opening a single latch.

Wherever you walk
the deep roots are there,
but you cannot see them.

Getting lost in these trees
means the end of circling
around and around
what you've always been.

~Daniel Skach-Mills~
The Tao of Now

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Make Room for...

This week has been end of summer, too much getting ready to happen, need to get organized kind of week. I got the cleaning bug and need to make room for me. My studio/work space/office is closing in around me. Trying to re-arrange things to make my studio a place to paint again.

Last year I moved my computer upstairs as the signal was too weak between floors. Now my office has invaded painting space. It worked for a while but as I do, I have too many projects going on at the same time and too many piles of stuff.

Even though I just read the article about how a creative person tends towards the un-organized. I need to make some space. Each artist has their own routine, when I want to paint and can't, I clean, organized and cook. The cooking part takes the place of the creative painting. I am just about at the end of this little routine, I cooked yesterday, been cleaning all week and now just need to attack the studio spaces.

My plan is to paint most of this week, finish framing and prepare some works for shipping. I do the bulk computer work in the morning. Then set up for studio time, lunch, back to studio until dinner. I have been doing little sketches, they are good exercise. It is time to get the routine back in order and make room for me.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Pay It Forward Friday

I have had this idea for some time, paying it forward is something I believe is just a part of my life. I like to share information, share techniques, I have donated art for many charities and truly believe what goes around, comes around.

This week was National Elephant Week, the 13th was Left Hander's Day, 14-15th V-J Day - end of WWII, 15th is Relaxation Day. Not so sure that one is in the cards today. I am reorganizing studio spaces and general end of summer cleaning.

Today I will post an elephant painting and as I stated earlier this week if it were sold in a gallery 50% would go to the gallery. I will take that 50% and donate it to the "African Wildlife Trust". A number of amazing artists around the world are supporting this group to help find ways to stop poaching of ivory. In my own little way I feel a need to help.

If you are so inclined to help me help elephants and gain a piece of art just send me an e-mail at: I accept credit cards, checks and of course cash. I am working to get my Pay Pal back up and running, so that could be an option too.

Today's image is "never forget" it is 12 x 36 x 1 3/4 " special price through September $750.00, painted in oils, details of the painting wrap around the sides.

Detail of painting

Full image - 12x36 oil painting

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Down 2 Business

This past weekend the Fine Arts in the Valley group got down to business. The business of ART! We have two new artists joining us this year, Lisa LeMair & Christopher Proto of LeMair Handcrafts. They have lived and shown their art in the Mid-Atlantic area for many years. They have moved to N.C. and now show all over the country.

In the fall they will join, Homer Yost, Marilu Tousignaut, Linda Harrison-Parsons, Tracy Tousignaut Reed and Sarah Simpson at the event barn in Middletown, MD. We had a sneak peak at some of the new works that will be at FAV @ Country Pleasures Farm & Orchard.

One of the great things about artists having business meetings is they are not your corporate kind of meeting. We had the sit down, get to the heart of the matter kind of meeting: what goes where, who does what, PR, postcards, and sales reports. Follow by a pot luck dinner with the owners of the event barn, Eric & Lori Rice.

Art, food, wine, beautiful views, friends and family what a lovely way to end a business meeting.

To find out more about the show go to our web site:
If you would like to get a post card or e-card please e-mail me at:
You can also find us on Face Book and coming soon Instagram!
Mark your calendar: October 17th opening reception 5:00 - 8:00, October 17-18th 11:00-6:00
and October 25-26th 11:00-6:00

Christopher Proto pottery

Lisa LeMair fiber arts

Lisa LeMair knitted stainless steel jewelry 

Fine Arts in the Valley artist with Eric & Lori at Country Pleasure Farm & Orchard

Tuesday, August 12, 2014


It is World Elephant Day, August 12, 2014, it is an annual event hoping to make people aware of the issues we are facing. The elephant population is dropping so fast that it is currently estimated that they may be extinct in 11 years.

Elephants are the largest animal to walk the earth, Africa elephants, which are two species, Forest & Savannah, and Asian elephants are the second largest. Less than 100 years ago there were over 100,000 Asian elephants, now there are less than 4,000. That number includes wild and domestic/work elephants. Poaching, the taking of ivory even from young elephants, and the loss of habitat are two main causes for these low numbers.

I love to draw/paint elephants, there is something about these large wrinkled gentle giants that touches my heart. There are many wildlife artists whose works will be on sale today to help benefit many different organization that help fight against poaching.

Today I will post some of my own elephant works. Most galleries take 50% of a sale, so today, I will give that 50% to the elephants, well to charities that help the elephants, the fight against poaching.

Here are some links to organizations that will give you more information on the fight to help the elephants: - elephant sanctuary in Tennessee       Wildlife Conservation Society

"out front" oil on board special sale price $300.00 11x14 image 13x16 framed 

"never forget" oil on canvas special sale price $750.00 12x36"

"evening heat" oil on canvas special sale price $300.00 4x12" framed

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Long Way Home

There are days when it seems like we take the long way home. Then there are the days when I have to think about where I call home. What it really comes down to is home is where I am. Right now I am in Virginia, last week Arizona, week before that Oregon to see John and enjoy the coast. Earlier this spring up to Massachusetts to visit with Beccy in her new home.

Coast to coast, here or there, being in nature, walks in the woods, hikes in the mountains, strolls along the beach or craving your way through busy city streets it all has special meanings. I take pictures to capture the moment. I keep them on my computer and print them out to use as references for paintings but also to remind me that home is always where you find it.





Tuesday, August 5, 2014

The Painted Sky

The light and clouds created such wonderful painted skies. I love watching the sun rise and fall. The changes in the clouds, the colors of the mountains and the sky. When ask most of the time our first reaction to the question, what color is the sky, will be blue. Light, reflections, moisture create the wonderful colors, hues, values or shades we see all around us. Take a moment from day to day and look and see what color is your sky?

Monday, August 4, 2014

The Magic of Light

Back in AZ for the moment, during monsoon season. So the sky, sunsets and clouds have been putting on a show. The hummingbirds have been happy to see us, we have Anna's & Rufous visiting this week. They too have the magic of light to show off their colors.

From day to day, hour by hour, even moment to moment the sky and mountains have taken on some amazing light effects. The tilt of the hummingbirds heads show off the reflective iridescence's in their feathers.

The mountains that we view from the back yard can change from white reflection to tones of deep purple depending on the sun, clouds and rains. But, as they say a picture is here are a few shots taken between the sun and the storm.
Rufous Hummingbird

Anna Hummingbird

What's That Sound???

You know you are in Wyoming when you wake to the sound of horses. With limited wi-fi service it has been a lot harder to get blogs written a...