be my valentine

Jan 23, 2013

I may not be much of a romantic, but I do look forward to going on dates with my husband.  One of my fondest memories out together was on Valentine's Day.  My husband was actually out of town that week, and I was invited by a few of my high school students to a birthday celebration.  The girls picked me up at my house and we headed to my favorite Mediterranean restaurant.  As we were being seated, the waitress led me to a secluded, candle-lit table for two, and there sat my husband with a single red rose in his hand.  I was surprised to see him there, and by the time I realized the high school girls were all in on it, they were already gone. 

I usually catch on to surprises, but my husband is a well practiced schemer.  It ended up being the perfect evening, definitely one of our best dates.

I'm guessing all the Valentine hype (thanks, Etsy) is making me a little sentimental this week.  So when I sat down at my art desk yesterday, this is what came from it.  I'm calling the new piece, My love for you.  As in, My love for you is a mountainside from that great love song by Little Willie John.  It's currently for sale in my Etsy shop.

The new painting also inspired me to make Valentine cards.

The cards are printed on nice letterpress paper, and there's room to write a sweet note to that special someone.  My girls have already requested several to give to their teachers and friends.

The Valentine cards are just available in my shop thru February 14th.  Click here to see the listing.

my crazy busy week

Jan 18, 2013

I have a pretty high tolerance for stress, but this past week proved to be one of the more challenging weeks in recent years.  I was simultaneously working on three major projects: the completion of a third painting for a London gallery, the fulfillment of a large wholesale order of art prints, and the launch of my first sample sale in my Etsy shop.  There wasn't much room for error with such a tight schedule, and yet, some things went terribly wrong.

I could rant about all the ways my printer gave me grief this week, but the lowlight of my week was the varnish drying unevenly on my painting.  Some imperfections can be fixed with additional coats of varnish, but I knew in this case the varnish needed to be stripped.

Stripping varnish is always a nerve racking process.  And this was the first time I have had to remove varnish from a painting with gouache.  Here are some photos capturing the process.

I used cloths soaked in mineral spirits to remove the layers of varnish.  It actually ended up going better than expected, but I did have to eventually repaint the top portion of the painting. . . 3000 gold dots and all.  To say that this was tedious would be an understatement, but I tried to have a good attitude about it.

I ultimately decided to leave this area unvarnished, because I prefer the chalky matte look of the gouache.  Here is a look at the finished painting.

It's titled Alpine Reverie.  I'm happy to say that the painting, as well as two other works, are now en route to London.

I also have 80+ prints headed to Dallas, Texas.  We Are 1976 is restocking their shelves with more of my art.  Yay! 

Even though it's been a crazy busy week and my patience and fortitude were tested to the nth degree, I am very grateful for it all.  And I'm so thankful for a husband who was willing to take on the role as art assistant for the week- scrubbing dried paint off of palettes, cutting cardboard, running errands to art stores, and making me tea.  Thanks, honey.  Now, do you mind tackling the mess on my art desk for me? 

Sample Sale!

Jan 8, 2013

My Sample Sale is up and running!  Click here to check out the deals.

my creative week

Jan 6, 2013

After a two day trip to the mountains in central Oregon, I created this 18" x 24" painting inspired by the Three Sisters.  The three peaks are the main attraction of the 20 mile drive from the charming town of Sisters to the popular recreational destination of Bend, Oregon.  Our family travels often to this area to visit dear friends and to seek a little R & R. 

Although my friend wants this painting for her Sisters home,  it's headed to London! I am honored to be invited back by Lilk Gallery for their upcoming show on Broadway Market.  A few new original works of mine will be part of their group show starting January 21st, including this piece, Pink Moon

For more information on the January show in London, click here.

This weekend, I also have been getting ready for my first Sample Sale on Etsy.  I have a number of near perfect prints and one-of-a-kind works that are just sitting in my studio.  Some of these works were done a few years ago. I've entertained the idea of having an open studio, but I realize many of my followers live outside of Portland.  So an online Sample Sale it is!

The event will start this Tuesday, January 8.  Nothing will be marked over $50, so this is a great opportunity to pick up affordable original art.  The pieces below are priced between $24 - $40.

auld lang syne

Jan 1, 2013

2012 brought lots of great memories, as well as a new fish, kitty, and pup.  Here are some extra pics from the last year.

As for new year's resolutions, I haven't gotten that far yet.  The other day I opened up a fortune cookie that said a pleasant surprise was around the corner for me.  Maybe I'll just leave it at that. 

Hello 2013.

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