Wednesday, April 27, 2011

For The Love Of Art: Part One

Before I became a silk painter, more than fourteen years ago, I painted in oils.
Here are a few of the many paintings I did back in the day.

I loved everything about oil paints... the smell, the texture, the Turpentine.
Then, one day, I discovered silk painting and tucked all the oil paints away!

But I still wanted to paint landscapes, so I did a few on silk. Like this one.

Then I started painting flowers on silk scarves and that was all she wrote! I was hooked!!

A few months ago, I went on a road trip to San Francisco and the wine country.
My nephew, Brad Gruno and I went to visit Katrina Frey at the beautiful Frey Vineyards.
I took a ton of pictures and when I saw this one, I knew that I had to paint it... in oils!!

Since I got that idea in my head, everything I looked at became a potential oil painting.
Here's another photo from Frey Vineyards. I love that place!
Katrina invited me to come down and be the artist-in-residence! Ohhh yeaah!!
(Katrina, if you're reading this, thank you again!!)

Another potential painting. (Minus the dashboard.)

From a recent trip to Descanso Gardens.

Another one from Descanso.

And another.

On a recent trip to Oregon I fell in love with the moss and thought that it would look gorgeous in a painting too!

Moss climbing on the side of a wall. A cool abstract!

Look at this lushness! Love it!!

I finally decided to go-for-it, but I couldn't find any of my old supplies!!!!
A few years ago, I came across my huge assortment of brushes and thought, "that's a weird place to have put them". Making a 'mental-note-to-self' I went about my life.
The moral of the story, don't put stuff in weird places and don't make mental-notes-to-self!
It ain't gonna work for ya. I've searched and searched for those brushes and supplies and can't find squat!! I finally gave up and bought some new stuff. Just the basics.
A container to put the globs of paint in, without having them dry out.

Two 16" x 20" canvases. Canvas'? Canvas? Canvy?

Some brushes and a palette knife. Ohhh! I had sooo many!!!! Still do... somewhere. :(

Over the years I've become very sensitive to chemical odors and I don't think I'd fare well with the smell of Turpentine, Turpenoid, or any of the other things associated with oil paints.
So I decided to try acrylics. I've never liked acrylics before, but I thought I'd give them a shot anyway. Maybe the texture is better now. I also bought a palette to mix the paints on.

I love a huge assortment of colors! I want them all!! But I behaved and just bought a set.

Okay... I caved and bought a few more.

I couldn't find my easel either, so I got this little inexpensive one.

Of course I had to buy a book.

I had to!!

So, wish me luck, my friends!! I'll give you an update and show you the painting in-progress and completed, in a future post.

"Peace-out, dude."

There are SO many things to love!
I love "Followers" and comments too!
(Thank you.)

Signing off for now,

Detour To Descanso Gardens

A good friend of mine is in town, so we made plans to spend the day together.
Her name is Linda Walker, an award-winning wildlife & western artist.
Her work is beyond stunning, as you can see by this photo of one of her oils!!

We decided to meet at Sisley's and have 'a little bite'. (Yeah, right.)

Here she is! It's like she never left at all! You know how some people are like that?
Love that girl!
I apologize for the blurriness of the next few photos, but they get better, I swear.

I'd never been to Sisley's. The first thing I saw was this. Oh yeah, I'm gonna like this place!!

I can't remember what Linda ordered, but it brought a smile to her face.

Yumm. Tasty.

I ordered Spaghetti. As some of you know, I'm a raw foodist, but I've decided that when I'm out with a friend, I'll just eat what's on the menu. And it's a treat sometimes, I won't lie.

This was Linda's dessert.

And this was mine.

A piece of Cheesecake the size of my head!!

Linda was quite pleased with her dessert too.

Since I'm not used to eating processed, cooked foods, my body likes to let me know it's not too happy with me afterwards! A headache began before we even left the restaurant.

After our 'little bite', we decided we'd go to the Norton Simon Museum, in Pasadena, to get our art-fix.

We yacked all the way. We're quite good at it. Finally, the museum...
with plenty of parking spaces! Cool!!

Hmmm... that can't be good.
It wasn't. Apparently Norton Simon is closed on Tuesdays!!
OK, change of plans. Let's go to the Huntington Library! Yeah!!
But let's call first to see if they're open. Nope. Closed. Who closes on Tuesdays?!!

I had the bright idea of going to Descanso Gardens. We called and they were open!
Which was great, because Linda had never been there.

At the entrance. The open entrance.

I don't know the names of most of the flowers I photographed, and was too lazy to write down what the little signs said. I'm hoping you'll just enjoy seeing them.

Time to take off the jacket. The Southern California weather was wonderful!

When I think of Descanso Gardens, this is what I see. Little pathways, with dappled light. Even more so than the beautiful flowers.

The Japanese Tea House.

As I took this photo, I thought I saw something running.

When I zoomed in on the photo, I saw this little coyote! Isn't it cute?!
Of course the rest of the day, when I heard something rustling in the leaves, I got a little nervous.

We walked up the hill to the fabulous Boddy House. Love that place!!

Look at that kitchen!!


Linda had to get in the act too.

This is Trish Kertes, the artist that was having a showing at the Boddy House.
Her work is beautiful and reminded me of the California Impressionists.

Here is the tram that will drive people up the hill, if they don't want to walk it.
Linda and I were quite happy to walk - especially after the amount of food we inhaled at Sisley's!

Like a kitty-cat basking in the sun.

A giant Redwood.

Stealing the show.

I love Lilac!! Looking at this bloom, I can almost smell it.

I've never met a gift shop I didn't like. And the one at Descanso Gardens is wonderful!!

I love sitting next to a giant Redwood. It makes me feel so svelte.

California Poppies. I love them so much, I painted them on a silk scarf.

As we left Descanso Gardens, we made a wrong turn, so we drove around looking at some of the homes. Be still my heart!!

We finally found the freeway and off we went.

Nice scenery.

I spoke too soon!!

The freeway cleared and we were almost there.

Linda dropped me off at my van, gave me a big hug -

And off she went!! :(
Goodbye for now, my friend. See you the next time you're in town!!

UPDATE: Today, 9/26/14, the laughter stopped, for my beloved friend, Linda Walker. She fought valiantly, but lost her fight with cancer. She was a beautiful, beautiful person and a wonderful, talented artist. She will be missed by so very many. My deepest condolences to her husband, family and friends. Always and forever in my heart, Linda. 
This is how I will remember you... laughing with me and having fun!! I love you, sweet girl. Until we meet again. ~ 

" A friend never defends a husband who gets his wife an electric skillet for her birthday."
- Erma Bombeck

"A friend will tell you she saw your old boyfriend - and he's a priest."
- Erma Bombeck

"Seize the moment. Remember all those women on the 'Titanic' who waved-off the dessert cart."
- Erma Bombeck

There are SO many things to love!
I love "Followers" and comments too!
(Thank you.)

Signing off for now,