Snow has Fallen and the Gifts are Given

I've spent much of the past 2 months working on some fairly last minute Christmas gift commissions for a couple of my friends. Thankfully those 2 pictures have led to at least 2 other commissions because I was feeling so pressed for time that I carried the drawings to work with me to work on during breaks.

The first is a watercolor portrait of Bear, a friend of mine's rottweiler who recently passed away.

The second is a portrait of my Boss's daughter and her Fiance. I've been rediscovering my love of pencil drawings and have been putting in some time to improve my drawing skills.

With that said the snow is falling in Indiana and the winds are picking up. So for those of us who live in the middle of nowhereville please for the love of GOD...

1. Don't think because you have an SUV/4Wheel Drive/or other large vehicle that it will keep you from skiddering on the ice. If its icy/snowy 65 mph is NO LONGER the appropriate speed to be driving.

2. Do not ride my bumper, if my 40 mph speed does no suit you please just pass me. If your overpriced Hummer rear ends my grand prix I will lose and you will owe a huge insurance if not funeral bill.

3 Dear HEAVENS please CLEAN the SNOW OFF of your HEADLIGHTS/TAIL LIGHTS. It is Important that we SEE you coming and going when the visibility is almost zero.

Now that I'm done ranting I hope everyone had a fabulous Christmas and will have a safe and happy New Year!


Where I was, where I am, where I want to be...

I spent the last weekend of October moving out of my beloved studio at the Sugar Creek Arts Center. While it wasn't a fun decision it was necessary. It came down to a lack of funding. I can't do both a formal studio and continuing classes so I decided to continue with my Bargue Copy Classes.

On the bright side of the move I now have taken over an actual room in my home and am working from there. It used to be our computer room but with much rearranging and a couple coats of a questionable color of paint, I now have an area where I can close the doors and work and listen to music with out disturbing many in the house and vice versa. All in all it was a good compromise.


On my desk(s)

I'm working on a couple of pieces at the moment.

Falling for You - 11x14

and Diana Krall Portrait 16 x 20 (Sorry Diana at this stage you look zombieish, I promise that it won't stay that way LOL)

I'll be starting a new venture next weekend it seems. I've inquired about doing some studying at the Lafayette Atelier with Mr. James C. Werner. Am excited and nervous.


And the winner is...

I received the "The Crawfordsville Art League Group G Award For work by a Montgomery County Artist" for "Contemplation- A Portrait of Jessie"

As always the Crawfordsville Art League put on a fabulous show and we had a good time.

You can read more about the show here...The Paper Of Montgomery County


Sigh of relief....

Today I completed one of the most daunting challenges I've ever faced...

I completed and hit the submit button on a Fellowship application I've been working on for several weeks.


And the Plot thickens...MUWAHAHA

I've finished the portrait of Kyle and so my plot to mortify all three of my children is now 2/3 complete....muwahaha. 

Boo!: A Portrait of Kyle

And a closeup of the eye.

A note on the title, his nickname is also Boo as that is what he used to totter around the house saying as soon as he started talking and walking. It was his favorite game to look at you and go BOO! Oh how the time flies my little boy is now a 14 yr old young man.

Once I know what angle I want for Jenny I will be doing a portrait of her also to complete the set. They have asked me what I plan on doing with these large portraits of them, I said I was going to hang them in the living room and later it would be their sole inheritance they get in my will...LOL



Two of my works have been accepted into the Fall Juried Art Show in Crawfordsville, Indiana. This will be my second year participating in this event. If you are going to be near Crawfordsville between September 25 and October 4 you should definitely come take a look at all the fabulous talent on display. It is a display in ALL of the buildings downtown and is available for viewing 24 hours a day between those dates. 

The two paintings that I'll be showing are:


Contemplation: Portrait of Jessie  32x40 (She is absolutely mortified as this is her high school's "Hometown" and many people will see her fantastically huge head on display ROFL...my evil plan progresses)


If I'm ever in the position

I swear I am going to start an easy to understand, readily available to uneducated, older artists grant fund that will help them break free from their status as "working a real job" to a full-time working artist status.

The search continues.


The forces of Nature...

We had some spectacular storms move through last week. Before the storms I was melting and now I am sitting around in sweats and socks, but never fear by Tuesday it is suppose to be back up to Melting weather again, I LOVE Indiana :)

I am still working at Kyles fabulously large head (32x40 ish) so that he may be as appalled as his older sister was with my immortalizing them in art. Two embarrassed children down, One to go. (Instert evil laugh here) There is still much to do in my evil plot to redden the cheeks of my children, keep in mind, you too could have your children roll their eyes and get red in the face for a nominal fee....contact me and I'll tell you how!


On my desk...

I'm working on a couple of things right now. Seems I'm in a portrait mode and am doing one of my son. (Shhh don't tell him, he has no clue and will be just horrified) I'm liking the odd offbeat portraits instead of a formal style and am enjoying playing around with that. 

More often than not there is never enough time in the day to sit and work on my art and even more often I feel keenly aware that I am struggling to find my own voice in my work. It's not really a bad thing but it's almost like the "I've got the word on the tip of my tongue" feeling only with painting, if that makes any sense at all. I find by Friday I am anxious and in need of a fix and yet almost never make it to the studio. Today is Monday and I've spent exactly 3 hours working in the studio since Friday and am not dressed and out the door yet today although I'm hopeful it will happen. If only working a "real" j0b wasn't a neccesity LOL


Lili with Tulips and Bottles

I've gotten a finished picture of the portrait of Lili (Thanks Dave!)

I also did a little batik over the weekend of some bottles. I will be going back into this painting and fixing a couple of spots that I just don't like, but overall it turned out very well.



Another painting from Tom and Amy's photo's...

Shhh- 11x14 Watercolor on Fabriano $100


And this is Dedicated to Milo aka Fat-ass

Milo make Tom give you more blueberries and tell him to stop commenting on the size of your bum. In the meantime I hope you recognize this from your extensive library of photo's.

Thanks so much to Tom and Amy (and the ferrets) for letting me live vicariously through your blog and allowing me to use your photo's! Tom...you have such a wonderful way with words, I'll let you title the painting's I do from your photo's. Here's the first....

Untitled (so far) 11x14 Watercolor and India Ink $100.00


Fireworks can't swim...

It was a VERY soggy fourth of July in our part of Indiana. The Fourth was actually celebrated on the 5th, but since it ran over into midnight I guess we celebrated into the 6th.

I've been somewhat productive since the opening of my little studio, although I'm not spending nearly enough time down there as I would like. Vacation is soon so hopefully I can sneak down there more then.

I've finished the two portraits I was working on and delivered "Lili with Tulips" to her Dad just in time for Fathers day. Although the finished portrait has a dark background, I didn't get a finished picture of it before I sent it with her dad.

The portrait of Dr. Gillan is also complete.

Dr. Gillan-"Cool Man Cool" SOLD!

I've also gotten "Bahama Race" almost done (Thanks Tom for the reference photo's!) and completed the initial sketches for 4 more paintings.

There's also my first experiment with India Ink. I really like the vibrance it lends to a painting and for once I can say I really don't think the photo does it true justice. I might just send this in for consideration for the juried show in Crawfordsville this year.

Larger View of Iris

Iris- 16x20 India Ink $208.00


All Moved In

I've been MIA because I moved in and redecorated my studio last weekend. I've spent two days actually working in it and love being there.  I'll be having my official "Opening" this coming Friday so I'm still trying to finish the decorating with one final touch to add to the paris theme. I have an old window I am painting to put on the back wall since my studio has no window. I thought a scene of the Eiffel Tower might be nice for my faux window. Will post pic's of it once it's done. The only minor hitch is that back wall is brick/concrete so drilling will be fun.

The walls are actually purple although they look black in this photo. I took both the following pic's with my camera phone and they aren't the greatest.

I've almost finished the portrait of "Lili with Tulips"  and hope to give it to her parents next week.


Better Days...

Better Days 11x14 watercolor on Yupo - $80.00

I finished "Better Days" this weekend. I loved this car because she looked like she was grimacing. She's a memory of better days and she's seen better days. Nothing much else going on at present all is quiet on the homefront and it's back to work tomorrow.


Taking the Plunge or Pure Joy by the Square Foot

I am so excited. I mailed out my reservation for Nick Simmons workshop at Sandy Maudlin's for 2010. I know it sounds like a long way away but it's a big deal for me.

Now I have a problem....I can't decide which is the bigger news for me today because I also finally stepped off the edge and decided to get an art studio. I move in next Friday!! It's on the third floor of Sugar Creek Arts Center and I'll be sharing a large open floor plan studio that can actually house 3 artists but has only been used by one artist for a little while. I will be moving in with Lynn Dugan which is probably what is most exciting about it. I could have had another studio up on the same floor that was just mine but I think I actually like the idea of being in the room with another artist. Her style is vibrant and expressive and we are very different and that is probably the whole point of getting a studio at the center. The possibility of being around all types of art.

I might also be giving flute/beginning music lesson's...not sure yet we'll see. I don't have a golden flute like James Galway but I did manage to teach my own daughter how to read music and how to play flute. Maybe I can spread the music and the art at the same time.

I am near giddy over finally deciding to do some things to take my art further. So happy in fact that I went out for dinner and actually had some fine malt beverages. For those who know me well, they know I am not really a person who drinks often, so the fact I've had the equivalent of too many beers tonights means I am apologizing now for any typo's now.

Cheers and G'nite!


Hi my name is Lori and I'm a Junkie...

Well an art junkie anyway. I finally got to paint for a couple of hours today and I feel SO MUCH better. Less cranky, more even keel, I got my fix for the day, and sadly probably for the week because tomorrow starts ...LET THE PARENTHOOD GAMES BEGIN. Dances, and basketball practice and work and meetings and graduations this weekend and I volunteer Friday afternoon at the Sugar Creek Art Center

I haven't gotten to work on Lili's pictures anymore as of yet(soon Dave I promise) but I did work on the old Junk car today...(see previous post for sketch) It's on Yupo and it's been fun working on it so far.

I also bought a copy of "Art and Fear" as suggested by Sandy Maudlin.

Thanks Sandy, I'll be reading that this week!

If your reading this Tom or Amy of the Dream Catcher I haven't forgotten all the pictures you so generously let me swipe. I have a few planned once I get caught up and will let you know as soon as some of them are finished.

Sketches of Lili ...Time for a real Studio?

Recently it seems everytime I sit to work I get interrupted by one thing or another. I've been toying with the idea of getting a "real" studio but the monthly cost has always stopped me. There's so much more I could use that money for (supplies/workshops/BILLS). I only managed to get a couple of sketches done this weekend and still have the one completed sketch transferred and ready to paint for over a week now. 

So when is it time to just bite the bullet and invest in a "real" studio? I enjoy the ease of being able to just work whenever, but whenever seems to be few and far between the longer time goes on. At least with a studio (and a payment going out for that) I would need to get up and "go to work" on my two weekdays that I have off at least. 

On a positive note, I did manage to do a couple of sketches for a commisioned piece of Dave M.'s little girl Lili. The reference photo's he sent were gorgeous and she is such a pretty little girl. 


I need to do some more work on the first sketch (it's off a little) but I think the second one is ready to transfer to watercolor paper. Here are the photo's I am working with as a comparison


And here's the sketch of the car...

It's already been transferred to yupo and is waiting for me to start work on it. I have some fabulous metallic watercolor's that I am interested in trying for this. 

Side note..the art show artist reception was this past Friday night in Martinsville, IN. They did a lovely job and the show was nice. 

I'm off to have brunch with my mother (yet another interruption LOL) so hopefully I will be able to work on some things after lunch. 


Dive bombing Robins and syphilis

I fed the chickens this morning and was getting dive bombed by a pair of robins as I was trying to get waters cleaned and refilled. Guess the resident pair decided to nest attached to my coop and fence. So I clicked a couple of pictures of the charming little brood (all the while frantic screeching parents were trying to scare me off)

Spring has sprung and the sun is out...at least for today. We've tilled the garden and bought the tomato plants and seed corn and I am setting a batch of eggs in the incubator today. (If my hens didn't hide their eggs I might not need more layers but such is the life of free range chickens.) 

I also delivered two paintings to a juried art show this weekend. Artists reception is this Friday, May 15th. The show is in Martinsville, IN and is at the Art Sanctuary.


I hope all the mothers out there had a lovely mothers day! I got pancakes and flowers (live ones to plant..somehow a gift that involves work is ironically suitable for mothers day.)

I am working on a couple of things right now. The last project I completed did not turn out well and has made its way to the trash pile to be recycled or recropped or something.

I have nothing to add to my blog that would assist too many people with techniques or educate them in some way. I guess my contribution to the art world would be just to say ....just do it. Just create something. I constantly fight down the fear that what I am doing isn't good enough to be viewed by anyone other than myself. It's not uncommon I suppose, to feel somewhat inadequate, but fight the urge to compare yourself to someone else. 

If Van Gogh or Gaugin or others had given up because they were told they weren't good enough we wouldn't have many of what the world now considers to be the most progressive, insightful paintings in history. Of course I have decided there are a few reasons why I could never be as famous as the above mentioned artists....

1. I don't drink nearly enough

2. I am not even close to being crazy enough.

3. I don't have syphilis (which probably contributed to #2)

The impressionists and post-impressionists were truly an interesting bunch!

Bottom line I'm not educated, I'm not wordly, but I do love to paint. There is a fear and excitement that comes with each new painting. It's a feeling comparable to stage fright and much like stage fright the show must go on!

BTW...it's really too bad the habit of the rich becoming patrons of fledgling artist and supporting them fell out of practice LOL


A Day at the IMA

I spent a lovely day at the Indianapolis Museum of Art with my girls Saturday. Neither one of them had ever been before. The IMA has a lovely grounds and lots of sculpture outside, so we arrived a little early and wandered through the gardens and such prior to opening and then spent about 3 hours inside looking at all of the art.


Update and DH's beautiful heap...

DH took a couple of photo's tonight one of which turned out just stunning...I think it might be one of my most favorite of any he's done yet

And I worked some more on Jessie's portrait today

A look into my "studio"

Yep that's it. It's a glass top computer desk that we purchased at walmart (because it came with the nifty roll around cart you see to the side) To my left is the coat rack and behind me is usually a group of teens playing guitar hero. 

I've finished "Winter's Warmth" and have it matted and framed for a show in May. I'll be taking it and "Koiosity" to The Art Sanctuary

I'm currently working on a portrait of my oldest daughter, it's not quite finished yet I just started it this past weekend. It's 24x36 on Fabriano 140#HP

I have several others stored in my pea-brain I just need to find time to get them out on paper. (And to finish up the one's I've started) If the portrait of Jessie turns out ok I'm going to use it for the juried fall art show this year, I'm not sure I'm quite happy with it.

On side notes as a proud mom I have to mention that all three of the kids are doing VERY well in school! Kyle's made the golf team and was just inducted into Jr. National Honor Society, Jessie just went to her Junior Prom and was on the Prom Court. She and her best friend went together...they were both just stunning this past Saturday...

Shea on the left and Jessie in the wild zebra print dress on the right :)