Sunday, November 23, 2008


SOLD"Raah", 8x10, oil on canvas

My friend Joyce recently told me that the Hebrew word "raah' means to see. She said it's the kind of "seeing" that God did when He made creation and He saw that it was good.. It's not just a physical seeing. It's a spiritual seeing. It's a gift from God and not from ourselves when we can see this way.

Painting this rose was a revelation for me in many ways. My sweet friend Holly had sent me the picture of the rose and had encouraged me to try to paint it. But I didn't want to. Holly knows everything there is to know about roses. That's what she does for a living. So I knew that she would look at my rose with an expert eye, and I didn't want to fall short. In the end, I forced myself to paint it in a realistic style, which does not come natural or easy for me, but which is the style most befitting a rose this lovely.

Trying to render this rose with accuracy was hard, but it forced me to see in a whole new way. I had to study that rose and every single petal it contained in order to see it with brand new eyes. I discovered that the rose is an incredibly complex thing to paint. It has multiple petals, and each and every petal has it's own set of curving planes, some parts of the petal turning towards the light, some parts facing away from the light, some catching reflected light and some catching highlights. It took me a long time to paint this rose. But in the end I was glad that I forced myself to do it, as it enabled me to see the beauty and complexity of the rose in a whole different way- much different from the typical abstract palette knife strokes I generally use to haphazardly render one of God's most gorgeous creations.

This is Thanksgiving week. I give thanks to Holly for encouraging me to do something that I didn't want to do. And I give thanks to my friend Joyce for helping me understand difficult Bible concepts. Most of all, I give thanks to God for helping me see many things in ways that I had never seen before. And in enabling me to paint this rose, God has given me a new confidence in my painting abilities.

This rose will be a Christmas gift this year, so it is not for sale. But thank-you for visiting my blog.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Painting awards!

"Simple Gifts", 16x20, oil on linen (People's Choice Award)

This was a good weekend for me paint-wise. On Saturday, I was awarded the "People's Choice Award" from The North Port Art Center for "Simple Gifts". I also received an honorable merit award for this painting.

On Sunday, I received the second place award for Fantasy Impromptu from the Englewood Art Center, which is a division of The Ringling College of Art and Design. I was also invited to do a solo exhibit there in the summer of 2009. Here are a couple pictures of me at the receptions.

People's Choice Award/honorable mention for "Simple Gifts", North Port Art Guild

Second Place Award for Fantasy Impromptu, 18x24,

The funny thing about Fantasy Impromptu is that I sold it from my blog to a lady a few months ago. The woman paid for it and I was about to ship it. The day I was supposed to ship it, I took it out onto my porch and sprayed it with what I thought was retouch varnish. The painting started turning all white and misty as I was spraying it, and that's when I looked at the can and realized that I had sprayed it with Elmer's mounting Glue!

I called an oil painting restoration expert in Sarasota and followed his instructions to remove the glue. It took almost a week and I had to touch up the painting afterwards, since some of the paint came off in the process of removing the glue. In the end it looked just fine, but I told the person who had purchased the painting what had happened with the glue and in the end she decided not to purchase it. I am glad now, since it has turned into an award winner.

This is what a friend of mine calls a "God Wink"; when God takes what looks like a bad situation and turns it out for the good.

Recently, I also won a second place ribbon for "Faces in PLaces" exhibit, for the Girl in the Red Unitard. See picture below. You can read more about it here.

Thanks to the Lord for giving a dumb person like me a little talent, and for using my talent to make people who buy my paintings feel happy!

Amen! Hope everyone had an uplifting weekend!