Wednesday, April 27, 2011

"Hurdy Gurdy Man", 11x14, oil on linen

"Hurdy Gurdy Man", 11x14, oil on linen

In case you don't know, A Kobzar (Ukrainian: кобзар, pl. kobzari Ukrainian: кобзарі) was an itinerant Ukrainian bard who sang to his own accompaniment. (From Wikipedia)

Kobzars were often blind, and became predominantly so by the 1800s. Kobzar literally means ‘kobza player’, a Ukrainian stringed instrument of the lute family, and more broadly — a performer of the musical material associated with the kobzar tradition.[1][2]

The cossack or Kobzar above, is depicted as playing either a bandura, or a hurdy gurdy, both of which are stringed folk instruments. Since Hurdy Gurdy kind of resonates with me, being a child of the 60's and a Donovan fan, that's what I decided to title it.

I love painting figures of ethnic people and I found a photo of this old bard in a very weird place- a book in a pricey hotel on Jekyll Island, South Carolina. We went to Jekyll Island while traveling through the South, and I just had to see stop at the island to see where the rich elite concocted their plan for the Federal Reserve. The book (not Creature of Jekyll Island) was entirely written in Ukrainian, so as much as I'd love to credit the photographer, I can't. Hopefully he isn't blind, (the cossack, not the photographer), and hopefully he won't mind that his face took on a rather uncanny resemblance to former President George W. Bush.

The painting is not for sale since I cannot give credit to the photographer of the reference photo, but it sure was fun to do!

Have fun researching Kobzars, Hurdy Gurdies, Banduras, Donovan and Jekyll Island!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

"Window View of the Lobster Shack", 14x11, oil on linen, Peggy's Cove, fish shack, lobster shack, red boat, windows with a view impressionist painting

SOLD "Window View of the Lobster Shack", 14x11, oil on linen

Mother's Day is just around the corner and this painting is beautifully framed, reasonably priced, and ready to give as a gift to that special mother in your life.

This painting is overall a success in my humble opinion- loose and generous with paint where it needs to be, and also restrained in areas where more modest color and brush strokes take a back seat to the lush floral bouquet in the foreground. It was tricky trying to do a painting like this, because the background needs to be painted first. The hard part is to keep the background from interfering with the focal point, while still incorporating its story into the overall theme. I hope that I was successful in that.

The background is a scene from a lovely little fishing town in Nova Scotia, called Peggy's Cove. I took some liberties with the setting and hope no one minds that I sat my window sill right smack in the middle of St. Margaret's Bay, overlooking a little fisherman's hut.

If you are interested in this painting, please send me an email at, or call Leah Sherman directly at Collector's Gallery and Framery at 941-488-3029.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

"A Place in the Sun", 6x6, impressionist garden paintings, contemporary impressionism

Sold"A Place in the Sun" 6x6, oil on museum wrapped ampersand Gessoboard

I know this isn't a great photo of this painting, and I'll definitely try to take another one in the morning when there's natural lighting.

Last week, I bought some sunflowers and used them in my painting, "Sleepyheads with fruit". Afterwards, I took them out in the back yard and put them on a little bistro table we have in the yard under the palm and hemlock trees. My hubby took a photo of me reading in the sunlight and then I got the idea to make it more dramatic. So I ran in the house, threw on my lime green skirt, added a multi-colored scarf as well as my favorite hat. All that was left was to add the glass of wine and as I sat between the lengthening shadows and the harsh Florida sunlight, I knew that my hubby had captured a photo that was paint-worthy!

"A Place in the Sun" was the result, and I am extremely pleased with it, since I have been struggling to make some sense out of painting small. This attempt was definitely a winner in my book, and I think if an artist can paint small then they can definitely be successful at painting most anything! I named the painting after a song that my dad used to play on the family stereo. My dad always did his best to introduce his kids to all types of music, and I owe my love of music to him. Here's the lyrics, if you're too young to remember the song:

"A Place In The Sun"

Like a long lonely stream
I keep runnin' towards a dream
Movin' on, movin' on
Like a branch on a tree
I keep reachin' to be free
Movin' on, movin' on

'Cause there's a place in the sun
Where there's hope for ev'ryone
Where my poor restless heart's gotta run
There's a place in the sun
And before my life is done
Got to find me a place in the sun

Like an old dusty road
I get weary from the load
Movin' on, movin' on
Like this tired troubled earth
I've been rollin' since my birth
Movin' on, movin' on

There's a place in the sun
Where there's hope for ev'ryone
Where my poor restless heart's gotta run
There's a place in the sun
And before my life is done
Got to find me a place in the sun

You know when times are bad
And you're feeling sad
I want you to always remember

Yes, there's a place in the sun
Where there's hope for ev'ryone
Where my poor restless heart's gotta run
There's a place in the sun
Where there's hope for ev'ryone
Where my poor restless heart's gotta run
There's a place in the sun
Where there's hope for ev'ryone...

"Dripping with Charm", painting of 1125 Mill Creek Rd. Gladwyne by Maryanne Jacobsen

"Dripping with Charm"-a painting of a little blue cottage at 1125 Mill Creek Rd.-Gladwyne", 16x12, oil on Masonite

(Note: Please click on the photo to see the impasto better!)

I sold real estate for about 5 years before moving to Florida. I was in a pricey market on the Philadelphia Main Line, and it was never dull to take clients around and show them potential homes to buy, as they were all invariably interesting and beautiful. Some even had historical significance.

I recall one client in particular, who was considerably more entertaining than most, (of my clients) in that she invariably picked the weirdest, most controversial, or most glorious homes in that area to look at. She was also a physic, so she would get vibes about the previous owners whenever we walked into a house. (Nine times out of ten they were accurate!)

One day, she decided that she wanted to see a little blue 'Victorian cottage' in Gladwyne.

I think the term "cottage" is what grabbed her, as the house description in the MLS conjured up fantasies of a home dripping with charm, historically relevant and built in the 1800's upon a glorious lot with blooming azaleas, a creek and waterfall! In the end it took what seemed like hours for us to finally find this little dream house tucked quietly and peacefully behind the main road. Mill Creek Road is just one of about a half dozen dauntingly difficult to negotiate yet magnificent stretches of winding highway that is located in an area of prime real estate in lovely Lower Merion Township. The road ran snake- like along a fast-flowing creek that could quickly become treacherous after a rainfall, flanked by cascading hills and tall trees on either side of the 2 lane roadway.

We finally found her little blue house that day, towards sunset, after reading the stupid map at least a thousand times forwards, backwards and upside down, and taking way too many wrong turns in our endeavors to get there before dark. Seemingly the little blue cottage was tucked betwixt and between two worlds, for although it was just around the bend from the fast moving cars on Conshohocken State Road, the house was nestled quietly behind a fairy forest of trees, rushing water and fresh-blooming azaleas.

This was the year 2001, and Garmins and Magellans were not in vogue back then. It must have been May or early June when I shot this picture out side the house, because that azalea bush was screaming out for our attention with every ounce of energy it possessed!

In the end, my client elected not to buy the charming blue cottage for reasons which had nothing to do with charm or location, for there was certainly no denying the absolute beauty and isolation of that place, so conveniently located just ten short minutes from Philadelphia .

I took the photo of the little blue house with the very first digital camera that I ever owned. The photo is pretty pixelated, but there is still no denying the beauty of the scene.

I hope that my friend and ex-client is doing well. I have been thinking about her a lot lately for some reason. We had great fun looking at homes together, though I'll confess that the fun never translated into a sale for me.

Weirdly enough, after completing this painting, I did a quick google search on the computer of the realtor who had listed the home way back then, and as it turns out, this house is on the market again with the same realtor, Alan Wood of PFR Bryn Mawr. So if you are looking for a historically significant property in Lower Merion Township on a beautiful lot, just contact Alan for a preview. Here's a site with more info about this $649, 000 "cottage", as well as a google street map if you want to see the scene that I painted.

Painting this scene certainly brought back some cool memories. The Philadelphia Main Line is a lovely place. I used to take the hour long drive from Chester Springs to Narberth at least 4 times a week to dance at the Pennsylvania Academy of Ballet. A favorite restaurant of mine in Gladwyne was The Guard House, where many of the local realtors would gather and exchange stories. Although I don't live in the area any more, I can still appreciate its incredible beauty, especially along that remote stretch of Mill Creek Road , in Gladwyne, Lower Merion Township, through this photo and through my own humble painting of the scene.

If you are interested in purchasing this painting, please contact me at maryanne To visit my official website and learn more about me and my art, please go here.

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Monday, April 18, 2011

"Ancient Village-Peru", oil on masonite, 16x12-by Maryanne Jacobsen

"Ancient Village-Peru", oil on masonite, 16x12

This is an older painting that just recently came out of an exhibit that I had at a restaurant downtown. I've always like this painting, and whenever I look at it, I realize that I should use more burnt sienna in my landscapes! The warmth it added to the foreground was perfect, and it still allowed me to make the background receed through the use of cooler colors. An artist friend took this photo from her vacation in Peru and was kind enough to share it.

This painting was done with palette knife only and has thick , sumptuous paint layers throughout. Please send me an email at for purchase information about this painting. To visit my official website and learn more about me and my art, please go here.

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Saturday, April 16, 2011

"Hobbit's Hide-Out", 16x12, oil on board

SOLD "Hobbit's Hide-Out", 16x12, oil on board

My painting "Hobbit's Hide-out" received the first place award at last night's opening reception of "Abstraction" at the Venice Art Center. The art center is a beautiful place, and the people living in Venice are quite proud of it. There are beautiful courtyards with fountains and tropical plants that flank either side of the building. The wine bar was set -up in one of the courtyards last night and there were hors d'hoeuves and other goodies to munch on while the people leisurely strolled around and perused all the art. There is always an accomplished pianist on hand at the receptions to entertain the crowd, and a good time was had by all.

I met some new friends last night, and re-connected with some old friends, too. Overall, it was a wonderful evening- especially for me! A big thank-you to the art center for the generous $500 check for first prize!

Here are some pictures from the reception:

That's me looking towards my sweet and supportive hubby as I receive my award.

This is one of the open air courtyards- this one adjoins the restaurant where gourmet lunches as well as wine are offered to guests of the art center.

A lot of people complimented my painting last night. I even met a couple from Pennsylvania who live in Kimberton, which is just outside of my old home town of Chester Springs. Small world!

The pianist....

People had over 100 paintings to peruse in the exhibit. There was also a very cool solo exhibit of tiki heads in an adjoining gallery by artist Maryjo Florjanski.

Please send me an email at for availability and purchase information about this painting. To visit my official website and learn more about me and see more results of my daily dance with paint, please go here.

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Friday, April 15, 2011

"Coffee Break", 8x10, oil on wrapped canvas, green mug, tangerine, pear, food still life

SOLD"Coffee Break", 8x10, oil on wrapped canvas

With spring here at last, I decided to pull out my pretty pastel napkins. As I was making dinner , I made myself a cup of coffee and realized how pretty my new mug looked with the colorful napkin. So before you know it, I abandoned plans for a fancy dinner and instead set up this colorful little arrangement.

I'm not sure how many people eat fruit with their coffee, but it certainly is better for you than a doughnut!

Please send me an email at for availability and purchase information about this painting. To visit my official website and learn more about me and see more results of my daily dance with paint, please go here.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

"Allegro", 11x14, oil on linen by Maryanne Jacobsen

"Allegro", 11x14, oil on linen-Not for Sale

Sometimes you just feel like dancing! Or leaping for joy- or jumping in the air! That's how I have been feeling this week.

In ballet class, the petit and grand allegro were always my favorite part of class. The petit allegro occurs towards the end of class when the dancer is sufficiently warmed up enough to do very quick, but small and precise jumps to a sharp, fast tempo. I always loved the petit allegro because of my musical background. The faster and more syncopated the rhythm, the quicker and more precise the jumps need to be, and I loved that challenge. I think I was best at the petit allegro because it did not require long gorgeous lines and extensions as the adagio did, and which I did not have. The grand allegro was also a series of jumps and leaps across the floor, only performed typically to a grand waltz tempo since the combination would always incorporate the biggest jumps, such as a saut de chat (leap of the cat) that required a longer phrase of music.

This has been a good week for me, so that's why I'm in the mood to dance. I sold a large painting early in the week, and also found out that I received a first place ribbon in The Venice Art Center's "Abstraction" exhibit. The reception for the exhibit is tomorrow from 5 to 7 , so if you are in the Venice area come by for wine and hors d'oeurve and check out the exhibit. When I dropped off my painting, "Hobbit's Hide-Out" last weekend, I marveled at all the beautiful artwork already on the walls, so imagine my surprise when I received the phone call that I'd won first place!

Then yesterday, British novelist and new collector Deborah Lawrenson, wrote a beautiful piece about my artwork on her blog! I was so excited to see all the wonderful comments and read Deborah's rich, glowing description of my painting, "Long Shadows-Provence"!

Please take a moment to stop by Deborah's beautiful blog, and be sure to read the post about her new book, "The Lantern", due out this summer.

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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

"Sleepyheads with fruit", 12x24, oil on hardwood-stll life with sunflowers

"Sleepyheads with fruit", 12x24, oil on hardwood-
Note: Please click on the photo for a better view of the brush strokes and impasto

Sometimes all it takes to awaken my creative juices is a bouquet of sunflowers in the supermarket. I lucked out today when I spied an unexpected display of fresh sunflowers in the local market, while shopping for lunch.

I took them home and decided that they would look perfect painted in a long format, which I just happened to luckily have on hand. I rummaged through the fridge, found some fresh fruit, and went to town.

When I took the flowers out of their wrapping and placed them in the vase, their little heads were drooping and they looked like they were nodding off. Hence the title!I do love sunflowers. They always make me feel happy, even when their heads are bowed.

If you wish to purchase this painting, please contact Shelby Ward at Gallerie Unique at
(239)332-2121 or visit their website here.

Monday, April 11, 2011

"Colle Verde Vineyard-Summer"-24x36, oil on canvas

"Colle Verde Vineyard-Summer"-24x36, oil on canvas

This painting just sold to a repeat collector from Texas. It just came out of an exhibit last week and my son and daughter-in-law have been eyeing it up for their living room. They were disappointed to hear that it sold , so I guess I'd best try to paint another big one!

To visit my official website and learn more about me and see more results of my daily dance with paint, please go here.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

"Nancy in Aqua", 14x18, oil on canvas

"Nancy in Aqua", 14x18, oil on canvas

Over the past few weeks, I've been trying my best to regularly attend the open studio sessions with a live model on Friday afternoons at The Venice Art Center. I have realized that the more that I paint portraits from life, the better I can evaluate values, colors and light temperature.

Nancy modeled for us last Friday as well, and this is the first time that I actually was able to attend two consecutive sessions with the same model. At the end of the day on Friday, Nancy had asked me if she could use a photo of my painting for her website, so I decided that I'd better make a good attempt to put on the finishing details at home.

I added the jewelry on her blouse at home, as well as playing around with that darned striped cushion! But for the most part , I was able to finish her face in the 5 hour session satisfactorily.

Nancy was a very good model- anxious to please and stayed perfectly still throughout. She is also an artist herself, so she had a very good understanding of the struggles artists go through in attempting to perform their craft to the best of their ability.

I was happy with the end result. I think I did a fairly decent job of rendering Nancy's character into the portrait. Nancy is an avid outdoors-woman, comfortable in her own skin, and like me she also enjoys ballet class :0) She also fishes, kayaks, hikes and paints images on coconuts, which she calls "Coconut Telegraphs", which she appropriately sells at a gallery in Key West. Whew! That's a lot of activity!

Nancy, however, has done a much better job at maintaining a ballerina's slim figure than I have!

Thanks Nancy, for the opportunity to paint you!

Thursday, April 07, 2011

"Snake River-Wyoming", 20x16, oil on canvas, by Maryanne Jacobsen

"Snake River-Wyoming", 20x16, oil on canvas

This painting just came out of a year plus long exhibit and it is beautifully framed in a gold plein air frame and ready to ship to anyone who loves:

1, Wyoming
2, The Snake River,
3, Vibrant impressionist landscapes
4. Palette knife landscapes
5. Western art
6.all of the above

Please send me an email at for availability and purchase information about this painting. To visit my official website and learn more about me and see more results of my daily dance with paint, please go here.