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17 posts from September 2009

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

My Pride Runneth Over


My baby girl isn't a baby anymore.  She is growing up so fast, and I am so proud of her I could burst.  She started 10th grade this year and she is doing so well - beyond my expectations, but not beyond her own. 

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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Sometimes You Just Gotta Get Comfortable


Our doggies have their favorite chairs, and I'm convinced that there is psychology to the chosen chair.  Take Hannah for instance - I am convinced that she prefers this chair just so that she can keep an eye on me when I'm working on my laptop.  She'll jump up into the recliner and keep an eye out on all the activity in the family room.

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Saturday, September 26, 2009

Saturday Morning Skraw ©
Drawing Lesson 5 - Simple Shapes


When I begin to draw, I always begin with simple shapes, observing first the shape of the object I am drawing.  If you confuse your brain with all of the details surrounding what it is you want to draw, you'll end up giving up.  Start small.  Start big.  But start with a shape.

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Friday, September 25, 2009

My Dream House


You know what I miss about Maryland?  The rolling hills and the beautiful countryside.  As for people, though, I love Charlotte.  I love our home here in Charlotte, don't get me wrong, we have a beautiful home, but there was just something about where we lived in Maryland that was beautiful horse country.  It was peaceful.  Anyway, in Maryland, at least our home had landscaping in front.  It took us 4 years to get green grass, irrigation, a new driveway and sidewalk, a new drainage system, having the entire home interior painted, new carpeting, yada, yada, yada, and I am hoping it won't take us another 4 years to complete the money pit we've invested so much of our lives to make a home.

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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Red Barn at Outlook Farm - The Finished Painting


Many of you wrote to me and expressed interest in seeing the completed painting, so here it is in all its glory.  It isn't a masterpiece, but it is a painting that I am proud of and the family that commissioned me to do the painting are thrilled with it.  I took it to Frame Warehouse to be framed - my favorite place in all of Charlotte for framing and they helped me and the "B" family find the perfect frame to set off the painting beautifully.  We are all excited to see the painting varnished and framed and ready to ship this week.

So, before I ship it out the door, I wanted to share it with all of you.  Here again, is the process I used to complete the painting ...

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Teacher Vision and Busy Autumn Fingers


I love Teacher Vision.  I can count on them to send me great newsletters filled with information and projects for my children.  I can count on them to provide me with a slew of assignments, subjects, and reading for me and my children.  It is a great website and I recommend it not only for homeschooling parents, but for certified teachers too!

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Monday, September 21, 2009

Georgia O'Keeffe - An American Inspiration


I adore the work of Georgia O'Keeffe.  It is beautiful, magical, original, and simply feminine.  The other evening I watched a story about her life on Lifetime television and received a renewed sense of artistic inspiration.  She is an inspiration to all women who want to express themselves artistically, freely, and independently and in her day was considered a remarkable woman, paving the way of independence and self-expression to woman around the world.

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Saturday, September 19, 2009

Saturday Morning Skraw © - Drawing Lesson 4 - Two-Faced


Two-Faced.  If you get red flags about a so-called "friend" or someone else - run like hell.  Believe me, if they talk about others negatively behind their back - be sure that they are doing the same to you.  That's what you call "two-faced," "back-stabber," or "Ali-cat."  They'll act like a friend and then trash you behind your back.  I don't know about you, but I have no use for people like that.  They are ignorant, insecure, and shallow.  In the meantime, a great stress reliever is drawing and this seemed like an appropriate subject ...

The Two-Faced Drawing:

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Thursday, September 17, 2009

Cardamom and Orange Butter Cookies


By Beth Sollars (Singingirl Cooks!)

A couple of weeks ago when I bought that really expensive jar of cardamom for the Indian Inspired Dinner, I vowed to find ways to use it. After reading a little about this exotic spice and the ways in which it makes baked goods so delicious and curries so fabulous and coffee so spicy tasting, I started not to feel so bad that I had put my Pug's favorite treats on the back burner for this jar of cardamom.  Just Kidding!!! I'll have people calling the Pug Rescue Society for saying that.  Since I had made my Aunt Rose's cookie recipe in the past, I knew that with just  a touch of cardamom, it would send them over the top awesome. So, on with the recipe for Cardamom and Orange Butter Cookies, and I just know Aunt Rose won't mind that I renamed them.  If, however, you don't have cardamom, don't want to spring for the jar, or the cardamom pods and grind it yourself, then make these cookies without the cardamom. Aunt Rose did.

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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Accomplishments Feel So Grand


We are very proud of our girl!
Sarah has been invited to
Queen's University
to perform her "Waterfall" composition
in a winter concert at the University
on November 21st.  

The second half of the concert will include
a performance by

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Thank You Pablo Picasso


I've been struggling.  All artists go through this at some point in their career, but I felt I should talk about it.  Richard Schmid once said that you have to paint, and the more you paint the fewer "duds" you will turn out.  Now, I don't expect every painting to be a masterwork, and even my best is far from it, (and I think this one is probably one of my very best), but I keep trying, although I must admit that I am not as passionate about trying with every painting.  I don't know why that is.  Maybe laziness, maybe impatience, maybe I'm just tired.  I was passionate about painting "America's Promise."  Can you tell?

I realize that no matter what it is we are passionate about, though, sometimes we just don't feel like giving it our best.  It happens.

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Thursday, September 10, 2009

In Progress - The Red Barn at Outlook Farm


About 2 months ago, I received an email from a reader requesting a commissioned painting of the Red Barn at Outlook Farm for her sister who was getting married there in the coming months.  I have to say, nothing makes me happier than to get a commission for a painting that I love to do - and you know me and barns.  

Since that first contact, I sought out the best possible reference image, and although it isn't the best, it is enough to create a beautiful painting.  I thought I would take this opportunity to show you how I progress through paintings like this.  I do things a little differently now and then.   So let's get started!

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Monday, September 07, 2009

What Not To Do - Or...


This year has been so discouraging that I have been thinking seriously about what options and resources are available for opening a small business.  Having been a small business owner in the past, I carry with me a bungalow of optimism when it comes to starting a business, however, I know how much energy, time, and effort goes into the building, creating, and financing of a business as well.  It's a lot of work - and that's an understatement.

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Friday, September 04, 2009

New Paintings to Share


Hello everyone!  I have some new paintings to share with you that I am going to be exhibiting at the Matthews Alive Festival this weekend together with some other paintings I have for sale.  This one is called "Rolling Acres" 8 x 16 Oil on Panel. You can click on any of the paintings to see a larger view.

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Time for the Festival


Just want you all to know that I am busting my butt at the Matthews Alive Festival through Monday evening.  They'll have to peel me off the ground before the weekend is out.  I have to say, I really hate doing these festivals.  The last time I did this 2 years ago I swore I would never do it again and here I am.  I must be crazy.

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Wednesday, September 02, 2009

What's the One Thing?


To everyone who stops by today ... I have a random question for you ...

What is the one thing you wished for that you are glad you never got? 

This question was posed on TypePad and it got me thinkin.  So, what is the one thing that I wished for that I am glad I never got?  Actually, I think I may have a few things.

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Tuesday, September 01, 2009

An Indian Inspired Dinner


My stomach is growling and this sounds absolutely delicious.  After looking at the pictures, though, I told Big Bear we've gotta whip this up this week.  Thank you Beth!  So, are you ready for something delicious? Howza bout Melon Curry and Kicked Up Coconut Chicken Tenders!! Here ya go ...

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