Wednesday, December 26, 2007


We had a wonderful warm family Christmas with our youngest son and his family. It meant hours on the road, but was well worth it. This coming weekend we go to our other son's for another "Christmas Day". How neat is that?!

Today life goes on, chores on our farm, painting and I have spent most of the day answering emails and inquires.

I have attached a pen and ink done of a polo pony. I am working on a papercut of a polo scene but did this sketch for something different to do. Again the black and white, yin yang and composition called me.............and I am enjoying doing these quick sketches.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Black and White

It has been a while since I have done a paper cutting, but this one was finished a week or so ago. It is called " Riding Like A Lady", and it already has a home to go to. In this scene the hunt stops as a very lady-like equestrian joins the field, in her side-saddle and fancy attire. Even the hounds are interested in this rider.
I have always liked the challenge of composing a work in just black and white, where you can capture depth and motion, all simple... and direct. I think I have achieved it here.
Now...... back to a watercolor of a Standard Poodle for a client! This is such a nice to day to be working in my loft.My barn chores are done for now and the snow piles up outside, while the horses nap in their stalls in the warm barn.
Winter blankets Morrill, Maine.

Monday, December 3, 2007

What I Do When I Procrastinate

After taking care of our four horses, walking the Corgi and shoveling the snow that was steadily accumulating, I headed up to my studio with a cup of hot tea and "whipped" out this pen and ink on illustration board. It is of two horses who were taking part in a Civil War reenactment. Their bridles are like what the army used back then...........but this was an reenactment...I am NOT old enough to have seen the real thing!!! The photo reference of these horses came from a fellow Equine Art Guild member.

But doing this sketch gave me a needed break from the paper cutting I am working on.... a hunt scene with very small detail. I get so "into" a zone when I do paper cutting, that I forget the time and very often I also forget what I am supposed to be doing. Today was not a good day to be cutting. But it turned out to be a good day for a small [ about 7 1/2 by 8 1/2" ] pen and ink rendering.
I will be putting this work onto my mixed media gallery page on my website.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Today I finished two more caseins for the “Shades of Black” series. There will be only one more painting in this series on the study of how black absorbs color and how light plays off the black horses on our farm.

Light, shadows and design…………..words that describe my work and that excite me about what I am doing. Both "Shades Of Black #8 "and "Shades of Black #9 " will be up on my site soon…….

Tomorrow I start a new paper cutting…..A hunt scene that depicts a sidesaddle rider and the hounds………..what fun this will be. I only hope my hands keep steady for the cutting!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Let It Snow!

Let it snow... let it snow!!!
Well, that is what I am saying now....but ask me in a few months how I feel about snow and I may have a different outlook! This is the view from my studio this afternoon. I look down on the barn and see the horses sleeping under their run-out sheds. The gardens have been put "to bed" for the winter and the bird feeders are full. I can paint.

Today I am finishing up some caseins that I am working on. I always have a few works in the "works", as I have to wait for glazes to dry before going into the same painting. This system also keeps me looking at each painting with a new eye when I start back working with it.

I am also sketching out a hunt scene silhouette to be done in cut paper.This is for a commission. I just sent two cuttings to the Millbrook Gallery. I haven't done any cutting for a while, so this will be a welcomed change. I always get so into a zone when I am cutting paper and I loose track of the time.

Back to the drawing board..........or do you think I should put the horses into their stalls ?..........


Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Coming Three Filly

Yesterday I took the day off and had lunch and visited with artist friends. We had a Chinese food feast and then talked, talked and talked. How wonderful to have such good friends who share the same interests and tastes....if was a enjoyable way to past the day. One friend brought her Golden Retriever with her, and "Koda" and my Corgi, Addie, had their own party. Actually Koda spent most of the time retrieving slippers and various things from about the house, bringing her booty to us for "our" enjoyment! Addie did what Corgi's do best.......kept a vigil for food droppings under the table.

Today I am back working in my studio, and just finished up this watercolor that I am calling "Coming Three Filly". I had posted the graphite study for this in an earlier post. Now that this watercolor is done, I can work on the caseins that have been drying and are now ready for the finishing glazes.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Early this year I did a watercolor of this Belfast building that I love looking at. It is on Main Street and when you drive into the town Belfast, Maine, you can’t miss this corner building, as it is right in your face.

This painting is a 10 x 8” casein on canvas board. I am working on some other scenes from this area of my world, as I venture forth and document my impressions of Waldo County, Maine. The earlier watercolor of this scene is already on my blog and on the watercolor page of my website. It is interesting to compare them……………… spring and one summer…….?

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Study of a Study

Today I started working on a watercolor of a two year old Welsh Cob filly, but first I had to do a quick study in graphite to get my values correct. I love doing quick sketches with definite line and movement. And I have found that there is interest in the purchase of these sketches too.

Tomorrow I will get into the watercolor more, but I am not quick with my watercolor work........actually I am not quick with any medium , except maybe my graphite or charcoal sketches!

Monday, November 5, 2007

Media Mixed

I have been playing with mixed- media for the past few weeks, and I just finished this piece, a watercolor, casein and pen and ink work....done sort of quickly and loosely. I like the finished product, done on 300 lb cold press watercolor paper. This four-in-hand had stopped for a lunch break with the coaching crowd that met at Acadia each year to enjoy the fall scenery. I was part of this group, as a groom for a gentleman who drove a four-in-hand of Welsh Cobs.
This team depicted here are Kladruby horses. The Kladruby, a handsome coach horse similar to the Lipizzan, originated in the Czech Republic 1579. It was derived from the Spanish Horse and the Old Neopolitan Horse from Italy. There is also other breeds like the Holstein, Andalusian, and Oldenburg horses, mixed in. This breed was produced as a heavy and beautiful carriage horse, and I enjoyed watching them trot down the road, or even standing under a shade three at lunch.
I also enjoyed working with transparent watercolors mixed with opaque casein and then throwing in some pen and ink..........I am sure I will do some more of this!!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Shades Of Black- The Series

I have completed two more caseins for the Shades of Black series…one of which is depicted here.

There are so many colors in black………and there are so many colors in my two black horses, two Tennessee Walkers…They throw off the reflection of light from their surroundings, the woods, the fields, and the sky. I see blues and reds and purples in their black coats and manes.

Nothing is black…life is not black and white. And things are never just what they seem. This is why I play with this ‘Shades of Black’ series and will continue to explore it.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Drawn From My Life

A few days ago I set up a still life to play around with. I haven’t done one in “color” in quite a while. I have done sketches of things that I have around the house…where they stand, not taking the time to really set them out with good lighting, just trying to make a composition that would work. But I felt the urge to do a few real still-life works and here is one.

This is casein on canvas, 8 x 10 inches. My mother gave me the pitcher years ago and I paired it with some apples that came off the huge crab apple tree that stands out side of my studio window.

I just needed to convince myself that I still could do still life works and enjoy them. I think I did.

I know I will be doing some more of them over the winter. I have a lot of memories in dust catching mementos displayed around the cottage…what fun! In each painting you will share a personal connection with my life and surroundings. Maybe this will be a good way to get to know me…..?

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Four-in-Hand at Acadia

Last weekend we went up to Acadia National Park carriage driving with friends. Wildwood Stable was getting ready to close for the winter season. What a wonderful time we had, with weather that was awesome. Maybe the fall colors weren't as brilliant this year as other years, but there were splashes of color that delighted the soul.

This casein painting above, done on Colorfix paper, is one of the works from the body of work that I am painting now. The four-in-hand in this painting is a team that was up at Acadia on an other occasion.

It always amazes me that these horses stand and wait , calmly, for the hitching and for the whip to take up the lines ......and then off they go! It makes me think that this is how we should approach life..............wait and then when the moment is you go!!!

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Waiting Our Turn

Maine Carriage Day is one of New England's oldest pleasure driving shows.For years it was held at Cumberland Fair Grounds, then moved to different spots, Snowfields in Pownal, and other training barns that had room for it. This year it is being held at Skyline Farm in North Yarmouth, and will have a different format.It will be held with dress classes and turnout classes being the most important themes. I hope to be there to get shots of interesting turnouts for future paintings, and to help with the ongoing art show that is still exhibited, "A Dog And Pony Show".

The small work pictured above is of a whip and her Morgan from a Maine Carriage Day event of years ago. This is a 5 x7 inch casein on canvas board. It of course is available for purchase.

This weekend we are heading to Acadia and Wildwood Stable to go driving with friends and their beautiful pair of Clydesdale's! I am looking forward to spending this time steeped in the tradition of carrige driving and the beauty of the carriage roads of Acadia, one of Maine's greatest treasures.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Sitting Pretty

After spending yet more time with no computer.........yes, my PC crashed again!! I am back on line on my NEW computer! And I am also getting commission work done and original work up on the easel ready to go. This is always a busy time of year for me, both for my artwork and for the chores that need to be done around the farm before the winter sets in. Today the temperature outside is still hovering above the normal. Thunder storms have rumbled through Morrill, but I shan't complain. The cold and snow will come quick enough!
This small casein portrait painting pictured above is of a very pampered canine that was done for his person in New York. What a life, heh? I have more canine works in the making. I keep working while "my" canine companion, Sweet Adeline, a Welsh Corgi, strikes a similar pose in our living room as she sleeps in my easy chair. I work and she sleeps. Who said dogs have a hard life?????

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Jacob Cotswold

There was a farm on a road near us where a lady raised sheep. There were 'flocks' of them..big, little, ewes, rams, and baby lambs. I was fascinated with them. They sported horns....some had many horns, so many they could have formed their own band!!
I stopped one day on my way to Belfast for shopping and talked with the lady who had all these sheep. She was very proud of all her flock and let me snap photos of them for future paintings. This is the first of my works depicted these neat sheep.
They are an ancient breed that are mentioned in the Bible. This was my first introduction to Jacob Cotswold sheep, a rare breed. I have raised sheep before, as a child on my family's farm in New Hampshire for 4-H, and again on our farm in Pownal, Maine. I always loved sitting with the sheep, listening to them chewing their hay and the peacefulness of the barn.
I miss my sheep...............but for now 4 horses,a cat and a Corgi are work enough.
I will stick to painting my sheep.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Somedays I Feel Like This?

This casein painting has just finished drying. I am calling it "Non-Voluntary Dismount". If you have ever ridden a horse, you know that this is not how you would want to dismount. The photo reference for this was provided by an artist friend who does painting [I have one of her oils!] and photography. Donna Ridgeway and her poet husband live out west......someday soon my husband and I would love to go visit them.
In the mean time...this painting makes me wonder how our 3 year old Welsh Cob filly is doing at "school". Last weekend we took her to a trainer here in Maine, in order that Ms. Maggie could start her growing up phase and become a solid citizen. We hope that she will take to driving like her mother and aunt did.She will also be started under saddle when she is ready....and I am believing for her to be a kind and gentle mare....not like the bucking bronco pictured above!
I am getting too old for many non-voluntary dismounts!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

I Can Do It Myself.... Sorta

This casein painting on paper is one of a body of works that I am working on now. I will tell more about this later, as the works come together. Stay turned!
The past few days have been full of hurdles website went down when the server that carried it went"belly up". At the same time our tiny cottage was full of company and distractions.
But this too has past and the cottage is quiet again, and my schedule is back to "normal". I am painting pictures and cleaning horse stalls. The birds sing outside my studio windows.
My website is still down... but that will be fixed soon.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Am I Blue?

I did a lovely watercolor of a gray Welsh pony a while ago. [It is in the Center Piece Gallery in Seal Harbor this summer] The image was provided to me by a photographer friend from across the country. She resides in the great state of Washington. Wendi Ross and I seem to be drawn to the same sort of subject matter… Kindred spirits it seems.
I have been doing a lot of drawing lately and I re-visited this little Welsh in graphite with a watercolor wash of blue. This pony has the bluest of eyes, so it seems proper to depict him this way. All gray and blue.
This graphite and others....and some new watercolors... will be put onto my website soon, but this is a preview of what is to come!!
But now I head out into the gardens to work. A labor of love! Soon [well, I hope not too soon.] snow will be flying and I will be cooped up in my studio with much to be done. Now the gardens await!

Friday, August 24, 2007

In past years I have enjoyed summers at Acadia, with my husband, driving our Welsh Cob mares. Lazy summer days with the pair trotting down the carriage roads built by Mr. Rockefeller, so that he could enjoy the spectacular views of Mount Desert Island and coastal Maine. If you have horses and haven’t been there, you need to go!!

At Wildwood Stables, where we camped with our horses, I took many shots of the draft horses there that pull the carriages that take the tourists through the carriage roads, so they can get a glimpse of the beauty that hides on these roads forbidden to the automobile. This casein is of one of those big boys, on a respite. I have done several versions of this draft, in different mediums- in casein, watercolor, acrylic, liquid gold, and pastel. Some of those can be seen on my

“A Quiet Spot” is the latest version of this gentle giant.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

PC Problems Etc, Etc....

The month of August started with computer problems and went down hill from there.....but the "puter" is fixed and life goes on.

Yesterday, while waiting for my computer, I sketched a self-portrait in graphite. It is a fast study of myself. They say [and I don't know who "they" are.] that we should sketch ourselves often as a exercise in art. This was an exercise to say the least. But at least I can chock that exercise off as done for a while.

Over the last few weeks I have been finishing up some caseins and some graphite studies of works to be done. I have also been getting works ready for "A Dog and Pony Show " ,an Invitational Exhibit that opens on August 31st at Skyline Farm Carriage Museum in North Yarmouth, Maine. This is the second year that I am curating and exhibiting in this fun show.This year we have some great artists participating and I am sure there will be something for every one's artistic taste.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Reflections on July 21,2007

It is true that over the years we get a bit rundown. Some of us more then others.

Such is the condition of an old house sitting by Rte 1, going out off Searsport, Maine. Every time I passed this relic, when we were looking for a perfect home in this area years ago, I wondered about the stories this old home held. The first time I saw it, my good friend and fellow artist Karen and I were heading out to Blue Hill to look at homes for sale. We laughed at the sight of this fixer-upper, saying this would be perfect……….yep!

This year I decided to paint this mystery [to me at least] house. I call it “Handy Man’s Special”. It certainly is. I think anyone interested would be wise to heed the “ Do Not Enter” sign that warns of jobs too big to fix.

And it is my opinion that we also should hang similar signs on our persona as we age for ‘The Doctors’ to heed.

Just my reflections for the day……………….from one who could be called a “Handy Man’s Special”

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Up Close....and Personal.

I am busy packing more paintings to go to yet another gallery. This painting "Up Close" will be exhibited in Saratoga this summer at Terry Lindsey's Equidae Gallery at the Hilton Hotel along with 5 other works of mine. It portrays the old Standardbred tongue loll. All business, and focus on the race. This watercolor has a graphic punch to it....with colors that are a tad more brilliant than what is displayed here.
Okay.....back to the wrapping and taping!!

Friday, July 13, 2007

Out And About? Not!

Earlier this spring, while snow was on the ground………I vowed that I would paint outside more often this spring and summer………..I did some quick sketches this spring of surrounding landscapes, houses and Belfast’s seaside atmosphere and lovely Victorian architecture. This watercolor is of a wonderful building in Belfast that has fascinated me since we moved into this area over five years ago. You can’t miss it as you drive into Belfast on Main Street…it is in your face. A lovely building!

When I lived in Italy, I painted and sketched often in the streets and piazzas of Rome. I had the works sold on the spot, as passer-bys watched me work and asked to purchase the works as I completed them.

Today I find I can’t work for long outside……….and even though I planned on working more outside, I prefer the studio and it’s bug free environment. Guess I am a sissy in my old age!!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Warming Up At Acadia

My favourite place to be in the summer [spring or fall] is Acadia National Park on Mount Desert Isle , Maine. For years we have been taking our horses there to experience the wonder of the carriage roads that John D. Rockefeller left to our nation. There we can enjoy a step back in time, on carriage roads created to be travelled by horse drawn carriage or by horseback. I have also had several art shows in Seal Harbor , where the main body of works exhibited have been works depicting scenes at Wildwood Stable, horses and the people who go there with their horses.

This casein depicts a scene where a driver, exercises her horse before hitching for a drive, and two ladies in their wicker phaeton prepares to head out onto the carriage roads from the grounds of Wildwood Stables. The Triad stands behind with outcrops of granite showing through the trees. It is a beautiful day!!

How I wish I were there today instead of working in my studio!!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

I have been invited to be part of a virtual art exhibit hosted online by Tapestry Institute in conjunction with The Voice of the Horse Conference This exhibit runs from June 30-August 31, 2007, The piece they selected is my casein “Dark Moon Ride” depicting a young man and his black Percheron draft horse on a moon lit night alone with their thoughts as they trot across the field. The innovative Voice of the Horse conference is designed to increase the understanding of the horse-human relationship at its most fundamental level -- the horse itself. Presenters include some of the nation's top horse professionals along with musicians and artists. Participants in the conference will be asked to share their stories of the horse-human relationship The conference will be held live at Iowa State University on June 30 and July 1; but it will be web cast live that weekend and it will also be available through August 31 for individuals to view and participate.This is an unique opportunity to show my artwork and participate in a study. Tapestry Institute is a federally-recognized non-profit 501(c)3 corporation.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Ice Ponies

Even though it is sunny out here now and the trees are in full green, flowers in bloom and the grass growing way too fast......I thought I should tell you about a diptych I did last winter , but have not put onto my website yet.
These two casein paintings on canvas are only 5 x 5 inches each, painted on all sides and ready to hang or sit on a shelve, without a need to frame them. Together they make a 5 x 10 inch painting depicting a small herd of Icelandic horses eating their hay. This herd belongs to a friend who breeds Icelandic horses in Knox, Maine. Icelandics are the neatest breed, with a comfortable rack and with "brio" galore. if I didn't have Walking horses to ride, I would want a woolly big hearted Icelandic.

I am glad the snow is gone...........the birds sing and summer is not far away. But these little caseins bring back the memory of the winter.... long gone by now.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Study On A Rainy Day

Today I finished this graphite study ...... a woman and her horse. The object of her affection is a Standardbred, "Trav", who has been her trail buddy for years. He is a stately gentleman whom I have taken care of on occasion. He reminds me of my 27 old Walker, Dom, who is also a grand gentleman.
My old "Dom" sleeps in his stall today as the skies pour outside. Spoiled rotten he is! As are his 3 stablemates.......all sleeping in dry stalls and munching hay watching the rain come down.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

To Work Or Not to Work?

In the studio, that is......That is the question.

It is so hard to stay in the studio and work these days. I get up from a commission I am working on and look out at the garden and think ”Hmmmmm... those weeds need to be pulled. That clump of Wooly Thyme needs to be divided. The forsythias need to be trimmed.” So where do I end up? In the garden! But my philosophy is that it was a long cold winter and the good Lord has given me these bright days to work in the garden.

I have finished this attached watercolor, one of three watercolors portraying harness racing; that will be on exhibit at Equidea Gallery in Saratoga, NY this summer. It is called “In The Blue”. It is always a pleasure to get back into painting in watercolor after working in casein. The paint behaves so differently and serendipitously………

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Old Horse - Old Barn

The rain is coming down at a steady clip today. From my studio window I watch the horses as they seek the shelter of their run-out sheds at our barn… and then as they trudge out between rain deluges to eat the new grass shots in their pastures. The fruit trees in our orchard are decorated in their spring cloaks of blossoms…white, pink and red. Everything is wearing green.

I have started a casein painting of an old horse and barn from a photo given to me by a new friend. Tim wrote, ”It is a photo of the barn, and one of the horses, on my Aunt and Uncle's farm, where I spent my summers growing up as a child. Maybe it will be of some inspiration to you.” Well, Tim…It is an inspiration to me… and I will be sending healing thoughts your way as I paint it. Thank you for your confidence in my portraying a part of your world that you grew up in. I think many folks can relate to this scene from the south.

I have started the painting with a chiaroscuro and this will dry enough to get into it with color in a few days…[or longer if it doesn’t stop raining!] I have attached it to today’s blog.
And now I will get back to finishing second watercolor of harness racing horses for Equidea Gallery in Saratoga, for the summer season.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Penned #2

Today you can see the second casein , 5 x 7", of the Penned series. This is "Penned #2".

Small can be good!!

Brevity can be good too, so back to the easel I go!

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

What Happens When Your Studio Is Small

With four horses to care for, a Corgi to walk, perennial gardens [that surround our cottage] that need spring cleaning and getting all details put together for a museum art exhibit I am curating……..Life has been a bit of a jumble lately. I do manage to get into my studio each day and work. The above image is a casein just finished……..”Penned #1” is one of two caseins finished of the same subject matter. In fact the second is a continuation of the first. Thus it is appropriately named “Penned #2”. These are small, 5 x 7”, but a number three will be coming soon and it will be bigger!
I have come to the conclusion that I do small works because my studio is small………the old ‘bell jar’ theory. That is why I am planning on working outside more this summer. With the sky above me, I shouldn't be hitting my head as I often do in my loft studio!Stay tuned!

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Just Busy Working

This week has gone by quickly. My days have been spent in the studio, or down at the barn. I have finished the above watercolor portrait of a certain black Tenn. Walker gelding , [who just so happens to live at our farm] and have started a painting of a local house .........sounds boring? Wait until you see it! This house has a story!!!

The next few days promise to be dreadful weather. So I am sure I will be staying in, working. I have two portrait commissions to work on and some writing that needs to be done. I am so grateful I don't have to travel far to go to work!

Saturday, April 7, 2007

What A Face

For an Equine Artist, I paint a lot of dogs!!?

This Boston Terrier fellow was just begging to be painted, so as I am a sucker for any cute mug, here is what I came up with. It is a small [5 x 7"] casein painting on board.

Life has been a bit busy of late. I have been picked up by another gallery! This time in Millbrook, New York. Paintings need to be boxed, shipped and paperwork done. Being an artist is not all brushes and paints. There is a side of the business that takes doing that is dull and boring, but it needs to be done if we want to be able to do the creative part.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

An Italian Greyhound Called Penny's Pooch

This casein painting was included in the Nation’s premier juried fine arts exhibit devoted entirely to man’s best friend, the Dog, The Art Show At The Dog Show in Wichita, Kansas from March 2 through April 4, 2007 at the Foyer Gallery and the City Arts Gallery. Then the artwork will be on display from April 6, 7, and 8, 2007 at the Sunflower Cluster Dog Shows at the Kansas Coliseum, Wichita, KS. Penny Plumb, a dear friend and fellow artist, is mother to two adopted Italian Greyhounds. They rule her house. This is Packard, Penny's pooch.

Dogs have always been a part of my life too. From Saint Barnard's, Standard Poodles, black and yellow Labrador's, Blue Tick Hounds, to our currant one an only Pembroke Welsh Corgi, "Sweet Adeline". So now while I finish up a color portrait of a horse, a black Tennessee Walker, I have started a small casein of a Boston Terrier.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Looking Down A Road

At the age of 17 I was living in Italy and going to The Rome Academy Of Fine Art. I walked down this street each day on my way to painting and drawing classes. I am sure the street has changed since I walked it...but now as I painted it from my loft in Maine, it seemed as if I was there, a student again in Rome. The little VW sitting in the sun with the other two cars, made an interesting counterpoint to the narrow ancient street. They all made a statement to me.... and so I painted.

This is "Roma, Italia".

Thursday, March 22, 2007

I Miss Italy

I don't know why I feel such a nostalgia for Rome, Italy lately. I spent my teen years there , painting, growing up and wishing I was somewhere else. I still have friends there whom I have somewhat kept in touch with over the years. I so want to go back and revisit it all. This longing has prompted me to start a casein painting of a street in Rome that I remember as if it was yesterday.
The sun shines here, with March winds howling around the studio. Outside the snow is melting. The brook is free of its winter cloak of ice, free to gurgle and skip through the woods, past the barn and past the horses. It is spring here in Maine, but how I long for the warmth of Italian sunshine and an espresso, sipped at a cafe by the Spanish Steps.
So I paint... and maybe I can feel as if I am there...........

I will post the work when it is done..........until then I can dream. can't I?

Monday, March 19, 2007

The Silhouette

In the past centuries silhouettes were usually portraits made of the profile of the subject and cut out of black paper mounted on white paper. Simple, and flat looking. My fascination with silhouette began in Italy, where I was studying at the Academy of Fine Art in Rome. There I was turned onto the amazing papercut works of an artist named Ugo Mochi. [1889-1977] A master at achieving the illusion of movement and drama from a simple papercut, his works were done with the skill of a sculptor.

This challenge to envision an entire picture in black and white and then to achieve depth and perception and a sense of movement all cut from one piece of paper, intrigues me and I am drawn to this challenge.

The above papercut is an example of my silhouette work. Black and white, yin and yang, design and abstract pattern at its most simple.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Hunter Jumpers...unite!

There are 3 "Hunter-Jumper" works, a bit united, but each a work on their own. The first "Cinching Up", is almost able to be part of the "Shades of Black" series. But it isn't.

The other 2 works almost are a triptych . "Hunter Jumper 1" and "Hunter Jumper 2". But they don't need to be. These are all caseins, all 12 x 12", and from the same palette.
Now I need to move on to new works...........maybe a paper cutting?

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Shades of Black

My "Shades of Black" #5 in a series of light and shadows as they play around my two black Tennessee Walking horses, is done. My first works in this series seem to be have been more free from internal clutter. This last work , with brighter highlights, more color and less of a silhouette effect seems to be saying more, but also has seems not to be leaving so much for the viewer to imagine.

This series is an interesting result of my fascination with silhouettes and the abstract pattern that the emerges when I am challenged with just the white and black ,abstract yin and yang when leaving out distracting detail. I have always worked in black and white cut paper before when I did silhouette compositions...this series is a journey into another medium [casein] but capturing the same depth and movement with simplicity.

I will talk more about the actually paper cutting fascination another day. Today the sun beckons and the horses are shedding........Spring is almost here!!!!

Monday, March 5, 2007

Why Casein?

It seems that I am always explaining what casein is and why do I use it? ...
There are so many different painting mediums I could be using, but time and time again I am drawn back to casein and what it does for me.
Casein is a water media paint made from milk protein. It has become my medium of choice with it's wealth of possible applications. I can do aqueous washes, layering delicate glazes, all speeded up by its quick drying time. Or I can paint thickly with a knife as if in oils. I can apply it in a consistency of tempera or gouache in a dry brush technique for detailed work. In other words...casein does ..for me...what all the other mediums can do. That's my story and I'm sticking to it!!
So I guess I need to get back to painting!
Attached is one of my favourite paintings, "In Your Face", a 16 x 20 casein on canvas. These ponies look at me as I work on my "Shades of Black" Series.........good company in my studio!

Friday, March 2, 2007

Snow out, Warm in.

Snow whirls past my studio windows. The big old crab apple tree is decorated with goldfinches, chickadees, purple finches, juncos as they take turns at the feeders and sunflowers that litter the snow below..... and my Maine-coon kitty, Mittens, seats at the window and watches.
The horses are all tucked warmly in their stalls. This storm will blow all day.
I am tucked warmly in my studio and have been painting all morning. I have stuck two of the three casein's here for viewing in part. They are 12 by 12" each, too big to go on to the scanner. But this gives a idea where I am going with them.............I think?

Wednesday, February 28, 2007


The sun shines into the studio. and our horses feed on hay on top of the snow in their paddocks. I look down on them from my 3rd floor loft studio.What a great sight to be able to constantly look at. I have a great job!!

The 3 caseins of Hunter- Jumpers are almost done...but today I will give a preview of a watercolor completed. This work is of a driver [whip] as she bridles her gray pony for their drive. They make a great pair.

I surely feel blessed to be able to do what I do , love what I do ... and to still be able to do it!!

Monday, February 26, 2007

Who said this blogging is easy??

Due to my own limitations, I have been locked out from my own blog since my last [and first] entry. We have been snowed under and blown by the winds since then. Just doing the barn chores has been a it of love?
But on the bright side...I have been painting. Yesterday I finished a watercolor [Titled: "Pony"] of a lovely gray pony who captured my muse at last fall's Maine Carriage Day held at Skyline Farm in North Yarmouth, Maine. Then I went back to painting three caseins I am working on of hunter-jumpers. Today I work on the three caseins and started a fourth in my "Shades Of Black" series. I am on a roll...........
Now if I can just remember how to get back into my blog creation page I will write more soon.......

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

I have joined the world of the "blog". After everyone telling me I should have it is.
Not knowing what to write , or what to contribute I guess I will start with...

It is cold out this morning on our small farm in the Maine woods. The horses breath ice crystals as they trot around their paddocks, trying to warm up their stiff bodies , free now to kick and frolic, out of their nighttime containment. I have given them hay, uncovered their heated water tanks and lined their ice covered stall buckets out in the sun. I leave the 4 horses to their games, and Addie [ my best Friend and resident Corgi] and I are back in our warm cottage, enjoying the bright sun as it streams through our south facing windows.
I grab a hot cup of coffee and my work in my studio begins.