I was recently commisioned by a very proud grandpa to paint a portrait of his two grandsons. The painting is a gift to his wife for their anniversary. I was able to take a very low resolution cell phone image and turn it into this painting of two very handsome young men. My client says he bets his wife will cry when she sees it. As long as they are happy tears, that's ok! I'm sure sweet surprises like this are why they are celebrating over 20 years of marriage! It makes me so happy to be able to help with surprises like this, no matter what the occassion!
My latest painted portrait is of Rimma. She's a beautiful chocolate lab that loves to be with her humans, especially when they are outside. They have watched her grow from a four pound puppy to a 64 pound bundle of love. She's almost the same color as her favorite sofa, so it's easy for her to nap inconspicuously. I think she may be a bit spoiled, but after all, she is just a furry four legged baby!
I'm excited to announce that one of my paintings, "Gettin' Into It", was selected to hang in the Arts in the Airport Spring 2017 display at McGhee Tyson airport in Knoxville, TN. It will be on display from late April until mid October. If you're travels find you in the Knoxville airport, stop by and take a look at it!
If you're looking for something unique for a Mother's Day gift this year, why not commission a custom digitally painted portrait? Paintings can be created from an image taken during a photo session by me or from an image you already have - even a cell phone image! Flowers and candy will soon disappear, but a custom painting will remind Mom of your love for years to come! Specializing in pets and children, I am now accepting a limited number of commissions for Mother's Day delivery. Contact me ASAP for details.
I had the privilege of photographing Winston last year when he was first brought home by his humans, Andrew and Janet. Winston is a great big, loveable, kiss giving Goldendoodle. He's always glad to see you and loves to play ball.
This year, Winston's mom and dad got him a baby brother! Meet Bentley! Bentley is a little bigger than Winston was at the same age and just as full of energy. Winston is a great big brother. He's already showing Bentley all the important things about living with humans, like how to get them to throw the ball for you. The two are quickly becoming best friends, just like brothers should be.
Enjoy these photos from their "Welcome home Bentley" session!
Here's another painting I created from a cell phone image provided to me by Herschel's human dad. It was a gift to Herschel's human mom for Christmas. I love getting to help Santa by creating a piece of art that captures memories!
I had the privilege of helping Santa with several surprises this year. Below is one of the paintings I did from a cell phone image. Terry wanted to surprise his husband, Mark, with something special. From what Terry told me, Mark has a way of always finding out what his gifts are before the big day. Terry and I worked together to make sure Mark didn't find out about this one ahead of time. We succeeded and Mark was surprised!
Sadie has been Mark's fur baby since she was 8 weeks old. She's now 14 years old. I think the painting shows the love the two have for each other. I hope that Mark and Terry will enjoy their painting for many years to come! It makes me happy to preserve such special memories!
I fondly remember my childhood Christmases. Everything seemed to sparkle with magic! In the late 60s we got an aluminum Christmas tree with a color wheel that lit up the entire living room at night. My brother and I had the privilege of setting up and decorating this beautiful, sparkling symbol of the holidays. We always decorated it with shiny glass ornaments. To me, it sparkled even more during the daytime when the sunlight coming through the window hit the slivers of the silver branches.
With my memories and love of midcentury style in mind, I created a couple of vintage/midcentury style wreaths. Would you like to add a little vintage sparkle to your home? If so, let me know. One of these could be yours, or I could create something for you with specific colors or a theme to complement your home.
Today is the first Monday in 30+ years that I haven’t had to “go to the office”. Last Thursday, my career in technology came to an end when the contract I’ve been working on for the last six years was cancelled. While many would get upset over losing a job, I am treating it as the opportunity to finally do what I’ve wanted to do for years – work for myself from home. I’m excited to say that as of today, I am a full time artist and photographer!
Art has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. I managed to spill the “no spill” paints I had when I was five years old. In elementary school, one of my favorite things to do was help the teacher mix the tempera paints then paint masterpieces on giant sheets of newsprint. I still have one of the first oil pastels on canvas board that I created on June 9, 1971 (I dated it on the back), and a watercolor I did in art class in high school.
The photography bug hit me in fifth grade. Who knew that the film that I was “wasting” taking pictures of the trees and mailboxes would be my introduction to photographic art. Unfortunately, I don’t have those images, but I do have the first image I remember taking when I was eight years old. It’s of my parents and was made with my mom’s Herco Imperial box camera. You can see it on my blog if you’d like.
I’ve been seriously doing art and photography part time for several years. I have attended numerous classes and seminars, and entered lots of competitions, to improve my craft. I’ve also been part of several photography groups and organizations, such as Professional Photographers of America and the Professional Photographers of East Tennessee. The friends I’ve made and the knowledge I’ve gained by being a part of these organizations has helped me to realize that I can achieve my childhood dream of being an artist.
So today the new chapter begins. I’ve already had my dog, Skipper, outside modeling for me this morning. My “to do” list is so long that I may have to work 80 hours this week to avoid working 40 hours for someone else. Isn’t that one of the definitions of an entrepreneur?
If you would like to commission me to create Art for Your Heart ™ custom portraits or artwork for your home, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you’d like to check out my photography and painted portraits, please visit my blog and website.
I look forward to creating something special to preserve your memories!
For the last three months I have participated in an online zen art challenge. I didn't keep up as well this month as I did in July and August, so I found myself playing "catch up" today. I did the watercolor on the paper before doing the daily drawings, then tried to fit some of the "tangles" into the colored spots of the watercolor. I like how a unique piece of art unfolds as each daily drawing is added.
If you think you'd enjoy doing this, check out the Facebook group called Mindful Creativity with Tangles. It's a closed group so you will have to request to join. Though this looks complicated, it's very relaxing. You can do the designs at your own pace and in your own way. There is no right or wrong way. It's just a way to relax and have fun!
Last week was the annual International Print Competition (IPC) hosted by Professional Photographers of America (PPA). The name is a bit misleading as the only person you compete with is yourself. The goal is to achieve "merit" status with your submissions. Each merit gets you a point towards PPA's Master Photographer degree or Master Artist degree. It takes a total of thirteen image merits plus twelve continuing education merits for each degree. Only four images can be submitted in each category every year, so it can take several years to earn the degrees.
This year I entered eight images, four in the photographic open category and four in the master artist category. Out of those eight, two in the photographic open received a merit and three in the master artist category received a merit. One of my master artist images, titled "The Art of Geometry" was selected for the loan collection, which is considered the "best of the best", and received an additional merit. I am now only one merit away from my Master Photographer degree and halfway to my Master Artist degree.
Below are my merit images for this year. If there's any way I can help you to preserve your memories or create a unique Art for Your Heart ™ piece for your home, please let me know!
Have you come across a box or old trunk full of old photographs of your ancestors? Isn't it fun to look at them and see if you resemble them? Whose side of the family do you look like? If our ancestors had not had these images taken and printed, we would only be able to imagine what they looked like.
What is the condition of the pictures from that old box or trunk? Are they still pristine because they were carefully stored? Probably not. Many will have moisture/water marks on them, be discolored, scratched, or may be torn and have missing pieces. If you have old pictures of your ancestors that may need restoration before you display them, please contact me and I will help you get great-grandpa and great-grandma looking their best!
Here is a before and after image of my husband's great-grandparents. It was originally stored in an oval frame with a rounded front. It had some water marks and discolored spots on it. I restored it as a surprise for my mother-in-law for Christmas. Now everyone in the family has a copy so they can remember Ma and Pap Bowman!
What household in the 1970s didn't have something made from macrame? Our Girl Scout troop did a project that taught us the basic knots. There was no stopping us then! Macrame belts with beads and long fringe were popular - they looked great with bell bottoms. Spider plants and ivy in macrame plant hangers were in most homes. And of course there was the macrame owl with its big bead eyes following you around. There's one in my coloring book, Memories of the 1970s. I hope it brings back some fun memories and makes you smile. Here's a version colored by one of my granddaughters.
Wishing everyone Peace, Love, Happiness, and a wonderful 4th of July!
The world needs more Peace, Love, and Happiness.
Here's a little doodle/tangle I did this week. practiced my shading with colored pencils.
Jill sent me this page that she colored from my Memories of the 1970s coloring book. She named it "The Partridge Family" because it made her think of The Partridge Family TV show that was popular in the 1970s. Jill said she thinks Memories of the 1970s is fun because it's lighthearted and there's so much variety in the pages. Thanks Jill! You can get your copy here!