Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Art Futura (addendum)

Just a small change to add to my post from a few days ago about the art event 'Art Futura', the venue has changed to an equally great site/setting. I am pasting an email below that states a change of venue for the show.

Hi Helen:

You will note that we have changed venues to the Portals gallery! This is an amazing space and will be a great fit for Art Futura....Everything else is the same, but please tell your friends...we hope to see you there too!

Thanks for stopping by, Helen

Simple Joys of Life

Okay....here I sit, thinking about what exactly it is I want to say. I have an assortment of people that read this blog, a number of people are not artists, so I try to mix things up a bit. Mix things up in as far as what I post - what I want to post and what I think will be of interest to the different folks visiting my blog. There is not much point to this for me if it does not engage viewers....I tend to be traditional in some ways and would much rather write in a journal if this were mainly for myself.
Okay, so, with that in mind I decided to post some photos of a painting I am working on...have been working on and hope to finish soon. This is a 30" x 40" oil on canvas...just something fun I wanted to paint. I enjoy painting children and water/beach scenes and just simple things in life. Often people ask me how I go about creating a painting, well, I don't have a standard way. Well, rather it is has changed back and forth over time and it depends somewhat on what I am creating and the materials. With that said though, I do generally just roughly block in or loosely sketch what I am going to paint - or what I think I am going to paint - this too, can easily change once I start painting. For me, a tight, detailed rendering would be too restrictive and limiting; It is just not how I work and is probably a reflection of how I live??? I don't want to invest a lot of time and energy in sketching as I find it is not necessary for the way I work. I tend to draw, paint, and sculpt my paintings during the actual painting. Also, I might be bit too eager to get into the painting for I like the process of painting - tactilness, the smell, etc...And I suppose I am much like a child with a package before them - the anticipation as I open the package and find a surprise before me. I can't wait to see what develops by my hands and before my eyes.
So, back to how I create my paintings. I generally have a pretty good vision of what I want to paint, whether 'en plain aire' or working inside from sketches, studies, reference photos, models, etc...I roughly block it in as I feel more free to change my mind as I paint. I try to get a loose image or layout, and some sense of the colors, lighting, values, temp, etc...laid in too. As I paint I will step back often or leave the room for a bit as I think it gives me a fresh perspective, not unlike life, eh? If something doesn't sit well with me it will jump right out, although sometimes I will take photos of the piece or view it in a mirror or upside down (the painting, not me) as it gives me a different perspective and another accurate way to see what is not working. If I get things early on as I like than it seems the rest of the painting tends to go smoother and just come together better.
I must say that I have found that the paintings that are more spontaneous, some of my plein aire work or ACEO's, sketches, etc...are sometimes my favorite pieces because of their spontenaeity...they are not overthought, nor over edited, and just seem to come purely from the heart and soul.
Well, I will add to this discussion as I finish the painting. I will post an image of the finished piece and some close-ups too. If anyone has questions, comments, or observations, please feel free to post or email me.
"The path to your heart's desire is never overgrown". Kigezi proverb
Thanks for stopping by, Helen
P.S. Stop by again as I will finish this post and painting, also plan to discuss getting back on task with art we have abandoned/given up on (can be applied to other areas of life); discussion of creativity (inspired by a very creative M.D. I know), maybe an interview with some decorators I know; and getting back to topics I started in old blogs....artist-in-residence, ACEO's, my murals, etc....

Thursday, February 18, 2010

'Another Chicka'

A 12" x 12" oil on gallery wrapped canvas...I painted this little gal awhile back when I painted working girl (2008?) and thought I would go ahead and post as I have not shown her much....she's just coming out into society :). These paintings are fun...lighthearted but enjoyable to paint as well. She is available...hmmmm...I've been thinking about the title...something fun along the line of the 'Working Girl' painting....maybe 'Single,Available Blonde', or something....?? 'No More Blonde Yolks'...okay, okay...has to be something fun. Send me your suggestions for her title. And as I said, she is available for the right price.
"Hope is that thing with feathers perches in the soul and sings the tune without the words and never stops...at all". Emily Dickinson
Thanks for stopping by, Helen

Friday, February 12, 2010

Art Futura

Good Morning,
A friend and patron of mine from the Chicago area sent me an email about an upcoming juried art show that some of my fellow artists might be interested in...actually, many of you nonartists and artists might be interested in attending the show. It is to benefit the Rehabilitation Institute in Chicago.

The show is titled 'Art Futura'...I am pasting some information about it (description, dates, contact info.) in case any of you are interested. It is an opportunity to maybe win some cash prizes, have your work seen in a reputable gallery in Chicago, and help a worthy cause.

"This is courage....to bear unflinchingly what heaven sends". Euripides

Thanks for stopping by, and take a look at the information I am pasting below.

The Associate Board of the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago is hosting its 8th annual ArtFutura at the River East Art Center from May 11-20, 2010. ArtFutura showcases work submitted by hundreds of artists from around the country. James Rondeau, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art, The Art Institute of Chicago, serves as juror and selects exhibit participants and awards outstanding works. More than 250 emerging artists, civic and business leaders enjoy music, refreshments and artwork on display at the special Closing Night Event on May 20. Proceeds from ArtFutura directly benefit the hospital’s Therapeutic Recreation Department and fund a part-time Art Therapist, who provides art-based therapy for patients. Recreational activities, such as art therapy, enhance socialization, relaxation, expression and adjustment to disabilities for RIC adult and pediatric patients.

For application and further info: http://www.associateboard.org/ or contact Eric Horner: 312-238-1252 * ehorner@ric.org

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

More ACEO'

Just got home and am going to head to bed, but I wanted to post a little something(s). A couple more ACEO's that I painted today between various tasks of the day. Haven't painted a lot of animals, a few, and I do like dogs...so here is one cute, little, fluffy critter. The other painting is a scene I have painted in the past...variations on it. These are the fields, some sunflower fields, that I originally painted en plein aire a number of years ago when I was in Perugia, Italy. I have since recreated the scene numerous times....takes me back there (but for a lot less money :( ).
These can be had for a small price if you are interested! Let me know.
"Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending". Maria Robinson
Thanks for stopping by,

Friday, February 5, 2010


Another ACEO...this one is titled 'Ann'. It is an oil on canvas paper of a good friend and patron. These beach scenes are helping to get me through the winter...and she, like me, loves the water and beach. This painting of Ann is of her as a little girl, how I imagine her as a little girl. The blue and gold shirt is for her love of all things Notre Dame, the number four is for her four sons.

She is seeking shells....small and simple, yet beautiful and unique creations making their way to shore after being tumbled around a bit. They are lovingly sought after and collected by such gentle little hands....a gentle, loving soul...one who has the eyes and soul of an artist.

John 10:14

Thanks for stopping by,


Tuesday, February 2, 2010


This is a portrait created in pastel of a friend of mine who was so kind as to sit for me. I enjoy portraiture so much and this was fun as it allowed me to get quite creative with the colors. I tried to make his expression a bit more ambiguous than it actually was. Feel free to comment. Hope you enjoy!
"Do not be afraid of tomorrow; For God is already there".
Thanks for stopping by,

Monday, February 1, 2010


This is a little ACEO I painted today. For those that don't know or don't recall from one of my previous posts, ACEO stands for Art Card Editions and Originals. These are paintings the size of a baseball card (2.5" x 3.5"). They were started a few years back by some artists who traded small paintings between themselves and eventually they caught on with other people. ACEO's have become quite collectable. This is an oil on canvas paper. These make nice little treasures to give or to keep...display a grouping of them or with other little treasures in a basket, a porcelain sugar bowl, under glass, on the fridge, etc.....
Let me know if you are interested in purchasing this small painting. It is quite a deal!
I can be reached at rtist6162@aol.com.
"When life hands you lemons, make lemonade". I don't recall who said this...good advice though.
Thanks for stopping by,