Sunday, April 26, 2009

San Dimas Festival of Western Arts

This weekend was the 33rd annual San Dimas Festival of Western Art Show. I was honored to be featured artist this year. This is one of my favorite shows to do, the people who run this show, board members and volunteers, really do a wonderful job and take such good care of all the artists. The show was moved to the historic Walker House in San Dimas for the first time this year and proved to be a good move for both artists and collectors. The 100 year old house was the perfect setting for the collection of artwork presented by the 40 invited artists and also for the permanent collection.

I had the privilege of being one of the judges of the student art competition for the 7th year. I swear, the art of the kids gets better every year and I think that we old guys should watch out for the young artists on their way up. If this weekend is any indication of what we have to look forward to, I don't think collectors will be disappointed.

As featured artist, I was also asked to give a talk to students, artists and collectors. I was nervous, but I think it went well. I received a lot of good feedback so I hope those of you that were there enjoyed it. My topic was, "How long did it take you to paint that?"...probably one of the most asked questions we artists hear.

I was shocked and surprised to learn that 5 of my paintings were nominated for awards. At the Saturday gala, I was awarded the bronze and silver medals for Pastels, and the silver for Pencil. It was a great show and sales were good in the gallery and in the quick and slow draw auctions. A sure sign that even though the economy is struggling, we continue to appreciate good art.
Thank you to those of you who made it out to see the show, I know that you were not disappointed by the art that you saw there. And for the really missed a lot of great art, cowboy poetry, music, food and fun. Maybe you can make it next year!

Next weekend it is the Reflections of Nature show in Fallbrook.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

New Image

When my husband and I went to Rome in 2007, I had the great pleasure of spending the day surrounded by the art of the Vatican and the Basilica. The sculpture, tapestries, and paintings are just breathtaking (and yes, I did cry when I saw the Peita...blubbered might be a better word). I was walking through the Basilica when I heard the sound of wings flapping and doves cooing...I looked everywhere, but could not see them. I thought that a dove on one of these massive sculptures of the saints would be a great image. Whether the doves were really in the chapel, or it was just my imagination, this is the result. I hope you like it.
It is untitled at this point, but hopefully I will think of something soon.
"Untitled" Graphite 9"x11"

(Added 4-28-09)Additional information: I had no idea who this saint was when I photographed her sculpture, but I have since learned that she is St. Juliana (Guiliana) Falconieri (1270-1341). Born in 1270 she became the head of the Third Order of the Servites after her mother died. Her order served the poor and destitute and it was said that she never gazed upon the face of a man. She took great risks in her charitable works, even laying her mouth on the sores of the sick to heal them. These acts took a toll on her health and at the end of her life, she suffered great gastric distress and was no longer able to accept the sacraments. On her death bed, she asked that the Host be laid on her breast and she died. At the time of her burial, the mark of the cross that was on the Host was burned onto her chest. Her body is interred in a glass case in a church in Florence.
Her family was very wealthy and huge patrons of the arts. I did not know anything about her as I was painting her image, but it is interesting to know it now after memorizing her face after many hours of drawing.
This sculpture was done by the artist Pietro Paolo Campi in 1740. Gazing on this sculpture that was done so many years ago, is like a glimpse into the past of this woman's life.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Stealth Cam

My husband gave me the coolest gift for my is called a stealth cam, or sniper cam. It is a digital camera that you mount on a tree and a motion sensor activates it. We set it up at our deer feeder and these are a few of the pictures we got last night:
I call these girls, the Ladies. It is a mom and her twins from last year. They come every day and if there is no feed in the feeder, they are more than happy to swipe some of my tomatoes.

This is a bunny caught dashing in front of the camera.

And the coolest...a grey fox at 2:25 am in the morning. We never even knew she came around anymore.
I will post more as we learn how to use the camera a little better!

Thursday, April 02, 2009


This is my latest painting called Footloose. I am not completely sold on the title, but it works for now. If you have a better title, I am open to hearing your suggestions.