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Archive for January, 2011

Wearing Catherine’s hat – Portrait #11

January 30th, 2011 8 comments


Dear Readers,
Here is my latest mirror self portrait, but she has a problem, I haven’t come up with a name, can you help me name her?
I have a good friend named Catherine, she likes to collect vintage clothing, so when I planned my next portrait, I knew I had to get some props from her. She stepped into her closet and brought out all sorts of curious and delicate old clothing, and after a few try-ons, I ended up with this dark silk blouse and this silly little hat.
But here she is, a portrait of someone who looks a little like me. She’s serious, she’s fastidious, (ha, I left out the stray hairs) and she is even wearing jewelry. But who is she? Who does she evoke to you? I’d love to know who she is to you, and if I like the name you choose, this painting will have a name.

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Portrait #10 – The fisherman’s wife

January 16th, 2011 3 comments


One of my favorite authors is Giovanni Verga, who was born in 1860 and died in 1922. He lived in Sicily, in the city of Catania. I was able to visit his house while I was there a few years ago. He wrote about the tragedy and the beauty of the poor working class that he saw around him. In a time when people struggled to make a living in shabby little boats a fisherman’s wife had a hard time indeed. She prayed every time her husband went fishing, knowing full well he might never return. And if he did not, the tragedy was doubled. She lost him, his boat and his income, and likely her son would replace him on the sea if she had one. Or she would end up with nothing at all except for a little tiny bit of sympathy from the other fishermen’s wives.
Of course the model for this portrait was me. But she could have been my great great grandmother.

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Jump like a Comet!

January 14th, 2011 6 comments

I had to wait to post this because the painting was a surprise and a Christmas present for my nephew’s wonderful wife. It’s the first formal horse portrait I have ever done and it was very exciting to pull it off. This is Comet, who is no longer a teenager, but he has been extremely well taken care of, and he obviously loves to jump. The reference photo for this portrait was taken at the Whidbey Island 2010 Horse Show.

I am very excited about painting horses and hope to add more to my body of work. I used to have horses of my own in the 1970’s and although I doubt that I will ever own another horse, I still love to watch them move, and thus, capture them in paint.

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Art House Co-op Sketchbook Project

January 13th, 2011 3 comments


Sometimes it’s fun to participate in group efforts, one of which is the Art House Co-op Sketchbook Project.
I had to pay a little money to receive a little journal book in the mail, but it came quickly and I immediately started drawing in it. I didn’t really like the paper, it was thin and even pencil drawings showed through to the other side. I guess I got about 1/2 way through it and set it aside, as I have another journal book that I like much better which has stout paper that I can scribble, paint, and use pens on. That’s the one I took to Italy with me.
At the last minute, I decided to finish this one and mail it in. Eventually you will be able to see mine on line, I will post the link when it appears. Apparently there are thousands of artists participating, and some of the stuff they have put in their books is incredible. I am a little intimidated, but the fact is, this is the first time I’ve ever put a sketchbook together like this and it was a pleasant effort, so it was worth it.
I was given a theme “Help!” which did not resonate with me at all, so I more or less ignored it. I was inspired to do a sketchbook by the work of Sue Pownall a very well traveled artist.
The Sketchbook Project: 2011

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His sainted wife – self portrait #8

January 9th, 2011 3 comments

Having explored the faces of many earthly personalities, I decided that I must go the other direction. I wanted to paint a saint and give her my face. So I did. First I had to describe serenity, and then I had to have the model looking up to the sky. Would it work? Could it be so simple? After I was finished, I knew I had a keeper, I could probably name her after one of the saints, why, I was named after a Saint! Mary Magdalen … Madelaine.. what a coincidence. I hope you like her.

Oh, I had better explain the title. It has to do with being married to a Boothby.

One of my dear husband’s coworkers used to tease him about the amount of suffering I had to go through to put up with him. He even made up a joke on the subject (6 words to describe Donald’s wife, “poor Mimi, poor Mimi, poor Mimi” ) Alas the man repeated his joke so often that even I remembered it.
So Rob, is this what you meant?

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