Archive for March, 2010

Annabelle was the cutest little lamb that had to be bottle fed.  Isn’t she adorable?  This painting of Annabelle is an oil on canvas panel measuring 6″x8″ and is available for $125.  SOLD

For more adventures of Annabelle and her farm friends click on www.chickensintheroad.com .

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“Anyone who doesn’t know what soap tastes like has never bathed a dog!”  So the saying goes.  And anyone who has ever had a hound dog knows what a nasty dog smells like.  Especially if that hound dog is a scent hound….one that follows his knows to every disgusting smell in the world.

I have two such scent hounds, Truman and Jed.  And when we go to the cabin they find every pile of cow, deer, bear, rabbit and duck poop they can possibly smell out and roll in it.  The whole rolling in poop thing is primal, to cover their own scent so they can sneak up on their prey.  Like a box of Milk Bones is going to run when they go for their snack.  But anyway, they love to roll in poop.  And often that means several bathes in a weekend of rolling fun. 

At my age, bending over a tub with a dog loaded with suds is tough on my back.  As luck would have it, on the drive home in little Wardensville, WV, right by the road we take home, is a Car Wash and they have added this wonderful Dog Wash.

It has an elevated bath tub with a ramp that the dogs can walk right up.  Well, more like drag right up because after stopping just one time and bathing them there they have figured out the routine and they don’t want to go up the ramp any more.    It is so nice to be able to stand and wash the stink off of them without breaking my back bending over a tub. 

And check out the “services” available.  You can choose shampoo, conditioner, rinse, oatmeal shampoo, flea bath, blow dry or super blow dry.  And all of this for only $5.00 for 10 minutes.  WOW!  What a deal.  I can actually bathe both Truman and Jed in 10 minutes.  Although we don’t blow dry in that time.  They hate the sound of the loud blow dryer so we just shake dry and use our own towels.

While this is the look of two not so happy and wet dogs, I wish you could see the smile on my face after the event has ended.  🙂

Whoever thought of adding the Dog Wash to the little Car Wash that we pass each time on our way home was brilliant!

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For some time now I have been addicted to a blog that I read everyday called “Chickens in the Road”.  It’s by a marvelous writer turned farmer about her experiences on a farm in West Virginia.  Her photographs are wonderful.  She has lots of animals and many adventures that she writes about in a way that makes you want to come back and read more.  Be sure to take a look at www.chickensintheroad.com .  (And notice that her blog is listed in my favorites links on the right column of my blog so you can click everyday and look at it from here.  I just love the internet!)  

Because of her terrific photos, I have been wanting to do a series of farm animals and Suzanne McMinn, aka Chickens in the Road lady, gave me permission to use some of her photos as reference for my paintings.  So over the next few weeks I’ll be posting the Farm Animal series based on her animals.  

One of my favorite animals that she talks about is Jack.  Meet Jack.  

Photo courtesy of Suzanne McMinn


My version of Jack is an oil on canvas panel measuring 6″x8″.    How can you not love that face????!!!!!  SOLD.

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In October 2009 I got a call from a new student who was interested in only learning to paint in abstract.  So we started lessons.  We have been having a great time painting several times each week as she has learned the ins and outs of painting in abstract.

Now we have been invited to have a show together as teacher and student.  The name of the show is “Minds Wide Open” and the organizers of the show thought that our works in abstract would be a good way to emphasize that theme.  The show will have each of our works, side by side, to show the different visions each of us had to the same lesson.  I think it will be very interesting.  I’ll let you know when it will go up so hopefully you can stop in to see it.

Today’s painting (that is an Ode to Joan Mitchell, a wonderful abstract painter from the mid 20th Century) shows the progress of a recent lesson and the finished painting.  I know that abstract is not everyone’s “cup of tea” hence the name of the show, Minds Wide Open.  It is sometimes good to take a look at something we don’t think we care for and we see something in it that we grow to appreciate.

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Valley View Lesson I is an oil on canvas panel measuring 9″x12.


Valley View Lesson II is an oil on canvas panel measuring 11″x14″.

Both of these were lessons for Wednesday Night Art Class.  I just completed these recently.   New students almost always start with a landscape similar to these because it gives them a chance to learn about color mixing, tones, and composition as well as becoming comfortable with putting paint to canvas.

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Truman can be so mean to Jed.  I have to play referee a lot while painting.  I will look around and there will be Truman laying in front of the doggie door and poor Jed sitting outside waiting to come in but Truman is blocking the way.  You can see the outline of Jed through the door in this photo.  I have to go over and move Truman to let Jed inside.  Basset Hounds are so ornery sometimes!

Bold Carrots is an oil on canvas measuring 10″x8″ and is available for $95.  This is another lesson piece that I have just finished up after it sat here for a little while.

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Best Friends is an oil on canvas panel measuring 12″x9″ and is available for $145.  We did it in art class a few months ago and I just finished it.  Often in class I will begin a demo piece and then I start moving from student to student to help and I never  get back to my painting to finish it.  So this last week I had a chance to finish a few and I’ll show those to  you over the next few weeks.

The dog reminds me of my Jed sitting staring out at the world.  Jed does that often.

Here he is waiting at the cabin to go run and play in the snow a few weeks ago.  I think he was trying to decide if he got stuck in the deep white stuff if he would ever get out!

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Apple Blossoms II is an oil on canvas panel measuring 8″x10″ and is available for $150. 

Spring is almost here!!!

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Falling Leaves I & II are acrylic on gallery wrap canvas measuring 12″x12″ and are available individually for $175 or the pair for $300.

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Crochet Frog says “Good Morning”.  Come see this and other cute baby items at Delilah’s in Front Royal.

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