Sunday, February 28, 2010

Harp- Almost there...

Well, here she is- ready for her color. I can't wait, I can't wait, I can't wait!!!

Friday, February 26, 2010

A painted "Painted Turtle"!

My latest- "hot" off the easel! :-)

Casein. 2.5"x3.5" Now for a title...

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Artwork Accepted!

I managed to get so excited over the harp I never posted that I had 2 pieces accepted into the Richeson Small Works and Miniature Show! I am very honored and excited to be accepted.

Power and Glory (acrylic)

Marsh King- Great Blue Heron (casein)

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Latest Landscape

Here's the latest landscape, just finished Thurs. Acrylic. I finally remembered to photograph with a penny so you can get a sense of size. Can not get the colors quite right on the computer. Did the best I could... Next- back to an animal. :-)

It's Carved!

I have finally decided on the color of the stain- it's gonna be a color called Bordeaux (I'm not sure if I have the spelling right- but that's the spelling on the back of the sample he sent!) It's a deep wine color. If I can find the time I'd love to paint ruby-throated hummingbirds on the soundboard and name my harp Ruby!
Well, here's the latest. It's looking gorgeous! Now to figure out the color I want!!!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Age and Wisdom- and Regrets

Since I posted on Valentine's day I have been thinking about all sorts of life issues. Now, please understand first off- I perhaps have a strange sense of humor, so please take my next few sentences in the spirit it is meant! (For those who don't understand, this means it's a joke. I'm trying to lighten a very intense emotion- at least for me- so I'm trying to add a bit of humor in before I get to the real issue I want to talk about- understanding and appreciating what we have been given in life. I've had one person not understand it's meant as humor, I certainly don't really believe I should tell God what to do!)

God made a few mistakes. Yes, that's right- over all He did a great job, but He should have talked to a woman. One of the mistakes I always felt He made was: ticks and mosquitos. Now, I know they feed something else, but really couldn't He have come up with a better foodstuff than something like these. Any small insect that didn't require my blood to pro-create would do!

Another mistake He's made- (I'm sure if I think awhile I could remember all of them I've noticed over the years, but we won't be too hard on Him today) is he got our lives all backwards... yup, backwards. We oughtta start at 99 and work towards 0!

Now to the serious parts of my thoughts. If only we could live from old to young. There are reasons for the old cliche' of "With age comes wisdom". Those wrinkles are earned. Oh, to be able to go back and know the things I know now. To relive my youth and be able to "stop and smell the roses", to appreciate each and everything and everyone as they appeared in my life. To be able to go back to those piano sessions and practice happily and say thank you to my mom, to have understood what one of my piano teachers wanted me to do with my music when she advised me to continue on and go to MacPhail Center for Music right here in MN. To have begun my art at a younger age and really have done something with it from my early 20's instead of doing this as an "old lady"!

To hold my babies again, to understand- REALLY understand that poem about the dust, vacumning, and work still being here after they are grown up. You know that intellectually at the time, but you don't "feel" it, it can't really be understood until it is too late. I look back at all the things I was "going to do" with my girls and grandkids. Too late. Some things ofcourse will always be impossible, perhaps money, time, whatever issues. But some things just didn't happen- I was always "going to" do them- someday. The real someday actually does come and go, and once gone it's never again attainable. With children it seems like you have such an infinity of time with them when they are little. Some things aren't initially apparent- like they may be 13 or 14 and still able to do some of those things with you- but will they WANT to at that point? You forget teenage happens! Other things I wanted to do didn't happen because of my husband (at the time). I always wanted to travel and take them to see things. But he preferred having a cabin. The girls loved it there so they always wanted to go there on vacations. I gave in. What a mistake. I wanted to show them the world, the majesty of our United States. The wonders of each area of this beautiful country. The strange and wonderful creatures that inhabit different regions, the immense changes in the scenery from desert to mountains to swamps and the beauty and grandeur of each. I wanted to be there when they first saw the phenomenal Grand Tetons, the mysteries of the Everglades, when they felt the heat of the day and the cold of the night of a great desert. Regrets...

Gettin' ready to carve...

Here's the latest photo- he's starting the carving today! WOOOOOHOOOOOO!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

True Valentine's

Today is Valentine's Day and I'm here alone, contemplating the road of life. It doesn't matter why- it's just the way it is. I decided this day that is about love was a good day to post something very heartfelt- so here goes...
When I was a child my mother was just "horrible"- she made me take piano lessons, and then she made me practice!!! I was always a relatively easy child to raise, but that was one area I was a little bugger about- I fought her constantly, but she never gave in! And now I bless her nearly every day for it (I'm 56). She gave me a lifetime gift. She has alzheimers and is getting worse all the time. She has begun to think I am her sister alot of the time, which is very hard. I've had her here a few times to try and give my dad a break and I've begun playing for her- it's my way of saying thank you to her. Have you ever tried to read music with tears in your eyes and love and sadness in your heart? But with age has come the realization of what an absolutely HUGE gift she has given me. And now I plan to learn the harp- I would never do this without my knowledge of the music. So it will be another gift from her. I hope to be able to someday play for her. They say harp music is good for people with alzheimers.
This is a photo we took a couple of years ago on a "girls trip" we took- because we knew it was only a matter of time before we would loose my mother- she was already getting worse at the time. Thank heavens we did this. It would be too late now. I don't have any photos from when she was "normal". She would never let us take her picture. How sad. So all the photos now really don't look like "my Mom" to me. This one isn't too bad, (we're crooked because we were out in the country at a church and the only one to hold the camera was the car!) :-)
If you don't take the time to do something you will always regret it- do you have something you've always said "Someday we're going to..."? Don't wait- DO IT! NOW! This was such a blessing, we have no regrets now. I and my mom used to take trips to carving shows once a year- then would meander home and just enjoy being together. I'm not saying it always went smoothly. We had our "moments". But do you know- I don't really remember specifics about that- I remember the trips and the fun. Thank heavens we did this. I will have it forever.
May you all be blessed on this Valentine's Day with the realization of the true gifts you have been given in this life, and may you be very, very thankful for them.

Oh... one more thing...
Call them up (whoever they may be) and just say "I love you" before it's too late.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

More harp WIP photos...

Just got more photos. It's looking like a harp!!!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

A future harpist!!!

I have ordered a harp- to be built just for me! I've always dreamed of playing a harp (and the bagpipes!) I decided my husband would probably appreciate the practice learning the harp more than the bagpipes. :-)
I am buying a William Webster McFall style harp- it is designed after an antique McFall- I love harps, I love antiques, this one has a beautiful sound to go with a beautiful harp. Bill has been very patient with me and all the decisions that have to be made. We are now trying to get the "right" color- I want a stain similar to my grand piano. He is building the harp in birds-eye maple for me! Gonna have carving and everything!!! I'm a sucker for carving (being a carver and all.) I'll post a few "in progress" photos. I am soooo excited. I hope perhaps to eventually do harp therapy. Harp music is so soothing to the soul.
BTW- check out Celtic Americans blog for a link to a gorgeous piece of music (from Star Trek the Next Generation of all places!)

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Finished swan, and my student's first piece.

I completed the swan this afternoon. Just had touches left to do. I am definitely getting a bit "senile"- I could have sworn I had taken a photo in progress between this and the water- went to post it this weekend- no photo. Too late then. Had it so near completion you probably wouldn't have seen the difference! Ah, well....

I have been mentoring a young piano student of mine who I find to be a true sweetheart. She has always loved my paintings- even bought a small print once for her father's birthday. I believe she is 13 now and not a bit of the normal "know-it-all" teenager do I ever see. Just very enjoyable to spend time with. Anyway, I offered to teach her to paint and she has graciously let me post her first completed piece. It is a mini ofcourse, not tiny, tiny, but still in the correct size limits other than I'd have to see if the 1/6th rule was perhaps not quite on. She just finished it this evening. Hope you enjoy seeing her work. Maybe we'll have another new miniature painter! :-)