3.23.2016

Celebration of Creativity - Stained Frames - Art Classes

Tulip
10"x10" framed, oil
$350

I was honored to be a part of the Celebration of Creativity  in early March. It featured original works from 80+ artists from 15+ different media categories.
I took 6 out of 12 pieces I had remaining that I painted for the calendars that I made for the Portland Open Studios. 
They wanted all the pieces framed, so I bought 6 plain, unfinished frames from Canvas Place. I sprayed them with water and I stained them with acrylic paint in the same colors I used in the original artworks. Then I finished them in acrylic gel gloss.
They turned out excellent! I think I will do them again. :)

Art Classes

I have made a bold move! 
I couldn't talk for about two weeks after my stroke, so I was unsure of offering to teach art classes. Well I'm doing it and my first students said that I did great! 
There are still two spaces available in my upcoming art class, March 29 and 31, from 9am-2pm. I'm fixing a tasty lunch for my students on the 29th. Beginners welcome!
Details here: http://www.eventbee.com/v/anniesalness/event?eid=168236983

Listening to while I paint:
Audiobook:  
The War of Art, by Steven Pressfield, narrated by George Guidall
Podcasts: 
Better Call Saul Insider Podcast, hosted by Kelley Dixon
American's Test Kitchen, hosted by Christopher Kimball
Online Marketing Made Easy, hosted by Amy Porterfield
Beyond the To-Do List, hosted by Erik Fisher
Artists Helping Artists, hosted by Leslie Saeta
Social Media Examiner, hosted by Michael Stelzner
Splendid Table, hosted by Lynne Rossetto Kasper
Truth For Life, hosted by Alistair Begg
Music: 
My iPod

Pandora

What I am reading:
Color and Light, by James Gurney

Really helpful:
I am continually checking a dictionary, thesaurus, spell check, but one thing that has been particularly helpful is the grammar check and Hemingway App. Please excuse any errors that I make and tell me! :)



12.10.2015

What I learned from doing Open Studios

There was so much to learn from doing open studios. 
I participated in two this year, the Portland Open Studios, which is a juried event, and the Washington County Open Studios . 
They both had fees to participate and these are the catalogs.
The PDXOS had two meetings in May and August, and the WCOS had one. This was a chance to meet with other artists, pass out the street signs (used to tell people where we were),
familiarize us with their program and talk to us about marketing.
Along with over a hundred other artists, I had my home studio open the 2nd and 3rd weekends in October.
To begin with, I used Evernote to list off the things I needed: set-up in the basement, what I ordered (envelopes, post cards, calendars, etc.), points from other artists, etc..
There were many mentions from the organizers and fellow artists on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and I ordered post cards to tell about the studio tour.

The main reason for the studios visits is to educate the visitors on what goes on in the artists studio, so I took them on a tour of mine, starting with my still life cupboard and still life set-up.

Since I had to learn with my other hand since my stroke, I showed them how I start my studio time with quick drawings of lines, circles, anything around my studio, and life drawing from YouTube. (Really, I should have been doing this all along...it is important for me to draw!)
Then I would show them my painting process....the picture of the black and white value, setting up the halfway points, value, color, etc.. Because I have a hard time talking (because of my stroke), I typed out signs of each display I wanted to mention and put it beneath my work. Although the visitors thought it was for them, it really was for me. :) I would get stuck trying to say a certain sentence and then I would glance at the typed words and be okay! 
(Does this make sense????)

Finally, I would show them on my computer the image I was painting and how I like to paint upside down.
In my very limited experience, most people don't ask questions or they don't know what to ask. Hopefully, I gave them enough of my process and that will lead to questions.
Although the main reason for the open studios was to teach my process,  I decided to have something that everyone could afford to buy, so I had note cards and calendars. 
The calendars were fun because because I decided to do flowers, which led to a post on Facebook. I asked people for their flower suggestions and I got several submissions and then I could follow up with what I was doing.
A proud moment: the 4'x 8' peg board we got at the 
hardware store to hang the calendar paintings fit PERFECTLY along our wall!

It was tiring, but I loved it. I met a lot of new people, had friends 
come over, and I got many new commission 
requests and class sign ups.
(About 40% were friends and 60% were new people.)

Here is an excellent checklist on open studios from Harriete Estel Berman who goes into much more detail than I. if you are interested.

Listening to while I paint:
Audiobook:  
Assassination Vacation, by Sarah Vowell, narrated by Sarah Vowell
Podcasts: 
American's Test Kitchen, hosted by Christopher Kimball
Online Marketing Made Easy, hosted by Amy Porterfield
Beyond the To-Do List, hosted by Erik Fisher
Artists Helping Artists, hosted by Leslie Saeta
Social Media Examiner, hosted by Michael Stelzner
"Wait, Wait.... Don't Tell Me!", hosted by Peter Sagal
Splendid Table, hosted by Lynne Rossetto Kasper
Truth For Life, hosted by Alistair Begg
Music: 
My iPod

What I am reading:
The Big Magic, by Elizabeth Gilbert

Really helpful:
I am continually checking a dictionary, thesaurus, spell check, but one thing that has been particularly helpful is the grammar check. Please excuse any errors that I make and tell me! :)












10.15.2015

A Special Story and a Pumpkin...

Pumpkin 2
10"x 10"
oil on board
$175
Click here to purchase
I had a wonderful time this weekend at the Portland Open Studios tour at my house. THANK YOU to all who took time out of their day to come see me!
It is the last weekend this year for the Portland Open Studios and the Washington County Open Studios tours: 
Oct. 17-18, 10am - 5pm. 
This is a "unique educational opportunity for the public to witness art in the making, and learn about media, materials and the business of creative endeavor." from PDXOS
I will have maps to the other artists' studios.
My address is: 12545 NW Coleman Dr., Portland, OR. 97229. 
Come on by!!!

Amy, Me, and John
I REALLY have to share this with you...

Just last week I shared with you the story about my cousin, Amy Melious, and how she developed the photo of our Grandpa Jack with a Photoshop composite and acrylic paint. She did two versions of Jack, one for her brother John, and one for the Cattlemans Restaurant.

She lives in Canada and John lives in Santa Rosa, CA., and I live in Portland, OR and they just *happened* to be passing by my house? Last Saturday? WHAT????? - (it's a long story...)
I couldn't believe it! 
AND, they had John's picture of Grandpa Jack in their car!!!!
John and Amy! :)

Studio Tip
I just got this gooseneck flexible thingy...made for a cell phone or a tablet?
I use it for my handmade viewfinder. (Based on Carol Marine's book
It helps me crop in or frame the still life. 

Listening to while I paint:
Audiobook:   Need a new one.... :)
Podcasts: 
American's Test Kitchen, hosted by Christopher Kimball
Online Marketing Made Easy, hosted by Amy Porterfield
Artists Helping Artists, hosted by Leslie Saeta
Social Media Examiner, hosted by Michael Stelzner
"Wait, Wait.... Don't Tell Me!", hosted by Peter Sagal
Splendid Table, hosted by Lynne Rossetto Kasper
Truth For Life, hosted by Alistair Begg
Music: 
My iPod


What I am reading:
Youtility, by Jay Baer

Really helpful:
I am continually checking a dictionary, thesaurus, spell check, but one thing that has been particularly helpful is the grammar check. Please excuse any errors that I make and tell me! :)


10.07.2015

Calendars Done!, Grandpa Jack, Amy Melious

Calendars
The paintings for the calendars are done and the images are off to the printer to be made into wall calendars, desk calendars and note cards for Portland Open Studios and Washington County Open Studios.  This is a "unique educational opportunity for the public to witness art in the making, and learn about media, materials and the business of creative endeavor." from PDXOS
This weekend and next, Oct 10-11, 17-18, 2015, 10am -5pm.
My address is: 12545 NW Coleman Dr., Portland, OR. 97229. 
Come on by! :)

This is such a special story...

This is a story about my lovely cousin, Amy Melious, and how she took my original photo of our Grandpa Jack and what she did with it. She is a very talented photographic artist.
    "My siblings and I never knew Jack, so working on this piece was a fascinating and rewarding look into who he may have been. All I know of him is a few great stories. I love to explore things in visual language. When Annie first showed me the base photo of Jack on the horse, I felt it was a perfect illustration for a story my dad told me once about how much his dad loved being on horseback and in the open landscape, with the big sky above, 'Son, this is my church'....

So, I made a first version, with an old map of the constellations as the background. (Grandpa Jack in his Heaven)
About the first version: It's a photoshop composite I made using about ten separate image files. The finished piece is printed on canvas and I embellished it by hand with acrylic paint.
Base image: This is the vintage black and white print that you let me photograph at your house one time when I visited- the 8x10 image of Jack on the horse by an unknown photographer.
Constellation graphic in sky: Vintage graphic.
Ponies in landscape, my photo taken in California- placed to represent the world we live in-the ponies representing family (I like the echo in the collection above -stars--collection below-family)

Shortly after the first version was made, my brother John called. He was looking for a piece of art for a particular space in one of the Cattlemens restaurants.
I created a second version  to tell another story. 
John has worked with Cattlemens for over twenty five years. The founders have played a large role in his life. The new picture ties together Grandpa Jack's cowboy history, my dad, John, and Cattlemens founders.
Again, my family is present in a subtle way by the use of the word "Pacific" running vertically along Grandpa Jack's spine. It was symbolism used to link John, Grandpa Jack, the ranch in Montana, and the legacy of Cattlemens. 
In both versions, I included a field to connect all the generations, and ponies that I photographed in my hometown of Willits to symbolize his descendents. There is also some grass (picked near my house) in the most near foreground to serve as the absolute most current aspect. 
I love the imagine that my dad and our grandfather might be proud to know they are celebrated in the form of artwork. 
2nd Version:  Also, a photoshop composite I made using several image files, both my own photographs and found vintage images.The finished piece is printed on canvas and I embellished it by hand with acrylic paint.
The finished piece is hanging in the Santa Rosa Cattlemens, and a second copy of it was recently installed in the Selma Cattlemens Restaurant."

What a beautiful story!
Here is my daughter, Katherine(middle), Heather and John my cousin, at Santa Rosa Cattlemans.

Listening to while I paint:
Audiobook:  
"The Natty Professor" by Tim Gunn, narrated by Tim Gunn. A master class on mentoring, motivating, and making it work! 
Podcasts: 
American's Test Kitchen, hosted by Christopher Kimball
Online Marketing Made Easy, hosted by Amy Porterfield
Artists Helping Artists, hosted by Leslie Saeta
Social Media Examiner, hosted by Michael Stelzner
"Wait, Wait.... Don't Tell Me!", hosted by Peter Sagal
Splendid Table, hosted by Lynne Rossetto Kasper
Truth For Life, hosted by Alistair Begg
Music: 
My iPod


What I am reading:
Youtility, by Jay Baer

Really helpful:
I am continually checking a dictionary, thesaurus, spell check, but one thing that has been particularly helpful is the grammar check. Please excuse any errors that I make and tell me! :)


9.29.2015

Zinnia, Portland Open Studio, Washington County Open Studio


Zinnia
10"x 10"x 1.5"
oil on cradled board
This is one of twelve paintings of flowers that I am doing for a calendar and note cards that I am having available at the Portland Open Studio and Washington County Open Studio tour, 
October 10-11, 17-18, 2015. 
My son, Thomas, and I look over black and white photos for the calendar.
I am almost done with my paintings. I have laid out samples of envelopes from Envelope Mall to see if any of them match. (look how many "greens" they have!) The next thing is to email images of my paintings to the printer.
Canna Lilies are blooming right now, and although they are one of my favorite flowers, I decided not to paint them but to use them to show you how effective light can be.
(That's my daughter Claire a few years ago. She's 5'10" now!)
Here is sunlight directly on the leaves... 
...and this is sunlight from behind the leaves.
Notice the difference? Isn't it beautiful?!
That is why "light" is always so important to me when I paint.

Studio Tip:
I clean my brushes in Murphy Oil Soap. 
Oil, water-based oil, acrylic,....whatever, it's great at getting all the paint off!

If you have any other ideas about a cleaning solution, let me know. :)

Listening to while I paint:
Audiobook:  
"The Scarlet Pimpernel", by Baroness Orczy. I watched the movie in 1982 with my dad. It had Anthony Andrews, Jane Seymour, and Ian McKellen.
Podcasts: 
American's Test Kitchen, hosted by Christopher Kimball
Online Marketing Made Easy, hosted by Amy Porterfield
The Nerdist, Patrick Stewart, hosted by Chris Hardwick
Artists Helping Artists, hosted by Leslie Saeta
The Chalene Show, hosted by Chalene Johnson
Social Media Examiner, hosted by Michael Stelzner
"Wait, Wait.... Don't Tell Me!", hosted by Peter Sagal
Splendid Table, hosted by Lynne Rossetto KasperTruth For Life, hosted by Alistair Begg
Music: 
My iPod


What I am reading:
Youtility, by Jay Baer

Really helpful!:
I am continually checking a dictionary, thesaurus, spell check, but one thing that has been particularly helpful is the grammar check. Please excuse any errors that I make and tell me! :)



9.11.2015

Portland Open Studios, Washington County Open Studios, Calendar

I am in the Portland Open Studios tour (Oct. 10-11, 17-18, 2015) and the Washington County Open Studios tour. 
(Oct. 17-18, 2015)
This is your chance to go to the artist's studio, see their workspace and their processes.
I have been setting up all the things I want to show you. :)
 Here is the Portland Open Studios catalog....
.....and the maps to different artist's studios that you can visit over the four days.
It's been really good for me because I have to think through what my process is: taking pictures, setting up a still life, drawing, painting, etc. .
Along with my approach to painting, I've decided to have a calendar and note cards available during the tour. 
I like to paint on wood panels, so I ordered 12, 10"x 10" to do flower paintings for the calendar and note cards.
These cradled boards have a very nice, smooth, 1-1/2 inch edges, so I decided to tape them (with Painter's tape) because I don't know if I am going to leave them natural, stain them, or paint them. 
Since I only have one working hand, I put the tape on the side of the table and pulled down.... 
it worked perfectly!
The boards needed to be prepared by using gesso as a substrate. Gesso is designed to penetrate supports and provide a surface to which paint can adhere. I am going to try Krylon Gesso Spray. 

More to come!

Listening to while I paint:
Audiobook:  
"To Kill A Mockingbird", by Harper Lee, narrated by Sissy Spacek 
Podcasts: 
American's Test Kitchen, hosted by Christopher Kimball
Online Marketing Made Easy, hosted by Amy Porterfield
The Nerdist, Patrick Stewart, hosted by Chris Hardwick
Artists Helping Artists, hosted by Leslie Saeta
The Chalene Show, hosted by Chalene Johnson
Social Media Examiner, hosted by Michael Stelzner
"Wait, Wait.... Don't Tell Me!", hosted by Peter Sagal
Splendid Table, hosted by Lynne Rossetto Kasper
Truth For Life, hosted by Alistair Begg
Music: 
My iPod


Really helpful!:
I am continually checking a dictionary, thesaurus, spell check, but one thing that has been particularly helpful is the grammar check. Please excuse any errors that I make and tell me! :)





7.09.2015

Decarli Restaurant and Catalyst Wedge

These are 3 out of 5 paintings that will be on display 
at Decarli Restaurant from July 8 - September 8, 2015. 
 Ominous
48" x 36" x 1.5
oil on canvas
$1200
Click here to purchase
Grasslands
48" x 36" x 1.5
oil on canvas
$1200
Click here to purchase
Coastline
48" x 36" x 1.5
oil on canvas
$1200
Click here to purchase
Here is my husband, Lad, hanging them!
Process: right now I am using a Catalyst Wedge in my work. 
I took a close up of this photo of Coastline so that you might see it closer.
Catalyst Wedge  
I like the wedge because it allows me to move color 
and drag it around and extend a simple movement or direction. 
Does this make sense?
I have tried an old credit card, palette knives, matte board, 
card board, etc., but I like the Catalyst Wedge best.
I am anxious to try the squeeguee like artist Charlie Hunter.

Do you have anything that you prefer or that 
I might have missed? :)

 Listening to while I paint:
Audiobook:  
How to Win Friends and Influence People
Podcasts: 
Beyond the To-Do List, hosted by Erik Fischer
The Nerdist, John Cusack, hosted by Chris Hardwick
Artists Helping Artists, hosted by Leslie Saeta
The Chalene Show, hosted by Chalene Johnson
Social Media Examiner, hosted by Michael Stelzner
"Wait, Wait.... Don't Tell Me!", hosted by Peter Sagal
Splendid Table, hosted by Lynne Rossetto Kasper
American's Test Kitchen, hosted by Christopher Kimball
Truth For Life, hosted by Alistair Begg

Music: 
My iPod


Really helpful!:
I am continually checking a dictionary, thesaurus, spell check, but one thing that has been particularly helpful is the grammar check. Please excuse any errors that I make and tell me! :)


5.13.2015

Randall Tipton Demo Using Yupo Paper!


Donna Sanson and I had the privilege to see Randall Tipton demonstrate at Museum 510 in Lake Oswego, Oregon. 
He is a very accomplished and wonderful painter, and he is one of my favorite art friends!
He was demonstrating  with watercolor painting on Yupo paper. "Yupo is a compelling and unique alternative to traditional art papers. It's a synthetic paper, machine-made in the USA of 100% polypropylene. It is waterproof, stain-resistant, and extremely strong and durable." 
From Blick Art Materials

He says:
       "It's plastic, nothing is absorbed! The water in the paint must evaporate. This [use of Yupo] requires a completely different approach. A major difficulty is getting the paint to stay 'still'. I can do something I like, turn away, and when I return, it's different! It's as if the paint has its own agenda. This can be a strength as well. Watercolor can do marvelous things on this brilliant white surface. What would be muddy on true paper becomes rich, subtle, and sometimes profound".
It was a pleasure watching him paint. He uses a big, soft brush down to smaller one....well, I let him describe all the tools he uses: 
          "A natural sponge for pre-wetting and later lifting. Lots of Kleenex for blotting, Q-tips for drawing through wet paint making a soft fat line, a silicone spatula for drawing with a sharper line, a piece of mat board with a bevel edge for scraping like with a squeegee, cheap house painter brush for blending and then the watercolor brushes. Note those at the top have extra long soft bristles. I`ve come to prefer this type because you can really load them up yet they`ll also come to an edge or point. I`m using a bristle filbert that is extra long for oil painting too. Then there is the angle brush up above. I love these because they double as a wash brush but also can be used for line.
On bigger paintings I`ll use a much larger assortment. Often I`ll stop in my process and look over the choices to choose the best one for the task at hand. I feel like a surgeon sometimes"!
Randall started a magnolia painting. He says,"I try to get something I like...something to encourage me".
He left the demo with this......
Magnolia and Sky with watermedia and oils 20 x 20
.....and finished it at home. Because he started it with watercolor, he sealed it with spray acrylic. He then added acrylics and finally oils. Above is the final piece. It's beautiful.
There were several of his works at Museum 510, these are the few I took photos of....
"Randall thinks of himself as a realist who paints personal subject matter. 'I'm a nature boy'. His loyalty is to the process. Randall begins with an idea. He's not a slave to an image and paints mostly from memory. 'I look at the image in my head'. While painting, 'I keep the thing in play, in process. I might focus on the tangle in the front with the distant meadow as a quiet moment. Being in nature and/or thinking of nature is something I do 24/7. That's why I live in Oregon' ".  From Sarah Peroutka notes.
I look forward to his blog because it is so well written, honest, and full of the most interesting and fun things. (check out the new cat carrier!

Listening to while I paint:
Podcasts: 
Beyond the To-Do List, hosted by Erik Fischer
The Nerdist, hosted by Chris Hardwick
Artists Helping Artists, hosted by Leslie Saeta
The Chalene Show, hosted by Chalene Johnson
Social Media Examiner, hosted by Michael Stelzner
"Wait, Wait.... Don't Tell Me!", hosted by Peter Sagal
Splendid Table, hosted by Lynne Rossetto Kasper
American's Test Kitchen, hosted by Christopher Kimball
Truth For Life, hosted by Alistair Begg

Music: 
My iPod


Really helpful!:
I am continually checking a dictionary, thesaurus, spell check, but one thing that has been particularly helpful is the grammar check. Please excuse any errors that I make and tell me! :)


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