Live art on Easter

What a joy to perform Live Art at the Woodland Life Center on Easter. I painted the risen Christ this year. It's hard to see but I was about 3 feet off the ground on scaffolding. I am so grateful that I did not step backwards and fall on the drummer. There is nothing more glorious than painting live during amazing worship singing.

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Painting Live at Keg & Cork festival

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Painting live at the Keg & Cork (for arts sake) fest was so much fun. The even is to benefit the Woodland Park Arts Alliance. They had a huge turn out. 

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Of course the best part of painting anywhere other than my studio is hanging with great friends. 

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Here I am back (all alone) in my studio finishing the painting. The image, if you were wondering is my son Dylan drinking beer. Thought it would be fun to do a series of paintings of people drinking beer and wine to market my work to breweries and wineries. 

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Here is the final image. (of course I always tweak it a bit) I will be meeting with a Brewery this week to possibly be doing a series of paintings of people drinking beer. Fun. That will of course involve sampling different brews to be authentic! 

A Family of 4

This was such a fun commission. This is an amazing family that adopted these four exceptional kids. I was so honored to do an individual painting of each kid. I love this picture of each kid holding their painting. I was surprised at how proud they were to have a painting done of themselves. It kind of makes things permanent when you have a painting of your adopted child hanging in your home. Kind of says " Here is where they belong" My heart goes out to you adoptive families. You have shown me the heart of Christ. Thank you for allowing me to be a small part of that journey.

Each painting was 3' x 3' they hang in a row in their home. here I am borrowing them for the Air Force show. I had to get a shot of each of them holding their painting.

Skylar in three mediums

I had so much fun taking old photos of my first born Skylar. (Who is an amazing actor, i must say) and trying out different mediums. Oil, Watercolor, watercolor and charcoal and pastel. I have realized over time that I am always learning. It's so important to keep trying new things. I did only watercolor for years and doing this exercise really launched me into getting back into Oils and Acrylics. Keep on learning!!!

Santa in Saudi Arabia

This was a unique commission for sure. Painting Santa Clause in July for a client in Saudi Arabia. That's one I never guessed I would do. Was really fun to paint this guy who played Santa for a community there and was retiring. Someone saw my work and wanted to honor this guy by having a painting done of him playing Santa.

Celebrating life before birth

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Psalm 139: 13,14

What an honor to have done this painting. This is a baby at 4 months in the womb. I surrounded the image with the words from psalm 139:13-16. I was overwhelmed at trying to capture something that only God really sees. A baby he has formed in it's mother's womb. What a miracle really. I felt as though I was on holy ground, entering into this place.

PORTRAIT OF JEAN

LARGER THAN LIFE.

That's what I am calling these Large oil portraits I am doing. What a blast!!! I have really found my “Sweet Spot” I think I enjoy doing these more then anything. The reference for this painting of my Mom is from a photo Taylor my daughter took. Thanks Taylor for being such a great photographer!

The size for this Oil is 4 feet x 3 feet. I will be hanging a show of all these new oils in May at Park State Bank. I also entered this piece into the Portrait Society of America show. I should find out March 24th if it got in.

FAMILY PORTRAIT FROM 1965 PHOTOGRAPH

This was a commissioned portrait from a family that I grew up with outside Chicago. It was a gift for the parents 65th wedding anniversary. What a blast this was to do. I was best friends for many years with the girl in the middle. As you can see the reference was Black and white and quiet dated. I was able to get an idea of the clothing colors from the eldest daughter. This really was a blessing and am so honored to have been chosen to help celebrate a 65 year old marriage that is worthy of much celebrating.

MEMORIAL PORTRAIT OF ERIN POWERS

This memorial portrait is of my son-in-law and his sister, his only sibling. I wanted to capture their bond in this painting. This image was taken at their mom’s wedding.  I loved it because of the way Erin is looking over at her brother with her curled hand so naturally holding his. Even though she never spoke or walked, they had an unspoken connection that was hard to describe. She lived to be 32 and had such an impact on people with her smile and her joy.

My focus for this picture is the hands. Because hands sometimes best describe the way we connect.

HISTORICAL MURAL - MEETING ROLAND

It’s so much fun to Be Blogging again. I tend to be intimidated since there seems to be writing involved with telling a story (that makes sense). But intimidation aside, This story needs to be told. So bare with me as you read along, knowing that sometimes God loves to stretch us and take us out of our comfort zones.

 I have a HUGE job coming up. I have been Commissioned by the Woodland Park Arts Alliance Creative Arts district to paint a Historial mural in down town Woodland Park. It will be on the side of the Cultural Center. Kind of the hub of Woodland Park. It will be 145 feet long the height varies since there is a hill, but the highest part of the wall is 24 feet then tapers to 10 feet at the other end. The largest and beginning of the Mural starts with honoring the Ute Indian Nations. This beginning part of the mural has been so enlightening as I continue to refine the final design. There are so many things that the Historical Society and I have talked about that need to be included in the design as well as left out (always want to be politicly correct).

The beginning section about the Utes has a huge Ute Chief face that I was having a hard time getting just the right reference for. Really not having a good feeling about the design as well. We have already done three unveilings for the city of the (what I thought) final design. Also knowing I had not done enough research on the accuracy about what differentiates between the Northern Utes and Southeren Utes (not even knowing the Mountain Utes existed) So my dear (brother) Friend Scott Stearman had a contact for us to meet named Roland McCook. Scott is an amazing sculptor. He had met with Roland once before about a Ute sculpture is is designing right now. So we had our foot in the door.

I really wanted to share this experience because this has been a Huge Honor to meet and be invited into Roland’s home and his story. Scotty and I really felt as though we we were walking on holy ground. Was really amazing. Kind of one of those life changing experiences.

Let me tell you a bit about Roland. He is the Great-great-grandson of Chief Ouray and his wife Chipeta. He was the Vice-chairman of the Smithsonian Institution’s Native American RepatriationReview Committee. He was the NorthernUte Tribal Chairman (Chief) for 9 years. He now travels extensively educating and speaking about the “Nuche” the name the Utes call themselves, Which means, “A person of substance.”

 This is the design for the mural that we are looking at with Roland.

      

      

When Roland put on his full Regalia, Scotty and I were speechless. What an Honor and gift he gave us. I love this photo above. I was truly awe struck. I wish I was a better writer, but I just can’t seem to put this into words. Thank you again Roland. All I can say is I hope I do you Proud!

Here is the final design for just the Ute section of the mural. I’ll be posting the full design later after our City Council unveiling. This section is 24 feet tall so you can only imagine how HUGE the face will be. Roland is planning on coming to the unveiling when I finish painting this section, in his full Regalia! I can’t wait for him to see the fruition of this project and to see his face 20 feet tall. That would be crazy for any of us.

MEMORIAL PORTRAIT OF JACOB WORTHEY

We left the hospital as Jacob Worthey was living out his last hours on earth after a nine month battle with leukemia. I turned to my husband and said, “I am painting this, this week.”  I started painting and I couldn’t stop. I have never had an experience like this before. I had my earbuds in, singing loud and out of tune, weeping with the worship music going. I felt God’s presence directing my paint brush for this memorial. The whole thing took one day. It was a total spiritual experience.

The family did not want to see this portrait until the morning of the funeral and I didn’t want anyone to see this image of Jacob until the family saw him. It an emotional unveiling for all of us. The thing I love most this portrait is the way it shows Jacob’s joy. I love his hand on his heart. He just had so much joy, even in the midst of all that suffering. Maybe this is an image of how he looked once all the suffering was gone and finally everything made sense.

Joy.

MEMORIAL BENCH

This is a bench to honor the life of Nick Naples. What an amazing kid. I was so honored to be able to do this for the family. Nick was such an active guy, it was easy to have it be crazy busy with so many activities that he was involved in. The bench will be displayed in Memorial Park, in Woodland Park, CO. 

CAPTURING A MEMORY

This picture is important to me because it captures something important to my Dad.  I recently had him play his autoharp — after 30 years!  He had so much fun trying to remember old folk songs.  He strummed along but couldn’t remember the words to his favorite songs like “Mary Ellen,” and “Old Blue” and old hymns like “Just a Closer Walk with Thee.”  He was mostly making up his own words. I took a picture o f him, not because I intended to paint. I just wanted to snap a photo because  my mom and I were laughing so hard.   It was a precious time.

Later I decided to paint this moment and captured the memory of him, remembering.