Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Cowgirl Up! Quick Draw, state 1

Cowgirl Up! Quick-Draw__State 1_______done and gone!
Many art shows have a "Quick-Draw". The artists create a painting or a small sculpture in one hour, then frame it and auction it to the crowd which watched the whole thing happen. It's a fun time and raises money for the museum...I usually have a quick draw painting in my head and work it from memory or a sketch. (Remember my big red poppy quick draws?) The Cowgirl Up! folks offered "models" if we wanted them, so I tried something different this time and ordered a mule!...One reason why I like painting the quick draws from memory is that I get to make it up as I go and I am not trying to make it look like the photo if I had one...So, when I got my mule, I ended up likeing the mule's owner as a subject to paint...then I thought it would be cool to do BOTH..only had an hour, and this canvas was 12 x 12...probably way too ambitious, but fun...This is "state 1", just about 3/4 of the way done. My friend Marla took the photo, and it's all I have to show for it! Still pretty rough at this stage, I actually left it fairly rough. The cowboy's name was Merlon, I think, and he had a cigar in his hand which I included in the painting...his wife bought the framed painting in the auction :)

Monday, March 29, 2010

Desi, Jazz and Toby

Desi, Jazz and Toby____for Monica! My great Cowgirl Up! hostess!

OK, This was a quickie for Monica, the wonderful museum volunteer who put us
up in her lovely guest quarters at Cowgirl Up!. She was showing me the
photos one night and didn't notice that I sneaked them into my shirt so that
I could sketch them when she was not around...It took me a few days of
catching a minute here and a minute there, but I finally finished this
little sketch of her "family".

I like staying with Monica, because EVERYONE in town knows her and loves
her....then they think I must be nice if I am staying with her! hahaha

Don't forget I am teaching a workshop in Fredericksburg on June 14 - 17 and
we will focus on DRAWING. email me if you need more info

And get out to Marble Falls any Thursday thru Sunday till April 18 to see
selections from my Last Year on the Farm
paintings. If you have a group that wants a special personal viewing with
me, e-mail me and we can work it out!

Arizona Poppies and Mesquite

Arizona Poppies and Mesquite___6 x 8 oil on linen....Marla got this one!
Sunday afternoon, after the Cowgirl Up! Quick Draw, a few artists went out to paint. Again I went up to the Vulture Mine Road, near Vulture Peak (great place names, eh?) and we found a spot of carpet-green grass dotted with beautiful gold poppies. The Arizona mesquite, like the Texas variety seems to be among the last plants to bloom...
Show week was FULL of fun and activities, so getting out in the field to paint was a welcome change of pace. Painting alongside were a couple of Arizona artists, Marla Smith and Cathy Krieger travel buddy Brigitte Woosley painted too.
The desert does not bloom all the time, but this was a special year! The whole area looked like a golf course...almost too "neat" with green between the saguaro and barrel cactus! It looked soft and friendly, but Arizona might be the thorniest place I know!...heading home, now!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Vulture Peak

Vulture Peak__Wickenburg, AZ__6x8 oil on linen panel__$150 if you like 'em WET!
YIKES! Because of the way I have to post, this image is HUGE! You artists might enjoy clicking the image to see every molecule of paint!
We went out to paint this afternoon, before the big Cowgirl Up! sale at the Desert Caballeros Western Museum. It was good to get out in the warm sunshine! We didn't have long, but found this great view of Wickenburg's beloved Vulture Peak, a typical, saguaro cactus covered Arizona landscape...THough, this year is VERY unusual in that the desert is blooming! Flowers everywhere...we are going out to paint again tomorrow, so I will look for a good place with flowers!
Cowgirl Up! began tonight and was BUZZING with sales and happy patrons and artists. I made some new friends, welcomed old ones back and had some sales, so I am breathing easier. Tomorrow is the quick draw, where the artists have one hour to paint on the spot, with crowds watching. We then frame them and the museum auctions them off. It is a fun time and I enjoy competing with the clock to create a great painting in such a short time.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

A Gentler Sound

A Gentler Sound___14 x 11 oil on linen panel_available at Roundup, Kerrville, TX MOWA, April 10-11
I painted this similar painting (see yesterday's post) because the first one sold...this will be at the museum for a month or so...come to Kerrville if you can! Again, there is a gentle little mourning dove sitting here...if you click the image on the blog you sill see a close-up, better version! Would love to know your thoughts on how these compare!...this bell is at Presidio La Bahia, Goliad, TX.
PLEASE come to Wickenburg, AZ this weekend for Cowgirl Up!
I need to catch a plane there, now! God Bless y'all

Saturday, March 20, 2010

A Gentle Sound___14 x 11 oil on linen panel__for Roundup, MOWA, Kerrville TX, April 9-11
I hope you will click the image above to see this one larger...the brush strokes look neat and the dove looks ready to fly! The Museum of Western Art in Kerrville, TX will present its annual "Roundup" on April 9-11. I brought this one and two other paintings to the museum this morning for that show.
Today "opened" a special exhibit of about 100 paintings from "Last Year on the Farm" in Marble Falls, TX. From now till April 20, the works will hang in the Gallery at 205 Main Street. PLEASE VISIT when you take your "bluebonnet" trip to the Hill Country in the next few weeks. The Gallery is open Thus. - Sunday. If you have a group of 10 or more planning to go, please let me know! I might be able to meet y'all there and give a little talk about the works and my current project.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

A New Farm Painting_Grazing Together at the Bottom

Grazing Together at the Bottom___24 x 30 for Museum of Western Art Roundup Show, April 9-11, 2010

Here is one I will deliver to Kerrville, Texas and the museum of Western Art's Roundup show next month. It is derived from paintings I did at our farm. If you are not familiar with this story, please look at my web site, and the 365 small paintings I call "Last Year on the Farm". They are special, because they tell a special story... This Saturday is the opening of the LAST EXHIBIT of available "Last Year..." paintings. The exhibit runs through April 18, and is in the most beautiful part of Texas, suring the most beautiful time of the year...Because of the rains Central Texas expects a BANNER YEAR for bluebonnets. We are all excited to anticipate the best wildflower year in a long time. Take a road trip to Marble Falls and take in this last chance to see my beloved farm on canvas...this one last time!! I only have about 130 paintings left, and I have selected 100 for this exhibit. e-mail me for more info

Here is a link to the invitation ...

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


Romeo__Decision__9x12 pastel pencil on archival paper__from my sketchbook
I mentioned a while ago that when Romeo sees me looking at him (or aiming a camera) he jumps up and gets in my face. So it's hard to sketch him from life sometimes. If I have the right angle and he doesn't SEE me studying him, I can get away with it. In this sketch, he obviously knows I am looking at him, so his "decision" is whether to jump up "now" or after I am finished sketching him....Guess what he decided?
Below is an invitation I have been meaning to send....I wish I had mentioned it sooner for my Texas friends...It's the last big exhibit of my Last Year on the Farm paintings. About 100 selected paintings will be on display for a month in Marble Falls, TX....the reception is THIS SATURDAY, but the show hangs till April 18. I will speak a little bit on Saturday and on April 18, too and tell a little bit about the farm...PLEASE COME! I would love for you to see all these plein air paintings, and hear what you think of my farm....

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Invitation__V....Vaughan Farm Exhibit

In conjunction with this show, the Uptown Marble Falls Alliance is hoosting "Paint the Town", a plein air event. Artists will submit works for judging (V....Vaughan is the the judge!). There will be Cash Awards and original medals of bronze by sculptor Dan Pogue. If you are a plein air artist and want to participate in the paintout please contact Janey at 830-693-5973.

Monday, March 15, 2010


Romeo__Upward__9x12 pastel pencil on archival paper__from my sketchbook

I do not remember what he was looking at, but Romeo let me shoot the photo which I used for this sketch.
I tweaked my blog today. On the right side I added some things, including a picture of my book about the farm. And at the bottom of the page is a neat gadget to click and preview the first 15 pages of the book. If you have not seen the book, please go to the blog, scroll to the bottom, and turn the pages! It's really cool...and if you want to, you can order from there, too! If you get this post in an e-mail, click this link to go to the blog. If you want to get my postings in an e-mail, let me know, and I will add you to the group that gets the pictures FIRST...let me know

Sunday, March 14, 2010


Romeo_Sigh__9x12 pastel pencil on archival paper__from my sketchbook
I am not sure if all Great Danes are like this, but Romeo is so alert to whatever I am doing, that if I look at him for any length of time, he gets up to come see me...making sure I am OK, I guess. So for the next few days I will post sketches from photos of him. Right after I snapped the photo for this one, he jumped up and got in my face.....sigh
Below is a little "blog award" that I just received from Stephanie Berry in Maine. I think I have actually won one of these before, but was not sure what it was! Stephanie explained it to me well, and NOW I get it! I am posting my OWN award winners' links below! Please take a look at the blogs I look at the most...not all are artists, but all have great "sunshine" when they post!

According to someone's blog, "The Sunshine Award is awarded to bloggers whose positivity and creativity inspire others in the blogging world." Pass it on....
1. Post the flower logo on your blog.

2. Pass the award on to 12 fellow bloggers.

3. Link your nominees

4. Let nominees know they have won this award by commenting on their blog.

5. Be sure to link to the person you received this award from.

Friday, March 12, 2010


"Drowse"____9x12 from my sketchbook
Romeo has his "own" couch, downstairs. When the storms roll in, he hears the thunder miles before we do, and he gets upset and demands to be wherever we are. Giving us his famous, deep "Woo, woo" before the storm the other night, he really really wanted to be on "our" couch. Since everyone else had gone to bed, I was alone on the couch, and relented...just this he is straddling the couch and the ottoman, taking a drowse...

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Bearing Gifts _ 20x16

Bearing Gifts__20x16 oil on linen__for Cowgirl Up! Wickenburg, AZ, March 26-28
A few months ago I posted the study for this one. It was a little 6 x 6 and sold so fast with so many great comments, that I decided to create a composition with the same theme. These are actually some of the wranglers that "wrangled" all us "cowgirls" when we went on a trail ride last year in Wickenburg at the Cowgirl Up! festivities. Please click the image to see it larger.
I just shipped out my last piece of art for this wonderful show...My favorite thing is that I am "unveiling " some spectacular new frames for this event. I have been working with a special craftsman for a few months, now, and he has created something that is UNIQUE just for my something that I really like...I hope the public will, too.
When I remember to shoot the frames on my art, I will post it to show on the blog... Tell me what you think of this one, above!

Monday, March 08, 2010

Night Lights

"Night Lights"____36 x 36 oil on linen___for Cowgirl Up!__Wickenburg, AZ, March 26-28, 2010

Here is one of the big paintings I have been working on for the upcoming western art show called Cowgirl Up! in Wickenburg, Arizona. It was hard to photograph...I do not take good shots of the big ones, and there's no telling how it will look on your monitor!

If you follow my work, this one might look familiar to you! I combined a couple of my favorite themes to create this painting. I have painted this scene in the daytime...and I have recently painted this sky several times, after studies I painted in Colorado last summer.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010


Listener___12 x 9 pastel pencil on archival paper
Ah Romeo, my "good Dane", not "great"...
...he is EVER PRESENT, at my feet while I work, at my side while I move around the house, waiting outside the bathroom with his paws crossed while I shower...the Great Dane breed is definitely a "lap dog" breed - extremely loyal. Never hyper in trying to get attention (he's so big he just walks up and looks you in the eye...he knows I know what that means. If I do not respond, he speaks his famous, deep "woo, woo" and then a deeper big "WOO" for emphasis. He also does this if he wants to get close to me but something blocks his books on the floor, or Velcro the cat. He is bothered when he can't get close to me. In fact, he is looking at me now, blocked by the chair and a pile of bills on the floor....oh Romeo, Romeo...

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Cowgirl Gold

Cowgirl Gold___16x20 oil on linen___for Cowgirl Up! ...Wickenburg, AZ, March 26-28, 2010
I had a nice visit with the Austin Palette Club this morning, and began this painting as a demo for the group. Since I had painted a plein air study several months ago, it all felt very "familiar" and I think the demo came out well....note to artists: when doing a demo, be sure that you are comfortable and familiar with the "subject", and be sure that the group is NICE...makes the demo easier ...The Austin Palette Club is a VERY NICE and HAPPY group of artists! We had a great time together, but it went so FAST!!!
The title of this is really "Nestled in Gold", but as I typed it in, I saw that I had already used that for another painting. OOPS! Cowgirl Up! asked for our titles months ago, and I turned in "Nestled..." without thinking. This is the painting that they are using for the show catalog, and it is a painting from the plein air study I did last fall while visiting CO with a couple of friends.

Monday, March 01, 2010

Romeo's Profile

Romeo's Profile___detail____from my sketchbook
I am still working on big paintings for Cowgirl Up!, a big western art show in Arizona at the end of this month. ...SO, for the log I have a few things from my sketch book this week.
My favorite model, Romeo offered this little pose in the snow the other day. I have some new pencils and have been trying to figure out if I like them...the only way to do that is to USE THEM...often
Sketching and drawing are such an important part of being an artist and developing a COMFORT level with your eye and hand...I teach a lot of drawing in my workshop in June...JOIN US!