Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Off Kilter

New work and one of the last of 2008. I thought it was fitting for me to have it a little "Off Kilter". I have found that I like my life so much better when it is not fitting into the gingerbread house with the perfect picket fence.

Have a safe holiday season and remember that coloring outside of the lines breeds creativity!!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

December and trying to keep on track

Winter is the hardest time for me to keep motivated in the studio. I am a girl of the sun and I work best when I get my time in the glow. This year, I have been working harder at keeping up my motivation and it is seeming to be working. Or perhaps, it's because I moved the thermostat up a few degrees. What ever it is I am simply happy that I am keeping a better work ethic than I did last year at this same time.

Things I wish I would complete....but probable will not are:

1. Redesign and build a new website. My website is just OK and I would like it to look a lot better. But it does function so there is no drastic drive to get it done
2. Paint my living room, dining room, and kitchen. They really need a new coat of paint. Perhaps, I will talk my husband into doing it.
3. Start on my master bathroom is frighting. Telling you that I still have the original 1960's pink tub, sink, and commode should give you a clue. This one, I know, will not be done due to the current economy but I want it done so badly that it had to be on the list.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Something to smile about.....

For those that know me rather well this should not come as a surprise. I am a klutz and there has been plenty of kidding about it over the years. The fact that Spillar is my last name has added to the humor. I do have to say that I do think it's rather funny myself and have many a good story to tell over a glass of wine about my many miss-stepped adventures.

So here is my latest story...On Sunday after a fantastic workout, I decided it was time to do some deep cleaning in my kitchen. I didn't even change out of my work out gear. I started on the stove and scrubbed for awhile and felt that there was a spot that need to soak for just a bit before I tried to tackle it again. This is where my first mistake started, I left the oven door open. Things were going great and I started on the fridge. Well, that went rather well and was happy to find my missing jar of capers in the process. After checking the clock I realized that I better start on lunch. I still had many contents of the refrigerator on my counters while I was waiting for the shelves to dry. But no problem, I am a multitasker and that was no issue. I stooped down scrubbed a bit on the oven spot, then I pushed the refrigerator contents aside so I could make chicken salad. Knowing all along that my youngest would complain about such a lunch. But doing it anyway because at some time in her life she is going to have to like food that is mixed. She is still in the separate but equal phase of her eating career. Bear in mind the oven door was still open while all this is going on and I had been gracefully side stepping the door all this time.

Well, things changed quickly, after I had just added my forth project of feeding my 20 year old cat, Homme. I was turned back around to my kitchen sink, thinking about why its so hard to scrub a oven, how did those capers get lost, is Homme really going to keep on meowing when the food is right in front of him, and last but not least what type of face while Anaïs have once she sees that not only had I contaminated her chicken by making chicken salad, I had also mixed the peas and corn together. As all these thoughts were going through my head, I did a classic Spillar, I turned rather quickly and ran my lower right leg right across the open edge of the oven door. I felt no pain, I knew it was bad. I must of yelped because both Anaïs and Parker came running in. I immediately told them to get their Dad. They got him quickly by calling out that I was hurt and gushing blood.

After sitting down and covering it in paper towels (ran out of large bandages from an earlier accident) and medical tape. I told them to hurry up and eat (that's the Mom in me... must take care of family first even though I really need to see a doctor). I sat and contemplated if they could stitch this mess and if so how many. I did not want to waste an emergency room visit. After a while I realized that I could not stop the bleeding and started wondering if it was because of my double platelet donation two days before. So I told the family to hurry up and eat and please toss all the contents of the fridge back in. Secretly, I was hoping that they put them back in the right places. I did not want to loose those capers again.

Then we all went to the emergency room. Fourteen stitches later, I am a proud owner of a wonderful smiley face wound.

The next morning, Parker came into the bedroom with a sheepish grin on his face. Then he produced a sharpie and a huge giggle. I knew immediately what he was planning. See the picture below of his wonderful addition to my leg.

Monday, December 01, 2008

My Mom's painting

I have mentioned over the years how I grew up watching my Mom paint so I thought I would share one of her paintings. She finished this one in 1980. We came across this building and truck on one of our summer vacations . Enjoy

Monday, November 03, 2008

Mr. Brown

My best friend and fellow artist asked me a bit ago if I have ever done a predominately yellow painting. I paint so many of the other primary colors but it is true that yellow has been under utilized in my studio. So in honer of Neil, whom got me back into painting, I give you all "Mr. Brown".

Friday, October 24, 2008

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

A new idea and direction.....

I have been pondering a new direction for a a while now and am determined to work it out this winter. The beginning of it all begins in the pile of wood in the picture above. On my long drive home from Alabama yesterday I had PLENTY of time to work the details out. I will start trying some of the ideas out over the next few weeks.

The beginning of the process is entirely out of my hands and fascinates me to no end. Every time a piece of veneer would drop the crowd would form and watch a few minutes and then drift off to somewhere else. I on the other hand stayed to see the process from start to finish the first time I saw it a few years ago. The only thought I had going through my mind every time a section would drop to the ground was about the painting that would eventually form on these sections of wood. Well, that was three years ago and the wood has sat. This year we went back out for the day but arrived to late to get many really good pieces. We had planned on filling the van up. Fortunately, I do have enough currently to get a nice collection of work going.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Alabama Beach.....

I had to share the beauty of the Alabama Beach. Every evening after my show I would buy a bowl of "Shrimp and Grits" and sit at the shore and watch the tide come in. We live in such an amazing and beautiful world.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


So I received a hot stolen check recently and I have to say I am very mad indeed. Fortunately, it was not a expensive piece but it's the principle all the same. I chatted with this lady on two different days and was very friendly to her. We talked about my work, her friend named Bob, and the election. She came in the next day and after chatting for awhile, I told her that she could have my Obama pin and she was very excited.

Then the bitch decided that she wanted one of my Alphabet line series paintings. In fact she wanted one with her initial "K". So I proceded to pull out all my line paintings and produced the "KK" painting for her. She was very happy and asked if she could write a check. Of course I said yes. I had talked with her over a two day period and figured that she was not a thief. BOY WAS I WRONG........

So here is what I would like to say to her if I ever see her again.....

"YOU WORTHLESS PIECE OF TRASH. FIRST OF ALL I AM A STRUGGLING MOM TRYING TO SUPPORT MY TWO CHILDREN, SECONDLY YOU STOLE A PIECE OF MY ART THAT I WORKED LONG and hard to make, and last but not least you stole those checks from some one else. I could have bought an entire week of groceries for my kids with that money....I have talked to the police and I hope you land in jail!!!!!!"

63 Gallons of gas....

I just had to get home to see my kids. I missed them so much. So I will be using a total of 63 extra gallons of gas an an extra 16 hours on the road to be able to see them at home for two days. I was in Gulf Shores Al this past weekend and will be leaving this Thursday for Northport, AL.

Last night when I drove in my kiddos were waiting in the circle for me. Parker came running up and jumped into my arms and Anaïs would not let go of me. Any miss givings about spending all the extra money on gas (that I do not have to spare) were forgotten as soon as I saw their faces. Worth every penny.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Christian Louboutin and Atlanta

I Just got home from my very first show in Atlanta and I have to say....I left craving my dream shoes. I was amazed by how many women wore high heels. They even walked gracefully on the sidewalks you see in the picture. I could NEVER do that but I do dream of one day owning my very own pair of Christian Louboutin's. For those that know me and those whom have met me at shows, this should come as a huge surprise. I rarely ever put on makeup. I don't think I have worn any in three months and possible longer. I live in my trademark flip-flops and usually have a funky skirt on with a black shirt. That is my uniform most of the time when I am not painting. I do own one pair of basic black pumps that get me through weddings and funerals but they are bland, PAINFUL, and at about $60+ all I could afford. They do not make me feel like a princess when I put them on.

This lady was fantastic and we were talking in my booth about shoes and blogging. She was one of those women that would look elegant in a t-shirt and a pair of jeans. She looked amazing in a simple yet very chic dress and shoes. So she was gracious enough to give me a shoe pose. Thank you and my dream lives on.....either of these would do.
Triclo Crisscross d'Orsay

Mary Jane Platform

So.....if you were wondering why I chose black over all the other fabulous shoes, I will explain... If I was ever lucky enough to receive a pair I would want them classic so I could wear them forever. A nice classic to carry me over the years.......A silly dream for a tom-boy at heart.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The Alphabet Line Series

I really REALLY REALLY want to keep this one but.....I am taking it to shows anyway. That is the way of a professional artist. For me to be able to keep painting, I must let paintings go. The title of this piece is "H3" and is 6x6 and will be coming to Atlanta with me this weekend.

I have decided this is the year that I am going to permanently place some artwork in my house. When it is my off season, I have my artwork hanging everywhere and I love to walk by and see them. But when show season starts, I strip my walls down and all you see is empty hooks of where art used to be. This year things are going to change. I will be keeping artwork up all year long. I will still keep them up for sale on my website but I will not be taking them down for shows.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Clifford hogging the spot light!!

Clifford simply did not want to cooperate with me this afternoon. I think he felt that he was not getting enough attention and was determined to get some. As soon as I took this painting, titled "Method", to the deck to photograph it, Clifford decided to lay down right in front of it. Then I would get him to move and he would drop right down again. We repeated this about four more times before I gave in. I took this shot, turned off my camera, and spent a couple of minutes petting him. Then I was able to get my shot.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Circles Circles Circle

I am back in studio and LOVING it!!!! It is amazing how all the outside troubles simply slip away while I paint. This painting is titled "Five '08" and it was tiny cut in lines through out the entire piece.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

CANCELLED Downers Grove

I am open for the rest of Saturday until 5 pm. All the other artist have left around me and the rest are. Packing up. I have no choice but to leave mysef at the end of the day

Please forgive me but I cannot update my website until I get home. As of right now it states I am open rain or shine both days. Well I am open today and it's raining. For anyone that comes out on Sunday please forgive me:( And I am truely sorry


Friday, September 12, 2008

Pork Barrel

The email - Quinn Latimer and Lyra Kilston

Friends, compatriots, fellow-lamenters,

We are writing to you because of the fury and dread we have felt since the announcement of Sarah Palin as the Vice-Presidential candidate for the Republican Party. We believe that this terrible decision has surpassed mere partisanship, and that it is a dangerous farce—on the part of a pandering and rudderless Presidential candidate—that has a real possibility of becoming fact.

Perhaps like us, as American women, you share the fear of what Ms. Palin and her professed beliefs and proven record could lead to for ourselves and for our present or future daughters. To date, she is against sex education, birth control, the pro-choice platform, environmental protection, alternative energy development, freedom of speech (as mayor she attempted to ban books and fired the librarian who refused), gun control, the separation of church and state, and polar bears. To say nothing of her complete lack of experience.

We want to clarify that we are not against Sarah Palin as a woman, a mother, or, for that matter, a parent of a pregnant teenager, but solely as a rash, incompetent, and all together devastating choice for Vice President. Ms. Palin's political views are in every way a slap in the face to the accomplishments that our mothers and grandmothers and great-grandmothers so fiercely fought for, and that we've so demonstrably benefited from.

First and foremost, Ms. Palin does not represent us. She does not demonstrate or uphold our interests as American women. It is presumed that the inclusion of a woman on the Republican ticket could win over women voters. We want to disagree, publicly.

Therefore, we invite you to reply here with a short, succinct message about why you, as a woman living in this country, do not support this candidate as second-in-command for our nation.

Please include your name (last initial is fine), age, and place of residence.

We will post your responses on a blog called "Women Against Sarah Palin," which we intend to publicize as widely as possible. Please send us your reply at your earliest convenience—the greater the volume of responses we receive, the stronger our message will be.

Please email your responses to Thank you for your time and action.



Quinn Latimer and Lyra Kilston
New York, NY

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Tic Tac Toe

This is one of my all time favorite pieces of art that I created. The title is "Tic Tac Toe" and it now lives with a wonderful couple in Chicago! I ran into M&J again in Chicago this year and they told me they had moved and showed me the photos of their new place. I asked them half jokingly when I could move in. WOW, is all I can say. Plus, I am a little biased when I say....I think my art looks fantastic in their new abode.

They have also bought a few Daily's in the past two years and this is how they had them hung. I like the grouping. But, it reminds me that I need to go and paint so off I go.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Silent and Live Auction 2008

I am proud to be donating this painting to the Silent and Live Auction 2008 which will benefit The Center on Halstead. The painting is titled "Mist" and the dimensions are 20x20. So if you have fallen in love with this one, click here to find out how you can place a bid.

A little known fact about art donations and why I rarely donate my artwork unless it is a superior cause....As an artist I am not entitled to deduct the full value of a painting on my taxes. I can only deduct the cost of materials. This does not include my time or the true value of the work. But if you owned one of my pieces and wanted to donate it you could deduct the full value of the art work.

The current status of H.R. 1524 is that it has been referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means. The Senate also has S. 548

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

I finally upgraded computers and I am so happy!!!!. I filled my Mac Mini in less than four years and it was so slow because I blogged it down with painting images and music that I must have to paint with. So I have this new baby and it is FAST FAST FAST and I am in love! It is the Mac Pro ( yes, we are a Mac house since the early 90s) and I added a 1TB hard drive. I should be good for awhile on my storage needs. Verne still reminds me that I made a mistake in not buying stock in 1994.

I AM off to go painting again....just wanted to take a quick break.

PS. Yes, I already have some paint on the keyboard and mouse. What do you expect from an artist whose computer is located in the studio.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

And the game November 4

OK....I did not find this. My friends Pat and Jon had it posted on her blog. I had to have it too so I took it. Go check out Pat's blog. I bought one of her boxes and love it!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Jessica.... The "J" Painting

In October it will be three years since my beautiful and amazing niece was killed in a car wreck. She was one week shy of turning 14 and all I can say is that the world lost a shinning star that day. She had a way of lighting up the room when she walked in. My sister'in'law Tina, asked me to paint a painting titles "J" to hang in the room all of Jessica's furniture is now in. This was the hardest piece I have ever painted. I had Parker and Anaïs add a touch of color on it so it came from all of us. Parker, Anaïs, and I picked out the colors together. Each color has a specific meaning.

I am delivering this to Tina right before Labor Day. She has not scene it yet, all she asked of me was to use J's favorite

I had many tears while painting this. I added the lines with the antique bed springs from my Dad's bed. I had to walk away after I did that. It was simply to much to handle for me. I miss them both very much.

I am so honored that Tina trusted me with this very important piece. I only hope that I have lived up to Tina's idea of what she would want for Jessica.

Favorite show of the Year

Well, I am back from my favorite show of the year. I took this night shot on Saturday night. I should have waited until it was a bit darker out but I love the look of it. Oddly, I liked the blue of the trash can so I did not edit it out. It was great to see friends and patrons from the past and meet new ones. This is the only show that I get spoiled at by my patrons. I not only had tea delivered, I also had a bottle of wine delivered to my tent!!! Thank you all for such a great weekend!

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Monday, August 04, 2008


I just got back from Minneapolis and had a lot of fun at the Uptown art show. I came home with a fantastic painting by William McCarthy. His booth was across from me and I feel in love with his work. The funny thing is I am not normally drawn to that style of work for my home but his pieces were so incredible I feel in love with them. The icing on the cake was, when I found out he also under paints his paintings in red like I do and signs most of his work scratched through he paint as I do. We are doing a trade. He really liked my "Line Series" so I am going to paint him a 12x12 and ship it to him by November.

I am also having a delivery of my BUG. Micheal Cole has this amazing image of a locust and I have always wanted this photo of his. I am going to hang it in my kitchen. I told the kids about it and they are excited. You know, anything bug related is always cool to a kid.

I met three most fabulous and fun guys in Minneapolis. They made my weekend and I hope to see them again. Sorority Sister, if you read this, I must tell you NEVER to take the bus again. Aryln and Brandon told me it broke down. I hope you found a great drink ( or two) to swallow down. The Thai food was great and hope to meet up with you all again. I wish you all lived in St. Louis!!!!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

My zoo........

I thought that we had enough pets but apparently, I am wrong. Yesterday we add three more for a grand total of eight. I think I stuttered when I tried to type that number. Anaïs has inherited Bumble a hermit crab and thought it was lonely so we picked up two more. She named them Fuzz Ball, and Shelly. They are rather fun and she keeps them in her room with Flicky her fish.

Anaïs is certain she had trained her fish, Flicky, to come to her when she calls him. I am under the impression that the fish really is trained to come up for food. She bought Flicky with her own money and washes his bowl every week. She takes very good care of him. If only she cleaned her room as well, I would be very happy.

Then in Parker's room we have Speedy a uromastyx. Last year Speedy got loose in the front yard and after many hours searching we thought he (or she) was gone for ever. It was a bad day in the house. Parker was mad at his sister for loosing him and I was mad at Verne for letting Anaïs take Speedy outside. Well, the anger was short lived because three days later he was found in the garage hiding behind a broom. He was happily returned to his sandy tank.

Then my two amazing cats. I am a cat person and I have had these two babies for YEARS. Homme is 20 this year and Kato (Homme's son) is going to be 18 on Labor day. I am not sure how much time Homme has left. It is going to be very hard for me to let him go.

Last but not least is Clifford, our rescue dog. He has decided that he must not ever be more than a few inches from me almost all day. He is lovable and cries at the top of the stairs if I do not let him come downstairs to the studio with me. This is how I am usually painting, in my PJs and with an 85# lab curled up next to me. I try to get him to move but he likes to be right next to me. Sometimes he gets some paint on him. In this photo he was painted with Dog Safe food coloring. The kids thought he needed some color.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Water Series....brought back

I thought I was done with my "Water Series". I loved it and at the time I was painting the series it had great meaning and an amazing calming effect when I needed it the most. The series was born right around the time Verne was laid off. I needed to paint it and it helped bring back a sense of being I was so very much lacking. I sold my last piece, "H20", and was happy to see it go to a good home.

Very early this year, I applied to a juried show with paintings from my "Water Series" and just found out that it was accepted for a very big show. Therefore, I am having to dust off the series and bring it back for the show. I am very happy with how this latest piece came out but it brought back those horrible memories of trying to keep the family afloat during that 2.5 years of no long term work, CRAPPY under-insurance of the self-insured, and never knowing if we would have enough to buy food for the week.

So I present "Aqua" in a very bittersweet return of a series. I only hope I can reclaim the feelings the series originally brought me

Friday, July 25, 2008

A death in my studio.....'s true my favorite and only palette knife I paint with snapped today while I was cleaning it. I must have let out a very load "Oh No" because my kids came running in and asked if I was OK. I have at least 20 different palette knives that I use to grab paint, mix paint, but I never paint with them. They did not have the same feel and therefor were never considered worthy of using.

So I took my broken friend to Artmart and tried to find something that could replace my lost treasure. I felt like I was Goldilocks in the the three bears. Papa Bear's handle was to large for my grip. Mama Bear's handle was to soft, and baby Bears was just not right. I ended up buying all three to try them out. If I find a suitable replacement, I am going to go out and buy a duplicate so when it breaks ten years from now, I hopefully will not go into a panic. So far I have tried all three and am not too happy. The angle from the handle to the knife edge is different than my fallen friend. For all my fellow painters out there, I know you understand my pain. Because loosing a favorite brush feels just as bad.

So now my knife is sitting on my computer desk. Many a fine painting it has produced. So RIP my beautiful little paint covered friend.

Monday, July 21, 2008

A bird in my tent

Sunday morning I came back to my tent to find this cute but very scared bird in my tent. It must have been trying to seek shelter from the evening storms. See post below and you will some of the destruction from UN-weighted tents and poor ezup owners whom did weight but the water dumped their tents.

After I took off my front wall and put up the awning, it finally escaped. I only wish I could have gotten a better photo. It kept flying from place to place and would only land for a second or to.

Weights and Ez-ups ( and all similar tent ez designs)

I thought nothing could frustrate me more than an easy up with out weights but....I have found something that agrivates me more. The information tent, that is manned and put up by the show directors themselves was not weighted. It is very fortunate that the tent did not wipe out the very nice woodcarvers tent. It landed only a yard away from his tent and would have surely caused a lost wall or a bent frame.

The cardinal Rules for ez-up easy down owners.

1. Invest in clamps - theses will help you in a rain storm
2. Always take your art out if there is a possibility of storms
4. Unique things that due work for rain - hula hoops - pool tube floats - See number 1. for the easiest soulution. Anything that will pull your tent top taught so water does not pool. The water fills up the top and drops your tent.

This seasons weather has been insain and anyone doing shows in the midwest have scene tons of distruction. Even the more heavy duty tents are going down. Please everyone ban together and demand your neighbors tent is weighted. Personlly, I can forgive a weighted tent for running into mine but an unweighted tent is unforgivable. Check out my bottom picture. They did not weight this lite-dome and it broke the poor neighbors tent. Sadly, most of their work was ruined.

I just got my happifeet ( heavy duty tent weights) and love them all except they were not designed for pro-panels in mind but I will figure out how to make it work. So if anyone is interested I will sell my PVC/concrete weights at a bargin price.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Art Fair

I just returned from a art fair and I had a great time despite the pouring rain we set up in. Yes, I said we. My son Parker got to come along with me. He has begged for years to come and I told him he needed to be 10 before he could come. He is actually a great help and I love the company. We had tons of laughs on the trip.

I had three different people come up and ask me about the red painting I had hanging on my front wall when I was there in 2007. After looking at records I believe it is the one pictured above. It is titled "Good Night Nin" and sold a little bit later in Louisville, KY. I really should start taking pictures of my booth at each event but I am sure that I will forget to do it or forget to label where it was taken.

It was great seeing some of my clients from the past and meeting new ones. I met a wonderful couple again. The husband is still sad about a painting that got away. I was fortunate enough to visit their house and see their fantastic art collection. I loved hearing about each piece and what captured their eye about it. There are so many people that want the art to match something in their room with out ever thinking outside of the box and seeing that yes, a red painting would look good in a predominately tan room. Or hearing that they love my work but their style of furniture is to traditional for abstract art. For the later, I usually ask them if they have ever looked at a Architectural Digest? I have scene so many images of a wingback chair with a Pollock, Richter, or other equally non-objectional abstract painting hanging above it and they look great together. So thank you Matt and Judith for being the type of collectors that let the art speak to you and could care less if the art matched a certain throw pillow on your couch!!!

PS.........I changed the photo out. A client of mine took a picture of it last year and sent me the jpeg....Thank you- Jack!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

the new iphone

I bought my iphone in April this year and I love it. But, I am a little ticked off that the new one came out for $199 and I paid $399 back in April. I contacted the At&T store the same day the new price had been posted and they said that they would not give a rebate or trade for the new iphone.

Monday, July 07, 2008

New Painting from my line series

I am finally trying to catch up with photos on my art work. I had a ton of fun with this. I love it and hope you all do as well. It is simply titled "Lined". This is a beginning of a new series based on a commission painting I did for a wonderful lady living in the Sheraton Hotel in St. Louis. She loves color and had a large majority of art that carried hearts in them. I came up with the idea to do a large heart all out of multiple colors of lines out of twelve 12x12 canvases. I cannot wait to see where this series goes.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Lewis Black

OK OK OK.... I cannot believe it. I love Lewis Black and have been waiting forever to see him. Well, he has finally made it to St. Louis and I will not be home. The only thing that is making this better is that I will be in Chicago for my favorite event of the year. If it had been any other event I would have canceled to see him.

Since I cannot make it, I ask all St Louis people to go for me. The way I figure it is if he gets a huge St. Louis audience he might come back again sometime. So buy tickets here and then let me know how great it was.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

The Fish

Well....I do know the fish have nothing to do with my art. But, I like them and after hours of debating what my blog redo should look like and looking at thousands of templates I came across these fish. They made me happy. In a way, they are apart of my art. I paint best when I am happy so fish it is.

I also like that the picture poses a question. Are the fish jumping to a glass that is more than half full or are they jumping to the glass that is half empty? The optimist in me believes they are jumping to freedom and their glass is half empty.

So what do you think of the fish??

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Comission Titled "Reflection"

I am very excited about my latest commission piece for a very nice gentleman named Tom. I met him at a show in Birmingham and we planned out this piece. It is five panels and the dimensions of each are 30x10. This painting will be hanging in his foyer with in the week.

I ended up having to put two coats of my high gloss on there and it looks fantastic. I had thin spots on my first coat. Sometimes that happens and I can kick myself for the mistake. The gloss I use is very expensive and little mistakes really cost me. But I do have to say the painting looks FANTASTIC with two coats on it. My family loved it. But since it was on the dining room table for a few days while it was finishing curing, they had no choice but to look at it. So in a way, I am glad they liked the piece or I might have have not been happy with the comments all week.

I spent way to long constructing a box for this piece. I hate making boxes but I did not have anything that would fit the dimensions of the painting. The box looks frighting but it will do the job. I dropped it off at Fed Ex on Monday and should be arriving at his doorstep on Wednesday.

We went camping for a few days this last week. It was a very nice change of pace. The kids (with life jackets on) played in the river for three days, we hiked, and had some great food prepared over the fires that Parker built. Verne's favorite meal was the couscous with sauteed mushrooms and asparagus and the kids I am sure would vote for the smores.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Rain Rain Windy Wind.....not the best weekend

So I was all excited about my latest trip. Everything was in place and off I went to Milwaukee with a smile on my face. Well, it didn't last long the rain came in, 50 mph gusts, two separate tornado warnings, and flooding of my booth. It was so crazy outside that not only was I weighted down, I tied my tent to a huge metal post. My tent did survive but not thanks to my neighbor that had an easy-up and wouldn't tie it down. I even offered to give them rope and tie it for them. After a bit I noticed that my tent was being pulled in one direction. I was afraid that my poles would twist and break. I came out and looked and the people next to me had tied their tent to my weights and when the wind pulled theirs it was pulling mine as well. I was not happy. Their tent ended up breaking and I felt bad for them but come on buy some weights. The moral of the story is NEVER EVER tie two tents to one set of weights. You are asking for a disaster.

After Friday's tornado warnings and rain, Saturday's severe rain storms, flooding, and a second tornado warning, I checked the weather for Sunday and it looked bad so I pulled in and broke my tent down in a 8" puddle of muddy, stinky, water and left the show. I am glad I did, I checked the weather and they got hit again very badly. I am lucky I did not loose any artwork but I certainly would have if I had stayed for Sunday. There was no way I could have got my art safely back into my cargo van in the storms that were going on.

The one good thing about all the bad weather was that I got to come home one day early to see my kids. Anaïs made a huge "Wellcome ( that's how she spelled it) Home early Mommy" sign and decorated the dining room. Parker came running into the driveway and grabbed me for a hug even before I could get out of the van. I am one very lucky women.

I am back in Chicago for a show this coming weekend and I am keeping my fingers crossed that I have sunny skies!!!!

Monday, May 26, 2008

Back from Dallas again.....notice a theme???

Yes, I am back again from Dallas for the last time this year. This was the third time I have been in Dallas since April. Think about it....that is at least 66 hours driving time. If only I was paid buy the mile!!!! I love Dallas and good ol' St Louis could learn a lot from Dallas about how to build a good highway system.

I had a great time in Dallas and I had some of my former clients stop in and say hello. But I did make a big fopaux, I had a couple stop in and I simple did not register that I had met them before and he was not happy I did not recognize them. I felt really badly but I do see thousands of people while doing shows and have hundreds ( think about all the Daily Series buyers) of clients. After they left, it clicked and I remembered them and as I recall he was not dressed in full business attire as he was this weekend. A little to late on my part. So if you are reading this....please know that I did feel badly.

Monday, May 12, 2008

I am tired but.... home

I just arrived home from Dallas a few hours ago and I am tired. But, I had a great surprise for dinner. Verne and the kids were all ready for my late-Mother's day ( I cannot believe I missed another big event this year). Parker and Anaïs wrote me the most wonderful letters. Oh, I love my kids so much.

Verne took the kids shopping and I would have been happy with just the 59¢ box of Lemonheads but they went jewelry shopping too. I do not wear necklaces EVER but I LOVE bracelets. So they found me two great pairs of earrings and a fantastic bracelet. Watch for me wearing the bracelet at my next show.

I am off to hang for a gallery show tomorrow. The opening is on Friday and I am going to miss it. I am sending my husband and daughter to represent me since I will be at another show that same weekend out of state. Parker is excited because he is going to his first show alone with there is a Ripley's believe it or not museum in the same city and I will find time to take him.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Graduation Present - Daily 4-29-08

Today, I sold this rather fun Daily painting. It will be given as a graduation present in a few weeks. I have to say it is a wonderful feeling knowing that someone values your work enough to give it as a gift.

Gallery Show

I am off to Dallas again for a art show and when I get back I will be racing around hanging art for a gallery show in Belleville, Il. I am looking forward to the show. The title is "Forces of Nature" and is a two women show with a wonderful fiber artist named Jacque Davis

Friday, April 18, 2008

ONB Magic City Birmingham Alabama

Well, I am off to another show in less than a week and I am getting excited. I love a new adventure and this is one of them. I have not done this show before but decided to give it a try. Hopefully, it will be a lot of fun.

My Beasty is in the shop and I am happy to say it was simply low oil and not some other huge problem. I am keeping my fingers crossed that it can make it another 100,000 miles.

Parker was home sick today so I didn't get much done in studio. While he was sleeping, I worked on a piece that is going to be in my upcoming gallery show in May, got a few Daily paintings matted and photographed, but that is about it. Tomorrow should hopefully be a more productive day.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Diet Coke

My daughter has been after me for years to stop drinking diet coke. So a few months ago I gave it up. I drank a lot and the McDonald's window saw me ever day for a hugo and sometimes I stopped in twice a day. I am very glad I stopped but I thought my cravings would be gone by now. Well they are not. Everyday I think about my diet coke and I really want one. Anaïs has always said I was addicted to it and now I have to agree.

Sunday, April 13, 2008


Spring is finally here and all I am painting in this last few weeks is BRIGHT orange??????? This is the view off of my deck. It's amazing view in the spring.

My front garden is starting to bloom. It needs a lot of work. I had a beautiful garden at our last house. But I also spent a lot more time working in it.
My 8 year old daughter took this photo. I know I am biased but I love the way she choose to capture the tree.

I am off to paint but I wanted to share some of the stuff around my home that inspires me to paint.

Friday, April 11, 2008

PTO President

Well my two year term as PTO president is winding down and I am getting rather excited. It has been a huge time commitment but I would not change a thing. I am so proud that I have taught my children the value of volunteering by my example, helped raise thousands of dollars for a Long family that lost everything in a fire and had no insurance, and the friendships that I have made.

By no means am I stopping my volunteering at school. I now get to pick and choose the things that interest me. I will be running the spring book fair. This is a perfect fit for me, I love to read, the kids think it's fun to help out, and this past year the spring book fair brought in enough money to buy over $3500 books for the school library and that makes me feel great. Plus, I was able to give books to every child that could not afford one.

In the past few months I have had emails from past high school and college buddies, I am sure not a single one of them would have ever thought that I would be the PTO president let alone even ever go to a PTO meeting. Well, I cannot blame them. I either was either in my insanely preppy self centered phase or was wearing combat boots, vintage June Cleaver dresses, with either purple or flaming red hair in various states of distress.

I have my glass held up high and I send a cheers out to all the volunteers out there. Volunteers make the world a better place one hour at a time.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Daily 3-12-08

I am a little behind on photographing the Daily Series but am finally catching up. I really liked how this one came out. Verne loved this one and said I should do more like this.

I am turning 40 in less than a week and I really don't care about the number. Years ago I was told that I would really be upset and feel old when I became 40. Well, I don't.

I have always been under the impression that your age is relative to how you feel about life in general. Therefore, I still feel young, happy, and not old in the least.

Here's to celebrating my 40th birthday, Monday on a long nine hour drive home from Dallas. I will kick back, drive safely, and enjoy all my NPR pod casts "Wait Wait Don't tell me", "Science Friday", etc. and of course my usual loud music. I have to keep it loud to tune out my horrible singing!

Saturday, March 29, 2008


I am very excited to be starting my show season again. I cannot wait to be in Dallas again. It will be great to see all my friends again.

The "Beasty" ( my kids named my cargo van) is almost packed, oil has been changed, and AAA has been renewed. I am ready to take it for a drive. Hopefully, there will be no middle of the night water pump disasters this year. Thank you Cowboy and Neil for the repair. That is a story that will never be forgotten.

I mailed post cards about a week ago. If you didn't get one, please send me a email with your current address and I will put you on the mailing list.

See you all in Dallas


Friday, March 28, 2008

Carbon Monoxide Detectors

A few years back I loaded up on three more carbon monoxide detectors for our house. We already had one, but thought it best to get some more. While I was at the store I recall thinking, these are expensive and do they really work. Well, I can say YES they work and worth every penny.

Last Saturday, thankfully the kids were outside most of the day, I was in the house and feeling kind of funky. I just thought it was allergies. A little while later the CO detector went off. I quickly grabbed Homme my 19 year old cat, Clifford my yellow bouncy lab, and my cell phone. I ran outside and told the kids not to go inside and called the fire department. Then I went inside for Kato my 17 year old cat. Parker was almost in tears because of Kato. He loves Kato and sleeps with him every night.

The fire department came and checked out the house. They said I was the winner this year for how high the levels were. The fire department read 94 in our upstairs and the gas company was reading 150 downstairs ( were my studio is) near the furnace . Then the three fire men started staring at me and checked out my hands. They quickly called an ambulance. Thankfully we have great neighbors. Verne was not home yet, so I sent my two kids, crazy dog, and two cats to stay at their house until Verne go home. I am fine and spent a few hours in the emergency room on oxygen and I am back to normal. We did end up having my daughter checked out as well. The hospital took blood work and although she had levels of CO they were low enough so they cleared her to go home.

I now have a shiny new furnace and air conditioner. Plus, I now have heat in my studio. They put in a vent for me in my studio.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Busy Schedule

Sometimes I feel like I am juggling all the time, I can see the end but cannot drop any of the balls yet. Verne has not been home for weeks, months actually. He has been working insane hours, sometimes 80+ these last few months. The hours should drop to normal in April but it has been tough.

Here are some of my balls I have been tossing around, raising kids, carpooling kids, PTO president ( that is almost over and anyone who knows knows, this takes lots of time. Second and last year of it), Parker's baseball practice, Anaïs' softball practice, painting, website design, babysitting the cutest baby on Monday and Tuesdays, babysitting a neighbors dog ( went home the other day) all household chores, and trying find more time to paint. I paint during school hours but need more time in the evenings and on weekends. But Verne is working during those times and my paint time has suffered.

On top of everything, I am still having eye issues. But I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Verne will be home soon, PTO is being passed off to a Mom that will do a fantastic job, and the baby I take care of will be home with her Mom. This is the one I am sad to give up. I have had so much fun taking care of this little one.

Time to toss some balls...

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Fly Fishing Series

I recently finished my latest commission piece. I was so excited to get this commission because I was able to reopen my Fly Fishing Series. I love LOVE LOVE painting these. The colors in this just are so ( I know a non-art term) happy. I will be delivering this to my Dallas clients in a few weeks and I am already sad it is going.

PS. Eyes are getting better ( not great yet), I can paint for much longer lengths of time.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

eye issues

OK. So I was so excited about lasik now I am having problems. Dry eyes, blurry vision, and a eye infection that has been with me for over two weeks. And before you ask.....yes, I have been in to see the Doctor and have another appointment on Monday.

Yes, I am still trying to paint but I am lucky enough to only work about every 15 minutes before I have to stop.

That's my story hopefully in a few days I can give a better report.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

I CAN SEE..............

Wow, I can finally see when I wake up in the morning. It is truly an odd feeling not fumbling for my glasses anymore. I had Lasik with interlase this past Wednesday. Thank you Melissa for being my nurse and driving me to my appointment and back.

I was all prepared for my day of rest after the surgery. I had a book on tape ready on my ipod and Melissa picked up my kids after school and took them home to play with hers all afternoon while I rested. I picked the perfect book. "Gang Leader for a Day" by Sudhir Venkatesh. It was such a powerful and amazing book. I have already put this book on my children's reading list for when they are in high school.

On the subject of reading... A few weeks ago I picked up a copy of "Possible Side Effects" by Augusten Burroughs. I had already viewed the movie "Running with Scissors" and loved it so I thought this would be a good bet. IT WAS. I started reading that book when I got home and could not put it down. It was perfect in a sarcastic and twisted way. One of the short stories was about Burroughs first book "Sellevision". I could not wait to get my hands on it. The kids and I ran to B&N and I snatched up "Sellevision". I read that one in a matter of a few hours. Now, I was rather obsessed. I had to have more. I went back to B&N (the third time in three days) and bought everything else Burroughs had written. With my eye surgery approaching and not knowing how things would turn out, I made a fast Amazon order for his brothers book, "Look Me in the Eye: My life with Asperger's" by John Elder Robison. I stayed up the night before the surgery so I could finish it. What an interesting perspective and a good read.

I cannot wait until the next book comes out. I have not felt this way in a long time about an author (especially one that is still living and breathing).

Some of the other Authors that I have compulsively read from book to book:

  • Anaïs Nin ( notice my daughter's name is also Anaïs - When she is in college, I will pay for her therapy once she starts reading the later diaries and books)
  • Henrey Miller
  • The Russians: Tolstoy, Nabokov, Dostoevsky ( all I plan to re-read again)
  • Anne Sexton
  • John Kennedy Toole ( well I would have read him compulsively...."Confederacy of the Dunces" was amazing. You could see his talent with words., there for he deserves to be on the compulsive list
Back to the subject or my eyes, I am going to attempt painting today and see how it goes. I am still a little foggy. My right eye is at 20/20 and my left is not. I do have my depth perception and every day it gets a little better.

Saturday, January 19, 2008


This painting was titled by my 9 year old son. He insists my work reminds him of volcanoes. He has been begging for a volcano reference in one of my painting titles, so here it is. In a way it really does fit. Parker was on to something., I can see the hot lava seeping through the tranquil colors of land and water.

This bad boy is available for sale....please visit my website for more information.