Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A Vaulted Sky and Movies.....

Vaulted Sky 20x20 oil
As I promised here is the latest landscape started barely before Christmas....now finished. I put the last of it on yesterday afternoon. Took the photo this morning....downloaded it into the computer...started writing this post and uploading the photo.....only to realize I haven't signed it. I will then repost the image later. Most of what was done yesterday was the foreground but I also glazed the lower part of the clouds with a very thin wash of Permanent Rose. I noticed they were not really a color.....I believe any gray should have a name....blue gray, yellow gray....rosy gray. So rosy gray it was. I also began the portrait for Karin Jurick's Different Strokes. I believe I will have that one done today.....but one never knows!
We went to the movies Christmas Day....in the evening. We had been talking about seeing a few different movies...something we wanted to see on the big screen....here is my "A" list of what is currenntly out there:
1. Doubt
2. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
3. Revolutionary Road
4. The Reader
5. Frost/Nixon
6. Milk
7. The Wrestler
Strangely enough they all made the Golden Globes.....which frankly has very little to do with my choices....but it was an odd coincidence. As we thought about it we decided that Benjamin Button would be the choice to spend $40 on for the four of us to see on the big screen. Mind you I am not a Brad Pitt fan....I like good film....really good film...great story lines and believable acting. The only thing I can say is INCREDIBLE!!!!!! This is a real saga....beautifully written and adapted for the screen (thank F. Scott Fitzgerald for the seed of the story), luxuriant settings, fascinating characters, gorgeous photography and incredible acting! I could watch it again...and yet again! It is the kind of movie that had us all crying including 17 year-old Wyatt who sobbed uncontrolllably with great passion. It is the kind of movie that makes you come away wanting to write....write anything..as long as it is perfection. It is the kind of movie that makes you come away feeling highly creative and feeling diminished in talent all at once. It makes you appreciate all the richness and diversion of life. You will be reminded to appreciate death also and the people you meet before passing. You must go see it if you have not yet.....and savor the magnitude of emotion that it encompasses.
The others on my list will be seen eventually.....I love movies! We may wait to rent them or possibly go see one or two....but it will most likely be just the two of us.
That's it for today....except...here below...is a photo of Max and I at a birthday party for his nephew. It was taken this fall and we just got it at Christmas.
By for now, Theresa

Monday, December 29, 2008

Just a little....

Christmas is over and there is a little bit of sadness in my heart. It is a sweet kind of sadness though....that nostalgic feeling you get when you think of an old love or a part of your life that is only a memory now. It has been joyous, glorious, rich and emotional....filled to the brim with love and kindness, warmth and sentiment. There have been crystal mornings of frost and snow with sun so bright it almost hurt ones eyes. There have been deep midnight skies with Bethlehem stars and full moons of cheese to hang a wish on. There has been young-love-hand-holding and old love kisses under the mistletoe. Christmas decorations from a another time period....forty or better years ago....that leave a little lump in your throat when you remember making them with your children. Twinkly light displays in the Vietnamese Park and Nativity scenes at the churches. Packages and mail with photos and wishes from grandchildren and great-grandchildren and friends all over the states. Garlands, wreathes and boughs laden with red berries and pine cones....the perfumed needles taking me back to childhood. Cookies and candies from chefs young and old.....dinners with family and drinks with old friends and new. It is a beautiful season in a million different ways.....bringing out the best in people and the finest of thoughts.
The house seems a little dreary now with all the decorations put up and only the odd box of chocolate and the wreath on the door left to remind us of the Christmas season. The thing is though.....these are just a few of the standout moments of thousands of little things that happen everyday.....Summer...Fall...Winter....and Spring. I revel in these moments and savor them like those chocolates on the table or the wine in the cabinet.
Next stop New Years!!!!!
Much Love, Theresa
Below is the light display put on by the Vietnamese Monastery...Congregation of the Mother Co-Redemptrix: the Way of Salvation...they also host the Marian Days Festival in August.

Monday, December 22, 2008

A Crisis Is Less Likely To Revise Ones Nature Than To Reveal It...

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Well, friends, the holidays are in full swing and I am caught up in a round of visiting baking, cooking, painting and just plain enjoying the season! As I reflected on seasons past I thought of all the Christmases I have had so far. Some were extremely good and others not so good. It is my sincerest wish that you are all happy healthy and have all you that you need...that your friends and family surround you and have what they need too. These are tough times for many and I feel for those less fortunate. It is my prayer and wish that the coming times are bearable and do not get any worse for those less fortunate.
For myself....I cannot believe my good fortune. There have been many times in my life when I lived on as little as $400 dollars a month. This is not meant to make anyone feel sorry for me or anything as dramatic as that...far from it. What was so important about those times was I learned how to live with less, learned how to make and fix many things that perhaps I normally would not have learned.... many Christmases were spent making homemade gifts or having none at all...but the most important thing was the connection of friends and family. Two times in particular I remember two separate families in Utah, aware of my and my children's circumstances... giving us Christmas....including a tree, gifts and dinner. The lessons learned left me with much to be thankful for. My children are grown now and very successful....and yes they remember those times clearly. I am a strong believer that it is what is in ones heart and not their wallet that makes all the difference in the world. Yes it would be a dream come true to be a highly successful artist....but I would rather be a highly successful human being and that somehow, someway my life has made a difference and an impact in a positive way on someone elses.
Here are a few photos of my old house in Kansas and my old, old new house in Carthage. From me to you have a Christmas and New Year filled with peace, love, happiness and creativity...lots of hugs from children and grandchildren and greats if you are there yet...warm smiles and greetings from friends and distant relatives and a twinkle in the eye of a stranger...that you may have just put there yourself.
Much Love,

Friday, December 19, 2008

In The Begining....

I started this one day before yesterday..a landscape. It is a 20x20...sometimes I like to paint on a square format. I begin pretty much the same as always. I like a warm ground ..this is transparent oxide red with just a touch of ultramarine blue in the mix. It is mixed with a small amount of thinner and then let dry before applying the next round of thinned paint. I have a quick sketch underneath using a charcoal pencil. I then spray the sketch with hairspray so the charcoal does not smear. I like this composition because of the perspective of the hay bales and rows and the impending sky.....not to mention the colors.In the second stage I apply the darks that will be allowed to show through the later layers of paint. I begin to add many of the colors that are seen in the land in the sky...the difference is that they are muted and paled. I see the colors of the landscape reflected in the clouds. The distant hills had a peculiar blue-green color and the hay field had an almost orange cast.I start to apply more color and thicker paint delineating the different planes of the landscape. I start to model the sky and give the clouds form. Painting...for me...is largely a series of adjustments in value, color, shape and form.Here you can see some of the adjustments that have been made...it is still largely unfinished...especially the foreground and the right middleground. I have begun to work on the haybales and the rows of stubble...leaving the dark underpainting showing through for the shadow areas. Approximate time so far about 10 hours.

I will have to stop on this piece for the next day or two. I have cookies to bake...and a large dinner to prepare and a house to clean! I made a huge pot of spaghetti with meatballs and Italian sausage the other day and we have been eating that for awhile. I make everything from scratch....just a habit from how my family cooked. Max's son is coming up from Houston, Texas for the holidays...Christmas dinner will be at relatives house and I have been assigned to bake an apple pie....just as spectacular as my cheesecake if I do say so myself. Ha! The dinner will be our Christmas dinner for when Wyatt arrives.

I will try to get this one done before Christmas and then start another one sometime soon after Christmas day. I will also try to keep posting in between.
See you soon,

Monday, December 15, 2008

Success....The Beginning and the End....or Vice Versa..

Gospel Singer 11x14 oil
This painting was done on the 13th....the day I threw out the failed landscape. I really needed to prove to myself that I could still paint. It took about 3 1/2 hours to complete and my feet did not touch the ground the whole time I painted it! What I mean by that...is...I was in the zone. You know...that feeling when your left brain stays out of the way and you seem to be on automatic and the decision making process is a snap. You know exactly what the next stroke is you know exactly how to simplify when it is needed...all the color choices and values move in the right direction.....and.....you know exactly when to stop...without someone standing right next to you trying to break your arm so you don't mess it up! Now before you start thinking I know everything...I don't! I am sur there are some things that may need to be fine tuned.....but for myself and my eye....this is what I want! This is how I intended this painting to look. No tight detail in the cloth, or much of anyplace else for that matter. I believe I have gotten the strong values and confident brushwork that I so love. The color is a tad on the warm side but that seems to happen when transferring a painting to the computer...and of course there is always a certain depth that escapes ones viewing a painting on a screen in the digital world. The darks are thin and not clumsy and dead and the lights are thick and applied with a knife and then manipulated with the brush in some areas. I have tried to loose a lot of edges where I find it important and keep the stronger ones where they also need to be. So yes...I am pretty damn happy with this one. The practice is paying off and I will soon begin some larger ones for my upcoming solo show.

Here is the loose start so you can see some of how I begin. There is a quick sketch to make sure proportions are accurate and then drawn with paint using lines rather than curves. Below the painting you will see my color charts that I made some years ago.....I still use them but find that I intuitively know the colors I need more often than not...but keep them handy to check back to. The charts are from Richard Schmids book "Alla Prima; Everything I Know About Painting". By the way I am anxiously awaiting his new book, out in 2009 "The Landscape Book". His first book was somewhat expensive....but so worth it...and I expect the second one will be equally as good. There is...in my mind...no greater all around modern master than Schmid! He can paint anything!
I always start at the center of interest and move out from there...painting little pieces of color and value and making sure the shapes and temperatures are right. I paint in the background on portraits very soon in the beginning to correct any shapes in the features that might be off. The small bottle of liquid is a glazing medium and works very well for keeping the darks from being obnoxiously thick. It also keeps the paint from drying flat and dead and keeps the paint open for a longer amount of time as I try to paint Alla Prima (all in one sitting) mostly. The small box with the oriental design is a magnifying glass to look at reference material when I need a closer look.
So there you have it...let me hear what you think..!
Loving the continuing challenge,

Friday, December 12, 2008

Can you say "Paint By Number"?....

Hmmm....it took only three days to find out that I was correct..... off to a very good start only to find out that this painting began to disintegrate before my eyes the more I painted on it. Lesson learned? Do not use a canvas that has all the life sucked out of it from repeated layers of gesso....do not use reference material that does not have enough information in it...paint from life more often and most of all have a good clear picture in ones head before beginning a painting! Now remember I did mention these things in an earlier post. I just thought I could work around them! You'd think I would know these simple things by now (most times I do).....but alas...old age has set in...I have become forgetful...along with over confidant!
I include the shameful progressions here for everyone to see. On coming close to the final product....it has the peculiar resemblance of a paint by number. Thus the name of this blog. LOL!
Actually there are a few things I do like in this painting...a very few....which parts do you like if any? For me it is the transparent red oxide sketch (earlier post)....some of the shapes in the trees, some of the color and the way one tower is executed. But...wait!!! After this failure....which I chose not to hide or wipe off...I will simply take the canvas off the stretcher bars and place the old canvas in the waste bin or the burn pile....where naughty paintings and old lovers go(not Max...never Max!). Recycle the stretcher bars with a brand new canvas and begin something else that will either fail or succeed. Yesterday was a VERY successful painting to my eyes but for now you will have to wait till tomorrow to see it! One last note here.....every failed painting, every misstep with the brush, every decision in simplification or overworking, every choice of color and painterly execution or lack thereof....every mistake...is an opportunity to learn....if one chooses to see it. And as we all know...that not only applies to painting....but, indeed to the rest of life!

Loving the process......still!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Starting Again...

Here is the beginning of a new painting...well it is actually just a color study. I rarely do them...studies, that is.... but this one has some very tricky lighting aspects and color so I am inclined to do a study before hand. There is a problem....this is an old canvas and it has been gessoed twice....not a very good idea....as it is sucking up the paint like a dry sponge. Not only that but it has a lot of texture on it from gessoing it more than once. I guess I just like a challenge!!! I like the texture...most times. Well, we will see what happens as I plod along. I am painting from a photo and it is not terribly clear...but it's not horrible. The photo is of a church in Santa Fe, N.M., at sunset.

I have done a quick loose sketch with paint as my start and put in some values that I want to remember.
As far as the rest of my life we had a nice dinner/get together at a friends house Sunday evening. Steak and potato and shrimp....yum!
Our friend Jack the electrician will be here once again tomorrow to continue on rewiring this old house. Speaking of which...Everything is unpacked for the living room and there are very few boxes left in the rest of the house. What remains needs some shelving in the kitchen.....a future job.
If anyone has not seen what the room looked like before go to a back post and you will see that room was stacked high with furniture and boxes....not just in front of the door but the entire room was stacked in the same manner....daunting to say the least!! And that was the second time it was like that!! The first time was distributing Max's Ebay and personnel possessions through out the house or selling off unwanted, unneeded stuff!
Well, back to painting and have an inspired day!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Desert Moon....

Desert Moon 11x14 oil
Here is another quick study from the other day. I have admired night paintings or nocturnes from several artists here in the blogoshere and elsewhere . What I didn't know was hard the color of night is. So, as I remembered an exhibit I went to a few years back an image began to form. It was on Frederic Remington another painter from the past that I admire. I remembered the impact his work had on me when I saw it. The entire collection was nocturnes and they literally glowed when you saw them. I had to have that catalog!! Fortunatly I bought it after seeing the show before leaving the museum. I searched for it the other day, found it and pulled it out to study it. Wow....is all I can say.
So here is my first attempt at a nocturne...I did use a photograph for the design but the color is from running outside and looking at the yucca plant in the front yard and reviewing Remington's work.
Oh and I have added a new artist to my websites list that I have been watching for a couple of years...Kevin Beilfuss. Check it out!!!
See you tomorrow,

Thursday, December 4, 2008


Music! 8x10 oil
I have been away from the computer by design lately. There are several reasons and I will touch on a few here.
I have been studying first of all. Not painting for almost 2 months has made me a bit rusty. So in order to "get my hand back" I have been reading, looking and doing small paintings the last few days. They are OK...not fantastic....but OK. I can't express the importance of painting everyday.....to keep that flow.
So here is the first one done the day before yesterday. It took about 2 hours.
I also quit smoking....for the 5th time! I have been a nonsmoker before....for as long as ten years. I also never smoked while I was pregnant (five children) do the math. I was a nonsmoker when I met Max and a nonsmoker another time for 4 years and once for two...and then started again....fortunately Max has been wanting to quit also. Well, it's been three weeks....I'm Ok with it...but I don't spend a lot of time by the computer until I am past that part of it. It seems to be a trigger along with the phone and alcohol!
I hope everyone had a wonderful and thankful Thanksgiving..I did! We had a lot of company and I also cooked a lot. Now we are gearing up for Christmas and a possible open house here since everything is finally put away! My folks always had an open house at Christmas...there were always lots of people of all walks of life coming and going, lots of food and drink and many of the guests were musically inclined. It was a lot of fun listening, visiting and watching... even as a kid.
I have just finished reading a book about Antonio Mancini. I sooo want to paint like that! I had a magnifying glass in hand while reading to study the paintings! I highly recommend taking a look at his work via the link on the list to the right.
I will be back but it will be limited for the time being until I am more comfortable painting and writing again.
All the best, Theresa

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Tagged Again!!!

I have just been tagged again....Thank you Barbara Muir...fantastic artist, friend and admirer!
I will get to the rest of the game in a bit...but first!!! Hold the presses....we all know who Thomas Kincade is, right? Presents himself as a devout artistic Christian, right? You gotta read this...I just found it on Jeremy Lipking's blog and if you don't know who he is you don't know nothin'!! Click here for a very informative article of "The Painter Of Light" who obviously has a very dark side.
That said on with the game....but if I get tagged again I will have to pass!

So here are the rules for being tagged.

You need to:
1. Put a link in your posting to the person who tagged you.
2. List 7 unusual things about yourself.
3. Tag 7 other bloggers at the end of your post and comment
on their blogs to let them know.

1. I received two scholarships...two years in a row..which was actually every other year because that was when they were available...to Scottsdale Artist School. I studied with John Budicin and John Burton.
2. My children are all part Hawaiian....my first two husbands were Hawaiian.
3. I actually lived in a tree house when I first moved to Hawaii...it was designed by an architect. I lived there for about three months and visited often for a couple of years after that. There was also a bus that was permanently parked beneath the tree and completely livable.
4. I danced Hula professionally for two years.
5. I am a baptized Catholic. My godparents were Elizabeth Taylor's secretary and his life partner.
6.I am also a baptized Mormon....but do not practice.
7. Although I owned several horses over the years. I broke my first and only colt at age 40 while living in Utah.
8. I am going to add this one because their is a reason I don't paint every day. I had back surgery due to a truck wreck...not my fault, thank God! The other problem was they discovered I had a birth defect of some kind....no wonder my back hurt from the time I was kid!! I have a metal plate and several pins plus a bone fusion in my back. I have died twice....yes certified dead! Once when I had spinal meningitis and once from an accidental overdose. I remember everything....it's just like the stories you have heard. I also suffer from mild depression...mood swings....whatever....and arthritis but some days I am either in a lot of pain or just blue.
Here are the 7 delightful bloggers and great artists..
Michael Lynn Adams
Karin Jurick
Diane Mize
Stacey Peterson
Michael Naples
Eldon Warren
Steve Atkinson

I received an email from someone that thinks I should rename my blog semi annual rather than daily! LOL! I imagine it was a brand of humor and meant to be funny. Well, unfortunately I can't name it semi annual since I have already painted 24 pieces this year ( low by my standards) ... and most of them have sold. On the other hand I have not been painting daily for the last month and a half. This has been a difficult year for painting between moving and a new relationship/family but there are many dividends that don't come out of a tube. Without knowing someones history very, very well I don't think I would attempt this kind of humor, but thats just me. I have been painting on a daily basis for many years....except this one.....oh, and one other time when I had to move from my home of 15 years, go through a divorce, found my lost child of 23 years and the woman that was as close to me as a mother died.....on the other hand this year I have a gift of a wonderful man in my life, many new friends from my move and blogging and some wonderful new doors of opportunity in the art world and more. So when I paint...I paint....and when I don't....I don't.
Here, below, for your amusement one of the absolute worst paintings I have ever done!!! It's soooo damn pink! And the one at the top is one of the most popular as far as prints.
Much love, Theresa

Saturday, November 15, 2008


Aspens 8x10 oil
I have just been tagged by Theresa Miller! This is a really fun way to get to know your blogger friends in art! The rules of this great game are:-
1. Put a link in your posting to the person who tagged you.
2. List 7 unusual things about yourself.
3. Tag 7 other bloggers at the end of your post and comment on their blogs to let them know.

Here is the list of 7 things about me, I have been told time and time again I should write a book…

1. I have 5 children by birth, 13 grandchildren, and two great-grand children. I also considered the 3 children by relationship with my dear Max as mine.

2. I had two scholarships one in music (piano) and one in art...to Chounard in L.A.
which became The California Institute of the Arts. I pursued neither scholarship.

3. I have drawn all my life and painted sporadically. It wasn't until the last 7 years that I became serious about painting.

4. I traveled Europe and Hawaii before I was 6 with my parents Reginald and Theresa Rankin.

5. I grew up in Beverly Hills, California and have lived in Illinois, Hawaii, Utah, Oregon, Kansas and now Missouri.

6. I went to school with the children of Van Johnson, Frank Sinatra, Danny Thomas, Dean Martin, Jayne Mansfield, Jerry Lewis, Mia Farrows siblings and many more at Beverly Hills Catholic School now called Good Shepherd School for 8 years, Hawthorne School for one year (Kindergarten), Emerson Junior High and University High School. My first date was going to the movies with Burt Lancaster's son,the late Bill Lancaster.

7. I was quite a body surfer while living in California and Hawaii...drove an eighteen wheeler for almost ten years including hauling logs...grew all my own food (including animals and the butchering) and made all mine and my family's clothes for about 14 years.

And here is the list of fellow artists I am tagging:
Barbara Muir
Erika Nelson
Vicki Ross
Carol Schiff
Bonnie Luria
Elizabeth Floyd
David Lobenberg

Painting done above was a plein air done on vacation.
Until next time, Theresa

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Keeping busy.....

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Gee...it's been almost a week since I posted....Life does get in the way!!! A few updates about what's going on here.
I have the living room about 95% unpacked. All that is left is hang the curtains and the wall art...finish unpacking the china and stemware...vacuum and then move in my easel and taboret. There is still a file cabinet and several boxes in the hallway that need to go upstairs into the office....and then I will have to organize that room again so I can find what I need. I hate this stuff....but always like the outcome once it is done.
I am becoming obnoxious from lack of painting........looks like a a few more days before I do anything artful. Maybe less...hopefully!!
We did however have a wonderful weekend....Last Friday we went to a reception of local artist Andy Thomas.....who has done extremely well!!! His last painting sold for $180,000...yes that's right folks....right here in little old Carthage, MO. Andy is represented by Greenhouse Gallery in San Antonio, TX. and Cherry's here in Carthage....she is working on a new website which we are all thrilled about. Take a look at his personal site here.
We had a lot of fun visiting with Cherry and Joe, other artists, buyers and a few of my clients were there which is always nice to see. Great food and a few glasses of wine topped it all off.
Saturday we went to Kansas to visit with Verna and Jack who own draft horses. They put together a draft horse horse pull and invite people from all over the area to bring there teams and plow. Verna was my mail lady for many years while I lived in Kansas and lives just south of where I used to live. There was a lot of great food....including Verna's famous beans and peach cobbler. It was a bitterly cold and gray day but there was a great fire and lots to see.

I have been invited to come for quite a few years and take pictures. Some of the pictures have become paintings....three of which are shown here. The two old boys are lifelong friends...since grade school. and I gave them each a print for using them as models. The original sold at a show in Dallas, Texas for $1800 it was a 16x20. The draft horses and plow are Jack's and is payment for his electrical work here at the house and a print of each will pay two doctor bills. The third is a treeline there at the pasture they plow and won best of show here locally last year and is now in the possession of one of my old students who bought it for herself for a Christmas present last winter. It is a very good place to go....and I always have a great time seeing the horses work. Jack has a new one he is training so he had three pulling the plow this year. I have seen as many as 5 pulling as one team. This was Max's first year here....and he thoroughly enjoyed it also! Some of the photos are his and the others are mine.
I also included a memory album our host for the Halloween party sent us. So have fun looking at all the pictures!!
Yesterday we went to get some paintings scanned down in Arkansas. He is new to us as my previous scanning company has transferred his business to Scott's Art and Frame. He will be doing the scanning and printing for me now.....it's a long way to go....so I will only go down there when there are about 4 or 5 pieces to scan. We treated ourselves to Vietnamese food while we were down there.....it has become a ritual to have Pho and Bun!!!
That's about it for today....until next time,

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Hope and Happiness.....

Renaissance Sisters 24x30
We won!...better yet the world won!.....Ok, so now what?

A generation ago, President John F. Kennedy called on Americans to serve their country and they overwhelmingly responded. If you have not paid close attention to Barack Obamas' speeches....he has also consistently talked about a New America with the same universal and charismatic vision as Franklin D. Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King. Please read the plan (through the link above) if you have not yet and I hope we can all join together to improve this country and this world. Here are just a few of the words remembered last night from Obama's speech at Grant Park. Obama talks about bottom-up solutions to the economy, to democracy. Echoing that vision, he said last night:

"Let us summon a new spirit of patriotism, of responsibility, where we work harder and look after each other . . . In this country we rise and fall as one nation, as one people."
"The new dawn of American leadership is at hand. To all those who have wondered whether America's beacon still burns bright . .tonight we proved once more that the true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals: democracy, liberty, opportunity, and unyielding hope. ."

There are hundreds of millions, perhaps billions of people who suddenly can believe that they can do anything.....anything......and I am one of them. We have never been a collection of Red States and Blue States: we are, and always will be, the United States of America.This is fundamental to my beliefs. All my life I have believed that party politics and in most cases organized religion separates people rather than uniting them. We have before us a man who has not used the race card, the religious card or the party card to any extreme. In the next few yearsI hope to see hands across the aisle, the borders and the oceans in unity as mankind. I have lived my life and raised my children with this belief. I believe in touching one person at a time by example and the Golden Rule. I strive continuously for excellence in my life. I am far from perfect and it hurts that I am not. I hope we can all come together as Mr. Obama stated last night.

"The road ahead will be long. Our climb will be steep. We may not get there in one year or even one term, but America – I have never been more hopeful than I am tonight that we will get there. I promise you – we as a people will get there."

"There will be setbacks and false starts. There are many who won't agree with every decision or policy I make as President, and we know that government can't solve every problem. But I will always be honest with you about the challenges we face. I will listen to you, especially when we disagree. And above all, I will ask you join in the work of remaking this nation the only way it's been done in America for two-hundred and twenty-one years – block by block, brick by brick, calloused hand by calloused hand. "

I ask you...How can anyone let these words fall on deaf ears. I for one am more than happy to do what ever it takes....doors knocked on or steps traveled....I hope to see this country restored to it's former level of respect and grandeur. Our standards of education raised. A country where the thought of color is not even a thought...but an appreciation for cultures and lifestyles that are simply interesting and valuable to who we are. A country where we see kindness and thoughtfulness and hard work and hope at every level from the youngest to the oldest.

I am here, in the last half of my life, to do what I can do.

Sincerely, Theresa

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Voting Day and My Reasons Why........

I am off to vote today......when I get back I will hopefully blog....and now I am back after a few errands and a visit to Cherry's Gallery. The lines here were nothing...I was in and out in no time!
The things and events of time and space...
the stuff that's surrounding you now,
your memory of recent events,
all simply reveal where you've been,
not where you're headed.
These words reminded me of the reason I voted for Barack Obama. I have voted since I was eligible and never missed and I am 60 now. Even when I was driving a truck I still made it in to vote or got an absentee ballot. It is the right time for this nation to have someone who is as diverse as he is. We all know his background...Kansas to Hawaii to Chicago Illinois. Father from Africa who was not a part a of his life. Midwest Grandparents. Hmmm....Not so different as mine...only in reverse and with a few more stops! I like his unflappable manner and calmness in a storm evidenced by his demeanor under attack in debates and on the stump after such devastating family news. I like someone who is not afraid to say they will find the best advisors for the job to surround him in presidency rather than thinking they already have the answers. He appears to be a real thinker and above all he knows who he is. We need someone who can represent this country without the might is right theory, someone who has the appeal to sit down with members of foreign countries and truly listen to them without immediately reacting like a Texas gunslinger. Our infrastructure has run out of steam and to think we can have an economy while sending jobs overseas is implausible. Where is everyone supposed to get the money to buy these goods if they have no disposable income except for the very few. This presidential race is historical for so many reasons...yes...including race. THAT has never been an issue for me...I married two Hawaiians and my stepfather was half African-American....many of my relations and dearest friends are Japanese, Hispanic and many other races. I marched for Civil Rights and cannot believe that in this day and age it is still a problem....yet...sadly it is. I have unfortunately heard it with my own ears. We have had Conservative Ascendancy for 30 years with only a brief break. It is certainly time for Health Care Reform....other countries and yes I do know people from other countries still have an economy that serves capitalism and national healthcare. I love this country and the people in it and think they deserve some help with everything I have mentioned. And My gosh....what is anyone thinking to use up all natural resources without something to back it up.....wind and solar are free and just waiting for us to use them. We in this country have the technology and some of the best schools but sadly our standards have fallen and we now lag behind. I could go on and on...and I am sure there are those that disagree...and that's okay too...that's why we live here.....I just wanted to express how really happy I am and have been for three years since I first heard of Barack Obama and the words that still ring in my ear till today "We just need to do the right thing". Happy that we have a candidate of his caliber to choose from. Happy that we have the chance to vote.....Happy to watch the returns no matter which way they go.....I still live in a great country.
Love, Theresa

Monday, November 3, 2008

Halloween 2008...........

Well, we are finally better! Max and I have recovered from the grand kids "gift" and were able to go to the Halloween party although we didn't stay very late. The next day was a Thanksgiving dinner since some of the family would be in Alaska during Thanksgiving. We had a lot of fun at the Halloween party and almost everyone dressed up. It was held at the home of artist friend Linda Simpson...lots of good stuff to eat and we had a ball handy out candy to all the trick-or-treaters. As I mentioned before Max and I went as Deadwood.....he was an 1800's bartender and I was a saloon girl. The photos are not as good as they could be.....but oh well!

Dropped off my painting at the ANA art show...but forgot to take one to SPIVA our local arts council....I think I may need a secretary..LOL! The dates are confirmed for the two solo shows I will be having next year. I guess all my paperwork is in order except for a massive mail merge address list I need to input into the computer. All the info is on my website.
I am still putting away the stuff in the living room....which also has stuff that goes in the garage and upstairs and in the kitchen. In order to put something away or move a piece of furniture....something else has to be moved and then something else and so on and so on. Combining two households is very, very different from moving into an empty house!!! I am so glad that Max is the patient sort....I tend to be...hurry up and get it all done in one day type. Thank goodness for the balance!
Aside from recovering we are both consumed with the election.....I am addicted to the electoral vote maps....and CNN..as is Max. A day does not go by when we check the poll spread and listen to the latest stumping and analyzing!!! We will be sooooooo glad when this election is over! It is obvious I will not rest until tomorrow after voting. Some of the hate mongering and smear campaigning is becoming way to much for me. Then, of course, there is waiting for the results......!
Well, thats about it for today.....I will be back soon!
Love, Theresa

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Under the weather..

There is cotton in my head and
Tissue clouds beside my bed...
Hazed over thinking through
Overcast eyes....
Variable high pressure head storm brings in
A rainy disposition......
Hands as damp as the Fall leaves outside
Forecast turning chilly and no longer sunny.....
Lethargic movement stalling
Atmospheric activity....
A mottled nose followed by
frost tipped digits...
Three days coming...
Three days staying...
Three days going....
This is the forecast...
I'm sick....and.......
I am sick of being sick..........


I am making light of my condition today and doing it in an attempt to be poetic....or is it prose? I am not a poet although I would love to be able to paint with words. ( My apologies Lori and all other writers for my abysmal attempt at what you are all so good at!) But I had fun trying!
Inez is home and is becoming used to her handicap of a broken wrist. Her dance studio gave her a little party for her birthday last night and she valiantly attended before promptly going to her room to rest. Poor thing, she is annoyed and I don't blame her one bit.....I have never broken anything...and pray I never do. I have had some serious events and surgeries in my life but my hands were never afflicted. I thank God for that!
Today is her birthday....so HAPPY BIRTHDAY INEZ!!!!!
I will probably putter around the house today before going to be abused at the Women's Center in Joplin. Today I have a mammogram and bone density scan. Doesn't THAT sound like fun! Which brings me to a request I have of the ladies who read my blog.
I joined the Army of Women the minute I heard about it.....a month ago. It is a website devoted to curing breast cancer by Dr. Susan Love during her lifetime.

Excerpt from their website follows:

The Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation and the Avon Foundation, a global leader in breast cancer research, joined forces to launch the Love/Avon Army of Women.

Our revolutionary initiative has two key goals:

  • To recruit one million healthy women of every age and ethnicity, including breast cancer survivors and women at high-risk for the disease, to partner with breast cancer researchers and directly participate in the research that will eradicate breast cancer once and for all.
  • To challenge the scientific community to expand its current focus to include breast cancer prevention research conducted on healthy women.
I lost my Mother to untreated breast cancer and have an Aunt who had it also....fortunately she recovered. Because of my heredity it makes me what they consider a high risk. I have had exams regularly since I was 41 and hopefully all women do this regular preventative program. I urge you to join this month as it is Breast Cancer Awareness month. You may join here.

In a strange way the painting posted today seemed apropos to what was discussed in this blog. It is painted on textured canvas. I use thick gesso and make it thicker in some areas than others. I also try to give it an interesting surface texture by using a house painters brush and jabbing at the canvas to remove some of the gesso. I will also use a knife to give an almost Spanish stucco wall appearance. It was painted last year.
Love, Theresa

Monday, October 27, 2008

When it rains it poors.....

Inez, Max's daughter, came home night before last and.......my gosh....she had a broken wrist. The really sad thing besides the fact this will interfere with her work, life and just about everything..... is... she is a dancer. She has been dancing for a very long time about 20 years...it is part of her life...and she is very good. She was trained in classical ballet and dances three times a week and teaches occasionally also. I feel so bad for her. She had surgery yesterday and they reset the bone and added pins and a plate. It will be six to eight weeks before she is healed. She will be allowed to come home sometime today depending on her mobility and the doctor's schedule. Max and I cleaned her room and I washed all her clothes and making cinnamon rolls for her. She had great plans to go up to Kansas City and party with her friends.....she will still go....but obviously must be very careful. It is also her birthday on the 28th....not exactly the present she was looking for. We are all hoping for a quick an easy mend.....and that it won't interfere with her dancing.
Well Halloween is almost here and Max and I are invited to a Halloween Costume party....I think we may go as Deadwood....if you never saw the series....it is a hoot. I will let everyone guess who he and I will be. Some more suggestions would be helpful, too!
I have been looking at Eldon Warrens blog which is fabulous and very descriptive. He is showing the progress of a landscape painting he is working on. Please take a look!! He has some beautiful work.
Along the same lines I subscribe to Empty Easel and who do I find that writes there....Diane Mize...another fellow blogger and fabulous artist. She has a great article on edges....my trouble spot....and her entry is fabulous!
I plan to do the same as Warren soon......put up a progression of work. I will also put up the Profiles magazine article too. But for now....I am a little overwhelmed with duties. So all I have to offer is some work that was done a while ago. One is a plein air and the other a portrait. I sold the 8x10 plein air for $2000 at the Richard Schmid Auction and the 12x16 portrait could have been sold ten times over....but as of yet I want to keep it because it has some things in it that I like how I painted them. In particular the roses, the dress and the hand. Less is more....I am still struggling with that!
That's about it for today....off to make cinnamon rolls!
Love, Theresa

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Just a little more......

Ardie's Villa 11x14 sold

Here are a couple of plein air paintings both sold....I have always loved the freshness and spontaneous feel of outdoor painting. They are both from local places just a few miles from me. I wish that same freshness and the chance to paint outdoors happened more frequently. I am still a bit under the weather. Max is recuperating but still coughing.
For today's post I want to respond to a comment that Erika left me yesterday because it had some interesting things that might warrant some of your attentions. Erika is an extremely versatile artist...A stunning human being....and one of the most charming people I know.
First Cut 5x12 sold

Here is Erika's comment:
Artists clean their studios? I think I was absent when they taught that lol That is one serious easel Theresa, it means business! You guys do have a lot of work to do there, but it will all be worth it since you're doing it together and the house does seem like there is new life wanting to break out of it! I know you'll breathe it into it ;)
The kiddies are cute! Awwww the barefooted princess, does she look like your mini-me? Glad you had fun with the family and you even discovered Wii! Looks like something I'd enjoy as I loooove games especially if I can engage the husband to join me.
No worries about posting frequently as long as you promise to let me peek in once in a while. Guess this means you won't be offering a fall workshop here huh? I hope to see you here next year maybe. Welcome home!

October 24, 2008 11:23 PM

Hawaiian Shack 8x10 sold

Regarding cleaning my studio....LOL!! When I am in the middle of painting it is a mess...there are reference materials, paint, paper towels, rags and glasses....brushes piled up in thinner...and numerous bottles and tubes everywhere. We have two dogs and three cats...so there is also hair...and it is something I am always on the watch for so I don't end up with "furry" paintings. Once a painting is finished and signed...framed and hung....I have already got another one in the back of my mind. Unless I am experiencing a block or there are impositions on my time. So for me....I find that I need to tidy up my space...clean sweep (mentally and physically) to make room for the next one to grow and take on its own direction. I cannot do that with an abundance of clutter everywhere. It's just me....how I am. I need things open and clear to allow a free flow of thought. Call it Feng Shui...if you like...but it does work for me. My easel is serious...I suppose...it just feels comfortable to me and I have had it for several years....since I decided to take art serious and make it my living. It didn't cost a lot only a couple of hundred dollars....I have seen some for thousands....I don't feel the need for one of those!

THE HOUSE...I must tell you when I first met Max and later came to his house I was in shock...to put it mildly! Max was a bachelor for some time...about 8 years or so...being the very cautious Missouri sort...he wanted to pick the right one. He lived like a bachelor and it was a bit of mess. He had some girlfriends of course....but lucky me! Hehe! The house was his Grandmothers and Mothers by joint ownership. She was 21 when they bought it. She passed away at 84 about 4 years ago. Max grew up here. There was an amazing amount of "stuff" stored here....Mimi (as the grand kids called her) never threw anything away. The depression era generation was like that.... my folks and my grandparents were that way and everyone I have ever known from that generation was like that. Max and I have a tendency to carry that value on....just not to the extremes of saving string, tinfoil, bottles and other items...unless they have historical, sentimental, antique or homemade value. We have a fantastic assortment of advertising art from his Dads store and Max's job. Lots of homemade quilts and crocheted rugs....hooked rugs and old oak furniture. Silver, crystal and fine china from my side. I have collected antiques since I was quite young so all of the furniture works well with the house. Several old trunks are used as end tables in the TV room. The parlor is more formal and I am still working on unpacking that. Yes, new life is being breathed into this house. I have redone several old homes in my life....and believe I have one more left in me.....and yes we are doing it together....it does make a difference!

Yes, Erika, my granddaughter TerinnaDelete, the barefoot princess from yesterdays post....is a mini me.....she loves to draw and color....and while working on a picture one time....she donned a pair of play glasses and came up to her Mom with a drawing in hand and told her "Look, Mommy, I'm Grandma Honey"! My heart just soared when I was told that story. Another time my daughter told me she looks just like me when I was very young. My daughter named her after both of us and the fact that Larry always loved the nickname Terry. Terinna is a combination of Terry short for Theresa and my daughters' name Anna. While I was growing up I was called Terry.....than as an adult I liked my full name better. My family and some very, very old friends still call me Terry till today.
I have not given up on holding another workshop....but I will have to see how it goes here. I believe I may have overextended myself this coming year.....but I always love a challenge!
Love, Theresa