Thursday, April 30, 2009

Perseverance Pays Off

One of my background images, available for commercial licensing online.

The past few months have been exciting and challenging for me, as I have been learning the skills needed to photograph and post process my images for commercial stock licensing. It has not been easy and I have spent countless hours fumbling with software and equipment and making mistakes. Without the help and encouragement of friends, especially my mentor, Nancy Louie, I'm sure I would have trashed the idea months ago. I still have a long way to go, with many techniques and equipment operations to learn. My perseverance has paid off however and you can now see my portfolio on two online image companies, Istock Photo and Dreamstime. Check my portfolios often. Some uploads that have approvals are not posted yet and I'll be adding many more in the near future. I will see how this venture pans out and possibly become exclusive with one or the other, further down the road.

"There ain't no free lunches in this country. And don't go spending your whole life commiserating that you got the raw deals. You've got to say, 'I think that if I keep working at this and want it bad enough I can have it.' It's called perseverance." ~ Lee Iacocca

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

A Perfect Ride

This morning Betsy and I put Rudy and Rita into the trailer and went down to the forest to ride. Things just couldn't have been more perfect! There was a breeze that kept the bugs away and the temperature was most comfortable. There wasn't another soul around, so today we had the whole heavily forested area covering 1.1 million acres called the Pinelands National Reserve to ourselves. And that's just the way Rudy, Rita, Betsy and I like it! A great start to a season of rides in the NJ Pine Barrens.

Rita wasn't in the photo shoot mood. You can see she's pretty well shed out, with just a little fuzz still left on her belly.

Rudy and Betsy are the best buddies. I think Rudy sees her and our rides as just a great big treat event. I see he's licking his lips here in this shot.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Blessed By Angels

I'm sitting here on my screened porch sipping my coffee and watching the new arrivals at my hummingbird feeders. Oh my gosh! I just saw my first female! They are usually a week or two behind the males, but there's my first lady, glistening in the sunlight in all her iridescent beauty, only a few days later than the guys. So far, they all look in really good shape too, not thin and travel weary like some years. With the temperatures here being unseasonably warm the next few days, (in the 90's), I'm expecting even more travelers to show up shortly. I get such immense pleasure from my little jewels! I've missed them tremendously and am rejoicing about their return.

"Against All Odds"

16" x 20" ~ Double - Matted and Framed
silver level ~ original watercolor ~ $399.00

Because they can travel more than 3,000 miles two times a year,
hummingbirds are symbolic of accomplishing that which seems impossible.

Learn about how to attract and care for your own little earth angels by going to my Hummingbird Pages and my Squidoo Lens. People don't call me the "hummingbird master" for nothin'!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

April 19th Demo At The Seaport Museum

I had a fun time at the Tuckerton Seaport Museum on Sunday. Pat Johnson, photographer and journalist for The Sandpaper of Long Beach Island, NJ, did a story on me which I just read here online. I think it's one of the nicest pieces ever written about me! The photos are very pleasing too. See my demonstration painting here. This is probably partially due to the fact that Pat is a kindred spirit and a fine artist herself. Thank you Pat! You have a wonderful style of writing and a natural way of portraying the essence of my art foundation, methodology, personality and artistic perspective. You can read Pat's lovely article here.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Demonstration This Sunday

This Sunday, April 19th, I will be at the Tuckerton Seaport Museum doing a painting demonstration from 1:00 - 4:00 pm. Learn how to go from photo, to drawing, to painting. Admission to the museum is only $8.00. The demo is free and will be loaded with insights and information. (Now is your chance to see me in action!) A small collection of my originals and prints will be available for sale. Also, view the Tuckerton Seaport 2009 Art Show and Sale with over 100 paintings while you're there. The Lovely Lighthouse Gallery is open daily from 10am - 5pm. Hope to see you on Sunday.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Lean On Me Lover Boy

This sweetheart is waiting for a home at the Burlington County Animal Shelter. I call #C25359, Lover Boy. When I met him last week, he just wanted to be held. Lover Boy has been "in Prison" for several months now and needs to find a forever home real soon!! This 8" x 10" oil painting was painted as a 100% donation for the shelter as part of the "Art For Shelter Animals" project.

"I'll lean on you and you lean on me and we'll be okay." ~ Dave Matthews Band

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Molly The Mastiff Mix

A few posts back, I featured Molly, the Mastiff Mix ID # D-23899 at the Burlington County Animal Shelter. At that time, I did a sketch of what I thought her three quarter profile might look like. From the photos on, I thought she may be part Labrador Retriever, a popular designer dog called a Mastador. She may be, but boy was my drawing way off! When I visited last Tuesday, I took pictures of this impressive, powerful guard dog mix. Today I finished an oil painting of Molly. She was sweet as can be, but I must admit a bit intimidating. And in this day and age, with crime on the rise, that's certainly not a bad thing! Mastiffs were bred as far back as 3000 BC and have proved themselves through the ages as fearless defenders of personal safety and property. She would be a perfect match for someone strong and physically fit. She's a big dog with a lot of heart in a beautiful, sleek, powerful package. Go to Art For Shelter Animals to see my portrait of Molly.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Katie The KindHeart

When I went to the Burlington County Animal Shelter on Tuesday, I met all kinds of cats and dogs. None of them stood out like Katie, #d-26335. She is a nine year old Golden Retriever. Although her situation is grim, Katie "looks on the bright side of life". :-D She was a perfect model and lady. When I took her picture she wagged her tail and smiled with cooperation. She was clean and fluffy as she had just been groomed by the kids at a nearby school. What a wonderful spirit and ambassador for homeless pets! I thought to myself; "Now, here is the perfect NO HASSLE pet! What a sweetheart!" I can imagine Katie in her new home with little children pouring their affections over her. If I was a dog, I'd like to be a Golden Retriever, at least that's what the quiz I took said I'd be. What breed would you be? Go to "Art For Shelter Animals" and see my first post as a team member and the pencil portrait I just did of Katie.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

I'm Officially on the AFSA Team!

I am proud to announce that Carrie and Sheila have added me to their blog, "Art For Shelter Animals" as a team member. I am honored ladies! Thank you so much. See more about this on today's Spirit Art Blog.