"Peonies"  12" X 12"
Mixed Media on Board

Yesterday I was madly (safely) driving up Hwy 15, a busy 2 way highway, to get my Oatlands show application turned in on time. Made it with 5 minutes to spare.  Theme for me this year is peonies have been spectacular (see the "Peonies" above), "Blue Iris", "Glads", and "Polka dot Gerberas" have also capture my imagination.  Now for the "wait period" to see which painting(s) the jury will select.  If you were the jury which if any would you chose and why or why not?

"Polka dot Gerberas"  
8" X 11"
Mixed Media on paper
"Blue Iris" 12" X 12" Gallery Wrap Canvas
"Glads" 11" X 15"
Mixed Media on paper

"The Feathered Nest"   
Show in the office of

Berkshire Hathaway Home Services 
4 E. Colonial Hwy  Hamilton, VA 
April 20- August 
Mon. - Fri. 10:00-5:00

"Feather and Song" 11' X 11" Mixed Media on paper

"Kilmer" 16" X 20"

Remember Kilmer?  He was commissioned by a goom for his new bride.

Which is your favorite?

You overwhelmingly chose #1 along with the groom!  I found your reasons interesting and seem to support my "hunches" in creating a pleasing pet portrait.  Here are a few of your comments.

#1 "Love them both...but"  Becky A.
"#1 because he is looking right at me.  He is proud yet comfortable."  Maril S.
#1 "His facial expression is too cute and he looks so relaxed and at home."  Lynn W.
#1 "The repetition of horizontal lines in the background, juxtaposed with the strong curvilinear lines of his body (great pose!) is really wonderful.  Both depictions of the dog are fun and dear, but #1 is my winner because of the strong composition." Penny PG

#2  "He looks so wise" Linda G.

In conclusion, I think it is best when you can see both eyes, and the critter is engaging the viewer.  A smile  always helps. Strong composition is key.  Colors count! and never hurts to offer a choice!  In the end the groom has a second gift ready for the right moment!
"Kilmer #2"   16" X 20"
One of my paintings "Cookie?" is featured in a You Tube Art Video by Jill Poyerd 

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Painting is a VERB and a process!  Sometimes a LONG process as in my latest LARGE project: 

"Flamingo Ballet"  48" X 54" Mixed Media

Step #1 (after my doodle start) was a joyful laying down of my general idea using big brushes and my memory of flamingos in the wild at Celestun Mexico on the west coast of the Yucatan peninsula.  Did you know little ones start out white and as they feed they get progressively more colorful?

Next was the fun of making a mixed media piece using "gloss medium and varnish" to adhere paper I purchased in Paris, pattern pieces painted various colors, art tissue paper, music and more!

Step #3 included defining the vegetation in back along the top edge.  I also needed to have one or more flamingo actually feeding and figure out how many legs and what neck belonged to what body...yikes getting messy here....  I did have fun adding the purple to the under side of the birds.  Did you know that when they fly the under side of their wings are black?  And yes, they do fly...look like pink pencils with wings.

Perhaps I have #3 and #4 in the wrong order :0/   but painting goes one way and then another so who knows?  

But, I do know about this point I put in an SOS call into my mentor and friend Tara Funk was that or gesso the entire 48 X 30" WHITE! 

She calmly stated the obvious..."the flamingos don't walk in water over their need another canvas".  2nd & 3rd SOS calls were to my golfing hubby and Plaza Art Supplies for a 48" X 24" canvas.  By 3:00 p.m. my golfer returned with my new canvas and I was back in business having a "doodle start" good time with the "legs" of my painting.

The feeding flamingo looks strange.  I always think I know what something looks like until I try to paint....
I also needed to get some of the feet going in different directions and the reflections in the I discovered paint skins would add some wonderful texture to the legs. 

Makes for a full studio when working on a piece this large.  I need at least 12' to back away and take a look at how the painting is "reading".

This is not quite "the finish"...but close.

Next step is to have this large piece professionally photographed and to find a good home...anyone have a Florida house?  

Here is the "Flamingo Ballet" hung with space between the canvases at Framecraft in Warrenton during the "Spring Fling" weekend.

"Framecraft of Warrenton"  Mark, Meleana and the staff at Framecraft are experts!   I have many pieces there and am pleased to be represented by them.   

Remember to let me know what paintings you would jury into Oatlands.  

You are the best!  With florescent pink and orange on my brush, Linda