Monday, May 28, 2007

What we did with the long weekend

We let the kids sleep out in the tent in the front yard for the first time last night. Boy are they tired now. It was ours, the Moys and the Moores so a full couple of tents with kids all hopped up on smores but I think it was a good experience all around. Especially good was that once they were asleep, we went upstairs to our nice soft bed. Tully also slept inside as she is very practical and too young to stand a chance in an argument. The picture at the top is Emer looking out from the tent.

I hope everyone had a nice Memorial Day weekend. Ours was so good. Eric took Friday off and just recovered from his rough week at work and then we set into some serious relaxing Saturday, Sunday and Monday. So that means lots of grilling for him, and painting for me. He was so great to give me these huge chunks of time painting and I feel like I got a lot done. It seems like the painting of Ribeye is a big hit sales wise and I'm thinking part of it is that not many people get these close up personal views of a cow. So I took advantage of my own cash cow in the back yard and worked up this painting of Lacy. I'm not sure if it is done or if I want to put a wreath of flowers on her head. Might offer a version of it both ways on Etsy. We'll see.

I also reworked this painting I had done for my neighbor Teri. You see originally she had wanted a painting of the tree in her front yard and I had made a trade for some pictures for my portfolio. Well as it turns out all I really need is her light set up in her studio but I've been using it a lot lately and recently I saw this tree painting I had done for her and I just hated it. I'll spare you the before photo but the colors were too simple and the image was just blah. So I took it back and I was just sort of holding on to it until I got an idea of what I could do when the idea for this came to me. You see the thing she liked about the tree in her front yard is that she looks at it everyday as she's doing dishes. So I've made the image of her in the process of viewing the tree. Also she's at a point of transition in her life and that's sort of reflected in the piece as she's standing at the sink about to do the dishes. Also she makes such a fuss about people/clients not coming through her kitchen and seeing her dirty dishes and it's funny to me to have them displayed there for all to see. And capturing that between possibilities sense there is the dead plant to her left (which is not fictional) and the live plant in front of her (also not fictional). I also like how the lighting is coming around so that she is facing the light but she is mostly in shadow. It could be she is taking in the light or it could be she is trapped. So I like the idea. Visually I wanted to leave empty spaces and areas where what was there was vague blocks of color but that's hard for me to do. I do think it's a clear change from the Lacy piece which is techno-color. I don't know if it is done or if I like the unfinished feel to it. The arm closest feels a bit stiff but I'm afraid I might overwork it if I'm not careful. It's a big canvas so I think it will take more to finish then I am used to. Feel free to chime in. Meanwhile have a good week. And don't be afraid to use the comment button right below this post! There's nothing so lonely as a blog with no comments. My blog is beginning to think it has cooties.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

The Laundry Monster is back!
Now really I'm not airing my dirty laundry on the Internet. That would be incredibly tacky and cliche. This is clean laundry, it just needs to be folded and put away. And besides this serves an educational component too. How much laundry could a family of five possible create? Here's your answer.

Please don't let today be the one day my dear sweet grandmother-in-law visits the site. She is the queen of laundry, even owned a laundromat for a time. She even had three children in diapers back before disposables. So to let things get this out of hand would be unthinkable for her. Her whites are white, her items are washed, folded, and put away, thank you very much. Laundry monster indeed.

So you can't have a monster lurking around the house with out a hero showing up before long. My knight in shining detergent. -I know the metaphor is breaking down here since it's clean laundry but bare with me.

Well that was fun. More fun than folding.
I'll have to include a shot later of it all folded nice and neat to redeem myself for this post.

It's been a good couple of days. Felix had a friend over today. Tully is refusing to nap, Emer is reading a lot and fast. You know, the usual.

Also I put some new pieces up in the shop. My favorite being the wild bunny. I'm going to have to do a whole series of bunny paintings since I like the idea so much. Also I think the composition could use a little tweaking. And I'm trying to sort out ideas for the two portraits I've been commissioned to do, trying to think of some interesting angle or idea to focus the pieces on. Fun fun fun. but for now, folding.

While you're looking around on Etsy here are some artists I found just today that I liked. It's really amazing the quality and variety of work on there.
This guy is amazing.

And this from DKim is one of my favorites from what she has in her shop:

And this from Artsy is just too weird to not be cool:

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Proof positive that I don't get out enough

Octopus hotdogs with macaroni and cheese. When my mom used to make these for me she used mustard to make the eyes and I think they looked better that way. But these kids don't respect my artistic integrity so I sell out and give them the ketchup. What is it about ketchup? I think if there were popsicles made out of it my kids would eat them. And in other news of domestic bliss, I've conquered the laundry monster! Okay, well at least it's all washed and folded and put into laundry baskets waiting to be put away. But I rationalize that the opening and closing of drawers would wake the Tullster so I leave it at this stage for now. I so love watching episodes of the Daily Show and sorting and folding because the funny makes it go so much faster.

I had mentioned before Emer's ready to ride the bike to catch the bus look earlier and here she flaunts her goggle look. And for the Simpson's fans I put in the obligatory quote, "The goggles, they do nothing." Is it just me or does she look a little like an engineer? Speaking of which Eric took her into the clean room early Saturday morning and she really enjoyed.

So this is apparently the picture post where I finally put in all the pictures I've talked about and not done. Felix's haircut and silly face...

And Tully and him together.

I realized again today how happy I am that I quit eating red meat as I looked out the kitchen window to see Lacy scratching her ear with her back hoof just like a dog. About a month ago a baby calf that was born in the back while Eric was grilling and the smoke from his hamburgers was literally blowing over the new baby and I began to think something was horribly wrong with this picture. And then I went and watched Fast Food Nation which was a fictionalized account of the book and it showed views of a killing floor and all I could picture was Lacy and Ribeye. And then I did all these paintings of the cows and from there it seemed inevitable that I would quit the red meat. I'm still on for chicken though. They're dumb and tasty just like I like them.

So I hopped the fence to get some good shots of Lacy for more paintings. Just when I think I can't even think of doing another cow painting I see them in some way I feel I have to capture. It's like chocolate eclairs. I went through a phase with those too, where I would eat some and think I wasn't ever going to have another after that, but then a few weeks would pass and an eclair would cross my path and all of a sudden I'm in the mood again. Cow paintings are like that for me. So I hop, I click, I click, I get into different positions to get some unusual perspectives and foreshortening and then I realize that Lacy and I have a really good relationship and I trust her considerably. As I'm laying on the ground looking up at her realizing she could step on me and do me real harm. So I kept talking as I was shooting to remind her there was a person there and it all worked out fine. This isn't the best shot but the others would require me opening and editing them to make them vertical. So this is what you get.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Speaking of rocking out

I know I've told just about everyone I know about this but if you have any interest at all in music you have to check out Last FM. I just don't have the money to buy cds of all the music I like and the radio around here is really awful. So I found this website and you can type in an artist you like and they will play you similar, or you can find someone with similar taste to you and listen to their radio or their neighborhood and as you do you can tag songs you love and ones you hate and it slowly builds a playlist for you. A lot of times when I see artwork I like I wonder what the artist was listening to when they made it. The majority of time that I'm on Lastfm I'm listening to a user called frankenfish here
You'd think I work for them but really, music just gives me big happy and I think it's such a great program.

Friday, May 18, 2007

It's Friday I've got no job and I've got stuff to do!

Yippee! Friday and Eric took of from work since he'd already put in so much time this week. We had a leisurely morning with coffee and then he took Felix and Tully out to a park for a long stretch. It feels almost like a real weekend. It's been so hard to deal with his volunteer training all day on Sundays because it made the weekend so unbearably short. I've jumped back into two paintings that I want to touch up before posting and I have some new ideas coming together about bunnies. -not as stupid as it sounds. That and I broke the shop up into sections and posted some pieces of the kids. I know these probably won't sell but I feel like they give a good impression of my range in case people want to contact me for commissioned work . . which someone did! So exciting to tackle a new challenge. So I'm off to load a fresh palette and rock out!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

How fast grass grows

I put up a new piece for sale in the shop today. I like seeing my work in that context all together on the screen, but it makes me itchy to make more. I've also got some neat ideas about using new materials. I just need a good stretch of time to get things done.
Tully is still rocking out with the pull ups keeping them dry. I've just been asking her when we get somewhere or when we leave a place if she needs to go and she'll say yes and lo and behold she goes. I'm so boring talking about potty training in a blog. While I'm at it maybe I should describe the grass growing. -Fast. The grass is growing fast.
Felix and I had fun yesterday playing the poem game where he gives me a word, and I make up a poem about it and I give him a word and he makes up a poem about it. He likes to give two versions of all his poems, the short version and the long version. Usually for the long version comes out more like a song.
Emer has done a better job listening this past week so as a reward I gave her a new jump rope. She took it to school today so she could use it at recess. She a little bit better at saying the little rhymes than the actual jumping, but practicing more will help. Also she's doing a really good job getting ready to go to school in the morning and she's riding her bike down to the bus stop. I need to get a picture of her wearing her goggles to protect her eyes from the wind when she leaves in the morning. Too funny.
Eric is working really hard on the satellite lately, putting in a lot of hours. I feel like I don't see him much anymore, or when I do, he's still on the phone keeping track of what's being done.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

So I'm really excited that I finally got everything together to get on Etsy. The main thing that had been a stumbling block for me was getting good pictures of the paintings and Teri was a big help in letting me use her lights. Also I found the chrome setting on the dig camera and the museum setting help a lot for photographing artwork. Etsy is a huge community though and there are so many great things there. . We'll see.

I'm happy anyway that I set a goal for myself and reached it. It feels so good to get something done besides changing diapers. Speaking of which, Tully is potty training herself. She has a strong independent streak and she's taking off diapers to use it and everything. Yesterday I painted over the last painting I had done of her. The last looked too tight, like I was trying too hard and the skin tone had this dead zombie look to it. This painting, I worked from a new picture, one I've been thinking of for a while with her sort of looking up all foreshortened. The fun challenge part though, and the reason I think it was so much more successful, is that I painted the majority of it upside down. It still has flaws, but overall I like it better. In the actual photo she's holding a camera bag, but that didn't read well visually, so with the idea of people reaching into their purses to buy my prints I made it a purse.

We got lots of things done today. Eric took Tully to the plant nursery while I took Felix for a haircut. He looks so much better without such a mop. I almost think it's worth it to let your hair grow out into something huge and monsterous so that when you get it trimmed, the transformation is more amazing. While I was picking up Emer from a friend's house Eric and the kids planted the herb garden. We are arguing about tomatoes again though.

Is this normal? Tomato fights? I think even two plants is a lot to keep up with and if you're not careful you end up -up to your ears in rotten tomatoes. Eric is concerned that some might die and we'll need back up. Also he thinks it will be more manageable if we simply prune better. I'm not asking for a tie breaker vote here but you'll know I lost the battle if I start selling salsa online.