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Archive for January, 2010

The Art Books of Robert Vavra

Many of my Suidoo lens were created from gleanings off my blog. So I thought It high time for my blog to do a little gleaning of it’s own. And thus this post was born.

Robert Vavra is one of my art heroes and I have an extensive collection of his books. The biggest issue I have with them is NOT using his images as reference materials. Trust me, it is oh so tempting. His photos of horses buried in jewels and gold, or draped with chains or hundreds of ribbons are stunning. He also marvelously captures horses just being horses. LOVE the art of Vavra.

So okay enough waxing poetic. Here’s an excerpt from my Squidoo lense The Art Books Of Robert Vavra

When I was young girl (and that was a looong time ago) I begged my mom for this book. I had to beg because it was $40 and this was the early 80’s so it was a hefty price to pay for a picture book for a child. So the answer was no.

But I wasn’t about to accept that, so I set about getting the money myself. Eventually I earned enough through various odd jobs and working the fields in the summer to not only buy all my school clothes and such but also the book.

When it arrived in the mail it was truly the picture book to end all picture books. I spent endless hours flipping through the pages and reading all the passages. And still do on occasion.

I think in many ways Robert Vavra’s vision shaped my horse art from a very early age. His books aren’t just pretty pictures of pretty horses, they are indeed art. They are spectacular horses, in spectacular settings with choreographed movement.

From this very first book I was hooked on Vavra.

Squidoo Goal
So my goal for this year was to make a total of 20 lenses. I already had 7 so this was in effect doubling my numbers. It seemed like a rather big challenge but at this point I have 18 functioning lenses and two work in progress lenses. So yeah, shouldn’t be a problem to mark this goal off. Though one of the work in progress lenses is about my totem series so that may be awhile in coming. The other is a lensography which is kinda the mother of all MEMEs rolled together with compilation (or rather a directory) of all my lenses.

If any of you visit my lens I would really appreciate it if you took a moment to leave a comment. I think you have to be a member of squidoo to rank the lens but anyone can comment.

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Cougar Totem Painting Continued

Meet Samantha
(Sam for short)

I always love the intensity of big cats eyes. Even when at rest they have a stare that (perhaps because we humans are prey animals) speaks to the very primal mind. Here she is a sub-adult though in the wild she would be old enough to be on her own by now.

Sam is giving me a good stare because she is trying to discern whether I might be smuggling some haunch of elk or something. (I was not.) Mostly she slept out of view so zoo goers were often disappointed. Part of my job was to talk with people so I often would call her out. Of course she always came. After all she wouldn’t want to miss a meal on account of being anti-social.

The person I replaced was attacked by a mountain lion. Whether it was Sam or not, I do not know. They fell into the electric fence and that is pretty much what saved the keepers life.

I had only one “really” scary moment with Sam when she wrapped herself around my right leg and started chewing on my boot. Fortunately I had my trusty garden hose and all it took was a spritz to end her making a snack of me.

About The Painting
The body area is not done. Considering I’m not a fan of yellow I certainly have allot of it here. I am moving onto to the background now and then may play with the coloring of the cat again.

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Cougar Totem WIP

The photo here is a little dark as the paper should show white. This is a cropped view of the latest in the totem series. Tomorrow I will post my reference photos (and introduce you to my model Sam) and the full view.

This is once an again oil pastel on handmade paper. Kinda fun to play with the wild colors after doing so many realistic horse paintings. Trying to decide which to do next. Moose? Horse? I’m thinking also of a white buffalo sometime in the future. I want to change up my color palette some in the next few. Though I keep seeing the Moose as green.

I should finish with this one by tomorrow and plan to just jump right into the next one. Mike has left for his classes so I have 5 days to myself.

Make that 5 productive days to myself. (Whoohoo!).

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A Post About A Post

Well this is just to say that I haven’t forgotten about the blog. Between blizzards and being sick very little has gone on and most of my actual “awake and functional” time has been spent working on my article for Apples ‘n Oats.

But . . .I should have an actual post about something on Friday. Perhaps tomorrow but definitely Friday. I’ve got my new totem critter drawn out (inspiration courtesy of Robert Sloan.) And so may have some color in play by then. Or I may talk a little about my favorite equine photographers/artist inspiration.

Either way there will be a post with actual content. 🙂

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I'm not dead. I just feel like it.

Okay I apologize for being gone so long. Partly this is because I’ve got nothing going on artwise to talk about. Or at least to devote a whole post to. And I’ve been sick this time with a sinus infection. I’ll spare you the details but it involves me not sleeping because I can’t breathe!

Prior to my illness I went to see The Blind Side (with Sandra Bullock) and Avatar. (yes, I know that I am the last erpson on the planet to have seen these movies.) And of course they were both totally awesome.

I did agree to do the artshow with Barb. The director said they actually have two galleries available if we want them both. I’m not sure there is enough work for that for either Barb or myself, but we’ll see.

And lastly I’ve been putting effort in my Squidoo lenses again as well as beginning my next article (Spanish Gold) for Apples ‘n Oats.

That’s my week in review. I promise as soon as I’m feeling human again I’ll do a real post.

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After a brief period of being down the Apples ‘n Oats website is back up and running. The current issue is now available online but the archived past issues have yet to be made active.

At any rate for those of you wanting to read my current article about my Liberty painting or any other the other great stuff, you now can.

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Okay, I just made a post but I figured I’d get the word out to any locals who might be interested in participating in The Artisans Road Trip this fall, but are either out of the area or don’t have a space to show in. A.R.T. is a studio tour of Northwest Iowa. The group works hard to promote the event.

Jan Hersom of JH Designs in Laurens called me asking if I knew of anyone who’d like a place to display. She’d be willing to host more than one if there is a need. There will two other artists showing in Laurens so you should get good traffic because of the multiple artists.

The ART application deadline is fast approaching. (umm like tomorrow I think) so if you’re interested hop to it!

For more information on A.R.T. please visit their website.

You can either contact me or Arts on Grand to arrange for a space with Jan.

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