Tag Archives: story

this painting will never be seen again

Spring blooming magnolia with Southern magnolia in the background

It’s 24 x 36, oil paint. I worked hard on it, first doing pastel sketches of the flowers because the flowers don’t last long and a charcoal sketch of the branches. Then I painted the background first which is a finished background.

This is one of the paintings that got stolen from my door when I was moving a few years ago and the key got stuck in the lock so I ran over to the apartment office which was about 100 yards away but they were closed because it was 5 already and when I got back to the new apt. the art I left at the door instead of putting back in my car was GONE!! Stolen by my would be neighbor. I didn’t take that apt and they gave me my money back to keep me from going on yelp. A few days later almost everything was returned to me by another artist who lives in the same complex but in another building. He wasn’t the one who stole it. The neighbor who stole it probably saw that guy carrying canvases into his apt. across the yard between the buildings and put my things at his door. He opened his door to go out and it was blocked by my art. His name was coincidentally Chris and he had a lot of his own paintings and wouldn’t take a reward. My phone number was on the back of one drawing.

That happened in 2020 at the start of the lockdown and I got a hotel room at the ocean front after vacating the old apt and putting my things in a mini storage. I enjoyed the hotel for a week and it wasn’t expensive then got the apt I’m in now and it is much quieter and safer than the apt. at the ocean front.

I was glad to get my art back. It was all my best stuff from so many years. This was a new painting from 2019. Every time I move I give away or throw away a lot of art because you never know when your number will be up and I don’t want to leave my daughter with hundreds of canvases so I get rid of a few at a time and now I’m painting on canvas paper a lot because it’s more practical for storage.

I don’t get a sentimental attachment to my paintings. They are all just another step to making a better artist of me. It doesn’t matter how hard I worked on a painting or how much time is in it. All my life I’ve been working many hours and never saw much money for my labor or got any praise for it. I’m just a worker bee. That’s what we do.

I had this hanging in my apt. for a few years but now I’m tired of it and I know I can do better. It’s not going to be a give away. It’s going directly into the dumpster.

It’s hard to get a decent photo of the painting because it’s a little shiny from my Maroger medium. I’ll paint the magnolia flowers again another time.

a true story and abstract art / acrylics

Strange things happen to me with alarming frequency. I see weird stuff and people tell me weird stuff. It leaves me wondering. This story is about one of those times.

I was invited to paint on someone’s private property so I went there and they had an old barn that was leaning and looked like it would fall down in the next big wind so I decided to do a painting of the barn.

After going there a bunch of times I was finishing the barn painting and stepped away from it when I saw something move out of the underbrush. It was a box turtle walking over to me from about 20 feet away. I just stood there and watched but questions were already flying through my brain.

It was late summer and the first thing that worried me was, do turtles bite? Do turtles carry rabies? I met a pretty nasty snapper turtle once that I tried to rescue off a road but couldn’t because that turtle wanted to bite my finger off but this was a box turtle and seemed friendly.

The turtle walked right up to me and stopped at my feet and looked up at me. I didn’t move and neither did he. I didn’t say anything and neither did he.

Then the turtle spoke to me through mental telepathy. It said, “You got anything to eat?”

I answered the turtle with my mind and said, “I have a donut but I can’t share it with you. It’ll only make you thirsty and it’s too dry out here.”

The turtle silently said, “Awww, C’mon, I’ll be fine.” But I just stood there in amazement and didn’t give him the donut.

He glared at me in anger for a minute or so and acted like I was the stupidest human he ever met. Then he finally turned around and walked away so I started packing my art supplies to go home.

Then I heard some angry bird squawking so I looked up and saw a crow chasing a red tailed hawk right over my head.

Before I left I stopped in at the house to thank the man and tell him I was finished so I told him what happened with the turtle.

He said there are so many turtles out there it’s crazy when he mows the grass. He has to keep stopping and moving turtles so he doesn’t kill them with the mower. He feeds them. hahahahah

E.T.s come to Richmond / monoprints and story

As soon as they stepped through that bright light portal people loved them. They looked like a delicious tossed salad and smelled so fresh. They communicated through mental telepathy that they were here in peace and said,”Take me to your leader.”

The governor rushed right over to meet them and they promised that they could increase our crop yield 1000%. Imagine getting a real ton of tomatoes from each plant, 50 foot tall corn stalks with 100 ears on each, pumpkins large enough to be made into housing! They could do all that because they are actually vegetables themselves and they want to put down roots in Virginia.

The governor gave them the key to the city. Then the next day they were shopping downtown and some kids started chasing them with bottles of ranch dressing and forks. Suddenly the portal reappeared and they vanished.

I hope you enjoyed the story. If the mono prints look like something else other than aliens tell me what you see!

It’s raining and I had some fun with these prints but I’m not finished with them. I want to do a larger collage using them and make something deep with layers of paint. I’m not sure yet how I’m going to do that. I’ll have to wait a few days for this to dry then I might cut these and rearrange them.

Life’s not easy if you’re a pine tree on a sand dune. / oils

Trees are like people.

I spent roughly 20 hours on the dune next to this tree and I was only trying to capture it’s image but when I got home I kept thinking about the tree, like the tree was communicating with me by mental telepathy or something! nah, I’m kidding. This is what the tree would like to say.

The sand doesn’t have enough nutrients. The wind is trying to blow me down all the time. Someone called me scraggly and now I have a low self esteem. I won’t live as long as other pine trees or ever get tall.

And still, the scraggy little tree lifts it’s dead bleached arms to the sky like a person who suffered but doesn’t give up hope.

There’s something going on in the shadows and places where you can see the dune grass through spaces between branches. It’s heavily textured.

You can’t go down the dune through the grass filled with burrs and give the tree a hug. The tree is prickly too, not to mention that’s a steep drop off and you have to climb back out.

You want to remind the tree that it is on prime real estate with a better view than most pine trees have and its head is above dune level.

Plus, the tree has a lot of grace, like people who have lived through some bad stuff. Then when something else bad happens, those people don’t freak out in the next dangerous situation. Like the tree, they remember a worse storm. And people or trees that had it easy fall apart under stress.

a car like this knows the story of my life

1972 TR6

Last night I dreamt I saw the car. It belonged to my best friend, Dick Clayman of York PA who died in 2001. He left the car to me and I kept it for years but eventually sold it because keeping an antique car running can be too expensive.

The car was the symbol of our friendship. He was an old man, I was a young chick. He talked constantly but he was trying to impart his wisdom to me since he and his wife didn’t have any kids. They kind of adopted me. His wife was very kind. They had me over to eat every day when I was in art school. They were my neighbors. Dick drove me all around PA. MD. and VA. in the TR6. We enjoyed each others company. He was an opera singer, a tenor, and he often sang arias while we were driving around in the country with the top down. La Boheme was his favorite. He’d sing in Italian then ask me if I knew what it meant. I didn’t but he told me what the words meant. He brainwashed me on how to be an artist. He taught me more than anyone else. That’s where I got my attitude. (from a tenor)

In my dream, I was going to the mall with another friend and when I saw the car I ran back inside looking for Dick. He was in the bathroom. I called in, “Can I come in, Dick?” He said, ” Wait a minute.”.

I guess I was in the land of the dead in my dream and he didn’t want me to go in too soon.

I’m not afraid of dying. There’s a chance I could see Dick again. I might live a long time. My Mom’s 98 but she has dementia now and is being well taken care of in a luxurious old folks home. She didn’t want me to live with her and take care of her. Now I know it would have been too hard for me to do that. She needs professional care givers. Anyway, I hope I don’t live to be 98 because I won’t be able to drive. And I love driving thanks to Dick.

This is just a little snippet of my weird life. It was always weird and I thought of starting to write it down when I knew Dick but he told me not to. He said. “That path is yours alone and it might not be a good idea to write it down.” It’s for me to learn from and no one else will get the lessons from it. So this is all I’m writing.

He’s dead 20 years now. I had a lot of other friends but none like Dick.

Mountain, Table, Anchors, Navel by Arp

I’ll tell you a little story from my school days.

I had one teacher that I loved, Mrs. Palmgren, my art teacher. When I was in first grade she had us making collages and when she handed out the paste she said, “If you eat the paste you don’t get any more.” I ran out of paste and was afraid to ask for more so I cried. She asked me why I was crying and I said I need more paste. She said stop crying, I’ll give you more. Then I thought she was the nicest person I ever met! She stopped teaching elementary school art and I thought I’d never see her again but when I got to high school she was there! She was the only adult that seemed to understand me and showed me a lot of things of great interest in art.

When I was a senior she arranged a field trip to MOMA! It’s a 4 hour bus trip from Ephrata, PA. to NY.

As we walked through MOMA it was so much to take in! When we got into the gallery that had Mountains Table Anchors Navel and I saw this I cracked up! I mean I couldn’t stop laughing! The other kids were laughing too but they were mostly laughing because I was laughing. It was the funniest thing I ever saw! And so totally unexpected in an art museum! Not that I’d ever been in a real art museum before. I was so wound up by this that I was acting up all the way home! It was the most fun I had as a kid! My parents would never have taken me to NY.

I thought the teachers were probably arguing about me in their lounge because I was a real bad truant. I thought Mrs. Palmgren probably defended me. I had a real bully of a home ec. teacher, Mrs. Lentz. She picked on me and other girls in other classes. Back then, some teachers were real bullies and got away with it. Some of the teachers didn’t like me because I skipped their classes. I bet Mrs. Palmgren asked Mrs. Lentz, do you get modern art? Mrs. Lentz would have said no. Well, I get it. It’s a joke!

Then once when I was in class they sprung an IQ test on all of us. The whole senior class had to take it and I couldn’t just walk out. Those nosy b—–s wanted to find out if I really am a genius like Mrs. Palmgren said I was. I don’t know what my IQ is and I’m not interested in taking another test. I don’t have much of an ego for an artist, but I thought they made us take the test because they had me tracked with the non college bound students and I hated school.

That’s how it is for a lot of young artists. The system fails them.

returning to my roots with this project

haha I don’t have any roots. I’m a tumbleweed.

Once I drove Rt. 66 from Springfield MO. to Santa Monica CA. I was in OK. and I saw these dead looking shrubberies by the side of the road, which had no traffic. I thought they fell off a truck and wondered why they didn’t pick them up since they were on the road. Then I saw so many of them I thought, these have to be tumbleweeds.

This is my plan for the next painting, the second time I sketched it, this time larger. The chalk is sand and the chalk dots are sea oats.

That’s how you start a painting in the traditional process, do a detailed drawing on the paper or canvas. When I was sketching a few people walked across the path at the top of the meadow to the right of center and I decided to try to paint a figure in to give it scale. I had already sketched in some sea oats that rise up over the path from this view. I decided to erase them when I paint and put my person walking in that spot on the path. This step is the time to plan and change plans. If I started in a rush to slap down some paint without doing the sketch then the painting wouldn’t work out as I hoped. Where would I put my person in?

That’s the only roots I have, the traditional ways of painting that I learned long ago. Some times I tumble along in the breeze trying to paint like a modern artist. This time I’m going to use paint brushes and take my time on it, not skipping any steps.

plein air painting from a couple years ago and scary thing that was a false alarm but weird

The painting is long to fit in the window at Jerry’s Artarama. They asked artists to paint on canvases to fit in the store windows to block the view of the merchandise racks from the outside of the store. This was in front of a rack of paper so I thought it would be safe because they’d have to move a lot of paper to take it out of the window. It was in the window for a couple years and I wanted to get it back and rework the water but didn’t ask because I knew it would be difficult to get it out of there.

So, today I went there to buy some things and my painting was replaced by a tiger. I asked where my painting was and the guys didn’t know. The girl that arranges the windows would be out for a couple days. I gave them my phone number but expressed my concern about it with out acting too alarmed because I’m really cool in weird situations, but I was afraid it was stolen. The manager didn’t even remember the painting and he worked there for a year!

He went around the whole place looking for it and finally spotted it in a window behind shopping carts. You could only see the sky. The rest was blocked. No one would ever notice it. I was so relieved to see it. I took it home, never to be on display again! They still have some empty windows but instead they hid it.

Every time you put a painting out there you run the risk of losing it. Now, if I want to throw it away that’s one thing, but if it goes missing that would be kind of upsetting. I used to worry when entering shows in those huge sprawling non profits with back doors and no one’s watching that someone would walk out with one of mine. It did happen to a guy and the newspaper did a report on it. That artist said it was worth the loss for the publicity and sales he got afterwards but I know if it happens to me it wouldn’t make the news.

I wonder why the store didn’t just call me or email me and say it was time to pick it up? That I could understand. But hide it behind carts? Next to the front door where it was easy to slide out? Makes no sense. That also reminds me of the non profits because they liked to mainly reject my paintings but when they got hung they were in the hallway, or way up high, or next to the bathroom, or in a corner or some place I had to hunt for them, like behind a sculpture.

I’m really glad I got this one back.

It’s the view from the beach side at First Landing State Park looking out over the Chesapeake Bay at the bridge tunnel. This is a close up.

omg. I just looked at the back of the painting and someone had put a price on it of $40. This is looking more like a plan to rob me. That’s another weird thing because someone tried to rob me earlier this year and made off with a bunch of my art and I got it all back, except one thing I can remember which they didn’t return. That thing was a drying rack I made from stretcher strips and button twine. It’s possible they kept more of my art and I just don’t remember what I had because it was all my good stuff from so many years, since I regularly cull my collection and toss the old stuff I don’t want.

Now I feel like someone up there is watching out for me because I only went to the store because a fellow blogger told me to buy a different kind of palette knife.

So, Thanks to God!

Lucifer / If I wrote the story / spoiler alert

That’s Lucifer, 3rd from the left. Chloe is next to Lucifer in a leather jacket.

It’s my favorite series on Netflix so I was happy they came out with another season, but so far they’re only airing half of it, or 8 shows.

I think it would have been cooler at the end when God shows up if he’d have stayed invisible and just boomed out, “Do not maketh me come down there!”

Why isn’t God played by Morgan Freeman?

I doubt if the series will go on long enough to finish the story, but if I could write the end, I see it going in a certain direction.

First, Chloe should never have had sex with Lucifer. Yes, I know he’s hard to resist, but this will not go well for her. He can only cause pain and destruction. He is the devil, after all.

And she didn’t seem to be worried about getting pregnant with the devil’s spawn so we have to assume she’s on birth control, but it won’t work. I predict Chloe will have Lucifer’s baby.

One funny thing about the angel, Amandiel (on the left in the photo) and Linda’s baby, (Linda’s on the right) is that the baby cries all the time. Amandiel is a good angel and Linda, a human, is worried about being a good mom, but she likes to go out and get drunk with her girlfriends leaving the baby with Amandiel. Then the baby stops crying when he sees Lucifer’s devil face! The baby likes the devil face, which is scary looking.

I think if the story goes on long enough, Amandiel and Linda’s baby will be the antichrist and Lucifer’s baby with Chloe will be the second coming of Christ. That would be a twist. It might not go that far unless they have the kids grow up real fast like on soaps, since they already said they would end the series then they came out with another season.

Also, Dan’s daughter isn’t afraid of Maze’s demon face. (Maze is behind the bar and Dan is second from the right)

And Maze wishes she had a soul. She already has one. She suffers just like a human.

We should see the 4 horsemen of the apocalypse before this ends.

Horse V. Candy / feat art jargon and story


This is a still life I painted with oils a few years ago. I used the same flower pot as I did in my most recent painting. It’s one of my model horses with a bowl of peanut M&Ms and a Rex begonia. It was fun because I arranged the M&Ms as if they were coming out to defend their fortress against the horse.

A couple weeks ago I read a post by one of my blogging friends, Judith, at art discoveries,  and she talked about art jargon which I find impossible to read. So many times I’ve tried to read an artist’s statement and been annoyed by meaningless jargon. I think, why can’t they be honest?! Why do they try to confuse people with a  meaningless statement? So I was amused to find out there’s a site that generates art jargon.” the instant art critique phrase generator.” It’s a bot. All you do is type in 5 numbers and it gives you meaningless bs! You don’t have to upload your painting. This is as random as the zodiac. These are some of the things I got from it by typing in zip codes.

“I find this work to be playful because the optical suggestion of the fracture makes the eloquence of this piece.”

“The disjunctive perturbation of the negative space specially undermines the distinctive formal juxtaposition.”

“As an advocate of the aesthetic, I feel the metaphysical resonance threatens to penetrate the exploration of the montage elements.”

“The subaqueous qualities of the elements bring within the realm of discourse the substructure of critical thinking.”

That sounds important and very esoteric! doesn’t it! And there I thought it was impossible to get a real critique these days!

I’ll tell you a true story about this painting. When I lived in Richmond and most of my paintings got rejected from the juried shows, I joined an art club, because when you enter with a group they have to hang your painting even if they don’t like it at that certain non profit, because the group paid for the wall space.  The first day when I wanted to join the group along with a few other artists, they wanted us to bring a piece of our art so they could see what kind of art we did. I took this still life. When I got there, I saw the others had leaned their paintings up on chairs so I did the same until the meeting was ready to start. A lady came in and threw her coat over top of my painting which I thought was kind of weird and I left it there and so did she. Then when it was my turn to talk about my painting I moved her coat. It seemed hostile to me. We had to wait in another room until they decided if we could join the group. I didn’t know if I’d get in but then they called us back and I did get in the group. When the meeting was over that lady was walking out in the hall close to me and she told me she’s the past president of the club for x number of years. I guess she was someone important. I said that’s nice, it looks like a good group. Then I entered shows with the group but I knew some didn’t want me to join. I got a weird vibe the few other times I had to interact. This isn’t my imagination. I’m neither an introvert or an extrovert. I’m just an ambivert, which is the correct term for someone that likes people but is ok alone.

Speaking of a weird vibe, I might go back to Fort Monroe and finish the drawing I started a couple years ago. The universe told me the guy that was planning to rob me over there got corona! hahaha Just kidding, the universe doesn’t talk to me. If I still get the weird vibe there, I’ll leave.