defenseless armor

sad, tragic for earth, for us, is the loss of this magnificent beast-the last male northern white rhino-gone-that is all

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our blue boys

the mantle has been empty far too long
I’ve been meaning to create another portrait
what else is an empty fireplace wall for?

it seems an eternity has passed
since working with a linen base and liquid pigment
pencil and paper are sometimes sorry replacements

on August 3, I set out my paints
and selected a canvas
large enough for a big dog
yet, not overwhelming
for a little one

our last Shepherd, Chama was a regal type
her stoic beauty typified her grace
I did my best to present these qualities
when I painted her formal portrait in 2002

Appreciating

our current dogs
hmm
Rocky the Shepherd
Mojo the Dachshund
what is it about this dynamic duo
that makes my family laugh often

they are quite goofy
yet, they can be fearless too
as small dogs usually go-
Mojo’s 13 pounds sees 90 in our Pella glass door
and
while a Shepherd cuts an intimidating figure
most times
Rocky acts quite silly

when conceptualizing a portrait
there is but one goal–
doing justice to
the subject(s)
outlook(s) on life
natural as the air they breath

in the case of Rocky and Mojo
I’d say joy
and since purple was not quite right
I chose the colors of a
blissful sky, a wistful ocean,
an icy fruit-sickle on a steamy day

our blue boys…
blue boys.largerBlue Boys, acrylic – 3′ x 2 1/2′
finished a few days ago, in between doing loads of laundry – ah, if only they could help with the chores, now that would be something 😉

Chama (Chama the Shepherd looking at her portrait), oils – 2′ x 1 1/2′
painted in 2002  (sorry for poor photo quality)

Charlie’s Ears

My Friends,
Yesterday’s doll conversations brought back fond memories of a cherished childhood friend. His name was Charlie. He had curled pink fur and bright blue eyes that somehow didn’t seem right, but were. I remember many a dark night when Charlie was my cuddle pal.

I can’t remember why I cut Charlie’s long ears off. They were most likely cropped to better match his eyes. I can’t recall what eventually became of my beloved pink buddy. Maybe he ran away in fear. His little lunatic owner might chop off his balled tail which didn’t look quite right, but was.

Charlie DogIt’s funny how sometimes making new friends can remind us of old lost ones. My blog buddy, Deb has an impossibly adorable dog named Charlie. If you’d like to see precious Charlie along with all his other four-legged house buddies visit C-Dog. Deb is a brilliant wordsmith and a great champion of animals in every conceivable color, even pink. And Fawn of Trigger’s Horse, handles her mom’s cherished doll collection with warmth and pride. Fawn is a volunteer extraordinaire and a multi-talented craftsperson.

Thank you. May you dream of your favorite childhood friend.

Charlie Dog drawn yesterday with misting eyes and markers

Hiding Blue Bull

Dear Friends,
Keeping in the spirit of Halloween and all things ‘monsterish’ – here’s Blue Bull. Yes, I know he’s mostly green, but his eyes are bedazzling blue. Blue Bull is a shy ‘fella’ with the strength of a thousand men. Though he wishes no harm to person or creature, he’s relentlessly hunted. Blue Bull’s gorgeous eyes and odd coloration make him a highly desired prize – a rare trophy – humans crave. How man adores his pretty things…
Taurean Bull
Blue Bull knows fear and feels safest among the cows.We cannot see him hiding there. Most humans when passing by cows, are only capable of seeing black and white.
Hiding Bull

Thank you. May you dream of sleeping on the cool green grass, looking up at the bedazzling, blue stars…
Please keep West Africa in your thoughts…

Blue Bull and Cow Patch created 2008 for monster project…

 

My Lovely

Dear Friends,
(Sorry – this is a longish post – my apologies) I’ve been blogging about six months now. Since starting, I’ve been the fortunate recipient of a happy Liebster and a colorful Versatile ribbon. I’ve hung these pretty things on my little blogcabin mantle. I now have the honor of adding a ‘One Lovely Blog’ ribbon. Please note, I’m still holding out for that Chocolate Crown 🙂

A spicy youngin’ has nominated me for this Lovely Blog award. I’ve since visited her site. Bethan reminds me of why being 19 is X-citing. Bethan is quite sassy and speaks her mind. She is a young person of conviction and I don’t doubt she’ll make something quite grand of her life… If you don’t believe me, check out her blog for yourself at Bethan Nicole

Lovely

Lovely

As part of playing along I must nominate fellow bloggers. This is the lovely part of these generous nominations. Sharing other blogs, because we’re all in this pixel porridge together. I apologize in advance to my nominees (not in any particular order). Though it’s an honor receiving these treasures, they take some time to put together. I realize many of you are quite busy, so play along if you’re able, either way I’m most happy to share blog directions to your splendid homes here:

HemmingPlay: a brilliant mind and mighty muse
Images and Words from Bluerock: the name says it all, engaging and thoughtful
Triggershorse: strong, intelligent matriarch whom I admire greatly
C-Dog and Company:- Caring, compassionate, caretaker of animals – we sip invisible Starbucks together
Simon Tocclo: musician of life, family and music
Brooklyn Doodle: a caring young person whose small doodles have huge impact
Pamo’s World: a terrific cartoonist and avid motorcyclist (I’m jealous)
Luggage Lady: documents with love and panache her worldly travels (she the stewardess, he the pilot)

Now onto the ‘reveal stage,’ where I must divulge 7 things about myself to you my friends:

I had my first huge crush on a boy in 3rd grade. I cut out his little head from my class picture and placed it in my silver heart locket. I showed him one day and he ran. I mean he sprinted in the opposite direction – not the reaction my throbbing heart was hoping for. From that point, while in Catholic School, I literally hid in classroom closets whenever boys passed by. Unfortunately, I ran out of closets.

I’ve never gotten over my childhood fascination of horses. I do hope to have one in my backyard one day. Right now, I’d settle for a donkey 🙂 This is a picture of the shelf above my studio entrance. The running Breyer’s horse is Ruffian. I sobbed for days when she was put down on the track in 1975.

RuffianGeez, the first 2 are depressing let me try for uplifting. When I was minutes away from delivering my first child, my ob-gyn asked, “Do you mind if a few med students observe?” I said, “Of course not, bring whoever wants to learn something, I’d love to help out,” then I suggested, “Why don’t we sell raffle tickets and have an Open House!”

I often fantasize Hemingway, Fitzgerald and I are companion barflies. We smoke cigarettes, sling back a few and talk life in a darkened corner of some Parisian CafĂ©… They tell me I shouldn’t smoke (I don’t) and I tell them they shouldn’t drink so much. Hemingway and I share laughs over our matching black turtlenecks, Fitzgerald is wearing wrinkled linen, but he laughs too because he thinks we’re madcaps. We continue smoking, drinking and gabbing the night away…
(Speaking of drinks, I pick my wine according to the animal on the label. I like this rooster.)

rex wineI have three sisters and two brothers who are much smarter than I (or is it me?).

I lived the first half of my life totally insecure. Somewhere I smartened up. I looked inside and out and decided this is what I have to work with so mold it like Picasso. It’s okay if the eyes are on the nose and the ass is on the knee.

I often look at the open sky by my home and hum “Cool Change” by Little River Band. You should try this. I swear even when my feet are planted it feels like I’m sailing. Very peaceful and cathartic…

big skyThank you once again, Bethan and all of you bloggers our there – a glorious weekend to you all…

Dream well…

Animal Bullies

Dear Friends,
There is something so absolutely pacifying in a wagging tail or a wet nose against a palm. Animals bring magic to our lives. They make us smile-

car and mojoIt is so very sad when animals languish in shelters. Are we not their caretakers?  It is so very sad when magnificent creatures are cut down because it is easy. One wouldn’t dare approach a gorilla bare-fisted. Our power is in body-splitting metal equipment only, we own nothing naturally. We trigger from a safe distance then take our prizes in hands and horns and leave the rest to waste. How sad for us.

gorilla I hold hope, as many of you do. We are better than those few who maim for profit. We are better than those who buy then throw on the street because the puppy didn’t fit ‘the dream.’ We will be better. We are good and kind and animals too…

rhinoThank you and goodnight. May you dream of fantastic jungles and leap from vines of silken pillows.
Peace my friends…
Delicate Daughter and Mojo the Dachshund taken in 2013, gorilla and rhino sketched in 2008

The Talking Mushroom and the Little Red Fox

Dear Friends,
There once lived a little red fox-

fox

fox

Her auburn fur edged with gold, flickered in the sunlight whenever she ran about the forest. She was smart and lovely, yet she was unhappy. Though she could do all things in perfect fox-form, she dreamt of being a kangaroo. Daily she practiced graceful long jumps. The little red fox could even leap much higher than her older brothers. But this amazing athletic prowess, didn’t satiate her bounding appetite. She wanted to be a kangaroo. One misty morning with dew saturating her delicate toes, the little red fox came upon a purple-spotted mushroom. It was a purple-spotted fungus, the likes of which she’d never seen.

“My dear child,” bubbled the purple-spotted mushroom from his damp earthen throne, “you are unhappy.”

“Yes,” replied the little fox, not even a bit concerned she was talking to a purple-spotted fungus.

“I can make you happy,” whispered the mushroom low, as not to share his secret.

“How?” asked the little red fox, unable to contain her excitement.

“One bite of me and your dream will come true.”

The little red fox wasted not a moment, she chomped on the purple-spotted mushroom. When she awoke next morning, she could not push up on her strong front paws as she done all the previous days of her life. She rolled to her side, then much to her surprise, sprang up. So forceful was the leap, she soared fifty feet across the forest floor. The little red fox landed by a large puddle that had collected between gnarly tree roots and rock. She caught her reflection in the shimmering water. Her wish had been granted – her dream realized. Instead of being jubilant for the change, she sobbed mightily. She was neither a little red fox nor a complete kangaroo…

fox:kangaThere was once a snowman who wished he was a fox-

Snow Fox

Snow Fox

Hope you enjoyed my little fable.
Thank you and goodnight. May you dream of being content in your own skin…

(Fox Up Close: Prisma, 2000,  Foxroo: acrylic on canvas, 1999,  Snowman with Fox Mask: Prisma, two days ago)

Merrily, Life Goes ‘Round

Dear Friends,
Designing and painting a wall mural is a formidable process. The execution is simply an expanded version of what one would do on canvas. This is not the arduous part. The difficulty comes with the passage of time. What happens when a room gets redecorated or repurposed? The mural is often a victim of circumstance. Many wall paintings are eventually covered over with contemporary hues. The delicate daughter’s carousel had its day in the sun too. I created it years ago when she loved playing with dollhouses and reading picture books. This mural was painted over with Georgian Gold when it became the guest room.

I began this Merry-Go-Round with research and the painting of this wooden sign-

signNext, came the animals-

lion closeThe Paint horse below was created in homage to the animated movie, Spirit. Her name is Rain. She is Spirit’s horse girlfriend-

rain closeupThen of course, there’s the proud Mustang stallion, Spirit-

spirit horseSee how the equine pair frolic about the Wild West-

spirit:rainAnd what’s a carousel without a doting cherub –

Cupid/mural detail

Cupid/mural detail

One must have an animal menagerie to bounce upon too-

giraffeThere can’t be a carousel kingdom without a prince of the forest and a king of the jungle –

lion, deerSo merrily life goes ’round and carousels spin. We ride and laugh aloud. Sometimes we even get sick. The Merry-Go-Round stops and waits for the next group of riders.

Goodnight and may your night be filled with dancing animals and happy music…