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Tech Savy and Art: An awkward combination?

So, after a year or so, okay, emphasis on the “so”, I moved my old blogspot blog to this site, en toto.  I did the first steps all by my not so big self, though it did require an hour and some minor cursing from my tech guru husband.  At any rate, it’s done! Wahoos are in order for me, as I left the old blog unattended while I was working on this website. So, for those of you who were following the old blog via RSS, the links in RSS will now bring you right here, and you can even look at the old posts and photos contained in them.

Now, with a few more tweaks, I can return to painting.  Yes, being an artist is hard work. While skill and passion is a known requirement, these days, so is discipline and marketing savy.  Ouch.  It’s a work in process.  Of course.

There will be some notable changes coming here.  While the emphasis of being a gallery has lingered, it will be changing soon, to my personal work. However, there may be “popUP” times when I’m promoting someone else.  We’ll just have to see how it goes. I get it, you follow me for me. For who I am and what I do, and from here, I’m beginning again, starting anew. I hope you’ll come along.  And let me know what you’d like to see?  I’d love that!  Thank you!

 

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Thanksgiving and Gratitude

As the official day of giving thanks approaches, it is appropriate to share the gratitude that pours from me.  While I try to maintain an attitude of gratitude on a daily basis, sometimes I know I get overwhelmed by everything else.  So let me put it down where I can go back and see it again and again. 

I’m thankful for the daily blessing that flow through my life.  For the growing strength of my sweet husband, and the healing wounds of my loyal and loving Grace.  For the way that showers of supply seem to come just when I think I’ll give up.  For my warm home, loving family and faithful friends. 

I can scarcely believe we’re about to celebrate the 8th Anniversary of the Gallery.  And grateful for that too.  Immensely grateful for my customers, so many of whom have become my friends, for all of you who collect my work.  For all of you who collect the works of any of the artists in my gallery.  That leads me here, I’m so thankful for you, the artists who trust me with representing you, who supply the gallery with the beautiful pieces you bring in.  Without all of you, there would be no gallery.


I’m grateful for all of you and the many ways you have all blessed and impacted my life.  May the coming Season bring you joy that will walk with you every day of the future.  

Angel Fire ArtSpace,
3469 Mountain View Blvd, Suites B2-4 Angel Fire NM
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I love the rain

I know, I’m not a great poster.  I get so involved with life and living, I forget.  Usually it takes something to get my attention to make think “I should post that!” 
So, what snapped my attention today?  Well it started with the first clap of thunder.   A week or two ago we grew weary of the frantic running and barking that signaled the start of monsoon season.  Drugs, even “natural” ones were scary and left us uncomfortable, with our beloved Grace wandering drunk-like and bleary eyed, too tired to bark or eat or anything.  We saw an ad for the Thundershirt and decided to try it.  It came last week.  I was working everyday, so it was left to hubby to try it out.  First cool thing was that he was able to get it on Grace without a battle royal.  Next cool thing was that he said, “It works!”

My first experience with it was today, at the first clap of thunder, I called her from her running bark and she came and stood in front of me, expectantly, like she was asking for the Thundershirt.  I laid it across her back, velcroed the pieces that go across the front, then velcroed the pieces under her and around her chest, then used the flap to snug it, all while she stood patiently while I did it.

Then, she wen to her favorite window at the end of the kitchen, and laid down.  And so, that is where she has been.  When I moved to the chair to write, she followed me, and laid down.  It is raining steadily and the thunder is crashing regularly, but not a sound from her.  Every now and then a low rumble of “grrrrrrrrrr” comes from her…but that’s it.  Hubby went to nap and she followed and they are both now sound asleep.  I love it, love it, love it.  Thank you Thundershirt!

Angel Fire ArtSpace,
3469 Mountain View Blvd, Suites B2-4 Angel Fire NM
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Happy New Year…It’s been too long!

It’s not that I don’t think about it.  I do, and alot.  So many things have intervened since the last post, it’s hard to remember them all.  Part of the delay was surely the laptop, which I breezed by in the last post. Out with the old, in with the new.  It still amazes me how long it takes to make that transition, but it is done and I love my new HP, though I’m not wild about the touchpad.  That said, it’s pretty much the only thing I’d change on the machine, and it is so light I actually don’t mind carrying it around! 

Then, Wooosh, the holidays were upon us.  Time literally seemed to fly.  The 7th Anniversary of the Gallery, that was in the planning for 7 months (or more) came off quite well, even though there were far fewer in attendance that I expected, it worked out well given the small size of the current venue.  I posted video on facebook, but here it is again, just in case you don’t do the fb thing.

 Not sure we could have packed in any more folks as it was!  The musician is Tom Perry and he was great!  So, that was December 17th, and then the march was on to Christmas.  Then New Years.  Now it is the 3rd of January and tomorrow is my sister’s birthday.  Happy Birthday Beckles!  I won’t whisper her age, cuz I’m much older!  

Ok, so I’ll be 50 this year.  I can hardly wrap my brain around it.  Likely though, it won’t be much different than being 49. I spent most of this day painting, and that was wonderful.  Particularly since I’ve kind of been putting it off.  Dily Dallying around.  Doing the drawing, throughing it away and doing it again. It’s a commission, for a friend of mine.  Those are generally hard anyway, but this involves the human form and though I know “how” I’m reluctant to delve in.  It’s his dad.  The complication is that I don’t know his dad.  Painting from a photograph is ok if it’s a flower, but people, well, it’s more complicated…or at least it can be.  I procrastinated, and last night, when John said, “are you going to paint tomorrow?” I hedged.  I finally said, “I’m struggling with this one”.  He said, “I noticed”.  

Then, this afternoon, something happened.  The house was quiet.  The studio, recently cleaned, bekoned. And there, on my table was a blank canvas and a drawing on paper next to it.  When I do detail on canvas, I do the drawing on my computer (in Corel Painter) and then print it, and if happy, transfer to the canvas, so that I don’t damage the canvas with erasures and extra graphite.   I got out my transfer sheet, traced the image on to the canvas, opened my watercolor palette and wet the paint.  I sat down, and painted. Didn’t look up, didn’t hesitate for a moment.  Lost in the painting and time did not exist.  When I stood up and stretched, I glanced at the clock. Two hours had passed.  I’m not sure it’s done, but I think it’s close.  Very close.  


I love it when that happens.  Happy New Year!

 

 

Angel Fire ArtSpace,
3469 Mountain View Blvd, Suites B2-4 Angel Fire NM
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Sharing Gratitude on Thanksgiving Day

I can scarcely  believe it already Thanksgiving day.   The last post was on November 1….wow did time fly.  When I woke up this morning my first thought was gratitude and that kind of surprised me. Not that it should, but it did.  When I hit the “get mail” button on the new (more on that later) laptop I followed a link to the blog post of a friend of mine. Sort of.  I doubt he knows my name, but I have been following and learning from him for a few years now.   His name is Jeff Walker and he wrote a post called “The Discipline of Gratitude”.  Worth the few moments to read it.

So in response to that, here in black and white is my list, of what, really I am thankful for this morning.  Though they are numbered, there is no real order in them.  They are really, mostly, all #1.

1.  This comfortable chair in which I sit is in our amazing home in the beautiful Moreno Valley of Northern New Mexico.  My mortgage is current, the heat is on and the lights too.  The well gives water and the coffee I just brewed is ready.  I’ll pour a cup before I go on. 

hmmm. Is that one or three?  Anyway:

2. Though my sisters and Mom are far away, I can hear the happy sounds of their voices in my head and I know they are well and like most of us, busy.  I’m thankful for all of that.

3.  My husband of  21 years is still glad he’s married to me, and he tells me so.  It goes both ways. In this day that is something to be particularly grateful for.

4.  Seven years ago, on this very day, I sat across the table from Vicki and Larry and we toasted the decision to go forward with what seemed almost a ridiculously absurd idea to open an art gallery in Angel Fire.  Let me shout gratitude for that.  While the journey has been fraught with tears, I never would have done it without them.  Many know that I later bought them out, but there is not an inch of doubt in my mind that I would never have taken that leap on my own.  How far, how very far I have grown.  Grateful I am, for all of it, and for the venture began, 7 years ago today.

5.  On that topic, Angel Fire ArtSpace Gallery, what a ride, and wow am I grateful to all of the hundreds of people, friends old and new,who have wandered through my life.  Some have wandered through and on, while others have come again and again, honoring me with their support and encouraging me on.  Thank you. Thank you, thank you.

6.  Now some specifics, my gratitude to and for the following people is so deep in me it tingles my toes.  John, Diana, Melissa.  Thank you is not nearly adequate and I am blessed by your love, friendship and partnerships.  Janet & Dick, still…..and ongoing….thank you.  Anna, always there, unafraid to tell me the truth, even and especially when it hurts.  There are many more.  If I didn’t type your name it doesn’t mean you are not in my heart.

I think I’ll stop there, the writing part anyway.  Jeff, your post is well taken.  Thank you for prompting me to dig a bit deeper and put it out to share it.  You’re right, it is so good to take a look around and count the blessings.  I intend to look around more regularly.  It is so easy to get inundated and overwhelmed.  In looking around, I found my faith.  I didn’t realize I had lost it, and clearly I didn’t, but it was misplaced.  Should have been right there, and in fact, it was.  I just didn’t see it.

Thank you.  And Happy Thanksgiving all.

Angel Fire ArtSpace,
3469 Mountain View Blvd, Suites B2-4 Angel Fire NM
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Glorious Colors of Fall

The color here is stunning now. I took some photos, but don’t have my camera with me here at the gallery so can’t upload them just now. Perhaps I’ll add some later. Maybe it’s me, but it seems to me to be more brilliant this year.Either way, it’s beautiful. And though the air is crisp, the bright blue sky is the perfect accent with light spraying the leaves, inviting them to sparkle.

I’d love to be out taking more photos…but not yet. I’m here at the gallery. I don’t know how Sundays will fare as we move into November, but so far it’s been one of my busier days of the week. Here’s to hoping it continues!

I haven’t posted much over the course of the summer. Been too busy with other things, not the least of which was the move in the middle of July. Thank God that’s over! Life has settled back into a familiar rythym, though I’m eager for more studio time. It’s coming! Now the gallery is closed Tues/Wednesdays so I should get more work out in the coming months. To see what I’ve finished of late head to my facebook pages.

In the mean time, I’m headed outside with the phone to see if I can snap more photos while here. cheers!

Angel Fire ArtSpace,
3469 Mountain View Blvd, Suites B2-4 Angel Fire NM
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Streams

I woke up this morning, and realized (startled) that I had slept all night. It’s the first time in months and the number of times in the last 5 years I can count on one hand. Yay.

It’s amazing how much it impacts your outlook, energy and all that. After doing some things that had long been waiting for my attention (laundry, cleaning bathrooms, etc) I realized I didn’t really have time to paint before I had to head to the gallery. Hmm. what to do? I sat down and started sorting through “reference photos” stored on my hard drive. lots of them. I ran across some that made me smile, and some that made me teary. Some that I moved to the desktop to use for reference in the upcoming work I’m planning to start.

As I scrolled through the years I ran across this:

I heard a noise as I came out of the bedroom one morning to make the coffee. I looked out the back door (glass) and saw him. I thought he had a gorgeous tail, and if the door hadn’t been between us, I could have reached out and touched it. That’s the concrete of our back porch under his feet. That close. Stunning. Then Chloe (our dog back then) sauntered out of the bedroom and saw him. Need I say more? We decided to build a fence.

It reminded me of the first days we lived here, specifically building the house and moving in (it’ll take a book to tell that story).

The first morning we lived in our house, as I was sitting at the dining room table, I felt someone looking at me. Looked up and there, peering in that same back door was an elk. Female. Looking in longingly, like she wanted to come in, like we had taken her favorite grazing area. It was not lost on me. When we were building, every morning I’d come back to the construction site to find new prints in the soft dirt that would become our floor. Then I’d clean up the skat from various soon to be rooms. A tinge of guilt clouded my heart, that we were invading.

Now we’ve been here 16 years.

We don’t see the coyote, the bear, the mountain lion (it still prowls our yard, we find the prints in the damp mud beside the garage) or the elk as often as we used to. But we do hear them. We hear the owls hoot, the eagle screech, the coyote’s wail and the elk calling in the fall. It’s where we live, and hope we leave but a tiny footprint when we’re gone.

It’s raining now in Angel Fire while I type this as I wait in the gallery for the next car load of customers. The air smells fresh with wet pine. Remember it, I say to myself. Remember it.

Angel Fire ArtSpace,
3469 Mountain View Blvd, Suites B2-4 Angel Fire NM
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Fall is in the Air

It’s fairly quiet this afternoon at the gallery, so I grabbed my bag of what I’m working on, slid the phone in my pocket and headed for the door. Crystal blue sky looked inviting as I stepped outside, but then, whoosh! the wind hit me. Quite a cool wind mind you. The smell of Fall distinctly in the air. At once refreshing, but still caused a deep sigh. Can it be already? Wow has this summer rocketed by.

I stood there for a few minutes, and then decided good music inside would be more conducive to finishing the scratchboard piece I had in my bag.

So that’s what I did. And it’s done now, at least for the scratching part. I’ll take it home now and paint it, perhaps in the morning (I don’t open the gallery till noon on Wednesdays). I’ll post a pic once it’s finished.

I do have to fiddle with the new Sony A/V receiver first, mind you, to try one last time to see if we can make it work. Not my idea of fun, mind you, but gotta try it before they’ll take it back. Got it from American Express Rewards, along with a new HD TV. Read, great reward, but nightmare. TV is great. Receiver constantly and immediately goes to “muting” once you’ve selected a source. HDMI flickers black on and off and on and off..though we’re not really sure if that is the receiver or the satellite receiver. I thought AMEX rewards would take it back and replace it, but I apparently called three days too late after trying over and over to find a solution. Sigh. Hopefully the “test” Sony asked me to do will go quickly and it will either solve the problem completely or completely not, so that I can head to the studio and paint for a while before I head in to Angel Fire.

I thought about hanging out here for a while this evening, to watch the celebrated burning down of the “Central Reservations” building across the street. Guess I won’t be using that as a landmark any more! If you’re in town, head to Centro Plaza and enjoy some bbq on the Fire Department while you watch the show. I wonder how long it will take? Likely not long as it is wood and wood and old, so old. I don’t think I’ll hang out though. Been here all day and am more than ready to head home.

Anyhoo…cheers to the Fire Department and may the wind die down!

Angel Fire ArtSpace,
3469 Mountain View Blvd, Suites B2-4 Angel Fire NM
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Unexpected Visitor

here I was sitting at my desk, laptop on my lap, chair twisted so I could see out the doorway and window, up popped a prairie dog not 5 feet from me. I lept up and shouted “get out!” (like it speaks english!) and whoosh it ran between two jewelry displays and curled up in a ball.

Good grief. I ran to close the other gallery door, and whispered “thanks” to God that there was that hidden pocket door between the “office” part of the gallery and the front part of the gallery. Then I bravely placed the ladder next to the display where he lay terrified. I climbed up the ladder and began swishing at him with the broom, trying unsuccessfully to dislodge him from his hiding place.

Brother. Now what. I went outside to see if there was another soul in the building. Yes! Don’s vehicle was there at the end in it’s usual place. And so down to the end of the building I marched, watching backward to see if it ran out on it’s own. I returned with Don and Brinn in tow. We carefully blocked off access to any other potential hiding places and then Don went at it with the broom, it ran out, and tried to head to another spot, Don caught him swept him across the floor and it ran right behind the door.

Time for plan C. Brinn went to get the fireplace gloves while Don stood guard, the poor traumatized rodent now huddled behind the door. Gloves on, Don picked him and took him outside where it ran away, glad for it’s life. Behind it left wet spots from the release of his terrified bladder and yes other stuff too. ugh. So much for leaving the out side doors wide open. At least when I ‘m the only one in this part of the building. I’m sure it looked like a good safe place to wander and look for scraps of food. I’m afraid he didn’t get the best of the Art Gallery, and I hope he learned his lesson. The lady at the Art Gallery has a big broom and lots of Friends. Be warned prairie dogs, squirrels, chipmonks and all…enter the Art Gallery at risk of terror.

Enough excitement for me. Anyone have some wine?

Angel Fire ArtSpace,
3469 Mountain View Blvd, Suites B2-4 Angel Fire NM
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Quiet Saturday but for Loud thunder

Thunder is booming outside. O dear! On the other hand maybe it will send some Summerfest revelers toward this gallery! That would be a good thing. We’ll see.

In the meantime I’m doing some catching up. Bookkeeping, (ugh) up-cleaning, touch up here and there. Still need to stain one side of the front door, and stain the door between the two rooms, but it’s not to pressing. If it’s this quiet tomorrow maybe I’ll tackle that then. It’s kind of weird to be the only open business in the Centro Plaza on a Saturday afternoon. Hopefully as people get familiar with my new location and new hours they will come find me!

In the meantime I’ll keep my hands busy getting things ready for Arts About Town and the next trail event (Labor Day weekend) Can you believe it’s less than a month away? Stunning how fast this summer has flown. Before that, there will be my 7th Annual MFAF Gallery Reception. It’s a bit later in the month this year. Mark the calendar for the 31st (it’s a Tuesday) and plan to come to the festivities. It’s always one of the biggest receptions of the year.

Speaking of which, I need to get to work on the invitations. Later, friends.

Angel Fire ArtSpace,
3469 Mountain View Blvd, Suites B2-4 Angel Fire NM
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