Friday, October 31, 2014

Zinnias - and Patch (the Cat, Not the Website)

Oil on black canvas, 48x48

I felt pretty good when, after the Paradise City Arts Festival, I left half a dozen paintings with Lori at Center Framing and Art in West Hartford Center, CT. Lori was so excited about my paintings, especially the new ones -  In the Barn, Poppies No. 1 and Rouge Bouquet - that I was excited to leave them with her. 

But then I got home and wondered what I had done. I pushed the wonder, worry and fear aside, and started to paint. And I love the paintings I've made. I can't wait to see them hanging all together in my tent.

This one, Zinnias, is the largest - 48x48 - and it is a true show-stopper. The painting is large, the flowers are large, the impact is large - doesn't it seem perfect for Texas?  

Dog of the Day

It's Patch! And while it's a little hard to tell from this photo, Patch has one green eye and one blue eye. He is a funny, funny cat - and amusing to me, since I used to work for Patch. 

Want your pet to be the Dog of the Day? Send a jpg to me at

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

I Shall Find You - and a New Neighbor?

I Shall Find You
Oil on black canvas, 12x36

I love a tall, skinny painting! Verticals are more unusual, and while a huge vertical can be tough to hang, a small one works pretty much anywhere. 

The colors in this one, the dark green foliage at the bottom, the stained-glass feeling at the top, the little blurb of orange and pink at the bottom, and the willowy feeling of the tall flowers, these are all things that make me like this one. 

Here's the poem from which I took the title. The poem is "Idyll," by Siegfried Sassoon:  

IN the grey summer garden I shall find you 
With day-break and the morning hills behind you. 
There will be rain-wet roses; stir of wings; 
And down the wood a thrush that wakes and sings. 
Not from the past you’ll come, but from that deep         5
Where beauty murmurs to the soul asleep: 
And I shall know the sense of life re-born 
From dreams into the mystery of morn 
Where gloom and brightness meet. And standing there 
Till that calm song is done, at last we’ll share  10
The league-spread, quiring symphonies that are 
Joy in the world, and peace, and dawn’s one star.

Dog of the Day

I'm pretty sure his name is Nick, and I'm pretty sure he's going to move into the little blue house next door. His human, Margot, has put an offer on Dulcie's house, and if the inspection and all the other house stuff goes well, we will have neighbors. Yay! 

Monday, October 27, 2014

Bouquet - and the Smartest Dog

Oil on black canvas, 16x16

I post my paintings fairly regularly on the Zest of Orange, a blog started by Middletown, NY, Times Herald-Record staffers whose jobs had been eliminated. The coterie of contributors has changed, but the blog chugs along with good writing and thinking, art and cartoons, and I'm always happy to be a part of it. 

Jeff Page, another contributor, wrote to tell me how much he liked my October Morning painting, and it got me thinking about the past few months. I've been in a period of vague dissatisfaction with my painting since about the middle of the summer.  

I'm at a point in my painting life where I recognize this feeling as a presage of a breakthrough, and so I've been riding it. I know you all have been reading and watching the evolution here, and I am beginning to feel that I'm finding my way in this new phase. This painting is one of the touchstones, I think. 

This new phase often involves the black canvas showing through. It seems to involve brighter colors, fewer strokes, and, within the boundaries of these stained-glass-like shapes I'm ingraining into the paintings, a new sort of freedom and looseness in the strokes. 

At least that's what it seems to me! 

I am really, really excited about these new paintings, and I am so hoping that other people will like them, love them, buy them, and delight in them as I do. 

I'VE LONG BEEN bothered by perfume and perfumey scents. They make my sinuses swell, give me headaches, make me sneeze and upset my stomach. For years, I could barely make it down the laundry-soap aisle in the grocery store. Being around teenage boys, who have a weird propensity for wearing gallons of super-smelly Axe, was torment. When I was the top dog in newsrooms, I set down strict rules against the wearing of scents. Otherwise, I griped and moaned and begged people to not wear perfume and cologne. 

I've grown out of much of my sensitivity, though someone doused in particular perfumes or cologne s can still cause me pain. So I was mystified when I came home one day and found my husband in the back hallway, smelling of cologne. 

We tried to figure it out, but couldn't. He wasn't using any new shampoo or deodorant. We were still using the same laundry soap. He hadn't been anywhere where he would have come into contact with anyone swimming in cologne. 

A week or so later, Peter figured it out. The trash bags we use are suddenly, stupidly, perfumed. I can't tell you how much I object to this. First of all, it's just plain stupid, at least in my opinion. It certainly doesn't kill the smell of rotting trash, just mixes it with the smell of perfume. It gives me a headache, makes my sinuses swell, and when I put a new trash bag in, it gets all over my hands. 

I wish manufacturers would just Cut This Out! 

Dog of the Day 

WE SHARE OUR home with five dogs. One is a hunting dog with a great nose. Two are total food hounds. A couple of them are so smart, it's scary. And four of them can see and hear. 

Zoe, a lhasa apso, is the oldest of the five. She's the smallest of the five. She is mostly deaf and nearly totally blind. 

And clearly, she is the smartest of the whole bunch. 

Peter had left the empty dog food bag in the back hallway. It had been there all day. After supper, he called to me, and pointed into the back hall. And there, next to the wire rack with the smelly trash bags, was Zoe, with just her hind end sticking out of the bag. She licked out the entire inside, scarfed up whatever crumbs were left, and had herself a great time. 

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Poppies No. 5 - and Driving on the Shore

Poppies No. 5
Oil on canvas, 30x30

While there's a part of me that does get tired of driving long distances to shows, most of me - I do admit! - kind of loves it. 

Every journey is an adventure, even if it involves going to a place I've been before. There's always something new to see, something interesting to ponder, something fresh that I might like to paint. And even though I've complained about driving through Texas, driving TO Texas seems different. 

I've never been to Houston, never seen Galveston and Padre Island and that whole south-coastal part of the state. I'm going to camp in the van at a state park down there for the week between the shows, and I'm really looking forward to it. 

And honestly, I'm looking forward to the whole experience, driving south, and then heading west. Who knows what I will see? It will be an adventure for sure. 

ONE OF THE THINGS I enjoy, driving around the Eastern Shore, is seeing the HUGE pieces of farm equipment that are also driving around the Eastern Shore. They are really something, these machines. 

Dog of the Day

He's a new dog in town, and I think his name is Sweetiepie. 
He's a very hairy poodle, who was absolutely frantic to say hello. 

Friday, October 24, 2014

Three Chickens, Two Fancies and One DOD

Three Chickens
Oil on canvas, 36x36

Had to look it up, but I've found out that roosters are chickens, but chickens are not necessarily roosters. And, according to Wikipedia, a male chicken who is less than a year old is called a cockerel. 

At a show a couple weeks ago, I learned that a bull is an intact male cow, used for breeding purposes. A steer is a bull who has been cut (I have young readers, so I am being a little vague here) before reaching maturity. A heifer is a female cow who has never given birth. Who knew?

This last discussion came up around a painting I will post soon, a 15x60-inch painting of a longhorn, that I made specially for my upcoming Texas shows. The artist in the booth next to me had spent his summers working as a ranch hand, and he knew his bovine terminology! 

I had a blast making this painting of the three chickens. The two on the sides are wyandotte chickens, and have amazing rounded feathers, with different colors on the edges than in the middle.  Here's a photo of a gold-laced wyandotte: 

I'D LOVE YOUR opinions about my website, The homepage background is black. The next page (new!) has a yellow background. The rest have an orangish background. Do you have a preference? Please let me know. 

And any of you who are friends with me on Facebook, I'm going to close my personal FB page by the end of the year, and do all my posting on my artist FB page. If you haven't already, would you all please click here to go to my Carrie Jacobson, Artist Facebook page, and "Follow" me? Thanks! 

MY HUSBAND PETER has adopted a new way of dressing since moving to Virginia. I happen to love it - and I also think it's a scream. I sent a photo of Peter in all his sartorial splendor to my friend Kevin, and while he liked the outfit, he said it reminded him of something his mother used to tell him: There's plain, and there's fancy; you want wear one of each, or two plains, but never two fancies! 

I cheer my husband on for wearing two, three or even four fancies!  

Dog of the Day

Think it's Jojo? (Click here and scroll down to see Jojo) It's NOT!
 It's Maggie, who lives down the street, and who we like to call "the fake Jojo."

Thursday, October 23, 2014

October Morning - and Bonnie's Amazing Art

October Morning
Oil on canvas, 10x10, $100

Yes, I love autumn! And yes, I love the morning, too. The light is clear, the shadows long, the day just beginning and full of promise. 

But these mornings, the dawn seems to come soooo late. I know most folks hate the shorter days that we get when we set the clocks back. I have to say I love that sunrise is earlier. I'm usually up at 5 or 5:30, but these mornings, in Virginia, the sun doesn't come up until after 7. 

MY NEXT SHOWS are in Texas, yee ha! I'm pretty excited. After the first one, in Houston, I will have most of a week to explore and paint. I'm going to camp at a state park outside of Galveston, and explore Padre Island and all that Texas coastal stuff that I've seen on maps, but never seen in real life. I'll post photos. 

The shows are the Houston Fine Arts Festival,  Nov. 1 and 2, and the Winnsboro Fine Arts Market, Nov. 8 and 9. Fun! 

My friend Bonnielynn Brankey  makes gorgeous paintings (click here to see her Ocean Colors website), and beautiful, luscious hand-painted scarves. If you're starting your Christmas shopping, check out her website and her Etsy store, too!
Above, one of Bon's scarves. Below, one of her paintings! 

Is there an artist or a craftsperson you'd like me to feature on the blog? 
Please drop me a line at 

Dog of the Day

I've showed this photo of a Williamsburg, VA, bichon to our bichon, Woodreau, about 100 times. Woody is STILL scruffy and grimy. Guess he just doesn't know how to take a hint... 

Monday, October 20, 2014

Autumn Morning - and Xmas Already???

Autumn Morning
Oil on canvas, 10x10

I nearly drove off the road about six times, on the way from Cynthia and Kevin's home in northwestern Connecticut to the show a couple weekends ago at Paradise City in Northampton, MA. The autumn colors sang out, brilliant and clear and voice by voice. It was not the full chorus bellowing out "Hallelujiah," to carry out the metaphor, but a small choir singing an airy, complicated, gorgeous contrapuntal song. 

Finally, it was too much for me, and I got out and set up the easel and painted. I hung the little painting wet - and was thrilled when this mother and daughter decided to buy it. The daughter is an artist, and we all were on so much the same wavelength, it was, well, music to my ears. 

Happy buyers

My painting in the landscape

Really??? It's not even Halloween. 

Dog of the Day

Here's Abby, attack dog. She is turning out to be a gentle soul, but I think she'd definitely attack anyone who wanted to mess with Peter or me, or any of the dogs.