Monday, September 26, 2016

Christmas Gazebo

 Christmas Gazebo, Wachapreague (above)
Moonrise (below)
Both are oil on black canvas, 10x10
Available at Seaside Antiques and Art, Main Street, Wachapreague

I love our little town. Love it in the winter, when it's deserted and gray (though I am one of the people who deserts it, for at least part of the winter)... I love it in the spring, when the birds come back and the azaleas bloom and dogwoods are everywhere. I love it in the summer, when it's at its busiest, when the second-home people come in, with their dogs and their golf carts and their vacation outlooks. And I love it the best in the fall, I think, when the salt marsh turns gold, the birds start to fly south and the mornings are crisp and rich with the scent of the marsh and the sea air. 

I love how quiet it is here, how peaceful. A neighbor's Canadian cousin, staying here for a month, said that the anxiety that plagues her constantly at home is just gone here, and I know how she feels. 


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HEATHER MACLEOD a talented artist I'm lucky to have as a friend, seems always to be brimming with fun and interesting ideas. I've become increasingly interested in one of her ideas, and I hope you will be, too. 

In about a week, I'm leaving on the Big Skies Painting Trip. I'm heading to Montana, Wyoming and South Dakota to see our beautiful country, explore some of its lesser known places and to paint. You can come along with me, well, virtually. Sponsorships start at $125 for a 10x10 painting, and for special, sponsor-only blog posts, some goodies from the road, and my eternal thanks.  

But say you'd like to support me, and support the trip, but don't really want a painting. You're not crazy about the West, you don't have room for another painting, you just don't want more stuff or (gasp!) you might not be really crazy about my paintings (it happens, I know, and that's OK). Or there could be a million other reasons why you'd like to support the project but not end up with a painting. 

Here's where Heather's idea comes in. She said I should make some paintings and just leave them, for random lucky strangers to take home. The only price for them would be to send me a jpg of the painting in their home. At first, I was skeptical, but the more I thought about it, the more I delighted in the idea. 

So I'm going to do it. I'm going to leave a few paintings for random people to bring home. I'll put a note on the back explaining the process, and I'll see what happens. Would you like to be a part of this fun scheme? You can go to the Big Skies Painting Trip page on the Jacobson Arts website, click on the Abandoned Art PayPal button ($100), or email me for more info. If you sponsor a painting, I'll ask that the eventual owner of the piece send YOU an email, too. So, fun! We will see what happens! 


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Dog of the Day


Would this be you, if you were a dog? 

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A Final Thought

"Well, art is art, isn't it? Still, on the other hand, water is water! And east is east and west is west and if you take cranberries and stew them like applesauce they taste much more like prunes than rhubarb does. Now, uh... now you tell me what you know." 
- Groucho Marx

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Exploring an Idea



These two paintings -"Four in Hand," above, and "Swirling Sky," left, come from an experiment I've been doing. In both, I put much of the paint on the canvas in loose blobs (big loose blobs), and then used my knives to pull the paint into images. 

I love both of these pieces, though neither does precisely what I was hoping to do, which is to pull the whole painting - somewhat abstract, somewhat realistic - from the blobs of paint. 

This is tantalizing to me, and I'm going to keep trying it, either until I learn to master the idea, or I find I'm at the end of this particular road. 

The top painting is now in the home of a buyer, who is deciding whether to keep it. It's 15x60. The lower painting, 20x20, is in a gallery, Art House Charlotte, in Charlotte, NC. Please drop me an email if you're interested in either, or in having me make a similar painting for you. 

Dogs of the Day  


Jojo (above) and Zoe (below) have been gone for just about a year now. I miss them both,  and also I miss Smokey, who died a few months ago, and Sam and Looie, who passed in 2014. It's been a tough stretch, and we knew it would be, way back when. 

But our dogs enrich our lives. They make me laugh, they make me stop and play, they help me love with abandon and joy, and to forgive when forgiveness is required, right away and without rancor. There is always the pain of loss, when you have a dog. That's the price we pay for the love of a dog, the companionship, the countless hours of laughter and comfort. Zoe was a dear girl and I miss her. Jojo was the dog of my heart, and I'll never stop missing her. 


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A Final Thought

"Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone." 
- Pablo Picasso

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Nebraska Farm


Nebraska Farm
Oil on black canvas, 10x10, from a photograph by Jeff Swanson
sold

Well,  I've had two loser shows in a row, in Pittsburgh, PA, and Lorton, VA. At least in Lorton, I made expenses, didn't lose money on the show, and got to spend time with one of my lovely collectors, who bought Nebraska Farm, and is also a sponsor of the Big Skies Painting Trip.                                                                                                                               I have a show this weekend in Durham, NC, and while part of me is - as ever - hopeful, part of me is feeling beaten and downtrodden, a little bit sure this show will also be a bomb. I am focusing on hope, though, and on remembering that people like my paintings, and people buy my paintings, and two weak shows in a row is an anomaly. Coach Joe would tell me to look at the year as a whole, and not to focus on one or two (or three) shows, and as a whole, it's been a good show season. Even so, I feel more than a little dread about this weekend. 

But I will square my shoulders and raise my chin and head into this show with faith and hope intact. 

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RECENTLY, A PAINTING of mine was included in a nice online group exhibit, all about nature. It's on a cool and very helpful business -of-art website, Artsy Shark. You can check out the exhibit by clicking here. 

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Dog of the Day

Doc and Lulu were neutered on Tuesday.  Much to my surprise, Doc - solemn, serious, sensitive - took his operation in stride. If he weren't wearing a collar, you'd never know anything had happened to him. But Lulu, who is full of light and love and sunshine, is miserably unhappy. She hates the cone, can't figure out how to do anything while wearing it, she's itchy and unhappy and flinging her body around in her little crate. I feel terrible for her. 

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A Final Thought

"If we, citizens, do not support our artists, then we sacrifice our imagination on the altar of crude reality and we end up believing in nothing and having worthless dreams." 

- Yann Martel, "Life of Pi"










Saturday, September 10, 2016

Swirling Sunflowers


Swirling Sunflowers
Oil on canvas, 20x20

The Workhouse Arts show in Lorton, VA, starts in just a few hours. I'm a little late posting this, mainly because I was just too exhausted after setting up in 93 degree heat. Yow. I thought summer had ended! There are no trees in the yard at the former prison, but in spite of that, it is a lovely spot, and the show looks fantastic. It's the second year of the show, and the temperature is supposed to be deep in the 90s, at least today, and so - who knows? But then again, who ever knows?  In the former prison, which has been totally and beautifully renovated, there are artist studios, and I'm hoping to check them out during the weekend. Next weekend, I'll be in Durham, NC, at the Centerfest show. Then I head west for the Big Skies Painting trip! Sponsorships are still available....
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Dogs of the Day
Yup, it's our dogs, or most of them, gathered at the gate to say goodbye! 
And that's Peter, also saying so long.

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A Final Thought

"We have art in order not to die of truth."

- Friedrich Nietzsche





Friday, September 2, 2016

Summertime!

HERE'S A SWEET sunflower painting that's 10 inches by 30 inches. It's just the right size to hang in a little nook, or in that space between two closets or two windows. If you're interested, this painting is at Center Framing and Art, 963 Farmington Ave., West Hartford Center, CT.

                                  ***

HAPPILY, A SUNFLOWER painting has been chosen to decorate the brand-new hospital that's being built in nearby Onley. My painting, which will be 36x36, will hang somewhere on the first floor, so that sounds like lots of people might see it. Very exciting!

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MY NEXT SHOW is next weekend (thank God I have no show during this hurricane-stuffed Labor Day weekend!). So, Sept. 10-11, I'll be at the Workhouse Arts Festival in Lorton, VA. It's only the second year of this show, but I heard that the first year was good, so I will give it a try. I'll be in Booth 72, and I'll post a photo when I get my tent set up. For more on the show, click here. 


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BELOW IS ANOTHER painting I should have posted ages ago. I made it in the spring, when the forsythia, dogwood and cherries were bursting forth with color and the exuberance of spring. Some of my favorite collectors bought this piece at the Paradise City show in the spring.

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Dog of the Day 
Met this beauty at the show in Wickford, RI, this summer. He has one blue eye and one brown! 

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A Final Thought

"Weeds are flowers too, once you get to know them." 

- AA Milne (via Eeyore)

Thanks again to Lynn Hoins for sending this good quote! If you have a quote about art, flowers, cows, the Eastern Shore or anything pertinent, and you'd like to share it, please send it to me at carrieBjacobson@gmail.com. Thanks! 




Thursday, September 1, 2016

Fred and Ethel

Fred and Ethel
Oil on black canvas, 36x48
Please email me at carrieBjacobson@gmail.com 
for price, availability and other details! 

FRED AND ETHEL, CHARMING though they might be, did not bring me good luck in Pittsburgh. Or maybe they did.

Set-up for the Shadyside show, on Walnut Street in Pittsburgh, is at 3:30 a.m. on Saturday. You're allowed to drive in to the very narrow street, unload your stuff, and then get out. You can start putting your tent up at 5 a.m., when everyone has driven in and unloaded. After the show, the process reverses. You take everything down and put it on the sidewalk, and when everyone is done, you can all drive in. 

Most artists had to park in the organizer's lot, which was several miles away, and then catch a shuttle bus back and forth from the show street to the lot. 

Because of all this, Alison Thomas and I did some different stuff. Alison is a photographer/digital artist and a friend - check her work out at Serenity Scenes - and she and I split a suite at a hotel close to the show, and also decided to rent tents. When you rent a tent, it comes with all the weights, and also is put up and taken down by the tent guys. Because we both had vans, only one of us could park in the lot by our hotel; Alison had to park in a downtown garage, as my van wouldn't fit. 

So... We got there at 3:30 a.m., unloaded, and reparked the vans. In time, the tent guys came along and put our tents up, and we were able to hang our work. Both show days were blazingly hot. I sold one painting, and that was it. But I loved the couple who bought my painting, and as friends have reminded me, it's better to sell one than to sell none. 

The show closed at 5 p.m. on Sunday. I took my paintings down, wrapped them up, went and got my van and was able to park in a small lot close to the show street. I made two trips to the van with my handtruck, and was closing the van doors when all hell began to break loose. 

Artists at shows are obsessive weather-watchers, and we all have scads of weather apps on our phones. None of them picked up the storm that blossomed over Pittsburgh. It had been a sunny, hot day, and then suddenly, we were in the middle of thunder, lightning, high wind, sheets of pelting rain and yes, hail. 

Alison had been unable to get her van out of the garage - the gate wouldn't take her credit card, and wouldn't take cash. While she was wrestling with that, I found a tarp and put it over her photographs, which were on her handtruck. I moved the rest of her work to a doorway, covered it with a sheet and piled up stuff in front of it. I didn't notice her wall panels, however, and they got soaked. A huge huff of wind blew some of the coverings off her work, and a few pieces were damaged. 

But that was nothing compared to elsewhere in the show. Artists who hadn't rented tents had hauled their work to the sidewalk and many had the tents partly disassembled.                                                                                                                   The weights were off, but the tents were still standing. People hadn't begun to load their vans because their vans were parked miles away. This photo, by artist Tom Wachs, gives you a sense of the wreckage.                                                                                              
Work was ruined. Tents were ruined. People were hit by art and tent legs. Everyone was soaked. I was wet through to my underwear. The next day, my shoes were still soaked. By the time the storm stopped, and we were able to get Alison's van in to load her stuff, it was 8:45. on the way home, we nearly drove into a mass of downed wires, which, for all I know, were live. 
It was a terrible show for me, that's for sure. But in the end, I guess I was one of the lucky ones. And I am thankful for that. Here's a short video of the hail. 


video

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Detail 

After my most recent posting, Morning's Glory, a friend suggested I post 
a detail shot of the texture of the piece. So here are a couple! 


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Dog of the Day 

It's Red, whose human is Christine Stark, our dog pusher. Yup, Christine has been responsible for us having Abby, Koko, Dr. Cooper and Lulu. I joke, but Christine is a force of nature, who has done tremendous work fostering and finding homes for dozens, if not hundreds, of dogs. A passel of puppies was responsible for Christine losing her rental home. The group she worked for must be missing her like blazes right about now. 

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A Final Thought

"We are saved only by love - love for each other and the love that 
we pour into the art we feel compelled to share." 

- Tennessee Williams

Thanks to Lynn Hoins for sending this quote to me! If you have a good art-related quote that you'd like me to include as A Final Thought, please send it to me at carrieBjacobson@gmail.com




Thursday, August 25, 2016

Morning's Glory




Morning's Glory
Oil on black canvas, 36x60

Cheryl Wheeler, in "Summer's Almost Over," sings "Summer's almost over, and the weeds have won at last..." and I don't know about you, but that's where we are. The gardens are happy and the flowers are blooming, but the weeds are happier, and through all the heat of the past month, have triumphed. They haven't choked out the flowers yet, but it is only a matter of time. 

This painting seems to capture all the glory and thrill of summer, when the sun is clear and the air is warm and the afternoons seem that they will last forever.

You can see this one - and several other new pieces! - live and in person this weekend in Pittsburgh, PA, at the Shadyside Art Festival! It's the 20th anniversary of the festival, which is one of the top ones in the country. I don't know my booth number yet, but will post it here on the blog, and also at Jacobson Arts  as soon as I find out. 

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IN OCTOBER, I'm heading west, to paint in Montana, Wyoming and perhaps South Dakota. I can't wait! It's one of my favorite parts of the country, and because of my schedule, I haven't been able to visit in years - except in the dead of winter, which is not the best time... 

I still have sponsorships available for the Big Skies Painting Trip! For $125, you will get an original 10x10 plein-air oil painting, regular blog postings about the places I visit, the people I meet, the dogs I see... and some goodies from the road. You can sign up for bigger paintings, as well. Click here for more information, or check out the Big Skies Painting Trip on my website, Jacobson Arts.

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I THINK THIS this sign is pretty funny. I also think the sign just past the George Washington Bridge, "New England, Exit 4" is funny. It amuses me to think that one exit could take you to an entire, huge area. 

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Dog of the Day

The two with the white noses? They got into a bag of flour. Ah, puppies. 

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A Final Thought

"The purest and most thoughtful minds are those which love color the most." 

- John Ruskin

This quote was sent to me by a faithful blog reader. Thank you, SaraBeth! If you have an art-related quote that you love, please send it to me at carrieBjacobson@gmail.com. Thank you!