Thursday, December 18, 2014

Paintings, Calendars, Sponsorships, Books & More! Ho Ho Ho!

California Calling Book!  Filled with paintings, photographs and writing from my 2014 painting trip. Starts at $22.79; order two before Dec. 19, using the code 2PLUS, you will get 20 percent off. Order three or more by Dec. 19, use the code 5PLUS, and you'll get 30 percent off. Blurb says it can get the books to you before Christmas if you order on or before Dec. 19. 

California Calling calendar! $12.99 on Lulu. Twelve paintings from my California Calling trip! Lots of fun!

Sponsorships! Be a part of my upcoming trip, or give the experience to someone you love. Most sponsorship levels get you original plein air art from the trip. Click here to find out more

Gift certificates!  Drop me an email and I'll send you a pdf of a gift certificate for a painting, a sponsorship, or a pet portrait! My email is

Available Paintings! 

The paintings below are available directly from me. 

Paintings by me are also available at Center Framing and Art in West Hartford Center, CT; Current Reflections in Wachapreague, VA; Harbor Gallery in Norfolk, VA; J. Gallery of Fine Art in High Point, NC; and JWV Artists, Charlotte, NC. 

Order soon to get them in time! 

Calla Spiral
Oil on black canvas, 12x12, $350

Into the Hills
Oil on canvas, 10x30, $200

Blue Petals
Oil on canvas, 18x36, $200

Tennessee Afternoon
Oil on canvas, 10x10, $100

October  on the Eastern Shore
Oil on canvas, 10x10, $100

Blue October Hills
Oil on canvas, 10x30, $300


Blue Plate Special
Oil on canvas, 10x30, $150


Cheriton Cove
Oil on canvas, 8x10, $100

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

I Do - And Good Ideas for Presents!

"I Do"
Oil on canvas, 16x20

I had planned to finish all my commissions in November, and then take the month of December to relax, visit with friends and family, and experiment with some new approaches, some new content. Launch my people project. Start on paintings for a children's book a friend has written. Pursue some other ideas - make paintings that might eventually be for sale, but are not necessarily intended for sale. This, I'm finding, is a luxury. Who would have expected it? 

Being sick for three weeks in November and early December really upset my plans. I still am working on commissions. I'm still mailing paintings away. I'm already planning paintings for the spring shows, and for galleries that really want new work - work that right now, I just don't have. 

But I took time over the past few days to make this painting, one of a series of paintings of people at specific moments in life, some big, like this one, but most small. 

I saw this scene on a hot day in July, at the courthouse in Accomack. I pulled the car over and took a bunch of photos. Though I didn't even attempt the camouflage material, I hope you can tell that the groom is a soldier or a sailor. In my mind, I imagined him about to go off to to boot camp, or off to his boat, young and strong and just married. 

Still looking for that perfect Christmas present? 

BUY A PAINTING! Check out the available paintings on my website, jacobson arts.  If you find something you like, there's still time to get it in the mail. And I'm happy to make you a gift certificate in any amount you'd like. 

CALIFORNIA CALLING BOOK! It's 54 pages long, and starts at $22.79 for softcover. I got a note from Blurb this morning offering discounts, too. If you buy two books, use the code 2PLUS, and get 20 percent off. Three or more, use the code 5PLUS and get 30 percent off. These offers are good through Dec. 19. Click here! 

CALIFORNIA CALLING CALENDAR! They're 12 months, and $12.99 on Lulu. Each month showcases a painting from my California Calling Painting Extravaganza. It's fun and really pretty. Click here! 

SPONSORSHIPS! My next painting trip takes place in February, and will bring me back to where I spent the first months of my life - For Defiance, AZ. The town is on the Navajo Reservation in the northeast corner of the state, a gorgeous, amazing area that will be a rich painting subject. Sponsorships start at $50, and go as high as you'd like. Click here for more info and to choose a sponsorship. If you give one as a gift, I'll make you a nice gift certificate that you can print and give. 


The woman who bought this painting from me had been looking for a painting for that spot for years. It's the first thing you see when you walk into her house. I am honored that my painting is hanging in this special spot. 

Dog of the Day
Who would guess that this sweet-looking cat is a warrior? 

Last night, Abby (below), who weighs 70 lbs and stands 3 feet high, snapped at Puffy, the sweet-looking cat above. Puffy, who had been sitting on the arm of the couch, jumped off. She ran about 4 feet away, sat down and licked her paw, then jumped back up on the arm of the couch and proceeded to hiss and spit at Abby, and was going to attack her, until Peter stopped it. I was laughing too hard. 

Monday, December 15, 2014

Autumn in Tennessee - and a Change in the Palette

Autumn in Tennessee
Oil on canvas, 10x10, $100
Please email me if you'd like to buy this painting! 

I'm in the middle of collecting an inventory of all the paintings I made in 2014. I'm up to June, and I'm in the 75-80 range. I have a whole bunch in a folder on my desktop that I haven't posted, and it's time to get busy with that! 

So here is one from November in Tennessee. The air was clear and yellow, and though the morning had been chilly, the afternoon bloomed with sudden warmth and brilliant color. I got off the highway and painted this, and then managed to get dreadfully lost. But I made it home. 

The paint on the yellow tree in the center is very thick, very bright. The tree shimmers in my painting just as it did on the side of the road there. I like this one. 

Sometimes I think I like autumn best of all. 

THERE'S REALLY NOTHING nothing I'd rather do than paint, and with each painting, I think I learn something. I try to try something new with each one, even if it's something small - and then I pay attention to see how that thing changes the painting, my outlook, the outcome. 

I listened to an online talk yesterday, and one idea that came up was that to save time, you should arrange your palette so that the colors you use most are closest to you. It might be only a fraction of a second that you save, but those fractions add up. So I did. It was a bit alarming to have a different arrangement of colors - but it made me think about them all anew. Interesting. 

And yes, I have thought about using fewer colors. Every once in a while, I do. But I love having all these colors! Love it! 

Dog of the Day

Here's Patch, the kitty who lives with the wonderful woman 
who cuts my hair. Patch is a riot! A smart, funny cat, 
Patch amuses me every time I visit.  
Want your pet to be the dog of the day? 
Send a jpg to me at

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Poppies on Black

Poppies on Black
Oil on black canvas, 16x16

With my penchant for leaving paintings unfinished, or to put it another way, leaving the canvas showing, I got to this point with this painting and I just fell in love with it. Several people urged me to "finish" it. The black was too much, too distracting, too dark - but I just couldn't. Well, I just didn't want to, that was really it.

So I hung it, like this, in the show in Houston - and it sold. A woman came by the first day, and then came back later. She couldn't get it out of her head, she said. And the black, the drama of it, was part of what intrigued her. 

Before I began painting, I thought I knew who I was. I mean, I was in my 50s, after all. I had a successful career, a secure marriage, a happy home life. I was intellectually, physically and spiritually active. I'd done some stuff, seen some things, been some places. 

Now, I see that while I might have known who I was for the situations I was in, I really had very little idea of who I was deep down. There was lots of stuff in the way. 

These days, I am on a journey of discovery. I'm clearing the stuff out, keeping what's important, tossing the rest. I have an increasingly clear idea of who I am, and am increasingly happy with the person I'm seeing. 

Paintings like this - and all the decisions that go into them - are part of the process. 

In Place

Here are two of my sunflower paintings in an incredibly beautiful display
 in the home of friends who are also collectors. One is 36x48, I believe, 
and the other is 36x72. I do wake up at night sometimes worrying 
that they will fall, but my friends insist that 
the paintings are safe and secure. Don't they look fantastic? 


Dog of the Day
It's Zeus, dog about town, at the Wachapreague 
Christmas celebration Saturday night.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Spine of the Earth - and Me Vs. Target

 Spine of the Earth
Oil on canvas, 18x24

I've made this painting a few times now, and every time I make it, I think it gets better - and more interesting.

The original painting was a plein-air piece I made on Ocracoke Island, off the Outer Banks of North Carolina. It was on the way home from that trip that I stumbled into Wachapreague. That detour started a series of events that involved me quitting my job at, and ended with us moving to the Eastern Shore of Virginia.

I went to the Outer Banks that October thinking that I wanted to paint the ocean, and the place where the ocean met the sand. Instead, I found myself mesmerized by the dunes. They rose and fell like breathing. Pulsed like the earth dancing. Shifted and churned like waves turned nearly solid. The wind blew hard the entire time I was on the Outer Banks and Ocracoke, and I could see it sculpting the dunes, carving them, moving them, grain by grain by grain.

I loved the wild romp of colors, the bright, sun-glinting sand, the deep maroon of some beachy scrub, a million shades of green and gold and tan in the grasses, and all of it churning and swirling and waving in the wind.

Every time I approach this painting again, I capture more and more of that feeling. I see more colors, feel more pulses, paint the wind and sky and rhythmic dunes with more verve and more abandon. Perhaps next fall, I'll go back to the Outer Banks and paint on site again.

LOOKING FOR INSPIRED Christmas/ Hanukkah presents? Why not buy them from me? I'll appreciate it so much more than Target or Macy's ever would.

For $12.99, you can get a really nice 2015 calendar showcasing 12 of my California Calling paintings. Click here to go to the Lulu site, where you can buy a calendar or 10.  

For $22.79 and up, you can get a book of my writings and paintings from the California Calling Painting Extravaganza. Click here to go to the Blurb site, where you can see all the options and buy a book or two. 

For $50 and up, you can sponsor my upcoming painting trip, the Origins trip. I'll be going back to Fort Defiance, AZ, where I spent my first couple years, and I'll paint the land in and around the town. There are a whole bunch of options, and I promise you will love the blog and the paintings I make! Click here to go to the Jacobson Arts website, where you can find out more, and become a sponsor.

And finally, you can always buy a painting from me, or give a gift certificate for a regular painting or a pet portrait. Check out the Jacobson Arts website, or drop me an email at, to find out more.

Dog of the Day

When I was in Winnsboro, TX, last month I went out painting early one morning. Afterwards, I drove around the neighborhood, just to see a little more. There was pretty much no traffic - just this one truck driving down the drive and out toward the road.... with the farm dog racing alongside. He went as far as the mailbox, then stopped, watched the truck drive away, and headed back toward home. 

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Mr. Owl - and These Dark Days

Mr. Owl
Oil on canvas, 6x12

I will never love the holidays as much as I loved them when my mother was alive. That pang of sadness, it's always with me, between Thanksgiving and Christmas, and I know I'm not alone. 

Friends of mine are facing deep and painful losses now. Other friends are going through the holidays without loved ones, for the first time. The distance between death and this part of life need not be small to matter. It's been decades since Peter's mother and brother died, in the holiday season. Decades since we lost our dog Najim on Christmas Eve, since my grandparents passed away. 

It's hard to celebrate the birth of Christ, to find joy in family and in friends, to seek peace and goodness and look ahead to a new year when pain is your canvas, sadness your colors. 

The holidays go on around you, with presents and sweets and Christmas carols, and they swirl and shine and don't touch you. And that's how it has to be, this year, next year, for however long. You must feel what you feel. There is no hurrying grief.

In years to come, the holidays will never be the same. They will never look as sparkly or as innocent. But the years will put a distance between you and the pain, and in time, you will celebrate again, remembering the ones you love and the light they brought to your darkest winter days. 

Dog of the Day

It's a long-legged Abby. She's had some bad days lately, behaving 
like the big, dumb puppy she is. But with training
 and some time, she'll learn. 


Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Sadie, a Good Year, and a Friday Event in Hartford

Oil on canvas, 12x12

It's too late to have me make a pet portrait for you to give this holiday season - but it's never too late for a gift certificate for a pet portrait. I love finding, seeing and painting the soul of a beloved dog... or cat... or turtle... or hamster... Sadie came out really well, I think - playful but still serious, girly but still very tough. Painting portraits of pets is a thing of joy for me!

The 12x12 size is $350, and there's plenty of time for me to get a nice gift certificate to you!


IT'S THE END of the year, and a convenient time to step back, take stock and set goals.

2014 was great for me. I made paintings that I loved, and took strides to discover new directions, new ways of expressing my heart and soul. I had a fantastic plein-air painting trip, and got to see parts of this amazing country that I'd never seen before.

I participated in 20 indoor and outdoor art festivals. I met hundreds of interesting, enthusiastic art lovers. I made friends with artists and volunteers, buyers and lookers, children and spouses. I found a few serious collectors.

I began not only to get good ideas for creating products to sell, like books and calendars, in addition to my original paintings, but I also managed to make some of these happen.

After a daunting bout of reality at a show in Westport, CT, in the middle of the summer, I found myself infused with new passion and new zeal. I promised myself to make landscapes that were different from everyone else's, or to stop making them. I promised myself to learn to see and use and understand new colors. I promised myself to work harder to understand what it is to be a contemporary artist, and take whatever strides I could - even if my heart was in my throat - to grow in that direction.

At one point, I sent myself an email that just said: "Carrie paint the light." And so I have, and so I shall.

I worked hard this year, but I would not have worked as hard, or had the ideas I had, made the strides I made, or had the successes I've had without you. You folks who have followed me and supported me on my blog, who have bought my paintings, showed up at my shows, told your friends and family about me, written to me, pushed me, questioned me, and been truly and fully interested and invested in my success, you are an enormous part of all of this.

And so I say - WE had a great 2014! Thank you!

I'm sending you all great hopes and good wishes for a joyous holiday season - and a fabulous 2015.


IF YOU LIVE IN or near Hartford, CT, or you're going to be there on Friday, here's an event you might consider:

My brother, writer Rand Cooper, sent me this email:

On Friday, at the Mark Twain House, Marlon James, novelist and teacher, is going to be on hand to read from and discuss his new novel, "A Brief History of Seven Killings."

This book, Rand says, is rumored to be a front-runner for the Pulitzer Prize in fiction, and he has heard nothing but raves about it. The New York Times' chief book reviewer, Michiko Kakutani, is a notorious shredder who hates almost everything... and she calls the book "raw, dense, violent, scalding, darkly comic, exhilarating and exhausting — a testament to Mr. James’s vaulting ambition and prodigious talent." Rand says the full review can be found by clicking here. 

James will discuss the book and sign copies of it. The event is free, but you have to register to attend. Go to, or call 860-280-3130. 

Dog of the Day
It's Muppet, Dave and Maura Ammenheuser's bichon. 
He is a great dog, and I got to visit him, and his humans, 
on my trip back from Texas. 
Want your pet to be Dog of the Day? 
Email a jpg to me at