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Saturday, May 10, 2014

Skunk, Heron, and Coach Joe

Skunk
Oil on canvas, 6x12
Great Blue Heron
Oil on canvas, 6x12
I had another excellent session this week with Joe Skelly, my prosperity coach.

With his typical, blinding insight, he righted me. The ground had been feeling bumpy under my feet, but when Joe helped me rebalance, it seemed welcoming and springy.

I've been stressing about the number of paintings I need to produce - three galleries want sunflower and flower paintings, one gallery wants a cow painting, and I need sunflower and cow paintings for the shows, too.

The sunflower and cow paintings are fun, fun, fun to make - but it takes a while to paint them, several days, usually - and because they're big, and have lots of paint on them, it takes forever for them to dry. So it seems I never have enough.

Joe suggested that I take three days a month, religiously, to paint sunflowers and cows. Every month. That means all the galleries will have as many as they want, and I will, too - and I can stop worrying every day about them.

A related problem that he solved rather easily is that I simply lose track of things. Pretty much, if I can't see it, it tends to not exist. I can write a list in a notebook - and I've gotten very good at this - but more than half the time, when I close the book, the list simply vanishes from my consciousness.

Sometimes, I feel that I am a little damaged in this regard. I have to use clear containers. I am better off with shelves instead of cabinets. I can sort and see and make sense of an immense amount of clutter, but if the stuff is in a box or in a closet or under the bed, and I need it, chances are I will go out and buy it again.

So Joe suggested a big white board. DUH. I can list shows, commissions, sunflower-painting days, etc. Simple. Elegant. Effective.

I'd encourage you to reach out to Coach Joe if you think he could help you. His number is 757-675-6569. He'll do a first consultation for free, and you can see whether it would benefit you to work with him. Meantime, click here to check out his blog, The Parched Iguana.


Here's my drying wall, a couple weeks ago. 

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I HAVE SOME EXCITING shows coming up! A week from today, I'll be in Indianapolis, at the Broad Ripple Art Fair . This is one of the top shows in the country, and it's a feather in my cap to have gotten in. You can never tell about how your work will sell in a show, though, and it is a loooong drive. But I'm going to do it, and see how it goes. 

The following weekend, I'll be in Northampton, MA, at the Paradise City Art Festival. This is a fabulous show, another one with great art and excellent fine craft. There is a gate fee, but if you click here, you can get a coupon for a discount. 

After that show, I deliver my animal and landscape paintings to the Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center in Mystic, CT. The center is a a real treasure, a quiet wonder of a place, with lots of programs, lots of trails, and lots of ways for kids and adults to develop or deepen their relationships with nature. 

It's run by Margaret Jones, a high school classmate of mine, and its current communications director is Elissa Bass, my former boss at Patch.com. It was Elissa who invited me to do the show, and I'm particularly grateful to her, because it got me painting birds - and I'd had no idea how much I would enjoy painting birds! 

The Nature Center is a great place to go, to take the fam, to enjoy a lovely day with family and with nature. 

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Dog of the Day


I ENCOUNTERED THIS dog at the show in Rockville. And yes, that is a rock in her mouth. This is what she does, her humans told me. They take her for a walk, she selects a rock, carries it along with her on the walk, and deposits it in a little pile back at her home. 

Years ago, we had a Dalmatian named Sam, who used to chew rocks. He'd pick one up, gnaw on it, and drop it, covered with dirt and dog saliva, at your feet, so that you'd pick it up and toss it for him. 

One day, we were in a park in Hartford, and Sam showed up with a little paper bag in his mouth. He dropped it at my mother's feet. She opened it - and it was full of rocks. We never, ever figured it out. 

***

     

Pretty, yes? These banks of azaleas are at a hotel down the shore from us. The whole shady front yard is full of them. I think I'm going to go down there today and paint, before they all pass. 



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