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Thursday, March 31, 2016

Summer Bouquet


Summer Bouquet
Oil on black canvas, with gold leaf, 30x30
Please click here to email me for price and availability

This painting is on its way Friday to Center Framing and Art in West Hartford Center, CT.  I've been in this gallery for longer than any other, and I love being represented by Lori. The gallery moved early this year, and I haven't seen the new digs yet, so I'm excited. I plan to paint in front of the shop for at least part of the morning, weather permitting. Ronet Noe will be there with me, also painting!

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A FRIEND ASKED today about my Abraham Lincoln paintings - an idea I had back in the summer, to paint Abraham Lincoln doing this and that, in 21st century America. I made one painting, of Abraham Lincoln jumping rope with a Muslim girl - and while I really liked the painting, it became clear to me that the Lincoln idea was a short road.

I've found a whole bunch of short roads while I've been on this journey. The underground bunnies, the tiny food paintings, tiny bird paintings, and to some degree, the swirly sky paintings. This last road might pick up again after a little detour, and who knows, maybe I will come back to some of the others.

It's interesting to me to see how - no matter how exciting the idea is - a few paintings in, I can tell whether there's more to go, or whether that's just it.

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Dog of the Day 

It's Henry, Cynthia and Kevin's new puppy, having his first bath. I can name a few Wachapreague dogs that could use a good bath... 

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A Final Thought

"If I could say it in words, there would be no reason to paint." 
- Edward Hopper

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Ready for the Handoff

Ready for the Handoff
Oil on black canvas, 30x40

I'm so glad I changed my plans and spent time taking photographs of the Pony Express riders, back in January. I know I'm a little nutty about the whole event, but it transported me, brought me to the Old West, made me imagine - with a clarity I'd never experienced - what it must have been like to live back then. 

Also, I have kind of a thing for cowboys and horses. That's very much the 21st century me - but again, I think it's because they evoke a time and a way of life that call to me. I know I wouldn't REALLY want to live back then - with outhouses, woodstoves, gas lights at best, and exhausting days filled with the hardest kind of living and working. Of course, I don't want any of THAT... just the wide-open spaces, the clean air, the beautiful horses and the sense of adventure and discovery. 

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REMEMBER, I'LL BE at Center Framing and Art, 968 Farmington Ave., West Hartford Center, CT, on Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. If the weather is nice, I'll be outside, painting. If the weather is yucky, I'll be inside, hanging around...

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Dog of the Day

Today, the Dog of the Day, AND the odd extra item I try to find regularly for you all, are one and the same. This is Abby, our plott hound, up on the bed while Peter is still sleeping. 

Abby has a strange habit of finding Peter's boots and bringing one or both of them to wherever she is. She doesn't chew them, or do anything to them. She just brings them. I think they're her comfort, her binkie. Funny, eh? 

The stuffed squirrel that you can see above is a different story. Abby takes all the toys away from the puppies, especially the new toys. The squirrel is the newest one, and just before I took this photo, she'd slunk up to the puppies and yanked the squirrel away from them. This, she will chew up, de-squeak and disembowel. 


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A Final Thought

"Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life." 
- Pablo Picasso


Monday, March 28, 2016

John, Paul, George and Ringo

John, Paul, George and Ringo
Oil on black canvas, 36x60
Please click here to email me for info on price, availability and shipping/delivery

I have no idea why I enjoy painting cows so much. I love how big they are, and how blocky. I love their ears and their knobby knees and how they stare at you when you stare at them. Yes, I eat beef, and drink milk and wear clothing and shoes made of leather and suede, and I make an effort not to think too much about cows when I'm eating or getting dressed. I understand how weak this is of me, but I believe it's possible to love cows and also enjoy all of the above, without driving myself crazy. Well, without driving myself too crazy. 

At any rate, I really love this painting, especially the blues and greens and Ringo's one evil eye. 

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FOR ALL OF YOU living near West Hartford Center, CT, I'll be bringing new paintings to Center Framing and Art, in its new location at 968 Farmington Avenue, next to Max's. Doesn't my sunflower painting look great in the photograph? Lori Chozik, who owns the gallery, says the new location is wonderful. It's smaller, but lots more people come in, parking is easier and it's great to be in a new space. I'll bring the paintings in on Saturday, and will either paint or just hang around for a while, depending on the weather. Please stop in if you can! 

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THIS IS MY favorite news story in at least the past 10 years, if not of all time. The Brits asked people on the internet to name a new research vessel (above). The winning name? Boaty McBoatface. Hahahaha! 

Click here to read a brilliant and hilarious New York Times story about this. It might have been my mood in the moment, but I was laughing so hard when I read this out loud to Peter that I could barely make it through the whole short story.
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Dog of the Day 
Met this little guy out in Tubac. Cutie! 

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A Final Thought

"Great art picks up where Nature ends." 
- Marc Chagall


Thursday, March 24, 2016

Tennessee Mountain Home

Tennessee Mountain Home
Oil on black canvas, 36x36
Please click here to email me for price and availability

In real life, you can see more clearly several receding banks of mountains in the background of this painting. I've tried six or seven photographs and so far, none has captured the boundaries/nonboundaries between them. 

It's sort of a problem with the kind of art I've been making. I've been working to abstract the landscape a little, to break it a bit more into pieces, and meld one level into the next. I do believe that we are all connected, and this way of painting is a way of telling that story - at least in my hopeful mind, it is! 

This painting is a departure for me on other levels, too. What is that person doing there? Going home? Looking back? Simply walking the dog? I have my own story, and would be interested to hear if the painting conjures stories in any of your hearts.

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FOR THE PAST couple months, I've been posting my paintings large on this blog. Do you like them large? Did you prefer them smaller? 

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Dog of the Day


My friend Galen got a new puppy! Xena's parents were muttleys. Buster, above, is OK with the puppy, though you can tell who owns the dog quilt...


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A Final Thought

"The position of the artist is humble. He is essentially a channel."
- Piet Mondrian


Wednesday, March 23, 2016

The Earth Laughs in Flowers

The Earth Laughs in Flowers
Oil on black canvas, with gold leaf, 40x40
Please email me for price and availability

One of the joys of leaving newspapers is that I am no longer required to be emotionally involved in the news of the day. I can choose to let it have a deep impact on my life, or to let the events of the day touch me and then dissipate. Most days now, this is what I do. It's what I must do, I find, if I am to remain sane and whole and devoted to finding the joy in my world and making art that captures that joy and passes it along.  

Today, I watched the news of the bombing in Brussels, and I listened to candidates for the presidency try to make hay from the events. I thought about the lives lost and the incredible, seemingly unstoppable violence, all in the name of God. 

And then I turned the television off, and I played with the puppies. I rejoiced in the warmth of a spring morning and the deep, simple pleasure of the first cup of coffee of the day. I thanked my God, a God who - in my understanding - doesn't want war or strife, for the many gifts I have, for my family and friends and this simple life. I turned away from the violence and the hate and focused on love and the light. While this might be simplistic, while it might be superficial, it is what I can do, and for that, I am thankful. 

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Dog of the Day
Ruth's dog Patsy died suddenly last fall. When Ruth and Tim were in Tucson this winter, 
they found Lucy, on the left, and adopted her. Vinny, right, seems pretty happy 
with the change, and Ruth and Tim are happy, too. 

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A Final Thought

"To create one's own world takes courage." 

- Georgia O'Keeffe




Sunday, March 20, 2016

Homesick Blues

 Homesick Blues
Oil on black canvas, 15x60

When I drove through Tennessee on my way home from Arizona, I was struck by the beauty of the state. I was in eastern Tennessee when I saw this trio of buildings near the highway. Even though I was aching to be home, I doubled back and got off and found this farm, which I photographed from about 50 angles. 

In addition to the buildings and how they sit on the land and pick up the light, I really like the misty quality of this painting, the way the sky and mountains meld here and there. I also like the little bits of spring pink and green in the trees behind the buildings. The shape of the canvas is fun, too. Usually I paint longhorns on this shape and size, but I think it works for this landscape, too. 

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Dog of the Day
Seems to be a springtime of puppies! Meet Henry, whom my friends Cynthia and Kevin found at a shelter in Tucson. He's part German shepherd, part airedale. Isn't he adorable? 


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A Final Thought

"The object of art is not to reproduce reality, but to create a reality of the same intensity." 

- Alberto Giacometti


Friday, March 18, 2016

The Red Bandana

"The Red Bandana, "36x36
Oil on black canvas with gold leaf

I'm hoping people love these Pony Express painting, and that they buy them, because I'm loving painting them. I'm enjoying experimenting with perspective a little, bringing the horse to the front, putting the cowboy to the back a little, and stretching him by making his head smaller than it might be. Peter's not crazy about the gold leaf, and is worried that I might use it too much - but I am enjoying it, and hoping that I will know when enough is enough. 

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AS I WRITE this, the puppies are curled up together at my feet. Lulu is actually resting ON my foot, and Doc is curled up with her, licking her ear. I admit, I was not completely sure about adopting not one, but TWO more dogs. But I'm so very happy that we did. These two really, truly need each other. They sleep on each other, play with each other, watch each other - and clearly, learn from each other. 
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My dad is Donald Cooper... I stopped to take the photo of the Serva-Teria 
and noticed that across the street was Cooper Tires! 

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Dog of the Day 
This guy was snoozing in the sun in Tubac.

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A Final Thought

"Those who do not want to imitate anything, produce nothing." 
- Salvador Dali



Thursday, March 17, 2016

Safe at Anchor

Safe at Anchor
Oil on canvas, 10x10, $125

For a New Englander like me, it is still a thrill to have a 70-degree day in March. Yes, the wind blew briskly off the water, but as long as we stayed in the sun, the day was warm enough to make a plein-air painting. The gulls squawked, people walked by, and but for the lack of boats and cars, it could have been summer.                                                                                                                                  My friends Pat and Carol run an antiques store in town. A couple years ago, a guy going very fast in a truck smashed into the building, knocked it off its foundation, broke most everything inside, and ended up destroying more than half of the store. Pat and Carol have had it rebuilt, and it's smaller but very cute, and will soon be open. 
I'm making a 2017 calendar of Wachapreague, which will be available through me, of course, and in their store. So this is Painting No. 1 for the calendar. Yay! 

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I WAS THRILLED this week to find that I've been lifted off the waiting list, and will participate in the Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts, which has been named the No. 1 show in the country by Sunshine Artists, the major group that lists and ranks festivals. So that is very exciting! 

The festival is July 14-17, in State College, PA, on the grounds of the University of Pennsylvania. 

Meantime, I've been rejected by the Boardwalk show in Virginia Beach, and wait-listed for Stockley Gardens in Norfolk. Sigh. 

Please check out my website, jacobson-arts.com, to see my show schedule. 

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Dog of the Day 

Well, DOGS of the Day... Meet our new additions, Dr. Cooper (brown eyes) and Lulubelle (blue eyes). Less formally, Doc and Lulu. They're about 10 weeks old, at least part Catahoula leopard dog, and part who knows what. They weigh about 7 pounds. 

The big dogs were wary at first, but now they're loving having New Friends! And Peter and I are loving the enthusiasm and joy with which the pups address life. Everything is new, everything is exciting - and maybe, everything is edible. Their energy and enthusiasm are contagious! Yes, it's madness to have six dogs, but it's fun, too. 


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A Final Thought

"The main thing is to be moved, to love, to hope, to tremble, to live." 

- Auguste Rodin


Friday, March 11, 2016

Pony Express

Pony Express
Oil on black canvas, with gold leaf
At Priba Furniture, 210 Stage Coach Trail, Greensboro, NC

My beautiful gallery in the JH Adams Hotel in High Point, NC, has closed. But as my grandmother used to say, when one door closes, another opens. That's been the case with me - and with remarkable timing, too.                                                                                                                   I was in Arizona, nursing my injured knee, when I got a call from Gwenn Lance, who has run a gallery in Greensboro, NC, for 14 years. She was on the brink of moving to Priba, a large furniture store in Greensboro, and she wanted my work.                                                                                      On my way home from Arizona, I stopped in Greensboro, met Gwenn and saw the beautiful store and the amazing art she's collected and hung on the walls there. It's an exciting venture, and I'm thrilled to be a part of it. 

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ANOTHER FUN OPPORTUNITY came along last week, when artist Tamara Gonda asked me to participate in an artist-question series she's writing for her blog. I was her first guest artist, and am honored by the opportunity. 

To read the piece, click here - (http://www.tamaragonda.com/blog/march-art-talk-month-carrie-jacobson) and be sure to check out Tamara's work and her other blog posts, too. 

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I've never seen self-checkout lanes in a convenience store/gas station, 
but I saw them at this Pilot outside of Knoxville, TN! 

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Dog of the Day 
Saw this cutie at the show in Tubac. Very serious... 

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A Final Thought 

"To be an artist is to believe in life." 
- Henry Moore

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Hard Times Come Again No More

Hard Times Come Again No More
Oil on black canvas, 10x10

When friends of Dad and Paula told me about the town of Oatman, Arizona, where wild donkeys roam the streets, I knew I had to go. So when my knee was healed enough for me to hobble around a little, I said goodbye to Dad and Paula, and goodbye to Tubac, and set off for home - with just a slight detour to see Oatman. It turned out to be far more than a slight detour. It was a six-hour drive in entirely the wrong direction - but was probably the most beautiful drive of the entire trip. 
The road I took from Phoenix to Kingman - Route 93 - wound through rich, golden desert and then climbed up, up, up, to traverse the tops of mountains, through canyons, Joshua Tree forests, and conglomerations of strangely beautiful rock formations. Even if Oatman wasn't all it was cracked up to be, I thought, the drive itself would be worth it. 

Good thing I'd thought that! Turned out that the donkey herd had been thinned just the week before, with most of the males and many of the females being adopted out. 

Before I introduce you to the one lone burro who did show up, let me first tell you that if you decide to go to Oatman, do not, under any circumstances, drive there from Kingman. Do whatever you need to do to circle around and drive via Bullhead City. The first 10 miles of the road from Kingman are fine. The final 15 or so miles are the most frightening I've driven in my life. The road has no guardrails, no shoulder, is barely wide enough for two cars to pass, and on the right is a terrifying, sheer, deadly drop-off to the rocks below. I've driven on scary roads all over the world, and they don't hold a candle to this one. 

The lone burro I met is called Duke by the locals. He's the male of the herd, and one guy told me Duke is the smartest of all of them. Young males would come down from the hills to court the females, and Duke would run, feigning fear. The young males would fight among themselves, and when they were exhausted, Duke would show up again and beat the tar out of them. 

He has a broken ear and a bunch of battle scars, but he's smart and tough and gentle. He ambled up the center of the road into town, and stood there braying until the tourists heard him and began to flock to him, handing over pellets of burro food. 

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Scenes from the Road

Above and in the two photographs below, scenes from Route 93.  The trees in the middle photograph are Joshua trees, which only grow in a few places in the US.


If you click on the photograph above, you can read the story of the burros of Oatman.



Here's Duke, in all his broken-eared glory. 

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Dog of the Day
Met this great-looking guy at the show! 

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A Final Thought

"To be an artist is to believe in life."

- Henry Moore