Thursday, February 28, 2013

Banana Joe - and Tubac and Back!

Banana Joe
Oil on canvas, 12x12, $350

YES, this is Banana Joe, who won the Westminster Kennel Club dog show this year! He is a black dog, and as such, his face is hard to see. But as a blue and green dog, he's not so hard to see!

Sponsors and others have already seen the following, but many of you haven't! Apologies to those of you who have already seen it! 

On March 9, I'll be embarking on "To Tubac and Back," a journey to Arizona to paint, visit my dad and his wife in Tubac, and participate in the Fourth Avenue Street Fair  in Tucson.

I'm gathering sponsors for the trip, following the model of a CSA - community-supported agriculture... and I'm asking for your participation. 
It's a great chance to be part of something fun, and to get original art (and more) in the process.

For any donation of any amount, you become a sponsor, and get a whole raft of fun sponsor benefits (you'll see these in just a moment!), and a chance to win a painting of your choice, including a commission, up to 36x60. You also get to help choose my route!

For $100, you get a 10-inch by 10-inch painting from the trip. These sell for $100 ordinarily, and they sell quickly. Your $100 donation ensures that I paint enough of them that you get one. You also get a chance to win a painting up to 36x60 - And there's MORE (coming... just a moment...)

For amounts over $100, you get the small paintings, discounts on a larger painting, a chance to win the big painting. And there's MORE (moment... moment...)

Discounts apply to trip and non-trip paintings.

Want to donate more than $100? WHEE! Here's what I've cooked up! 
  • For $150 - you get one 10x10 and 5 percent off a larger painting
  • For $200 - you get two 10x10 paintings and 10 percent off a larger painting
  • $300 - three 10x10s and 15 percent off
  • $500 - five 10x10s and 25 percent off 
  • Sponsor  me for $1,000, and you will have five 10x10s and 60 percent off any painting, including a commission, up to 36x60 - or a large painting from the trip, along with several smaller ones. For that amount I'll also come to your house and make you lunch, or groom your dog, shampoo your rugs, fold your laundry... (well, maybe not shampoo your rugs... but you get it. I'll be very grateful!) 
If you'd rather, each 10x10 can be converted into $50 off a larger painting.

I'll also display your names prominently on  my blog, The Accidental Artist (if you want) and on my website, too. 

To sponsor me, click here or on the donate button below!  It's EASY, and fun and you can use PayPal or a credit card, whichever you prefer. 

And thank you! 

OK, here's the AND MORE: 

Sonsors are getting more than art and the chance to win a BIG painting. You're getting SUPER SPECIAL SPONSOR-ONLY REWARDS, INCLUDING:
  • The first look at all my paintings from the trip, via a super-secret, sponsor only blog
  • Special photos, videos and postings For Sponsors Only, on the super-secret blog
  • A postcard or two from the road (email you street address to me
  • A collage, signed by me and suitable for framing, of images from the trip
  • The chance to win a T-shirt that I will paint in (and get paint on) during the trip. It will be an XL or larger, and I PROMISE it will be clean (but painty) when you get it. 
The one disclaimer: Donations are NOT tax-deductible.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Red, an Update & and Invite

Oil on canvas, 12x12
Donation to Eastern Shore SPCA

Where the HECK have I been?

After the daunting trip to Florida, I traveled to Hartford, CT, and participated as a vendor at the King's Foot Guard Dog Show - and had a great time. I got one big commission - and an abstract one at that (check out Roy and Bert to see what I mean), which makes me so happy.

I love painting these, the abstracts, but making them is terrifying. There can be no mistakes, none. You put a mark on the canvas, and there it stands, naked, without coverup or background. No changing your mind! No second guessing!

So much like the very best moments in life, yes? Those moments when you have the courage to jump, the strength not to look back, the serenity not to question yourself.


The update

I leave in about 10 days for my Arizona journey, To Tubac and Back. I have a raft of sponsors already, but there's plenty of room for more. So why not sponsor me? Everyone who pitches in anything gets a chance to win one of my paintings. For $100, you also get a 10x10 painting and a discount on a larger painting - and the chance to win a big painting, too.

The sponsorship arrangement is fun and interesting, and has changed my outlook on the trip. It feels much more like a mission this time. I am not just wandering the country looking for cool stuff to paint; I am wandering the country looking for specific cool stuff to paint for very specific and special people. I love knowing that I am making paintings for these folks! I am more directed and energetic than ever. Want to get involved? Click here to find out how.

Here's my sponsor list so far:

Kathryn Yamartino
Tiffany Williams
Laurie Cooper
Dov Kugelmass
Pat Hart
Blake Wenz
Maggie Platte
Donald & Paula Cooper
Kristen Singh
Linda Fite
Nancy Russell
Sherry Svec
Heather MacLeod


The invite

Longtime followers of my blog will remember the Art for Shelter Animals Project, which I started years ago with my friend Shiela Tajima. ASAP has languished for well more than a year now, as I got too busy with Patch and with life to give it the attention it deserves. 

It's time to start it up again, and I'd like to invite any and all of you who make art to consider joining me in relaunching the project. 

Here's how it works. You make a portrait of an animal in your local shelter or with a local rescue group, you send me a jpg of the portrait, and then you give it to the shelter or rescue group. They can do whatever they want with it. Anything. Once you give it, the piece is theirs. The more creative the shelter, the more uses they will find. 

And more than anything, the shelter will be grateful. They'll be thrilled to have the painting and happy for the attention. 

It was making paintings for ASAP that liberated me in terms of using colors, and using the palette knife, really. The shelters are so happy to have the pieces that there is No Pressure At All. Making these portraits showed me that dogs can be painted in shades of green and purple and still be recognized. 

Please join me! Make a portrait of an animal in your local shelter, or with your local rescue group, and donate it. Send me a jpg before you give the piece away, though! You can go to the shelter and take photos, or do what I do and use

This is a great way to help your community, to help some dogs and cats and rabbits and whatever else is in your shelter, and to do it without involving money. If you teach art classes, it's a great topic for an art class, too! 

Thank you for considering it! 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

A New Idea

Storm in the Black Dirt
Oil on canvas, 16x20

My second tour of Florida was as bad as my first. The 27th annual Boca Raton Museum of Fine Art was a bust for me. It was a lovely show to be in, with exciting and strong work - but no sales for me, and apparently low or no sales for many others.

Exasperated, disappointed, unhappy, I was packing up when I was struck by an idea that I'd thought of in passing but never pursued: Try a dog show!

So this weekend, I will travel to Hartford, CT, to sell dog portraits at the Governor's Foot Guard Dog Show at the XL Center.

I'll bring an indoor set-up, all my dog portraits, get some more postcards made up and see what happens!

The show is Saturday and Sunday at the X-L Center. The doors open at 8 a.m., and the show starts at 9 a.m. Tickets are $10 each; I don't know about kid prices.

Nearly 800 dogs are entered; it's one of the bigger shows in the area, and a good one! Click here to find out about the Governor's Foot Guard... Click here for the XL Center's info! 

I'll paint while the show is on - so that should be fun for people to watch. And who knows? It's surely worth a try.

I did get out of Florida without being skunked. I stopped to visit a friend, and she bought the painting at the top of this blog entry. It's a painting I made a while ago, and it has long been one of my very favorites. I'm glad it went to a person for whom it has meaning!

So, not for the first time, I say: thank heavens for friends and family!

Thursday, February 7, 2013


Oil on canvas, 12x12

I truly feel that painting was given to me by God, or whatever you want to call the higher power in the universe. I was given this gift, and there is no time that I feel it more directly or more truly than when I am painting animals.

My first painting was of dogs, and the next dozen or so were also pets, either dogs or cats, my own or friends'. I paint people's pets regularly these days, and I love doing it.

When I am on, when I am making the connection, I paint a pet portrait in one fairly breathless sitting. The portrait comes easily to me, and directly, and quickly. My eyes move, my hands move, my heart moves, and the painting comes through me and onto the canvas, just like that.

If I am not on, I sometimes have to do a painting two or three times before I get it right.

With every pet portrait, I give thanks for this gift that came to me when I was 50. I give thanks that I had the insight, the support and the lucky breaks to do something with it.


Would you like me to paint a portrait of your pet? Or do you know someone who would like a portrait? Please click here to drop me an email! I work from photographs, I ship all over the world, and I can tailor a painting to suit you and the colors you like. A 12-inch by 12-inch painting is $350, and I go up in size and price from there.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Running Before the Storm

 Running Before the Storm
Oil on canvas, 36x60

On Tuesday, I head to Florida for the Boca Raton Museum of Art Fine Art Show - and I know it is going to be a fabulous show for me!

Though my first time in Florida was not good, sales-wise, it opened my eyes and my soul to a whole lot of possibilities - and forced me to make changes in attitude and action that already are paying off.

Those first Florida shows prompted me to start working with Prosperity Coach Joe Skelly. They brought me to the idea of my sponsored painting trip, which is coming up in March. They made me examine my mode of transport, and the wisdom of keeping my beloved teeny camper.

And most of all, they made me get even more serious about my success - and vow to have even more fun painting and going to shows.

What felt like a failure at the moment has been transformed into a success, and I am grateful. So off I go to Boca Raton, and the February Florida Success Tour!


p.s., there is still time to join the following wonderful sponsors and take part in my "To Tubac and Back" adventure! To read more about it, and join these supportive folks, click here! 

Kathryn Yamartino
Tiffany Williams
Laurie Cooper
Dov Kugelmass
Pat Hart
Blake Wenz
Maggie Platte
Donald & Paula Cooper
Kristen Singh
Linda Fite
Nancy Russell
Sherry Svec


This year, my booth will actually have a SIGN! WHEE!