Thursday, December 12, 2013

Max and Carrot - and Woody, Too

Oil on canvas, 12x12
So where does inspiration come from? I can't say that I know. But I do know I recognize it when it comes calling. 

And that's sort of the answer for me. 

Inspiration is not here with me 24 hours a day. The muses just aren't always singing. 

Luckily for me, I had a lifetime before this one that also brought me into contact with inspiration and the muses. And I learned, from my years of writing and editing, and writing headlines and captions, that the best way to greet the muses when they do show up, and entreat them to stay for a while, is to be prepared. 

When I was writing and editing a lot, I eventually began to think of those activities as muscles that needed to be exercised and strengthened every day. I wrote and wrote and wrote, and edited and edited and edited, and so, when inspiration showed up, I was tuned in enough to recognize it and lithe enough to capture it. 

The same goes with my painting. 

I paint and paint and paint. I paint every day. I try things, and try things again, and then try again. And when, for instance, Max goes from being a cardboardy face on a canvas to taking on the soul of the dog, I can recognize the moment of inspiration and grab hold and, if I am lucky, hear those muses singing. 

What about you? Do you think that inspiration deserves more respect, more of a princely welcome? How do you seek and find inspiration? 

Oil on canvas, 12x12

p.s., Carrot and Max live together, and their portraits are going to hang together. Fun! 

Want to give a pet portrait as a Christmas present? I'll send you a gift certificate to give to that special pet-loving someone. Email me at


AS MOST OF YOU know, I think, I am embarking in mid-January on a painting trip to California, and I'm looking for sponsors. 

Sponsorships run from $50 to $750. For your hard-earned $$, you receive art that I paint on the way! You also receive goodies from the road, including a 2015 calendar of paintings to the trip; postcards from my travels; regular emails with paintings, stories and photos from the road; and a chance to win a big painting of your choice. 

Sponsorships make great Christmas presents! If anyone wants me to suggest to a friend or significant other that you might like a sponsorship, please email me at, and I'll drop the hint. 

Dog of the Day

Here's Woodreau. He's a bichon we rescued; he was so messed up, it was a year before we could pet him. He did make friends with the dogs right away.

Want your pet to be the Dog of the Day? Send me a picture at

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