Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Open House, again!

So ol Mother Nature didn't like my plans.   Over a foot of snow last weekend, altho that didn't stop one group from coming!    (they were east river people, hehe)   

But, I am all set up, and have lots of artwork and soaps ready for you!   Soaps are on sale for $5.00  and all artwork, framing, etc is 10% off!   If you've ever wanted to commission something of your own, now would be a great time!  

I have quite a few small paintings that are unframed, so you can add your own touch to a gift, of which I promise your giftee will not get doubles of!     There is time yet for me to frame a few, but you'll have to be quick!  

So, let's try again--OPEN HOUSE this weekend, noon til 6, both Saturday and Sunday! 

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Some Raw Deals Coming up!

Some of the small works that will be available at my Open House
In a short time,  I'll be having my Holiday Open House.   I'll be offering several "raw deals"....paintings that are ready to frame Your way!   They are raw, just the painting itself, ready for Your personal taste to frame. 

So often the frame becomes an issue as it won't go with the decor of the new owner.   These small works could easily be framed in time to give for Christmas, and talk about one-of-a-kind!    What a perfectly thoughtful, personal gift!   

Holiday Open House, one mile east of the old Lucas school (Sully Flats)
December 1 & 2, noon til 6pm.    Come enjoy cookies, meet up with some friends and have a fun afternoon!    

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Save the Date!

New paintings and soaps!  

Save the dates, December 1st and 2nd.   Noon til 6pm each day I will be hosting my Holiday Open House, at my home and studio located near Lucas.  

I will have several new soap scents (and shapes!), gift bags, and even a soap for Fido!

There will also be many new paintings from my plein air season this year, and some studio works as well.   Some are framed, some are ready for your own framing ideas.   I can help with that as well.

Also, there is still a little time left if you want something custom in time for Christmas.   Frame that graduation or wedding photo, children's art too!   A pet portrait maybe?    There's not much time left, so let me know what I can help you with!  

Monday, October 29, 2018

Is "talent" real?

I often hear "I wish I had talent".  Hmm.  I do understand it's meant as a compliment, and I appreciate that.   But art is often seen as this invisible, magical thing that isn't possible for many, if not most, people.  

Here is one of my very first watercolors.  I was in high school when I did this, entered a calendar contest and was included.   It's not bad for a high school kid, but there's plenty of issues with this horse....

   I spent tons of time around horses then, but yet made lots of mistakes.   Here's a more recent sample of a horse portrait....

Did I get more "talent" by now?  How exactly does a person 'get talent' anyhow? Or you either are born with it or not, is that how it works?

Everyone seems to have a desire to do certain things.   I have absolutely no desire to fly but yet my dad loved to.    Same with boats, no thanks!   

I do have the desire however to create.   So within having that I pursue new ways, teachers and ideas.   That is how you 'get talent."

I can't say going for it is always a fun time.   This past weekend I did something along these lines, I took another art class.   A drawing class.   Why?   Because I know the value of this exercise.    Is it fun?  Um, not really.  Honestly, its a beastly amount of work that is tedious at times, and generally doesn't produce a piece of art to sell.

“Amateurs look for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work.” – Chuck Close
At left is what I spent 3 hours work on this past Saturday.  (No, mine's on the right)   My lines are so light they are invisible, but they are there!  I have hours and hours yet to work on this.   I am copying this master-copy.  Why?  Who wants a copied copy of a....foot?! 

Its called Bargue plates, and they are an old method of teaching and learning to be as accurate as possible in drawing.   Not really a fun time, but the learning that happens certainly is!   These are like scales in music--no one buys a cd of scales to jam out to, but its the learning of them for their own value.   
"Good things come to she who waits...if she works like mad while she's waiting!"
So go out there and claim your talent!   Its just hiding under a pile of effort.  

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Open House!

....All the boys and girls
Joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea
Joy to you and me" (-Three Dog Night)

Fall has almost come and gone already, but I have been asked several times about having an open house again...so YES, I am!

On December 1st and 2nd, I'll have a Holiday Open House, at my house and studio!    I will have lots of new paintings from my trips this year and from home as well, and dont' forget allll those new soaps I've been posting about!  

I will have another little surprise as well, something new I've been working on and will have available during the Open House.  

So make plans to enjoy some cider and cookies, meet up with your friends for a fun afternoon!   (Time to be announced...)

Sunday, September 30, 2018


I planned a trip to Custer just to enjoy it.  No agenda, no rules; just me and my little dog, and my art supplies.   How perfect!
Not what I was expecting!
It was bitter cold so this one was fast and loose!

Of course Mother Nature thought she'd pull a fast one on me and decided to rain all day my first day, and then a few inches of snow the second day!    The third day was sunny and beautiful in a more typical way but I thoroughly enjoyed the other days also.

 I didn't get out and paint nearly as much as I planned due to this weather, but took tons of photos to work from later (in my warm studio!).  
*Really* not what I was hoping for!

the finished study that was on the easel in photo above
Study of Yellow bush, on the final and only sunny day!

creekside grasses in the sun on the last day

graphite sketch in the car to stay warm
These little pieces are all 5x7-ish and simply studies for myself, a record of my mini vacation.   I would very much like to try this again, but when its not so cold and wet!

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Soap Shop!!

I've been making more soap than ever, and its become a problem with stuff all over the place!   So my hubby once again stepped up to help me--making a nifty little workbench with gobs of storage!   I will hang some upper cabinets also, and a cute little curtain for a door, but yea, my first official soap shop!  

I will be making some new things to add to my current large bars, ready in time for my in-home open house early this winter!  

I'll post a photo when its not so messy!

I've also been doing some paint outs, and did the sketch crawl yesterday in Sioux Falls.  That's when artists are given a list of spots to go sketch, and a limited time to do them all.   Like a game, and it was a fun day, albeit a bit warm.   I will say tho., with soooo many people and cars and noise I was in a pretty big hurry to get home!
Here's a piece I did plein air in DeSmet, all framed up.   8.5 x 10 pastel $175.  

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Busy Busy!

Summer is always a very busy time for me, I can barely keep up some days!
 Lots of riding, and lots of gardening including making chokecherry topping and pickles.    

I haven't' spent much time at all in studio but instead, I've been going out several times per week to plein air or at least take photos to use later.   I also want to be all ready for the upcoming plein air events, one of which I'm the poster girl this year!  Check the link!

And soaping, tons of soaping!   I've gotten so many types that my current system was no longer functioning at all.   So I did some swapping with a friend  and now have this dandy cabinet!   I used chalkboard paint on boxes to store various types and can write that on the box for ease of use.  

Also....I have begun planning a late fall home-show!   So be on the watch for the dates, I have new paintings, will have some plenty of soaps, and a few other things not yet decided.  
A recent plein air from nearby   7x9 pastel "Tipton Road Tree"

Monday, June 25, 2018

Rain and more rain

Power Poles  pastel on sanded paper 6x9

Section Line 6/24  6x9 pastel on sanded paper
We've gotten so much rain lately, the roads are mud, the dams and ditches are flooded.   I admit to rather liking this weather, at least for a while.   It lends an atmosphere that we don't see as often in my area.   Since all my gear is still loaded into Big Alyce (my tahoe), I went out last night even with spitting mist.   The sun was coming out every so often, and with everything so soaked, it was beautiful.  

The greens were so intense, as were the blue of the clouds passing over.    I was able to sit outside the car for a couple little sketches, enjoying the freshness of it all.   I used a deep blue jean colored paper, and put a hussle on it in case one of those deep dark clouds opened up.  

Roads are holding my interest lately and I especially like the section line roads--they are not traveled much and most are just a couple tracks leading off into the distance.   I would love to ride a horse down each one!   

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Simple Life

I am trying more every year to keep my life simple.    One of the simplest ways to learn to draw, to learn to paint better, learn to SEE better, is to go out painting plein air.   Now, this isn't saying simple is easy, oh no, dear friend, far from it!   As an art buddy said to me recently, "the simple life is a lot of work!"  yup! 

To go do a simple plein air sketch, you gotta have your gear at the ready, and packed in the car is best.  I loaded my 3 set ups a few weeks ago and have gotten out a few times.    I always wonder why I dont' go more, and fully intend to; just somehow doesn't always turn out that way.  

But with my gear loaded, its pretty easy to just hop in the car and go!   Here's my sketches of recent...

Wet Road 5x5 pastel on canson paper   I didnt' even bother with sketchbook for a thumbnail, and this set fits in my lap in the drivers' seat, its very small!   Its somewhat a limited set but I was able to get what I wanted for the most part.

Field Studies, 6x6 and 6x9 copyrightCMCernetisch    These 2 are from sunnier days than the top on, and were both done on uart paper, with an underwash that you can still see.  

Monday, April 30, 2018

Continuing Education

We've all heard the cliche "when one door closes, another opens".  That's what happened to me last week;  for many years I've wanted to have a taste of atelier schooling.  This is very classical type of work for an artist to learn to see and render very accurately.    Its very intense, and most are far away.   I was dismayed that I couldn't go to one this summer, but a friend suggested a teacher only a few hours from me.  So I jumped at it!

Safet Musinovic has a studio in Sioux Falls SD.   I and my friend Bonnie decided on 3 days of several hours.  This seems simple enough, hahah, not so fast!   This was hard!  Its intense!   Its frustrating!   And I loved it!  Safet was a wonderful teacher, very patient and kind and helped every step of the way.  I learned sooo much, and I see so many ways I can use this in my own work, including plein air.  (painting outside).  

I worked on a cast of a mouth, while Bonnie continued on a full face of a bearded old man she'd started a few weeks ago.  A mouth, hmm...figured I'd get that done in a few hours.  Boy, was I wrong!   But its not about having a nice sketch of a mouth--I can do that in a few minutes.  Its digging deep to train the eye to see so very well.   Instead of fixing problems, you take time to be accurate from the start as much as possible.   Its making tiny marks and adjustments. 

We used hard and medium charcoal on white Canson paper, and a kneaded eraser.   Each day felt less awkward.   By day 3, Safet's words were sinking into my poor little overheated brain, and I finished my cast drawing.   All the way home I was thinking of his words, and looking in a new way.   As hard as it was, I am enthusiastic to start another learning project.   Guess this ol dog can learn new tricks.
Bonnie and I with our work

My patient teacher Safet

the beginning with a small sketch 'plan'
midway thru

Safet's super cool studio
My final drawing.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Taking the Back Roads

5'Oclock Shadows; 9x12 pastel   $145 ready to frame
I am a pretty serious homebody--I've made a life and home that is pretty great, so its got to be a good reason to pry me out of here.   But on occasion, I do, usually for art and or a horse event.    I do not care to be in the car much, especially on the interstate; I know, its quicker but so very boring!!   So, I take the back roads. 

On the back roads, there are so many things to see!   Horses and cattle grazing in lush pasture, barns in various states of health, rows of crops, kids playing on swingsets.    The back roads are slower, yes, but to me, oh so worth it!  

I was heading home just as the sun was setting last summer, and found this scene.   I pulled over, let Arty out (another bonus of those backroads--no traffic!)  and snapped some photos.  I also just took it in--smelled the fresh air, felt the breeze, you know "stopped to smell the roses" kinda thing.   This is what I kept in mind as I painted this piece, "5o'clock Shadows", hoping those things I was feeling will come across to the viewer.  

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Making my own sunshine

Ah, February in SD.  One day is warm and the hint of spring on the way...then a day later, its snow and bitter cold.   Blah!   So I am not into painting when I loose feeling in my extremities, so its time to visit my reference file.  

This is from this past summer, a lazy dirt road not far from my home.   I have driven and rode this road several times, and its not gotten old yet; I can see forever on the tops of those hills!   And the sky is so big from up there, too!  
So while we are being kept in the deep freeze, I am making my own sunshine.

Dirt Road; 9x12 pastel     $145.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Just sketchin'

I had a fun commission to do and since it cannot be shown yet, I will just show what I do in my free time...some sketching.   I need to do more, can never do enough really.   Its one of those things that is hard to sit down to do but yet when I finally get to it, I just can't believe I put it off!  

One of my favorite things to do is sit down with my laptop or phone and do small thumbnail sketches.   When one really makes me take notice, I'll set up to paint it either right away or at least very soon.  

This really is a good habit, far better than watching tv or endless facebook surfing.    Then when painting time comes around, I am not fiddling and wasting time finding something to paint.  My sketchbooks are messy and private, so I am free to mess up, scribble, and experiment. 

Here are some samples, some messier, some a bit more refined...

Friday, January 12, 2018

Dang, its cold!

"Winter Ride"   6x8 pastel    $45 unframed
One good thing about the cold is I get stuff done inside.   But sometimes, I just gotta get out for a bit regardless.   My daughter and I went for a short horse ride the other day and altho the temps were fairly warm, the wind slapped us hard!   So it was a short ride, but that sky!  

I snapped a photo and while sipping hot tea and snug in my studio, I painted it.   Its not a plein air (painted from life outdoors), but I think I caught that same feel as it was fresh in my mind and I worked quickly, so as not to dilly dally over details.

Its small as I have other commission work to do, but I felt I needed to get my artistic mojo going first.   I used a piece of paper I'd done color swatches on previously, and used alcohol to just blend them all together, making a deep purple underpainting.  Perfect for painting snow and cold winter skies!