Tag Archives: character portrait

My First Art Show

I’m sorry to have gone on such a dry spell with my blog, dear readers.  I have been quite overwhelmed, and happily so, with my first art show.  It is called Ashley for the Arts, and it’s a wonderful annual event that encourages artists of all kinds to gather and show their work.  The show was held on August 10th, and it was a beautiful day to be out and about with many other talented and wonderful local artists.

With a lot of help along the way from family and friends, I have spent the last couple of months preparing for this show.  It is a juried event, and I was so honored when I learned I had gotten into the show earlier this summer.  As soon as I was sure I was in, preparations for the show began.  Suddenly, my conversations were consumed with the topics of theme, design, layout, and such.  I ordered a white 10×10 foot tent and purchased some other supplies such as business cards, a table, tablecloths, and supplies to make things such as the screen that holds my original drawings (check out the photos below).  I borrowed and repurposed a lot of things as well, which I really enjoy doing.  You may recognize the bowler hat from this post, and the little ladies shoes from this post.  From the start, I was hoping to put them into my tent to add to the old fashioned theme of the tent.  I was going for sort of an old elegant (picture the 1920s) theme, but in the end, it morphed into a somewhat farm themed tent.  That was ok though, because many of my drawings and sculptures are farm animals.  During all the planning for the setup, I was also trying to churn out as many wire sculptures as I could.  You may notice a couple in the photos that I haven’t posted about yet.  All in good time. 🙂

I was pleasantly surprised by the reactions to my artwork, and I had many visitors and a lot of encouraging comments on what I do.  It was great fun to reach out and talk with other artists.  There are many talented artists at the show, and I only wish I could have explored their displays, but alas, I had to stay with my own.  I did make a number sales, which was wonderful.  It was just fun to be out on a perfect day, breezy, sunny, in the mid-70s for temperatures.

The show began at 10:00, but we got there at 7:00 to set up.  It was quite a rush getting everything up and ready in time, the tent up and staked, the tables in place, the tablecloths draped just so, the original drawings hung up on the screen, the sculptures set out, and the art notecards, the photo notecards, prints, and copies of my book all in their places.  Toward the front of the tent, I had a small table set up to offer business cards and Smarties candies.  The candy proved to be a hit.  The manikin hand is wearing a beautiful purple wristlet, which was made and given to me by a good friend, Jana.  She is a very talented knitter and does amazing work!  Please check out her blog here.

Once we were all set up (my mom helped me out all day – thanks, Mom! 🙂 ), people were beginning to meander on the sidewalk and explore the tents.  There was not much time between visitors, I am happy to say, and we ate lunch standing behind the tent, quickly gobbling sub sandwiches and guzzling water and sodas to stay hydrated.  It was so wonderful to have such a turnout, and some of my family came to offer support as well.  Thanks for popping in, everyone!  🙂

Another fun part about the show was that my tent was right across the sidewalk from a large field where they launched hot air balloons.  It was such a sight to see!

So that’s pretty much how my first show was.  It was very exciting and fun and exhausting and uplifting all at once.  I hope to do more shows in the future.  At long last, I will now share my photos with you.  Enjoy, and thank you for looking!


Posted by on August 20, 2013 in Odds and Ends (Uncategorized)


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Tough Guys

Last weekend, as a much needed break from my scratchboard project, I decided to draw something fun…something just for me.  So I turned to my collection of what I call “someday photos”…reference images I’ve collected over time for a rainy day or for inspiration.  Well, one of my favorite images in the group is one that a fellow blogger, Matt, of the wonderful and elegant picsofthen blog, very kindly let me use for a drawing.  Thank you so much for generously allowing me to use one of your beautiful photos as a reference, Matt!  I could not have enjoyed drawing these four tough guys more!  For those interested, you can check out the awesome original photograph here.

I drew this over the course of three days, a total of roughly six hours of work.  It was refreshingly quick to draw and it was so nice to draw something spontaneous and without pressure.  I used inks and white charcoal on a wonderful gray tinted paper for this drawing.  I don’t often mix media, but this time it seems to have a nice effect.  The gray paper was such fun to use, and I think I’ll be doing more like this in the future.

Tough Guys

– 8 x 10 inches on Strathmore gray tinted Pastel Paper

– Drawn with Faber-Castell Pitt Artist pens of various shades of gray and black, almost exclusively using the Brush Tip size

– Once the inks were in place, I added pops of white with a white charcoal pencil in areas such as the faces, eyes, shirts, scarves, buttons and just a hint on the leather gloves.

– This took roughly six hours to complete


Thanks for looking.  Have a great rest of the week, and happy first day of Spring!


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Meet Russ

After painting Zeke, I decided to try for another character portrait.  This one is Russ, who has been a part of my writing experience for quite some time.  If you’d like to “get to know him”, you can click here.  He is one of those characters who has sort of taken on his own life.  It was such a joy to paint him.  I had an old public domain photograph of a man who really reminded me of this character, so this was inspired by that photo, as well as my own ideas on Russ’ appearance.  I didn’t used to imagine him with a bowler hat, but this just fit in the end.  Russ also claims to have somehow ended up with President Lincoln’s hat.  He does like to tell tall tales. 😉  I imagine he may have a whole collection of hats.  As you can see, once again, I have chickened out when it comes to painting in color, but soon, I hope to ease back into the world of color in painting.  For this particular painting, I liked the idea of it being in black and white.  Classic, right? 😉  This took around 8 – 10 hours to complete.


-Acrylic on canvas board

-11×14 inches in size.

Here’s a close up.

Thanks for looking.  I hope you like it.  Have a great day! 🙂


Posted by on January 26, 2012 in All Artwork, Paintings, The Cozy Red Lounge


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