About Me

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Guymon, Oklahoma, United States
I am blessed to live where my grandfather homesteaded, to have three beautiful daughters who are my best friends, to have six delightful grandchildren who live nearby, to be married to my sweetheart of 35 years and to thrill to the special magic of creating my own works of art. I'll never cease to thrill to witnessing new ideas and images come to life from the point of a pencil or splash of a brush. I am blessed.

Saturday, December 11, 2010


 Each fall I begin a lengthy ink unit with my advanced students.  While they work away I start an original bookplate design which I eventually scan, print on adhesive paper and give to friends and family for Christmas.  This year's bookplate is finally complete

I've known for a long time that I wanted to celebrate my success with my fruit and vegetable still life paintings by using the same subject matter in my bookplate.  My youngest daughter had discovered a little white plate with blue flowers at a local thrift shop and I had been itching to use it in a piece of art work.  I also wanted to design a decorative border around the still life.  I started by drawing a flourish design and inked it with a .08 micron pen.  This pen has a relatively thick tip.  I planned to create the entire piece using stippling (layers of dots/dashes).

I also selected a pomegranate as my subject matter.  I was surprised to discover how symbolic this particular fruit is for so many different religions and cultures.

I knew I wanted something a little different from my earlier bookplates so I decided create something vertical.  I cut a piece of Crescent mat board 9" x 15" for my support.  It is nice to have a hard surface to work on since this piece is hauled around for weeks between my home and classroom.

 For the background of my still life I wanted the look of a folded tablecloth so I draped some fabric under the little plate and sliced open what would be a series of ripe pomegranates.  I wanted to have the final layout be straight down and not a traditional side view of the plate and fruit.

For the remainder of the piece I used a .005 micron or prismacolor ink pen.  It's like drawing with a tiny strand of hair.  I have no idea how many dots/dashes make up this piece.
 Like most things that take a lot of time to complete.  This detailed ink drawing began to evolve.  The more I learned about the significance of the pomegranate, the more I wanted to make a statement in this year's work.  I can't help but be influenced by world news and current events in our household and part of the fun of creating an annual work of art is to use it to mark the occasion or note what's happening around us.

In researching the pomegranate I learned that it is a frequent icon in almost every established religion.  You can find it in synagogues, temples, mosques and churches all over the globe.  Each group claims it and identifies it with their faith.  So I couldn't just feature it on a little floral plate. 

After some further study I wrote the word "Peace" in a variety of languages around my subject.  I felt this made more of a statement and took this piece from being just a simple still life.

So here it is.  Hope you approve.  Hope you'd like to have a print for your very own.  And most importantly I hope you find some time of peace and joy during the holidays.

"The Symbolic Pome"
8.75" x 14.75"
Black Ink Stipple on Crescent Mat Board

Monday, December 06, 2010

Aven's Watercolor

Aven's Watercolor
6.5" x 10.5"
Watercolor & Colored Pencil on 200 lb. Watercolor Paper 

I made it a goal to post on "The Shoe" with more frequency but deliberately chose not to post some of my recent commission work.  Many of these new pieces are gifts for friends and former students. I didn't want to ruin the surprise for my customers should someone accidentally see their Christmas gift ahead of time.

This commission piece is for a very young child and was ordered by my son-in-law's sister.  I doubt the child will discover this post but I hope her mother will be pleased.  My challenge for Aven's watercolor was to create a folk art piece inspired by the owner's piggy bank.  Aven's room is decorated in matching colors and designs.
I am just about done with two companion pieces for Aven's brother and sister.  Each of their paintings are entirely different and have been a lot of fun to create.

I am nearly finished with my 2010, inked bookplate.  Stay tuned to see this year's design.