About Me

My photo
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.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012


6" x 8.5" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page
Original $50 - Prints $10
I finally found some time to create a few drawings just for myself. This tree was therapeutic to draw since trees can pretty much be whatever you want. My husband has been gone all week teaching advanced debate at a speech camp so I've had lots of alone time to play in my studio. I've got a number of new dictionary pages started and have a beautiful (at least I think so) acrylic painting of my grandfather emerging on my easel.

I have always loved this photo of my grandfather, Winfield Powell taken in a field of his sorghum.  It's a black and white photo but I wanted to create a vivid, Panhandle sunset instead.  I also decided to lower the horizon line so I'd have more space to play with the sky.  It's painted on a piece of Masonite I had cut to fit in an big, old, garage sale frame I found.  I plan to paint and distress the frame before I actually set the Masonite inside.  I just had to see what it looked like last night after I started some details on my underpainting. 

This weekend we head West on a two week adventure to see family and drive up California's coastline. I'm going to pack my art supplies as always and take hundreds of photos along the way.

Sunday, July 22, 2012


My ideas far outreach my time and checkbook.  I love to craft and create household items as much as I love to make fine art.  I come from a family of seamstresses, crafters and general all around "projecters."  We were raised to keep our hands busy and always have something in the works. I have two very artistic sisters and had a mother with amazing skills with food, fabrics and just about anything her family threw at her. 

Since I posted the newly painted, child's chair I decided to feature some of the other painted projects around my house. (I am not, however, going to showcase the stacks of unfinished projects in my basement and utility room.)

Painted Vintage Lamp Shade
Years ago I bought a vintage, iron, floor lamp for $5.00 which had once been in an old motel in town.  I decided to paint a western landscape all around the fiberglass shade. I had to paint the interior of the shade, too, so the light didn't defuse the images when the lamp was turned on.  I also had to rethread the leather around the top and the bottom.  I know there are more of these lamps in storage around town and I'd like to get my hands on more.

My Roy Roger Rug

I proudly admit to being a huge fan of Roy Rogers.  My favorite TV and movie stars in my childhood were Roy Rogers and Dale Evans and I even got to see them in person a few times.  I think they were and still are pretty good heroes for a kid to have.
When we moved into our two story, fixer-upper we immediately yanked up all the terrible carpet to expose pretty good condition wooden floor - at least everywhere except the tiny kitchen.  The kitchen floor was in terrible shape comprised only of water damaged, plank flooring.  My cheapest fix was to repair the cracks, prime it and paint over it until I could afford some professional help. 

Years later I still have my quick fix and I doubt I'll ever change it.  I painted my floor black and then got on my hands and knees and created my one-of-a-kind rug of Roy on his trusty horse, Trigger.

To maintain my Happy Trails I occasionally give it a touch-up and another heavy coat of Polyurethane.
 Kitchen Utensil Drawers
I was given a wonderful set of wooden drawers from my sister-in-law a few years ago and debated for a long time on how to best put them to use.  The drawers originally were from a baby nursery and had adorable wooden blocks as knobs.  I finally opted to create more storage in my cramped kitchen so I set about to paint different "food" designs and patterns on the drawers.  They now house my silverware and assorted utensils and have held up pretty well to daily, continuous use.

My Basement Steps
Probably the craziest paint project in the house are the wooden stairs that lead to two rooms in our basement.  We turned one of the finished rooms into a teen hangout while my daughters were all still living at home.  We tiled the floor, painted the room hot pink and set up dumpster recovered furniture and a TV.  The girls spent a lot of time in the basement and sometimes would sleep there.
I got the bright idea to paint inspirational words on each step.  The project took a lot of time and since the girls have grown up I rarely travel downstairs so these steps have been badly neglected and the entire basement isn't maintained as anything more than added storage or possible protection during a storm (which would be difficult since the two rooms are piled high with boxes and forgotten keepsakes - mostly belonging to my three daughters.)  

Saturday, July 21, 2012


Lily Making a Masterpiece

One of my greatest joys is my grandchildren and I am very fortunate to have two living just down the street.  One morning this week, my two year old granddaughter Lily stopped by for a visit while I was painting.  She asked to join in the fun so I set her up with an apron, brushes, palette and piece of cardboard on an easel.  It was great fun to watch her happily paint away. 

She was so focused and content and spent a long time working on her painting.  Her grandmother was especially proud to see her enjoy herself.

Friday, July 20, 2012

HANDPAINTED CHAIR (My Summer Insanity)

Hand Painted Wooden Chair

Years ago a good friend gave me an adorable table and four chairs set for children.  It was actually in pretty great shape.  We have used the dickens out of it since it is just the right size for my grandchildren and other small fry that might drop by for a visit.  I keep them set up in my living room anytime someone is in the mood for a tea party, Play dough or a snack.

Ever since they arrived at my house I have intended to paint the wooden chairs and table.  I've collected different examples of painted furniture and taken multiple photos of table and chair sets I've found in our travels (one of my favorite is in the little bookstore in Telluride, Colorado)

This summer I was determined to get started on this project.  I never expected it to be so time consuming.  I could have been a little less ambitious with my patterns and design choices but I've dreamed of painting these for a couple of years now.  After about 40 hours of work I have one chair finished.  I don't even wanna think about how much time I'm going to have in this project IF it ever gets finished.

I know that my grandchildren are going to play and eat on this furniture and that the paint is going to chip and scratch away.  I also know that my two year old granddaughter, Lily loves her new butterfly chair.  She even helped me to draw the butterfly on the seat.

Close up of the butterfly design on the chair's seat

After I posted the first chair on facebook and Pinterest, I've had some requests to paint and sell more.  I don't think anyone would pay me what it would take to do these for sale especially considering the time involved.
Close-up of the painting details on the spindles

My husband carried a second, wooden chair up to my studio yesterday so I can begin painting it with gesso before I start to add the acrylic underpainting.  I've got more ideas than I can possibly use but my time is running short.  We'll see when and if any more get done anytime soon.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


5" x 5" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page
Original SOLD (maybe) - Prints Available

I have been waiting to post this drawing.  It is a commissioned piece but the buyer has been dragging their feet about getting back to me.  I've already sold a print of the piece and may post the original in a few days if the buyer doesn't respond soon.

The great fun in creating these dictionary drawings is trying to invent as many colors as I can while still capturing the reality of the subject.  I cropped this drawing back to 5" x 5" but the original actually is still on the full page from the book.

My dictionary pages come from a 1961 elementary dictionary.  The pages are aged (it pains to me to say that something from when I was 5 years old is "aged").  Because the pages are delicate it takes some skill to distress them, draw on them and add many layers of color.  I can claim that I have yet to damage a page so badly while drawing that I've had to discard it but occasionally there are some rough areas and little, tiny holes where the paper has dissolved when marked.

I have actually taken a break from drawing for a few days.  I am enjoying the last few days of my summer vacation and am doing some craft and personal projects in my studio that I've had on my list for some time.  I need longer days and longer summers to complete everything on my lengthy list.  My brain is bad for dreaming up far more than I can accomplish in my limited lifetime.

Friday, July 13, 2012


6.5" x 8" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page
Original SOLD - Prints Available

Before I drew this piece I had no idea about the evolution of soccer balls and football helmets.  I do now.  The challenge in this drawing was trying to develop the natural leather look of the equipment while still using some fun, creative colors.  I was commissioned to draw vintage sports equipment on a dictionary page for a little boy's room.

It's been a great summer for Flying Shoes.  I've had great success (in my limited experience) with my Etsy store and I've had lots of friends notice and purchase my artwork.  I have a few more commissions to finish up and then I hope to do more dictionary drawings of personal subjects. 

The great advantage of these small drawings is that even after the original is sold and long gone, I still have nice prints of the artwork that can continue to be sold.

I'm off to the studio and then hope to enjoy a great weekend.

Thursday, July 12, 2012


6.5" x 8.5" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page
Original SOLD - Prints Available

6.5" x 8.5" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page
Original SOLD - Prints Available

I continue to have new and interesting subjects commissioned of my original, dictionary drawings.  We have a university located ten miles away and a friend (and my husband's former student) is the entomology professor there.  He adores bugs of all sorts and on occasion will visit with some hissing, squirming, and often terrifying specimen. 

He and his wife have purchased a lot of of my bug-like drawings and they asked me to create a page of ladybugs and another of beetles.  I never knew there were so many varieties of the darn things.  When I was a kid and had to collect bugs for a biology class, I was too lazy or disinterested so instead I captured grasshoppers and beetles in the pastures and barns around our farm, euthanized them then took legs and wings and such from one and glued them on others.  I even took watercolors and acrylic paint to add unique colors and patterns to my "frankenbugs."  My teacher had to have noticed but somehow seemed to appreciate the artistic effort of my collection enough to give me an 'A'.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012


6.5" x 8.5" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed, Dictionary Page
Original SOLD - Prints Available

It's been funny how many different images I've been researching while working on my dictionary page drawings.  I've studied all sorts of subjects that I've never paid much attention to in the past.

A friend asked for a vintage airplane and I honestly didn't know much about planes so I had to dig in and educate myself about the little idiosyncrasies of old biplanes.  As in all of this series of dictionary illustrations, I'm not striving to capture textbook realism but I sure want to draw something that has the essence of my subject matter.  Sometimes these drawings are composites of lots of different images and sometimes I just entertain myself by drawing however I please as long as it can be interpreted as the subject by viewers. 

I'm doing some more experimenting with my mixed media drawings.  I recently had a local printer enlarge a few of my dictionary pages and I am excited to try and do a detailed drawing on the bigger sheets of paper.  I've got them inked and covered with washes waiting for me up in my studio.

Monday, July 09, 2012


6" x 8.5" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed Dictionary Page
Original SOLD - Prints Available

6" x 8.5" Mixed Media Drawing on Distressed Dictionary Page
Original Sold - Prints Available

My summer studio is filled with projects as I rush to complete lots of things before school starts.  My husband and I have a huge trip planned to the West coast at the end of this month so I am pushing to finish commissions before I shut down the studio for a couple of weeks.

A good friend commissioned these two pieces for her dining room.  Her mother recently passed away after years of collecting plates and spoons.  That collection now has a new home with these two pieces displayed around them.

Well, I'm off to draw........

Tuesday, July 03, 2012


Yesterday I posted that all of my Taos show pieces are selling for $50.00 at my Etsy store.  Thanks to social media and digital postings I've moved a number of these pieces.

I love these pastel still life paintings but it's time they find a home.  My studio is filled with new work and there just isn't enough room to house all my work.

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