Friday, December 30, 2016

Of Dragonflies and Elves -Paint Party Friday

This is a drawing I recently found in one of my keepsake files.  It is an early illustration for a children's book.  I believe I was 19.  This girl looks SO much like my own daughters.  I did a double take when I found it!  Amazing, almost prophetic.  And you can definitely see how much I've improved in my artwork over these last 39 years!!!

Anyhow, Happy New Year, sweet Friends.  May God bless you with joy, wisdom, strength and comfort over this coming year.  Happy Paint Party Friday!

Friday, December 23, 2016

Merry Christmas! -Paint Party Friday

I have been away for a long time.  I have had a hard time of it this holiday season--But as I think back over this year, it has been such a wonderful year in so many ways.  When I remember the time I had with my Beloved--I am SO grateful for our 31 years together.

The above illustration is from a Christmas Children's Book I designed.   It is called Christmas with Grandma.

I have missed you all very much.   I pray all is well with you, and that your Christmas is a lovely one, sweet Friends.''

Friday, November 25, 2016

Dear Girl -Paint Party Friday

I love to draw my sweet Friend Melissa.  We have been pals since the day she was born.  I drew this ACEO back in 2006.  This particular drawing is no bigger than a baseball card!

I apologize for putting up a drawing from the past, but I've been incredibly busy getting ready for Thanksgiving, and haven't had much time to draw.

Due to a terrible loss of data, I don't have my original reference picture, but I do have other pictures of her--so you can see why I love to draw my dear girl's face.

Isn't she lovely?  I am SO proud of her--she has grown into a lovely young woman, not only beautiful outside, but inside as well.   

Happy Thanksgiving dear ones--there is so much for which to be thankful.  Happy Paint Party Friday all you wonderful people!

Friday, November 18, 2016

Wonderland Walker -Paint Party Friday

I have a vivid imagination.  I can still remember the places I dreamed of when I was a little girl.  This place is one of them.  Where flowers pile over the ground in brightly colored bunches.  I imagined arches covered with ivy and bright castles where one might find glittering treasures and perhaps a sleeping princess.

Above you see my reference photo of dear Rena.  I am SO blessed by the friendship of my sweet models.  When the camera is on--magic happens--the camera loves this girl.  

This week has been a difficult one, as yesterday was my Daddy's Heaven Day.  He left us four years ago, and I still grieve for him--I was a Daddy's girl and when he left, he took a bit of my heart with him.

It gives me great joy to know Daddy is in heaven, strong, whole and young again--I can see him smiling at me with that wonderful smile of his.  I know he is proud of me.

Have a lovely weekend dear Friends.  Thank you for your good thoughts and prayers.  Happy Paint Party Friday!

Friday, November 11, 2016

Esther, Star of Persia -Paint Party Friday

This is a Prismacolor pencil drawing of a young friend of mine, Casandra.  She has always reminded me of Esther.  I am posting this older drawing, because I have been so very busy this week--getting ready to produce a new drama--so I've been away from my drawing board.

My original reference pic was lost--but below you get the idea of the beauty and loveliness of this dear young woman, who reminds me so much of Esther.

The true story of Esther is a fascinating one.  Before her name changed, she was known as Hadassah, a lovely young orphan living in a foreign land with her Uncle Mordecai.

It came to pass the King of Persia put on a lavish feast for the kings of surrounding countries.  But when he asked Queen Vashti to come forth and meet the revelers--she refused to obey him.  It was because of her choice, she was no longer queen.

But soon, in a fit of loneliness, the King of Persia decreed the most beautiful and accomplished women be chosen from each province of his kingdom. From these candidates he vowed to choose his Queen.

Because of her exquisite beauty, Hadassah was taken from her home to the King's palace.  There she was given a new name, Esther--which means "star." After months of preparation, she met the King of Persia. The King was so charmed by Esther, he proclaimed her Queen of Persia.

However the King did not know Esther was Jewish. Her Uncle Mordecai had admonished Esther not to disclose her nationality to anyone.

Meanwhile, Haman, an evil man who hated the Jews, had became very powerful. Haman deceived the King into authoring the wholesale slaughter of Jewish men, women and children throughout the entire empire. This malevolent man callously cast lots to determine the exact day they would die. When the date was set, decrees were sent throughout the kingdom and the Jewish people went into mourning.

Mordecai informed the Queen of this decree, asking her to intervene for her people, saying, "And who knows whether you have not attained royalty for such a time as this?"

Esther had not seen the King for several months.  The law of the land was that anyone who appeared before the king in the inner court without being invited was doomed to die unless the King held out his golden scepter.

Mordecai sent word.  He said, "If you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?”

This brave young woman replied, "I will go before the King, which is not according to the law; and if I perish, I perish." After fasting three days, she carefully adorned herself in rich royal robes. Then she entered the inner Court in front of the King's rooms--uninvited.

When she entered the inner court, the king saw her standing from afar.  His heart turned within him, perhaps he wondered that she would risk certain death to see him.  He welcomed her, held out the golden scepter and she drew near to touch its top.  Thus her life was saved and in the end, the lives of her people.

Queen Esther was a powerful woman. But her power came from something deep within her soul. It wasn't because she was the most beautiful woman in the land. There was something else which caught the King's heart. "Why are you troubled, " he queries. Though Esther must have been terribly frightened, she bravely faced death for the sake of her people. In making herself vulnerable in a time of great danger, she risked everything. Because she did, she saved an entire nation of people from the evil plotting of a murderous man.

Queen Esther was just one woman, but her wisdom, obedience, bravery and trust in God, changed the tide of history itself.

Greatness is when an ordinary person risks everything to do what is right in the face of grave danger. We live in dangerous times.  Life can change in one moment--and an ordinary person may be asked to do the extraordinary.

I believe every woman has a "Queen Esther" deep inside. Each of us has a purpose and have been given great power to influence the lives of those around us. Let us choose to face life with courage, wisdom, and trust in God. Let us speak words of peace and truth to those we love, just as Queen Esther spoke them to her people in the days of Purim.

If you get the chance, read the book of Esther.  It is a wonderful story of a young woman's courage in the face of monstrous circumstances.  It can be found in the Old Testament of the Bible.

Thank you for your good thoughts and prayers, dear ones.  Happy Paint Party Friday!

Friday, November 4, 2016

Holly Mermaid's Seahorses -Paint Party Friday

This picture was originally drawn from memory in 2011.  Holly has been in my life for years--I met this delightful young woman when she was around eight years old.  She has always loved horses--this whimsical piece pictures Holly as a mermaid who's best buds are the sea horses.  I just recently finished adding color to this pen and ink drawing from long ago.

For those who may be wondering, I am doing well after surgery.  God is so good to me.  The two-year mark of the passing of my Beloved has come and gone, and though I miss him dreadfully, life does go on.  And there are often sparkles of joy along with the tears.

Thank you for your good thoughts and prayers, dear ones.  Happy Paint Party Friday!

Friday, October 28, 2016

Blue Faery -Paint Party Friday

I once read a poem which had the whimsical idea that faeries are God's smallest angels.  I rather like that idea.  This little blue faery is a frequent imaginary visitor to my garden. She's part Genie as you can see. She lives in a brown glass bottle next to the fence in my yard, where in summertime she oft comes out to play with the gold fish after dark.

This is a drawing from long ago.  I have been away from my computer for a bit, so haven't had time to scan in my latest artwork.  My reference photo was lost with a tragic crash of a hard drive years ago--so I don't have the original picture to show you--but I can tell you this, she is not only lovely, but she is a sweet and talented young woman.

This Sunday will mark two years since my sweet husband flew away to heaven.  It will be a bittersweet time.  Sometimes it seems like forever since he left us--at other times, it is as though it were just yesterday.  I am also speaking and performing for a women's retreat on Saturday.  I would dearly appreciate your prayers for my family and me.  I continue to improve daily from my surgery. 

Happy Paint Party Friday, sweet, wonderful Friends!

Friday, October 21, 2016

Pray Without Ceasing -Paint Party Friday

This is a drawing I did just after returning home from the hospital.  I find when I draw, or write for that matter, pain fades away and I am lost in another world.  I have been surrounded with prayer from the day I discovered I needed a hip replacement and all through my recovery.  Hence the title to this drawing--Pray Without Ceasing

I am so grateful to those of you who have been sending your good thoughts and prayers my way.  I am improving daily.  The Physical Therapist told me my rapid recovery is VERY unusual!  Haha!

Have a lovely weekend, dear Friends.  May God bless you with His tender care.  And happy Paint Party Friday all you wonderful people!

Monday, October 10, 2016

Frisky Friends in Living Color -Paint Party Friday

Here is the finished drawing of Frisky Friends.  I started with a graphite drawing, inked in the lines using various sized nibs to give the picture depth--then used Prismacolor pencils to add color.  I love to put people's faces into scenery.  This is my favorite of four recent facescapes. 

Abby is my lovely model--she's my dear niece and I think her sweet personality just shines from the drawing.  I have included her favorite color, flower and animal--can you guess what they are?

For those who have been wondering about my surgery, I had a complete hip replacement in early September.  It has been a little over a month since the surgery. so it took awhile for me to be able to sit in front of my computer again.  Now I am well on my way to recovery!  I have graduated from a walker to using a cane to get around.  In a week or so, I won't even need that!  I am so grateful to my surgeon, and to you dear ones, who prayed for me.

What a miracle it was.  I discovered I needed a hip replacement, and three weeks later the surgery was done.  That in itself was incredible---a miracle of God's perfect timing!

Happy Paint Party Friday all you lovely people!

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Frisky Friends -Paint Party Friday

This lineart drawing is of my adopted niece Abby.  She is the most delightful girl--sweet and kind, with  wisdom far beyond her own and a wonderful flair for fashion.  She reminds me of a lovely red rose--hence the rose bushes growing in her hair.  She also loves animals and has a special bond with horses.  I am honored to be her friend and Auntie.

Above you see the reference photo of my sweet niece.  Don't you just love her haircut?!  I think the red color is awesome, too.  

I know many of you have been praying for me as I am facing surgery next week.  I can't tell you how amazing it has been.  God has answered so many specific prayers and needs in such a miraculous way, that I am in awe.  Thank you.  May God bless you, dear ones...for you have blessed my heart.

Happy Paint Party Friday and have a great weekend all you lovely people!

Friday, August 26, 2016

Sweethearts -Paint Party Friday

This drawing is the last in a series of three.  I am so pleased with how it turned out--the colors were chosen by Marissa, the sweet Bride to be.

Above you see my reference photo.  What a wonderful adventure they have ahead of them!

As you know I will be having surgery on my hip.  Turns out the surgery will take place week after next.  I would surely appreciate your prayers as I face surgery--then recovery. 

Happy Paint Party Friday and have a great weekend all you fabulous people!

Friday, August 19, 2016

Fair Marissa and Russell the Elf -Paint Party Friday

This is a piece I made especially for Russell and Marissa in honor of their recent engagement.  They are such a dear and charming couple.  I was impressed that Russell didn't mind that I had portrayed him as an elf.  Ah, young love!  I used pen and ink for the outlines and my beloved Prismacolor pencils to put brilliant color to the piece.

Above you see my reference photo of this sweet couple.  May their life together be a wonderful, continuing adventure!

I may not be able to post very much over the next few weeks, as I discovered only last week that I need immediate surgery on my hip.  I am not that seriously old, so this was a real shocker to me.  I would appreciate your prayers.

Happy Paint Party Friday and have a great weekend all you wonderful people!

Friday, August 5, 2016

Romance, Sunflowers and Roses -Paint Party Friday

This is a commissioned piece I am doing for my dear friends Rena and Luke.  They are such a wonderful young couple.  They have just celebrated their second anniversary--this is Rena's gift to her beloved husband.  I am very honored to have been asked to do this portrait of them. 

Above is the photo I used as a reference for this lineart drawing.  When I'm done, it will be in full color, with lots of green, red and yellow.  I'll post it when I finish it sometime next week.

Happy Paint Party Friday and have a great weekend all you wonderful people!

Friday, July 29, 2016

Gathering Flowers -Paint Party Friday

I met Marissa at an Office Depot store.  She has been a great help to me since I've known her.  She is a dear young woman.  She will be married soon, so I offered to draw a picture for her.  This is the lineart version--I will be adding color to it very soon.

Above you see the lovely reference photo she sent.   It does my heart good to do something special for this precious young couple. 

Have a great weekend everyone.

Friday, July 15, 2016

There's Hope in a Rose -Paint Party Friday

I have had guests from out of town here all week long, so didn't get to do much drawing.  I'm posting a piece I drew many years ago.  It is one of my favorites.  I'd never drawn anything quite like it before. This faery maiden's heart was badly broken. But the look upon her face, and the rose in her outstretched fingers caused me to believe she found hope and healing.

Hope is beautiful, like a rose. Roses flower throughout the seasons, and astoundingly, I have even found them blooming in January beneath the snow. There is hope in a rose.

Somehow when hope shines impossibly through the cold darkness of hard times, its beauty and fragrance are more precious and lovely than ever before.

Happy Paint Party Friday, dear Friends.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Friend of the Hummingbird -Paint Party Friday

Here is my beautiful little niece Jena, as a fairy--friend of that cute little hummingbird she holds in her lap.  When this drawing is done, there will be lots of hummers flying all around her, landing in her hair and hanging on her wings.

I am sure there is a hummingbird fairy hanging out in my garden.  I have caught the sparkle of her wings out of the corner of my eye.  Her special friend Mr. Soots, is a black chinned hummingbird who is not one bit afraid of people.

Above you see the reference photo I  used for this charming fairy.  Isn't she sweet?  Have a lovely weekend and happy Paint Party Friday!

Friday, July 1, 2016

Blackberry Faery -Paint Party Friday

About seven years ago, a good friend of mine gave me three starts of some thornless blackberry bushes! The fruit is delicious, and without the inevitable scratches and prickles, it is a pleasure to harvest them.  This year they are just dripping with fruit.

The day I took the photo from which this pen and ink evolved, was sunny and hot. I can still hear the bees lazily buzzing in the lavender bush, the fragrance of the berries, and AH, the rich taste of the ripe fruit.

I shared a bite with the Berry Faery, you know. She thought they were tasty, too.

I don't have the original photo, due to a sad loss of data back then.

This will be a bitter sweet weekend--another holiday--July Fourth, without my Beloved.  It is hard to believe he has been gone 18 months already.  Yet, God is good and there is joy to be found.

Have a lovely weekend, dear Friends, Happy Paint Party Friday, and to those of you who are here in the United States, Happy Fourth of July!

Friday, June 24, 2016

The Magician -Paint Party Friday

I apologize for being so late with my post.  It has been a VERY busy week.

Here the magician begins his magic. Though all is illusion, we wonder, "could this be real?"  Part of the genius of this boy, is his wonderful imagination. He lives in a world where anything is possible.  Like his Daddy, he is a storyteller.

Have a lovely week, dear Friends.  Though the sadness still crashes into my heart like the waves of the sea, there are so many things for which to be thankful.  It is good to be alive.  I'm SO grateful for my Family and dear friends--you know who you are.  You are loved.

Have a wonderful week and Happy Paint Party Friday!

Friday, June 17, 2016

Thumbelissa -Paint Party Friday

One of my favorite fairytales is the story of Thumbelina. The story chronicles the adventures of a tiny girl born in a velvety red tulip, in answer to her mother's wish and prayer.

She has many a perilous journey, but in the end she is rescued, flying away on the feathery back of a sparrow. Her friend brings her to a garden where the fairy folk live in the flowers. (I'm sure the garden must be mine...) There she meets and falls in love with a fairy prince. On her wedding day the fairies give the girl a pair of clear sparkling wings.

I have a collection of old fairytale books, and in the most ancient version, the tiny girl was called Thumbelissa. It's a toss-up as to which name is the most beautiful!

I am going to be out of town, so I'm posting this drawing from 2006.  My model was lovely Melissa, when she was a young girl.  I don't have the original reference pictures to share with you, but I'm sure you will  recognize her wonderful face.

I'm SO grateful for my life-in house sitters, for my watchful neighbors and the policeman who lives across the street.  It makes traveling so much easier to do.  

God bless you, dear ones.  Have a lovely week and Happy Paint Party Friday!

Friday, May 27, 2016

Daddy, Tell Me a Story -Paint Party Friday

I posted this once before, back in 2009.  I have been so busy, I just haven't had time to do much art, so hence this post.

This Cloud Painting takes me back to when my children were small. Every night when we'd tuck them into their beds inevitably one of the kids would say, "Daddy, tell me a story..."
My Beloved was a wonderful storyteller.  Over the years--since they were tiny babies--Alan would tell them fantastical bedtime stories about a mysterious Sea Captain. The Sea Captain became so real the kids once stopped a man in Oregon's coastal town of Lincoln City, to ask if HE was the Sea Captain.
Each of the Sea Captain stories had a theme.

One evening the story he told was to teach the children to call upon God in times of trouble. The lights were were low. Alan lay on his back on the old waterbed, the girls perched on his outstretched arms. They were on a boat in the open sea.
Suddenly a storm blew up out of nowhere! The wind was ferocious, the ship began to rock. I provided the "sound effects for the wind."

Alarmed the Sea Captain began to shout orders. Alan's up-flung arm became the mast, as our youngest daughter began to pull in the sails. On the other side, the eldest was ordered to "frappe" the boat as the waves of the sea grew higher and higher. Our young son, the official thundercloud, began to bounce up and down on Dad's feet. The lightning flashed! I flickered the overhead lights. And the thunder grew louder and louder!
The boat began to bounce and rock dangerously from side to side! The thunder growled and the clouds grew darker and darker. I switched off the bedside lamp. It began to rain furiously. The deck was so slippery no one could walk without being swept out to sea! Giant waves were splashing clear up over the ship!
"Nothing more can be done!" cried the Sea Captain. "What should we do?"
But all that rocking had put one little sailor nearly to sleep. She opened one eye, and with a huge yawn she replied, "Call 911!"

Alan was a great Dad.  We all miss his stories and wonderful jokes.  Sunday afternoon, the kids and I sat around the fire pit playing music and sharing stories and laughter, as we often did when Alan was here.  We will miss Alan for the rest of our lives.  He was such a wonderful man.  He filled our world with color, laughter and song.  What a blessing for those precious memories.

Here are the original clouds I photographed for the cloud painting Daddy, Tell Me a Story.  God bless you, dear ones.  Have a lovely week and Happy Paint Party Friday!