Monday, April 26, 2010

Forgiveness . . . Wet Paint Rocks!!

Okay - I'm not gonna lie . . . I was a little miffed that my "wet paint" didn't arrive on my email doorstep last Sunday, but when you see the wet paint that's come off the easel, you'll see why my heart melted and I not only offered forgiveness, I groveled at his feet!!  Is it just me, or is this guy a rock star??  hahaha yeah - well alrighty then!!

So this first painting that was being worked on last week is a larger version of the ever-popular "This and That" that debuted at Doug's show at Terzian Gallery in February.  It was the one that was used on the invitation and so Doug used that painting as a study to do a bigger version!!  This one is 32 x 30 and, I'm certain, is going to have a very short stay at Terzian Gallery before it finds a permanent home!  It is spectacular.  I love the fall colors and the soft mountains in the back.

"Some of This Some of That"
32 x 30
Available at Terzian Gallery

This next wet painting was just finished literally a few minutes ago.  In the midst of watching NBA playoff games, I've been walking to the studio and impatiently tapping my ruler on the palm of my hand waiting for this painting to get done.  It was fun to watch the progress and I'm sorry I didn't take pictures to let you see the process, but initially, I thought "what the heck are you painting here?"

It's so interesting to have the kind of mind that Doug has--a mind that visualizes this painting finished and wet with paint.  Seriously, I would have NEVER EVER imagined that this would be a painting that would take my breath away.  When we were in Salt Lake a few weeks ago, Doug went around and was taking picture references around town.  As we got to a big building, he said "I wonder if I can get to the top of that building?"  I'm like, "huh???"  So we proceed to circle this building and find a parking terrace.  In we go, up we climb.  The parking spaces become more and more plentiful as we continue heading upward.  Doug is always looking out the window, slowing down, backing up, moving forward again.  I'll offer to drive, but no thanks, hon.  So he stops.  Backs up.  Get out and pulls the camera out. I'm not seein' the amazing visual and besides, it's drizzly and cold so of course, I don't get out!  I'm trying to tap into some wi-fi in the parking terrace.  No luck.  He comes back and off we go.  Well, voila!  Here is what came from that little parking lot "venture."

"Rain Snow Mix"

Is this crazy good or what?  This was painted for a show at the Salt Lake Art's Center and will be part of a "silent auction" fund raiser for the "Not Just Another Pretty Face" Gala on June 5th, 2010.  Contact Raven at 801-328-4201 ext. 112 at the Salt Lake Art Center if you are interested in putting in a bid!   

The workshop season is almost underway with the first workshop in Midway starting on May 19th.  This workshop is full but we still have room in the Torrey 3-day workshop!  Cathy Bagley has done a great job or coordinating this workshop and will include two evening meals with tuition.  Also, she has arranged for a great rate at rooms at the Rim Rock Inn for around $50/night!  Doug's painted that area so much and he will soooo be in his element amidst the red rocks!!  I'm hoping to get to "tag along" if I've not been made the President & CEO by then!  haha  Helper is also gearing up for some great workshops this summer - these are five-day workshops (which is really more like a painting vacation . . . I mean, how hard is it to slap a little bit of paint on a canvas??  hahaha  Oh I'm going to PAY for that one!  Doug loves it when I say "you should paint that!"  He says "Yeah, YOU should paint that hon!!"  We've also added one more workshop in Ogden for the Ogden Nature Center which will be a 3-day workshop as well--July 15-17.  Go to our website and click on the workshop link to sign up!  (Have you been to check out our website yet? Oh yeah, probably so . . well, I'm still thinking it is amazing, which would make ME amazing, I guess . . . that's the rumor I'm spreading anyway!)  

Many of you, bless your hearts, have asked about the new job, so here is the ten-cent update!  The company is Sunbridge Healthcare.  Sunbridge is part of a larger corporation, Sun Health Care and we (I use that term now because I'm pretty sure I'm going to be a big wig real soon!) yes, WE own over 200 health and rehab centers across the US.  It's a great corporation and some great people to work with.  I mean, I'm going to be old and broken down someday, so just as well start working on providing the best place for me to stay, right?  I work in the Western Division Office and WE do what we can to provide the best services at the 60 western locations that are part of our Division.  So there ya have it - that was more like the 25-cent update!  BONUS!!  hahaha

Well, gotta fly.  Busy busy ya know!  Did I mention that my Utah Jazz are up 3 games to 1 against Denver in the playoffs?  MWAHAHAHA (evil laugh there - Denver fans, I am sooooo sorry . . .  really . .  I am)  I really really really love this game and I'm really really nervous about sending the Jazz back to your arena to win just ONE MORE GAME!   

Hoping you are having a fabulous day!!  Doug has promised more wet paint on Sunday . . . we shall see!  Golf and garden season is approaching . . . hard to keep a paint brush in his hand . . . he'd rather have a rake or a golf club!!

My best to you all . . . and if I haven't said thanks for reading and following our blog, well, thanks soooo much for reading and following our blog!!

love love love ya!


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

LIfe of Leisure - NUAMES & VSA 300 Plates!!

My life of leisure is nearing an end as I’m going to start a full-time job here come next Monday!  I’m very excited but will absolutely miss my come-and-go-as-I-please-life of leisure!  It has been, I would probably say, one of the most fun years of my life!  I was going to say “funnest” but technically that’s not a word, and well, damn it, Wesley would be all over me!)  Being able to “putter” around the house, flitting here and there, great phrases I learned from my mom!  on my own time schedule has been a blast (and, quite frankly, I don’t have to do that if I don’t want to!)   

One thing I'm really going to miss is the ability to just take off and go with Doug as I please!  Going out to the plein air competitions was an absolute blast!  We probably spent at least 5 or 6 weeks away from home this year.  That’s like a six-week vacation for me!  We spent two weeks in Estes Park, a week in Idaho Falls, several days in Spring City as well as shorter stays in Midway, Torrey, Arizona and St. George!  He would go out painting while I was, uh, yeah, on vacation!  Oh, I’d do some work on the computer, but that didn’t take long so I got to read some great books, drink lots of Fresca and yes, I must confess, played poker with my facebook poker buddies!  It did give me the chance to meet soooo many of you who are now readers of our blog and for that, I am eternally grateful!  I still plan to come to many of the plein air competitions and have been assured by my new employer that they are incredibly flexible and will allow me to still travel a little with my main squeeze!  
Our “Wet Paint” for this week is a plate for the “VSA 300 Plates” show which will be held at Art Access in Salt Lake City on Friday, May 20 from 6-9 pm.  This event is going into it’s eighth year and each year it gets better and better!  VSA raises money to help provide quality art activities for adults and children with disabilities.  “The arts are truly a universal and essential language that challenge people to look beyond themselves and celebrate diversity.”  What a great cause!  

"Snowy Sides"
2010 VSA 300 Plate Show

So, this is how it works:  VSA extends an invitation to some phenomenal artists across the state to paint on a “plate.”  It’s not a round dinner plate mind you, but just a metal square plate with two holes punched in the top.  The plates are organized around the gallery and are numbered starting with, I believe, #65.  They go all the way up to #365 with a few that are put on a “silent auction” wall.  The painting “number” is also the price!  So there are some incredible bargains to be had!  It has grown so popular over the years that now, when you get there, your name is put into a “hat” and, after you’ve had a chance to peruse the gallery and find your “picks,” they draw out a name and you then get the opportunity to purchase your “bargain” painting!  This keeps us from tackling other people who are going for our same painting!  haha  We’ve gotten some great little paintings over the years, including a John Erickson, Tracy Strauss and last year, a great little broom painting by Joe Carter!  We love them all!!   
Last year Doug painted “Dueling Banjos” which most people loved but didn’t get the title. 

"Dueling Banjos"
2009 VSA Plate Show 

Doug is always very fascinated with the graffiti painted on the trains and always comments to me “isn’t that some awesome painting on that train!”  Dueling Banjos represents the friendly rivalry between “graffiti” artists and plein air painters in their quest for “who’s the best in the west” I suppose!  

If you’ve never been to the Plate Show, contact Ruth Lubbers at Art Access to get on their mailing list!  We will most certainly be there and would love to see you there as well!  Hey, let’s do dinner! 

Another thing I'm going to miss is teaching!!  I’ve been substitute teaching, as I mentioned before, at the Northern Utah Academy of Math, Engineering and Science (NUAMES) and DANG, I am sooo going to miss that!   Since I was in high school myself, I have always dreamed of teaching school.  I guess because of some of the great teachers I had myself that really made an impact on my life.  
I seriously just love these kids!  It’s not easy being a teenager so it’s really great when you have someone there that truly WANTS you to succeed.  It’s easy to teach the good kids, the ones that do their homework and are totally prepared day in and day out.  It takes a really good teacher, however, to love the ones who don't--to help motivate the kids that are, well, unmotivated for whatEVer reason.  Sometimes they are too smart for their britches and are bored, or sometimes they are overwhelmed with a lot of stress at home.  Reaching out to those that need a smile, a pat on the back, a little gentle nudge or a swift kick in the butt!  So to my friends at NUAMES, (and I’d name names, but there are too many, and I most certainly would leave someone out - but you know who you are) I say thank you from the bottom of my heart for making me feel welcome at your school and for helping me fulfill a dream I had of teaching!  (a term I use loosely!)  

See, being a “regular teacher” is a piece of cake, you get to not only teach your specialty, but you have your own lessons prepared and do your own curriculum.  Being a sub, however, well, that’s tough stuff!  Here’s your lesson plan and by the way, we’re learning about algorithms and poly-something-or-others!  I loved teaching the English stuff, PE, Finance and World Civ, but when they asked if I could sub for Chemistry . . . “Well, I DO own a Honda ELEMENT so I’m pretty sure I’m qualified!  I am seriously campaigning for “Sub of the Year!” (an award I created myself so I’m quite certain I will win!!)   
Off to work . . . or not,  . . . maybe I’ll just putter in the kitchen . . .
Cheers to all clink clink here’s to . . . full-time jobs with health insurance!!  :) 

PS . . . the weekly blog will continue without interruption, like it or not!!  

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

"Easter Traditions & Rodeo Queen . . . Well, good!"

Happy Easter everyone!  As I posted on facebook, I love that the Easter Bunny still comes even though my kids are big, and contrary to Doug’s belief, the kids were pretty excited too!!  See the look on Ryan's face, that's pure excitement!!  

Holidays at our house have always been somewhat of a challenge because “he-who-shall-not-be-named is somewhat of a “holiday scrooge.”  he will totally deny that!  I seriously love the holidays, and I do get sucked into all of the holiday marketing!  I make a big deal out of every holiday that comes along.  Hiding eggs throughout the house is always a good time, but our biggest tradition has been to hide plastic eggs OUTSIDE (rain, snow or shine) with “stuff” inside!  Each child would have their assigned “color” of eggs they could find. There were amazing things inside, like mini reeses peanut butter cups, or mini hershey bars, or better yet, a quarter and a dime!  I know, I am soooo clever!   I remember going through my “change” cup the night before and sorting all the change I could get my hands on, dividing it out three ways right to the penny.  As they all brought in their “goods” and dumped the ”egg contents,” they would sort out all their candy, and divide the “coinage” into quarters, dimes and nickels, when finally one would loudly announce “Eight dollars and sixty-eight cents!”  Then of course, Ryan tries to throw out the "I'm the favorite" card by declaring "I got ten dollars and fifty cents!!" Looks of despair dart my way as I confidently reply with reassurance, “No ya don’t!  Everyone's is the same!!”  Ryan grins as I give him the "evil eye!"  
We carry on many of the traditions that we grew up with, and I remember hunting for eggs out on our lawn--sometimes for months after Easter!  Remember those big ol’ easter eggs that were filled with white sugary hard stuff??  If you’re over 40, (a mature adult like me!) you may remember them!  They were nasty!  Maybe even a health hazard!  My mother would make my dad go out and help her hide eggs and on the most part, he would take his handful and give them a big toss across the lawn and say “there, I’m done!”  We would find those hard eggs buried deep in the grass long into the summer months and they would, on occasion, “argue” with the lawn mower!  We’d hear the “clunk clunk clunk” and then we’d laugh - “Ahhh, there’s another easter egg!  Hope we didn’t break a blade!”  
Okay - off the subject, but I have to throw this out there and get it off my chest!  We had a discussion this morning at breakfast over the usage of the word “good.”  Now, where I came from, someone says “How ya doin?”  We responded “Good!” or on a better day “REAL good!”  Of late, however, my sweet Wesley (bless his little heart) has been correcting me with “Don’t you mean “well” Mom?”  Now, mind you, I’ve tried to catch myself--really I have.  Being corrected by my 16-year old son SEVERAL times a day over my “bad grammar” has gotten a little, well, annoying!  yeah - annoying!  Truth is, sometimes “good” just fits better as to how I really feel!!  If my brother, Boyd, from Cleveland, Utah were to call and ask “How the hell ya doin, Nettie?”  Well, quite frankly, if I were to say “I’m well!”  He’d say, “Who is this???”  As it is, he knows it’s me if I answer with an enthusiastic “pretty damn good!!”  So yeah, Wes, I know it’s “proper” to say “well” but, just give us a break for a while, k??  Ryan and I decided to “pay back” some annoyance this morning so I asked Ryan “How’s your eggs, Ryan?”  He said “They were really WELL!!”  We both laughed hysterically as Wesley rolled his eyes.  Doug chimed in with the suggestion that as soon as Mr. Webster decides “good” is not only an adjective but could be used as an adverb, then, it’s all GOOD again!!  Well, good.  I am glad to get that off my chest!  
Wet paint, you ask?  Ahhh, Doug was working on it this morning!  Another pretty unique subject matter.  

" Ropin' "
8 x 10

Horses!  Yeah, whoda thunk?  Doug’s probably painted less than a dozen horse paintings, I would guess.  If you want to test me on that, you could go to our new website and check out the archives!  Okay - I have become a computer nerd and have redone Doug’s website.  If I don’t mind saying so myself, I think it looks, well, really good!!  hahaha used grammatically correct - in your face, Wesley!!  I will keep it updated on a weekly basis with new work and new information so feel free to “drop in” at the website and send me your feedback if you have any!!  
The rodeo painting!  Pretty sweet huh?  On a final note, it reminds me of my sister who is, quite frankly, one of Escalante’s greatest rodeo queens!  I so wish she were here to tell this story, or better yet, the story gets even better when told by my brother, Randy!!  (it doesn’t coincide with Patrice’s story, I’m sure!! haha) but suffice it to say she gave the image of “Escalante Rodeo Queen” a whole new “look!” (snowboots look almost like the real thing don’t they?  Well, you get the picture!!  Love ya Treesie!!)  Hoping you’re all well and ready for spring!  My golf clubs are still screaming at me!!  We are sooooo ready!!  
Till next week . . .


PS - some favorites that can be found in the "Archives" part of the new website!  Some I haven't thought about in years!  Enjoy!  Website is just  

"Against the Wind"
14 x 16
One of  Doug's favorites painted in 2004.  This reminds me of the snowstorm that hit just last night!  
What's up with this weather??  

"Fall Colors Near Calf Creek"
32 x 30
One of my favorites of all-time.  Painted in 2006, it was one of his biggest paintings he'd done to date.  
At 30x32, it was breathtaking. 

"Evening Shift"
16 x 20
A fun little "burger stand" up in Roy, Burger Bar.  One of our favorite places.  I love the "time stamp" that these paintings create in our lives.  It's like a really amazing "journal" of our lives!