Friday, November 8, 2013

Settlers West Show

Please join me and my artwork in Tucson, AZ on Nov. 23, 2013 at the Great American West Exhibition at Settlers West Gallery.

I will have three works available at the show.

"Trail Boss" (renamed from "Going Steady") is my largest work (24"x30") at the show.

"The Huntsman" is 20"x30"

Star Studded (pictured in the next post), an 11"x14" board.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

"Star Studded"

Just finished up "Star Studded" - another working western horse.  I loved all the textures and studs on his bridle and breast collar, and he had a handsome face and expression too.  I made a lot of changes from my reference as he had overly bright rope reins with ugly snaps, some extra straps and buckles sticking out that simply distracted the eye and were not important to the work, and an unattractive saddle blanket sneaking in to the edge of the photo. 

I tell artists over and over again - get to know your subject matter and never be a slave to your reference photos!  The word reference implies that you should refer to them, not copy them inch by inch!  If there is an aspect in the reference image(s) that detracts from the finished product as a piece of artwork then leave it out or change it up to make your art BETTER than the photo(s)!  Get to know your subject matter because if the piece you choose to omit is very important (such as a piece of the bridle that keeps it all together) then anyone knowledgeable about the subject matter will know you didn't know the subject and your work will loose a potential purchaser.

"Star Studded" - 14"x11" - Scratchboard

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

ISSA Gathering and new works

We had a great time at our International Society of Scratchboard Artists (ISSA) Exhibition and gathering in Vancouver, BC June 7-9!  Such a wonderful group of artists; so supportive, helpful and fun!  It was fantastic to see the show in person - WOW!  Scratchboard is always so much more impressive in real life than looking at it online.  Overall everything went off without a hitch.  If you live in British Columbia or Northern Washington it is worth it to make a trip to see the show!

Our 2014 ISSA Exhibition will be June 24-Aug 17 in Cary, North Carolina at the Page-Walker Arts and History Center.  If you live in that area start making plans to attend :)

I have three works on various stages of completion, and getting ready to lay out a 24"x30" piece where almost the entire board will be scratched!

Here are three new ones.

"Foxy Lady"
Already Sold :)
See it scratch-by-scratch with Zoomify here (requires flash)

"Mahigan" (which is "Wolf" in several Native American languages)

"Watching Me, Watching You"
Committed to the 2013 Greeley Stampede Western Art Show June 27-July 7

Reference photo by: Jaimito Cartero

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Going, Going, Gone!

I am delighted to say that I have had a recent string of good luck and good sales!

"Bear With Me" - 12"x12" - Scratchboard and Ink

At the Colorado Governor's Show opening night (April 28) I was pleased to sell two of my four works.  "Spring Loaded" went to a new collector who was very excited about this piece.  And "Bear With Me" was my most popular work with four people wanting to purchase it!

This past weekend I was in Tucson for the Settlers West Summer Show.  I was invited to show three works and all three sold making me the high volume seller of the night!  "Zen", "Leading The Team" and "A Sensitive Nature" were all well received at the show and went home to happy purchasers (I met two of the three buyers).  I am delighted to see my work (and scratchboard) being so well received at top national art shows this year!  As a result of my success I will also be exhibiting in the Settler's West Great American West Show in November.  They have requested at least one large work from me, so I will get going on that soon! 

While in Arizona I also did a demonstration on scratchboard at the Sonoran Desert Museum.  It was well attended and well received.  It looks like I will be headed back there in the coming months (fall or next spring) for a full workshop on scratchboard.  What an honor to have this prestigious location host me for a workshop!

My next upcoming events will be:
Art Marketplace - May 25-27 - An art fair in Estes Park, CO

International Society of Scratchboard Artists Annual Exhibition - June 4-23 - Federation of Canadian Artists Gallery in Vancouver, British Columbia.  Show opening is June 7.

And the Greeley Stampede Invitational Western Art Show (Greeley, CO) June 27-July 7.

I have also sold "Feeling Inclined" and just recently found out that it has also been selected for the Society of Animal Artists "Art and the Animal" Exhibition, which will open at Bennington Center for the Arts in September.

Friday, April 12, 2013

"Feeling Inclined"

It seems that just when I should be the busiest I have hat a bit of artists block!!  Doh! 

Anyways still forcing myself to plug along.

There were several times I wanted to give up on this guy, but pushed through and am pretty happy with how it turned out (though still might tweak a few things here and there).  The rocks and grass and brush took FOREVER!

Story behind the Art: My friend Kim and I were hiking near Dubois, WY last fall looking at some really cool Native American Pictographs in the stone when this guy stood up on a distant ridge line. When he looked up the hill and the sun illuminated his face I was glad I was ready with my camera. I chose to include small pictographs in the shadow part of the rock as sort of a tribute. Sorry for blurry photo - it is raining outside.

"Feeling Inclined" - 18"x24" - Scratchbaord and Ink

Close up look at pictograph rocks in thadow section of the board

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

MaRcH MaDdNeSs

I am not quite sure why, but it seems like all of a sudden in the wildlife art world that while January and February are rather quiet... suddenly every possible deadline roles around from the middle of March to the middle of April, making this a rather hectic time of year for me as I scramble to get work done for shows, get my entry forms turned in, figure out what to send to what show!  Eeek!!  Between the Art Association of Northern Colorado, Bennington Art of the Animal Kingdom, International Society of Scratchboard Artists (ISSA), Settlers West Summer Show, Birds In Art (BIA), Colorado Governor's Invitational Exhibition, Society of Animal Artists (SAA) annual exhibition and the Ward Wildlife Art Show (via SAA) I will have 20 works submitted to all these different exhibitions!!!  Most can not overlap due to dates and risk of a work selling (not that I ever mind that problem!).  Some of the shows will only take one work out of two entries (SAA and BIA) and some I may not get juried in to at all, but you can see why us artists must keep a large producing a lot of work in any given year!  This list does not include Women Artists of the West exhibition (May 1 Deadline), The Greeley Stampede Invitational Western Art Show (end of June) and Art for the Sangres Show (end of September)... and I may be forgetting some shows off the top of my head too!

I had to actually create a spreadsheet to keep this all straight!

I decided to color "Bear With Me" and it will be headed to the Colorado Governor's Show at the end of April.  I think the color really brought out his personality.

"Bear With Me" ~ 12"x12" ~ Scratchboard and Ink

Back to work!  I have two works on the go right now - a lion (20"x36") and just started a bighorn sheep (18"x24").  Both are color boards and as a result difficult to photograph as WIP the ink creates a lot of shine until they are varnished.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

The Elightened

This was a fun one to create with all the feather shapes!  I am hoping most people will get the play on words with the title.  One aspect is 'the wise old owl' concept, and the other being that he is in the light.  Possibly an entry for Birds in Art this year, but not sure yet.

"The Enlightened" - 12"x12"- Scratchboard

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Mister Chipper

I loved this guys expression.  Even though he is a golden mantle ground squirrel and not a chipmunk I decided the title "Mister Chipper" fit his cute expression.  Size is 7"x5"

"Mister Chipper" - 7"x5" - Scratchboard

Saturday, March 9, 2013

How fast can you scratch?

So it might SEEM like I am cranking out a piece a day by the way my blog posts come together, but I actually often have multiple projects on the go at any one time.  The bear was about 80% done in Early February, but just got around to finishing him up today.  And the horse I have been working on concurrently with the bobcat over the past month.

Bears are full of amusing antics.  I love watching them play with items in their environments and at times they definitely seem to have a sense of humor!  Once of the challenges with them in art is that they have TINY eyes.  As a species they are driven mostly by smell, so they have no need for large eyes.  This makes capturing light in the eyes and personality in them quite difficult.  I loved this fellows 'give me a break' expression.

"Bear With Me" ~ 12" x 12" ~ Scratchboard
Zen is the name of this lovely Friesian mare, and I liked it as a title for this work as well.  This work will likely be headed to the Settlers West Invitational Art Show in May.

"Zen" ~ 22" x 14.5" ~ Scratchboard

Friday, March 8, 2013

"The Hunger Games"

Just completed this afternoon!  "The Hunger Games" - 24"x24" Scratchboard colored with ink

It is difficult to get a decent photo of this one as it is not yet varnished and has lots of shine to certain areas of it.

The Hunger Games ~ 24"x24"

Friday, March 1, 2013

"The Scout"

Completed last night! 

"The Scout"
16" x 20"
Scratchboard (of course)

You can view the 'scratch by scatch' details with zoomify on my web site at:

The original is available.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Playing Catch Up

January slipped by in a flash and here it is already more than half way through February! 

Last week was the Settlers West Miniature Show, which I went to Tucson for.  It was a nice show with lots of people in attendance. About 70% of the 366 works sold, which was amazing!  My horse work "Shine On" sold.  Yeah!  I was also invited to participate in their May show, which only has 47 artists in it (the miniature show has 250), so I am VERY excited about that!  I thank Settlers West for their support!

I have been having a little bit of a problem finishing works... I get like 90% done, set them down and start something new.  I have a pile of works that need just a few hours to finish up.  "Why don't I finish them?", you ask.  Not quite sure... LOL

I did finish three today!!

First is a horse that I started last year.   I have titled it "A Sensitive Nature" and it is 11"x14" in size.

Next is another 11"x14", titled "Range Rover"  Colored with ampersand ink.
And last, but not least, is "Moose On The Loose", an 8"x10" board.

Also right before I left on my trip I finished a 14"x18" board which I have not decided on a title for yet.  All suggestions welcome. 

I have four more works that are also 'nearly' completed, but not quite, and one that I started two days ago. 

Happy scratching!