Copying myself

Every now and then, someone requests a copy of a painting I’ve completed and sold.  I don’t personally know other artists who do this, but I’m sure they are out there.  It’s difficult to tell what paintings will sell and which ones will not. Unless I’m painting a commission, I paint what I feel like painting!  It is a compliment when an art buyer requests a repaint of a sold painting.  The repainting is certainly not exactly like the original.  I guess I could project an image of the original on a blank canvas, but that would be too precise for me.  In the repainting, I can revisit the original idea and make changes that may even improve the original idea….I don’t know if they are really “improvements”…more like just changes in my present painting style and color choices.  In the past, I have repainted “Best Friends”…a black dog and yellow dog sitting side by side several times,  and  Three Black Dogs.  Three Black Dogs was originally donated to a rescue fund raiser back east….

Jake the Weather Dog

It’s amazing how a dog will show up in your life and just lead you to a new level of understanding and yes,even a new level of frustration.  I have thought it would be cool if dogs could talk, for some limited amount of time, so we could get to the important stuff about them quickly!  But, alas, we can observe, change the situation, yell, bark, swear, and sit back in contemplation about all the stuff in our lives that we have little or no control over.

Jake is one tough customer. I am going with his current care taker to talk to Dr. Hunthausen this coming week.  It seems his care taker has done everything to make this crazy dog more comfortable…but, we are not there yet.   He remains a puzzle with no easy fitting pieces. Here is the list of what Cindy has tried so far: A thunder shirt, a soft, but strong kennel, lots of blankets, a garage, several walks a day, anxiety meds,  and, as much attention as she can give him without losing her job.

I’ve created a painting about him. We will be auctioning it off on face book to help pay for his expenses . Also, I’m sure I’ll have some helpful advice to pass on. Check back!

The adventure continues…..

Change of Seasons

Now I have several paintings to do, and I have the canvas primed and ready to go, but I have no energy! I think it must be the shorter kind of dreary days of fall.  We’ve spent some time repairing a wall in our store and everything is looking fresh and new.  I could take some inspiration from this feeling and actually do a painting about this change of season.  I’m writing this down to remind myself that I feel this way every year.

Mind Dance is a painting I did in 1997.  I’m sure I was feeling the same way then as I do now. It’s comforting to know that I’m seasonally consistent. Writing journals are great, but sometimes a painting is simply greater at catching a feeling.

Revision Revision

Spirit Guides I  have been  working on a real title for this painting. It is very cave drawing like…which is where I was headed when I first started working on this.  If I lived in a cave, I would draw my favorite spirit guides on the walls, and they would be my protectors! And, they would be my dogs! Dogs have always taken this roll for us. Their reward should be a warm safe place, good food, an walk everyday, a treat before bed and a bed of their own near us at night.  Our reward for providing them all of the above is we hear the warning bark that someone is near! Friend or foe, we look to see who it might be.

That being said…That is the name of this painting.

Spirit Guides

This painting is acrylic (Golden brand) paint on canvas. Size 48″X58″


Painting is a conversation. Sometimes the conversation stops…and then, later, it begins again. The room in the painting was too empty. Nothing like my life!  Now it is full of the memories of past  and present dogs in my mind…and even some of the dogs I’ve met along the way…a whole company of dogs. Now it seems like a good conversation. I’m  nearly finished with this canvas.


Repainting a Destroyed painting

        It’s actually very difficult to copy myself, so I don’t worry too much about someone else trying. Several paper pieces were recently badly damaged by a dog we rescued from a bad situation. He was on his way to a new home, but spent some time in my studio while I was out of town….My partner had no idea that the dog was terrified of thunder storms.  He broke out of his kennel and tore up two paintings that were waiting to be shipped.  The Destruction painting was headed for a fund raiser in Hawaii, and I was able to patch it together enough that perhaps the dog’s input added a great tale to the piece! The other painting (pictured at top) was so yummy, that some pieces were actually missing, and the painting  was already sold, so I’ve been working away at copying myself.  The good news is that I like the new painting even better. Hopefully the customer will agree. See for yourself!



Every day is a new day. What was on the easel yesterday, doesn’t work today or certainly could use some work. Finding  some time today to just wrestle with an idea about our close relationship with the dogs we live with….that doesn’t even really cover it, but I think the painting shows our relationship in the universe ….I can’t say more…let the painting speak.

Leaping border collie!

Every time I attempt to organize my studio a little more, I find some painting  that I think  someone else might enjoy!  I have worked with the MOKan Border Collie group in Kansas City  for several years. They usually have a get together in the spring…or is it fall? I’ve designed t-shirts for them from time to time.  The leaping dog has not made it to a t-shirt yet, but I  think it’s worth sharing here. It’s great to watch these border collies in action. They really do float above the ground.

As I have started to paint on canvas again, I realize how addictive painting on paper can be.  Canvas work just takes much longer to build the paint on to get the rich painted feel.  Paper is more absorbent and can suffer from overwork.

Border Collie agility

Agility dog

Transporting large canvas paintings

When I began to have shows in the Kansas City area in the 1990’s, I realized that a passenger car was not going to work. Many of my canvas pieces were 48X58″ and I just needed something larger than a regular car.  I went online and searched for used cars.  It was somehow easier then (1998) than it seems to be now…but I found a used Safari Van and traded my Honda in for this great Safari van that I could haul t-shirts, paintings, dogs, small furniture….whatever I wanted!  We even drove to a Backer Show in Atlantic City …packed to the gills with t-shirts display stands, signs, suitcases and two dogs.

Two years ago, ….just when Cash for Clunkers finally came online, that van became a prospective clunker when we were on our way to a dog show in Omaha, Nebraska! The Monday after our nervous return to the Kansas City area,  I traded my  usually trusty Safari in and  got a great Honda Insight that gets great gas mileage …and is kind of a computer on wheels.  But, no 48X58″ painting would fit in the Insight! This became a road block for my painting on canvas.  I worked on smaller canvas.  Even though some were successful, I really missed the larger space of a big canvas.

Yesterday we went shopping for a car that  I could put a large painting in…and we found one!  A Toyota Scion!  With tape measure in hand we walked around the Toyota lot inspecting  trunk openings. Now I can paint big paintings again!  It’s a wonderful thing.  I realize that the limitation of the transportation problem also affected my canvas painting.  Sounds silly, but…physical reality can get in the way of creative thinking.