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The One Really, Really Important Rule About Painting

Hi all y’all,

I have been wanting to connect with y’all on-line, but the universe has been conspiring against me. Maybe it is all this retrograde talk or maybe my blog was just not ready to be birthed.

Crows on a wire has been a difficult painting.

#1 I painted a tree without really knowing how to paint a tree, so I painted the tree 20 times before I was happy with it.

#2 The question occurred, “Why are the crows dressing up?”

#3 “Why are they all wearing random costumes?”

I don’t usually paint with massive amounts of detail. I usually know basically where the painting is going. I am trying to just remain open.

I am getting to know these quirky birds.

I have a million women inside of me wanting to be painted. I do not know how the crows took precedent.

July 1st version of Crows on a Wire
July 1st version of Crows on a Wire

I love how the background showed up in the roof.

I now know the crows are dressing for Mardi Gras.

The 2 black capes on a black bird were getting lost. I tried something new with the judge’s robe. I colored the robe with a black oil pastel. Then I melted the pastel with a heat gun. I like the feeling and the denseness. On the vampire’s cape, I streaked silver ink, let it dry and colored in with black oil pastel. I am going to paint with acrylics on top of all that.

Magnificent Maggie, who I am certain is going to be the next Rodrigue, told me something interesting.

She said, “Nena, there is one really, really important rule you need to know about painting.”

I replied, “What is that, Mag Pie?”

“The one really, really important rule is to Never quit painting until you are happy with it.”

Seriously, words to live by.

Unabashedly in love with life,

Gator Girl

P. S. In my next blog you will see the finished Mardi Gras Crows, as well as a, hopefully, happy story about visiting Gaza Gaza.

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Shotgun Angel framed!

Hi all y’all,

Thanks to my daughter, Katy, Shotgun Angel is framed  in the wood that I want for her. I cut one side too short and we replaced it with another piece of screen door. I thought I had wrecked the frame, but no.

I am still looking for 2 skeleton keys to hang from the door handle.

Shotgun Angel framed
Shotgun Angel framed

I think I might lighten the sky a little in the darker parts… sitting with that idea for a while.

In the last 2 weeks, 2 women told me that they wanted to paint, but don’t. I would like to tell anyone that wants to paint:

Show up.

Start anywhere.

Keep painting.

I have taken classes on and off through the years. I got serious about painting when I took a class from Shiloh Sophia of the Cosmic Cowgirls. She empowers women and teaches a spiritual side of painting.

I learned how to draw proportional bodies from Jane Davenport.

If I am having a problem, I sometimes watch a YouTube tutorial.

A drawing class at the local junior college helps teach you how to see objects by their lines and curves. Wherever you see your next place to grow, go there.

For inspiration, I take a class called Lifebook from Tam Laporte. It is only $99 a year and you get weekly on-line tutorials from different artists.

If you want to paint, paint.

It can save your soul.

It can save the world.

With ever-loving gratitude,

Gator Girl

P.S. It is OK to spend money on paint.


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Angel Appearing with Attitude

Hi all y’all!

On a beautiful winter day and the longest night of the year, Happy Winter Solstice.

I am painting my favorite painting. It has all the elements that I love. It is definitely New Orleans and full of magic and attitude.

Shotgun Angel in progress
Shotgun Angel in progress

It is a little know fact that Shotgun houses have their own angel. When she appeared on my canvas, I immediately fell in love. She is going to have cool cellophane wings. The nice people at Rouse’s Market gave me a cellophane sleeve without buying the flowers.

Here is Alligator Bliss in progress.

Alligator Bliss in progress
Alligator Bliss in progress

The glitter paper on his leg shows through the glass, but you can’t tell what it is with the glass on top.

This is my finished Alligator Bliss. I tried building up the background with molding paste. It made the swamp grass look pretty cool. I wanted parts of the painting raised to balance the safety glass I used for scales. That is also why I put tile along the bottom.

Alligator Bliss
Alligator Bliss

Do you notice the  yellow dotted paper on the alligator stomach? It is the same piece of paper I used on the curly hair of women. I am on the look out for another piece of bubble paper, now that I am hooked on its usefulness.

I made this little Christmas decoration for my daughter and her girlfriend. It is their dachshund with antlers and one of their rats. Cami, the dog, looks like a deer in headlights. The rat is quizzical. I painted it on a left-over piece of our dining room table.

Cami and rat
Cami and rat

Wishing you all the blessings of the season. Time for this gator girl to look over the past years events and make plans for 2013. Time sure does fly.


Gator Girl