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Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Westport Art Festival - Aug. 18-19

The poster has finally arrived! This year's featured artists are Karen Lucas, Cameron Blagg, Mark Hoppmann, and myself.

"Cormorants", my feather featured on this poster, *will* be on display at the show - we have been careful not to let that one find a home before the festival. So if you would like to purchase a one-of-a-kind original painting that has been featured on an art festival poster, here's an opportunity!

We are, however, still waiting on postcards. They will be similar to the poster. We're all a little concerned, because they were due at Lucas Art Gallery last week but seem to have fallen into the Postal Service Black Hole. Knocking on wood, and hoping they arrive within the next couple of days... I have 200 postcard stamps just waiting for them.

In the meantime, I will be hanging this poster at the Coupeville Arts and Crafts Festival. That event takes place the weekend before Westport. August is going to be a very busy month!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

ACEO Cards

Art Cards, Editions, Originals. It's a fun concept, and gives artists a chance to try new things - albeit in a tiny format. These cards are only 2-1/2" x 3-1/2", the standard trading card size, and fit nicely in sports-card sleeves. I have begun playing with production in these, and I must say they are really fun to do!

I've a few up on Ebay at the moment. My favorite in this batch has to be the Tlingit-style wolf, which you see here. Keep in mind the size, there's a lot of detail on this one.

For more of these little cards, go here.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Heavenly fragrance

I knocked the back of a hatchet with the back of an axe, and split into that big red cedar crosscut that I've had in my yard for the past year. I was pleased to see a trickle of water seeping from the cut as I forced the hatchet's blade deeper into the wood.

"Good," I thought. "Still good and green." It is important to keep the wood wet when working with traditional PNW tools and methods-- these were designed for wet wood. Puget Sound's weather did most of that for me, but there were a few times last summer when I hosed this wood down. One more hard blow, resulting in a sharp *CRACK!* as the cedar broke open cleanly and evenly. No wonder this wood is so utilized and so prized. The Tree of Life. The grain is straight, but it's coarse, not tight- a male tree.

I plunked two nice little hunks into a bucket of water on my patio under the deck. One will become a frontlet, and the other is yet to be decided. The fragrance of fresh-cut cedar fills my back yard. I've left my studio door open to enjoy that fragrance even more-- there is nothing on earth to equal the scent of fresh-cut cedar. The bucket sits next to a bag of rawhide, which waits to be turned into drums and other things. Should be a productive summer.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

feather art

Arab Horse

A painting of a beautiful dapple-grey Arabian, as per his owners' request.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Order of the Arrow, Pt. 2


This one was created for the purpose of fundraiser auction, to support the Conclave program for Section W1B. This will help fund program and events for next year's Conclave. Available for bid in Anchorage Alaska, W1B Conclave this coming weekend.

feather art

Order of the Arrow

This one was ordered for our Section's Chief, so the orca is appropriate. Look closely and you'll see the arrow and the "WWW" on the quill. Framed in black moulding with a dusty blue suede topmat, this piece will be on its way to Alaska this week.

art business - pricing

This came from Alyson Stanfield's blog entry. Short, to the point. -and very true!


"The golden rule for pricing your art is . . .

Start low and go from there.

If you’re too high and later have to lower your prices, you appear unsuccessful and you also tick off anyone who purchased your work at higher prices. "


Let me elaborate on this one from an art show standpoint--

I've watched artists at shows ( not this last one, these artists know better than that!) who get very discouraged at the end of a show because they did not do as well as they anticipated. So what do they do? They knock 10% - 20% off their prices on the last day! On top of that, some will even call that out to passersby: "20% off! This day only!" I rarely see people flock to that artist for a "bargain" when said artist does that. The truth of the matter is, that artist just succeeded in losing his credibility, his prestige, and possibly the respect of the customers. What happens when he returns to that show next year? Will the patrons remember the beautiful piece they had their eye on the previous year (that DOES happen!), or will they wait til Sunday because he's probably going to drop his prices? Or will they determine that he doesn't know what he's worth, he's not successful because he keeps changing his prices, and not buy from him at all because at this rate he might not even be around in a year or two?

Patrons won't buy from you just to have your art because you may not be around much longer. Patrons want you to be successful. They want to own a piece from an artist who they think is going somewhere. They don't want to pity you, they want to see your confidence! Don't sell yourself short. Don't drop your prices to try to bring in sales. And by all means, remember to keep your pricing consistant - in the gallery, in the show, and in the studio!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Wood Duck

Wood Duck

This is the last one I was able to complete before the Fair - a drake paddling contentedly on a quiet pond. I left the water effects dark and subtle, because the feather created so many water effects all on its own.

Spring Fair, Puyallup WA
If you happen to be going to the Puyallup Spring Fair here in western WA, please look me up! I will NOT be in Artists In Action like I was last Spring. This year I will be amongst several artists exhibiting in the Fred Oldfield Western Heritage Center. For those unfamiliar, that is the mustard-colored building just inside the Red gate. We have a full house in there! Nestled amongst the museum's antiques and artifacts are artists booths and walls of all shapes and sizes. Other artists exhibiting are Paul Langston, Judy Sleight, Karen Lucas, Dick Oldfield, Mark Hoppmann, Peggu Rowe, Hulan Fleming, Katherine Caughey, and Aletha Deuel - and of course, fred Oldfield himself.

Thursday, April 19; 3pm - 10pm
Fri & Sat, April 20 - 21; 10am - 10pm
Sunday, April 22; 10am - 3pm
The Fair itself will continue going on Sunday til 7pm.

Quick Draws
Come watch us pull our hair out as we frantically work to create a piece of art in one hour's time! We begin this at 5pm on Friday and Saturday. The results of this toil will go through live auction at 6pm on Friday and Saturday. This is a great opprotunity to own an original work of art that you could watch being created.

Live entertainment
Musician Don Allard will be performing throughout Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. We will also be treated to Western music and poetry by the Rockin' HW on these days.

It's going to be a busy four days!

Thursday, April 12, 2007


Ringneck Pheasant Pair

More experimentation with heritage turkey feathers. I like how those of the Royal Palm turkey are so very similar in coloring to the flight feathers of a male pheasant.

This was scanned on Bainbridge's dusk suede. I may try simple photography and see if those results come out any better.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

How's Your Body?

...body of work, that is.

As we gear up for the deluge of art shows, festivals, and competitions that fill up the warmer months, we should always have an eye out for the next potential gallery representation. Usually it is best to approach these in Spring-- especially in areas prone to tourism-- before the high traffic hits the local businesses. When you do so, make sure your body of work is up to snuff. Author Robert Regis Dvorak puts it very well in his book:

Selling Art 101

Body of Work
"If you are an artist who wants to sell your work, you need to have a body of work-- a number of paintings, prints, sculpture pieces, whatever you do, at minimum 12 to 20 pieces-- that look like they were done by the same person, all are about the same size, all are in the same medium, all are completed, and all have a contextual theme. Don't even attempt to go to an art gallery in search of representation unless you have that. Do not take an assortment of media, thinking that you will impress the gallery owner by your range of talent and skill. The work that you will show must be of the highest calibre-- only your very best work. Don't risk showing secondrate work.

"Think of the painters and sculptors who are well known-- Georgia O'Keefe, Mark Rothko, Willem De Kooning, Robert Rauschenberg, Helen Frankenthaler, Henry Moore, Andy Warhol, Alberto Giacometti, J.M.W. Turner. Each artist's work has unique subject matter, is consistent in medium, and has a contextual theme.

"Art Dealers are looking for new work. Do not imitate the success of others. If a dealer or critic sees a resemblance to another artist, you are not welcome. You may borrow knowledge and information, but you must do your own work.

"When you have a body of work and feel psychologically prepared to sell, be very discriminating. Pick your best, most original creative works and go for it!"

Good advice. Good book, too.

Don't ever try to put the cart before the horse and think that oh, a half dozen will be good enough to get your foot in the door. While your work may be consistent and in keeping with the same theme, your prospective gallery representative may single one particular piece out and say, "I like this one. Do you have any more like this?" You don't EVER want to have to say, "This is all the work I have!" Make sure you have ample work.

It is also a good idea to have an ample amount of your artwork available for viewing online, sold works and current works. I have picked up gallery representation by way of works displayed on my website, but I have always had an adequate amount of work available or accessable when the gallery owner wants to personally see more.

The best rule of thumb is, do not set out looking unless you have those 12 to 20 pieces. The size of your works may also influence how many you'll need. If you work in a small scale like I do, you'll want to have at least 18 - 20. Just consider what it would take to dress out a 10 by 10 booth and you should be fine.

Sunday, April 08, 2007


Kingfisher ~on Peacock wingfeather~

These bold little guys are so full of personality and so much fun to watch when they fish.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

a little Skunk...

Skunk ~ on Royal Palm turkey feather~

What's not to love about a cute little skunk? As adorable as these little guys are, you just don't see them at wildlife art shows. As a matter of fact, I'm willing to bet this will be the only skunk at the upcoming show.

I will be framing this with Bainbridge's Rosewood (seen here), and Thistle on top. So far, this is the smallest feather I'll have on exhibit - from tip to tip it's only 9 inches.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Sockeye Salmon

...and the river turns red with migrating fish.

Some sockeye salmon urgently heading upstream to the place of their birth, to begin the cycle anew. Peahen wingfeather. I like how the subtle mottling along the edge of the feather looks so much like sunlight filtering through ripples on the water's surface. I used a slightly stylized version of salmon in this one. This will be available at the Fred Oldfield Western Heritage Center's art show during the Puyallup WA Spring Fair, Aprill 19 - 22.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Dall's Ewe & Lamb

Dall's Ewe and Lamb
on mottled hybrid turkey feather

I attempted scanning this in with Bainbridge's Dusk suede matboard behind it. Although the feather itself is still flattened more than it would ever be framed, I wanted to preserve the downy strands of feather at the base. Turkey feathers are a lot fluffier than peacock feathers, Ive learned. I may or may not use Dusk behind it in the actual framing, I haven't decided yet.

One drawback to scanning on matboard is the scanner's light is so brilliant and the items scanned are so flat, I lose all sense of depth - there is no cast shadow. But it will have to do for now. The originals always look so much better.

I'm painting like a mad woman in preparation for this show, once again risking burning myself out. I have a mere two weeks to have all inventory completed and framed. My hanging space will be smaller than the usual 10X10 booth I have at most shows. Instead I will be utilizing one of the wooden walls inside the Western Heritage Center. These works I'm finishing up should fill that out nicely.

Keep an eye on this blog, as more paintings that will be available at the Fred Oldfield Western Heritage Center will find their way here regularly between now and the Puyallup Spring Fair on April 19th.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Redtail Hawk at Tablerock

This was requested as a wedding gift. The redtail and the location have special meaning to the recipients. The mats were scanned in and placed with Photoshop to show how they'd look with the feather, but we ended up going with a darker red-orange (Bainbridge's "chaps") for the second mat.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Puyallup Spring Fair

Puyallup Spring Fair at the Oldfield Western Heritage Center!

I'm going to jump in and try doing a postcard to advertise. This is new to me, I haven't tried it before. Got Print makes it easy to give it a test drive though... you can order as few as 250, but I've ordered 500. I'll go through them, I have a pretty good mailing list. I created these in Photoshop by way of GotPrint's template. I wanted to go with humorous/fun, and I think this will fit the bill.

There was a lot of info to put on the back, it took some creative editing to get the most important times and dates in there. One concern with mailings, postcards, etc. is the accidental placement in the circular-file when it arrives in mailboxes. I'm told that one way to avoid that is the day that one mails the cards. I was told by a savvy artist to mail on Tuesdays or Wednesdays so the mailings will likely arrive to their recipients on Friday or Saturday. The reason for this being that Mondays and Tuesdays tend to see a glut in mailers , ads and circulars, while the week's end tends to be very light in comparison. I've been watching my incoming mail and have found that he is right - at least in my area. Your area's mileage may vary.

This shipment of cards is going to be delivered most likely on Friday. You know how I'll be spending much of my Easter weekend!

Friday, March 23, 2007


Ok, for the most part it's up! The website overhaul has progressed enough that I felt comfortable publishing. I still have a lot to do, but I should be completely finished in a few days. Woohoo!

Featherlady Studio

supporting the galleries

I've got several shows coming up all around Western WA - actually I'm looking at a minimum of one a month from April through October, which is the most rigorous schedule I've put on myself yet. Most of these shows are within reasonable proximity to at least one gallery who carries my paintings.

Much preparation to be done! It's been a very busy year, more so than I've seen yet, and as a result my inventory is not as high as I would like. That's ok, I'll get there - I have a month before the first of these shows.

Part of my preparation is getting with each gallery who represents me, and getting a stack of their business cards। When I set up the table in the center of the back wall in my booth, it contains my brochures, my business cards, a guestbook, a couple of WIP's, some unpainted feathers for kids to touch... and lots of gallery business cards.

I keep the business cards of all galleries in the region in a tidy little rack in a prominant place. I let local patrons know that they can also find my paintings in these galleries nearby। I make sure I have a list of what that gallery has, so in the event that a patron is looking for a specific animal that I do not have or no longer have in my booth, I can cheerfully tell them that so-and-so has a feather with that animal in their gallery, and I describe it to them, and describe the gallery and its location if they are unfamiliar. There have been a couple of cases where the patron exclaims, "Oh, I didn't know there was a gallery there!", which is good for the gallery because I've just pointed a new visitor in their direction. It's good for me because they'll be very likely on the lookout for painted feathers when they do visit that gallery. I've seen some gallery sales that way. It's good for the patron because now they know where to find my work, they don't have to wait for next year's show - they may also have a new venue on their list of galleries to explore.

And I always, ALWAYS keep the prices consistent: at the gallery, at the show, in the studio. One should NEVER undersell a representing gallery, it's just bad form all around.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Website progressions

I'm not publishing yet, it's going to be a while! But I did want to put up this screencap of the new links page. It's settled, that's the way the links bar is going to be.

The photo inclusion was via a suggestion from a friend of mine. I was showing off some turkey feathers I had recently procured, so I took a snapshot of them all laid out on my button blanket (which is under construction, hence all the basting stitches). She said, "Oh, you should put that on the website!" She was right, I think it looks pretty cool there. Those turkey feathers are going to be a LOT of fun to work with!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Commission completed and received

Yes, it is a very familiar scene. And I had a lot of fun doing it. This was a special birthday request for a lady who collects End of the Trail. The style and color palette were not my usual, which made it even more fun and challenging. I hope it goes well with the rest of her collection!

Website remodeling

It has come to my attention lately that my website lacks.... professionalism? Polish? Continuity? Ease of use? Oh let's face it, it looks like a great big mess put together by a hobbyist. Because it is. I first built the site a number of years ago and kept the same look, so it has that dated feel. The way it was laid out was adequate for showing a bit of work, but I kept the same format and just kept piling more work into it. It has grown so much that the beast has become unwieldy indeed. By every right and appearance it looks like an ameteur did it - that just won't do, not for a professional art site. Time to roll up my sleeves, bite the bullet...

I have factors working against me. I am technologically-inept. The site content is HUGE. It was put together with a WYSIWIG program. My time is limited. I can't afford/don't want to pay for a professional web designer.

So I've been looking at a LOT of art sites and their layouts. I'll take an appealing page into MS Word, and rework it. Change the colors, the table/cell sizes, create the necessary graphics I'll need for my own, add elements I've seen on other pages that I like and want to incorporate into my own format. I've got a start on a design I kinda like. It needs further tweaking, such as reducing the nav bar/title-logo occupation as they take up too much room on top. It's a drastic change from what my site has been for the past.... 6 or 7 years? Hey, I'm overdue! This change won't be immediate, it's going to take a LOT of time and work. I won't drop older works, they will be archived and available on the site.

T'ain't easy, but I'm learning a lot as I go.
If anyone would like to chime in with an opinion or a critique, such information would be heartily welcomed.

Monday, March 19, 2007

New canvas!

Spring Calf

I have new "canvases" to play with! Just about everything over the 17 years I've been painting feathers has been on peafowl plumage, male and female. I now have a nice little collection of Royal Palm turkey feathers to try things on. I love how the natural patterns of this feather elude to an intended background, and many people see different things with it - high cirrus clouds, a snowy mountain, rolling hills... each mind interprets it differently, which adds to the fun of the image.

Explorations in cedar

BSA DIstrict Awards

It was so much fun having a part in these! I was on the District Awards Committee, and part of the creation of the awards. A *very* talented Assistant Scoutmaster made all of these from a lot of cedar boards that he had onhand, and designed and created the patches. My task was painting the PNW Flat Design on all.

There were 10 paddles (sorry for the blurry pic), each unique in size and shape, so each received its own unique painting - there was Salmon, Raven, Sea Monster, Halibut, and so much more. With each paddle I became more and more comfortable with the process. The other two photos show two sides of one box. There were several boxes. This particular box told the story of Raven Steals the Sun; you'll recognize the lid design from a previous work I did on paper. Moon is seen on one of the panels, and Sun (not shown), is on the other. I kept Moon's features soft and basic, and very much in contrast to Sun's features, which were highly detailed, more angular, and also giving him a hooked beaklike nose. Personalities along the lines of the contrast between sunlight and moonlight, I suppose.

Upon arrival, most of the awards were decorated even further with wrapped feathers, which really set them off. In all, it was a neat proceeding, well organized, flowed well, great dinner, and most importantly, most of the recipients were present. A great evening, and I hope it all encourages a higher attendance next year.

I don't think any BSA District in all of Western WA has done District Awards like these! Lots of fun, and I hope to be involved again next year.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Many brands on the coals...

I've not been posting much here lately, but it's with good reason. I've been pulled in many directions over the last couple of months, some in art and business and some in Scouting.

I've recently had to make a decision to cut something out. I had to step down as Cubmaster. It was a hard decision, as I've been with that unit for 6 years, since my younger son joined Scouting as a Tiger Cub. He advanced on up to Troop last year, though, but I was still in a leadership position with the Pack. Two sons in two Troops. Art business that has suddenly taken off this year at a much greater rate than I anticipated. Involvement with local arts communities to network and to find opportunities. My family was not seeing enough of me either - something had to give. I know the Pack willl do fine without me, it's just a matter of adjustment and other parents stepping up. That position needs to be filled by a parent who has a son there, not by someone trying to be active at Troop level too.

So now I'm playing catch-up. I've several commissions to fill, I'm mustering art to hang in a local restaurant, I've a big show at the Fair next month to prepare for. And I'm working on awards for an all-too-quickly-approaching BSA District Awards Banquet. These awards are very unusual and pretty cool. The idea grew from paddle-making which I put an OA youth onto up at Camp Black Mountain last summer. That and aspirations to learn steam-bending cedar - which we still want to do, just to be able to teach to youth. These awards are a joint effort - a talented craftsman of a Scouter built them. I'm painting them with PNW Flat Design. Then four of us will get together and finish the decorating andadornments. District has *never* seen awards like these!

After Banquet, I will post photos. I wouldn't want to give away the surprises before the event. I must say though-- I feel like I'm getting ready for a Potlatch!

Sunday, February 25, 2007


Tree Frog with PNW accompaniment

I'm having a lot of fun with frogs lately. This one is available at Lucas Art Gallery in Graham WA.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Feather for a Woodbadger

For those of you less familiar with the Boy Scout Leadership training, Woodbadge is some of the best adult leadership training the BSA offers. The training is comparable to business leadership and team-building training that one would find in the corporate world. A Woodbadge class is broken down into Patrols, like a Boy Scout Troop: Beavers, Bobwhites, Foxes, Eagles, Owls, Bears, Buffalo, and Antelope. At the completion of the training, the individuals must then complete a series of goals geared towards his or her position in Scouting. Once this is accomplished, the individual heceives a formal Beading ceremony.

This feather was ordered for a Bobwhite's Beading, which takes place this Saturday.

The feather's natural striping made for some very interesting cloud effects. I'm happy with the interest, color, and sense of depth the Beach Peas in the forground provided. I may be using Beach Peas in a seascape format again soon.

Monday, February 19, 2007



A new feather available at Lucas Art Gallery in Graham, WA.

There will be a Grand reopening of the gallery on March 3rd, to celebrate the completion of the big gallery remodel project. This promises to be a lot of fun, with many artists and patrons onhand.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Commission, completed and approved

I *LOVE* doing these for Scouts! This eagle will soon cross the continent for an Eagle Court of Honor.

Friday, February 02, 2007


My boothspace is forever undergoing subtle evolutions. I always use the ivy garlands now, I like the way they soften those hard lines of the gridwall. I haven't decided yet if I prefer the sheets in front of the grids or behind. The table on the right is where I work -- doing demos throughout a show is great advertising and does wonders to help encourage people into my booth and ask questions. Since doing those high-pressure Quickdraws at Western and Wildlife shows, I don't mind at all when people watch me work or ask questions - as a matter of fact, I enjoy it! Especially kids. Kids are so inquisitive, and love to look through the desktop magnifier to see a current featherwork really close. I'm sure this space will undergo many more changes as I learn, but for now this setup works pretty well.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Gallery rotations: keep it fresh!

Something struck me at Bonnie Kahn's Wild West Gallery. When we talked over the matters of my exhibiting there and she selected the works she wanted to start with, she said something I had not heard a gallery owner say before: that she keeps all artwork on a 3-month rotation. Now this is Gallery #7 that I have signed on with, and it's the first time I've heard of one doing that. What a novel idea! I'm sure many others do it, I just haven't encountered it before.

And when you think about it, it only makes sense. If something isn't moving at a particular venue over a period of time, the chances of it moving at all begin to deteriorate. Patrons will get bored looking at it. They may even deem that the artist is not very collectible if the same art is hanging there in the same place, month after month. And if the gallery has many such artists who have works that aren't moving, there will be less draw for the patrons to come in and visit at all.

I have made it a practice to rotate works in and out of galleries. I'll be honest, sometimes these rotations of mine coincide with big shows or back-to-back shows, with a panicked me trying to fill my booth, and then afterwards bringing works back to the galleries from which I borrowed, and having them hand-pick what they wish to display. But whether it's a matter of borrowing for shows or a simple matter of rotation, the end results are the same: the works are swapped regularly, and what I have on display at each venue stays fresh.

If something doesn't move at one venue, it very well may move quickly at another. It really all depends on the audience. I've learned that while generalities work to an extent, when it comes right down to individual subject matter there just isn't any way to guess what will attract whom. there is no science, only educated guesses.

So keeping to a regular rotation of one's work benefits all - the artist, the gallery, and the patron. Keep it fresh!

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

I'm back from Oregon

What a delightful trip!

I now have gallery representation in Portland. If you're ever in NW Portland, do stop by Bonnie Kahn's Wild West Gallery. She has a magnificent assortment of Native American and Western art, jewelry, textiles, and paintings. When you enter, you are immediately surrounded with the scent of sage and sweetgrass - the gallery is a wonderful experience!

The Good Earth Home Show was even bigger than last year. They had over 250 vendors and 40 seminars. Any visitor would be hard-pressed to see and do it all. I met so many wonderful people, and many whom I met last year. It was great seeing and talking with you! I do hope to do this show again next year, it was fantastic.

Now I must prep for the Art & Wine-tasting event in Downtown Tacoma. This is a one-day event from 5pm to 9pm on February 15th, and will be quite a new experience for me. I'm looking forward to it! I shall provide more details and specific location soon.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Off to Eugene

The Good Earth Home Show

I'm driving down there today, and will hopefully be there in time to set up. Along the way, I have an early-afternoon interview at a gallery in Portland, so between that and traffic my itinerary is a little grey.

I did this show last year and was overwhelmed with the enormity of it. Patrons were shoulder-to-shoulder in the isles, and every parking space was filled. It was my first year that year, so I was very pleased to squeak into the black when all was said and done. there were quite a few events going on, even the Cascade Raptor Center put on demos with their birds. This year promises to be even bigger. Setup for vendors takes place tonight and tomorrow morning.

While doing a show far from home, have you looked for creative ways to spend as little as possible? I tend to be very frugal, and I'm always looking for ways to save a little more. The motel room I'm renting has a fridge and microwave, which only cost a couple more dollars per night. I figure I'll do the breakfast-cereal/tv dinner thing to save on expenses. I'm packing sandwich materials too, so that will also help considerably. Last year I had a lot of cereal bars in my pack to get me through the day, but that got very old in a hurry!

I'll have 23 framed feathers on display. I've packed in accordance to what's been selling lately. Wolves have not been moving at all over the last year, so I have no wolves. Eagles always move, so I do have an eagle. Bears have increased in popularity, and that has been true for two years now. I'll have two bears. No marine life, sad to say... "Free Spirits" has developed another purpose. Karen of Lucas Arts is taking that one to Westport for me. Hopefully that event went well for her!

Wish me luck, this will be an exciting trip!

Thursday, January 18, 2007

"Rude Awakening"

I had to do -just one- humorous piece for the upcoming show. What a way to wake up!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Sparrow Hawk

a.k.a. American Kestrel

As a kid I remember often seeing these tiny hunters perched along the fenceline, waiting for some unsuspecting field mouse. I never realized just how tiny they truly are until I saw one up close at the raptor center in Eugene last year. truly a beautiful and intelligent bird.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Dining in the Green Room...

Washington State is blessed with lush, deep, dark rainforests out on the Olympic Penninsula. I tried, but I simply cannot capture in paint the overwhelming emerald green that completely envelopes you when you venture into the Hoh rainforest. This image just is not green enough!

This little black bear seems to be eyeing the stagnant pond for anything that might make a good snack.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

From the Rainforest...

Orchid and Frog

I love the jewel-like brilliance of many of the Rainforest's amphibian residents. I sought to intensify that perception with strong lighting and a deep mysterious background for this little treefrog on an orchid.

This too shall be on display at the Good Earth Home Show in Eugene.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Pheasant Cockerel

It can be quite a challenge coming up with an image that will even be visable on one of these flaboyantly striped feathers. Ringneck pheasants always seem to be a popular adornment, though. Many first-reactions are "Oh, you painted a pheasant on a pheasant feather!" I grin and reply that they're not far off. Pheasants and peacocks are related, after all.

Free Spirits

This scanned a little dark, and that Photoshop color I chose to represent matting isn't really helping. I spent more time than usual on this one, trying to get the sunset just so, trying to make the Puget Sound waters believable. I'll have to take a photo of it once it's framed, as this scan is not a good representation.

Those are the pros and cons of working small on a dimensional object such as this. It's small enough to fit on a scanner bed, and the scanner will show all the details up close and personal. My scanner does not match color perfectly. I also get a fisheye effect from it because of the dimensionality of the piece. It was not meant to mash flat. A feather has a distinct and graceful curve to it, and I utilize that in the painting. I create the painting by cradling the feather in the palm of one hand while applying the acrylic with the other. The result is a three-dimensional effect which is only enhanced by float-mounting in a shadowbox frame. People often say the paintings look much better in person than they do online. I believe this is why that is so.

Monday, January 08, 2007

PNW play


He's got a few issues I'd like to change, though nothing enormous. Overall, I'm pretty satisfied. This is for Wapiti, my OA Chapter. Our Lodge is Nisqually, the Raven. You can see Raven in his eye. I went with a Northern style, sort of a Tlingit-Tsimshian. I'll eventually paint him on a drum.

Eventually I will design a full-body elk suitable for sewing on a button blanket. The image I have in my head is in profile, leaping. I remember seeing an ancient tattoo that was on the corpse of a woman of high rank. She was discovered in a tomb in the Russian Steppes; her story was published in the October 1994 issue of National Geographic. I've always been quite taken with that tattoo design. The pose is so striking, so free, full of joy and powerful - it has stayed with me. Yes, I think that design with a Northwestern Coastal approach would be quite appealing on a blanket. Maybe I'll tackle that one by Spring.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Smaller feathers for Eugene

In trying to create a variety in size and price for the Eugene show yet still sell originals, I went with some smaller wingfeathers as my canvas. They average about 3 inches shorter than my usual and are certainly narrower, which presents more of a challenge in coming up with an appealing design. Below are Mimbres-style Native Deer, a Grey Squirrel, and Allen's Hummingbird. I may be doing some more touch-up to the hummer, but I am trying to keep these as a smaller time-investment and justify a smaller price. Click the thumbnail for the full jpeg.