Tuesday, October 14, 2008

was last week's theme over at Illustration Friday. Unfortunately, I did not realize it was last week's theme till after I posted this and entered my link in the IF linkslist. Sorry! Since my entry cannot be retracted I'll just carry on as though nothing was wrong. ;-)

I certainly have an embarrassment of riches to choose from in the sugary images department! I painted this little piece in August...I'd always wanted to paint a broken piece of pastry or bread but have always had some inexplicable block. I know this sounds weird. Why do we have these odd internal harnesses? Anyway, my son Henry (who has autism and mental retardation) got into my studio and got into my still life set-ups (he likes to eat the pastries and candy, even if they are stale.) This doughnut fell to the floor during the raid and broke beautifully in half, so, despite the wreckage I ended up feeling very grateful to him! It was as though I had finally gotten permission to paint a piece of broken pastry, because after all, it would have been a shame to let it go to waste!

Not sure what all that stems from, and probably best not to inquire too deeply. But anyway, here is my late, sugary, post!

Broken, oil on canvas laid to wood, 5 x 7 inches

Monday, September 15, 2008

is this week's theme at Illustration Friday. I am just back from a week of painting on Monhegan Island in Maine, so I have a lot of paintings to choose from. I painted this sitting on the highest point of Monhegan (Lighthouse Hill) looking over towards Manana, a small uninhabited island which helps form Monhegan's harbor. It seemed to be hunkering down comfortably, like an animal enjoying the brilliant sunlight.

Landscape is a medium for ideas...the various details in a landscape painting mean nothing to us if they do not express some mood of nature felt by the artist.
~Robert Henri, The Art Spirit

Little Manana, oil on canvas, 5 x 7 inches, 2008

Friday, May 30, 2008

is the theme at Illustration Friday this week. What fun, I love painting babies! I was one of those little maternal girls with a family of dolls I lovingly tended, and I still like to draw babies whenever I get the chance. Very rarely does anyone ever commission a painting of a baby however...I guess because they change so dramatically in such a short span of time. Often there is only a faint resemblance between an adult's face and his or her baby face, but there is usually some likeness between a child's face and an adult's. Personally I love the face morph time. I love doing teenage portraits as well, again, a time period only rarely commissioned.

Well whatever, this challenge has made me realize that I have only ever painted five or six portraits of babies (!) and I'd like to do more. So maybe I'll just do some for fun. If you live near me (Philadelphia) and have a cute baby, send me an email!

I was shocked to realize it has been several months since I last participated in IF! I have been busy preparing for my first one person show in New York; it's called Still Moments and I just delivered all the paintings on Tuesday. Now comes the nerve-wracking period before the opening, where I worry about the work and its presentation even though at this point there is little to do except try and find a nice dress for the reception. If you're in Chelsea on June 7th, please stop in Sherry French Gallery and say Hi! And if you say Hi Baby I'll know you got there from IF ;->

Nya and Katina, oil on canvas, 28 x 24 inches

Sunday, February 10, 2008

is the theme this week at Illustration Friday. I am using a painting I did several years ago...but it was a big leap forward for me at the time. Taken me quite a long time to catch back up with myself, if you know what I mean? Anyway, it's about having to choose. Taking one thing, then looking again at what you left behind and thinking "Hmmm..." Concept embodied by a small boy eating cupcakes!

Desire, oil on wood, 16 x 8 inches

P.S. Penelope may be too modest to mention her interview in the latest issue of Artful Blogging magazine. I was thrilled to be one of several artists whose images were used as visuals for the article. For more about this, see here!

Saturday, January 19, 2008

is this week's Illustration Friday theme. An excellent theme that can be interpreted a variety of ways. I am posting a plain black & white line drawing! I did a number of these hoping to get some work doing spots for children's textbooks. I showed them to two very experienced illustrators I know: both said, "Excellent work! You're good to go!" But go where? It turns out textbooks are a very difficult market to break into. It seems you have to have an agent, and I don't...yet. Oh well! I had a lot of fun doing them, they were a great exercise in artistic restraint and line control, and I guess it's a case of virtue being its own reward, even though virtue would really have preferred to be rewarded with a few paying jobs! ;->

I'm posting this particular spot because my twins are turning fourteen tomorrow! Like every other birthday mother everywhere my thoughts are all "That was fast!" and "I can't believe it!" And "I have got to get that cake baked!"

Saturday, January 12, 2008

is this week's theme at Illustration Friday. I thought this painting might suit the topic. When my boys were tinies I enjoyed knitting for them, although apart from a couple of infant caps, I never knit clothing: I knit toys instead! I did not have the attention span necessary for a sweater, but I could manage to knit a lamb or a kitten or a striped ball. Not sure I want to enquire too deeply into what that says about my character. But anyway, knitting and early motherhood always seem to go together in my mind. This is a painting of my friend Emilie and her youngest son.

Knitting, 18 x 14 inches, oil on canvas