are we all still here?

I’m wondering if I should continue to check this site daily or let it go. What do you guys think?

One more post (at least). I just sent this out in a blog to friends and galleries, consultants….ya never know. I used someone else’s base picture to drop in my own paintings. I’ll let you know if it does any good. Sales in the US are slow if non existent but it’s what I do so must keep the chin up.

3 setups I let them know that, though I work small I often am asked to upsize something similar….so…..

New York, New York Part II


I can’t remember if I mentioned this before, but 5 days just aren’t enough for a city like New York and although I now spent 10 days in this amazing city I have decided I need to come back next year if finances allow. There is still so much to do…..


This is a Graffiti sculpture along the High Line, very clever.

This time round Phil and I enjoyed spending time in the East Village, went to the Whitney and saw the Frank Stella Retrospective (amazing!!!), walked the High Line now covered in Autumn colours and stumbled into some amazing art galleries in Chelsea.


Amazing Frank Stella artworks and some of them are huge!!!!

We saw some breathtaking art at Sotheby’s, went to the Print and Artist Book exhibition at The Tunnel in Chelsea, enjoyed some live music at the Bowery Electric and went to a play at the Gene Frankel Theatre in Bond Street.  We also caught up with family friends, old work friends from Phil and Billie, my landlady during my first stay in New York. What can I say, we felt right at home!  We also had a glass of wine at Grand Central Station, walked to Times Square, saw Ground Zero and enjoyed many Happy Hours drinking Margaritas!  Poor Phil I made him walk for hours!


Amazing artworks in Chelsea galleries.


The High Line – beautiful in Autumn at 25 degrees Celcius! How lucky were we walking around in T-Shirts in NY in November!


That’s my man!


One World Tower….and Ground Zero



and did I mention I love all the Graffiti!

Again I re-discovered I am a city girl at heart and although I enjoyed my time in Las Cruces, I missed the buzz and noise and excitement of the big city. How will I cope in Bundy after this amazing trip???? I guess, work will keep me on my toes and I do have lots of plans for future artworks.

We are now in Chicago and this city is even more exciting than New York if that’s at all possible, but that’s something for my next blog.


Chicago from the river :-)

Home, sweet work.

Hello from Perry!
One of the things I knew before I left Mt Perry in late August was that Red Hill Gallery had secured a commission for me, and Marlies and Phil got the usual call “can you make me a 100cm x 100cm stretcher frame, tickety boo?”.

Stretched and primed, with some texture in place to dry, I closed up the doors and headed off.

After working 4+ years full time in the studio, and never for a minute regretting any of it, I did hear myself often quip “it’s no way to make a living“, making light of a genuine concern about income. And yet my struggle with commissions continued. So I got onto the plane knowing it was time to ‘reframe’ those thoughts, and be brave enough to ask some other artists theirs.

Off and on over the weeks I spoke with about 6 different artists and of course everyone was generous and thoughtful. And yes, it’s a no-brainer: someone is prepared to pay you to paint something you love painting. They like your work, therefore they will like what you paint. This was the gist of reply each time amidst a great broad ranging discussion.
But will I like what I paint?

Well probably not if I tie myself in knots over it! And I already know I have a process in place that avoids being asked to replicate works, or to be heavily directed, but apparently I have numerous doubts. Other questions I’ve posed to self have been: What is this angst over studio paintings versus commissioned pieces?
Will money corrupt the process?
Am I a lesser artist afterwards?
Is the work less interesting?

Answers: sshhhsshh, stop the voices;
yes, and buy you a canvas roll, get over it;
no, doh, build a bridge and get over it;
and, only if you let it be!

One of the things the residency fostered was my willingness to ask questions of the US artists that I may not have so easily asked of my home crowd. Nearest astutely observed that we can often be more ourselves when a long way from home—a little more fearless in our approach perhaps—as the importance of the lasting impression seems lessened. Or this may just reveal more of my own shortcomings back home, but I certainly won’t forget the responses I received. Either way I came home emboldened.

I am really enjoying the lightness of the work on this one, I’ve started some sketches around it (2nd pic) and also started the base painting (above). I’ve decided to not finish the sketches first, to not be too prescriptive, but instead move from one format to the other and maybe some interesting things will occur in that process.

The coffee is flowing, the oils are out, the watercolours too, and Nearest is still terribly impressed with how many Qantas meal trays I managed to flog on one long flight to Australia. Thank you Qantas, they make excellent watercolour palettes.
And the studio assistant (cue the gratuitous pet photo) is very happy to be working again.


Saturday morn, talking to meself, I think. haha


Sometimes, I put up my first cuppa of the day on my facebook page. This was today’s. I won’t make it a habit here, but will share today. Left is a small card art by Truth or Consequences, New Mexico artist, Susan Christie. Next to it is a postcard art by Sacramento, California artist James Gasowski…see the sweet worm? My first try at sculpture. Alas, I paint.

Have a swell weekend and think about keeping this blog going for another week or two or….

a ‘free’ commissioned piece. ha

I was invited to join 6 other artists to ‘illustrate/paint to’ one of 7 winning essays that were selected by  the Wonder Institute in Santa Fe, New Mexico, which is owned by the BEST ex art dealer in that beautiful city. It was an honour for me to be invited. The piece will eventually go into a book with other essays and images. It isn’t really ‘free’…if anyone wants it they’ll have to pay me the usual price. ha. Just ‘free’ for the show and to go into the book. Will be fun to see what others did. Mine is about a 14 year old whiz of a young woman…reader, competitive swimmer, trying to blend in teen who wears lavendar cat eye sunglasses…. This one is called: THE BOOK OF DAISY (her name)…24×24 inches, 61x61cm….acrylic, graphite and crayon on canvas.


Whew, sent it to the curator and owner of the Wonder Institute and she said it was PERFECT for the essay. wheeeee

Farewell to Adrienne and Marlies

Postcards-adrienne by her painting-f

After a flurry of final activities for the ladies from Bundy, including one more show of Adrienne’s work (above) within the Project Postcard exhibition at NMSU, it was time for final farewells to Adrienne & Murray and Marlies & Phil.Murray Adrienne at Double Eagle-f

One more margarita at the Double Eagle….

Adrienne Nancy Jeanne at Ouida's-f gang at Ouida's-f

…as a warm-up for more good drink and tucker, hosted by artist Ouida Touchon at her lovely home in Mesilla.  Joining in were artists Jean, Jacklyn, Nancy Frost Begin (center, above), and some wonderful significant others.  All were impressed by Adrienne’s small water-media works from her stay, especially Nancy, a Signature Member of the National Watercolor Society.

In keeping with New Mexico’s “wonderful” cultural tradition of letting rubbish lay where it falls, I close out the 2015 WBHD2 blog posts with a few international beverage-exchange images.

Fosters still life-f

White Sands-Bundaberg bitters-f

White Sands-Bundaberg ginger beer-f

I’ll continue to post and am already planning a return trip to Bundy and Oz in 2016, time-frame is still TBD.  Until then….

Party at Peg-ay’s

The elusive Mrs. Brown and hubby Joel held a wonderful welcoming party for recently arrived Murray Williams and Marlies, along with several of the WBHD gang and their significant others.  Here are a few pix of us in various stages of debauchery.  Other attendees included artists Nancy Frost Begin and Margaret Berrier, and the Thomas’ (who hosted AW and MO during their stay.)

Peg's party-Nolan Murray Dick Marlies-cPeg's party-group by bar-cPeg's party-at the table-c Peg's party-at the table2-c Peg's party-other end of table-cPeg's party-Sherry Nancy Margaret-cPeg's party-AW going for the margarita-c

Peg's party-Joel-c Peg's party-Peg clowning-c

Moments with Marlies

Unfortunately I had family visitors for much of the month of October, so was not able to spend as much time with Marlies as I would have liked (lucky for her, eh?).

Raul shares collages at Unsettled-e

I got to watch some of her collage work as part of the Mesquite Street open studio event.  While Adrienne and Jean were across the historic Camino Real (now Mesquite St.), Marlies and Raul Dorn shared their collages outside on the Unsettled Gallery veranda.

Art Obscura-Marlies and Crook pose-e Art Obscura-Marlies with Crook at painting full-e

I had the pleasure of introducing Marlies to the Art Obscura Gallery, a mecca for younger, emerging artists.  We attended the opening of a solo show by Crook (Juan Gonzalez) that was particularly good.  The painting I wanted was already sold by the time we got there (so couldn’t add to the 4 pieces by Crook already in my collection), but Marlies was able to snag one that fit in her suitcase.  Marlies’ funky outfit was right at home with the crowd in the gallery.  Art Obscura brings in a food truck for events, so she got a literal taste of the local culture on top of all the art.

Marlies by 138 Food Truck-eMarlies plays illegal immigrant-e

Speaking of vehicles, Marlies introduced me to a part of Las Cruces region that I wasn’t familiar with….the eclectic open air, dusty bus depot out by the highway petrol stop at Dona Ana.  I picked her up from her exciting outing to El Paso by Greyhound.  She is an adventurer after my own heart!

Marlies Phil at Double Eagle-f

It was wonderful to see Phil again, however briefly during his stay in Las Cruces.  Above the happy reunited couple enjoy killing some brain cells over margaritas at the Double Eagle bar in Mesilla.

There was plenty of art produced!

One thing that really impressed me about Adrienne, and mirrored by Marlies when she arrived, was the dedication to the production of artworks.  I really wasn’t permitted the luxury of much creative time during my residency in Bundy, but Adrienne made a point of setting aside time in the studio and the field to sketch and paint.  Here are a few moments that I captured during her stay, to supplement her many posts on this subject.

Adrienne painting thru window-e Adrienne working in Mesquite studio2-e Adrienne holds strip in Mesquite studio-e

The Ayers were kind enough to provide studio space across the street from Unsettled Gallery.

Aussie open studio-Adrienne collector and Jean-e Aussie open studio-Jean and Adrienne-e

Jean and Adrienne shared their work in the same studio during the Mesquite Street open studio event, highlighting the Australian connections.Aussie open studio-Adrienne expains painting to Raul-e

Adrienne enlightens local art icon Raul Dorn on her approach to an oil.  Raul taught many of the emerging artists in Las Cruces as a teacher in several schools over the decades.  His wife Tauna Cole currently teaches art at the University, and Adrienne shared various art-bonding events with this influential and inspiring couple.  Another art couple to bring out the best for Adrienne was our very own Nolan Winkler and her sculptor husband.  Adrienne did a retreat for art at their Hillsboro home, as well as other stop-overs.  The watercolors and gouache pieces Adrienne created there were especially good!  I was fortunate to see her at work (below) when I came to courier her back to Cruces.

Adrienne at Nolan-with Nolan studio2-e