Wednesday, December 23, 2009


Michelle Burnette's Challenge for the year end for Following the Masters is to paint your favorite master artist of the past, inspiring me to render great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great,great, great, great, great, great. great. great, great. great grandfather... GROG PARKER!!!

Now, many of you may wonder how I knew about Grog. Well, my brother, Burney, was a marvelous geneaologist (and so much more)...and he was very, very thorough about our family history. So I'm working from some stone etchings he made. Pictured beside him is his small pet house dinosaur, Alfalfa. The little dinos were around then, but all the big dinosaurs had bought the farm and were way underground making fossil fuel for Dubai and Bahrain.

Different Strokes From Different Folks Challenge from dat big old sweetie and world-renowned figurative artist, KARIN JURICK. Karin has a year-end challenge comprised of participating artists exchanging reference photos and doing portraits of each other. What fun! What challenge!! What torture!!!
I sent in the reference photo below,and below it is the portrait that artist NANCY BLUM rendered from it.....

Nancy is a very talented portrait and figurative artist, and my portrait, I will assume, looks much like me, because, long ago, I came to the stark realization that I am no Robert Redford or Brad Pitt. However, when I did see my portrait posted on DSFDF, I took several Excedrin, 3 Sudafed, a bottle of Jack Daniel's and made a doctor's appointment.

I received Nancy Blum's photo from Karin, and, as the rules go, I had no idea whatsoever who I was painting. I
went back to a few challenges and explored and dug around trying to get an ID by referring to blog profile photos (turns out Nancy doesn't have one) to have a better idea who I was gonna immortalize (or mortify) in acrylics. So here is the reference photo and my effort beneath it....

One further note on this year-end challenge....there were 180 artists participating, and the artwork displayed so far is so incredibly talented it's awesome. But, in the midstof this marvelous art emerges two portraits that extend far beyond phenomenal....and that is the exchanged portraits of Edward Burton and Akiko Watanabe. They are simply breath-taking. Please take time to check em out. Click on their names and Click Different Strokes From Different Folks.

Now, for a bit of fun....

Many of you may not know it, but Santa Claus and I are best buddies. He and I have closed up the bars in Nova Scotia many nights (which is quite an accomplishment with those 2 month nights). Anyway, he sent me some interesting photos and breaking news from the North Pole.

Last year, Santa brought a few penguins up to the North Pole, after seeing the movie, and thinking they were real cute. Turns out, they are pesky little practical jokers. As if the polar bears didn't have enough to worry about with global warming, they have to put up with "pranky penguins".
On a sad note, one of the apprentice "Delivery Santas" that was being trained by the big guy himself, failed to heed Santa's warning about looking both ways twice over O'Hare. May he rest in pieces.

The tragic loss of his apprentice left Santa in a big labor crunch, so he had to enlist the aid of his sweet significant other, Ms. Claus. However, it's not too clear how well that's working out. If your presents are a bit late this year,,,,what the hey....blame it on the Post Office!

Special Note...After years of collecting the funniest, most inspiring, weirdest, most awesome stuff there is, I finally found a place to put it..WINDOWS OF WONDERS (WOW). Please take a moment to check it's Mind-Bloggling! Click HERE

Next blog is about the Gallery and Studio....but, from the bottom of my heart....have a joyous and meaningful Christmas. Cya down the road...James

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


I've been away from the blog for 2 weeks...and I was close to pulling my hair out (And I don't have any to spare). But YIPPEE-HI-YAY, I do think that things are kinda coming together for a semi reasonable and organized existence. I have opened a gallery, studio and gift shop in Burnet, Texas. I'll have pictures and details on the next blog. Best of all. I have a great place to work and blog with excellent and continuous Internet service. I was so limited to access before now, that I seriously neglected (and missed) blog visiting. Now, I'll be making the rounds frequently. And Pokey and TacoBelle approve of the situation.

First, Windows to the Words had f
ew contributors last month, but the submissions that did come in were very nice. Below is my effort, titled
"Two's Company...Three's Painful"

This month's challenge consists of 2 Christmas reference photos to choose from, or...submit a artwork of the present you'd like to get for this Christmas.

Next, I've been working on an patio mural, a trip-tych, and some smaller works like the one below...

As hard as it is to believe..... Christmas is next week!!!!

Sadly, some pig-headed Grinch in the next county was playing tricks in the local cemetery, and really upset this little fellow.

Also, Christmas time is not immune to the occasional mugging...even in the oddest situations, such as....

I did manage to get my place decorated, tho....that's me on the right.

My neighbors weren't so fortunate with their decorations...they had to take them down. See below....

This fake "eave-dropper" caused 3 accidents and 2 dozen frantic calls to 911 before he was removed.

And the friendly policeman told this homeowner that he hadn't ever heard of the "Brussells Boy" fountain statue.

And, finally....If ya find time...check out my new "FUN BLOG" ...Windows of Wonders....WOW...guaranteed to provide humor, awe and inspiration or double your money back. Just click HERE. Below is a sample from the "Pictures in Pictures" post on WOW. Find the hidden picture.

CYA Down the Road...James