Friday, September 25, 2009

YIKES...Self-Portrait - WTTW Cats - Pokey and TacoBelle Frantic

I hopped right on Michelle Burnett's Following the Masters Challenge for this month because it is on a subject that sends chills up and down my spine and makes me reach for the Excedrin....SELF-PORTRAITS. Now, I think it so much more interesting (and less painful) to be painting raccoons or birds or wildflowers than to have to face a picture of myself for long enough to paint a self-portrait. But...I knew that if I didn't do it right away, that I'd put it off and it never would get done. And, out of the 4, 812 blog artists I admire, Michelle is right there near the top of my list. So here I am, I think it actually does sorta look like me.
NOTICE!!!! (Added to blog, Sunday Sep 27, 2:30 PM CST... I've extended the deadline for submitting artwork for Cats Up until midnight, Oct. 5 (judging will be Oct. 6)
Next...Only 5 more days left of WTTW Cats Up Challenge (prizes with this one). So paint a cat. Draw a cat. Sketch a cat. Spay a cat. Barbecue a cat. No...scratch that last one...Pokey put me up to that.
I did 3 of em, and I just put one of em here. You can see the others (along with some really good ones) b
y clicking HERE. Oh...and a comment on my "Happy Cat"...I started not to do that one because I was sure I couldn't paint it without making it look like a cartoon. I was right.

I'm trying to post at least 4 or 5 ACEOs a week on Daily Pain Things. I am selling these for only $10.00 PP until the first of the year. You may want to check it out. Ad paid for by Starving Artists and Painters Society.

I will have some details on the upcoming "Texas Paint Out" rescheduled for October on my next blog. Should be and ideal for bringing the best out in the "mud daubers". Fingers crossed.

And last....Pokey and TacoBelle came
to me all upset and frantic this morning. Pokey told me about this Labor Day they had in a town not far from here where they were eating real dogs as hot dogs and showed me the picture below. She thought that Tweedles had got lost and was about to be munched down for supper. And that wasn't Tweedles, but Tweedles' long lost second cousin, twice removed. I told her they weren't eating the dogs, just dressing them up for Halloween.

Seems Texas has had problems down at the border with illegal aliens, but I didn't know all the details of the situation until TacoBelle showed me this photo. Weird, huh?

Remember, ability and talent are meaningless unless they are put to the test of action.
Cya down the road...... James

Saturday, September 19, 2009


Michelle Burnett's Following the Masters Challenge for this month was Western Scenes. She had some marvelous submissions...really great artwork. I went up to my niece's home and took a picture of one of her Texas Gardens and painted it for Michelle's challenge. Here it is...

Karin Jurick's Different Strokes From Different Folks Challenge had cupcakes on parade as its theme. So I did this one for it.

The "Cats Up" Challenge on WTTW is in full swing, and the paintings that have been submitted are grand. Click HERE to check em out. One kitty seemed to have gotten the wrong idea about the challenge, and went down the wrong path....illustrated below.

The economy seems to be on the rebound, but there's still a bunch of unemployment out there. Some of the job lay-offs can produce unexpected results. Such as in this photo that a friend sent me...

And....some friends of mine returned from a trip up North and took some pictures of Mount Rushmore. Then they went up to Canada and took pictures of Mount Rushmore from the Canadian side. You know, I've always wondered.......

Cya round the bend.....

Saturday, September 12, 2009


Well, today my sister and I were to be at the Marble Falls, Texas Arts and Crafts Fair peddling our wares. After 3 months of drought...we are having a deluge. No complaints...the rain is sorely needed. But here I am blogging instead of raking in beaucoups of Dinero (Hahahahahahaha!!!!!)

This month's subject for Windows to the Words Art Challenge is Cats...CATS UP!!
I have posted 2 here, but there are 4 delightful little critters posted on WTTW to be used as reference for feline-inclined artists. AND, this month, something new...PRIZES. You can see all four puddies and the details by clicking HERE.

Next....I was unable to ship all my paintings from Costa Rica due to expense, size, etc. Some have been in galleries, but most have been stored. Well they are now on display and for sale at a Rio Casa Blanco EcoLodge in Guapiles, Costa Rica.

Casa Rio Blanco is a delightful place. Herbie and Annette are from the Netherlands, and some years back decided to make Costa Rica their home, and did so by establishing this Ecolodge at the foothills of Volcano Turrialba and on the outskirts of the rainforests of Braulio Carillo National Park. Herbie and Annette are marvelous folks and their lodge is enchanting.

Nestled among Palms, ferns, heliconias, orchids and other lush tropical foliage, Casa Rio Blanco provides a home for toucans, monkeys, sloths and all kinds of other rain forest inhabitants. An intriguing hiking trail winds down to picturesque Rio Blanco (White River) where ctystal clear water from springs and upper level rainfall flows magically over rocks and boulders that are even older than I am.

Herbie and Annette have graciously displayed my work for sale throughout their facility. I have posted a few photos of Casa Rio Blanco here, but you can view more scenes and details by clicking CASA RIO BLANCO.

And lastly, I've been a bit under the weather for the last few days....kinda like hitting on 3 cylinders. My sister asked me if I might be coming down with the Swine Flu. I don't know where she got that idea. So I went into the bathroom and looked in the mirror and took a photo....Hmmmmm...she might have something there. What do you think?

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Commission Acomplished, Illustration Friday, WTTW

When I grow up, I want to be that guy who posts his blog when he says he will post his blog. Running late as usual. I'm back in Texas, but at my sister, Margaret's....who is a slave driver. We have this show (she does fused glass) in Marble Falls this Saturday, and she's been working me over to get more art pieces ready. Below is pictured some of Margaret's delightful handiwork!!!

But I had to take time to post the finished commission painting I delivered while in Louisiana. A couple of blogs back, I had published the WIP of this one. Here is the finished piece, delivered, and client pleased. This is a MIXED MEDIA...acrylics, cigarette ashes, perspiration, and pizza crumbs, applied in 100+ heat, raging winds at times, and amid vast hordes of flies and gnats. All in all, I think it turned out sorta OK.

Thanks to Deb Keirce, I got involved with another challenge thingy...
Illustration Friday. Penelope Dullaghan posts a word or phrase every Friday, and participants send in artwork appropriate to the post. This Friday the topic word was "Strong", so I painted a still life of my
container of Speed Stick Deodorant. However, I thought that was a bit tacky, so I submitted these leafcutter ants from a series I'm doing... "Windows to Costa Rica...Wildlife".

And next, I found the paintings I had done for Windows to the Words, Summer Stuff. I am the world's worst packer, so when I went visiting in Louisiana, I just kinda packed stuff here and there, in suitcases and garbage bags and chunked ii all in the old pickup. When I finished em, I took out my camera to shoot em, and the camera told me "Forget it, your batteries have bought the farm", So I temporarily forgot about em. But here they are.

My sister's on my case to get back to work, so I will. I apologize for such a sloppy blog, but next week, Pokey and TacoBelle and I will be back in Dripping Springs/Wimberley/Blanco in our typical "laid-back" mode. And hopefully, back on schedule... Take care.