Friday, February 27, 2009

Wekiwa Springs Event

Friends of Wekiva River is once again hosting a week long plein air event in conjunction with the Wekiva Riverfest. This is an invitational event that I have been fortunate to participate in for the past 2 years and again this year.

Wekiwa Springs State Park in Apopka is a fabulous place to paint. The diversity of landscape in the park offers artists everything from lakes with wading birds and natural spring headwater to sandy paths and spanish moss drapped oaks.

Artists are housed in the Park's Youth Group Camping Complex. Being on site makes painting from sun up to sundown possible. And you will often see a painter working by moonlight.

Artists begin arriving Sunday, March 1 eager to get down to business. Many will have a painting in the Wet Room on Wekiva Island by evening. During the week as paintings are finished, but often still very wet, they are hung for the public to see.....and purchase.

If you havn't attended a plein air event this is one of the best. Watch artists create paintings right before you......and yes, you can buy that painting wet, right off the easle. A portion of the sales go to the upkeep and restoration of the Wekiwa River. That makes this a win-win situation for everyone!

See you there!!!!!

Go to for additional information.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Style and Painting Techniques of A.E. Backus

Jackie painting during the demonstration

My painting demonstration at the Appleton Museum of Art in Ocala, Florida, was great fun for me. We had a delightful group who was full of enthusiasm and questions.

The format of my demonstrations is always relaxed and informal. People may move chairs around, making sure no one else's view is blocked, stand, ask questions and make comments. This always generates a lively discussion and more interaction.

Backus was the focal point of the day, not only his painting techniques but the kind and gentle man himself. I was able to clear up two questions everyone asks, how he got the name Bean and his relationship with the group of painters now called the Highwaymen. Backus is a favorite topic of mine so the 3 hours went by just can't beat painting and talking about what is near and dear to your heart.

Koreen, Education Director at the Appleton, was a gracious host. The facility is wonderful with great lighting for painting in the classroom and beverages were provided.

If you are interested in having me speak about Backus or give a demonstration, please get in touch. I am always ready and willing to enlighten people about my teacher, friend and mentor, A.E. "Bean" Backus.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Appleton Museum of Art-Backus Preview

Jackie, Dr. & Mrs. John Lofgren

The Reception for the Director's Circle to preview the A.E. Backus Exhibition went very well. I worked all week on my presentation and managed to pare Bean's life down to about half an hour. I said everything I wanted to say about his life without getting into to much detail but still creating a picture of the outstanding man that he was.

I have been asked to share a copy of my talk with the Docents at the Museum so they will be better informed about Bean's life. So I plan to make that available to them. There is such interest in these personal stories about his studio I may add a blog site devoted just to that. I will let you know when I get that up and running. Or add a comment here with your request to be notified when I post it.

Bean influenced a great number of artists as well as non artists, challenging all he met to follow their own personal dreams and goals. He taught us to share what we have, whether that might be information or money; to accept people for who they are not what they have become; and not to judge anyone by the color of their skin but the works they do.

He was asked once how he would like to be remembered and he said:
"I would rather be remembered as a humanitarian than the greatest artist in the world".

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Studio Open House

Linda Blondheim is a wonderful artist whose blog I read regularly (address listed below). Last week she issued an open invitation for all to visit her Studio Open House, Saturday, Feb. 7. I am always interested in seeing other artists studios so I scooped up my friend and great equine artist Sharon Crute (blog address also listed below) and off we went.

Linda had given me directions and I had taken my GPS along just in case. We didn't do too badly considering I got off I-75 at the wrong exit. Oh well, the GPS took us right there in spite of my goof.

The studio is in North East Gainesville in a pastoral setting..with cows and everything! You can hear the wind in the trees instead of cars!! Perfect place for an artist's studio. Now I understand where Linda got her inspiration for her series of yard paintings...she just steps right out her front door.

Jackie, Linda and Sharon

The art work was so wonderful I had to buy a little painting for my personal collection. The chili, with ALL the trimmings was hot and tasty and the brownies to die for. Sharon and I hated to leave the studio filled with guests all talking art and buying art! But, we had been there a couple of hours and needed to make room for new arrivals.

To ease our pain we stopped by the Krispy Kreme Donut Shop in Gainesville on the way home!
It was a YUMMIE day.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

The Economoy

Doom and Gloom! Newspapers, television, radio ---all are telling us what is wrong with America. It is enough to weaken the knees of the strongest of us.

I am not a "polyanna" but an optimist. America is not on it's last leg, we are just limping a bit. Money is still out there. Maybe not as much as before, but still in the market place. Things are getting better--we have always rebounded.

To quote Jack White as written in his column in Art Calendar Magazine, Jan. 2009, "...artists have a positive attitude and the ability to weather adversity. They don't let a small glitch slow them down. Being creative for a living has insultated them from listening to the outstide static. They know how to focus on controlling what they can do..." He goes on to say "...It's all about attitude. When an artist goes to a show down in the dumps, you can bet your best boots that artist bombs. But if you go expecting to do well, you'll do great. It is that simple."

We create our art because we love the process. We also appreciate getting paid for our efforts. So, I for one, intend to keep on keeping on. I plan to work harder on my marketing, getting in touch with past collectors and building relationships with new collectors. There is much to be done in and out of the studio.

White wrote "...many of you will give up making art. Some of you won't be able to adjust your attitude to take on the challenges of the coming year. But a few of you will thrive. Those who can will be way ahead in the race when the economy recovers. This is America and the economy will recover. America may get her nose bloodied, but she stays in the fight. I implore you to join me and do the same".

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Feb. Mini Painting and Backus Exhibition

February's Mini Painting 2"x3" Great Blue Heron

MINI PAINTING AUCTION: Thanks to everyone who sent in bids. The first mini painting has been sold. Posting a mini painting every Wednesday is a bit too much. So, a new one will be posted the First Wednesday of each month. This little painting is oil on canvas mounted on gator board. I got such a big response starting the bids at 25 cents last time lets start the bidding at 99 cents. Remember this includes shipping. Email your bid to me ( and put auction in the subject line.

Jackie and Beanie

This is me and Bean on his 80th birthday in 1986. He was still using his record player. The package he is holding is a Count Basie record I gave him for the occasion. He was an avid jazz fan.

Some days he would really crank up the sound. We would paint and kind-of dance around the studio, swaying to the music. But sometimes, he would actually do an easy jitter bug (as he called it) with me. As you see, I am still waxing poetic and very nostalgic about those days.

Now, back to the present. Dr. Lofgren, Appleton Museum of Art Director, visited my home and studio yesterday. A charming young man named David, sorry I did not get his last name, came along too. Dr. Lofgren said he was the talker and David was the guy who really worked. True enough, Dr. Lofgren talked and David took notes.

Dr. Lofgren has some wonderful ideas for the Appleton. His enthusiasm is infectious and his love for the arts and his job is obvious. I will keep you informed as these ideas materialize.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Web Site is Fixed!

Yea!! My web site is up and running again. After studying the How To Build It book for my web site program I gave up, called for techie help and VOILA she fixed it in a couple of minutes from her end of the line.

So, now I have decided to add building a new site to my long list of things to do. The current site is a bit outdated in its format. I do change the images and schedule regularly, just need to update the layout. Got any suggestion for me? What would you like included...or left out? Add your suggestion here by way of a comment.

I also got my NewsLetter going. It will be sent once a month with updates on my show schedule, images of new paintings as they are created, new prints as they are released and anything else extraordinary that may happen.

The "Subscribe Button" is not in place yet, I 'm still working on that....don't want to crash anything again. So, send me an email with the word Subscribe in the subject line

Visit here to get weekly updates if you don't want to wait for the NewsLetter.