Monday, February 16, 2009

When I grow up, I want to be an artist!

O. K.! I am an artist. It's settled.....but when I grow up I want to be a 'fine' artist. You know what I'm talking about! Wooden palette in my left hand, brush in my right. Beret on my head. Standing in the great outdoors painting plein air at my folding french easel. This has been my long time desire. So last week, I loaded up the truck and drove to Fredericksburg, Texas to chase after my dream. My Sunday afternoon drive through the hill country was lovely, so I snapped alot of photos along the way. Sixty eight to be exact. Not everything turned out well...some looked like this,
and then some turned out pretty good ...considering I never stopped the car.
I arrived just before the sun set, rolled down my windows and drove slowly down main street.
Savoring each and every sight! I then continued 5 miles out of town to the Rocky Hill Guest Haus. This authentic 'dog trot' log cabin was the ideal place to stay! From top to was perfect!Monday morning at 8:00 sharp, I walked into the Rather Sweet Bakery and Cafe. What a way to start a day! So many delicious choices.....I decided on a Bacon-egg-cheese Kolache (and knew I'd be back). At 8:45 I pulled up to the studio of tonalism artist, Nancy Bush (formely the studio of G. Harvey). At this point, to say I was excited would be an understatement! I quickly met Nancy Bush (www., who introduced me to Marie and Letti, who had driven from Houston, both in pursuit of painting excellence. As I set up my easel and paint palette, my heart was a flutter with anticipation. I had no idea what I was about to encounter but I knew it would be good for me!
Nancy is a fabulous artist. She paints daily and rarely teaches. She shared her thoughts, books, knowledge and ideas for awhile and then she began to paint. Watching her mix paint and brush was magical! She walked us through part 1 of the first painting. We listened carefully and took notes and then was our turn. For the next 4 days we worked hard, asked alot of questions and learned alot. Nancy was a wonderful teacher. Generous and patient. Truthful and encouraging. She has an 'eye' for color and makes the most of every brush stroke.
Painting 9:00 to 4:00 daily, we progressed quickly. By the end of Tuesday, I was overflowing with joy and gratitude (and had a tearful, but happy evening)! It felt like God had given had given me the 'best birthday present a girl could hope for' and it wasn't even my birthday. I felt His love enveloping me in an overwhelming way. I am deeply touched by the power of His love.

And the day wasn't over. Marie, art student and new friend, invited me to dinner to celebrate Letti's birthday. At 7:00 I drove up to the gate, pushed in the code and entered 'the amazing land of OZ'!!! What had begun several years ago, with an 1850's German rock house/turned sheep barn, was now an extraordinary 'EXTREME HOME' that in recent years graced the pages of Veranda Magazine. Need I say more? For the next 3 hours, I spent a most enjoyable evening with 'birthday girl', Letti, Marie and her family. The veal with roasted cummin sauce, spinach and strawberries salade, scalloped potatoes, fresh bread, expensive wine and texas hot cocoa cake with ice cream was delicious. And though the house was exquisite and the meal amazing everything paled in comparison to the warm hospitality, that set the house a glow!

Here are a few more paintings by Nancy. She is a tonalism artist. She says more with less.

I just love the impressionistic style of her work.
Nancy makes painting look very easy.

Thank you, Nancy for an unforgettable week. You'll probably never know exactly how much it meant to me. You are a very good teacher. You shared alot. I appreciate all you gave me and I'm making a commitment to paint, paint, paint!

I'm back now and I'm more than anxious to get started. I brought home the 5 paintings. I'll post them later. They are the beginning. A starting place from which to grow. But one thing is for artist is emerging in me. I look forward to the journey. As Nancy calls it, 'brush mileage'!


Beth said...

Yay Mom! Loved seeing the beautiful paintings...Nancy has such a cool look...i know you will have one of your own that emerges as you paint, paint, paint! Can't wait to see the outcome! Get going! :) love you!

bunnytrails said...

Wow! Thanks for sharing your experience. You are ALREADY an amazing artist but it will be fun to see what you do with what you have recently learned. It was great seeing you last Saturday at the CC. Love your hair...Mark really likes "Coach", too!

Debbie said...

I love the pictures of your paint brushes. Mine have been put away for awhile now. They are all so valuable to me as a tool and I haven't used them in a long time. Seeing your pictures, there was an awakening in me. Where did the weeks, months and years to that I held those brushes for hours almost daily? I think there are still smoldering embers in my soul. Who knows maybe they will find their way back onto my table?