Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Seat of Knowledge

"Seat of Knowledge" 20x16" Oil on Canvas


 "Knowledge is knowing we cannot know." 
Ralph Waldo Emerson
This wing back chair sits vacant in the north facing window of my studio. It was a rescue from a friend of my daughter's whose cat had taken a liking to it. 

To me, this chair is the semblance of the Tree of Knowledge growing smack dab in the middle of the Garden of Eden, tempting all who come upon it to eat of its forbidden fruit. The shiny, sweet-talking tangerine, balancing precariously on a limb is the brightest allure in this lush garden.

Can you imagine sitting shamelessly idle, sipping on a cup of jasmine tea, and delving into the hidden secrets of a half finished book in the middle of a quiet afternoon? Seeing this chair empty, makes me wonder if its latest occupant was cast out of paradise mid bite after partaking of...heaven forbid...leisure time?!? Wonder what that feels like? Guess I'll never know. It all comes down to living your passion. Are you living yours?
 
nancy

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To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio •  Saatchi Gallery •  Fine Art America

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Call of the Light


"Call of the Light", 20x16, oil on gessobord
CLICK TO BUY

"All men's miseries derive from not being able to sit in a quiet room alone." —Blaise Pascal


This large painting is of the wing back chair that sits in the corner of my mom's living room where I snapped the photo reference. 

Caught in a yin-yang sea of cool and warm light, the chair sits vacant and still, like an empty canoe at dawn, docked against a back lit window that laps cool waves of early morning light against its sides. In a battle for dominance and balance, the table lamp to the right, casts its baited hooks of warm golden highlights designed to lure and reel you in for the catch.  

This seat beckons, kick off your shoes and sit right down. Simply be and listen for a quiet moment, not with the mind but with ears of the heart. 

This tiny minnow-of-a-habit built into each day reaps a bounty you'll never throw back. 

Thanks for bobbing by today!

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To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio •  Saatchi Gallery •  Fine Art America

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Morning Salutations

"Morning Salutations", 10x8", oil on gessobord


"When you rise in the morning, give thanks for the light, for your life, for your strength. Give thanks for your food and for the joy of living. If you see no reason to give thanks, the fault lies in yourself." — Tecumseh
The birds certainly get it. These tiniest herald's of first light, erupt in wild abandonment to salute the dawn with their joyous gift of song. From slender perches, high among dark branches, they cry out into the quiet stillness of waning night in an all-knowing awareness that light is somehow already present.  

J.R.R. Tolkien said, "You can only come to the morning through the shadows." Today's stoic chair stands guard facing the dawn like a wooden sentinel over a shadowy grave, and cries out in praise for the beginning of a new day!

Happy Wednesday. 
nancy
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To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio •  Saatchi Gallery •  Fine Art America


 




Sunday, March 23, 2014

Skinny Dipping

"Skinny Dipping", 7x5" oil on canvas board

 NOT FOR SALE

" I used to go skinny-dipping; nowadays its chunky-dunking."
— http://www.turquoisemoon.co.uk/blog/sayings-that-i-like/

Busted! Boy these two are in big trouble...caught red handed. See 'em blush. They stole the key and went for a midnight dip. Oh, but wait, they're only wading. I am guessing they didn't want to mess up their frilly dos. 


Thanks for sneak'n a peek.
nancy
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To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio •  Saatchi Gallery •  Fine Art America

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Aroma Therapy

"Aroma Therapy", 10x8", oil on gessobord
"Do Lipton employees take coffee breaks?"
— Steven Wright
 Hmm...good question, Steven? In my opinion, unless you are Brittish, tea breaks would be just plain wrong!  

Call it addiction, but I can't function without multiple breaks for cup after cup of rich strong aromatic Hazelnut or creamy French Vanilla. Lewis Black sums it up best, I like coffee because it gives me the illusion that I might be awake. I get up at 4:15 a.m. to walk my dog and swim, I'll take all the life-giving, ground from beans, rich dark liquid gold you can throw at me to keep my illusion going.

                  BOOK COVER NEWS

In my 9-5 business as a graphic designer, I am blessed to design a lot of book covers for a University Press. Today's painting is the cover of an upcoming novel of short stories by author Michael Lieberman. How fun it is to be able to paint illustrations for book covers here and there, especially when it features brimming cups of hot coffee. Mmm, can you smell the aroma?

                    ART SHOW NEWS
More good news! Last weekend I was awarded a 2nd Place Ribbon Professional Oil Division in the Conroe Art League's Spring Show for my painting "Home is Where Your Hat Lies." Bottoms up!

Thanks for breaking with me today, even if you're a tea bagger...tea-hee-hee.  : O
nancy

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To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio •  Saatchi Gallery •  Fine Art America


Monday, February 24, 2014

Window Seat

"Window Seat", 10x8", oil on gessobord


 
"What you really want for yourself is always trying to break through just as a cooling breeze flows through an open window on a hot day. Your part is to open the windows of your mind."
—Vernon Howard

The other day a friend asked what was up with all the chairs I've been painting recently? To be honest I am not sure what motivates my fascination? However as I reflect on the question, I have to admit I've been as moved by the illuminated windows serving as backdrops in my paintings, as I have been by the silhouetted chairs themselves. 

The yin-yang of light and dark enchants me with the omnipresence of shadowy darkness stalking ever so close, lurking on the prowl; while parallel worlds of redeeming windows stream with the brilliance of life-saving portals, open invitations for light and color to enter pregnant with the hope of possibility.

I don't know why I feel compelled to paint chairs, but those flanked with wide outstretched stuffed arms, sure seem to long to surround with the warmth of a soft embrace, offering safety and protection. To coin a phrase from Goldilock, "Ahhh, this chair is just right."

Thanks for flowing in through my window. 
nancy 

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To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio •  Saatchi Gallery •  Fine Art America


Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Seeing Red

"Seeing Red", 14x11", oil on gessobord

CLICK TO PURCHASE THIS PAINTING

"You can get help from teachers, but you are going to have to learn a lot by yourself sitting alone in a room."
 — Dr. Seuss


Here's another rocker that gets a regular workout in our home. This one was a gift to my husband when he retired from teaching high school. I am sure it was intended for a front porch setting, but serves us well in our living room. 

There is something I find irresistible about a chair sitting idle, open and waiting for someone to fill its highest purpose. Even if I have trouble finding the time to actually stop and sit much, sometimes simply seeing an empty chair permits me to mentally rest for a second or maybe two. Our lives are so fast-paced, chairs are wonderful metaphor for stillness, quiet... a reminder to stop the world now, and again...to indulge in the gift of another moment. Franz Kafka said, "You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet still and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet." 

Thank you for pausing for a spell.
nancy
PS. This is a larger painting 14x11"

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To see more of my art or to contact me: Daily Paintworks Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio •  Saatchi Gallery 

Sunday, February 16, 2014

The Rocker


"The Rocker" 10x8", oil on gessobord

"A house that does not have one warm, comfy chair in it is soulless."  — May Sarton

A silhouette of solitude sits in soft sultry light, inviting the viewer to enter into this room and take a seat by the french doors overlooking the pool; perhaps to rest awhile, read a book, or simply sit amid elongated ghostly shadows and rock in early morning's light.

This rocking chair has been in our family for as long as I can remember and beyond. I know all eight of my siblings and I were all rocked and comforted to sleep in it, just as I soothed my own children, and then one-by-one each grandbaby. 

The time-weathered cherry with its now tattered cane seat, groans with each rhythmic motion, lulling little eyes to sleep like some entrancing mantra. Accompanying lullabies were gently sung from the armless frame, such as Rock-a-bye baby, You are my sunshine, even an original Go to sleep my little baby—composed by my grandfather—and passed down from one tender lap to the next from its seat.
  
To me this chair is a priceless heirloom, one that continues to uplift this now grown child in a treasury of memories and tradition. 

I don't think I have ever said this before about one of my paintings, but I really LOVE the way this painting turned out...and the emotion it invokes. There is such a feeling of satisfaction when a painting comes together and I can step back and say YES that's it!

Thanks for letting me introduce our family's rocker.
nancy
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To see more of my art or to contact me: Daily Paintworks Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio •  Saatchi Gallery 

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Darkness or Light?

"Darkness or Light?", 10x8" oil on gessobord

"A table, a chair, a bowl of fruit and a violin; what else does a man need to be happy?"—Albert Einstein
Taking the positive view, today the quiet morning light reflected onto my wooden living room floors creating shadowy markings as precise as the painted lane markers on the freeway. I will even go so far as to say, one of my ladder back chairs has jumped in to play a round of hopscotch? 

However from the opposing viewpoint, it could also seem that this unoccupied, desolate straight back was trapped, worthless, isolated, even trapped in the darkness behind bars. 

Which is it? The same scene with two opposing perspectives. Which slant resonates with you? Is the light overcoming darkness here, or do you see darkness overcoming the light? While I see stillness, quiet, and inner solitude; another might see emptiness, abandonment or even purposelessness. Life is what we bring to it...what we are looking for always finds us.

Thanks for playing along on this beautiful morning.
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To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio •  Saatchi Gallery


 

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Home Is Where Your Hat Lies

"Home is Where Your Hat Lies" 10x8" oil on gessobord

"Where thou art, that is home." — Emily Dickinson

From where I art, my home looks almost magical early in the morning as the sun begins peeking into corners of cool-gray lifeless windows, and prying open heavy lids of sleepy wooden blinds. Quickly the soft luster begins bouncing and dripping down the walls of the room as if caught in the middle of a paintball game. I love gazing at the dazzling light show as free-form patterns twirl about the room illuminating golden splashes on furniture, floors and walls, here and then there; perhaps directed by an invisible wand spattering glorious razzmatazz into the quickly vanishing darkness. 

I picked up this unique little bargain chair years ago in an antique shop. I was sure it must have belonged to a count or duchess. It was love a first glance. From where he art, hubby Dave wasn't too impressed with my prize find. However since then he has made use of it, serving as his own personal hat rack... Now does that not seem a bit sacrilegious

Thanks for visiting with me in my home today.
- nancy
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To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio •  Saatchi Gallery 

Monday, February 3, 2014

Nelly Logan

"Nelly Logan" 8x10" oil on gessobord

 SOLD

 "Time spent with cats is never wasted." 
— Sigmund Freud

This is Nelly Logan, may she now rest in peace. Her owners, dear friends of ours, recently had to say good bye to their cherished Nelly after years of extraordinary measures of love that kept their little girl mewing. 

There are many misconceptions concerning cats such as, cats so graciously allow us to love and care for them. Christopher Hitchens even said, "Owners of dogs will have noticed that, if you provide them with food and water and shelter and affection, they will think you are God. Whereas owners of cats are compelled to realize that, if you provide them with food and water and affection, they draw the conclusion that they are God." 

As independent and self assured as cats may appear, deep down their aloofness is only the reflection of their keen senses on high alert for the sight, sound or smell of potential prey. And to debunk another myth, did you know cats actually need your companionship and can in fact, go through separation anxiety if left alone too often or for too long?

As for Nelly, I know she was as grateful to have had the Logans, as they were blessed to have had her in their lives. Nelly enjoyed a long life nine times over in the comfort of their home, and will never be forgotten.


Thanks for dropping by to show your respect. 
nancy
______________________________________________________ To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio •  Saatchi Gallery •  Fine Art America

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Play A Song For Me

"Play A Song For Me", 10x8" oil on canvas board
 
"The musician writes for the orchestra what his inner voice sings to him; the painter rarely relies without disadvantage solely upon the images which his inner eye presents to him; nature gives him his forms study governs his combinations of them."   
— Hermann Ebbinghaus
 
This is a painting of my son, Rob when he was younger. It doesn't really look like him in the face, so I am sure he will not recognize himself. However when I look at the painting, I get a distinct sense of satisfaction knowing I have captured his creative genius and spirit of love for music. Whenever I've watched him perform over the years, I can see him disappear pulled along by the hand of the illusive inner voice, enveloped into the sound of the great abyss. I recognize this sanctum, as I suppose is true with all artists. It's an inner sanctuary you simply fall and melt into similar to meditation. It happens quickly and...poof you're mind, heart and very soul are no longer in the space your body still occupies. I don't know where this zone resides, but for me if I'm not there, I am not creating. 

For me this was a successful portrait. 

Thanks for listening today.
nancy

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To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio •  Saatchi Gallery •  Fine Art America

Monday, January 27, 2014

Division in the Family

"Orange Reflections", 11X14", oil on gessobord


"Fruits... like having their portrait painted. They seem to sit there and ask your forgiveness for fading. Their thought is given off with their perfumes. They come with all their scents, they speak of the fields they have left, the rain which has nourished them, the day breaks they have seen." — Paul Cezanne


On the last day of my recent figure painting workshop with David Shevlino in Fredericksburg, our live model was a no show due to icy roads. Thus this lush family of colorful fruits volunteered to come to our rescue in bright allure. However, there must have been serious trouble in River City cause they carefully kept their distance and never said a word to each other all day. Such a pity. In spite of the family feud, they were an interesting group to paint. I especially loved the reflections their fiery anger created on the sides of the copper pot.

The boards I have been painting on are primed with a gray gesso versus my standard red tinted grounds. Can you see the difference? I wasn't sure I'd like it, but now think it worked quite nicely by helping to set off the bright colors. I think I'm going to stick with the gray for awhile. 

Thanks for letting me bear my soul.
nancy
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To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio •  Saatchi Gallery •  Fine Art America

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Figure Painting

"Reclining Nude", 20x16", oil on gessobord

"He who does not master the nude cannot understand the principles of architecture." Michelangelo
I am happy to report I am not dead nor behind bars, but rather took some time off to attend a 5-day figure painting workshop in Fredericksburg, TX with nationally know oil painter, David Shevlino. It was pure joy to paint from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. or later each day with such an accomplished artist. David is an excellent teacher with a great gift for patience. I will be digesting all I learned for years to come. 

This 16x20" nude study is the only painting successful enough to post. The human body, with it's angles and curves is the most difficult of all subjects to paint, but also the most beneficial for the growth of an artist. Rarely having the opportunity to paint from a live nude model, I truly struggled and at times wanted to pull my hair out. It's always a challenging experience to draw the human figure, but to then mix the delicate skin tones in just the right values of lights and darks which accurately capture each subtle value shift in every shape and form of the body required 100 percent concentration and focus. Needless to say, I left the workshop completely exhausted, yet ever so grateful for the experience. 

I was also blessed to have shared a room with my dear friend, and one of my very favorite painter's, Rene Wiley. Rene is a highly accomplished and FABULOUS artist from Galveston, TX. If you've never seen her amazing work check out her gallery. 

Thanks for baring with me today. 
nancy 

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To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio •  Saatchi Gallery •  Fine Art America


Sunday, January 12, 2014

Songbird Note Cards by Nancy





Songbirds, a set of ten folded note cards by artist /graphic designer nancy parsons featuring five birds from original oil paintings.   

I am excited to announce my songbirds are now available in a beautiful set of note cards. Sure to delight bird lovers, these beautiful full color note cards are 5"x6.5” in a vertical orientation, are digitally printed on a premium 80# white card stock with a matte finish for easy writing. Inside cards are blank for your own personal message. Each card comes with a blank, 60# Cougar A-6 natural white envelope. 

These note cards will arrive safely packaged in a gift box, tied with raffia, and protected in sturdy packaging to reach you in perfect condition. All orders can be gifts, as no paper invoice of the transaction is included. Click on the link above to purchase a set of (10),  or more for an entire flock.

For full details visit my Etsy Store.

All images are protected by US Copyright Law and may not be reproduced without the consent of the artist. All rights reserved.

Thanks for visiting my nest today.

nancy ____________________________________________________________________________________
To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio  


Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Lemon Light

 
"Lemon Light", 6x6" oil on canvas panel
 "Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it."
— Terry Pratchett

Talk about bringing light into darkness, my husband and I have a dear friend who, for a number of years, has gifted us with her homemade limoncello at Christmas. And, I can certainly tell you, it is to die for! Today's not-so-still life captures a cordial of this delicious lemon liqueur, posing along side one of the very cool bottles she so delicately decanted full of her sumptuous golden treasure. 
Perhaps it's just my imagination, but I am sure the step sisters huddled up against the glass are staring in amazement and green with envy at the smooth creamy transformation of Cinderella. Not to worry sisters, at the stroke of midnight she will have vanished leaving only her empty glass behind. 

Thanks for sampling my wares today.

nancy
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To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio  

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Watch on the Wild Side

"Watch on the Wild Side", 4x4" oil on black canvas board

CLICK TO PURCHASE
"The call of the wild is a call to the elemental levels of the soul, the places of intuition, kinship, swiftness, fluency and the consolation of the lonesome that is not lonely."
— John O' Donohue

Swallowed alive by the demands of the holiday season, it felt good to return to the solitary retreat of my loft studio, brushes, the smell of paint, and the hours of quiet that sustain with the fullness of silence. 

I sat for a long time today watching a myriad of wintering birds fluttering from limb to limb outside my window. They darted in and out of dry seed pods at the tips of barren crepe myrtles, creating lacy umber patterns against the cold blue sky. Under the empty bird feeder, a small flock of morning dove peck and forage for scraps rudely knocked to the ground by a rowdy band of squirrels. These uninvited guests barge in and squander while hanging upside down from the fast-food diner in search of the choicest entrees of corn and sunflower seeds. 

Just over the fence, the noisy celebration continues among a lush canopy of loblolly pine, sweetgum, oak, magnolia, dogwood, just to name a few. Shrouding a host of low lying natives, this piece of forest provides protection for a multitude of bird-loving plants, berries, grasses and shrubs like: american beautyberry, black cherry, pigeonberry, turkscap, redbud, yaupon holly, maiden hair fern, trumpet and grapevines, dwarf palmetto, and hundreds of others whose names I am unfamiliar.

Today was just another extraordinary day camouflaged in the ordinary.

Thanks for viewing today's songbird the Wood Thrush. Happy New Year!
nancy

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To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio  




Tuesday, December 3, 2013

SOLD - Nutcracker Sweet

"Nutcracker Sweet" 4x4" miniature oil on black canvas panel
SOLD

"A bird does not sing because it has an answer. It sings because it has a song."— Chinese Proverb
This little blue bird is a red-breasted nuthatch, the latest in this series of wintering birds. I sure wish birds could talk and share the secrets of their happiness; I know I could learn much. 

We all have our own unique songs to express and share with the world if we can just spread our wings and soar. I believe that artists paint because they cannot do otherwise. I suppose I'll always strive to capture on canvas the joy I feel for birds... I'll listen to their warbling ballads... and wonder. 

Thank you for sharing in my song today.
nancy
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To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio 

Monday, December 2, 2013

SOLD - We Are Family

"We Are Family" 4x4" miniature oil on black canvas panel 

SOLD

“What I saw was just one eye
In the dawn as I was going:
A bird can carry all the sky
In that little button glowing...”
 ― Harold Monro, Collected Poems 

These cozy cardinals make quite a team bracing a frosty winter night as snow flurries dancing all around them.

The quote from Harold Monro's poem above, speaks to me. When painting a bird, the highlight or finishing touch of the painting is placing that tiny little white dot in the birds eye. It's always that one speck of whitest value which brings the painting together, breathing life into the bird; it's kind of like putting the icing on the cake, or dropping a cherry on top of that ice cream sundae.  

Thank you for being a member of my little flock of followers.
nancy
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To see more of my art or to contact me: Online Gallery  • E-mail  •  Website  •  Graphic Design Studio