Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Guest Writer #2

My last guest was relatively new so this time I asked
someone who has been following me for a very long
time.  My Guest Writer #2 is Michele and Rich, I think
they wrote it together since I asked them both...

Take a small trip down memory lane with us to the late 80's. Our sons' school, Christian Brothers Academy in Lincroft NJ, had their Art Show each year in early February. One of the first shows we attended had works by a Pennsylvania artist named Andy Smith who just happened to have his wife and 4 year old daughter with him. After having a lovely conversation with Andy, Linda and wee Abbey, we purchased a picture entitled Yorktown Ice House and two other originals. I just did a quick walk thru of our house in North Carolina and we have 40+ originals! Several have made their way to California and some are still in NJ and Staten Island. 
Each year we were drawn to Andy's display - we loved them all - we appreciate his fine eye and unquestionable talent. In recent years many of his works reflect the world travels he and Linda have enjoyed and we were thrilled to include some of them in our collection. 
When we look back over the years - and we are approaching nearly 30 years (!) - we have great memories of the times when we hosted Andy and Linda at our home - including one show in a February that was snowed in till Sunday - lucky we had pea soup and steaks in the freezer - regular November trips to Lititz for the Smiths' Open House and quick rides "down the shore" to Seaside Heights. 
It's been thrilling to know and collect art from a living, breathing artist. 

We plan to attend the Waterford show in Virginia this October since it's been nearly two years  - hey Linda, time to find venues in East Carolina!


Monday, August 15, 2016


This is a slow process.  Just filling in bricks.
Going deeper into the chimney.  Added some

Windows, starting washes under the porch.
Fence in, yes it is purple!
I am not doing anything else right now but concentration
on this painting.  I'll work till about 9pm tonight.

Thursday, August 11, 2016


Progress on my school house commission.
Just sitting here painting bricks!

Saturday, August 13 you can find me at:
The BIG Lititz Rotary Craft Show
rain or heat!  FREE

I was moved across the street, I am now in
front of the steps to the Sutter's Patio.
Space B4

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Guest writer...

I had an idea to invite some of my clients to write a few words
about what my paintings mean to them, what they see in
them, why they buy them.  Then publish their thoughts on
my blog, just as a different way of sharing.
There has been a recent conversation with a client about an
inner glow some of my work has and how the paintings change
as the light in her house changes.  I thought she would be a
perfect first guest.  A little scary since I am not editing what is

So my first guest writer is Rose Ellen... these are her words...
      The candles in my windows brighten the rooms in my home enough to see in the wee hours, but then I noticed my rooms were warmer, brighter, and I realized the light was from Andy's paintings, which, I surmise,  means he felt it, too.

     At first, trepidation took me from room to room, not sure of what I would see, but then the paintings felt home, and I felt home with the work, and its inner light began to shine through even more. 

     No matter the time of day, the paintings speak to me, and they are different at different times of day. However, in the gloaming and in the darkest hour before dawn is when they are at their best.

     The inner light of each painting's soul speaks and reaches out through the frame, through the glass, and touches deep within me, and I feel safe.

Thank you Rose Ellen!

Wednesday, August 3, 2016


This may not look like a lot of progress but each little brick
gets painted!  I'm happy with the first chimney.  Starting
wash on the roof... and lots more bricks to go.

Heading to Kentucky...
Pleasant Hill Craft Fair
Held on the grounds of the Pleasant Hill
Shaker Museum,  Harrodsburg, KY
August 6 from 9:30am to 5pm
August 7 from 9:30am to 4:30pm

Monday, August 1, 2016

Commission update

I have spent pretty much time on my commission.
Scroll back to 7/11 to see the original sketch.
Since then I re-drew (by hand!)  the whole thing on
my watercolor paper. (Kilimanjaro 300 lb cold press paper)

Photo #1 is that drawing and the beginning washes on the

 Photo #2 is the beginning washes on the bricks.

I plan to work late tonight!

Heading to Kentucky later in the week.  One of my favorite
places, Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill.

There will be no new "Painting A Day" pieces until
my commission is finished!

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Starting an Art Collection...

I was asked to post some thoughts on
“Starting an Art Collection”.
These are only my musings on the topic! If you're
looking for advice on collecting from a business
perspective, you should check out Invaluable's blog
In Good Taste which features the latest trends
in art and antiques and the people asking me to
post my opinion.

First ask yourself why you are collecting.  If you
think you are investing in art with the intention
of making a profit I suggest doing some real
legwork, study up on what’s trending, do your
research and you may need to hit some
cosmopolitan cities and find yourself a gallery
you can work with.  This is out of my realm of
information and I wish you luck!

Since I chose to make a living painting and doing
it my way, without the support of galleries my
view point is a little lower key.   I am speaking to
the average (and above average!) person who
likes art, and I also understand you may be
for the perfect piece to go above your
sofa and that
does not offend me!  
But find a piece you love.  
I believe you should purchase art you love and
surround yourself with what speaks to you and
touches your soul.   Your purchases reflect who
you are so take your time and look around. 
Plenty of great art and personable artists can
be found at local art shows and at your local art
association.  There are also smaller, well informed
galleries in every town who often feature local
work.   From the emerging young artists to us
older established artists.  You can find a broad
price range to suit your  budget.  I believe if you
can possibly afford it, purchase an original piece
of work.  I offer layaway if the timing is not right,
rather a layaway than miss out on a painting you
love.  If original paintings are simply out of your
budget, check into the artists prints. 

You should still do a little research and ask a few
questions.  What style do you like?  Are you drawn
to certain subjects?   Do you prefer a medium?  
When you find art you like you should still ask a
few questions…   Do you see a style, is there a
continuity in all their paintings.   I want people
to see a painting of mine and say…
Oh, that’s an Andy Smith.
How long have they been painting?  I can
seriously say there is a huge difference in my
work 30 years ago compared to today.   My own
understanding of the medium gained from daily
painting.  Do they have a love for what they are
doing?  I hope you can tell that when you meet
me!   Is the artist making an effort to earn a
living, working at building a name?   Google
the artist and see what comes up.  Your purchase
will not stand a chance of someday increasing in
value if someone is not working at it.   How
many paintings are they printing?  How large is
the editions?  What type and quality prints are
they making?   Who is printing the prints?  Are
they printing the full edition?   Is the artist
or gallery forthcoming with this information?
Is the artist willing to talk to you?  You may
ask me most anything and if I don’t know
my wife will!  
In conclusion… my advice: buy what you
can afford and surround yourself with art
you love!  
And if I am lucky... you love my

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Checking In...

I spent late last night finishing up a painting
started last weekend.
untitled - suggestions welcome!

Today was spent packing, getting the camper
hooked up and a few errands.
Penn State setup is tomorrow!  I will be demonstrating
all week so make yourself known to me!!

Monday, July 11, 2016


The first stage of my commission is finished. I always start
with a hand-drawn sketch on paper the size it will be 23x17"
By drawing it I am able to greater understand it.  Mentally
work out the problem areas, I do not rush this stage.
This drawing took 4 days... check out the fence!
My client ok'd it, we talked about the plantings around it
and she does not want to see sidewalk or street in the
foreground and wants a better view of under the porch with
the front door.

This is a school house in Columbia that is now an Art Gallery.
Next step is to re-draw it on my watercolor paper.  No tracing,
I will re-draw it!!  I need to put this project on hold since I
am packing tomorrow for the State College show.

Central Pennsylvania Festival of the ArtsState College, PA      FREE!
Thursday - Saturday from 10am to 8pm
Sunday from 11am to 4pm
Space A-21 on Allen Street

Thursday, July 7, 2016

2016 Still Life #13

5"x 5"  Original Watercolor ~ A Painting A Day

This little gem is from Nemours Mansion.
I was interested in the color and shape.

I decided to put paintings from Iceland on hold until
after I am finished with my commission.  I need to study
the landscape and both cannot hold my concentration.