I am so honored to be part of this wonderful memorial tribute to Judy VanAlstyne, commissioned by the Bill Naito Company in Portland. The memorial was designed by Mary Galluzzo Design and written by Janet Gonrowski. And I was fortunate enough to get to know Judy during my month long process of painting her. Judy served the Bill Naito Co. for 24 years as property manager, and was known and revered for her dedication to Portland’s downtown and Old Town. She was a mentor, a strong supporter of women in business, and she was a key team member responsible for bringing City Target to downtown Portland. So it is only fitting that Judy’s memorial is permanently exhibited in the Galleria Building in Portland.
I’m honored that my Waterfront Blues Festival painting received a First Place award in the 2015 Oregon Society of Artists Rose Festival Art Show! Many thanks to everyone at the OSA and to juror Geoff McCormack for this wonderful award!
It’s always a great feeling to start off the New Year with a new portrait painting. This year is especially meaningful to me, because before I started this painting in early December, I hadn’t painted in almost a year. As an artist, that long absence from painting can make one feel very hesitant to bring out the brushes and canvas again. There’s the feeling of being out of practice, and even worse… fear of not being able to paint anything at all! Well, I got out my brushes, relished in the familiar smells of the oil paints as I mixed my palette, and took a deep breath and started to paint. Trusting that all my years of painting experience had not disappeared, I began the process of building my painting. I paint in layers, and for the first time I’ve documented this process in a slideshow. I’m still not quite finished, but it’s mostly there. I’m going to set it aside for awhile, and then see if there’s anything else it needs…
The first musician portrait I painted was in 1998, and my subject was Linda Hornbuckle. For the painting (which appeared on her CD “Clearly”) I photographed her at Music Millenium, and later in her living room as she sang. Sadly, Linda passed away last week, after a two year battle with cancer. I will always remember this beautiful woman and her beautiful voice. The community will always remember her as the great soul diva of the Northwest. Tonight, I am donating a large print of the painting at “More Love for Linda”, an all-star benefit to help with her medical costs.
To attend, or donate, visit http://www.crystalballroompdx.com/events/130472-More-Love-for-Linda—A-Community-Benefit-for-Linda-Hornbuckle-featuring. A video tribute featuring Linda singing Amazing Grace, accompanied by the late Janice Scroggins… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NwZoQkdNea0
This is the fourth year I have been creating original drawings for Thara Memory’s American Music Project’s Benefit Concerts. This one of Bennie Maupin, along with my drawing of Terrell Stafford, auctioned for $2000! I am so pleased to be able to contribute to programs like this that bring essential arts training to our students!
I did several 30 minute portrait studies during my weekend at the Vancouver Wine and Jazz Festival… this is one I did for Lamar Savage, commissioned by his wife for his birthday. I think he liked it!
Norman Leyden was a nationally known conductor, composer, clarinetist, and educator. He was best known as the conductor of the Oregon Symphony Pops orchestra, however he also worked with Glenn Miller during his years in the US Air Force. More recently, Mr. Leyden performed at the Hollywood Bowl with Pink Martini. I photographed Norman during his induction into the Oregon Music Hall of Fame in 2008, and used one of the photos for my pencil drawing of him. It was recently on display at the “Tribute to Norman Leyden” concert at the Arlene Schnitzer Hall in Portland. I was very fortunate to have met Norman just weeks before, and he seemed so pleased with the copy of the pencil drawing that I gave him. Norman Leyden passed away July 23, 2014.
This is the second grant that I have received from the Regional Arts and Culture Council, and thanks to this opportunity, I was able to attend this year’s Annual Portrait Society of America’s Conference held in Washington DC. I observed painting demos featuring the top portrait artists in the country, and received portfolio critiques from the same portrait artists. One thing that was emphasized was the importance of drawing from life, which I have been neglecting for much too long. Since returning from the convention, I have been inspired to sketch from life on a regular basis, and now I see why it is so important in my progression as an artist. This 30-minute sketch was done while my daughter was in town for her birthday this month.
During the past few months, the film crews at Oregon Art Beat have been filming in my studio, and on location, for my segment on Oregon Art Beat! The segment is finally airing tonight, but you can also watch it online any time here . Thanks to Robe Imbriano, Greg Bond, and William Ward for doing such a great job!
Earlier this year, I was commissioned to create the poster for the October 2013 Legendary Blues Cruise, and I have
just returned from this seven-day blues festival at sea! This is my second poster for the Blues Cruise (the 2007
poster can be seen (here). This time, I was on board the Ms. Maasdam as the commemorative artist, sailing out of Fort Lauderdale with stops in Key West, New Orleans, and Progreso Mexico. The performers included Irma Thomas,
Los Lobos, Marcia Ball, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Tommy Castro, Guy Davis, Lucky Peterson, Ruthie Foster, and many others including special guest Johnny Winter! Thanks again to Roger Naber and the Legendary crew for making this an amazing experience! Since pictures are worth a thousand words, I have put together a photo album to share. Check out my photos at this link