Ever a story... waiting to be told

Tuesday, April 29, 2014


I donated this piece to an auction event, to benefit children with Angelman Syndrome (AFXA) It's colored pencil and pastel mounted on a cradled clayboard and sealed with several coats of varnish. I'm just hoping somebody steps up to bid on it! 
The event is called "Voices of Angels" and will be held at the Rhinegeist in Cincinnati, on May 17.  It's my first time putting an artwork into an auction, and I'm a little nervous at the thought that nobody will bid on it, and there it will sit, while all the other paintings get happily taken to new homes. I guess it's that age-old fear we have of being the wallflower, huh? 
I'm really getting attached to this old cafe that I'm drawing. I just love those old brick structures downtown! This week at the drawing board I completed the bricklaying task on the main building. There are about 1500 bricks there, give or take a few. I still need to add some subtleties, but those will come later. As the piece progresses, I'll go back and add little stains, and cracks, and shadows where they seem necessary. If you ever find yourself drawing architecture, trust me... you will be very grateful for your trusty triangle tool, and will reach for it again and again to measure, remeasure, and double-check your lines and angles!
(on my own wall here in US)
Apparently I'm not the only one who finds the history of this city and country so compelling. Last week at the gallery, I sold an antique envelope drawing to a woman from England who was visiting her daughter here. The envelope was postmarked in Cincinnati 1942, and depicted the American flag on a school desk. She promised to email a photo of the piece hanging on her wall in England!
I have to say that Cincinnati has been a wellspring of inspiration and exciting art opportunities for me. Especially those beautiful old buildings and the unique style of architecture here. But I have other wellsprings that  nourish my creative thoughts just as strongly... those subjects that I find myself studying every time I go out somewhere. For me, I find that inspiration in trees and stones, and time-worn objects. Other artists might study flowers, or people, or cars. We each have those things that pull us to them like magnets and something inside of us demands we paint them.
What are your wellsprings, and how do they influence your art? 


  1. Bonjour, chère Katherine.
    Votre générosité est aussi grande que votre talent, et je souhaite sincèrement que cette merveilleuse peinture recueille beaucoup d'enchères.

  2. Wonderful post on a sunny morning. Thank you. The triangle, yes!
    I know how to find center from the four corners, and after that, its only the measurement tools that keep me from wandering off.
    Wellsprings...light, old building details, doors, stone, sky, and windows will cause me to stop and dream of the possibilities.

  3. No need to worry about bids on that painting, Katherine. I think you will pleasantly surprised as it's a beauty!

  4. I can't wait to hear all about your sale at the auction!! : )

  5. The little girl is stunning, I am sure she will sell , what a generous gift !

  6. Hey K!

    That is such a perfect donation for an auction for that cause! NO CHANCE of it being a wallflower. It will be a wall show-stopper! I hope two or three people really like it and allow their competitive spirits, generosity and egos to run the bidding way up! Will you be there to see it?

    1. I might go see it, Wryly... if I get up the nerve!

  7. I think it's very generous of you Katherine. Your painting is really sweet and I've got no doub tit will get lots of attention. Good luck! :)

  8. Buena labor todo sea por una gran causa, felicitaciones por sus trabajos que ultima mente me e perdido, saludos Katherine

  9. I love the piece you submitted for the auction, Katherine. I'll be a monkey's uncle if that doesn't sell, quite truthfully. I don't think you have to worry about that!! And this building looks amazing to me. These are just the types of little diners that I love to find and visit. They are so full of charm, often old-fashioned, and have just the best food! When we were working, we often loved to drive and just visit little towns just like this one. Sometimes we occasionally still hit the road for a short day trip, but with the cost of gas, it is kind of hard to manage. Well, that and school work keeps me home. Anyway, can't wait to see this piece develop even further. Love the idea of going back in to do stains and cracks on the brick face. That seems a smarter way to handle that process; I probably would have tried to do them as I went along and it would have come out looking wonky.

  10. Wow Katherine, your donated piece is so precious! I don't think you have to worry about it not being bid on.

    Your WIP is amazing. I am always stunned by the evident patience you have to do the work you do and to do it so well.

  11. I can't imagine your piece not going home with someone! It's a beautiful piece and is sure to grab interest for this great cause. I find my inspiration in a variety of things. Usually nature, but sometimes people or antique items and more often than not in the stories that I love to read.

  12. Katherine your auction piece is beautiful and I don't doubt for a second that it'll receive several bids. I can't imagine ever painting architecture in the minute detail that you do- it's incredible but I'd go cross eyed trying to create something that detailed and precise. You are outstandingly talented.

  13. Oh boy I've been so busy as of late I have gotten behind in my online visits.
    Really great to reach out and donate for a cause Katherine. I too hope it does well, as it should. Your recent meticulous storefronts are looking really great, it's definitely one of your strong suits so keep them up.
    Look forward to the finish.

    Keep painting (drawing)...

  14. The piece you donated is absolutely gorgeous! A beautiful little girl that will definitely find a new home...keep us posted! And the drawing you're doing now is fantastic... you have such patience ! Wonderful work, Katherine!!!!

  15. I can't imagine your painting not being bid on. Whether the price is as good as you'd hope is a different story. Not everyone appreciates or understands how much work goes into a painting. I put a contemporary folk art painted footstool in a charity auction once. It didn't bring in even the price of the wood piece! I could have given it to my daughter who would have loved it and $5 doesn't add much to a charity even 20 years ago so I know how you are feeling but this is different than a trendy footstool. This is hang on your wall worthy art! You'll be on pins and needles for a while evidently.

    I honestly can't say what interests me as a theme, a go to subject. I draw what grabs my eyes in the moment I feel like drawing. When I look for something to draw I tend to go to my pets, my everyday objects or flowers/food. Whatever basically. But I am someone who has never stood still to really hone my skills on any one craft either. Instead I have learned the basics and a bit more of many, many things and it will probably be that way with drawing. I guess in a way you could say I want a decent challenge, not something so hard I'll just end up discouraged but something different than "before" such as in one journal I am using only 6 colored pencils (a warm and cool of each, red, yellow and blue) whereas in a daily food journal I made small blue ballpoint pen drawings on most days (1.5 - 2 inches in size). This month those same little drawings are in colored pencil. I want to keep drawing but how I do it changes often.

    Sometimes I wish I could be as dedicated to a tool or a theme as many artists are but it's not how I seem to be so I have to make the best out of who I am as I am not those artists and I don't want to be a copycat anyhow!

    Wishing you lots of luck in that auction! You are a good artist even if it doesn't sell or goes cheaply and you know that. Our feelings just like to be torn up by that internal critic of ours but we have to shut him up!

  16. Oh, I don't think you have to worry about that beautiful piece you have so generously donated to a worthy cause - I am sure it will enjoy a good bidding war :) I admire your meticulous work on the building- more so because I have lost my patience halfway thru in anything remotely detailed and know what it takes to bring a piece to beautiful finish! More power to you :) Looking forward to seeing it progresss.

  17. Your auction piece is precious - no worries about her finding a loving home!

  18. I'm sure it will be snapped up Katherine! It was very generous of you to donate it for the auction.
    I find I'm drawn to anything and everything and therefore can't imagine ever being able to settle on a signature subject matter.
    I love the progress so far on your latest work. The bricks are fabulous - great colour variations!