Showing posts with label Connie Townsend. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Connie Townsend. Show all posts

Monday, December 14, 2015

Art treasures for the holidays

By Judy Feldman | www.wildemeyer.com

With the holiday season comes the quest for gifts for friends and family. For many people, it’s an overwhelming task, since stores are filled with merchandise, and finding the right present can be difficult. So, how about a gift of art? A hand-crafted glass or ceramic piece, a small painting or sculpture would be a unique way of showing your holiday wishes, and the recipient will enjoy it for a long time.

At this time of year, Wilde Meyer Gallery asks its artists to produce small works that would be appropriate for gifts. It’s a great way to give (or acquire for yourself!) a piece from a favorite artist that you may not have been able to afford in a larger size. It also gives you a chance to get to know most of the artists there, since many small pieces are be displayed at once. This year, the show is called “Treasures,” and it will run in Scottsdale until Christmas, then will open at the Tucson location.

Holiday Nap 12" x 12"
Judy Feldman
Bruno Waiting 14" x 11"
Judy Feldman
I find it fun to do small paintings, since I can work fairly quickly. The two here, “Bruno Waiting” and “Holiday Nap” have an intimate quality that I like. Even though I love details, I tried to keep the images fairly simple.

Sounds Reasonable 10" x 10"
Linda Carter Holman
Crazy Eyes 14" x 11"
Connie Townsend
When I went to the gallery yesterday to look at the wall of small paintings, a few caught my eye. Connie Townsend has a portrait of one of her chickens in her distinctive style called “Crazy Eyes.” Linda Carter Holman has included some of her favorite things in her painting entitled “Sounds Reasonable,” such as the Calla lilies, the goldfish, fruit bowl and a dog with an expression that reminds me of one of her gracious ladies in larger paintings.

Let's Go 12" x 12"
Timothy Chapman

Timothy Capman’s “Let’s Go” painting reflects his whimsical ideas; this time, a blue bird with a saddle is taking flight off a plateau. Great idea for a traveler friend! Trevor Mikula has painted one of his distinctive dogs with a touch of humor, entitled “She’s a Lady.” And, if you like Bill Colt’s cows, you’ll see a few on the wall.

She's a Lady  12" x 12"
Trevor Mikula
So stop by and see the amazing wall of Treasures. There’s really something for everyone’s tastes. The gift of art is a unique and memorable one!

Treasures is on view until January 2, 2016. You can see more work by Judy Feldman, Connie Townsend, Linda Carter Holman, and Trevor Mikula at Wilde Meyer Gallery. 

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Divine Bovines are Udderly Wonderful at Wilde Meyer!

By Judy Feldman | www.wildemeyer.com

Growing Pains  24″ x 48″
Sarah Webber
Wilde Meyer artists tend to like animals. It’s not at all unusual to see images of dogs, horses and even chimpanzees when you walk into any of their galleries. But, this month, some other animals will be prominently displayed in Scottsdale at the first “Divine Bovine” show.

Here, you’ll see all sorts of bovine art: cows, buffalo, bison and yaks. At least 25 artists are participating in this themed show. Some of the artists, like Bill Colt and Sarah Webber, have favored painting bovines for quite a while.

Onlookers  18″ x 24″
Bill Colt
Lily Fair  24″ x 20″
Bill Colt

How Now Brown Cow  30″ x 30″
Judy Feldman
For some, like me, it’s a first time we’ve painted a bovine. I don’t know why I never thought of it before, because I do think cows are beautiful, especially their expressive, heavily lashed eyes. I thoroughly enjoyed painting “How Now Brown Cow,” and I really did feel a bond with this lovely creature!

Small in a Fuzi Dream 18″ x 18″
Linda Carter Holman
Linda Carter Holman has a personal relationship with the subject of her painting, entitled “Small in a Fuzi Dream.” The yak belongs to her! Linda has incorporated images that recur in her other paintings, such as the goldfish and the charming female figure, along with her typical color palette.

As a matter of fact, you can probably identify the artists of many paintings. Although the subject may be new, our styles still come through! Sherri Belassen’s “Retro Vache” definitely reflects her technique and choice of hues. Connie Townsend’s “Red” has the same crazy expression you see in many of her driving dogs. And, of course, Trevor Mikula has come up with a witty way of showing his cows in “Heads or Tails!”

Retro Vache 60″ x 72″
Sherri Belassen

Red 24″ x 30″
Connie Townsend
Heads or Tails 24″ x 24″
Trevor Mikula

Yak Yak Yak  30″ x 17″ x 16″
Barbara Duzan
Buffalo Past
Adriana Walker
The show is not only about paintings. Adriana Walker has Necklace and earring sets (show Buffalo Past). Kathryn Blackmun has created a turquoise bison ornament and a bison plate, and there are sculptures by Carol Ruff Franza (Prairie Thunder”), Kari Rives (“Sky Cow”) and “Yak Yak Yak” by Barbara Duzan.


So, stop by during October and see this fun show. You never know, you might fall in love with a cow, a buffalo or even a yak!

You can see more art from Divine Bovine at Wilde Meyer.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Collecting 101

(actually, Collecting more than 100)

By Judy Feldman | www.wildemeyer.com

Collecting original art can be a bit stressful for first-time buyers. You can walk into a gallery and be overwhelmed by choices of styles, subjects, colors and sizes. The prices, too, can be out of reach for some would-be collectors.

Betty Wilde, one of Wilde Meyer Gallery’s owners, said that gallery visitors are often afraid to make their first purchase. But, she tells them, “Buy your first piece, and you’ll be hooked on original art. Posters won’t do it for you anymore!”

Some people are initially convinced that they have to purchase art that matches their d├ęcor. Betty tells them that their tastes will come through in their selection. “Chances are, you’ll gravitate to colors that you like anyway. Choose what you like, and what you’ll enjoy living with in your home.”

Betty has found a way for art lovers to dip their toes into the wonderful world of art collecting, and helping animal charities at the same time. During the month of June, the gallery at Marshall Way will host a “100 for $100” show. More than 40 artists are participating, and each painting will sell for $100, with much of the proceeds going to several animal charities.

“It’s a great way to get to know many different artists,” Betty said. “It’s always easy to find a place for a small painting, and at this price, you can even make a grouping of several paintings without spending too much.”

Many of the paintings have been created by the artists expressly for this show; others, including Jamie Ellsworth and Chaille Trevor, have included larger paintings as well, because they want to help the charities.

Last year, the show was so successful, that the gallery will be selling more than 100 paintings through a lottery system. The images will be emailed to all of you next week; you can put your name on a list for a particular painting, and a name will be drawn for each painting on Friday, June 5. This is your chance to start (or continue) collecting!

Friday, March 29, 2013

The Art of a Smile

By Judy Feldman | www.wildemeyer.com

Since visual art is a means of personal expression, it’s not surprising that some paintings or sculptures convey a sense of humor. Those of us who see the world in a lighthearted way tend to have that vision when creating art. And, today, we have much more freedom to “tell” a story the way we want to, than say, Rembrandt or Vermeer who were pretty constrained by the artistic styles that were in vogue at that time. (Do you think Rembrandt had a sense of humor??)

The Wilde Meyer artists who embrace humor in art seem to have one thing in common: they frequently portray animals. Let’s see why…

BFFs 24"x30" oil on canvas
by Connie Townsend
Connie Townsend translates the humor she sees in life to her paintings. Even though most of her work focuses on dogs, the joy and hilarity she conveys could certainly apply to humans. But it’s so much funnier with dogs! For example, in her painting entitled “BFFs,” the two dogs riding a motorcycle – one in the side car – are having a blast together, tongues hanging out, ears flying and totally focused on their exhilarating ride. You can’t help but smile at a scene like that.

Labra Duo 24"x30" oil on canvas
by Connie Townsend
New Yorkie 24"x16"
by Connie Townsend
Her titles capture her sense of humor as well. In “Labra Duo,” two Labradors are hanging out the windows of an old Cadillac. Look closely, and you’ll see their white and black tails crossing each other. “New Yorkie” is another one of Connie’s funny takes on dogs-who-could-be-humans. The Yorkie is all dolled up with a bow in her hair – she could be a New York City dog, or maybe a New Yorker…

Despite her humorous approach, Connie has a very painterly technique, and her vigorous brush strokes and bright colors give the works the energy needed for her lighthearted style.
Strong color is another way of expressing upbeat emotions. Sue Goldsand produces fused glass sculptures of animals in a whimsical style. The bright hues and funny expressions on her characters’ faces definitely evoke a smile, if not a laugh.
Tweets, fused glass scultpure
by Sue Goldsand

“Blue Standing Dog” is another example of Sue’s humor, with its cool glasses, wagging tongue and bright red heart (in a strange place).
Blue Standing Dog, fused glass sculpture
by Sue Goldsand

Bailey, cast bronze scultpure
by Jim Budish 
Jim Budish’s bronze sculptures don’t have color for expression, but his stylized animals with their elongated legs bring a sense of humor to his work. Jim says "I try to create a smile through my sculpture by reaching into my subject, attempting to capture the ‘Joie De Vivre’ that I believe is somewhere inside all of us.”

Jim captures the essence of his subject’s spirit, emotion, attitude and personality. His rabbits’ long necks and large ears represent a species that we know, but are just a little funnier than they are in life. He references relatives and friends when he names his sculptures. “Abbey” is named for his granddaughter, and “Bailey” represents a friend’s dog.
Abby, cast bronze scultpure
by Jim Budish 
Like Your Hair 24"x24" acrylic on canvas
by Trevor Mikula
Hula Hoop Takes the Stage 12"x12"
by Trevor Mikula
Humor is the essence of Trevor Mikula’s paintings. Sometimes, it’s just the title: “Like Your Hair,” referring to a leafy plant, or the “Argyle Chicken” strutting on a diamond-patterned floor. Trevor says he gets his ideas from friends, who suggest a quirky take on something they see. Using his own imagination, vibrant colors and textured paint application with a palette knife, Trevor creates whimsical characters that are joyful and funny. “Hula Hoop Takes the Stage” is a great example of Trevor-style humor.

Argyle Chicken 24"x24" acrylic on canvas
by Trevor Mikula
We enjoy looking at art for many reasons, some more intellectual than others. But getting a smile or even a good laugh is certainly one we can all appreciate!

See more at www.wildemeyer.com.

Friday, August 3, 2012

It’s A Dog’s World,-At Least for This Month


Dog Days the 20th, August 2012
Coyote Underbrush by Sarah Webber
 We all know that dogs are man’s best friend, right? I think that you could also say that dogs are one of Wilde Meyer artist’s favorite subjects – especially right now, when the 20th annual “Dog Days of Summer” show is up at the Marshall Way gallery. As noted in the show invitation, the "dog days of summer" refers to the period of time between early July and early September when the Dog Star, Sirius, is visible in the night sky. Presumably because Sirius appeared during the very warm days in August, "dog days" came to signify the hot humid days of summer.
Party Dogs in the Pueblo by Melinda Curtin 

There are several great things about this show. First, it features small and affordable paintings. So, it’s a great way to collect a piece by a favorite artist without spending too much. Second, it showcases many different kinds of dogs in so many painterly ways.


Some artists choose to paint the dog in a more realistic manner, such as Sarah Webber who has done an impressionistic portrait of a coyote. Others, such as Melinda Curtin, favor a more non-traditional route. Her dancing dog is reverse-painted on glass in a contemporary, funky way.


Sounds Resonable by Linda Carter Holman


Top: Pancake and Polly, Puggie
Bottom: Whittle Brown Baby, Pug
by Trevor Mikula
If you follow the artists at Wilde Meyer, I’m sure you’ll recognize their style in these small dog paintings. Linda Carter Holman’s painting has so many of her favorite “accessories:” calla lilies, a pearl necklace on the dog, a bowl of fruit, lovebirds and a goldfish bowl. Trevor Mikula shows his wacky characters- some adorable hounds you’ll probably never see in real life! As usual, Connie Townsend’s dogs are going for a joy ride – this time on a motorcycle.

You’ll also recognize Sushi Felix’s distinctive style in the stylized canines she’s portrayed. You might even recognize my two pieces (hint: Plein Air Pooch and The Secret of the Missing Cupcake). The latter was inspired by a photo of a friend’s dog who was stealing a sweet potato. I thought a cupcake would be more appealing!


Biking the Bloomin' Desert by Connie Townsend

Coyote Pups and Little Coyote by Sushe Felix

Plein Air Pooch by Judy Feldman

The Secret of the Missing Cupcake by Judy Feldman

The last, and maybe best, great thing about the Dog Days of Summer show is that so many artists choose to participate (more than 30 this year). It’s so much fun to paint dogs in different ways, and we all enjoy the spontaneous pleasure of working on a small canvas. So, brave the heat of August, and cool off at the gallery while selecting your favorite hound. If you’re in Tucson, the show will be up there in September.

"Dog Days the 20th" view from outside




Monday, February 13, 2012

The Second Time Around…


New Beginnings oil on canvas 48"x48"
by Lawrence Taylor
There was a period in my life when I didn’t mess around with oil paint – or any art materials for that matter.

A good part of my adulthood was spent working as a public relations consultant – a fairly creative field, but mostly marketing ideas and writing. It wasn’t until I moved to Arizona in 1996 that I took up painting. But making art was in my genes: my mother was an artist, and my brother is a professional sculptor. In Arizona, I had more free time, and so I started to learn about painting. Sixteen years later, painting has been a focus of my life!

I asked the staff at Wilde Meyer if there were other gallery artists who also had a previous "artless" career. Here are a few, and in all cases, it seems that the desire to pursue art has always been brewing.

Labra Duo oil on canvas 24"x30"
by Connie Townsend
 As a child, Connie Townsend loved art. Her parents allowed her to paint murals on her walls and build a club house in her back yard. Although these skills would serve her well throughout her life, Connie could be the poster child of non-artistic early careers!

For a short time in the early ‘70s, she worked as a service station attendant, where she learned basic car maintenance. She spent her work breaks sketching the vehicles parked at the shop, with a keen interest in the VW Bugs and Vans.

You can see Connie’s love of cars and dogs in many of her paintings, such as "Labra Duo" and "K9 Taxi."
 
Color Me Lovable oil on canvas 30x30
by Connie Townsend

K9 Taxi oil on canvas 24x36
by Connie Townsend

Then, in 1980, she moved to Flagstaff where Ralston Purina hired her to drive a fork lift, loading trailers and box cars with dog chow. No time for art, I would guess! By 1990, she had enough of hard labor, and took a course in screen printing.  One month after the course, Connie left Purina and opened her own company, "Outrageous Tees Custom Screen Printing". That’s when her artist side began to show.

She started noticing the graphics on t-shirts and began to visit local galleries and art exhibits. She enrolled at the community college and started oil painting and was instantly hooked. A large painting entered in a show at the Coconino Center for the Arts received public acclaim, and the sale of that painting got Connie thinking that perhaps she could make a living as an artist.

By 2001, she had enough confidence to approach galleries both inside and outside of Flagstaff. Her art was well received, and she is now a full-time artist, calling her new business Blue Collar Art Works.

One of her paintings is currently on exhibit at the Sky Harbor Airport in a group show. Arizona became a state 100 yrs ago on Feb 14. In honor of that Centennial, 60 artists from across the state were chosen out of 572 submissions. The show is titled "Arizona Valentine". And my piece is "LUV AZ" 20" x 40" oil on canvas. The show is up 'til June 17 terminal, level 2.
LUV AZ oil on canvas 20"x40"
by Connie Townsend
 
Roses Near the House oil on canvas 42"x72"
by Lawrence Taylor 

Lawrence Taylor spent 20 years as a financial executive for a Fortune 500 gold mining company. "When I was growing up, you were trained to have a career that could earn you a living," he says. Although he studied finance in college, he also took electives in fine art and art history. Whenever he had the time, once he started working, he took classes at the San Francisco Art Academy. 

 Then a series of personal events occurred that motivated Lawrence to make a life change and do what he really wanted to do: create art on a full-time basis.

The Winding Steps oil on canvas 40"x50"
by Lawrence Taylor
In 1980, he took a trip to England and Wales. As a member of the British National Trust, he was able to visit and photograph many private gardens throughout the countryside. "Nothing in North America compares to these gardens," he notes.

Now, Lawrence makes a trip to England every two years to visit more gardens that have been turned over to the Trust. It’s easy to see the influence of these beautiful environments in his paintings: "English Gardens X" is a 42"X72" work that takes the viewer right into the space, ready to walk down the curved path. "Roses Near the House" is another large painting. Here, bright red flowers jump to life against lavender in the foreground and the misty English landscape that recedes. Winding pathways and artful paintings of flowers are recurring themes in Lawrence’s work, seen above in "New Beginnings."

England Gardens X  oil on canvas 42"x72"
by Lawrence Taylor

Sanctuary at Purgatory Chasm 60"x40" acrylic on canvas
by Acacia Alder

The beauty of landscapes also inspired Acacia Alder to change careers. Although she has always been involved in art – she was a jeweler for 10 years - the move from Ohio to Tucson had great visual impact.

Summer Aspen 18"x18"
by Acacia Alder

The large vistas she saw during hikes in the area caught her attention, and she became fascinated with the details and structures of plants as well. "I’m interested in how things weave together – the relationships of the things I see," she says.

Aspen Snow Shadows 18"x18"
by Acacia Alder

Acacia has studied drawing extensively, and that medium comes through in her acrylic paintings, such as "Sanctuary at Purgatory Chasm."

She has a delicate mark making that is very distinctive, and shows her love of the locales she visits. Aspens are a favorite subject at different times of the year.

I think we’ve all been extremely lucky to be able to pursue our passion for art in the second part of our lives. It gives us a new appreciation of our surroundings, lots of energy and a wonderful way to express ourselves. What a gift! 

Aspen Trail acrylic on canvas 48"x60"
by Aacia Alder