Thursday, December 31, 2009

Painting in the New Year

"Snow Lashes", photograph, 2009

I'm back in the studio at last, after a month of Christmas preparations, holiday concerts and gatherings, gift shopping and wrapping, and holiday baking.
Just days after Christmas was over, I was driving to Long Island to deliver paintings for a show in Oyster Bay, New York, home of Teddy Roosevelt and the Teddy Roosevelt Association. TR and the Horse is an exhibit featuring myself and four other equine artists. We will each be exhibiting 7-10 pieces of our own work, and a few drawings of Teddy Roosevelt's favorite horses. My contribution is an ink wash drawing of Manitou, his favorite hunting horse. The preview party will be January 9, and the show will run through the month of January.

Oyster Bay, as is turns out, is also home to quite a few Underhills, and there is an entire room full of archives and geneology on Underhills, maintained by the Underhill Society. Since I'm only an Underhill by marriage, I lack the knowledge of family names to do any real research into the family history, but it was fascinating to know that it was there.

My little trip to Oyster Bay was a perfect excuse to visit a friend in Manhattan, and so to avoid the scariness of driving into the city, left my car in Oyster Bay and took the Long Island Railroad to Penn Station. This made my return trip quite the ordeal, as it is an hour and a half train ride to Oyster Bay and then it was a four and a half hour drive home in bumper-to-bumper traffic on 95. Apparently New York City rush hour begins at 2 in the afternoon.

So now I am back in the studio, inspired to paint a few dogs. Kimberly Kelly Santini's book, Painting a Dog a Day, was a Christmas gift, and her wonderfully expressive paintings of dogs have inspired me to tackle a few myself, and revisit some of my reference photos of dogs I have encountered at various events.

Today, I ventured no farther than my own paddock to photograph Niqui and Keeper in the wet snow. The photograph above features Niqui and her beautiful long eyelashes.