Creative Visionary Program

In April of this year, I started the CVP program with Art2life with Nicholas Wilton and his team. The online course runs for three months, and covers an amazing amount of content about painting. The emotional and mental aspects of a creative career are also covered, as well as the business aspects. It was the most awesome experience, and am presently going over the videos again, as there was so much to learn. The piece below is an acrylic painting on a birch panel, part of a collection I am developing as a result of taking the program. There will be a lot more to come!


Recently I entered three pieces in an exhibition at the Cottonwood Center for the Arts in Colorado Springs. The theme was “Motifs” and “Patterns”, a very good fit for my art. All three of my giclees were florals in repeat, inspired by my travels to Portugal and to Taos, New Mexico. A gentleman who spends a lot of time in Portugal every year, purchased the piece below. I was happy to have captured the essence of tile designs in Sesimbra, a small and picturesque fishing village south of Lisbon. I hope to be able to visit this area again, and do even more sketching this time.

A Day in Sesimbra
A Day in Sesimbra

Traveling and Creating

This year I have been lucky enough to spend some time traveling. From Portugal to New Mexico, and the mountains of Colorado. All along, I have been taking photos and jotting down ideas, either to use in my garden, or my licensing collections. After spending months working on my property, I realized how much I love creating environments, and how this is a path that I will continue to pursue.

Now that fall is in full swing, I am heading back into the studio, and just finished designing my first image inspired by Portuguese tiles. This year I have been particularly interested in how to take travel ideas from sketchbooks, and translate them into viable collections.

portuguese tiles

Creating new work


It’s been a while since I have posted an update. My foundation repairs on the house and studio have been taking up a lot of time. I have however created a number of new collections that are ready for licensing. 

It’s been fun working in a brighter palette as on my last trip to the Atlanta Gift Show I really noticed how the colors are cheery and fun! The piece below “ladybug with Flowers” is part of a collection that I’m working on right now. My focus now is to make the groups as exciting as possible while keeping the themes coherent. Of course scale, flipping out background colors,   adding elements, playing with movement are all ways to accomplish the objective.

Stay tuned for a lot of new design work and shared ideas this year.

Starting a collection

The collage below represent part of the evolution of the group. It’s been fun. The art work will  be shown in my portfolio at the the Gift Show in Atlanta in January.

As you might have read in the last post I spent some time in Tuscany at the end of September. With all the inspiration for decorative design in Italy, I was thinking of a Tuscan collection while traveling. So how does one start the process? I purchased some research (did not have time to draw on location) took photos, and starting sketching in my studio as soon as I was home. Although I chose some local colors I wanted to expand a bit on the typical earth tone and make the collection a little brighter. The first drawings were in colored pencil, they were then scanned into my computer and opened in Illustrator. Although the subject matter is typical of the region rendering the pieces digitally gave them a contemporary look.

Tuscany Collection

What inspires us as artists? Different things for different personalities.

I just took a trip to Tuscany with some friends where we rented a gorgeous villa in the hills above Cortona. I am starting to formulate a collection or possibly several collections based on the huge amount of visual inspiration that the region offered.

We visited several cities, churches museums and wineries, and I was always on the lookout for some interesting themes, patterning, color and simply things I had not thought of. I didn’t realize that there were so many  fruit trees in the area.

I took pictures of tiles, landscapes, art in churches and bought a fair amount of research to bring home to work from.

So far I am thinking of a design with olive branches, some landscapes, maybe a wine theme and definitely a fruit design. Or some of the themes may mix and mingle.

If you are thinking of traveling to the area I recommend going the the Eastern part of Tuscany where there are fewer tourists and beautiful towns perched on hills surrounded by magnificent countryside.

Colorado Alliance of Illustrators Annual Show

Last Friday I worked at the CAI’s Annual Art Show in Lakewood CO. Two days before the event several illustrators helped us hang the art… it was great to have so much help this year. The quality of the pieces was rather high, with a variety of styles and techniques used in the illustrations. I was showing two designs that were acrylic paintings with pastel accents. A patron was interested in my butterfly image, but it was not for sale as the piece is now under a licensing contract.

The Best in Show piece “Afrika”  by Jeff Crosby will be drawn with chalk at the Pizza Dell’ Arte event in Larimer square in June.

The attendance was fantastic this year, great to see so many people, and the party rocked!

Anam Cara Living Arts Studio and Gallery
445 S. Saulbury St.
Lakewood, CO

Colorado Alliance Of Illustrators Show

It’s that time of year again, the Colorado Alliance of Illustrators annual show opening will be on May 7th at the Anam Cara Living Arts Studio & Gallery, 445 S. Saulsbury St. studio B (block 07) Belmar, CO.

This year I am showing two illustrations, acrylics with pastel accents; as I am on the board I will help hang the show as well as help on opening night. This is a really nice venue, please join us for the show, you will enjoy a nice variety of art from our talented artists. Will post photos later.

Atlanta Gift Show

Last Friday I arrived in Atlanta (my parents home town) to attend the Gift Show; my flight was a day late due to a bit of snow at the airport. This seemed rather silly to me as I live in Colorado, but the delay must have been due to de-icing challenges.

It was good to get out of the cold weather and into the Atlanta’s Mart building; didn’t have trouble getting my pass which was a huge relief! I walked the C building where “Children’s World” is located and enjoyed seeing really fun products for kids, and talking with prospective clients. Most of the exhibitors were willing to chat and direct me to their Creative Directors in the corporate offices.

I spent two more days in buildings A and B looking at home furnishings (made me want to decorate my house), greeting cards and paper products. After showing my portfolio to a number of manufacturers I came to the conclusion that too much time has been spent on juvenile art, as my Everyday and Holiday designs were well received. So back to the drawing board.

It was also fun to run into several friends, and to visit old friends in Marietta and Roswell after working all day.

Since my return I have been following up, sending samples to interested parties, and planning new directions for my art work. All together it was a very successful trip, and I plan on returning in July for the next show.

Wintertime in the Rockies show

Art Hardware  in Colorado Springs had their art  opening ” Winter in the Rockies” on Friday night; I have four pieces in the show, two fabric and embroidery pieces, and two winter scenes with people painted in a primitive style with a crackled texture.

Several artists were showing pieces with winter themes, a potter, several photographers, and a painter. This gallery is a new idea, in an existing framing and reprographics locally owned  business; the traffic could have been a bit better, but it was a very cold night…

I was happy about  selling a piece called “Shopping in the Village”, which will be sent to Hawaii as a gift to the new owner’s mother.

The show will be up until February 4th 2010, at Art Hardware , 402 South Nevada Avenue Colorado Springs, CO 80903

Art marketing

Today I started a new marketing program that is based on the book “How To Get Clients Now”; my coach Donna Feldman from Denver is helping me with this process. The markets that I usually work in have changed so drastically so this is a good time to have a new strategy. The program consists of a system with actions that are taken on a daily and weekly basis; you have choices, for instance one of them is to follow up with two prospects everyday. This is a good thing as it helps to stay focused.

The initial actions are taken for 28 days, I will keep updating my progress on a weekly basis. So far I like the concept.

Colorado Alliance of Illustrators

Early this month we had our first board meeting with the new members; I am now the vice president of the organization, and was glad to find out what my duties will be. We went over  all the jobs that need attending to and I am in charge of making sure that all of the events for the year are  properly in place. Next summer I am planning a plein air painting day in Garden of the Gods park, followed by a barbecue at my house. The other members are very professional and friendly, so I am happy to be a part of a good group. If you would like more information about our many events please click on the link  under blogroll.