USA Collectors

Linda Blondheim Art Collector Map
Make yours @
Make yours @

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

New Make an Offer, Painting at Fair Oaks Farm, Patrons helping Artists

The winner of the 50.00 gift certificate for December is MARY NEAT Mary, email me at:

This Weeks Make and Offer painting.
Indian Pass Palms
8x10 inches
oil on Masonite Panel

Your offer must be at least 10.00 with 4.00 shipping or pick up at my studio. If you are a Florida resident add.0625% sales tax. Make offers to me at: Put OFFER in the message line.

Fair Oaks Farm

This month during the holidays I have been doing a lot of painting outside. The weather has been marvelous and I enjoy painting with my companion Henry(Studio Dog), my French bulldog. We load up the car with my painting gear and head out several days a week.

One of my favorite places to paint is Fair Oaks Farm in Evinston Florida. Evinston is the home of the Wood Swink Country Store and Florida's oldest post office. You will find my small paintings at the Wood Swink, depicting the farms and ranches in that area.

Fair Oaks Farm is just a mile or two from the Post Office. It is owned by a very kind and generous friend to painters, Rick Knellinger. Rick is an attorney by trade, but his passion is for his farm and the art that his friends produce. A few of us are lucky to have all the time we want to paint on this lovely farm. It is a privilege I don't take lightly.

Live Oak at Fair Oaks Farm
8x10 inches
Oil on Masonite Panel

Palm Hammock at Fair Oaks Farm
8x10 inches
oil on Masonite Panel

The farm is graced with ancient Live Oaks, Magnolias and tall graceful Palms. The lawn is emerald green with interesting patterns and shapes or dark green made by the cast shadows of old trees. This formal lawn is surrounded by fields dotted with palms, an orchard with lemon, grapefruit,tangerine and orange trees a lovely pond and bee hives. A lovely old Cracker barn sits behind the old house. The farm is home to Sand Hill Cranes and many other birds who take up residence in the winter.

Fair Oaks Barn
12x16 inches
oil on Raymar panel

The farm is lovingly cared for and treasured by it's owner and all who visit. I always meet interesting people there, and the ever charming Rick never fails to extend the most gracious hospitality.

Rick shared this wonderful story with me about the farm. In his words:

" Fair Oaks was originally part of a very large plantation.
The mansion burned around 1900. The present home was the guest house. The
stories that have come down to me are few. During the Civil War, soldiers
on leave were constrained by chaperones, but were wily enough to take the
objects of their affection for a ride in a tiny row boat on Clearwater Lake.
Room only for two! They threw balls to raise money for the Confederacy.
The lake is now a seasonal pond due to dropping water levels. The
cistern is all that is left of the mansion. It is 18 feet deep and about 9
feet in diameter. I would love to find someone to restore it.
For 35 years, Faye and Guy Miles, she a concert pianist and he a
literature professor, "camped out" here. My friends and I would come out to
dine and read Shakespeare on the balcony just before the gloaming, then
meander downstairs to a piano concert and much laughter where no one was
Puck was a regular visitor here too. Some of Faye's smallest
visitors saw him hiding in the bushes and ran to her to report it. In the
morning she would point out to the children the fairy rings in the fields
where they had danced in the starlight, and the dew kerchiefs they
carelessly left behind. Faye is the Muse that continues to guide each day
here. She would "let nothing be ordinary", as she held the fresh head of
lettuce, pulled it apart with her hands, and deeply inhaled its freshness.
She "joined the cosmos", as she promised to do, a few years ago. Every
person was welcome to her hospitality. For her 85th birthday, we surprised
her with a concert in the back yard, with renowned violinist Elwyn Adams.
He arrived in his huge 1974 Cadillac convertible with a broad straw hat, and
renewed his friendship with Faye from his first concert in Gainesville.
Faye was lucky to tip the scale at 100
pounds....very lucky. She wore torn jeans and formal dress with equal
panache. Once she was playing in a concert, where someone had failed to
lock the wheels on the Steinway. The longer she played the further the
piano slipped away from her hands and the lower her organdy dress slipped
from her breast. She relates that she had never played the piece with such
speed and authority managing to keep the audience in rapt suspense as to
which performance would finish first."

Being a painter gives me the opportunity to meet and visit many wonderful places in the world. It is a special life for which I am most grateful.

Most artists live a fairly minimal lifestyle, particularly if they are single. We are not wealthy financially, but we have a privileged life thanks to many patrons like Rick who share their lands and provide assistance. There are many ways to enhance an artist's career and assist them. Providing a space to paint, lodging at beautiful locations, equipment, referrals, commitments to financial support, and good business advice are just a few. Sometimes a simple invitation for coffee or lunch will boost an artist's feelings. If you admire and respect an artist, think about ways you might help them with their career.

See my paintings HERE

Sunday, December 21, 2008

This Week's Make an Offer painting,An Ice Cream Adventure, Art Collecting Decisions for gifts

Winter Marsh
11x14 inches
oil on panel

This Week's Make an Offer Painting

The offer must be at least 10.00, with .0625% sales tax for Florida residents. Shipping is 9.00 via USPS Priority Mail, or pick up at my studio to save shipping charges. Make offers at Put OFFER in the subject line. This painting will be available for offer until 6 PM 12/21/08.

This week I stumbled upon a terrific little Ice Cream shop in Gainesville, Florida. It is tucked away in a little strip shopping center at 3437 West University Avenue. There is not much ambiance to work with in this store front, but the owner, Michael Manfredi, makes every effort to make you feel important and welcome. I had my French Bulldog Henry with me, so we sat outside, waiting for others to bring out the ice cream treat, a lovely hot fudge sundae. The ice cream was rich and smooth but not so rich to be overwhelming. The fudge was the real thing, thick and creamy, just right. The portion was generous and yes, I ate the whole thing, I'm ashamed to admit.

Mr Manfredi came outside to meet us and to admire Henry. He has a Boston Terrier and wanted to meet Henry up close. He brought Henry two dog biscuits, which was a kind gesture. He serves a large variety of ice cream flavors, made right in the shop. The waffle cones are crisp and tasty. He has art on the walls, a nice touch of sophistication for such a small,unpretentious location. He has tables and chairs out on the patio for alfresco dining. It is well worth the trouble to find him. Telephone: 352.378.0532 This shop is a bit old fashioned, which appeals to me, no slick marketing or toney style, just excellent, homemade ice cream from someone who cares about his customers.

Collecting for Others

I have been collecting art for my daughters for years. Each year I choose a new painting for each of them as a gift, either for birthday or Christmas. Several of my clients purchase paintings from me to give as gifts each year. When you think about it, there is absolutely no gift which can be more unique or valuable than original paintings or sculpture. They are one of a kind and will last for generations.

When purchasing for others, think about their home environment. Modern,traditional,cottage style? What about the furnishings and wall colors? Their taste? Landscapes,florals and still life paintings are sure to appeal to many people. If you don't know, choose something that is fairly neutral. Bright splashy paintings may not appeal to everyone.

If you are not sure what to do, pick an artist you think they will like and purchase a studio gift certificate from the artist. I am always happy to provide gift certificates for my studio.

Plan an outing with the person you are giving the art to. Have lunch together and a studio visit to choose the painting the person will enjoy. I love to have studio visits. I always try to make it an occasion, with candles, music and a snack and beverage for visitors. What artist doesn't want to show off their latest paintings? It will be a special day for you and the recipient together.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Florida Orange Shop, Collecting by Subject

The Orange Shop
14x18 inches
oil on Masonite Panel
See my paintings HERE

One of my favorite old time places to visit is the Florida Orange Shop in Citra, Florida.

The Orange Shop
PO Box 125
Citra, Florida 32113-0125
Phone: 1-800-672-6439
Fax: 1-800-345-6888

This is a wonderful place. It has all the great tourist stuff that you found years ago all over the state. it is completely authentic with the original building in wonderful condition. It is owned by Pete and Cindy Spyke. The shop has fresh squeezed orange and grapefruit juice for sale each day and that alone is worth going for! I try to go over at least twice a year. I subscribe to their newsletter. Their fruit is fantastic and always fresh. You will be treated to a warm welcome when you visit this part of the living history of North Florida.

Collecting by Subject

It's really fun to build an art collection around a particular subject instead of a more general collection like still life, portraits or landscapes. If you have a fondness for Orchids, or vintage Mustang Convertibles, or Palm Trees, it's a great way to collect a number of different styles and artists. You will still retain harmony and consistency of subject while creating a very diverse collection. It will generate much interest and attention from guests who visit your home or office.

Another way to do a subject collection is to purchase a series of paintings by one artist who delves deeply into a subject, exploring it with many paintings over time. This is the kind of collection which shows well in groupings through our home or in large facilities like corporate buildings or offices.

This week's Make an Offer painting. Current High Offer: 55.00 email lindablondheim@gmail to make offer. Put OFFER in the subject line.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Florida's Cattle Ranches, I'm a Florida Cracker

Produce at the Wood Swink Store
8x10 inches
oil on panel

This week's Make an Offer painting was done during the Heart of Florida Paint out earlier this year. It was cold outside so a group of us set up our easels in the store to paint Freddie's produce. It was a wonderful experience for all of us.

Offers for the painting must be at least 10.00 and you must pay a 4.00 shipping fee and .0625% Florida sales tax if you are a Florida resident. Send offers to an put OFFER in the subject line.

Current High Offer on the above painting is $55.00.

Here is my latest Florida Farms and Ranches painting.

Palms at Florida Cattle Ranch
20x24 inches
oil on Birch Panel
Wired and ready to hang, unframed.
shipping 95.00 or pick up at my studio.
Purchase HERE

Many people think that cattle ranches always look like Montana or Colorado. Here in Florida, we have a variety of flora and fauna on our ranches. North central Florida has stately old Live Oaks with Spanish Moss dripping off them and rolling hills. In south Florida, there are vast cattle ranches with tall graceful exotic palms and tall grasses instead. In North West Florida there are majestic old pines in the landscape. All of these ranches are beautiful and exciting to me and I'd love to be able to paint them all. If you own a cattle ranch or horse farm in Florida, or know of one that the owners would allow me to paint and photograph, please email me at:

I'm a real Florida Cracker. There aren't so many of us left these days. I was born in Gainesville and grew up there. My Mother's people are from the White Springs and Lake City area. In fact, my ancestors came to Lake City in a covered wagon, long ago. They established a little community called Falling Creek and built a church there, which is still used once a month today. An itinerant Pastor comes for the service. The graveyard has the graves of Confederate soldiers who were killed in the battle of Olusti near Lake City. They used to have reenactments of the battle and I imagine they still do. The family still owns the old home, which was a Cracker house with a dog trot between the kitchen and the rest of the house.

My mother was born in White Springs Florida, a very interesting old town adjacent to the Stephen Foster State Park on the Suwanee River. Her grandparents owned a store and a boarding house. I have painted in that park many times and at one time did demonstrations there.

It is well worth the drive to visit the beautiful park and see the old town, an artist community of sorts.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Florida Keys and Islands,Deciding on the right sized painting for your home,

Wood Farm
Evinston, Florida
12x16 inches
acrylic on birch panel
Wired and ready to hang unframed
shipping 20.00
You can purchase this painting HERE

I've started a new series about Florida's Keys and Islands. Everyone thinks of the Florida Keys south of Miami, but I mean the Keys from Tampa north. Most visitors have no idea that these beautiful places exist in North Florida. I have painted and photographed many of them over the years, so I think it is time for me to pay homage to them with this series.

At this time, I am doing research on the islands I have in mind, including Horseshoe Key,Shired Island, Honeymoon Island,Hontoon Island,Chicken Island Pine Island and several others. When I start a new series, I like to learn something about the history and legends of the places I paint. If you know of a Key or Island you would like to have me explore and paint, please comment about it and I'll check it out.

I have begun to paint 5x7 studies in acrylic of some of the compositions. These small paintings are warm ups for larger works. They give me feel for the location and allow me to refine the palette and composition for a larger painting later.

Stay tuned for more about this lovely project. I'm looking forward to it.

Sizing your painting

You visit my studio but can't decide on the size you need for a painting. Before you come, buy a roll of brown craft paper and some painter's tape. Measure and cut out several templates of the sizes you may be interested in out of the craft paper. Be sure to add about 4 to 6 inches to the paper in both directions to include framing. Tape them up on the wall, trying several sizes, and also two or three smaller templates hung as a grouping.

Stand back after you tape up each one and this will help you decide what size painting to look for or whether two or three smaller hung together would work just as well. This will make your decision in the studio or on the web site so much easier. You will know exactly what you need in size and orientation, whether it be vertical or horizontal. I'm always happy to do custom sized commissions and colors to match your decor.

This Week's MAKE AN OFFER painting. Type OFFER in the subject line and email me at:

Thursday, December 11, 2008

A great film about Florida,Collecting Art

Rawlings Home
24x24 inches
oil on canvas

I love north Central Florida and was born and raised here. Back in the late 1980's I lived in the little town of Micanopy. I ran a small restaurant there for a year or two. At the time, the film called Cross Creek was filmed in the area. It is one of the great films about old Florida, starring Mary Steenburgen,Peter Cayote, and Rip Torn. I met them all, and made the pecan pie in the movie. It was a wonderful experience to watch them film segments in Micanopy. I consider it to be a real art film, with fantastic scenery of Florida, and a beautiful sound track. It is one of Rip Torn's finest performances. If you love Florida as I do, buy the DVD or rent it. You won't be disappointed.

Collecting Art

Getting your basic art education may sound like all work and no play, but quite the contrary. If you like art, learning about it by going places and looking at it, reading about it, and meeting interesting artists in the process is pure pleasure. And the fringe benefits are that the more you do, the better informed you get, and the more discriminating you become as a buyer. Visiting an artist's studio is a wonderful way to learn more about art.

Don't forget to enter the contest here on the blog!

This Week's Make an Offer Painting

Send offer to Put OFFER in the message line.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Horseshoe Key, Choosing Quality Art

Evening at Seahorse Key
Cedar key Florida
acrylic on birch panel
wired and ready to hang unframed
shipping 20.00
Purchase HERE

My research tells me there are over 600 Cotton Mouth Moccasins living on Seahorse Key. I will need to be very careful on the island if I go there to paint and photograph. The photo for this painting was taken from the boat on my recent tour.

Don't forget to enter the contest on this blog to win a 50.00 gift certificate toward art on my web site. See the contest widget at the top of this blog.

Choosing Quality Art

Here are some guidelines and questions to use for measuring the quality of the artwork you are think you would like to buy.

Is it obviously a creation of a skilled craftsman or artisan?

Is the finish and the medium likely to last more than a few years?

Has the artist used high quality paints and an archival support for the painting?

Does the design have an effect on your emotions?

Most importantly, do you like it?

If you want to brighten your world and enhance your environment, stick with well designed, quality artwork.

I will get in trouble here with some friends because I am going to recommend that you purchase original art rather than reproductions.

The commonly used word "print", is actually often mis-used. Real Prints are hand pulled original art, which is made from wood blocks, lithograph stones or metal plates, done by hand one at a time on archival, high quality, rag papers. Each original print is slightly different because of the pressure on the press, or hand pressed paper.

Reproductions are facsimiles of original paintings, sometimes called Giclees ( pronounced Gee-clay), color copies, or offset prints. They are machine made reproductions and not original art.

I’d rather save up for the real thing. There is nothing like an original painting, drawing or print. To know that the artist put paint to canvas, using their emotion and love to craft a fine work of art is important in this world where fine craftsmanship is lacking in most things.

Affordable, Original Art. That's my motto!!

This weeks "Make an Offer" painting. Send offer to Type OFFER in the subject line.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

This Week's Make an Offer Painting, Art Collecting Tips

This Weeks "MAKE AN OFFER" painting.
Palms at Rawlings Estate
8x10 inches
acrylic on panel

You must make an offer of at least 10.00 and pay shipping of 9.00 or pick up at my studio. Send offers to Sales tax of .0625 for Florida residents. Put Offer in the message line.

Art Collecting Tips

Buy art because you like it and because it moves you, and because it enhances your life.

Visit as many art galleries as you can, gallery staff can be helpful guides in your art education.

Get on gallery mailing lists so you'll be invited to openings and special events.

Visit and join your local Art Museums and Non Profit Art centers.Curators sometimes give lectures on collecting art.

If you know art collectors talk them and find out what they know and what they've learned about collecting.

Read art and art history books or books on collecting art.

Subscribe to a few art magazines.

Read reviews by local and national art critics, but keep in mind that reviews usually just reflect one persons opinion.

Once you've educated yourself and have fallen in love with a work of art, buy it, take it home and enjoy it. Don't worry about whether it goes with the furniture, Excellent framing can bridge that gap. Don't wonder about investment value. Just love it with all your heart.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

My Cedar Key Florida Adventure

Palm Grove
20x24 inches
oil on Birch Panel

Yesterday, I took my mother,sister, and Studio Dog (Henry, the French Bulldog)on a boat tour of Cedar Key Islands. It was splendid in every way. In fact, I plan to go back and do it again by myself, to take photos of the Islands for paintings. I'm also planning to take the Suwanee River boat tour and the Birding Tour.

We placed ourselves in the very capable hands of Captain Doug. He was extremely knowledgeable about the history of the area, as well as the birds, flora and Fauna of the islands surrounding Cedar Key. He knew just where to go to see all of the interesting birds, like the large white Pelicans, which I have never seen in all my years of painting on the Florida coast. They were large magnificent birds, snow white with black feathers under their wings. One of my favorite islands was Horseshoe Key, now leased by the University of Florida's Marine Science lab. The lighthouse there is used as a dorm for students and researchers. There are many beautiful palms growing wild on the islands and the beaches are white sand. Happily, all of these outer islands are owned by the national and state land preservation agencies, so they cannot be developed. That makes me very happy indeed.

We were able to watch the Dolphins and they played surfing games in the wake of our boat. We saw a huge Bald Eagle nest and two Eagles at another island. We even got off the boat at one Island to explore the trails.

Captain Doug was in every way accommodating to us, allowing me to bring my dog and helping my Mother on and off the boat with great care. Mrs Captain was warm and personable and we met their daughter who is also a boat captain. The whole family was delightful.

Here is some information for you about the tours:

Captain Doug invites you to experience the pristine waters surrounding the Cedar Keys and Lower Suwanee National Wildlife Refuge aboard Cedar Key's finest touring vessels.

We offer Island Tours, Suwanee River Tours, Coastal Back Country Tours,Birding Island Drop offs, Group Charters, Weddings and Memorials.

Telephone reservations: 352.543.9523 or 352.949.1996
Web Site:

We had a wonderful dockside meal at the Seabreeze Restaurant. The waitress was personable, happy and friendly. She gave us excellent service and the food was fresh seafood and fantastic.

It was a wonderful adventure and I look forward to the next trip with Captain Doug. I hope to get started on some paintings soon from Cedar key.

This week's Make an Offer Painting. Make an offer at Current high offer is 50.00

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

A boat Trip, My painting Process for Collectors

I'm off this Friday for a new adventure. I'm taking my sister, my 85 year old mother and Henry(AKA Studio Dog), on a boat tour in Cedar Key with Captain Doug. HERE I have wanted to do this tour for a long time and decided, Why Not? I plan to take many photographs along the route which I will use to make paintings later in my studio. I have long loved the wild places in the South and spend much time at rivers and lakes, photographing and doing small studies of scenes for later use. I will be sure to post about this adventure after the event and share some of the photos with you. If you are traveling in the area, be sure to take the boat tour.

Perhaps you will enjoy an explanation of my process in this. I use photos a lot in the studio for larger paintings. I feel that my best paintings are done in the studio where I can take the time to craft them carefully, stopping along the way in my process for drying periods and thinking periods between sessions.

I do smaller paintings on location to use as studies for possible compositions later in studio. These pochades (field studies) are road maps if you will, for larger works done more carefully in studio. These studies are almost always done alla prima, which means all at once, wet on wet with no drying period. They are usually quite simple in composition dealing with basic values and color. They give me the information I need to translate the scene into a larger work later. Alla prima is also done in the studio with the same approach in mind to use these small paintings as studies for larger works or to experiment with painting techniques and thematic subjects. Contrary to popular misconceptions, alla prima and plein air are not interchangeable. Alla prima means painting from start to finish in one session. Plein Air means painting out in the open air, or outside rather than in a studio.

Plein air painting may be done in multiple sessions with drying periods in between, though most painters do smaller works alla prima on location.

Sometimes, I will start larger paintings on location, doing the basic block in, color, shadows and composition. I then take these paintings back to the studio, where I take my time to complete them. All of these methods of painting produce interesting work.

As you consider paintings for your collection, you will need to think about which method is most pleasing to you. Studio work is more refined than alla prima plein air work. Alla prima work tends to be more simplistic in composition and design and looser in brushwork. It has a more abstract feel to it than studio work though they may both represent the same subject.

This Week's Make an Offer painting.
Curent Highest offer 50.00

Snd your offer to Put Offer in the message line.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Working with artists on commissions,Color Fields Series,This weeks "MAKE AN OFFER"painting

Leaning Palm
12x16 inches
oil on panel

This Week's MAKE AN OFFER painting:

You must make an offer of at least 10.00. You must pay 10.00 shipping or pick up painting from my studio, and .0625% Florida sales tax if you are a Florida resident. Send offers to Put OFFER in the subject line. This offer is available through December 7th at 6PM.

Current High Offer on the above painting is 50.00

Color Field
5x7 inches
acrylic on mat board
Free Shipping

The color field series is based on my admiration for Mark Rothko's beautiful paintings. I saw them at the museum in Montgomery Alabama a few years ago and the pictures in books don't do them justice at all. I am not an abstract painter, preferring the landscape as my subject, so I decided to experiment with the idea of color fields in representational work. These small studies are the result.

Working with artists on commissions

What should you expect from an artist you commission a painting from?

You should expect good communication skills.

You should expect to see representative samples of the artist's work.

You should expect to receive work by the deadlines agreed upon, or be advised of any unforeseen situation which will cause delays.

You should expect to be treated courteously and with respect.

You should expect to receive some documentation about the painting you purchase, with archival information, for future restoration if needed.

You should expect the artist to use professional quality paints and supports, to insure longevity of the painting.

You should expect a skill level which is comparable with the cost of the painting.
You should expect an invoice or receipt for the painting.

Most of my collectors are my personal friends. I go the extra mile for them always and do the best I can to please them. They are very important to me as clients and personal friends. They deserve no less than my best efforts.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Which Artists' Work Should You Collect?

Feed Shed
12x16 inches
acrylic on Birch panel
wired and ready to hang unframed
Purchase HERE

Which artists' work should You collect?

Well, Mine of course!! :>)

When you start out as a collector, think about it as the beginning of a long term relationship with your art. Take the time to think about what part of your budget you wish to use to purchase art. Will it be multiple paintings over a period of time? Will it be one special painting, hung in a prominent place in your home or office? Are you an art lover or someone who wants a memory of a special person, pet, or place in your life? Do you prefer bright intense colors or more subdued? Is your home contemporary with modern furniture and sleek lines or is it more traditional with classic furniture, drapery and rugs? How will your choice in art fit in with the environment you are comfortable with?

I collect art myself and have for many years. I love the landscape and so all of my paintings, and the paintings I have purchased have to do with nature in some way. My choices are thematic. I purchase art from painters who have a passion for nature and the landscape. I purchase from artists who love their process of work entirely. I believe strongly in the old saying "paint what you know and love". I don't want to buy paintings from somebody who lives in the big city doing landscapes. I want to buy landscapes from artists who live here in the South, who paint the places that are so dear and special to me. As a collector, I want to buy from artists I respect, who know the land I love, and who paint it with the same passion that I do.

Buy local and regional art because we are the painters who love your part of the world. I paint and travel all over the South, especially in Alabama, Florida, Georgia and North Carolina. When you see my paintings in a gallery in the South, you know I have a deep commitment to Southern Culture and the land. I haven't been flipping through magazines, guessing what the land looks like. That is why I don't try to be a western artist, though that is the most popular place to paint the landscape. I prefer to paint what I know, understand and love.

Wherever you live or travel to; whatever place you love and want a memory of, choose the artists who live and work there to start your collection. You will live the passion for it through their work.

This week's Make an Offer Painting

Ozello Marsh
12x16 inches
oil on Masonite panel

You must make an offer of at least 10.00 and agree to pay 10.00 for shipping, or pick up at my studio to avoid a shipping charge. To make an offer email me at: Put OFFER in the message line. I will notify you if you have the highest offer each Sunday night.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

New Art Exhibit at Ice House Gallery McIntosh, Florida

See Linda Blondheim's New "North Florida Farms and Ranches" Series at:

Ice House Gallery
"New Beginnings"
Opening December 5, 2008
6 - 10 PM
Ice House Gallery
US 441
McIntosh, Florida
Through December 31, 2008

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Vacations and Travels to St Augustine Beach, Great Restaurants and Art Galleries

St Augustine Light House
8x10 inches
acrylic on birch panel
wired and ready to hang unframed.
shipping 15.00 or pick up at my studio
Purchase HERE

I have fallen in love with St Augustine Beach. I was lucky to spend a few weeks there this fall. It is one of the best east coast beach towns. Small and cozy but large enough to have adequate shopping and businesses, so you don't have to travel to the mainland if you don't wish to. It is just a hop and skip from Jacksonville to the North, and South to wonderful Marineland and Washington Oaks State Park. Anastasia State Park is right in St Augustine Beach and it is one of Florida's loveliest ocean front parks.

I recommend several restaurants right on A1A:

The Oasis for an excellent breakfast and great seafood.

The Sunset Grille for great seafood and excellent service.

The Sea Oats Cafe, a tiny cafe with a great breakfast and outstanding biscuits and sausage gravy.

The Cafe' 11, a quirky menu which is good, and Wireless Internet.

The A1A Ale House, downtown in St Augustine with outdoor seating and view of the tourist and carriages as the go by. Very good diverse menu with excellent service.

There are dozens of galleries in the City but the two I like the best are both beach side:

Island Fine Art just north of the 206 Intercoastal bridge on the west side of A1A in the Island Center (You can see my work there through December in a group show)

Rachel Thompson Gallery in the Town Center on A1A.

St Augustine Beach has lots of condos available for rental. My favorite is the St Augustine Beach Racket Club 880 A1A. They are really lovely and very secure with a 24 hour security guard and a locked gate to the beach. Beautifully landscaped too with exceptional dunes.

There are lots of nice hotels along the beach including the Garden Hilton, Holiday Inn, Days Inn, Comfort Inn and others.

St Augustine Beach is a relaxed easy going lifestyle. There is a new library at the Town Center, a large outlet mall nearby, lots to do in the old city and lots of beautiful, very clean white sand beaches. You will never be bored there.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Collecting Art

Wood Farm
12x16 inches
oil on Birch panel
wired and read to hang unframed
shipping 50.00 or pick up at my studio
Purchase HERE

Here is some information for art collectors

Collectors of art fall into two basic categories. The first is the collector that to lives with art, buys it until all the walls are filled, and then stops. The second is committed in the experience of collecting, and like the artist, feels compelled to continue with this passionate relationship, regardless of the decorative or functional aspects. Then is the investment collector who buys art as a commodity like stocks or gold.

What many collectors don´t realize, is the process is not over once the piece is hung. It becomes more important to become a responsible collector if you are collecting museum quality artists. There are three basic areas that require attention from all collectors.


It is important to document each piece of art in your collections. This could prove to be an invaluable resource for restoration, or damage. The best and most economical form of documentation is images on a CD. It should be properly labeled to include artist´s name, title of work, date of completion, media, and dimensions. Also, an indication of top and front is advisable. Remember,CDs are not archivally stable, so in most cases it is a good idea to follow up with hard copy prints.

Biographical Information

It is also important to keep yourself informed about the artists´activities and save related materials. Write-ups and reviews, as well as exhibition announcements should be kept on file for each artist in your collection. This will increase the value of the work as an artist´s career develops. Minimally, you should keep an up-dated biography or artist resume. Several collectors also ask the artist to write a brief statement about their particular work. This is not always possible, but if you have contact with the artist, it is an additional luxury that only collecting living artists affords.


If you have purchased a piece directly form a gallery or the artist, the artwork doesn´t have a history of having been in prior exhibitions or collections. But, occasionally if a specific piece you own has been previously exhibited or owned, this should be recorded accurately, and is referred to as the "provenance."

Keeping accurate records regarding your collection will allow for immediate access to current information for future exhibitions and catalogs. It is necessary backup for insurance and tax purposes. As your collection grows, it is a good idea to get a periodic professional appraisal.

Finally, as a courtesy to the artist, it is always a good idea to contact them when you move or sell the art. Artists need to have access to their work for retrospectives or survey shows.

I make up a packet for my collectors which includes a bio/resume/statement, a COA with archival information and an image of the painting, and put all into a Manila envelope for their files.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The Wood Swink and Wood Farm

The Wood Farm
12x16 inches
oil on panel
shipping 50.00
Purchase HERE

The Wood Swink Post Office is the oldest working post office in Florida. It is an icon for this part of Florida and we landscape painters know it well. It is a combination antique store, post office, and produce market. It is a complete step back in time. The center of the store has a wonderful old wood stove. Chairs are grouped around it, and a checker board is strategically located where anyone can start a game. There is one of the old large metal drink boxes in front. I always have to buy a drink so I can use it. Visitors from around the world stop to post letters there and to enjoy the camaraderie they find there. It is like a second home to me. I paint there in the back from time to time and at any time I will see other painters because we all love it so much. Wilma Sue and Freddie allow their artist friends to show small paintings there and I enjoy a sale now and then. This is not one of those fake tourist stores, or a museum. It is a real step back in time, a working country store from the 1800's.

The store and post office is run by Wilma Sue Wood and her friend Deb. Freddie Wood, Wilma Sue's husband, is a farmer in the little town of Evinston where the post office is located.

Freddie's farm is prime painting territory for me and the other lucky artists who know him. Freddie grows lush crops of vegetables, including squash, collards, field peas, broccoli,tomatoes, and many other yummy vegetables. All these are available year round in the store. Freddie raises fat happy cattle on the farm. The farm is beautiful beyond description, with tall graceful palms and giant Live Oak trees, which border Orange Lake. In the afternoon, the views are simply stunning, with the golden light and long purple shadows. This is a place above all others I am fortunate to paint. I have free access to all parts of the farm and can wander to my heart's content. It is magical and sacred for me. A part of the history and legend of north Florida.

There is a story that Mr Wood killed Mr Swink in a gun fight out in front of the store over a woman in the 1800's and that is how the store became the property of the Wood family. To this day it is still called the Wood Swink.

I have a mission and dream to turn Evinston into an art destination. Freddie has an old very large packing house next to the store which would make a wonderful art center/gallery. He has an old shack on the farm which could be made into a nice cabin for painters to stay in and use for workshops. I keep hoping that a cultural private foundation or private donor will come forward to help. This old historical town needs to be saved and made into a wonderful destination for art lovers and painters.

You will find the Wood Swink Post Office on County Road 225 which runs parallel to US 441 beteen the little towns of Micanopy and McIntosh, Florida. Traveling south from Gainesville on US 441 go past Micanopy about 5 miles and you will see a green sign for Evinston, Turn left there and the road will dead end at CR 225. Turn left on 225 and go about a block to see the store on the left. You can't miss it!! They close for lunch from 12-2 PM M-F Open Saturday AM, closed Sunday. If you go, tell them that Linda Blondheim sent you and be sure to look at my paintings in the store.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Hontoon Island, Florida, A historical site

Hontoon Island
8x10 inches
gouache on panel

History of Hontoon from Lars Anderson. Lars is a naturalist here in north Florida. He leads canoe trips all around the rivers of North Florida and Prairie Walks here in Alachua County. I vow to go on one some day. I know you will enjoy this excerp I got from a recent email from Lars.

While digging a canal in the 1950's, workers brought up a carved wooden "totem" of an owl from the river bottom. Later, in the 50s, another totem was pulled up by a dredge being used to work on submerged cables - this one of a pelican. This brought a rush of archaeologists whose thorough search of the river bottom revealed a totem of an otter holding a fish. These are the only such wooden totems found anywhere in North America, aside from the Pacific Northwest.

The descendants of the totem artists enjoyed many more centuries, living and dying in their river side villages, before the first European explorers ever entered their world. That first encounter came in the 1560's, when Pedro Menendez led an exploratory mission up the St. Johns. After crossing Lake George, he met these people, known as the Mayaca and asked permission to pass. He did not get it. After passing a barricade of log spikes Menendez ascended deeper into Mayaca territory. As the river narrowed, he realized he could easily fall into an ambush set by these reportedly fierce warriors, and wisely turned back.

As the long arm of the Spanish mission system swept north Florida, the Mayaca region was at the southern fringes of activity and was therefore spared - for a while. Eventually, as the north Florida natives were decimated, the Spanish started looking closer at Mayaca. Several missions were estblished in south central Florida and the upper St. Johns. In the end, all that remained of the people of Hontoon Island were scores of shell middens and burial mounds and a few totem poles - whose somber wooden eyes look out from the glass encasements of the Florida Museum of Natural History upon a world and people they could never understand.

A century and a half later, after the last of the Mayacas and their successors, the Seminoles were driven out of the upper St. Johns, a veteran of the Second Seminole War named William Hunton settled on the Island. It is from his name, though skewed and tattered from the passage of time and countless lips, that the name Hontoon was derived. From that time to this, the Island changed hands several times and was used alternately as a boat yard and cattle ranch. The State bought the island in 1967.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Changes Here on the Blog

My Yard IV
12x16 inches
oil on panel
Purchase HERE

I have neglected this blog and I apologise. I have decided to change it into a collector's blog with stories about the rural South, tips for collectors on framing, hanging paintings, archival information, choosing a collection, how to work with an artist on commissions, and various topics related to art collecting. I will also feature small paintings with a rural theme from the ranches and farms I paint on here in the South. I will post about once a week. Enjoy it and share the blog with your friends.

The above painting was done in my yard last week. My home was once part of a large farm here near Lacrosse Florida. The entire farm was owned by farmer Earnest Bethea. He grew all kinds of crops, including Broccoli, potatoes, corn, beans ,squash and other vegetables. He would take them to the packing house down the road about 7 miles to Lacrosse. There are packing houses all over this part of Florida and farms in every direction. My neighbors have beef cattle and other neighbors have horses. Living in rural Florida is wonderful for a landscape painter. There is nothing like it. I have many fond memories of the fish camps and farms I used to roam as a child. I walk my dog each day through the fields of tall grasses and can hear the neighbor's cattle lowing in the dusk of the day. Many foxes, owls,turkeys,bald eagles,other wild birds and deer live on these farms.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Linda Blondheim Art Studio Landscapes of the South

Florida Palm Grove
20x24 inches
oil on birch panel
wired and ready to hang unframed

See my web site HERE

See my large paintings HERE

Studio Events:

Linda Blondheim
Books Inc.
NW 5th Avenue and 13th Street Gainesville, Florida
November 1-30, 2008

2nd Annual Bartow Paint Out
November 21-23, 2008
Bartow Florida

I have a new Make an Offer feature on my other blog HERE I show a painting for a week and take the highest offer on Sunday. Offers start at 10.00 Buyer must pay shipping or pick up at my studio. Send offers to me at Type offer in the message line.

2008 Crescent Beach Paint Out
October 21 - 25, 2008 HERE

Linda Blondheim Art Camp

Color Mixing for the Southern Landcape

Join me in my cozy studio 13 miles form Gainesville, Florida. Come January 10th, 2009 for my art camp on the color palette of landscape painting with acrylics or oils. We will explore the world of landscape painting with color. The camp will focus on color mixing the Florida and Southern landscape palette.

9 AM- 5PM

This camp is one stop shopping!! No need for breakfast, lunch, snack or drinks. I will provide all!!

Just bring your paints, 50 sheets of index paper (card stock), one canvas for a final painting after lunch, your brushes, one bottle of acrylic glazing medium, one small jar of gel medium for acrylic painters, Your turps and paints for oil painters, a sketch book and pencil.

The Date: Saturday January 10, 2009
The Fee: 100.00
which includes 2 meals, snacks, beverages, instruction and workbook.

Deadline for payment January 1, 2008
Limited to 12 painters.


Studio: 386.462.5726

If you want to use I have a button on the web site on the artist resources page HERE If you'd rather pay by check, send to:

Linda Blondheim
3032 NW 161 Court
Gainesville, Florida 32609

I have a new web site for my commission work and larger available paintings. Check it out HERE

My next Studio Monthly class will be the first Sunday in November at 2 PM

Please join me.

I am now offering Dog Portraits. Please check my web sites for more information on various commission subjects. It's time to order commissioned paintings for holiday gifts.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Linda Blondheim Art Studio Landscapes of the South

Tomoka River
40x48 inches
oil on canvas
125.00 shipping

See my paintings HERE

Painters Tip

Warm Up with Brushwork

I give my students three exercises to do to warm up for painting.

1. Long and short strokes. They must practice loading the brush carefully and making the longest most even strokes they can. The other side of that is short choppy strokes. Add tos that curves, circles, rectangles, cross hatching, side of brush and flat of brush strokes.

2. Stippling. Dots of paint in multiples, singles and so forth. Building up layers of dots to make stippled layers of paint. They use a variety of brushes from rounds, to flats, brights,filberts, large and small.

3. Scumbling. This must be done with thin paint over dry paint, either very thin with medium or dry brushed onto the paint surface in a scrubbing motion so that the top layer of paint is scrubbed over the dry paint layer underneath.

I use all of these strokes when I paint and most painters do. To study them one at a time as an exercise builds technique and warms you up for a painting session.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Linda Blondheim Art Studio Landscapes of the South

Gold Finch
4x6 inches
gouache on acid free mat board

See my work here

Art Notes Blog Here

Painters Tip

This week I share quite a bit of information I have found on the web about various whites in oil painting. I would like to credit the authors but can't remember which sites I researched.

Titanium White - titanium dioxide (oxide)
Reflects 97.5% of all available light. The most opaque white, perfect choice for direct painting but difficult for color mixing because it takes so much color to tint Titanium. Titanium is completely inert, does not change by aging or normal chemical action, but it does require more oil to grind than other whites and can show some yellowing because of the darkening of linseed oil when it dries. It does not dry very quickly and is more Zinc white in this respect. Titanium White does not dry as hard as Zinc white eventually will, and consequently will make a more flexible film.

Flake White - basic carbonate of lead
Flake white has a heavy pigment requiring very little oil, and combines in time with oil to make a very flexible film. It is regarded as the most reliable white on which to build a painting. It can be applied more heavily than other whites with less danger of cracking than other whites. Flake white dries well and is a "warm" white. Note: Being composed of lead, Flake white is poisonous if absorbed into the body, but this does not happen by external contact.

Zinc White - zinc oxide
The most popular and transparent of the whites, it is also slow drying. It is a "bluish" (cold) white color, not nearly as strong and opaque as Titanium White and therefore can be very easily controlled. Zinc is recommended for scumbling and alla prima painting. Impressionists who painted directly liked Zinc White for its transparency and slow dry time. But Zinc's slow drying time and brittleness does not make it a good choice for general painting.

When painting in the indirect method you need to remember the fat-over-lean rule: always paint a more flexible layer over a less flexible one. With that in mind, the brittleness of paint films created with Titanium or Zinc whites make them less suitable for this method of painting than Lead white.

"Fat" refers to the fatty drying oil used as a binder and in mediums. A fatty layer of paint has more fatty oil (linseed, poppy seed, walnut, etc.) in it than does a lean layer, or one containing less fatty oil. To paint "Fat-over-lean" is defined as painting in layers of paint, which contain successively greater quantities of fatty drying oil.

The purpose of this method of layering oil paints is due to the fact that oil paints do not dry by evaporation, but by oxidation, during which time the paint film flexes and moves. By adding more oil in each layer of paint you insure that the lean under-layers will dry before the top layers to prevent cracking. Whereas a lean layer painted over a fatty layer would completely oxidize and become inflexible, causing it to crack when the underlying paint layer flexes during oxidation

Painting on a flexible support, such as canvas, creates flexibility within the structure of the painting, which can be damaging. Any painting on cloth, which received a blow (whether from being bumped from behind or dropped, etc.) will cause a certain type of cracking which is usually visible in a circular pattern on the painting's surface. There is only one way to attempt to avoid this. Paint in a series of daubs of color separated so as not to create a continuous paint film. the flexing support can then bend between the brushstrokes without cracking them. However, this style of painting is very limiting creatively.

Most artists desire to create a continuous paint film across the support and have, for centuries, done so in varying thicknesses of paint: thin wash imprimatura, covered with transparent shadows and bold, thick highlights, glazed with transparent glazes and scumbled with thin layers of translucent opaques. The key is in knowing the amount of fatty oil in each color. Each pigment has different properties, including particle size, which determine how much oil is required to turn it into a paste. Craftsmen of past ages, who ground their own paints, knew which pigments were high in oil and which were low. The underpainting would then be produced in lean colors and successive layers used fattier pigments, or else more oil (in the form of a medium) was added to altar the paint film's elasticity. Lead white is a very lean color - it requires very little oil to produce a paste for painting. Each pigment chemically reacts with the oil to effect drying. Lead white reacts in a way which speeds drying times by increasing polymerization. It should be used in underpainting or for painting over washes of color, but is more likely to crack if layered over a very fatty color such as a thick layer of umber or carbon black.

As a general rule earth colors, especially those containing heavy metals, dry faster than do organic or synthetic pigments, which have finer particle sizes.
Because of the yellowing of linseed oil, many artists and paint manufacturers throughout the ages have sought to use other binders or vehicles for grinding pigments into paste, especially lighter colors and cooler colors which may be effected by yellowing. Rubens and others of his day ground whites and blues in walnut oil because it yellows less.

Today, many paint manufacturers, creating paints for the direct painting methods of the impressionists and plein air painters, use poppyseed, sunflower, or safflower oils. However, none of these are suited to layering paint. Archivalists discourage the use of poppy seed oil because it is brittle and cracks more easily. Safflower is also not a good substitute because it never dries and is thus not truly a "drying oil." Most paint manufacturers using these oils add dryers to the mixture to force consistent drying. But there is little that they can do to prevent the inherent brittleness of these paint films. The very chemical within linseed oil that makes it yellow is also the thing that makes it flexible.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Linda Blondheim Art Studio Landscapes of the South

20x36 inches
oil on canvas

Painters Tip

Improving your work

If you really wish to stretch and grow in your painting you will need to do research and study. You need to take the time off from your regular painting schedule and have separate time to read and paint for learning.

There are a couple of good ways to do this. Some painters do some study first thing in the day, when they arrive at the studio or on location. The have a plan or an exercise ready to start and they use it as a way to warm up before serious painting time.

Another method is to take longer periods of time like weeks or months to study and research; an in studio artist residency or retreat if you will, taking yourself out of your usual studio routine.

I use both methods. I like to do a lot of exercises before I teach workshops and classes. In the summer, things are slow in the art world and I am home in the studio. If I have a sufficient inventory to last the summer, I will often spend the summer doing research, writing about paintings and doing various painting exercises to improve my work.

In addition, I will have a study topic for the year. This year I am studying the art of NOTAN. A couple of years ago it was painting architecture. Generally, I will study areas I am weak in,so that I improve and progress in my painting skills. I make a list of areas I need to develop and choose from that for my summer study or studio warm ups.

However you decide to study, do it consistently and take a lot of notes. You can make an excellent notebook about each topic to keep and reuse over and over again. You work will improve as much as you are willing to work. It you apply yourself with discipline you will improve. If you make little effort, you will get little in return. The best painters I know are always studying and working very hard on specific areas of painting.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Linda Blondheim Art Studio Landscapes of the South

Produce at the Wood Swink
8x10 inches
oil on panel
gold frame
Purchase HERE

Painters Tip

This week I think I will give some information about the versatility of pochade boxes in the field. You can actually use them in studio as well and I have done that many times. In studio, it is easy to put them on a workbench to stand and paint, or on your tripod. I also sit at a work table and use them. I have two boxes, one for acrylic or gouache, and the other for oils. I keep them both set up and ready to use at all times. I always have two sets of every medium and brushes,one for in studio and one for in my car studio. It makes life so much easier for me. When I have to reorder, I just get two tubes of each color or two brushes, one for each set.

You are not restricted to any size with a pochade box. They say they are made for one size but I often go as large as 14x18 down to 4x6 inches on my 9x12 box. I simply use a large spring clamp to clamp the panel to the edge of the box. You can also use a bungee or the little bungee gizmos that the pochade box companies make if you want to spend more money. Some of them, like Guerilla Box make inserts to fit various sized panels, which fit in the lid. Again, nice but unnecessary with a clamp instead. I use a piece of plastic coated framing wire to hold my paper towel on to the box. You don't need their attachment. You could also use string.

You also don't have to buy special brushes. You can cut off the ends of your longer ones and tape the ends to fit inside your box.

The tripods allow you to adjust heights to many levels, for sitting or standing, including uneven hills and so forth. I use a garden bench for sitting when I'm too tired to stand. I prefer to stand but at paint outs, I am often tired after four or five days of painting in a row. The benches are available at garden centers and home improvement stores. They are really great. The have a foam padded seat in a narrow rectangle with metal legs on springs that fold flat, so it looks like a flat rectangle when it is folded up. It takes about 30 seconds to set up and put away. it fits right in the file box on wheels with the pochade box.

I use the file boxes on wheels for my gear. They are cheap, about 25.00 and have a collapsible handle. They fold up flat if you need to store them. Lots of painters use those big wheeled things with the canvas seat and flaps and so forth, but that is too much work for me. I go fast and lean. I usually will just carry my box over my shoulder on the tripod with a bottle of water unless I have a long way to go. Then I use the file box. The file box will hold two pochade boxes, the bench and tripod, sunscreen,bug juice and a few panels.

The lid to the box can be adjusted to almost any angle for your comfort, including flat for watercolors.

These boxes will take an unbelievable amount of abuse. My advice is to buy from a company who has a good reputation. My first Guerilla box is now 8 or 9 years old. It is still working though it looks horrible. That is a worthy investment.

Check them all out and ask a lot of questions before you buy. Talk to other painters and figure out the style you like best. These boxes are worth the investment, whatever brand you choose.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Linda Blondheim Art Studio Landscapes of the South

Ichetucknee River
24x24 inches
oil on canvas

Purchase HERE

Painters Tip

My advice today is about getting the best painting possible. So many landscape painters have fallen into the trap of believing that alla prima or plein air is some sort of magic. To me plein air painting is simply a useful tool in helping to create a good painting. There is nothing magical about it. I believe that getting the best painting is the goal. If I start a painting on location but can't finish it there, because of time constraints, weather, wind, heat or any number of reasons; I can finish the painting in my studio and improve it. That is the goal for me. I don't market my work as either plein air or studio really, since I do both. I find that my patrons really have no interest in whether the painting is pure plein air or pure studio. They really don't care. The only people who do seem to care about this issue are the artists I call the plein air police.

I believe we are wise to have the best possible painting as our end goal. If you bring a painting home from the field and it still needs tweaking, by all means, improve it if you can. if nothing you do will enhance it in any way, call it done and frame it!

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Linda Blondheim Art Studio Landscapes of the South

I'm going to be painting in this beautiful place for a week starting Friday. Don't give up on me. I will return soon with more painters tips.

Painters Tip

It is pretty easy to lose focus in a painting when you are out on location or painting in front of others for a demonstration. What you need is a plan before you begin. Think about what drew you to the scene and rely on that for the theme of your paintng. Let go of all but the main elements and rank them by importance. Keep the number small and think, main element, secondary elements, tertiary elements. How will you lead the viewer through the painting to rest on these elements? What paths will you create to lead the viewer? Will you use values in such a way as to establish paterns or paths? Will you allow a dominant value in the painting to create more interest? Will you create anchors or stops in the composition to prevent the viewer from going out of the painting? Where is the direction of light? What is the source? How will you feature the main element?

Where will you feature the most texture and hard edges, where soft and blurred? Remember that you are in charge of the painting and it's theme and development. Paintings are not about copying nature. You are the conductor of the orchestra, or the arranger if you will. Your job is to create a beautiful painting that viewers will fall in love with and want to look at over and over again.

Thinking through all of these questions and answering them will help you to stay focused on the process and the painting, bringing it to fruition with control, not chaos. Will any of us always create beautiful exceptional paintings? Likely not, but our goal is to strive for that excellence each time we put brush to canvas. Careful analysis will help us come closer to that goal.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Linda Blondheim Art Studio The Value of Quick Draw Painting Practice

Honeymoon Island Palms
12x16 inches
oil on panel

See my paintings HERE

Quick Draw

This exercise is a warm up for painting. If you get into the habit of the quick draw before you begin serious painting, you will improve your observation, brushwork, and technical skills.
It is simple. Just set a timer for 15 minutes get your palette ready and a small canvas. Paint for 15 minutes, completing the painting in that time. No talking, music or distractions. Do nothing but paint. Do them on Index paper, save them in your notebooks and you will begin to see great improvement over the months. You can use them as preliminary studies for composition, color and values, saving many mistakes by working out problems on the quick draw.

The other reason for doing the quick draw is that it allows you transition time from your everyday life and problems to the focus you need to do good work.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Linda Blondheim Art Studio Landscapes of the South

Town and Country Farm
8x10 inches
oil on panel

shipping 15.00

Purchase HERE

Art Notes Blog HERE

Painters Tip

Today I have a few tips for framing.

I use metal leaf frames because that's what my gallery dealers and patrons like the best. Often the rabbit area of the frame will have gold or silver leaf stuck in it. When you put your painting in the frame and then later remove it to put in other paintings, you painting will have strips of gold or silver on the front. Not good!! I have learned to turn over the new frames back side up and to wipe the rabbit out with either Q-tips or a paper towel. Scrubbing the rabbit out good will remove the metal leaf and keep your paintings clean.

I like to use mirror hangers or D-Rings as they are sometimes called, on my frames. They are stronger than eye screws and they allow the frame to hang flat against the wall. It is also better to use plastic coated framing wire. It will last much longer and not become stretched out and brittle.

Save the cardboard corners which come with ready made frames. I just reinstall them on any frames I need to transport to galleries or shows. Just staple them back on and carefully tear them off. They can be reused several times.

Sometimes I will get frames which are just slightly too large for the painting. A gap shows between the edge of the painting and the frame rabbit. To solve this problem use very narrow strips of foam board, which are cut to the depth of the rabbit. Glue them into the frame at the bottom and the picture will fit fine, not slipping down too far into the frame. You can also use tiny strips of mat board doubled or tripled, depending on how deep you need it.

For pastels, you can use slightly recessed strips of foam board or mat board glued to the inside of your mat, which will act as a spacer between the surface of the pastel and the mat.

To protect the thin metal frames which paper media artists use, go to the hardware store and buy the foam pipe protectors. They slide over the four sections of the frame, protecting it from damage.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Linda Blondheim Art Studio Landscapes of the South

Lone Pine
8x10 inches
alla prima on location

See my paintings HERE

Art Notes HERE

Studio News

Plein Air Monthly Class
March 15, 2008 Saturday
9 AM
Kanapaha Gardens
State Road 24 (Archer Road)
Gainesville, Florida

Studio Monthly Class
Sunday March 16, 2008
Linda's Studio
near Lacrosse off SR 121 North

Email me if interested

Painters Tip

Painting Water

There are three basic elements to consider when painting water: color, rhythm and movement.

Water is constantly moving from the influence of wind, waves and direction of flow due to gravity. Creeks and rivers flow according to what is under the surface. Natural breaks occur due to rocks, limbs, shallow areas like sand bars, causing the water to break and flow around them in areas. Deep water generally flows slower with a smoother surface, its reflections mirroring the colors of the sky and of the trees and land elements. Shallow areas flow over stones, sand and debris on the bottom. The result is a series of broken reflections. Broken strokes of paint in various colors pick up the above water elements as well as debris under the surface.

The depth of the water creates its own color. In nature water is almost never simply one color, instead it tends to pick up some of the land colors and is often darker and bluer in the deeper areas. As it becomes shallow, it picks up more of the land colors. The color of the water is subject to the light of the day and the type of water. A clear overhead light creates a dominant blue in clean water. The surf can be gray, blue, or green depending on the light and time of day.

Particles suspended in the water reflect more light, creating an overall lighter tone in fresh and shallow water. On the surface, shadow areas from objects immediately adjacent to the water tend not to reflect the object, but rather offer a view under the surface. This is due to the object blocking the reflection of the sky. The reflection of the sky on the surface of water is often a darker reflection of what you see in the sky, however, often the distant water is a bit lighter than water close to you.

The important thing is to break the water into the patterns and colors you see, rather than simply swishing a brush back and forth to pretend you are painting water. Don't think of water as water. Think of it as patterns value, color, shape and light.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Linda Blondheim Art Studio Landscapes Of The South

North Carolina Hills
4x6 inches
gouache on acid free mat board.

See my paintings HERE

Art Notes Blog HERE

I will be away on a paint out trip next week March 2-8, 2008. Please be patient until I return the following Thursday.

Painters Tip

Using Art as a Visual Aide Attracts Attention from Collectors

Soon I will have a few events where lots of collectors will be present. Competing with other artists is tough, especially when all of you paint the same subjects. I have come up with a way to get viewers interested in my work. I have created a story board about the stages of a painting. The first four stages and a final finished painting. The last stage has information about my agent's web site and mine. People are interested in how things work. I believe they will remember my work because they have seen and learned something about my process. All I have to do is take a table top easel and my story board with me to all of my spring events. The board will work in the wet room for all of the paint outs and at the Garden party where I will be painting. I can see many possibilities for this, including gallery openings, lectures and demonstrations for studio parties,art league meetings,interior decorators, artist residencies and museum portfolios and proposals.

I used a simple piece of foam board. I did the four stages in gouache on paper, mounting them on mat board. The fifth painting is a real oil painting with a nice mat in front of it for a nice presentation. I typed out all of the labels and glued them onto the board under each painting. I will keep the board in a sealed plastic bag for transportation.

If this seems to be popular, I can actually have a nice professional presentation done by a graphic designer instead of the homemade look, but I think this will do for now.

I am very happy to share this idea with you all, but I do ask those painters who go to the same events with me not to use the idea to compete with me. Use it somewhere else please :>)

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Linda Blondheim Art Studio Landscapes Of The South

Homosassa River
24x24 inches
oil on canvas

See my paintings HERE

Art Notes Blog HERE

Painters Tip

Thoughts about Painting Reflections

There are lots of ways to approach painting water reflections. Some painters make a science of it, being very precise, others keep it minimal with simple streaks across the water in a side to side motion. My method is simple. I am not a realist painter and so I approach landscape painting from a design perspective rather than trying to copy nature. I like to lay in the basic elements of the reflection, trees, color masses and so forth, early in the painting. Then I will ignore the water for some time while I work on the land masses. I save the water for last, using a semi abstract method to apply the paint. I like to use diagonals and curves to leave motion on the surface in areas, laying in dark and light, color and so forth, esentially plugging it in approximately where it would be in the scene I'm painting.

I never swish the paint from side to side, preferring to have a cleaner crisp placement. Instead, I lay in short strokes with color over color, creating a broken refracted look to the paint surface. Some of the paint is left untouched and smooth, other areas are textured. My reflectons are never exact or perfect mirrors because I think the painting is more interesting without perfection. Sometimes I will turn the painting upside down to check for linear elements.

The best way to learn to paint water is to do small studies . Do studies of patterns, different atmospheric conditions and so forth, until you are very comfortable painting water in all kinds of conditions. Water is about light and reflection. Don't make it too predictable. Don't think of it as water, but instead, as form,color, and value.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Linda Blondheim Art Studio Landscapes Of The South

Cypress Trees
4x6 inches
gouache on cold press watercolor paper

See my paintings HERE

Art Notes Blog HERE

Painters Tip

Working on a Series or Theme

I've been working for a couple of years on my Florida River series. It has been a very interesting journey and I have loved every minute of it. My advice is to do some planning before you begin a long term series. Take lots of notes about your process and your journey. Write down your basic goals for the series. Will it be educational for your viewers? How will you support this idea? With studies, a journal? Will you want to show the body of work in a gallery or museum? As you sell the paintings, will you keep a record of you the patrons are, so that you can borrow the paintings back for exhibition?

Often times my series just happen without forethought. I often have to play catch up with documentation, studies and so forth after the series is well on its way. That's ok too. The first river paintings were just happenstance, with no thought in mind for a body of work. They are long gone, but after a couple of months, I started getting excited about the paintings and began to be more serious in my long term approach to this project. It has only been in the last month or two that I started being quite serious about all the parts and pieces in terms of the educational value of this journey for nature enthusiasts, conservationists, and art lovers. Now I do multiple 4x6 inch studies of the rivers I intend to paint, so that I can share these with those who wish to know the painting process. I use my Art Notes blog to record my process and thoughts about the series. I will be able to simply print it all out and write the essay to show with the studies and the paintings to make a complete presentation for this body of work.

I am very much looking forward to traveling to Wekiva River State Park in two weeks where I will have a week to paint the river, springs and lakes in the park. I will be able to take lots of notes and do many small studies of the area to add to the series.

Planning a project and series will enrich your experience beyond measure. The next time you start out on a series, think of the possibilities which will enhance your body of work. Not just for your patrons but for your own knowledge and growth.