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Linda Blondheim Art Collector Map
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Thursday, February 26, 2009

Landscape Painting at Kanapaha Botanical Gardens

Dear Friends,
I will be away for the month of March. Stay tuned in April for new stories here on the blog.

Gator Pond
30x30 inches
oil on Birch Panel
Wired and read to hang unframed
shipping 95.00
Purchase Here

Kanapaha Gardens

One of my favorite spots to visit in North Central Florida is Kanapaha Gardens. It is located on state road 24, just a few blocks west of I-75 in Gainesville. It is a adjacent to Kanapaha Prairie which offers a lovely vista, especially in the winter with lush wheat rust and mauve shades in the grasses. The garden has paths which wind through many varieties of plants. It has a huge bamboo garden in the middle, which is my favorite secret garden. I paint there frequently with Studio Dog. He loves to chew on the old pieces of bamboo canes which have fallen in the groves.

Bamboo Garden
Color Fields #37
5x7 inches
acrylic on Masonite Panel
Purchase HERE

There are water dishes placed around the garden paths for dogs and it's a real bonus to be able to take your dog with you.

There is a large water garden feature with exotic water plants, a cactus garden, and herb garden. The palm arboretum is especially nice. It features many palms, including several grand specimens of the Washingtonians with their long graceful petticoats.

At the entrance of the gardens you will find a large modern building called the Summer House with a gift shop and meeting rooms. Many events are held at the garden, including memorials, weddings and parties of all kinds. The garden has a very nice gift shop and has wheelchairs available for guests.

I have an annual pass, but you can pay a daily fee to enter.

This is the perfect place for quiet contemplation, outside of our busy world.

Here is the web site with information about the entrance fees and hours of operation.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

The Fox Hunt Adventure

Fair Oaks Farm Afternoon
12x16 inches
oil on Birch panel
Wired and ready to hang unframed

shipping 20.00
Purchase HERE

There are so many fun activities here in north Florida. We are blessed with lovely weather from October to May and so many outdoor activities are available here. Yesterday I went to my first fox hunt with my pal, equine artist Sharon Crute HERE. She is one of the top equine painters in the USA and I am blessed to be her friend. We attended the Misty Morning Hounds Fox Hunt HERE on Saturday. I could not have asked for better weather. It was crisp and cold early and warm later in the day with a cloudless sky.

The Hounds are American Foxhounds. They are beautiful and very well behaved.

This was our charming hostess for the event.

The hounds were at the kill, which turns out to be a bag of dog food.

This is the Huntsman with the hounds. She had a little horn, which directs the other riders through the forest.

We rode along in the truck, which carries the equipment and water for the dogs, and the all important cooler for drinks. At each kill spot, we played bartender, serving Mimosas to the riders in little cups.

After the hunt, the riders all take care of the animals first and then gather for a meal made by the cook staff. The tables were decorated for Mardi Gras. The menu included Bloody Marys, turkey gumbo with rice, baked ham, salad, and bread pudding.

After the meal, our gracious hostess drove us around the farm to take landscape reference photos. I started a 30x30 painting from one of the photos last night.

It was a wonderful and exciting adventure for all.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Mountains Edge Frames

Today I'm happy to feature a company owned by my friends. I'm sure you will love their story. From time to time I like to share information about framers, interior designers, furniture companies and artists I respect and regard highly. Please feel free to share this with friends.

Mountains Edge Frames HERE

Steve Whalen and Deborah Paris are the owners of Mountains Edge Frames.

Deborah in front of her lovely painting.

Steve at work on a new frame design.

Steve is an artist, having started his art career as one of the youngest combat artists ever to serve in the Marine Corps during the Vietnam war. He went on to run a full service advertising firm for many years. Deborah is a professional artist showing her landscape paintings in galleries, shows and events all over the country as well as online. Together they ran a gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico for a time and it was there that they began to help artists and collectors with framing needs.

Now based in northeast Texas, the business has evolved into a custom frame business- all frame moldings are designed, made and finished in their shop, and their frames are shipped to artists and collectors all over the country.

We are an artist owned company providing quality custom frames at affordable prices to artists, collectors and galleries. We specialize in handcrafted closed corner frames and other custom designs. Unlike imported ready made frames and prefinished moldings, our frames are completely custom made. We select the poplar or basswood, make the frames in our shop and then hand finish them. Our molding designs – both traditional and contemporary- are based on classic American frame designs, but are completely unique to us. We design and make all of our moldings in our shop.

Artists often underestimate the power of the proper frame to create an impression on a potential collector and to distinguish their work from other artists. The right frame can and should support the aesthetic of the work itself. More often than not, the frame in which the piece is purchased is the one it remains in. Historically, original frames selected by the artist add long term value and provenance to an artist’s work.

Collectors often contact us about framing for paintings they have purchased unframed or that are framed inappropriately. We help select a frame which not only works best with the style of that piece, but which will also fit in with the rest of the collection. We also assist collectors with ideas about how to make the most of their collections. For example, hanging paintings in groupings or salon style (stacked vertical with just a few inches of space in between) can create visual impact and cohesiveness in a collection.

We work with our customers to create a frame which will enhance each painting. Our customers often email us images so that we can suggest the molding and finish that will create a perfect presentation. We believe the purpose of the frame is to make the art look important- to enhance and compliment. It is an essential finishing touch.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Another Adventure at Fair Oaks Farm

Color Fields #31
Barn at Fair Oaks Farm
5x7 inches
Acrylic on panel
free shipping
Purchase HERE

Henry (Studio Dog) and I had wonderful adventure at Fair Oaks Farm today. If you recall, I featured a story about the farm with a note from Rick not long ago. I try to paint there as often as possible because I love it so much. This little painting is the second I have done of the barn.

Today we had a special treat. Rick was home, and took a break to give Henry and I a tour of the farm with Matt, his farm manager. It is a huge farm. I had no idea it is so large. He continues to add to the property slowly with acquisitions of neighboring land. There is so much variety of land on the farm. Many lovely palm hammocks are dotted around the farm along with huge Live Oaks, Magnolias and lovely Bay trees with fragrant leaves. The bay leaves you buy in a jar don't compare.

There are lovely secret gardens and wide open fields, trails along Fish Prairie,ponds and marshes. There are both rust colored fields of winter and emerald green pastures with winter rye. Rick shares this beauty with his artist friends and I feel so grateful to be included. He has golf carts which he lends to us to roam around the farm and that is a huge help with painting gear. Henry has other dogs to run and play with too, and plenty of shade to snooze in.

This is the real Florida, far away from Disney and the Interstate traffic. There is time for quiet and contemplation at these farms in North Florida. An artist can be content here.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Spring Brings Opportunities to Find Art

Brewster Farm
12x16 inches
acrylic on Birch panel
Shipping 20.00
Purchase HERE

Spring will bring many opportunities to see landscape paintings in Florida. Besides the many sidewalk festivals around the state, plein air festivals are quite popular. Yo will see many artists out painting landscapes in parks, at lakes and rivers and historical areas of towns. We are always happy to have visitors come and watch us paint. I will be participating in the Wekiva River Paint Out at Wekiva River State Park March 1-8, The Epcot Center Flower and Garden Artists in the Garden Paint Out March 26-29, and The Winter Park Invitational Paint Out April 28- May 2.

Please come to my annual Chili Party February 7, this Saturday from 10 AM-6PM. Look on the contact page of my web site to get directions or email me at: Art makes a great Valentine's Day gift.