Thursday, September 10, 2009
Linda Blondheim Art Studio Newsletter September 10, 2009
acrylic on Masonite
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September 10, 2009
The Annual "My Yard" Series Begins
It's officially fall as far as I'm concerned. Henry and I did the first of the My
Yard paintings for this year. I guess I've been working on this series for about
five years now. I can't begin to describe how much I enjoy doing it each year.
I live in a rural part of the county. My parents bought the property when I was
about 15 years old. At the time it was parceled off from one large farm when the
owner died. His children sold it off piece by piece. It makes me sad when that happens.
All of the toil and years of work the farmer put into the land, only to have it
sold off for mini-ranches in the end. Don't get me wrong. I have loved living on
this land and having it all of these years, but I hate to see it taken out of farming.
We have six acres, most of it in woods and fields. We mow the area around the house,
but leave the rest natural to change with the seasons. That may seem messy to you
but I love the natural process of the land. I love seeing the grasses and weeds
change color gradually, seeing some sprout up and die only to have others replace
them. I have some wild sunflowers that grow tall each year at this time and soon
they will begin to flower. They are not like the big heavy sunflowers you traditionally
see at farmers markets. These grow tall and slender with small yellow blossoms and
have tiny brown fuzzy middles. They look similar to yellow daisies.
When I was a girl we had a red barn for our horses and stored hay there. I can remember
going to the barn late every afternoon, the smell of fresh hay, the smoky color
of the trees and atmosphere that you always see in the winter. We used to lay around
on the hay bales and just enjoy the scents of the barn and the coming evening. The
color, is amazing in north Florida in fall and winter. Not the in your face color
that you see in North Carolina, North Georgia and Tennessee. The color in Florida
is much more subtle and to my liking. Lots of smoky gray,blue,mauve, rust and wheat,
with startling spots of emerald green from the rye fields. I just soak it all in
while I paint and travel.
This year I got smart and planned ahead. In years past, I have booked all kinds
of events in the fall and have been constantly frustrated by being on the road and
unable to paint the beloved places I frequent. I have nothing booked on my schedule
after October 11th. Yippee!! You will find me in Evinston at the Wood Farm, the
Wood/Swink and at Fair Oaks Farm in mid October- December this year, as well as
my yard. Henry's dog condo in the back of the car is all packed and ready with his
non-spill water bowl, his toys and his carpeting. We are anticipating many happy
hours together on the farms.
It's cool now in the morning and afternoon. The Sycamore trees are unhooking their
skirts, letting them drop on the ground and snuggling in for their winter naps.
I'll be sharing the "My Yard" paintings with you as I evolve through the fall. I
usually manage to get at least four paintings before the leaves fall off the dogwoods.
They are scarlet every year.
Notes From My Desk
I've been working hard with my webmaster David Johnson (A super star of the webmaster
world) to make my web site the greatest artist web site ever. His email is href="mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org">email@example.com
He gets my highest recommendation. I listen to what my clients like and need and
I try to make it happen for them. In my effort to make my site more user friendly,
I am planning to have a live chat feature installed, so that I can be available
to answer questions about paintings and any information you might need. I'm looking
forward to having you check in with any questions you may wish to ask or to get
help in selecting the right painting for your home. Once the chat is up and running
I will be available on Tuesday - Thursday 9 AM- 11 AM each week for your convenience
on Live Chat from my web site.
I have increased the return time for you to send back a painting to 10 days, although
that rarely happens. I have made payments available for paintings on the web site,
and have posted a step by step instruction for purchasing work. Please send me
more ideas for making my web site to your liking. I'm always willing to consider
I'll be participating in a new Invitational Exhibit at
Melrose Bay Gallery
Small Works/Big ideas/Thinking Inside the Box
November 7- December 20, 2009
Reception November 8, 1-5 PM
Art Hop Gainesville Florida
The Art Hop businesses have put together an enticing, valuable Gift Certificate
Raffle and Florida's Eden is featured as the beneficiary.
Twenty businesses are joining together to create an evening of cultural fun, Friday
September 11,from 6-9. This creative district unites three adjacent shopping areas:
Thornebrook Village, Market Place and Millhopper Square and provides an easy way
to enjoy art, music, culinary delights and meet friends for some early fall fun
Here's the list of participants: Alternatives, Artisan's Guild Gallery, Bead All
About It, Collector's Cabinet, Do Art, Floating Lotus Spa, Gifts of Avalon, Hanks
Yarn and Fiber, Lost Art Gallery, McIntyre's Stained Glass Studio and Art Gallery,
Paddiwack Gallery, The Painted Table, Thornebrook Gallery, Thornebrook Optical,
and Wild Birds Unlimited.
How About a Recipe?
I just love root vegetables. When I was a chef in my catering days, I used to grow
them in raised beds. I grew turnips, parsnips, beets, rutabagas and carrots. I used
them both for cooking and for food garnishing. These vegetables make incredible
flowers. There is nothing lovelier than a silver bowl on a tray surrounded by beet
and turnip roses. My years in art school served me well, not only in painting, but
in sculpture too and food design. As any true foodie knows, food is as much about
art as it is about eating. Most anyone can learn to do basic cooking, but truly
wonderful food needs an artist to create it. I always wanted to work in a test kitchen.
That would be so interesting to me to develop recipes for restaurants or the food
I would like to start teaching a foodie class again some time. I think restaurants,
cook supply stores and places like Fresh Market would be smart to have chefs come
in to teach cooking. What a great way to have people come into your business who
are already interested in your product. Once I was invited to do a cooking class/demo
for a kitchen cabinet shop. it was really great. They had a staged kitchen set up
and I went in to cook and do a tasting. It was great fun. I can't let my love for
cooking go, even though I am a full time artist. I love cooking and all things
foodie. Cooking is art after all.
I have shared with you my recipe for roasted root vegetables. It is a favorite at
my house and we have it about once a week.
Here is a different take on beets. Before you start making faces and rolling your
eyes, give this recipe a try.
Roasted Beet Salad
4 beets roasted at 375 degrees with 2 T olive oil in covered pan
Peel beats when they cool and dice
1 head of raddichio torn into bite sized pieces
1 cup watercress
½ cup toasted walnuts chopped
8 oz Gorgonzola cheese
Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing
Toss it all together. Yummy!!
I love beets, steamed, roasted, and pickled. They taste sweet and wonderful when
they are slow roasted. They re also full of good nutrition. All for the root vegetables
are good for you.
To keep your hands clean when handling root vegetables, wear the latex gloves Drs
use. Beet s stain badly, so this will prevent your messy red hands. Roast the beets
first and then peel them. It will be much easier.
Choosing Quality Art
Art Collecting Tips
Buy art because you like it and because it moves you, and because it enhances your
Visit as many art galleries as you can, gallery staff can be helpful guides in your
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.
Attend National Art Expos and Art Fairs whenever possible.
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.
Once you've educated yourself and have fallen in love witha work of art.... buy
it, take it home and enjoy it.
I'll be painting out in front of my gallery in Gainesville; Paddiwhack Gallery next
to Fresh Market on 16th Avenue. I'll be there on Fridays, unless I'm traveling,
from 11 AM-1 PM for the summer. In the fall, I may extend the time. It's a great
way for me to make new friends and show my paintings to others. Come by on a Friday
and chat with me.
Paddiwhack Gallery next to Fresh Market
11 AM- 1PM
The River Styx
A reader asked me to write about the River Styx. There isn't a lot of material written
about the River Styx. I have painted it from the bridge a few times, and from reference
photos. Most of what I read about it comes from boaters.
I like painting the cypress trees that grow prolifically there.
In prehistoric times, when water levels were higher, this swamp was an arm of Orange
Lake. One of north Florida's oldest and most impressive mound and earthwork complexes
is located here. By 1539, when De Soto led his expedition through here, the nearby
village of Potano was the headquarters for the chiefdom of the same name which covered
the Orange Lake/Paynes Prairie area. The areas richness of a kind of rock called
chert, an excellent material for making tools and weapons, made the Potanos the
envy of neighboring tribes.
There are only a handful of river names in the world - the Nile, Amazon, Mississippi
- that share the mystique of The River Styx in North Central Florida, yet Styx is
only a few miles long as is more of a swampy creek than a formidable river. It connects
Newnan's Lake with Orange Lake, and passes through a superlative, high-quality cypress
swamp forest. The State of Florida has acknowledged the special quality of the
River Styx by naming it an "Outstanding Florida Water" (only 40 out of the 1,700
rivers in Florida have been so named - named as a result of their pristine qualities).
This Week's Ebay Paintings
S & H: Free
Type Blondheim Art into the Ebay search window.
I'm looking forward to painting with several friends this Saturday for my last in
studio workshop for awhile. I've made the switch to virtual E-Classes for my students.
I love being able to teach friends all over the world while I'm in my own cozy studio
and they are in theirs. I'm even going to teach a couple of virtual plein air classes.