A nice story

I love a nice story. And I have one to share with you.

Awhile back I offered to donate a pet portrait as a fundraiser for a group (Red Head Strays helping cats strut) that works tirelessly to rescue and foster cats. In thought I would have completed the painting in January,but Mother Nature had other ideas. I think you know the story. Snow. Rain. Flash freezing. And of course, pretty sure you know how this went - the basement and studio mess as a result.

Lilly and Bernie by Helen Shideler

The story goes like this

Once upon a time there were two little girls who liked to swing on swings, giggle and talk. Some of the things they talked about were the Beetles and their two amazing hits: I want to hold your hand and She loves you yeah yeah yeah. And so one of the little girls taught the other about the all important pop music and what one must know. Then the little girls sang a lot while swinging.

And the memories are warm and wonderful.

Flash forward

In the aftermath of the winter house mess, we were finally ready to start moving around the boxes of stuff around in our house and go through them. What stays? What goes? What I had been looking for and really missing. Like all my paints and art supplies! My acrylics paints emerged and I could finally start the painting that a very patient person won in a draw.

Once I had the painting finished, I reached out to the winner to say hey, guess what. A couple hours went by and her name registered with me. Could this be the girl I had such fond childhood memories of?

And it was. Say what you want about social media, but this was a fun encounter made possible by Facebook. Karma and the universe move in a wonderful synchronized way.

I am happy to have been able to paint her fur babies Lilly and Bernie!

Life is so good

Loving this season

Ceilidh

There are so many magical, wonderful things to love about the Christmas season. All the new memories created and moments so precious. I am ever so grateful that what I do often contributes to creating wonderful memories for others in the form of creating cherished memories with Christmas commissions! I have been blessed with the opportunity to paint a few this year.

Ceilidh by Helen Shideler

We all love our fur babies so much. The opportunity to capture in paint such a special love for a family is so rewarding for me. This series was a gift for the whole family. The painting above is 12” x 12” and the two below are 6” x 6”.

Mulder and Lyndsay

Mulder & Lyndsay

I always love to be a part of a secret plan, especially when they have been planned and dreamt of for awhile. I love the thought process that people go through before they commission someone to do a painting.

When they share their story with me - I want to be able to “Wow” them with the finished painting. And of course, I also love to hear the story of their reaction to a most thoughtful gift - this my friends is why I paint commissions.

Reaction “we made her cry” in a nice way of course!

Wishing you all the very best of this holiday season. May 2019 be the best year ever for us all!

Until next time

Helen

Soggy doggies

So much fun painting this series of soggy doggies. This is a series that I have had planned for a number of years. Have taken so many reference photos in preparation and have now finally decided to start them. Happy dogs make me happy!

Trophy Stick by Helen Shideler

Never paint only one

You learn so much when you start to paint in a series. I wanted to strike a balance between a looser and less detailed background, while painting the subject with a higher degree of realism - all this while attempting to capture movement. No small task. Oh yes - in a small format and in oils. So far the paintings are 8” x 10”. I think the next round will start to get a bit larger 9 x 12” or 11x14”.

Oh Helen, must you do try to challenge yourself all the time? Apparently! And apparently I like it.

Get the Stick by Helen Shideler

Christmas commissions

I decided to paint a few relatively small paintings in between the secret commissions so I would have some fun things to share. The commissions will be shared after the holidays of course. Now that I have completed these requests I am able to get back to the large white lilac. Hoping to have it completed prior to the holidays!

Fetching Fun by Helen Shideler