Thursday, December 27, 2012

Portrait of Henry

I'd like to share with you my newest pet portrait! Henry's portrait was a gift from my client to his "mom" for Christmas and some great snapshots of him were provided. It was a lot of fun to create this portrait of Henry in colored pencil. His coloring worked well with the tinted paper that I used, providing enough contrast for the white fur. This portrait measures 10" x 8" and was matted and framed to a 14" x 11" size.

 Here's a closer view of Henry's face. Isn't he a cute little guy? 

My next portrait is on the drawing table of another cute little pooch named Dickens, so stay tuned for his portrait coming soon! 

Monday, November 5, 2012

Ninety-Three in the Shade

A couple of years ago, Keith and I visited the Coupeville Arts & Crafts Festival on Whidbey Island. It was mid August and the Puget Sound area was experiencing a heat wave. A bike ride on a breezy little island sounded like a good way to escape the heat, so we thought. Well, we didn't exactly escape the heat, which was close to triple digits! It was a little too hot to ride our bikes, so we slowly walked through the quaint town of Coupeville, trying to find a shady spot to rest. I spotted someone's sun-baked front porch with potted petunias exploding with color. I snapped a photo of it since I find front porches to be pretty much irresistible!

Ninety-Three in the Shade, 7.5" x 7.5" Colored Pencil

What was it about this porch that grabbed my attention so much? I liked the horizontal, vertical and diagonal lines going every which-way, softened with the rounded flower shapes. I also loved the old-fashioned appeal of the scene with the antique doorknob, scalloped window shade and the perky petunias. 

To make the colors pop, I tweaked them a bit so that they are more intense and cooler than in the original photo. I really wanted to intensify the feeling of heat, while maintaining the cool color palette especially in the shady areas. A square format makes this piece a bit different, but it helps to zero in on the porch elements.

I find front porches to be intriguing as I'm wondering who lives there, and wondering what the little house looks like behind those curtains. What are the people inside doing to keep cool on such a hot day? Okay, maybe I'm just nosy. But a charming front porch tells a story about the person who lives inside the house. Hopefully my painting makes you stop for just a moment to appreciate the common, everyday sights that are all around us, and the people who are connected with them.  

Monday, October 15, 2012

Sammamish Arts Fair 2012

I had a wonderful time this weekend as a first-time participant in the 6th annual Sammamish Arts Fair. I just want to thank all of you who stopped by my booth to take a look at my artwork and to chat. It was thrilling for me to see so many friends come to my booth. You filled my love tank with your hugs, affirmation and encouragement. THANK YOU!!

I met many wonderful new people as well, and if you are one of those who is taking a moment to check out my website, thank you for your kind words and amazing feedback. You have filled my artist inspiration tank with your enthusiasm and appreciation for my artwork. Today I go to my art room with a renewed sense of purpose to make more art and to grow as an artist.

In case you missed the fair, here are some shots of my booth. As you can see, I had a nice, cozy spot! The Sammamish City Hall was a beautiful location for this event. It may have been pouring rain outside, but inside the place was humming with creativity as a steady flow of art admirers wandered through for the full 14 hours. There were a total of 30 artists participating this year with a wide variety of mediums represented. Pottery, jewelry, paintings, metal sculpture, wood carving and more - it was truly inspiring!

The photo above shows a wall of my booth. I had on display watercolor, pen & ink portraits I created of  historical Issaquah landmarks. You can also see that I have some empty spots to fill! I plan on hitting the drawing board to crank out some more paintings to show next year. Empty wall space in my booth is wonderful motivation!

The photo above shows more of my Issaquah portraits and two samples of my custom pencil pet portraits. My 13-year-old Golden, Zoe was quite the star and I almost wish I had brought her along! I never knew there were so many Golden Retriever lovers out there. Again...notice the blank spaces. Motivation!!

One last parting shot of the back of my booth with more original portraits, giclee prints and information on ordering a custom home or pet portrait of your very own. Thank you again to those of you who came to see me! Hope to see you at the Sammamish Arts Fair in 2013!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

The Pickering Barn, Then and Now

One of my favorite places in Issaquah is the Pickering Barn. When I first moved to Issaquah in 1987 the barn sat alone on a huge, empty field. The exterior was weathered to a silvery grey, and the whole structure looked tired and in sore need of attention. Over the years, I watched the barn change from it's sad, lonely, dilapidated state to it's current state of total renovation. 

"Pickering Barn, Issaquah",  11x14 watercolor with pen & ink

Along with the renovation, the Pickering Barn acquired some new neighbors. The Costco headquarters and warehouse sit directly across the street now. The barn is often accompanied by heavy traffic driving past it to and from Costco and the surrounding Pickering Place shopping center. Sometimes, as I drive by the barn on a busy Saturday, I think back to how different it looked when I first saw it. I often wonder if this old barn feels better with it's makeover, fresh red paint and frequent visitors. I also wonder if it misses the old days, how things used to be when it was a working farm with lots of elbow room and solitude.

The Pickering Barn has a story to tell, but not many people who drive past it know about it. Some may even think that it's a newly built barn placed there to look charming, next to Costco. I have painted this barn twice (on paper that is, not on the actual barn) but wish that I had taken a picture of it way back when it was in it's "before" state. I would have loved to paint a portrait of it as it looked before the stores and crowds came.

"By the Barn's Early Light", 11x14 watercolor and pastel

Would you like to know this barn's story? Here's a very brief history of the Pickering Barn. Originally built in the 1800’s by territorial governor, William Pickering, it was one of the largest dairy farms in the area for many years. The barn and its surroundings were maintained by the Pickering family for agricultural purposes until most of the property was sold to investors in 1975. The Pickering property was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1983 and donated to the City of Issaquah in 1993. In the mid-1990’s, the barn underwent a major renovation with most of the original woodwork being retained for reuse in the barn structure. Isn't that interesting? 

If you live in the area and have not been to the Pickering Barn, I highly recommend you visit! There is a wonderful farmer's market there every Saturday from 9 am to 2 pm. There is a small garden that overflows with flowers in the summer. The painting above is the view from that garden. Go take a look for yourself sometime, walk around the grounds and try to imagine how the area looked when the Pickering Barn was the largest building for miles around. It's fortunate that we have this piece of Issaquah history in our midst. There are more historic buildings in Issaquah to tell you about, but I guess that's a blog for another day.  

Monday, August 6, 2012

Sammamish Arts Fair!

I've been busy preparing for the Sammamish Arts Fair coming up in October. But first, I'll be one of the artists from the fair participating in the upcoming Sammamish Nights on Saturday, August 18th! I'll be selling my original watercolor, pen & ink portraits of Issaquah landmarks. I have created seven portraits and will also be selling giclee prints of four of them. Here's a preview...

If you are in the Sammamish area and are looking for a wonderful way to spend a beautiful summer evening with wine, food, music and art, come to Sammamish Nights! Tickets are available at the door for $45 per person. If you are unable to attend, please come back to the Sammamish City Hall on the weekend of October 13 & 14. Admission is free, and I'll have more new pieces of art on display and for sale. Hope to see you then!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Quilt Heaven!

I was in Sisters, Oregon for the 2012 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show this past weekend. My daughter, Melissa and I drove down to Sisters from Issaquah with 7 month old Anelie...a long 8 hour trip with a baby! My parents live in Sisters, so it was fun to go see the show with them and with my BFF from high school days who flew up from L.A. to join us. It was wonderful to see her again and to share such a delightful weekend together!

If you don't know about the Sisters Quilt Show, it's an annual event that takes place on the second Saturday in July. People come in droves by the bus, plane and carload from all over the country to see approximately 1,000 quilts which hang from every building in town! They close the main street for the day so that you don't have to worry about getting run over by a car as you gawk at all of the amazing quilts.

Here are quilts hanging on the side of the famous (to quilters) Stitchin' Post fabric store...

...and here is a close-up look at a quilted "Starry Night". It's hard to see, but the quilter used metallic thread throughout the quilt that made it sparkle and glitter in the sunshine. Beautiful!

Quilts lined every street of every building in town and it was just about impossible to see every single one.

Here are just a few of my favorites, like this quilt of the town of Sisters...

...and quilts that incorporated traditional quilt blocks,

and clever quilts like this "dress" quilt,

and my personal favorite, "Grandma's Kitchen" quilt...

...with charming vintage fabrics, 

and loads of charming detail!

Some quilts looked just like paintings that glow, 

and mesmerize with beautiful color, texture, 

and incredible detail. 

Watching people watching quilts was part of the fun too!

I couldn't resist taking a peek into this wonderful western wear shop and especially loved all of these cowboy boots lined up. I want a pair!

In the afternoon, the sunny skies clouded over and thunder crackled above us. The rain poured down, but all 1,000 or so quilts were safely inside in less than 30 minutes. Hats off to the Sisters Outdoor Quilt show of 2012!! 

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

An Enchanting, Enchanted Garden

Last week I was vacationing at California's Central Coast and one of the things I enjoyed most was discovering the town of Cambria. It's located just a few miles south of Hearst Castle, so Keith and I spent some time exploring the town before we headed over to the Tea Cozy tearoom for lunch.

We discovered this wonderful store called Heart's Ease, and it drew me in like a magnet the moment I saw it! Charm was pouring out of the windows and doors and overflowing into the garden in back. I had to go in and see it!

Getting into to the garden was the tricky part. I first had to navigate my way through shelves lined with jars of loose tea and the amazingly fragrant potpourri sitting in crocks on this table, inviting you to take a scoopful or two home. 

So much to look at, so much to want to buy! It's a good thing that I had given Keith my credit card for safekeeping, and he was wisely nowhere in sight. Finding the garden was helping me to focus on adventure instead of shopping, so I wandered through each little room until I found the back door that led outside... this table full of owls and mushrooms which was the first thing that caught my attention. It really didn't help that two of my daughter's favorite things are owls and cute mushrooms! I still had to resist the temptation to buy (which is exactly what the store wanted me to do!) so that I'd have more time to explore the garden before it was time to leave for our lunch reservation.

Now into Alice's Tea Garden we go! 

Through the arbor (on the left), and then who should be hiding behind the shrubbery than Alice herself! See the blue bit on the far right? That's part of her dress. Someone made an enormous Alice (obviously AFTER she had eaten something that made her grow huge) that was towering above the pathway. She looked kinda scary to me so I didn't take her picture.

Everything was miniature-sized since this garden was created for children to wander and explore. I felt like the big-sized Alice galumping along, trying to fit inside this little tea arbor! 

There was so much attention given to delightful details around every little nook, like the teacups attached to the gate posts. There was a sign pointing in various directions to Never Never Land, Narnia, the Tulgey Wood and other enchanted lands. And if you believe in fairies, this is where you'll find them!

Well, the too-big Alice in this story had an absolutely wonderful time exploring this enchanting garden and wanted to stay longer. But like Alice in Wonderland, tea awaited her so off she went hoping to come back someday to linger a while longer.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

...I'm Still Here!

As you can see from the date on my last post, it's been quite awhile since I've communicated! Five months has zipped by and I hardly know where it went. Then again, I think I do know! I have a beautiful, fun and adorable granddaughter that has completely stolen my heart. Anelie is 6 months old now. Isn't she a cutie?! Whenever she comes over, everything on my "To Do" list gets tossed out the window and it's playtime. Well, can you blame me? Look at that face!!

I really, truly have have been productive, so I wanted to give you an update. You may have noticed that my blog has a slightly new look, which leads me to announce my BIG NEWS...
I have added TWO NEW BLOGS to Heidi Rose Artworks! 

My "Homes by Heidi" house portrait business and my "Pencil Pet Portraits" business each have their own blogs now. Look at the navigation bar on the left and you'll see links to each of them, as well as picture links that you can click on. Click on one, go visit the other, and then come back here. See? Everything looks similar to make it all work together. Pretty neat, huh? 

My "Homes by Heidi" website at is no longer in service, so this new "Homes by Heidi" blog replaces that site. Every so often as I make more home and pet portraits, I will post them on their respective blogs. This blog that you are on right now will be devoted to everything else. Hopefully, this is not too confusing but I felt it would be less confusing overall to give my portrait businesses their own blogs.

Thank you for sticking with me through all of the many changes of Heidi Rose Artworks. As an artist with multiple interests, I appreciate you taking the time to peruse my blogs. I also promise that I will try very hard to post something more often than every 5 months! Bye for now!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Painting in Miniature and Zoe's Turn...

Last Mother's Day, my family took me...or I should say, I dragged them to the Parklane Gallery in Kirkland to see their annual miniatures show. "What on earth is a miniatures show?" you may be thinking. Well, since you asked, I'll tell you! The National Gallery in London describes a miniaturist as "an artist who paints in great detail on a very small scale". I absolutely fell in love with the tiny little paintings of landscapes, portraits, wildlifes and still lifes. They even provided magnifying glasses for viewing!

Painting in miniature used to be called 'limning' in Britain, which grew out of the techniques used to illustrate illuminated manuscripts in the middle ages. Miniatures were an especially popular art form before photography. A portrait of a loved one could be painted and placed in a locket or kept in a pocket. As a rule, miniatures nowadays are works of art that can fit into an open hand, being 25" square inches or less.

After being so inspired by the tiny works of art that I saw at the gallery, I decided that I would try it out myself! I've always enjoyed working in tight detail, so it seemed to fit right in with the way that I like to draw and paint. Being quite nearsighted is also a plus...I take off my glasses to see better close-up. May as well take advantage of it! Below is a portrait of Lulu, my favorite model these days. I had taken a photo of her on her kitty bed by the window. The afternoon sun was shining on her and the lighting was perfect! I knew it had to be painted, so painting in miniature seemed like a good choice.

This watercolor painting measures 3" x 3.75". It's really blown up quite large here, but for size reference, imagine a US quarter filling the entire dark blue area in the lower left corner. Fun!! I'm hoping to enter this portrait and at least two more paintings in the miniatures show this year.

Well, I've given Lulu Belle way too much coverage lately on my blog, and poor Zoe has not had her fair share. Poor pups. She'll be 13 on March 10th. A teenager! Actually, she's more like ninety now and it's been really starting to show this year, especially on her face, it's almost all white now. The first portrait of her, directly below, is in Graphite pencil and is about 8" x 11". It makes her look a bit more youthful because you can't tell how white her face is.

The next portrait I made of Zoe is in colored pencil on tinted paper and is the same size as the black and white pencil portrait. This one shows her age a bit more and is called, "Golden Girl's Golden Years". It also shows off her adorable pink, polka-dotted nose. What a sweet pooch! 

I love creating pet portraits because I'm such an animal lover, and also because I think they are so much easier (and more fun) than painting people. If you would like to commission me to draw a portrait of your pet, please let me know. I would be delighted to create your pet's portrait! I use photographs as reference, so a clear, sharp, close-up shot of your pet at their eye level is the best. Just send me an email for more information and pricing and I will get right back to you. Well, I'd better get back to the drawing board now and get off of the computer so that I'll have something new to show you for next time. Thanks for checking out my post today!