Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Hello, Lady! Wake up!

Hello, Lady! Wake up!

You'll understand the title a little later. This will be a slightly long blog entry. I, too, was surprised when I went on what I thought would be a fairly unvenventful but pleasant bike ride on the Cady Way Trail in Orlando, Florida, one afternoon after work.

I started out writing in a little book every 1/2 mile or so to make notes about possible painting sites and shade.  But as I rode along I discovered and experienced many interesting things. As I progressed and wrote more in my book I realized it might be nice to share my short ride in my blog with everyone. 
Now, come ride with me.

The late afternoon sun is warm but the humidity is low (for Florida). I am expecting a fairly cool ride so there is no need to change clothes. I wore the same clothes at work all day. They are comfortable and unconstricting. My purse is slung backpack style on my back.  Before taking off I make sure my camera and notebook are within easy reach.

The Cady Way trailhead is tucked behind a USPS (United States Post Office) behind the Fashion Square Mall. A quarter-mile in I stop to note that I am riding along the edge of Baldwin Park (homes) where I find a couple of guys fishing. Around the half-mile mark I cross Humphries Road. Now there are businesses along the trail.

Further on there are homes that are not a part of Baldwin Park. The streets are narrow and a little busy. You have to watch out for motorized vehicles at the intersections. But the drivers I encounter seem watchful and are courteous.

I have no idea where I am right now. I come to Beach Road and Old Cheney Highway. There's a 1 1/4-mile marker. I see a very shaded part of the trail now up ahead. It's very nice with lots of trees on both sides. I'd expect in full summer there are lots of mosquitos here. But today there are none to pester me.

I seem to be riding alongside Old Cheney. There are older homes on the right and newer ones (Baldwin Park again) on the left. Now I see the road on my right has ended and it is dirt leading to the back of an apartment complex. It reminds of my younger days.

An electric scooter shooshes by me. It says "Lithium Powered" on the side. Cool! There is another road up ahead. The scooter turns onto it and is gone.

I pass the 2 1/4-mile marker and arrive at the intersection myself. I have two choices in front of me. The trail splits. I can make a sharp right or go straight ahead.

I see a woman pushing a stroller cautiously crossing the intersection towards me. When she reaches my side I decide to ask her if she knows where the trail to the right goes. She says she doesn't know. But if I go straight it goes to the Cady Way Park and Showalter Field plus there is lots of shade that way.  I choose the shade!

After crossing I realize that on my right I can see a bit of the Winter Park Pines Golf Course. Then I come to more homes behind fences. On the right I can see down into some of the yards because the trail is elevated a few feet. Baldwin Park is still on my left.

There's a sharp turn up ahead. I stop at this one for awhile to write some more and take a short breather. (And to give my butt a rest from the bicycle seat!) This is one of the many places you can stop on this trail for water or to sit on a shaded bench. There is also an emergency call box.

It's actually warmer to stand still than keep moving so I get on my bike again. Ah, a nice cool breeze now.

At three miles I come to Winter Park High School.  Then Summerfield Road. I decide to turn around at Cady Way Park and head back to my car.

On this trail bikes and skaters are asked to stay on the 10-foot-wide trail away from the people walking or jogging on their own parallel trail. I obeyed this rule. But you have to watch out for the guys riding fast on their 10-speeds with the skinny tires. They are serious about their exercise.

At one point I was on the far right side of the bike trail looking around. I was enjoying my afternoon ride. It was so pleasant and quiet. I saw one of these fast cyclists approaching from the opposite direction.  He yells out, "Hello, Lady! Wake up!" I say back to him that, "I was just looking around!"
Later, a couple of other cyclists complimented my bike. My shirt was a bright flowery print. You couldn't miss me on that trail. I didn't look like everyone else!

On the way back I heard loud music coming up from behind. One of the fast cyclists was smart. He had a radio on full blast (or at least very loud) on his handlebars to alert people.

I heard lots of other things. Strangely enough, it seems there is an ice cream truck that plays Jamaican metal drum music. It was very pleasant and accompanied me as I rode past the Winter Park Pines area. 
A girl walking ahead of me with a cell phone to her ear and with fluffy house slippers on  her feet exclaimed "Ew!" as I rode by. I don't think she was talking about me!

And I can't forget the evil squirrel that tried to drop nuts or *something* on me. I was going to fast for him! Ha Haaaa!

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Lookin Good!

What is the most significant thing I did since my last post? How about saving a little bird? I found him behind the building where I work near the loading dock. It was lunchtime and I was on my way to the library. I don't know what made me look down but I'm glad I did! There was this cute little bird staring straight up at me. He didn't try to get away or anything. He just kept looking at me. So I got a friend who is a birder to help me. He told me it was an Oven bird which is a type of Warbler. I went to find a small box. Then he found a local bird rescue lady and took him there on his way home from work. She told him the prognosis was good. At least now he is comfortable instead of trapped on a hot sidewalk with no shade, food or water. And he now has shelter from the afternoon storm
The painting is the second in a series of three 24x48 works. Actually, I painted this one simultaneously with the third which I will post later. While painting the first one (Hello, There!) I had worked out a lot of the colors (palette), methods and design issues. Then I went to one of Elin Pendleton's official "Color Bootcamp's" and learned more about using color in a painting. There are just some things you can't learn from reading a book or watching a video! You can subscribe to my new eNewsletter here or You can see my entire blog here or If you need to email me directly, please click here.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Hello, There!

And now some more paintings of horses! I have to say it. These paintings are cool. For awhile they are going to be the center point of any venues they fit into -- literally. Here's the story of how they happened.
When another horse or horses were in the show arena others are prepped for the next act in their stalls. As I was walking around looking for pictures to take I noticed how this was done. The stall doors were partially open so you could see inside while the horses peeked out. In my minds eye I immediately saw the potential for several vertical paintings. When I saw that some large 24"x48" canvas on sale at Michaels I bought three of them.
Each of these paintings is $1000 USD. They are done in acrylic and are unframed but ready to hang. When they were hanging in the main room at the University Club they looked magnificent. The one pictured here is the first one I started painting back around February 2009.
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Friday, July 31, 2009

Beach of Dreams

I have a great friend who LOVES Hawaii. He has been there several times and is going again very soon to vacation for two weeks. During each visit he is great at taking lots and lots of photos. I used one as a reference in a painting workshop. It is not an exact representation of everything in the photo. I added some people and simplified the background. I also didn't put in all the trees that were in the photo and moved some around to make interesting shadows. It is an acrylic on 8x10 canvas framed for $125.00.
Several people have asked me why I don't have prints for sale of my work. But I do! For example, most people ask about prints of my pencil drawing "2 Horses of Rothenberg". I joined a website where anyone can order prints, posters or even t-shirts with the image. The item is mailed directly to the customer making it easy for both my clients and myself as I do not have to maintain an inventory of prints. The page lists the photographic prints first but if you scroll down you can see the options for prints on canvas or chromalux. I have not yet ordered any items for my own use. Although I'd love to get a t-shirt with my drawing on it! However, from samples I've received the quality is very, very good.
I have received advice from many friends and clients asking about giclees, but I don't do them. The reason is they are expensive both to produce and to purchase and my prices would definitely have to go up. If I thought many, many people would buy all my paintings or even some of them as giclees I would be more than happy to work with a local professional printer to produce them. But at this time it just isn't worth the cost to me. However, if anyone is interested, just let me know and I'll price it out for you.
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Monday, July 27, 2009

Decadent

This is the third in my newest set of paintings inspired by Herrmans Lippizans -- but just from head shots I got at some of their shows while they were at Freedom Ride. The entire set of 3 was available for $250, but Tasteful (below) sold at the opening. If anyone is interested in the last two as a set I offer them together for $200. That would be this one, Decadent, plus Delicious (below). They are each acrylic on 12x12 canvas with no frame, but ready to hang. Speaking of hanging ... I thought I might add a piece of advice I recently gave to a friend of mine.
Pop the hood of your car once-in-awhile and take a look. You don't need to be a mechanic to see a potential problem in the making. In this case, one of the battery terminals was completely corroded. It finally got so bad the car would not start. I advised my friend to pour some Coke on it. Sure enough, that's exactly what the tow truck driver did. Then he jumped the car and it started right up. My friend didn't even know how to open the hood of their car. The bottom line is this: Dare to take a peek and try to learn how thinks work under there. You never know when a little bit of knowledge will come in handy.
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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Tasteful - Sold

This is the next piece in a series of three that I did for my show at the University Club. By the way, the show was a huge success! I think everyone had a good time and there was plenty of food (but not too much!)
I was completely surprised when some people walked in and one said "You don't remember us, do you?" My mind was racing! Did I know them from another show or an art club or from work or what? But the mystery was quickly resolved when one of them told me they used to work with me! I was reminded of everyone's names and it was so cool to see them again!! One of my friends even bought this painting. It is just coincidence it was the next one I was going to post anyway to my blog. It is an acrylic on 12x12 canvas. I don't think my friend will mind if I just use her first name: Thank you, Kathy! As soon as the show comes down on July 29 I will contact her to meet and deliver her painting.
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Saturday, July 11, 2009

Delicious

As promised I am starting to post the paintings in my show! That way if you cannot attend or would like to see them after the show is down (July 24) they are viewable here.
This is "Delicious". I guess I was hungry when I titled it. Along with two others that are in this series! Wait until you see those titles. This little painting is an acrylic on 12 x 12 inch canvas. Inspired by one of Herrmann's Lippizans. The cost is $125 USD.
My solo show is tomorrow! I am so tired after getting back from vacation but I am also excited and can't wait to see my friends and family that will be able to attend. The food is purchased and in the morning I'll be cooking up the sloppy joes and little hot dogs wrapped in croissants. I got sweet tea and both pink and regular lemonade. I hope I don't forget to pack the ice cream in the cooler as it is the only frozen item I am taking. My mom is making the potato salad as we speak. It is a two day process!!
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Saturday, June 27, 2009

Sun. July 12 Solo Exhibit

Click on the image to see a bigger version of it. The opening reception will be held on Sunday, July 12, 2009 at the University Club in Winter Park, Florida. These gracious people invite one artist per month to display and sell their work in their beautiful facility. I am the artist for July 2009.
The food will be great! I am planning an indoor picnic with little hot dogs, sloppy joes, my mom's potato salad, apple pie, ice cream, lemonade -- you name it! *If* there are any leftovers by 4:00 p.m. everyone is invited to take food home -- except my mom's potato salad! That's mine if there is any left. It's a favorite at all family get-togethers.
In addition, I have subscribed to a newsletter service. Click on the following link (http://eepurl.com/b5V6) if you would like to subscribe to it. After this show I will no longer be using email to contact everyone about my shows. The list is just too large to manage and I don't want to take a chance and accidentally start spamming someone who no longer cares to receive my emails. Not that I've sent that many out recently. And that is why I have not done so. The newsletter service will manage my lists for me automatically including Unsubscribes.
I'll tell you more about what to expect in my newsletters in future blogs. Please consider subscribing to the RSS feed (if you know how) or bookmark and check my blog at http://karenbowden.blogspot.com often over the next few weeks to see the paintings that are in the University Club show. I'll be posting them one or two at a time for those of you who cannot attend the show on Sunday, July 12.
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Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Oak Tree Park

My first video I am putting online. I had a rare few hours on Saturday and I found this beautiful tree in a place where I least expected it. Please enjoy. (Music version coming soon!)

video

March 19-April 17, the 3rd Annual Central Florida Watercolor Society members only show at City Arts Factory in downtown Orlando, Florida.

Saturday, April 4, Gardens of Winter Park South, painting en plein air at the 2009 Winter Park Historical Association’s annual garden tour. Tickets will be on sale soon. Times are 10am to 4pm.

Friday, April 17, Solo show! One night only at the Urban Think Bookstore in Thornton Park in downtown Orlando, Florida. Times are 6pm to 9pm.

Saturday, April 25, Sanford Gardens Plein Air event - Florida. Will post details when I get them.

Saturday, May 2, Stirrups & Strides fundraiser event. Chairs for auction painted by local artists. At the Paddock Mall from 12pm to 3pm in Ocala, Florida

Sunday, July 12, Solo show! One month at the University Club in Winter Park, Florida. Opening reception times are 2pm to 4pm.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Watercolor Show for Members Only

The Central Florida Watercolor Society Juried show will be on Thursday, March 19, in downtown Orlando, Florida at the City Arts Factory. See details below. Hope to see you there! Thursday, March 19, the 3rd Annual Central Florida Watercolor Society members only show at City Arts Factory in downtown Orlando, Florida. Times are 6pm to 9pm. Saturday, April 4, Gardens of Winter Park South, painting en plein air at the 2009 Winter Park Historical Association’s annual garden tour. Tickets will be on sale soon. Times are 10am to 4pm. Friday, April 17, Solo show! One night only at the Urban Think Bookstore in Thornton Park in downtown Orlando, Florida. Times are 6pm to 9pm. Saturday, April 25, Sanford Gardens Plein Air event - Florida. Will post details when I get them. Saturday, May 2, Stirrups & Strides fundraiser event. Chairs for auction painted by local artists. At the Paddock Mall from 12pm to 3pm in Ocala, Florida Sunday, June 28, Solo show! One month at the University Club in Winter Park, Florida. Opening reception times are 2pm to 4pm. You can see my entire blog here. If you need to email me directly, please click here.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Update to my Events

There's at least one event per month coming up for me. Try and keep up. Saturday, February 28, Duck Derby at Mead Gardens in Orlando, Florida. Plein air painters from Central Florida have been invited to paint in the gardens during this fund raising event! Times are 10am to 2pm. Thursday, March 19, the 3rd Annual Central Florida Watercolor Society members only show at City Arts Factory in downtown Orlando, Florida. Times are 6pm to 9pm. Friday, April 17, Solo show! One night only at the Urban Think Bookstore in Thornton Park in downtown Orlando, Florida. Saturday, April 25, Sanford Gardens Plein Air event - Florida. Sunday, June 28, Solo show! One month at the University Club in Winter Park, Florida. Opening reception times are 2pm to 5pm. You can see my entire blog here. If you need to email me directly, please click here.