Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Gift of Art

A Portrait of Nick Wood in three stages for his Mother

I'm winding down today from the hoopla of another Christmas with friends, family, and guests as well as our first White Christmas in Tennessee since I was 13 years old!

As each year goes by and art becomes a larger part of my life and social setting, it also becomes a bigger part of the holidays as well.  My creations make a unique gift and I was fortunate to ship dozens of prints and books all over the country which I ran specials on through the internet.  I also held some contests on the Facebook Fan Page to give away some free prints to random folks who participated (and I do this from time to time anyhow, so get your LIKE on by clicking the link above if you haven't already!)  The last portrait commission I took this year was of one of my oldest friends, Nick.  He wanted to give a portrait to his Mom for Christmas and gave me a few reference photos to get started a few weeks back.  He was wanting a young and older version of himself as the picture.  We were both really pleased with the final result and Jen at Hobby Lobby was gracious enough to pull some strings and get it framed for us just a couple of days before Christmas... thanks hon, you guys are the best!

My wife and I spend Christmas Eve with my family and Christmas day with her family.  Friday morning we headed down to my old stomping grounds of Tennessee Ridge.  Last year about this time, I showed you the portrait of my Grandfather which I gave to my Grandma for Christmas last year. For her gift this year, I turned out another portrait, this time of her parents. She recognized them straight away, which is my best (and sometimes only) indicator of success with my likenesses...
Portrait of my Great Grandparents, Paul and Clemmie Frey

Functional art by Paul Lancette / Pic by Aurora Hardin
The sleet scared us out of Houston County and back home Friday night.  I scored a pretty sweet tabletop easel from my father to use at art fairs next year.  He always manages to sneak in something of use to my passion. Here is one of the more charming memories we took from this year's Hardin Christmas...

We are all artists with ample time, motivation, and sometimes boredom, which apparently my sister's boyfriend was chalked full of staying in such a rural area after living in Phoenix the past few years.  Mom's reindeer got put in some compromising positions with his new found ingenuity.

We headed out Saturday morning for Nashville to my sister-in-law, Rozita's house.  We didn't get far when my good friend, Mike called me in a ruckus.  The poor guy got in late Christmas Eve from Columbus and thought he could at least get into Wally World to take care of getting mama that something special for Christmas.  The only places open in town were Walgreens and the Chinese restaurants.  I have a feeling mom wasn't expecting an earwax removal kit or take-out Kung Pao shrimp.  Fine art to the rescue! I couldn't leave the guy hanging so we pointed our direction back home to parlay.  I had my reservations about his choice of this work from my Topsy-Turvy series but he called later to tell me she loved it and already had it on the wall...

"Topsy-Turvy:  Faces" (inks on bristol / 2008)

Down in Nashville, Aurora had chosen four prints for her nephews and lay them out upside down so they could randomly choose which they would get...
Art is cool and colorful but you can't really play with it.. Good thing they got stockings filled with a variety of candy to wind them up so they could get busy with their new toys!  We gave them each items their mother was sure to love including jumping beans and farting gak (which kept us entertained the duration of our visit!)
It's amazing!  You stick your fingers in it to make a symphony of farting noises AND you can take it out of the jar for other endless possibilities!

Merry Christmas!

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