A New Normal

August 3 – My sister was thrown from her horse and damaged both legs…the right was broken in three places, the left had ligaments torn. The short story is she is recovering and maneuvering the best she can from a wheelchair at her rural Vermont home.

When I heard of the accident, I dropped everything and went to help in the tending of sister and her farm, horses, dog, cat and chickens. I was there two weeks.

Days before I left for Vermont,  the memory care home where I have had my step-father on a waiting list called to say they had an opening as of September 1.

“Do you want the unit?” they asked.

I said, “yes” to the opportunity of having the elders of the family closer.

So after two weeks in Vermont, I came home and with a great deal of luck found Mom an apartment nearby and just this week we signed contracts and leases.

There’s still the actual move for her but he is moved and content in his new surroundings. This comforts her.

The last few days we settled him in, arranged an”establish care” visit at the doctors, filled in a lot of forms and signed a lot of papers.

While this was going on, my offspring moved to California to start a new job. Husband and I helped with the move on the weekend.

So you can see why I haven’t been writing the blog.

Moving is exhausting.

Care-taking is exhausting, too.

Yesterday, Mom flew home to close things up there and

I turned my attention back to my life and had a session with a personal trainer.

This morning I worked out. It felt good.

My list of things to do today include prepping for a photo shoot of all white objects on Monday. I know I have a white pitcher, vintage white crochet gloves, a lace tablecloth.  I’ll see what else I can find to add to the still life meant to teach the best lighting techniques for all neutral subjects.

Then I want to purchase and prep a canvas for the sunflower painting. Update: did this. It is getting increasingly difficult to find a good canvas without knots, bad weaves or flaws. If anyone has a good source, please let me know.

Next, I need to select and photoshop a group of photos for a client.

And, write a summary of the garden program.

Finally, I hope to hem three pair of pants.

It may not sound exciting to anyone else, but these tasks sure sound good to me.


Sunflower Painting Sold!

Thank you, Nancy. May it always bring you joy.

It is deeply satisfying to know it will be in your home.

As an artist it is wonderful when your creation goes to someone who loves it as much as you loved painting it.

This is definitely one of the happiest paintings I have ever done and I love that it will be “living”  in Saratoga Springs.

Natalie Walsh

Sunflower Painting Finished

Here it is.

This is one of the happiest paintings I have ever done.

In case you haven’t been following the blog, these sunflowers are a variety similar to those painted by Van Gogh. I purchased the seeds from Renee’s Garden seeds, grew the sunflowers at the community garden, and created this 20 by 24 oil painting when the flowers bloomed.

I hope you enjoyed following the painting’s progress. Natalie Walsh

Sunflower Painting – Third Post

The oil painting of the Van Gogh sunflowers is coming along.

I’ve been working on the color of petals, the urn-like vase, the overall shapes of the flowers, highlights and darks. It’s not done yet, but I love how energetic and joyful the painting is at this stage. It is coming alive.

I had the good fortune of going to the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston last week. There was an exhibit of paintings by Renoir I had to see. In the same room there were several paintings by Van Gogh. I just stood, stared and studied. What a pleasure.

I hope you enjoy watching this painting as it progresses. – Natalie Walsh

If you haven’t been following the blog, I planted Van Gogh sunflowers seeds from Renee’s Garden seeds in the community garden for the purpose of using the flowers as the subject of an oil painting. When they were ready, I harvested and photographed the sunflowers.  I will continue providing updates on the painting until it is completed.  

Sunflower Painting Progress Report

This week my focus has been on tweaking the composition, getting the sunflowers shaped and placed, and starting on the color of leaves, seed head and petals.

This is how it looks today.

It is far from completion, but you can see the painting’s direction.

If you haven’t been following the blog, I planted Van Gogh sunflowers from Renee’s Garden seeds in the community garden for the purpose of using the flowers as the subject of an oil painting. Last week I harvested and photographed the sunflowers.  I will continue reporting my progress through to the painting’s completion. I hope you enjoy watching it evolve.

— Natalie Walsh

Painting from the Garden

Gardens are a source of inspiration for my art.

This morning, I cut the remaining Van Gogh sunflowers and brought them to my studio for a photo session.

In case you missed the blog where I wrote about them, I planted these flowers because they are reminiscent of the sunflowers painted by Van Gogh, who once wrote in a letter “As you know, peonies are Jeannin’s, hollyhocks are Quost’s, and sunflowers, well, sunflowers are mine.” That’s true even more than a century after his death.

It’s my goal to chronicle my oil painting of sunflowers here.

Before I begin to paint I take photos of the painting subject. This time I took close to a hundred images of the sunflowers in various vases and pots.

By the way – Thank you to my girl friends for loaning me large vases. And for those who might be curious, I purchased the sunflower seed from Renee’s Garden seeds.

Day One – Starting with the background and determining the composition.  In this photo, the canvas is tilted on an easel making the table the flowers are sitting on look angled. It is not.