Saturday, September 14, 2013

Riverside, The Farnsley-Moremen Landing

The year,1837...That is the year this southern bell was built. She sits on the banks of the Ohio river and I adore her. She is one of my favorite places in Louisville. This is the Farnsley-Moremen House. You can tour the house and gardens as it's all part of the Riverside Park. Volunteers take care of the gardens and they are charming, peaceful, and when I walk through them I imagine that I'm wearing some sort of Tasha Tudor outfit! This place calls for a long skirt and apron.

This is the backside of the house. It seems like it should be the front as this is what you first see when you walk up, but back when the house was built it would have been first seen from the Ohio river. If you look to the right of the house in this photo you will see some low trees then some tall ones in the back, the tall ones are the Indiana side of the river, the low ones are the Kentucky side.

Here is the front of the home. Everytime we've been here it's been in the early morning or the late evening and the house is already closed up. I'm betting the views of the river from that second story are stunning.

You can see a bit of the water from the front lawn. It looks rather small here but trust me the Ohio is a mighty one! 

There are a few little spots where you can peek out and see the river. It's so peaceful in the early morning here, you really feel like you've gone back in time.

The volunteers have many of the plants marked. 

What is it about the nasturtium? I think maybe those beautiful round leaves. They look like tiny lilly pads! 

The summer kitchen. I can't even imagine the heat in the middle of a hot Kentucky July in this little building with the fire going. I'm sure it smelled delicious though! 

Here is the vegetable side of the garden. We were there in early summer and everything was just sprouting. I wonder what it looks like now! Maybe hubs and I can go back this fall for more photos when the trees have started to turn. I also need to get inside that beautiful house! Even though I do think the garden holds so much of the the charm for me.

I'm not sure the barn swallows cared for our visit! But they are so pretty and entertaining to watch.

I wonder what type of tree this is? It looks like has stories to tell. There was also a huge mulberry tree by the garden. I had to kick myself for not bringing a basket or bag for collecting some of the berries. They were so sweet and made for a good snack while walking through the garden. It's a shame you can't find mulberries in the stores, but they just don't keep. If you've never tasted them you must, the darker they are the sweeter. I think they are superior to all other berries in flavor, well except strawberries. ;-)

If you would like to visit Riverside or learn more here is their webpage.

I hope you are all enjoying your weekend. The weather here is amazing! Today was the Big UK UofL game so I'm sure most of our state was watching football. We certainly were, with a warm bowl of chili and the windows open. It was another sweater day! Yay for sweater days!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


Let me first start off by saying that I really love this painting. It's a watercolor I did of a friend of mines little girl. I think it looks like her daughter (is she not so beautiful!) so that was a great surprise for me when I completed it because I find portraits really hard to do. First, I'm always what if I insult the person and they think it's awful? They think I must think they look crazy? OR even worse they think I'm the worst artist to walk the face of the earth. What if they look too old? That is so easy to do...a little bit of shading can turn to crows feet faster than Judge Judy can quip about urine and her shoes. The other thing is getting paid for portraits. There is a lot of thought that goes into them since I'm not a "natural" at it. I put too much time into them for what I ask to be paid but on the flip side if they hate it they should'nt have to pay for it. But then I just put all this time into it for nothing. What am I going to do with a portrait of your neice Bethany? Over the years and with lots of practice I've found a few tricks that seem to help me. Especially when doing a portrait of a child. Many years ago I took a class called Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain. It was based on a book that I've found to be one of the greatest books around for new artists who are trying to teach themselves how to draw. The idea is that you turn the image upside down and it will change what your eye sees so that your brain does not register it as the literal object but more shapes and shadows. It REALLY works. Hopefully I'll get to do more portraits in the future. It seems like when Christmas gets close people start looking for unique things and ask about them. Maybe with more practice I won't have to worry so much about making a mistake. You know what they say about practice! :-)  

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Ball Jar Painting

Thanks to my sister and her idea that we each paint a Ball jar. I think it came out really cute! I don't know if you've seen any of these in antique stores lately but I'm so shocked at how much money they bring. It seems like anywhere from a low $7 all the way up to $100! I don't know anything about vintage mason jars, but I'm sure there is something special about those high dollar ones. A friend of mine mentioned that Ball released the blue ones again this year. I was very excited about that as I have an entire box (22lbs) of pears to can. I went to pick up more jars but was when I saw the blue ones they didn't really look like the old ones. The blue was very bright. They are still pretty, but I decided to go with the clear. Do you think this painting needes something in the background? It seems a little drab even though I do really like the how the jar came out. Hope you are having weather as beautiful as we are! It's only 72 degrees out and the wind is blowing. I'm wearing a SWEATER!!!!! I love sweater weather.