New Auburn Prints and Note Cards

I've just completed this pen-and-ink drawing of Toomer's Drugs, Toomer's Corner in downtown Auburn, AL which will be part of my exhbition at Stonehenge Gallery in May. I've created prints and note cards of the drawing and you may now purchase them in my Etsy shop (scroll down to the link on the right side of the page) Toomer's has always been well known for their fabulous lemonade and it's always one of your stops when you're in Auburn. This would make a great graduation gift for an Auburn graduating senior. Or, you could by the companion piece, Auburn Oak, for a set.

Art and a Cookbook

“A Cookbook for Katie” by Daphne Simpkins is not your average cookbook. The recipes are laced with history (of ingredients and family dynamics), suggestions for ways of doing things (creating cornbread with crust, making meringue, separating eggs—it’s a sin to throw yolks away, they are given to the dogs, one yolk per dog, including the neighbor’s dog, Mr. Mooney) and woven in between delightful stories.

Several months ago Daphne asked if she could reference my work in the book. The reference is in the last essay “The Bride’s Room.”

“Standing in front of a series of carefully crafted drawings, I experience Melissa Tubbs’ exquisite work on the wall. They are architectural drawings of specific locations of this building. Deceptively austere, they draw you into not the place they represent but into a timelessness, a serenity so peaceful that I can hear the whisper from heaven, ‘Be still and know that I am God.’ In those pictures I enter that stillness and know a deeper way of breathing, of being, but once I turn away I find myself wondering about the artist who capture those still moments. I deduce that the artist has a pure heart, and I wonder what that feels like and if she sees God. The Bible says that pure-hearted people do.”
On one hand it’s amazing for me that I could be seen as pure-hearted, on the other hand, that is what creating art is all about--making a profound connection deep within a person for the better. My hope is always that it would be true.
This is a delightfully good read. As Daphne says, “…eating and recipes always come with stories. That’s one of the reasons they taste so good.”
Get your copy at bookstores and on Amazon. As a matter of fact, beginning on Valentine’s Day you can get a free Kindle version of the book on Amazon.

Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts Exhibition: Creator/Created

I’m pleased to be a participant in the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts exhibition Creator/Created: Jerry Siegel Portraits and Artists from the Permanent Collection which will be on view from March 8 through June 1, 2014.

Over the past few decades Siegel has captured intimate moments with our region’s most creative artists. By providing details such as what the artists look like or where they work, he creates an important visual record that illuminates the rich art-making culture of the South. Pairing works from the permanent collection with Siegel’s portraits of their creators, allows the fresh interpretations of the art works and new insight into their makers.

The opening reception on Thursday, April 10th will begin with a gallery talk from 5:30 to 6:00 with Jerry Siegel and participating artists, followed by the reception. Please mark your calendars and plan on being in Montgomery to join us for a unique art-and-artist-filled evening!

Commission for Holiday Birthday

This commission is a beautiful log house on a lake. Great present for a birthday a couple of days after Christmas.

Peculiar People Day January 10th

Today is Peculiar People Day! Peculiar People Day is in honor of uniquely different people. Un-ordinary, extraordinary, unusual, strange, odd, uncommon, intriguing, different, abnormal, and quirky.... These are all things that we think of to describe the word "peculiar". Most of these characteristics can be viewed as good, or not so good. Today is a day to look for the good in your peculiar acquaintances.
One of my favorite Peculiar People is Edward Gorey. Born February 22, 1925, died April 15, 2000, Gorey was an American writer and artist noted for his illustrated books. His characteristic pen-and-ink drawings often depict vaguely unsettling narrative scenes in Edwardian settings. He often dressed his characters the way he dressed, in a long fur coat or tennis shoes.
"He was a cartoonist in the widest definition and a major illustrator in the smallest," Theroux says. "But I think his particular style grew out of the fascination with pen and ink drawings. He once told me it was so hard to get a book published in color in the early 1950s that all his books were in black and white. And his drawings got more and more oblique — his subject matter was the 1920s, and he always fit his drawings to that particular world, the Edwardian period." 
"If you asked him what was behind The Dwindling Party, which was a mysterious pop-up book," Theroux says, "he would say, 'I'll leave you to tell me — I don't even know.' He loved that phrase, 'I don't even know.' "

"Edward was one of the few people I ever knew who did exactly what he wanted," he says. "He went his own way."
(The Strange Case of Edward Gorey, Alexander Theroux)
Gorey wrtoe more than 90 books, illustrated 60 others, and designed sets (he won a Tony award for the set of Dracula). He created the animated opening for PBS's Mystery!

My favorite book by Gorey is The Doubtful Guest which is the story of a solemn, mysterious, outdoor creature, dressed in sneakers and a scarf that appears one winter night at a family's Victorian home and never leaves again.
I learn something about drawing with pen and ink each time I look at his drawings.

A Surprise Commission for a Husband

My client wanted to surprise her husband for Christmas with not one but two drawings of their home, front and back. He loves to work on landscaping their yard and has really done a beautiful job. It's always fun to work with clients I've worked with before which was the case here. I'd drawn their previous home for them several years ago.

Sarah's Daisy

My granddaughter's favorite flower is the daisy and she asked me to draw one for her 16th birthday in November. Someone brought the pitcher and flower to the Alabama Art Colony in October, so I took advantage of the sunshine and got a great picture to use for the drawing. Sarah and I were talking about taking it to be framed and I asked her if she would like to put it in my etsy shop as a reproduction print so that other daisy lovers could buy it. She thought that was a great idea :~) and we are proud to share Sarah's Daisy with you. Click the link to go to etsy: