March Newsletter: Columbines & Poppies

You are a Priority

Somewhere on your list of priorities should be you and things that make
you smile. For me filling my surroundings with things I love is part of taking
care of me. Some of the things I like to surround myself with are photos of
family, remembrances of special times and art that I enjoy. Things that make me think, things that make me feel and things that bring a smile to my face.

Today it is still quite cool outside. The sun is shining on the snow covered
ground and it looks as though someone has sprinkled glitter on top of the
pristine white snow. Everything is still and peaceful, Bella is napping at my
feet. I’m sipping on a cup of hot water with lemon. I don’t remember how long ago I started drinking hot water but it has been many years.
At first it was a way of assuring my water intake was enough in the dry climate of Colorado. Now I just enjoy it. It’s clean, healthy and feels nurturing to me.  While on a plane flight one time I ordered a cup of hot water with lemon when the stewardess came by. The rather robust lady seated next to me said, “In Michigan, where I come from, we call that Silver Tea.” That sparked a pleasant conversation and it does seem much more sophisticated to be drinking “Silver Tea”, don’t ya think?

Commissioned Paintings are a Privilege

It is such a privilege to have a friend commission a painting. My friend, Linda, is a joy to be around, she is intelligent, spiritual, an avid hiker, a dancer, a movie goer and she has two wonderful canine friends so she also loves spending time in nature. When she asked if I would paint something for her living room I was honored. She had changed a few things since I had been in her home so I stopped by to measure and to see some of the color changes she had made to her decor. Like so many of us Linda loves flowers. In fact, when you visit her in the summer you are greeted by beautiful flower gardens that surround her home. After taking all of these things into consideration and getting measurements I went home to do some sketching.
Columbines kept popping into my head. She accented with a deep red so poppies seemed a good fit although I would have to take some liberties and coordinate them to her accent colors. She wanted an airy feeling to the painting so a pairing of wild flowers on fields of tall grasses were the seeds of my inspiration.

Deep red poppies would add a sense of daring and the columbines created a
quietness at the same time. The first sketch was approved but when actually
drawing it out on watercolor paper to the proper scale a few changes were needed. Since it was to be a vertical painting having the flowers in closer proximity actually made it feel more intimate.

Meaning of Columbine

The columbine was said to have sprung up where the Virgin Mary’s feet touched the earth when she was on her way to visit Elizabeth. The spurred flowers resembled the tiny doves and came to represent the Holy Spirit. The flower also symbolized the innocence of Mary. The petals of the Columbine symbolize the seven gifts of the Spirit. The wild columbine has only five petals.

Meaning of Red Poppy

In Persian literature, red poppies, especially red corn poppy flowers, are considered the flower of love. They are often called the eternal lover flower.

Limited Edition Prints

One of the exciting things about the technology available to artists today is
print-on-demand. As an artist I can have a limited edition series and not have inventory and storage to contend with, not to mention the possibility of damage that can occur in a storage area. The actual size of a good quality giclee can be customized to my client’s decor as well. My giclees are printed on archival canvas or archival watercolor paper. The quality is amazing. What I like about limited edition prints is that they make art affordable to just about anyone. What wonderful choices we have available to us. If you have questions about art or reproductions just drop me an e-mail.

Bella’s Insights


I’m beginning to like this writing stuff. Last month mom and I went with friends to the “Paint Mines” outside of Calhan, Colorado, not far from Colorado Springs. Boy, was I happy when I was invited too! I noticed that mom put her hiking boots on – that’s always a sign of a pending adventure. Wahoo!

Lots of mom’s friends were there and I even got to meet Arlo and Muki who turned out to be really nice “for dogs”, they really taught me a lot more about exploring. Oh man, did I get to play in the mud, look at these paws!

Arlo was a real go-getter, he checked everything out and if he got out of site his mom called and he always hurried back, he was really smart and that dog could jump like a kangaroo- What a hoot!

Muki is my other new friend. Muki and I pretty much didn’t stray far from the trail. Of course a leash around our necks helped with that. We were taking in the sites.  I still managed to get wrapped around some bushes and rocks.

The Paint Mines were different than any place I have seen and right here near Colorado Springs. You can’t see them from the highway, the road or even the parking lot. All you can see are the great Plains of Eastern Colorado.  You absolutely must go exploring to find them. I can’t wait to go again. It was an overcast day when we went. Now mom wants to go back when the sun is out and see how different her pics look. Who knows, maybe she will share that place in one of her paintings. That’s it for now, this is Bella signing off. ~Bella, the Explorer


2 comments to March Newsletter: Columbines & Poppies

  • eileen

    your words ring so true as my heart is now misplaced…
    being with my husband or sharing what time my mother has left
    so I am here for now… but you have found a way to heal your heart
    time has helped I am sure and your artistry keeps you grounded
    I love reading your newsletters they inspire me, allow me to feel sorrow and happiness at the same time. Thank you so much eileen

    • Dear Eileen, I empathize with how torn you must be feeling. It all has a way of working out. All you can do is follow your heart, share your love and cherish what time you have with her as I’m sure you are doing. Blessings, Mickey

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