Freshly Painted

Hi Friends, I was so busy planning and sharing my new photography blog site,

and working on watercolor sketches

that I neglected to share my weekly "Petite Painting" available on this blog.

A few weeks ago it was wonderful to paint in oil, a few more panels ranging in size from 8 x 8 to 8 x 10. Each painting comes with an easel for display, and complimentary shipping.

You will find the entire collection on my website, Sharon Furner  
Just go to the Collections section, click on Petite Paintings

Here is today's featured painting/oil on panel.
The Pink Farmhouse

Through my wonderful journeys in the south of France, I have to say I have not actually seen a PINK farmhouse, but if the sun is just right, it magically casts a pinkish glow on the stucco.  

In Havre de Grace, there was a full-blown PINK mansion on the main street of the village. I yearned for a Pink house. Once I was able to go inside, I was so excited. In the end I liked the outside better with its PINK walls, flowing/flowering cottage gardens, white fences..very romantic.

This painting represents things I adore: lavender, fields of poppies, waving grasses, large shady trees and yes, Pink Farmhouses real or imaginary.


52 Lists: Week 8

 Ways to be a Good Companion.
Friendships enrich our lives. Friendships hold our hands when sorrow crosses our path. Friendships teach us about sharing and caring.

I love this prompt from 52 Lists.

What the Postlady Brought to the Door

 A postwoman/lady faithfully delivers the mail to our home. She is chipper and smiling, winter, spring, summer or fall. She even recognizes me when I am at the post office!!! 

Sometimes she comes to the door with a package, like today.

And it wasn't from Amazon!!!

Work through the tightly taped box,  push aside the Styrofoam popcorn!
Delightful Surprise!
Nestled in the bottom is a rose tissue, wrapped package tied in a lime green bow.
This is definitely a time to pull the camera out.

Frying Eggs in New York City

Tomorrow, up at pre-dawn, and off to the airport.
Destination: New York City. 
Not that one needs a reason to visit New York City....but our son who lives in Asia is in NY for work. He wondered if we were free
and might like to fly up and stay with him a few days. Are you kidding me, would we mind?

Of course, the last thing on my mind is packing clothing that might be appropriate. There are more immediate  decisions like choosing  sketching materials and which lenses for my camera!!!
I am pretty positive I will have time to sketch away in NY. 

Camera, sketchbooks, watercolors, water brushes, pens, maps, i Pad, and most importantly a 
HUGE bag of Peanut M & M's. 
How could one possible have energy enough for sketching, photo-shooting, walking and shopping with out a little nourishment.

Eventually a few clothes got tossed into the mix, something to read, easy stuff like photography manuals, lip balm and pink canvas shoes and a much to heavy back pack!


Color me RED with embarrassment!!!   Eager to be up to snuff with this blog, I was prepared to post the above and then planned to write from New York, like a REAL photo journalist,(laugh) what we were seeing and doing. Well, it didn't quite happen as I imagined. 

Did you know that those Fancy Hotels do not provide FREE internet? NO siree, you PAY!!!  Gosh even Motel Six, Seven, or Eight gives you free internet. Before you knew it, four days zipped by and we were heading home to Charlotte and nothing, despite my good intentions, was posted.


Our stay in New York was memorable to say the least, as we arrived on the wings of that blast of heat that splashed across CNN news.  The news report was that it was hot enough to fry an egg on the sidewalk. Forget eggs,  my feet fried in my hot pink tennis shoes!  My Black camera was to hot to hold!  Remember the clothes I hastily packed...uh, two sweaters, one blouse, one LONG skirt and one pair of cotton pants. Two sweaters, did I think I was going to Siberia? One blouse for four days? A LONG skirt?

Not to belabor the point. But it was so HOT that our evening flight home was CANCELLED, a few hours before take off. 

At the last minute, where in the world does one stay in NYC with an explosion of hot, sweaty tourists? (Oh, before I forget, our son's room was in a very nice hotel near  Rockefeller Center, but stationed outside the heavy brass doors was 24 hour, round the clock policemen in full uniform and bulging weapons. Next to them parked directly in front of the hotel was a police car with a running ticker tape on its roof about terrorism. Yup we felt safe alright!)

Moving on.  Delta Airline bless its heart put us in a room near the airport. We were so hot and exhausted that we grabbed a bucket of ice, two glasses and never left the room for dinner. 
And now we are home....and guess what. It is smokin' hot here, hot enough to cook southern BBQ on the sidewalk.


I can't expect you to read through all this without including a few fun photos. There will be more to come, but for now.....

There was a time when to sit next to the airplane window made me seriously sick and dizzy. I knew if I touched the wall I would fall out like some "silly" without a parachute.
But I have "grown up" and now I love to sit by the window; because I can take photos of beautiful clouds, airplane vapors, sunrises and sunsets...gosh if only the wing wasn't always on the side I am sitting. Such bad luck!

Soon we will be in NY, we are flying over water, you can see it shimmer below.

It is a glorious sight to sail with the clouds, higher than birds.

After unpacking we headed straight for the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Not to see the Impressionist collection this time, but the Asian collections and a few old masterpieces.

Organic, sculptural, symbolic shells carved over 3,000 years ago. Oh, to hold in one's hand and feel the deep incisions and ponder who crafted such a thing of beauty. 

This is a most unusual Buddha. The position of the head turned towards the shoulder is very rare, then there are the layers and layers of deep rich glaze. Simply breathtaking.


Do you write lists, lists of lists, and then lists of where the lists are?

I recall my mother sitting at the yellow Formica kitchen table, writing in her neat, school teacher script the lesson plans for school and the weekly shopping lists.

My daughters make lists, I make lists...

  sometimes on the back of an envelope, discarded paper, receipts, 


post-it-notes that seem to stick to something else, corners of newspapers and magazines,

computer folders for lists...hmm now that is convenient!

and occasionally a really nice Fancy-Nancy Notebook for "lists that can't get misplaced." (Until you forget you have that fancy book!)

I wonder what type of list maker you might be, my friends. 

I am inviting you to join me for a different type of list making I happily found on  Geri Centonze's website. She posted a whimsical, inspiring list of things to do on a rainy day.  I thought I would give it a whirl. Check her link for a fun peek at her list!

Kellie has created an opportunity (check link above) to join other list makers in posting once a week for 52 weeks. She supplies the prompts.

 Week 7 ( I am a little behind)
The prompt  for this week is: Things to Do on a Rainy Day.

You will never see so many creative ways to keep a list. Join in on the fun.

A Passion for Re-arrangement

One day my mother came into my tiny bedroom to find me once AGAIN rearranging  my meager hand-me-down furniture and book collection! She plunked me down on the twin bed and with a scowl on her face, vivid words poured out, "Sharon, people who are constantly moving their furniture are basically insecure!!!!!"

A little comment I remember well.  And maybe there is some truth to it.

1. I LOVE LOVE LOVE to rearrange furniture. We have been in our home for 12 months and I have explored every possible 'which way' to move the furniture around. Hubby always tripping over the latest "rearrangement."

2.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE to rearrange books, like pieces of precious art. Every room has a special spot to display books, some are funky, others unusual like my Bible stand from a Catholic church.

3.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE  journals, some of which are forlorn and neglected, holding but  random paragraphs,while others are falling apart from use; some books are yellowing from age, others cutesy or sophisticated. They are all "part of the history gang." It is important for the journals to "strut their stuff!"

4.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE to rearrange my blog and website. But this you have probably figured out. Like today's new font. Do you like it? the color? If Blogger comes up with a neat font, I try it out. Next is experimenting with a myriad of colors. It is enough to make one dizzy or really wonder, "Was her mother right?"  I do quite like today's font, it is fun to "mix it up" a bit.

5.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE to read  blogs. In fact it is becoming rather addictive, like not being able to stop eating Peanut M & M's. Never met a Peanut M & M I didn't swallow!  Lets see, I LOVE blogs about food, cooking, photography, photoshop, painting, books, art tutorials,there is barely a blog or website I don't like.
(Right now I have to give a humble thank you to my aging computer for hanging in there with me when IT would rather be asleep.)
This all leads me to sharing with you my friends a BRAND NEW BLOG.

If you look to the right of this post, you will see a sign for ARTSEE BLOGGERS. It is created by the marvelous and talented Geri Centonze

 The very energetic, multi-talented Geri has created a space where YOU can visit the blog sites of hundreds of artists at one time; one-at-a-time. Better yet, if you write a regularly posted blog and create art in any number of  mediums, you too can be a part of this. And it is all a GIFT from GERI!

I know you will enjoy visiting Geri's regular blog,  My Heart Art by Geri. You might consider getting a drink of something delicious, putting the kiddies to bed, then spending the next hour or so delightfully following all of her wonderful nooks and crannies of blogger delights. In addition to her lovely art work, Geri is a self-proclaimed  GEEK GIRL. She generously shares tutorials on all sorts of Geeky things...I am working my way through her offerings. Like a kid in a candy shop, I want to try this and this and this.....okay, I will settle for the Peanut M & M's.  See you in a day or two! meanwhile enjoy Artsee Bloggers and see if you can find me there. 

I Just Can't Do It

 A few weeks ago, I posted this watercolor sketch. I chattered about attempting to work soft, serene, pale, pencil and diluted color only. As I view it here on my screen it looks okay, I like it in an uncommitted way.

But it just isn't me.
I must have been swaddled in a red baby blanket or something equally bright, as I seemingly only navigate to the brilliantly bold.
It is the same with oil and acrylic.

A few days ago I pulled out some photos taken in Indonesia. I knew there was no time to do a full blown oil painting. The next best option would be to do watercolor sketches.

Once again I tried for the softer look (WHICH BY THE WAY I DO LOVE AND GREATLY ADMIRE.)
This time I used some really nifty Japanese skinny-mini sketch pens in sepia. Loved them. Happily I swished over the fine lines with diluted water color.

Not bad, one can certainly see the fine sketching. An easy way to put detail into a painting. 
(In Indonesia I fell in  love with the magnificent multi-layered umbrellas used in ceremonies and at holy sites. Only Harry Potter could stick a 10' umbrella, dressed in tutus of ruffles and embroidery, into his luggage!!)

I came home empty handed...

The fishing boats in Cambodia are like none I have ever seen. How I wished to be on one and ask a zillion questions...but the fishing vessels are small,  delicate and I am not. It would have been the end of their livelihood. 
Same sepia pen, diluted colors, but getting a bit stronger. Couldn't help myself from ratcheting up the color a bit!

Just not sure what I think of this softer approach. 

After all is said and done, it truly isn't the end of the world.

But I think I will go back to my bold, yummy jelly-bean colors for awhile!

Inspired by the Sunflower

Saturday mornings in Havre de Grace, there was a lovely but modest Farmer's Market, complete with a view of the Chesapeake Bay. My favorite little stand was always stacked with lush scarlet tomatoes; day-glow-green herbs of dill, oregano, parsley and cilantro perfuming the air;  yellow-orange-red-green peppers; fresh onions, red and yellow; and baskets-full of sun bursting corn.  Truth be told, even better than all that delicious fresh food for the body were the fragrant newly cut bouquets of flowers, for the soul.  I could never leave the Harmer Family Stand with out an armful of flowers; the Sunflowers beguiled me to paint their portraits.

Did I mention how much I miss it all?

Today a posting without words, just enjoy! May the sunny flowers put a smile on your face and leave a golden place in your heart.

The RED, the WHITE and the BLUE

America-the  Fourth of July

Flags are present in all nations. The design and colors represent the values of its people. 
In America we, also, fly our flag with pride. 

Flags of every size, but always RED WHITE BLUE

Flags are found in the usual and not so usual places. 

People across America choose to fly flags out of respect for our history, government, Declaration of Independence, freedoms fought for America and elsewhere, lives lost in the cause for that freedom and gratitude for our government as set forth on July 4, 1776.