Monday, March 31, 2008

King Ludwig II's Bed

Those of you who know me personally are aware of my inability in detecting a gay man. Let's just say my "Gaydar" is not up to snuff. In my own defense, I have come a long way since my Senior Prom when my date suggested we sneak away from the dance so he could try on my prom dress. At the time it was funny. Looking back, it was the first big indication that I had no " Gaydar". Another time in college had me returning from class only to find a new boyfriend rumaging through my closet wearing my black vintage sweater with the white ermine collar. Oh, there a many more stories that illustrate my faulty gaydar. Let's just say that this time,

I finally married a straight man.

I am sure you are wondering why I have shared this information. Well, yesterday John and I visted the castles, Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau. This is something that people do early on in their tour of Germany.

I knew little information prior about King Ludwig II. He had built Neuschwanstein in homage to the composer, Richard Wagner in 1869. You might recognize the inspiration for the Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella fairytale castles in Disneyland. With 17 years of construction, the castle was never completed.

King Ludwig only lived there a few months before his unexplainable death. The state commission had declared him insane by the psychiatrist, Dr. Von Gudden. This explains his unfortunate title, "The Mad King". He was later found drowned in shallow water along with the doctor.

We took a horse drawn carriage up to the castle. The weather was absolutely beautiful.

We had an English speaking tour guide, who led us through this fairytale- confection of a castle. Since it was never completed, there are only a few rooms shown on the tour. Each room is dedicated to an opera of Wagner.

Hmmmmmmmmm. My gaydar signals were starting to alert. It wasn't until we reached the King's sleeping chambers that my gaydar went into full swing. We weren't allowed to take photos, so I will do my best in describing. His bed was not only fit for a king, it was fit for a gay man-not that there is anything wrong with that.

The canopy was hand carved wood of every cathderal spire in Bavaria. Imagining that this helped ease his Catholic guilt from the lustful dreams of Wagner and random stable boys. I couldn't wait to get back home and research my presumption. Remember I still attend The University of Google.

My guess was correct. King Ludwig never married and had a few close relationships with other men. Ones where they would dress in costume and recite poetry. This reminds me of David and my black vintage sweater. Ludwig almost married his cousin, Elizabeth, but the wedding was canceled.

After his death Elizabeth was quoted saying that the King was not mad; just an eccentric living in a world of dreams.

An eccentric who left to the world an amazing castle filled with painted walls and guilded halls. One in which you'd never believe.

I bet

if you could sleep in that magnificent bed, you too would live to dream.

You can click on the photo collage to see bigger-Enjoy!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Patrick's Apples

Patrick's Apples
16 x20
collage on paper

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Beginning and End II

End II
16 x 20
collage on paper

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Beginning and End

collage on paper

I am showing you the beginning of this collage along with the finished piece. You can click on the image to see the many layers I added. The bottom half is crinkled tissue paper. The first time I have tried that technique. I really enjoyed painting on that surface. I might try a whole painting that way.
Still snowing here!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008


acrylic on canvas
mounted to paper
This was an old piece that I sold last year in a show held on the base. I was really surprised because it was just such a simple image. The woman who purchased it approached me at the bazaar and told me she hung it in her office. It motivates her to see a project all the way to completion. The thin lined drawing of the vase making it's way to a full finished one.
I have talked about perception in earlier blog entries and it puzzles me that she would read it this way. That is the wonderful thing about art; it speaks differently to each one of us.

Monday, March 24, 2008


I decided to
return to my abstract work today for a change. Looking through my boxes upon boxes of scraps, I found the word, foundation.
The word got me thinking about so many things.
The way we walk;
the direction we are going and have been before; and
the impressions that we make upon each different
surface- a collage of sorts.
Each day I walk my dogs in snow, mud, or grass.
Most days I go with Manuella, my neighbor ,who has 3 little dogs.
She also has 4 horses, 2 cats, and a bunny. I believe that people who own so many creatures have an innate ability to understand and train these animals, especially horses.
She is a wealth of knowledge and I am always learning a new horse or dog tid-bit.
Today she told me that it takes about a year to train a horse to gallop properly. I had no idea that horses were taught this. I thought it was natural.
Her last words before we parted were that they forget faster than they have learned.
That brought me full circle with the meaning of foundation. I pictured a horse galloping with effortless grace. The hind legs reaching forward to the front legs. The importance of maintaining such mastery led me to this poem .
Cautious steps for many years
too slight for prints in sand
have made me walk a stronger walk
by reaching
for His hand.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Schnee Häschen

John took this photo in Salzburg at the Church of Mondsee, The Sound of Music wedding church.
It gives a whole new image to snow bunnies( Schnee Häschen).
I finished yesterday's painting of impatience flowers, funny I didn't have the patience to paint another day.
Hope everyone has a nice Easter weekend.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

To Swim

Day one
acrylic on paper

This one has a long way to go. Please bear with me.
For the past 10 years I have been listening to NPR while I paint.
I used to listen to music, but for some reason people talking have taken it's place.
I usually only get bits and pieces, because a certain word may trigger a whirlwind of memories or ideas.
Today something must have triggered the memory of learning to swim and all of a sudden there I was in a navy blue one piece with white ruffles swimming to my Dad. I distinctly remember reaching for his beige swimming trunks and missing with every desperate stroke. His backing away and my swimming further; the cruel and continuous dance each father plays on his young child learning to swim. Swallowing more pool water than a poor girl could handle, I kept going. I had to.
Looking back,
I am sure this tactic taught me how to persevere. Teaching me that things that may be within my reach, can only be met by pushing harder.
I will never forget the surprise of looking back and seeing how far I actually swam.
The width of the pool seemed so long and so hard.
I thank you, Dad.
I guess it wasn't such a cruel trick after all.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

To Dream

Looking through photos, I stumbled upon this image I took when we were in Monterosso. Can't you just feel the warmth of the sunshine?

But today snowflakes are furiously falling outside my window here in Deutschland.

I am the woman with the Scandinavian last name by birth, who lives in Germany, dreams and paints of Italy, and is about to move to Ohio.

I swirl in as many directions as each snowflake.




Finding new ground...........

Tuesday, March 18, 2008


There was a study recently done in Europe that proves people who believe in God are generally happier, healthier, and able to handle stressful life situations compared to atheists and agnostics.
I wonder how the atheists and agnostics are handling this information?

Monday, March 17, 2008

Bizarre Bazaar

'It's over, it's finally over', I keep telling myself as I sit at my computer with heavy eyelids from lack of sleep, swollen feet from standing too long, and a slight headache from being "on" with a smile.
Are you curious about how it went? Was it a success?
Knowing that success can only be determined from one's pre- set goals, I feel I may have misjudged my audience here on the military base.
Does success equal lots of money? Perhaps, not all the time. The people that bought were most deserving of my work and I wouldn't have had it any other way. The stories I have with each purchase are priceless. Here are just a few. The young couple who bought the landscape of Monetepulciano are planning a trip there this December. How exciting that a beautiful memory of mine now hangs above their fireplace. Also serving as a calendar counting the days to their own vacation, which will one day remind them of their own beautiful memories. Art can be powerful for those that can appreciate it.
The cute little girl who's mommy said she could pick out a painting for her room. Such discerning taste for an 11 year old, she spent quite a bit of time looking through all my work. Her mind was made up with a sunflower painting. When mommy came to pay she told her that the posters of Johnny Depp would have to come down because now she has a piece of real art. Sorry Johnny.
Katherine and I spent most the time laughing, but that really is nothing new. I composed a little lyric which will help illustrate my audience, a bit of a coping mechanism, you might say.........
There was a young woman who had a red kitchen
Finding no art to match
She couldn't stop bitchin
Trying to "Keep with the Jones' "
She couldn't compete
Alone in her kitchen suffering defeat
and I with my memories
Yet no sales receipt

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Still Life with Deruta Plate

Still Life with Deruta Plate
20 x 24
acrylic on canvas
This is the last painting.....

108 pieces painted, priced, and packed.

Please check back next Monday. I will have photos from the show.
Wish me luck!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Deruta Plate

Still life with Deruta plate
day one (unfinished)
20 x 24
acrylic on canvas
Don't ask me why I started a very detailed painting 3 days before the show.....

Friday, March 7, 2008

Silent Sounds

Silent Sounds

Listen closely,
as snow
the silent sounds
of spring.
She buries those that think they can
melts to those that sing.

Bis Montag!

Thursday, March 6, 2008


9 x 12
acrylic on canvas

Fueled by nervous energy she continues to paint.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Near the end

Deruta Pitcher II

acrylic on canvas


This is the other painting I am donating to the raffle. I had planned this to be the last one , but I still have a few empty canvases haunting my studio and my mind. Tomorrow the show will be exactly one week away. I still need to get prices on everything. I have been putting that off to the last, because that will finalize this journey. In a way, I don't want it all to end. I have been working for this goal-the bazaar- for over a year. It scares me, because I don't have a reason to paint after this, not here in Germany. I wish I could just paint for enjoyment and for myself.

I guess my next painting venture will present itself, once we get settled in Ohio.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Deruta pitcher

Deruta Pitcher
8 x 8
acrylic on canvas

There will be two raffle drawings at the bazaar. This is one of my donations.
I will be painting another one similar to this tomorrow.
We are covered in snow (Schnee) here in Germany. I knew I jinxed the good weather by showing you my tulip slide show yesterday.