Art For Your Walls

Something that I consider a perk of my job is that I often use my own walls at home to store my art. Rather than have it sit in a stack of paintings, I get to take my paintings for a test run, so to speak, on my walls until they find their permanent home.

With the new house & its renovation coming along, Austin and I have been dreaming about what we want the finished product to look like. We have covered everything from paint colors, chandeliers, tile, and everything in between. These decisions are certainly the “fun” part of the project (at least a lot more fun than tearing out sheetrock from our walls) and it’s this vision that propels us forward when our arms feel like jello and we want to just go take a nap.

One of the big things that we both want in the house is for one of my paintings to be a permanent fixture in our home. So, basically, I am commissioning myself with a painting. When I got to thinking about what that would look like, I started to feel a little panicky and I felt the weight of what I was committing to. Commissioning a piece for my home made me realize the serious business that is a commissioned painting. I’ve certainly done commissions for clients in the past, but I never understood the gravity of the task until I was hiring myself out for my own home.

I firmly believe that choosing art for your home is a deeply personal decision. I believe that art is the soul of a home, and an integral part of communicating your voice & personality through your home’s design. That’s why I never like giving art as a gift to someone unless I am 100% positive that they’ve previously said they wanted it or I know for a fact that it will jive with their home decor. I would never want to impose a piece of art on someone who doesn’t connect with it.

As I paint, I’ve been asking myself the question lately, “Would I hang this in my home?” as a barometer of what I am communicating with each particular painting. I want a painting to be a window of nature that brings peacefulness and color to a home. I want it to be something that receives more than a passing glance, it should draw you in and transport you to a more beautiful place, even just for a moment.

That is where the beauty of commissions shines! A commission is made to be exactly what you need. It can be a custom size, style, color scheme, and even be based off of one of your own landscape photos to make this piece of work as personal and as specific as possible. It is an opportunity to create a lasting impact in your home, and an honor for me to facilitate.

As I consider what I want for my own home, I’ve adjusted my commission process to be as personal and fulfilling as I want my own commissioned painting to be. Art is an investment, but a worthy one.

Have you ever considered an original painting for your home? I have several available to browse through, or would love to create the perfect custom commissioned piece for you!

All About Brushes

Today I’d like to introduce you to the real hero of my studio - my paintbrushes! I’d have to guess that most artists couldn’t do without them. Yes, we have all heard of artists dumping, squeezing, and scraping paint on the surface of the canvas, but I’d guess that most of the artists out there rely on their trusty paintbrushes to create their artwork.

I selected a few of my favorite paintbrushes to cover in my Instagram stories, but I thought it would be helpful to layout all the info here too. There is such a variety of paintbrushes, whether its in shape, in what type of bristles or their specific function. For example, the different shapes of brushes include, Flat, Bright, Filbert, Round, and Fan. Each of these could be maid of hog hair, synthetic fibers, sable (a type of weasel, lol), or ox hair. The different purposes include, but are not limited to detailed work, color washes, hard edges or blending. These lists are by no means exhaustive, and are just the beginning of the breadth of paintbrushes available for artists.

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Authenticity & Kacey Musgraves

Last weekend, I saw Kacey Muscgraves perform at the Houston Rodeo.

Let me tell you how much I love me some Kacey. She was my most-listened-to artist that I according to my end of the year summary on Spotify; I spent over 32 hours of last year listening to her music, particularly her newest album, “Golden Hour.” Last summer I launched a collection of paintings, that I named “The Color of My Sky” after a line of one of her songs, the namesake of her album:

“...You’re my golden hour,
The color of my sky
You set my world on fire,
And i know, i know everything's gonna be alright…”

Needless to say, I’m a fan.

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Life Lessons (We Bought a House!)

Slowly but surely, I’m learning what the true meaning of “adulthood” is. Looking back, there are so many times when someone older than me dropped some wisdom, or told me a truth that I brushed off, thinking, “No, it’ll be different with me/us. We will do it differently,” just to turn around and nod my head saying, “yup, you were right.” Whether it’s about marriage, sticky situations, or life changes, some things are just always true. One of the lessons I’m beginning to learn is two-fold.

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My Dream Studio

As the end of the year is approaching, I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about my goals for next year and dreaming up all of the ways I can grow and develop in the coming year. A long term goal that is always on my mind is building my own studio.

While its true that art-making can happen anywhere at any time, there’s something dreamy when I think about having the perfect studio. It would be bright white, with tall ceilings and lots of wall space. There would be a corner with a comfy chair that I could sit in as I take a step back from the canvas, and I’d love to have a chair right next to it so that I could welcome guests and clients.

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Art That's On My Christmas List

If the Christmas season wasn’t already festive enough, I get even more excited to shop for my loved ones. Gift-giving is one of my love languages, and there is nothing more satisfying than discovering a gift that the recipient will a) love, and b) actually use in their day to day life. When I select gifts, I want them to be a combination of thoughtful, creative, unique, and somewhat unexpected. I take gift giving as a personal challenge to consider the recipient, think about what I’ve head him/her say or do in the past year, and assign a gift that perfectly suits them. Maybe for you this year it might be an ornament or vellum landscape!

While I spend the bulk of time online searching for gifts for other people, I can’t help but slowly build a list for myself. I’d be lying if I said that I haven’t had my eye on a couple items over the year, and finally get the chance to pull them from my bookmark archives. Every year, I always end up with several items from my favorite artists on that list, and this year is no exception. My favorite creative minds have outdone themselves this year. I’ve picked my top favorites that are on my list that just might end up on yours too ;)

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Why Prints?

Something that is easy to forget in any professional position is the jargon of the industry you are in. In regards to the art world, not everyone understands the difference between acrylic and oil paints, a gallery versus a showroom or who the heck Monet is. As I’ve shared more about my art practice, I’ve been reminded that there is an educational component that the consumer needs; a base level of knowledge that they might not already have. 

When I released my fine art prints, I got a few responses that made me realize that not everyone knows what exactly they are. To define the term, a fine art print is a high-quality printed reproduction of an original piece of work. In contrast, an original painting is the piece of art that I created with paint on a canvas. Fine art prints are intended to be framed, and give art collectors a more budget-friendly option to grow their art collection. One of the very first pieces of art that I purchased was a large print by one of my favorite artists, Teil Duncan. I had just graduated from TCU and I wanted to purchase a piece of art to commemorate the occasion. There was (and still is) no way that I could afford an original piece of her work, but because of her example through my college years, I knew that I had to have something from Teil. So, I chose my favorite print. Although I hope to one day own on of her original pieces, the print is truly the next best thing, and it still hangs in my home today. 

I decided to pursue a line of prints from The Color of My Sky series for this same reason. There might be some of you out there that want a piece of my art, but at this point in time, don’t have the ability to purchase an original piece. That is MORE THAN OKAY! I totally get it. As an art collector myself, I’m in the same boat. Once I realized this, the decision was obvious. I ordered a round of test prints and was amazed at how incredibly detailed the prints turned out. They really are just like the real thing! I was able to capture the texture of the brush strokes, and the same luminosity that can be found in the original painting. 

I hope to continue offering prints from every series of original paintings, so that there is always a fresh option for print collectors. If you haven’t already, you can take a look through the very first collection of prints - click here to browse!  

Artwork for the Holidays

I’m not here to scare you. I’m just here to give you a heads up. The Holidays. They’re coming, and they’re coming fast. When I was mapping out what I’d like to accomplish in the rest of this year, it didn’t take much time to realize that, when I worked backwards, I should’ve started making work for the holidays…last week.

But, I’m not going to fret, because I am sooo excited to share all of these original holiday items with you very soon. The raw materials for everything are coming in the mail day by day, and with each delivery I get more and more anxious to get to making. You can find all of the release dates below - mark them on your calendar, set a reminder in your phone, or follow me on Instagram so you don’t miss a single thing!


IN-HOME SHOP EVENT, NOVEMBER 13 - A good friend in Fort Worth is opening her home to myself and a few other local vendors for a fun shopping event! There will be jewelry, gift baskets, and of course, lots of art to shop from! The event will begin mid-morning - I’ll release the address very soon!

VELLUM LANDSCAPES & HAND-PAINTED ORNAMENTS, NOVEMBER 16 - I’m bringing back the vellum landscapes framed in magnetic acrylic frames and expanding my options for ornaments! If you weren’t around last year, this is what I’m talking about. This year, I’m setting a high goal for the quantity I’ll have available, and hopefully I’ll repeat a sell out!

NEW ORIGINAL PAINTINGS, NOVEMBER 29 - I’m making progress on a small collection of original paintings ranging from 18x24” to 30x40” in size. I’ll be honing in on my color palette, and I’m excited (and nervous!) to experiment on the canvas.

COMMISSIONS, DECEMBER 1 - Do you have a special place you want to capture with a painting? These make great gifts for family members of spouses to commemorate your love for beautiful landscapes. Fill out a form before December 1! I can’t wait to create a painting specially for you.

Beyond the Studio: In the Kitchen

Today I’m sharing the first of a series of posts called “Beyond the Studio.” The interests that I have outside of my art speak into what happens when I’m in front of a canvas. I want to dive deeper into the things that happen outside of my studio, that indirectly affect what happens when I pick up a paint brush. Whether creative or mundane, I’ve learned that every aspect of my life impacts my artwork - so today I’m sharing these other facets of my life with you!

Some of my earliest memories are in the kitchen. I specifically remember making cutout sugar cookies with my mom, and being so distraught over throwing away the scraps of dough, that I started sneaking little bites out of the trashcan (don’t worry, it was right on top!!). I’m not sure why that memory has stuck with me because its kind of weird and a bit gross, but maybe it’s that I had a passion for creating something out of nothing, and I hated to see it go to waste. I grew up eating wonderful homemade food, and it didn’t take long until my sister and I were joining my mom in the kitchen, helping her prepare whatever delicious recipe she was working on.

These days, I have grown to love cooking savory food primarily, with some baking thrown in there. I love cooking more than baking because of its forgiving nature. Baking is more of a precise art, and while I’ve had a lot of success there, I’ve had even more success cooking breakfast/lunch/dinner. It is less exact, and is open to interpretation. I get to use my creativity in the seasonings and spices, and love to riff off of a recipe that I trust. I usually cook dinner for Austin and I, and I’ve enjoyed planning ahead with a mix of new recipes and old favorites. There’s something calming about coming home after work and turning my brain off from accomplishing anything but my next meal. Cooking is a relatively quick creative exercise that produces immediately consumable results. When many other unfinished projects or unanswered questions linger, cooking allows me to one extra problem by the end of the day.

My family’s recipes are sealed tight, but I’ve slowly built a collection of recipes that are a mix of old family recipes, trusted favorites, and new resources. The cookbooks that I most often turn to are any of Ina Garten’s books or Chrissy Tiegen’s. I have yet to purchase Chrissy’s new book, so stay tuned on that… There are also several food blogs that I’ve come to trust because each and every recipe is outstanding. My top favorites are Half Baked Harvest and Broma Bakery. Not only do their recipes turn out great, these girls are fun to follow on social media, and inspire me to experiment with my paintings similar to how they push the boundaries of their recipes, their styling and their photography. I made these pork chops last week with some leftover pears from the farm and Austin was literally licking his plate. So good.

I think the reason that I love being in the kitchen so much is because of its immediate results. It allows me to serve others and myself, and creates a reason to gather, whether it is Austin and I on a weeknight, sitting on our kitchen barstools, or entertaining our closest friends and family to celebrate a special occasion. I can bring the same service-oriented spirit into my studio. I intend for my paintings to serve as a reminder of the natural beauty in the world, and to create a moment of calm in an otherwise overly stimulated world. While the results are less immediate than a home cooked meal, their lasting impact is equally as profound.