According to John Kremer’s newsletter, today is American Painter Day.  Most writers know that John Kremer is somewhat of a book promotion guru, helping authors obtain publicity for their projects.  With each e-mailed newsletter comes a summary of some little known days of observation.  My favorites have been Bon Fires can be Dangerous to your Health Day, and Starting Over Day, which conveniently falls just around my birthday.

Today, as I prepare for the upcoming 35th Annual Christian Brothers Academy Art Show, I am truly pleased that it is American Painter Day (I think that this should include house painters, too). 

For local art lovers, the show (in Monmouth Co., NJ) is what makes this coming weekend extra “Super,” as many enjoy the art exhibition as a warm up to that other big event on Sunday.  The show, a major fundraiser for the school, begins Friday evening with a classy wine and casual dinner reception for patrons and artists, and is open to the public for a nominal fee through Sunday afternoon.  For my fellow artists, and I, it is the first show of the year, a way to reconnect with the public.

When I created my first antique postcard painting in 1989 I never thought I would be doing this for so long.  My work employs the use of vintage postcards, which after being matted, are embellished with an extension painting that continues onto the mat.  Postcards can be anywhere from 50 to 100 years old.  The finished piece can be viewed from the back, showing postmarks, stamps and messages, they are the equivalent of our modern day e-mails.  I am happy to say that my work hangs on walls around the world!

In my research for my National Dog Week book, I have taken to collecting old postcards that feature dogs circa 1905-1940.  Some are cute, some sweet and sad, others beautiful, but all show me that even back then, dogs ruled!  These cards have been a welcome addition to my growing collection.

In honor of American Painter Day, I would like to give a shout out to my sister-in-law, a Fashion Institute of Technology grad, turned “country girl” and  mother of four, Gigi Begin.  Gigi is a gifted painter who recently presented me with a portrait of our dog, Hooper, painted on old barn wood.  It is truly beautiful.  Gigi’s paintings are on display in several venues in and around Cambridge, and Saratogoa Springs, New York. 

And a shout out to my “top dog” and husband, Rich, who is celebrating a birthday tomorrow.  Shhh…he told me if I wrote about him on my “Blag” (ryhmes with Blab) he would sabbotage my posts!  But I can only say good things about a guy who is patient and supportive, always there, a true friend to all, always looking out for everyone, always unpredictable, refreshingly honest, and very funny.

These days when I tell people I am concentrating on my writing, they mostly ask if I will illustrate my books, and if I’ll keep up with the painting.

In answer to those questions about my future plans, I really can’t answer them for I’ve always made my plans up as I go along….I’ll just have to consult the cards (postcards, that is).

Dog Trivia Question:  Which very popular dog from the Terrier Group is not recognized by the AKC?

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