Splish Splash We Were Having a Blast!

A Fun Day at the River!

by Rachelle Siegrist

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AH . . . now this is relaxing!  Sharon and me floating on the tubes.

We’ve recently been under a “heat dome” here in the Smokies, so we headed to the river early one morning this past week with friends Tom and Sharon, and found the perfect spot for hanging out for the day!  The sun was shining bright illuminating the crystal clear water and within minutes we were in and having a ball!  Of course I couldn’t resist a nearby cascade, so down I went plunging into the frigid water, sending it splashing up all over me, and having a blast!

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A perfect way to spend a summer day!

I quickly convinced my friend Sharon to join me, so she too was having great fun going down the rapids!  While we ran the rapids for awhile, Tom and Wes snorkeled in the deep pool nearby.

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Me convincing Sharon the water’s not that cold . . . hee hee

I heard them excitedly telling each other what all they were seeing, so I grabbed my mask and joined them.  I was thrilled to see crawfish in great numbers, in various shapes and sizes, crawling around on the rocks beneath the crystal clear water!  A few trout were also swimming along the rock ledge below, as well as several chub minnows and other small fish.

One of my favorite past times . . . “Hillbilly Snorkeling”

Tom handles the icy water better than I do and he just dives in!

Soon friends Kit and his mom Helen had joined us, and of course it wasn’t too long before we convinced them to “Come on in . . . the water feels great!”  Soon after we had all worked up quite an appetite, and decided it was lunch time!  I quickly concluded that the best seat was my tube, so I floated around while enjoying my sandwich, a first . . . and  great one at that!

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Just hanging out

With all of us being on a sugar/caffeine high after consuming some delicious homemade dark chocolate brownies, we thought it a perfect time to really hit the rapids!  So we took turns while being cheered on and of course photographed by the others!  Each time the frigid icy water splashed up onto stomachs, it created great photo-ops indeed!!!

Sharon and Tom going down . . . Woo-Hoo! 

Then me and Helen go down . . .Yee-Haw!

After just relaxing and snorkeling awhile longer, we three girls decided to float down the river for aways,  after I convinced them this would indeed be lots of fun and a great adventure!!!  We had a ball, bobbing, swooshing, plunging and giggling and named ourselves the “River Warriorettes” AKA . . . see adventure, hear adventure and do adventure!  Of course due to the lower water level, there was quite a bit of rock polishing going on as well, compliments of our bums . . .  ha ha!  While the paparazzi (Tom and Kit) took photos and videos, Wes became the rescuer and helped unstick certain individuals several times while we were all laughing like crazy.  An exciting highlight of our adventurous journey was when Sharon had just gotten Helen unstuck, and she immediately went over a cascade backwards, while Kit was yelling . .  “No, no, no!” but never stopped recording her doing so!  Thankfully she made it just fine and now has an awesome story and video to share!

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Sharon, Helen and me just taking it easy

It was truly a fabulous day with great friends and we’re all ready to do it again soon!

I was delighted to learn this past week that my miniature still life painting “Rhapsody in Blue” won the Best in Watercolor at the 10th Annual Miniature Fine Art Show!  Wes was thrilled to learn he won the People’s Choice Award on his miniature landscape painting “A Moment of Inspiration” at the 12th Annual Heartland Art Guild International Miniature Paintings & Sculpture Art Show.  You can see and purchase several of our miniatures this week at both of these shows.

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~ Recently Off the Easel ~

I finished my first miniature painting on silk available for our shows this past week, of a hummingbird I photographed while in Texas this past spring for the TexArt Workshop. I first tried my hand at it, while painting a Peony with artist friend Dan Chen there at the workshop, and was hooked immediately!  I’m so delighted that it’s sold already!  Wes has been putting the finishing touches on a surprise commission he has been working on.

“The Flying Ballerina” 

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~ To Commission A Painting by Us Click Here!

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Until next time . . .

~ Rachelle

See Exquisite Miniatures at the Woolaroc Museum!

See Exquisite Miniatures at the Woolaroc Museum!

by Rachelle Siegrist

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Wes and I are very excited that our touring exhibition Exquisite Miniatures is currently at the beautiful Woolaroc Museum and Wildlife Preserve near Bartlesville, Oklahoma!  We had the pleasure of showing our work there back in May of 2011, along with several fellow artists.  Our weekend spent at the museum back then was a truly delightful one, as it offers so much to see and do, and is run by a very friendly staff! So if you’ve ever thought of visiting this gem, now is certainly the time to go, as you can see over fifty of our miniature paintings available for purchase, and displayed alongside beautiful western, wildlife paintings and sculptures.  You can read more about our adventure-filled  weekend here . . . Woolaroc weekend.

Here are a few photos featuring our Exquisite Miniatures exhibition and a portion of the museum’s lovely interior (courtesy of the Woolaroc)

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Over fifty miniature paintings, including self portraits by each of us, as well as two from our Visiting the Masterpieces series, are currently featured in this unprecedented and history in the making national traveling museum exhibition encompassing twenty-five venues thus far!

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A sign showing step-by-step images of one of each of our paintings

We were delighted and honored to be commissioned by the Woolaroc several years ago to paint both Presidents Bush and Obama for their collection, which is displayed in a lovely wood cabinet at the museum.

The museum’s collection of Presidential portrait miniatures displayed in the case above in 2011.  The two most recently painted portraits where done by us.

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Exquisite Miniatures will be at the Woolaroc until September 30th, then it will travel to the The Dane G. Hansen Memorial Museum in Logan, KS, where it will be on display November 4 through December 4th.  If you would like to see Exquisite Miniatures come to a museum near you and have any info or know persons at the museum, contact either us at siegrist@artofwildlife.com or our Tour Director, Dr. David Wagner.

~ Recently Off the Easel ~

I finished my miniature painting this past week of an absolutely adorable calf and it’s Longhorn mother.  I had captured this amazingly tender moment in a photo, while recently visiting Texas during the TexArt workshop.  Early one morning, myself along with 3 other ladies, drove a half an hour to a certain pasture, with hopes of seeing and photographing the resident herd of Longhorns.  We were thrilled and delighted when the entire herd walked over to us within minutes of us pulling up to the wooden fence!  I got numerous wonderful photos, but this one in particular instantly captured my heart, and I knew I had to paint it first!!!

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“A Loving Touch” 

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~ To Commission A Painting by Us Click Here!

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Until next time . . .

~ Rachelle