Miniature Paintings At The Customs House Museum

Exquisite Miniatures At The Customs House

By Rachelle Siegrist

Exquisite miniature exhibition at customs house museum

Wes and I headed to Clarksville, TN last Wednesday morning, and I couldn’t resist singing the Monkee’s song. “Take the last train to Clarksville . . . and I’ll see you in the morning“!  We arrived in time to visit Dunbar Cave State Park later that afternoon.  It was a lovely little park, with a couple of nice hiking trails winding their way through the woodlands, which we enjoyed walking, and although the cave wasn’t yet open for season, it was still impressive to see!  It’s adjacent to Swan Lake, where we saw lots of turtles, a few ducks and even a nesting Canada Goose.

rachelle siegrist at dunbar Cave state park

The next morning we drove to the Customs House Museum and Cultural Center, a beautiful historic building which first opened as a customs house to the public in 1898. We were delightfully surprised to see a large banner hanging at the front of the magnificent building, displaying our miniature paintings on each side!

Once inside, we were met by the friendly staff, before heading to the gallery with Terri, where Exquisite Miniatures is on display until June 24th.  Beautifully arranged in groupings, each group has two hanging magnifying glasses easily accesible, for getting an intimate look at the miniature gems on display.

Exquisite miniature exhibition at customs house museum3

We quickly set up our easels and palettes, while laying out our brushes, and before long attendees started filing into the gallery.  With standing room only left, everyone seemed intrigued with the miniature art, as we talked about the process, joys and difficulties of painting miniatures, while also demonstrating some of our painting techniques.

wes siegrist Exquisite miniature exhibition at customs house museumOnlookers voiced how interesting the differences in our painting techniques are.  Having not really thought that much about it before, we totally agreed that watching Wes paint is like watching a high speed car race, while watching me is more like watching sheep peacefully graze in green pastures!

Trying to pack as much information as possible into our time there demonstrating, which passed all too quickly, we lingered afterwards and answered as many questions as possible from curious attendees.

siegrists Exquisite miniature exhibition at customs house museum

Afterwards, we enjoyed walking through the museum and seeing the numerous exhibits and historical artifacts on display, with the large model train set being a favorite for both of us!  We want to thank Terri, Blanca, Randy and the rest of the friendly staff at the museum again for making our time there such a pleasure!  If you’re ever in the Clarksville area, I highly recommend a visit to this wonderful museum!

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Next week I’ll be sharing exciting stories and amazing photos from our adventurous day at Fall Creek Falls State Park!!

We’re so delighted that we each had a miniature painting accepted into this year’s Society of Animal Artists’ 58th Annual Art & The Animal Exhibition
at The James Museum of Western and Wildlife Art, St. Petersburg, FL!

Wes’ “Long Jawed Orb Weavers” and my “Uncomfortably Menacing”

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Until next time . . .

~ Rachelle


Happy Easter


Wishing You A Blessed Easter

By Rachelle Siegrist

Rachelle Siegrist's Easter BouquetMy neighbor friend Mary Ruth, kindly brought me this beautiful bouquet from her gardens this past week, after learning I had been under the weather.  I must say it smells as pretty as it looks too, and is currently sitting in the middle of our dining room table, where we can enjoy it throughout the day!Cows in Townsend photo by Wes SiegristI can’t tell you how thankful and thrilled I am to be able to enjoy daily walks outside once again!  With spring rains, the grass is a gorgeous bright green and the local cows are enjoying it immensely!  I love walking by these precious babies each day, stopping to watch and admire them and of course chat a bit.  They’re still quite furry, since our temps have dipped into the low 30’s recently, making them extra cute!Yellow Trillium photo by Rachelle SiegristIt’s also been such fun walking through our garden paths in the yard, seeing what new wildflower is blooming or about to open each day.  Several Trillium as well as Bloodroot are now blooming, along with a few other wildflowers.  Some of the shrubs are covered in bright green baby leaves and I can see the light red of new growth in several of the tree canopies.  It’s a splendid and very welcoming sight to these eyes indeed!  Wes also has kale, lettuce and a few herbs, as well as lots of seeds sprouting in the greenhouse.  A promise that warmer days are coming soon!cute squirrel photoWe even got to enjoy eating a few meals on our back porch recently, which was a real treat, not only for us, but also for my critter friends who I toss peanuts out to.  We have a squirrel we named Stretchy, because she’s always hanging upside down from her toes and stretching her arms and fingers as far as she can, and even occasionally yawns at the same time, who is nesting inside a big birdhouse outside our studio window.  We love watching her peak out the door of her home, and of course she loves coming up to the porch for handouts.  although she’s quite spoiled, another squirrel named Friendly is definitely the most spoiled, and comes right up to the back screen door, while waiting for me to hand peanuts out to her.  I truly love my squirrel friends and the great laughter and joy they bring to me every day!

Come see us paint at the “Art and Lunch with Rachelle and Wes Siegrist”!

Art & Lunch with Wes and Rachelle SiegristThe fun is happening at the Customs House Museum, in Clarksville, TN, Thursday, April 19th at 12:15 PM – 1:15 PM CDT.  Its free admission to the event, and bagged lunches are welcome.  In conjunction with our exhibit “Exquisite Miniatures“, Wes and I will be giving a gallery talk and demonstration of our miniature painting technique in the Kimbrough Gallery.  We hope to see some of you there!

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Until next time . . .

~ Rachelle



Getting Ready For SEWE!

 Miniature Paintings at SEWE and The Neville Public Museum!

By Rachelle Siegrist

siegrist gardens

Ah . . . the feeling of hammer hitting the nail!  How delightful to derive so much satisfaction from one of life’s simplest activities, especially when done efficiently and perfect! I got to spend the day yesterday, enjoying this favorite past time of mine, while Wes and I rebuilt a large wooden planter by our back deck that houses a beautiful Weeping Holly.  After 15 years, the old wooden box was in disrepair and needed to be replaced, and I must say that the holly seems very pleased in its’ new container, and I was very happy to spend the day outdoors building and hammering!

wes siegrist framing miniature paintings

The rest of the week has been spent once again at our easels and with Wes working on framing our paintings getting ready for the upcoming Southeastern Wildlife Exposition in Charleston, SC.

framing miniature paintings


Upon finishing a painting, we decide which frame it looks best in, and then they lay in wait, until appropriate mats are cut and the painting is assembled, ready to be hung or displayed on an easel.

wes siegrist framing paintings

Painting and framing are only part of the work that goes into getting ready for our upcoming shows at SEWE and NatureWorks. I’ll share more of the process next week.

Our traveling exhibition tour Exquisite Miniatures, opened at the Neville Public Museum a couple of weeks ago and is being greatly enjoyed by the public!

Siegrist Exquisite Miniatures Exhibition at The Neville Public Museum -

Over 60 of our miniature paintings were hung with careful precision affording the viewer the opportunity to enjoy looking at the little gems with ease.

Siegrist Exquisite Miniatures Exhibition at The Neville Public Museum

Green Bay Presses’ The Daily Dose, was live on January 24th at the Neville Public Museum to talk about the new exhibition, Exquisite Miniatures.  You too can enjoy watching the fun interview by clicking on the photo linked below.Green Bay Press Gazette live with Siegrist Exquisite Miniatures Exhibition at The Neville Public Museum

dog painting by rachelle siegrist commission a pet painting

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Until next time . . .

~ Rachelle