Fun Digging Through History

 

turkeyi in smoky mountain national park
Turkey crossing the road winding through the Smoky Mountains 

Wes and I took a whirlwind trip over to Durham, NC this past week, where we went to pick up historical items pertaining to the Society of Animal Artists.  One of our long-time SAA members passed away this summer, leaving behind newsletters and catalogs, among other things. With Wes as Executive Director of the organization, it was decided that we would drive over and get the material to add to the SAA archives. On the drive over we saw a couple different flocks of turkey while winding our way through the Smoky Mountains National Park, which is always a treat!

christmas at gatlinburg
A rainbow of folding chairs line the roads in Gatlinburg

Leaving the park behind and entering Gatlinburg, we began noticing what looked like folding chairs lying along part of the sidewalks lining the main road through town. On the return trip the next day, there were even more of them, creating a continuous rainbow of folding chairs along the edge of the sidewalk, stretching the entire length of Gatlinburg! We decided it must be chairs that people laid in place days early, to save their place for the upcoming Christmas parade, and I must admit we found this unusual practice most interesting. Back at home that evening, Wes started the enjoyable job of digging through everything and finding the missing links in the Society’s 60+ year history.

wes siegirst with SAA historical papers
Wes going through and organizing newly acquired SAA materials

My birds and squirrels are always very happy when we return home, even if we’ve only been gone overnight, and they all come to eat while acting like they haven’t eaten in days! The next day the sun returned for a while, which we all thoroughly enjoyed, especially my precious Bunny squirrel who hung upside down in one of her favorite yoga poses for nearly 15 minutes, obviously enjoying the sun’s warmth and a good stretch!

cute squirrel photo by rachelle siegrist

 

 

 

~  In The Studio  ~

I finished painting a commission that I’ll share with you later. Wes is painting the last painting in a collection of miniature songbirds that will be comprised of 6 paintings.  He had to postpone finishing them when his Ott-lite bulb burned out! The set will debut at the 38th Southeastern Wildlife Exposition this coming February.

miniature songbird paintings by wes siegrist

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~ See Our Miniatures In Person This Week ~

86th Annual International Exhibition of Fine Art in Miniature
Until January 5, 2020: The Mansion at Strathmore, Bethesda, MD

siegrist miniatures in the tradition of audubon exhibitionIn the Tradition of Audubon Exhibition
Until January 5, 2020: Cincinnati Museum Center, Cincinnati, OH

siegrist miniatures in the tradition of audubon exhibition

Society of Animal Artists’ 59th Annual Art & The Animal Exhibition 
Until January 5, 2020: The Briscoe Western Art Museum, San Antonio, TX

Rachelle and wes siegrist paintings in SAA Exhibition at Briscoe Museum

 

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Until Next Time . . . 

~ Rachelle

American Women Artists Steamboat Art Museum Exhibition

 

american women artists steamboat springs museum rachelle siegrist
With my sold miniature painting

Wes and I just returned home from an exciting week of fun and adventures out in Colorado!  We flew out to attend the opening weekend festivities for the American Women Artists Exhibition at the beautiful Steamboat Art Museum located in Steamboat Springs, CO.  Arriving a day early we drove over from Berthoud with dear friends artist Diane Mason and her husband Bob and boy did I ever enjoy the spectacular scenery along the way!  It was a fabulous day, with clear blue skies above, as we watched the changing scenery unfold, seeing snow, moose, Bald Eagles and more!  Steamboat Springs is located in a stunning setting and was so green after recent snowfall and rain.  We arrived in time to attend the Meet and Greet at the museum that evening, where I enjoyed seeing numerous artist friends I had not seen in several years.

american women artists steamboat springs museum opening

Of course being told that my miniature painting had sold the minute the show opened, made it even more exciting!  The next morning we all headed out to artist John Fawcett’s gorgeous ranch where his studio is located, and the drive out rewarded us with more spectacular scenery!  Nestled against a backdrop of evergreens and a dense aspen grove, his studio and home face a jaw-dropping view of the surrounding mountains and pastures!

american women artists rachelle siegrist
With artist friends Diane and Laney at John Fawcett’s studio

They had a few models there for artists who were painting on location and I found these two four-legged models particularly beautiful!

artist john fawcett studio

Artists enjoyed painting plein air from a variety of scenic locations throughout the day, and it was very interesting to walk about and see what everyone was working on.  One couldn’t ask for a more picturesque setting in which to paint in!

american women artists john fawcett studio1

Wes and I walked about while taking in the scenery and I decided this was the greatest BBQ pit I had ever seen, imagining cooking over the fire, and then gazing out at the mountains, watching as the setting sun was replaced with vivid starry skies above!

american women artists john fawcett

Artist John and wife Elizabeth not only graciously opened their beautiful home and studio to us all, but also fed us a delicious lunch with one of the best views ever!

artist john fawcett ranch

After thanking them for such a wonderful opportunity and great time, we enjoyed another scenic drive around Steamboat Lake, before heading to the botanical gardens located in downtown Steamboat Springs.  Free time in the afternoon was filled with me enjoying a swim in the delightfully heated warm water at the hotel and evenings we spent playing ping pong outdoors with friends Diane and Bob.  The next morning Diane and I attended the members’ meeting which brought a couple of nice surprises allowing us to use colored pencils,  markers and more!

american women artists rachelle siegrist4
Creative time!

After being given an assortment of art supplies, we were told to draw a map of our art journey through life which had brought us to the point where we currently were, being involved in AWA.  Mine ended up being one of the lightest ones, and I figured it was because I’m so used to using such a light touch with my wee brushes while painting my miniatures, especially when working on silk.

american women artists
A patchwork quilt of our drawings

That afternoon we had enough time to take a short hike to Fish Creek Falls, which was thundering down with the snowmelt feeding its voracious appetite!  I even managed to squeeze in some time swimming in the pool before heading to the opening at the Steamboat Art Museum that evening.  We arrived in time to enjoy a leisure walk through the Wildhorse Gallery, where I made a new friend named Timber.  He was absolutely gorgeous and I had great fun petting him and feeling his dense soft fur, and he seemed quite happy with this newfound friendship as well!

wildhorse gallery steamboat springs

The museum that evening was filled to the brim as excited patrons and museum visitors poured in while admiring the stunning collection of art comprising the AWA show this year.

american women artists steamboat springs museum5

AWA is a wonderful group of women artists of which I am most honored and delighted to be a part of, and I am thrilled at the direction in which this organization is going!  If you would like more information, please visit the website at American Women Artists.  Next week I’ll be sharing photos and stories from our outdoor adventures while out in Colorado.

~ Fresh Off The Easel ~

Before leaving for Colorado I finished my miniature painting on silk of this beautiful mother flamingo tending to her baby.  This piece along with several others of both mine and Wes’ will be featured in the upcoming exhibition titled In the Tradition of Audubon Exhibition at the Cincinnati Museum Center, located in Cincinnati, OH, this September 12th through January 5, 2020.

Flamingo-painting_Primping_With_Mommy-by-Rachelle-Siegrist1
“Primping With Mommy”

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Until Next Time . . . 

~ Rachelle

Attending the Artistic Designs Miniature Fine Art Show Opening

the artists at the 2013 opening
L to R ~ Tim, Char, Sandra, Wes, Rachelle, ?, Terri, John and Penny

This past Thursday, Wes and I left Townsend, and drove to Jeffersonville, IN to where his parents live. We enjoyed spending the afternoon with them and eating dinner together that evening. After lunch on Friday, we left and drove two hours north to Brownsburg, IN, where we arrived at the Artistic Designs Gallery in time to judge the miniature show before the opening that evening. The opening was well attended and it was standing room only when Wes began his lecture on the history of miniature art. Many of the attendees complimented Wes on how very interesting his talk was, and how much they enjoyed it! Several artists drove a couple of hours or more to attend the opening as well as our demonstration and/or workshop the next day. It was the first time we had ever met a few of them, and it was indeed a pleasure getting to talk with them that evening and during the next day!

 

The next morning we were at the gallery bright and early, ready for a day of painting adventure! During the morning hours we demonstrated for all attending, and answered questions as well as Wes giving out lots of information about our painting techniques. After enjoying a nice lunch with a few of the students, we spent the afternoon teaching a workshop. That evening it was time to say our goodbyes to everyone and “Thank you’s” to gallery owners, Lee and Laura, and begin driving the two-hour trip back to southern Indiana, to Wes’ parents home.

wes lecture at artistc design
Wes giving his lecture during the opening that evening
artistic designs art gallery
A wall featuring some of our miniature paintings on display

We arrived at Wes’ parent’s home that evening in time to enjoy a nice walk with them both  We walked some distance to feed carrots and apples to the neighborhood horses, which is always a highlight for me! I was also quite happy that they were babysitting Wes’ brother Greg’s dog, Zeus, as I really enjoy walking him, and it gave me an excuse to go for lots of walks throughout the weekend! The next afternoon, Wes’ two brothers and their families came over to spend some time and grab a bite to eat. Wes’ niece Caroline, and I played beauty shop, and worked on her American Girl dolls’ hairstyles. That evening, most of us went to eat pizza at a local favorite, Tony Boombozz Pizzeria, and to see Despicable Me II at the theater. The next morning, I gave Wes’ dad and mom a haircut, and after lunch I rolled his mom’s hair for a permanent. It was then time to say goodbye and drive back to Townsend. It was a beautiful drive and lots of hungry birdies, as well as a blooming orchid welcomed us home! Today, we’ve spent catching up on business stuff and working in the yard, including me planting some pretty ferns and a holly tree which George kindly dug up for me out of their yard.

Tony Boombozz Pizzeria in Louisville
Wes and Caroline at Boombozz Pizzeria in Louisville
photo of a blue jay
B.J. finally enjoys taking a sunbath after many days of no sun!
orchid bloom photo
A gorgeous bloom on one of the orchids I saved from the garbage in Charleston, SC during the SEWE show
spanish moss
My beautiful Spanish Moss, which my dad graciously got for me when we were in Florida a couple of weeks ago

 

Fresh off the easel ~ I finished my miniature painting of two beautiful Flamingos during a courtship ritual.

Wes finished his miniature landscape painting of Nacapule Canyon in Mexico. I’m currently painting on a commission.

flamingo painting
“An Elegant Courtship” by Rachelle

 

Miniature Landscape Painting by Wes Siegrist
“Lost In Awe In The Canyon”  by Wes

~ Check out these exhibitions of our work this week ~

 

 

~ Masters in Miniature Invitational Show

 

Trailside Galleries, Jackson, WY

 

~ 52nd Society of Animal Artists “Art & the Animal” Exhibition Tour

Charles H. MacNider Art Museum, Mason City, IA

Society of Animal Artist tour
That’s my miniature painting at the right

 

 

To view all our upcoming exhibits: http://www.artofwildlife.com/exhibitschedule.html

 

 Have a loved one or a beloved pet you would like captured in miniature? Contact and commission us!

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Until next time ~ Rachelle