Welcome to My Project!

I was born and raised in Florida. After many years of travel, attending plein air paint outs, I discovered that residencies are the best way to explore the natural world I love. Working for an extended period from seven to ten days really enhances my painting experience. I am lucky to have friends and collectors who make it possible to explore the exciting and interesting locations I love to paint. Supporters provide their unoccupied vacation homes or hotel lodging for my residencies throughout the year. I am always delighted to leave an original framed painting for them as my thanks for their generous gift. If you would like to sponsor a residency, I would love to hear from you.
Contact me at: linda@lindablondheim.com

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Friday, June 29, 2012

Painting From My New Smyrna Residency

Notes From My Residency Files

This is a painting done from one of the images I took while on location at Merritt Island Wildlife Preserve. It is lovely to have so many reference photos on file to choose months after my time in a location.It brings back the beauty and joy I experienced there. I hope to have another residency there in January or February of 2013. That is the ideal time to be there. The color is lush and beautiful then. The temperature is pleasant and no bugs!! The preserve is just south of New Smyrna and is owned by NASA . There are hundreds of trails that wind through the marshes and large pine forests and palm hammocks. The waterways are lined with very old red cedars that have been sculpted by wind and rain over the years. A marvelous wild place to explore in Florida.

The painting is not so pinky purple. It is sometimes hard to get the right hue in the imaging software. 

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

My First Fairy Houses

These are  houses I built yesterday in my painting studio. The top is a clay flower pot and the second is an old strawberry flower pot turned upside down. I used pine bark for the roof shingles. To put texture on the bottom pot, I used paper towel pieces dipped in paint and glue and smoothed them onto the pot.  I like the idea of the clay pots, as they will last indefinitely and I can replace the roof and awnings as they degrade. I will seal them with varnish to help the paint last a bit longer, but as they age, they will begin to blend into the landscape. Hopefully moss and lichens will attach to them as well. I have painted them with neutral purples,blues and grays with just a bit of color here and there on trim. I have seen fairy houses that are bright colors but I don't like them. I want them to look as natural as possible. When I get them on site, I will add paths and ornaments of nuts,berries and dried leaves to make them welcoming for our fairy friends at
 Fair Oaks. I will make a Popsicle easel and do a tiny painting as decoration.

I'm going to be making some of the houses to put in my loft studio as well.  More houses to come....

Sunday, June 24, 2012

A Fair Oaks Project- Fairy Houses

Notes From My Residency Journal

Being an artist in residence is not just about being a painter. Being a steward is part of the package. I roam the  land every time I go to Fair Oaks, looking for trees down, trash left by a careless visitor and checking that the neighborhood livestock have not wandered onto the property. The owner and staff have so much to do, they don't have as much free time as I do. I like to help them in small ways when I can. My next Fair Oaks project is to build some Fairy Houses around the woods and fields. Fair Oaks has long had fairy residents in Holy Ground Field. They make fairy rings in the grass and I can feel their presence there from time to time. I think some homes for them would be a good idea. Thankfully, Rick is a patient man who allows me to do fun projects on his land.

My favorite fairy houses are the all natural ones. I'm not crazy about the fancy store bought varieties. I have begun to gather materials to build the houses. My father was a wood worker/machinist. I think he instilled the love in me to do projects. I'm  not skilled with tools, but I have figured out how to use pre-made construction, like bird houses, baskets, and cardboard boxes as the buildings and cover them with natural materials for roofing, walls, doors and windows. I can use a hammer and nails and wood glue, so I have the plan.

Here are some materials I use for the houses:

tree bark
pine cones
dried and pressed leaves like Sycamore,Magnolia and Maple. Large leaves that can be dried flat work the best for wall covering, floor rugs, and roof tiles.
popsicle sticks
Spanish and decorative mosses
wood scraps
clay pots
wood glue

These little houses are left in the elements to gradually break down, so they will need to be rebuilt from time to time. That is part of the fun. I'm looking forward to building these houses as a project. I will leave a tiny painting on an easel in my favorite one.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

The Daly House

The Daly House

Notes From My Residency Journal

This is a rendering of the next residency home I'll stay in at Crystal River.It is out on the marshes with glass windows so I'm going to really enjoy it. It is also right next to the state park so I won't have to travel a lot to see great scenery. I'll be there from July 23-29. More to come.....

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Mini Fair Oaks Residency 06/17/2012

Field Palms

Notes From My Residency Journal

Is it any wonder that I love Fair Oaks so much? The above scene is only one of many I see each time I go there. This morning I got up and baked a fresh blueberry tart for the gentlemen who toil tirelessly to make Fair Oaks the haven it is for me and many others who visit. I arrived to greetings from Buddy and Shane and got to say hello to Rick and Mr Jake Glisson who visited and brought a fresh baked peach pie. Mr Glisson is a legend in Evinston and Cross Creek. His paintings are wonderful illustrations of life in the south. He is an accomplished writer as well, with several books about Florida. It is always a pleasure to see him when he visits Fair Oaks. 

My golf cart was ready and waiting for me when I arrived and I enjoyed a morning of painting in the shade. After my first painting I drove around to see the fields, plowed and ready for planting. They look so different bare of the rye I love to paint each spring. I love the rhythm of the seasons at Fair Oaks., The spring garden is through and now the fields are tall with grass, creating ribbons of light as the grasses wave. The cart leaves interesting tracks through the fields.

Rick's God daughter Liz arrived in time for lunch as well. We enjoyed excellent chicken,corn bread, macaroni and cheese, blueberry tart and peach pie. Great Eats!! After lunch Liz and I took the cart around the fields and Fish Prairie. We ended up on the lane through giant trees, with lots of limbs down from the recent storm.  We got stuck on a limb, tried to push the cart over with no luck, but I was able to back over it and get free. I love that golf cart. it never lets me down. 

It was a beautiful summer day and a wonderful place to spend it. I'm the luckiest girl in the world to be welcomed at Fair Oaks. 

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Crystal River Coming Up Soon

Crystal River

Notes From My Residency Journal

My next residency is to Crystal River and surrounding areas. I'll be there from July 23-29,2012. Linda Daly is my wonderful sponsor for this residency and I'm so grateful. I'll be staying in her home while she is traveling north for the summer.

I'm looking forward to exploring Crystal River, Ozello and the Homasassa Springs area. I love the west coast marshes and they have a very different flavor from the east coast. More to come on this residency in July.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Researching Residency Locations

Washington Oaks State Park

Notes From My Residency Journal

I'm doing the research now for two upcoming residencies, one in Crystal River and then in Crescent Beach.

I'll be looking at the following locations in the Crystal River Area:

Crystal River Preserve State Park
Crystal River Wildlife Refuge
Chassahowitzka Refuge
Chinsegut Hill Refuge
Withlacoochee State Forest
Homosassa Springs State Wildlife Park

In the Crescent Beach area:

Bings Landing Preserve
Flagship Harbor Preserve
Princess Place
River to Sea Preserve
Gamble Rogers State Park
Bulow Plantation/The Ormond Beach Loop
Sea Colony Community

That ought to keep me really busy. I always like to do a bit of planning and research before I head out to a residency. I feel a responsibility to the project and to my sponsors to learn and grow, and to promote the wild places that we have in Florida. They are so important to the health of our state. 
More to come...

Sunday, June 10, 2012

My Fall Residency

Notes From My Residency Journal

Before you know it, fall will arrive and I'll be off to the beach for my residency at Hibiscus Condominium Resort on September 10-16th, thanks to Bob and Nan Sherwood, my residency sponsors. I'm thrilled to be going back again to explore and paint in some of the areas I explored in May for the first time during my residency sponsored by Chad and Sarahs Condo.

Bob and Nan tell me that the grounds of their condo are especially beautiful with many beautiful plantings, boardwalks and beach views, so I will be able to get many paintings right at their condo. I am already dreaming of my time there. Thank you Bob and Nan for your generous support. I know that Nan loves flowers and gardens so I will be doing a nice painting of flowers for her as my thank you gift.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Butler Park- Crescent Beach

Butler Park

Notes From my Residency Journal

This is the second painting I have done of Butler Park. It is a lovely and quiet county park in Crescent Beach, right off A1A. There is a nice boat ramp and large parking lot. Covered pavilions with tables are scattered under large shade trees and there is a bathroom with indoor plumbing as well. It faces the river, so there are lots of water and wading birds in the canal and the river. It is a  great place to photograph or to paint. I saw no place to pay fees so I believe it must be free with no boat ramp or park fees.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Buddy and Shane

18x24 inches
oil on canvas

Notes From My Residency Journal

I don't do many canine portraits but I wanted to honor Buddy and Shane and they are such good subjects. I used a photo by Magda, the Photographer in Residence for Fair Oaks for my reference. She takes such beautiful photographs of Fair Oaks. 

Buddy on the right and Shane on the left are my canine friends at Fair Oaks. Buddy loves the old basketball in the painting. Shane loves to aggravate Buddy :>) Buddy is a dog with much dignity. He is quiet and thoughtful. He is very polite and waits his turn for pets and attention. He is about as perfect as any dog I know. 

Then there is glorious Shane. He is the baby at Fair Oaks. What a dog. His life is one amusing adventure after another. Shane often goes with me to paint if his Dad is not around. I am naturally the last choice as a  companion, since his Dad is much more interesting, but Shane loves everyone. When he was a pup he was always in trouble for some sort of mischief. Most of us lost our lunch or dinner at least once. He is so smart. He learned how to open the door to the cottage all by himself too. He is a high energy dog and I never know what he will do next. 

When I had my last residency at Fair Oaks in February, Shane, Buddy and I got to spend a lot of time together. I love them so much and luckily, they are kind to Henry when he is with me. Henry is simply wild about them.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Perks of Being an Artist in Residence

The afternoon light at Fair Oaks is like no other place. It is simply stunning!!

My friend Sebastian is the business manager for the Richard M Knellinger Law Office. I don't get to see him often but it is always a treat to see him. and his fiance Magda. She is the official photographer for Fair Oaks and the designer of the web site, Fair Oaks Florida What a talented couple!!

Notes From My Residency Journal

One of the perks of being an artist in residence at Fair Oaks is the privilege of being invited to many of the parties there. Today Rick threw a party for his foreman Mark and fiance Anna. They will soon be leaving for Europe for Mark to finish his master's degree in Germany.

We wished them well with a lovely party, dining alfresco on the beautiful green carpet of the lawn at Fair Oaks. We enjoyed BBQ pork, chicken with all of the trimmings and Rick's legendary homemade ice cream. Lindy and Bob Brounley provided the beautiful music. I can't think of a more pleasant way to spend an afternoon and evening. Well known author and painter Kate Barnes joined us as well. The conversations were lively and we enjoyed watching Mark and Anna's friends jump in and out of the pond. We watched the resident Sand Hill Cranes and saw a Kite darting around too. I was itching to get out my paint box but I was good, enjoying the role of party guest for the day.

Thanks to Rick and his staff for a marvelous day.