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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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Fish Prairie


Notes From My Residency at Fair Oaks

Fish Prairie is small and only accessible from private lands as far as I can tell. Lucky for me it is rimmed by Fair Oaks.  The staff has carved new trails around the prairie which I enjoy painting so much. It is like being a million miles from civilization but only takes me about five minutes to get to from the Fair Oaks fields. When I was there last week, the colors were wonderful, lots of gray rust,ochre, olive and hints of orange, red and purple. A smorgasboard of yummy color. That will all change in the next few weeks as Spring enters the landscape. By the time I get back from the two paint outs I have in March, Fish prairie and Fair Oaks will be transformed to impossibly bright greens with wildflowers everywhere in the fields. Each season  is a fascinating palette of color, shape and nuance.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

My Residency at Fair Oaks in Evinston, FL February 2012



Notes From my Fair Oaks Artist Residency

I spend as much time as I can painting at Fair Oaks. I try to go about twice a month, on Sundays, my only day out of the studio. I learned how important a week long residency is for growth as a painter. When you live in a place for a week or more you learn so much more. There is a rythm to the land that isn't possible to understand when you are there for a few hours. To really understand a place you must spend time there without stress, pressure, or timelines. A residency allows you to settle into the land and begin to notice so much more.

 During my time, I saw a King Fisher trying to catch his dinner, a Red Tailed hawk, listened to the owls at night, and saw lots of animal tracks around the back fields. Flowers began to bloom and trees began to bud out in the week I was there. I settled into a routine of drinking my coffee on the porch in the morning, painting until noon, taking a break for lunch and then heading back out into the fields for afternoon painting each day. Late in the afternoon I would shower and dress and head down to the pond to feed the fish and enjoy the birds. The little pond is stocked with all kinds of fish and turtles and I enjoyed seeing the big cat fish come up for their evening snack. Some are Albinos. There are lovely benches where I could relax and read my emails for the day, listening to the birds, and enjoying time with Shane, my canine friend. About six PM the Sandhill cranes would pay a visit. Days started early and ended early. I never slept better than I did at Fair Oaks. I left all of my cares at the end of the driveway.

Monday, February 27, 2012

A week of Luxury at Fair Oaks


Notes From My Residency Journal

I'll be posting several times about this residency as it was too wonderful to limit to one post. First, Fair Oaks is like no other place. It is a state of mind as well as a physical place. The moment I turn into the driveway, my worries and responsibilities fade. I'm greeted by Shane, my favorite pup, who is full of whimsy and energy. Buddy is more dignified, accepting his pets with quiet gratitude. Shane loves to be part of the action, so he goes with me for my painting sessions around the fields and deep into the prairie. We enjoy each other's company. When my pup Henry goes along it gets a bit crowded but we always have a good time. This time I felt the need to spend time with Shane and Buddy without my Henry. They have lost their beloved Joy and needed some extra attention.

I admit to being somewhat a bedding snob and when I sink into bed at Fair Oaks at night I am in the lap of luxury with fine Indian Cotton Sheets and down pillows and comforter. The room is furnished with antiques, so I live large for my stay there. The old house is soon to be remodeled and I confess I will miss staying there. She will be a grand dame soon, much too fine for the likes of this country girl.

I managed to do nine paintings on location during the week and one 18x24 upstairs in the studio of the old house, which still needs some adjustment, which I will do in my loft studio.

More about my week to come.....


Sunday, February 19, 2012

My Week long Residency at Fair Oaks February 20-27, 2012



Notes From My Residency Journal

I'm off to Fair Oaks for a week of painting. Unfortunately, Mary Jane won't be able to come this time. I am taking a box full of painting panels from 5x7 to 9x12 inches. I am also bringing a 20x24 and 18x24 canvas to work on in the thoughtfully provided studio upstairs in the old house. My plan is to spend mornings out in the fields painting, mid day up in the studio and back out to the fields in late afternoon when the light is wonderful. In the evening, I'll enjoy a walk around the field. There is no TV, a good thing, as I will spend some time reading. On Saturday I will head over to Prairie Creek Lodge, not far from Fair Oaks, for an exhibition and sale of the paintings from the group project Six Artists Six Prairies. I'm looking forward to a wonderful, very focused week at my favorite residency. I'll share it all with you when I get back.

Linda Blondheim

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Linda's Mini Residency at Fair Oaks February 12, 2012

Ana and Mark
Mark is the foreman at Fair Oaks. They are such a sweet couple.
Rick Knellinger with his dog Shane. Rick makes all things possible at Fair Oaks. I'm so glad he is my friend.

Henry is my studio dog. He makes my world work!


Notes From My Fair Oaks Residency Journal

Winter has finally arrived in north central Florida. My morning painting session at Fair Oaks was in 42 degree weather. BRRR!! Henry wore his sweater and bandana. I wore my hoodie, which was insufficient to say the least. It's been so long since it was cold here that I forgot to dress warmly. I will be wiser next time. I felt like a Popsicle before lunch time.

It was my turn to contribute to the lunch menu today so I brought roast pork with gravy and cheddar thyme cornbread. Anna brought wonderful rutabaga and greens and Rick brought stuffed baked potatoes and  a fabulous chocolate pecan pie. Lunches at Fair Oaks are always the best part of the day. After I thawed out for awhile, Henry and I took off again to start a tree painting and then out to explore Sebastian's Trail. New paths have been cut since I was there last and they are beautiful.

I am so excited that our week long residency at Fair Oaks is almost here. A week from Monday, Mary Jane and I will move in for a week of painting and fun. I am going to be spending quite a bit of time out on the new trails. The studio upstairs in the old house is available for larger paintings, so I will probably work on a larger painting while I'm there too. I can't wait!! This week at Fair Oaks is one I wait for all year long. This year will be special because the old house will soon be under renovation and no longer available, so I will treasure this time.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Canaveral National Seashore

30x30 inches
acrylic on birch panel
espresso frame

Notes From My Residency Journal

This is a favorite place for me inside the National Seashore. It is in the north entrance to the park down at the end  on the point. The dunes were colorful in January and these red flowers were so pretty.

 During the residency, we explored the south entrance to the National Seashore adjacent to the Merritt Island National Wildlife Preserve. The south National Seashore is wonderful and much less traveled by tourists. It has more of a local flavor. There are many fishermen there who are friendly and willing to give you advice about how to find cool places. This year for the paint out, I will spend most of my time there. The Sea Grapes are especially nice in the south park.

Linda Blondheim

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Our May Residency 2012

Sarah and Chad's Condo
Sarah and Linda enjoy the view.

Notes From my Residency Journal

Sarah Carey wrote:

"One thing you'll notice at our place are several pieces of original artwork by renowned Southern landscape painter, Linda Blondheim. We are happy to be hosting Linda and her friend, fellow painter, Mary Jane Volkmann, for a painting residency in May 2012! In this shot, Linda came to visit in the summer of 2008."
I'm so happy to have this opportunity again in May. They have the best condo in St Augustine, charming and comfortable with all of the comforts of home as well as a splendid view of the dunes. For information, click on the link to their facebook page.

Linda Blondheim

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Beautiful Pines at Merritt Island National Wildlife Preserve


Notes From my Residency Journal

I was most impressed by the stunning old pine trees inside the preserve. They grow naturally and at random, not lined up in rows as I so often see them. They make a wonderful subject in the atmospheric light of early morning. We pulled off the road for a bit of discovery time among these beautiful and elegant trees.

Here is a little information about pines and how they grow in Florida, from: Florida's Nature


Pine Flatwoods

Pine Flatwoods are the most widespread eco-systems in Florida, occupying as much as 50% of Florida's land area. As the name states, the topography of a Flatwoods is relatively uniform, the soil is generally sandy, poorly drained & acidic with little organic content with a underlying layer of hardpan. This layer of hardpan also inhibits drainage in the wet season causing Flatwoods to be flooded for part of the year, experiencing alternating periods of flood and drought. The canopy is open, allowing plenty of sunlight to reach the understory plants.

The understory of a healthy Pine Flatwoods is regulated by regular fire, areas that burn more often have an understory dominated by grasses and diverse herbaceous plants, while those that experience less frequent fires have more leaf litter/debris with an understory dominated by shrubs. If fire is absent for long periods Pines will eventually be succeeded by Oaks and the subsequent development of of a closed canopy forest or Hammock which inhibits understory growth.

Saw palmetto, Wiregrass, Fetterbush, Tarflower, Gallberry, Blueberry, Broomsedge, Wax myrtle and St. Johnswort are a few of the plants common to Pine flatwoods habitats.


Linda Blondheim