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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Sunday, October 27, 2013

Fair Oaks Mini Residency- October 27, 2013

Flowers on Fish Prairie

Path Between Fields

Notes From My Residency Journal

Today I came to Fair Oaks with my pal Mary Jane Volkmann. We were reconing the estate and Fish Prairie for next weekend's first Invitational Painting  Retreat. We owe it all to Fair Oaks, Paddiwhack Gallery, Gamblin Artists Paints, French Canvas, and Claudia Ballard. 

This is a special privilege for painters and I'm very excited!

We spent the morning exploring and taking reference photos. This was my first trip out on the prairie since May. It was great to be back on the trails. They were in pretty good shape. There were a few paths blocked by trees, but most were easy to navigate. The prairie was full of beautiful yellow flowers, blooming everywhere. 

We had a fabulous lunch of turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy and corn. Super good, topped off with famous Fair Oaks iced tea. Thank you Mark, our chef for the day.

The weather was perfect and the company too. 

Another delightful day at my favorite place in the world.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

A Painting Retreat November 2-3,2013


Painting Retreat

November 2-3, 2013
I'm honored to be joining the following landscape painters at Fair Oaks for a two day painting retreat:

Charles Dickinson
Brenda Hofreiter
Sally Evans
Tom Sadler
Randy Pitts
Kevin MacNamara
Mary Jane Volkmann
Scott Hiestand
Elisabeth Ferber
Kate Barnes
Cynthia Edmonds
Steve Andrews

We will camp out and paint together for two glorious days!!

Thanks to sponsors for the retreat:

Paddiwhack Gallery
Fair Oaks
Claudia Ballard
French Canvas
Gamblin- artist's oil colors

Beautiful Fair Oaks
Evinston, FL

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Talbot Island Wrap Up

Renault Club Tree
9x12 inches
Oil on canvas

This morning dawned bright and clear on the marshes before a lovely bacon,sausage and homefries breakfast prepared by my host Bonnie. We enjoyed our coffee on the deck facing the marshes, as they turned from orange to gold and finally to green. We scurried around straightening up the house and parted with fondness for a happy adventure we will remember. I look forward to returning next October.

I headed out and got lost, naturally, heading in the wrong direction for about 20 minutes. I finally got turned around heading west. I made it back to my loft studio I'm happy to write. 

The highlights of my residency were many:

The lovely and comfortable Big Talbot House and grounds, my painting studio on the porch.
My wonderful sponsors, North Florida Land Trust
The beautiful marshes and wetlands
The extraordinary trees
Renault Club Road
Amelia,Little Talbot, and Big Talbot Islands
Simpson Creek
Dead Tree Beach and the park
The kind and helpful park rangers
Nicole's Restaurant
Marche Burrette Restaurant
Sliders Restaurant

I had a splendid time! Thanks to all who welcomed me so kindly.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Big Talbot Island Residency -Day 5

Big Talbot House Dog Roxy- she has entertained me with her delightful personality this week. 
Rebault  Club Drive

Big Talbot Island State Park
Cusp of Evening
16x20 inches
Oil on canvas

Notes From My Residency Journal

This is the kind of day that Floridians wait for after a long, brutally hot summer. I started with a short tour of Ft George Island with my host Bonnie Barnes, dynamo of North Florida Land Trust. We met Marc Hudson the other dynamo, for breakfast at Nicole's. I have learned so much about conservation this week that my head is spinning with excitement! They have a Heritage Tree Conservation plan that I want to be a part of. You all know how much I love trees.

Nicole's is a favorite local restaurant. It is small but clean and the food was very good. I had bacon, eggs, home fries and toast. All good. The coffee was plentiful and our server was attentive. It is very close to the Ferry between the islands and Mayport. Good grub and excellent conversation is a great start to a day of adventure. 

After breakfast, I wandered down the coast to the Rebault Club. The drive offered spectacular views of the fragile and beautiful marshes. I stopped along the way to take many reference photos. I enjoyed that leisurely drive so much.

I headed north to Little Talbot Island State Park with a friendly park ranger who gave me the scoop on the island. The park is small but lovely, lots of sand dunes with terrific Red Cedars and Cabbage Palms. I was impressed with the extra wide bike path adjacent to the road and well designed pavilions with large parking areas.

This afternoon I'll enjoy one more painting and head back to my world of fields and farms. What a wonderful adventure!

 The North Florida Land Trust will allow me to return to continue my work in October of 2014. I can hardly wait to come back. I urge you to support their continued efforts to preserve these environmentally sensitive lands. They support beautiful birds and wildlife and our own healthy future. Kudos to them for their tireless work.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Big Talbot Island Residency - Day 4

Dead Tree Beach Park
9x12 inches
Oil on panel

High Tide
Big Talbot Island

Notes From My Residency Journal

Today was a great adventure. At last a sunny day! I started with a wonderful breakfast at Marche Burrett Market and Deli. It is located in the shops of Amelia which look like quaint cottages. Very sweet. The Marche is charming, well lit, with a lovely deli, fresh produce and wines. The dining room is spacious. They provide table service and the staff is friendly and efficient. I met a reporter for the local paper. She and her companion were friendly and welcoming. The have a variety of breakfast offerings, including biscuits with gravy, smoked salmon with bagel and cream cheese, oatmeal, daily quiche, and my favorite, bacon eggs, home fries and toast. The coffee was delicious. My server brought ice water with fresh lemon and coffee in a large cup, right away. The breakfast arrived shortly, perfectly cooked. The homefries were crispy and flavored with herbs, delicious. The bread was full of flavor. A tiny jar of lovely sealed Orange Marmalade was delivered and I was able to take it with me, a nice touch. Coffee refills were plentiful. The server was outstanding. This is definitely the place to eat breakfast! 

I headed for Fernandina Beach and somehow ended up in a town called Yulee. Anyone who knows me will laugh, knowing that I have no sense of direction and constantly find myself in strange places, not knowing how I got there. After a false start, I made it to Fernandina. It is a lovely town, catering to tourists and a shoppers paradise. I toured a couple of the local galleries and studios, enjoying the fine day. I allow myself one day of tourist pursuits when I go to residencies. 

I will set up my easel at 4 PM to attempt to paint the lovely sunset hour here in the back yard at the Big Talbot Island house. The view here is marvelous. No need to go anywhere.

Another Day in paradise, thanks to North Florida Land Trust.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Big Talbot Island Residency- Day 3

Marsh Palms
9x12 inches
Oil on panel

Notes From My Residency Project

Welcome to the first cool day of Fall this year! I woke to cool breezy overcast weather. I'm so happy to have a cool day.

 I went in search of breakfast in Amelia Island. I stopped at a place called Parkway Grill. It is really more of a bakery/deli. You go up to the counter to order. It is self serve for utensils and coffee. You put a number on your table and someone brings your food. The room is on hard floors with small diner style tables. No atmosphere at all, but it is clean and well organized. They brought thick sliced bakery bread, which was a nice texture. The bacon was over cooked but I don't mind that. The eggs were cooked right but the hash browns were not crispy. The best thing was the coffee which was quite good. They did not make it clear whether refills were allowed. The server did not return to the table after delivering the meal. I would rate it as adequate. I am the first to admit to being a foodie. I love breakfast the best, so I'm always in search for a really good breakfast restaurant. I am happy to brag that Gainesville has some outstanding breakfast restaurants. I will search out a new place tomorrow.

After breakfast I headed back toward Big Talbot for a bit of exploring.  There is a new bridge between the islands. They saved the old bridge as a pedestrian only bridge. I love to see this. It is so nice to save old bridges for hikers and fishermen.  I wish they would do that everywhere.

I stopped at the state park on the marsh side first, for some photos, then headed to seaside to see the dead tree beach. What an interesting park. Bonnie took me there for a quick look see on Monday. Today I had time to get some photos. The tide was high so I didn't go down on the beach. I climbed up on top of the platform bench to get some good photos of the trunks on the beach. The real appeal for me were the huge twisted trees growing in the park. They were quite splendid. 
Since it is dark and overcast today, I headed to the house to set up and paint on the porch.

Another day in paradise thanks to North Florida Land Trust. Bless them for supporting my project.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Day 2- Big Talbot Island

Marshes from the Dock
18x24 inches
Oil on Canvas

Notes From My Residency Journal

My plans changed today. It was raining when I woke up and we were in for a day of it, so I decided to stay in to paint from one of the photos I took yesterday. I set my easel up on the screened porch and got to work. My companion for the day was Roxie, the sweet little Pappion dog who runs the household. She is so sweet and well behaved and as cute as can be. It's so nice to have a dog here. I miss Henry, my French bulldog, and my canine friends Buddy and Shane at Fair Oaks when I'm traveling.

The director of North Florida Land Trust, my friend Bonnie, is amazing. She is the absolute queen of shopping. She furnished the entire house with thrift shops and Craigslist. It looks like a high end home. I wan't to be her apprentice. 

This place is truly wonderful. When I sit on the back deck I watch the birds fly over the marshes and marvel at the tall palms.

Tomorrow, weather permitting, I'll be off to explore the island.

Day 1-Big Talbot Island Residency

Marsh at Big Talbot Island
8x10 inches
(Sorry for the glare)
View from the Dock at Big Talbot House

Notes from my Residency Journal

This week I'm staying at Big Talbot Island, thanks to North Florida Land Trust, my sponsors. Their beautiful home is right on the beautiful marshes. There is a long dock, a large patio, where I am painting, canoes, bicycles, and the home is large and yet very intimate and cozy. It has all of the bells and whistles too. How did I get so lucky?

Today I moved in, unpacked and enjoyed an afternoon of painting on the patio. The director, Bonnie Barnes took me to a place in Fernandina called Sliders. I had a wonderful shrimp PO Boy with handmade chips. Bonnie had the Salmon salad, equally yummy. It is a casual, friendly restaurant right on the beach. There was live music, very pleasant and not too loud. The service was excellent. We sat out on the porch and enjoyed the scenery.

Bonnie showed me several pieces of property they have saved from development. It was awe inspiring to see all of this environmentally sensitive land the trust has saved from development. I urge you to support their efforts. We enjoyed a lovely evening of interesting conversation.

Tomorrow I'll be out and about to explore in the morning. There is so much to see here.