The American holiday Thanksgiving is a time for us to stop and express gratitude for our blessings. As I reflect on this and the twists and turns that my life as an artist continues to take, I realize that I do have much for which to be thankful.
If you read my previous blog post, you know that we just returned from a wonderful trip to California. We no more than got home when my December issue of Texas Highways magazine arrived in the mail. What's the big deal? Well, there's a full page promotion for a series of small wildflower paintings that I have created for the magazine's online gift shop under the Texas True tab!
We recently returned from a long road trip to California where I exhibited my art at the Sacramento Arts Fest. If you've followed me on this "journey as an artist" for very long, you know that I like to write about trips like this to share with my friends and fans. From when we left on Oct. 26 until we returned on Nov. 11 we put another 4, 127 miles on our Ford Transit!
AN EARLIER THAN USUAL START
For the first time, we decided to do something a bit different. Instead of waiting until morning to get an early start, we left the evening before, rolling out at about 9 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 26, and drove through the night. As you know, Texas is a big state and just getting to the border takes several hours. By sunrise we were in El Paso and well on our way. Our first stop and layover for a few days would be Yuma, AZ, where David's dad, brother and cousin live. Since this is practically "on the way" to California, we had to include the visit in the itinerary.
We made it to Yuma by 4 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 27. Over the next few days we visited with David's family, make a couple of trips across the border into Mexico, and enjoyed some amazing Southern Arizona sunsets and sunrises. We left out on Monday morning, headed for San Diego where we would be taking care of some business before making our way north to Sacramento.
SIGHTS AND SITES ALONG THE WAY
In the photo album at the top of this post are just a few of the photos I wanted to share from the journey and the show. The first five are from the show and I'll say more about that in a minute. But I wanted to say a little about the next four photos in the album. One of the fun things about a road trip is that you never know what you'll come across. The first photo is of an amazing sunset, taken from a parking lot, on our last night in Yuma, AZ. The big rusty dinosaur was at a road-side stop on the way to Yuma. The aliens in the third picture....well that was a total surprise as well. We were nearing Sacramento and needed to stop for gas. We pulled off at in Lathrop, CA (had a Facebook friend ask if we were in Roswell when I posted a pic...nope, California). While David was pumping gas, I went in to take care of other business and had one of those jaw-dropping moments. The entire convenience store was decorated in an alien theme, designed as if a flying saucer had crashed into the building and all the little green aliens were stocking up on supplies. What a treat! The fourth photo was from a visit to the rose garden in downtown Sacramento. I took tons of photos of the roses but this little praying mantis perched on a beautiful pink rose was my favorite.
ABOUT THE SHOW
This was our second time to exhibit at the Sacramento Arts Fest. We missed last year but we were there in 2014. It's one of the better organized shows with a long history, attracting art lovers and collectors from a large region. Many people remembered us from two years ago and were delighted to get my 2017 calendar and notecards again. When possible we like to take some smaller items in addition to a selection of my large paintings. We met several serious collectors but as we've seen before, when it comes to large purchases, it's not until the last day of the show that decisions are made. Nearing closing time a lovely couple, Sharon and Bruce, stepped into the booth and began discussing which painting they wanted. After a several minutes, they settled on "A Texas Wildflower Sunset."
THE JOURNEY BACK HOME
We wrapped up the painting for Sharon and Bruce and soon the show was closing down and it was time to pack out. We left the next morning, heading east over the mountains to Lake Tahoe for a brief stop and then southward along the backside of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. David and I both enjoy the perks from business trips like this of being able to see and enjoy the amazing scenery along the way. And this trip certainly did not disappoint! The next ten photos after the pink rose are just a few of the highlights that included fall color, mountains, pine trees and snow!
A NEW FAN AND COLLECTOR ALONG THE WAY
It's a rather long story but in a nutshell I had buyer, Bill, who was interested in my work and contacted me several weeks back. There was a particular painting he liked that he saw on an outdated website of a gallery that represented me at one point. As fate would have it, I was able to pick up the painting in San Diego on this trip. The buyer and I went back and forth through emails and texts discussing if and when we could meet and he could see the piece in person. He had a place in the Bay area and tried to make it to the show but it didn't work out. However, he also had a condo in Las Vegas, where he'd be during the week. Since Vegas was "on the way" home, we adjusted our route in that direction where we were finally able to catch up with Bill on Wednesday and do an in-home viewing of the piece he wanted as well as several other paintings we had with us from the show. The first photo below is of the painting he originally wanted, titled "Eternally Yours Again." And, yes, it was perfect match to the decor of the bedroom! He decided to create a "Linda Calvert Jacobson" collection and choose two more pieces, "Wildflower Escape" for the opposite wall, and "Almost Dusk" for the adjoining bathroom. So now three of my paintings are in a private collection in Las Vegas and a fourth in California as a result of this trip.
THE LONG HAUL HOME
Once we had that final sale settled, we hit the road and headed home. David decided to end the trip as started, by driving through the night to make time, only stopping along the way for gas and to rest the eyes. We wanted to be back in Texas in time for David to open our Wildflower Art Gallery Friday morning for the kick off for the Wimberley Alive event that was held Nov. 11-13. Wasn't easy but we did it! The final photo in the album at the top of this post is of a sunset in West Texas on Thursday evening.
As always, it's such a thrill to see my paintings find a new forever home where they can bring joy into people's lives. This past weekend I felt extra blessed as three of my wildflowers went home with two very different couples. While they were years apart in age and miles apart in location, they had two things in common...a visit to our gallery in Wimberley and an appreciation for how I interpret wildflowers.
Carl and Diane of Austin, Texas, purchased this pair of paintings, one titled "Soft" and other "Subtle." But this wasn't their first purchase. So here's the rest of the story...
I first met this sweet couple some 10 years ago while doing the Spring show at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin. They immediately fell in love with my art and I fell in love with them (and would have even if they had not taken home three of paintings that day). Through my occasional mailings over the years, they've kept up with me and knew that my husband, David, and I had opened Wildflower Art Gallery in Wimberley last year. Recently they decided that they were ready to add some companion pieces to their collection so they made the trip over to Wimberley. Luckily for all of us, I was at the gallery and enjoyed a wonderful visit with these two kind souls. We brainstormed on which paintings might work and they choose "Soft" and "Subtle." What a loving couple and what an honor for me to know that my art is bringing joy to their hearts and their home!
By now, "Twilight Rhapsody" is hanging center stage in the master bedroom in this young couple's Houston home.
Rachel, Nathan and their nearly newborn daughter were spending the holiday weekend in Wimberley and were looking for a unique painting for above the bed. They first found me and our gallery online after doing a search and said that of all they artwork they look at, that my wildflowers spoke to them the most. Liking what they saw on the website, they were even more impressed with the work in person and, especially drawn to this 2ft-by-4ft interpretation of Texas wildflowers at twilight. I'm looking forward to seeing photos of this painting in its new Houston home!
I know I say if often but it's so true... what an honor and a pleasure it is for me to share my art with the world and to know that it makes people happy for it to become a part of their life.
We are back in Texas from an awesome week in New Mexico that included walks among pines soaking up the mountain air, making new friends and fans at the Ruidoso Arts Festival and reconnecting with a new collector.
RETURNING TO RUIDOSO AND THE ART FESTIVAL...
Anytime David and I can find an excuse to head to the mountains we try to make it happen. Ever since being juried in for the 46th annual Ruidoso Art Festival several months ago, we've been looking forward to spending several days in and around the area.
We arrived on Wednesday evening so we could be there for set up on Thursday. The show opened on Friday and continued through Sunday. Each morning we woke up to those cool mountain temperatures...cool enough for a light jacket some mornings! David and I took early morning walks in the pines and along the river before getting ready for the show each day. If you've never been to the Ruidoso and Cloudcroft area of New Mexico, you need to put it on your list! For people living in Central Texas like we do, it's a full day's drive but worth it!
The show was just wonderful! It was our second time to exhibit and, again, the show organizers and crowds did not disappoint us! Buyers loved and took home my wildflower purses and note cards and we made several contacts for future art collectors for my wildflowers, aspen and poppy paintings! At the end of the day on Sunday we packed out and spent our last night in Ruidoso, knowing that we'll be back again!
HEADING NORTH TO ALBUQUERQUE...
On Monday morning we left the pine tree covered mountains of Ruidoso and made our way up to Albuquerque. I had an appointment to keep with one of our newest collectors from the Rio Grande Arts and Crafts Festival that we did there back in March.
One of the best things about doing a road trip is getting to enjoy the changes in scenery along the way! We opted to avoid the Interstates when possible and chose instead the "roads less traveled" where we could take our time and enjoy the drive and the scenery.
By Monday afternoon we were at our appointment with Roann, owner of A Love for Life, a wonderful assisted living facility in Albuquerque. We met Roann and Ron at the March show when they were looking for art to brighten up there training/meeting room at the facility. They fell in love with two paintings, "Garden Delight," from my signature wildflowers series, and "Evening Romance," one of my newest poppy paintings, and purchased both as the start of their new collection.
Since they were looking at adding another painting and since we were going to be "in the area," we arranged to bring the some work to them for an in-business viewing. Both David and I just love providing this personal service whenever possible! After unpacking and trying several different paintings in several areas to see how they looked along side the two paintings they already had, they choose to add "A Sunny Meadow," a similar-but-different style painting of wildflowers, and "Delightfully Red," another poppy painting. I'm posting photos of how the first two paintings look on the walls and another of Roann and I with the two new works.
Since this is a space where they meet with staff to not only train but also coach them on the importance of providing loving care to the residents, creating a joyful setting becomes an important part of the mission...and my "happy" art certainly does just that! I'm so honored to have my art be a part of this "family" and this worthwhile endeavor of making the world a more loving place for seniors!
After a layover Monday night in Tucumcari, we made our way across eastern New Mexico and across the border to West Texas to make it home by that evening. It's always good to get home but we really do love our trips westward, getting to spend some time in the mountains...whether they are covered in pine and aspen trees or hunks of rock and only dotted of cactus and cedars. It's all beautiful and inspiring! I'm already looking forward to our next trip that direction when we make the drive to northern California in early November for the Sacramento Arts Fest.
Thanks for sharing these travels with us!
If you've been following my "life as an artist" story or spent anytime checking out this website, you know that my husband, David, and I have a gallery in Wimberley, Texas. We opened Wildflower Art Gallery in February 2015 and are happy to be celebrating our second summer there! In addition to my paintings and gifts, you'll find some wonderful clay work by Canyon Lake ceramicist Kathy Rigdon and beautiful jewelry by Lynette Clauser of New Braunfels, Holly Glenn of Austin and, our newest addition, Barbara Blaschke of Canyon Lake.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS:
Kathy works in several techniques but what she is best known for are her horse hair pottery and her raku work. At any given time, we have several of each available at the gallery in various sizes. Prices range from $24 to $280. Kathy earned her BA in Fine Arts from Southwest Texas State in 1991 and started her home-based studio in 1997.
Lynette creates one-of-a-kind fused glass jewelry often paired in sets of necklaces, earrings and even matching pins. She combines her excellent sense of design and superb craftsmanship in each of her creations. Lynette's prices generally range from $30 to $85. In addition to working in fused glass, Lynette has an extensive background in stained glass, pastels and mixed media.
We are thrilled to have Holly's hand-wrapped wire jewelry and to feature her unique Bluebonnet pendants and earrings that she created just for us! Most of the pieces range from $20 to $40. According to Holly, she designs and creates unique artisan jewelry pieces out of materials including raw stones and crystals. "My jewelry is chic, affordable and by nature, one of a kind. Each piece takes on a personality of its own, and hopefully you will find a piece that speaks to you!"
Barbara creates jewelry that is as elegant as it is unique. Working with materials including gold, silver and semi-precious stones, her prices range from about $110 up to $500. "I love experimenting with unusual combinations of stones and metal," she says. "Agates and Jaspers particularly appeal to me and I try to set them in a way that complements their swirls and whorls in all their glory." We are happy to be the Wimberley area source for Barbara's beautiful rings, bracelets and necklaces that will compliment any outfit with a special panache.
We hope you'll drop by Wildflower Art Gallery and check out all of our artists! If you have questions or need directions, please email email@example.com or call him at 830-730-7880. The gallery is generally open Wednesday-Sunday. Click here for maps and more information.
When asked which of my paintings is my personal favorite, I'm ready with this answer: The one that just sold.
But I'm quick to explain: When someone loves my work enough to buy it and take it home, well, that's the best compliment ever!
Three of "my favorite: paintings have found new homes in the last few weeks! Two are now showcased in a lovely home in Seguin, Texas: "Summer Festival," a 30x30 that was inspired by a trip to Jackson, Wyoming, a few years back, and "Twilight Gold," one of my more recent autumn Aspen paintings. Meanwhile, "Nature's Gold" from my California poppy series and shown in the photo to the left, went home with a new collecter in Kyle, Texas. As always, I'm honored when someone chooses my art to brighten their homes and lives!
Above are a few photos from the 2016 Spring Downtown New Braunfels Art Walk. We had a wonderful turnout and several sales, including "Magenta Magic" that went home with Kathy and Jerry to add to their collection of my art!
As the month of April comes to close, I wanted to share a few of the month's highlights. If you read the previous blog post from March 24 (Reflections on March 2016 trip to New Mexico), you know that March was a busy and productive month. April was also exciting in so many ways.
FEATURE IN UNIVERSITY OF INCARNATE WORD MAGAZINE...
I felt truly honored to have been interviewed and photographed for the Spring 2016 issue of The Word, the official magazine of the University of the Incarnate Word. I earned my BA from Incarnate Word College, as it was known then, in 1990. It was an amazing time of spiritual and intellectual growth and I shall always be indebted to Incarnate Word and the many benefactors who provided the scholarship funding that made my attending even possible. That is why I support the institution each year with a donation of one of my original paintings to be auctioned during the Swing-In Gala to raise money for their scholarship program. This year I donated a 30x30 painting titled "After The Rain."
I invite you to read the article online: http://www.thewordonline.org/2016/03/among-the-wildflowers/
WILDFLOWER UMBRELLA SHOWCASED IN WILDFLOWER CENTER'S SPRING MAGAZINE...
I also had another pleasant bit of print publicity in April as one of my Wildflower Umbrellas was featured in a full page ad for the gift shop at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin. Over the years, I've been invited twice for solo shows at the Wildflower Center, participated in both their Artists and Artisans Festivals held in the Spring and the Wild Ideas Gift Shows scheduled in early December, and had products with my wildflowers stocked in the gift shop there. One of my few regrets in life is that I never got to meet Mrs. Johnson in person. But I'm grateful for her setting the stage and doing the groundwork to create this wonderful place.
LUBBOCK ARTS FEST...
My husband and I traveled to far north Texas (or at least it felt like it) earlier this month to exhibit my wildflowers-and-aspens at the Lubbock Arts Fest, sponsored by the Lubbock Arts Alliance. Held in the civic center April 15-17, it was an awesome show and resulted in sales, contacts and lots of new fans!
WIMBERLEY ARTS FEST...
The following weekend we were back home and exhibiting for the first time at another show, the Wimberley Arts Fest. I have to say that the volunteers with Wimberley Valley Art League did a great job pulling it all together!
DOWNTOWN NEW BRAUNFELS ART WALK AND COMING UP NEXT MONTH...
We'll be ending the month with the annual Downtown New Braunfels Art Walk on Saturday, April 30 and Sunday, May 1. My studio upstairs at the New Braunfels Art League Gallery will be open and I'll be there to meet-n-greet visitors from 10 a.m. -5 p.m. on Saturday and from Noon-5 p.m. on Sunday.
Then on Monday, May 2, David and I'll be heading up to Austin to install an exhibit of my art at the Kerbey Lane Cafe-University location, 2602 Guadalupe. This will be the first of three 2-month shows I've been invited to have at different Kerbey Lane Cafes around Austin. This one will be up through July 5. I've been exhibiting at the KLCs since 2005 and it's always a pleasure to have my art on exhibit at their restaurants.
So that's the recap for April and, as always, I appreciate your reading my post and your interest in my life as an artist.
We left for New Mexico on March 8 and returned two weeks with 3,600 miles behind us and a roller-coaster ride of experiences in our memories. The primary goal was to show-and-sale my work at two back-to-back fine art shows. The first, which was also our first time there, was the Rio Grande Arts & Crafts Festival Spring Show set for March 11-13 in Albuquerque. The following week we were booked for a return visit to the Las Cruces Art Fair. Between the shows, we had planned a business trip to Arizona combined with some R-n-R and sightseeing to and fro, and that's where things deviated from plan a bit. But let's start at the beginning...
David and I love to travel about as much as we love sharing my happy art with the world. So when we can plan a trip around a show or two, well, it just doesn't get much better than that!
We left Texas and headed to Cloudcroft and Ruidoso for the first night's layover before making our way to Albuquerque. We were in for a treat as snow was on the ground both at Cloudcroft and at Ski Apache. Of course, we love the pine trees and I got to enjoy seeing Aspens tucked here and there. We left out the next morning for Alamogordo with a couple of ideas in mind. First, we'd be stopping off at the pistachio farm and then we'd head out to White Sands. It's long been on our to-do list and we decided to make it happen. It you ever find yourself in that part of New Mexico, you need to check it out!
After playing in the sand, we hit the road for Albuquerque. We were able to arrive and settle in, anticipating our set up the next morning.
The show was held in one of the buildings at the EXPO New Mexico. We spent the day setting up and getting to know our show neighbors and the wonderful staff behind the scenes. The show opened to a large crowd on Friday morning and almost immediately we knew that many of the visitors were serious art collectors. We visited with dozens of potential buyers over the next few days and acquired many new "fans" in the process. We learned long ago that you never know who will return and become a collector...whether it be a day later or months, or even years later. But before the close of the show, we did acquire two new collectors. The first was Roann, who purchased two of my paintings for her business, A Love of Life, a residential assisted living facility for seniors located in Albuquerque. The paintings, "Garden Delight" and "Evening Romance," were each 30x40 in size. Then right at closing time, another new fan, Debbie, decided to take the 30x30 wildflower painting "Indigo Delight" home with her.
Needless to say, the show ended on a high note. By the next morning, however, we were about to face an unexpected challenge. Overnight, David was hit by a "bug" and I was soon to follow. We later found out that several other artists also got sick after the show. We are still not sure what was going around, but it got us and held on!
Our between-the-shows plan was to take a leisurely drive to Arizona, pick up some of my art from a gallery there, make a few other gallery visits and then do some sightseeing before making our way back into New Mexico for the Las Cruces show. As our health deteriorated, we did good to just make it to the gallery for the pick up and then back to New Mexico. The only sightseeing was from the Interstate.
Over the next few days, we both would seem to improve and then head downhill again. David was much sicker than I was so I did most of the driving. By Friday morning, we made a trip to a walk-in clinic to try to get him meds to kick it. He really didn't get any better so before we left town on Monday, we made a return trip to the same clinic. A different PA had a better understanding of his condition and with a new set of meds, he was well on his way to better health by Tuesday. But let me back up and tell you about the show!
David was able to help set up and do some of the break down but otherwise he stayed at the hotel for the weekend. Overall the attendance was strong and, again, we made new fans for my wildflowers and other paintings. I even met a few people who already knew my work. One man was from San Antonio but also had a home in Las Cruces and instantly recognized my wildflowers. We had several buyers come back and discuss specific paintings. But it was one very sweet couple, Mollie and Jeff, who knew that my art needed to be a part of their lives. On Sunday afternoon, they returned to pick up a painting but ended up with two works: "Fresh Breeze" and "Sunny Side Up."
We left Las Cruces Monday and decided to take two days to get home rather than push too hard. As we reviewed the options for the drive, we decided to bypass taking I-10 through El Paso (which can be pretty stressful as some of you may know) and instead looped around north of the city on Texas 375 through the Franklin Mountains and north of Fort Bliss. So glad we did...it was a spectacular drive! We then picked up 180 and headed toward the Guadalupe Mountains National Park before cutting back toward 285, which took us to Pecos and then Fort Stockton, our layover for the night.
The next day we made our way to Fredericksburg and took one last little detour to an old cemetery that David found a few years back. We wanted to see if the Bluebonnets were blooming again and, oh my, it was just amazing. What a great end to our trip...better health...almost home...Bluebonnets!
As always, thank you for reading and for you interest in our travels and in my life as an artist! Our next road trip will be a be shorted but exciting still as we'll be heading to Lubbock for the Arts Fest there on April 15-17.
It's always such an honor and joy to be featured in publications, whether they be old-fashioned printed products or online articles! And just recently I was honored not once, but twice! And each reached both national and international audiences.
"Dreaming in Color: Interview with Artist Linda Calvert Jacobson"
While the original article was posted about 3 months ago, it was such a pleasant surprise to see my interview featured in last month's e-newsletter. Homeclick is an online community that is full of resources for people who are building, remodeling or decorating their homes. It's designed for both professionals and DIY types. Last year, I received an email that they would like to feature me and my art on their site. After doing a little research about the company, I quickly agreed to completing the interview and submitting some photos. It's pretty cool to now read this online, knowing that it's already reached tons of people. I especially loved reading the comments! You can check it out by CLICKING HERE. I hope you enjoy it!
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center— Spring 2016 Issue
Another place that my wildflowers recently popped up was in the Spring 2016 issue of Wildflower, The Magazine of the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin, Texas. As you may know, I've had a long relationship with the Wildflower Center, having been invited twice for Solo Exhibits, participating in several shows there over the years and having products featuring my art sold in The Store, their gift shop.
So last fall I was contacted about having my one of my umbrellas featured in the Spring 2016 magazine for the full-page ad for The Store. Awesome! This goes out to members around the world. Yes, people from all over the globe do visit the Wildflower Center! And those who get the magazine or happen to drop by The Store this Spring will see my "Mountain Meadow" umbrellas!