Confessions

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Might be looking for some new digs.

Might be looking for some new digs in NYC soon.

So, what can I say?  I have been more overwhelmed in the last 6+ months than at almost any other time in my life.  There have been good things, great things, fantastic things, not-so-great things, super-scary things, and life-altering things.  I wanted a new direction and I certainly have been shown one.

My puppies, Noel and Stella at the park.

My puppies, Noel and Stella at the park.

I guess the biggest change in my life is the fact that I am flying solo these days.  Yes, I am getting divorced.  I still have my good puppies, but no spouse.  Not sure I want to stay here; actually I’m not sure of anything right now.

My front yard.

My front yard.

This bizarre winter seems to mirror my life right now. From the crazy warm days in December to the blizzard that snowed us in for an entire weekend a few weeks ago–I don’t know what to expect except the unexpected.

I’ll try to catch up on my posts again.  I know! I know! I always say that! But I am determined to slow down and I am doing it.  I love what I do, but everything has been too rushed.  I want to be “present” in my life so it’s not just a blur.  I know that sounds like something a shrink would say, but it’s true.  I’m in one place excited to be there, but still worried about the place I’m going to next.  Then when I finally start to enjoy myself, it’s time to change venues. I need to remember less is more.

So here is a little snapshot of what I’ve been doing and what I will be eventually posting:

Painting with the hard to find/track down Chris Pugliese

Painting with the hard to find/track down Chris Pugliese

Painting with the uber-talented Chris Pugliese in Tulum, Mexico.  I was crazy scared going there alone, but I ended up loving it–and Chris!  I didn’t paint as much as I had planned to, but I learned more than I had hoped. Great teacher!

Gregory Mortenson, me, Max Ginsburg and Ricky Mujica at the PSOA.

Gregory Mortenson, me, Max Ginsburg and Ricky Mujica at the PSOA.

-Attending Portrait Society of America Conference in Atlanta, Georgia – so, so much fun!!  Max (Ginsburg), whom I love and adore, won the William Draper Grand Prize Award!!!  Yay!

Driving across Mexico with my good man/boy.

Driving across Mexico with my good man/boy.

-Driving across Mexico with my son and experiencing some fabulous little towns with great food, men in black carrying machine guns, and of course yummy art.

John Hingston Max's class

John Hingston Max’s class

-Continuing my great class with Max Ginsburg at the Art Students League in NYC.

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-Moving to the Hamptons for the summer – painting on the water.

Ruth Miller at Max Ginsburg's 84th birthday party.

Ruth Miller at Max Ginsburg’s 84th birthday party at the Art Student’s League, NYC

-Attending Max Ginsburg’s 84th birthday party at the Art Student’s League, NYC.

A portrait of my dear friend Osagie. I have literally been painting, stopping, restarting, and painting again this portrait for 3 years.

A portrait of my dear friend Osagie. I have literally been painting, stopping, restarting, and painting again this portrait for 3 years.

-Taking a class in Brooklyn with Alyssa Monks.  Working on a portrait of my friend Osagie that never seems to get finished.
-Getting the bad news – my sweet sister Stacie flying to the Hampton’s to be with me. Of course, she is still trying to talk me into moving back to Texas.

Annie Kraft Walker - Salmugundie Club , NYC

Annie Kraft Walker – Salmugundie Club , NYC

-Meeting my close friend Annie Kraft Walker in NYC to celebrate her painting that was being honored in the Virtuosos at the Salmagundi Club. My first visit to this cool club.
-Going on my first date in literally a couple of decades :} (not sure I am going to write about this one, maybe l’ll write about dancing in the kitchen with someone instead).

Tim Mathias at his show

Tim Mathias at his show

-Meeting my Facebook friend painter/sculptor Tim Mathias in person for the first time.
-Going to the Philadelphia Sketch Club Gala with my friend Sergio Verdeza to see my sweet friend Garth Herrick receive a life time achievement award along with Vincent Desiderio.

Chris painting and lecturing in the dining room

Chris painting and lecturing in the dining room

-Organizing and having my first workshop with Max Ginsburg, Chris Pugliese, Garin Baker and Alex Tyng.  I literally gave a piece of my soul to make this happen, and a funny thing happened on the way back home–I got it back in spades!!  One of the best things I have ever done!

Warren Chang, John Varriano former Head of the Art Students League in NYC, Max Ginsburg, and I.

Wildly talented Warren Chang, John Varriano, former Head of the Art Students League in NYC, Max Ginsburg, and I.

-Having dinner with Max Ginsburg, Warren Chang and the former head of the board at the Art Students League, John Varriano, at the Salmugundi Club.

TRAC - Best conference I have been to. David Kassan, me, Michael Pearce, Dominique Medici. Dressed up for the day of the dead.

TRAC – best conference I have been to. David Kassan, me, Michael Pearce, Dominique Medici dressed up for the day of the dead.

-Afterwords driving over to Grand Central Academy in LIC (Long Island City) to see their new still life show.

-Attending TRAC, The Representational Art Conference, in Ventura CA–what a great conference!  I absolutely adore going.  This year was 10 times more fun than last year.

Lucy, by Aaron Westerberg

Lucy, by Aaron Westerberg

-Paying a visit to one of my favorite California artists Aaron Westerberg in his cool studio/home in Santa Clara, California

Eva Shae and I-Brunch with my new workshop friend and artist Eva Shae and her husband along with my son Winston at her 5 consecutive homes on top of one of LA’s highest mountains.  Winston and I got a wonderful tour of Eva and her husband’s fabulous art collection and  beautiful homes with their breathtaking 360* views.
-Having Thanksgiving in beautiful Houston town.

I painted my son's friend Lilian's portrait as a Christmas ornament.

I painted my son’s friend Lilian’s portrait as a Christmas ornament.

-Being a Nervous Nelly for my kids to come home for the holidays but it turning out terrific, despite my paranoia. Painting little holiday portraits for the tree.

Shelli Alford is an artist and author, who enjoys learning from master oil painters from around the world and reviewing their classes, workshops and demonstrations.

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3 Comments

  1. Michael H

    March 6, 2016 at 8:36 pm

    Fantastic post. Love this art blog.

  2. Michael H

    March 6, 2016 at 8:38 pm

    Fantastic post, love this art blog. Preach it, Shell.

    • Shelli Alford

      July 8, 2016 at 7:25 pm

      Thanks Michael! Great seeing you and Karen at the conference. I am crazy excited about the Grand Prize of $2,000 Michael Harding paint award and other things I won the last day of the conference. Can’t wait to get them and start painting!!!

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