Tuesday, September 18, 2012

looking forward to fall

Its been some time since posting. A lot has changed, but not like the changes are crazy enough to post. Just changes for me. These days I'm feeling less... "alone". I finally found a pup that I'm crazy over. Her name is Josie.

11 months old Josie

Josie was a stray that was brought in to a very nice shelter from the local dog warden. No one knows much about her. No name, no history. From the vets they had determined that her birthday is October. So this October, Josie will be one year old... yes, still a pup indeed. The fine people at the shelter named her Josie... I liked it, she was getting used to it after being in her kennel for nearly two weeks. Inside, I'm thankful she was only there for just two weeks. Ohh yeah, it was the eyes that got me by my heart strings. They listed her as a bloodhound mix, I think that the mix is of a shepherd.

65lbs at her first visit, Josie May will most definitely be a big girl. Her pawls are almost the size of my old dane Smokey. She is so darn sweet and squishy and I can't be more happier to welcome her to a better life than on the streets. I'm thankful to come home to a warm hug and kisses.

Its also nice to have a walking partner. She does fairly well! I first started her on a typical lead in which she had no idea how to walk on a leash. Through her pulling and nearly choking herself unconscious, I found a nice, inexpensive harness that has worked fabulously. Once she gets a bit more older, I think I'll get her a really nice one. It allows her to do what she does best, smell. Yes, I'm thinking she is much more on the bloodhound side than shepherd. What's interesting is that she doesn't bark, well only if I'm vacuuming or mowing the yard. To other dogs and people though, she is only interested in playing. I've hear one hound howl out of her though... I think it startled even her. I've gotta say, I hope she doesn't on any occasions... but to hear this coming from deep inside her, I thought was AWESOME!

Slate Run Park
Honestly, I've just been hanging out with my new friend and working on the house. Painting, decorating, enjoying.... sleeping. This is my life and I'm fairly ok with it. Been staying pretty much to myself these days, Trying to figure it all out I suppose.


Thursday, June 14, 2012

New beginnings...

Its been some time.

Since my last post, their has been a lot of happenings in my world. I lot that I simply couldn't talk about. A lot that I couldn't find words for. A lot of emotions that I had to sort through.

I got the job of a lifetime.
I completed my bedroom.
I've enjoyed a great friendship.
I've caught up with other great friendships.
I've spent time by myself.
I've spent time with those I love and cherish.
I turned 35... jury is still out on that one.

I'm about to start the next chapter in my life. It's scary. It's something so totally new. It's quite frankly a bit overwhelming. Being the fixed person I am, I don't feel comfortable with the unknown. It's so totally strange. The feeling of excitement and freedom from the world I once knew has now shifted. This is new. Wow, all new. Weird.

I'm so very excited to meet new friends, try new things. Have a different variation to my day and my work. I'm excited to be able to look to the future and find that I can afford to do some of the things that I was once a part of, to say I have a future, Wow.

I want to get back into the studio... if they'll have me.

It's not necessarily a want but rather a need. Its hard for me to paint in my home. So many things that needs done around here that I enjoy to do, but very difficult for me to settle my thoughts into painting in this environment. Painting for me is extremely cathartic, however... being in the right frame of mind has been a focus problem. To cleanse my thoughts of all the days and settle the heart.... I need this, though I'm still not there within these walls. Reclaiming has been a focus. Not only in my home, but in my house... within my walls.

Still extremely guarded. I will be for a very long time. I'm ok with that, but I don't want to miss the new opportunities that abound in front of me. I will miss my dear friends at Fine Line. They certainly were a second family. Ten and a half years.... I was just a kid when I started there. I'm still a kid I think, but just a little older. A lot more under my belt. A lot more expectations out of myself and others. A lot "harder" around the heart. Some of that makes me sad, but then I remember.... all of it makes me who I am, though certainly not perfect in any stretch... I know that I am a good person.

These last few days before I start my new adventure has been rather.... reflective. I've not really wanted to talk to anyone, see anyone, experience anything. I've just wanted to be still. To focus. To come to terms with the stuff that holds me back. I'm not happy about a few things and I want very dearly to change that. I feel its been a thought purging vacation. To rid myself of the "I don't know..." feelings. To move onto the "I am" sector. That in and of itself is frightening.

Its hard for me to say out loud that I am frightened or scared. Those that know me I know you agree. I'm a very stubborn, bullheaded sort... to a fault. I'm too proud of a person to ask for help. I don't ask very often, and when I do... I know I truly need it. I need help in ways that no one can do it for me. I need that inner "I am" to come to surface again. Its floating its way to the top and I very much look forward in meeting that person inside me again.

Friday, March 16, 2012

25 musings...

1. TGIF!!!
2. Looking forward in seeing my family this weekend.
3. Loved this week. Was able to open the windows and "Air" out the house while cleaning my messy jeep.
4. The tough days and nights are still present, but they are getting fewer and farther between, for this I'm thankful for.
5. Not much really going on, truly.
6. Not feeling as overwhelmed as I have in the past. Think I've finally come to terms that I can only do one thing at a time and no need to worry about the things that are going undone. In time, those too will be accomplished.
7. I can be alone and be quite fine with it. Though sometimes I don't like to be.
8. Am thankful that I have a place that I can BE alone. And I'm thankful that I have a choice to not be if I'd rather be elsewhere.
9. Loving this weather so I can get back into the routine of walking. Used to all the time with the smokester, its odd not to have him with me however I still feel him in spirit.
10. I really think its time to put Lucy down. She's not the same little kitty anymore.
11. Want to start doing some research on churches. Still would like to paint a series.
12. Thinking of donating the "dress" to a beautiful woman that really could use it. Somehow I think this idea may allow me to flip my prospective on the whole mess. Anyone know of a Lady that could use some help or a specific group? I've done a little research and have only found places that they re-sell dresses. That kind of defeats my thought-full purpose.
13. Thinking of a vacation this summer... thinking beach-bound. Solo!
14. Thinking of Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Never been.
15. Really getting motivated to be healthy. Feel the best I have in quite a long time.
16. Its hard to wrap my head around how time fly's by so fast sometimes and then how it all seems to stay so very still. Would just like it to find a happy medium.
17. SOOO excited for my very dear friends to be moving so close to me... YIPPY!!
18. Just found out that I will be quickly showing students from CCAD what I do here... yeah, lemme quickly show them... HA!
19. I want to buy another bike... Reeeally bad.
20. Wow... its been 12 years since I graduated CCAD.
21. Kinda secretly wish I could go back to school. Would like to go into Landscaping architecture or design. Something to do with plants, trees and dirt.
22. Have never seen dirt like mine at the house... its like gold! (darkest, richest soil ever!)
23. Know I want to plant a tree out back very soon. Thinking a white flowering dogwood.
24. Can't wait to see my backyard blooming this summer.
25. Girls night soon?! I'm feeling it...

yes... the bed once was his.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Something Old... Something New. Something Borrowed, Something... Blue?

Yeah, title of my blog... Paint, Create, Live... I'm more-so focusing on the living part these days. Pardon if I digress.

So title of this post, kinda a big thought in my mind since... well... 7 months. I'd have to say its changed quite a bit since I first thought of the phrase. If any woman you've ever known to be in the situation where the big day was "OFF!", please treat here with patience. My goodness what this whole feeling of marriage does to a lady. Makes them ABSOLUTELY NUTS.. keep this in mind.

Here now is my meaning to the phrase above:

Something Old: Family.

Though the times may seem dull and boring, I'd take the time spent with my family over anything. My Mom, how truly wonderful she is. She gets me. About the only person on this planet that truly GETS me. Mom, I know I say it, but I hope you know when I do, How much I truly love you! Dad, you are the most kindest, gentle man that I've ever had the pleasure of meeting. Your ability to keep calm and carry on amazes me. No wonder my Mom, Your Wife loves you so very much. I now know that there will never be any other Man that could fill your shoes! Boy oh Boy have you set a standard for me. Sis.. yes you. How beautiful and intelligent you are. How I would have loved to have had you as my teacher. You are an educator of many things and I know that your students will be forever grateful in all the lessons you have taught them. I will always have close girlfriends, but I will forever have only ONE sister.

Something New: Strength.

Many of us can describe Strength with different words and different feelings. It to me is very much a description. I know that some think its about how much you can lift, how BIG one could be. Others may think it would be how one can hold themselves tall to others on the outside. I think a lot of what people think of what "Strength" is, is what is tangible to them. I find the term very different for me. Strength to me is what I feel inside. Some days are stronger than others. Sometimes I feel weak. Its only in those times to I realize just what the word Strength means to me. To be weak, to feel disheveled, to worry to cry. This is when I feel when Strength appears. I know that you have to go through the bad to get to the good and only when you get to the good is when you can appreciate the feeling of good. This to me is Strength. "You gotta get through what your going through to get to where your going!".

Something Borrowed: Wisdom.

A lot of times, we see the end result and don't do a darn thing of it. We see things taking a turn and only out desperation we cling on hoping that things will "work itself out". I've neglected my wisdom. I've allowed myself to ignore what my gut tells me. I know that I'm smarter than this, but this is what I've done to myself. Having the Wisdom to figure it out before things spiral out, this I've borrowed from others that have been in my shoes. I'm listening, I hear it. I see it and now I know it. I'm feeling like a sponge these days, and for once its all starting to make sense.

Something Blue: .... I like lots of things blue.

Blue, could be cold. Could be wet, could be dark could be light. Blue... Well, I just keep thinking of the sky. Look up. Don't look down, Look up. The sky the stars, blue... Erica blue.

Getting sleepy but had these thoughts. I'm trying something new and actually making them very public. This is quite odd for me, but maybe then I wont be such a mystery, (or so I've been told).


Tuesday, February 28, 2012

25 things...

in no particular order...

1. I'm excited for my birthday, tho I'm feeling old... I know that sometimes life doesn't begin till 35.
2. Santa gave me all that I wished for... "A real nice tan".
3. I love my friends.
4. I miss my family daily.
5. Finding inspiration is hard for me right now, but I'm looking forward to warmer weather and better insights.
6. I work with some per-ty dern cool people.
7. My house has been neglected, but I'm ok with that.
8. I can nearly smell spring in the air today... that makes me happy.
9. I love my hair, tho I'm thinking I'm in a time warp with it. Its been 8 months since I've colored and I actually kinda like the grey that I see.
10. Little did the Twenty something gas station fella know, I got a giggle when he said I reminded him of Daisy Duke... must be the hair.
11. I need to fix my leaking toilet... ergh.
12. I've fixed the darn thing before, I can do it again.
13. I'd like to quite smoking. I need to quite smoking.
14. I feel bad that I've not painted, but not as bad that I've not had the desire to.
15. I wish I lived on a farm.
16. I wonder where I'll be in 5 years.
17. I want to be a better person to myself than the last 5.
18. I just need to unload the dress and be done with it.
19. When will Lucy start to show signs of suffering. I don't want for her to hurt.
20. I miss Smokey daily.
21. I think I'd be a great mom.
22. I look at a pink ribbon my friend gave me several days ago.. and it makes me smile. Its the little things.
23. Excited to get out of town soon... maybe then I could find some inspiration.
24. I'm looking good these days... Dressing well, eating better, sleeping more, drinking less... really does change your prospective when going through rough patches in life. I know I've not checked out.
25. I'm truly blessed. No matter how difficult times can be, they could be a whole lot worse!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012


Are you a list maker?

I am, though not always writing those ideas, to do's, or items down in such form. My lists tend to roll in my head. At night, during the day, while in mid sentence... my mind is always running on what needs to be done. Maybe I can fault my job, maybe I can trace it back to how I was raised. Maybe its just me.

I'll just go on the prospective of it just being me, much more responsible right?! These lists... the GD lists! Most of the time its such things as "what am I going to do after work. What needs done when I get home, laundry, grocery, emails that need sending, research that needs done". Then I do have those lists that I actually physically write down and leave in a very open place for me to see when I walk in the door. "Take care of banking, Talk to Insurance guy, Paint, Breath, Walk, Call on such and such...".

I feel like today its a whole other list. One big major messed up Erica list. Items on this list are all the things that are wrong. All the troubles. All of the negative going on's in my very personal life at the moment. I cannot seem to get my head off the list and I'm left wondering what the hell did I do to deserve all of these tears. I'm sick to death of crying. I'm tired of worrying and quite frankly... I'm tired. Having the hardest time finding motivation in doing anything but just breathing.

So I go to my place I call sometimes my home and lay with the only animal I have left. Today I will find out if she has cancer, though I already know the answer. Lucy Lu... my sweet kitty that I've had for the past 12 years. She will go to be with Smokey soon. This makes me sad. It makes me even more sadder that I can't seem to get my head on straight. That when it rains... it pours literally cats and dogs. I've lost three in the last several months. Three of the sweetest creatures that god has put on this earth, I can no longer care for, or might I say... care for me.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Getting back to me...

Its been a long road these last few months. Wedding planning came to a screeching halt. I will not go into detail on this board as I do have more class than that, but lets just say.... Thank GOD I know now instead of being locked into a marriage with a family that I couldn't escape.

Its been tough. Its been angry. Its been sad. Its been disbelief. But one good thing that it has been is enlightening. All of the things that I had put aside for someone else has now made me aware of the things I need to be doing. Loving Me. I've slept... a lot. I've cried... a lot. I've cleaned... a real lot. I've also just let me do the things I want to do.

Trying to paint has been hard through this process. Its hard to be creative when your mind is going in so many directions. I know I need to spend the time, not for anyone else, but for me to get back to my outlet.

I started this piece some time ago. I'm truly not certain where it is going, but that is what is kinda nice about it... their are no rules.

Thursday, October 13, 2011


Oh what a sweet sweet boy Bear was. For my dear friend clear out in Albuquerque New Mexico.. Brenda. When she came to me to commission this portrait, I agreed only on one condition, I hand deliver it to her out in that beautiful state.

I will never forget that first trip to New Mexico, we did so much and I truly felt that in the manner of 4 days, was truly able to see what that great state has to offer... Brenda, can I come back to see you?

Summers Over?

Not Fair..

I'm not ready for the summer to be over... well, I guess I can just say I'm not ready for the Winter to set in. The cold, the ice, the windy snow... makes me just want to sit back with a cup of coffee and watch it all pass by.

About all things art.... I've had the awesome pleasure working with Richelle Antczak McCuen from WCBE (90.5 FM) on their current 55 years Celebration of the station. With a lot of help and direction, we've come up with a logo for their sponsorship T-Shirt design.

Keep an ear out for me if your a listener to 90.5 FM... I'ma have my fifteen minutes!

Love and Blessings to all!!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

A new Spring, Moving on to Summer....

 So... Very... Busy...

There was absolutely no insulation in these 100 year old walls. Nothing but old wood and nails. Pretty cool to see the skeletons of the home... but didn't feel so nice when the wind blew.

Pproject time! Tear out the walls, pull down the ceiling, clean up the dirt and dust and dead bugs. Thankfully, no run ins with a dead mouse or bird... or maybe I shouldn't say anything just yet, fingers are crossed.

Lots of work I might add. From the start I was feeling a bit out of shape, scared to climb that ladder up to the attic for fear of falling. Pissed at the world. It was good for me. It was somewhat of a rough personal time. I was able to work through my emotions while pounding and pulling nails. Getting dust in my eyes and screaming four letter words here and there. I was able to work through it and feel better about myself at the same time, thank god!

Before Tear Out. Isn't that paper lovely?

When all the insulation was installed and all nails pulled... I started on the floors. I think the carpet was at least half of the age of the house. NASTY and stinky. The other peoples dirt had to go. So as to my delight when I pulled it up, under it are the beautiful plank pine floors that I've seen in the other rooms of the house. The condition not so bad but in this room, the previous occupants had varnished on the perimeter of the room. This was somewhat havoc on the sanders... so I bought a new sander... well, 2 new sanders!!! Yahooo! I love tools, and I love being that girl that will go buy a new tool instead of new shoes!

nope, no insulation here!

I love the open ceilings!

A week in teardown mode. A week installing insulation. A week sanding... now what. Initial plan was to get bead board and leave the attic beams exposed. This I feel would be truly awesome allowing the room to have much more space visually than ever and also give room to a much needed ceiling fan. Cost of course then comes into picture. While not only the cost of this board would add about $200 to the project the main problem is the age of the house. See, the only document I could find about my little crooked house of which had an actual age other than "old" stated that the house was built in 1909. Therefore, placing bead board up that needs to be perfectly straight may pose a slight problem. NOTHING is straight on Oak street. nothing...

I love these floors!

Stain to come!

Plan B: Drywall. I love drywall - NOT! Tthinking of hiring someone to do it... $700 bucks... not! I love to work with my hands and I can do this... right? I would love to find someone just to do the finishing. I know that I'm capable of doing some minor mudding... but this? We'll see.

With easter coming up this weekend, I've given the room and my self a break. I need to get rejuvenated with this project, so just like me, I've got myself into another project. Over the last couple of days, I've ripped the wall paper down in the kitchen… It not only looks so much better, but feels clean. I've got the paint all picked out… time for priming!

The house is under construction fo' sure!

Friday, January 22, 2010

The Mativi 3

Don't you just love these puppies!! 
Commission portrait. Oil on Canvas.

Initial Sketch


When my girlfriend Tia came to me with this project, I couldn't say no..

This was a gift to her husband very shortly after Charley had passed... such a pretty kitty...

Oil on Canvas
14" x 12"

Buster and Diesel

Another fun piece that I had the pleasure working with the client on multiple projects...

Oil on Canvas
18" x 14"

Bob and Tatum

Another piece that I've totally fallen in LOVE with...

This commission piece was a surprise from husband to wife for an anniversary. They both are very out-doorsie people who love their doggies and their doggies love each other...

Oil on Canvas
32" x 32"

Tuesday, January 19, 2010


This piece was done for my mom and her cat Sophie. I believe it was probably the second pet portrait I had done way back in 2007...

Oil on Canvas
14" x 24"

Una... The Golden Doodle


This commission piece was HUGE!!

2' x 4' Oils

My client has a very modern home with beautiful wood floors. When composing this piece, I relied upon using the star elements from a rug in their home.


While developing my style and approach to painting pets, I wanted to explore texture. I use this approach when speaking with clients of what ideas we can come up with for their piece.

A pattern from a dress... Upholstery from a favorite chair... something that would tie in the home with the painting.. something like a symbol of personality.

I love this piece of smokey, it turned out so well!

Oil on Canvas
24 x 36

Waiting on Santa..

Several years back.. I was able to capture Smokey Bones sporting a santa hat...

Oil on Canvas
14" x 11"

Maggie's Eye

This was a really fun piece starting out with a detailed graphite drawing. As I proceeded with color washes and building the "glow" with oils, I then went back in with colored pencil to add detail.

Mixed Media on board
14 x 12


Gift for my dear friend Virgina... wicked wild...

Acrylic on Canvas
10" x 8"