Book Signing December 23

Posted by on Dec 22, 2014 in Events, Wilsonia | No Comments

The Cabins of Wilsonia

Book Signing

Exeter Courthouse Gallery

125 South B Street, Exeter, California

12:30 – 5:30

Yes, I know 5 hours is a long time. That is the normal time for drawing lessons, and there are none in December so I decided to use the space and time for The Cabins of Wilsonia. Besides, the more spaced out it is, the more time I have to spend with each guest! Will you be one of them?

The Cabins of Wilsonia, $81 including tax (mailing adds $5)

Odd Job Based on Mineral King

Posted by on Dec 19, 2014 in commissions, Mineral King | No Comments

After many years of being an artist in Tulare County, and specializing in Mineral King, people often think of me when they need an artist. I get asked to do unusual things, which I call “odd jobs”.

This one was a first for me – drawing in a manner that could be sandblasted onto granite for headstones. The lines had to be a certain thickness, and little white spaces couldn’t be too little. I learned that black equals blasted, and that Sharpies can really get up your nose.

The designs are for people who were very dear to me, our cabin neighbors in Mineral King.

He wanted Farewell Gap. She wanted Sawtooth. Their daughter and I figured out how to do both on one stone.

Farewell, Jock. Thank you for closing the gap between my 2 front teeth, for giving me to okay to date Trail Guy, for being a wonderful generous neighbor and friend, and for rearing a daughter who feels like the missing half of my brain.

Farewell, Ora Kay. Thank you for helping Jock fix my teeth, for being my first good friend in Mineral King, so welcoming and loving and enthusiastic, for rearing such a great daughter to become my friend when you were stricken by MS and couldn’t come to the cabin much anymore (and I forgive you for running over my foot with your wheelchair.)

The Cabins of Wilsonia Cover is Revealed

Posted by on Dec 17, 2014 in General, Wilsonia | No Comments

The Cabins of Wilsonia, $86 including tax and mailing

The Cabins of Wilsonia Book Signing Today

Posted by on Dec 16, 2014 in Events, Wilsonia | No Comments

Five pallets of 1529 books arrived at my favorite store in Three Rivers, the Mercantile. These people truly understand customer service.

Trail Guy backed the Bot-Mobile and trailer containing about 3 pallets of books up the driveway. (We used the other pick-up for the 2 other pallets – don’t worry, we didn’t leave them at the Mercantile!)

After moving all those boxes weighing 31 lbs. each, 2 lovely gracious friends came over and helped put cover decals on enough books for today’s book signing (I HOPE it is enough!!)

The Cabins of Wilsonia Book Signing

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 16, 12:30-5:30

Courthouse Gallery of the Arts

125 South B Street, Exeter, California


Stocking Stuffer Recap

Posted by on Dec 15, 2014 in Events, the business of art | No Comments

“Recap”? What does that really mean? Just another piece of slang that we all accept, like “wrap up”. Sometimes I think I am losing my ability to speak real words, hence “do-over” “yucky” and “funner” in a recent post.

But, I digress.

The Stocking Stuffer Boutique went well. Six of us shared a vacant business space in “downtown” Three Rivers. It was a beautiful day, and after the first 1/2 hour of fidgeting, the people began arriving and didn’t stop until the end of the day.

This means that all my photos happened at the beginning of the day. We did a decent job of drawing attention to what has been a FOR RENT space for a year or two.

The added bonus is that I have 2 poinsettia plants now decorating my walkway at home.

Here is a peek inside the building. (Notice I chose the correct “peek” – I’ve read too many “peaks” lately when there was only something to see and nothing to climb.)

My things are to the left, mostly out the picture because you’ve seen them but you haven’t seen the space we were filling and I think it is interesting! (just be polite, ‘kay?)

It was so hard to stay indoors. I purposely wore shoes that weren’t good for outdoor walking because I knew the siren call of the river would pull me away from the day’s duties. There are limited opportunities for interacting with people with the place and way I’ve chosen to do business, so there is no excuse for trotting off to catch a view in the middle of it all.

It was a great space, a nice day, and now there are only 32 calendars remaining!

Beautiful Tulare County

Oil paintings of our county’s beautiful places by Jana Botkin

$15, including tax and mailing



Posted by on Dec 12, 2014 in Events, Thoughts, Wilsonia | No Comments

The books, The Cabins of Wilsonia, are supposed to arrive today. This may mean they arrive at some truck depot in Fresno where they sit over the weekend or it may mean a big rig comes to the hardware store in Three Rivers. (Bless Mike McCoy and the Three Rivers Mercantile for making their turn-around space and fork lift available to me!)

No matter when they arrive in Three Rivers, I will be bringing them (not all 1529, but a reasonable transportable amount) to Exeter’s Courthouse Gallery on Tuesday, December 16.

Here. Let’s make this easy:

The Cabins of Wilsonia



12:30 – 5:30



  1. If the books come on today, I will begin shipping to those who live far away on Monday. LET ME KNOW IF YOU PLAN TO PICK THE BOOK UP IN PERSON SO I DON’T MAIL IT FIRST!!
  2. If the books come on Monday, I’ll try to ship (Ahem. Most likely I will send Trail Guy to the Post Office!) on Tuesday a.m. before the book signing.
  3. If you paid for shipping and would rather not wait, come to the book signing and bring your receipt. I will refund your $5 mailing.
  4. If you didn’t pay for shipping, bring your receipt and retrieve your copy.
  5. If you live far away or can’t come on Tuesday, I will be there again the following Tuesday, same time.



  1. The price is $81, which includes tax BUT NOT SHIPPING.
  2. If you want a book shipped to someone, the price is $86. (Yes, I know it is a weird amount – I often specialize in weird.)
  3. If you want to order the book, you may do so using Paypal (the send money option) or through the mail (I accept checks) to P.O. Box 311, Three Rivers, CA 93271


I do NOT accept credit cards – bring cash or checks if you plan to buy a book. 

(This is because I don’t have a smart phone or a Square, because I don’t get cell phone service where I live – unbelievable, I know. Yes, I have AT&T. No, it doesn’t work at my address. Yes, I am sort of glad about that.)

While I Wait

Posted by on Dec 10, 2014 in the business of art, Thoughts | No Comments

This post was written on December 8.

As the arrival of the book The Cabins of Wilsonia gets closer, my anxiety mounts. This is due to several factors: the printer hasn’t been very forthcoming with information, and the closer to Christmas it gets, the more difficult I know it will be to get it signed, sealed and delivered.

It isn’t as if I have nothing to do. Look at this list:

  1. Figure out how to do some computer baloney (You don’t want to know – expensive, difficult and time-consuming while the company tries to sell me new computery stuff, and nothing makes sense and I have to call the company and be on hold forever to get any assistance while the chirpy voice tells me to just check the (non-working) website!)
  2. Send yet another email to the printer to ask if they know when the book shipped (last info was Dec. 5)
  3. More computer baloney with another irritating company
  4. Check email to see if the printer has answered.
  5. Begin cleaning up studio from slamming in and out for various weekend shows
  6. Check email to see that printer said book shipped Dec. 8, and think cynical thoughts about any info from printer.
  7. Sit in the sunshine with my sweet kitty and knitting to think uncharitable thoughts toward the printer and contemplate how to productively use the rest of the day.
  8. Vacuum the studio, hang paintings.
  9. Take inventory on pencil reproduction prints and find things to throw away, a very satisfying activity.
  10. Scan reproduction prints for the upcoming rebuilt website.
  11. Work on the blog
  12. Gather for another secret oil painting workshop
  13. Remember I have a commission drawing job and finally sit at the drawing table to do work as an ARTIST, for heaven’s sake!

I thought about telling you how really irritating the whole internet/domain/hosting baloney was, but I don’t want you to feel as irritated and stressed as I do.

So, let’s just have a look at the sweet Mr. Perkins and feel better.

Mineral King Mural Re-do

Posted by on Dec 10, 2014 in Mineral King, Murals | No Comments

The book The Cabins of Wilsonia may be in route to Three Rivers. Then again, it may not. Trust has been broken, so I am hearing the messages from the printer and the binder in the same sort of sound as the adult voices on Charlie Brown. Remember those?

Meanwhile, I am occupied with various tasks, all productive. I’d sort of rather sit and knit, or help my friend organize her closet or take a long walk, but the art world marches on, with or without my participation.

A new studio tour is scheduled for March of 2015. By “new”, I mean that different organizers are handing the arrangements. It is called South Valley Artists’ Studio Tour and will include lots of artists from lots of towns. Studio Tour used to be only Three Rivers; now Three Rivers is but a part of it.

The weather is mild, so I have spend some time refreshing the mural on my studio door. Here is the before and the middle. I know it needs more details, but need to wait for clarity and direction. It takes awhile to study one’s own work and see how to improve.

Sunshine is a wonderful thing. Like many wonderful things, too much of a good thing may cease to be so good. Sunshine fades paint, particularly the color yellow. This means greens turn to blue, oranges turn to red, and any brown that has yellow in it (they all do) goes either reddish or purple.

Here is the mural several years ago, a year when the leaves were brilliant in the fall:

Here it is prior to the recent refreshing. It kind of looks the same, so it probably has needed a do-over for a few years.

Here it is with new colors. I left the distant peaks the same so they would look distant. It might be too distant of a look. The rocks might be floating. There might not be enough detail in the foreground. It probably needs more work. And, I realized that I’ve never signed it. Perhaps I haven’t ever felt finished with the thing!

P.S. OF COURSE this is a Mineral King scene. . . were you expecting something else?


The Cabins of Wilsonia In Transit!

Posted by on Dec 9, 2014 in Wilsonia | No Comments

We interrupt our regular blogging schedule with this important news flash:

The Cabins of Wilsonia, the book I’ve been slaving over for 3 years, is on 5 pallets in a truck depot in Cincinnati, Ohio, expected to arrive in Three Rivers on December 12!

Do-Over and other juvenile expressions

Posted by on Dec 9, 2014 in commissions, Oil Paintings | No Comments

When you were a kid, did you sometimes allow do-overs on the playground? You know, you go to serve the volleyball, the class clown belches your name so you drop the ball instead of hitting it, and you get a do-over because it wasn’t fair?

I began a painting of pumpkins several years ago. It was to be a gift for someone who did me a favor, but the favor went south and the friendship did too. I couldn’t bring myself to finish it. I tried and tried to disassociate the painting from the incident, but every time I looked at it, I felt yucky.

Wow, this is a juvenile sounding post. “Do over” and “yucky”. Wonder what’s gonna sneak out next?

A customer requested a painting of Sawtooth after she saw my cards with that scene. I am always willing to paint something again, so I thought “Do-over? Sure!”

When I went into my canvas stash, I saw that dreaded pumpkin painting. Hmmmm, I wonder. . . Then, I couldn’t find the photo. No problem, because it was part of the first calendar of paintings I had printed (the 2013 calendar).

Look! Something weird is happening to those unfinished pumpkins!

Isn’t that weird?

I think it worked! The colors will be a bit brighter on this second version of Sawtooth because I am working from the printed version, which has exaggerated colors. I think it is funner this way.

There! Got in another juvenile expression!

When this dries, I will detail the branches in the foreground.

P.S. Sawtooth is the name of a prominent peak in Mineral King, the part of Sequoia National Park in the southern Sierra Nevada where I spend the most time.