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A Brand New Year

Taeghans painting
At our Christmas market in December, Taeghan aged 10 presented me with this painting which she had painted for me.
Nic's painting
Nic aged 10 bought this painting of the river with his own money at the exhibition
The River Runs Through. #3793. 70x51cm. Oil.   Now belongs to Nic Horn from Komatipoort.








How exciting to have these two young people who are interested in art.  I met Nic at a market at his school.  He took one look at  “The River Runs Through” and there and then decided that he liked it.  He went off with his mom and later they came back.  He said that he would  buy it with his pocket money, but he really wanted this painting.  Here he has come to collect it.  My very youngest collector.
We had a Christmas market at our local Mall in December.  Things were pretty quiet as far as the art sales etc. were concerned, so there was plenty of time to chat to people.  Taeghan also aged 10 told me that she liked painting.  We had a little conversation and I said that if they were coming to the Mall again, I would like to see some of her work.  Imagine my delight when she arrived the next day.  She showed me this painting that she had just done.   I admired it, and was told that she had painted if for me.  Is that not special? I will treasure it.

Art exhibitions are not all about selling art.  The opportunity that one has to encourage youngsters is so important as both these cases indicate.
These two 10- year- olds  definitely have managed to creep into my heart.  I hope they go a long way in their love for art.

So at the start of this New Year, may I wish all art lovers an inspiring year.
May you find a piece that warms your heart;  that you can live with and love for a long time.  A painting is only as good as the emotion that it awakes in a person.   Happy New Year.!


Being an artist can be heart breaking.

At the pond #3980. Acrylic on stretched canvas. 62x46x4cm. R1950
At the pond #3980. Acrylic on stretched canvas.62x46x4cm  . R1950

Being an artist is quite risky. One puts your heart into painting those paintings, you make yourself so vulnerable and so often a snide remark can just crush you.   

I believe that you have to become pretty thick skinned to handle all the onslaughts of the public, but more serious, the onslaughts of fellow artists. There is nothing that can bring you into the depths of despair like being snubbed by fellow artists. 

One can forgive the public, because often they have their point of view and are entitled to it.
As a artist, you have to ask yourself.  “Is their opinion worth worrying about?”  Easier to handle,.  But folk who are in the business with you can really destroy your self worth.

Small things like displaying your art in the back room as though you are something that the cat brought in.  Allowing others to display many more paintings than were allowed in the rules, allowing paintings to be displayed which are way above the price allowed by the rules.  One just wonders.  Is it so hard to share a place in the sun with each other?. 

If you are considering becoming an artist, start now to develop a hide as thick as a Rhino.  You are going to need it.


One Item ticked off my Bucket List.

Mona Lisa from a distance

A Truffle                                                        City Hall Munich

Everyone talks about the Mona Lisa painting at the Louvre.  Don’t understand why it is such a popular painting, it is small, I’m sure there have been other portrait paintings that have been as good or better,  ……….BUT,  this one is supposed to be the MOST valuable painting in the world.  Priceless.

Our chance came to see it in the Louvre on our trip to Paris a few weeks ago.
All roads lead to the Mona Lisa.  Millions of others had the same idea and it was all I could do to lift my camera up above my head and snap away, hoping that I had it aimed correctly.  I do wish that I could have got closer to see if those eyes actually DID follow one.

So: item ticked off on the bucket list. Now for the rest of the trip.
Europe is SO amazing.  I can never get over how magnificent those buildings are. The time and effort that went into building those cathedrals and town halls will never cease to be a ‘wonderment” to me.  The craftsmanship and pride taken has lasted for centuries.  What a sadness that we do not have that anymore.  Minimalistic and plastic.  No more little birds carved out of stone on the top of a huge pillar in a cathedral.  When asked why the artisan had done that when no one could see it, he said.”God can see it!”  Motivation enough.

We were treated to a day in Munich by our son who lives in Stuttgart.  It was October fest time and there were markets everywhere.  At one stall selling vegies they advertised fresh truffles.  Having never seen a truffle we asked to look at it.
The photo above explains it all.  I asked what one did with it and a tourist from the USA said, “we grate it on French Fries!”  So I learned something else.  Not sure that that is what the French chefs do , but good enough at 1 Euro per gram. Only for the rich and famous.

So ends a lovely holiday, feeling very inspired to paint SO many lovely scenes.  To see the first in the series of paintings  from the South of France, please see them on this website.

Your comments will be very welcome.  Thank you.

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It does not always go your way

#3384. To The Promised Land. Acrylic Framed.                            98×77. R4500

Imagine my delight on receiving an e-mail from a publisher in Australia, telling me that they would like to use this painting for a book cover and asking for a high resolution photo.

Once before they used one of my paintings, so I thought that this was great.   I will be getting famous one day!  Or something.

Well, weeks passed and I heard nothing and eventually e-mailed them to find out what had happened.  Apparently the Graffic designer had done the cover and when they showed it to the author, he then showed it to several other people. Eventually deciding that “It would not work with the mix”
So there goes a couple of bob and my fame and fortune.
Remember:  You can’t judge a book by it’s cover – OR, You can’t cover a book until it is judged.



I used the wrong heading! | bicycle

THE BIKE #3919 20x24cm
The Bike #3919 Acrylic. 20x25cm.

Imagine my shock and surprise after posting this blog about a young boy who came to my exhibition and asked me to paint a picture of a bicycle in front of a large house. He wanted that to illustrate a dream that he had.  He wanted to live in a house like that one day.  This was a rather human story and I thought that was that.
Weeks later I looked at comments in my website.  I was horrified to find 197 comments of the most vulgar, porno-graphic language you can or rather can’t imagine.
What is our world coming to?   Maybe I am just too old to even understand what or where this comes from, but giving the blog the heading of” A boy’s dream”  was NOT the right one.  We live and learn.
I would appreciate your comments.


It’s All Gone!

Bushveld Afternoon #3920. Acrylic on canvas 148x60cm. R6200
Bushveld Afternoon       #3920.


Yes, It’s all gone.  Half this painting is gone, the sun is going, the birds have gone.

Things which were precious to me, like old songs with music you could hum after just hearing it once or twice, have gone, replaced by raucous noise which assaults your ear drums.

Table manners have gone.  It was common practice  to use a milk jug on the table, now it is a cardboard carton or plastic bottle.I still use a milk jug. I have seen a jam tin with a jagged lid on the table.
We sat at a table which was set with table cloth, napkins, a side plate and cutlery. People sat down to a meal, having first said grace.  There was much conversation during the meals and the family shared what had happened that day.
Communication has gone.  Cell phones have seen to that.

Respect has gone.  Children do not stand back for older people,  they seldom would give up their seat for a lady or elderly person.  Sadly, they do not even notice.

Many of our friends have gone.  Due to the country we live in our safety has gone and with it our freedom.  No longer can you stop on the side of the road when on a long trip and have your picnic, even changing a tyre is dangerous in places.

We won’t even talk about morals.  Old fashioned marriage may be, but when we go against age old traditions, then there is always something that suffers.  So many young people move in together, play at ‘being married’ and then split up to repeat the whole process over and over again.  In the end they possibly end up as lonely old people, they never made the commitment to each other, so the relationship floundered.

Common sense has gone.  A sad new generation with a wishbone, instead of a back bone. It was all too easy.

The hardest part of getting older is to accept the fact that is all gone.   The only thing that we have left is our memories.  No on can take those away. They will not be gone until we are also GONE!


Those dreaded words: IF ONLY

If Only: 

How often have we heard those words?  If only I had listened to my parents, If only I had waited, If only I had not said that, If only we had left earlier,  If only I had reacted to that inner voice.  If only we had not made that bad investment.
If only, if only, if only.
That is over.  The one thing we can never get back is TIME.
What ever was done, was done, the main thing is to get over it and carry on with your life.  Remember: Yesterday is history, Tomorrow is a mystery, only TODAY is the present and we have to appreciate this present, a gift from above, and use it to the full.  No recriminations.  Forgive yourself and move on.
Below is a painting which painted itself.  An inner yearning to visit Italy again.  Shall we make it our goal for 2017?  Then there can be no “If Only’s”
What is on YOUR bucket list for next year?

Room at the top. #3847 Acrylic on canvas 80x80cm R3500
Room At The Top. #3847 80x80cm  Acrylic on canvas R3500

Moderating Blogs Please Help!

Can anyone inform me what this means.  Every time I get a message to ‘moderate’ this comment, I notice that the word
“HACKS” appears in the URL.   I have tried e-mailing these people and without fail the e-mails have all been returned.

Does this mean that these people can hack into your computer?   Please inform a 76 year old what this is all about?
I am nervous to approve anything,

Please help.


A boy’s dream | dream

THE BIKE #3919 20x24cm
The Bike #3919
Acrylic. 20x25cm.

While I was exhibiting my art at our local Mall, one of the shop assistants, a young boy probably under 20 came in to browse.
He told me that he loved bicycles and had a dream that he would one day live in a big house and own a bike. He asked if I could paint a picture for him to look at every day.
The house had a big door and the bike stood outside, just waiting to be used.
I came up with this little one.

It is not often that young people realise that visualisation is so important in working towards your goals and dreams. I would not be surprised if he does achieve his dream one day. But in this country, would suggest that he works for the government instead. Huge salaries if you move up the ladder. Then he will get his big house. Probably will exchange the bike for a fancy car too.  Dreams with passion become possible.


Lizz’s Bizz: HAVE to versus WANT to:

How often in our lives the HAVE To takes preference over the WANT To?   These last few months have been particularly trying as it is the end of the year and books have to be brought up to date.

Wouldn’t it be lovely if we could just pay our way and never have to keep account of it all?. Just think how many forests would be saved..

My painting has unfortunately had to take a back seat, but now we are almost done and can get into it again. |

Have you ever lain awake at night, wishing that you could just go and put those ideas on to canvas, and then when you wake in the morning that enthusiasm has sort of dissolved?

This little oil painting of an Aloe has been sold, but it was such fun painting it.  So Watch this Space.

Aloe Vera oil painting, Flower. Oil on board 18x48cm.
Aloe Vera 3898. 18x48cm.