Friday, November 30, 2012

Smoothie Anyone? 4″ x 6″ Watercolor

“Now and then we have to remind troubled friends how strong they are. If problems make them forget, true friends will speak of the courage that they sometimes neglect.”

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012
Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Smoothie Anyone?  4″ x 6″ Watercolor

I painted this little postcard from a photo by Lisilk at WetCanvas.  She always has the best photos!  I figured you might be a little tired of buildings.  :D

Dodinsky is the author of the upcoming inspirational and reflective gift book THE GARDEN OF THOUGHTS, scheduled to be released Spring of 2013 by Sourcebooks Publishing.

His written ruminations on life became a gift: Mothers passed on his writings to their daughters, brothers shared his thoughts with their fathers, and readers told their friends about the little treasures they discovered in his works. Appreciative emails from worldwide followers from all walks of life trickled in, sharing with him how he inspired them to look deeper within themselves for the answers to increase their own happiness and self-worth. Dodinsky was humbled to recognize that in his own little way, he was affecting the lives of others.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Nelson’s Feed & Seed – Eufaula, OK - 8" x 10" Watercolor

“One way to become enthusiastic is to look for the plus sign. To make progress in any difficult situation, you have to start with what’s right about it and build on that.”
Norman Vincent Peale

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Nelson’s Feed & Seed – Eufaula, OK

The Nelson family has owned the feed store since the early 1930′s.  Vernon Nelson purchased it and his grandson, T.Max Nelson runs it today.   It was leased to others for a time in the early years, but it has been Nelson operated since 1962.  Don’t you just love it?

If you look over your right shoulder, you will see my sign shop.  Their rooster has been known to wander over for a visit.

The quote below was also with the above quote and I loved it, so you’re getting a little extra today.  It’s from the book Body, Mind & Spirit by Anonymous.

 ”Beginning our days with a positive mental outlook is a great depression chaser. Simply lifting our heads and looking up and out instead of down will make us feel better. Although we can’t spend all our time staring at the sky, we can train ourselves to look for the best in ourselves and others.

 Even in the middle of difficulty or pain, we have choices. We can choose a gloom-and-doom attitude and endlessly replay the thoughts that accompany it. Or we can step back and find the one good thing. We may be blinded with pain. The situation may appear hopeless, utterly bleak. But recovery guarantees that we are equal to it; that in our pain there is at least one good thing.

We are the masters of our fate. We can change even the most difficult situations with an attitude of hope and positive expectation. Approaching each day with a hopeful heart will give us a different approach to our troubles.”

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Eufaula, OK – Main & Selmon, Going North – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor & Ink

“I’m a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.”
– Thomas Jefferson

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Eufaula – Main & Selmon, Going North – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor & Ink

If you turn right here, I’m just down the block on the right.  I love that building on the left.   It now houses Paradise Realty, but it has been many things in my 21 years in Eufaula.   It’s a wonderful old building.  Just in case you’re curious… that building on the right really is pink.  It used to be a soap store and that is when it went pink.  It now has a second hand store in it.   Don’t you just love the clock?  :)

About Thomas Jefferson

President Thomas Jefferson was a true Renaissance figure: politician, inventor, archaeologist, architect, and more. He was born in Virginia in 1743 and later designed his adult home at Monticello. Many consider him the brightest man ever to inhabit the White House. Jefferson was the primary author of the Declaration of Independence; the Library of Congress was founded from his personal collection. He died on July 4, 1826.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Eufaula – Main & Selmon Facing South – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor & Ink

“None of us will ever accomplish anything excellent or commanding except when he listens to this whisper which is heard by him alone.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Eufaula – Main & Selmon Facing South – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor & Ink

If you turn left right here, my sign shop is about 3/4 of a block on the right.   Funny thing about this painting… I took it over to the gallery (Our Favorite Place)  on Friday and before I even left… it sold!  Yay!!!!  And a couple more small paintings and a few postcards…. before I even left the gallery!  Love it!

In this painting, Our Favorite Place is the 4th building down on the right.  It’s a quick 2 minute walk from my shop.  I’m taking two more paintings over there today.  Of course I have to have a caramel latte while I’m there.   :)

About Ralph Waldo Emerson

Ralph Waldo Emerson helped spark the transcendentalist movement with the essay Nature, which described his belief in the spiritual essence of humanity and the natural world. He was born in Boston in 1803. He was a Unitarian minister until he resigned in 1832 to become a philosopher and writer. He suffered the untimely deaths of many of his loved ones: three brothers, his first wife at age 20, and his eldest son at age five. Emerson died in 1882.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Whiskers for Illustration Friday – Watercolor

“What I think about surrounds me. What I allow to be entertained in my mind becomes a reality. If I think negatively, I will attract negativity in my life. On the other hand, if I concentrate on developing positive thoughts, I will attract positive people and events to my life. My potential will be increased.

 I cannot control what thoughts come into my mind, but I can control my perception and reaction to them.”

Anonymous – from the book Help for Helpers, Daily Meditations for Counselors

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Whiskers for Illustration Friday – Watercolor

Whiskers is the word of the week at Illustration Friday.  I spent the weekend working on commissions, so my whiskers kitty was painted a while ago.  It is all watercolor and sprinkled with folly.  :)

That anonymous person has put into words what I live by.  I just love that!!

Friday, November 23, 2012

A Redneck Thanksgiving in Oklahoma

“It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.”
– Ursula K. Le Guin

Williamson Thanksgiving 2012

A Redneck Thanksgiving in Oklahoma

Yes… that is a car lift that Thanksgiving dinner was served on.  I just love it!  We have been eating Thanksgiving dinner with Jerry & Teresa Williamson for 9 years.  The last 6 or so have been served from this car lift in Jerry’s Boat repair business.  Behind me (as I was taking the photo) is a bunch of tables and chairs where we eat.  That wooden platform you see in the lower left corner is the stage for the permanently installed  stripper pole.  he he he  :D

About Ursula K. Le Guin

American writer Ursula K. Le Guin’s beautifully crafted, lyrical novels transcend the science fiction and fantasy genres; her books have been finalists for the Pulitzer Prize and have won the National Book Award and the Pushcart Prize, among many other honors. She was born in Berkeley in 1929, met her husband in Paris, and settled in Oregon to raise her family. Her best known novels include The Dispossessed, The Left Hand of Darkness, and The Earthsea Trilogy.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Purple Weanie Dog in a Purple Jungle

“In every person who comes near you look for what is good and strong; honor that; try to imitate it, and your faults will drop off like dead leaves when their time comes.”
John Ruskin

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

It’s Another Purple Weanie Dog

I promise… nothing stronger than coffee was imbibed during the painting of this little purple critter.  :D
Have a very Happy Thanksgiving and if you’re traveling, please be safe.

About John Ruskin

John Ruskin was an English art critic who influenced the attitude of a whole generation toward art and architecture. He was born in 1819 in London. His career began with an essay defending his friend, artist J.M.W. Turner, from critics. His book Modern Painters made Turner popular and gave stature to the Pre-Raphaelite movement. He founded the Cambridge Scool of Art in 1858, now known as the Anglia Ruskin University. Leo Tolstoy called him one of those rare men who think with their heart. When Ruskin inherited wealth, he gave most of the money away. He died in 1900.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Good Greif! It's a purple Weanie Dog!

“You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.”

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

It’s a Purple Weanie Dog!

This is one of two paintings I did for my neighbor.  She was giving them to her best friend, who just happens to love these dogs.  I worked on commissions all weekend, so I don’t have anything brand new to show you for the next couple days, so I’m exploring the archives.  :)

Who is Buddha?

Buddha can refer to the historical Buddha Shakyamuni or to anyone who has attained full enlightenment. Geshe Kelsang Gyatso explains in Introduction to Buddhism:

Awakened One.  A Buddha is a person who is completely free from all faults and mental obstructions.
In general, ‘Buddha’ means ‘Awakened One’, someone who has awakened from the sleep of ignorance and sees things as they really are. A Buddha is a person who is completely free from all faults and mental obstructions. There are many people who have become Buddhas in the past, and many people will become Buddhas in the future….There is nothing that Buddha does not know. Because he has awakened from the sleep of ignorance and has removed all obstructions from his mind, he knows everything of the past, present, and future, directly and simultaneously. Moreover, Buddha has great compassion which is completely impartial, embracing all living beings without discrimination.

He benefits all living beings without exception by emanating various forms throughout the universe, and by bestowing his blessings on their minds. Through receiving Buddha’s blessings, all being, even the lowliest animals, sometimes develop peaceful and virtuous states of mind. Eventually, through meeting an emanation of Buddha in the form of a Spiritual Guide, everyone will have the opportunity to enter the path to liberation and enlightenment. As the great Indian Buddhist scholar Nagarjuna said, there is no one who has not received help from Buddha.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Eufaula, OK – Main and Foley – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor & Ink

“You will not find poetry anywhere unless you bring some of it with you.”
– Joseph Joubert

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Eufaula, OK – Main and Foley – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor & Ink

This painting is being donated to the Eufaula Area Chamber of Commerce for their Community Dinner/Dance silent auction on December 8th.   I fell in love with this painting and I’m the artist, so I hope it’ll be a hit at the auction.

About Joseph Joubert

French essayist Joseph Joubert became famous after his death when his friend, the renowned author Chateaubriand, gathered a selection of essays into the book Collected Thoughts of Mr. Joubert. Joubert was born in 1754 in Périgord. He attended and then taught at a religious college in Toulouse but left in 1778 for Paris, where he became friends with a number of great thinkers of the time. He wrote copiously on such subjects as ethics, politics, theology, and literature. He died in 1824.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Little Fall Scarecrow – 2.5″ x 3.5″ Watercolor & Sharpie ATC

Education should be the process of helping everyone to discover his uniqueness.
Leo Buscaglia

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Revisiting a Little Fall Scarecrow – 2.5″ x 3.5″  Watercolor & Sharpie ATC

I painted this for a fall challenge in 2010.  It’s an itty bitty ATC.  I just thought it would be fun to post something fallish as we get close to Thanksgiving.  Have a great weekend!

Leo F. Buscaglia (1924 -1998)

Buscaglia was teaching in the Department of Special Education at the University of Southern California in the late 1960s when one of his students committed suicide. She had been one of the sets of “kind eyeballs” he always looked for in the large auditorium, because her responses showed him that at least one student was hearing what he said, so the news that she killed herself had a great impact on him. ["What are we doing stuffing facts into people and forgetting that they are human beings?"] This incident led him to form a non-credit class titled Love 1A. There were no grades. (How could you potentially fail someone in this class? That wouldn’t be very loving!) The class led to lectures and a manuscript loosely based on what was shared in those weekly classes. The book found a publisher – and an author surprised to find that the simple title LOVE had never previously been claimed, allowing him to say “I have the copyright on LOVE!” Buscaglia said he never taught this class, only facilitated it, adding that he learned as much as anyone.  Much more here.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Camel Donning a Wreath in Watercolor

“No one can really pull you up very high — you lose your grip on the rope. But on your own two feet you can climb mountains.”
– Louis Brandeis

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Camel Donning a Wreath -  Why Not?

Painting this wreath was the November challenge over at Paint My Photo.  I had a great time jazzing this camel up for the holidays.  The wreath photo was contributed by Donna Sommer.

About Louis Brandeis

American judge Louis Brandeis was the first Jewish Supreme Court Justice, and one of the most influential Justices in the history of the Court. He was born in Kentucky in 1856 to Czech-born parents. He graduated from high school at age 14 and later became head of his class at Harvard Law School. As a Justice, many of his decisions created greater protections for individual rights of privacy and free speech. He died in 1941. Brandeis University was named in his honor.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

A Charming Old Car – 5″ x 5″ Watercolor & Ink

“If there is a sin against this life, it consists perhaps not so much in despairing of life as in hoping for another life and in eluding the implacable grandeur of this life.”
Albert Camus
Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

A Charming Old Car – 5″ x 5″ Watercolor & Ink

I painted this from another photo reference from Lin (Old Rock Chick) at WetCanvas.  The plaid was fun.  I just made that part up.  :D

Albert Camus (1913-1960) was a representative of non-metropolitan French literature. His origin in Algeria and his experiences there in the thirties were dominating influences in his thought and work. Of semi-proletarian parents, early attached to intellectual circles of strongly revolutionary tendencies, with a deep interest in philosophy (only chance prevented him from pursuing a university career in that field), he came to France at the age of twenty-five.

 The man and the times met: Camus joined the resistance movement during the occupation and after the liberation was a columnist for the newspaper Combat. But his journalistic activities had been chiefly a response to the demands of the time; in 1947 Camus retired from political journalism and, besides writing his fiction and essays, was very active in the theatre as producer and playwright (e.g., Caligula, 1944). He also adapted plays by Calderon, Lope de Vega, Dino Buzzati, and Faulkner’s Requiem for a Nun. His love for the theatre may be traced back to his membership in L’Equipe, an Algerian theatre group, whose “collective creation” Révolte dans les Asturies (1934) was banned for political reasons.  More…

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

A Bethville Version of a Nuneaton Building – 3″ x 5″ Watercolor & Ink

“A life of reaction is a life of slavery, intellectually and spiritually. One must fight for a life of action, not reaction.”
Rita Mae Brown

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

A Bethville Version of a Nuneaton Building – 3″ x 5″ Watercolor & Ink

As you may have guessed,  this building is black and white in real life.  Old Rock Chick (Lin) from WetCanvas posted the photo in her WDE last weekend.  I do have to admit that I probably have 3 hours in this one.  The lamp post came from another of Lin’s photos.  I love that lamp post!  Lin lives in the UK and they have very ornate architecture there.  So fun to paint!!

About Rita Mae Brown

American author Rita Mae Brown became a pioneer of lesbian-themed fiction with the publication of her first novel, the best-selling Rubyfruit Jungle. She was born in 1944 in Pennsylvania and ultimately settled in Virginia, where most of her novels take place. After she lost a college scholarship due to her political activism, she briefly lived in an abandoned car with a friend and a cat named Baby Jesus. Her many novels include a mystery series “co-written” with her cat, Sneaky Pie.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Free Shade – 5″ x 7″ Watercolor & Ink

“We fear to trust our wings. We plume and feather them, but dare not throw our weight upon them. We cling too often to the perch.
Charles B. Newcomb

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Free Shade – 5″ x 7″ Watercolor & Ink

Tree is the word this week at Illustration Friday.  I had a good time painting this one.  Usually I paint the critters first, then move to the background, but I did this one backwards, since tree was the word of the week.   I didn’t know what color the cows were going to be until I dipped my brush in that pink.  :D

I couldn’t find any biographical info on Mr. Newcomb, but I liked the quote.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Eufaula Armory – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor

“Put your heart, mind, intellect, and soul even to your smallest acts. This is the secret of success.”
– Swami Sivananda Saraswati

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Eufaula Armory – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor

Built in 1935 and finished in 1937, this building continues to house a unit of the Oklahoma National Guard.  The Works Progress Administration program began in June of 1935 in order to stimulate the economy and employee citizens of the country. The program spent $10.75 billion, with $185 million spent in Oklahoma.

Many of the projects throughout Oklahoma were to build roads, dams, schools, post offices and other public buildings. One of the most outstanding examples throughout Oklahoma is the series of armories constructed in a variety communities. Prior to their construction, the Oklahoma National Guard units did not have permanent structures. Most rented building space, where security was a problem, leaving arms and equipment open for theft.

The National Guard Unit headquartered in Eufaula is Company H, 2nd Battalion, 180th Infantry. From time to time, the unit had seen its headquarters located in the High School Gymnasium, the county courthouse, as well as rental spaces in commerical space. Conditions were so bad that at one point the unit drilled in the streets of Eufaula.  More info and photos here.

About Swami Sivananda Saraswati

Swami Sivananda Saraswati, born Kuppuswamy, was an Indian doctor and Yoga guru. He was born in 1887 in India. When he set up a clinic in Malaysia, he became known for his kind heart and charitable work. He left a successful medical practice to go on a pilgrimage to India, where he took monastic vows. As a spiritual leader, he attracted many disciples, including Krishnamurti. He called his discipline the Yoga of synthesis. He wrote more than 300 books on Yoga and spirituality. He died in 1963.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Foley Mansion – An Artist’s View – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor & Ink

“When it comes to life, the critical thing is whether you take things for granted or take them with gratitude.”
G.K. Chesterton

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Foley Mansion – An Artist’s View – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor & Ink

The Foley Mansion was built in 1901 and burned in 1962, here in Eufaula, OK.  Since I was unable to find out what color it was for sure, I took the advise of fellow blogger Jill ( and researched colors that were widely used in that period.    I am thrilled with how it looks, but the hubby thought I should have been more diligent in my search for the actual color of the mansion.  Since I painted this for pleasure and it wasn’t commissioned… I like it this way.   :)

Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936) cannot be summed up in one sentence. Nor in one paragraph. In fact, in spite of the fine biographies that have been written of him, he has never been captured between the covers of one book. But rather than waiting to separate the goats from the sheep, let’s just come right out and say it: G.K. Chesterton was the best writer of the 20th century. He said something about everything and he said it better than anybody else. But he was no mere wordsmith. He was very good at expressing himself, but more importantly, he had something very good to express. The reason he was the greatest writer of the 20th century was because he was also the greatest thinker of the 20th century.  More here…

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Giant Dragonfly Goes for a Joy Ride – 4″ x 6″ Watercolor & Ink

“If you don’t like something change it;  If you can’t change it, change the way you think about it.”
Mary Engelbreit

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Giant Dragonfly Goes for a Joy Ride – 4″ x 6″ Watercolor & Ink

The two (yes… thank goodness it was two) seperate photos I used to paint this gem, were posted to WetCanvas by Oty.  Oty is from Greece and I’m pretty sure their dragonflies are regular sized.

I got to hear Mary Engelbreit speak to a small group at AmericasMart in Atlanta in 2011.  She is an amazing woman and very inspiring.  She has built an amazing empire with her art.  Go Mary!

Mary Engelbreit

Mary Engelbreit is known throughout the world for her distinctive illustration style, imbued with spirited wit and nostalgic warmth. The unmatched following for her work has grown with a range of licensed products that stretches from calendars, to best-selling children’s books, millions of greeting cards sold each year, and thousands of gifts, crafts and home accents.  More here.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Tibetan Woman on a Walk – 2″ x 5″ Watercolor & Ink

“Most people are so busy knocking themselves out trying to do everything they think they should do, they never get around to do what they want to do.”
– Kathleen Winsor

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Tibetan Woman on a Walk – 2″ x 5″ Watercolor & Ink

This is another painting from one of Connie’s WetCanvas references.  I did stretch her a little taller for effect.  All that detail is really tiny, but it was fun to do.

I was the 8th person to vote at my polling place this morning.  Don’t forget to get out there and make your vote count.

About Kathleen Winsor

American author Kathleen Winsor is best known for the racy historical novel, Forever Amber, which made a huge splash when it was first published in 1944, selling 100,000 copies the first week. It was banned in 14 states for its sexual content. The ensuing debate contributed to the loosening of restrictions that allowed works by D. H. Lawrence and Henry Miller to be published in the US. Winsor wrote a number of other novels, none as successful. She was born in 1919 and died in 2003.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Shy Panda Hides Behind the Big Pink Elephant – 5″ x 7″ Watercolor & Ink

“Learning to live from conscious intention rather from habit energy and past condition is the path of awakening.”
Fred Eppsteiner

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Shy Panda Hides Behind the Big Pink Elephant – 5″ x 7″ Watercolor & Ink

Shy is the word of the week for Illustration Friday.   The photo references came from two photos by Connie VanWisssen at WetCanvas.  Connie lives in the Netherlands, but her friend Wilma took the panda photo in Tibet and her brother Stef took the elephant photo in Uganda.

WetCanvas is a wonderful art community to be a part of.   I have been hanging out there since the summer of 2007, when I started painting again for the first time in 30 years.   They gave me a ton of encouragement and I have made some great friends.

Fred Eppsteiner is the Dharma Teacher of the Florida Community of Mindfulness with students in FL and NC. A practicing Buddhist for over 40 years, and a psychotherapist for more than 30 years, Fred has trained extensively in both Zen and Vajrayana/Dzogchen lineages. He received Dharma Transmission from Thich Nhat Hanh in 1994 and is the editor of two books: The Path of Compassion and Interbeing. For more information on Fred and the FCM, access 

Friday, November 2, 2012

The Foley Mansion - Circa 1901 - 8" x 10" Watercolor in Progress

Fearful as reality is, it is less fearful than evasions of reality.
Caitlin Thomas

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

The Foley Mansion – Circa 1901 – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor in Progress

This is as far as I have gotten on this painting.  I’m working from a really old black and white photo.  The Foley Mansion burned in 1962 and I have been unable to find out what color it was.  This morning  I found a painting of it on the internet and it was white in the painting.   I’m still not convinced that it was white.  Do you know?

I found some other interesting stuff about C.E. Foley.  He had a ticket for the Titanic voyage!  He missed the trip due to illness and his luggage was already on board the ill fated ship.  One of the artifacts that was salvaged by Titanic recovery crews was a $5 bank note. It was issued from the First National Bank of Eufaula, Oklahoma. The bank note was dated November 16, 1907. That is the date Oklahoma became a state. The Foley family is convinced it belonged to C.E. Foley. It is believed he kept the note as a keepsake, seeing he was a supporter of Oklahoma becoming a state.

Caitlin Thomas (8 December 1913 – 31 July 1994), née Macnamara, was the wife of poet and writer Dylan Thomas. Their marriage was a stormy affair, fuelled by alcohol and infidelity, though the couple remained together until Dylan’s death in 1953. After her husband’s death she wrote the book Leftover Life to Kill, an account of her self exile to Italy. She paints a picture of a grieving widow seeking solace in distance, a younger lover and alcohol.  More…

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Lighthouse in Chania city, Crete, Greece – 6″ x 11″ Watercolor & Ink

“I don’t want to get to the end of my life and find that I have lived just the length of it. I want to have lived the width of it as well.”
Author Unknown

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Lighthouse in Chania city, Crete, Greece – 6″ x 11″ Watercolor & Ink

Oty hosted the WDE (weekend drawing event)  over at WetCanvas and she lives in Greece.  This was painted from her photo reference.   In the photo, there was a beautiful horse and buggy, too.  I may have to find time to paint it later.

When I lived in Huntington Beach, CA, I worked for a company called Omynee Industries.  My boss, Tony Kardamakis, was from Crete.  He eventually went back to Crete and offered me the job of running Omynee Industries.  I had just moved to Oklahoma when I got this offer and passed it up, but I have always been grateful for the opportunity.

Author Unknown

This quote came from my wonderful little book by Ruth Fishel, Wrinkles Don’t Hurt, Daily Meditations on the Joy of Aging Mindfully.  I love this book!!!