Monday, September 24, 2018

Beaches in British Columbia

Hi,  The Travelling Chicken and Co.  arrived from Victoria on Salt Spring Island (a short ferry ride away)  to visit me Evelyn Oldroyd.
TC and SeniorAzul had a great  walk to Beddis Beach where they enjoyed the sun, waves and sand.

The next morning TC was awake enough to go to the beach again for a portrait in the early morning light before the sun was up!

TC sat on a small rock at the edge of the water (very brave as the water was cold!) and enjoyed the lapping waves and view of the other islands in the distance. 

Soon after they arrived we were off on a road trip to Christina Lake in the Boundary Country of British Columbia.  This meant a longer ferry ride very early in the morning.  Little Chicken and her chicks stayed snugged up, but TC and SeniorAzul came up on deck to enjoy the views.

At Christina Lake TC & Co. stayed at Cascade Cottage on the first tee of the golf course.  They enjoyed the beaches at Christina Lake  had hoped to go floating on the Kettle River, but  smoke from the many fires in the province came along which made being outside too uncomfortable.

We had hoped to have another painting session before they left, but had to get going to Cache Creek, another town in British Columbia.  We did take the opportunity for a few photo sessions so I hope to get more paintings done!

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Wine at Big Bar Lake and Grandma Duck

My name is Sharlene Stushnov-Lee and I am an artist living in Victoria, BC.  I first met TC and "the gang" a few years ago when they came to visit my good friend Marcela Strasdas, here in Victoria.  It sounded like they had a very good time together and I always thought that I would like to have them come and visit me.  But alas, life got in the way.

So you can imagine how surprised and delighted I was to find that they were making a return visit and would be joining us on our annual painting trip this year.    

Every year Marcela, Deborah (another friend) and I go on a painting road trip and this year was no exception.  We spent time in Kelowna, Ashcroft and Big Bar Lake. 

"Afternoon Wine" - The Gang at Big Bar Lake - Watercolour

One afternoon while we were at Big Bar Lake, I had the opportunity to spend some time with Senor Azul, Chicken and Hen and  . . .  how did that wine box get in there?  Yes, our visit may also have involved a little bit of afternoon wine. 

"Visiting Grandma Duck" - Acrylic on Canvas - 8"x8"

When we returned to Victoria, Senor Azul and The Gang finally came over to my house to meet Grandma Duck.  Grandma Duck has been around for a long time and was happy for some company.   Unfortunately, TC and friends couldn't stay long as they had already made arrangements to visit Saltspring Island, so after a short visit they packed up (or I should say were packed up) and off they went.   

Hmm . . . .perhaps another road trip next year?

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Tuesday, July 17, 2018

On the road again in British Columbia, Canada

The Art Critics - 8x8 - Oil on Canvas

As I mentioned before I had to go on a plein-air trip into the interior of British Columbia and I knew TC and Gang would enjoy a road trip as they usually travel by air and in confined spaces (a box!). This time they enjoyed seeing the Canadian landscape and of course got to pose for some of my fellow painters. When we came back from the trip, I was looking at all the paintings I had done during the trip and they were helping me figure out which ones needed some adjustments. Now that I took the photo of the painting and look at it again, it looks as if the clouds are coming out of Señor Gallo's mouth! We know now who had the  most to say! I will be forever grateful TC and Gang for your help!! Till the next time!

Visit my website and follow me on Facebook and Instagram if you are interested in seeing more of my work. Thank you! 

Excited to go through the mountains!

I think they were a touch bored at this point....

Back on the ocean

They even got to go on BC Ferries to get to Vancouver Island

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Thursday, July 5, 2018

Welcome back to Victoria BC!

TC and the Gang in Front of "Spring Glory" - 9x12 - Oil on Canvas

Well, it was a happy reunion when Tc and gang arrived back in Victoria, BC! They had visited a few years ago and we had had a blast in my studio reading books and chatting about travel. My name is Marcela Strasdas, I love to paint local scenes, our gorgeous BC coastline and the many flowers and gardens we have in this city. My medium is primarily oil at present.  My special guests came to Victoria at at the tail end of cherry blossom season and as I had painted a few of them, they really enjoyed parading around in front of my paintings. They said they felt like they were walking around the neighbourhood! 
At the time, I was doing a one-month-long artist residency at the Coast Hotel in downtown Victoria so I brought them with me with the idea of painting them while there but unfortunately, I never got to it. They did enjoy meeting people from all over the world and pose for photos in front of my paintings!

TC and Gang in front of "Whiteout Conditions"
12x12 - Oil on Cradled Panel

TC & Gang in front of  "Rows of Joy"6x8 - Oil on Cradled Panel

They were surprised to see I had moved and didn't live next to the beautiful forest they had seen before behind my house so of course, they explored the house and the yard and told me all about their travels in the last couple of years. Wow, these chicks get around!!

Blah-blah-blah-blah while I make dinner!

As if they didn't travel enough I took them with me to a Plein-Air Paint out in the interior of BC which I will share int he next post! Thanks for reading!!

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Monday, April 16, 2018

Visiting Chicks Admire the Senora Rosa Dali Statue on the Avenue of Second Place Trophies in Richmond Virginia

Weird surrealistic title, huh? Well, in a fact-is-stranger-than-fiction twist, this almost happened here in Richmond, Virginia about 50 years ago. Salvador Dali was approached about making a statue for a Civil War Erz nurse, Capt. Sally Louisa Tompkins, using (and no I am not making this up!) pink aluminum. 


So I had fun combining Dali's signature style along with facets of this story...

That is why Senor Azul has become Senora Rosa just for this post, along with the requisite melting clock, waxy mustache, spindly legs and funky clouds.  I even put in a self portrait in Dali style, can you see it? 

While the Dali statue never came to be, there was one conceptual sketch made.

photo courtesy of Style Weekly Magazine

This is how his publicist described Dali's vision...

"according to a Richmond News Leader article, “Dalí sees (Captain Sally) as a kind of modern St. George and the dragon. The facial likeness would be as near as possible to Captain Sally, but the form of the actual body would depend on whether she wore a uniform or not...Probably the dragon will be an enlarged microbe of some kind, not the standard dragon of medieval times.” The entire structure would sit atop a 20-foot model of Dali’s pinky finger."

This is how it was received by the city council at the time ...

" How about Captain Sally drooling over a branch with one eye supported by a crutch and all in shiny aluminum with a red neon heart that really beats? Let’s tie a bow on Traveler’s tail and hold a happening in Capitol Square.”

quotes courtesy RVANews

So needless to say this statue never made it off the drawing board. But the chicks visit here, gave me a great opportunity to imagine and then paint...which is really what it is all about, right?


Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Luck o' The Irish in Maryland, USA!

Acrylic, 5x7 inches

 I doubt Senor Azul has an ounce of Irish DNA but it was St. Patrick's Day and what better way to celebrate than to eat green French Macarons?

The trio was disappointed that they were here in the DC suburbs too early for Cherry Blossoms, but today's snow storm might cancel those blossoms anyway!  We're off to the Post Office this morning to be sure they are on their way to the next artist before the big storm hits tonight.

So much fun seeing them again after four years!

Friday, February 16, 2018

Friendships in North Bend, Washington USA

6"x6", Oil
It's been really great to see TC again here in
 North Bend, Washington!
After 4 years, since I last saw her, she looks great!!
Sorry you have to leave so soon!!
Here's my website:
Art By CJ Roughton
Here's my blogspot:
CJ Roughton Art Blog

Sunday, February 4, 2018

The Traveling Chicken and Her Peeps Come to Mankato, MN

A few days ago I thought there was a little pecking noise at the front door... Not sure if I was actually hearing something, I went to check. It's a good thing I glanced down! There was the tiny Traveling Chicken and her dear companions, Senor Azul and Hen right on my doorstep, shivering in the cold! " Come in, come in! It's freezing out there!" They were more than happy to escape the dangerous wind chills we've been having here in "Minnesnowta"  and come inside to warm up. After they had settled in, we got acquainted over a beverage or two and learned that we had many things in common, including our enjoyment of art communities where we can all learn and grow together. I mentioned that I had been an art teacher and this seemed to get TC very excited! She confided that, had she not chosen to be a world famous, globe-trotting artist's model, she would have liked to have been a teacher as well. TC loves to be around artists, both young and old, and loves to encourage others to find their creative spirit. That got me thinking. "Hey!", I said, "would you like to join me tomorrow when I go to my figure drawing group at the Art Center in St.Peter?" "You bet we would!", they all said in unison. The next day we went to the little town where our feathered friends posed and the artists drew them. Here you can see Senor Azul posing with Kelly, our model. Kelly was thrilled to share the stage with such celebrities!
 After our fun time there, we decided we would like to work with some younger artists too. Rosa Parks Elementary School kindly opened their doors to us and art teacher, Amy Muehlenhardt, invited us into her classroom. Her students were delighted to meet the famous travelers and enjoyed creating art about them in a variety of ways. So many  great ideas came from these original thinkers! Some kids wanted to sketch, others painted, some used oil pastels or chalk pastels. Many students came up with stories that would have made great books or movies. It was a very exciting time, over-flowing with creative energy! Here is just a tiny sample of the art happening that day. I predict there will be more to share soon.

After visiting and sharing with so many artists, it was now our turn for art-making. We couldn't wait! Back in my home studio, TC struck a pose while the rest of us took some inspiration from our visits with the local art communities and created our own art works. Lucky me! I was standing far enough back that I was able to capture the whole flock! We had such a lovely time together, that I will be sad to see them go. But, alas, it is time for the little art ambassadors to pack up and move on to their next destination. They told me that, even though February is a very cold month to be in Minnesota, they enjoyed meeting so many warm hearted artists and will always remember their visit to the land of 10,000 lakes.
Marjie Laizure's art can be viewed on the following locations:

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

TC and Friends "Fun Times In Idaho"

Senor Azul was thrilled when he heard he would be visiting Cindy Gillett's studio in Idaho during January.  It was a perfect time to explore Boise's local ski resort Bogus Basin.  

The snow year was a bit late...but Senor Azul did a snow dance on the airplane, working his rooster magic.  In fact, as Señor Azul, TC and Hen were unpacking, six inches of fresh new snow fell on the mountain.  Whew, just in time!!!

He tried to convince TC and Hen that his idea was the best...but they were more interested in picking out the soft pastel colors to be used for their portraits. They were secretly hoping they'd spend their time sitting by a warm and cozy fireplace sipping hot cocoa instead.

Being kind hearted, TC and Hen gave in.  In fact, Hen thought she might try out snowboarding while TC and Senor Azul stuck to traditional downhill skis. 

Senor Azul was so excited on the chairlift he crowed all the way to the top of the mountain.  While TC was somewhat amused, Hen was simply petrified and kept peering over the edge of the chairlift, sure her little chicks would meet an untimely demise.  

"Fun Times In Idaho"
8x6, soft pastel $125.
Currently available for sale at:

All in all, TC and Friends had a terrific time skiing in Idaho and yes, afterwards they all sat by the studio fireplace sipping their much needed hot cocoa.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Senor Azul Get His Portrait in New Jersey USA with Philla Barkhorn

I wanted to share my time spent as a host with these delightful new friends. 
First I did some fun set up.  They were thrilled with the little easel and Senor Azul marched right over in front of the canvas to create his shadow and said "paint me, paint me!"

He showed off for me and TC for a while and created some interesting poses with shadows for me.  He is such the celebrity!

I did a sketch of the pose I found most compelling; and he and everyone approved.

I posed him against a chromatic background and everyone loved it!

But Something was missing...

I remembered a cartoon I saw when I was a kid "Swooner Crooner" by Looney Tunes...

And so I added a microphone for Senor Azul and that made all the difference; as we all know how much he "swoons" over TC.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Happy Holidays! Merry Christmas! Happy New Year!

The Holidays are a busy time for everyone; including The Traveling Chicken.  The gang decided they wanted to spend the Holidays resting a bit.

But now that we are all recharged; we are all set for new adventures!

It looks like we are going to need some more places to visit.  If there are any artists who would like a re-visit; or any you would like to refer; have them contact me so we can get them on the list straight away.

All the best,