A Life and Death Dare

Have you heard the story of Rahab?  Don’t miss out on a Christmas fairy-tale-ending to a harsh historic reality:

– Rahab had to jump up and check on the blood red scarf flying in the dry desert wind in front of her window. The eyes of her family huddled in the small room behind her followed her, the glow of a small oil lamp reflecting off their scared faces. They had felt the deep rumbling of the walls crashing down in their bones. They had listened to the sounds of the massacre and the screams of the dying outside. All of them were aware that the scarlet band tied to the wood beams on the outside was the only thing saving them from death.

Rahab had to touch and grab the silken red rope and tried to calm her hammering heart. Yet, that band of trust kept her from trying to run and flee…

Rahab surely was what some would call a ‘soiled dove’, a woman of wrong career decisions. But just a few days ago, she had made a daring decision that would impact her family for generations to come: Two strangers showed up to lodge in her house. They were peculiar looking fellows with unusual hair styles and foreign clothes. Even though they tried to act inconspicuously, Rahab knew immediately who they were: spies of the invading force from the southeastern desert. The market place was teeming with rumors about these mysterious people – they walked with fire and commanded even the waters! The whole city was in an uproar bordering on panic, the guards checked all defenses – not that the massive walls had ever been breached!

Rahab had noticed she wasn’t the only one who scrutinized the strangers. After they had wolfed down her simple bar food as if they’ve never had a prepared meal, she carefully ushered them into the back room where she usually conducted her business. Her legs felt wobbly as she motioned them out the trap door onto the flat roof. Fully aware of the risk, she had decided to hide and help them. The deep, unsettling notion of fear that she hadn’t been able to shake off the last days had boiled to the surface and driven her to action. She had rolled her dice, and it felt like relief.

No sooner had she hidden her two guests under the stalks of drying flax and discreetly entered her small bar room again, that the door flew open. Two members of the King’s guard barged in. While they were questioning her about the strangers, she studiously kept her voice even. She hoped they wouldn’t notice her flushed cheeks and her racing heart. But they believed her lies and set off in pursuit, assuming the spies had escaped before the gates closed.

She slipped back onto the roof and found her visitors settling down for the night. Quickly she told them the plans of the guards, and recommended an alternate escape route. Then she took a deep breath. ‘I know who you are’, she said, looking them straight in the eye,’ and I have heard of your people and your protector’, and she confided her convictions to them. She bravely demanded that they spare her and her family when they would return with their army, since she had saved their lives. They agreed and promised that every one who would hide under her roof would be save when they came to take the city. And that was the last she had seen and heard of them – until now.

A loud bang on the door seemed to echo like thunder through the silence after the fighting. Her mom shrieked and her youngest sister couldn’t suppress a sob. With shaky fingers Rahab opened the door. Surely the promise of the spies and the One whose name they came in was faithful..?

In the street stood a number of men, one of them she recognized as the visitor she had saved. ‘Peace! You are safe’, he greeted her in his strange accent. ‘Lead your family out to follow us to our camp. This city is no more.’

Looking back years later, Rahab, the dark stain of the family, marveled that she would have never anticipated living an entirely new life in the midst of this unusual people under the One she had acknowledged as ruler of heaven and earthly powers – nor falling in love and becoming the respected wife to such an admirable man, Salmon. Nor did she know then that her son Obed would be one of the main figures in the wonderful story that is written down in the book called ‘Ruth’. Or that her grandson would father a king, called David, king of Judah.

Nor would she have ever dreamed that generations down her grand grand…child Joseph would be the earthly father of a child called Jesus.

This all happened to the woman who took heart and stepped out of the rubble of Jericho.

Merry Christmas to all of us Rahabs!

Joshua 2; Matthew 1:5

Oil on Linnen, 16×20″.
Inspired by the “Believing God’ study by Beth Moore

oil paintings on copper

Enjoy a warm Copper Glow in the cold season!

oil paintings on copper Could you use a bit of a warm glow around you in this particularly cold winter? Then I have great news for you: Enjoy the brand new, shiny Copper State series in my gallery (and shop) now!

I am pretty excited about these new paintings, as they combine two beautiful media: luscious oil paints on a shiny copper surface. What could fit better to the “copper state’ of Arizona than Arizona motives on the historic substrate? Copper had been used as a smooth and archival substrate by the artists of the Renaissance. It lends a warm, unique glow to the painting, and allows amazing effects, either by applying semi transparent layers of paint in some spots, or by letting the bare copper shine through in others.

Exploring the medium and painting in oil on copper is quite an interesting experience for the artist, I believe: I loved working on a surface with an extremely fine texture for a change (the copper sheets had been previously prepared to hold the paint). I am quite happy to be able to offer this little special for my Arizona Copper State series, and I’m currently working on the sixth painting.
Needless to say, these motives cannot be reproduced in print.
The originals are varnished on all sides for archival quality, and displayed in a 3” contemporary black satin frame.
They are available in my gallery here: Copper State Series.

And by the way,  still looking for Christmas gifts? 10 pieces of original art are on SALE (and more to follow), new items in the general gallery.

plein air painting

Plein Air: Paint Outside!

plein air painting Why would I scramble over rock piles with my paint utensils strapped to my back at temperatures in the 30s instead of painting in the comfort of my studio?

 

Maybe you have heard of “Plein Air” Painting, a movement started by the French impressionists a hundredsome years ago. In the last decade, this movement has internationally gained momentum again, and there is a reason. Apart from the love of the outdoors, the adventure and the challenge, I assure you! :)

Do you know the feeling when you try to capture a breathtaking panorama with your camera, and to your disappointment the result is far less spectacular looking than the view you are actually looking at? Those moody looking blue mountains that line the horizon in beautiful shades of purple are barely even visible in the photo. Either the foreground is a dark lump, or the sky turns into a white out. And it never, never, captures the unique atmosphere of that moment. That’s because Photos lie: not only will the lens focus on simply everything in its visor, but also crank up the contrasts too high. Depending on the algorithm you are always losing more or less of the the mid tones.
A photo is a great reference, but it can never replace the judgement of the artist on location, pondering which colors to use, how best to capture the light of the moment, which glows to enhance or dim down.

And of course, there are a few other decisions best to be made right in the spot. Nobody would need that big traffic sign square in the middle of the beautiful panorama. The casita in the picture has also seen better times, and the jumble of bushes in the foreground just takes away from the actual subject. This is where the artist comes in, edits the components and changes the composition. This also allows for far better judgement with the wind in the face and the panorama lined up in 3D.

Plein Air painting means being subject to the elements of nature, from mosquitos to high winds (better be sure that easel is weighed down properly!) to rain and thunder, encounters with wildlife, sunburns and frozen finger tips. It’s meditative and overwhelmingly hectic at the same time, as decisions need to be taken before the shadows creep into another position. Yet, a morning alone on the rocks with only birds as audience, throwing color on the panel to capture the moment while chasing the ever changing light brings a satisfaction, that no studio session can replace.
It reminds me of a Japanese tea ceremony saying: Ichi Go, Ichi E – ‘a once in a lifetime encounter’, or ‘Every moment only exists once in time, be sure not to miss the one present to you right now’.

Sedona sundown Ans TaylorLearning from the masters in red rock country Sedona

After two freezing cold days of rain and wind (the hazards of a plein air painting workshop!), finally a gorgeous sundown in plein air paradise Sedona. It’s hard to top the breathtaking beauty of the last light on the glowing red rocks of this Arizona gem! What a joy to try and capture that light! (Plein Air Workshop with Bill Cramer)

 

 

 

 

plein air at watson lake

30 degrees and still painting

Capturing the beauties of famous Watson Lake in Prescott, AZ on a brisk November morning.

 

Cactus Queen2 by Ans Taylor

We have a winner!!

Cactus Queen2 by Ans TaylorWe have a lucky winner!!!! By signing up to my newsletter you all had a chance to win this nifty, archival quality Xposer Print of the Cactus Queen 2 (shown here is the framed original oil painting).
Watch the video to see the price and drawing of my Artist Studio Tour  Free Art Print Giveaway.  – I know I’m not a movie star, in spite of having Arnie’s accent… :)
Congratulations, to Heather I think! I had trouble deciphering the name, but I should be good on the email and contacted you already in person (I cannot disclose the full email online, but if your email starts with ‘hnels…’ then: Congratulations to you!).

If you think I should offer another giveaway, let me know what would excite you!

 

 

thank you for visiting me at Artist Studio Tour Prescott

Thank you! :)

thank you for visiting me at Artist Studio Tour PrescottI wanted to say a big thank you to every one of you who came by and made this show a success! I appreciate that you took the time to swing by and look at my art, and I had so many inspiring chats about art and artists! Thank you to all my supporters who took a piece of my art home with them, from painting to stretched print to art card- I’m glad you liked it so much that you spent some hard earned money on it – I know exactly how difficult it is to decide, between all the beautiful art out there! :D

I hope to see you around for the next show, or in my little studio in the pines! If you’re in the area and you’d like to see where I paint, contact me and we can see what time works!

Tomorrow we’ll have the drawing for the art print giveaway, so stay tuned! 🙂

Exhibit Ans Taylor Prescott Studio Tour 2018

Artist Studio Tour Prescott in full swing!

Come by this weekend and join me at the Mountain Artist Guild, 228 N Alarcon, downstairs, for the yearly Artist Studio Tour! I have giveaways, painting demos, fine art and snacks, brochures and tips to see the other artists of the tour! There’s 14 arists in and about this building, and a total of 100 around town!

Come by for a chat and see my paintings live and in color ;) Daily 10 am to 4pm!
Don’t forget to enter the free giveaway – you can do that also here, online – until Sunday 4 PM! Drawing is on Tuesday!

You can win this Cactus Queen print!

Join the Prescott Artist Studio Tour online by taking part in the raffle!

If we are connected on social media you might have noticed that I have been preparing for Prescott’s biggest yearly art event: the Artist Studio Tour 2018. There will be lots of new art pieces, live painting demos, snacks, music and sangria – and a raffle for a brand new Xposer print!

And this is where you can join in the fun, even if you live in another state: just join my mailing list (enter your email address in the popup here: Ans Print Shop) for your chance to win the 16×20 Cactus Queen art print!

As a courtesy to my loyal clients who are already on my list: you can enter simply by replying “I’m in!’ to ans@anstaylor.com and you’ll be in the draw! :)

Deadline for the raffle is October 7, 4pm. The winner be determined by random.org on Tuesday, October 9th.

(If you’d like to give a friend of yours a chance to enter the raffle and get an extra entry yourself tell them to join my mailing list at shop.anstaylor.com to take part. There’s a pop up asking for the email – every entry between now and the deadline is in).

An Xposer print is a new and contemporary way to display your wall art: It’s a satin finished photo print (see photo on top) that comes with a light aluminum structure on the back (see photo below). Its easy to click the print into the mount – the result looks like a picture floating about an inch off the wall. Pretty neat!

 

Need an instant Art Panel Wall?

Hey everyone,

I’ve been busy preparing for the Artist Studio Tour Prescott coming up in October, and I ran across this ingenious recipe that I wanted to share with you. This is for the artists among you, and all the DIY fans. Wall space is notoriously tight at many shows – and in the case of my upcoming event, it comes with extra assets not conductive to hanging pictures (shelves, clocks, mirrors).  The other item being somewhat tight before exhibitions is usually the artist’s budget, as all means are being poured into extra art supplies, frames, marketing, prints, and the like.
So I roamed the internet and found a solution from this creative lady .

With the help of my (far more gifted at anything to do with handiwork) husband I collected 3 light screen doors, 3 outdoor carpets, 4  door hinges and 6 rubber bumpers, and went to work to create Pro Panels to display my canvas art prints!
It took about 3 hours total, and it’s definitely a two-man job. But the result looks quite respectable, what do you think? I hung up several canvas prints and one Xposer print, to test the finished panel, and I was pretty happy.

By the way, do you see the print with the delightful lady and the cactus flower hair-do in the Phoenix desert environment (Cactus Queen2, to the right) ? That’s the brand new 16×20 Xposer print which will be the raffle price at the Artist Studio Tour (October 5-7, Mountain Artist Guild, downstairs). More about that soon – you can also enter the free giveaway online!
Write or comment if you have questions!

interview ans taylor voyage phoenix

Interview on Voyage Phoenix!

interview ans taylor voyage phoenix

Interview on Voyage Phoenix

Hi friends,

the online magazine Voyage Phoenix did an interview with me. Have a look and tell me what you think!
They had formerly come across the Cactus Queen painting on my social media, and shared it on their site. I’m very pleased and humbled they took the interest to follow up with an interview afterwards. It’s great to see the way this magazine is supporting local creatives!
Enjoy the read, and don’t forget to give me your feedback afterwards :)

Interview on Voyage Phoenix

traveling germany and tirol

Traveling Europe! June 19-July 8

Friends! I’ll be traveling Germany and Austria for the next couple weeks to visit my family and friends 💚 Check in with me on Instagram or Facebook if you enjoy pictures of crooked old houses, vineyards, alpine mountains and the occasional sketch on the road. I’ll share a bunch in my IG stories (aka just click my profile pic to see what’s new).

Also, no orders from my shop can be processed until July 10. Please take that into account if you plan to order anything. Thank you for your patience!

traveling germany and tirol

traveling germany and tirol