Florida painter, Everglades, Marco Island, artist Jo-Ann Sanborn


White Christmas on Marco Island

Oops, posted to the Studio blog by mistake! Marco did have a white Christmas and you can read my Merry Christmas blog here! Have a wonderful holiday week!


Winter Solstice, Christmas Angels

The dead stick remains of long passed plants has welcomed every visitor to my front door for the last couple of months. I'd look at my hanging basket, dead since the end of the rainy season, be ashamed, and then run off and do something else. I'd pass by and remind myself that it had to be replanted, but would forget to get the plants while out doing errands. Over and over I said, I must put that on my list for tomorrow!

To my absolute delight a Christmas angel snuck the basket away--I didn't even miss the brown remains--and brought it back beautifully renewed. What a wonderful, happy Christmas surprise! Many thanks to my terrific, plant loving angel!

Another nice surprise came about when a client called to ask if they could come and look at paintings. I'm delighted to have visitors to the studio, and here on Marco people are always popping in and out, and many are only here for a short time, so I always try to accommodate. She had met me at one of the outdoor shows and liked my work. My impression was that she and her husband might like a new painting for Christmas. Imagine my surprise when she purchased five good sized paintings, to go into a bank that she's decorating! There's some framing and delivery to be done, so in the short time left before the holiday, daily painting will have to take second place.
Last night was the winter solstice, the very longest night of the year. The solstice is a Pagan holiday,and some people make special plans to visit one of the ancient sites, such as Newgrange, or Stonehenge to watch the light travel exactingly through the ancient structures at sunrise. I like the idea of celebrating the long cold days of winter getting shorter!


Snow, Frosty, Daily painting by Everglades artist JoAnn Sanborn

My Art Talk group met yesterday for lunch and we had such a good time. There were twelve of us, all who are, or seriously working toward being, professional artists. There's only one rule--the subject must be art! We start by giving each artist a couple of minutes to talk about significant art events in their lives for the past month. Everyone had something positive to say, about sales, recognition, new ventures. When someone has a question or wants to discuss something the group is very supportive and helpful. It's one of my most sacred calendar items, and I always go away uplifted. Santa had stopped by, too, and left everyone a small art journal at everyone's place. The Marco Island art community is getting to know each other and is growing!

All the weathermen are talking about a big storm that's affecting the cold north. Sometimes the forecast storms are really dangerous, and other times they dissipate before becoming a real threat. Still, all the hype makes me worry about my children up north driving around in the snow! Funny how things I didn't think twice about as a younger person, like driving in the snow, can cause anxiety just hearing about it at this point in life. Hopefully everyone will be able to get where they want to for the holidays without undue stress.

I decided to put all that latent anxiety to work painting the little Frosty you see above. Snowmen are always such fun to make and each one has it's own personality as distinct as the people we know. He's not for sale, as he'll be a gift for a very special new baby!

Here's a little video about the snow to make you chuckle, especially if you live in South Florida. It may not be so funny if you live in Boston or Chicago!


Everglades Value, A Quiet Day daily painting by Everglades Artist Jo-Ann Sanborn

Everglades National Park may be the third largest national park in American, but it is only protecting one seventh of the land that we call the Everglades. The Park was created in Congress in 1934, and was finally dedicated by President Truman in 1947. The park has been designated a World Heritage Site because of it's history and diversity by UNESCO in 1979, and is also designated an International Biosphere Reserve and a Wetland of International Importance. Despite all of these lofty designations, the land is still under attack and threatened by development and draining every single day.

Wetlands are vitally important to the health of our planet. Everglades wetlands are unique in the world, and vital to the health of the South Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico. You can keep up to date on Everglades issues or support the restoration and protection of the Everglades by joining Friends of the Everglades. This organization was started by author and advocate Marjory Stoneman Douglass who saw the value in this wet, humid, difficult land and proceeded to promote it's protection throughout her later life.

Coming from New England the land seemed exotic and magical. Although I've been painting this landscape for 15 years, it never disappoints, even on a quiet day.

A Quiet Day
7" x 5"
acrylic on canvas
$150 with free shipping and handling in the US


Island Christmas, Award, Building Clouds daily painting by Everglades Artists JoAnn Sanborn

This time of year most businesses are hoping to be busy, and this is true of the art world, too. Part of the weekend was spent preparing some daily paintings for shipping this morning, and working on a commission due before Christmas. The last day to order a painting to be shipped for Christmas will be December 20th.

We enjoyed a party with wonderful friends, good food, and nice music, on Friday, and had a great time at the Christmas Marco Island Style Street Parade on Saturday. The boat parade will be coming up this weekend, and should be lots of fun, too. Just because we live where there's no snow doesn't mean that we don't celebrate Christmas to the fullest! There's a Marco committee working on Christmas Island Style all year long, and a number of festive events each December! It's easy to say that Christmas has become too commercial, but it's my feeling that we should never pass up the opportunity for good cheer and good will, and any holiday that reminds us of the things we hold deep and dearly, and causes us to wish perfect strangers a joyful Merry Christmas is just fine with me!

Good news! I was awarded a Merit Award for my painting "Night Mists" sent to the National Association of Women Artists, Florida Chapter show "Art, the first language" held in the Jeanette Hare Art Gallery at Northwood University. Stop in and see the show if you're in the West Palm Beach area before February 5th. I hope to attend the opening reception on January 8th.

Today I'll mail the paintings and family packages, work in my home Studio for the rest of the day and look forward to the Marco Art Marketing Salon meeting at four. We'll have a bit of Christmas cheer as we discuss how to better our art careers!

Building Clouds
7" x 5"
acrylic on Panel
$150 with FREE shipping and handling in the US


Oops, Beach View Daily Painting by Everglades Artist Jo-Ann Sanborn

Beach View
Yesterday turned out to be one of those days--you know the kind, when you have too much to do, not enough time, and your mind is in 10 places at once. Our Internet line had failed the day before and required a new modem, an extra trip to Naples in an already busy day. First thing that went wrong was that I mailed a deposit check from a client, yes, mailed it! UGH. By the time I realized that I had no deposit for the bank, the mail shipment had already left town. Embarrassing to have to tell the client. The rest of the day went pretty much like that, with several backtracks and errors, until we saw that big, gorgeous moon, which I wrote about and posted. Oops! Posted to the wrong blog. It went to my studio blog, at Jo-Ann Sanborn's Art and Sunshine Studio, where I talk more about my process of painting, post larger work, and post some art lessons.

So, take a look, and see what you missed. The above daily painting is there along with some comments about the moon. The moon was big, rich and lustrous here, truly beautiful, the party last night a lot of fun, and tonight's the Christmas Parade. Hope you're doing something fun and seasonal this weekend!


Naples Potters, Parade Daily Painting by Everglades artist JoAnn Sanborn

This lovely pottery bowl with flowers and tendrils was gift from clay artist Gabrielle Nappo, who had a similar bowl in her booth at a show last year. By the time I decided that I must have it, it had been sold. Gabrielle said that she would just make me a new one. She did, and would not let me pay her for it. What a nice, much appreciated gift. Thanks, Gabrielle. It will be among my treasures. I really love durable pottery for household use. It warms my day to have coffee in a handmade mug or to serve vegetables in a unique handmade dish. We're beginning to get a nice collection of handmade pottery and we use it every day. We pick up a piece whenever we travel, so have some from afar, but also enjoy the work of fabulous local potters like Gabrielle, Annabelle Johnson who we've watched evolve, and part-time teacher and crafts person Rinny Ryan whose work we are delighted to own. We also look for their pieces when we need a gift. It's important to support others who make art, and although we aren't wealthy, we purchase what we can from people we know. Their work is unique a pleasure to live with, and in a small way we're helping to ensure they can continue to do what we love.

Today's cheery little painting was done in response to a request for "another" after the first painting was sold right in front of one of my favorite clients at the art show last weekend. It's actually quite different from the first because no two of my paintings are ever the same, but has the same colors and feeling. There's always room for a small painting, and this one would be nice set on a table easel as part of Christmas decorations, to be put away and brought out to be special at this time of year!
Parade 2


Mini-Masters, Charmer Daily Painting by Everglades Artist JoAnn Sanborn

We had a great time at the Marco Center for the Arts Mini-Masters and Mimosa's Show yesterday. This was our first time to attend since we have reduced our outdoor show schedule, and thought it was a wonderful event. The gallery show of members paintings was terrific, and the mini-masters were superb! Each 5x7 work of art was done on paper, and donated by the artists to benefit the Art League. There was something for everyone including beautiful executed sketches of local scenes, rich watercolors and acrylics and lush oils, plus a photo or two and some wonderful small ceramic pieces.
There were so many we wanted to take home, but decided to bid on artists Jerry Brunjulson, Stan Saran, and Shirley Piercy, all who have been prominent in the Marco Island art scene for such a long time. The bidding started at only $25, a great price for original works of this quality, and was quite active on some pieces. Anyone who wanted could have picked up a charming original work by a local artist at a great price. This could become a great community event and will be a not-to-miss for us in the future!

Today's Everglades painting told me it's name was Charmer, and I can see that it is. You often see a row of three or more palms emerging from the brush in the Everglades with one or two out in the open. Are they moving to higher ground?

7" x 5" acrylic on Panel
$150 with free shipping and handling in the US


Marco Island Wet Paint Live, Winter Noon Daily Painting by Everglades Artist JoAnn Sanborn

What a nice party at Orion Bank yesterday for the Marco Island Wet Paint Live artists and sponsors last evening. It was fun to see and visit with the artists, some quite renown and some quite new, but all with strong ties to the island. There was a great group of art supporting sponsors in attendance, too! Wet Paint Live is an event held by the Marco Island Chamber of Commerce's Leadership Marco classes to benefit student scholarships. Marco Island Center for the Arts and the Marco Island Foundation for the Arts will also participate and share in the money raised so they can grant scholarships, too. It's a nice community symbiosis.

This year a business sponsorship is only $50 and there's a long list of merchants and businesses already. It's not too late if you'd like your business listed as a supporter of the arts, scholarship and leadership on Marco! Just contact the Chamber and for $50 they'll be happy to add your name. Another way to support this event is to buy a ticket to the event, to be held at Hideaway Beach on the evening of Jan 29, 2009, and then show up! At this truly community event you'll have some delicious "masterpiece appetizers", see a great selection of "en plein air" paintings done on and around Marco on the day of the event, meet and talk with the artists, and have a fun time watching the paintings being auctioned off to the highest bidder. Tickets are already available at the chamber office. It could be you with a great painting at the right price, so save the date!

Today's Everglades Painting is one of a very common scene. The beauty of the simple components never fails to calm the soul. Now I'm off to prime a canvas for a commission that has to be done by Christmas!

Winter Noon
7" x 5"
acrylic on Panel
$150 with free shipping and handling in the US


Roemer Dutch Warmblood, Morning Moon painting by Everglades Artist JoAnn Sanborn

If you're looking for something special for Christmas this year, and think that maybe a dream horse is just the thing, take a look at my daughter's year old Dutch Roemer Warmblood Filly. She breeds Dutch warmbloods in Connecticut, and has had some wonderful successes. The filly, Creme de Lila, is a daughter of the famous Dutch Stallion Roemer, and her mother has consistently produced KWPN top ten national champions. Lila is a beautiful little filly with a great personality and a desire to please. There's bargains to be had in this economy and her price is quite negotiable. Email or call me and I'll put you in touch!

Did you see the conjuncture of the moon, Jupiter and Venus the other night? A beautiful sight! A couple of weeks ago on my morning walk, the moon was still high in the sky as dawn lightened the sky. It stuck in my memory for today's painting.

Morning Moon


Art Show Weather, Off by Myself Daily Everglade Painting by JoAnn Sanborn

Thanks so much if you are one of the old and new friends who stopped by my tent to chat or to purchase at the Renaissance Art Festival on Saturday. It was a lovely show with quality work and a leisurely shopping crowd. Congratulations to two new collectors.

Sunday's weather provided a bit more challenging. My husband and I got there early so we could park right behind our tent, and then went to the lovely Bella Sera Hotel for a nice breakfast. Little did we know that breakfast would be the nicest part of the day! We knew there was threatening weather, but this far south the weather forecasts can be quite unreliable and most of the art show artists watch conditions closely and are prepared to act quickly when conditions change. The tent was dry inside, so I decided to set out the paintings. Several rain squalls later and a leaky roof made me rethink that decision. When strong wind gusts suggested that forecast tornadoes could become a reality and festival management left the decision to each individual, we decided there would be limited visitors and shoppers, and decided to pack up. We were among several exhibitors who lost equipment due to the strong gusty winds. The rest of the day was spend washing up and drying everything out and putting it all away until the next show.

Today's Everglade painting is on a lighter note. Nice and sunny. As you know I love the single palms. This one, on the edge of the canal, seems not to mind being all by itself. Could it be admiring it's reflection?

Off by Myself
7" x 5"
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