2.26.14 Green Eyelet Madonna

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I painted this today, after 21 days of being away from the studio.  My mother fell sick with a BAD stomach virus, later complicated by an infection, then hospitalization.  I caught it a few days after the doctors had admitted her.  The recovery time was lengthy, so we are well again but still tired, believe it or not.  I hope there isn’t a Phase II to the ordeal — but trying to be positive!

I had laid the foundation for this painting on the 6th of February (or thereabouts) with a simple outlined mama and child in green, yellow and white — wearing a fun outfit, well suited for SUMMER!  The timing of this painting is perfect, since my mind has wandered South a lot this month — to warmth, my children and the thought of a job there if one arose. Warm tootsies, warm hands, warm hearts!

The cold season is wearing thin on Rhode Islanders, right about now, with temperatures in the teens all week and leaving me ready for SUN and SUMMER.  This Madonna is wearing my favorite summer skirt — one that I actually have in my closet! Crisp cotton, white and Kelly green eyelet, gathered at the waist, a tad to short to be considered appropriate for my age group, it screams FUN (even though she looks as tired as I have been feeling).  It makes perfect sense for today and the baby is just a love.

Son Pete with Anahata in her flower hat
Pete and Anahata in flower hat
Adelaide Mary Dever with bangs
Adelaide Mary Dever with new bangs

Speaking of total loves, I am praying that I’ll see my daughter, my son,  my grandbaby and her mama next week.  I hope to drive down to NC to love ALL of them with REAL hugs, not the across-the-miles hugs!  Last week, my son was hospitalized out of state for inhaling the smoke of burning pressure-treated lumber (he didn’t burn it; someone else did) and he should be back by next week!  PRAYER is needed for his health and a new job for him, if you are so inclined to pray.  Addy has a lot of change in the air, too, including new bangs this week — like this Madonna’s!  My daughter is a beautiful present-day Madonna with great adventures ahead and dreams of living in foreign lands… often the old-soul Child over the years, when I was most fickle. I want to touch base there to see them in LIVING COLOR…  cannot wait…  I’m tentatively thinking that when the snow stops here on Tuesday or Wednesday, I’ll hit the road.

"Happy 26th" (a Mother praying over the Child)

[E. T. Phone Home…] 

It isn’t easy for the 20-30ish year olds today.  They have a lot of pressure in an uncertain world! It gets harder and harder to find work and it isn’t easy to make a living; seems harder than the old days, anyway.  I support their dreams and try not to interfere BUT I worry more than they know — trusting in GOD but still worrying!

To find work for myself,  I’ve resorted to creative marketing. I actually created a website, www.hirejaneanndever.wordpress.com with my first post called “See Jane Work… With your help”.   On it, I included a link to my plain old resume (PDF) and  video resume (below/click on photo):

My Video Resume
I figure that hitting them with visuals might help — and it will SHOW them that I actually know how to design attractive marketing sites and presentations!

MORE on ESCAPING reality: and speaking of taking to the road, I saw a VW Van today and wished for one… and I watched an RV show for a bit tonight and I honestly may like to retire in one of those… I’d park it at South Shore Beach by summer and in NC in Spring and Fall and somewhere else in winter.  Sounds great to me, anyway…  With grandbabies sleeping over at Nana’s RV.  I’d move it four times per year, painting all the while (of course)!

I’ve thought of designing and building a moveable solar cabin on a flatbed (a friend of mine in NC lived in one and it was really cool and “rough”!) or having an RV at some point.  I have (thankfully) scaled life down to very little “stuff” — my best way to exist, I think — so I’m “portable”.  Of course, God only knows the future; and beyond my drive to NC soon, I have no idea what it holds for me.

South Shore Beach at the end of the day
South Shore Beach at the end of the day

2.9.14 – “Bold Miniature”

“Bold” (Miniature) Acrylic on Canvasette; approx. 4″ x 2″; $40

2.9.14 – BOLD Miniature

This painting was a quickie, for sure, but some days have those. She is determined in her look; and the Child is doing some sort of acrobatic move with the Mother unflinching in her gaze. They almost look as though they are caught staring at a stranger, who happed upon them. It is fitting for this date, I thought, since I had two trips to Providence, with a wake in between for a lost grandmother of my niece’s husband — a sad reality for him — his first major loss.

TODAY’s READINGS — Check these out!
Church was the high point of my day with not one — but two — masses! The first was at the ordinary time, 9:45 am — and the other was at 5:30, the Spanish Mass. I love that my Church is ethnically diverse, something that was more common in NC where I raised my children for a time. That’s it for a busy Sunday!

2.10.14 The Eye Doctor, a Funeral and a “Hanging”


WOW, The Eye Doctor, a Funeral and a “Hanging” could be a mystery novel, I think. Unfortunately, I did not paint today, with (as the title tells) a doctor’s appointment, a family funeral to attend, the Sage Café show to hang — and LOTS of job search activity! I have applied for several jobs this week and will (hopefully) have a job soon!

At the eye doctor’s in Barrington, he administered eye drops that turned the whites of my eyes a dark mustard color, so I looked like I had liver issues for the morning! I have had a lot of time seeing distance and close-up, with eye strain — painful — while painting, so I have GOT to get progressives. (Can’t wait, actually)

The funeral was sad (of course) and my nephew was a mess, really. There Bishop who said a few words seemed to think that the woman had only one child — he kept saying that — as her other two children sat in the front row with her (odd and annoying, I thought; but I do have to stop knit-picking. Obviously, he was misinformed or mistaken). It isn’t easy losing a grandmother — I’ve lost both of mine — and he was very close to her. She was a nice Portuguese lady, someone who smiled a lot whenever I saw her. Wish I could have communicated with her. Grandparents have amazing stories to share — my grandmothers did, for sure. My maternal grandmother grew up in Portugal’s high societal circles and in the colony of Angola before she came to America, with a polished and (a tad) snooty air; the other was from the mountains of the North and was a no nonsense, no frills, mostly gruff but loveable, way about her. They would take out old “costumes” from their youth, attire from “dancas” or occasions of their youth, and told stories that took me to exotic foreign lands. My only regret was not knowing how to speak Portuguese, as I really did have the blessing of a lot of time with both of these remarkable women.

NEW SHOWS: The hanging of the work for the CHEESE PLATE in Warren, RI, went without a hitch with these photos to share… The show ends on March 1st, so pop in and have one of their amazing salads if you have time.

My last stop of the day was to hang the show at the SAGE CAFE in Riverside. I will post photos of that show tomorrow, after I hang a few more! I’ll need to have an opening at each of these — TBD.

2.8.14 _ Wide-Eyed Madonna

2.8.14 Close-up of "Wide-Eyed Madonna" by Jane Dever; Oil on canvas, 20" x 16"; $350
2.8.14 Close-up of “Wide-Eyed Madonna” by Jane Dever; Oil on canvas, 20″ x 16″; $350

This oil painting strikes me as subtle in tone, loosely executed with untouched brush strokes. The boldness of the yellow auras is in contrast to its overall effect. Painted in one sitting, it may be darkened in the eyes at a later date. Named “Wide-Eyed”, I was taken with the angles of the faces and the eyes, as well as with the hands of the Child (best seen in the close-up). A calm painting.

OPENING News… The opening at the Unitarian Church was lots of fun — with so many old friends popping in, as well as many new friends from that congregation. Many thanks to Elizabeth O’Connell for the introduction and to Chiara Romano for curating the show! It was a lovely night, despite one broken bottle of wine in the parking lot with many folks trying to save it (to no avail) in the kitchen. The Mexican Queso and Brie and fruit and other offerings were very well received by the hundred or so that attended. I stayed for their monthly community dinner, during which I sat with Ruth Emers, a talented sculptor and wonderful conversationalist.

2.7.14 Imago Show
Community Art Event at IMAGO, Warren, RI; show photo taken by Ricky Gagnon on 2/7/14

Happy and satisfied, I fled to Warren and made it to the end of the IMAGO Show Opening with fifteen minutes to spare! The show, apparently had a great crowd, and a couple sales — so KUDOS to the IMAGO Members who graciously offered the space to other community Guest Artists. Your effort and skillful curating was greatly appreciated by this Artist/Blogger! See the photo (inset) to see how they nestled my three Madonna/Child paintings among some photos there (thank you, Ricky Gagnon, for the photo)

2.7.14 – Green Shoes Madonna (with Image this time!)


2.7.14 Green Shoes Madonna, Watercolor on acid-free paper, 11″ x 14″, $150

I created this on a busy day, on the fly (not ideal), in between taking down one show, hanging another and scurrying around town buying wine and cheese for the opening that week. Green Shoes is the title in the end, because they are the most prominent part of the painting/sketch — and she has connected ankles, the poor darling (as unforgiving as the medium I was using at the time).”

The openings were a success, with lots of attendees, lots of conversation and other art to inspire onlookers! Photos will be on my next post!

1.5.14 – Venetian Red Madonna

Venetian Red Madonna

2.5.14 – Venetian Red Madonna – and family photos

I painted this painting while hiding out at home and being glad that the roads were bad from the third snow storm in three days. One thing is sure though; when life slows down, reflection is possible! In between emailing info to my accountant, checking out the help wanted, scheduling shows, and arranging for art pick-ups at William Raveis Realty by Saturday, I did have time to relax.

I read somewhere today that I should cut myself some slack — and I moaned — because if I get anymore slack, I’ll trip on my cord. By the time I painted, I was ready to — really tired of not being by myself. The studio is my little escape, where I see my studio-neighbors but shut the door to paint.

I painted with my children and Mary in mind this evening, with an audience (Zoe). The palette was LIMITED, to say the least, considering that I only had six, mostly similar colors to work with (Venetian Red, Bright Yellow Light, Blue Violet Hue, Titanium White, a couple other reds and Indian Yellow). The rest of my oils were at the Studio. The blue violet offset the reds nicely, though…

When I was done, zoe on bedI turned to take a photo of the painting — only to find precious Zoe staring at me from her perch on my pillows, ready to go out in the snow — and ready for me to capture the moment on film! (photo, inset)

Missing the children and my granddaughter is part of what runs through my head on a daily basis, just part of my makeup at this point. Separation isn’t my choice but it is reality; partly due to my living with my mother (a necessity and enjoyable circumstance of her aging and my being here), as well as my children not loving the North after I raised them (for many years) in the South (Chapel Hill, NC).

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I can’t say that I love the North, of course, with its somewhat thick-shelled and easily grouchy people (I grew up here, so I can say that) and its ghastly weather; but, for the time being it makes sense, and I will add that I love the coast here (hands down prettier here than NC’s). Sitting by the water here for two months a year makes it bearable — as do my other family members.

2.4.14 – Avoid the Red Dragon and other sketches

2.4.14 Avoid the Red Dragon
2.4.14 Avoid the Red Dragon, Mixed media on paper, 12″ x 9″

“Avoiding the Red Dragon” and other sketches I did today…  reflect a yearning and discomfort that seemed real last night.  Emotion is not reality — not easy to remember.

2.4.14 Right Angles by Jane Dever, pencil sketch on paper, 12" x 9"
2.4.14 Right Angles by Jane Dever, pencil sketch on paper, 12″ x 9″

Fear is foolish, knowing that I am loved, and a sign that I am off track, trust-wise. Wisdom dictates that if my house welcomes God, he will bring peace to it.  Fear is a terrible thing and it skews my thinking.

A prank phone call riled me before bed last night.  I cried a lot and then prayed for safety and fell asleep.  The man who called was not kind, and it triggered a PTSD sort of reaction in me – paranoia even.  I’ve had time to reflect, even after another tearful breakdown tonight, wondering how to move past the fear.  He was the Red Dragon, for all intensive purposes.  I can run into the woods to the safe place God has in store for me; it just takes me a while to get it!

Bright Eyes by Jane Dever; pencil on paper, 12" x 9"
Bright Eyes by Jane Dever; pencil on paper, 12″ x 9″

In the end, it is as simple as this: mankind can kill my body but not my soul. I actually hid behind the snow today and stayed home.  I will leave the house tomorrow.


Making God first is my goal.  I know that money, a husband and a home of my own can be a curse if they aren’t of God. I pray for them, of course, and being nearer to my children — at least being able to visit them on a regular basis.

I will write again for the next painting… photos of my kiddos will be part of that post.

I have a lot of remembering (remembering God) to do.  Human concerns must take a back burner, for greater rewards.

2.3.14 – “Carpet Ride Madonna”

Carpet Ride Madonna by Jane Dever, oil/mixed media on YUPO, 12" x 9",  $200 unframed, $240 framed
Carpet Ride Madonna by Jane Dever, oil/mixed media on YUPO, 12″ x 9″, $200 unframed, $240  framed.

This “Carpet Ride Madonna” has been around the block, literally, in that she was started at the old Alta Luna Gallery last summer and finished at the new studio space.  Intriguing  for a variety of reasons…

It was painted with oil and ink on YUPO which (again) is plastic.  Using the more opaque medium (oil versus the traditional watercolor per this paper, it achieved an interesting effect.  The glistening reflective effect was still there but with the solid oil finish, permanence and richness.

This viewer sees the Mother as exotic, surrounded by mysterious vegetation and vivid auras of copper and gold; with pen adding odd twists around the baby.  Perhaps magical..

A view of the old Magic Carpet building… Robin Rug

I started this oil on Yupo about 6 months ago, when I had my desk at the back door of the Gallery, from which I had a bird’s eye view of the Magic Carpet mill neighborhood. Having just finished it, at the new Alta Luna Studio, the memories attached to this painting are Bittersweet. Mixing the sadness of loss as well as the lightness of freedom, it represents (to this viewer) the nostalgia of the past and the magic of Now.

The view from the back door of the old Gallery space
The view from the back door of the old Gallery space
The view this evening, as I was leaving the studio… The yard behind the studio

Happy Tuesday, all.  It is after midnight and snowy and icy in this northeastern USA.  Drive carefully out there!

The view from the new Alta Luna Studio
The view from the new Alta Luna Studio

2.2.14 – Star Mama Madonna & ART “Stimulus” SALE

This is a revised post of one that was too short and poorly written:

Close-up of "Star Mama Madonna" Watercolor on YUPO, 9" x 12, $175 unframed ($225 framed)
Close-up of “Star Mama Madonna” Watercolor on YUPO, 9″ x 12, $175 unframed ($225 framed)

In this blogger’s opinion, “Star Mama Madonna” has a fun feel to it,  due to the use of watercolor on YUPO  — a polypropylene plastic.  It is so different than canvas or paper, because the paint doesn’t soak in and it swirls about on the surface of the page.  Wild World (shared on 2.1.14) was also painted on YUPO with a more dreamy effect, due to using more water than I did on this one.  The YUPO has a reflective, glistening quality to the surface, even different than board. Board doesn’t absorb the paint either, but the effect is flat — not reflective.  I’m almost ready to dive back into oils, and the next post will feature an oil on YUPO that I started a while back to further test its properties…

Besides absolutely LOVING church and still being thankful for the opportunity to paint, unemployment can drain this girl’s mood and undo her ability to write.  Funny thing, the sermon this week was about knowing the difference of satisfaction versus fulfillment.  In all things, it is better to be fulfilled than have momentary satisfaction, with cravings to follow shortly after.  In that respect, doing the right thing offers more than grabbing at quick fixes.  So what happened after mass was perfect.

I was invited into the prayer room and was pleasantly surprise by a very sweet bunch of new friends.  They asked what my prayer needs were and i told them that i needed a job and that my son (too) needed employment, as he lost his job this week. They prayed over me and “laid hands” on my head and shoulders, asking God for the best solution.  It was moving, to say the least.  Having a faith community is very special.  I want the best solution, not any old solution: fulfillment, not satisfaction.   By the way, my résumé is available to anyone who wants to have it (On Linked In).

Without work, the painting is everything I have going on this week.  I dropped off three pieces for the IMAGO Foundation for the Arts’ upcoming Opening on Friday Night 2/7 (I won’t get there until the tail end); with thirteen in the show that also opens on Friday night, at the First Unitarian Church on Benefit and Benevolent Streets in Providence (I’ve committed to being there from 5-7pm). The Cheese Plate and Sage Cafe will have Madonnas on the wall by next week, too.  It is such fun to attend Openings — highly recommended — and the other work on display in both shows looks fantastic!

"Star Mama Madonna" by Jane Dever, Watercolor on YUPO, 9" x 12", $175 unframed, $225 framed.
“Star Mama Madonna” by Jane Dever, Watercolor on YUPO, 9″ x 12″, $175 unframed, $225 framed.

I want to offer 20% OFF on any purchase I have between today  so if anyone wants to purchase one from this site, let me know!  The only exclusions are Hard as Nails/Tough as Nails, Migrant Madonna aka Purple Haze and Silver Light Fantastic/OrangeAura Madonna.  Everything else — 20% off for the next two days ONLY.

There is a vulnerability that comes with blogging.  It was pointed out by a kind writer friend that my enthusiasm for my own work on occasion comes across as boastful and immature.  I do realize that I am not the best Painter in the world but I meet each new one with surprise, as I would when I make a new friend. Childlike sounds better than immature, so I’ll claim childlike (even though the other fits at times, unfortunately.  He is wise and writes better than anyone else that I know, so his loving criticism across the miles is welcome.

Love to all, Jane