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“Child’s Play” and other Watercolors

“Child’s Play”, watercolor, 6.5″ by 6″, $150

Painting at Angelina’s Coffee and at home today, I used watercolor to continue the fun I’m having using this new medium. It was great to be out in the public, running into old friends from my gallery days and having great tea.

About the paintings: The top one is “Child’s Play” with the baby reminding me of my granddaughter Anahata. The middle one is “Mod Mama”; and it reminds me that I should be more precise, if I’m going to use designer-style swirls and shapes. The last one “Shoes on the Beach” is funny, as it shows my habit of making the women way too short — and she has terrible shoes. I consider these all child’s play, part of my ongoing lessons in my self-taught trials in painting.

Life lately:  My experiences this week have been dramatically different then last week… More content, yesterday’s fun with oils is reflective of this shift. The changes involve reacting to feelings differently (job search, weight, rejection, family, financial challenges); less acting out or wallowing (this week I did both for one day) and more prayer and honest reflection. Sounds exhausting, right? No, actually, it is easier to see myself get better through the eyes of God. Seeing the truth faster allows me not to lose myself — and punish myself. Forgiveness of small failings also helps me to get back quicker… And god is not as punitive as he is forgiving! I used to be able to laugh at myself easily and hope to again.

When Ash Wednesday came, I kicked into Lent (cleansing) mode with a brand new vigor and was reminded at Sunday mass to spend time in conversation with my best “friend” — Jesus. Joining a group at church for “renewed spirit”, praying throughout each day to keep the friendship going and devoting at least a half hour of each day to reading scripture and contemplation are helping in all aspects of my life. With the exception of my giving unwarranted advice (imposing my opinion) on a family member and an acquaintance, and a three instances of gluttony, it was a great week!

Disturbed by my physical health and knowledge that I’d never have been able to walk very far if Jesus had ever asked me to physically follow him as a disciple, I’ve decided to incorporate self care with spiritual devotion in a non-gluttonous cleanse during Lent. I started the week off miserably by eating two boxes of candy and what seemed like half a chicken on Ash Wednesday, then completely forgetting not to eat chicken on Friday, and having a two martini Sunday at the pub during a fundraiser (dangerous thing to overdo). Self-Forgiveness was given, and I restarted with a low carb routine that includes at least one protein shake per day.

My food issues: emotional eating, grazing, starving myself in high school, self-loathing binges followed by hateful mirror conversations, and happiness definitely curtailed in all other areas of my life when I am overweight. I use food to rebel against people, places and things that upset me. You name it; and I’ll have used food to respond to it. The least pretty (interesting choice of words) side of myself, I make vain efforts (aah, another interesting word) at going back to a healthy weight but usually fail. Another side of these food issues: when I succeed, lost weight lightens me but the extremist side of my personality sends me to my own private ‘vanity fair’ of sorts, at which I become the equally revolting, hell on wheels ego-maniac — until I gain it back to start the cycle again.

I believe in the power of Love, so using God should help! And a few affirmations in the mirror might also help — and thanks to my Irish friend, Helen in NC, I have a tirade of these loving self-affirmations to take out of my toolbox. “Youre a beautiful Childnof God” is actually one of them… No joke, this is a loaded issue (unfortunately, a loaded potato came to mind as I wrote that — Dear God). For those of you who think I’m rambling, I probably am; and, if you aren’t into non-filtered banter, I am sorry to hear it.

Back to the art talk (this emotional stuff is actually all related, by the way, since painting purges my feelings):
Next, I’ll work on adding figures to a background I’ve started more than a week ago — and trying a black, white and grey-tone Madonna in Acrylic for a friend (if I can finish the other one. Taking my time will be my goal for the day — not rushing but enjoying the process. I’ll have plenty of time to rush and finish, when and if I get funded for the 365 Madonna Nights project…

“Mod Mama”, watercolor, $125
“Shoes at the Beach”, watercolor, $125

Old and New Artwork by Jane Dever

I am proud to offer old and new work to my friends and followers.  I have separated the work into two galleries: New Work and Pre-2014 Work.  Enjoy the slideshows.

(Click on the photos below).

Day 9 - "Silver Light Fantastic" by Jane Dever, Acrylic on Masonite board, 11-3/8" x 8-1/8", $500
“Silver Light Fantastic” by Jane Dever, Acrylic on Masonite board, 11-3/8″ x 8-1/8″, $500
Light of Mine, Acrylic on Masonite, $500
Light of Mine, Acrylic on Masonite, $500

All pricing is negotiable; major credit cards welcome

My services are yours if you need them

Seasons of Change (award winner) by Jane Dever. Acrylic on Masonite board. 16″ x 12″ framed. $500

I was at an opening reception of the Bristol Art Museum last night when I was asked if I do outside marketing consultation for artists’ websites and fan pages.  My answer was YES.

As life requires money for expenses and the art world sometimes leaves me short, I am looking for an additional job to help ends meet. Please watch and share my cool video resume here (entitled “See Jane Work”)

My Video Resume
My Video Resume

and visit (and share) my job search website:

Screenshot (5)

You may email me or fill out the contact form below, should you have or know of a job for me!

FYI: I also help folks to set up social media fan pages and company/studio websites for $30 per hour plus the cost of domain registration/online processing fees.

Also, if you need a great logo like mine, contact my daughter at

Thank you in advance,

Jane Dever

3/2/14 – Trio of Impasto Madonnas

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Spending time at the Studio was a hiatus from a steady stream of racing thoughts and too many lost weeks at home. Using oils and three small canvases, I wet my feet again and felt the release that painting is for me. Unemployment and worry has set me back in many ways, combined with an odd feeling of dread of late, so getting back to my life work is important.

Church helps me a lot, too, and today’s readings were intensely appropriate for what I’ve been fearing lately — exactly tailored to me!

God is always part of my innermost dialogue, so reading about Gods limitless love for me and listening to audio scripture while painting helped a lot. Today’s readings were about NOT worrying and trusting in God’s care. I do know how much I love my children — and I trust that I’m loved that way, too. Making God first allows everything else to fall into place.

I’ve decided to broaden my horizons to beyond the immediate, beyond the immediate company, beyond the immediate landscape, and beyond the imagined limitations that I’ve allowed to hold me back. Time to break free from molds that keep me in my self-imposed restraints. It’s hard to say why I’ve fallen into this rut; Lord knows that I’ve been given limitless possibilities. It occurs to me that it is time to bounce back.

I’m heading to see my children in my old town, Chapel Hill, NC, next week. Long overdue, I long to hold my granddaughter, to see my daughter and son and to visit with my granddaughter’s mama. I love Chapel Hill for its endless supply of dear old friends, cultural diversity, its music and intelligent open mindedness. I’m due for an infusion of its warmth and coolness! The fact that Ill hit the road on Ash Wednesday speaks to my need for a cleansing road trip — like returning to ashes where I once started my trip back here. Full circles are good. I may want to stay when I get there and I may want to come home; not sure. I’ve said that ill move to wherever I get the best job fastest but we’ll see. God will give me the gut feeling to know, I hope.

If I leave RI, I’ll worry for my mother and will miss my siblings. If I stay, I’ll worry more about the lengthening gaps in seeing my children. The visits north or south will have to be more frequent, regardless of what happens. The thought of not really knowing my granddaughter and being more available to my children hurts. Life is difficult when miles separate us from our loves. I’ve got friends in both places. The movie will help decide things, too, as a funded 365 Nights of painting will keep me at this studio for another year. I can paint in both places, though, so visits won’t interfere with the project. It’s all about being the Mother and being the Child — life.

Back to the studio tomorrow. Hope you enjoy my trio of impasto Madonnas…

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, 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!