Monday, December 16, 2013

Portrait of a Happy Couple

By Ana Tirolese ©2013 Copyright, All Rights Reserved.Graphite on Paper

Here is a commission piece that I got ready in time for Christmas. Below is the W.I.P. (work in progress). 

By Ana Tirolese ©2013 Copyright, All Rights Reserved.Graphite on Paper
Reference Photos plus the W.I.P.
 The woman in this portrait is Brigitte. Brigitte was our postal carrier for the last few years and she is absolutely delightful. She has been moved to a new route and I miss her. Brigitte always had a smile and is a very pleasant person. This is a portrait of her and her significant other, Rudy, that she commissioned as a Christmas gift. I really enjoyed working on this portrait.

By Ana Tirolese ©2013 Copyright, All Rights Reserved.Graphite on Paper
The Happy Couple By Ana Tirolese ©2013 Copyright, All Rights Reserved.
8" x 10" -- Graphite on Paper
Brigitte asked me to change her eyes in the original photo so that they were more open, and she also asked me to "comb" Rudy's hair. This is one of the beauties of working on a hand-drawn/painted portrait; you can make these changes for the client. It does not have to be an exact replica of the original photo.  Of course, these days, with Photoshop (or similar software) you can manipulate a photo to how you want it, but it does not have the warmth (in my humble opinion) that a hand-rendered portrait has.

The portrait was professionally and beautifully framed by London Picture Framing and, as always, Vince and company did a wonderful job. If you are from the London, Ontario area and want excellent work at reasonable and fair prices, go see Vince Tedesco and staff at London Picture Framing on Hyde Park Road, just north of Gainsborough Road.  Let them know Ana recommended them... no, I get no kick-back or financial recompense from this recommendation. I just get the satisfaction of promoting a local business and you getting an excellent final product. London Picture Framing is the only place I trust with my artwork.

Art Prints

UPDATE:

[December 23, 2013] Brigitte picked up the portrait from me and she absolutely LOVES it!  







Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Pet Family Portrait: Who is the Artist/Photographer?

Pet Family Portrait

This wonderful image has been going around the internet. I am wondering who created it.  If you know who the artist/photographer is that created this image, please let me know in the comments, below. Thank you.


Monday, June 3, 2013

Self Portrait without Glasses

I am taking a MOOC through Coursera on art concepts and techniques. I thought I was due a refresher. This self portrait was created for the course.

Self Portrait without Glasses by Ana Tirolese. Acrylic on Canvas Board. Copyright 2013, all rights reserved.
Self Portrait without Glasses
Acrylics on Canvas Board
13" x 7"
This painting is completely out of character/style for me. It is an abstracted self portrait in acrylics. I did not try to refine any of the shapes nor did I try to make it overly realistic/photorealistic, as is my usual style. I want to broaden my artistic mind. I have used my favourite colours in the background and in my top. I am looking stern or depressed but this is how I look when I don't smile for the camera. Not much can be done about genetics. I always think of myself as yellow-ochre in colour, even though I have light olive-toned skin in reality. I only used a little yellow-ochre in this painting.

If you are just getting started with Evernote, Ana Tirolese recommends that you purchase Brett Kelly’s remarkably practical e-book, Evernote Essentials, Second Edition. It is worth setting aside a couple hours to work through this brief, 95-page book. It will save you DAYS of learning Evernote on your own.

My husband hates this painting. He hates that I made myself ugly in it. He can't see beyond the subject matter. The painting is not a very attractive rendition of me, but it does look like me. It is stark, raw, and a bit sloppy and rushed. It is not an accurate, photo-realistic portrait, but is it good art?  What is your opinion?


Friday, May 10, 2013

Meeting Sandi Richard in Strathroy, Ontario

Sandi Richard and Ana Tirolese in Strathroy, Ontario
www.SandiRichard.com

http://www.cookingfortherushed.com/new/index.php/book5
In 1999 I came across the most amazing cookbook: Life's On Fire: Cooking for the Rushed by Sandi Richard. At the time I was the mother of a precocious 8 year-old, running a full-time business, and living the life of a stressed super-mom/woman. We were eating out, going through the drive through, and ordering in more days than not. It was not healthy, but I did not know how else to handle the dinner time stress. This book was a Godsend.

I had to write to Sandi and let her know how much I loved her book. I emailed her, not expecting to get a response. When Sandi, herself, responded to my email, I was thrilled. She and I started corresponding and have been doing so since then.  I even wrote a testimonial for her second printing of this book. See the testimonial that appears on the back of the book here (6th from the bottom on this page).

Sandi's open and honest style was refreshing to read. I enjoy how her book is laid out and how you start at the top of the page and when you get to the bottom you have a well balanced, full course, meal to feed your family. Sandi, being Canadian, wrote the ultimate Canadian cookbook. (We shop in metric and cook in imperial and the book is written like that). I like weekly shopping list, and I especially relish that every recipe can be put together quickly and are as delicious as they are nutritious. The meals are colour coded such:
RED: 15 minutes to prep
Dinner is ready in 30 minutes or less
YELLOW: 20 minutes to prep
Dinner is ready in 30 minutes or less
GREEN: 15 minutes to prep
Dinner is ready in 60 minutes or less
BLUE: 20 minutes to prep
Dinner is ready in 60 minutes or less
                                       What Make's Our Books Different - Sandi Richard
Cooking is something I enjoy but I dreaded the "what's for dinner?" question it's sister "what do you want?" usually followed by "I don't know, what do you want?" I found it difficult to plan and shop around my busy schedule, and sure as heck, the drive-through was far faster than anything I could pull together on a hectic week night. Sandi's book took all the stress out of the planning and the making of the shopping lists. It was done for me. My family loves the recipes, and suddenly I was cooking again and it was not taking any longer (or any more effort) than going through the drive-through or ordering in. And, as a bonus, we were saving money because we were purchasing what we needed for each week without any waste or excess.

http://www.cookingfortherushed.com/new/index.php/anyone-can-cook-dinnerOver the years I have been making up my own menus and using other cookbooks because, let's face, there are only so many times you can use the same cookbook over and over again before you want try something new. Yet, my family would ask for specific meals from Cooking for the Rushed, every so often, so my copy is quite well used.

One of the amazing things about Sandi Richard's cookbooks is that nearly every recipe is well loved by the family and you will find yourself cooking nearly  every recipe in the book, over and over again, rather than just one or two, like in traditional cookbooks.

Sandi Richard has been my hero since I discovered her cookbook in 1999 so imagine my delight when I found out she was going to be talking in a city near me! Sandi is doing the There's a Meal to My Madness Event where she is promoting a healthy lifestyle, encouraging us to get the family back to the dinner table, and showing us how easy it is to plan your meals, make your shopping lists, and cook every night. Her books and recipes allow me to be on automatic pilot throughout the week.

Several friends and I went to see Sandi Richard in Strathroy, Ontario. We were not disappointed. Sandi is a dynamic, motivational, and inspirational speaker. She regaled us with stories from her life, talked about Eating Forward (TM), explained how her method of meal planning makes it easy to always have a nutritious meal on the table, and even had a cook-off!

It was wonderful to finally meet Sandi in person after so many years of communicating electronically. She was happy to meet me too and even told the audience about our years of corresponding. I picked up the few cookbooks I did not have (Sandi has 7 books now). Sandi even wrote a lovely inscription in my original cookbook. We had a short but pleasant visit.

If you have a chance to see Sandi Richard live, go for it! You will enjoy it. And, go pick up at least one of her books. You will be hooked.

Here are some Sample Recipes.

I have all 7 of Sandi's books, now, so it is going to be a very long time before my family gets bored. I have been cooking from her new cookbook for the last two weeks and my family is thrilled. We are eating better, the meals are fabulous, the stress level is down, and bonus side-effects: we are losing weight and have more energy!

If you are just getting started with Evernote, Ana Tirolese recommends that you purchase Brett Kelly’s remarkably practical e-book, Evernote Essentials, Second Edition. It is worth setting aside a couple hours to work through this brief, 95-page book. It will save you DAYS of learning Evernote on your own.



Wednesday, April 10, 2013

The Many Faces of Taz

Taz sitting on my arm. Photo by Ana Tirolese ©2013 taken with iPhone
Taz sitting on my arm




Art Prints Recently, Taz (a Senegal Parrot) has come to live with us. She is a beautiful girl, although, she is a "plucker", and does look a bit "battle ravaged" at the moment. We hope, with time and patience, to break her of this habit. She is a little on the small side for a Senegal, but, perhaps when her tail feathers grow back in she will look a bit bigger.

Taz is absolutely delightful. She is full of personality and a lot of fun to have around. As expected, she is bonding with Anthony. All our pets bond with him because he truly is a most patient and tolerant person.

Taz enjoying some strawberries. Photo by Ana Tirolese ©2013 taken with iPhone
Taz,enjoying some strawberries
I created the image, to the left, as a tribute to Taz coming to live with us. I chose to do it in the Pop-Art styling of Andy Warhol because Taz is such a cool bird with many layers of personality.

This was such a fun image that I created a some items at Zazzle with this image on it. You can see a sample, below, of the tie. Doesn't that look amazing?!?

Taz is 18 years old (as of February 9, 2013) and came to live with us when her human had to move to Florida and could not take Taz with her. Her human, Vicky, had rescued Taz 18 years ago from an abusive situation (when she was only a few months old).  It was a difficult decision for Vicky to let go of her beloved Taz. Of course, it was a blessing for us.  Taz was sad for the first week or so, but she has since started to settle in nicely to her new home. She has perked up nicely and her wonderful personality is really showing through now. We even think her feathers are growing back in.

Taz visiting with Jill. Photo by Ana Tirolese ©2013 taken with iPhone
Taz visiting with Jill
Taz is such a sweet girl. She loves coming out to play and visit. And, she really enjoys exploring her new environment. She is still a little shy about speaking, but she does make happy sounds and purrs when she is very content.  She loves company, and when our dear friend, Jill, came for a visit, Taz was on her best behaviour. Jill does have a way with animals and children. They just LOVE her!  All our birds love Jill and behave much better for her than they do for us!

Taz enjoys "helping" me when I am on the computer. Of course, it is difficult to get any work done with having to constantly skritch her. She also loves to ride on my shoulder as I do household tasks, like make the bed, or go down for the mail.

All in all, Taz is a great addition to our little family. She fits right in and we are enjoying her so much!

The Many Faces of Taz Neckwear

The Many Faces of Taz Neckwear by Dollinha
Create your own neck tie on zazzle


If you are just getting started with Evernote, Ana Tirolese recommends that you purchase Brett Kelly’s remarkably practical e-book, Evernote Essentials, Second Edition. It is worth setting aside a couple hours to work through this brief, 95-page book. It will save you DAYS of learning Evernote on your own.