Posted by: MtnWoman Silver | May 6, 2014

When the Universe Smiles


I have been painting for over 40 years. My work has been included in five one-person shows and many group shows, both juried and non-juried. I have won awards at every level, but never have I received as much publicity as I did during my last show called Sounds of Self exhibited from March 7-29 at In Your Eye Gallery in the Paseo Arts District of Oklahoma City.

Slice magazine ( You’ll have to turn the pages to page 86 or 89?) which is the source of what is going on in OKCity, included my show in their Top 10 Picks of things to do in March. In February, I received a call from Molly Evans, a reporter for KGOU, the NPR radio station in Norman, asking for an interview which included watching me paint in my studio. I agreed and this feature was aired on March 9 ( Finally, on March 6, I was contacted by Galen Culver of NBC’s station, KFOR-TV, wanting to do a feature on me painting for his show, “Is This a Great State or What?”, that is part of the 5:00 o’clock news. This show aired on March 17 (

As a professional artist, I have always worked very hard. I have a fine arts degree in painting. I completed a year of post-graduate study in desktop publishing and graphic design. I have taken workshops in marketing and have read many books and articles on the “business” of art. I have learned that you can control many aspects of being an artist, but whether you achieve success in the form of fame and fortune is out of your hands unless you already have the connections or wealth to promote yourself. There is an element of luck or magic. I still have far to go on the road to success as an artist, but this past March, the Universe was definitely smiling.


Posted by: MtnWoman Silver | February 19, 2014

So Being

So Being

So Being

I painted this painting in 1987 and it was bought by a friend that same year. Just last week, I was talking with him on the phone and he mentioned that as we spoke, he was looking at this painting. He said, “I have always loved looking at that spaceship sailing across the sun”.  I was amazed at his interpretation of what he saw; all the time I was painting it, I saw it as a mysterious figure with one eye, a supernatural being, all knowing and all seeing. For some reason, I named it So-Being.

Since our conversation, I have thought much about art. Once a painting is out of the hands of the artist, it must truly live on its own. There is no way to know the many ways a viewer may interpret what he sees. And, hearing back what other people see in our work makes it become different even to us.  I think that is marvelous!

Copyright MtnWoman Silver and MtnWoman Silver Speaks 2014

Posted by: MtnWoman Silver | February 6, 2014

Being of Service

For a long time after leaving 20 years in the social work field and pursuing art full-time, I battled with guilt over not being of service to my fellow man or for not bringing in a steady income. In addition to painting, I added a part-time job as teacher’s aide to a high school, special education teacher. That lasted about six months. I decided I didn’t like being around high school students. Next, I volunteered to be a classroom assistant to an elementary school art teacher. That didn’t last either. I didn’t like being around most little kids; many are like loose cannons. Finally, I spent 10 years teaching computerized, graphic design programs part-time at an adult technical school. Dealing with semi-adults was a little easier. Still, I found that these activities added so much pressure and stress, I became fragmented and often, could not focus on creating. I finally gave up working for others. How did this become acceptable to me?

Well, after years of thought and soul searching, I arrived at my current way of thinking. Being the unique person that I am and showing what one unique person can achieve serves as an example and inspiration for others. So, I began to glorify my days in painting, making quilts, gardening, cooking, and caring for my husband and home. I decided that every creative effort is a valid excuse for itself. No other reason is necessary. I am because I am. I do because I do. However I wish to express in each day is okay. But, where is the service? I concluded that even if not done for another, every work that comes from within is in service of truth or beauty—and that is a valid service.


Self-Portrait: -A-Joyful-Noise-

© MtnWoman Silver 2014

Posted by: MtnWoman Silver | January 29, 2014

My Tempestuous Marriage to Painting

Silver Painting “Road to Glory”

From my earliest memories, Drawing and I have been friends. People came and went in my life, but Drawing never deserted me. It has been my lifelong friend.

In college, I dated Painting and Sculpture for four years, finally marrying Painting. On leaving college, Painting and I separated with only a brief visit together a couple of times until 1982. We got back together that year and had a wonderful reunion that lasted until the summer of 1983. Once more we separated for a year and a half and finally reunited in 1985.

From 1985-1989, we were together, but I often neglected Painting giving it little physical attention, although it was often in my thoughts. In 1990, I began a really intense exploration of my relationship with Painting. It was a very troubled period with highs and some bad lows. Out of the high periods came some really fine work. Yet, I found myself in 1993 turning a straying eye toward “Quilting”, just thinking and reading lots about it and looking at enticing photos. I tried to keep my marriage to Painting alive, but it was difficult. In 1994 and early 1995 while still married to Painting, I actually had a fling with “Writing”, mostly short stories, and the beginning of a novel. Then, in 1995, my lust for Quilting took over, and I began a full-blown affair with it that lasted until 2006. I totally left my marriage with Painting and gave little thought to it during those years. Quilting brought me so much pleasure, so many needed lessons in appreciating “process”, in learning to relax and live in the moment, in organizing a project, in appreciating color and pattern. I was extremely happy with Quilting and thought I would never leave it.

Yet, in 2006, after years away, I suddenly fell in love with “Painting” once more. I returned to my marriage to it and completely away from “Quilting”. I brought to Painting all the lessons I had learned from Quilting. Still, my marriage has had its stormy and sometimes, depressing, moments. I love Painting; I enjoy being with it, but there have been parts of the marriage that were and are troublesome–mostly to do with selling–but I have persisted and the relationship with Painting has deepened, especially in the last 2 years when Music became a third party to the marriage. I am enjoying the process and the products of this triad relationship, and I have learned to manage the less enjoyable aspects of the commitment (galleries, marketing, advertising, receptions and openings, etc).

I can now say that after 44 years of marriage to Painting, I still love it and know I do not wish to live without it—-unless Drawing decides it wants more from me than friendship.

© MtnWoman Silver 2014

Posted by: MtnWoman Silver | January 28, 2014

Two New Paintings for February, 2014

I’ve decided to begin posting current goings-on once more, not only on facebook, but here. Since September 1, 2013, I have been represented by In Your Eye Gallery located in the Paseo Arts District of Oklahoma City, OK. Some of my paintings are on display all the time, and once a year, I am the featured artist, filling up a room by myself. I will be featured artist in March of this year and will add some paintings from that show.

Today, I am posting images of two current paintings. One, called Inner Rage, was accepted into the juried Paseo Arts Association Member Show 2014, opening February 7, during the Paseo First Friday Art Walk. The companion piece, Outer Calm, will be shown at In Your Eye Gallery during the same period.

Inner Rage

What lies beneath the surface control

Outer Calm

Hiding what lies beneath

I am becoming braver in expressing my emotions in my painting. I paint mostly non-objective abstracts so they are greatly affected by my current mood and by the music I listen to while painting. My current favorites are  classical composer Tchaikovsky and Carlos Nakai playing Native American flute music.

I would really like to hear from you about your creative process and how you express yourself in poetry, dance, music, painting, and writing.

© MtnWomanSilver 2014

Posted by: MtnWoman Silver | September 7, 2010

Conclusions on Post: Why do You Buy Art?

In addition to posting my question here on WordPress about buying art, I asked the question also on facebook. I received several comments on this post as well as the following comments on facebook

“I buy art because I like it. If I had to buy art for an investment I would starve to death because I don’t know what is considered investable and what is not. If you don’t like a piece of art why would you hang it on your wall? “
” The art has to touch a feeling in my soul! Something spectacular about it moves me, and then I will buy it.”
From the comments I received, I concluded that buying art comes down to buying for investment or because you like the artwork or the artist. This is true whether the artwork is for yourself or as a gift for another. Knowing these two basic reasons still does not answer the question as to what triggers the exact moment of decision to purchase the art.
When I pressed people on that question, most said it had to do with their budget. Was there money available to buy the artwork at the price asked. This was said by people with unlimited as well as limited discretionary funds. I think that funds play a big part in the decision, but I have seen a man decide to buy a framed photograph when he learned that the photographer and he were both fishermen. The photograph had nothing to do with fishing. I’ve seen people spend large amounts on artwork when the money was going for a worthy cause.
I had hoped to get some insight into artwork buying practicec. I learned very little that was new to me. Reasons for the buying decision remain “luck of the draw”. Someone may “love” your work, but apparently, the moon has to be in the right position or something for the sale to occur.
That’s all for now, Folks!
© MtnWomanSilver 2010
Posted by: MtnWoman Silver | September 1, 2010

Why Did You Buy That Piece of Art?

If you have ever bought an artwork, please answer this question. What took you from loving it to buying it?  When are you content to just tell the artist, “I love that painting!” and what makes you want to own it?

For me, I see many works I really like but I buy few. My art collection is very eclectic containing both bought work and work for which I traded a painting. I know I have a maximum price with which I am comfortable, but occasionally, I will go over it

I am researching this question for an article I am cosidering and would really appreciate feedback. Look on your walls at your artwork and try to remember the exact feeling you had that made you “decide” to buy each piece.

Posted by: MtnWoman Silver | August 23, 2010

Update on Art Activities

I had pieces juried into two shows in July, FiberWorks2010, and the Annual Mixed-Media Exhibit, both held in galleries here in Oklahoma City. Here are a few pieces I have completed in the past three months. Boy With Kite was juried into FiberWorks2010; Free Spirit Behind a Block Fence was juried into the Annual Mixed-Media Exhibit.

Boy With Kite


Three Trees and Two Kivas

Free Spirit Behind a Block Fence

I thought that retiring from teaching last November would give me more leisure time, but then I signed on with a gallery and am working harder than I could have imagined.  I have been showing my art through Contemporary Art Gallery in Oklahoma City since May 1. I am a featured artist for the month of August, 2010 which demanded all new work. I am showing Colorful People plus three quilted wallhangings of people. These works may be viewed on my Flickr site, Colorful People.

In July, I was named the Social Media Specialist for the gallery and now administer the Contemporary Art Gallery Facebook page and Twitter. I am enjoying this demanding work because it uses all my computer skills (things I taught the last 12 years) and I have lots of interaction with people, both online and off. In July, I signed up with Fine Art America to have giclee prints made of my paintings and quilts. I hope you will check out all these sites.

I will try to post more regularly now that I know how much time my activities require. Please feel free to contact me if you have questions or comments.

© MtnWomanSilver, 2010

Posted by: MtnWoman Silver | May 10, 2010

MtnWoman Silver on Kiva Magic

Today, I will talk about my collage, Kiva Magic.  A kiva is a room used by modern Puebloans for religious rituals, many of them associated with the kachina belief system. Among the modern Hopi and most other Pueblo peoples, kivas are square-walled and underground, and are used for spiritual ceremonies.

For me, the act of descending into the Kiva represents the going within to contemplate the richness of the non-physical, the spirit, and our connections to the earth and all that is.

Kiva-Magic copy

Kiva Magic

The image size of Kiva Magic is 12″ square. It began as a collage using papers, both tissue and watercolor, that I had painted and stamped with acrylic paints. Only after laying a few scraps of paper down and arranging and rearranging them did an image or composition begin to evolve. Like most artists, my interests and passions determine the content of my art. (One of my passions encompases Native American culture and symbology.) For me, the first inkling of where I am headed  is when creating gets to be really fun. Shapes begin to appear and demand to remain. As more and more shapes become permanent residents on the surface, my decisions become more important. At some point, I will decide to adhere some of those shapes to the surface. Now, new additions should work with those already in place although I sometimes put new ones right over old ones. Every scrap added requires decisions about design, value, composition, etc. At some point, I “know” the piece is complete.

Titles of artwork may come during the creating process or after it is completed. If I get the title while still creating the piece, it affects my choices. Sometimes, a title will come long after the piece is finished.

Once I think a piece is finished, I put it away out of sight for a few days. Then I take it out and study it often rotating it to see how the composition is working from a new perspective. A few times, I have liked a work better after it is rotated, but usually, it remains oriented just as I created it. After this period of study, I know if the piece is truly finished or needs something more.

Kiva Magic evokes the mystery of the Native American ceremonies that take place in the earth from which we all come. I enjoy looking at it and contemplating those mysteries.

© MtnWoman Silver and MtnWoman Silver Speaks, 2010

Posted by: MtnWoman Silver | May 10, 2010

Talking about One’s Own Artwork

Since becoming affiliated with the Contemporary Art Gallery in the Paseo Arts District of Oklahoma City, my life has become a bit too full of activity. Yet, I’m learning constantly new things about myself.

This past Friday, ten of my paintings were unveiled for the opening reception at CAG during the First Friday Art Walk in the Paseo. CAG has 15 artists. I found that I could talk easily with patrons about other artists’ work, but when I stood in front of my own, I became tongue-tied. The things I could say about fellow artists seemed immodest when applied by me to my art. Heaven forbid that I should go against the teachings of my parents about modesty: I could hear them in my head saying “pride goeth before a fall”. I found I could discuss my process if that is what someone wanted to know, but I was stumped by questions like, “What inspired you to do this work?”, “How do you choose your subject matter?”, “How long did that take you to do?”.

I often begin a work with no preconceived image in mind. A work may take hours, weeks, months, or years depending on what it tells me to do and how long I have to wait before knowing what the next step is. Because of this proces, I work on multiple projects. and at any time, new pieces are being started and others are being finished

In the next few posts, I plan to show some of the paintings that are presently at the gallery or in my studio and talk about each.

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