An Artist’s Life in the San Luis Valley

At the Historical Novel Society Conference I met a couple of women who live in my “hood” — the hood is as big as Connecticut but it’s a hood nonetheless. They collaborate on historical mystery novels and so we instantly formed a writer’s group. Earlier this week I went to one of their homes for lunch and our first meeting. Since I’ve never worked with other writers, it was an interesting experience and it will be a little challenging for me NOT to be an English teacher. I was upfront about that and asked, “You sure you want to deal with an English teacher?” so they are getting into it with their eyes open — not that I’m picky about stuff as the stereotype of English teachers would imply, but…

And, this week, I hung some paintings in a show in a coffee house in Alamosa with three other members of the Monte Arts Council. It’s a small show (not much wall space) and I hung only four paintings. This one, the largest:


Selfie, 20 x 16 oil on panel

and these…


September Snow in South Fork, 5 x 7 watercolor on panel

Berkeley Pit Mine

Berkeley Pit Mine, 8 x 10, Oil on canvas


Honeycrisp, 5 x 7 oil on panel

It’s fun to have a social life after months of virtually constant solitude (which was also fun). I’ve learned of other painting opportunities that I am going to pursue.

The Valley Arts Co-op store is something else. I do not think paintings will move out of that store, but I’ve made note cards that might when I’ve finished with the packaging and so on. I think selling paintings requires a real gallery where people go intentionally to look at and maybe buy paintings. I do know that if nothing of mine ever sells in the co-op store, it will not be worth it for me to remain a member and mind the store 16 hours/month.

How does this relate to today’s daily prompt? Well, last year when I wrote this prompt, I was five days from driving away from California. I didn’t know where I’d live, what my house would be or even where it would be. Now I’m here and life opens a little more every day. Knowing ahead of time what will happen would steal the fun from the moment and from the future. I stand by my Bible verse: Matthew 6:34 Therefore do not ye be busy into the morrow, for the morrow shall be busy to itself; for it sufficeth to the day his own malice. (Wycliffe Bible)

If you want to read what I wrote last year (it’s a good post and I’m proud of it!) it’s right here:

8 thoughts on “An Artist’s Life in the San Luis Valley

  1. Lovely paintings. I cannot paint, although Mr. Swiss paints, mainly aquarell, and his originals take up space on our walls. He has done oil, but he has to go outside for that, smells a bit strong. It is a perfect opportunity to find a group where you can share your interests. It sounds so romantic to live in the San Fernando Valley.

  2. I’ve thought a lot about joining a writer’s group or/and a photographer’s group and finally decided it wouldn’t work for me. I don’t like groups. I’ve joined so many, but never such with any of them. I’ve gotten so used to being a loner, I’m not sure I even remember how to socialize except in very small groups with people I know very well. Good for you for trying again and I hope it works out well for you. I’ll be watching with curiosity and optimism.

  3. I enjoy seeing your art. I wish I had your talent- writing and painting. You are fortunate to be so creative. And it’s nice to know that you have found two ladies with whom you can share mutual interests.

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