Friday, December 21, 2012

Houses 2 & 3

Before I share my latest art story I would like to take a minute to remember the children and teachers who were lost last week in Sandy Hook. My heart breaks every time I see those faces and think of what the families must be going through. This morning there was a moment of silence and the ringing of bells for each of the victims. They are the angels watching over us now. I hope that the families can get some measure of comfort in the days ahead. My thoughts and prayers are with them.

I should explain what started the idea of doing the house portraits. My husband has 4 cousins in one family...all girls. Every time there is a family event or reuinion on Long Island they take turns hosting, and do it so well! The house of thecousin I am going to show next was flooded during Hurricane Sandy...4 feet of water in her house that is only one floor. Almost everything inside was destroyed. Barbara is now living in an apartment while the house is being redone, and I'm not sure if she will move back in or end up selling the house. So I decided it would be a good idea to do a small house portrait for her and her sisters.
My first idea was to find all the houses on googlemaps. Out of the four of them only one showed up. So I drove to each of the other houses to personally take photos. However when I got to Barbara's house in Oakdale, all the outside siding had been removed. There was no indication of the color, or if there were shutters. All you could see was the Tyvek protective wrap all around the house. For the life of me I couldn't remember what color the house was. So I called my sister-in-law who couldn't remember for sure. She suggested I email one of the sisters and ask, not telling her that I was doing a painting for everyone else too. Terry emailed me that the shingles were light grey and the roof was mention of shutters. lol So I checked the address with googleEarth and several other sites. I could get good aerial views on most of them, but they don't let you see it from street level. Finally I found a site that let me turn the photo around and I could get a slight view of the front including the color and the fact that all the windows had white shutters. I did this painting from that information.
The next one, Janet's house, was a bit easier because I was able to take a normal photo.
Three houses done and one more to go!


  1. Hope the families find some comfort.

    Your house paintings are a great idea and are really good Joan.

  2. Good job on houses 2 & 3. I wish I could see their faces when they open your gifts.

  3. Beautiful job on the houses Joan. A great gift.

    Joan, just want to take this time to wish you and Jerry a very Merry Christmas.

    Looking forward to see you next year, hopefully before the spring.

  4. What a lovely idea, and what lovely houses to paint. So sad about the flood though. My thoughts are also with the children who survived and how they will cope.

  5. Joan!
    The house portraits are great gifts. Thank you for telling us the story behind this wonderful idea!
    Thank you for sharing your feelings about the tragedy in Connecticut.
    It is still so very, very sad. My heart and soul go out to the families.
    Hang in there Joan.
    Take care and Peace.

  6. My mind has been on those precious children and their teachers. My youngest granddaughter is 5 and when I look at her, its hard not getting emotional. My heart breaks for all the family.

    Your house portraits are wonderful. I just finished one as well, which I will post after the Holidays. That second one looks like a photo..beautifully done, Joan!! Googling it was a great idea.

  7. You all have certainly had your fair share of trauma in the US in 2012. Hopefully 2013 will be a smoother path for all. Your little trauma raised a smile but you got there in the end. I know for sure these paintings will be cherished. Great job.

  8. Oh I do love that first house, Joan. What a shame that it was wrecked in that storm. You did a beautiful and fine job researching it and I hope this cousin will be overjoyed. The second house painting is superb too! What wonderful gifts these will be!

  9. Thanks so much Ann, Mickey, Joan, Polly, Michael, Hilda, Laura and Sherry!!!