Portraits

I’ve concentrated on painting portraits this year, an interesting break from landscapes. Take a look at my Portraits page (see subheadings.) All these portraits were done from photographs, and I’d be happy to do one from your snapshot, too, but this year I’d like to focus more on doing portraits from life, and for myself. Although it’s fun to strive for the likeness, sometimes more can be accomplished more through gesture than by precise rendering.  Also, in the new  year, I plan to get myself back into nature, since in 2016 kept me too busy to spend much time outside. This year will be different, so you can expect to see some new landscapes appear on these pages.

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I am excited to announce that the following five paintings can now be purchased at www.ugallery.com. More will become available there in the future. Until then, you may contact me at cynthiabaldini@hotmail.com if you are interested in pricing for any of my other work. Please click on the subheading “PAINTINGS” above to see the complete selection.

Sunset Island on the James - acrylic on canvas - 24x36"

Sunset Island on the James – acrylic on canvas – 24×36″

River Mist # 5 - available at ugallery.com

River Mist # 5 – available at ugallery.com

Path along the James - acrylic on canvas - 22x28"

Path along the James – acrylic on canvas – 22×28″

Last Sun - acrylic on canvas - 11x14 " - available at ugallery.com

Last Sun – acrylic on canvas – 11×14 ” – available at ugallery.com

Chiesa in Chianti - acrylic on canvas - 24x24" - available at www.ugallery.com

Chiesa in Chianti – acrylic on canvas – 24×24″ – available at www.ugallery.com

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Deer on the Blue Ridge

A few days with a touch of autumn temperatures inspired me to pick up the paintbrush again. It’s too early for the colors to have changed already this year, but an old photo I took on the Blue Ridge Parkway plus recent encounters with deer came together in this medley of fall colors entitled Deer on the Blue Ridge.

20X24" - acrylic on canvas - $300 (packing & shipping not included)

20X24″ – acrylic on canvas – $300 (packing & shipping not included)

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Mountain inspiration

Shenandoah Sunset #1 acrylic on canvas - 11X14"  $110 (price does not include packing & shipping)

Shenandoah Sunset #1
acrylic on canvas – 11X14″
$110 (price does not include packing & shipping)

A weekend in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia was all I needed to give me new inspiration. I’ve made two new paintings and plan on doing more of the beautiful scenery there.

"Mountain Trail #1" acrylic on canvas - 11X14" $110 (price does not include packing & shipping)

“Mountain Trail #1”
acrylic on canvas – 11X14″
$110 (price does not include packing & shipping)

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Cardinal in the Sweet Gum Tree

In my new painting I wanted to try something a little different … a more intimate portrait of nature instead of my usual panorama. I don’t like to produce copies of my work, a purposeless process since no exploration is involved. No discovery. I try to create challenges for myself, and this painting was an attempt to do that.

The painting began as just branches, but seemed to lack a focal point, so I added the bird. I considered a blue jay, for its color contrast, but decided to stay with my red color scheme.

Insertion of the bird required alterations in the rest of the painting, so my brushwork isn’t as fresh as I might have wanted, but the overall composition is much improved.

What will I paint next? Can’t wait to figure it out.

Here it is:

Cardinal in the Sweet Gum Tree

Cardinal in the Sweet Gum Tree

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“Heron at Dawn – James River”

Finished another painting!  I still have more ideas than Heron at Dawn - James Rivertime, but I’m trying to keep up.

***** SOLD *****

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Inspiring scenery

geranium walkwayHere are photos I took that illustrate the typical gardens and scenery in Tuscany. Images like this inspired the descriptions in the two following excerpts from “Immortal Venus.”

Excerpt 1:geraniums2

The terrace is edged by a low wall on which sit huge terracotta vases filled with geraniums, whose brilliant red blossoms stand out with vibrant intensity against a dark hedge.

Beyond the terrace white petunias spill from urns scattered throughout the garden, and small silvery trees shimmer down the slope, rising up again toward a distant castle on the other side of the valley. The sky is clear, and details stand out sharply, almost magnified.olive panorama

I feel pierced, as if the beauty of the day were a weapon that slices directly into my solar plexus. My inner pain intensifies and transforms into a pulsating throb of unfocused urgency.

Excerpt 2:

At the end of the hedge beyond wrought iron curlicues on a big gate, another cypress-lined driveway curves away and disappears uphill. gateThere’s an emblem on one of the stone gateposts, a coat of arms. It’s eroded and the animal depicted on it is indistinct; it looks like some kind of dog.

 

 

 

Here are a few more photos that, while not specifically described in my novel, still influenced my vision:

BEST olive vineyardiris face

Castellina in Chianti

Castellina in Chianti

 

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Cold Blooded

Here is another poem based on a dream:

 

Cold-Blooded

I laughed when I described this dream;

 its image of hibernating snakes.

My dream self is rolling them up in wool—blanketing them

with such silly seriousness.

snake rolls IMAGE

I’m packing you away now, I say,

but keeping you

wrapped in wool blankets.

Don’t die.

I’m wedging you into my cracks

blocking me,

but you are insulated.

My poor snakes are cold again

cold and stiff old snakes.

Stay alive, I tell them.

I don’t want to store you

putting you away again like fine lace, too nice

too rare.

 I’d worked years to thaw your coils

only to make them stiff again

and hard.

So I wrap them.

Dare I hope my sedated snakes will revive,

become once more wiggling and alive,

if I abandon them?

At least I know they’re here, inside.

No! I can’t say it this time.

Can’t say …Wait for me.

I’ve worked too hard.

I want instead to shake them awake

from dormancy.

I want them alive and with me,

colorful green ones handy in my pocket

and a bagful of angry rattlesnakes.

I even want back the big black snake

who moves under my shirt to sleep below my heart.

I want the serpent rainbow.

 

 

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The Watcher

I found a poem written years ago. It was based on a dream … so, does anyone have a clue what it means?

The Watcher

She sat, then shifted from side to side.
A solemn man spread his net,
pulling it from the riverbank.
Its open weave billowed and sank.
He worked with steady concentration.
The watcher’s disinterest was evident.
She felt slight amusement
at the man’s intentness.

Attracted by skittering movement on the sand
she picked a crab up and held it
in her hand.
The intensity of its shell
was shocking on her pale palm,
its deep red-tinged edges
pulsated life into her pallor
… heat into her passion.
The crab’s sidestep on her palm
tickled her centered calm
in an unfamiliar way.

crab in hand IMAGE
She dropped her arm
and slid the crab
into the river’s flow.
It sank through transparent layers
and was pushed across fluted sand
by the undertow.

Then fisherman was now observing the watcher.
This disturbed her.
His attention made her a participant.

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My First Book Fair

My debut novel, Immortal Venus, was published on September 15, 2012. My efforts to market so far have been minimal, since I work full time. But my employment will be ending in one week and I hope to give more attention to getting the word out about this paranormal mystery/romance.

Caffespresso, November 2012

However, I did have a successful booksigning at Caffespresso, an independent coffee shop here in Richmond, Virginia.

I also participated in a group Book Fair at Regency Mall shopping center. This was my first book fair and I didn’t know what to expect. I thought I’d prepared well, but the other authors were clearly more experienced because they had an array of eye-catching displays, besides which my table seemed barren. There was a lot of traffic from passing shoppers and the fair was successful, thanks to Tina Glasneck’s excellent planning.

 

 

 

 

You can see photos of the event and samples of the authors writing at: http://celebratewithabook.blogspot.com/

I enjoyed conversing with the other authors and I’ve learned much about presenting my work to the public.  Say tuned for upcoming events.

The Ebook is now available at:
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00ALG152K

BARNES & NOBLE:
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/immortal-venus-cynthia-ann-baldini/1113140838?ean=2940015732641

BOOKLOCKER:
http://booklocker.com/books/6444.html

ITUNES:
https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/immortal-venus/id586031137

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