B ' Twee You & Me - Blog
Susie E Caron
Acrylic Pet Portrait Artist
Twee' Art LLC, Vermont
Susie E Caron
Acrylic Pet Portrait Artist
Twee' Art LLC, Vermont
These Sweet Songbird Paintings Go Anywhere
Susie Caron © 5/7/21
During Covid-19 lock down, I distracted myself by creating a lot of smaller paintings for interesting categories: holidays, sunflowers, baby animals, pets, winter animals and songbirds to name a few. As incidents of Covid-19 slowed and vaccinations increased I began to wonder how to brighten your lives, and help my favorite gallery too.
I partnered with my local Village Frame Shoppe and Gallery to display 6 of these 5x7 paintings on each of 2 boards in the two display windows. They are for sale, and also function as lively enticements for customers to see, to come in and shop as well as advertising for my custom pet art. (The second board holds 6 pet art paintings as little examples of the many sizes of commission, custom pet art I create for customers.)
Now You Can Bring A Little Bit of 'Life' into Your Home.
These framed songbirds can hang anywhere in a home where you might want a spark of life to brighten your day.
And These Painting Make Great Gifts!
Use this special offer to buy and cheer your loved ones.
Just For My Readers and Fans
A Limited Time Special Offer.
May 6, 2021 until June 1, 2021
You can buy one or more of my 5x7 framed ready to hang Songbird Painting in the following ways.
Buy 1- 5x7 framed painting for only $85.
Buy 2 to 3, 5x7 framed paintings, your choice, for 10% off the total.
Buy all 6 at once for 15% off.
Call the Village Frame Shoppe today, or from 10-4pm EST Monday -Saturday, between 5/6/21 & 6/1/21 and tell Dan you read my Songbird blog article. *
How's that for something special to brighten your day and perhaps add some cheer to your loved ones life?
*This offer is limited based on time, date and availability of paintings. You understand that when you call one, more or all of the paintings my have already sold and you may miss your chance to buy.
Thanks for Reading
As always please leave a comment.
A Big Thank You.
Susie Caron (c) 4/28/21
As you can see from this photo, I am happy and grateful. You helped make the re-opened Vermont Maple Festival and the Sappy Art Show a success and me too! Here's the good news.
Success of the Vermont Maple Festival
The Vermont Maple Festival and The Maple Themed Sappy Art Show and Photo Contest successfully re-opened this year, 2021. Whew! After such a looooong year it was fun to get back to even a mini resemblance to life pre-Covid. Because of good weather, masks on and social distancing St. Albans restaurants opened for sidewalk dining. Maple Donuts and take out menus abounded. And there was more.
Success of the Sappy Art Show.
The Village Frame Shoppe, St. Albans Vermont, once again hosted two contest categories of Maple Themed Art: Paintings and Photographs. These exhibited in the giant front window of the store for all to see. Professional judging for awards and voting by customers and those attending the festival, were completed by 4/25/21 and the results are in. I am so excited, and grateful for your part.
Sappy Art Show Success
Two of my paintings received awards. Maple Rain (above right) received an Honorable Mention. My painting, Maple Horses Watch (above left) received the ‘Best In Show’ award. In addition, it received the most customer and fan votes to win the “People’s Choice” Award! What a wonderful endorsement from you! Thank you! I treasure your support, encouragement and I could not have done this without you.
Here is a list of the Maple Themed paintings and winners for the Sappy Art Show:
Best of Show: Maple Horses Watch, Susie Caron
1st Place: Sugarhouse Road - Charlotte Parot
2nd Place: Spring Fever - Fred Johnson
3rd Place: Sugaring - Nicole Gadouas
People Honorable Mention: Sugarmakers - Charlotte Parot
Scenic Honorable Mention: Maple Rain - Susie Caron
Process Honorable Mention: A Good Year's Work - Claire Payne
Peoples Choice: Maple Horses Watch, Susie Caron
Here is the viewable and clickable list of Maple themed Paintings and Artists.
Thank you for reading and for being part of making this re-opening successful. I enjoy the awards, but you made it special.
Here is a list of winners for the Maple Themed Amateur Photo Contest:
Best of Show: Every Drop Counts - Jessica Sweeney
1st Place: A Leaf Waffle with Vermont Maple - Michelle McNall
2nd Place: Who Needs a Bucket - Jessica Sweeney
3rd Place: Contemporary Spout - Barbara Tenney
Scenic Honorable Mention: Waiting - Carolyn Lewis
People Honorable Mention: Not Ready Yet - Tammy Menard
Process Honorable Mention: Sweet Success - Tammy Menard
Process Using Maple: Maple Meringues - Barbara Tenney
Peoples Choice: Vermont Babies - Gene Ann Kinney
If you'd like to see the Maple Themed photographs click here:
To learn more about the Vermont Maple Festival and the Sappy Art Show,
or perhaps how to enter or participate? Click on these links:
Fun for You in the 2021 Vermont Maple Festival & ‘Sappy Art Show’.
Susie Caron © 4/21/21
It didn’t happen last year, but it’s back up for 2021 and you’re invited!
First A Little History
In 2011 The Village Frame Shoppe began hosting the Sappy Art Show for artists and photographers, in conjunction with events in the Vermont Maple Festival, St. Albans,VT. Like many Vermont venues and activities in the year 2020 both were cancelled, due to Covid-19, for the health and safety of all.
And Now Good News!
This year, 2021 the Maple Festival is open again and The Village Frame Shoppe scheduled the Sappy Art Show to begin April 21, 2021 – May 6, 2021. This delights photographers and fine artists, like me, because once again we enjoy the opportunity to display Maple Themed Art for customers and art lovers.
Of course, I jumped at the opportunity to participate and entered 2 of my Maple Themed Paintings. You can see them here- Maple Horses Watch above and Maple Rain just below. I included three others near the bottom of this article which I'd entered in previous years, before Covid.
Here’s Some Fun for You!
Now you have an opportunity, no matter where you live, to participate. Beginning this year, you can vote online for your favorite in each of three Maple Themed Categories: 1. Fine Art Paintings, 2. Photographs, 3. St. Albans Window Displays. The winner in each category will be awarded a “People’s Choice Award.”
Voting is fun and besides you can see some great Maple Themed art, photography and window displays.
Vote Today because Voting Closes Saturday, April 24,2021 at Midnight.
These 3 links take you to each individual category.
If you prefer to vote for one in each of three categories, here’s the link for that.
PEOPLES CHOICE | VT Maple Festival
Do You Want To Know More About These and 2021 April 21-May 6, 2021 Schedule of Events.
Maple Festival events:
About The Sappy Art Show:
Thank you for reading and for helping to make the re-opening of the Vermont Maple Festival and The Sappy Art Show a success.
I'd Love to hear from you.
Comment by clicking 'comments' up near the title, or Sign Up (top right of this page) for my email and download your copy of 'Quick and Easy Tips to Better Pet Photos.'
Hugs and Blessings
Launched to Bring Inspiration
Susie Caron (c) 2021
I’ve been absent for a bit and excited to share something for you.
Following our Jan-Feb. 2021 Launch, I took some time off to attend an artists' conference online, to ponder and to paint. Now I want to share what’s coming up for you on Susie Caron’s Pet & Wildlife Inspiration.
Lyrics from a Carpenter’s song tells us “Rainy days and Mondays always gets me down.”
I don’t want this to be true for you anymore.
Beginning 3/15/21 I will share Inspiration Mondays with you and seek inspiration from you. Every Monday, I’ll invite you to engage in discussions and share all things that inspire you, including our pets and other animals.
What is Inspiration?
You know inspiration as an idea. Here's one definition:
A sudden brilliant, creative, or timely idea.
(Oxford Dictionary online, #1.)
But that’s only the first part. Let's add this:
After noticing an inspiring idea, we need to bring it in to our heart and mind.
Merriam-Webster online dictionary adds
Inspire came from the Latin inspiratus, meaning
to breathe into or inspire.
Later, in the 16th century the word changed in English
to mean draw air into the lungs.
There's a third part to recognize.
Consider this definition from the Oxford Dictionary online.
The process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something,
especially to do something creative. (Oxford Dictionary online, #2)
In other words, for an inspiration to be of any use to improve our lives
and the lives of others, we need to do something with it.
Whether inspired by a person, place, pet, or thing, we need to recognize it, bring it into our system, allow it to grow in us then use it to help ourselves and others.
Where Can You Find Inspiration?
Think about these questions and briefly write down
Where do you look for inspiration?
Why do you want to be inspired?
Who inspires you?
What inspires you?
How do your pets, or perhaps wildlife stories inspire you?
When you feel inspired, what do you do?
How to Get Ready To Share and Be Inspired by Others
Start by watching for and collect things you want to share.
Make a special place to stick ideas, news clips, you tube links and more. Start a folder, word doc,
or in notes on your computer or phone,
Each Monday morning be ready to contribute and reap benefits from others.
Want more Motivation?
When we feel inspired, we also inspire others. When we share our stories we discover new ideas
and encouragement which can help us to engage in life more fully. Come and share with us.
Thank you for reading.
I’d love to hear your thoughts so leave a comment. Just click on the word “comments” at the top,
next to the Title.
Inspiration for Quilting Includes Pets & Animals
Susie E Caron (c) 2/6/21
My Interview With Phoebe Sunflower Pickles.
I met Phoebe soon after moving to Southern Vermont with our two toddler aged children. She lived not far from us and we hired her to babysit our young children from time to time. Phoebe was great with our kids. I was not surprised when she took her first amazing job. As you will soon discover Phoebe was a blessing in her first career choice and continues to bless others in her current passion.
Susie: Briefly tell us a little bit about you, your family, and your occupation.
Phoebe: I grew up in Vermont, then as a young adult I moved to Pennsylvania to be a nanny. I stayed with the family for 23 years. They treated me as family, and to me they are my family. I moved back to Vermont when the youngest child when off to college. I found a part time job at a contemporary quilt shop. It’s the best job ever! I love working there, being surrounded by so much color all day.
Susie: Wow. Quite a career change. Do you or have you had any interesting pets or animals? Tell us a bit about your pet & animal interests and any stories you may want to share.
Phoebe: I’ve always loved animals, especially cats. The cat I had before my current one was rather special. His name was Snicklefritz, he was found in a parking lot as a kitten with head trauma. A friend that is a vet, fixed him up and then gave him to me. The head trauma left him blind in one eye. He was very docile and loved being around people. He was my best friend for 17 years. After I lost him I didn’t think I would get another cat. Six months later I started looking for a kitten. My requirements were that it had to be the opposite of Snicklefritz. My current cat, Velma couldn’t be more different! She used to be rather a wild child but has calmed down a lot. While Snicklefritz was my friend, Velma is my baby. She’s a rather spoiled kitty that brings me so much joy.
Susie: It's wonderful you've enjoyed two cat buddies who are very different. Do you do anything in your current occupation or hobby that includes pets or wildlife?
Phoebe: I’ve made a few art quilts that have featured animals and would love to do more. There are just so many projects I want to make and not enough time to make them all. I love modern quilts although I can appreciate all types.
Susie: Do you have any interesting products, featuring pets or animal themes for sale?
Phoebe: I don’t make things to sell, I’m open to selling some quilts that I have made, but would rather gift or donate them.
Susie: Where can my customers find these? Do you have a website, or etsy store? How can they contact you?
Phoebe: I don’t have any of those, although I have considered opening an Etsy shop. People are welcome to follow me on Instagram as Sunflowerpickles
Susie: Thank you Phoebe for sharing this interview with us. I love your passion for cats and quilts. Please keep us posted when you open your Etsy shop. I believe we will see people ordering from you. Your work is beautiful and inspired.
Thank you all for reading.
Below you'll find a few more of Phoebe's fantastic quilts.
Please leave us a little Love by telling us what you think about this, or even about using your own passion with pets & animals in a hobby or vocation.
You can do this by clicking on "Comments" up near the title and write! Thank you.
Unusual Pets & Wonderful Inspiration
My Interview with Vonnee Lee (Y I Lee)
Vonnee Lee, and I met through Facebook posts a few years ago. We began messaging and I discovered, except for our physical distance – one in the UK and the other in the USA - we had much in common. We had each worked with and enjoyed horses, engaged in multiple career endeavors, plus authored and published books. To my surprise Vonnee Lee revealed she’d also experienced joy with something others may think of as unusual pets. As you will soon see, in my interview with Vonnee Lee, she combined this love into something to share. I hope you’ll find her and her story interesting and inspiring.
Susie: Welcome Vonnee Lee. I am so happy you want to share your story. Please begin by briefly telling us a little bit about you, your family, and your occupation.
Vonnee Lee: I was born in the UK in the county of Wiltshire. I had a younger brother and sister, sadly both have passed away. My father was a Doctor and my mother worked as his receptionist. When I eventually left home, I worked for a few years in various equestrian centers, as I had and still have a great love for horses. However, in the sixties I decided to go to London. It was an exciting time. I trained to be a singer. My career continued for fifteen happy years. But it was the 1980s and I found work was becoming more and more difficult. Live music was being phased out as clubs and music venues struggled to pay artists. Not only that, I found myself at a crossroads struggling to find any real meaning to my life. Thank God in November 1981, I had a profound spiritual experience that changed my life. I gave my heart to the Lord Jesus Christ. It was the best day of my life.
Susie: Yes, your story touched me deeply.
Tell everyone how you first got into writing.
Vonnee Lee: My autobiography Mother, Me and Mantel is something I have wanted and needed to write for some time. For me, it proved to be a cathartic experience. Allowing me to face and banish any remaining demons from my past. I want the book to be a testimony to God's goodness, love and grace. I hope it will encourage whoever reads it.
Susie: I believe it does and will continue to help others heal. Thank you for sharing this.
As you know I am posting this interview during my annual Susie Caron’s Pets & Wildlife Inspirations Group on Facebook hoping to share how people use their love of pets and animals to inspire others. “Do you or did you have any interesting pets and stories you may want to share?”
Vonnee Lee: I have had some great pets in my life, but I have to say, fancy rats have been my favorites. I wasn't sure about them at first, I was scared. However, that quickly changed when a friend asked me to look after her rats while she went on holiday. At first, I was terrified of them, but that soon changed. They were so friendly and such fun, I hadn't laughed so much in years. Needless to say, when she took them home, I missed them so much I had to have some of my own. Then began my foray into breeding and showing, them which I loved and made many new friends.
Susie: I enjoy how excited you get when you talk about your Pet Rat Friends. How delightful to discover this about you. Will you share what you did with your experience and love of these pets?
Vonnee Lee: I began writing books, two of which were inspired by my rats. It was great to be able to write from experience. The first was called, A Rat and a Ransom the second was called Rat Run. Both are popular with children. My other books are more for Y/A.
Rat Run is a children’s fantasy, similar to Aesops Fables
and Watership Down.
It takes the reader on a fast paced, dangerous quest
with Timere, as he searches for the
answer to the hostility between two groups of rats.
A Rat and a Ransom, written for children, is the story
about how helping someone weaker than ourselves,
brings benefits for both.
A lesson young Tom soon found to be true.
Susie: Thank you Vonnee Lee so much for sharing this love of pets and how you combined your experiences to share these lovely books with others. I want our readers to also know that you are actually the author of several more books also for adults as well These are titled: 1. The Door. 2. The Gathering Storm and 3. A Shadowed Valley.
PS All Vonnee Lee's books can be found on her author page: Y I Lee: Click Here:
Vonnee Lee: Thank you so much for inviting me.
My thanks to everyone who is reading this. I hope to continue, after our annual launch, publishing one interview every month for you. If you know anyone who works with animals in special ways, or is inspired by pets and animals (Including horses, farm animals and wildlife), please let me. You can give me their contact information in the comments below. Tell me what you think about my interviews so far too. You can also join my mailing list, by signing up and contact me that way.
Can Pets & Animals Help Us?
As a pet owner I’ve enjoyed many pets. I especially treasure the unconditional love they so freely share. Preserving this love and memories alive for myself and others motivates me to paint pet portraits for people who love their pets. This isn’t the only way people use pet experience to keep the memories alive and recall the lessons and inspiration pets offer. I’ve asked several wonderful people who use their personal pet experiences to share these with us.
Today I am pleased to interview Tracy Crump, an accomplished author, editor & instructor who contributes articles in numerous magazines and books. Tracy offers writing workshops, webinars and her course “How to Write for Chicken Soup for the Soul”, is a Serious Writer Academy’s Top Seller.
I met Tracy on Facebook when I read she contributed to the 2021 Daily Devotional for Animal Lovers, All God’s Creatures. I bought the hardcover book from Guideposts and after reading I knew I wanted to share more about Tracy and her work with you.
*An Interview with Tracy Crump, author, editor and contributor to All God's Creatures, Guide Posts Daily Devotionals for 2021
Susie: Tracy, tell us a little bit about you, your family, faith and occupation.
Tracy: My husband, Stan, and I were high school sweethearts and have been married 44 years. We live in north Mississippi and homeschooled our two sons, who are grown now, and each has two children of his own. Years ago, I worked as an intensive care nurse and now enjoy writing articles, devotions, and short stories. We’re both active in our church-(except during Covid-19 restrictions)-and my 99-year-old mother-in-law lives with us.
Susie: Tell us a bit about your pets or pet/animal interests and any stories you may want to share.
Tracy: Except for grandchildren, we are currently pet-less, but we’ve shared our home with a variety of cats, dogs, gerbils, hamsters, finches, and parakeets, some of which have taken center stage in my writing. Our Siberian husky became ecstatic whenever it snowed (which it seldom does in the Mid-South). He would jump into my husband’s lap and sled downhill with him. We also had a golden retriever who had two sets of nine puppies. That’s when we learned there’s nothing sweeter than puppy breath.
Susie: What do you do, or have you done because of your interest in pets and wildlife?
Tracy: When we homeschooled, I jumped right into whatever my children were interested in. One son considered becoming either a veterinarian or a park ranger, and the other wanted to keep bees. Both boys volunteered at wildlife rehabilitation centers and the Memphis Zoo. I’ve taught school children about wildlife, put on puppet shows, worked at a butterfly exhibit, and sloshed through ditches at night hunting frogs for an amphibian monitoring program.
In one of my more daring moments, I allowed my son to keep a rehabber’s pet kingsnake in our home for use in a school program. Unfortunately, the weather turned bad, and the streets became too icy to do the program or take the snake back to her owner. I had failed to add frozen mice to my grocery list that week, so we were left with a hungry snake. She latched onto my son at one point, but thank goodness, she was too small to swallow him!
Susie: Do you have any interesting products featuring pets or animal themes for sale?
Tracy: I’ve published stories about dogs in two Chicken Soup for the Soul books and one about a cat in another anthology. A story about our husky will release in The Dog Who Came to Christmas later this year. I wrote about my favorite wildlife rehabber and a hawk she taught to hunt in The Ultimate Bird Book (no longer in print). And of course, Susie, you first saw my name in Guideposts’s All God’s Creatures: Daily Devotions for Animal Lovers 2021. I had six devotions in that book and will have ten in the 2022 edition. [Photo attached.]
Susie: Yes! I found and read your contributions as soon as I received the book. I was personally moved by one about how a dog helped your Mother recover from an illness.
Can you tell us where my customers can find these? Do you have a website, or how can they contact you?
Tracy: All the books can be found on Amazon or in bookstores, except the Guideposts book, which can only be purchased on their website at https://www.shopguideposts.org/bibles-devotionals/all-god-s-creatures-2021.html. Additional formats available may be found here: https://www.shopguideposts.org/bibles-devotionals/all-gods-creatures-daily-devotions-favorite-formats.html
Your customers can connect with me at https://www.tracycrump.com/ or any of the sites listed at https://linktr.ee/tracycrump.
Thank you for having me as a guest on your website, Susie. Your artwork does justice to the animals you paint, and I think that’s the highest praise a portrait artist could receive.
Susie: Thank you for your compliment and for taking the time for this interview. It was my pleasure to share you, your appreciation for pets and animals and how you inspire us through your work. I feel motivated now to write up some of my pet stories.
Do pets and animals teach, inspire, or bring you comfort?
Comment below about this or ask questions.
Where Oh Where Has My Little Dog Gone
Susie Caron (C) 2021
My Little Dog was gone! Upon return home from a short visit on my Grand Father’s farm, Blacky was gone. At 3&1/2 years old I felt beyond devastated. I’d named him Blacky, and we were buds. He was my comfort, my confidant, and my companion. Tears & anger were not enough to bring him back.
My toddler legs took me outside to look for him. I called his name daily from my porch, backyard, out near the street and sobbed on my bed at night. Days went by but no little black dog came to lick tears from my face.
My parents tried to comfort me saying, “He ran after the car when you left for Pop’s farm.” This backfired as my wailing intensified. My toddler heart felt guilty for leaving him behind. Apparently, my parents found such grieving too much for them. They never offered me another dog.
Decades later, I learned losses like that follow us through our lives and play out in our behaviors. I knew I could never replace my Blacky. However, over decades of adult life, I’ve looked for, lived with and loved many pets. They filled my heart, gave me companionship and unlimited, unconditional love.
Of course, there is no replacing a pet. Each one has unique features, personality, and the way they love and live with you. You fall in love with them, but a pet’s time with you is always too short and you wish they lived much longer.
After retirement, I began painting several of our current and past pets. The process gave me unexpected pleasure as each one appeared to ‘come to life’. Framed and displayed in my home I felt like they were back, surrounding me with their love and life. It occurred to me that other people may like to see their pets this way too. I gathered photos from family members and friends and gave a few paintings away. Soon after, I found myself engaged in a new way to serve - by creating pet portraits for customers so they could keep their pets forever too.
Want to know how you might get a custom pet portrait?
Contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org for your free, no obligation phone chat.
Or visit my web Home page: https://www.susiecaron.com right on this web site.
Let me know what you think about this article in comments below.
I can't wait to connect with you and learn about your special pet.
"The unconditional love of a pet is a gift to treasure forever.”
Keeping Your Pet's Love
Susie Caron (c) 1/8/21
What makes you want a pet, or a lot of pets? How many types of pets do you have or want? How do you recover when a pet passes away?
Certainly none of us likes to think about a pet leaving us. However, most don't outlive us. Each person reacts differently and there is no 'right or wrong' way to grieve.
Pet portraits can bring some relief when you are missing a pet. I keep many of my pets with me on painted coasters and other pet portraits appear to surround me with life and love on the walls of my home.
Over the years I've painted many pet portraits for others. My friends and family members have told me how much their pet paintings means to them.
One customer, Mary, who appreciated her own pet portrait, commissioned a painting for her friend. She expressed the feelings about her gift this way:
"Susie, Last night I gave my friends the portrait you painted of their beloved dog, Hunter. To say that they were thrilled is putting it mildly. You captured his soul. They are still in mourning and I was so happy to be able to give them this gift. I don't know how you do it but you got him just right. Thank you so much!"
To those of us who know our Pet's life and love, a pet portrait by a friend means so much.
What do you do to remember your pets? Comment below and tell me your pet's story. I will respond.
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Susie Caron, acrylic artist, creates realistic paintings of pets, animals, and selected scenes. Her love of and experience with many pets and farm animals throughout her life, enables her to capture the unique feeling and expression of each subject. In her commission pet and livestock portraits, Susie also works with each customer to discover and then reveal the personality and special bond between pet and human.