Tuesday, June 25, 2013


American Cocker Spaniels.                     watercolor    

Have I ever mentioned that I LOVE painting dogs, horses, and cats?  When I decided to make art my career, I didn't set out to paint them.  I knew there was little market for animal paintings - and guess what?  I still know that! :D  Fresh out of art school,  I set out to do Fantasy paintings, and although I still do some, the animals are what settled on the end of my brush.
I knew that if I was going to follow my heart and not only work as a full time artist, but even worse, an Animal Artist, I was going to have to make some sacrifices.  Just what was I willing to give up so that I could build a business painting the dogs, cats, and horses that I love?  (And make no mistake, this is my business.  I love what I do, I put a lot of myself into each painting, but I'm always ready to send them out into the world when someone falls in love with one of them. I offer an excellent product at a reasonable price, with GREAT customer service.  I want these paintings to find a home.)
After a lot of  thought, I decided that I didn't need a big home - a home of our own, yes, but small and simple would do.  I decided that I no longer had to follow fashion.  Hey, I'm an artist! I can wear Vintage with this year's Tee if I want!  I have a few nice classic pieces for when I need to dress up, and a lot of  well made, moderately priced things that have been worn to threads for everyday.  Did we really need to live in an expensive city, or could we relocate to the country where I'd always wanted to live?  If my Sweetie was working in our home village, did we really need two cars - or even an expensive "ego" car ( beautiful though they are)?  And since we both enjoy cooking and curling up with a DVD, did we really need a lot of restaurant meals and nights out?  If we were going to have so many animals, were yearly holidays practical, or even desirable?  Did we need all the latest electronic gadgets that no one can figure out how to use?
In other words, with my husband's willing agreement, we gave up most of the Bells and Whistles that most people feel they need in today's society.  And you know what?  We don't miss them!   We have kept the things we really enjoy, have all the things we need, we live a quiet, peaceful lifestyle, and we get up every morning eager to get to our work. I think we've gained far more than we've given up. :)

Heather Anderson

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