rebecca green

  • The Painted Desert with Rebecca Green


    Last week I had the privilege of working with illustrator Rebecca Green on her mural project “The Painted Desert.”  She flew in from Denver, Colorado to sunny Phoenix, Arizona for the occasion.  Painting a mural is a large project to tackle and takes several days to finish so Becca had a team of creative folks helping her along the way.


    On the first night Becca took her final sketch and projected it onto the side of the building, The Lodge Studio, where Becca used to work when she lived in Phoenix.  There was a little bit of chaos moving the bulky projector around to get it placed just right.  It sort of ended up in the street.  Studio mates Abbey Messmer and Rafael Navarro were there to assist as well.  Once in place, we used thin brushes to apply the outlines of the sketch to the wall.



    As I said before, the process took several days.  I was not able to be there to help Becca the whole time, but when I was it was really fun.


    I learned a lot about color.  Becca used a limited color palette.  The first layer was monochromatic and she added bright colors over it to accent the whole piece.  Choosing the colors was an experiment.  The time of day effected how the colors looked with the direction of the sun.  The colors needed to be mixed just right so that they all married well together in the composition.


    Becca said that she was afraid of using bright colors and I laughed because I have always struggled using muted colors.  I am learning that muted colors are very important to composition.  They help balance the color composition.  I am learning that they are not as boring as I used to think because they make brighter colors look their best.  Together they can create magic.


    We went out for a drive in the warm sun and chatting it up and losing ourselves in great conversation as we made pit stops for paint and supplies.  When it was time to paint, I really enjoyed standing on the scaffolding barefoot painting in the afternoon sun.  We talked about art and life and everything in between.  Although Becca and I are only about a month apart in age, and we both grew up in Michigan, we have had very different experiences in our lives that have brought us to where we are today.


    There is a local vegan restaurant across the street from The Lodge called Bragg’s.  They generously offered us a piece of pie 🙂  We both had a slice of blueberry almond.  It was delicious!


    The mural is now complete and it looks beautiful.  It has been a pleasure to assist Becca with this.  I will smile every time I drive by “The Painted Desert” mural at The Lodge studio.

  • Painting with Rebecca Green – Article Mention

    rebecca green

    I had a wonderful time painting alongside Rebecca Green, assisting with her mural in Phoenix.  You can read the full article here as well as my own blog post about it here.

  • Holy Cow and WOW… just breath!

    Time for a good ol’ fashioned “Low Down”  …life is going so fast around here so I will “throw down” an update!


    Custom Pet Portrait orders continue to come in and I really enjoy painting such wonderful pets!

    Last week I was in “Art Battle for Community #6” to benefit the Creston Neighborhood Association…


    Photo by Tommy Allen


    I was new to the scene, which can always get your nerves, but when I arrived I saw famed photographer Terry Johnston with his camera resting at his side and his paint brush at the ready.  It was so good to see Terry, then I saw what he was working on and I knew I needed to get to my own!  It was so good to see some supportive friends and also meet new ones too.


    Terry Johnston

    I’ve been doing a lot of community events lately.  This coming Saturday, I will be painting Custom Pet Portraits on the spot at the Fulton Heights Neighborhood Association Garage Sale in Grand Rapids, MI.  The next event following that will be the Eco.Expo at City High School in Grand Rapids where I will be teaching kids about crafting green!  My nerves were on the rise as I thought about what I might teach two hundred kids over six 45 minute sessions so I got together with the best person for advice, one of my best friends Mindy Taggart.  Over some coffee at the local cafe “Sparrows,” Mindy put me at ease with her quick wit and a dash of her background in art education.  I also drew from a past experience when I was teaching some sweet young girls how to make greeting cards out of scraps of fabric and paper.


    Diving deeper into my work, I recently met with some wonderful mentors who have been so helpful.  I met with Laura Caprera, owner of Stellafly and had some great conversation.  In a few short weeks I will be working at an event for the Humane Society of West Michigan.  They are having a “K-9 Cabaret” on May 17th to support the organization and also honor the Grand Rapids Police Department’s K-9 unit.  I will be painting custom pet portraits on the spot and I am so excited to be a part of it!  The following weekend I will be out at the Dog Bowl Funfest in Frankenmuth, Michigan.  I have never been to Frankenmuth, but I hear it is lots of fun and can’t wait!

    This past weekend we had the opportunity to check out the work of some wonderful artists around town.  These talented people are internationally known and just really great folks.  We went out to see Rebecca Green‘s show at St. Cecilia in Grand Rapids.  Such wonderful illustrations left me totally inspired.  It made me want to go back to the studio and work more.


    We also had the opportunity to visit the Beerhorst family home and chat with Brenda and Rose for a bit.  We went to the localFulton Street Farmer’s Market for the grand opening of their new facility and found Rick Beerhorst playing with The Wealthy Orphans as the shoppers walked by.  IMG_3525

    My fiance Cam and I had our engagement photos done recently as well.  We are both artists so we had a sort of “artist throw down” in my parent’s front yard for a photo shoot.  Lovely and talentedAmy Carroll did our photos–and she is absolutely wonderful.  Amy is another person who has really been a great business associate and mentor.  She has so much good advice and such a positive energy, I love it!


    I’ve been working on some things for Amy Carroll too.  Here is a small preview one of the paintings I am working on for her.  goat-preview

    I can feel myself growing inside so much as an artist and a person from all of the experiences I have had lately.  There are so many ideas in my head right now and they can’t be shared.  There is a time during my creative process where everything must be internalized for a while.  My thoughts have to go into outer space and simmer before they can come back down to earth.  All I can say is I am excited to see what the future has in store!


    Amy DeCaussin specializes in Illustration.  View her work here,

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