Back Alley Guthrie ~ Nestled

This small one story building is nestled between two larger ones, hence the title… 🙂

“Nestled” 12″ x 12″ oil on canvas

This structure is to the left of my previous painting, and as I mentioned before there is a better view of the Guthrie Post office in the background. The front of this building has a large sign saying Hurley Plumbing. According to waymarking.com , it was built in 1928. I’m going to borrow a photo from them to show the front…

I’m guessing they remodeled the front probably in the 60’s to modernize. The old buildings are so gorgeous I don’t know why they did this, but at least the back alleys still show some of the antiquity.

Here’s a photo of the back that I used when painting in the studio…

Yesterday, I revisited the site to see how the sun might be shining out here in the morning hours. For the first time ever the corrugated metal gate was closed. And according to the signs they definitely don’t want anyone getting too close.

I have one more back alley building to work on and a smaller project of an old handle that I will be sharing soon.

Be back later… 🙂

A Spiral Staircase ~ Take 2

I tried fixing the color problem by changing the saturation. This is a better picture of my last post, not perfect, but a lot better…

A little reminder to myself on why I’m doing these back alley paintings from my first back alley post…

“A little honesty here… I have been so uninspired by the Oklahoma landscape. My dream always has been to paint oceans and mountains, places I remember that I loved when I was growing up. But just maybe I have been looking in the wrong places. Maybe I need to find the forlorn, the lonely, the cast off and begin to make beauty from ashes. This may be a new beginning for me…just maybe…”

Back Alley Guthrie ~ A Spiral Staircase

I probably spent 2 hours trying to get an accurate photo of this painting. Even with some editing I could not get the colors right. The sky is much lighter than this, and the stone and brick darker, but I think you can get the idea. The spiral staircase is fascinating. Many of the back alley buildings have wrought iron staircases. It still amazes me what detail and care the builders put in the backs of these old buildings.

Spiral Staircase 12″ x 12″ oil on linen

The building that you see peeking out from behind is the Guthrie Post Office. The next painting I’m working on will show more of the post office in the background. It will be the small building next door to the left.

Until then… 🙂

Back Alley Guthrie ~ Back Alley Arches

One thing I have discovered in observing the back alleys of Guthrie is that this town is full of arches. Not only on the fronts of the buildings, but in the back, as well. And most of them have a double layer of bricks on top emphasizing the beautiful arched doors and windows.

I named this next painting “Back Alley Arches”, because that is what first attracted me to this back alley location.

Back Alley Arches 12″ x 16″ oil on linen

For those who appreciate a little background, my daughter Sage and I went on a back alley discovery adventure last fall. I took photos of sites that intrigued me.

A couple of months ago, I went back to take a look and there was a woman outside working on her potted plants. The place looked adorable…

Massive vines cover a lot of the back alley buildings in the summer, in the winter all the leaves are gone and it looks pretty bare and scrubby.

And here is my preliminary sketch…

Now the painting has to dry for some months and then the linen will be glued to a masonite board and have a coat or two of varnish, before it is framed.

Hope you enjoyed seeing a little view of the progression of this oil painting.

Back Alley Guthrie ~ Endangered Fire Tower

One of my favorite back alley treasures in Guthrie, Oklahoma is this fire tower. I had no idea that it was endangered until I searched for some historical information about it.

Endangered Fire Tower 16″ x 20″ oil on canvas

A news article from The Oklahoman dated 1997 stated…

“The tall narrow structure behind the Guthrie Fire Department’s downtown station, may be the only remaining hose tower in Oklahoma, said Melvena Heisch of the Oklahoma Historical Society.

“At least, we don’t know of any other in the state,” she said.

The tower was placed on the state’s list of Most Endangered Historic Properties because it is no longer used and is in disrepair.

The tower is behind the station at 111 S Second.

It is built of wood which has been covered with tin. And, it’s in danger of being demolished.

When it was built, canvas fire hoses had to be hung up to dry. But when they were replaced by those made of nylon and other materials, the tower no longer was used.”

Here it is 25 years later and the tower is still standing. I’m so glad. 🙂

The Guthrie Fire Tower is also listed on The 2021 List of Oklahoma’s Endangered Places.

This is the perfect pleinair set up… the back of a pick up truck, so comfy and convenient. 🙂 My daughter Tera even brought me some coffee from our favorite Guthrie coffee shop Hoboken, which is only a couple of blocks away.

I hope you enjoy some of the links I’ve shared. The 2021 Most Endangered Places has a nice picture of the tower and more info on the history. You can order coffee from the Hoboken link, and even read the story of the amazing family that started Hoboken and have given so much love to the Guthrie community and beyond… There’s a great video to watch about Hoboken here.

“Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.” ~ Luke 21:36

Back Alley Guthrie ~ Farquharsan Building

Strange name, isn’t it? Albert O. Farquharsan opened a clothing store in this building in 1907.

This quote from waymarking.com describes the building…

“The 1907 Guthrie City Directory shows Albert O. Farquharson occupying this building as a clothing store, with men’s furnishings, hats and shoes. In the back alley on the west side of the building is a ghost which reads: “Clothing Store / Hats Shoes Tools and Grips”. “

I thought it was interesting that these faded letters on old buildings were called ghosts.

Here is my rendition…

Back Alley ~ Farquharsan Building 20″ x 24″ oil on canvas

A friend of ours dressed up like an old time gentleman for the Victorian Christmas Walk last year, and I thought he was such a fitting addition to the scene. Just imagine back in 1907 walking out of this men’s clothing store outfitted with a new hat, vest, coat, pants, shoes and cane.

Just recently someone painted the letters on this out of the way back alley building. I really am partial to the ghost letters. I’m glad I painted it before the renovation.

Even though the ghost lettering was hard to read, I think they made a mistake when they painted HOUSE instead of STORE.

Curious to know what you all think??? 🙂

Feeling Peachy :)

I’ve been really busy in the gardens these past months, amending soil, planting seeds, making new garden beds, and hoping for a great harvest this summer. All to say that it hasn’t left me with a lot of energy to paint, but I have had some great sales at the gallery, so I thought I’d share a few…

Peachy SOLD

Speaking of peachy… I have a beautiful peach tree in my back yard. Unfortunately, it usually blossoms out, and then we have a freeze and consequently no peaches. But this year we did not have that last freeze, and I am eagerly anticipating a wonderful harvest of peaches!!! Can’t get more peachy than that, can you? 🙂

Last year I planted a lot of Dahlias, then overwintered the tubers. I’m hoping for a good year of Dahlias again this year. This next painting of one of my dahlias is a small one 5″ x 7″ surrounded by a beautiful ornate gold frame that I had stored away in my studio.

Dahlia SOLD

And a couple of minis… SOLD

And some cards… SOLD

It has been a good month. Hope you all are having a blessed month as well.

As the weather gets hotter here, I’m planning on spending a good amount of time in my studio working on those back alley paintings and whatever else inspires at the moment. But for now you will find me out gardening…

On my way to our local garden center Terra Cotta to buy some plants for my porch pots. 🙂

Happy gardening everyone, get some sunshine and dirt on those hands… it’s good for your health.

Back Alley Bicycle

As you know if you have been following me here, I have been working on a series of paintings of the back alley buildings and whatever else I find in the historic town of Guthrie, Oklahoma. When I saw this bike leaning against a railing it sure caught my attention.

Here’s my sketch…

Here’s the painting…

Back Alley Bicycle oil on panel 8″ x 10″

The geometrics is what really inspired me, plus the black railing against the Terracotta color of the wall. Terracotta means “baked earth” and this color is rich in Guthrie in all the bricks used on the historic buildings. You can even see it on one of the old buildings as you peek around the corner on the right side of this wall.

What really intrigued me too was that this bicycle looked as if it was used every day, but the plant growing out of the crack in the pavement actually had wound itself in the spokes of the wheel.

I hope you enjoy inspecting the elements of this painting.

I have been sick for quite a while with this long drawn out virus. My motivation has been extremely impeded, but I hope to be getting better and getting some more work done on this series.

I’m excited about the Trucker’s Freedom Convoy and I hope it will spark a fire that will bring an end to unjust tyranny around the world! Wouldn’t that be incredible!

Praying that God will be with them all… and you all…

Nandina Berries

Nandinas grow abundantly here in Oklahoma. They probably do as well in many places as they do here, but I’ve never noticed them until I moved here. I have several bushes growing in my shady yard. They never get many berries, probably because they love the sun. Last year about this time, my daughter brought home a bunch of Nandina branches full of gorgeous red berries after doing yardwork for a lady who did not want to keep the berries because they are harmful to the birds. I placed some of them in a vase on my dining room table and could not resist painting them…

Nandina Berries Oil on linen 12″ x 16″ $280

This painting is available on my website here… Nandina Berries

I decided to go ahead a make cards of the Nandina Berry painting and ended up ordering a variety of some of my favorites.

Here are my new cards that are available… 🙂

You can mix and match… 5 for $20.00

These are blank note cards with a matte finish, white envelopes included.

Just contact me karin@karinnaylorpaintings.com

These are going fast, but I can order more. 🙂