A Journey With a Wolf

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In 1990 I was working in watercolor and creating my own hand embossing in the paper. Back in the day my subject matter was animals and nature and that year I’d painted a wolf on a clean white background with embossed wolf tracks titled, appropriately enough, Tracks.

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‘Tracks’ – 1990 – Watercolor on hand embossed paper.

Through the miracle of Facebook I was able to reconnect with the patron who bought that painting and she posted a photo. The piece was so well received I thought I’d revisit the subject matter in my current work style and process.The new painting is titled Ghost.

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‘Ghost’ – 30 x 30 x 1.5 – Acrylic and oxidized gold leaf on cradled wood panel.

Ghost detail - A pattern is produced by blocking color into the natural shapes created by scratching into the wet background. Aging the metal leaf adds an organic, earthy appearance, mimicking weathered canyon rock.

Ghost detail – A pattern is produced by blocking color into the natural shapes created by scratching into the wet background. Aging the metal leaf adds an organic, earthy appearance, mimicking weathered canyon rock.

Both paintings were a lot of fun to paint and I found it interesting to see how things have changed and how they’ve stayed the same. Thanks to patron Joyce Lindsay for the use of the Tracks photo.

Visit Artsyo to price the painting. Prints are also available so contact me for sizes and pricing and keep channeling your inner wolf.

Welcome Road Winery – great branding, great wine!

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processI had the extreme privilege of producing the art for fledgling Welcome Road Winery‘s fine products. And when the time came for the winery to invite folks into their West Seattle wine room for some tastings, straight from the barrels, I was asked to create a mural for the tight space.

The image was taken from the same watercolor produced for the product bottles and it took just under 3 days to complete. Oh, and no, there was no sampling the product while on the job, though it was a real treat to finish a hard days work with an extremely tasty Welcome Road vintage.

The award-winning winery will be having their spring release party at their tasting room in Woodinville, WA on Saturday, March 26th. Hope to see you there!

The Long Hot Walk: North Street Book Prize finalist

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The Long Hot Walk has been selected to be a finalist in the North Street Book Prize, presented by Winning Writers. Winning Writers is an online, one-stop-shop for all things writers and writing. The site was voted one of the best 101 sites for writers by Writer’s Digest. Getting the nod from such a peer institution is both humbling and thrilling. Winners will be announced February 15th.NorthStreet

Long Hot Walk selected as a Nancy Pearl Award finalist

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LHW_cover-NPAThere I was at my desk toiling away on something or other when I received the call. “Deborah, I’m pleased to tell you that you are a finalist for the Nancy Pearl Award.” I wasn’t sure I’d heard her. Who was this, really? After some assurance, it was confirmed that the little book that could had actually placed in the top five of the Memoir category for the prestigious prize. I am beyond thrilled to be considered among so many talented writers. The awards dinner is on July 18th, smack dab in the middle of the Pacific Northwest Writers Association’s conference. Can’t wait to meet and greet the best and brightest in the field. You can find the book in digital or hard copy form on Amazon or buy from Etsy (hard copy only).

Paramount Hotel Commissions Six McCarrolls for Permanent Collection

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It’s raining in the Paramount Hotel in downtown Seattle. Six paintings from the Rainy Ladies series were commissioned and now hang in the hallways on the 2nd and 4th floors. The hotel was searching for water-related original art and the umbrella paintings filled the bill. If you find yourself in need of accommodations, check out this fine local supporter of home-grown art.

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Stoned in Love

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I’m happy to have a painting of mine make the cover of Stone Voices art and literary magazine! The publication features a wide variety of artists and they did an amazing spread on my work. I wasn’t expecting to make the cover and I was stunned when I opened the package! I urge you to check out the site and see some of the great work from the publisher Shanti Arts.

Book Release: The Long Hot Walk

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LHW_cover-webWhen I was eight-years-old my mother appeared at my classroom door and we began our walk. We walked for days across the wide open New Mexico desert, straddling a cracked and crumbling Route 66 with no water or food. The journey would lead to an eclectic cast of saints and sinners tucked into a Catholic boarding house for Navaho women in the fading jewel of Gallup, New Mexico. It would lead to steely mental institutions, literally, pants-on-fire, and a murdered rooster (strictly self-defense, I swear!).

This work has been a labor of love and at times a bumpy self-examination. I wrote it in an effort to share my story and to illuminate the countless families navigating the turbulent waters of mental illness and homelessness. Every time I have a reading or speak about this book, I am approached by another good soul with a sibling, child or parent suffering the paralyzing symptoms of schizophrenia. I was luckier than many. My mother was defiant and loving in the face of her illness and I wouldn’t be here were it not so.

The following is the first of excerpts to be posted in the coming days. You can find retailers for the book at Goodreads.com or buy the book at Amazon.com.

The Long Hot Walk

     After walking all day, we had dinner in a run-down diner and found a trailer park that had a makeshift launderette in a drab little cinder block room. It consisted of three washers and dryers and a couple of molded plastic chairs that were scuffed and ready for the landfill.
     I sat on the stairs out in the growing darkness, smelling detergent and residue from the dryers as it mingled with the frying of various trailer park dinners.
A chill crept up across the desert as stars winked on. It gets cold in the desert at night. You wouldn’t think so in the baking oven heat of the day.
     My feet were sore and I was so tired that I imagined myself to be an overcooked noodle as I slumped my ribs over my knees. I took a look at my shoes, black numbers, open on the top with buckles on the sides. Mary Jane’s. They were shoes made of dirt now. I couldn’t even see my socks through the top strappy part, just dust. I attempted to wipe some of it off and clean them with my thumb and a bit of spit, but it just seemed to rearrange the dirt, so I gave it up.
     No one came to do their laundry that night, which was good because we looked pretty suspicious, hanging around with no clothes to wash and no money with which to wash them.
     After awhile, sleep got the best of me and I curled up on the washing machines. I’d wake throughout the night, fluorescent lights painting everything with a green tinge, including Ma. She was always awake, sitting up straight in that hard chair, lips working, as if reading an invisible book or magazine. Now and then she’d laugh, her eyes glassy and unfocused. I’d turn over and go back to sleep.
     I woke up in the morning, stiff and cold. She was still in the chair. She looked up at me and said, “Well, good morning.”

Yearly art show bash in Seattle!

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Hey guys and dolls. Save the date for our sweet, sweet Holiday Art Party at the super cool Piranha Shop gallery in the shadow of the mighty Seahawks Stadium. There’ll be food stuffs and music and wine by Welcome Road Winery. I’m doing my part by painting my heinie off and Brooke Belman will have brand-spankin, amazeballs photos for your viewing enjoyment. Invite all your pals and don’t you dare miss it!