classical art

Sometimes, it’s disappointing when you get accepted to a show.

I’m not complaining, but I am a little dumb-founded.

First, the good news – I was accepted to the Pen Women show coming up in August. The confusing part – the piece they chose.


I submitted a sculpture and two paintings.


They chose the sculpture; the least complex and challenging of the artwork. It just goes to show, art is in the eye of the beholder.

I will post links and info when the promo materials arrive.

Sucking the Party Dry

I was recently invited to join the Big Dawg Radio Blog, BlogBytes, as a contributing writer. Though my first article has not been approved yet, you can view their page at the link provided. I will post the article link on Liberatchik’s FaceBook page when it goes up.

As part of my responsibilities at BlogBytes, I have been asked to write some articles explaining my work. I realized that some of you here are not familiar with my early paintings and drawings and decided to write those articles now.


This painting was donated to the 2011 Art Papers Auction in Atlanta. This is a prestigious annual event that raises money fro art grants and projects supported by the organization. As a participating artist, I received 35% of the final bid on the painting.


Medium:Acrylic and china marker on masonite

Dimensions:24w x 48h x 2d


This painting is a statement on the power-hungry nature of Bill and Hillary Clinton. Since Hillary is the most guilty of this vice, it could be said the painting is an homage to her hunger for power and esteem at the expense of all else. I’m sure Bill has just come along for the ride. The Clintons, like so many of their peers, will stop at nothing to be in the spotlight. They do this even at the expense of their own party, movement and supporters. They will literally suck the Democratic Party dry if it will achieve their goals. Amazingly, some of their liberal counterparts have grown wise, and have become a great source of quotes on the subject. These quotes form the under-painting of this piece.

**Update, January 2013 – the links to the original article are no longer active. While I normally provide a bibliography for my research, I will have to leave it up to you to verify the quotes at this time.**

The emaciated donkey is the Democratic Party when it has lived out its usefulness to the Clinton political machine. Bill and Hillary are the flatworms emerging from the spent carcass, eagerly looking for the next victim. Though a flatworm can be excused for its nature, the Clintons cannot. The worm cannot help being a parasite. The Clintons, and so many like them, are aware of the damage they do and the cost their constituents bear – and take full advantage. All of the quotes come from a single article which contained many more. There just wasn’t room in one painting for all of them.

Frances Byrd is the National Director of Liberatchik.comand a contributing writer at the Big Dawg Music Radio Blog, BlogBytes. Her art can be viewed at

The Grapes of Wrath

The Grapes of Wraith
The Grapes of Wrath

The Grapes of Wrath  is the second painting in my series on the Occupy Wall Street movement. In the blog post, American Crow #1, I gave a little background on the movement as accompaniment to the first painting in this series. After many hours of reading articles and statements on the OWS web pages and related MSM articles, one thing stands out among the cacophony of demands – the idea that the world owes them something simply because they demand it be given them. This is the embodiment of the entitlement culture we have allowed to take hold in our nation. While politicians and elitists are most to blame for this development, we must also take responsibility for our own complacency. It is time to take a stand before our future is picked clean by these scavengers and rogues.

In this second painting from the series, I chose to draw an analogy to the Grapes of Wrath, by Steinbeck, to illustrate the natural outcome of irresponsible behavior and refusal to demand accountability of those who have created a system that preys on ignorance and envy. There is a lesson here for us in the way that history tends to repeat itself when people allow themselves to forget the past.The Great Depression was not an unavoidable tragedy and the government did not lift us up from the brink despair. Because this is not an historical essay I will leave it to the reader to educate themselves on the subject of the Great Depression and return to the topics of culture and propaganda more relevant to the art being discussed.

Like the Joad family in the novel, the OWS movement has set off for better opportunity and the fleeting promise of an easier life. In many cases, they are people who have become disillusioned by circumstances beyond their own control. The similarities quickly fall away however, in all but the reality that awaits them – that the government, it’s minions and those who have established themselves in the pecking order are in control and the needs of the people are not their ultimate goal. I would wager the OWS movement’s realization of their position as pawns is a long time, if ever, in coming. It is not by accident that they view themselves as victims.

About the Painting

The Grapes of Wrath

acrylic, tempera, oil, and glitter on gessoed wood panel

21.5″ wide x 32″ high x 3″ deep

completed September 2012


This painting is currently on display at the Helen Arts and Heritage Center. Please contact for purchasing inquiries.

The Grapes of Wrath is the second painting in an ongoing series on the Occupy Wall Street movement. As discussed in previous articles, the crow is being developed as a symbol of envy, ignorance and thinly veiled violence in pursuit of an entitlement culture devoid of accountability and personal responsibility. The crow and the movement are scavengers on the droppings of the elites and harbingers of a future where our culture has been destroyed and replaced by dependence upon a corrupt establishment.

As the gluttonous dancing crow celebrates his ravages upon the grapes of his neighbors’ labor in the foreground of the painting, the world burns in the background. The flames are not evident yet, but the ruddy glow has discolored the storm-clouds that are building on the horizon. And, like the crow, the OWS movement is focused only on the short-term and immediate gratification of consuming something that they have not built with their own efforts.

Working sketch for The Grapes of Wraith from my first Occupy Wall Street art journal
Working sketch for The Grapes of Wraith from my first Occupy Wall Street art journal

Frances Byrd is the National Director of She is also a conservative political artist and blogger. Her art can be viewed at

American Crow: The Occupy Wall Street Series

The American Crow is a large black bird with iridescent highlights across its body. It has a very striking physical appearance and behavioral characteristics. It is considered an ill omen by some and a dirty scavenger by others. What better imagery could be used to describe the Occupy Movement?

I am currently developing this idea and related imagery into graphic forms via a series of paintings, drawings and mixed media projects. I recently completed the first painting in the series, working out many details in style and technique. Here is a detail from the painting illustrating the idea that OWS protestors are merely cogs in the machine of The State:

Detail of American Crow #1

In an effort to present a factual and reasoned defense of this analogy, I have spent a great deal of time on the website and the Occupy Atlanta page in order to learn exactly what they are demanding. It turns out to be just about everything, but that is a topic for a future post. In addition, I subscribed to the Facebook page for Occupy Atlanta in order to get timely updates about events in my area. It’s infuriating at times, but it helps keep me focused and inspired.

OWS journal; study for The American Crow #1
OWS journal: definitions and research topics

For now, I leave you with the culmination of my idea and the model for future works of art depicting what could very well destroy the culture of America.

American Crow #1

About the Painting

American Crow #1

acrylic, tempera, oil, and glitter on gessoed wood panel

22″ high x 29″ wide x 3′ deep

completed August 2012


Please contact for purchasing inquiries.

Frances Byrd is the National Director of She is also a conservative political artist and blogger. Her art can be viewed at

Upcoming Events @ the Helen Arts Center

HAHC ARTivities

Summer 2012


WHAT: HAHC’S Art-y Party!

WHEN: Tuesday, July 24 at 6:00 p.m.

WHERE: Helen Arts & Heritage Center

SPEAKER: “Sights & Sounds of Summer” Featured Painter Mary Ellen Rand

POTLUCK THEME: Keeping It Cool


“Sights and Sounds of Summer” opening reception is at 5:00 p.m. Thursday, July 17. Intake is 12:00 noon until 4:00 p.m. Sunday and Monday, July 15/16. Featured artists potter Nannette Johnson and painter      Mary Ellen Rand.

The current exhibit is “Summer Sublime” featuring the work of painter Annette Rougeou and potter Susan Holmes. Gallery hours are Thursday thru Sunday, noon until 4:00 p.m.


No History Event will be held in July. On August 14 at 5:30 p.m. HAHC welcomes Emory Jones, author of “Distant Voices,” for a program about the Nacoochee Indian Mound. Tuesday, September 11 co-authors David Greear and Chris Brooks will introduce Images of America “HELEN” a new book that traces Helen’s history from earliest days to the present. Program begins at 5:30 p.m.


Our first day camp was a huge success with our young artists, who held a show-and-tell reception on the last day of camp. Many thanks to our fine teachers for their time and talent: Hilton Hill, Gayle Murdock, Paula Ash, Anna Wilkins; Marlene Eubanks, Annette Garmon, Donna Redfeather, Rudy Potesta and Theresa Rice.


To register or for more information, call 706-878-3933 or come by 25 Chattahoochee Strasse in Helen.

Class: Watercolor

Instructor: Becky Threlkeld

Date: Tuesdays Ongoing; Time: 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Class fee: The class is ongoing at $35 per session, paid at the beginning of each class.

Materials: Not included. A basic supply list may be obtained at the Helen Arts & Heritage Center.

Each class session is a stand-alone lesson so students may attend week by week without worrying about make-ups or missed classes. The focus of Becky’s classes is to relax and have fun while learning painting techniques with a non-academic approach. Each class will begin with a demo or mini-lesson. These“warm-ups” will cover blending color, how to paint trees, flowers, rocks, sky, clouds, landscapes, and texture, as well as some non-traditional techniques. After the demo, we will move on to hands-on help with your individual paintings. For beginning, intermediate or advanced students.

Class: Pottery On and Off the Wheel

Instructor: Hilton Hill

Date: July 12 – August 16; Time: 1:00 – 4:00 p.m.

Cost: $150.00 plus $25.00 materials fee

Pottery class participants will have an opportunity to learn how to create hand-built pieces using pinch, coil and slab construction techniques and/or thrown pieces on the potter’s wheel. Demonstrations and examples will help the students to produce a variety of both functional pieces and decorative ones. After firing the clay pieces, the students will also learn a variety of glazing methods for finishing the clay. We welcome beginners, along with anyone who has had previous clay experience.

Artists Open Studio: Thursdays 12 noon till 4:00 p.m. Ongoing. Bring your materials and brown bag lunch to work on whatever you choose. Stay for the whole time or drop in as you like. No fee but donations are appreciated.

Workshop: Pen & Ink in Unique Forms

Instructor: Midgie Humphreys

Date: Monday, July 16 thru Friday, July 20, 2012

Time: 1:30 – 3:30 p.m.

Cost: $50.00 per student, plus $5.00 for shared materials

The workshop focus will be on pen & ink, with a few surprises along the way. Students will explore a variety of different uses of pen and ink, watercolor, acrylic inks and drawing forms in abstract and realism.


  • 1stday – Zentangles (in a new way)
  • 2ndday – Abstract in ink with watercolor enhancements
  • 3rdday – Pen & ink (realism)
  • 4thday – Watercolor with pen & ink
  • 5thday – choose your subject (one-on-one help)

Come at 1:00 p.m. on Monday and bring something for the table and we will share lunch together. Class starts at 1:30 sharp.

Class: Art Mondays with Midgie Humphreys

Date: Ongoing. First session Monday, July 23

Time: 2:00 – 4:00 p.m.

Cost: $20.00

Call Midgie Humphreys at 706-219-4597 or e-mail

Do you have an urge to take up art? Or try a new medium? Join instructor Midgie Humphreys as she shares techniques and ideas in a variety of media. Each Monday session will be a stand alone lesson with a different theme. Midgie has experience working with all skill levels, from beginner to advanced. She will work with you to develop your talent.

Workshop: Glass Fusing — Dichroic Pendant

Instructor: Janine Shelby

Date: Saturday and Sunday, July 28 & 29*

Time: Saturday 2:00 – 4:00 p.m.

Sunday noon – 2:00 p.m.

Cost: $40.00 includes materials

Talented glass fusing artist Janine Shelby will offer another HAHC glass workshop, this time teaching jewelry making, using dichroic glass. Dichroic glass has a particular transmitted color and a completely different reflected color that changes depending on the angle. Class limited to 15.

*Rescheduled from July 21/22

Workshop: Three Day Artists Intensive

Instructor: Gayle Murdock

Date: Thursday, Friday and Saturday, August 16,

17 & 18; Time: 9:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Donation: $45 for one day or $120 for total workshop

Noted artist and facilitator Gayle Murdock will offer a hands-on art concentration from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Thursday thru Saturday, August 16, 17 & 18 at the Helen Arts and HeritageCenter. The course, designed to give participants both personal and artistic growth, is open to artists of all levels, tailored to the individual artist’s skill, ability and interests. “Bring your idea file of inspiration,” says Ms. Murdock, who has taught several classes and workshops for HAHC. “Media used will include acrylic, watercolor, oils and mixed media. Projects will range from studio drawing, still life, en plein air (outdoor) painting, abstract art and others.” Guest artists Paula Ash and Sue Williams will each offer a special demonstration during the workshop. Attendees will supply their own paints and other materials, including at least six grounds (surfaces) to paint on, several medium-sized and some small-sized, with at least one large canvas or board. No fee will be charged, but donations are requested.

~ ~ ~

Helen Arts and Heritage Center

P.O. Box 390
25 Chattahoochee St.
Helen, GA 30545 On the web
Phone: 706-878-3933

American Crow Painting #1 Preliminary Photos

It has been quite a while since I have had the time to post on the blog. My personal life has been a whirlwind of activity lately and I have been making a concerted effort to spend more time in my studio than on the computer. Consequently, I have photos of new work to share.

This is the first in a series of paintings depicting the OWS movement, their demands, and my general opinion of them. I will refrain from posting any thoughts at this point as I am currently in the midst of slogging through their websites and news articles for research.

This painting currently consists of an acrylic under-painting on a wood panel. Hopefully the texture will show through most of the completed painting. I have set myself a strict goal of simplicity for this series in an effort to produce as many as possible and streamline the underlying message. Whether I maintain this goal or not remains to be seen, as I have an affinity for detail that mortified some of my professors at SCAD.

The gears are metallic acrylic and tempera and the text is china marker. The final layers will be in oils. I finally dusted off my oil paints and liquin this weekend in order to start on this series of paintings. I forgot how much I miss the smell of the paints and mediums. I haven’t worked in oils since my son was born, but I think I’m coming back with a vengeance on this series.

More photos will be posted as the paintings progress.

Frances Byrd is the National Director of She is also a conservative political artist and blogger. Her art can be viewed at

Restoring Love 2012 is completed


Restoring Love 2012

Images of the preliminary drawings submitted to Mercury One and the process of creating the paintings can be seen here.

Mercury One Painting Progress Update #1

I was able to do some more work o the painting for Mercury One over the weekend. Here are the most recent photos of the project.

Frances Byrd is the National Director of She is also a conservative political artist and blogger. Her art can be viewed at

Mercury One Painting layer1Mercury One Painting layer1

The American Crow Scavenging #1

American Crow Scavenging #1
American Crow Scavenging #1

Exhibit at Mable House Arts Center celebrates artistry, creativity of women

by Sally Litchfield

February 05, 2012 12:03 AM | 704 views | 0  | 7  |  |

Celebrate women artists at the Virginia Avery Memorial 3rd Biennial “Reflections” exhibition, sponsored by the Atlanta Branch of the National League of American Pen Women. It is at the Mable House Arts Center at 5239 Floyd Road through March 1.

Virginia Avery, who had been president of the National League of American Pen Women at the local, state and national level, endowed the show. She left a bequest for an exhibit open to all Georgia women artists in all mediums.

“The show offers something for everyone,” Mikki Dillon, chairperson, said. Various media by 50 women artists is on display, including paintings, sculpture, mixed media, photography, and drawing/pastel/printmaking. Eighty juried works, from realism to contemporary, were selected by juror Gail Wegodsky. There were 243 entries.

Wegodsky creates in oil and has shown at Marietta Cobb Museum of Art, the Mable House as well as a solo show at Oglethorpe University. She exhibits her work at Mason Murer Gallery in Atlanta.

“There is such a variety of subject matter and different styles that somebody, anybody, will find something in there that they will like and enjoy,” Dillon said. Among the local area artists showing are Ann Cockerill, Kathy Morris, Jennifer Nolan, Ronnie Offen, Lisa Schwendemann Smith and Mary Jane Warren Stone.

Dillon said the show is important because there are many women artists who still have to use there initials rather than their names in order to show. “Although it’s better now than it was when Virginia (Avery) was alive, (sexism) still exists,” she said.

The show offers an opportunity to see some women who excel in the art world. “Whether it’s people who have never been to an art show, there are things that they are going to really enjoy,” Dillon said.

Gallery hours are Monday to Thursday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Call (770) 739-0189 or visit or for more information.

Read more: The Marietta Daily Journal – Exhibit at Mable House Arts Center celebrates artistry creativity of women

American Crow

American Crow
American Crow

Frances Byrd: American Crow

Posted by on Jan 15, 2012 in Arts and Culture, Conservative Art Movement, Frances Byrd, Gallery, Liberatchik Artists | 0 comments

Now that a new year has rolled over, I have decided it is time to get back in my studio and create more artwork. For too long, I have been juggling schedules and staring at the computer screen and creating very little art of my own.

I am determined to change that this year, so I have unwrapped a new Moleskine and set about planning a series about the Occupy Wall Street movement. The ideas are tenuous at the moment because a great deal of research will be needed to flesh out the subtler details. However, the underlying theme is rooted in the phrase “A Murder of Crows”. Taking that as my starting point, I have begun a series of sketches, the first of which is included here. Finished drawings, multi-media pieces and paintings will follow.

This first drawing looks a bit more like a mocking bird than a crow, but it captures the general idea. Once the details are worked out in future drawings, it will not only capture the essence of the crow, but the movement which I intend for it to represent.

Frances Byrd is the National Director of She is also a conservative political artist and blogger. Her art can be viewed at

The Virginia Avery 3rd Juried “Reflections” Exhibition Opening Reception

Third Virginia Avery Memorial
“Reflections” Juried Art Exhibit

January 19, 2012 – March 3, 2012

Location: Mable House Arts Center – Mableton, GA

Best in Show: $1,000 & rosette
In each category:
First Place – $300 & ribbon
Second Place – $200 & ribbon
Third Place – $100 & ribbon
People’s Choice – Ribbon & Art Piece
*All awards and honorable mention ribbons will be given at the discretion of the juror.

JUROR: Gail Wegodsky attended the University of Maryland in the General Honors Program before graduating from The Maryland Institute, College of Art in Baltimore with a BFA in General Fine Art. She graduated from Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia with an MFA in painting. She taught painting at University of Rhode Island, Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, University of Georgia, Indiana University, The Torpedo Factory in Alexandria, VA and Kennesaw State University. Gail has been the recipient of an Individual Artist’s Grant from the Georgia Council for the Arts, was one of The Artist’s Magazine’s 2009 Artists of the Month. She was a Winner of one of Open Studios’ Magazine’s Southern States Competitions. She exhibits her work at Mason Murer Gallery, Atlanta.