By Drake the Dog
Where am I taking my humans today?
I’m strolling downtown singing along with Pharrell Williams to his paw-stompin’ tune, “Because I’m Happy.” So on this fine afternoon, “come along if that’s what you want to do” to the Lisa V. Maus Art Studio located at 109 Main Street in Sandpoint. Yowza, there is so much color in here! Lisa says color makes people and dogs happy. Just ask her four-footed family– Foxy, a Shiba Inu, and TyeDye, an Australian Shepherd. This colorful bunch provides happy inspiration for Lisa’s paintings. Foxy and TyeDye have been my BFFs since I adopted the Mister and Missus in June. When we are not sitting for our portraits, we love to take walks, swim in the lake and get treats from the neighbors.
Lisa has lived in Sandpoint for over 15 years. She was raised in California at her family’s winery, Butterfly Creek. Her parents wanted her to become a winemaker, so when she was young, she studied wine-making in France. When she was was in the fourth grade, her parents took her to France to see the art and gardens of Claude Monet. And, voila, she was hooked (just like when I hooked the Mister and Missus at “hello” during the Yappy Hour at the Pine Street Bakery). She taught herself to paint, and the rest is history. She won her first national award when she was 12, and her vineyard paintings are the most viewed on Google.
I am doing the “shakapaw” in the studio, adjusting my beret and “pawsing” for my portrait among the aspen fall foliage (shhhhh, no drooling, as this is my holiday gift for the Mister and Missus).
As I settle into my model role, I notice that Lisa’s “secret sauce” is like that of the Impressionistic French masters. She mixes the paint right on the canvas and then she flicks the colors back and forth creating colorful art that’s the bark! Wow, that doggie in the picture looks just like me, because I’m happy!
Lisa is such an amazing person. She will teach you how to paint, either in studio (with wine) or if you prefer to DIY she has two books (available in the studio and on Amazon), “How To Create An Artist Income in One Hour A Week” and “The Five Keys of Perspective.” Buy the books. She guarantees results.
Before my nap on this awesome fall dog day afternoon, Lisa reads me some poems from her latest poetry book, “Life is Supposed To Be Fun.” Her paintings come alive with the poems that inspired them. Happy, happy, happy!
So here’s the Straight Poop when you visit the Lisa V. Maus Studio:
1. Bring your imagination—it’s contagious and inspirational.
2. Sit quietly with good manners. Lisa spends a lot of time on composition and spreads photos all over the floor. Don’t mess with the photos. Sometimes the composition step takes her two weeks to two months….then she gets inspired and finishes the painting in two days (I wonder if she gets a treat?).
3. If you want a personalized painting for a holiday gift—start now.
4. If you get antsy while “pawsing” and need a potty break, go outside and clean up your mess.
5. No barking in the studio.
6. Please do not drink the wine.
7. Bring your own water bowl.
8. And most important: No licking the brushes or paintings!
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