Thursday, October 2, 2008

Animals Inimitable

“In painting,” said Degas, “you must give the idea of the true by means of the false.” Appreciating the talent behind Amber Alexander’s satirical animal portraits in watercolor requires that one constantly be reminded of this fact: true is quite different from real, or logical, or cognitively harmonious. Only a few of us would ever imagine our pets bedecked in such archetypically human garb or wearing such disconcertingly personal expressions—the halting melancholy of Lovey the rabbit, the coy smile of little Mademoiselle the fox, the knowing gaze of Victoria the high-society doe—but we can not deny that these images convey intangible truths. Alexander’s animals are, in some ways, more truthful than we are. Take Les Mews, for example. Perhaps the idea of a cat as a smartly smocked Frenchman isn’t an incredible stretch, but to add the element of Revolutionary history, and a locked-in feline stare that could be construed as suspicion or pride or both, well, those kinds of layers create an image that lingers with us long after we’ve forgotten where we saw the picture in the first place.

Of course, painting these people-pets with such jarring authenticity doesn’t preclude the idea of having a little fun with it, too. If you can’t enjoy the delicious wit of a wary-eyed squirrel pausing from her attic scurrying to try on a bit of domestic attire in A New Apron, you’ve probably missed the point altogether. It is also worth mentioning that Alexander’s fare isn’t limited to modestly costumed mammals. Somehow an amphibian (Burp) or two made it into the gallery, as did an invertebrate (Octo), neither of these being any less delightful than the other subjects, which include birds, bats, and insects in addition to the creatures already mentioned. And since this writer had such a difficult time choosing a favorite, it’s likely you will, too—but you’ll have to do just that when you enter this giveaway. In a wonderful gesture to our readers, Amber Alexander is giving away the Print of Your Choice to one winner. As with past giveaways, participating is painless: Visit Amber Alexander’s shop on Etsy, choose your favorite print, and then come back here to tell us about it in a comment. You may receive an extra entry for subscribing to our newsletter; mention your subscription in a second post and confirm your subscription. You don't have to have a Google account to participate. Click "anonymous" or "name" to enter. The winner will be chosen randomly. Contest ends 10/10/08. Best of luck!

**We have a winner. Melanie who said "My favorite is the Little Burp - Print Reproduction of watercolor." Congratulations!

273 comments:

1 – 200 of 273   Newer›   Newest»
kygirl said...

Shy -Print is my pick

catherine said...

Kook is my favorite, I love it very nice Thanks

lisagee said...

Portrait of Lovey -Print is good & Coal print too! Nice items.

Berry said...

Bat and Mouse Game is my favourite.

Berry said...

I'm a subscriber.

Jenn S. said...

I love the Bunny Races print.

arbrashears said...

Elly/Baby Elephant is my favorite by far in honor of my elephant loving daughter!

arbrashears (at) msn (dot) com

Sandy said...

nectar or the bunnies

strawberry3d said...

love the fruit flowers print.

mar said...

The Precious Pumpkin Pie Dollface - Print is my favorite!

blueviolet said...

I like the print called Bunting. So sweet and tender.
doot65{at}comcast[dot]net
Elizabeth

mrchips said...

Octo is my fav.

littlelatina said...

Bat and mouse game

Jess said...

Oh my goodness, fantastic giveaway! I love "Genghis Khitten - Print." Thanks! :)

http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=14713944

jess^^^4002 [at] gmail [dot] com
(without the ^^^)

Jess said...

I'm already a subscriber to Wishing Willow! :)

jess^^^4002 [at] gmail [dot] com
(without the ^^^)

Treasuresofjoy said...

tea and cake is PRETTY!!!

Croasla0 said...

raspberry print! i think the giraffe is too cute and would be great in a child's room.

kdkdkd said...

New Mama - Print is wonderful

misa said...

Love them all but those Fraidy Cats are my favorite!

abigail said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
abigail said...

Ah, so many to love!

I'm torn between March Winds and Coal, but I think March Winds edges ahead by a nose (or, rather, beak).

leftymylou at gmail dot com

Abigail said...

I'm also a subscriber.

leftymylou at gmail dot com

Mia J. said...

I really like the New Mama print. It is so sweet.

Nicole G said...

I love "Satin Nest" - but they are all great.

toughturtles said...

Filly - Print

mverno said...

i love kook so cool

llinda29 said...

Satin Nest is my choice

single mom with tiny tot said...

I couldn't decide...I like "A New Apron" and "Sweetheart"

Kimberly said...

AWWWWW!!!!! So sweet!!!!! I love them all.

I'm tossed between "Tea and Cake" and "Happy Pig". Those are my two favorites. I guess I'm leaning towards "Tea and Cake" but they are all so cute!

Thank you for an adorable giveaway!

HunnyV "at" Optonline "dot" net

Kimberly said...

OOOPS! I forgot to add that I subscribed to your blog too!

HunnyV "at" Optonline "dot" net

jenny said...

wow how cute thay all are and well by far the : anew aporn is realy sweet i love to try and win this thanks

piece of me said...

Elly Baby Elephant Print would look so adorable in my little one's nursery.
livifelov at yahoo dot com

Naomi said...

Mademoiselle or Little Inky Riding Hood are my faves!

Abby said...

Tea and Cake - Print this one is my favorite very talented artist!

ajcmeyer AT go DOT com

Centsible Mommy said...

there are 5 0r 6 I would love to diaplay in my home but my favorite nutcase tucked in because that looks like my balck cat named Jinx!

Janice Golden said...

Blueberries is my pick
Jaleigh78;at]aol[dot]com

rosannepm said...

Fruit Flowers -Print of watercolor

is my favorite

ignoramoose said...

Really hard to choose, but I think "New Mama" is my favorite...love!

ignoramoose (at) gmail (dot) com

crystal said...

Awww, so many adorable ones!1 Especially all the kitties:)
I really love the Bat and Mouse Game- Print though. So cute and unique!!!

cyclona66@aol.com

gunzie said...

These prints are fantastic. I really love the sweetheart. http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=13028728
Thanks for the great giveaway!

ann dot guns at mac dot com

gunzie said...

I'm also a subscriber.
ann dot guns at mac dot com

Ollie said...

My beloved cat passed away last year. I would love to win "Somebody has got to brush it" because it looks so much like him. He was so meticulous in his grooming this even reminds me of him. Thank you for introducing me to this artist and her work.

Ollie said...

I just subscribed and will confirm my subscription as soon as I receive the email. Thanks.

Ollie

misa said...

I subscribed & confirmed!

fuzzypeach said...

I love this bunny best - his pose and backward-peeking eye are so cute.

http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=14635139

Jennifer said...

My favorite one is the Elly - Baby Elephant Print Thanks for a chance to win one of these beautiful prints :-)

thedirtyshirtblog(at)gmail(dot)com

cathyhall said...

Fantastic site, I love her humor with the titles, the play on words and love the art work itself. My fave has to be Book Club.

thanks for the great contest.

cathyhall said...

I also subscribe, thank you.

Roberta said...

My fave is the Groundhog Hair and Let Them eat Tuna - so clever.
Thanks.

rhubbert at socal dot rr dot com

Roberta said...

I'm a subscriber.

rhubbert at socal dot rr dot com

Candice said...

It is a tie for me between Ahhhhhh- Happy Piglet in the sun PRINT and Elly Baby Elephant. If I win I will have to call in a tie breaker vote!

onlycancan at hotmail dot com

janetfaye said...

I like the Fraidy cats - Print.

janetfaye (at) gmail (dot) com

janetfaye said...

I subscribed.

janetfaye (at) gmail (dot) com

Apple Blossom Designs said...

I love the Ahhhhhh- Happy Piglet in the sun print. What a lovely artist! I've always loved animals depicted in a human way!

Roxy said...

I love the Fraidy cats print

hockiemack@hotmail.com

DEY said...

You were right, hard decision! I think Nectar is my pick. Great giveaway, thanks!

RE said...

My little one loves kitties, so this would be great for her room! I'd have to go with fraidy cat. Thanks!

Alice H said...

The "Groundhog Hair" print is my favorite - thanks for the chance! afdr3d@umkc.edu

jochrisbryan said...

Moxy - Reproduction... is my fave its his eyes that makes it.

Thanks

Anonymous said...

I love "Sweetheart". Chimpanzees are my favorite animals, and this print is so evocative. I adore it.

urchiken at gmail dot com

Whimsical Creations said...

My favorite is the Little Burp- Print Reproduction of watercolor.

=) melanie
http://melaniescrafts/blogspot.com
melanieadey at hotmail dot com

Whimsical Creations said...

I am a subscriber.

=) melanie
http://melaniescrafts/blogspot.com
melanieadey at hotmail dot com

mom2boys said...

I really like the Desperado print. Thanks for the chance!

- Marybeth I. said...

tea and cake is my favorite!

pintolinda said...

I like Nectar for the colors and also the subject. I love hummingbirds and have feeders out for them. Thank you for the giveaway.
pintolinda(at)hotmail(dot)com

delfina said...

Mature Antelope Squirrel. I have a friend who'd get a kick out of it.

Genevieve P said...

I can't pick between Happy Piglet, New Mama, and Tea and Cake!

The Mommy said...

Ok, I LOVE LOVE LOVE "New Mamma". It's gorgeous. I have two little baby girls, and I got a little choked up when I saw that print. It made me think of my little girls, and how I was so intent on listening to their breathing when they slept when we first got home from the hospital. Just wanting to be aware of them, every minute and know that they are safe, snug and healthy was my focus. It still overwhelms me and fills me with so much love I think my heart will burst. Thank you so much for giving me those feelings again. I feel surrounded in an aura of love for my babies when I see that print!

Xenia S said...

They're all so unique but since my daughter is really into giraffes, I have to choose Raspberry as my favorite.

Thanks!
xpsundell(at)gmail(dot)com

Sue Wintz said...

A New Apron. Our daughter loved squirrels, so to honor her I now collect them.

Love and miss you, Sarah.

tiff said...

I like the Fruit Flowers print!

texan_michael(AT)yahoo(DOT)com

melissad.williams said...

I love Octo! Cephalopods are my favorites!

Baba said...

It would have to be Elly Baby Elephant because my sister collects elephants, and my grand-daughter loves elephants now that she is able to say words. It is one of her favorites.

layla said...

My favorite is the Bunting Print. I love the cute Mommy (or Daddy?) bird with the baby bird.
laylarenee[at]cfl.rr.com

layla said...

I'm already a subscriber.
laylarenee[at]cfl.rr.com

ThreadBeaur said...

I have an incredible squirrel collection. I love the squirrel in the new apron print! What a great giveaway.

Dianneo said...

I love the Les Mews - French Revolution Kitty. Great contest to many great choices. Thank You
d.fox13@hotmail.com

Aura said...

Gosh this is a tough choice. The "Ahhhhhh- Happy Piglet in the sun PRINT" made me crack up but my husband is not very fond of pigs, new mama is cute and would look adorable in my new twins room as would little baby but I think my absolute favorite is Tea and cake. Hope I win!
aahaft at gmail dot com

Megan said...

I really like the Filly - Print

Lessa said...

Oh, I just adore Fraidy Cats! It's too cute and I love the colors and the looks on the kitties' faces!

Lessa said...

I subscribed to your newsletter too!

Amanda said...

All are delightful and charming but my favorite is the Portrait of Lovey. It would be beautiful in my daughter's room.

AmandaSue said...

I love the dear heart print, the cat looks so sad but yet the painting is so pretty.

Allison said...

Nectar is my favorite. I love the colors and composition of the bird! Thanks for the great giveaway!

windycindy said...

"Little Burp" is my favorite print! Please enter me in your delightful giveaway drawing. Many thanks, Cindi
jchoppes[at]hotmail[dot]com

mommyjen99 said...

My favorite is called Little Burp. It reminds me of me burping my sweet daughter Summer.
thanks
jen62728@aol.com

mommyjen99 said...

I am a subscriber
thanks
jen62728@aol.com

Jennifer M said...

Desparado is my favorite.

starr884@yahoo.com

Minxy Mimi said...

I like the Senorita Betty
mimibunny31@gmail.com

Minxy Mimi said...

I am a subscriber
mimibunny31@gmail.com

Madam Pince said...

I really like Bat & Mouse game.

gkstratos said...

Octo is my favorite. Lovely work.
gkstratos@yahoo.com

gkstratos said...

Subscriber
gkstratos@yahoo.com

elaine said...

I love the print of Nectar-such vibrant colors!
Elaine R
emrosser@shaw.ca

Jefftexas said...

I love them all, but Sweetheart the monkey is my favorite! Thank you for the chance to win! Good luck everyone, Jeff

jefftexas(at)suddenlink(dot)net

miss bliss said...

My favorite is definately the shy bunny print.

michelleharrod at hotmail dot com

Karen said...

Love the Bat and Mouse Game :)

ktgonyea at gmail.com

tracytreehouse said...

oooooohhhhhh! i love baby burp! so sweet! what beautiful work!

Kathleen said...

These are the most wonderful animal portraits I've ever seen. Fingers and toes crossed here!!!!

I love the Bat and Mouse game the best. It reminds me of the poor baby bat that got into our house on New Year's Eve. We eventually got it out with a garbage can (placing it on top of it). It was creepily cute. Thanks for sharing this find!

Kathleen said...

I just subscribed too, at katwalck at hotmail dot com

judybrittle said...

We just had to put my darling cat to sleep just two weeks ago. She was 14 years old and I miss her so much. I would love the SOMEBODY has got to brush it - Print reproduction
in memory of her.

judybrittle said...

I'm subscribed

PinkDaisyGirl said...

The Stare. Thanks.

PinkDaisyGirl said...

I'm a subscriber too.

bavaria said...

wow, beautiful ! I just love the Octo - Print :)


thanx !

dcala said...

How very cute. I love the Little Burp print.

andeeram said...

I like fruit flowers.

Ruth Ann said...

I love "Bat and Mouse" & "Bunny Races" I also like many more, but those are my favorites! Love the artwork, very unique and imaginative!

the worstest mommy said...

My favorite is Fruit Flowers -Print of watercolor.

yyeres said...

my favorite is The Stare - Print

Lindsey said...

I love that shop! My favorite print is New Mama, the bunnies are so sweet! Thanks for the giveaway!

Lindsey
ladyufshalott at yahoo.com

pjmomof3boys said...

They are all so beautiful! I think my favorite is Satin Nest. I love birds!

Thanks!

Just Another Hofeling said...

My favorite would have to be the Blueberries print because I've absolutely adored otters ever since I was little.
Autum

our2angels said...

Wow, such talent! I love waiting and new apron.

Thanks for the chance to win
Blessings
Sue
marklovessue@numail.org

SeahorseLady said...

I love the Filly - Print. I'm a collector of seahorses and this would go great with my ever growing collection.
Thank you for the great giveaway.

SeahorseLady said...

I'm also a subscriber.

Rebecca said...

Fraidy cats is my favorite, I love kitties!

legacyofbrutalitysa{AT}gmail.com

Rebecca said...

I am a subscriber!

legacyofbrutalitysa{AT}gmail.com

Star said...

I love all her prints, but I am especially loving "new apron".
Thank you!

Angie said...

I think Elly Baby Elephant print is adorable!

ravenwins @ comporium.net

Michele said...

This is another extremely difficult decision, and I can't pick one favorite yet!! I love Fraidy Cats, Bunny Races, and New Mama. SO SUPER CUTE!!! Another great giveaway!!!

Thanks so much!!
Michele R.(CA)
luvkittysmeowmail@gmail.com

Michele said...

I'm a subscriber!

Thanks so much!!
Michele R.(CA)
luvkittysmeowmail@gmail.com

pancak said...

Octo is my fave; the kids would get a kick out of him.

Blissfully Enamored said...

ROMEO! :)

Thanks!

Kerrie said...

I love the Elly - Baby Elephant Print...it's SO adorable! =)

Kerrie said...

And I subscribed via e-mail!

Christy5150 said...

I love 'Let Them Eat Tuna'! They are all awesome though.

Jenn S. said...

It is a toss up between the Bunny Races and the Bat and Mouse Game.

Sara said...

Fraidy cats is my favorite

Sara said...

I am a subscriber

amy purple said...

Tea and Cake is adorable! Thanks.
pposwaps(AT)gmail.com

betty R. said...

oh wow!Thanks so much for introducing her and her work.I am an avid animal lover as well as my grands ,i love these!!!!
happy pig,tea and cake ,
But I must choose Fraidy cats..lol..looks like my grandsons after they have talked me into a scary bedtime story,,lol,,,
enter me please!

oldplace.betty(at)gmail.com

betty R. said...

i am subscribed as well..
oldplace.betty@gmail.com

betty R. said...

got you blogged as well..thanks again and thanks for th extra entries//

oldplace.betty@gmail(dot)com

Rachel said...

There are so many strongly moody prints that draw me in. My favorites are Groundhog hair and darkness. In my own work, and what draws me into other's work are color combinations and texture. I love a darker mood as well.

Tessa said...

"Groundhog Hair" is my favorite print, because it's so clever and unexpected. :)

Tessa said...

I just subscribed; great blog!

Anonymous said...

Christina - xristya@rock.com - I choose Amber Alexander's Nectar, with the beautiful bird in flight! However the other fancifully dressed animals remind me of Beatrix Potter, who first drew and painted clothed animals! Also, I think you should charge more for your work - it's certainly quite talented and creative and deserves more value!

Minute said...

My favorite is Victoria, Tea Time because we have deer on our property at times.

Misplaced Country Girl said...

These are just beautiful. I love that squirrel.

Lori said...

Pterodactyl (wants a cracker) - Print

oona said...

I am in love with the French Revolution kitty print, it looks just like my sweet cat Oliver.

http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=15927107

Thank you for the giveaway.
foxsquirrelrabbit(at)gmail(dot)com

Marc said...

I like Bunny Races.

finegal50 [at] sbcglobal.net

Lani Robertson said...

Stunning art! I love this quirky little cat in her glasses~

Book Club - Print
http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=15740633

I'm a subscriber.

Lani :)

Chrissy said...

I am partial to The boys print. Thanks!

Natasha said...

"Little Burp" is my favourite! It would be so cute in my little guy's room!
natasha_sacopaso[at]hotmail[dot]com

Natasha said...

I'm subscribed to your feed :)
natasha_sacopaso[at]hotmail[dot]com

silverbele said...

The cat with the scarf talks to me.

marissa said...

"Kook" & "Fruit Flowers"... they remind me of something that should be in a Gauguin painting. <3

yadgirl said...

A New Apron is my fave.

MageMorgana said...

I would choose the Bunny Races print ;)

ladyblue1112000[at]yahoo.com

yellowlabs said...

The Royal Taffeta is my favorite!

Anonymous said...

I love the Baby Elephant print. Johnlenoraplus2@yahoo.com

Imanoptimisticbeauty said...

I love the print Parfait!

imanoptimisticbeauty[at]yahoo[dot]ca

Imanoptimisticbeauty said...

also a subscriber :O)

imanoptimisticbeauty[at]yahoo[dot]ca

blog mom said...

Happy Piglet in the Sun is my favorite. How precious!

ky2here said...

Undoubtably the Mall Hair print. I like how she varies her style. Some are cutsie and others are more traditional.

Croasla0 said...

i like the fruit flower watercolor! thanks!

lauren
croasla0(at)sewanee(dot)edu

Kirby McCauley said...

I adore the Bunny Races!!

Sunny B said...

I like Mice on the Mind.

monky said...

I like Groundhog Hair the best it's awesome!!

:) Thank you for the great giveaway! :)

sascha said...

I had such a hard time choosing my favorite. I finally settled on Miss Adorable

Anonymous said...

Lots of great prints to choose from. My favorite is the Desperado print.
-Terra
partymix25(at)hotmail(dot)com

malleycc said...

I love the print Tolerence. The picture and the sentiment

L said...

Juliet, morning print

Deborah Stinson-editor said...

I just love Nutcase Tucked In. Reminds me of one of my own cats. Very nice artwork too!

Barbara said...

My favorite print is Dreaded Class Picture. THanks!

3oink63moo484 (at) gmail(.)com

DePro said...

I like the seahorse "Filly" print.

ariyana9501 said...

I'm another member of the "Save a Life Grope You Wife" fan club! Thanks for the awesome contest!

pitaharmon said...

I love the new apron print. We have lots of squirrel friends and the kids feed them around here.

paula h said...

I like Looker or Little Burp the best.

Melissa said...

I love Nectar! They are all beautiful!

Sara4236 said...

I like new mother

jnmacdonald said...

I like blueberries.

Anonymous said...

I like Tolerance. It reminds me of my cat and birds. Thanks for the contest. Charlotte
charlottewinters@cox.net

Anonymous said...

Les Mews - definitely adorable!

vboackle said...

i like sweetheart.

kaylee8 said...

Tolerance makes me smile and is my pick!

kktwins said...

My favorite is the Fraidy Cats Print. Thank you.
kktwins22@aol.com

bfox74 said...

These are wonderful! Although I like others better for me, my sister would absolutely love the otter eating blueberries!

Gianna said...

I love the Little Burp- Print Reproduction of watercolor :)

Lisa said...

I like A New Apron.
angel_2417@yahoo.com

Steve said...

"Sweetheart" is my favorite!(It would look GREAT in my son's room!)

Deborah said...

I love Amber's work! Some of my favorite must haves are Tolerance, Spring Lamb, and Juliet Morning. Wonderful and delightful pieces. I always smile when I see her watercolors. Thanks for the chance to win! Big hug, Deb

Viv said...

The Book Club print of the cat in glasses is adorable.

scoomer said...

I adore the Groundhog Hair print!

heatheranne99@hotmail.com

Sahm Lee said...

Sooo many wonderful pieces but I love the Bat and Mouse Game the best! Thanks for the contest!

yellowlabs said...

The Royal Taffeta is my pick.

jffryclough said...

the 'happy piglet in the sun'

Linda Wilmer said...

fire deer is my favorite. The colors are so vibrant.

alexandrea said...

Wow hard choice! Bluebell is adorable. New Etsy shop has been added to my favorites folder!

Anonymous said...

i love art

Kristin said...

Any of these would look fantastic in my cozy new apartment. I think I like Mall Hair the best.

legenderry(at)cox(dot)net

Maja said...

angelina115@hotmail.com

Blue Bell

Shannon said...

The bat and mouse game.

Maja said...

angelina115@hotmail.com

subscriber

Darcy said...

I really like quite a few of the prints, but my favorite is March Winds. Thank you for the giveaway!

mistyriver2009 (at) yahoo.com

Darcy said...

I'm a subscriber. Thanks!

huggr1960 said...

Bat and Mouse

Anonymous said...

Dear Heart - Print I just love.

Nora
neneelynn@yahoo.com

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