Friday, December 31, 2010

"THE PAINTING THAT BROUGHT HIS FATHER BACK"- A little miracle in an obscure cafe...

"Mr Samples" / 20X24 Oil on Canvas/ Eileen McCoy

I paint what inspires me. There is a school of thought that for every painting there exists an owner.  In this case, the encounter between artist and collector turned out to be more than happenstance.
 May this true tale bring you hope and encouragement for the coming New Year.

Artist: " In 2002, A local cafe owner invited me to hang some paintings on his shop walls.  Among my selections for the show was a 20" X24" oil painting entitled "Gentleman in the White Fedora". I knew nothing about this man; only that he was a regal-looking chap I had often seen about town, sporting a white fedora hat and a cane and proudly watching the other locals mill about our county seat in Liberty, Missouri.  In 1998, I drew some sketches and took some photos during our Liberty Fall Festival parade; and sometime between 1998 and 2001, I painted this oil of the (then) "unknown" gentleman. 
Karie, The Granddaughter of the subject:
"(After my grandfather's death in May of 1999), my father went into an obscure coffee shop in town.  (This was such an odd thing for my father to do.  He is not the kind of man to wander into a coffee shop to sip on a hot beverage and hang out.  This was really out of the ordinary for him but, nonetheless, he did it.)  While he was there sipping on his coffee, he looked up at the artwork on the walls.  One painting in particular caught his eye.  It in fact, startled him.  He couldn't believe his eyes.  The painting hanging on the wall was the exact likeness of his recently deceased father.  He was stunned..."

"I remember the man. He was the only person that came into that hidden, little cafe that day.  He didn't seem to notice me as he ordered his coffee and sat down.  I proceeded to hang the painting of "the unknown man" when, to my left, who should appear but a figure of a man intensely studying the painting. His expression was aghast..."
"Oh, do you know who this is? " I asked enthusiastically. " I have wondered who..."
Before I could finish my sentence, the mystified guest stated simply: 
"It's my father. He's deceased." 
Karie, Granddaughter:
"He of course bought the painting and brought it home.  When he relayed the story to us, we were all as surprised as he was...  Our family has always felt that it was fate that made my father wander into that coffee shop that day. We believe that painting was destined to be in our home.  It felt like we had my grandfather back- if only for a moment.  Eileen McCoy is the artist and she captured my grandfather’s essence perfectly.  We are thankful that she chose to capture his image in her artwork.  We cherish the painting.

 "What do workers gain from their toil? I have seen the burden God has laid on the human race.  He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.  I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live. That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God."
Ecclesiastes 3:9-13

Thursday, December 16, 2010

PARTY CARICATURES: "David (him) and Joe(her)"

 Hijacked After a Pilot Party
Learning to expect the unexpected is part of what I so enjoy about my work. I was packing up after drawing at a Christmas gathering for some local pilots,when, I was hijacked, so to speak, by the manager of the restaurant at the facility. He invited me over to draw some of his staff for their Christmas presents. I don't often get copies of the hundreds of party drawings, but Joe (the bartender gal) was nice enough to run a copy for me. They were so fun to draw as they were so delighted and not self-conscious at all. The best caricatures come when people show their personalities and don't hold back. I am looking for that sparkle; that unique quality that makes you who you are.  This drawing was done in 3 minutes per head. 

Thank you David, the vet, and Joe, the bartender for not holding back. It was a pleasure to draw you!

To book your Kansas City Caricature event or order a Custom illustration, contact me via website:

Note:It has been a busy season for Caricature party entertainment and I have been deluged with custom orders for paintings and illustrations. I cannot unveil these yet, as many are for client's Christmas cards or paintings the clients are giving for gifts.  While this blog will be primarily a venue for my daily paintings, I will insert the occasional caricature  drawing whilst I catch up on photographing the inventory.

COMING SOON: The Career Miracle painting! 
Enjoy! Eileen 
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Saturday, December 11, 2010

"Sandy Beach" ("Sand on It")18"X24", Oil on Canvas


 This painting is currently on exhibit and may be purchased through the Buttonwood Art Gallery
in Kansas City. See link below:

This was one of the paintings from my painting trip to Hawaii in 2008. 

Friday, December 10, 2010

"PILE UP" 18"X24" Acrylic On Canvas

"PILE UP" 18"X24" Acrylic On Canvas

"Most people come back from Colorado with landscape paintings. I came back with inspiration for a shoe pile painting. We were wandering through the Arts fest at  Breckenridge, when I spotted this mountainous pile of shoes, appropriately branded as "HYPE". The colors and the shapes beckoned me to paint them.
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                                                                      Enjoy, Eileen 

Sunday, December 5, 2010

"Jensen's Joy" Painting a Day by Eileen McCoy

"Jensen's Joy" Painting A Day
Pastel on Paper 9"X6"
This original painting may be purchase through the artist. 
Once again, a child has inspired a lively painting. Here is a pastel on paper that was lots of fun to create! I find it is good to work in different media from time to time. It keeps one's skills sharp and versatile.  Enjoy! Eileen

Saturday, December 4, 2010

"LEAN ON ME" painting a day by Eileen McCoy

6"X8" small painting.
Available for purchase. Contact artist via website:

The only way these two apples would stand up was to lean on one another--like my husband and I do. He holds up the ends that I cannot seem to manage and visa versa. Thus the "Lean on Me"
On a technical note: notice the use of green in the background. The large red area in the painting needed some relief and complementary colors supply this balance--kind of like a middle-aged married couple! Also, notice the purple reflected light, a nice tertiary color that was present. I am constantly reminding
myself to paint what I see. Enjoy! Eileen 
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Thursday, December 2, 2010

"Avery: Ready for the Day"

12"X16" Acrylic on Canvas

The joy of my little neighbor, Avery, catches my eye daily. So inspired was I, that my painting took a different, more lively approach: that which was reflected by her colorful outfits and accessories. Avery reminds me to take time for the simple pleasures of life. Avery is always ready for the day... and warms my heart with a hug, a newly found bug or flower,  and her big red bucket. (Notice the boots!) Thank you, Avery, for the joy you bring to me daily!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

"Love In Loose Park"-original oil painting

6"X8" Oil on canvas panel-signed by artist

It's always a pleasure to get outdoors and plein aire paint. This painting was created during a plein aire "paint out" with a group from Kansas City. I chose this scene in the rose garden at Loose Park. This couple unknowingly added a nice theme to the romance of the beautiful rose garden in the early morning sun.

Saturday, November 27, 2010


Here is a group caricature illustration drawn live at an event on a large illustration board. Typically, these large groups require layout time and are created from photos via the internet. But this one was drawn on location for this lively group of women who meet to play Bunko on a regular basis. Perhaps you recognize some of these faces?

One of the things I really enjoy about entertaining at events is the spontaneity one is able to achieve from drawing live at such a quick pace. Likenesses are commonly achieved in 3 minutes per person, but a layout like this one usually requires about 5 minutes per head.
I also come away from these events with a connection to each and every person in attendance. It is an honor to be invited to entertain one's entire party of guests!

Enjoy! Eileen

Thursday, November 25, 2010


"Love of Lemons"/Award-winning Original Oil Painting/ 8X10"

This painting is currently on exhibit at the MOAK exhibition at the Springfield Art Museum.
The painting was also shown earlier this year at the annual Heartland Juried exhibit in Merriam, Kansas and won an award there.  It was an honor to have my work exhibited in these prestigious shows.

The light from the setting sun spilled over onto the kitchen counter after and I had just cut apart my daily ration of lemons (I really do love them!). The translucent slices, reminiscent of the sun in the blue sky, inspired me to paint this. (I also secretly like the way the top shadow reminds me of  ''PACMAN"-but we won't tell anybody.)