Wednesday, December 30, 2009

a moment in time

just a moment in time
seeing the toddler’s face in my mind
transposed onto the handsome man
at the keyboard
smiling and joyful as he sang
and played for the sold-out crowd

the toddler with perfect pitch
singing along with the piano tuner
in our small Belgian apartment
and the musical youngster
who did not want to continue
piano lessons and switched to clarinet

piano lessons started again in college
his own choice this time
full circle, generation to generation,
two grandfathers whose love of music
was passed down to parents
who kept the music going
to the next generation
just a moment in time

©2009 Linda H Feinberg
Author's note: I saw this image in my mind while watching my oldest son, Jake Freedman, playing  keyboard with his band in Portland, Maine in November. It was a beautiful image.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

David Feinberg 1935

This is a pencil drawing done from an old wedding photo (1935) of my parents. It was very challenging. I posted the first drawing of my mother earlier. This one was done with Faber Castell pencils on Bristol Vellum paper. I liked this paper better than the regular Bristol (smooth). I enjoyed the class with Jeanne Lachance and hope to study again with her, but maybe not portraits! I still prefer to draw animals, flowers & landscapes.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Cape Cod before the storm

We had to cut our havurah conference visit short as a big storm was moving in. We left after dinner Saturday night. Very few people chose to stay.  Easy drive home as the snow had not started yet.  As usual, we had a wonderful time, but this is New England and it is winter now, so we understand.

If you look closely in the fifth (3rd down on left) picture, you can see either geese or ducks flying. It was very overcast and I couldn't tell from the formation, but I thought they might be geese.  I did see ducks and seagulls on the water, so perhaps they were ducks.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


Hope my readers are having a happy Chanukah.  I am very busy this month and next with my bookkeeping service, so I don't usually have time to post to the blog.  However, I made this card which has been well received and I've had several orders.  The photo was of a sunset seen from my house. I played with it a bit in Photoshop.  I didn't feel like using the standard picture of a hanukkiah (the special menorah/candelabra with 9 candle holders for Chanukah.)  I liked the sunset colors, they remind me a bit of the colors of the flames from the Chanukah candles.  The words are from the prophet Zechariah and are part of the liturgy on the holiday. 

I did a craft fair a couple of weeks ago and some of the people were surprised to see texts on my cards from Jewish, Christian and Apache sources.  If the words speak to me, I like to include them with my artwork.  I think the meaning is more important than the source.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Pen and Ink

I worked on this pen and ink drawing some more, putting it away several times, pulling it out and tinkering.  I think it's done now.  (See post of August 20th for earlier version).  My scanner is not big enough for this paper (11" X 15") so I took some photos.  I had some difficulties with getting a good picture.  Finally, I took the drawing outside and tried a photo in the bright sunlight. That seemed to help a bit.

The drawing was from a photo I took at the Alta ski area in Utah in June while hiking with my daughter.  The mountain is called Devil's Castle. I was about 8,000-9,000 feet up, so I think it is probably about 11,000 feet at the top.  Even though it was June, the tops of the mountains still had snow on them.

The drawing is on Arches 140 lb watercolor cold press paper. Initially I thought I might use some watercolor on it. That's why I used that paper.  But now I think I will leave it as a pen and ink drawing.  I don't want to ruin what I did already.

I liked the scenes in Utah so much that I played with some of my photos with Photoshop and made some small cards with them.  I'll have a craft table on Sunday and will put them out.  Hope to get some positive comments along with some sales.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Portland, Maine (again)

Back to the beginning of the blog. My first post in 2008 was about Portland, Maine and our trip there to hear some music at One Longfellow Square  This past weekend, we went back. This time to hear my son's band play in the same venue.  The band is a tribute type band to Steely Dan. They picked a play on words and are called Deely Stan.  The concert was sold out and we had a great time.

Of course, I'm a proud mom, but I think there were many people who were not related to the musicians and just loved the music. Lots of applause.  Jake (Freedman) looked so happy playing keyboards and singing.  I loved watching him!

I noticed that since I've been taking the drawing class this semester on portraits, I am really looking at faces differently.  I could imagine a series of woodcuts, or linocuts, with musicians and their instruments, or singers & microphones.  White lines on black backgrounds.  I was watching  the shadows on the faces (from the lighting at the show) very carefully.

We went back to the Portland Museum of Art as well.  Again, I was looking at portraits and faces differently.  The museum has an exhibit of prints up now. That's what made me think of the woodcuts.  Joe has been studying Impressionism (American, I think) with Kim Roth. He was looking at the Impressionist painting at the Museum in more detail this time.  A good trip.

Happy Thanksgiving to my readers. I probably won't post again until after the holiday.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Belle Feinberg, of blessed memory

Originally uploaded by LHFeinberg
Pencil drawing done in class with Jeanne Lachance. This was from a photo of my mother on her wedding day, January 27, 1935. Jeanne had us trying out Bristol Smooth (plate finish) paper. I did not like the paper and will try a different one on my next project.

I was happy with the result, though. This is my first drawing class where we have practiced on faces. I think I like flowers, landscapes and animals better, but I enjoy the challenge of the class.

I tried scanning and the original and using Photoshop.  I came out with some different results.  I posted the others on the Flickr website Flickr.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Deciduous Trees - can you identify?

Most of the autumn leaves are down and we are busy raking.  These trees at Dorrs Pond are still very beautiful, but I don't know what they are.  If you can identify, please let me know.  Thanks.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Honorable Mention

Picatso was my first "conceptual drawing" done for a contest in Manchester promoting the play "Cats". I was pleased that I received "honorable mention".  Some of the winners of the contest are professional illustrators and they certainly deserved to win.  I had fun coming up with the idea.  The French words at the bottom are a play on the "cat" theme, they say "The artist Picatso (Pichatseau) in open air"; the Spanish words on the "easel" say "el gato" - "the cat" -- just playing around with language.

I am actually getting to use some of my rusty French now as I am tutoring a woman from Algeria. We manage to understand each other with my broken French and her broken English.  I haven't really used the language since 1974 (when I returned to America from Belgium), so this is a good review.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Fall Color

Fall color is past peak now but still beautiful. This view is of Head's Pond in Hooksett. We walked the Kiwanis trail (along the abandoned railroad tracks - recycled for hikers and bikers to walk) on Sunday.

The maple leaves are from our yard. We have lots of raking to do this weekend. Good exercise.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Class Drawings

These are drawings done in my art class with Jeanne Lachance. The top one was done from a photo of a bust by Alan Colby "Jammont".  The bottom one was done in class from a bust of what looked like a copy of a Roman or Greek statue.

I had never been interested in doing portraits before this class, but I am finding it very challenging and helpful in my study of art.  I'm really looking at photos and faces in a new way.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Joe's Book

Joe's book got some good press in today's Union Leader, article by John Clayton:


Speaking of books, there's a little thing in the publishing business called serendipity, and it comes into play when you write a novel and your fictional premise suddenly becomes a shocking truth, a truth that results in global outrage, banner headlines and round-the-clock cable news coverage.

That's what's happening to Joe Smiga.

Simply stated, the premise of his first novel is this -- Iran has nukes.

That's the central storyline in "Behind the Lies," a prescient piece of work worthy of Tom Clancy, what with Hamas and Hezbollah and renegade Ayatollahs in control of Kilo-class submarines and, in a tribute to his adopted hometown, Joe has scripted a cliff-hanger of a naval battle with a destroyer called the USS Manchester cast as a key player in the drama.

Talk about lucky timing.

"Actually, I had it planned," Joe said, and, while I thought he was joking, he wasn't.

"I'm Jewish," he explained, "I've been reading the Jerusalem Post for years and for as long as I've been reading it, Israeli intelligence has been saying that Iran would have a nuclear capability by the end of 2009, so when I started writing in 2005, that was going to be my premise." And what was his reaction when President Obama held that press conference announcing that Iran has acquired "sufficient information to be able to design and produce a workable atomic bomb"?

"It's a terrifying reality, but as an author, I was thrilled," he said. "His remarks reinforced the title -- the truth 'Behind the Lies' -- and the fact that my book has a black President who's in his first term in the book strikes a chord with readers as well." If you'd like to be one of them -- readers, that is -- you can seek out "Behind the Lies" on the Amazon or Barnes and Noble websites, or if you're looking for an autographed copy, you can go to

John Clayton is the author of several books on Manchester and New Hampshire, including his newest title, "Remembering Manchester." His e-mail is

Friday, October 16, 2009

Artist Ziva Kainer

I usually don't put any advertisements on my blog, but since I am hosting the artist tonight for shabbat dinner, I thought I would put this up.  The reception Sunday is free and open to the public at the Jewish Federation building in Manchester (698 Beech Street).  We have a sister city program with a region of Israel called Hof HaCarmel (coastal, between Tel Aviv and Haifa).  There is an artist colony there, Ein Hod, and Ziva is part of that colony.  Joe and I did get to meet some of the artists three years ago when we were there. We hope to go back again in a few years.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Great Bay

Had a good walk at Great Bay Discovery Center yesterday (seacoast). We had never been there before. Interesting area (estuary), but walks were too short for us.  Dina and I took another longer walk later in the day around Dorrs Pond when we returned to Manchester. She goes back to Salt Lake City tomorrow. We've had a great visit and I'm sorry to see her leave.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Burning Bush

Fall is here. Love the colors and the crisp fall air.  I was disappointed at the presentation of my artist of the month award at the gallery -- it was behind stuff and hardly visible.  However, the picture of all the September artists is up for a little while at this link:  Picture taken by webmaster Tom Wright.  This is a good one.  I will be submitting another painting at the next meeting and hope to win a placement at a different location.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site

A beautiful day at Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site. I have been working on eyes, noses and lips in my drawing class with Jeanne Lachance. It was interesting to see all the statues today and look at the faces. There were many artists there today demonstrating various methods of art, gilding (gold leaf), blow torch fire organ, bas relief (modeling clay), pastel, sculpting with wood, stone & clay. We had a great time watching everybody.

The busts were inside and will be on display through October 31, 2009.

See more photos at this link:

Joe and I took a slower drive home through state roads and enjoyed all the autumn leaves too.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Rosh Hashanah, 5770

the leaves are touched by gold this day,
the birthday of the world
5770 years ago God created it
skies, waters, planet earth and us

was God lonely, the angels and seraphim
not enough company?
perhaps God had that strong maternal drive
I felt so many times myself
that drive to create life

yet we pray, “our father, our king”
hard to change to gender neutral terminology
although the imagery works for me
seeing the divine with both masculine
and feminine characteristics

looking back at the old year
looking forward to the new
feeling purpose in my life
bringing people together
listening to others in hard places
where I have been before
I can empathize but I know
the healing only begins
with decisions and actions

one summer morning we hiked on hilly trails
and found ourselves on a ledge above a ridge
looking down at hawks soaring on thermals
a moment of awe at the sight

looking ahead the drive to create is strong
finding joy in my art with pencils,
pens and paint or an occasional poem

I am filled with wonder at all I see
from a red-bodied dragonfly to the
cardinals singing fortissimo and
the chirpy chipmunks on my deck

may this be a good year,
a sweet year for all

L’Shanah Tovah

view of Mount Monadnock from Pisgah State Park, August 2009

copyright 2009 Linda H. Feinberg

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Misty Morning

Unretouched photos from my early morning walk to Dorrs Pond (Livingston Park) nearby (Manchester, NH). I think this is the last day of summer, first day of fall. The sun has come out now and it's a beautiful day.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Early work

I have been installing drivers and software today on my new computer. Getting some error messages that some of my old software has known "compatibility" issues with Vista. I may have to buy updated programs.

Meanwhile, I installed my scanner and scanned in an old piece to test it out. This is one of my very first colored pencil drawings. I still like it. Maybe I'll make a small card out of it. Looking at it I can see how my drawing skills have improved. A good thing too, after all those lessons!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Artist of the Month (Belmont Street)

Finally won something! For the first time I entered the voting at the Manchester Artists Association meeting. My painting, Belmont Street, that I posted in May, will be displayed for a few weeks at the Lazy Boy Gallery ( in Manchester .

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Japanese Masa Paper

Just playing with art supplies. The process is quite interesting and takes several days. First you wet the paper and crinkle it, then I painted the reverse (non-shiny) side and let it dry. The colors did not come through enough so I repeated the process on the shiny side and let it dry. Then the dry paper gets pasted onto cold press watercolor paper (it is too thin by itself) as a backer. I actually used some old experimental sheets (recycling!) that I no longer needed. Their colors did not show through. The Japanese paper is sufficiently opaque.

I used Chinese watercolor pigments (Marie's) and Chinese brushes. After the paper was dry, I thought about what I wanted to put on it. I decided on the blossoms first. After a couple of weeks, I tackled the other paper and decided to use Chinese ink for a landscape. The inspiration for the first was a photo I took of crabapple blossoms in the spring; for the second a photo I took while hiking in Alta, Utah. My paintings were very loose representations. I was not trying to be too technical, just having fun!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Mount Willard

Great views from Mount Willard in Crawford Notch State Park (NH). Some of the trees are starting to turn red & gold already. The temperature was comfortable, very few bugs. It took about 1 hour and 20 minutes to go to the top and 1 hour to come down. We spent some time having lunch and enjoying the view. This is a popular hike and not too difficult. Well worth the sweat to go up.

The road below is Route 302 (in the middle), the other line on the right is a railroad line. This view is looking east toward the Presidential Range & possibly Chocorua. Mount Washington is not in this picture, but we could see it when we walked around the top. I didn't get a good picture of that one.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Fall Art Classes

Fall art classes start again soon at E.W. Poore. I will be studying drawing again with Jeanne Lachance. There are many others, reasonably priced and not overly long for those of us with short attention spans! Here is a link:

Sunday, August 23, 2009


An enjoyable afternoon spent wandering the sculpture garden at the Mill Brook Gallery in Concord, NH. Beautiful gardens and flowers, interesting sculptures. Gallery inside with paintings, mobiles.

There were some real horses on the adjacent site, but Joe didn't get to play with them this time. He's still doing some horse sitting and training, but the economy has put a damper on that part of his retirement. Many people are actually giving their horses away because they can't afford to feed them. Very sad.

Thursday, August 20, 2009


This is a pen and ink sketch I am working on from my trip to Utah in June (11" X 15"). It is a view of Devil's Castle at the Alta ski area. It is on watercolor paper so I can add color, but now I have to make some decisions. If I paint it, I can't go back to black and white. I could paint it realistically (the tops of the mountains had snow on them, the sky was very bright blue, no clouds), or in fanciful colors, or just a little bit of color. Or, I could crop the picture and leave that big rock out of it. I could leave it black and white.

Meanwhile I sent a jpg file to my art teacher. I will be starting classes again in September and she said to just bring it in to discuss. So, I guess for the moment I will just leave it and think about it some more. I have lots of art supplies so I can always start a new picture.

I might take it to a shop with a bigger scanner (mine is too small to scan in) and then play with it on my computer. I wasn't able to get a good photo, the paper is actually quite white, but the photo shows up gray. I probably have to adjust something on my camera. Would be happy to have some reader comments, or you can send me a direct e-mail if you don't want to post on this blog. Thanks.

Later: The first image above was scanned at Kinko's. That is closer to the original.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Havurah Conference 2009 (Rindge, NH)

Just some photos from our vacation week. We had a wonderful time, but now I'm stressed with catching up with my work. We also had a chance to hike in Pisgah State Park. Beautiful hiking trails and views of Mt. Monadnock. The musicians were awesome!

Monday, August 3, 2009

missing you

the stones told the story
born in . . . died in . . .
a name
in Hebrew
in English
dates in both
but I only knew you
from stories
and old photos
immigrants to America
modestly dressed
in old-fashioned clothes
my bubbe
my zayde
gone before I made
my appearance in 1946

what would have changed
had I known you?
maybe I would be
more observant
more in tune with ritual
but I’m confortable
with my faith as is

yet I feel the lack
the emptiness inside
from that missed connection
when I hear Yiddish
or old Jewish melodies
I think about you
and realize that my mother
was a role model for me
as bubbe to my children
since I never knew my grandparents
so I cook
I teach
I listen
I tell stories
and I pass on the love
that I missed
but still have inside to give

draft copyright 2009 Linda H. Feinberg

On electronic retreat this week. No more blog entries this week.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Psalm 90:12

Another version that I found while cleaning up my office. I made a small card out of this one too. I will have cards and prints available next week in Rindge, NH at the Havurah Conference at Franklin Pierce University. Shuk is Wed., August 5th, 4-9 p.m. Joe will be there with his books for sale too.

Showy Penstemon Figwort

Just some pretty flowers from the Utah trip (Red Butte), beautiful botanical gardens. Not too sure about the name and spelling on the flowers.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

From Minsk to America, 1914

a horse-drawn sleigh ride, a train,
then a ship from Hamburg, Germany
brought my father to America
leaving pogroms and the old life behind
his father and older sister already here
he was only seven, traveling with his mother,
brothers and sisters

other passengers heaving
not him, cast iron stomach
the first time he had enough to eat
they gave him their food
too seasick for it

and then, a childhood in poverty
his sisters quit school, taking factory jobs
so the brothers could finish high school
my father sold popcorn on the boardwalk
took college classes at night
and made it to the middle class
helping others whenever he could

yet he had so much anger inside
drinking let the sarcasm out
"battle-axe" "jerk" "stupid"
a rejecting kind of love
how little I knew of his inner struggle
until I fought my own demons inside
now I follow him while breaking the cycle
using words that heal
instead of words that hurt

copyright 2002 Linda H. Feinberg

My father was born in Minsk 7/15/1906, part of a set of twins "David" and "Solomon". I have been thinking about him this week since it would have been his birthday. At this point in my life, I have been able to make some peace in my mind about my issues with him. I think he had a very hard life and while I don't agree that someone should drink to ease the emotional pains they had, I do at least understand it a bit. He had many good qualities, too, and I've tried to focus more on them and learn from them, rather than the negative ones that caused me so much emotional pain as a child.

Monday, July 13, 2009


We have two grandchildren visiting us from Mojave, California. They have never been here before and are enjoying seeing all the green trees. We'll take them on a whale watch soon. Meanwhile, they enjoyed the Indian Powwow in Warner, NH this past weekend. We also toured the Mt. Kearsarge Indian Museum.

I loved this quote from the brochure (10th Annual Intertribal Powwow):

"Grandmothers are even more sacred because they carry the heart and soul of the people. Grandmothers carry the sacred spirit of the Mother Earth. Grandmothers give us gentleness and caring because they have also given us life. Our elders teach us who are ancestors were. Our elders are our connection to everything in our past. It is with their knowledge that we understand how we fit into the world." Rick Williams

Beautiful thoughts and very much in tune with what I learned about respect (derech eretz) for Jewish elders as a child. I feel very blessed that I have grandchildren, even though biologically they are not mine. The biology does not seem to matter to my heart.

The other really enjoyable part about being a grandmother (or any parent) is that you get to do all the kid things without anybody making fun of you! I love that too.