Love Birds for February Show

I’ll have some of these at The Artery in February, “Love Birds, 1 through 4.”


Love Birds, 1 through 4, mixed media on cradled panels, 6 x 6 in., $90 each

The Artery, aka Studio 6, is an artist co-op. It’s located at 625 E. Indian School Rd, Phoenix, AZ. Studio 6 The Artery Facebook Page

A group of 12 women painters jointly claimed a spot in the gallery for the year. We will be rotating our work; I won’t always have something there. Details TBA, but tentatively it looks like I’ll have work there with one other in the group this fall, probably Nov. Most if not all of us are participating in a Love themed show in Feb. If you go and don’t see the one you want, ask. Each artist will probably only have one up at a time, and I may not take them all, depending on space allotted for each artist.

The birds were created with fine pumice paste tinted with acrylics, as a base. I then used drawing media and acrylic washes, etc, to finish them off. They’re sealed with clear acrylic and wired to hang, no frame needed. You could frame them if you chose. The cradling on them is 3/4 in. deep so they do fit nice in frames.

Here’s a pic of them while they were in the early stages.


Work in progress on four “Love Birds”


Nothing’s finalized yet but I have been asked to have something in The Icehouse gallery in Phoenix during March’s Art Detour. This is an amazing large space currently managed by artists Jaimie Blue and Joe Holdren. The show will include multiple artists.

Also, I plan on making another Mutant Pinata this year, for the show of the same name, at Chartreuse gallery, on Grand Avenue in Phoenix. Last year my pinata sold which was a delight because I wasn’t sure where WE would put it! It was rather large. This year, some of them will be outdoors. I am thinking of how to make one that could be displayed outdoors so I’ll be doing what I can to make it weatherproof enough for outdoor art. We shall see. Good thing I saved empty containers over the last year for armatures! Here’s the post about last year’s creature-pinata:

Small, Affordable, in Time for for Holiday Gifts

These little square bird pieces are mixed media, kind of a combination of drawing and painting, and sealed well so they do not need to be under glass. They are wired on the back to hang, on 3/4 in deep panels, (you could frame them if you wanted to).


More to come!

These are made by applying a thin layer of tinted fine pumice paste in two colors. I used sandpaper when they were good and dry, to knock down any peaks that were too high and for the effect/look of the sanded pumice surface. Then, I drew on them with colored pencils and added some acrylic washes, watercolor style. They’re sealed with clear acrylic and the edges are painted a dark charcoal gray.

They’ll be at {9} The Gallery, 1229 Grand Ave, Phoenix, AZ, thru most of December, (opening night Fri Dec 2), for the Tiny Works-Tiny Dances group show.

Chicken Portrait, Herberger gallery at AZ Center


Work in progress; I had not yet finished some details here.

A few weeks ago, photographer Archie Tucker and his photographer wife Connie Tucker asked me to participate in a show at the Herberger Gallery at Arizona Center. The gallery is fairly new and has a variety of local artists and photographers. The invitation was to create a derivative work, a painting based on one of their photos. They wanted me to paint from one of their beautiful chicken portraits that I’d previously “Liked” on their Facebook page. I didn’t do an exact copy, but I wanted to stick pretty close to it, as I loved the dark background and the chicken’s various textures. I suspect that chicken was part silkie, because it had fur-like feathers but a red comb, (silkies usually have black combs). There are lots of delightful silkie crosses, and silkies are so near and dear to my heart.

Here is the finished painting, which is now hanging in the Herberger gallery, and will be there for about a month.


“Chicken Portrait,” Acrylic on deep edged panel, 20 x 16 in. Cindy Schnackel, from photo by Archie Tucker with permission, 2016.

I was asked about doing another for later in November and I would sure like to. A hummingbird this time most likely! Now I need to go buy a plant that hummers like, so I can sit outside and sketch them before I embark on a painting of one! Oh the horrors, to ‘have to’ go buy flowers! 😀

Herberger Gallery at Arizona Center

455 N. 3rd St. Ste 1200

(602) 254-7399

The gallery has more open hours than many of those on the first and third Friday art walk routes, but call first if you plan to go, to be sure what the hours that day are. To make sure you don’t go to the wrong gallery, go to the one in the AZ Center, which is a shopping/dining area. Confusion could arise because the Herberger Theater Center across the street from the AZ Center also has a gallery.

Herberger at AZ Center Facebook page

Archie (A.O. Tucker) and Connie’s site

Fall 2014 Stuff


First bowls, beginning wheel throwing, Sept 2014


One day in late August or early September, I was bored, overheated, and felt like taking some risks.  The three things I did that day were:

  • Cut my own hair, (turned out ok; let’s just say I’ve paid for worse),
  • Went swimming alone, (stupid and unsafe, but it was well over 100 and I’d been outdoors a couple hours)
  • Signed up for beginning wheel throwing class

Back in the 80s, I did try wheel throwing in a college ceramics class, but it wasn’t the focus of the class, and I never mastered the fundamental of centering clay on the wheel! I moved on to handbuilding. The idea of spending the fall on ONLY throwing is kind of scary because I was not sure if I was just incapable of centering clay, and I didn’t want to waste money, time, or material. Now, I’m in class again, and focusing on the wheel, with the goal of incorporating some wheel thrown parts with handbuilt, to create creatures. This fall will be spent getting competent enough that I can go in during open studio and make what I need to. Next year I’ll continue taking classes to have access to the workshop, wheels, kiln, etc. Ceramics is something I can’t do at home. It has been over 20 years since I did any! Somehow, air dry clays are just not a 100% satisfying substitute. I enjoy seeing pieces transformed by firing and glazing, and I like that they can be functional objects as well. These little imperfect bowls, if they survive all the firings, will be useful food vessels or perhaps we’ll burn incense in them by the pool. If they break, I have a couple of mosaic artist friends who’d probably love the pieces.

So…progress. We made several bowls each, some were total failures and ended up on the clay recycling table, to be scraped up and remoistened later.  The first class, we just threw bowls. The second class, we trimmed the bowls to put a nice little foot on them, which if the bowl is reasonably uniform and you get it centered (again), goes pretty well and is fun. Reminds me of wood turning, another thing I’ve never done. Of course not all the bowls were easy to trim. Some got cut through because we didn’t make the bottom thick enough.

I’ll try to remember to take more pics when I go back, to show the progress.  It was surprising to me that my husband decided at the last minute to take the class, too, so we are in it together.



I have a show penciled in for spring of 2015, but it is too early to announce anything about it, even the date.  I plan to keep a lot of the work for it off the internet until closer to the show, so that is a whole swath of work that’s happening starting now, but that you won’t see pics of for several months! That’s hard for me not to post pics of new work.  Last year I kind of did that due to an infringement problem but it was nice when I did show them, that they were unseen by most people, so that’s also a nice feeling.


Studio, Cindy Schnackel, fall 2014

Some bird paintings are of course going on at the same time! I have several small works on wood that are done now, except for the edge treatment.  They are laying on the table, still in progress at this stage, in this pic of my studio. It was taken right after I’d put in some new shelves and rearranged everything, which took awhile. With material brought in for making work for a show, I had to haul everything out of there,  figure out shelf placement and then totally reorganize the room. it’s much better now!


Birds hand painted on prepared bottle caps, Cindy Schnackel, 2014

The bottle cap bird paintings are growing in number.  They are $20 each. The hanger is a recycled pop top ring or other type recycled hardware, depending on what is available.  There are two on the bottom row in this pic that have the ring attached.

A lot of the really tiny things I’ve been working on were put away in drawers so they would not get lost or damaged.  Now that the studio is back together, I’ll be taking those things out, dealing with any last finishing touches, and soon uploading some to my inventory list and probably also my redbubble page.



As if I needed more to do, I started a new blog, Found A Chicken, where I post photos of chickeny things I see, or or showcase other artists. I hope you’ll go take a look!

Reception this Friday April 18

3rdFriThis Friday, April 18, please join me and fellow artist Scott Wolf for the second reception of our show, For the Birds!  The gallery opens at 6 pm and is open until 9 pm.  (Or by appointment.)  The 3rd Friday art walk will be going on so there will be many galleries open in downtown Phoenix the same evening.

Most of the little affordable pieces sold out so gallery owner Robrt asked me to bring in more!  Today, I’m delivering 17 new miniature paintings and drawings for this Friday’s reception.  Many are new this month.

Hope to see you there!

For the Birds; showing in April! Also, Governors Arts Award


“For the Birds will open on First Friday, April 4 at 6 p.m. with an artist reception, and again on Third Friday, April 18 at 6. The show will remain on exhibit through April 28. R. Pela Contemporary Art is located at 335 West McDowell Road, and is otherwise open by appointment only, by calling 602-320-8445.” — R. Pela website announcement of the show:

I’ll be showing with fellow artist Scott Wolf, (the toy phone mashup is Scott’s). My first time seeing Scott’s work was his chick with vegetable peeler!  I don’t know if that will be in the show, I am pretty sure he has sold it but not sure.

Quite a few of the pieces I’ll be showing are new and have never been uploaded to the net, though I’ve shown a few sneak peeks of work in progress, detail shots, etc.  It’s my nature to upload new work as it happens. This year though, I refrained from doing that with certain work, so that new works and series could be shown together when I was ready, without the ‘set’ being already broken up before the show.

There will be sparrows. I was going through some old sketchbooks to find framable small pieces, and ran across a 2012 sparrow head portrait, that is very much the twin brother/sister of a new surrealistic painting of a sparrow.  I wonder what took me so long to get around to painting it?  The sketch was nice in monochrome, but I applied thin layers of acrylic glazes, and some colored pencil detail, to turn it into a colored piece that has more impact, and put it in a vintage frame with curved glass.

Also, new chickens, several of them, wearing clothes.

As is true with a lot of my work, I start very subconsciously and let it develop.  Later, I may start to see symbolism in the works, but it’s interesting to hear what other people see in it, too.  This is particularly true of the detailed paintings where objects I add for seeming no reason begin to have possible meanings.  Look for things like eggs, dishes, and toys, and see what they say to you!




Tonight is the Governors Arts Award event, where my painting, Birds in Wigs, will be presented to the arts education org that wins their category.  I’m curious to meet whoever is going to take it home, and hope they like strange birds!  Given that it’s an organization that will win it, I wonder if it will end up hanging in a public place. That might be cool! (The painting was purchased for the award, see previous posts about that.)  Here is a recent article about it, you can see which category of nominees is eligible to win each piece purchased for the event: