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Monday, January 31, 2011

New Site on Whimsical Artists:

New Site:

There's a new website I hope you all will check out:

Welcome to the world of whimsical art! Here are some favorite whimsical artists from around the country and world. Their whimsical artwork will hopefully incite your imagination and inspire your creativity. What is a whimsical artist? Explore and see for yourself what these whimsical artists have to offer with their whimsical art.

This website includes information about internationally acclaimed whimsical artists Tim Nyberg and Lucia Stewart, along with emerging whimsical artists Scott Plaster and Juli Cady Ray. If you like the site, please feel free to add the badge above on your own site!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Whimsical and Collage Artist Team up for Cary Art Loop

Whimsical Artist Scott Plaster's Collection of Flies
The whimsical "Collection of Flies"
by Whimsical Artist Scott Plaster
Cosmic Cow Society Artists Travel to Cary, NC
Whimsical and Collage Artist Team up for Art Loop

Studio Salon 180 will host Whimsical Artist Scott Plaster and Collage Artist Perry Boswell on Cary's 4th Friday Art Loop. An opening reception will be held from 6-9 at Studio 180, 210 High House Rd, Ste 101, Cary, NC.

Whimsical Artist Scott Plaster has been painting for 30 years and his line of "whimsical" animals has been featured in newspapers and magazines. His "Cosmic Cow" has been used for several magazine covers and is also the namesake of the regional arts organization he leads called the Cosmic Cow Society ( He also offers a line of prints and cards and his work is for sell in galleries, boutiques, and shops all across NC, from the mountains to the beach. Go to to learn more about Scott and view his image gallery, and to check out his prints, card sets, complete list of exhibitions, sign up for his newsletter, and even send free online greeting cards! Plaster will exhibit his whimsical Collection of Flies and a collection of limited edition framed prints. 

Collage Artist Perry Boswell's work is well known across Central NC, having been featured in articles and hosted in numerous group and one-person shows. Perry's love of nostalgia and times-past carries over to his work; his unique collages tell stories using witty humor, antique pictures, and pieces of old books. It seems you see something different every time you look. Perry teaches art in a public school and has also done interior design work for the furniture markets in NC and CA. You can learn more about him at

Plaster and Boswell's work is also currently on exhibit at Cellar 101 in Fuquay Varina. 

You can RSVP to this event on Facebook at

Also, for more information about Studio Salon 180, check out the following links:

Check my blog below, and also the following for more information:




Thursday, January 20, 2011

Whimsical Artists Manifesto, Part 2: The Whimsy of Our "Whimsical Animals"

Whimsical Artists: Scott Plaster's Cry Baby whimsical painting
Whimsical Artists Manifesto, Part 2:
The Whimsy of Our "Whimsical Animals"

In Part 1 of this series, I talked about what makes a "whimsical" artist, a whimsical artist. There's so much to that question! This time, I'll focus on one subject of many whimsical artists -- whimsical animals. So many of us find whimsy when we turn to nature and the animal world. It's no wonder that whimsical animals would be the subject of a whimsical artist's realm.

I host a group on Fine Art America called, Cosmic Cow: Home of the Whimsical, with 70 members and over 1,000 images. Let's see what we can learn by looking at their works, starting with cats and dogs, including my "Cry Baby" featured here. Here are some of the interesting paintings from my group's members:

Some whimsical cat and dog paintings from Whimsical Artists:

by whimsical artist Pat Saunders-White
Sir Barksalot
by  whimsical artist Diane Daigle
The Cheshire Cat - L...
by  whimsical artist Lucia Stewart

by  whimsical artist Catherine G McElroy
by  whimsical artist Alan Kenny
Amigo by  whimsical artist  
Joy DiNardo Bradley DiNardo

All of the whimsical artists above classified their works as "whimsical." What an interesting collection -- a smiling dog, a dog in armor, a cheshire cat, a cat being wooed by a couple of mice, a patchwork cat comprised of a desert scene, and a little "amigo." What makes each one a whimsical animal? Is it the pose, the treatment, the situation, the juxtaposition of other subjects? Which painting is the most whimsical? the most original? the most unique?

"Cry Baby" is one of my whimsical animals, and I think the reason he qualifies is his drastic and unusual "yawn" which ambiguously looks like a big cat's growl. Who knows (other than me) which is the case? I suppose it makes you wonder. Other whimsical artists have different takes on creating whimsical animals out of cats and dogs.

Are the cats in "Amigo," "Cheshire Cat," "Landscape in Cat," and "Be Mine" whimsical for similar reasons? I think "Amigo" is personified and given character by putting him beside a bench and looking as if he's just downed a margarita. The Cheshire cat certainly has the type of character you see in animated features. The cat presenting a Valentine's gift in "Be Mine" is certainly lighthearted and playful. Is the context what makes it whimsical? The unusual situation? Of all of the cats, "Landscape in Cat" might be a little different. Although its pose is a little extreme, what sets it apart is that the figure of the cat is rendered in the landscape elements that have been eliminated from his surroundings. What an interesting take on the subject! But is it "whimsical"? If it is, what makes it whimsical? Is it because of the unusual approach? How many times can an artist use the same "unusual" approach before it is no longer out of the ordinary?

The cute terrier in "Sir Barksalot" is situated like a knight, because we all know that terriers are the most royal of dogs, right? What separates this dog in armor from an average, everyday cartoon character? Does an animal have to be personified to be considered whimsical? Of all the whimsical animals above, the dog in 'Peek-A-Boo" might be the most mainstream. Is it whimsical, or does it fall short of our criteria? Looking closely, you see the dog is immersed in foliage and playfully looking out. I think this qualifies, and steers clear of creating a cartoon-like picture that threatens to border on the overdone. The dog certainly has character and it has been caught in quite a whimsical situation.

I really enjoy the variety and creativity we can see in paintings of whimsical animals! To me, I could paint many and still not run out of ideas, but I really do try to make them each different. I would love for you to check them out in my image gallery, my cards or prints pages, or even on free online greeting cards. I consider myself a whimsical artist, but I don't want to be confined to any bounds or definitions, as I'm sure most whimsical artists would not.

Enjoy... and be whimsical!

--Whimsical Artist Scott Plaster

Online Greeting Cards:

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Whimsical Artists Manifesto, Part 1: The Whimsical Artist's Subject Matter

Whimsical Artist Scott Plaster's Cosmic Cow
Whimsical Artists Manifesto, Part 1: 
The Whimsical Artist's Subject Matter

What makes a "whimsical" artist a whimsical artist? I started terming my subjects "whimsical animals" long before I really knew what the term "whimsical" encompassed. I think many aspects about an artist's work can make it whimsical, but perhaps one of the most important is not the style, but the subject matter.

Take the first whimsical animal I painted, the Cosmic Cow. I've seen lots of paintings of cows, and not all of them are whimsical. Many whimsical artists DO paint a variety of animals and other wildlife. What makes the Cosmic Cow whimsical? To me, a cow is not a typical subject, one that is not usually the center of attention, and when barnyard or farm scenes are painted, they usually do not have the animal standing at attention looking directly at the viewer. So, in this case, a cow is definitely a "whimsical" subject.

I suppose most animals can be considered whimsical subjects. I've seen other whimsical artists choose mainly the friendly and fun animals like birds, domesticated house cats, bugs, and other animals you might see in children's stories. So far, I've painted the cow, a sheep, an alley cat and a house cat, a pelican, a rooster, a duck, a tiger, and a meerkat. I'm working on an owl as we speak, and I also have another duck, a white ibis, and some other creatures in the works.

What I think all of these subjects have in common is that they all have "character." Whimsical, by definition means fun and unusual, lighthearted, and unique. I seem to be drawn to birds! But why whimsical animals? Some whimsical artists paint people, while other whimsical artists paint landscapes. To me, it is easier for me to portray an animal's whimsical nature, than it is for me to paint a whimsical landscape. Believe me, I've tried, but I am just not as connected in the same way as I am to my animals.

What do you think? What are the best subjects for whimsical artists?

You can see my complete menagerie at my website at Just go to my cards or prints page. Better yet, try a whimsical artist puzzles or an online whimsical art greeting card!

I will continue this series by discussing other elements you might find in whimsical art, and what I see myself implementing as a whimsical artist.


Monday, January 17, 2011

Whimsical Artists? What is a Whimsical Artist?

Whimsical Artists: Scott Plaster's whimsical Cosmic Cow painting
Whimsical Artists? What is a Whimsical Artist?
Whimsical Artist? What makes Scott Plaster a whimsical artist? The term "whimsical artist" has been around for a while, and it is often used in differnet contexts. Some whimsical artists create images using child-like characters resembling cartoons. Other whimsical artists might create surreal "fantasyscapes" or other-wordly images. Scott Plaster's "whimsical animals" are different, but he still likes to call himself a whimsical artist. His whimsical animals are not cartoon-like, but they have a unique blend of realism and the whimsical, surreal quality that other whimsical artists capture in their work. Whimsical artists might not always agree on what the term means. What do you think?

Check out my whimsical artwork at my website or send a whimsical online greeting card.


Friday, January 14, 2011

Starving Artists? Original Oils for $19? The Real Story

Isn't it Lovely? A bargain? An Original?
Starving Artists? Original Oils for $19? The Real Story
I keep seeing the ads on TV: Get sofa-sized original oil paintings for only $whatever dollars. As if the garish, tacky, poorly done style is not enough to scare away a true art enthusiast, everyone should know where these paintings come from. I found some nice resources I can point you to, but I will first summarize. Many of these paintings are simply not really paintings at all, but prints that are made to look like real paintings. Even worse, the "real" paintings are usually completed on an assembly line by sweatshop workers paid very little, producing hundreds upon hundreds of look-alike paintings. Are these "original" works of art?

Before you (or anyone) proceeds to consider purchasing one of these "bargains," ask yourself, "Wouldn't I rather own a painting created by a real person, someone I can actually meet, talk to, and follow the work of?" In the "Buy Local" movement, don't neglect to include art and design among the areas we want to keep at home. We have lost so many of our jobs overseas in many industries, and it is usually NOT because we do not have the workers or materials to produce these items locally.

Never is that statement more true than with art. We have talented, eager artists, artisans, and craftspeople all around our communities. Look around. Their work is available. And it is sometimes very affordable. You CAN own original art and you don't need to look overseas to do it.

Here are a couple of links where you can learn more about the "bargain" art you can buy in hotel conference centers:

If you want a bargain, you can discover my whimsical artwork for FREE at My Website, which includes free online art greeting cards, my image gallery, pages for my cards and prints, and even interactive online jigsaw puzzles.


Thursday, January 13, 2011

"Study in Greys" - Poetry and Art

Study in Greys - Poetry and Art
I don't think I have this "preserved" anywhere, so I thought I would do that here. This painting and poem was my submission for last year's "Poetic Expressions" contest at the Gallery of the Arts. The idea was to pair a poem and painting, for one to inspire the other. I started with the painting and wrote the poem based on it:

"Study in Greys"
Greyness broke our footfall,
One brick down and one brick back.
Once the clay washed off the peak
Falling grey, then white, then black.

The graves are where the bones 
Of ash collected when we wept.
We built the walls around our heart
To protect the ones who slept.

Complete the puzzle to see the painting:

Solve more puzzles at my website at

Monday, January 10, 2011

Four Cool Cats in Town: We're Having a Party!

Four Cool Cats in Town: We're Having a Party!

I've rounded up my four whimsical cat paintings and they're now on exhibit at the Green Goat Gallery in Spencer, NC, located right across from the train museum. "Mystic Tiger," "Miami Lewie," "Monty Meerkat," and of course, "Cry Baby" are on display for cat and whimsical art lovers alike, along with prints, greeting cards, notecard sets, and stand-up prints.

Click to Enlarge
"Cry Baby" is the only house cat of the group. I caught this unusual yawn? one day when I just happened to have a camera in my hand. It was just a coincidence that the footstool he sat on was a leopard-print. I created the deep blue/purple background to accent his silver and grey fur. The texture of his coat was captured with brush strokes and knife work, with a sheen on the top of his head to highlight the softness of his hair. The whimsical original, 22" x 28", is smaller than the other three 30" x 40" paintings.

Click to Enlarge
"Miami Lewie" is a curious little alley cat who lives outside a hotel in the Art Deco district of Miami. The unusual perspective of this painting was captured from an interesting vantage point with the cat reclining upon a stuccoed wall. I captured this interesting portrait with a camera while on a photo excursion in Miami while on vacation. I affectionately named my subject "Louis Puffy Cheeks" and captured this interesting feature when I painted him. I spelled the name "Lewie" instead of Louis in the title because so many people pronounced the name Lewis (must have been because of the juxtaposition with "Miami"). My treatment of the foliage is reminiscent of the primitive style of Henri Rousseau, while the sunwashed beach-tone stucco created with a scumbled effect, contrasts with the more natural color and stylized lines of the cat's fur. The chain-link fence behind the subject accentuates the whimsical Art Deco flair.

Click to Enlarge
"Mystic Tiger" is based on the male tiger who lives at the Natural Science Center in Greensboro, NC. Axl came from a large cat rescue in Mebane, NC, and is a Bengal-Siberian mix. Tigers are now endangered and more live in captivity than in the wild! Like all of my animals, I wanted Mystic Tiger to be something out-of-the ordinary. To me, a tiger is out of place in Greensboro, behind a fence or glass. Somehow its presence transcends the here and now. It's such an awesome experience to be able to see such a sight in person. The "mystic" aura around the tiger in my painting seeks to capture that experience.

Click to Enlarge
"Monty Meerkat," like the tiger, also lives at the Natural Science Center. Meerkats have always been curious creatures to me. I struggled with the treatment of Monty. I created the rocks in the foreground early on in a "cartoon-like" style, and then considered what to do with the rest of the painting. At first, I was going to do a monochromatic treatment of the entire subject. I then began the background, at first in a flat black. After adding texture to the background, I found the balance I was looking for between the stylized look of most of my animals, and a hint of realism to add to their character. Painting Monty was easy by that point. His curiosity is reflected in his eyes, and his fur just waits to be petted.

All of these whimsical art images can also be purchased in matted art prints. I offer matted 8"x10" and 11"x14" prints. You can see what these images look like as matted prints by checking out my prints page at They're also available as glossy, high-quality 5"x7" greeting cards. You can even get all four cats in a four-card notecard set, called "Cats in the Bag." You can see it at my cards page at

"Cry Baby" is even featured in greeting cards at my FREE Online Greeting Card site at  Over 500 cards were "picked up" during the Christmas holiday season, but I'm going to keep the site going strong by expanding it with other holiday cards. I have three very different birthday cards to choose from, and even a get well soon card. I'll be creating a large variety of Valentines Day cards, so check back soon!

To learn more about Whimsical Artist Scott Plaster's work, read more at

Visit the cats at the Green Goat Gallery:

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

FREE Online Birthday Cards (and More)....

FREE Online Birthday Cards (and More)...
The Christmas holiday season is over, but my free online art greeting card site is still going strong! Over 500 cards have been "picked up" at my site! I have a new url at and have a few selections in the Birthday card section and even a Get Well Soon card. I'll be sure to have LOTS for Valentine's Day....

Know someone having a birthday soon? Send a thoughtful art greeting card!


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Free Music and Art in Fuquay-Varina

Free Music and Art in Fuquay-Varina
The arts organization, the Cosmic Cow Society, and Durham-based band West Trinity will be hosted by Cellar 101 in Fuquay-Varina in a multi-sensory blend of art and music on Friday, January 7 at 7 pm as a part of the Art After Dark event.  Durham-based band West Trinity will perform its bluesy rock originals and the entire establishment will be lined with the eclectic art from a regional arts organization, the Cosmic Cow Society. West Trinity features accomplished and original musicians, thoughtful lyrics, and powerful vocals. Currently working on their second album, Therese, Kenray, John, and Jensen have been featured frequently at Cellar 101 and are always well received. The arts organization, the Cosmic Cow Society, is made up of twelve diverse artists who work in various media, including painting (oil, watercolor, acrylic, gouache, mixed media), fiber art, photography, and woodcarving. The group is made up of some full-time professional artists, several interior designers, teachers, and some emerging artists pursuing art on a part-time basis. Artists will include artist and leader Scott Plaster (, collage artist Perry Boswell (, and woodcarver Bob Stuart ( Highlights of the evening will include a woodcarving demonstration and prize raffles. You can find out more about the Cosmic Cow Society at West Trinity publicizes its events on and on Facebook at ( Find the Facebook event at Join us for an exciting evening of art and music!" The art will remain on exhibit until West Trinity returns on February 11. Cellar 101 is located at 101 S. Main StreetFuquay-VarinaNC, 27526