Christmas Sock Monkeys at Antie Faye’s

“Reduce the complexity of life by eliminating the needless wants of life, and the labors of life will reduce themselves.”
Edwin Way Teale

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Christmas Sock Monkeys

I have been painting  little Christmas things I can add to the building paintings, so that clients can make Christmas cards.  I just stuck these two little toy soldiers on this to show you how fun it can be.  They sorta blend into this building, but it’s just for an example.  I’m making wreaths and swags and trees, for example, to jazz up any card.  Fun!

Edwin Way Teale

Edwin Way Teale, (1899-1980), was a naturalist, writer, and photographer who captured the imaginations and hearts of Americans in his many books about nature. He is ranked with John Muir, Henry David Thoreau, and John Burroughs as one of the best and most influential nature writers in America.  More here…

Auntie Faye’s Postcard sans Sock Monkey

“What a time to be alive!
There are no ideas that are totally tapped down,
no ideology is adequate to the task of this time.
So it is a time for really alive, innovative people.
I have my oar in the water with everyone else.
I am rowing in the direction I can….
It is great to be alive!”

Fran Peavey

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Auntie Faye’s 4″ x 6″ Postcard – Without the Sock Monkey

The sock monkey is actually a little town marketing thing we got wrapped up in.  I don’t begrudge the folks at Auntie Faye’s for their decision to take it out for the postcard.  I’m just happy that I know how!   Yay Photoshop and Tara Reed’s tutorial that I purchased a couple years ago.   😀

I love today’s quote!  It came from Ruth Fishel’s little book Wrinkles Don’t Hurt – Daily Meditations on the Joy of Aging Mindfully.  I love that book!!

Fran Peavey has worked in many fields: college professor, taxi driver, junior high teacher, comedian. For 30 years she has been working as a human rights campaigner, comedian, and social change worker. “For more than half her life…Peavey has been at the barricades, challenging the status quo, trying to build a new culture of peaceful co-operation and social justice…Fran Peavey reminds that ordinary people can make a difference.” David Leser, in “Good Weekend”Fomerly a member of the world renowned Atomic Comics, she teaches “heart politics to social changeworkers around the world.  (copied bio info from

State Farm Sock Monkey Painting

“You miss 100% of the shots you never take.”
– Wayne Gretsky

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

State Farm Sock Monkey Painting – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor & Ink

First I have to say my heart goes out to all the people in Aurora, Colorado.  I visited that city when my brother lived there in the 70’s.  It’s horrible what happened at that movie theater and it’s going to have such a huge impact on a state that has already been rocked with too much this year.

This is another painting from my hometown of Eufaula, Oklahoma.   My friend Janiece Vest owns this business and is such a huge part of our community.  Janiece is a giver and a community leader who has worked very hard for the Chamber of Commerce and other causes.

I love this one.  I giggled at the State Farm bear peeking out the window the whole time I was painting it.  Fun!  😀

About Wayne Gretsky

Wayne Gretsky, the Canadian hockey champion known as the Great One, held 61 NHL records when he retired in 1999. He was born in Brantford, Ontario, and was a prodigy on the ice, competing with ten-year-olds when he was six and playing professionally by 16. He hit the big time playing for the Edmonton Oilers. When he was traded to the L.A. Kings in 1988, Canadians burned the Oilers’ owner in effigy. In 1999, ESPN named Gretsky the fifth-greatest athlete of the 20th century.

Signs by Beth Building Sketch – 8″ x 10″

“A ship in port is safe, but that’s not what ships are built for.”
Grace Murray Hopper

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Signs by Beth Building Sketch – 8″ x 10″

Here’s the initial sketch for the Signs by Beth sock monkey painting.  I wanted to get involved in the sock monkey project and do my building, too.  I am tickled with my jeep.  I never dreamed I’d be able to draw it where you could tell it was a jeep.  he he

About Grace Murray Hopper

Rear Admiral Grace Murray Hopper, the American computer pioneer, was the first woman to become a Distinguished Fellow of the British Computer Society. She was born in 1906 in New York. By age seven, she was taking alarm clocks apart to see how they worked. She worked for the U.S. Navy developing the first compiler, which allowed people to write computer programs in real language rather than machine code. When she found a moth inside a computer, she coined the term “debugging.” She died in 1992.

Even a Sock Monkey Likes a Cool Dip to Refresh

“Long live impermanence! Without it a flower would never blossom, a baby would never be able to walk or become a teenager and grow into adulthood.”
–Thich Nhat Hahn

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Even a Sock Monkey Likes a Cool Dip to Refresh – 4″ x 6″ Ink

Busy weekend and no time to fill in with watercolor.  I painted this from an photo by Lisilk at WetCanvas.  Li lives in the Bahamas and there were children playing on a floating toy in the ocean.  Somehow my brain went to “refresh” for Illustration Friday and of course… sock monkeys.  😀

Thich Nhat Hahn

The Most Venerable Thich Nhat Hanh (Thây)  founded the Unified Buddhist Church (Eglise Bouddhique Unifieé) in France in 1969, during the Vietnam war. Thich Nhat Hanh is a Vietnamese Buddhist monk, a poet, a scholar, and a peace activist. His life long efforts to generate peace and reconciliation moved Martin Luther King, Jr. to nominate him for the Nobel Peace Prize in 1967. He founded the Van Hanh Buddhist University in Saigon and the School for Youths of Social Services in Vietnam. When not travelling the world to teach “The Art of Mindful Living”, he teaches, writes, and gardens in Plum Village, France, a Buddhist monastery for monks and nuns and a mindfulness practice center for lay people.  Source

Eufaula 2011 Art Walk Poster – 11″ x 14 Watercolor

“Face your deficiencies and acknowledge them; but do not let them master you. Let them teach you patience, sweetness, insight.”
– Helen Keller

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Eufaula 2011 Art Walk Poster – 11″ x 14 Watercolor

This is the painting that started the sock monkey craze we have going in Eufaula.  See the red building on the far corner, next to the aqua awning?  That’s Steel Daffodils.  I am currently working on the kinda orangy colored building with no awning.  Now it’s gray with black awnings and it’s Our Favorite Place, the new gallery in town.   If you turn left at Steel Daffodils, the next one I’m doing is State Farm, on the right side of the street.   If you turn right at Steel Daffodils, you’ll see my sign shop on the right.  Yes, there will also be a Signs by Beth painting and who knows who else will jump on the bandwagon.    Fun!

About Helen Keller

American author and activist Helen Keller was born in Alabama in 1880; she became blind and deaf after a childhood fever. When Helen was seven, her teacher, Annie Sullivan, coaxed her out of her sullen, angry shell and taught her to communicate. From then on, Keller took on the world. She graduated from Radcliffe, traveled the world visiting sweatshops and speaking out for the powerless, helped to found the ACLU, and wrote 11 books. She died in 1968.


Steel Daffodils Practice Sock Monkey

“The point is not to pay back kindness but to pass it on.”
– Julia Alvarez

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Steel Daffodils Practice Sock Monkey

I painted this little dude while trying to see if I could paint a sock monkey with his legs crossed.  Ya gotta love sock monkeys.  They are just the purest form of a childhood toy, that’s okay to keep (or make, or buy) as an adult.  I made a sock monkey for my hubby when we were first together.  I was shocked that he grew up poor and didn’t know what a sock monkey was.  I had one.  My mom was great that way!   She taught me to sew very young and by the time I was in junior high, I was making my own school clothes.  I still love to sew, but I have very little time for it these days.

About Julia Alvarez

Dominican-American author Julia Alvarez is best known for her novels, How the García Girls Lost Their Accents, about sisters adjusting to life in the US, and In the Time of the Butterflies, the tragic life story of the anti-Trujillo activists, the Mirabal sisters. Born in New York in 1950, she was raised in the Dominican Republic until she was ten, when her family fled the country. She and her husband live in Vermont and run a sustainable coffee farm/literacy center in the Dominican Republic.


Steel Daffodils – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor and Sharpie

“The game of life is not so much in holding a good hand as playing a poor hand well.”
–H. T. Leslie

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Steel Daffodils – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor and Sharpie

This is another sock monkey Eufaula building portrait.  Steel Daffodils is owned by Tammy & Helen, two of the sweetest ladies you ever want to meet.  It’s a wonderful store!  Our little sock monkey is enjoying one of their wonderful coffees.  🙂

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

I couldn’t find anything at all on H.T. Leslie.  This quote came from the book, Our Best Days.  A daily meditation book for adolescents, Our Best Days offers support on issues such as responsibility, family members, peer pressure, and relationships.

Stuffed Olive Postcard – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor

“This I conceive to be the chemical function of humor: to change the character of our thought.”
– Lin Yutang

This must be why I often say “I needed that!” after a good belly laugh.  🙂

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Stuffed Olive Postcard – 8″ x 10″ Watercolor

The owner of this restaurant, Debbie Gibbens,  has the best set of marketing skills!  She is always doing something original and quirky to promote her businesses.  (Besides this restaurant in Eufaula, she has 3 locations of Libby’s, a wonderful clothing store; in Eufaula, Tulsa and St. Louis.)  Debbie commissioned this postcard.  She wanted the restaurant, a VW bug and a sock monkey.  The trailer was my idea and she liked it.  I also did their sign when they first opened.  The olive is a carved, dimensional olive.

Here are some of the practice steps I took on the way to the final painting…

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

Copyright Beth Parker Art 2012

About Lin Yutang

Chinese author Lin Yutang wrote more than 35 books in English and Chinese, including My Country and My People and The Importance of Living, which brought him international fame. He was born in 1895 in the Fujian province in China. He created a Chinese-American dictionary, an indexing system for Chinese letters, and translated many classic Chinese texts. Written in a humorous, accessible style, his books bridged European and Chinese cultures. He died in 1976.

Sock Monkey or No Sock Monkey

“To keep your character intact you cannot stoop to filthy acts. It makes it easier to stoop the next time.”
– Katharine Hepburn

Art Walk Poster – 11″ x 14″  Watercolor

You may remember that I did the poster for this year’s Eufaula Art Walk & Car Show.  The only thing they asked for was to put a car in it.  I also put a sock monkey in the car and well…. that didn’t go over so well.  They asked me to photoshop it out, so I did.  That’s okay.  Not everybody likes sock monkeys.  (what?!  Really?!)  he he

The prints that will be available for sale at Art Walk will be the ones without the monkey.  They will be auctioning off the original (with monkey) at their silent auction.  I still haven’t seen the posters with the Art Walk advertising on them.   That is why they have so much blank space on them… for the words.

Be sure to stop by the Main Street Studio, 201 S. Main, in Eufaula this  Saturday, October 1st.  I will be there from 8 am – 11 am, and the auction will run all day.   They are also offering several workshops in the studio.  Around Eufaula, there will be a car show, a golf cart show, an Indian Exhibit, over 30 local artists, kid events and food everywhere.  The hub, so to speak, of the event is going to be at Bank of Eufaula, inside and out.   (They always have coffee and really good cookies there, too.)

I have around 25 small paintings at the Main Street Studio, too, so don’t be shy.  They are all available for sale.  😀

Remember, there is only one painting with the sock monkey in it, the original, available at the silent auction.

About Katharine Hepburn

Gutsy American actress Katharine Hepburn was ranked the greatest actress of all time by the American Film Institute for her roles in films such as The African Queen and The Philadelphia Story. She was born in 1907 in Connecticut. Early in her film career, RKO took away her overalls, demanding she dress like a screen icon, prompting her to walk through the studio in her underwear. Her romance with Spencer Tracy led to their delightful verbal sparring in films like Adam’s Rib and Woman of the Year. She died in 2003.