Art   on

The Mezzanine
Esther Luttrell, Artist
"Cave Dwelling"

The beautiful detail you see is a natural part of the broken tile I obtained for free, at a handi-man store. The only thing I painted were the actual ancient Indian apartments inside the cave. A gallery in Huntington Beach, CA carried these for me and put a prize tag on them of $85.00. They sold quite well.
"Flapper in Blue"
"A Southern Barn"
"Everglades at Dusk"

Could have been called Scene From My Childhood.
"Ships A-sail"

Mainly I wanted to experiment with the translucent look of a stormy sea. When I finished it though, something bothered me about it. I looked at it every now and then over a period of about a week before I finally got it: the perspective is off! That ship on the right is closer than the one in the middle, and yet I painted it smaller. I was so pleased with the water tones, I didn't want to scrap it, so I stewed another few days. And then it came to me what to do to salvage it: I would put the men in the rowboat in a bottle, and the ships inside bubbles! To heck with perspective! 
"The Metallic Girl"

My family was stunned to see that I exhibited this odd little thing in a Long Beach art show. They were even more stunned to see that it sold within the first half hour!
"Angel Watching Over"
"At the Drive-In Picture Show"
"Breaking Out"

One day it hit me that most of us females are a very long time in breaking out. The pencil sketch at the left of the main figure represents how most of us were rather robot-like when we were children. We obeyed our parents, our teachers, those in authority. Then we dated and tried to be good little girls for our future husband. Then we married. And one day, we realize that we have not ever been ourself! And we break out! That doesn't mean leaving anyone or anything; it simply means realizing our own value, and coming to love ourself as a unique individual.
"Two Faces of Women"

Still in my female-thought mode, I realized that most of us have two faces: one that is rather a charade: That's when we say everything's fine and it isn't fine at all; when we're strong for those who depend on us when we want nothing more than a wide shoulder to lean on; the fix-it female, making everyone happy but herself. And then ... there's the true woman. The one she is in her heart: soft, vulnerable, often confused, and gentle.
"The Hooker"

Can't imagine what inspired me to paint this.
"Reader in the Moonlight"
More Classic Movies

"Gloria Swanon at 18" (above) I took that from a black and white photo. I wanted to see if I could paint knit and satin.

"Dietrich": I never have understood why she is considered an all-time beauty.

"Ingrid Bergman", now this lady, to me, is really beautiful.

"James Cagney as Yankee Doodle Dandy" - Need I say more

"Garbo". Greta, that is.
"Brooke Shields"

Step-daughter Rean was 2nd A.D. on a Brooke Shields movie and the two hit it off. On Rean's birthday, Brooke took her mom Terry, Rean, Larry (Rean's father, my husband) and myself to dinner. Someone happened to mention that Brooke's birthday was coming up soon. Since I'd already painted this, I thought it'd be downright kindly of me to give it to her as a present. So, I did. A lot of personal items were on the frame. For instance, see the bowling pin? In Brooke's Santa Monica condo, her narrow entrance way was lined with bowling pins. There are also crushed Pepsi cans on the frame, because Brooke loved Pepsi. She had made a movie with the name of a desert in its title, so I had a lot of sand on the frame. Just a lot of fun mish-mash that I thought she'd get a kick out of. She accepted it graciously, but I heard later it never got further in her house than her bedroom closet!  Such is life....
(1)"Judy All Grown-Up". (2) "Natalie Wood": I painted this as a companion piece to go with the James Dean painting. They had matching chrome frames. The owner of a gallery where they were on exhibit had a crush on Natalie Wood. When his gallery closed, I went to pick up the paintings that were still there. Natalie was not among them, though I had no record of the painting having sold. Turns out it was in the gallery owner's home. I can't swear to what happened, but when I insisted he give it back, it arrived with a knife slash, making it unsalable. (3) Nope, not Clint Eastwood. It's that wonderful actor "Jack Elam". He had one eye that sort of wandered off and did its own thing, but he was terrific. (4) "Rita Hayworth". I wasn't so interested in painting Hayworth as I was trying to determine if I could capture the look of velvet. (5: Below) "King of the Cowboys: Roy Rogers". (6) "The Lone Ranger".  Don't pass out from shock when I tell you this little thing sold not ten minutes after it went on exhibit!