by Lynn McBrides
The word souvenir in French has a broader meaning than its English equivalent: it can mean a keepsake but is also the French word for a memory. Even if you’ve never been to France and have no ‘souvenirs’, you may have a fantasy in your mind of the places you’re longing to visit.
If you have a little place for France or Italy in your heart, how about a place for them in your home?
We live in Burgundy and I love to collect small oil paintings at the French flea markets, but it’s increasingly hard to find good ones, especially at a reasonable price. Since I’ve started blogging I’ve made friends with some wonderful contemporary artists who have poured their hearts into capturing the beauty of Europe: the architecture, the landscapes, the little European moments of discovery. And you don’t have to get on a plane to find them, they’re on the web, and much of their work is surprisingly affordable.
Each of these artists has a connection to France or Italy and a story to tell, and I’m drawn to each of them. Which artist will bring back a ‘souvenir’ of Europe for you?
For more information on any of the artists, click on the links or on their paintings.
From his house in the Dordogne countryside, Tom Vieth paints fun, fresh, and oh so French watercolors that will bring a smile to your face. He and his wife Susan blog at A Small village In France. Thomas Vieth
California artist Barbara Andolsek captures the heart of France with her sophisticated, evocative oils, and she’s even painted some of the photos from my blog at Southern Fried French, so you may find that some of her work looks familiar! Barbara Andolsek
It’s Paris all the way for Barbara Redmond, who writes the popular blog, A Woman’s Paris. Her fanciful Paris scenes will take you there. Check out her watercolors– and she even paints iphone covers, so you can carry your ‘souvenirs’ with you! Barbara Redmond
Patricia Glee Smith is a fine artist, one of our readers and lives in Umbria. She paints detailed oils with an old world feel that will absolutely amaze you. Patricia Glee Smith
I love the peaceful feel and rich colors of Vicki Ingham’s paintings. Vicki was a colleague at Meredith publishing and she lives in Iowa. She often goes to Italy as a retreat, where she creates lovely landscapes of the Tuscan countryside. Vicki Ingham
SOUTHERN FRIED FRENCH
Lynn, a native Charlestonian now living in France writes her blog, Southern Fried French, where today she is talking – Let Them Eat (Salmon) Cake !