Calico cat

28 01 2016

Something totally different from me, studio fans. Yes, a cat! I created this piece with hand-dyed tissue paper and framed it just in time to offer it to the Punahou Carnival Art Gallery, open during Carnival hours 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on February 5 and 6. Half of the sales collected is donated by the artists to the school’s financial aid fund. I love this kitty!


Below are two more creations of mine that will be in the exhibit, too.

18” x 24” Hand-dyed Paper on Canvas by Rebekah Luke

Bromeliads (paper)


Life at Ka Punahou (oil)

Copyright 2016 Rebekah Luke

Ula the Cat; she’s back

13 01 2014

Ula the Cat is back. When Pua the bigger dog came to live with us, Ula became a nervous wreck and moved out. One dog, okay, but not two!

When Ula disappeared, DH and I thought she had gone away to die, as cats do. We looked everywhere for her until I spotted her resting quietly under the front porch, largely hidden from view by ferns.

I crawled around under the steps for awhile with food and water. Then we tipped an old ice chest sideways to create better shelter and a level place for Ula to hang out. From that spot she had a 180-degree view. No way would she come back into the house.

DH got tired of serving Ula there, so he moved the ice chest to ON the porch. Not rain proof. Not sat.

Here’s a photo of the current fix designed by DH, a handmade hardwood and granite table to go over the ice chest.

Whenever Ula is not in her box, as she wasn’t this morning, we worry. But now she’s back again. She will pad up to the front screen door to meow for breakfast, but still no further. She is used to being the Queen.



For the birds

7 12 2013

Two peacocks appeared
in my garden this morning
looking for salad
On the right and left
I missed their iridescence
not their loud love calls
Five six seven eight
chickens mingle, look for worms
don’t dare touch cat’s food
Fat dove out-raced them
for the tasty little bits
of breakfast. Oh, birds!
Copyright 2013 Rebekah Luke

Win win, Ruth says, but I call it bartering!

24 02 2012

All of a sudden, things are starting to move around here, and everyone is tuning in to the new energy. Even Alice Brown and Ula feel the change.  But first, an announcement:

Rebekah Luke is the solo guest artist starting Sunday, Feb. 26, at the residence at 914 Kainui Drive in Kailua! I’m thrilled! My sister Ruth and her colleague Karyn have staged the home for sale with my oil paintings, and I must say, both the house and my paintings look great! Instead of seeing my work in my virtual gallery, people can now see what the paintings look like hanging in their frames and imagine what they will look like in their own home or office. There is really no substitute for seeing the original.

Ruth phoned and asked if they could borrow an easel to set up an area as an artist’s studio. Sure, I said. Then she asked if I had any paintings they could use to decorate the freshly painted walls. Indeed, I’m always looking for opportunities to show my art, and, really, no problem. Ruth, an equestrian, did help me out once by providing a horse I needed for a photo shoot.

DH and I loaded the paintings — nearly all my available inventory — into the car. I wanted a large enough choice from which Ruth and Karyn could select. I also packed up other props, like a palette, some paint tubes, some brushes, even some “leaners” (unfinished or unsaleable canvases).

When I reached the venue I could do whatever I wanted, in any of the rooms, to install an art show! The public would come to see the property, and at the same time they would view the art. The realtor associates needed interior decor, and I welcomed gallery space! “It’s a win win,” Ruth said, quite pleased with herself. I’m loving it too.

I arranged the paintings on the floor in front of the wall they would hang on, and the three of us concurred as to their placement. Naturally, I deferred to my hosts, and I’m so glad I did! All of the paintings are on display!

About the property: Conveniently located at the edge of Kailua, on an avenue lined with coconut palms. Renovated 3BR, 2B, single story, large back yard, new landscaping. The current owner is our mom Ivalee, and the home has been in the family since the 1960s (or earlier) when Grandpa and Grandma Haus lived in it. Ruth can give you the asking price.

About the paintings: My original Hawaiian landscapes and still life in oil. $125 to $800.

If you are on Oahu, I hope you’ll take the opportunity to meet us and see our work.

The Special Showings and Open House dates and times are:

Sunday, Feb. 26, 2-5 p.m.
Thursday, Mar. 1, 9:30 to 11:30 a.m.
Sunday, Mar., 4, noon to 5 p.m.
Thursday, Mar. 8, 9:30-11:30 a.m.
Sunday, Mar. 11, 2 to 5 p.m.
Sunday, Mar. 18, 2 to 5 p.m.

Thanks, Ruth and Karyn!

In the next post I’ll give an update on my teaching adventures, travel adventures, new energy, etc., Meanwhile, here are today’s snaps of the studio animals.

Alice Brown, our adorable puppy, keeps me company in the studio.

Ula, the bossy cat. Look out! She's old now.

Copyright 2012 Rebekah Luke

My aging cat

5 04 2011


Her name is Ula, for the red-brown color of her fur. She adopted us, sitting outside the door for several days. When no one answered the ad for “Found: big, brown bossy cat,” we surrendered to letting this beautiful creature move in. She’s old now.

I realized that yesterday morning when I made this portrait. I stopped a split-second-in-time and saw in another way the familiar soul I’ve lived with for at least 15 years. It’s an image of an aging cat.

Ula is the queen of the household, and she has both good (DH) and reluctant (me) staff. She rules with a loud, irritating New York meow that means one of four things: “feed me,” “let me in,” “let me out,” or “pet me.”

She can bang on the screen door as though to break it down. She delights in lying between the dog, who is smaller and arrived after her, and the dog’s way out to pee. It pains me to let her have her way, but I do because otherwise she’d continue to nag or, worse, scratch or nip me.

She is so crotchety, her vet once said, “Why don’t you take her to someone she likes?” On the last visit, we all agreed that she doesn’t have to make the trip to the vet any more.

But though old, Ula’s still got it. For hours last week she stalked a dove, who mistakenly flew into the studio, and nailed it. Feathers everywhere.

DH prefers to think of Ula as ageless and not aging. I ask, “Is she complaining because she is in pain?” because lately she’s barfed more than the normal hairball barf. He replied, “Ula always complains.”

When I reviewed the photo, I thought, “Ula, you grew old before my eyes, and I hardly noticed until now.” It gave me pause.

How we love to chronicle a child’s growth and development. Yet how easy it is to miss the physical changes of life’s winter, especially of those closest to us, unless we make a conscious effort to truly look and “see” them enough to extend some kindness.

Copyright 2011 Rebekah Luke

For more on Ula, click on the word “cat” in Favorite Topics (see the right-hand sidebar). Then scroll down to see previous posts about my cat.

Ula the photo assistant

11 11 2010

Alice Brown the 7-year-old puppy dog upstages Ula the cat all the time. Today I thought I’d share a photo of Ula the photo assistant.

I was making an artsy photo of Native Hawaiian plants—Hibiscus kokio ssp. saintjohnianus in an umeke (calabash) turned from kou by island artist and friend Scott Sullivan. The Lyon Arboretum displayed the final image.

Copyright 2010 Rebekah Luke

Guest dog is here and Ula meows no thanks

9 10 2010

Alice Brown and Pua

Pua is at the studio. I call her guest dog, but she’s really Alice Brown’s cousin and part of our extended family. On most days DH stops by her house to take both of them and Miss Marvelous for a walk down the beach. Yes, we’re dog sitting.

The one most inconvenienced is Ula the cat. She hates it. When Pua arrived, the cat made a mad dash to under-the-bed in the guest room. You might wonder, if Pua is the guest, then why doesn’t she get the guest room? Well, she doesn’t fit under the bed. Ah, now you understand why Ula hates it. And besides, Pua comes with her own bed. And food.

Pua chasing her mom chasing Miss Marvelous

She’s a good guest, and we make her welcome, though. As soon as she arrives, she immediately gobbles whatever is in Alice Brown’s dish and slurps up the cat’s food on her way out to the dog run to relieve herself. This, while the cat makes her escape.

Ula under my easel

How did we do it the last time? asks DH. Pua stayed over on the Fourth of July. It was some combination of a child gate and, hmm, what did we do?

We started with the gate to cordon off the second floor. Then we moved Ula’s food and water station to the guest room. Now, picture the cat having the use of the whole upper level and the rest of us on the main level.

When it was time to turn in for the night, I looked all over for Ula, as she was not under the bed anymore, and I finally found her under my desk behind a curtain. She’d been right there by me most of the evening.

Not a peep did she make. Ordinarily she is very talkative. A big brown bossy New York cat who meows loudly and frequently. Let me in. Meow. Let me out. Meow. Feed me. Meow. Now! She’s old now, still healthy as far as we and the vet can tell. But she’s also aloof. She won’t let anyone touch or pet her much. Please don’t try it; you might get shredded.

I reminded DH who was watching TV downstairs with the dogs to make sure he separated the animals when he came to bed. I fell fast asleep. At 4 a.m. loud barking and scurrying and hissing! Pua had found Ula and had cornered her! My guess is that Ula had come out of her hiding place and was hoping to make her way to the litter box.

Okay, so now we separate the animals. DH takes the dogs out to the dog run, and the coast is clear for Ula. My last act of service before starting this blog post was to move the litter box to the guest room, coax the cat back into the temporary quarters, turn the lights down low and close the door.

You see, at the studio Alice Brown is the Princess (see the masthead), but Ula’s the Queen.

Copyright 2010 Rebekah Luke

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