In just four short weeks I’ll be having an exhibit in a once grand historic mansion called the Henry E. Cook Mansion. In anticipation of that exhibit, I am painting new paintings to hopefully sell to the droves of people that will tour the mansion for Christmas. I thought I’d paint a portrait of the old mansion to use in marketing materials but also just because I wanted to.
I’ve got a soft spot in my heart for old homes. Having lived in a few old homes in my life and experiencing their charm, I would rather have an old home if given the choice. Other than the costly heating bill and small to no closets, they suit me just fine. Besides, the older the home the more chances there might be for a spirit or two to be residing as well! For those who don’t know, I’m one of those crazy people that like to do paranormal hunts.
The Cook mansion first got my attention through a high school friend who happens to also be my mail carrier. Lisa drives the rural route and when I have a package delivery that she has to bring to the door, we get to catch up if for only a short time.
Her son Lucas, a realtor, bought the old mansion and is currently restoring it. She told me about it knowing that I love to investigate anything that might be haunted. She arranged for me and my ghost hunting friend Jody to tour the place.
While I can’t say it’s haunted, I will say that renovations are notorious for ramping up paranormal activity. When I saw the place for the first time, I was smitten. It’s simply beautiful. Even in it’s rough state.
The new young owner, Lucas Neuffer, is lovingly restoring it and has plans to bring it back to its former glory. Much has been done already. The historic mansion was once the home of Henry E. Cook, vice president of Cook Brewery in Evansville. It was built in 1899, is a Colonial Revival style and was designed by architects Harris and Shopbell.
The stately home was once considered Evansville’s most endangered building before Lucas obtained it. The historic mansion was one of three mansions owned by the Cook family on that block. Today, it is sadly the last one standing.
But it will proudly shine again, I’m sure of it.
I wanted to paint the historic mansion how it used to look. Digging up old photos, none of which are in color of course and none of which taken from the same angle, gave me ideas of how it once looked. I did research and found out the porch has been changed over the years. There used to be awnings in black and white. The pediment (the triangular upper part of the front of a building) is totally missing so I had to go from old photos for reference.
It was fun to see the transformation come alive with paint and I can imagine what this beauty will look like in person someday.
So after having painted this house portrait, I thought that others might be interested in having their own home or one they once lived in painted. I’m opening up House Portraits to my repertoire of paintings. If you’d like to commission me to paint your home just contact me.
This painting is just a 7″x5″. It wasn’t the best size for getting in a bunch of details, but it turned out to be a sweet little painting. I would recommend at least an 10″x8″ or larger for a commission and of course really good front facing photos!
Oh hey, if you are interested in coming to the exhibit, I’d love to have you there! If you’re on my email list, you’ll get an invitation very soon or you can find out more information here on my events page.
Learn more about me on the ‘About’ page
under the additional links menu. I’m an artist – a painter mostly and
an avid gardener. I paint a variety of subjects including birds, koi
fish, my gardens, ponds and flowers as well as anything having to do
with nature especially trees and tropical scenes. I
also enjoy painting abstracts and have started created more and more of
them. My most favorite thing to try to achieve in my painting is is
mystery and telling mystical stories.
If you would like to keep up with what I’m doing, I have a newsletter e-mailed about once a month that gives you special status for invitations, birthday greeting and more. I’d love for you to add your email to my Friends and Collectors list!