May 23, 2011

Guest Artist.....Nancy Dale Kinney-Stout

Nancy Dale Kinney-Stout resides in Longview, North Carolina, located at the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. She has traveled and taught since nineteen eighty-five and has maintained a wholesale and retail business. Nancy also enjoys designing painted projects for home decor. She has authored twelve prior books on floral, birds, butterflies, and floor cloths. These books encourage the painter to paint realistic birds using Nancy’s step-by-step method. Nancy has just completed two previous books by Viking Woodcrafts, “Birds We Love I and II plus a North Light Book, which all contain many of the common backyard birds that we all enjoy. “ Birds We Love III is due out at HOOT Convention, Aug. 2011.

My Life
Although I have been privileged to write several books on painting, many of my new designs comes after some turbulent years in my personal life. Some of my loyal followers may have noted that my name has changed from Nancy Dale Kinney to Nancy Dale Kinney-Stout. This name addition is a chapter in my life I wish to share.

After forty-one years of marriage, my first husband announced he no longer loved me nor did he wish to remain married. He left me emotionally and financially devastated. Literally, months after becoming single I found myself being financially forced to leave my home of thirty-two years. Single, homeless, broken, and terrified – it took every ounce of faith and energy to survive much less paint.

However, through the pain and great struggle I slowly began the healing process. I found a “day” job (if you will) that allowed me some health insurance and cash but more importantly, forced me to put on pearls and lipstick when I would have preferred to pull the covers over my head.
At this humiliating job where I actually had to wear a polyester uniform, God sent a gentleman down the isle – in my department where low and behold – he needed help with some paint, matching colors, that type thing. Turns out, he appreciated my assistance and returned frequently to my department. Soon after, we went on a date.
This eventually led to us getting married.
The Picture Trail Site listed has some good pictures of this blessing.

Fairy tales are real. Love is still out there. Hope prevails. I am rooted in my Jesus, the author, creator, and savior of all that is good. So, I want everyone to know I have turned my polyester uniform back in (though I came to cherish it) and I am painting again. At sixty-eight I am the happiest, most loved, and most loving I have ever been. I thank God each day for Al Stout.

Al and I now live in my original home place which we both refer to as: The Paintin’ House. As I look out over this property where I had such a great childhood with ponies and other wildlife that my parents provided, I am aware of how grateful to be back home again to the “good ole days”.

How I Got Started in Art

I was very creative as a child. I didn’t draw or paint but I loved to make up stories, which I still do. We didn’t have a television when they first came out so I made a TV out of a large cardboard box with a hole for the screen. I would crawl into the box and act out commercials from my mom’s cleaning supplies. I did a lot of other “television” shows. I always had to be the center of attention.

When I started in college, I studied to become a veterinarian. But the chemistry classes proved to be my downfall. I decided to major in business and took lots of art classes and that started my interest in expressing myself through art. I decided at that time to concentrate on oil painting.

In the 1970’s, when my children started going to school, I had a little shop called Pets & Crafts. I hired a lady who said she could do decorative painting. I advertised classes but she wasn’t a very good teacher. There I was with students but no teacher. I decided that I would teach the classes. Talk about flying by the seat of your pants! I had to work out the instructions the night before each class then hope that none of the students barreled ahead of me.

I must have done fairly well because later my students encouraged me to teach a class at a national convention. I was literally sick to my stomach from the moment I found out my piece was accepted until the convention started. When I got to convention, all I could think about was calling home and telling my family to come get me. I was so scared! Somehow, I managed to hang in there until the day of my class. I took a deep breath and blurted out that this was my first teaching experience at convention. There was no reason for them to be nervous because I was nervous enough for everyone. I said that the class would be fine because we would be beginners together.
Fortunately, everything worked out. It was a great class!

After that, I taught at a community college for 30 years. 100-200 ladies a week! I started because someone called me to talk about adding art classes to the education curriculum. I learned a lot from those ladies. Mainly that we all have talent that we have not developed. Particularly mothers. They spend so much time and energy developing talent in their kids without realizing they have talent themselves.

The other thing I learned was how strongly people believe they can’t “do” art. It looks hard and they are completely intimidated. They don’t realize that it is the act of painting that is important. That is what I teach. How to enjoy painting itself and not be so caught up in the results.
After thirty years, I stopped teaching at the college. When I first started teaching, I submitted some projects to a book publisher and was turned down. It took all those years to work up the nerve to try again. Now I can add many books, travel teaching and conventions to the list of gifts God has given me through my painting.

Why is Painting Important to Me?

To me, painting is an answered prayer. For years, I asked God to help me develop my own style. I didn’t want to always paint other people’s designs. I have always loved animals and nature. I started paying close attention to the beautiful creatures around me. Slowly, God directed my development as a painter as I tried to reflect his glory in the birds and animals I painted.
God clearly answered my prayers when my first book was published. But, I wasn’t aware of it at the time. It wasn’t until 1998 when I was teaching a class in Tennessee, that I finally understood that my prayer had been answered. A lady came up to me and asked me how I had developed my own style because she also wanted to do that. Being asked for advice is a sure way to realize you got to know something.

Why I Think Painting is Important to Others

What I have seen in painters is that they do believe in a supreme being. They are loving people. They do not like to do housework. They want to be creating. Artists only do housework because they are trained to do it as women. But, they all hurry up to get those chores done so they can have time to create. Through painting, people develop patience with themselves and people around them. They see things differently. Painters appreciate creation more. When they look at a bird, they see all the detail – the different tones of blue, the little bit of gray at the end of the feather. They look at clouds and wonder how they could capture them with their paints. They notice how the sun hits the side of a tree and highlights the details of the bark.

When women first come to my classes, they are terribly shy. They believe that they won’t be able to paint. Their self-esteem needs to be built up. I explain to them the fact that they came to the class makes them unique right from the start. They don’t realize how different and how special they are. During class, I encourage them to look at each other’s work. I believe it is important to see that everyone paints differently. They begin to understand that there is not a “right” way to paint. That builds a lot of confidence because they can see that they have their own special style of painting. That’s what I like about painting. It makes you proud of yourself.

What Advice Would I Give Painters

I have lived in Longview, North Carolina my whole life. I have been in every corner of my house to paint. The first piece of advice I would give to painters is that no matter where you live, find a place in your home that you can call your own. Be sure to have good lighting so that it is a cheerful area. Set up a table, stand those brushes up in a container, and put out your paint. Your space should always be ready for you. All your visitors will be impressed!
Dress to paint! I have found that if a woman comes into class and she doesn’t dress well, she doesn’t paint well. Have respect for yourself and the work you are doing. That way you will feel good about both.

How I work Out My Designs

I have to admit that I can’t draw. I can see it and the colors that I want to use. I don’t spend time working through different ideas in a sketchbook. I just sit down and paint right on the project. When I am making patterns for my books or students, I literally put tracing paper over the design and trace the outline.
I especially enjoy painting subjects that have special meanings or a story that I have encountered. I try to write a short story about each of my paintings. After all, that is why I got inspired to paint the design in the first place. I would hope that the short stories that I write about my subjects would inspire someone else to choose to paint.

My Supplies and Favorite Painting Tools

I work in mainly acrylics and oils. The design depends on which medium that I choose. Most of my designs are painted with acrylics. Working in acrylics then I must have a Sta-Wet Palette if I am mixing paints. I mainly work with thirteen colors. I mix a few but I do purchase background colors already bottle mixed. If you are interested in these thirteen colors, I will be glad to email you a list. I can literally place my colors in a “baby wipe box” and I am ready to hit the road.

My brushes all consists of chisel flats ranging in sizes 2-24. I try to purchase the best that I can afford. I have found the brush is your most important tool. You just cannot ask a brush to paint something that it is not designed to do. I have to admit that I am a brush collector. I have three brushes that I have developed to help me with my style of painting. I call them Nancy Kinney’s Dabbers (small and medium) plus Nancy Kinney’s Floral Brush. These brushes help the students to blend. Many students get so frustrated when “floating” so these brushes are just an alternative to frustration. These three brushes help me to get a softer appearance in my art. Other than the above brushes, I have liners and large wash brushes.

The dabbers & Floral- brushes are avaliable only from me.

Kinney's Paintin' House.

My “painting” room consists of several painting tables and easels; a large table holds my computer and printer for the convenience of writing my instructions so that I do not forget. Usually beside of me on a basket sits one or more of my cat friends. At my feet are two small inside dogs. They all know where to find me. I guess that these four-legged animals are my daily friends.
What's Next?
I will be doing demos at HOOT Convention August 2011 in Columbus, Ohio when my new book will be available at Viking Woodcraft’s Booth
From Columbus I go to NET Convention in Massachusetts October 2011. In September 2011, I will be hosting my sixth annual retreat here in Longview, North Carolina.
Sharon has been kind to allow me to speak to all of you great artists out there about my life and to advertise my retreat! Thanks, Sharon for what you are doing for so many of us!

If you would like information on pattern packets, books, painting surfaces, seminar teaching schedule or need help with painting instructions please feel that you can contact her at Nancy Kinney’s Paintin’ House, 228 27th St. S. W., Longview, North Carolina 28602 (828) 327-2478 or e-mail her at

Web Sites:

My Upcoming Seminars and My Retreat Are Pictured in the Above Picture Trail Site

To see a small clip of how I use my brushes visit

Nancy Kinney's Sixth Painting Seminar


When: September 15th-17th 2011

Where: Gateway Hotel and Conference Center (Hickory, NC)

Much To Learn (See the Two Attachments for Projects)

1: Creating Unique Back Grounds.

2: Blending and Value Changes in Composition Design.

3: Two Projects: Clarifying Above Techniques. (Carolina Wren/Lamb, Pears/Chickadee)

4: Proper Surface Preparation.

5: Applying Patterns Correctly when Painting Bird.

6: Study of Paint Mixtures in Acrylics for value changes.

7: Study of Fur and Feather Techniques.

Tentative Schedule

Thursday, 4:00-5:30 p.m. Registration, Project Preparation, Dinner Provided and More Work.
Friday, Breakfast 8:00 a.m.
9:00 a.m. Class, Beginning First Project Chickadee /Pears. 11” by 14” Stretched Canvas
12:00 p.m. Lunch
1:00 p.m. Class Continues
6:00 p.m. Dinner On Your Own (After Dinner, Welcome to continue painting until 1 am)
Saturday, 8:00 a.m. Breakfast
9:00 a.m. Second Class Project, Do You See What I See? Carolina Wren/Moses “the Lamb” 31” long Shovel (Looks Great in front of Fireplace)
12:00 p.m. Lunch.
1:00 p.m. Afternoon Class Project Continues.
6:00 p.m. Dinner On Your Own!
8:00 p.m. Farewell Get Together with Surprise. (Welcome to continue painting until 1 am)

Sunday, 8:00 a.m. Breakfast and Farewells!
Total Price: $350.00 per Person For Seminar
Hotel Fee: $80.00 per room including tax or grab a friend and split the cost!!!!! Hotel Rules (Only two per room)
Includes: Continental Breakfast Each Morning, Thursday Dinner, Friday & Saturday Lunch
Surfaces, Paint, Instruction and Surprise
Certificate of Completion
Register Soon to hold your space.

$150.00 Deposit Must Arrive by Mar. 15, 2011 (Non-Refundable due to Site Commitment.)

Call Nancy to register and get more info so that I can hold your spot. Details of supply list to bring sent to you as time approaches. Please do not go out and purchase any supplies at this point.

Phone 828/327-2478 or 828/612-0552 Pay Pal or Personal Check.


Nancy Dale Kinney

228 27th St. S. W.

Hickory, N. C. 28602

Space is Limited-So do not hesitate to let me know if you want on the "coming list" I want to be able to sit with each of you and do some one on one work!

Please feel to call me or email me at any time to talk or to ask me any questions. I hope that you will come and join us for some great fun.

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