Flowers & Friends

Many years ago I built a greenhouse so that I could grow some annuals over the long, snowy months of a cold, Kansas winter. If memory serves, I grew petunias, geraniums, begonias, and of course, carnations. My love of flowers has continued through the years. But now, instead of growing them in a greenhouse, I spend my time painting them in all their glory.

Below is one of my impressions of the infinite variety and beauty of flowers. You can see many others here -- maybe one of them would brighten your home during the upcoming dog days of summer in Kansas. Just like friends, you can never have too many flowers!

Gamma Floral, Rick Frisbie

Thanks for reading, friend. Until next time, 

Rick Frisbie signature

May 23, 2023


“I must have flowers, always and always.” Claude Monet

Sky Floral, Rick Frisbie

My first favorite flower was the carnation, dianthus caryophyllus. Dianthus means “flower of the gods” in Greek. The common name, carnation, is from the Latin incarnationem, which means “the incarnation of God.” But it’s the carnation’s fragrance that I find most appealing.

Bursting Out, Rick Frisbie

When I was in high school, carnations were everywhere. They were almost exclusively used in girls’ corsages and guys’ boutonnieres (probably the first French word I ever heard). They were used for weddings, funerals, anniversaries, birthdays — a carnation for every occasion. White was the most common color, but I also remember seeing several pastel hues.

Eager to learn more, I went to a well-known florist, Gib Cunningham (any of you locals remember him?), who taught me how to grow carnations and add color to them. Turns out changing their color was easy (just use food coloring!), and they maintained their hypnotic fragrance, but propagating them was tougher (let’s just say there were lots of deaths in my carnation families).🫤

When the Birds Sing, Rick Frisbie

My appreciation for flowers of all kinds has greatly expanded over the years. I enjoy painting them in all their brilliant variety, as you can see if you look through the collection of florals. Perhaps you'll find the fragrance, color, and composition you have been looking for — and you don’t even have to water it!

Until next time,
Rick Frisbie signature

Trinity United Methodist Church Gallery
901 E Neal | Salina, Kansas | 785-825-5270
Lauren Quinn Flower Boutique
129 S Santa Fe Ave | Salina, Kansas | 785-502-5120

Call or text me at 785-577-1227 if you see something you're interested in.


May 23, 2023

Ever wonder what a painter's studio is like?

Rick Frisbie in his studio

Not long ago a man contacted me and asked where he could see my paintings in person. He had seen them on my website but now wanted to experience them first-hand. Many of my paintings live in my studio, so I invited him to come and take a look (my previous gallery space closed and I've not yet found another -- if you have a recommendation, let me know!). 

He told me which ones he was interested in, so I had those out and ready to view. Then I left him alone to browse. He had questions about the “back stories” of the paintings -- every painting has a backstory -- so we had some interesting discussion. We talked prices, he decided which ones he wanted to purchase, then we loaded his paintings and he headed home. I think he was happy and I certainly was!

The internet is great, but there's nothing like seeing the color, texture, and composition in person. So here's an invitation just for you: if you have seen a painting on this website that sparked your interest, please come and visit the studio to see the work in person.

personal invitation to visit studio

A painter’s studio is a private place. Not many people have seen the inside of mine, but I welcome you. If you let me know which paintings you're interested in, I'll make sure they're on display and ready for you. I hope to see you soon!

Happy, colorful art to you! 



Collection of floral paintings (15% off in-store sales)
Lauren Quinn Flower Boutique | 129 S. Santa Fe | Salina Downtown

February 1-April 25, 2023 | Triptych of tulips
Trinity United Methodist Church | 901 E. Neal Ave | Salina, Kansas

Lincoln Art Center Member's Only Show

March 10-April 2023 | Members' Show
Lincoln Art Center | 126 E. Lincoln Ave. | Lincoln, Kansas

March 15, 2023

What to do when ideas and inspiration dry up.

I just finished three large paintings and a rush order portrait. My creative flow seems to have dried up. Now what?

My usual remedies are to continue working, but more slowly, along with walks in nature, rest, and honoring my best times — early mornings.

Writer Ray Bradbury suggested a "program" for being more creative. Every night before bed, a person should read:

  • one short story
  • one poem
  • one essay 

"Do this for a thousand nights," Bradbury said, "and you'll be full of ideas."

Austin Kleon, who describes himself as a writer who draws, (I recommend his weekly emails -- entertaining and inspiring), wrote this about Bradbury:

“One thing he (Bradbury) emphasized is that you shouldn’t just feed on what you think you should feed on, but what’s most delicious and what really nourishes you.”

Maybe my Muse is hungry? Bradbury fed his Muse equal parts trash and treasure, including comic strips, TV shows, books, magazines, newspapers, plays, and films. 

What do you think of Bradbury’s program? It seems like a fun way to set a inviting table that might entice my Muse to return. I'm currently pondering what sounds most delicious and nourishing, so I know what to serve. I'll keep you posted.

Do you have a method for breaking through creative slumps? If so, please tell me about it in the comment section below so I can try it myself!

Thanks for reading, 



Collection of floral paintings (15% off in-store sales)
Lauren Quinn Flower Boutique | 129 S. Santa Fe | Salina Downtown

February 1-April 25, 2023 | Triptych of tulips
Trinity United Methodist Church | 901 E. Neal Ave | Salina


Members' Show | Lincoln Art Center | 126 E Lincoln Ave. | Lincoln, Kansas
March & April 2023 | Opening Reception March 10

February 23, 2023

“What kind of painting does Rick Frisbie do?”

Rick Frisbie: The Dawning of a New Day

That was the question my friend’s partner asked him. 

Curious, I asked, “What did you tell her?” 

“Sort of loose,” he replied.

I laughed and said, "I would say rough."

Another friend told me that she thinks many of my paintings fall into the 'abstract expressionist' category. I can go with that. In fact, I like it. 

Since I am primarily self-taught I have always had a strong determination and sense of independence. I feel at liberty to try anything in any way or combination in order to learn more about painting. I have much I want to learn. 

Recently I watched the movie In the Good Old Summer Time with Judy Garland. Her song “I Don’t Care” caught my attention. Don’t misunderstand me -- I care deeply about painting, my own paintings, in particular. I have eagerly spent 2-4 hours every morning since 2000 to learn and practice my passion: painting.

But Judy’s song touched a note in me about the opinions of people with much more formal art education than me. Judy sings,

They say I’m crazy
Got no sense
They may or may not mean offense
I don’t care
You see, I’m sort of independent
I am my own superintendent
And my star is on the ascendant
That’s why I don’t care
I don’t care, I don’t care
What they may think of me
I’m happy-go-lucky, they say that I’m plucky 
Contented and carefree
I don’t care I don’t care 
If I do get a mean or stony stare
If I’m not successful
It won’t be distressful
Cause I don’t care
Rick Frisbie: Bursting Out  Rick Frisbie: Diagonal WatersRick Frisbie: When the Birds Sing  Rick Frisbie: Floral Pinwheel
The paintings above show some of what I consider a new class of “passion” for me. They may be seen as wild, primitive, amateurish, unfinished by some folk’s standards. But I don’t care. I like them because they carry some of my passion. 

“Members Show” at Lincoln Art Center
March & April 2023
Opening Reception March 10

What do you think of one or all of my paintings? Give it to me straight in the comments below. I can take it.
January 19, 2023

😎 Just chillin'


When was the last time you did absolutely nothing? Some might call it chillin’. I don’t know much about doing nothing or chillin'. In fact, I sort of pride myself in being a “let’s get it done now” kind of guy. Dad told me before I started on my first construction crew, “If you don’t know what to do next, grab a broom and start sweeping.” 

But recently I read some articles which got me thinking. 

Our world is busy and crowded, full of noisy cell phones, computers, schedules, and deadlines. They fill in all the cracks and crevices of our lives and times. Maybe some short periods of doing nothing would be helpful.

The Dutch have a word for doing nothing: they call it niksen

As I understand it niksen is not like yoga or meditation. It's doing nothing for the purpose of doing nothing, not thinking about breathing or repeating mantras. Supposedly, niksen decreases anxiety, brings creativity to the surface, and boosts production. I can use all of those. You can do it while you're:  

  • drinking a morning coffee and staring out the window
  • taking a walk in the park, listening and looking
  • daydreaming in your favorite chair, or out on the porch.

When was the last time you laid on the grass and watched the clouds? That could be niksen—doing nothing for nothing’s sake.

Recently a friend challenged me to connect with the electrical energy of the earth by taking off my shoes and socks and walking on the soccer fields. I hadn’t done that in over 30 years. I'm still a little foggy about the science, but I know it was calming. I think it qualifies as niksen. 

woman-with-large-flower-rick-frisbieI wondered if any of my paintings conveyed the idea of niksen. The Four Accepting Friends at the top of this letter seem to be chillin'. And the Woman with Large Flower at left appears to be carefree, just appreciating the shapes and colors floating all around her. Now that's niksen. 

Doing nothing seems simple, but doesn’t come naturally for me. What about you? Do you know anything about niksen, or do you practice it? Tell me more in the comment section below! 

Thanks for reading. Now let’s get busy and do a little nothing.

Bugs Bunny & My Paintings

🥕 I had some fun sessions in my studio last week. "Life" has made it difficult for me to keep my early morning painting schedule, and I was beginning to think I'd explode if I didn’t paint soon.

You might say I got “a wild hair.” I went to the studio determined to pick up brushes and splash some paint no matter what the results. I grabbed some 5” x 7” canvases and started in, and these five paintings emerged. 

things-that-fly-rick-frisbie    james-web-told-me-your-planet-is-delicious-rick-frisbie



I began to wonder where the phrase “a wild hair” originated. One of several meanings is to have a fervent, usually sudden desire to do something surprising or unexpected (there are some coarser meanings, too!). The internet told me that "A Wild Hare" was the title of a 1940 cartoon where a wise-cracking bunny with a Brooklyn accent made his first appearance. Yes, Bugs Bunny of “What’s Up Doc?” fame. Now there's a real wild hare!

🐇 So if you get "a wild hair/hare" and decide you must have one or more of these special paintings, just click the image to go to my website. I would love to deliver it to you personally!

TOP ROW Things That Fly, James Webb Told Me Your Planet is Delicious,
MIDDLE ROW When Things Were DifferentOne Bag of Gold for You, Three for Me
BOTTOM ROW Tomorrow I Work on Calves


The Dog in the Orchestra seems to me to be good company for the five paintings above. I painted it after reading a poem from Billy Collins (former U.S. poet laureate). It's from his book, Sailing Alone Around the Room, which is a fun collection of poems. I invite you to read Collin’s funny poem and the inspiration for this painting.

Another Reason Why I Don't Keep A Gun In The House
Billy Collins

The neighbors’ dog will not stop barking.
He is barking the same high, rhythmic bark
that he barks every time they leave the house.
They must switch him on their way out.

The neighbors’ dog will not stop barking.
I close all the windows in the house
and put on a Beethoven symphony full blast
but I can still hear him muffled under the music,
barking, barking, barking,

and now I can see him sitting in the orchestra,
his head raised confidently as if Beethoven
had included a part for barking dog.

When the record finally ends he is still barking,
sitting there in the oboe section barking,
his eyes fixed on the conductor who is
entreating him with his baton

while the other musicians listen in respectful
silence to the famous barking dog solo,
that endless coda that first established
Beethoven as an innovative genius.

Thanks for looking in. Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below. And feel free to share a story about one of your own wild hairs/hares!

August 09, 2022

Time management

the persistence of memory by salvador daliIs it possible to bend time? Can time be molded? 

Salvador Dali’s painting, “The Persistence of Memory,” makes me think of time being bent or molded. But is that really possible?

My paintings shown below—though not as dramatic as Dali’s—have evidence of time bending and passing… wrinkles, shadows quickly creeping out from trees as the sun moves across the sky, and paintings of persons no longer here. In “After Time” (bottom right) I imagine what it will be like after individuals have finished their lifetimes.

colorado-trail-rick-frisbie conductor-toscanini-rick-frisbie
soul-beings-rick-frisbie after-time-rick-frisbie 

We speak of saving time, time standing still, crunch time, time slipping away. The most common phrase probably is "time management."  

But time cannot be managed. That's the most valuable and helpful thing I learned in my post-graduate studies at Drew University. We can only manage ourselves in time. We can manage our use of time, but there is no managing time itself. Twenty-four hours is the limit—for everyone. 

Sometimes, while trying to fully use my daily 24 hours, I become almost obsessed. My responsibilities, daily tasks, and progress toward my painting goals all get put into specific time slots. I keep my schedule on a note card in my pocket.   

“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.” -- Lao Tzu

A friend shared the above quote (was he hinting for me to slow down?):

Do you “manage” your time well? If you have any helpful tips, please send them my way in the comments section.

The Small Wonders Invitational
June-August 2022
Reception on Sunday, June 12 from 2 to 4 p.m.
Birger Sandzen Gallery, Lindsborg

Country Seasons Boutique
201 South 5th St.
Salina, Kansas

Lauren Quinn Flower Boutique
129 South Santa Fe
Salina, Kansas

Posters, tote bags, phone cases, and more featuring my painting are available at


Thanks for reading, and I hope you're having the time of your life!

Rick Frisbie signature

The Eyes of Change

Painting is highly dependent on change: changing shadows in a plein air landscape, the speed of deterioration in a floral still life, multiple changes on a canvas as a painting takes shape, and of course changes in my skills and interests.
May 31, 2022

Flavors of a Painting

What flavors do you prefer in the paintings you choose?
Landscapes, abstracts, still life, figurative?
Color, style, texture, subjects?
January 26, 2022

Move your feet.

“When you pray, move your feet.” That’s what I believe. Someone once questioned if I have any faith. At first I was a little offended. But it is a good question. I decided to
December 06, 2021
Tags: faith holiday


Don is one of my heroes. He served us (U.S.) in all of the toughest places. At the end of last January doctors had to remove part of his leg. Something was missed medically. He came within hours of losing his life. Don does not want nor will he tolerate any pity. Notice his t-shirt. Another one says,
November 22, 2021