art oil painting FRED book cover by Natalie Buske Thomas


“A Little Girl with a Big Imagination”

     “Fred” is a collection of oil paintings that was published as a children’s book to inspire creative children to always believe in yourself and to never give up.

     Fred is the nickname that Natalie’s father called her. Apparently the story goes that one day when Natalie was three years old, she announced that her name was no longer Natalie, but Fred. No one knows why and Natalie has no recollection of this incident, but her father honored her wishes and never called her Natalie ever again, always Fred.

This oil painting of “Fred” (peeking behind the fire hydrant) was inspired by a black and white picture that her late father took when he was enrolled in a photography course. This was taken on Grissom Air Force base, where he was stationed. Watch more art from the Fred book come to life:

"Little Girl in a Tree"

Watch Natalie paint this art from the Fred book.

"Classroom Scene"

Watch Natalie paint this art from the Fred book.

Watch Natalie paint more illustrations from “Fred”:

Painting Experiment

Painting 1
A simple oil painting of a closed flower
Painting 2
A second painting of the bud opening

See this art come to Life!

This was a fun painting experiment to see how feasible it would be to create a very basic, crude “stop motion” style animation by painting a series of similar living objects and then putting the video together as one. To make this video truly incredible, I would have had to paint probably 100 different versions of each painting, to show all of the steps in each transition. Obviously I wasn’t committed to doing that!

But, this quick method of painting an illusion of a flower coming to life was emotionally satisfying, especially when set to music. The motion of watching the paintbrush move creates a life of its own, so this is really a whole new type of animation. I’m happy with the effect and, now that I see how well it works, I’d like to try it again in the future with something more complicated and detailed.

I love inventing new methods for how I do things, and experimenting with ideas. To save time and cost, I painted on tiny square canvases for this project, which made the effort a bit tedious. I used fine detail brushes and felt very constrained. I had a headache when done, as I couldn’t freely paint in my usual style and had to stay so tightly on task. But, it was the right decision because I wanted to fit this little game in between other projects I’m doing. As a working artist, sometimes I have to modify how I create art, so that I can stay on schedule. It’s a worthy sacrifice because it pushes me to produce more work and become who I want to be.

I call this series “Crocus in Snow“.  When the first flowers pop up through the ground- even through snow- our hearts leap with hope that spring is coming soon. Some winters are darker and longer than others. A simple flower means so much.

Art Videos

Watch Natalie paint 100+ oil paintings in short time-lapse videos that appear at the bottom of each art page. Browse by search keyword, title of painting, or click on the collections below for a list of art pages.

NEW! Watch Natalie paint in real time! Full-length painting shows here.

  • Completed collection: “50 Oil Paintings Inspired by Savannah, Georgia” (the “Lion and the Lamb” painting in the featured video above is from this collection; see also landscapes, animals/birds found in GA, Savannah foods, and more)
  • Ongoing: Censored Artist Collection (political paintings typically censored on social media by removing “likes” or “retweets”, interfering with replies, replacing videos with a “sensitive media” box, suppressing views, etc.)
  • Children’s Books: Paintings for Grandpa Smiles, Nana Plays, Fred, and Bird Days- some of these are on YouTube, and will be added to this site at a later date.

Natalie Buske Thomas, artist

Natalie Buske Thomas is working toward her lifetime goal of 1k finished oil paintings. She paints 50+ works per year, produced as time lapse videos, books, prints, and fashions. She also offers free virtual classes, shows and a daily inspirational blog.

NEW! Easter Show 2022 – Featuring 2 oil paintings “Easter Lily” and “Jesus at Calvary”, 2 hymns “I’ll Fly Away” and “Be Thou my Vision” in English and Irish (Gaelic)

Christmas Show 2021 – 45 minutes of entertainment

Featuring 2 oil paintings, singing, dancing and JOY!

Christmas Show 2021

is also available

on YouTube

Scroll down this page to view a searchable menu of Natalie’s art. 150+ oil paintings and growing! Relax, have fun, and be inspired!

Watch Natalie paint this lighthouse in one minute (time lapse)


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