Céad Míle Fáilte!... (One hundred thousand welcomes!)

"Enchanting Ireland"... Take an artistic journey to the Emerald Isle as seen through the eyes and palette of American Artist, Bernie Rosage Jr. A collection of paintings and adventures inspired by two trips Bernie and his wife, Tami, took to the Emerald Isle. The first trip was in 2008 and the second was in 2014.

Bernie has been blogging their adventures and the background of this collection on this blog... browse around and enjoy yourself.

Paintings are available for purchase... Click HERE to see the collection, availability, and prices.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas from the Rosages'

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year
from our home to yours...
May you find Peace, Hope, and Joy
this Holiday Season...

The Rosages'

"Peace on Earth... Goodwill toward Men"

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The quaint little village of Blarney in County Cork...

After arriving at our hotel earlier than expected with our group... we had plenty of time to explore the small village of Blarney before our tour of Blarney Castle the next day. And explore we did... Tami and I walked the streets of Blarney from one end to the other.

The streets and buildings had a charm and the weather and light were perfect! The only way it could have been better for me is if I had my paints and easel and could paint "en plein aire". I didn't have the paints but I did have the camera... and plenty of scenes to choose from. The small painting below is referenced from a photo I took of Tami below it.
"Just down the hill a bit..." ... 8x6" Oil on Panel, alla prima, 11-2008.

Tami in Blarney....
As we walked the town we found a great little "Fish and Chips To Go" place and got some chips... which are similar to our "steak fries"... and onion rings. The "chips" we are used to here in the states are called "crisps" in Ireland. We gathered our "chips and onion rings" and headed for a small park in the center of town where all the locals gathered to play or watch soccer (football). We had a great/relaxing afternoon...

enjoying our food, the park, and each others company...

resting up for the next day and our "Quest to Kiss the Blarney Stone" and gain the gift of gab...

Here we are at the Blarney Castle on the beginning leg of our quest...
more to come...

Friday, December 5, 2008

The Flight: we are so small...

As Tami and I flew from Wilmington to Atlanta, and from Atlanta to Dublin I had a revelation. Now take into consideration... I am not a world traveler... in fact at age 46, this was only my 4th flight (first trans-Atlantic)... so I was as wide-eyed as a child when we took flight. The sky was full of those puffy white clouds reminding me of those "Jesus in the sky" paintings all over the internet... Heavenly to say the least. Two things I realized... #1... there are still a lot of trees left and... #2... we are small.

Most people, myself included, get caught up in our own world and often think the world revolves around us or at least around our small inner circle of friends, family, and acquaintances. Up in the clouds I realized just how small we are... a very humbling experience. Humbling yet uplifting... uplifting in the fact that as small as we are God knows the very number of hairs on our heads (Luke 12:6-8). He not only knows us... He loves us! John 3:16...

Check out this short video that shows just how small we are....

Monday, December 1, 2008

Kevin Barry's Irish Pub in Savannah... Pappy's 70th Birthday Celebration!

Located on River Street in Savannah, Georgia... Kevin Barry's Irish Pub became our favorite hang-out during our recent trip to Savannah in celebration of Pappy's 70th birthday. We had a blast everywhere we went but seemed to migrate to Kevin Barry's on three separate occasions in our two day stay... definitely due to the Good Craic! The pub is named after Kevin Barry, a young Irish patriot who gave his life in Ireland's fight for freedom... much like our own Nathan Hale of the American Revolution. Our food was excellent... the Guinness gave us strength... and the entertainment was superb! Irish folk singer Harry O'Donoghue was one of the main reasons for our Good Craic'n Time! Watch the video below and you'll see what I mean. If you ever get a chance to see Harry live... do so... and if you are ever in Savannah... be sure to drop by Kevin Barry's Irish Pub!

Happy Birthday Pappy (Dad)!!!!!!

LtoR: Mike, Fonda, Pappy (Birthday Boy), Granny, Tami, and Bernie.


Irish Singer - Harry O'Donoghue - Irish music

Click HERE to see more Harry O'Donoghue videos...

Thanks Pappy and Granny for the GREAT weekend!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Máirín Fahy and "Trad on the Prom"... Galway

Tami and I had the pleasure of seeing on of the greatest Irish shows in my opinion while in Galway... "Trad on the Prom"... featuring several top ranked dancers and musicians including Máirín Fahy. I thoroughly enjoyed Máirín's fiddle playing while Tami loved her sister, Yvonne's amazing talent on the Bodhran, a percussion instrument. If you are ever in Galway... do NOT miss this show! One of the coolest things they mentioned was that the Irish traditional music is still alive and well in the mountains of North Carolina. They even played an Irish reel that crossed over into our old time mountain music and into our modern day blue grass.

Trad on the Prom, true to it's name, is the best of Irish traditional live entertainment, performed in the new conference center of the Salthill Hotel, located on the seafront promenade over looking Galway Bay and the Clare Hills.

The Band
The Trad on the Prom band comprises of the finest musicians on the Irish music scene today.The band includes Gerard Fahy on uileann pipes, Chris Kelly on guitar, Yvonne Fahy on accordion and percussion, Brendan Hayes on keyboard and guest musicians Brian Morrissey, Padraig Rynn and Kieran Munnelly on concertina, flute, banjo and additional percussion.

The video below is an interview with the "Trad on the Prom" members discussing the music, dancing, and success of the event...

Spotlight Galway- Trad on the Prom

Finale from Trad On The Prom At Milwaukee Irish Fest

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

"Here's to you Ronnie Drew"...

Just after we got home from Ireland we got news that Irish folk artist Ronnie Drew of the famed Dubliners passed away... Many a'Irish souls are sad tonight...

Ronnie Drew, singer and guitarist: born Dú*Laoghaire, Ireland 16 September 1934; married 1963 Deirdre McCartan (died 2007; one son, one daughter); died Dublin 16 August 2008.

Irish folk singer Drew dies at 73

"Earlier this year many of the artists who had taken inspiration from him – U2, Sinead O'Connor, The Corrs, Chieftains, Damien Dempsey, Shane MacGowan, Christy Moore – released a tribute single, "The Ballad of Ronnie Drew", with proceeds to the Irish Cancer Society. It topped the Irish charts and a frail-looking Drew gave an emotional interview thanking them when they performed it on RTE's Late Late Show in February. "Illness can make you happy in a strange way," he said, "because it makes you realise people are there for you".
SOURCE: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/obituaries/ronnie-drew-lead-singer-of-the-dubliners-900669.html

The Ballad Of Ronnie Drew

One of my favs...

The Dubliners - In The Rare Old Times

"Máiréad's Window" by Bernie Rosage Jr.

"Máiréad's Window"... County Clare, Ireland... 20x16"... Oil on stretched canvas by artist Bernie Rosage Jr., 11-2008.

Finished work for the Enchanting Ireland series...

Click on image to enlarge....

While traveling through Ireland we noticed so many quaint little cottages... many with thatched roofs and white-washed walls. 99% of them had a splash of color and flowers a plenty... a woman's touch you'd say.

Dedicated to my wife's ggggreat grandmother, Margaret Fetters Lee, who was born in Belfast, Ireland. Margaret is a nickname from the gaelic... Máiréad (MAW-rayt or MAW-reed)... which means "pearl".

Friday, November 14, 2008

"The Cliffs of Moher" by Bernie Rosage Jr.

"The Cliffs of Moher"... County Clare, Ireland... 20x30"... Oil on stretched canvas by artist Bernie Rosage Jr., 11-2008.

Finished work for the Enchanting Ireland series...

Click on image to enlarge....

The Cliffs of Moher in County Clare on the West Coast of Ireland is Ireland's premier Tourist attraction. The 700ft high County Clare cliffs attract tourists and stretch for nearly 5 miles along the Western Shore.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Cherish the Ladies... "An Irish Homecoming"... a Review

A review of the Cherish the Ladies... "An Irish Homecoming" concert at Kenan Auditorium on the campus of UNC at Wilmington, NC, October 24, 2008.

"Superbly led by the larger than life Joanie Madden on whistles, flute, harmony vocals and introductions, these ladies dusted the perceived cobwebs off traditional music by presenting it in a new light, with a mixture of first class 'kick-ass' playing, sensational singing, dynamic dancing and infectious humour, that packaged it and sent it into the modern world - without ever losing respect for the musical roots." This homely approach, with great stage banter, ensured not only an entertaining night but also that never before has 'trad' been so enjoyable.
The Belfast Telegraph, UK

This review is worded perfectly to which I'll add the addition of new singer, Michelle Burke, is the crowning jewel on this already superb and talented group. Her vocals and Irish dialect warm and enchant the soul... watch the video below to see what I mean. The friends that the Ladies brought with them added an extra treat and truly made this an Irish Homecoming. The champion dancers added so much with their timely precision. Dermont Henry was a hoot! Bohola gave the music even more depth. I cannot say enough about Maura O'Connell... her charm and dry humor were only eclipsed by her awesome singing voice. My parents, wife, daughter, and I enjoyed the show immensely... The Kenan Auditorium was a perfect setting for this treat. Enjoy the various youtube videos and link of a few of the songs played at the concert.

Cherish the Ladies with Michelle Burke singing "Donegal Rain"...

Maura O'Connell... "Down by the Sally Gardens"... Click on link to see and hear...

Maura O'Connell preforming "Trouble in the Fields" which she called a modern day folk song when she preformed it at the show. Click link to see and hear this great performance.

Friday, October 24, 2008

An Irish Homecoming....

Tami and I are in for a real treat tonight... we're taking my parents as an anniversary gift to see Cherish the Ladies in concert. The concert (An Irish Homecoming) is in Wilmington on the campus of UNCW and features an all-star gathering of musicians performing in the Celtic and Irish traditions adored the world over. Joined by champion dancers and former dance ensemble members of Riverdance and The Chieftains, the renowned Celtic band Cherish the Ladies, vocalists Maura O'Connell, Dermot Henry and Eddi Reader, and the accordion and guitar duo of Bohola will bring Ireland to Wilmington for one amazing evening.

I'll give a full report soon...

Thursday, October 23, 2008

"Low Tide at The Long Walk" by Bernie Rosage Jr.

"Low Tide at The Long Walk"... County Galway, Ireland... 11x14"... Oil on stretched canvas by artist Bernie Rosage Jr., 10-2008.

Finished work for the Enchanting Ireland series...

Click on image to enlarge....

"Streets of Bunratty" by Bernie Rosage Jr

"Streets of Bunratty"...County Clare, Ireland... 10x14"... Oil on stretched canvas by artist Bernie Rosage Jr., 10-2008.

Finished work for the Enchanting Ireland series...

Click on image to enlarge....

Friday, October 17, 2008

Thatched Roof Cottage #2... County Clare, Ireland

"Thatched Roof Cottage #2... County Clare, Ireland"... 6x8" Oil on panel, alla prima, "Enchanting Ireland" series, 9-2008.

This original oil painting by American Artist, Bernie Rosage Jr. is available for purchase... click HERE to check availabilty.

Click on image to see a larger view...

Another quaint thatched roof cottage from County Clare, Ireland.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

WIP's for Enchanting Ireland series...

Here's the latest update of my Works in Progress (WIPs) for the Enchanting Ireland series...

Think I'll call this guy Sean Dempsey after the the main character in the song, "Dublin in the Rare Auld Times" by the Dubliners...



Saturday, September 27, 2008

"Galway Hooker #1"... small oil painting.

"Galway Hooker #1"... 6x8" Oil on Belgian Linen on panel, alla prima, 8-2008. "Enchanting Ireland" series, 8-2008.

This painting is for sale... Click HERE to find out about the availability of this painting. Will ship to Ireland!

Click on image to see a larger view...

Galway City was one of our favorite places on our recent visit to Ireland. The bay has a beauty all its own... especially when the Hookers are out and about. I know what you're thinking... I thought the same thing when a friend said that I had to photograph and paint a Galway Hooker... I thought to myself "what kind of tour did Tami book?". The friend told me to go home and google "Galway Hooker"... the laugh was on me... they are a beautiful sailing vessel unique to the west coast of Ireland and the Galway Bay. This small painting was for a study of the sailing vessel for a large painting I am working on of Galway Bay... expect a few more of these small studies of Hookers in the future.

These small paintings are inspired from my recent trip to Ireland... in most cases they are studies for larger works for a solo exhibit titled "Enchanting Ireland" that will debut August 2009 at the Baysden Gallery.

This painting, on a Belgian Linen on panel with painted sides, is easily framed or displayed with a decorative easel.

All my paintings are signed originals using artist grade oils and archival surfaces. "Certificate of Authenticity" included.

Friday, September 26, 2008

"The Old Homeplace"... Irish Thatched Roof Cottage, County Clare, Ireland...small oil painting.

"The Old Homeplace"... Irish Thatched Roof Cottage, County Clare, Ireland... 6x8" Oil on panel, alla prima, "Enchanting Ireland" series, 8-2008.

This painting is for sale... Click HERE to find out about the availability of this painting. Will ship to Ireland!

Click on image to see a larger view...

Thatched roofed cottages are a common site in Ireland... a beautiful site I must add. We visited Bunratty Folk Park where we got to see and go in several. The village was set up recreating the general feel of the 19th century with a period style village main street. The cottages came alive as we stepped back in time... we even got to enjoy the smell of peat fires burning in the cottage fireplaces.

These small paintings are inspired from my recent trip to Ireland... in most cases they are studies for larger works for a solo exhibit titled "Enchanting Ireland" that will debut August 2009 at the Baysden Gallery.

This painting, on a gessoed panel with painted sides, is easily framed or displayed with a decorative easel.

All my paintings are signed originals using artist grade oils and archival surfaces. "Certificate of Authenticity" included.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Two thumbs up on Dan Hill's DVD... "Enchanting Ireland... a Mighty Craic"

Tami and I just got done viewing Dan's DVD from our trip that he sent us...

I am only able to sputter out single words like...


because my chin is still on the floor... Two thumbs up Dan!

Thanks so much!

A message from Dan...

Hello world travelers! Bernie's e-mails and blog got me to thinking that some of you might enjoy the DVD that I made from the video and pictures that Beth and I took on the trip. I made the DVD for our "Ohio 8" hence, most of the footage includes us... but the places we visited, well, you were there too, and might enjoy this recap of a great trip. Actually, the introduction by Allie is worth the time watching.

Email Dan for details...

Dan Hill
Valley Forge Productions

The "Ohio 8"...

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Galway Girl...

Tami and I must have heard Steve Earl's song "Galway Girl" a dozen times as we explored Galway City. We heard it at Máirín Fahy and Band's concert at the Trad on the Prom... and we heard it played by local busker's playing on the streets for tips.

Here's a snapshot of my favorite "Galway Girl"...

Enjoy this live video of "Galway Girl" performed by Steve Earl with Sharon Shannon....

Thursday, September 11, 2008

WIP: The Old Cottage Window

Here's another WIP (Work in Progress) for my Enchanting Ireland series. I am currently working on 4 large paintings for the series at the moment but haven't completed any as of yet. This one is from a photo I took at the Bunratty Folk Park.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Who let the DOGS out?!... Irish dogs have moxie!

Out tour guide, Allie, mentioned that men from County Kerry referred to as "Kerry Men" had a certain presence and charm... here in the south we call it swagger or moxie. We found it to be true with our Jaunting Car driver Billy and also with a sheep herder/dog trainer named Brenden Ferris (pictured below). In fact... he had the charisma and looks of Tom Selick. In addition to being a dog trainer, Brenden owns the Kells Sheep Centre. He has won awards from shepherding competitions all over Ireland. We had the pleasure of seeing Brenden and his dogs in action...

He impressed us with his knowledge and skill in working his Border Collie sheepdogs. These dogs were amazing... with a whistle here and there Brenden was able to get them to do anything.

A certain whistle would have them separate the sheep into groups, another would bring them down the slopes, etc... These dogs were well trained and very smart...

probably the smartest dogs I ever saw until...

I saw this one on the streets of Galway City reading a storefront sign...

Seems even the dogs in Ireland have swagger and moxie...
swag·ger –verb (used without object)
1. to walk or strut with a defiant or insolent air.
mox·ie –noun Slang.
1. vigor; verve; pep.
2. courage and aggressiveness; nerve.
3. skill; know-how.
[Origin: 1925–30, Americanism; after Moxie, a trademark (name of a soft drink)]

Here is a video of a sheep herding demonstration by Brenden and his dogs at his Kells Sheep Centre, County Kerry.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A little American/Irish history... "In Memory of the Irish Volunteer... Wearing of the Green"

My painting below is dedicated to the members of the famed Irish Brigade who fought so gallantly for the Union during the American Civil War. In December 1862, after many hard months of hard fighting the regiments of the Irish Brigade turned in their ragged regimental flags... they were to be replaced at a ceremony set for December 13, 1862 but the brigade was called into action for the Battle of Fredericksburg and the tragic assault on Marye's Heights that day. The New York regiments went into battle that day without their green flags. In their stead, General Meagher and his staff gave a sprig of boxwood to every man to wear in his hat to identify them as members of the Irish Brigade. The 28th Massachusetts, the only regiment carrying a green flag that day, was placed in the center of the brigade as it made the assault. The results of the attack were devastating; the Irish Brigade that had gone into battle 1200 men strong, came out with only 263 standing between its five regiments. Sprigs of boxwood (the wearing of the green) were a common adornment on their hats from that time on.

"In Memory of the Irish Volunteer... Wearing of the Green"... 8x10" Oil on Panel, alla prima from life, 2008.

Click on image to see a larger view...

Close up...

I set up this still life in my studio paying special attention to the historical accuracy of the subject. The federal kepi is adorned with a sprig of boxwood and red trefoil corp badge which was distributed to the Union army just before the battle of Chancellorsville in May 1863. The Red Trefoil or Club denoted the Second Division, Second Army Corps which the Irish Brigade was assigned to for most of its service to the preservation of this country.

Check HERE for the status of this painting.

Pat's finished painting...

Here's Pat's finished painting from our painting challenge/swap... Bernie and Pat's Painting Challenge / Swap...

Pat's watercolor painting... Currently displayed in an art show titled "What I Did Last Summer"...
Click on image to enlarge...

Bravo Pat!

Pat's sister is also an artist... her name is Marge Drew... visit her art webpage HERE.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Nothing like viewing great art in person... Our visit to the National Gallery of Ireland...

As Tami and I walked the lovely streets of Dublin we came upon many interesting sites. One of the best treats for me was our visit to the National Gallery of Ireland... here we are pictured outside.

My advice... never pass up a gallery or art museum. Paintings should be viewed in person to get a true sense of their splendor where they can literally communicate with the viewer. So many times we only get the chance to see works by the masters in print or online... neither are able to rival the awesomeness of viewing a painting in real life... it's a rush for me!

Some people would be ecstatic if they could see their favorite singer or movie star in person... that's how I felt when I rounded the corner in the National Gallery and came face to face with one of my top five favorite paintings... Caravaggio's The Taking of Christ.
Caravaggio (Michelangelo da Merisi) 1571–1610
The Taking of Christ 1602 (Click on image to enlarge...)
Society of Jesus of Ireland, on loan to the National Gallery of Ireland

The man carrying the lantern at the extreme right, who looks inquisitively over the soldiers’ heads, has been interpreted as a self-portrait of Caravaggio.

I wasn't even aware this painting was part of their collection so this was a special surprise. The gallery was almost empty and it was if we were able to have a private viewing of this spectacular work. I handed Tami the camera and asked her to snap a photo of me with the painting... at that point the private viewing was over... a security guard (who appeared out of thin air) quickly informed us about the "no photos" rule and I was forced to commit the painting to memory... a good one I might add.

The painting has an interesting story behind it and how it came to be part of the collection at the National Gallery...

By the late 18th century, the painting was thought to have disappeared, and its whereabouts remained unknown for about 200 years. In 1990, Caravaggio’s lost masterpiece was recognized in the residence of the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits) in Dublin, Ireland. The exciting rediscovery was published in 1993.

Read the complete story about the rediscovery HERE....

YouTube Video... The Taking of Christ - Caravaggio

The guard was very pleasant once we conceded and actually gave us a tour discussing several other works which included pieces by the likes of Canova, Vermeer, Rembrandt, Poussin, Monet, Velasquez, Picasso, Goya and John B. Yeats as well as Jack B. Yeats to name a few.

Another one of my favorite Old Masters was represented in the gallery.... Johannes Vermeer (1632–75). His painting Woman writing a Letter, with her Maid (c.1670) was another real treat for me to see and study intently in person.

Johannes Vermeer
Woman writing a Letter, with her Maid (c.1670)
National Gallery of Ireland

Viewing great art with a great lady in a great city... what more could I ask for?


Monday, August 18, 2008

Cool Video Ad for Dublin

Check out this cool video ad for Dublin City...

Click HERE to view it...

Friday, August 15, 2008

Small Study: Painting for Pat

Recently I mentioned about the painting challenge/swap between me and Pat...

I spoke with her via email the other day and she said she was working on her painting so I figured I better get started. I was experimenting with a limited palette... three colors plus white... the one used by the master Anders Zorn. Here's the result...

Pat's reference photo...

my interpretation...

6x8" Oil on panel, alla prima, using the Zorn palette (Yellow Ochre, Cad Red Lt, Ivory Black w/ Ultramarine Blue, and Titanium White), 8-14-2008.

Click on image to enlarge...