Jack Dorsey has painted a Christmas card that he and mom send to family and friends since 2004. In December 2016, I persuaded Dad to unveil that year’s Christmas card at the grand opening of Sunnyshore Studio. But the history of Dad’s Christmas cards, their original inspiration and the paintings themselves, have not been recorded, until today! Thanks to Mom who spent a few hours digging around on the computer and collected these images and dated them the best she could. We still have some missing pieces that we’re still trying to locate. Enjoy this history of the Christmas Cards of Jack Dorsey.

BTW: Dad has a few of the original Christmas paintings that’s he’s willing to sell. I’ll list those prices. Contact me (Jason, 317.209.6768 or j.dorsey23@gmail.com) if you would like to purchase one.

Original Inspirations

One of the inspirations behind Jack’s Christmas card is his dear friend, renown watercolor artist Thomas “Tom” William Jones. Tom painted four Christmas cards for Ronald and Nancy Reagan when he was president, 1985-1988. Being chosen to paint the nation’s Christmas card was quite an honor, and Dad was inspired to paint his own. Here is a link to Tom’s current retrospective exhibition, An American Winter at the Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, CA. There are 27 paintings on view through January 5th.

Other inspirations for the Christmas cards were that Dad and Mom value their family and friends and the annual Christmas card was a way for them to express their love. They also both value personal creativity (over the store bought cards) and are thrifty (so preferred saving money by making their own cards). Whatever the inspiration, I am so thankful that they began that tradition. it has brought beauty and joy into the world for many.

2004 Christmas Card

The first Christmas card we have record of is Dad’s painting of holly. I love how the red berries cascade across the dark green leaves.

2005 Christmas Card

Dad painted this Russian teapot on our mantel in our home in Indianapolis. He must have photographed or sketched it then painted it at his studio on Camano. The silver of the teapot in “Mantel Grace” sparkles against warm colors of the fireplace.

This painting is for sale
  • Title: “Mantel Grace”
  • Medium: Watercolor
  • Size 9″ by 12 1/4″
  • Unframed
  • Price: $300

2006 Christmas Card Concept

Here is a “concept” painting for the 2006 card. Dad painted this plate with “Baby Jesus” but didn’t end up using it. I don’t know why.

2006 Christmas Card

Going through old photos, I stumbled upon this Christmas card that Dad and Mom sent to us when our family lived in Indianapolis, In (2002-2015). Our best guess is that this is the 2006 Christmas Card. We’re still working on locating the original. Stay tuned for details.

2007 Christmas Card

We have a year gap in our records. Then this delightful painting of a nutcracker standing guard. I recognize the window shade at Dad and Mom’s house, and mom’s lovely decor of holly and poinsettia. Some of my favorite paintings of Dad’s are still life paintings where he merges objects with nature. A friend of mine from Stanwood High School days purchased this painting!

2008 Christmas Card

The 2008 Christmas Card is an example of Dad’s gift at still lifes that merge nature and objects. Dad loves old things, antiques, and many times they make their way into a painting, like this scale.

2009 Christmas Card

This oil painting is titled “Tommy Loops Place”. Dad has a knack of remembering names. I’m not sure who Tommy Loop was, but I’m sure Dad does and could tell some stories. I’m sure later today he’ll be straightening me out on old Tommy Loop. But anyway, here is his place. The yellow house stands bright against the muted autumn trees. I love the sparkle of snow on the ground and roofs.

2010 Christmas Card

This loose watercolor resembles a more traditional Christmas card in the subject of the nativity. I really, really like its freshness. The star watches over the stable birthplace of baby Jesus, the holy Son of God, light of the world.

2011 Christmas Card

Dad paints in oil and egg tempera and guache but he paints best in watercolor. This Christmas stocking with greens is a great example of his expressionistic realism. Dark and light values make the painting pop. And the complementary red and green sing.

2012 Christmas Card

Dad painted one of Mom’s Christmas angel on a metal plate and vase. Mom loves to decorate her home with beautiful little things. Christmas time is especially sweet with her angels and nativities that preach in their own way that “the light of the world is Jesus.”

This painting is for sale
  • Title: “Christmas Angel”
  • Medium: Watercolor on illustration board
  • Size 9″ by 10 1/4″
  • Unframed
  • Price: $300

2013 Christmas Card

“Christmas back home” was painted as a gift for a friend who was dying. Dad wanted to evoke for his friend his home, his “place”. I’m sure it meant a lot to his friend.

2014 Christmas Card

Dad’s 2014 Christmas Card, “O Holy Night”, captures the feeling of winter. Long shadows are cast by the moon on the freshly fallen snow. The church glows in the light (is it moonlight, or a streetlamp) and snow laden trees on both sides are the arch the worshipper enters to pay homage to the King of kings.

2015 Christmas Card

I’m pretty sure this Christmas card gave me the idea of making the unveiling of Dad’s Christmas card a thing at Sunnyshore Studio’s grand opening in 2016. This card is perfect. Sweet and simple, with an adorable angel on top the stable. The fir leaves and Holly in the snow are exquisite.

This painting is for sale
  • Title: “Nativity”
  • Medium: Watercolor
  • Size: 11 1/2″ by 15″
  • Unframed
  • Price: $300

2016 Christmas Card

This was the Christmas card we “unveiled” at our 2016 Studio grand opening. It is an oil painting titled “Home for Christmas” and was purchased by a collector.

2017 Christmas Card

This year Dad painted Cedarhome, a nearby community. I really loved the deep reds against the lights of the snow and distant trees, and the wreath on the mailbox welcomes you home at Christmastime.

This painting is for sale
  • Title: “White Christmas”
  • Medium: Watercolor
  • Size: 11 1/2″ by 15 1/4″
  • Unframed
  • Price: $300

2018 Christmas Card

Last year’s painting, “Home Tweet Home” was absolutely delightful and snatched up by a collector for a mere $1,500. Here is the unveiling of the 2018 card.

2019 Christmas Card

Dad’s Christmas Card for 2019 was a beauty, it was titled “Joy to the World.” Dad painted three of Mom’s angel figurines in sing in front of crimson candles glowing bright against a dark blue backdrop. My friend, Nathan Partain, let me use his wonderful song “Arise and Shine” for the video of last year’s unveiling. This painting is available for purchase!

  • Title: “Joy to the World”
  • Medium: Watercolor
  • Size: 24″ by 27″
  • Framed
  • Price: $1,500

2020 Christmas Card

There is a fun story about Jack’s 2020 Christmas card. Dad painted a delightful still life acrylic that mom photographed and they sent in to the printers be turned into the 2020 Christmas Card. We planned to unveil the painting at our Saturday, December 6 opening for our annual Christmas show (Which we’ve canceled now due to the pandemic). On Sunday, November 22, friends and collectors of Dad’s art, William and Sandra Dykstra, paid a visit and enjoyed lunch at Dad and Mom’s place (William is almost exactly Dad’s age. They met on jury duty a number of years ago). Dad showed him all his new paintings. William ended up wanting to buy none other than the Christmas Card painting and offered $1,000 for it unframed! As mom puts it, “Dad sold it with the idea that a bird in the hand is better than two in the bush.”

The Dykstra’s purchase of his Christmas Card painting was, of course, super encouraging for Dad. However, it left Sunnyshore Studio with the dilemma that we no longer had a Christmas Card painting to “unveil”. Dad nobly went back to work, and has painted a wonderful second Christmas painting much like it, but also with its own special flair and flavor (see image above).

  • Title: A Touch of Red
  • Medium: Acrylic
  • Size: 19″ by 23″
  • Framed
  • Price: $900

Merry Christmas from Sunnyshore Studio and the Dorsey Family of Artists!

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