Thursday, May 25, 2017

Beach Cottage, Crystal Cove

oil 12x9 inches magnify/purchase info On that day in Crystal Cove, I had driven for 2 1/2 hours to get there, so to make it worth the drive I painted again after lunch. Often times I end up wiping off my second painting which I attribute to lack of stamina. Plein air work does require stamina, and I'm wondering if others of you have found this to be true. I hope to build stamina with more practice. However, I'm happy with how this one turned out. I remember something crawled up my pant leg and started biting me on the buttocks. There I am grabbing frantically at my butt trying to kill whatever it was. I turned around to see a few people staring at me with dropped jaws. Ahh, the perils of painting outdoors in public!

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Crystal Cove Painter

oil 9x12 inches magnify/purchase info In March I joined the American Impressionist Society's paint out at Crystal Cove. About 50 fellow members had come from all over the country. It was fun to see a favorite painting spot full of artists doing our thing.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Roses In A Blue Vase -and THE BALBOA ART WALK

oil 10x8 inches magnify/purchase info In February I set out to practice painting roses. This is the end result of several practice sessions. Below are my out of order but numbered practice studies.
IN OTHER NEWS: The BALBOA ART WALK was amazing again! Perfect weather, music, great visitors to talk with, and sales!
Collector Joan Stipe made one of the first purchases, "Cinnamon Stop."
Jo Beth Prudhomme from Coast Magazine gave my booth an "Award of Excellence." A sincere thank you to everyone who visited, commented on my work and purchased paintings. You made my day!

Monday, May 15, 2017

Japanese Garden -a plein air painting from The Huntington Library and Gardens

oil 9x12 inches magnify/purchase info Thank you to The Huntington Library in San Marino for including me in their Art Guild Membership. What a peaceful place to paint! In February I enjoyed painting this scene on a very warm day. At the time I was experimenting with thalo green for cool darks. Usually I consider it too powerful in tinting strength and an unnatural green unless altered significantly with yellow and alizarin. So generally I don't include it in my daily palette. Here I thought it worked pretty well (altered) for those deep shadowed greens. Your comments are always appreciated.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Mums, The Bird

oil 6x12 inches magnify/purchase info I have a collection of birds in glass and ceramic. This is one of those with some mums from my yard. IN OTHER NEWS: I have upcoming two day workshops set for June and September. They are held here in my large studio in Upland, CA. If you would like more information just email me at

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Flower Happy II

oil 8x8 inches not for sale magnify I have a lot of catching up to do. This one was painted in early February.

Friday, May 5, 2017

Rusty Rest

oil 9x12 inches magnify/purchase info On our last day in Zion I found this beautiful old truck on a side street in Springdale. Below are some progress shots.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Big Bend -a plein air painting from Zion National Park

oil 12x9 inches magnify/purchase info Big Bend is one of my favorite spots within Zion. I paint small outdoors to finish in 2-3 hours because of changing light. But how to capture the vastness and scale of this scene on a 12x9 inch canvas? Zoom in. I'm thinking next time a larger panel painted over a couple of days at the same time each day. I took home a decent painting and twelve bug bites on my forehead.
In roughly the same spot the day before.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Airstream Dreams -SOLD

oil 9x12 inches magnify/purchase info Immediately after tax season I loaded my CPA into our little motorhome and took him far from his office to Zion National Park. In the campground I met Bob who owned this beautiful '77 Airstream. For the last few years I've been on the lookout for one to paint each time we camped. I took tons of pictures with Bob's permission. When the guy in the next campsite took out his banjo, well how could I not paint it right then? So there I was, painting, surrounded by Utah mountains, the rushing Virgin River behind me, and the banjo guy playing old hymns. Almost Heaven. I'm sorry I didn't get a pic of the banjo guy! That would make a nice painting too.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Violet Vase Floral

oil 12x12 inches magnify/purchase info The final piece in the January Strada Easel Challenge. I finished this piece fairly late in the evening of the 31st, placed it on the floor of my studio and added all the others. I took the picture below and posted both on Facebook by midnight as the challenge required. I had a great sense of accomplishment. Was I glad it was over? Nope! I can honestly say I never got tired of painting.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Patio Daisies

oil 10x10 inches magnify/purchase info Number 30 in my 31 paintings in 31 days. The light daisies against the dark background makes this a bold painting. I enjoyed painting these common objects on my back patio.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Anza Borrego -plein air paintings from the California Desert

Near the end of January we had scheduled camping trip to Anza Borrego State Park. I had painted there before, but this time the challenge would be squeezing in a painting on arrival day after driving and setting up camp, then again on departure day. With some planning it all worked out. Below are my four daily paintings. If you're interested in a purchase just email me:
DESERT DUSK 6x8 inches. Barely time enough to squeeze this one in. Late afternoon. The sun dropped behind that mountain and instantly the light was gone.
CAMPGROUND PALMS 10x8 inches A morning painting followed immediately by a wind storm. When your paper towel roll is rolling away you are done!
DESERT CHOLLA 9x12 For those of you not familiar with cactus, this is a particularly nasty plant full of fine and painful needles. But boy is is beautiful when the sun shines through. Difficult to capture in paint, but I had fun trying.
BOTANICAL BORREGO 9x12 inches Right outside the campground visitor center there's an informative nature walk. I liked the variety in this grouping, and I liked the nearby restroom too. Always a bonus.
My husband accompanied me on this trip. We enjoyed the many sculptures outside the little town of Borrego Springs, great Mexican Food in town, a hike up Palm Canyon and the REALLY dark quiet nights. So peaceful. I hope you've enjoyed this epic post.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Apple, Grapes & Green

oil 6x6 inches magnify/purchase info This one was painted on a black gessoed panel. It results in a bold look if you leave little bits of the black gesso showing though. Believe me, it's always a challenge to NOT slather every speck of the canvas with paint as if I was painting a wall in my house and going for 100% coverage!

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Modern Grannies

oil 6x6 inches magnify/purchase info Once in a while I enjoy painting a fabric pattern in contrast with some very simple objects. I love solving the problem of getting values right even though the pattern's colors change within a shadow shape. The fabric texture is a result of light coverage and some scraping back. More fun stuff. Number 24 of my 31 January paintings. I hope you like it. We are nearing the home stretch, folks! Newer paintings are piling up. I paint faster than I post.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Still Life With Wine Bottle

oil 12x12 inches magnify/purchase info Number 23 of my 31 January paintings. I'm especially happy with the color scheme here; deep reds with that clean blue and natural greens. The objects give it an earthy feel. That's a handmade botanical greeting card in the back from my friend Mary Jo. It carries the horizontal plane beyond the subject matter. Thanks again, Mary Jo.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Turquoise Pitcher

oil 8x8 inches magnify/purchase info Number 22 of 31 paintings in 31 days, this is one of my favorites. For me, the benefit of painting every day like I did in January, is being able to work with confidence instead of second guessing as I go along. It results in loose looking brushwork; laying down a stroke and leaving it alone, moving on to the next area and not fussing with things as I go. This painting is a good example. It has the freshness I'm looking for in my work. Back when I was painting mostly watercolor I heard this: "Do you want your painting to be like fresh sushi or well-done beef?" I'm going for the sushi. I've got to paint every day.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Fall Cupcake

oil 6x6 inches magnify/purchase info I loved the subtle color of this cupcake I found at a local bakery back in the fall. It sat in my fridge for a couple of months before I painted it. Hard as a rock, but looked just the same as the day I brought it home! Wish you could see this one in person. It's a sweet little painting, no pun intended.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Chocolate Cheesecake -a still life painting in oil

oil 6x6 inches magnify/purchase info I started painting desserts several years ago, and still they are among my favorite still life subjects. In a nice frame they make great little kitchen paintings whether on the wall or counter top in a decorative easel. This painting is a personal favorite of my 31 January paintings. "Did it taste as good as it looks?", I'm often asked. They usually don't, according to my husband.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Sunday, March 19, 2017

A Cow Named Mocha -a plein air painting from Amy's Farm

oil 9x12 magnify/purchase info Afternoon at Amy's Farm, Mocha was intent on her lunch and staying there a while it seemed. I set up quickly, snapped a lot of pictures and painted her first. She changed positions several times, so I relied on memory and the photos. Mocha is the new bovine star to groups of children on field trips at Amy's Farm. I painted her predecessor, the late "Grandma Tina", back in 2014. (below, sold.)