Personal Art Blog

Sharing the lessons I teach at the Artist Guild and the personal discoveries in my art.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Watercolor - Teapot and Pears

Teapot and Pears

7"x 5 1/2"  watercolor on Yupo  

Artist Note.
I  wasn't thinking about standard sizes 
when I cut my Yupo sheet into small 
pieces . I wanted to have enough to to freely
experiment on. Now I am in trouble with myself 
because I like this one. 
I have waxed it and love the finish the matt
surface - the colors still have a beauty
to them. Best of all -  it does not have to go under glass.
Going to keep this one for a while.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Watercolor - African Violets

African Violets
8x8 watercolor on paper  SOLD

Piddling with watercolor paint.
Relaxing. Trying to figure out a wallpaper pattern
 coupled with lots of little flowers - plus fracturing!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Doorway Out Of The Garden - plus white as a value

Doorway Out Of The Garden
8x6 oil on canvas panel $125. SOLD

This is the same location as my last post. 
Another type of chair and more of the glorious
flowers in this beautiful garden.

Artist Note.
Painting white is not easy. The values go much
darker than the brain wants to accept.
Camille Przewodek was the artist who took the
time to hammer home to me (12 years) ago that
'WHITE in the shadow is a similar value (or darker)
than BLACK in the light.
See below

The brain screams this cannot be... 
Black could never be as light as for those of you 
who, like me, experiences that then read on.

SQUINT at the value of the paper towel on top in
comparison to the body shadow. 
Compare the black cover of the calendar in light
to the black value in the cast shadow
I take artists - who are not quite understanding when I talk about
this principle -outside, and show them the above setting.
We are visual learners for sure so it helps to see it.
It is all too easy to think we know something,
but I still mess up and paint
white way too light at times.
The above chair was a real buggar to do. Sigh.
I worked too long on trying to get it right.
Light at the very top but angled
so the light caught it more than if it was a vertical,
and the seat (horizontal) caught the blue of the sky as well.
I am satisfied with it, but the photo does not show the
the actual shading very well.
Art is constantly fascinating.
 Always having to SEE and THINK.

Check out Camille Przewodek 
I have linked to a demo of her technique.
If you are not familiar with her work then this will be a treat.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Refreshments In The Garden

Refreshments In The Garden
6x8in oil on canvas $125. SOLD

I visited a good artist friend who has really beautiful 
front and back gardens.

Artist Note
In the mornings we stood and painted standing
in the shade on the west side of the house,
and in the afternoons we hauled our stuff to the east side.
I added to this when I returned home.
The white legs on the sunny side of the chair
jumped out too much so after placing the glass
over the painting
I added a front pot on the left side.
This also helped with a layering effect
indicating more frontal space than first shown.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Blue Rose Vase and Flowers - NEW!

Alstroemerias in Blue Rose Vase

8x6in oil on canvas panel $125.  SOLD

I painted this at a friend's house. As soon as I see a blue and 
white vase it just tugs at me to paint it. 

Artist Note.
Hope everyone has enjoyed the summer as much as I have.
It was fun visiting friends and family - still painting,
but in a more relaxed, and sometimes experimental, way.

What follows is a little bit of bragging...

How exciting to get the calls and emails 
about my art being in the 
Utrecht fall catalog - frame section.
Their designer apparently found my blog 
a couple of months back
and they asked for permission to use seven
of my images. They picked one of my fall landscapes 
to go on the cover, but, darn it - I could not 
get it to them on time. Here it is.

I am impressed with their color reproductions
as catalog paper is not the easiest  to get right.
Nice people, good products. I am grateful.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Waiting To Be Sliced

Waiting to be Sliced.

6x8in  oil on canvas panel  SOLD

This is a re-post. I have always liked this painting.
I see things I would do differently now, but have no urge
to  try and make it "perfect"...there is no explaining why some
paintings are like that and others drive me crazy.

Artist Note.

I have painted this cheerful, red colander before and it doesn't get any easier.
Especially with the fracturing technique. I am still figuring it out. Some things
are easier than others.

My colander was not a full circle because of my viewpoint which was not
directly overhead.
This is how I do a slight ellipse.

First I draw a square in the size I need.
Corner to corner to find the center
then half it both ways.
Make your circle as shown
Estimate the depth of the bowl and
the size of the base.
As I was looking into mine I could see
the full bottom with more of the sides
showing on the far side.
First I drew the horizontal line below,
but parallel to the first one (see in red)
add to existing center vertical - as
a reminder - and do a smaller, full circle
for the bottom of  the bowl.

In my case I did this first before I placed the lemons back into the colander.
It helps me understand the depth of what I am working with.
It is is not perfect, but it beats the heck out of making a box
in perspective to make the correct ellipse.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Turquoise and Orchid

Turquoise and Orchid
8x6in oil on linen  Gifted.

The photo is not too clear and has caught a 
bit of a glare.
Sorry. On vacation and do not have my usual set-up.

I love this little vase. I mean I really love it, and was 
devastated when I accidentally knocked it off
the table and saw it shattered into many pieces.
Our host and good friend, understanding my loss
miraculously glued the jigsaw of pieces 
back together...patiently sanding angles
and matching shapes. It took hours.
What an eye!
What a really good friend.
He grows orchids so this was a gift for him.
MY time for His time seems right... doesn't it?

Sunday, July 20, 2014


8x6in oil on canvas SOLD

Still on vacation and using this time to repost some
older paintings.
Re-post from May 2012
Thank you for still paying me a visit and commenting.

The incredible painter Abby Ryan came up with the the
 Daily Paintworks Challenge this week. The Yellow Challenge

Abby asks the question - what does yellow mean to you?
Easy - sunshine, happiness and feeling good.

This time I thought I would see what it was like to explore fracturing
with painting the lemons in water.

My palette was:
Titanium white
cad yellow light
Naples yellow
Indian yellow
Light red
Transparent brown oxide.
I put some yellow in every color I mixed.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Wanna Be World Famous

Acrylic on paper 
(This is a re-post as I am still on vacation.)

I was invited to enter a show featuring paintings of women only. 
On my pondering of the place of women in art, I thought of the Mona Lisa, 
reportedly the most recognized portrait of a woman worldwide. 
Then thought of all the famous artists' who have painted portraits 
of women in the hope to reach the same status. 
So far none have achieved Leonardo's stature. 
(I think Vermeer's Woman with a Pear Earring is coming close)
The gallery informed me this piece was sold to a museum in Denmark.

Picasso-Portrait of Dora Maar Seated
Leonardo Da Vinci - Mona Lisa
Van Gogh-Madame Ginoux
Cezanne-Young Italian Girl
Egon Schiele-Seated Woman with Bent Knee

The hardest part of this painting was the research of paintings of women
which would conform to my vision of them sitting 
together round a table...a universal theme the world over.
I started laughing when I picked the first two and even more 
so at the end
I adored the way these women looked totally bored ...
They must have been muttering as they posed...will he EVER finish!
Only Mona looks content, and after this painting I wonder why?
Any guesses?

Monday, July 7, 2014

New Mexico Kitchen Sink

New Mexico Sink

8x6" oil on canvas panel SOLD

I am on vacation and, yes...thank you...I am
enjoying a very relaxing time. 
We have been visiting wonderful friends and
I have painted every day
This painting is a re-post from 3/13/13
Off to visit son #1 today in his new home. FUN!
Hubby at home guarding the fort!

Artist Note.
It was Lisa Graham who sent this comment on

my last post of a Chili Ristra hanging by a door.
"Whenever I see a Ristra I always think of an old
Mexican kitchen with a large window over
the sink and shutters. 
Then I want to make enchiladas."
I could see the image she created so clearly in my
mind and this is what I came up with.

As this developed entirely from my imagination,
it kept on growing when I added items as I
recalled them. Most likely from the many,
many kitchens I have been in in Mexico and
El Paso.
Hand painted tile, no granite. No dishwasher.
Garlic and Chili Riestra's hanging by the window.
Tomatoes ripening on the windowsill.
Casual flowers or pretty weeds in a jar.
If she painted it...
Lisa's version most likely would have a plump,
motherly type rolling out the flour tortillas.
All painted in her wonderful unique style.
See her work HERE
Thanks for the inspiration, Lisa. I enjoyed
painting this.