December 18, 2007

Morning Ride

This painting is for my sister-in-law Teresa. She has a couple of horses and lives in Alaska. It still needs work on the horse but it's getting close to finished.
Sometimes it's a challenge to keep narrative paintings like this one from seeming overly sentimental. I'm hoping the treatment of brushstroke and color will pull it over into a successful piece of art.

December 17, 2007

Let it snow...

No, it's not snowing here in Seattle, lots of rain though. I can remember my grandpa saying "without the rain it wouldn't be so green in the Northwest." So welcome rain.

Painting is going well. Every time I sit down to paint a still life the form is more and more comprehensible and the subtle color and light changes are easier to see. Translating what I see has become less difficult.

Landscape, on the other hand is mind boggling. I am working on a couple of pieces in the studio and while some aspects are successful others are a disappointing. I belong to a critique group led by Mitch Albala which is incredibly helpful. Listening to the comments helps tremendously. One thing is have learned so far is not to just jump into a painting. Paying careful attention to composition, values and color in the planning process helps eliminate lost time on a mediocre idea.

December 15, 2007

Happy Holidays

Wishing everyone Happy Holidays and New Year!!!
2007 has been a very good year for me, a little crazy making but that's all part of the ride.
My goal for the new year is to work hard on the content of my paintings. Especially making deliberate choices of subject matter and their meaning.

November 27, 2007

New apple painting

I'm working on a series of fruits and nuts. I love the richness of color and wonderful shapes.

November 8, 2007

Breakfast in Class

This was a painting done at the Juliette Aristides workshop this summer. I set up my breafast on the table next to the easel and went to work. In reality I bought two of everything because it took a couple of mornings to finish. It wouldn't have been the same if I didn't get to nibble on the raspberry scone as I worked.

November 4, 2007

Paintings for Kaewyn Galleries small works show

I'm working on a series of still life's for a gallery show of small works. They will take up to six of my pieces so I'm getting as many done as possible by mid November so I can choose the best of the group.
Some interesting personal growth, I'm a member of two critique groups and in both there has been quite a bit of discussion about choice of subject matter and developing a personal style and voice. I find this very thought provoking. How does one articulate artistic inspiration? I'll let you know if I fiqure it out.

SOSF package

Here are some of the fun treats I received in a lovely package from Australia sent by my SOSF friend.

Thank you! It was such fun to open all of the beautifully wrapped presents!

October 28, 2007

work still in progress

This painting has been a real pain in the you know what! I think it is finally heading in the right direction. Quite the challenge to get a believable sense of space.

October 25, 2007

series of still lifes

here's a shot of my work table in the studio. I'm working on a series of small still life paintings for a gallery show in November. Sure is fun!

October 5, 2007

Finished painting

Here is the apple painting finished. I'm happy with the result although as I look again I may have to turn one of the apples on the table on it's side.

October 4, 2007

work in progress

This is a large canvas for me 24"x36". On this photo it is still in it's early stages. The biggest challenge is the lighting. Here it appears a little too flat. I'll have new photo soon to show the changes that have been made.

September 25, 2007

Fall is here HOORAY

Everyone that sees this painting asks what kine of flowers these are. They are actually the seed pods from a Japenese Maple in my backyard, it has such a glorious red and green combination.

September 18, 2007

work in progress

This is a painting I started recently when all of the local apples arrived at the farmers market. I'm hoping to get this completely finished this week so I can enter it in a competition.
wish me luck.

September 17, 2007

I'm hoping this post will look better once published, but no guarantees.
As always the retreat was magical. Here are some photos of high lights.

September 12, 2007

Lake Wenatchee

I'm leaving for our yearly POBL retreat this morning. The past few days I've been daydreaming about plein aire painting, there will be plenty of opportunities at the cabin. Hopefully I'll have some worthy images to post when I return.

September 2, 2007

more plein air

Another plein air painting from the Skagit Valley workshop with Mitch Albala.

August 18, 2007

Study in compliments

Another small study from the plein air workshop. I'm working on a studio version of this one. Hoping I can combine the fresh feeling of the study with the more complicated techniques in the studio. Wish me luck.

August 12, 2007

Lake Wenatchee

This little plein air painting is of Lake Wenatchee in Washington State. My family went camping there and it was beautiful. The winds off the lake made it a bit challenging to set up my paints but I persevered.
I won't get a chance to paint outdoors for a couple of weeks, too much going on, but I look forward to getting out in September. My favorite month of the year!

August 10, 2007

skagit valley

This is a little plein air painting I did during the landscape workshop. An important aspect of this type of painting is to simplify subjects into major shapes. I quite like the result, painterly but with a nice sence of form.

August 8, 2007

Mt St Helens Meadow

I'm having fun painting lots of landscapes these days. The plein air workshop with Mitch Albala through Gage Academy was wonderful! I learned so much. Now I need to do about 100 paintings before it really sinks in. Eight down 92 to go.

July 24, 2007


These geraniums were challenging but fun.
We've been coming and going quite a bit this summer so my postings are sporadic at best. Next week I'll be attending a plein air workshop, hooray! Then back out for a four day camping trip.

June 28, 2007

September retreat

This is a painting of a place that is very special to me. Each year in September a group of nine painting buddies escape to an old forestry lodge in the woods of Washington State to paint and play for a few wonderful days. I've know these ladies for many years now and this trip has become a treasured experience not to be missed. (Special thanks to Suzi who makes it possible).

June 24, 2007


This is a painting I recently completed inspired by the work of American Impressionist Childe Hassam. What a joy to be working on a large canvas, 24"x36", for a change!
Today my friend Rhonda introduced me to an amazing place in Woodinville Wa, Bassetti's Gardens. What a beautiful collection of gardens and some very lovely plants for sale.

June 21, 2007

working a little larger

I am working at painting my subjects close to life size. I enjoy the freedom of a larger canvas.

June 7, 2007

more rain is coming our way...

The forecast is more rain... big surprise! The good news is I'll have more time to spend in the studio if I'm not out messing around in the garden.
Two more weeks and my teenagers are off from school for the summer. I predict we'll be spending lots of time at the beach and I'll be hearing...
"Mom can you take us to the mall?"

June 6, 2007

skagit valley

The tulip fields in the spring are quite amazing, so much color! My daughter and I had a lovely time painting and photographing our visit. What fun.
My painting classes are winding up for the year and we're heading into summer. Now it's time for kid camps, we'll be drawing, painting and sculpting all kinds of things, including bugs and snakes! Should be very fun.

June 3, 2007

refreshing rain

We've had beautiful warm sunny weather, it's been just wonderful, but tonight the clouds rolled in and it's raining. I must be nuts, but I love it! Without the rain this wouldn't be such a magical place.

I'm taking a couple of workshops this summer. A week of plein air painting in the skagit valley and two weeks of intense study of still life with Juliette Aristides; needless to say I can't wait!

It seems every class or workshop I take allows me a little leap forward in my understanding and skills. Such a pleasure to move forward.

May 29, 2007

More flowers...

More flowers...

I'm designing my garden so there are plenty of beautiful things to paint, and eat! The birds and bees seem very happy these days, swarms of honey bees all over the yard and chickadees, junkos, towhees, and finches everywhere. The only thing missing this year is the little house wren. Hopefully they'll be back next year.

May 26, 2007

More flowers

Everyday there are new flowers in the garden to paint.
I am fascinated with natures ability to grow extraordinary flowers, edibles, trees... all things growing. It's an endless source of inspiration.

May 20, 2007

daphne and grape hyacinth

We took a little canoe trip on Lake Washington today. There were blue heron, raccoons, ducks and geese. It's amazing to glide along on the water and see the activity. Next time I'm bringing my watercolor paint and paper!

May 18, 2007

Wow, I've been trying to upload this picture for days, finally it works!

Lots of hours painting in the studio these days. The weather and growing things are inspirational!

April 12, 2007

Beautiful colors of spring

I am in artist's heaven these days. The spring flowers are in bloom and there is no end to lovely subject matter for paintings. My daughter and I spent one afternoon in the tulip fields north of our house, she photographing the blooms and I painting. So enjoyable!

April 7, 2007

more spring flowers

I love this time of year. That incredible green of new growth, and the thrill of watching buds open, absolutely wonderful!

April 4, 2007

Time to stop, look and listen

This painting was finished about a week ago. I'm fairly happy with this one, although I really wish I had made the eggs much smaller. There would have to be a chicken sitting on that nest to lay such large eggs... since the nest is only about six inches across that would be quite impossible. The flower is not bad though.
After quite a good run of painting and illustrating I hit a rough patch yesterday. I began a painting of some very lovely flowers in a cobalt vase and it was horrible when I finished. In the end I rubbed the paint off of the canvas and left it to dry. It will be the underpainting for a different composition . This experience reminded me that everyone eventually runs out of ideas and when that happens it's time to stop, look around and find inspiration.

April 2, 2007

Finally back

Well... as you may have noticed I haven't posted in a while. There has been a lot happening at my house. My husband has an exciting new job, I've been working on three illustration projects and trying to keep up with the painting. Fortunately everything has gone smoothly, it's just taken me a long time to get photos of the latest paintings.
This little composition is one of my favorites. The colors are so cheerful. It makes me think of all the flowers blooming in the spring. Everywhere I turn in the garden there are new buds mixed in with the crocus, daffodils, tulips and cherry blossoms.
I know I've said it before, but hooray for Spring!

March 20, 2007

Small studies

I'm fascinated with the artists out there doing daily paintings. They are usually small studies many of them still life There is a fresh loose feeling about them that is very appealing. My goal is to do at least four or five of these a week. I'll use them as a warm up for my larger more involved work

March 11, 2007

Snohomish Sunset

This is a valley just about 20 minutes north of my house. I used to drive up there for work four times a week. There were some beautiful sunsets on the way home.

March 9, 2007

New work in progress

Here is a new still life I'm working on. In my continual search for "my style or voice" I am experimenting with different subject matter. Last night in my critique group one of our members spoke about the challenge artist have as idea people. For many the ideas come easy, it's the focus and follow through that we have trouble with. For me that translate in the habit of jumping around in subject matter. I intend to limit the jumping from now on.

March 2, 2007

Rough sketch

A friend of mine owns the BeeHive Day Spa in Snohomish WA. They're creating a new product for sale and need a label. This is the rough sketch, the final will be in full color, red couch and black and yellow bee lady. Should be fun!
We had snow again yesterday. We've had more snow this winter than I can ever remember. It's beautiful, but I'm ready for spring!

February 26, 2007

Midwinter break, YIKES!

My kids were on break last week. So I didn't get much work done and no painting photographed for this site. My goal this week is to catch up!

February 12, 2007

February 11, 2007

love the spring colors

It's fun to work with a lighter palette for spring. The challenge to still life is to take the time to move the elements until you're truly inspired. It's so easy to think "oh, that's good enough", but I find when I stop there it's a dissapointment. This painting comes close to inspiration but not quite all the way.

February 6, 2007

Think Spring!

It's funny, I tend to want to skip the last month or two of winter and head right into spring. Guess I'll just have to be patient...