Monday, October 31, 2011


From my trip last week to Sedona.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Saturday, October 29, 2011

La Jolla Overlook

Another beautiful day for painting in plein air.  This spot, the La Jolla overlook, is just north of Scripps Institute of Oceanography, off La Jolla Shores Dr.   The darker water in the mid-ground is quite a sudden, different value of blue than the water around the cove which makes me wonder if there is a large kelp bed there.  Altogether a great spot to paint and find shady corner to do so!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Beautiful Day for Plein Air

It was a beautiful day to paint out doors today here in San Diego County.  Again, using a limited palette this time of Burnt Sienna, Black and Yellow Ochre.  Lots of fun with this palette, it works well in the late summer and fall in the southwest.  Another note regarding my trip this past week - I took a ton of photos to use as material back in the studio - I will be starting a larger piece of Sedona shortly, hopefully with more time to work through to the finish. 

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Day Three: Yellow, Red and Blue

The morning started with sun then small storms passed through Sedona the rest of the day. Makes an exciting day of painting.  It went from 85 to 60 and rainy in a New York minute.  A lot of breaking down and setting up 'camp'.  All in all another great day at the easel.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Day Two/Part Two: Orange, Purple and Green

I was ready to post this yesterday but the network was down all night - technology can be frustrating at times!  Another painting from the King Gold Mine in Jerome.  This old truck is one of a pair of trucks that sit side by side at the entrance.  The owner was giving me some history on them "We call these trucks the working girls, yup".  Just as he was saying this, two women walked by -  timing is everything.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Day Two - Blue, Yellow, Crimson

Second day of the workshop with artist, Kevin MacPherson.  We painted at the Gold King Mine & Ghost Town in Jerome.  The mine was established in the late 1800's and is now a tourist attraction of a different sort.  Dozens of old cars and trucks from the 30's, 40's and 50's litter the 'Ghost Town'.  Lots of great models to paint.  I was told by the owner (who is from the 20's, 30's, 40's)  that this is a 53 Ford.  It was fun to paint this composition with a limited palette of cad yellow,  alizaron crimson and ultramarine blue.  The above is painted with color, below is the early block in using the gray scale.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Day One - Purple, Green and Orange

Day one of a plein air workshop with Kevin MacPherson in Sedona.   The limited palette was purple, orange, green (and white).   It was a great day starting with lecture and a demo and then we got to put our easels up at four o'clock.  The sun disappeared two hours later.  I managed to block in the shapes, values and color notes.  Kevin MacPherson is one of the best contemporary impressionist painters and a very good instructor - I am thrilled to be taking his workshop.  He and his wife, Wanda, make a great team and what a great sense of humor and attitude they both have!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Orange & Then Some

Quick sketch of valencia oranges.  Trying to keep it loose.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Persimmon and Olive Oil

The persimmons are surfacing at the markets, they are so beautiful and rich in color.  I thought to pair it up with olive oil adding a dark, more dramatic background to let the persimmon stand out.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

And the Dish Ran Away with the Spoon

The full verse of the Mother Goose rhyme:
"Hey diddle diddle,
The Cat and the fiddle
The Cow jumped over the moon,
The little Dog laughed to see such sport
And the dish ran away with the spoon"

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

October Limes

The dark blue vase is great fun to paint.  And the limes are a bonus!  Still playing around with composition.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Still Life with the Driver

Took out the 'driver' for this shot.  Sometimes you just have to open big,  tomorrow it might be the hammer to finish.  

Monday, October 17, 2011

Pomegranates are BACK!

Oh so glad to see pomegranates turning up.  They are so much fun to work with, with all of their planes and color variations.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Gerber and Pepper

Warm colors dominated the day. Oh, and the daisy.    

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Gerber Babies

I found some time to pick up flowers and decided to put these two gerbers in a jar -  I must have a dozen of these jars hanging around the studio just calling out to be painted.  (I wonder if I'm eating too much jam and salsa).  And I bought a new rigger - and gave that a try, it is so nice to have the right brush in your hand.  All in all, this took much longer than I had planned and I was on cusp of over working it so I had to put down my weapon and 'step away from the canvas' before I murdered it.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Music and Art

Music and art intersect in so many ways and I was inspired to paint in a more primary style, using strong color notes and shapes because of the music I was listening to while painting.  The horns, the rhythm, the canvas and the palette. Thank you Spyro Gyra.

Thursday, October 13, 2011


Straight up Strawberry Jam, homemade (not in my home) and so delicious.  I tried to capture the density of the jam, the weight of the thing. I started the painting thinking that the composition would be more complex, some garlic, butter,  another bit of this or that.  But in the end the jam is the star, simply the jam, the jar and the spoon.      

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Stop Abusing That Canvas Already!

Sometimes things don't work out as you planned
. I started with shapes blocked in, painting this still life of flowers with a new vase. I wanted to work on atmosphere, to work on the foreground/background. I was excited. This first photo is just a quick shot of the block in. I was good with this start, it would all come together on the back nine.
There comes a point when you know you have gone too far. It's a common mistake that artists make, regardless of the medium. The fresh, crispness is gone. So you have to learn to walk away, to know when you are done and I passed that point many brush stokes ago. So I want a do-over. As Scarlett says "Tomorrow is another day". Another day, and a do-over.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


More from the farmer's market.   I wanted to capture the colors of the peppers and the plate, and the colors that radiated from these peppers.  And I like the way the green pepper cozies up to the red one.  They compliment each other in many ways.  Part of the fun in painting still life is in the composition.  Compliments and contrasts, both peppers are bold and of the same overall value but different in size and shape and color which is attractive and fun to paint.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Still Life with Radishes

Blue vase and radishes.  The farmer's market in Poway is the source of a lot of good 'models' for me.  This bunch of radishes was decidedly round and red.  I like the leafiness of the bunch, kind of like a mane on a vegetable.  And radishes know how to sit, you just arrange them and they sit there for you until you are done (unlike other vegetables I know).

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Buffalo Sunset

This is a sunset over Lake Erie from a photo taken by my good friend who lives on the lake in Buffalo.  She has sent me more than one photo of these sunsets taken from her patio and I observed one first hand late, this past summer, I was amazed by the colors  - so rich.  I tried to capture it - to evoke the feeling one gets when feasting your eyes on a sky like this.  I wanted to keep the abstractedness of it, which is how it struck me initially.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Blue Vase

This little blue vase is one of my favorites.  I must have at least twenty vases that I've collected since I started painting a few years ago.  I see a vase and I think how much fun it would be to paint so I bring it home.  New, recycled, previously owned, who knows where they've been and the flowers they've seen.  I found another one just this morning.

Friday, October 7, 2011

A Day at the Beach

San Clemente Beach on a perfect So Cal day.  (Unlike the rainy,  cold weather passing thru this week - yeah, yeah - I know we need it, we always need more rain here).

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Still Life with Apple

Simple things that are familiar in my everyday life.  Like my ipod, itouch, apple TV, macbook, etc.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Lily Pads

Lily Pads in the Reflecting Pool at Balboa Park are well known in San Diego; they are the Marilyn Monroe of flowers at the park.  When in season more photos are taken of them than any other attraction at the park.  I love to paint them because each one has a different 'pose'.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Still Life with Chanel

I'm still learning about preparing images to be displayed here.  Pixels, image sizes, color...things that can influence how paintings are rendered online and 'stuff' about which I need to learn more!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Day One!

What better way to start than with Milk and Cookies!