Wednesday, December 4, 2013

From the Train

I'm currently on a train headed West. Caught the train out of Greensboro @ midnight on Monday, spent last night in very muggy New Orleans, currently somewhere beyond Houston.  Can't wait to crawl into my bed & be lulled to sleep by the swaying train.

I spent 2 weeks in Tennessee with no internet or cell service, I'm back to reality.  I thought all my stories would begin in CA but let's just say that there might be a few chapters to be written about my time at my Uncle Bob's farm in TN. Being a city girl, I have certainly missed the very colorful tales that make up the community & my family in TN. Enjoyed beautiful 2+ inches of snow that fell before Thanksgiving, many days & nights in front  a fire, glasses of wine & lots of lively conversation with my family. I can't share all the stories but I will share a few over the next few months.

So good night from Texas.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Big Change, Great Opportunity

So here's the skinny on why a Southern Girl is making a huge move to the West Coast.  For the past several years, I was the primary caregiver for my parents. Between care giving, I taught a couple days a week & tried to paint. Not the most ideal way to advance a career as an artist. After my mom's death last summer, I tried to rebuild my life without a real direction.

Fast forward to 3 weeks ago, a phone call from my landlord informing me that my building was being sold and torn down.  Probably within 30-45 days.  Well that seemed to help me make a decision.  My bestie, who lives in CA, said (has been saying, I'd not been listening) move out here & start over.  I've moved at least 3x every decade of my life (except this last one), so moving is in my blood.  Leaving the baggage behind, starting fresh.  I even managed to sell every piece of artwork before I left.  No unfinished paintings shouting at me to fix them.  A true beginning.

As an artist, both California & Russian Impressionists have been my inspirations. So I guess it was inevitable that I would some day land in California.  Before I even arrive, I have 2 teaching opportunities lined up, as well as a one-day workshop booked.  Seems the universe likes the direction I'm taking.

For my east coast friends, students & family, I've loved being close to you, sharing the good and bad times. I will truly miss you but it's time to try something different.  Based on how many people are now planning trips to CA, it seems that I won't miss seeing you too much.

For my new West Coast friends, acquaintances & students, a couple of things about me.

  • Most Southerners think I don't have a southern accent, you might think differently.
  • Don't own or shoot guns
  • I'm a city girl, so when my best friend informs me that she has recently sighted a rattlesnake, bobcat & is awaiting a visit from a big brown bear, there is a really good chance that you will hear some blood curdling screams from around the Altadena area.  Might need to rethink the gun issue.
  • No, I don't have a cement pond, swimming pools are now the rage in the south :)
  • Sweetie or honey might slip into the conversation, a habit from my grandmother & great grandmother that I have never quite broken.
  • Any faux pas I might make, it more likely to be attributed to me being blonde, not southern.  
  • Quick sense of humor is appreciated & I will try to reciprocate. 
  • Feel free to ask me any questions but be prepared for any answer
  • Looking forward to embracing my new home but hopefully bringing a little southern to the mix
So with only my clothes & art supplies, I'm headed west.  Traveling light seems like the right move. For the next few weeks, I'm hanging out in Tennessee with my favorite uncle, drinking margaritas (yes, I know it will be cold but it's what we do). Hopefully painting a couple of scenes from his beautiful side of the mountain overlooking the Great Smokies. Spending time with my wonderful cousins, attending one of their weddings & generally soaking up my southern roots and family.  I'll be catching a train to LA the first week in December & plan to blog the trip.

I hope you will follow my adventures.  I can't wait to see how my art changes.  The world is now laid out for me to grab hold of and embrace.  See you on the road.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Low Country Revisited - SOLD

"Glow on the Marsh"
18x24  Oil on Linen Panel

There was a time when I painted marshes quite often.  Then I lost interest in the subject but when you come across a scene as beautiful as this...hard not to grab the brush and paint away.  

Monday, October 7, 2013

In the Kitchen - SOLD

"In the Kitchen"
8x8  Oil on Linen Panel

This was a blast to paint. What's for dinner?

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Roo Time - SOLD

"Roo at Max Patch"
8x8 Oil on Linen Panel

Painting dogs is usually not my subject of choice.  But when my cousin 
shared a photo of her dog, Roo looking so regal, it had to be done.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Just Outside - SOLD

"Just Outside the Window"
7x5 Oil on Linen Panel

Sometimes you don't have to travel far to find inspiration.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Palm Trees - SOLD

"Distant Hills"
5x7 Oil on Linen Panel

I enjoy painting these really tall palm trees.  I find myself searching my California photos for palm trees in the hope that there will be a scene to support painting the trees.  Weird, I know.  But whatever floats your boat.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Quietly - SOLD

"Quiet Day on the Farm"
5x7 Oil on Linen Panel

I'm sure farmers don't have many quiet days on the farm, guess that's why I'm a painter.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Flooded with Light - SOLD

"Sunlit Cafe"
5x7 Oil on Linen Panel

Give me streaming light & there's a painting to follow.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Anticipation - SOLD

"Autumn on the Bank"
5x7 Oil on Linen Panel 

It's another 4 to 6 weeks before the colors show up but I
couldn't wait. Come on autumn!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Just Indicating - SOLD

"Mountainside Lupine"
12x12 Oil on Linen Panel

Had fun trying to just "indicate" the beautiful lupine. There's always that line 
that you don't want to cross & hopefully I've stopped just short of it.  

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Cast Shadows - SOLD

"Cast Shadows"
9x12 Oil on Linen Panel

A new subject for me.  A challenge color wise because I haven't painted in a 
primary color palette. I enjoyed painting the shadows as much as the buoys.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Windswept - SOLD

6x12 Oil on Linen Panel

I was excited to paint the Golden Gate Bridge but the 
foreground ended up being the most fun of all.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Art Tutorial 

I'm happy to share my process in creating fresh & painterly works in oil.  In this PDF downloaded demo, I will offer my approach in eliminating unnecessary detail, keeping your colors clean & your brushwork descriptive.  I discuss my process from the initial selection of my subject to the final brushwork.  I include how to avoid mistakes, a section about color mixing & brushwork.  It's a great tool to print & keep beside your easel as you work through your paintings. This art tutorial is available for $10.  Click the buy now button below & once the purchase is complete, you will receive the tutorial by email.  I hope to have a new tutorial each month.  

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Breaking My Comfort Zone - SOLD

"4 O'clock"
7x8 Pastel 

My comfort zone is oil painting. It took a new student wanting a class in pastels to push me.  It's been about 8 years since I worked in pastels & boy have I learned a lot since then. Not about the medium but about painting fundamentals in general. I thought I would struggle but in the end it came down to the basics. Composition, value, color theory. I'm now eyeing my watercolors.  Lord, help me.  

Wednesday, August 7, 2013


"Rubber Ducky"
10x10  Oil on Linen Panel

Just completed this commission.  Ready to be varnished & shipped. Commissions can be challenging but fun.  Really enjoyed painting the kiddie pool & water.  Who knew that would be the really fun part. 

Thursday, July 25, 2013

After the Rain - SOLD

"After the Rain"
8x8 Oil on Linen Panel
$135 - SOLD

Love how everything is softened after the rain.  Certainly getting 
inspiration daily with all the rain this summer.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Sally's Cottage - SOLD

"Turquoise Door"
8x8  Oil on Linen Panel

This was today's demo for a student (hence the title).  I lost a lot of information from the photo to help highlight the door.  Students want to include much more than is necessary to make a good painting.  Remember less is more.  Therefore, no cobblestone walkway, no fence line, no bizillion plants in the yard.  Deciding what your painting is about makes the editing so much easier. 

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Is this Summer? - SOLD

"Bountiful Roses"
8x8  Oil on Linen Panel

I can't remember a summer less hot & more wet.  Summer in the south is hot, humid & sticky but not this summer.  Not complaining, like the cooler weather but a little less rain would be nice.  But the flowers seem to have benefited.  

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Beach Baby - SOLD

"Beach Baby"
8x8 Oil on Linen Panel

What's more fun than painting kids at the beach?  

Friday, June 28, 2013

Play Time - SOLD

"Play Time at Beach"
8x8 Oil on Linen Panel

First day & first painting of my 10 day unplugged painting "staycation".  Hoping the rest of the paintings flow like this one did.  Yaye!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Abstracted Again - SOLD

"Caribbean Storm"
12x12 Oil on Linen panel

I'm currently distracted painting abstracts.  For years, I've been unable to "see" a path to paint in an abstracted manner.  But evidently, my brain flipped the switch.  No worries though, I'm still going to paint my impressionistic art.  Just going to ride the abstract waves for a while.

Check out my latest post about abstracts here.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Abstracted - SOLD

"Splash of Hollyhocks"
12x12 Oil on Linen Panel
After many years of contemplating painting some abstracts, I finally took the plunge.  It was a blast!  I struggled for a starting point but found that inspiration from my last painting "Garden Shed II".  

Keeping some basic rules in my sight, I let color drive this work.  Color harmony, shape variety, calm & chaos were floating through my mind.  Stopping before I overworked was a challenge.  In the end, I was pleased.  I think it successful because I started with a sound foundation & hopefully, never lost sight of it.   Check out my Art Tip Blog post for Tuesday, it will be about what makes a good abstract & a few other thoughts.  

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Back to Back - SOLD

Garden Shed II - SOLD
8x8 Oil on Linen Panel

I guess I wasn't quite finished painting hollyhocks & sheds.  So some
 back to back garden shed paintings.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

No Green Thumb

"Garden Shed"
6x6 Oil on Panel
$95 + s/h

You'd think with as many flowers as I paint, that I would have a garden full of flowers.  Not so much.  In fact, I can't keep anything alive.  I killed a cactus once.  So I just rely on those more talented gardeners to supply me with the gorgeous subject matter.  

Go visit my Art Tips blog to see the latest post.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Go with the Flow - SOLD

"Abundant Peonies" - SOLD
6x6  Oil on Panel

It appears that I'm firmly on a path of painting florals again.  I guess I'll just go with the flow.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Kiawah Marsh

"Kiawah Marsh"
10x10  Oil on Linen Panel
Can't count the number of marshes I've painted over the years.   Adding another one to the collection.
Tomorrow, I'll share the video demo of this piece.  

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Colors of Spring

10x10 Oil on Linen Panel
Love the colors of spring!

Click here for today's Art Tip #103.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Do Over

Starting a series called "Do Over".  On occasion, I'll take old paintings and rework them to hopefully a better conclusion.   Here's the first attempt.  I did this painting about 6 yrs ago.   I like the result.

6x8  Oil on Canvas

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

A New Blog - Oil Painting Tips

Beginning this week, I'm starting a new blog to focus on lessons learned at the easel as well as the 8 years I've taught.  I hope you will follow me and comment.   Happy Painting.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Oldie but Goodie SOLD

"Stand Tall, Study"
9x12  Oil on Panel
$250   NOW $200

Digging through some older pieces & discovered a favorite of mine.  I always have a stack of panels of unfinished or didn't quite make the cut" paintings to serve as underpaintings for new pieces.  Somehow this got buried in the wrong pile.  My discovery could turn into a good deal for someone.  

Saturday, April 20, 2013


"Afternoon Stroll"
5x7  Oil on museum quality panel
$95 + shipping

This is another study that I'm doing in prep for larger pieces.  I always run into the dilemma of losing my initial excitement of a painting by doing a study but when I go big, it's important that the plan is set.  I can then just  enjoy the freedom of big brushes and piles of paint.  Happy Spring.