29 November, 2012

Halifax Boats 16"x20" $900

Just had a great visit with my trwo sisters and 94 year old Mama who drove out from Albuquerque to see me and Jim, my kids and grandkids.  We had a 3 day gab fest and Jim claims he had to raise his hand to speak!  Now just finished this boat piece-thanks to Becky and Blane's great photo.

I will be participating in the first Friday event at La Villita on December 7.  All the shops will stay open until 9 pm that night.  I will be set up just outside the River Art Group Gallery so come and say hi and enjoy the Riverwalk lights.  They have reverted back to the old style lights again-softer and more twinkly!

18 November, 2012

Lighthouse 2 6"x8"

Got back to San Antonio and my little grand daughter got a bad virus and ended up in the hospital for several days.  I babysat her the next week and now she is doing great, but i haven't touched a brush for two weeks!  So glad I was here to help out-nothing more precious than those babies!!  So now back in the studio and finished this little painting from our eastern seaboard cruise.  This one is going to our table mates Becky and Blane.  They so generously emailed me their favorite photos from the trip and I can't wait to use one of those in a large painting or two!

26 October, 2012

Halifax Lighthouse 6"x8"

We are back from our wonderful cruise up the eastern seaboard.  Except for one bad weather day at Bar Harbour, Maine--the tour was super, the food on the ship was outstanding and we lucked into having dining companions that really made the trip so much fun.  Here's to Wally and Rob and Becky and Blaine--thanks guys and don't forget to send me your best photos!  Here's a little lighthouse painting from Halifax where we saw dolphins and seals!

09 October, 2012

Commission piece-Hudson Homestead 12x16 $300

This is a commission piece I did for a friend.  This is the family homestead her grandfather built.  I don't normally like commissions.  Just want to paint what I want to paint, but she was so easy to work with and I ended up loving the painting.  I had planned to make use of the late afternoon sun so Jim and I arrived at the homestead about 5pm.  The light was lovely and the shadows were long but I had outsmarted myself because the house was situated so that the sun was behind it!  That meant that when I stood facing the house entrance, I was looking directly into the sun.  A blinding sun sort of swallows up any image!  Luckily those big trees helped to block some of the light and finally when the sun got low enough, the house itself blocked it and I got that nice back lit effect and some great glow colors on the porch.

06 October, 2012

BY the Road 16"x20" $425

I worked on this painting some more.  Simplified the background of yellow and made more definite shapes in the water.  I was having trouble carrying the interest from the water back to the trees.  The water just looked like a band of nothing and then all that tree activity!  So by making the highlight in the water stronger I think it balances better.

05 October, 2012

BY the Road 16"x20" $425

Had this fancy frame that I got on sale so thought I'd do a traditional landscape for it.  This is the bank of the dock about 100 feet from our house here by the lake.  The road behind it is the one we take when we want to go to the movie in Scotsboro.  This may be a painting that I come back to and and repaint some areas.  Sometimes its good to let it sit for awhile and then look again with a fresh eye because I may have pushed the colors a little too much trying for a glittery glow.  Also think it got a little too detailed and some areas could stand to be simplified--stay tuned as this painting is a work in progress!

27 September, 2012

Boathouse 2 6"x12" $165.00 SOLD

Just had to do this little boathouse again.  Alot of the boathouses now are constructed with aluminum siding  unlike this old wooden painted boathouse.  I suppose they are more weather resistant with the aluminum siding, but they are certainly less interesting and colorful.

24 September, 2012

The Boathouse 10"x20" $325.00

I never get tired of these lake scenes.  The light on the water has endless configurations and the reflections add a beautiful echo to any house or boat or tree that is lucky enough to be close to the water.  Oh and did I mention those gorgeous tree covered mountains that turn purple and tourquoise in the distance?

19 September, 2012

Geranium Under the Light 12"x12" $195.00

Just had to do another geranium painting.  Love the shadows and the glass.  Next I will probably do some more lake paintings--thanks to a lovely boat ride courtesy of our lovely neighbors, Sandra and David--thankyou!!

09 September, 2012

Guntersville Barge 8"x16" $225

After posting this painting yesterday--I just had to re-send the image.  The first image was way too dark.  I realized that my light for the pic was really bad due to the overcast weather.  I try to photograph in natural light but this was not true to the painting--so overs!

08 September, 2012

Guntersville Barge 8"x16" $225

This is what the I learned in school to call a "genre" scene.  I think It must mean generic or common but those words have a negative connotation so I would rather say it is an "everyday" scene--something that we see often in our ordinary life.  This barge has been docked at this pier for as long as the locals here can remember.  No one seems to know why, but it has become a local landmark and I love its rusty colors.

02 September, 2012

Taos Window 14"x18" $325

I like to change up my subject matter alot.  Keeps it interesting.  Career wise, I suppose it would be better to get known for one type of thing, but I would like to avoid that kind of type casting.  I'd rather be the character actor who takes on all kinds of roles!
So after a lake painting, this one is of the famous Taos church in Taos, New Mexico.  I was enthralled with this window and the depth created by seeing the window on the other side of the church as well.  I also just love to paint adobe--it seems to have a life of its own.  Maybe that is because real adobe is just plain mud and straw and is hand applied every few years.

29 August, 2012

Lake Sky 8"x16" $225.00 SOLD

While I was painting this I thought--I may not understand politics and I for sure don't understand religion--but I am positive about my sense of wonder.  And whoever or whatever made a sky like this may just be trying to get our attention!

26 August, 2012

Around the Bend 10"x20" $425

Haven't painted for about 2 whole weeks-a long time for me!  Went to San Antonio for a 10 day visit with my kids and grandkids, then off to Minnesota with my sisters to check out my sister Pat's new home.  So I get back and dieing to paint and the first one I try is just awful!!  It was of some Aspen trees.  All slim vertical tree trunks and lots of thin branches against snow--a drawing nightmare and why I chose that--just dumb!  So this is my second attempt-so much better-from a trip my sister Penny and I took last year driving from Albuquerque to Taos to visit my friend Mary Matthews.

31 July, 2012

Under the Bridge 8"x8" $165

I am on a roll with these Riverwalk pieces.  I am loving the dramatic lighting.

29 July, 2012

Riverwalk Tree on Fire 6"x12" $195.00

I had so much fun with this painting.  The lighting of the tree made a chaos of color and I was forced to really look and make some sense out of it all.  Then the bottom portion is all in shadow so a wonderful contrast of light.  I  love it!

26 July, 2012

Arneson Theatre Entrance 8"x8" $145

This is the entrance to the Arneson River Theatre on the Riverwalk.  On the other side of this rounded entryway there is a series of steps that form the seating for the theatre.  Here you can enjoy mariachi bands and flamenco dancers and other entertainments throughout the year.  Maybe not so much right now while the weather is sooooo  hot!

24 July, 2012

Riverwalk and class paintings

About time to replenish sold paintings at the Riverwalk Gallery.  We are allowed 8 paintings at a time.  These night scenes sell real well and I still love to do them so that is a happy thing.  Another happy thing is the 2 day workshop that I just finished with a group of really nice artists from Huntsville.  I had them go through my process of cropping off the photo and then doing a preliminary drawing first to establish the design and placement of things before jumping into the painting part.  Just handling the paint and colors is hard enough so a drawing first really helps me to decide what looks good where.  Then I am at least confident that my painting has a chance at being successful if I can then get the colors and brushwork working!  We did a "paint along" using this photo of the tomatos and the bowl. I wish the shadows in the pic were a little less tricky, but I think everyone started to look at the colors as shapes and at least started thinking about the importance of edges.

14 July, 2012

Toomer's at Twilight 12"x16" $375. SOLD

This will be a donation to the Auburn Knights Fund Raiser.  This was my second attempt at painting Toomer's Drugs.  The first attempt just had too much junk in it.  I was trying to paint the drugstore, framed by the trees across the street.  The photo I liked was not at dusk so I tried to make up the colors from others photos and ended up making a mess.  I guess simple is always better and I am much happier with this painting.

09 July, 2012

No Hurry Today 12"x12" $195.00

Was going to name this "Its Raining Cows-Hallelujah!" but then alot of people haven't seen "Magic Mike" yet so not so funny.  Anyway I will be getting off the cow wagon with my next painting.  Jim's Auburn Knights reunion is having a silent auction fund raiser end of the month and I will be donating a painting.  Plan to do one either of Toomer's Corner, or maybe of the trees that got poisoned and won't be there much longer.  We drove over last weekend so I could take pictures.  Got some really different shots at night so will see how they can be worked up into something kind of different and dramatic.  I want it to be good so they will get lots of money!!

02 July, 2012

Sunny Afternoon 8"x16" $225.00 SOLD

Just 10 minutes from our house on the lake, just past the Foodland in Grants is a farm with these cows.  I guess people around here are used to seeing cows, but to me--it is just amazing to be so close to a farm with real cows!  Maybe you have to be "not from here" to appreciate the cows.  I just think it is the coolest thing!

01 July, 2012

Blue Star Interior 16"x20" $475

This is one I just did for the challenge of it.  It is of the interior of the Blue Star Brewery in San Antonio where we often go to listen to big band jazz on Tuesday nights.  Every Tuesday there is a different big band jazz group and they often play Jim,s arrangements as well as his original pieces.  It is a micro-brewery and that is brewing equipment you see in the background of this painting.  The chairs are painted wood and I loved the light coming through the window and the light coming from the brewing area so thought it would be a challenge to make it work.  Can't say I am totally happy with it yet.  May have to put it aside for awhile and then look at it again with a fresh eye.

23 June, 2012

Guntersville Bridge 6"x12" $165.00

This is the bridge we cross anytime we go in to Guntersville.  This is how it looks at sunset on our way home from visiting friends in Guntersville.  It is a beautiful sight coming and going.  I am enjoying this small size again--forces me to simplify and count on color and light for an impact as opposed to lots of detail.

19 June, 2012

Heading for Shade 12"x12" $195.00 SOLD

Here in Alabama an artist needs to learn how to paint GREEN.  And by green I do not mean good for the environment but the color green.  Everywhere you look there are trees and grass--very verdant to say the least.  But while it is beautiful, it is also very challenging to paint.  These cows offered the perfect counter point--a welcome spot of orange and brown in a sea of green!

16 June, 2012

Evening Fishing 18"x24" $900

This is a large painting for me-and I am very pleased how it turned out.  My preliminary drawing was a great help with this one as it was important to get the figures in proportion to the boat and landscape.  I redrew the figures about 4 times.  Also a challenge just to do figures and not make them look stiff and unnatural.  I think they are just right--adding to the overall design, not detracting.

12 June, 2012

Under the Bridge 10"x20" $325.00 SOLD

I really had fun with this one.  I loved the contrast of water and shiny boat and old rusty bridge.  Also liked the way the dark shadow of the water at bottom, the bridge at top and the supports on each side form a frame around the boathouses and trees.  Its like a painting within a painting!  I think the bridge support on the right is a little too dark so will go back and lighten it up a bit.  Often when I photograph a painting, a problem like this will appear.  Usually when I go back and really look again at it--I will make a change for the better.

09 June, 2012

Guntersville Barge 10"x20" $325.00

As we drive over the bridge to go into Guntersville, we pass this big barge that is always moored at this dock.  The July 4 celebrations take place at this landing and sometimes other music festivals.  I'm not sure if the barge is used or not.  But it is rusty and beautiful to an artist's eye.

06 June, 2012

Portrait of Ben 15"x20"

I recently drew this portrait of my grandson, Bejamin who is almost three years old.  My daughter put it on Facebook and I have recieved alot of questions about my portraits so thought I would answer here.  The portraits are drawn on a 15"x20" acid free drawing board.  I use several different art pencils but the good old #2 school pencil does most of the work.  I used to do alot of these portraits for $100 each.  But now I charge $500 each because, frankly, they are very time consuming and I want to paint more than I want to do portraits.  John Singer Sargeant, a famous American portrait artist once said that a portrait is "a painting where the nose isn't quite right"!  And on the creativity scale from 1 to 10, a portrait rates about a 2--because it is basically copying--after all, you do want the nose to look right!  Now that I've given the negatives from the artist's side, I must give the positives from the client's side.  There is nothing more special than a hand drawn image of your loved one.  That is why I do these for all the new additions in my family-its the perfect baby and wedding gift.  I usually wait till the babies are about three and have developed some personality.  Have to admit I cried a little while doing Ben's picture-such a precious little boy and I feel so lucky to be able to show my love through my art.

24 May, 2012

Riverwalk Dinner 6"x12" $195.00

Thought I would show again how I do a value drawing first to prepare for the painting.  It just helps me plan how the shapes will flow and how the values can help to make the painting interesting.  For instance in this painting, the darkest value is that band of concrete that the diners are seated on.  It sort of grounds the whole design as well as supports the diners!

23 May, 2012

Riverwalk Night 6"x12" $195.00 SOLD

This painting has alot going on in it and that is a challenge to simplify but still keep things realistic.  I'm especially happy with the trees in this one because they are absorbing and reflecting all the lights and give a soft counter balance to all the architecture.

18 May, 2012

Geraniums in my Kitchen 12x12 $195.00

Another in the Geranium series.  My black refrigerator made a great background for the water to sparkle against.  Want to do a few more but need to stop and do a few Riverwalk pieces next--which I love to do so not a hardship at all!

11 May, 2012

Out my Kitchen Window 12x 12 $195.00

Second in my Geranium series.  This is sitting on my kitchen window sill with the tall trees outside.  I loved the back lighting and again the shape and color of those geraniums.
Want to invite all my Alabama friends to come see me at the May Art Stroll around the courthouse in downtown Huntsville this Thursday May 17, from 4pm to 8 pm.  My booth is number 52 so stop by and visit!

07 May, 2012

Geraniums #1 12x12 $195.00 SOLD

Think I will do a series of these Geraniums that we just bought for the patio.  I love their shape and color.  Haven't done many flowers before so fun to do something different.

05 May, 2012

Mission San Jose 8"x16" $275.00

This is why I love painting--Each subject, each attempt at capturing an image has its own challenge.  Here I was rendering an image of a certain church.  The drawing has to be good because a wobbly structure is disconcerting to say the least.  But the painting lacked interest.  The stone structure didn't have much color drama going on so I had to pump up the sky color and add some clouds.  Then I had  to try and create a focal point.  I tried to do that with the famous "Rose Window" situated at the lower center of the facade.  Also had the challenge of that green green lawn--still not sure if it looks natural but really is that color.  Anyway-I love all the problems that present themselves.

30 April, 2012

Mission San Juan 12"x12" $225.00

I think painting bright full sunshine is hard.  The colors have to be very high key.  This was the case with this painting.  I'm also still learning to paint trees.  The limbs always get slimmer as they get longer and new growth of foliage is always lighter in color.  So everything gets lighter and airier(?) as it branches out away from the core tree trunk.  I love these Live Oak trees in Texas.  They seem almost oriental like a big Bonsai tree with all their twists and turns.

26 April, 2012

Lake view 11"x14" $195.00

Can't say this is my favorite painting. Sometimes its best to just stop and go on--I do love this particular tree but the overall design of this one does not make me happy.  I think its because the water doesn't tie in with the rest--maybe too much action (tree and docks) on one side?  Anyway, I gave it a few sessions and now am just messing it up so will stop!

21 April, 2012

Autumn Colors 10"x20" $325.00

I painted this one pretty quick-in two 4 hour sessions.  Made myself stop and not over work it.  I am finding that suggestion is the key to keeping a fresh look.  Sounds easy but it is really hard to make the right choices so you don't have to re-paint --I guess that is where experience comes in--painting alot and often!!

19 April, 2012

Taking a Rest 10"x20" $425 SOLD

I am back to lake paintings for awhile.  I love the change of scenery.  Being around water is just so relaxing, it feels like vacation time all the time.  It was that same restful, peaceful sensation I wanted to convey in this painting.

05 April, 2012

Riverwalk Wonderland 10"x20" $375.00

You may have to live in San Antonio to know what this painting is about.  At Christmastime they decorate the Riverwalk with many tiny lights.  Last year was the first year that they wrapped the trees in lights.  It was a dramatic change and I think it turned everything into a sparkling wonderland.  I loved it!

30 March, 2012

Arneson River Theatre Entrance 11"x14" $575.00

I  LOVE this painting!  Every once in awhile I actually hit what was in my mind's eye when I started the painting.  Here I loved the twilight feel of the colors-caught between daylight and night--Maybe I should call it "Twilight" but then that would suggest all kinds of vampire activities on the Riverwalk--so who knows? (Only the Shadow)

26 March, 2012

Mission Espada 8"x10" $195.00 SOLD

This is the one mission I have not painted before.  It is the one furthest from my house and on our last photo trip, we ran out of time.  So this time I started with it and worked towards town.  The sun was high in the sky so that just the tops of the mission were in full light.  I think it made the stonework look really rich.
Want to invite everyone to attend the Starving Artist Art Show happening at Maverick Plaza in la Villita on April 7 and 8 from 10 to 6 each day.  There will be over 250 artists showing their art and it is free--no admission!  I will have booth #159-so stop by and visit.

20 March, 2012

Riverwalk Boogie 6"x12" $175.00

Don't know why that title came to me except that the strings of lights make a kind of staccato  movement throughout the painting.  I can imagine people out for an evening, sitting under the umbrellas and listening to some great up beat music!

13 March, 2012

Mission and Cross 11"x14" $225.00 SOLD

I am not a religious person.  Like my friend Donna says--I am a humanist!  However, the visual symbols here were nice and comforting  and I liked the complex layering of images.  The background is of course, Mission Conceptcion, here in San Antonio.  It could stand for organized religion i suppose.  Then the cross is symbolic of love and sacrifice, the tree of birth and growth with the plaster saint perhaps symbolizing the good that can be found in man (sometimes).  And maybe the wall symbolizes what I feel is often a separation between what the cross stands for (universal love) and what the church often teaches (love but only by my rules!).  I don't usually infuse my paintings with symbolism but this one was too fun to pass up!

06 March, 2012

Riverwalk Night Lights 10x20" $325.00 SOLD

Wanted to do a bit larger painting and this lighting was so dramatic I felt I could stretch and really have fun with it.

01 March, 2012

Display Easel

For some time I have had a problem with displaying my art at outdoor art shows.  I do not own a truck and all the display panels were too big to haul in my car.  I ended up having to depend on the kindness of friends with a truck to help me pick up the panels and transport them to the venue.  I also had to borrow the panels from a gallery, hoping I could get them before another artist got to them first.  I didn't want to buy the panels ( very expensive) and did not want to buy a truck (even more expensive!).  So when i saw this display easel at Dick Blick online for $130.00 It seemed the answer to my problem.  I was not disappointed!  It is sturdy and lightweight, assembles easily, and can display a dozen medium size paintings.  It also comes with a sturdy zip up bag with handles for transporting.  The best thing is that it fits in my trunk or back seat with ease.  I liked it so much that i ordered another and for under $300, I now have a good looking way to display my paintings at the shows.

08 February, 2012

Riverwalk Nocturnal 6"x12" $125.00 SOLD

Recently I saw a painting titled something... Nocturnal--Decided it sounded more romantic than just "at Night" for my Riverwalk night pieces.  This one is of the bells that form the backdrop at the Arneson River Theatre.  I really loved the shape of those trees in the background.