Thursday, September 22, 2016

Hartsel Bison

Hartsel Bison
plein air oil  9" x 12"
click here for Paypal
$295.00 + $10. s/h

This painting was done on the morning of Day 2 of the South Park Plein Air Arts Celebration.  This day was sort of a free day i.e.:  the town of Fairplay didn't have an organized location but made suggestions, or we could paint any where within 30 miles of Fairplay.  Hartsel is about 15 miles from Fairplay, and I knew that there's a bison herd there, so I made that my destination.  However, just because there's a herd doesn't mean that they'll be close enough to paint.  They don't care if they're near the road.

Well, they were sort of close.  So I set my plein air gear up right by my car, right by the side of the county road and painted away.  The bison appeared to just be standing around, but as they chew, they step, they chew again and step again.  After about an hour the bison were pretty far away and no longer near by.  



Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Old Coffee Pot

Old Coffee Pot
plein air oil  12" x 9"
$295.00 + $10. s/h
click here for Paypal

This piece was done in the afternoon of the first day of the South Park Plein Air Arts Celebration.  I painted yesterday's posted piece in the morning, then lunch was delivered to us out on the ranch.  We're not talking about a simple sandwich, we're talking pulled pork barbecue, cole slaw, fruit, cookies.  As I said, this is a GREAT plein air event!

Anyway, as time progressed, obviously the ranch owners purchased modern appliances and kitchen utensils.  The old favorites weren't thrown away, they were set up around the barns and out buildings. Every one of them called out to me to become a painting!





Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Ranch Rocker

Ranch Rocker
plein air oil  8" x 10"
$195.00 + $10. s/h
click here for Paypal

I recently participated in the South Park Plein Air Arts Celebration in Fairplay, CO.  This is a wonderful plein air event.  The town of Fairplay organizes it so well, providing food every day, arranging painting excursions to private ranches, & having evening gatherings.

This rocker was painted the first morning out on a ranch about 20 minutes from Fairplay. The ranch family has lived there for 4 generations.  After walking all around the ranch and being a bit overwhelmed by the views, trees, buildings, etc. I focused in on this old rocker.  I could imagine the pleasure the "rockee" would have enjoying his view and resting after a hard days' work.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Honoring 100 Years of Our National Parks



I have a show hanging at Cheyenne Mountain State Park Visitors Center here in Colorado Springs.  
In honor of our 100 year anniversary of the National Park system, the show is of paintings of 
county, state and national parks and wild life areas we have visited.  These photos show one wall of the show.  The paintings are from Bear Creek Park, Colorado Springs;  Arches & Canyonlands National Parks, Moab, Utah;  Cabrillo National Monument, San Diego, CA;  Hovenweep National Monument, Colorado;  Paint Mines Archeological District, Calhan, CO;  Great Sand Dunes National Park, CO;  Natural Bridges National Monument, Utah;  Monte Vista National Wildlife Refuge, CO;  Big Bend National Park, Texas; as well as a few more local Colorado parks.  

As the show is in the Visitors Center, I created a small information sheet about each Park which hangs by each painting.  If you're in the Colorado Springs area, please stop by the Visitors Center.  The show hangs until the end of October.  

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Fallen Log

Fallen Log
plein air oil  9" x 12"
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$295.00 + $10. s/h

This log is on our property in the mountains.  I've looked at it for years, slowly rotting away.  I always take my painting supplies when we go up there in case something jumps out at me waiting to be painted.  I saw the light, shadow, grasses and decided that this was an interesting painting.  I'd also recently looked again at Richard Schmid's book and remembered his painting of a log and was inspired!

Monday, September 5, 2016

Old Blue

Old Blue
plein air oil  11" x 14"
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$395.00 + $10. s/h

I found this old horse trailer when I was painting in Como, CO.  Como is about 2 hours west of Colorado Springs in the mountains.  Here is some info on Como:

It is believed the town was named by miners from ComoItaly, who worked the coal fields of the area. In 1879, the town became the location of a depot of the Denver, South Park and Pacific Railroad, which was extended over Kenosha Pass to reach the silver mining areas during the Colorado Silver Boom. Later, the town served as a division point for trains going northward over Boreas Pass and southward toward Garos and over Trout Creek Pass at the western end of South Park. The town has many historic weathered structures, including the roundhouse, hotel, and depot and has the air of a ghost town that is still nevertheless populated, by twenty people. It has a small commercial district consisting of a post office, gallery, hotel. The depot has been renovated with plans to make it an area tourist attraction.

Saturday, September 3, 2016

PAAC 20th National Exhibition



Thursday night was the opening of the PAAC National show at Mary Williams Fine Art in Boulder, CO.  I was thrilled to have been juried into the show.  It's always fun to go to openings and connect with artist friends who I see only occasionally and to meet new artists.  

Thursday evening I met an artist who I've known online for 8 years!  That was fun to meet in person and now we're trying to get together to paint.  She lives here in Colorado, it's a big state, but about 7 hours from Colorado Springs.  You never know what opportunities painting is going to open!

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Grasslands Inspiration IV Show


I was thrilled and honored to receive this award last night at the Opening of the 
Grasslands Inspiration IV Show at Mari Michener Gallery
University Of Northern Colorado, Greeley, CO.

It was a wonderful show full of great photos, watercolors, oils, acrylics and dry media 
influenced by the grasslands of north-eastern Colorado.  Thank you UNC (my alma mater) 
and the Northern Colorado Heritage League.

The show hangs until September 23.  Stop by and see it if you're in the Greeley area!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Grassland Inspiration IV


Grassland Inspiration IV:  Looking East Prairie Appreciation Show
UNC (University of Northern Colorado) Michener Library Greeley, CO  
August 22 - September 23, 2016

These are two of the three paintings that I will have in the Grasslands Show at UNC in Greeley.  Because I had participated in the Littleton, CO paint-out in early June, I received an email a short time later inviting me to participate in the Grasslands Show.  I had never heard of this show, but am an alumni of UNC and thought that it would be fun to participate.  There were well laid out eligibility and requirement "bullets" in the brochure.  The most important was that the paintings had to be of the 7 "grassland counties" i.e.:  the seven counties in northeastern Colorado.  It had been years since I'd been up there, Greeley is about 2 1/2 hours from Colorado Springs.  So, my husband, always supportive of any thing related to painting that I do, and I spent two days driving around the back roads in that area and taking 100s of photos and getting so inspired by the grasslands.  It was really fun!  

Upon returning home I spent hours editing my photos and looking further for inspiration.  Then I sketched dozens of pictures of my favorite locations.   Dozens because once I started looking I was so inspired by all of the different colors of the grass.  Then, I started painting.  My idea had been to do three pretty large paintings, but it was already the third week of July and the paintings were due in Greeley on August 17th!  That didn't leave me much time, but I work well under pressure.  Because I wasn't sure which of my sketch/ideas would become the largest painting, I decided to do several 12" x 12" "practice" pieces first.  Well, those "several" pieces became 7!  I loved painting those 12" x 12" pieces.  While deciding which of those would become a larger piece, I started on a large square painting of an old school house sitting in the middle of nowhere.  Then I also started on a large square of a windmill.  

Then, we went on a week long trip, so I wasn't able to finish the windmill, or start on the larger one of the grasses.  But, I chose the two of the 12x12s that I liked the most (above), framed them and submitted those two and the school house.  I think that it's important that we always know what we can do and just do it.  I realized that I wanted to enter this event, I didn't have lots of time, but I could do it.  And, I'm really happy with all of my paintings!  I'll post them soon.  

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Hanging On The Line

Hanging On The Line
Oil  16" x 20"
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$595.00 + $20. s/h

Last month I did a smaller plein air painting of this laundry.  (click here to view that piece)  This is a larger studio piece, from a different view, but the same laundry "hanging on the line."  This laundry is  from Rock Ledge Ranch here in Colorado Springs.  I loved all of the different whites and the movement created by the breeze.

I also think that I loved painting these laundry pieces because they remind me of my childhood.  when I was a little girl my mom hung the sheets out on the line to dry.  I remember them blowing in the breeze and remember running through them.  As artists, we paint what we see, but we also paint what's in our hearts.


Friday, August 12, 2016

Corn On The Cob

Corn On The Cob
Oil  8" x 6"
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$100.00 + $10. s/h

This is the same ear as yesterday's post, but shucked.  Decided to get 2 done before dinner!


Thursday, August 11, 2016

Sweet Corn

Sweet Corn
Oil  8" x 6"
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$100.00 + $10. s/h

Corn on the cob is one of my favorite vegetables, right up there with asparagus.  Right now the stores and farm stands are selling lots of corn.  The best corn in Colorado is from Olathe on the western slope.  I think that it's the cool nights and sunny days that make the corn so delicious.  It's so sweet that people talk about "the Olathe sweet corn being ready!"

Sometimes you have to paint right before dinner!

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Downtown Art Walk -- First Friday


Downtown Art Walk -- First Friday

As in many towns across the country, here in Colorado Springs First Friday evening is a great chance to head downtown and visit galleries and enjoy art.  This past Friday I painted during the Art Walk at Cacao Chemistry, 109 N. Tejon, Colorado Springs.  Cacao Chemistry is not a gallery, but a chocolate store, and soon to be dessert bar, that uses its' walls as a gallery.  I love when venues support the local arts!  I set up my easel in the front and had a great time meeting people as I painted.  

Additionally, Friday was the opening of the Olympic Games.  Colorado Springs is "the Olympic City" with many of the sports teams main offices here, as well as the head quarters of the US Olympic Committee and the Olympic Training Center.  Several blocks downtown were closed off to traffic and a there was a huge Olympic Celebration.  It included athletes still in training, former Cirque de Soleil acrobats performing on a 2 story portable contraption, Brazilian dancers in spectacular costumes, and the largest display screen that I've ever seen showing the event direct from Rio.  Thousands of people came downtown to enjoy the celebration.  Many of those spectators came into Cacao Chemistry for chocolate, and to see what I was doing!  Thank you Cacao Chemistry!

Friday, August 5, 2016

Summer Blooms

Summer Blooms
plein air oil  10" x 8:
SOLD

I recently participated in a plein air event hosted by the FOX Garden Group.  FOX is the "Friends Of eXtension", which is a part of the Colorado State University Extension Group.  This group deals state wide with "serving current and future needs of Coloradans by providing educational information and programs that safeguard health, increase livelihood, and enhance well being."  There are Extension offices in many towns in the state.  In Colorado Springs they have volunteers who who can call to ask questions about gardening, plants, etc.

The local FOX group has an annual garden tour.  Last year, my plein air group, Garden Artists, was invited to paint during the 2 day annual event.  That was a big success and this year we were invited once again.  I spent 2 days painting in 4 gardens.  This painting was done in the Saturday afternoon garden.  Not only was the event wonderful for gardeners to see gardens new to them, but for me, being a gardener and artist it was amazing!  (Also, it was in a neighborhood very near to mine and so convenient!)  The FOX group is very organized;  there were several volunteers in each garden to answer questions about flowers & gardening.

It can be challenging plein air painting under any circumstance, but with 100s of people touring the gardens I had to be very focused.  Many of the visitors had never seen a plein air painter and came to talk to me.  It was a great marketing event and overall a win, win situation.  I'm already looking forward to next years' tour!


Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Pink Hollyhocks

Pink Hollyhocks
Oil  16" x 8"
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$395.00 + $20. s/h

I loved painting all of these hollyhocks.  And, I love having them in our backyard.  These long stretched canvases are perfect for hollyhock paintings!

Hollyhocks are easy to grow from seed.  While they are a perennial, many only bloom bi-annually.  It's a good idea to plant seeds 2 years in a row.  That way you'll have them growing in your garden every year.  Once they start growing it's easy to sow some of the plants' seeds in the fall.  Also it's easy to save seeds over the winter and sow more in the spring.

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Hollyhock Spires

Hollyhock Spires
Oil on canvas  16" x 8"
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$395. + $20. s/h

This is the 2nd white hollyhock in this size.  (See my last post.)  There's one more to post, but in a another color.

We have hollyhocks growing in our backyard in several different locations.  Many hollyhocks are bi-ennial (blossoming every other year.)  Luckily we have enough that there are some blooming every year.  Many times I save the seeds over the winter and throw them back into the ground in the spring. Some new sprouts regularly appear.

I photoed this over and over with 2 different cameras.  There is just a bit more yellow in the flower than appears here.  Will keep trying.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Backyard Hollyhocks

Backyard Hollyhocks
plein air oil  16" x 8"
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$395.00 + $10. s/h

This is another floral done plein air in our backyard.  I love going out (to the mountains or elsewhere in town) to paint, but oh, it's so easy when you can just walk out the back door and paint!  My only problem with it is that I'll look down and see weeds in the garden or things growing in the grass that aren't grass and start weeding.  Soon, I've been weeding away for 10-15 minutes and many weeds are gone, but my painting is waiting!  Oh well, if that's my biggest problem in life I have a good life!


Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Ranch Meadow

Ranch Meadow
plein air oil  10" x 8"
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$195.00 + $10. s/h

This piece was done recently at Rock Ledge Ranch here in Colorado Springs.  A friend and fellow artist had "Julie's 3rd Annual Paint Out" to celebrate her birthday.  It's open to all area artists and has grown each year.  It was a really fun morning with artists from different plein air groups who might not normally paint together.  I was thrilled to have won the "Most Paint On Her Apron Award"!

I've painted at this ranch many times over the years, last month I painted some laundry.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Rose Garden

Rose Garden
Oil  10" x 8"
SOLD
$195.00 + $10. s/h

Recently my plein air group painted in a garden in an older home near downtown Colorado Springs.  I painted there last year as well (click here for that piece).  It is immediately obvious that this couple loves gardening and has spent years cultivating this love.  This house belonged to the woman's grand parents (she grew up in the house next door) and has been in her family for generations.  Somehow, knowing stories like that make painting in a location a bit more fun.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Curving Waters

Curving Waters
Oil  10" x 8"
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$195.00 + $10. s/h

I painted most of this piece (I added a few highlights later in the studio) on a recent morning in Tarryall, about an hour or so west of Colorado Springs in the mountains.  I don't think that you can ever stand before a river and not feel a bit in awe.  Rivers are like old souls or older loved ones, they seem calm and comforting but underneath they are strong and powerful.  Rivers are both terrifying and beautiful;  just look at Mother Nature in a river.

I have painted many river pieces.  They are challenging, as the subject in front of you doesn't pose well.  But their light and dancing sparkles and vast, contrasting colors draw me in.  Many artists paint rivers, as do poets write about them and singers compose and sing of them.  For many, rivers are a bit religious, and not just for baptisms.  As Bob Dylan said: rivers are "Just like God, the river is deep and mystifying, cleansing and strong, ceaseless and never-ending. It makes you wonder why anyone who lives within 20 miles of a river goes to church to pray."



Thursday, July 14, 2016

On The Deck

On The Deck
plein air oil  20" x 20"
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$695.00 + $20. s/h

Our geraniums this summer are spectacular right now...so I set up on the deck to paint them.  I've got this one finished and am ready to start a second.  In a few days I'll have to clip back the blooms and then for about a week or so we'll be in between great blooms.

I thought that this would be a fun, colorful painting if I toned the canvas bright red, like the subject matter.  I like the way the red sparkles through the shadow and back ground.

Here's a snap shot of the corner of our deck.  Normally the top geranium doesn't sit up on the deck ledge, but on the top of the little green garden shelf.  But, for the painting I moved it up and set it on a piece of cardboard so the shadow would show.  These plants were purchased in April at Costco.  I had to bring them in every night in April, because our nights here in Colorado Springs in the spring still get below freezing.  But, it was worth it!  Now I have beautiful color right out the kitchen door!

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Optimistic Hue

Optimistic Hue
plein air oil  6 x 6"
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$100.00 + $10. s/h

This is the 4th of the 4 recent yellow rose paintings.  Maybe I'll paint some more in their next blooming.  For those of you with roses in your yard, remember to cut them back after they bloom and you should have another series of blooms later in the summer.

Here is some more info on yellow roses that I Googled:
"Yellow roses in their unassuming charm and sweet simplicity send out an equally alluring message. Colors range from light yellow to golden. Yellow roses express joy, gladness, and friendship. They are given to new mothers, newlyweds, and graduates. They're also used as a reminder to a loved one to show that you care. 

Friendship and "I care" are the foremost meanings of a yellow rose. Unrestrained and uninhibited as the breeze, free from attachments, the yellow rose definitely says that the sender is keen on friendship alone. 

Here, you will not find the heat of passion, only the warmth of a genuine and sincere smile. The sender of yellow roses delicately indicates that while his affection is straight from the heart, there are no hidden depths. 

Unbridled joy is another meaning of a yellow rose. Therefore, yellow roses are often congratulatory in tone. Yellow roses are given to celebrate new beginnings. These delicate flowers proudly laud an accomplishment, a consummation or a fulfillment. You simply cannot do without yellow roses when you send flowers to express joy and pride in another's achievement.

The color yellow was interpreted as a "pale" color during the early Victorian period. They had shades of negative meanings ranging from lukewarm affection to jealousy. They indicated a frame of mind that was on the one hand lacking in fervor, while on the other mutinous and envious in tone. But, the yellow rose has overcome these negative intonations and now mean "warm and sunny" affection, joy and pleasure. "

Again, this is how I find some of my painting titles.  I Google the subject, read what's online and find a title.  I came up with 10 easy titles after reading the above yellow rose info!  How do you find your titles?

Monday, July 11, 2016

Wish For Well Being

Wish For Well Being
plein air oil  6" x 6"
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$100.00 + $10. /sh

Here is the 3rd of 4 yellow roses from our side yard.  It continues to amaze me how the petals and leaves change from warm to cool depending on the time of day, the weather and clouds, who knows maybe even the mood of the rose, maybe my eye sight.  I certainly couldn't have mixed together paint and used just those mixes for all four yellow rose paintings.  Ever wonder why the Impressionists all had such beautiful colors in their paintings...maybe, like me, their eyes were getting older!

And, the title for this was chosen because yellow roses symbolize "a wish for well being."

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Message Of Friendship

Message Of Friendship
plein air oil  6" x 6"
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$100. + $10. s/h

This is the second of the four roses.  I liked the way that there was just a soft shadow on the back of the rose.  You'd think the all of the petals would be either a warm yellow (leaning orange) or a cool yellow (leaning green).  But, no, this rose had warm and cool yellow petals making it so much more interesting!

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Good Cheer

Good Cheer
plein air oil  6" x 6"
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$100.00 + $10. s/h

I recently finished painting a series (4) of yellow roses that are growing in our side yard on a trellis.  This is the first in the series, the next 3 soon to follow!
 
As I often do to find names for my paintings I went to Google to search "yellow roses", found four good titles, and learned:

"Long associated with the sun and its life-giving warmth, yellow is the age-old spokes-color for warm feelings of friendship and optimism. In many Eastern cultures, the color represents joy, wisdom and power. But while any yellow flower will send a lighthearted message, the history of the yellow rose in particular has an optimistic, serendipitous character that really makes it the complete package.
By the 18th century the worldwide love of roses was in full swing, but they were only cultivated in shades of pink and white. At last, the elusive yellow rose was discovered growing wild in the Middle East, and the European love affair with yellow roses was born. The early yellow rose lacked the sweet scent for which the rose is famous, however, which was not to be tolerated. So, as cultivation methods were developed and refined, the beloved sweet-and-spicy rose scent was soon introduced and the yellow rose achieved all its optimistic and aromatic glory."


Thursday, July 7, 2016

Back Yard Iris

Back Yard Iris
Oil  16" x 20"
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$595.00 + $20. s/h

This was part of our back yard last month.  Most of this painting was done in the back yard, but a few touch ups were added a bit later in my studio.  I generally hang the "almost" done, or "I think" this is done pieces on one studio wall where I can look at them for awhile until I decide if they're finished.  This one took quite a bit of looking and heading back outside to really re-look at the leaves.  


Here's the start of my piece w/ most of the block in finished.



Monday, June 27, 2016

Laundry Day

Laundry Day
plein air oil  8" x 10"
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$195.00 + $10. s/h

This plein air piece is from a recent painting morning at Rock Ledge Ranch here in Colorado Springs.  I've painted many times at the Ranch.  It's a historical, "educational, non-profit living history farm and museum that depicts life in the Pikes Peak region in four time periods:  American Indian area in 1775;  1860's Galloway Homestead;  1880's Chambers Home and Ranch;  1907 Edwardian Country Estate."  Every thing on the ranch is done "in period"...so, the laundry behind the country home was washed in a wringer washing machine and hung out on the line to dry.

My past Rock Ledge Ranch paintings have included sheep, barn, path, shadows, roof area of the country home, and poppies.  But in all of my time there over the years, I've never seen the laundry hanging to dry.  As I walked down the path and looked into the back yard I immediately knew that I'd found what I was going to paint!


My view of the garden from the path...I just knew that this was my painting!  I set up on the other side of the laundry in the shade.  When the "period dressed" woman of the house came out to take down the wash, I asked her to leave it up for a bit longer.




Monday, June 20, 2016

Rose Garden

Rose Garden
plein air oil  6" x 8"
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$100.00 + $10. s/h

Almost as much as the roses, I loved the shadows on the fence behind these roses.  Often it's the shadows that draw me to paint something.  I sometimes find myself walking around looking for something to paint when at a plein air location.  When the shadows create a great contrast against the subject, there's a painting!  Additionally, when painting it's good to notice that it's usually "warm light, cool shadows".  On a hot autumn afternoon, the shadows might lean towards warm.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Garden Of The Gods

Garden Of The Gods
plein air oil  12" x 9"
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$295.00 + $10. s/h

This is a recent painting from the Garden Of The Gods, one of the most visited parks in the state of Colorado.  You could paint there everyday and never run out of rocks to paint.  The red rock formations were created during a geological upheaval along a natural fault line millions of years ago.

For those of you not familiar with this area here's a little history:  When the Garden of the Gods was being surveyed in 1859 one of the surveyors suggested that it would be a great place for a "beer garden".  The other surveyer was awestruck by all of the rock formations and couldn't imagine a beer garden in such a majestic place.  He said that it was a place for gods to assemble and named it:  Garden Of The Gods.  It is owned by the city of Colorado Springs and is visited by thousands of people every day.



Friday, June 17, 2016

Power Plant

Power Plant
plein air oil  6" x 8"
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$100.00 + $10. s/h

My plein air group recently painted in downtown Colorado Springs.  I had planned on painting one of the older warehouse style buildings, but was intrigued by the morning light on the Power Plant.   This is really a study in shapes.  It was a fun challenge and I hope to paint this again.