Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year


6" x 6" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
please contact me if interested

My your New Year be filled with health, happiness, friendship and family.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Canyonlands V


6" x 8" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
Please contact me if interested

This is another small piece from our trip in November to Canyonlands National Park in Utah. With the holidays and both kids visiting, I'm just now getting it posted.

I had some daily paintings in a fall show at a local Nature Center. Several of them sold and this morning I decided it was time to update that part of my blog. I'm not sure why, but when I did this, emails went out each time I edited the past blogs. Maybe it was a senior moment on my part, maybe something's going on w/ blogger. I'm not sure, but sorry about that. Is anyone else having this problem? Did I do something wrong? And, thanks to those of you who emailed me about the sales.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree


6" x 6" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
please contact me if interested

This is my last rock piece for the time being. I'll come back to these again as they are such great color/value/edge studies.
Yesterday I was trying to come up with another "rock" title for my piece, so I Googled "songs with rock in the title". (I know, how do I have time for that in this busy season!) I couldn't believe how many sites came up. My favorite site was "Songs with rock in the title that don't rock!" And, Jingle Bell Rock was in that list!
Both our kids are due home today. It'll be great to have them here for awhile.
I want to wish all my blogging friends a Merry Christmas and Happy Holiday. Thanks for all your support, comments, and friendship this past year.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Jingle Bell Rock


6" x 6" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
please contact me if interested

OK, I know this doesn't look like a jingle bell, but it has tints and shades of red and green. And, it is another Christmas song with the word rock in the title!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Frog Rock


6" x 6" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
please contact me if interested

I think that this rock looks a little bit like a frog. He seems ready to jump off the table. It is truly amazing the different values and colors of rocks. There are as many, if not more, than there are rocks. Then, there is temperature difference. I could repaint all of these changing the background cloth from warm to cool, and cool to warm. There are never endless exercises to be done and paintings to be painted.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Rock-in' Around the Clock


6" x 6" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
please contact me if interested

This was the only holiday song I could think of with "rock" in it.
I've been painting a lot of canyons, rock walls, rocky mountains and rocky cliffs lately. I paint what I see. I've also been thinking about value a lot. So, this led me to want to concentrate really closely on rocky values. Which led me to paint rock close-ups. All of these rocks are about fist or whole hand size. I've done four so far. They're together below. I'll post one each day. They've been fun to paint. Sort of a color study of rocks instead of boxes.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Turnips


6" x 8" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
please contact me if interested

My husband does most of the grocery shopping and came home the other day w/ these turnips. He said we should have mashed turnips for dinner (we have only had turnips maybe once in 27 years of marriage!) I just loved the color and had to get a painting done quickly. And, dinner was good!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Canyonlands IV


6" x 8" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
SOLD

This is from our second day at Canyonlands National Park. We were in an area where you walked along the edge of this cliff. For those of you who know me well, you know I have a fear of heights. I had to really breath deeply, walk slowly, look across and not down, to conquer my phobia. I will admit, that where I stopped here, there was a guard rail!

When landscape painting, the lightest value is usually that of the sky. The second lightest value is the flat plane of the ground....except the ground at the bottom of a canyon appears to have a darker value than the horizontal plane near the top of a canyon. These canyon pieces have gotten me thinking about all the values in a landscape. I even got out my Carlson's guide to see if he talked about canyons.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Canyonlands III


6" x 8" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
please contact me if interested

This is another piece from our recent trip to Canyonlands National Park in Utah. I'm trying to be aware of color temperatures and values. Granted, snow is cold, and the temperature was in the 30's, but snow can be warm or cool depending on if it's in the sun or shade. The same is true of rocks, or anything in a landscape. I tried to make sure that in adjusting for the color temperatures, I'm keeping true to the values. It helps to do a value sketch first.

I was asked in a comment what colors I use to tone my canvases. Usually I use cad yellow deep, yellow ochre, or cad orange. Sometimes a combination of two. And, sometimes red. I'll often tone 6 - 10 canvases at the same time.



Sunday, December 6, 2009

Canyonlands II


6" x 6" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
please contact me if interested

This is another view of Canyonlands National Park and more snow. This snow went a little more toward violet, which is was. The shady side of the trails was pretty snowy, but with practically no one else hiking, there was plenty of room to stay on the sunny side.

Canyonlands is a showcase of geology. Until recently, which means 15 million years ago in geologic times, this area was near sea level. Uplifts and volcanic activity created folds and mountains, but then movement in the earh's crust caused the whole area to rise. Today, the average elevation is over 5,000 feet above sea level.

In this painting you're looking at a ridge, a plateau, a canyon top, and a mesa.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Canyonlands National Park


11" x 14" oil on stretched canvas
$295.00 + $10.00 s/h
SOLD

My husband and I just got back from a 14 day trip, 9 of those spent days driving to San Francisco to visit our daughter. On the way we stopped in Durango, Co to see our son, and visited 7 National and State Parks and Monuments. It was an absolutely wonderful trip. In several of the parks we say only 5-10 other cars/people all day. Talk about uncrowded!

Our first park was Canyonlands National Park between Moab and Monticello, Utah. We spent 1 1/2 days hiking and driving through as much as we could. Next time we're taking our SUV as there are 50 miles of 4 wheel drive roads that we didn't want to drive on w/ our daughter's car.

I took my paints and hoped to paint occasionally, but the temperature never got out of the 30's. That's great for hiking, but cold for painting. I think I've got the snow a little too blue, may go back and gray it a bit. This piece, and those below, are from the area around Needles Overlook.




"Canyonlands is a colorful geologic wonderland in the heart of the high desert of southeastern Utah-a masterpiece of nature's work."

Friday, November 20, 2009

More Mowing


6" x 6" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interestd

It's really helpful to me to paint the same subject several times. The shapes seem easier when repeated often. And, goats are just big shapes.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Mow, Mow, Mow Your Goat


6" x 6' oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
please contact me if interested

Each year 500 goats are brought in to Bear Creek Park from Wyoming to eat noxious weeds, especially California thistle. Goats have a stomach system that easily digests thistles. A temporary fence is put up, 2 sheep dogs herd and watch the goats, people are entertained. The weeds disappear, the ground is turned over by hooves, natural fertilizer is spread, and no chemicals are used. A great situation for all!

I wiped out this piece 2 times before I started painting, because it looked so silly. Finally I decided it wasn't my drawing skills, but the goats themselves that are silly looking. Their mouths turn up, they appear to be constantly smiling, even while they're chewing. They're always happy looking.


This is a small portion of the herd. I did not think up this clever title; I have to give credit to the local newspaper.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

El Burrito


6" x 8" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

I wasn't sure if this was a mule, donkey or burro. So, I got out the old Webster's Dictionary and looked them all up. To teach you what I've learned:
burro: A donkey, esp, a small one used as a pack animal.
donkey: 1. The ass. 2. A stupid or obstinate fellow.
ass: Any of several quadrupeds smaller than the horse, and having shorter mane, shorter hair on the tail, and longer ears.
mule: A hybrid between the horse and the ass; esp. the offspring of a male ass and the mare.

So, this confused me even more. He's small, so he may be a burro or a donkey. He looks like he has horse in him, so he may be a mule. He seems stupid and obstinate, so he may be an ass.


We were driving home from fishing and he was walking around enjoying the afternoon, all by himself. When we stopped to look at him, he walked right up to the window.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

For Vincent


16" x 20" oil on stretched canvas
$495.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

This is my submission for Michelle Burnett's Following the Master's blog. When I taught middle school I often did units on famous artists. Van Gogh was one of my favorites. I would read "Camille and the Sunflowers" to my students and we would discuss many of the social issues in the book. In the story Vincent had very few friends; but, he was friends with the postman and his son. The son was very upset because the people in the village were mean to Vincent and threw rocks at him. Additionally, no one bought his paintings. Many great conversations developed with my 12 year olds about how Van Gogh's life might have been different if people could have accepted him with all of his illnesses, and how wealthy the ancestors of his patrons might be today.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Lower Gold Camp Road


11" x 14" oil on stretched canvas
$245.00 + $10. s/h
SOLD

This view is about a 30 minute easy walk from our back gate through Bear Creek Park trails. Or, in my case, a 5 minute drive around the north side of the park to a pull off on the side of Lower Gold Camp Road. As sometimes happens, the oranges and reds in the photo are just a little stronger than in my painting.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

October Trees


6" x 6" oil on panel
SOLD

This is another piece from last month's colors. September and October are beautiful in Colorado. November is an in between month; both color and season wise. It's no longer fall, but not yet winter. The colors are muted and subtle. For me, this month is a time to finish unfinished pieces, work from studies and photos, and get back to still lifes.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Morning in the Park


11" x 14" oil on stretched canvas
$245.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

Once again, this is Bear Creek Park, next to our house. This is from a photo taken on an early morning walk several weeks ago. I've done several pieces from those references. The lighting, colors, mood (I've decided mood means the mood of the artist!) were all perfect that day.

The rusts/reds are a little stronger and blues a little darker in this photo than in the painting. I encounter this off and on and haven't quite figured out how to adjust it.

This bike path was built a few years ago. It meanders in a circuitous path around our side of the park. In the summer there is a community race every Wednesday evening, and several very large regional races on set weekends. We joke that we don't need to spend the money for a trip to Europe to see the Tour do France, that we can sit on our deck and watch bike races for free!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Lower Hogback Trail


16" x 20" oil on stretched canvas
contact me if interested

This piece was done last week and was one of my submissions for the 1st Annual Autumn Painting Challenge and Competition on Facebook. The competition went on for the month of October. The number and quality of submissions is amazing: abundant and strong.

This hogback (a verticle geologic protusion from the earth) is an extension of the rock ridge which is part of the Garden of the Gods, and is not too far from my house. I was out there about 8 am to get the good light on the rocks.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

October on the South Platte River


6" x 6" oil on panel
SOLD

This piece is from last week, before the 4 inches of snow froze the leaves in South Park. I know, those of you who live elsewhere have bigger rivers, but the South Platte is a typical Colorado River.

Monday, October 26, 2009

October Meadow


5" x 7" oil on gessoed masonite
$75.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

This is another view from the Bear Creek Park bike path. I try to walk everyday and more often than not I walk around this park. It has miles of trails and is so convenient, right out the door.

I'm trying to make sure that all my landscapes have a pattern of light, color, or shapes to draw the viewer's attention to a focal point, and to make the viewer's eye dance and move around the piece. In this painting the focal point was the unbelievable bright light on the chamisas (it's a little whiter here than in the painting) at the top of the meadow. I used color patterns to move you up to that point.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Palo Duro Canyon Study IV


5" x 7" oil on gessoed masonite
$75.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

This is the last of my Palo Duro Canyon series which included plein air pieces, color studies, and studies done from photos. Jill, the owner of the B&B where we stayed in Canyon, Texas has made preliminary inquiries about selling some of our small pieces from her B&B. And, our group has started talking about another painting trip this spring.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Palo Duro Canyon Study III


5" x 7" oil on gessoed masonite
$75.00 + $10.00 s/h
contact me if interested

One more study from my trip to Palo Duro Canyon State Park, Canyon, Tx.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Bear Creek Fall


12" x 16" oil on stretched canvas
$195.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

Yesterday was an absolutely beautiful fall day! The early morning light on the trees and bushes was spectacular. The fall colors this year are amazing. Yesterday was one of those days that my family says, "Now, this is Colorado!" There's a sign near Buena Vista, Co. overlooking a great view of the Collegiate Peaks that says that. So, since we first read that sign to our kids many years ago, whenever we see an incredible view, we say that. One of those family moments.

Anyway, I painted this yesterday of Bear Creek Park. Our house sits next to, and overlooks, this aprroximately 600 acre county park. I've painted it in every season and never tire of its fields, trails, hills, views. This is just out our back door, on a bike trail.

(I still have a couple more studies from my Palo Duro Canyon series, but wanted to post this piece.)

Monday, October 19, 2009

Palo Duro Canyon Study II


5" x 7" oil on gessoed masonite
$75.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

This is the 2nd of 5 studies I did from photos after I returned from our plein air trip to Palo Duro Canyon State Park. As I stated yesterday, I used a limited palette while traveling. Those colors were: alizaron, cad red light, yellow ochre, cad yellow light, sap green, cobalt blue, ultramarine blue and white.

During the Weekend with the Masters Workshop, I attended a talk and slide show by Scott Burdick (whose travel paintings are incredible). He stated that when he flies he uses water based oils. We drove to Texas, so this wasn't an issue, but I'm wondering if anyone else uses water based oils. I've never tried them.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Palo Duro Canyon Study I


5" x 7" oil on gessoed masonite
$75.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

The next group of Palo Duro Canyon pieces are little studies that I did from photos after I got home. While on the trip I used a very limited palette, a warm and cool red, yellow, blue, sap green, and white. My palette at home has more colors and for these studies I added terra rosa, cad orange, and dioxazine violet. I got all the colors I needed on the trip by mixing the primaries. But I like the feel from more color choice.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Canyon Color Study III


5" x 7" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

This color study is of the "Spanish Skirts" which appear in the bottom of Palo Duro Canyon. This dark red oxidation is a combination of iron and oxygen.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Canyon Color Study II


5" x 7" oil on gessoed masonite
$75.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

This is another color study from Palo Duro Canyon. My understanding of color studies is to block in flat colors of the main shapes. It was difficult to keep myself from painting the tree areas textured. I really simplified the peaks, mesas, and cliffs. But the trees aren't flat areas. I'll work on that next time.

Blogger friend Celeste Bergin, (look at her blog if you're not familiar w/ her great paintings) commented that the last color study was "diebenkorn-esque". That's about the 4th time in the last month or so tht I've heard someone mention Richard Diebenkorn. At the Weekend w/ the Masters workshop, both Kevin Mcpherson and Skip Whitcomb talked about him. I guess I need to know more about him, so I've put his book on hold at the library. I'm more of a book than internet researcher. But, what I do know about him is that he painted a lot in the abstract expressionist movement of the 50s, he created a mood of quiet and isolation, and he worked in broad areas of color in open rectangular planes. I found that little bit from an old college book, "The History of Modern Art" by HH Arnason.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Canyon Color Study


6" x 8" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

I did several color studies of Palo Duro Canyon. This one was from near the top looking into and over a broad vista of the canyon. While the front rock outcropping looks a little like it's going up, the depth and flattening would have appeared w/ the details, I like the effect of the color flatness and simplicity. More to come.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Palo Duro Canyon IV


6" x 8" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

This piece was painted early Wednesday morning at the bottom of the Canyon. It was 42 degrees, I was wearing all the layers I had, my nose was running, there was absolutely no sun, so all the value and light was FLAT! When I look at this piece I see great colors, but w/ no value. There wasn't any! Because of the weather one group decided to go to Amarillo and view the sites, one group hiked, our group was hard core and painted. But it makes me think. Should I have pushed the values and created some? Should I have hiked? Or should I have done what I did...painted what I saw. I don't think there's a right or wrong. When you're painting plein air, you just get what you get and enjoy it.

You can see I really loved this outing. I have 5 more pieces to post! Maybe I'll post some others as well for variety. (Or not.)

It is said that Georgia O'Keeffes's early paintings were influenced by her visits to the Canyon. "It is a burning, seething cauldron, filled with dramatic light and color." GOK

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Palo Duro Canyon III


8" x 10" oil on panel
$100.00 + $10. s./h
contact me if interested
SOLD

This is the 3rd piece I painted on Tuesday afternoon at Palo Duro Canyon. It was late in the day and we switched to another picnic spot. As it was all day, the sun was in and out, causing color and value changes.

Before heading out to paint Tuesday morning we went to the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum which is on the campus of WTA&M. It is one of the most beautiful, well set-up museums I've seen and is Texas' largest history museum. In the geology section of the musuem we were given a talk by Petroleum Geologist Chris Bright on the Colors of Palo Duro Canyon. Some of what he told us:
--The dark red at the bottom of the Canyon is the top layer of the Permian age. The earth has an abundance of iron, which in combination w/ oxygen resulted in the dark red oxidation found in the Permian Formations.
--Murky, blue shale was deposited in the Triassic swamp mud. Rivers flowed through this area and cut into the bright red Permian, which resulted in the purple shale.
--He explained that artists find the Canyon so pleasing because the layers compliment each other. Next to the purple layers, is the complementing yellow shale, which is oxygen rich swamp deposits.
--The off-white, or grey sandstone at the top of the Canyon is the white sandstone of the caprock.

We were so impressed that Chris had geared his whole talk to artists and teaching us about the colors and layers of the Canyon. I had never really thought about rocks and color in quite this way. I live in the west, I live in the Rocky Moutains, I live near the Garden of the Gods, our son is a Geology major, I know that colors in paint come from nature...rocks and mountains are not new to me. But, I had never before sat in front of a huge relief sculpture of a canyon showing all the layers and colors and had it explained to me in such a way. It made my paintings so much more meaningful to understand the origin of the color.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Palo Duro Canyon II


6" x 8" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

For this painting, I simply turned my easel around and looked up the canyon. Everywhere you looked was another gorgeous spot to paint. I could stay there for days, and hope to go back. The white rock at the very top of the canyon is the sandstone of the Ogallala, which is the major water aquifer for the area.


This is the Hudspeth House, the B & B where we stayed while in Canyon, Texas. It was built in 1908 by Mr. Turk. The Texas Panhandle didn't (and still doesn't) have much in the way of lumber, so it is believed that he bought a boarding house kit from the Sears and Roebuck catalog for about $2,500.00 which came w/ a 75 page manual. In 1910 Mary Hudspeth was invited to join the faculty at the newly founded West Texas State Normal College, now West Texas A&M U. She boarded w/ the Turk family, and bought the house from them in 1912 when they lost everything in a drought.

In the days before dorms, Miss Hudspeth housed and fed students and faculty. The most famous of those eating meals there was Georgia O'Keefe, who was head of the Art Department from 1916-1918.


Georgia O'Keefe rented a room in this newly built home owned by a physics professor at the college. This 5 bedroom, 1 bath house is one block from the Hudspeth House, 2 blocks from the campus and is presently for sale. (It needs work.)

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Palo Duro Canyon


6" x 8" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

I just got back from a 3 day trip to paint at Palo Duro Canyon State Park in Canyon, Texas with 10 other artists/friends. Canyon, Texas is about 10 minutes south of Amarillo in the Texas panhandle. Palo Duro Canyon is the 2nd largest canyon in the US. Palo Duro means "hard wood" in Spanish, after the mesquite and juniper.

Palo Duro Canyon State Park opened in 1934 and contains 29,182 acres of the scenic, northern most portion of the Palo Duro Canyon. The Civilian Conservation Corp of the 1930's constructed most of the buildings and roads still in use by park staff and visitors.

The Canyon is 120 miles long, about 20 miles wide, and has a maximum depth of more than 800 feet. Its elevation at the rim is 3,500 feet above sea level. Palo Duro Canyon was formed by water erosion from the Prairie Dog Town Fork of the Red River. The water deepens the canyon by moving sediment downstream. Wind and water erosion gradually widen the canyon.


Our first two paintings were done at the southern end of the park. It was partly cloudy with the sun going in and out, causing the incredible colors of the rock to change before my eyes. I painted just the center of the far ridge.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Light and Shadow


6" x 8" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

It was very windy when I went out to paint this morning. We often have high winds in Colorado, and it can be even windier in Hartsel, up in the mountains. So, my choices were to stand in the wind or go down into the woods. As you can see, I chose the woods. I thought I'd do another shadow and light study (like I mentioned in the last post) painting this piece w/ more light than shadow. But, I was drawn to these two trees, and so ended up w/ more shadow than light. That's ok, one day I'll do a study with more light than shadow.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Shadow and Light


6" x 8" oil on panel
$75.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

During the Weekend with the Masters workshop, one of Kevin Macpherson's class exercises was to create a small piece which had 3/4 shadow and 1/4 light. During one of Skip Whitcomb's talks and demos he said that you should not have equal detail in the light and shadow. He also said that painting in the field is a place for fun and experimentation. So, this past weekend painting in the mountains, I tried to put all of this together in one exercise. I worked for 3/4 shadow w/ more detail, and 1/4 light w/ less detail. I think I've got about 1/3 2/3s, but a fun experiment.

A great benefit of blogging and the web world is meeting new people. I have met so many people through my blog. Today I got to meet a blogger friend in person! I spent a good part of the day w/ Cathyann Burgess from Richmond, Va. She and her husband are spending a month in Denver, Colorado visiting their son and his family. She drove down to the Springs, we met at the Garden of the Gods, had a great tour (I'm a pretty good guide!), went to lunch and visited galleries. What a world we live in! Visit her blog if you're not familiar w/ her work!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Spinney Mist


8" x 10" oil on panel
$100.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

We spent the last several days up in the mountains. The weather was beautiful this weekend; last weeks cold and snow disappeared. Once again we were at Spinney Reservoir. While my husband was out fishing, I was painting. Because of the mist over the peaks, this was a fun piece to paint. Like often happens when plein-aire painting, the late afternoon light changed so quickly.


This photo was taken when I was finished painting. At this point the light had changed dramatically. The reservoir was much lighter, the mist had increased and the mountains in the background had completely disappeared. The challenge is always sticking with the light as it was at the start, or changing the values in the piece. I think I do both, depending on my mood at the time and how the color and value look to me.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Zinnia Bouquet 2


16" x 20" oil on stretched canvas
$195.00 + $10. s/h
contact me if interested

Due to this weeks cold and snow, we have several zinnia bouquets in our house right now. So, I decided to do one more zinnia painting. My study for this was a bit different. I spent quite a lot of time with the still life set-up, making sure the flowers were arranged in a good composition, choosing and arranging the fabric on the table, getting a great shadow which included some of the flower shapes for interest. But, the painting seemed to have a mind of it's own. The flowers wanted to be life-sized, which left out the bottom of the vase and most of the shadow and lower fabric edge. I scraped it off and re-started twice, but each time the flowers came out life sized. So, I guess it was meant to be.