Sunday, February 4, 2018

Rain, Rain, Go Away!

Those of us who live in the Pacific Northwest are used to a good amount of rain. We buy raincoats, boots, and waterproof pants. We are used to gray skies and soggy ground. As a lifetime Northwesterner, I've also developed some mental coping mechanisms to get me through the season of water. First I think of all things warm and sunny; I recall places I've been that were warm, pleasant, and peaceful.  I pull out old photos and reminisce about sunshine and dry ground. Finally, I paint. This tactic has motivated me this past week to paint a series of little paintings, none of which involve rain. All are 6x6 inches square and completed with oil paints on stretched canvas. When the paint is dry, I will probably list them for sale along with some of my other small landscape paintings. You can check them out here. Stay dry! 

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Playing in the New Year

The new year has begun and so has a spark of abstract inspiration. I've recently been working on a series of little oil paintings that help me understand color and design a little bit better. The series involves working on some little 6x6 inch square canvases, using a palette knife, and experimenting. Some of these little compositions turn out well, and some do not, but I've enjoyed the effort of playing with paint.

As the paint dries, I will be listing the original paintings for sale in the Abstract Art section of my Etsy Shop. I hope you will stop by. There are more to come, but the paint isn't dry yet. 

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Nice Day for Ducks

As a native Northwesterner, I am well versed in the culture of rain. When the days of endless drizzle get to be too much, we imagine we have webbed feet, put on a raincoat, and try to pretend we don't mind. Often, when the moisture is heavy, I've heard people comment that it is, "a nice day for ducks." With this in mind, I had a fun afternoon last week painting some little web footed creatures. This is one of my favorites. I placed this fellow on a sunny bank, gave him a shadow, and tried to imagine a little warm weather. In my world, it was definitely a nice day for ducks. The little painting was created with oil paints on a small 4x6 canvas panel. He's for sale in my Etsy Shop where I will be listing the rest of his friends as soon as the paint is dry.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Getting Ready for Snow

This week I've been doing some more small studies, auditioning my ideas for something larger. Both of these paintings were inspired by a series of photographs I took while on a snowshoeing adventure in the Cascade Mountains of Washington State last winter. Both are oil paintings, the top one 8x10 and the smaller one 6x6. I have some canvases that are 24x30 and 30x30 that need to be covered with paint, so these little ones might go big, or might stay small. Undecided at this point.

You can find my original work at Smallimpressions and at Ugallery, or click on any of the links to the right.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Painting Process

It feels good to be back in my studio after several months of travelling. Although my paint brush was still, I continued to store up ideas for future projects. The first step in my painting process is to take numerous photographs, store memories, and think. After I am back in the studio, I spend time reminiscing and reviewing. Exploration of different scenes follows. These two little paintings, size 6x8 and 8x8 are explorations of the same scene on the Olympic Peninsula of Washington State. I couldn't decide whether a square format or a landscape format would serve the scene best, so I painted both with the idea of creating a larger version. I eventually sell the smaller studies here and the larger versions here. The decision on format is still percolating, but completing this exercise has help me draw some conclusions. What do you think? Square format or landscape? 

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Mountains and Coast

Hurricane Hill
8x8 Oil on Canvas

Salt Creek
8x8 Oil on Canvas

Last month I had the pleasure of visiting the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State with a group of friends. We ventured from the Strait of Juan de Fuca to Hurricane Ridge and hiked along the sea and in the mountains all within one day. I arrived home with lots of inspiration for painting the lovely landscapes of the area. A series of 8x8 square format landscapes emerged after the trek. The two paintings above are my favorites. The rest can be viewed here in my portfolio. As the paint dries I will be selling the originals in my Etsy Shop and perhaps doing some larger versions to submit to my Ugallery portfolio

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Encaustic Journey

Red and Black 1
6x6 Encaustic

Always eager to experiment with new art mediums, encaustic painting is a method with which I had no experience until recently. The ethereal sense that the process produces has long intrigued me, so I finally did some research, bought some supplies, and jumped in. Encaustic is a classic form of art that uses bee's wax and heat to produce a design.  Above is one of my first paintings using the process. I am delighted to report that it was fun and not nearly as difficult as I imagined. I'm sure I will continue to play with the process. Below are two more compositions from my exploration. I hope you like them.

Red and Black 2
6x6 Encaustic

Red and Black 3
6x6 Encaustic

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Paint and Paper

6x6 Mixed Media on Paper
Original For Sale

This past week I've been playing with some mixed media, acrylic paint, ink, and pencils. My surface is usually canvas, but I worked on paper this time, namely a 246 lb. archival acrylic paper. The focus was on making different kinds of marks, layering texture, and composition. You can view the entire series here.

After I was finished, it was fun to play with adding different types of matting and framing. My vision is a wall of these little abstract designs. Now, I just need a big blank wall. 

6x6 Mixed Media on Paper

6x6 Mixed Media on Paper

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Wild Grass

Last week I returned from a road trip along the West Coast from Washington State to Southern California and back again. It was a beautiful time to travel by car. Springtime was showing its face everywhere. The paintings above were inspired by the beautiful grasses that emerged on the landscape in Northern California and Southern Oregon. From the window of my car, the wild grasses provided color and abstraction that entertained me for miles. As soon as I got home I began working on this series based on those beautiful patches of wild grass. The paintings are abstract in both color and design, but I feel like they effectively capture the atmosphere provided by those lovely wild grasses. You can see more of this series here.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Bloedel Reserve

Near the Sheep Shed
4x6 Oil on Canvas

Through the Birch Garden
4x6 Oil on Canvas

Last week I had the pleasure of an invitation to visit Bloedel Reserve on Bainbridge Island in Washington State. What a treat! I took hundreds of photos and enjoyed every beautiful moment of the adventure. Above are a couple of little oil studies I completed after returning home. I created several others, but the paint is still wet and difficult to photograph. These studies will serve well as notes for creating some larger paintings in the future. Can't wait! I better order some more canvases.

Friday, May 5, 2017

The Value of a Cup

This week I've been practicing mixing paint from a limited palette to create a full range of values. A cup from my kitchen was a great subject for this practice. I used Cadmium Yellow Light, Ultramarine Blue, and a tiny bit of Alizarin Crimson, and a tiny bit of white. A great little exercise to do inside when the weather is spitting rain and lying about springtime.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Gaining Perspective--Time Will Tell

Yesterday I raided the pantry for bottles, arranged and rearranged the set up, and painted from life. I prefer to paint still life subjects from life rather than photographs. Photographs hide the subtleties of color and shadow that are so crucial to an attractive depiction. The two paintings, 8x8 and 6x8 inches will take a while to dry since they were rendered in oil paint. While they are drying, I like to let them sit for a few days in a place where I can get glimpses each time I pass by. It helps me to get some perspective. Sometimes I will have a wonderful time painting a subject and fall in love with the experience only to find a few days later that the painting really isn't very good. Then I either paint over it, wipe it out, or restretch the canvas and start something new. On the other hand, sometimes I will struggle with a subject and want to wipe out my work only to find that with a few days sitting on the easel, the work is actually not as bad as I thought. Finished work sitting on my easel needs a gestation period before it is released into the world. These little paintings are still in that gestation period. I think they will probably be hatched in a week or two when the paint is dry. What do you think? Wipe out, paint over, or birth?

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Big Wall--Big Art

Lately I've been working in a larger format. It feels good to change sizes from time to time. This week is the week of big art. I just finished some 24x30 inch landscape paintings and have ordered some 30x30 inch canvases. It is liberating to use a big brush and a lot of paint. This 24x30 inch original landscape in now for sale in my Etsy Shop. I'll be adding some more large works in the near future. Of course that doesn't mean I will be giving up smaller works, it just means painting is a whole lot of fun.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Playing with the Color Blue

I had some fun this week playing with paint, paper, and digital mixed media. A mixture of oil painting, acrylic collage, and a photo of a crafty raven merged to create the contemporary composition. I love the colors, the shapes, and the design. Pure fun. Below is an image of the design framed with a simple black frame and white mat. My print shop also created versions on canvas and metal. Hope you will stop by and see the possibilities available for display. They've even come up with it on a throw pillow. Some wonderful options. Visit my print shop here.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Little Birds

Spring is coming and I can't wait. Too much wind, rain, and winter this year, so this past week I celebrated the coming of warm weather by painting some little bird portraits. All were created with oil paints on small canvas panels. I will begin listing them in my Etsy Shop today. As the paint dries, more will be added. Hope you have a warm and sunny spring!