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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

6 of 30!


Bonzo, 5x5", oil on panel, private commission
I have gotten behind in both my painting and posting.  Yet I give myself cudos for continuing to paint.  Posting became problematic when my laptop crashed and had to go the the nerd hospital for a bit. All is well now, thank heavens!

Thought I would share with you some of my process:

I start with an image supplied by the pet owner, crop it for a "head shot" and get approval to use it.  I upload it into an ap called "AccuView" on my ipad.


I have a special Ipad holder and tripod that I set up next to the panel holder.


I use a grid to sketch the image quickly onto the panel, 
then do a transparent underpainting


I then start laying in the opaque colors


there are many moments during a painting when I think, "oh dear, this is a mess!"




I love it when the personality emerges from the paint!  I really enjoy painting "head shots" of pets. I find I am not all that interested in painting bodies or rendering patterns of fabrick.  Funny how preferences emerge once you paint enough paintings!

I am grateful for the many blessings of my life as it is today. 

Start where you are
Love what you have
Do what you can


Monday, January 06, 2014

5 of 30

Cottonwoods, 5x7" Watercolor
5 of 30
Ooops, painting two today, stay tuned for #6...

Today I chose a photo reference from our trip to New Mexico last October.  Far better to dream of the cottonwoods at Embudo Station, NM, by the Rio Grand than face the 3 degree temperature outside at the moment. I do pan to walk the dog in a bit but keep putting it off.  It looks so quiet outside at the moment but the wind chill is expected to be below zero soon.  My mind just can't wrap itself around this weather at all.

I love the cottonwoods and the aspens each fall. Such a brilliant display of cad yellow everywhere against that torquoise sky...

Ohio just can't compete (IMHO).

I am grateful for the many blessings of my life as it is today. 

Start where you are
Love what you have
Do what you can

Saturday, January 04, 2014

4 of 30

Goldfinch, 5x7" watercolor
4 of 30
Snow is expected tomorrow. Then really, really cold temperatures. Today, like most of Cincinnati, we went to Krogers. What a zoo! Good thing everyone seemed to enjoy the joke, even the employees.

I seem to be on a bird binge. I love watching the finches at our feeders all year round. Right now they are pretty darn dull but midsummers are glorious.  This perky fellow seems to surveying his kingdom with great pride.  I like that this small piece seems to be both loose and a little tight in places.

Hope you enjoy it as well.  Feel free to leave a comment or sign up for updates.

I am grateful for the many blessings of my life as it is today. 

Start where you are
Love what you have
Do what you can

Friday, January 03, 2014

2 & 3 of 30!

Grumpy Cardinal, 6x6" watercolor
2 of 30

Today I am playing catch up.  Yesterday I spent my time hanging out with our daughter on her last day of winter break. Today we took her to the airport and I am happy to report she arrived safely in Savannah, GA, to start her winter quarter at Savannah College of Art & Design. (SCAD) I was sad to see her go this time.  And very happy to have my "empty nest" back. We are all ready to get back into a regular routine again after the holidays.  I am still working at home due to the weather so am creating watercolors.  This is my first bird painting!

Bella,10x8, oil on panel
3 of 30
Bella is an oil that I created to have in reserve as a "catch up" painting.  She is a Yorkie/Maltese cross and her owner says I managed to capture her.  I really enjoy pet portraits because no dog says, "Can you make me look thinner?"

We are anticipating some bad weather tomorrow and very cold weather in the upcoming week.  I anticipate more watercolors in my future!

I am grateful for the many blessings of my life as it is today. 

Start where you are
Love what you have
Do what you can



Wednesday, January 01, 2014

30 in 30 challenge again!

"Sunny Face", 6x6 watercolor
1 of 30
Here we go again!  Leslie Saeta has put forth the 30 in 30 challenge for January and I have to say that I was conflicted as today went on & on. I spent the afternoon clearing out a huge closet in my studio with a friend and did not get my oils going.  So, honoring this commitment I went to my drawing table after dinner and got out my watercolors.  I can't use oils at home due to my cat since he gets up onto any surface he wants to check out.  Oil paint paw prints are not a good thing...

I am really enjoying watercolors because they are so juicy. I will be doing more pet portraits in oil.  A friend suggested that I "travel" during this challenge and revisit vacation images. This sounds like fun so perhaps I will revisit Paris, Giverny, the beach and New Mexico this month.  It is about to get really cold and nasty here in Cincinnati so I will NEED a break for traveling in my art.

Stay tuned!

I am grateful for the many blessings of my life as it is today. 

Start where you are
Love what you have
Do what you can

Thursday, September 12, 2013

8 & 9 of 30

Gaillardias, 5x7", watercolor 
8 of 30

Beach Flowers, 5x7", watercolor 
9 of 30
So today is September 12 and I am posting paintings 8 & 9 when I SHOULD be posting painting 12. Oh well.  I forgive myself for being human. I am allowing myself to do this process imperfectly...

Today was our last full day at the beach & it was wonderful.  I was able to take a retail break in the afternoon, leaving daughter & husband back at the condo.  It was really fun to talk with a local artist about her work and share some images of my own work.  I had a great deal of fun painting this morning as well.  I am happy as to how loose these small paintings are.

My painting set up on the front deck...
Unfortunately my right knee has gone a bit wonky so I skipped the beach walk.  We had dinner at our favorite restaurant, Sundae Cafe. (www.sundaecafe.com)  It looks totally unimpressive on the outside but offers wonderful selections at both lunch & dinner. A perfect way to end our brief stay on Tybee Island.  Can't wait to return next year.

Tomorrow we pack up the car early and head into Savannah to load the daughter back into her SCAD apartment for the year.  Then we head homewards towards Cincinnati.  We like to stop in Cartersville, GA for the night.  It gets us past Atlanta, making the next days drive easier.  Going all the way to Knoxville is just too hard at our age.  One year we drove all the way back in one L O N G day.  Never again!

And then the lovely empty nest begins again...

I am grateful for the many blessings of my life as it is today. 

Start where you are
Love what you have
Do what you can

Monday, September 09, 2013

6 & 7 of 30

Breezy Morning, 5x7", Watercolor (6 of 30)

Container Ship, 5x7", Watercolor (7 of 30)
We are on Tybee Island, near Savannah, GA.  This is one of my favorite places on earth.  Our daughter moves back into student housing on Friday to continue her studies at Savannah College of Art & Design (SCAD).  Last year we began this tradition - taking a few days on the beach as a family before moving her into her apartment and heading back to Cincinnati.  Savannah is a very busy port so container ships pass by the beach where we are quite often.  I am having fun experimenting with painting loosely with watercolors...

Since we have been on the road since Saturday I am a bit behind in the "official" 30 Paintings in 30 Days challenge.  I intend to keep plugging away. Since the car was filled with our daughter's back to school stuff I only brought watercolors on this trip. I plan to get back to oils next week and will hopefully get my numbers up.

I am grateful for the many blessings of my life as it is today. 

Start where you are
Love what you have
Do what you can