Sunday, January 31, 2010

Color Fields

Color fields was the name of a group show that I did one time; but certainly is appropriate for the Series of 100. One hundred little fields; thirty are finished, two of which have not yet been posted. I digitally manipulated the icy one in another view and may post it for fun...amazing what can be done with digital engineering! With the snowy one, I have seen that heavy frost that is so beautiful and dense on the trees - probably causing significant distress to the plant, but so pleasing to the eye. I achieved that by putting a dark purplish-brown down first, then giving it a mist of workable fix, on top of which the lighter colors were added. The beauty of Wallis paper with it's tooth and the fix allows you to get that 3 dimensional effect that just pops!
The blue one...what can I say...just working a sense of twilight on snow.
My great uncle who was an accomplished watercolorist, did a winter scene of his home in the woods of Northern IL in the evening. It is all shades of blue with the \yellow glow emanating from the windows. It was done when I was a kid; was his Christmas card image and I have been in awe of that painting ever since I first saw it! I became the caretaker of his artwork after my mother passed away and it hangs in my home prominently in it's original little frame and along with several other of his works. His work has served as an inspiration to me from early on.
happy painting...

Saturday, January 30, 2010

The Northwest Gallery Collection

The Northwest Gallery Collection

Click on the link above to see the publication. If you wish to get a hard copy let me know or contact NQGC directly. Enjoy the magazine!

Its about color!

It is about color. I am really liking doing this series for what it teaches you about color and details...and more. I am working quite small...3x5 about. So I have a minute space to say what I want to! #24 and 25 are completed. Also finished a hay bales. I am intrigued with the big round bales. Where I live you see the round bales of straw from the harvested wheat fields; in parts of OR and MT I see them in hay - so when the field is freshly cut, the bales are still the beautiful green as is the clipped alfalfa or grass. Put that together with evening colors in the sky and you can literally get a feel for the smell of the freshing cut hay; sense the warm summer evening and view another killer sunset that rises to immense beauty with the dusty air. That's my goal with this painting - get those senses going crazy in that vast openness of a MT hay field with one of the Square Butte ranges in the background absorbing the late afternoon warmth.

enjoy the paintings...and at a milestone with the series...#25!

Remedy for a foggy day...

The best remedy for a foggy day is to get out of it! Get out of the fog!! So one can typically get in the car and drive toward Pendleton or Dayton and be out of the fog in 20 minutes or so...or you can head to the studio and paint greener pastures!

Before I moved to SE WA, fog was a novelty. When the fog rolled in, it was mysterious, eerie...but when one lives some place where the fog can be an everyday occurrence in the winter...not so much a novelty. Fortunately, we have not had too much this winter and it seems to lift midday, unlike the first year I lived here and there were 28 days of serious fog. Wow. It is a good day to paint!

I was online yesterday and went to the site. Graciously, they have included an image of mine on their site - thank you very much...BUT...the real reason to bring this site up again is to AGAIN tell you this is a wonderful site....there is a ton of info there, plus inspiration and on and on. It is the best. It has learning tools; link to books, and on and on.

More painting today.

Another note - the local Hospice fund raiser is next week. I just about always donate a piece to that and this year as well. The September Trees (above) will be auctioned this year and we hope it will garner a significant amount for the good of the order. Also will work with M'Lisse and Lauri on their auction item...a vineyard dinner and a plein air demo and subsequent quick draw painting that I will do while the recipients dine in a local, private vineyard on some delectable treats prepared by Lauri and M'Lisse.

Happy painting....

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

the series continues...

Two more images in the series of _ _ _ ?100??? The gold tones was fun to do and it radiates with the warmth of the colors. When I did the red and yellow, I felt like I was maybe looking thru some sort of filter...almost a negative in a sense. The monochromatic golds I liked the best. I am thinking of what I will do next and for the Willow show where I will hang a collection of these. And how many... I am thinking 5x7 inch frames and images of 3x5.
A new blog that may show some of the It is a GREAT site with a ton of reference and postings of wonderful art biased toward the pastel painting folks! Lots of links, etc. Check it out.
I was looking at Idaho Beauty's blog and reading some I hadn't read before...seeing some postcards made of fabric...wonderful work - art. I am the proud owner of one and it sits on my desk at work to be complimented on by visitors. Fabric art is quite wonderful. Allied Arts in TriCities had a quilt show in January that looked stunning. I am afraid to step into those quilting stores...I sense it could be a whole new addition in the art world!!
So for now I will concentrate on my landscape series and begin working on some larger pieces for the Willow show in April/May and others beyond.
happy painting....

Monday, January 25, 2010

a beautiful thing is never perfect....

...or so says some Egyptian with that said there are two more in the Series 100. Again I used Wallis paper. It is so great to work with and will continue with it unless I want a strong pre-finished under-color of black Canson or Art Spectrum paper.
The seemingly monochromatic image on the right actually has a touch of blue and lavender in it. Working monochromatically is a good exercise in tonal study.
My son Chris is a great guy...he lives in Montana and keeps an eye out for his Mom in the art market there, as well as delivers and retrieves paintings from shows. He asks can he hang some of these in his office...well yeah, and can one of his associates hang one in her office...why on...Now I can ask...will you check out this quick draw event for me? will you check out this gallery? quid pro quo I guess it is...
Check out Neil Young's work on graphite work...
happy paintings and happy Monday!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

A pastel a day...

It is very easy to get out and paint...but its a little harder to get things in print. So I do the best I can with that! This week I got some good painting in. I decided to use the Wallis paper. It is a dream to work on. I also decided to use exclusive Sennilier pastels for this weeks work. I used the landscape plein aire series of pastels. Man, these are fabulous colors to work with. You have a great selction of earth and green tones, good blues, and more...I used some workable fix in places, especially the big tree to create some depth. I like how it looks when pastel is applied to the fixed area while it is just a tad wet. It creates a a nearly 3D look when the undercoat is a dark color... great for leaves.

The NorthWestGalleryCollection publication is soon to released and mailed. I submitted a page to it and was pleased with the results. This publication has a large database of addresses throughout several states. Anyone wanting info about this, shoot me an email or contact Dani at I believe this could be a great marketing tool.
For now...happy painting to all you artists; happy looking to all you art lovers!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

A beautiful thing is never perfect...

So goes the story of the 100 small paintings...they may not be perfect, but they are a learning process; some are nice little landscapes and some are interesting landscapes and some - I am not sure...Some interesting notes...Some colors really look wonderful together that I hadn't really used before...there is a burgandy that I layed over a cerelian blue and blended it...added a little's a wonderful see it in one of the skies. I am posting three images today which brings me to 15. That's a good number to have completed...on the way to 30, then 45,'s a do-able project!
I used some Wallis paper and some black Canson and then I had some paper that was already painted on and I decided to crop the painting. I chopped off a good part of the sky and have enough of that left to be used as I can with this project. So the former sky becomes an's on Moonstone Canson paper, so there isn't a huge amount of pastel that I can lay on the paper...but why not see what that comes to be! This sky with the burgandy is quite interesting...I have a couple of ideas for future paintings as a result of this one. Also to note is how the mountains or hills in the background take a different "distance" to their look with the utilization of a different color. The green hills appear quite close behind the trees while the dense blue mountains really look to be off in the distance.

I have put some of my work on It seems to be a well organized and user friendly site for artists to promote their work. Imagekind allows buyers to select an image, make it the size they want, select their frame and mat and voila! their painting is ready to be paid for and shipped. It's all print work- both paper and canvas are available as well as greeting cards. My site is Simple enough and lots of options for buyers if they are interested in print art. I have seen some of the work from this site and it appears to be good quality.

Saturday, January 16, 2010


So the painting today is the meadow at twilight. There is that magical time of day when the colors are sort of surreal and mysterious and when you add a few trees and mountains, etc you can pretty soon conjure up a story in your mind that can actually scare you....what's in the trees? did you hear that? what was that? Make you turn your tail and run for your secure safe place wherever that is! Reminds me as a kid on our ranch...the darkness held some degree of fear and to have to walk to the barns and corrals from the house which was probably about 3 blocks or so in urban terms...took about all the nerve a kid could muster up. And always there was something, usually on the way back to the house that caused the adrenalin to kick into high gear and I could sprint to the house in record time. whew! I am sure there was Nothing there and the idea that "something" was out there and about to chase me and who knows what was the result of my great imagination ! Now I enjoy being out in the late evening and see what happens to color and thus far nothing has jumped out and nabbed me and chewed off my left arm!

This painting was again done on a small piece of Wallis paper...absolutely essential for good dramatic skies and all that to let your imagination go wild!

A Room With A View...or should I say A Field...

I am getting the paintings done, but not always imaged and something penned on the blog each day. For the time being I am tacking the little pastel series up on the wall in the studio aka the garage and it is getting to be the room with a view of all those little fields and mountains in a different light.

So today I decided to use the best ever paper for pastels - Wallis. Sometimes I wonder why one even works with other paper, but then I go back to the reason of - occasionally one wants a different effect than can be created with Wallis. It is my most favored paper - the pastels always look crisp and rich and brilliant. My next favorite paper is the Art Spectrum Colorfix paper. I love the colors they are primed with. Although the amount of abuse one can inflict on that paper is not nearly the same that Wallis can withstand. Abuse, I say...well, lots of layers, some workable fix here and there and the building of some texture to the painting....that where Wallis shines.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

A Painting a Day Keeps....

What??? Keeps one thinking about what the heck to be painting! This was the second day that I put some Pan Pastels to the test. Not really thrilled with the results of the first one, I decided to try a totally different paper, so I dug around my studio and found some card stock. It has a pretty smooth surface without much tooth, if any. I was thinking about the sunset that I watched manifest out my window at work last night. It was one of those that was the brilliant orange and gold - absolutely drop dead incredible. So I thought that would be a good blend on the smooth paper, which it was. Interestingly enough, the pastels seemed to glide onto the smooth paper better than that with grit and tooth. Is it the applicator??? The color is not as brillilant still...this may be the result of the applicators I am using. These came with the pastels and look like makeup sponges and eyeshadow applicators. I will try more papers and different application methods. Maybe a wash/underpainting first?

On the way to a record # of little fields rendered in pastel!

Are you painting your series - you who have promised to do so??? I am finding myself thinking about them during the day and what I might do for that day's painting. Its becoming part of my routine :-) ...


well, I don't know about that, but the last couple of paintings have been experiments on paper and with "Pan Pastels". I acquired a nice set of pan pastels a while ago and they sat all pristine and polished in their box for a few months. Decided the other day they should come out and expose themselves to the world and show me what they could do! Did a little landscape on a piece of Arches w/c paper and wasn't too thrilled with the results. I have found that w/c paper does seem to dull the color so let it go at that.

Tried them again with my 100 series. This time on a piece of Art Spectrum colorfix paper - a pale yellow one. You seem to have to use an applicator with these pastels because of the fact that they come in a "pan" or something that could be mixed up with you eyeshadow round containers. It seems like more pastel comes off the paper than adheres...still not particularly vibrant color. Lights over darks work ok, however. This is a pretty primative little piece, but an experiment....that's what the 100 is about - different paper, technique, color combinations, pastels, etc.

Monday, January 11, 2010

a daily dose

Another daily dose of a variation of the landscape. Not particularly a favorite; but a color combination nonetheless. I love to look at the variations of the skies that Albert Handell and Elizabeth Mawry do. Bold, unusual...oh, but I have seen those colors!!
Looking into the art walk in Sand Point for 2010-at least I have done as much as requested an application...which is the biggest step!
I am also including in this blog one of the demo pieces I did at the workshop this weekend. A couple of the students had purchased prints of Ochre Fields and were wanting to understand how that painting was accomplished. So...we painted some trees and brushy fields with a hint of snow not yet melted.
Life is good when there is art in it, I must say :-)

Sunday, January 10, 2010

painting from the heart

Day two of the workshop and I am always happy to see positive results from students. We had great results, a lot of laughs and things learned from everyone. What a way to spend a weekend! Painting with and helping friends develop their own styles and techniques of pastel painting!

I managed to stay on track and get my painting-a-day completed. I think I even sreated some interest in the workshop group to do something like that....maybe not for 100 days or even 30 days, but for a few days. They know, I know and you probably know that by painting every day you enhance your skill level.....

I am going to post the three days of paintings that I just photographed tonight on this wishes and happy painting to your fellow painters!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

a painterly weekend...

Yesterday and today new paintings have emerged from the series I am doing....but no digital images yet.

I am spending the weekend teaching a workshop on pastel technique to an incredible great bunch of ladies. They are a wonderful group to work with 0 receptive, energetic, great senses of humor and on and on. With any luck I will have convinced them to do the series of paintings as well! I love to teach - it makes me work hard at doing good demos and to put forth information to individuals who want to learn new things is a very rewarding experience. The studio at Bambi's is sits out near fields and ponds and creeks with wild turkeys (well not so wild, I think, because Bambi feeds them, I am pretty sure!) meandering all over the yard and fields. I am looking forward to returning there tomorrow and work again in that surround.
Today's image is not one of the series, but one that I did repeatedly on 5 kinds of paper to demonstrate the different look with each paper. And when I step back and look at them, I think the best look was on the Wallis paper. I did not do this little painting, however, on the ColorFix paper...I think it would have looks nearly the same as the Wallis. So I am thinking that the white Wallis paper really lends itself to clean and crisp paintings.
More tomorrow...

Thursday, January 7, 2010

A Painting a Day for better or worse

from left to right : pan pastel test; daily landscape III; Storms Come From the West
It's a gray, high fog day and one that is god to beside working on projects and not really knowing what it looks like outside. Some good music going and a little creating in the studio...

Number III of the landscape series is done - a little different in all tones of reds...BUT I do have some news about work published on the You can go to and see "Storms Come From the West" in their fall landscape section.

I tried some of the new Pan Pastels for fun. Worked on a little landscape with some cows (attached) on a piece of 400# Arches watercolour paper. Using the blending tools was a new concept as opposed to my finger, but my general impression is that these are a fun medium. They are less dusty it seems than the sticks and I am now going to try them on a piece of Art Spectrum paper that is more smooth, but has a tooth that is great for pastels. I may actually do my next "daily landscape" with the pans. I have heard the the pan pastels can be used successfully going from light to dark as well as the conventional dark to light and not end up with a muddy appearance. More on that later.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Turning over a new leaf or HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Seeing 2009 in the rear view mirror is a positive thing and I welcome 2010! Even though I have an issue writing it as a date. I want to put the "10" down first! will take a while, about 3 weeks to change that!

Good things have started happening - some sales at two galleries already in the new year; two workshops scheduled for January and February AND most importantly or at least equally important - I am getting back into the studio space and painting. It seemed with the open house in early November, then the series of holidays and company, etc., no painting got accomplished.

Did you see the movie Julia and Julie about the young lady who decided to cook every recipe in Julia Child's cookbook in a year? Well, a pastel artist did something similar- at least similar in a time consuming project that took probably 3 months or so to complete...

So I have started working on a project similar to one I read about where this artist took one image and painted it 100 different ways. I can't commit to 100, but I am in the process of daily paintings in the 5x7 inch size of one subject and multiple color schemes for at least a month. My goal is to post them on the blog site and Facebook. And the idea is to think outside of the box and use a variety of color that perhaps are not the norm. :-)

On a more conventional note, I am doing a workshop at the Pendleton Center for the Arts Feb 27-28, 9-4 each day. They have great classroom space. The info is on their website. It's $150 for both days. It will focus on landscapes in pastel (soft) and using different types of paper. Contact the Center if you might be interested in the workshop.