Tuesday, December 05, 2023

Aimless Apples


Click Here to Bid - 6x6in. - Oil on panel - starts at $100

Lately I've been thinking about how much the "rules" of art help us, vs. intuition/feelings. I've pretty much decided that it has to be a balance, and personally I have to monitor that balance often. When I start getting tight and rigid and afraid I remind myself - "Carol, don't overthink it." And that helps me remember to play. Because if I don't play then I don't get unexpected things, and it's the unexpected things that lead me to new ideas and growth. It can also lead to me falling on my face, but if that's the price I pay for growth then I'll pay it.

Sunday, December 03, 2023



Click Here to Bid - 5x7in. - Oil on panel - starts at $100

Lately I've been focusing a lot on me. That probably sounds weird, and it feels funny to write. But in terms of art I've been asking myself - rather than what other people might like, or what might sell - what I actually enjoy painting. Maybe second to that is what I might enjoy seeing as a result. And one of the things I enjoy most is a technical challenge. And fun colors. So this is me being self-indulgent.

Friday, December 01, 2023

Teacher's Lounge


Click Here to Bid - 6x6in. - Oil on panel - starts at $100

Often my apples are on the move, but today they were just sitting around chatting. A nice, quiet day.

Thursday, November 30, 2023

Hogging the Yellow Plate


Click Here to Bid - 6x6in. - Oil on panel - starts at $100

I have to admit, I just let them do their thing and when they get in a good spot I yell "freeze!" and paint them.

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

That's Not How Tea Works

Click Here to Bid - 6x8in. - Oil on panel - starts at $100

I've got more apple paintings, but I thought we could break for tea. It's been so long though, everyone forgot how to do it.

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Monday, November 27, 2023

Apples Toplit

Click Here to Bid - 6x6in. - Oil - starts at $100

Here is the second version of this composition, lit more from above. Really changes the mood, huh? (see the first version)

Sunday, November 26, 2023

Apples Backlit


Click Here to Bid - 6x6in. - Oil - starts at $100

I painted this scene twice, in different kinds of light (this is number one - tune in tomorrow for number two). For this one I pointed the light behind the bowl for a backlit effect. I love what happened to the color of the blue paper, and the subtle reflections on the bowl and fork.

Friday, November 24, 2023

Shiny Happy Apples


Click Here to Bid - 6x6in. - Oil - bid starts at $100

The other day someone wrote and asked me how I make things look glossy. I decided to share my answer:

I think there are two things to focus on to make things look glossy.

First is highlights. Whatever a highlight sits on needs to be darker than the highlight. This isn't to say you need to darken that bit more than what you see, just to make sure that value relationship is accurate. We have a tendency to look at the "light side" of an object and paint it lighter than it really is. Especially when it comes to white objects, because our brain thinks "white". But in order for the highlight to pop, it has to be lighter than that light side. Hopefully that makes sense.

Second is reflected light. This is the light that is reflected back onto the object from anything around it. The value of the reflected light is hard to get right. It is (almost) never as light as what it's reflecting from. But it's also usually a little lighter than the darkest part of the form shadow (the shadow ON the object). It can help to take a black and white picture of your scene to better see the value relationships. And to squint.

BTW, getting accurate value relationships is the THE biggest thing I help students with in my workshops. It is the KEY to creating realistic work.

Wednesday, November 22, 2023

Homeward Bound

Click Here to Bid - 6x6in. - Oil - starts at $100

I don't often use pink in my still life paintings, but it seemed to work here.

Tuesday, November 21, 2023

Hide and Seek Apples


Click Here to Bid - 5x7in. - Oil - starts at $100

For reflections like these, I use a large piece of glass under my setup. Depending on how I angle the light I get different kinds of reflections - sometimes more like a mirror and sometimes very subtle. It's really fun to play with, and quite a challenge to paint.

Sunday, November 19, 2023

Show Us the Way


Click Here to Bid - 6x6in. - Oil - starts at $100

One thing I think that happens the more you paint is - you become more and more sensitive to subtle differences, in color and value for example. Which I think is good and bad, haha. Obviously this helps with getting accurate color and value relationships, but can also be a bit crazy making, because you see SO MANY!! It can be overwhelming. If you're shooting for painting a poem rather than a dissertation, the challenge is then in editing down to just the important differences, or the ones you want to emphasize. And then of course deciding if there are any you want to change... Can you relate?

Friday, November 17, 2023

Reaching High


Click Here to Bid - 5x7in. - Oil - starts at $100

This is the same bowl and apples as in yesterday's painting, but with companions this time, and different light. Apples get lonely and bored easily. You probably didn't know that.

Thursday, November 16, 2023

The Applebowl

Click Here to Bid - 6x6in. - Oil. - starts at $100

I bought some apples because they are my go-to for when I am back to painting after a break. They are colorful and shiny - what can be better for still life?!

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

Convening on Blue


Click Here to Bid - 6x6in. - Oil. - starts at $100

White is fun to paint - a bunch of subtly different grays. I have a pretty big collection of white cups in all shapes a sizes, and am always on the lookout for a new one.

Tuesday, November 14, 2023

Orange You Green

 Click Here to Bid - 5x7in. - Oil. - starts at $100

Green and orange don't always get along, but when it works it's one of my favorite combos. 

Monday, November 13, 2023

Why So Blue?

Click Here to Bid - 5x7in. - Oil. - "Why So Blue?"

One thing I'm really focusing on with these latest still lifes is value relationships. Not that I haven't always, but doing the portraits made me realize how even tiny mistakes make a huge difference. So I've been slowing down and keeping my palette more organized in terms of value. And also setting up compositions that challenge me. This one might look simple - just two cups - but the hard light and reflections made it quite difficult. I really enjoyed it.

Sunday, November 12, 2023

The Green Square


Click Here to Bid - 6x6in. - Oil. - "The Green Square"

I have suddenly gotten the bug to paint still life again. It's been 7 months. I guess I needed it.

Saturday, November 04, 2023

Kailey Rose, Cam and Parker


NFS - 18x22in. - Oil. - "Kailey Rose, Cam and Parker"

The reference for this portrait was a challenge to acquire, as you might imagine with 3 kids this young. I picked two spots and shot about 10 million photos in 15 minutes - just held the button down. Then I gave them candy - always a hit. At home I combed through my haul and ended up combining a few photos to get one where they were all smiling and doing interesting things with their hands. The actual painting part went pretty smoothly, for some reason. I'm quite happy with it.

Wednesday, November 01, 2023


NFS - 24x18in. - oil. - "Emerson"

This is Emerson. We had so much fun wandering around her grandparent's neighborhood. Fortunately her beloved toy 4-wheeler couldn't go much faster than my normal walking speed, otherwise I would have been left in the dust.

I am finding it incredibly challenging to get good photos of these larger paintings. There always seems to be glare somewhere. But I will keep working on it.