Wednesday, June 03, 2020

Color Options

Click Here to Bid (6x6in. - oil on board - starts at $100)

And now back to oil. It's REALLY interesting going back and forth between oil and gouache. One big difference is the drying time. Because oil dries very slowly, one can really play around with edges of things, right on the surface (panel/canvas). But it's the quick drying time with gouache that I really like too - that colors go down and dry almost immediately, which prevents any mud from happening inadvertently. I find I have to be a lot more careful with oil - really planning out my strokes carefully. Whereas I have more freedom with gouache because it layers easily. That said, I am learning that there are limits with gouache too.

Tuesday, June 02, 2020

Blodgett Overlook

Click Here to Bid (3x4in. GOUACHE on illustration board)

For the last few days I've been kind of obsessively doing little gouache paintings. And I not only LOVE the process, I am loving the results. So I'm going to do a little experiment here and see if anyone is interested in buying them. I'll start the bidding at $25. This one is 3x4in. and painted on Crescent, hot press, 24-ply, illustration board. This picture to the right should give you an idea of the size.
Soon I will also post a list of my materials and some photos, for those who are interested. And I will also share a list of reasons that I've been accumulating about WHY I love gouache in particular. : )

This scene is from a hike we took last week when we were camping. It's near Hamilton, which is about an hour south of our new home, Missoula, MT.

Sunday, May 31, 2020

Movie Night 2

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I tried popcorn in lots of situations, but three abreast appealed most to me. Any more crowded and you couldn't really tell what they were. Not in paint anyway. And from above they didn't have the same drama.

Today I spent most of the day painting little guoache mini landscapes. This one to the right is an example. Most of them were 2x2 inches (TINY!). It was for a contest/challenge put on by Tiffanie Mang, who's been doing a whole series of these. I posted 5 on my Instagram, along with the references, in case you're interested. I was nervous about them, and so put it off until the absolute last day, but boy did it turn out to be fun!!

Saturday, May 30, 2020

Polka Corn

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I have this polka dotted glass cup that is way fun but so hard to paint. And so is popcorn for that matter. So, a rather deceptively simple one here.

Friday, May 29, 2020

Movie Night

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We took a little break to go camping the last few days. The thing I love the most about this, is that it's like a reset button. Whatever ruts I was getting into, with art or life - however bored I was getting with the routines at home - camping removes me completely from that world for a few days, and when I come back I'm brimming with ideas and enthusiasm. This time one idea was popcorn. Go figure.

We went for a few hikes while we were out. Even though I love the exercise and the smells and just being outside, I feel like primarily I am a hunter. The prize is finding the really lovely scenes. The ones that make you go, "oh wow!" Eventually I will go back out with plein air gear, but until then I'm just collecting pictures and memories. Here are a couple of gems from yesterday. I get more points the harder they were to get to. : )

Monday, May 25, 2020

Horses, Shade, Water

Click Here to Bid (6x12in. - starts at $100 - please click image to enlarge)

We've been doing a lot of exploring here in our new state of Montana. We love to hike so we're looking for that, plus potential spots to camp and for me to paint. On a recent explore we bumped into these guys. They were very friendly, and came right up to the fence to say hi. They even followed us along until we came to this little creek, and then took the opportunity to have a snack. So I snapped a million pictures (with my phone, which is all I had), and someday I WILL do a bigger version. Oh, and on that same day we saw a moose! I love this state!

Sunday, May 24, 2020

Shade in Mexico

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As I slowly process what I learned from the online tutorials I recently watched (by John Burton and Nathan Fowkes) I find myself wanting to pull out old reference material and look with fresh eyes for potential paintings. This one is from a trip to San Miguel (Mexico) I took with some buddies a couple of years ago. The "thing" to the right of the skirted lady is a big bunch of balloons and toys being held by a guy who (I'm guessing here) was trying to sell as many as possible to us tourists. But the thing that really grabbed me about this scene was the split between light and shadow. It was tricky to get all the value relationships just right, but I'm really happy with how it turned out.

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Stuck in Here

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I wasn't sure how I was going to paint the "gold" of this goldfish, but I'm quite happy with how it turned out. And before you ask, no, I didn't use any gold paint. : )

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Big Rig

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I have been happy to find MANY old trucks all around Missoula, and Montana in general. Unfortunately I often see them when I don't have my camera, or I'm on my way somewhere and can't stop. So I will just have to systematically comb the streets. Or something. Here's number one.

Monday, May 18, 2020

Cherry Camps

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More fun with cherries. For this one I used a warm light - as opposed to the cool light I lit the last 2 with. I always like to try my subjects out in different environments.

Sunday, May 17, 2020

Cherry Jubilee

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

The title of this is "Cherry Jubilee," not to be confused with cherrIES jubilee, the dessert. A jubilee is a special celebration of an event - an anniversary. The cherries are celebrating the time they won the cherry bowl. You should'a seen it. They killed.

Saturday, May 16, 2020

Cherries Three

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Cherries are in stores again, so I felt it was fitting to pull out my little copper pot again. I found it in a Laguna flea market several years ago on a lovely trip with some artist friends. Ah, good memories.

Friday, May 15, 2020

Visions in White

Click Here to Bid (6x8in. - starts at $100)

One thing that is different about my new studio is I have true north window light! Actually, I had it (more or less) in my last 2 studios, but there were so many trees, and SO many glum days in Eugene, that I always relied on an overhead to supplement. Here I have a lot of natural light (from that big Montana sky!), and I'm right up against 3 windows, so I almost never need extra. Which has been nice! I feel like I can really see what I'm doing.

BUT, because of the way I'm situated to make the most of the natural light on my easel and palette, a fair amount of that cooler (sky) light makes its way into my shadowbox as well. You can see that very clearly here with the front bits of blue on the garlic (as opposed to the warm light that hits them from above). I loved what it added here, but I don't always love it, so I'm trying to find a way to modify my setup. I'll figure it out - it's a process.` But if you look back at my recent still lifes you'll probably see this a bit here and there. I think it's why I've been pushing my setups to the back of my shadowbox more often than not - I say that because I'm SURE you've noticed and wondered! ; )

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Curious Garlic

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

And now ... drumroll please ... daily painting number 3000!!! I decided for this one to do something a little different - something I've been intending to do for a while - a still life lit only by candle (and whatever ambient room light there was). I really like it.

And, so you can see where I was 1000 paintings ago -->

Tuesday, May 12, 2020


Click Here to Bid (6x8in. - starts at $100)

Here is one last sunflower before my batch gets tossed. Sunflowers have several great qualities - they don't move or change very much AT ALL, even when you shine a bright light on them (unlike tulips other flowers I won't name). And they last a really long time. Thank you sunflowers.

Monday, May 11, 2020

The Stripes on Vacation

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This is what Mr. and Mrs. Stripe did on their vacation. They consulted maps and wore fanny packs. They were very organized and got to where they were going, on time. And always had chapstick when they needed it.

Sunday, May 10, 2020


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

And now for something completely different. This is a scene I borrowed from Pixabay (royalty free). I just love how we seem to be interrupting these two. Like they were having a meaningful conversation about the state of the ocean before we arrived. "What are we going to do about this pollution, Frank? It's just got to go."

Friday, May 08, 2020

Florence From a Bike

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Here's one from my trip to Florence last year. I've been sort of avoiding painting anything from that trip, only because I know they will soon run out of reference photos and then I will be bereft. This happens every year, but I will be especially sad, one, because that trip was especially awesome, and two, I won't be able to photograph more people scenes for a while yet, probably. Not until all this crazy-virus-ness is done. But aside from that, what do I miss the MOST? Hugs.

Thursday, May 07, 2020


Click Here to Bid (6x8in. - starts at $100)

I had to try this one twice before I was happy. So much for my confidence of yesterday! Sheesh. What do they say? Pride go-eth before ... something. I can't remember.

For some reason this inspired me to go through some old files, and I found this one ("Gather Around" 6x6in. - sold), in which I used a very similar little white vase. I lost the original vase in the fire, but I'm sure I was happy when I found the new one! I need to use it more often. And figs.