Thursday, December 29, 2011

Another Autumn Painting

"Autumn Mood Heron Lake", 9 x 12, Pastel on La Carte paper.

I know winter is here but without rain since I don't know when and sunny days some in the 60's, it doesn't feel like winter, in fact it still looks much like autumn. I'm still going strong painting autumn scenes. I'm loving the colors this year. This is my latest painting. I used those little make up brushes and rubbed pastel my fingertips to add the highlighted colors as the icing on the cake. This painting is loaded with my DNA.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Colorful Autumn at Heron Lake

"Heron Lake Autumn", 20 x 30, Pastel on Mi-Tientes Touch Board.

This is my first painting on the Mi-Tientes Touch Board.I'm very pleased to say that this paper has a pleasurable feel to it. It works with the pastels and it makes this artist feel gooood painting on it. This is a smoother lighter sanded paper then I'm use to. It's not as gritty as most. The pastels seem to glide on the surface with good adherence.

On another note,  I want to let you that as of this post, I will be part of the website "Before It's News" . Check it out.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

In The Mood

"Moody Afternoon At Heron Lake", 10  x 14 on Mi-Tientes Touch paper.

My Mom used to keep a couple of Hershey bars in the refrigerator for when she or anyone got in the mood for chocolate. I was a thick giant bar that you could break off sections of and much away ...hmmmm yummmm. It hit the spot. Other things that I do like wake up with a mind for letting it all hang out so to speak. In other words a no make up and sweats day just because I'm in the mood. Not a bad thing just an in the mood thing free and easy as it comes. Or how about being in the mood for watching a scary flick. One comes to mind that I recently saw with the word phenomenon or something like that in the title that is really a tense film to watch. Now I have an itch I can't satisfy because I can't remember the title. Can anyone name the title? It's about a family that has a scary event happen at their house and installs cameras that the viewer sees throughout the picture. What happens is really gripping. Anyway, why am I writing about being in the mood. I guess its because there are things that we all need to do from time to time to satisfy us. This painting was very satisfying to create having just taken a walk around Heron Lake in the late afternoon as the fog was rolling in. I couldn't shoot enough photos. It was soooo beautiful. I think I'm in the mood to do another one.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Counting to 100

"Morning Light Play II", 12 x 16, pastel on Canson Mi-Tientes paper

My latest painting is one in a series I have been adding to from time to time. It's about paintings with "light" in the title. It's the light that always grabs me. Soft, bright, morning, night ( I'm not fond of midday light). I love the light coming off the water, on trails, light showing tree shadows, light on grasses, on hair (animal or human), on flowers. You name it .... what's your favorite light. Here are some photos I have taken of light play at my beloved Heron Pond.

By the way, I would just love to see who the 100th follower will be on my blog. In appreciation and gratitude to all the people who have been so kind and supportive of my work and my blog I am going to send a little present to that person provided she or he is living within the continental United States. If the 100th follower is not within the continental U.S., then the first person after living in the continental U. S. will get it.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Pastels on Linen What's This?

"Spring Morning Walk"

"It Started With Green" (currently showing at Timberline Gallery in Oakhurst, CA)

"Sienna's Path"

"Pond Currents" (featured in The Past Journal)

"Winter Showoff" (available)

I thought I would feature some pastel paintings done on linen mat board. These are some of my past paintings all but two hanging happily on collector's walls. I looked up in  my current inventory for more but found none. Hmmmm. I think it's time to get more linen mat board.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Autumn Color Infusion

Autumn Chic at Heron Lake, 8 x 10, pastel on pastelbord

My easel time lately has been shortened lately because of home repairs, holidays, travel and class starting up once again. My walks around Heron Lake have shortened along with easel time but I still manage to walk around the lake a couple days a week. I couldn't help but get inspired by this year's display of autumn fireworks. Explosions were going off in my head with each turn of the path revealing yet another breathtaking scene.

I love the fresh crisp and brisk air and a carpet of leaves neath my feet. I love my studio facelift. The color is called tea green. Hope you like it.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Face Lift and An Uplift - New Beginnings

All artists need changes. We can become stagnant, stuck in a place we need to get out of. I'm out of my comfort zone now as the new paint goes on in my studio. I'm really nervous and excited much like starting a new painting. I can feel the juices flowing but can I capture on canvas what I feel inside? I must listen to the positive voice of my muse that tells me I that I can do this and do it beautifully. I have to be true to me and listen to my instinct while muting out the other negative voices that like to chime in as a chorus from time to time. Am I talking about painting my studio or starting a new painting? Once the painting is finished and I have the newly painted bare walls staring at me isn't it like looking a blank canvas? 

"It Started With Green" 16 x 20 pastel on linen mat board

"It Started With Pink", 9 x 12, pastel on sanded paper

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Reconnecting With Home and Easel

Zion National Park

Recently my husband and I returned from a ten day vacation road trip to Zion National Park. I vaguely remembered the place from when we took our children there some 40 years ago. It was beautiful and inspiring. I was not a professional artist at the time. I noticed that I was seeing it now with a different pair of eyes, the artist's eyes. I was awestruck with the colors , light, shapes and patterns. I was consumed with its beauty and while still fresh in my mind, I wanted to start a large format painting which I did . It seems to me that the older I get, the harder it gets adjusting back to home life routine after being away and I came down with a bladder infection to boot, but nevertheless I did start the work.  I'm looking forward to its completion. Doesn't look like much now. Here it is.

Zion, Work in Progress

The support for this painting is a BFK Reeves white paper. I applied Golden Acrylic Ground for Pastels which I tinted with orange acrylic paint. At this stage (first layer) I'm applying mostly Dick Blick pastels. Here is the reference photo for the scene.

It's good and comforting to be home again. I'm enjoying the beauty of where I live and it feels good to reconnect with the easel and home.

Friday, October 7, 2011

The Smells of Nature and A Piece of Sand Paper.

"Summer Morning Tahoe Basin", 12 x 16, Pastel on Canson Paper

I love the wilderness. I love lands unencumbered by man made structures. I get a feeling of connectedness to my spirit within. I am at peace, I am joyful, I am exhilarated.  I love being there, the smells, the sounds of nature abound. I am at home. 
I try to paint these feelings into work ( if you call it work). In the creative process of this painting it came to me to try a technique I enjoy doing from time to time. In this case I took a small piece of sand paper and selected a pastel of a color I wanted to gently integrate into part of the painting. I stroked the pastel stick on the sand paper to get the loose fragments. Then I laid the painting on a table, took a watercolor brush and the sand paper and gently brushed these fragments onto the painting.

In this case I chose a warm peach/pink pastel to integrate into the piece. To fix it in place so the fragments wouldn't fall off when I lifted the painting, I very gently sprayed the fixative down onto it holding the spray can about a foot above it. I allowed it to dry for some minutes before putting the work back on the easel to continue on with the painting.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Wild Lands Wild Painting

"Chamisa Essence", 18 x 24, Pastel on Pastelbord

Our wild lands are free, unabashed, driven by nature. I always feel it bit intrusive when I'm in them, feel like treading where I shouldn't be but feel blessed and touched by a spiritual wand while I'm there. Wild lands have always appealed to me. When I'm there it's like going to my spiritual home. I try to capture the beauty I see there and how I feel when I express myself through my art. This painting was inspired by a scene from the Lake Tahoe Conservancy Land.

 Sierra Art Trails ttp:// announced that they will have a national exhibition in November called "Our Wild Lands". I hope I get accepted. This is one of two paintings I'm entering for the show.  

Monday, September 12, 2011

The Praying Mantis and Me

I had a spiritual connection with a praying mantis a couple of weeks ago. I was at our rec center pool where my husband and I go to water aerobics class. I put my towel down on a table and noticed a white/straw colored (maybe she was albino) praying mantis sitting at the edge of the table looking, staring deeply at me. She looked right into my eyes. I felt an instant communication between the two of us. What was being communicated I did not know, but I know some exchange had taken place between us. At the end of class, I went to shower off and when I walked out of the shower/bathroom I felt my head itching. I reached up to scratch when whoooops....out jumped the mantis. She landed on the cement deck then hopped away. Very strange I thought. I went up to a very wonderful and spiritual artist friend who is also in the class. I told her of my experience with the mantis. She explained that the mantis seeing my hair color as the same as her eggs( I don't have green hair, the mantis pictured here is not the one I had the encounter with) thought it to be a good place to which to plant her eggs and that it is to be taken as a good sign for she entrusted in me the  care of her precious creations and contribution to life. It is said that when one looks into the eyes of a praying mantis one feels the presence of god and this is exactly what I felt. Needless to say, she did not leave her eggs in my hair but I felt as if I had been touched by a higher essence. I felt blessed. Just remembering the incident sends chills of a good kind through me. OK so are words necessary for spiritual or divine connectivity? Does instinct that goes against all logical reason have a purpose? Does our creativity have to follow accepted/approved guide lines? What are your thoughts on this please.... ?  

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Feelings, Memories and Emotion in The Painting

"Chamisa on High", 12 x 16, Pastel on Canson Mi-Tientes paper.

Recently, we had a family reunion in Lake Tahoe, California with our children and grand children to celebrate my husband's 75th birthday. During my time there I drank in the beauty and joy from being in such a beautiful place with my beautiful family. I brought these feelings home with me plus around 200 photos to spark my memory for I knew then I would paint a series of works focused on this place and time. I incorporated my feelings not only of the beauty of the land but also the joy of being with my family into these paintings. When I look at the completed ones now, I feel an over whelming sense of peace and serenity.  Stay tuned for the second in the series. 

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Breaking Away From Solitary Confinement

"Elation", 8 x 10, Pastel on Pastelbord

Last night I attended  a Flash Mob Artist event in Oakhurst, California about 25 miles from where I live. This was the  first Flash Mob event in Oakhurst put on by a few of my dear artist friends Joyce Wycoff, Vivian Helena Amond-capone, Julie Mitchell and Kathleen Mattox who, I thought, did a fantastic job. It felt so good to be among other artists and town folk who came out to have fun, create, get caught up with people, meet new people and simply enjoy the evening and.... even a few sales were made at Timberline Gallery to boot. As a solitary studio artist, I find I get into my own head too much too often. When this happens, my creativity gets stifled. Last nights outing was just what the art doctor ordered. Oh, about the painting. I started it last night at the event. I finished it this morning. How's that for getting my juices flowing again?

Saturday, August 13, 2011

What is The Perfect Time to Paint?

Morning Light Play
12 x 16,
Pastel on Paper from Canson's new Earth Tones Art Pad

I am captivated by light especially early morning and early eventing light. I love the way the it plays in and out of shadows. Its tantalizing qualities captivate me. For me, this is what inspiration is all about. So I painted this work because I loved the light. But not right away after taking the photo.This is a scene from one of my early morning walks around Heron Lake last spring. The time was not ripe for me to paint until now. Why, I do not know exactly but upon return from a trip to Lake Tahoe a little over a week ago, I knew it was the right time. I was ready to embrace it and paint it with gusto. Is there a right time to paint a particular painting? Is there a wrong time? What's your opinion?

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Building and Tearing Down Three Times on The Same Canvas.

"Day Hike in Pneumonia Gulch"
19 x 28
Pastel on Canson Mi-Tientes Board

There is a story behind this painting. First off, I lied when I made the following statement near the end of my post on April 20, 2011 which was about a painting in progress. I said "I will continue on my next post". I didn't do that until now. Referring to that post, you will see quite a different painting going on. You will see where I left off. So, what happened between now and then... life... traveling, death of a close friend so when things settled down and I went back to the painting, I found that I lost interest, I wasn't happy with it anymore, I didn't like where it was going so I started the mutation process into quite another painting

This is where I left off.

This is my second vision inspired by an interesting place at the edge of Heron Pond. Working on and off for the next couple of weeks, I found myself wanting to change direction again but could I do this a third time on the support I was using. I challenged myself to do this but this time letting myself go into a black hole with only my intuition to guide me. It  was  a scary place to be but I pursued none the less. The support held up which pleased me as this was on a sanded paper. Being self guided had its frustrations and pit falls, but I liked where it was going and stuck to it. So, once again I show you the third and final painting.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Another Journey

Another Journey

"Sun Washed II"
19 x 25
Pastel on BFK Reeves Paper

You know how sometimes your looking for a nice Sunday afternoon ride (not so much anymore with gas prices what they are) but you want to see some beautiful landscapes with beautiful colors and you want to feel your cares dissipating as you venture further and further on down the road. Somewhere into the trip you find yourself on a dead end road (you forgot your new generation phone and your car didn't come with navigation included). Nerts, oh well, you turn around and trace you course back to where you turned off the main road. OK now so you're back on track. Think I need to stop this analogy here, it's getting too wordy hope you get the idea. So what does this have to do painting? EVERYTHING!!! It is rare for me that any painting goes as if it paints itself. My paintings are stained with my sweat and tears and I'm sure my fingerprints are being worn off by the pastels ( I don't paint with gloves). I like the tactile feel of the medium and I express myself better without covering my hands. This painting started off with a support paper I had never used before but having seen some impressive results using pastels, I decided to try it. I started by laying it flat on a table and spraying with water here and there. Next, I applied some Black Sumi Ink using an ink brush. Then sprayed more water on it and moved the paper around enjoying the effects of the ink doing its dance. After it dried, I started painting with pastels creating pleasing shapes, patterns, colors, whatever my intuition told me to do. I did not have a focus or end result in mind. My goal at this point was to stay in the here and now and enjoy myself planting in colors and shapes putting in the first layer covering the paper. Now what? So now I'm ready for something to emerge that would tell some sort of a story. Frustration is setting in now along with negative feelings. I know it is time to find an objective, time to tell a story. I'm lost, nothing is coming to me but I paint anyway. I know I need to stop and look around for ideas. I need direction and a plan so I start looking at some favorite books from my art library for ideas and inspirations. I tried several ideas that came to me which brought me a little closer to my journey's end but still no winning ticket. I closed the books and went back to the painting  refocusing and trying new out new directions once again. As I'm painting, now I'm looking for a story to emerge with would lead me to the final stages of the painting. I looked at the painting from every angle. I had worked on this piece for several days by now and I went to bed on yet another day without completion. That was yesterday. Today I work up refreshed and ready to go once again. It's amazing how a night's sleep can do wonders. I think I process paintings in my sleep and I'm not sure how this works, but after four more somewhat frustrating  hours of work on it today.....I AM DONE!  I knew I had come to closure because that feeling of completeness and serenity came over me. I felt good about the piece and I was glad that I stuck with it through the hard times.  I' done with this piece for now (maybe down the way I may do a tweet or two on it) but I have reached closure once again and I have a smile on my face.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

On With Painting

"View from Linda's Patio"
18 x 24
Pastel on Pastelbord

If you read my last post you know of the grieving process I had been going through since the death of my dear friend Linda. I found that I had to put closure to the phase I was in before I could continue to paint. I am so happy and please to announce that closure came and I am once again painting. So this painting I just finished is in memory of my dear friend Linda. Linda's house about a mile from mine sits on a hill slope. In the back of her home is a steep down slope to where a beautiful creek flows when the rains come, the slope going up on the other side combined with the far view offers a lovely landscape scene. One could sit on her patio for a good length of time absorbed in the view ( I know Linda did). There are homes and roads in the scene which I left out. I used a lot of artistic license and embellishment in the creation of this painting rearranging the far off mountains as I saw fit. Nevertheless, I believe Linda would have like this painting. I know I loved creating it.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011


Random Frieze with Dahlias
10 x 26
Pastel on Canson Mi-Tientes Paper

A dear friend of mine (who was recently widowed) passed away over a month ago following open heart surgery. I went over to visit and bring her some groceries. When I arrived at her house I found her in her favorite lounge chair having passed away. My griefing process has been a difficult one. I shall miss her forever as we were close good friends who confided in each other a lot. Last Saturday a close knit group of friends of hers had a get together to celebrate her in a way she would have liked,  having dinner and enjoying each other's company. We dressed up in her honor as she loved to dress up. It was a beautiful evening. I felt much love and belonging being with these wonderful ladies who are also dear friends. I believe our friend who passed was there in spirit and that she too loved this time we spend together that evening. After getting home and through the days that followed, I felt a big lifting of my grieving and a sense of joy and peace for the first time since her passing. Needless to say, a lot of things went to the wayside during my time of grieving including any urge to create. I believe I needed  to be still and allow myself to grieve which I did. A couple of days after our get together, I wanted to paint again. I started a new painting but found myself being drawn to a work that had been sitting around since last winter. An incredible desire to finish it came over me. I finished it and realized that I put closure to it, and that  was because I had put closure to this phase of my grieving process. I am at peace.

Monday, June 6, 2011

A Painting and It's Process

"Going In"
9 s 12
Pastel on Sabertooth Pastel Paper

Still coming out of a stagnation period but so glad to see this work come to completion.
I wanted to paint something peaceful and soothing with an non objective beginning that was all I knew when I started this this piece. I started by focusing on shapes and colors. As the painting progressed, I indulged myself by using water color pencils (dry or dipped in water), pastel pencils, Prismacolor pencils and regular pencils alternation with the pastel. I used the pencils to add curved lines and draw shapes where ever my instinct prompted me to go. Next I thumbed through a creative painting book for more inspiration which resulted in my adding a waterway to draw the eye in. From this point on I adjusted and tweeted here and there until I felt at peace with this work.  

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Repeat Performances

"Fecilia's Blue Meadow"
16 x 20
Pastel on Suede Mat Board

Please bear with me while I come out of my current stagnation.  I'm beginning to feel the inspiration and motivation come back so hopefully it won't be long until I will be posting new paintings. In the meantime I've brought back some works previously shown on my blog. Those of you who are new will be seeing them for the first time and those just checking in may have missed them in the past. Hope you enjoy this little showing of mine.

8 x 10
Pastel on Canson Mi-Teintes Paper

"Into My Gourds"
8.5 x 11.5
Pastel on Pastelbord

"It Started with Pink"
9 x 12
Pastel on Sanded Paper

"It started with Green"
16 x 20
Pastel on Linen Mat Board

"Dance of The Koi"
18 x 24
Pastel on Canson Paper

Friday, May 6, 2011

A Bit of Braggin

I'm thrilled .....Shown: Earth Tones Pad

Gray Tones Pad

Up to now it's been hard to keep this under my hat but now it's ok to let the news out. Canson Mi-Teintes has come up with two new pastel pads one in earth tones and one in  gray tones. They come in sizes 12" x 16"  and 9" x 12".  I'm so excited to have my artwork on these products. This is a benchmark acheivement in my career. I have used most if not all of the colors in the gray pad throughout my career. So I was very pleased with the selection of colors. I've used some of the earth tone colors before. Now I can't wait to try the rest of them. By the way, the artwork on these covers were done on one of the colors in each pad.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Work in Progress Using Pastel and Other Media

 Work in Progess- stage 1

I've done very litle basic sketching using a grey pastel stick attached to a water color brush to extend my distance from the painting. I use minimal lines to set the composition. Next I fill in the darkest areas using the broad side of the pastel stick. I use an assortment of the fatter rectangle and round shaped pastels. On this painting I'm useing mostly Terry Ludwig, Sennelier, Richeston and Unison pastels.

Stage 2
I continue filling in the canvas which is sanded pastel board.
Stage 3
More filling in.

Stage 4 - Introducing Other Media

Once the canvas is covered, I start playing by introducing liquid mediums (water and hairspray) painting before they dry. Next I added pastel,watercolor and lead prismacolor pencils. I don't know what I'll do next. I will continue in my next post. 

Just recently  my husband and I got back from a  very nice trip to San Francisco. I love the pastel buildings.  
View From the De Young Museum

Two of my favorite paintings at the De Young Museum 
'Tulip Culture'
George Hitchcock (1850 - 1913)
Oil on Canvas

''Spring Winds' 
Joseph Raphael (1859-1860)
Oil on Canvas

Farmer's market along the path to city hall.