Wednesday, August 27, 2008


5 x 7"
Oil on gallery wrapped canvas
Please contact me thru for
purchase info

Again with the dots. I don't get it! I started this yesterday and there's a second coat on every surface and still with the dots. Oh well, still more to do on this one.

Mood's better. Re-entry is hard after a 4-day layoff. I found myself heading for the couch more often than not these past two days. Back to work.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


16 x 20
Oil on gallery profile canvas

Can you believe this face? Mush, I just wanna mush it and shower it with a million kisses. The photo provided by my client for this portrait was like receiving a gift. How can you go wrong with a setting, a pose and a face like this?

OK, So I Let It Go!

Sloth, that is. So much time, so little done. Four days of rest and relaxation. Sometimes ya just gotta chill, but now, it's time to get back to work! I have 3 dailies, 3 commissions and 4 gallery pieces going at once and with nothing near done I'm posting two previous commissions from two years ago today.

I really have no set style of painting pet portraits. The photo I'm given as reference for the portrait determines the style in which I paint it. Some photos aren't that great for reference, but they contain just enough visual information to tell me who that critter looking out at me really is. Some, like the one provided by the client for this 16 x 20" feline, are incredibly detailed. I'm happy with both as they present me with a new approach or challenge with each new commission. Admittedly, I got a tad carried away with detail here. I had to be restrained, as I believe I was about to start counting eyelashes. That drove himself insane. I can hear him now..."they already have a photograph honey, I believe it's a portrait they commissioned!" The point itself was well made, however as I recall, I didn't take it very well. But I think I've relaxed since I did this.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Embracing Sloth

Eckhart Tolle says if I decide to sit, unproductive in front of the computer, watching reruns of "Life" with Detective Charlie Crews and "In Plain Sight" with Mary Shannon while lovingly embracing a big honking bowl of popcorn (94% fat free with spray butter, didn't want to be too hedonistic) that I should embrace that. No thoughts of regret and no I "should be" or "shouldn't be's." Be in the moment, whatever is happening and boy was I. Now, who am I to argue with that?

Of course, to be honest, he didn't specify that particular activity—but I got the point. I throughly enjoyed myself. I have a painting going and jump up to work on it every now and then, but today, I am whole heartedly embracing sloth and to be frank, I'm not sure when I'll let it go.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


6 x 6"
Oil on gallery wrapped linen

They say that confession is good for the soul so, I admit it, I am guilty of being addicted to "So You Think You Can Dance!" There it is. What can I say? I like to think I'm above reality TV, but apparently I'm not. Plus, I nurse a long since abandoned, deep desire to have been a dancer, so this particular show is steeped in fodder for fantasy for me.

The winner of the show, Josh is simply amazing. The choreography is stunning and one particular number, done with the top female contestant, leaves me awash with goosepimps and tear stained cheeks every time I watch it. It's a breathtaking creation by Mia Michaels that starts with the two dancers standing side by side, taking tentative steps forward and back to the beat of the music. They're each dressed in black and the stage is bathed in a purpleish-blue light. Josh's face appears full frame and I almost gasp every time I see it. The planes on his incredible face just scream out for a canvas. So, I set up the digital on the tripod, paused the DVR and snapped him.

I want to go back when he's dry and do more work, but I'm pretty happy with the outcome. And now, I'm off to watch that incredible piece just one more time before himself erases it to make room for more mixed martial arts, which oddly enough, I also love.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


6 x 6"
Oil on gallery profile linen
Please contact me thru
for purchase info

Strange couple of days. It's funny when one's life takes a melodramatic turn how suddenly one thinks one doesn't have to paint. Ha! Surprise! And, in the end, it made everything all better.

This is the second in a series of the same sarong. There's a literary term for that isn't there? When most of the words in one sentence begin with the same letter? I'll ask himself. Anyway, the linen was a dream today. Guess it depends on my mood. These are fun to do and go quickly. I was fortunate enough to get another commission this morning so I need to work in my waiting list, the gallery portfolio and my dailies. Oh my, just look at me... I'm a professional!

Oops forgot to sign it. I actually finally have decided on a signature. I love it, it's primitive and cool and when I showed it to my husband, he heartily approved. He should. It was his! I guess that's where I saw it. Another oops! It's cool though, the tail on his "y" doesn't curve like mine, so we're good. How exciting is this?

Friday, August 15, 2008


In Progress

I really wanted to finish this one today. I started it yesterday after I finished the sarong. (Really? Could we perhaps call that yet another growth spurt?) But, rainy and icky, they'll be no baking in the sun today so, alas, this will have to worked on when it's dry. They're spice tins from Dean and Deluca, the resident chef's preference for some spices, not all. How cool are they? The cool vs warm shadows and highlights are so well defined, painting this is like a study in values. I think the linen would have faired best for this but I'm still hesitant to revisit those cups I'm doing on that stuff. I think a break is in order, I'll stick with canvas for a bit.

It's Friday, I think I'll quit early. Professionals do that sometimes. Really. A nice cup of tea, some music and perhaps a book till my bud gets home. Enjoy the weekend! Arrrgh! More thunderstorms.

Thursday, August 14, 2008


5 x 7"
Oil on gallery profile canvas
Please contact me thru for
purchase info

I found the most beautiful sarong the other day while cleaning out the closet. The fabric is billowy, light and the color of tropical water. I took a lot of shots of the material scrunched up, folded and just mushed. This is my first try at what I hope will be a series. I'm thinking these shots might work well as larger pieces. They seem so peaceful they almost whisper and they'd be so much fun to paint. Obviously the first try is ok, but I'll get better as I go along.

Another severe thunderboomer is on its way. Time to batten down the hatches, curl up and read a book.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


5 x 7"
Oil on gallery profile canvas
Please contact me for purchase info

Painting this was like walking in mud. Again the toned canvas wasn't dry enough and again I pushed paint around hoping it would work out. It didn't. On to the next one.

The day I went to the market to purchase veggies and fruit for still life, these radish leaves were perky and plush. But by the time I arrived home, unpacked the groceries, did my best June Cleaver imitation around the house and finally set up to shoot—the leaves had lost their happy. I still thought they looked cool, if not a little sad, so I decided to paint them anyway.

It's so beautiful outside, I keep wondering if I'm dreaming. No humidity, the most incredible blue sky and bright sun. Good thing too, my commissioned "Lily," posted yesterday, has to be shipped out tomorrow. I bought a hair dryer just in case. I like tight deadlines because I'm forced to produce, but the drying time is a little nerve racking. And now, I'm beginning to see the wisdom in varnishing—which should take place one year after the painting is completed! A conundrum to be sure.

Monday, August 11, 2008


24 x 24"
Oil on gallery profile canvas

Another commission as daily! Well almost. It took two days but at least I was working and since I was working, I'm posting this as my weekend.

My client asked for a more modern approach to this portrait and I am very grateful for that. The request led me away from my traditional realism toward a more posterized effect, which I really enjoyed doing! I'm not unhappy. Not at all.

Also, a strange thing happened while I was getting ready to start this Saturday. As I was setting up my palette I heavy sighed to myself and thought—"I hate this part, it..." and then I remembered that I could choose to be present and enjoy the moment, pay attention to each step, not some future moment that I'm anxious about. I've never had more fun setting up to work! I noticed everything about what I was doing, the texture of the paint, the reflected light from each colorful mound on the stark white paper, a car that drove by outside, a bird singing in the backyard. I didn't drop anything, there was no melodrama. Oh my, another growth spurt!

Thursday, August 7, 2008


6 x 6"
Oil on museum wrapped canvas
Please contact me thru for
purchase info

Love the canvas. Hate the dots. In the studio, this puppy looked rich, the black was solid and effective. Not so in the sunlight. I get no dots on linen but drying time is required. Drat! I'll give this a going over once it dries. But, I really enjoyed painting this one, it was so much fun and went really quickly. I found 2 shells and a really beautiful, billowy sarong when I cleaned out the closet yesterday. I'm thrilled with the shots I took. Digital cameras are a miracle as far as I'm concerned. The stove top, the shell, camera and a tripod. Voila!

It's beyond me how the human psyche works. Yesterday I was incapable of painting a goldenrod mug in shadow. Today a complicated shell top took 4 hours. Oh well, stop trying to figure it out, just keep painting, expect success and zip it!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008


4 x 4"
Oil on museum wrapped canvas
Please contact me thru
for purchase info

This one had to be a quickie, if you'll pardon the expression. Gotta keep that "energizer bunny cleaning tour" going. Had a gig in the master bedroom closet today. Need I say more?

Cotton duck canvas worked perfectly for this. My growing fascination with cracked eggshells continues. They're so beautiful and delicate. No yoke today, but soon, I love them as well.

Back to the closet.

Monday, August 4, 2008


5 x 5"
Oil on museum wrapped canvas
Please contact me thru for
purchase info

Let's hear it for the cotton duck! Perfect for a one day painting. And, I can still use my linen on board, just keep a rotation of them going is all, thanks to some mighty fine advice.

These guys are from a series of shots I took before the studio renovation. There is just something about jalapenos—they're mighty and cute at the same time. They're like dapper little gnomes with no feet and sombreros with handles. Such personality and so much fun to paint.

Generosity and Kindness

If one has been reading any of my thoughts, it's rather obvious that I lack some confidence and conviction, well a lot of confidence and conviction. I sent an email to an artist who's work and blog actually inspired me to begin daily paintings and posting. She is not only an incredibly gifted artist, but also an amazing writer and I so look forward to seeing her new works and reading her thoughts. I asked her in my email, if she were so inclined, to share a bit of her process with me. Her reply was yet another guidepost sorely needed on my journey to wholeness and unfettered creativity. I will be forever grateful and I am humbled by her generosity.

This incredibly generous artist shared her thoughts and process and in doing so woke me up to my rather frustrating practice of sabotaging myself and my work because I don't believe I deserve success and can't see the obvious answers right under my nose!
I get so into wringing my hands and fretting about not being able to do what I want that I don't spend any energy actually thinking about how I'm going to do what I want, and consequently, I become my very own self-fulling prophecy.

I just wanted to thank her for her generosity, kindness and endless inspiration.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

MUGSCAPE 2 In Progress

More proof. I started this two days ago. Oh well.

MUGSCAPE 1 Almost!

I am officially giving up on using the linen mounted boards for dailies. It's a love/hate thing. I hate them for a daily but love 'em for the long haul. All a part of on the job learning. This is close, but I still need areas to dry before I can really finish. A daily painting means just that, not one every three days, so it's back to canvas.

The Magenta Wall

This is the other snap. Some tea, perhaps some toast, it's Sunday, so I'll put on some classical tunes and get down to business. Again Mr. Pressfield, I keep The War of Art right next to my easel. I am a professional, full of doubt and fear and I am sitting down to work. Thank you.

The New Studio

I just walked into the studio and was so overwhelmed with the order, neatness and general peace of the place that I was moved to share. Or perhaps show off. Either way, I'm so proud of me for honoring my work space and finally realizing I deserve a neat, decorated, inspiring studio to work in, I just don't know what to do with myself.

The weather broke yesterday thanks to a non-severe thunderstorm (my favorite kind) and this morning is clear, bright and so much cooler. I've got the windows open and the dappled sunlight streaming in dances on the floor each time the wind blows the leaves. It's just perfect, I can't wait to start work. I guess when one changes ones outlook everything looks different. Um...Duh! Of course a little sweat equity doesn't hurt either.

The snaps pretty much explain themselves. I took lots, but won't bore you with them all. The easel shot shows the Mugscape I hope to finish today and the other really shows off the magenta wall paint and the two farmhouse kitchen tables that became fashionably obsolete a few years back and now serve as desks for computers, printer and scanner. The hubs and I used to work together as graphic designers and he still works from home on weekends when necessary. Oh, a car alarm just went off and broke the spell of this beautiful morning! I refuse to close the window, the breeze is just too friendly. It just stopped. Time to work.

I will post at least one Mugscape today, but hopefully both.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

MUGSCAPE 1 Still Going

I'm actually beginning to enjoy working on the linen on board surface, but wet on wet isn't ever going to be possible, unfortunately, which might eliminate using them for dailies. While the surface is perfect for the bright work, it's impossible unless it's somewhat dry and it's a dull rainy day so there'll be no help from the sun.

I could begin working on other pieces, pick up on some larger canvases or organize my schedule, but the hubs is home, he's makin' chili with Patron, there's music planned for later, and he just made those cute puppy eyes, so, looks like it's a wrap for me today. What a drag, time to stop working and play. Oh well, if I must. Although, I must admit, it's really hard to leave the studio now that it's the only room in the house that's newly painted, decorated and cozy. Hopefully I'll post both Mugscapes tomorrow.

Friday, August 1, 2008

MUGSCAPE 1 In Progress

My second day in my new studio felt as good as my first. The new car smell is still here, or in this case new carpet tile smell. I used the ones you can use in your garage and got an extra box for those messier times. It's perfect. I'm thrilled.

I worked on the linen on board surface today. Found it a tad easier to manipulate the paint, although, even a bit of a bake in the sun wasn't enough to allow me to finish today, so I began Mugscape 2. Hopefully I'll be able to post both completed dailies tomorrow.

It's Friday. Nuff said. Enjoy.