Monday, November 29, 2010


oil on canvas

This is a commission that I was fortunate to get as a result of the fare last month!  I don't usually do this kind of portrait and felt it would be a real challenge. Happily the client was happy and so, of course, that means I was too.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


6x8" oil on canvas

Thought a Thanksgivingey painting would be appropriate for the occasion.

Strange times these. In spite of it all, I hope there is indeed a lot for us all to be thankful for this year. I remember, on New Year's Day, saying to myself...I'm gonna make this year go slow. Ha! In Little Suz time, it's still spring. Time is going faster, I can feel it, there's just no way I can prove it. How did we get here so fast?

Anyway. We're here. I'm dealing. Let's move on. These are a few of my major "thankfuls" this year:

Despite family clashes, misunderstandings and disagreements, I'm thankful that I've finally realized I don't have the slightest idea about what's best for anyone...including and most importantly myself.

I'm thankful that more and more I'm giving up my need to try and control things—an illusion at best, complete delusion at worst—and leaving it all to the Universe...or Yoda...or the Force.

I'm thankful for finally realizing that I don't really know anything. 

I'm thankful that enjoying my life, my family and my work is a choice I must make and has nothing to do with them or it following my directions, ideas or wishes.

I'm thankful that I've realized it really isn't all about moi. I tend to forget that...a lot.

I'm thankful that people have liked my work enough to bring it into their homes...or better yet... thank you so much for buyin' my stuff!

I'm thankful for the many people that read my blog and follow my work. I appreciate it more than I can ever say.

And finally, himself, the boys, our home, our time together.... the very definition of Thanksgiving.

Have a wonderful day and many many thanks.

Monday, November 15, 2010


The Weeper
5x7" oil on canvas
30 minute study

Thirty-minute study! You've just begun reading and I have already called your attention to the fact that the above painting is the result of this month's challenge, a 30-minute study! —three four times!

I can always tell when a challenge is one I need. I'm uncomfortable. Posting this painting in this state—for me— is like having that dream... where you wake up, in various states of undress, in places that, to you, would be the most mortifying, clutching and barely covering our naughty bits! I feel exposed. I feel unfinished.

I love spontaneous, brave paintings. By other artists. Alas, I don't think myself capable of doing them or I do and I don't think I deserve to, or whatever silly excuse I've come up with in the recent past to keep me from even trying to complete a painting in an allotted time...let alone in 30 minutes. Thank you Robin. Good one. Ouch!

It was all I could do to keep my grubby, paint splashed digits to myself when the buzzer sounded the cruel reality that 30 minutes had, indeed passed. In my slightly unattractive but somewhat usual slant toward grandiosity, I felt The Next Iron Chef contestant's pain. This cannot accurately represent my skills! I can't post this!

Histrionics aside, I'm kidding...I think. Obviously, I should do this more often. The results are pleasing and clearly an indication that, despite multiple protestations to the contrary, I would most likely have no trouble posting a daily painting and continuing on with larger pieces in one day. I am so busted!

Please enjoy the challenge group's 30 minute studies...

“Glance Back” 
Oil on canvas board 12”x9” 
©2010 Diana Moses Botkin

“Red Flag”
oil on masonite, 8x10”
©2010 Sharman Owings

“The Critique”
30 minute study
9x12” oil on linen
© 2010 Robin Cheers

"Last Light”
Oil on board, 5x6”
©Aaron Cordell Johnson

 “Thea’s Rock 10-10-2010”
13x13” pastel on clear primed linen canvas
©2010 Vicki Ross

Friday, November 5, 2010


oil on canvas

This is Samson and Delilah. I painted this as a gift for our friend Val who puppy sat for Blu and Raz while we went bi-coastal. Delilah, the cutie on the right, is Raz's sister and Blu's half sister...same dad, different moms. We picked them up from the breeder at the same time.

Despite my constant whining when they were pups, I really do think of my babies as just that, my babies. I'd also like to think of myself as the kind of person who hasn't substituted pets for children, but admittedly, I have been perusing catalogs for winter coats and sweaters for the little tykes. Anyway, leaving them with Val gave us both complete peace of mind while we were away, until our second day in when I became uncomfortable with my pervasive calmness in LA and decided we couldn't reach Val by phone or computer because Blu had somehow gotten out of the yard and she was out searching for him. Tim very lovingly talked me off the ledge and I quieted down until Val returned our call to report that everything was, of course, fine. Guess I was having too much fun and had to run to the familiar shelter of terrorizing myself with my thoughts...a favorite pastime of mine.

Anyway, this is just about finished. I like my work better in real life, the photos seem to be too hot. Tim suggested I change some settings on the camera that would allow the transition of colors to appear softer. We'll see.

Enjoy the weekend and thanks so much for stopping by.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


18x24" pastel on canson paper

I did this painting years ago when I worked exclusively in pastels. It's been missing since I sent it into the Pastel Society for acceptance. I was subsequently accepted and was thrilled, but I never made it back to pick this up, even after repeated notices from the folks there. I paid dues once and then just forgot about it. Strange. Why wouldn't I want to retrieve this and continue being a member of that illustrious group? I just kept blowing it off until finally it was years later and I thought it was too late to give it a second thought. I have no explanation for this behavior, then or now.

I'd like to think someone liked it enough not to throw it away or hide it in a dark, dusty closet. I certainly showed it no respect, but admittedly, I wish I hadn't been so careless with it.

Oh well. I've got four portraits to do, three pet certificates to paint, two logos to design and I'm still California dreamin. Heavy sigh. Couldn't wait to get home and now the sight of a palm tree on tv makes me swoon. It is my contention that human beings are the strangest species on the face of the planet. Most of the time what we do and say makes absolutely no sense whatsoever.