Sunday, November 7, 2010

Big Carriage Horse

This is the finished painting. I quit using the hard pastels and went to very soft ones to punch up the color. I had fun doing this one and let myself take 2 weeks to do it.

This big guy was in Canada when we visited this summer. There were lots of draft horses in the streets, and I can still smell their horsey smell when I look at this.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Next step

I am continuing to work up the areas with more color. This one has the main areas in proportion except the pupil of the eye. It isn't right at all. I also want more intensity of color on the left side to balance the greens on the upper right.

It helps to see it on the blog and get another view of how it is looking. The mane on the left needs to be punched up also. And a few more very dark values.

I have used multiple layers of fixative to be able to go back in and rework areas. I have probably 8 layers. Still needs work.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Gourd and Queen

This didn't work the way I had wanted. I like the butterfly tho.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

more darks

next step: more pastel

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Putting in some darks

I started putting in more darks. The angle of the photo is poor, but you can see the process.

Monday, September 27, 2010

a start

I have started this drawing of a carriage horse I saw in Quebec Canada. It took me awhile to get the proportions and the lines in place.
Then I have started putting in values with some color. This is a light sketching of pastel pencil on gray canson paper. I will need to put in my darker darks next. I am going to try a new fixative I got at the last IAPS convention to layer the darks.
to be continued

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Fairy butterflies with Pepper

These tiny butterflies are so cute. I wasn't thrilled with the pepper, but learned from doing it.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

peppers and cabbage butterfly

I did this one in an hour. It felt good and I liked the immediateness of it.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Questionmark and Pepper

I had a second butterfly in this one and it looked awful. I was ready to chuck the painting when a friend suggested taking out the second butterfly.

I have learned to use a rubber tipped tool to take off wet oil and employed it here. Simplifying the subject matter helped.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Grey Fox of the Desert

I saw this fox in Tucson AZ when we were there for the Gem Show this year.

We found a dead one by a stream out in the Natl. Park while hiking. He was small and looked like a young one. Then when we went to the Desert Museum Zoo I got some pictures of a much fatter one and did this portrait from those reference photos.

They just LOOK mischievous.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Chateau Frontenac, Quebec

This is where Bob and I stayed for a week in Quebec City. We had a great time goofing off, walking, and eating.

It was great to get out of the heat and not think about any obligations.
But we are home and it is time to think about painting again

Friday, August 20, 2010

White Cabbage sulfur

These cherries were so dark I had a challenge getting the red in highlights.

I think I could have used a warmer foreground. The painting is a little cool. Maybe it is the hot weather out that makes me yearn for cool paintings!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The finished painting:"Goeatweed Emporer"

The last step was to add the background color and highlights on the apples.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Block in objects for painting

This is the next step in the painting of this lovely Goatweed Emperor and green apples.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

First stage

This is the block in for a painting I did this week-end.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Background block

This is the carved block for the background of the print. The block will be inked with a gold water based relief ink. This is done first so that any overlap of the images will result in the black on top.

I started out using two different blocks, but now use one block with the bird on the "good" smooth side, and the background on the slightly textured side. This has saved on blocks piling up in my studio.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Block printing

This is the first block I carved for the print of a house wren. the negative spaces are taken out so that the ink just stays on the high parts.

Next I will show you the background block

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

"Pipvine on Trumpetvine"

This painting is about the light when it hit the little vase.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Dogface and Grapes

I love this one. Finally one I like. I knew it when I finished it an hour short of what it usually takes. It didn't overwork it.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


This butterfly was given to me by a friend who found him dead. It made me feed good to know I didn't have to kill a beautiful thing to paint it.

I enjoyed putting him with some new small tomatoes.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Buckeye and Greenies

I like the apples best in this one. I could have a better color choice for the background to make the little orange bars on the butterfly stand out more: bet you didn't even see them.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Morning Cloak and Apples

This is one of my favorite butterflies because of the rich brown of it's wings and the blue dots. I like the apple slices and the rhythm of shadows across the canvas.
I wanted to go in and change the shapes of the wings some, but decided to stop and not over work the painting, which is my biggest challenge.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

orange cloudless sulfur

I like this one. I am getting better at getting the perspective of the wings. The brush strokes help give the impression of movement.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

The Wipe

You may think there is something wrong with your computer. There isn't. This is the result of an afternoon of painting that did not go well. I was going to keep it just to see if I liked it better the next day, but I didn't, so I wiped it all off.

It has some ultramarine blue on it as a primer, but most of the painting came off. It had major difficulties with the color choices, and not worth trying to fix. Part of my job as an artist is to know when to throw in the towel. This was that time.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

cherries with yellow sulfur

I finally got one I liked. These cherries were actually darker in real life and tasted great. The cherries are in season and I will paint them for awhile.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Bee Letter

We have two bee hives in our big old oak tree out front. So we see lots of bees. They are very gentle and non threatening. We really like them.
Because they are so small, it was a challenge to get a print of one.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Apple and butterfly

I am starting painting again, and am not fond of this one. The butterfly needs to be more dominant. I need more practice.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Hummingbird Letter

I think this is the last of this series. These guys make me smile and that is a good note to end on.

Now it is time to paint.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Tufted Titmouse

I had done this is color some time ago and wanted to get it into the same format for a letter. I have really liked the writing each day.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Bluejay letter

This is a different format, a square with no gold foliage. I wanted to feeling of air instead of earth.

The perspective is a little askew on the writing because of the angle of the squared up better in reality. But I am satisfied with the wings, and that is really what this one is about. Flying

Friday, June 25, 2010

Cedar Waxwing letter

The Cedar Waxwings come through in numbers and eat off the blue berries of the waxleaf legustrom bush in my yard. Then they go poop all over my car. It is a great ritual!
I want to figure out how of make the berries show up. I'm going to work on the supporting branches for the color prints.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

House Finch letter

I have a pair of finches, maybe two in my backyard that visit my feeder daily. Their markings are so interesting and lend themselves to the print.
I have two more prints I am carving on and then I want to run a series with color and hand color areas. The main emphasis on these black , gray, and white ink prints is the bird and the writing.
I think they will have a totally different look with more colors and no writing.
I don't know why I am so drawn to prints right now, but the carving is very soothing.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Singing Wren letter

This little wren is singing it's little heart out. Wrens sing so loudly I can't believe all that sounds comes from such a little bird.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Chickadee letter

This print is another letter to my Dad. The writing is askew and I can get a better print of the bird. I'll do another with clearer borders.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Letters with a Wren

This is a blockprint with 2 colors and then a penned letter to my deceased Dad in white ink. I have been having a conversation with him in my mind as I work through the estate papers from he and my Mom. I decided to write out the one way conversation in a series of letters. So they will technically be mono-prints with mixed media.

Monday, June 14, 2010


This bobcat was in a Tucson Zoo that we visited last year. She was watching from up high on a ledge as the sun was starting to go down. I thought she was lovely.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Nectarines and Cloudless Sulfur

These butterflies are plentiful and luminescent. I have a set of them displayed in a shadow box my Mom made. The nectarines were alittle unripe, so they were perfect to leave out on my still life table for a day or two.
I think my shadows could have had a darker value.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Desert Cat Dreams

This is another dream written into the body of the bobcat. I used white ink on a block print on gray Canson paper. This is a large male bobcat I saw in Tucson.

Friday, May 28, 2010


I am trying a two color block print. This one is of a Titmouse I saw in my backyard. I was very interested in the pattern of his wings. I am waiting on more colors of ink to mix a more interesting background color. But this is my first proof of the design. I will do alittle more carving.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

grapes and little pitcher

This is my first daily study in a long time. I enjoyed the colors and the process. I am out of practice and ready to do more.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

"Baby Tiger" dream

Second in the series

"Bobcat" dream

I have been working with images from my dreams. This is a series of tigers and bobcats that are used as a support for the words of my dreams.

It is a medium that I have not worked with in a long time and I am really enjoying. It is very direct and precise.

Monday, March 15, 2010

two crabby

This is the other one.

two tiny apples

This is the last of the crab apples, I had to throw them out!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

pair of crab apples

These tiny apples were so cute I did several studies

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Motherless children


I recently visited the Tucson Desert Museum Zoo and found this lovely female Bobcat. I have a hard time with Zoos in general, as these are wild creatures and should be in their own habitat, but I took the opportunity to photograph her and admire her beauty while there.
I have been pulled toward painting wildlife, and hope to do more. Painting fur has it's own special challenge and I have been studying anatomy of large cats. I still like to do portraits best though.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Crabby Appleton

I really like this one. Crab apples are so interesting

Monday, March 1, 2010

Finally I have started painting again. I like my treatment of the cherry tomatoes, but an not crazy about the cup. Need more practice.