Thursday, June 30, 2011


Expect to see of old cars from me for awhile. I have lots of reference photos!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Good Old Gal

We spent a few days bicycling in eastern Washington. We had a great time, and the rolling hills, wheat fields, silos and big skies are gorgeous. Unfortunately, I took a bad spill in loose gravel and got a big laceration on my forearm requiring 9 stitches. The good news is it's not my painting arm. The other good news is that I came home with lots of photo references for old cars and trucks, farm buildings and skies.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Still Here

                                        No longer available

I've been dealing with computer programs and haven't been able to post for awhile. We ended up having to get the whole computer wiped out and programs reloaded- and there's still something wrong. Plus my old Photoshop wouldn't reload, so I've ordered a new version and in the meantime am using an unfamiliar free editing program. So here it is. This is my entry to the Daily Paintworks Challenge. I found that since the shapes in the scene were rather indistinct, the best way to distinguish them was to push the values.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

                                       In a gallery; e-mail me if interested
This 30x40 canvas was one I originally painted in 2004. It's quintessential Seattle! I always liked the composition, but it was not very well painted. I have learned a lot since2004, and so I used the original as an under painting and proceeded to paint over the whole thing. I strengthened the values and the edges on the tugboats, especially the smaller one, and kept the edges softer and the values closer together on the more distant buildings.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

You Can Call Me Rusty

This painting is 24x20, and I used a photo I took in Bisbee, AZ for reference. I ended up blending the sky with a round brush, as all the business of the brushstrokes was driving me nuts. The truck is so busy due to the rust; I thought that called for the rest of the painting to be more subtle.

I plan to make a few changes to the Poster Boy when the red paint gets a little dryer. I love the red, but I think it dominates too much and the shape is too boring. I think it would help both the composition and the narrative to add a few more posters. I'll try it, anyway and post the new version.

Thanks so much to those of you who commented. I didn't realize how much I value the feedback. I really really do!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Poster Boy

                                               7x5 $90
This was taken from a reference photo of a man posting a notice. Somewhere along the line I decided that he was a boy instead. I also updated my photo on yesterdays post. It's funny how you sometimes don't notice errors until you see the photograph. I realized I neglected to paint the bottom portion of the black cup on the top. Thus it sat at an improbable angle in the glass below, and the perspective looked wrong as well.

Do I still have blog readers???? Since I returned from vacation I haven't received hardly any comments. I miss getting feedback! I would love to hear what you respond to- positive and (constructively) critical.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Stacked with Lime

This is my entry for the Daily Paintworks challenge. It's challenging just to create one of these stacks; mine kept toppling before I finally got one that worked! I used the lime wedge to tie the greens together.

I've been painting madly. I have completed 3 pieces based on my Spain/Portugal trip and then another of an old truck I photographed in Bisbee, AZ. I also had a large painting that I completed about 5 years ago when I was a "worse" artist and didn't apply enough paint to make it interesting. I liked the composition though, so I used it as an under painting and applied tons more paint. well, maybe not tons. Kind of like people who apply "real" paint to their giclees? Anyway, I think it's a much better painting now.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Spheres and Stripes

             6x6 $90
I've only painted this teapot once before. It's an odd thing, likely handmade. The handle is really lumpy. It occurred to me that it might be interesting to tie in the stripes with objects of the same color.
I've been painting bigger the last couple days, using my Spain and Portugal photos as reference. My goal is to create about a 10-15 painting series and then find a show venue. I also have a request from a gallery for more  "truck and old car" paintings- and anything else that's not still life or figurative. She says that the things that are selling are "comfort paintings"- nostalgia and landscape sort of things. While I don't paint specifically to sell, I enjoy painting all kinds of things, and if they are likely to sell, so much the better. So I'll consider that subject matter in the next few days.
Here's a little tip for you, in case you hadn't thought of it already. I did a painting that I think may have the values too balanced- almost equal quantities of dark, medium and light. What I want is mostly one (in this case medium) some of another (dark) and a little of the last (light). In photoshop I converted it to black and white and then used the cutout filter to further simplify the shapes. Based on that, I decided to darken some of my lights so that they are clearly a middle value. I find this tool really useful in troubleshooting a painting.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011


                                     6x6 $90

Two boys by the fire; even as a girl I have memories of hours spent playing with a stick in the flames. This one may turn into a larger painting. My husband is leaving tomorrow for a one week trip, and that means lots of painting time for yours truly.

Monday, June 6, 2011

A Glassy Gift

                                  6x6  $90
I started with a cool color composition, and then decided it needed some "pop". This little red bowl never fails to thrill me with the impact it has on the surfaces surrounding it.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Springtime Gift

                                     6x6 $9o

This is my (first) submission to the Daily Paintworks Challenge. I couldn't decide whether to use the white or the green ribbon- so I did both. I tried to link the "lights"- the flowers, the table and the ribbon, and the "darks", the background and the shadow surfaces of the box. I did another one with a green ribbon- and colorful. Tune in tomorrow.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Green Door

                                      5x7 $90
This is a very loose interpretation of a landscape seen on or Camino walk. Needless to say, the field wasn't really striped in all those colors- it was plain green- but hey! That's what we get to do as painters. I was drawn to the green door and windows that related to the green in the field. I may try another version finding a way (I don't know yet just how...) to make the green field more interesting.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Beyond the Rooftops

                                       6x6 $90
I took lots of photos of rooftops and city views, and this is derived from a portion of one of those photos. For me, it captures the feeling of those old tile roofed buildings without getting too literal or sentimental. It will be interesting to see what happens when I try some of these on a larger format.I hope I'm not tempted to get too fussy.
I also replaced the photo below with a better one. The light wasn't good on the day I took the first photo. This is more true to the painting.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Outside the Cafe

I'm back!!! Today was my first painting day in over 2 months and it felt great! We were scheduled to return from Europe on May 25, but we changed our tickets to fly home early because our grandson was born early on May 21. We are pretty smitten with the little guy- Ryan Andrew Sandberg- and we have been trying to spend some time at least every other day with him and his parents. Then, of course, there's been the mail and other household stuff to attend to. Also, I told myself that i had to edit my photos and finish the Spain blog before i could begin painting. That took so much time!!!!! But it's done, and there is now a slide show of our trip as well as a blog completely outfitted with pictures. You can check it out at if you're so inclined. If you click on the link above the slide show you will get a better viewing version with music. 
So- about this lady. We had lunch at a seafood cafe in this old fishing village called Afurada- near Porto, Portugal. I took numerous photos of the outside of the building, primarily because there were guys frying fish there, but then this great old lady wandered by! I'm wary of photographing people without their permission, so I just proceeded to take more photos of the restaurant- and there she was-none the wiser. 
I painted 4 paintings today!!! I'm pretty sure I will end up doing a series of larger paintings based on my trip. There's something energizing about "re-living" the experiences by painting from them.