Personal Art Blog

Sharing the lessons I teach at the Artist Guild and the personal discoveries in my art.

Saturday, February 20, 2021

Gray Day At The Pond


Gray Day At The Pond
8”x8” oil on stretched canvas.  $200. SOLD

Artist Note.

Can anyone tell me why some water lilies 
have long stems and others do not?
Is it anything to do with how deep the water is?
Curious mind wants to know.

It was a misty morning when I first painted
this spot (in watercolor) 
and I remember thinking,
how bright a gray sky
 could be without the sun.

I was looking through some of 
my old watercolor sketchbooks
when I came across this view
and it stirred up some spark to paint it.
Nice when that happens

Poor Texas... 
I have really felt for her.

Some lovely friends live there.
The stories they have told are unbelievable.
Sending many prayers.
Besides donations, how can a person help?

Sunday, January 31, 2021

My Violets

My Violets 
6"X6" oil on raymar panel  $125.
Purchase SOLD

Artist Note
Thank heavens for the  
beautiful African Violet
which will bloom all year long,
providing a lovely touch of color.
I remember when I first 
started owning violets being told,
  they were just like children-
 the same care didn’t mean 
they would behave the same way.
So true!
I have had a bad cold...a regular winter cold.
Remember the days when you had a cold 
and you could just hunker down with
drinks and cosy blankets?...not anymore. 

I was scared out of my mind it was covid
so I was masked 24 hours a day...
and lugged my studio air purifier in my arms
everywhere in this small apartment 
so hubby would be protected. 

Major anxiety ruled the day.  

The first covid test
took two days 
before I was told it was
"damaged in transit" 
...and as my oxygen 
was in the 80's, and I felt major fatigue,
I hauled myself 
(and my hubby this time) off for another test, 
waiting another two days to find out 
the glorious news- both of us were negative.
It was a load lifted. Happy dance!

I had reasons for concern due to living where 
our next door neighbors 
had just been in quarantine for having covid
and quite a few living here having had it.
We get the first vaccine on Friday
and the anxiety will 
disappear a week after the second one.

Maybe my painting time will pick back up?
One can only hope.

Stay safe, my good friends!

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Morning Glories


Morning Glories 

8”x6” oil on Raymar panel. $150. SOLD

Artist Note

I started this one plein air in my friend’s yard.
(It was when I painted the pomegranates.) 

They were a beautiful 
purple color 
but as I didn’t take any photos 
I had to resort to some old pics
from a few years ago. 

Georgia O’keefe painted several paintings 
of morning glories and had one where she 
positioned this delicate flower
next to a large Ram’s skull! 
I have never forgotten the painting. 
Such an unexpected pairing. 

Any comments?

 I could not find a secure link
for you to visit 
Rams Scull and Morning Glory
But if you have nothing to do you may want 
to look it up and 
find out the interesting symbolism. 

Stay safe please. 


Thursday, December 31, 2020

Happy New Year!

 Mockingbird Pride

Artist Note

I am still working on this painting. 
Taking my time to think it out.
Tweak or not to tweak...
that is the question!

As the sun sets on 
I  want to thank you 
for the support you gave me and my art
during this weird year. 
It has meant so much.

My painting habits have changed 
due to being at home with a
dear hubby - who is delighted to have
me around due to him being able to enjoy
regular meals served on time.
(I do not kid myself it is 
due to my scintillating personality!)

I have always worked and been a do-er
so learning to be idle has been quite a feat.
I miss teaching and the wonderful artists 
I was around. BUT... I am grateful to be healthy
and in a position where I can stay safe and
 thanking heavens for Walmart grocery pick-up.
I am also becoming a ping pong player!

Let me know how YOU have adapted
to the new routines 
with any helpful hints you may have.

 I want to wish you all
 a much better new year than this last
one has probably been.

May 2021 Bless YOU with 
Health, Joy and Peace

12"x12" oil on gallery wrap 

Monday, November 16, 2020

Afternoon Pleasure

 Afternoon Pleasure 
6”x8” oil on Raymar panel  $150.SOLD

Artist Note. 
I named this Afternoon Pleasure 
because my
memories of visiting
this lily pond 
are still very pleasurable. 

I have done quite a few paintings from this 
lovely spot and I always enjoy the time 
painting them...well that is not exactly true. 
I start off fast and hopeful
then in the middle begins a struggle. 
and it usually goes through several changes
before it comes together in a way I like. 
This was no exception. 

How are you all doing?
This is a time like no other
and even though my hubby and I are safe
we are very aware how dangerous it
could be for us if we go anywhere crowded. 
 So we will be sharing a short outdoor 
picnic with our daughter and her hubby 
for Thanksgiving. 
This way there will be many more 
to share. 
Please stay safe and still enjoy a 
Happy Thanksgiving. 

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Sunflowers At The Ranch

Sunflowers At The Ranch
6"x8" oil on Raymar panel  $150. SOLD

Artist Note

I joined a few of the guild artists
on a plein air painting trip
to the wonderful Nichols Ranch and Orchards.
Altitude 7,000 ft.
(Link at bottom)

This building is over 100 years old and was
the original home of the Nichols family.

Look what a fabulous view they!
The line of white in the distance is
the amazing White Sands National Park. NM

I was fortunate enough to enjoy 
a couple of the family pets
joining me in the shade

I did a couple of painting starts and decided 
the sunflowers were worthy of attention. 
I eliminated the porch for the sake of balance.

The new Blogger format is 
certainly different. 
I just spent over an hour 
trying to get the spacing
back to what I am used to. 

link to Nichols Ranch


Monday, September 21, 2020

Pomegranate Duo

Pomegranate Duo
8x6" oil on raymar panel $150.
Purchase HERE

Artist Note

Every year I paint the pomegranates 
when in season. 
I got a call from a friend telling me 
her poms were gorgeous 
and she invited me over to paint.

It had been quite a while since I had painted 
so this was a real treat. 

Hope you are all surviving these
powerful and awful events...
Covid, the protests, the fires and hurricanes.
Who would have every thought it 
was all possible when
wishing everyone 
A Happy New Year...
Please stay safe and sane.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Profusion Of Hollyhocks

Profusion Of Hollyhocks
8"x6" oil on Raymar panel SOLD

Artist Note
This painting was started after seeing 
the hollyhocks on my morning walk.
I came back with hubby who napped
 in the car while I got a start.
   I finished it at home.

I wonder if any of you still get my blog
because it has been almost
 three months since I last posted. 
I have never gone that long before.

AND...what months they have been.
Covid has turned them into 
an anxious time of worry 
for our loved ones and ourselves...

The lucky artist can work at home
the creative drive is still flowing.
 I am happy 
to feel mine is slowly returning 
to where I am 
at least "thinking" painting
as I go about my day.

I am sending warmest wishes for 
safe and happier days 
while we adjust to the new norm.


 blogger has a new format which I am not having
much success with. Please go to
If the link to purchase does not work.


Thursday, May 7, 2020

abstracted waterfall

Abstracted Waterfall
6"x8" oil on canvas panel $150.
Purchase SOLD

Artist Note
This was inspired by the same photo 
as shown on previous post, 
but approached 
in an entirely different way.
I zoomed in on a smaller area of the photo
and let my imagination create the shapes
plus a different color harmony.

Play and Discovery

This was a lot of fun.

It became all about the process
because I was not worried about 
making it exactly like the photo.. 

I made notes of what I liked,
 technique wise,
and equally important...
did not like. 
I will repeat in another painting 
the parts of what I liked and maybe
it will be as enjoyable as this 
one was to paint..

Stay Safe everyone

Sunday, May 3, 2020

Rushing Water

Rushing Water
6"x8" oil on panel $150
Purchase SOLD

Artist Note
When the guild classes were stopped 
in  March due to c-virus,
 I still owed the painters a lesson
so I gave some thought to what 
would be the most useful and guess what...
Hands down...
THE Number one problem...
is watching artists
 trying to paint from a photo 
EXACTLY what  they see 
without doing a few 

The typical problems are 


This is the original photo which I used for the painting.
As an Impressionist I had to add 
the colors I clearly remember seeing 
Water is full of colors
 in the sunshine and 
also reflects the sky. 

The dark values appear way too dark  
as we know shadows are transparent...
but notice how the tops of the rocks 
are not only competing with the value of the water
but tend to lead the eye out of the pic.

Below is how I check if the composition works.
I like to use 
"every quarter should be different" 
a very useful way to prevent matchy-matchy areas.
At the same time I mark off the center to help me 
remember to have a circle of the interest 
right in the middle. 

When I first became aware of art workshops 
in the 90's, I went to a 
few of the really good painters.
Ovanis Berbarian, for florals.
Dan Gerhart for figure.
Michael Lynch for landscapes.
Richard Schmid, Burt Silverman - demos at ASL

They ALL said "paint what you SEE."
Trouble is... I didn't SEE what they did.
I had to learn.

But, hey, they too had to learn to "see."
I went back and found their early work 
and it was heartwarming to find
when they first started they made 
the same mistakes as all of us.

Time and learning are what make the difference.
Remember, shadows are transparent. 
If you are painting plein air 
you can see into the shadows very clearly
but a photo can make them way too dark.

Look above at original photo. 
I took this in Yellowstone
and I could see into those dark areas
and clearly "see' everything, 
all the bushes, stones and trees
surrounding this gushing stream. 
You cannot make any of those 
out in the photo

Sunsets are the worst offenders.
The ground is never as dark at sunset
as the photo makes them. 
I now take two pics - one of the sun setting 
and one of the ground. 
But logically, when you look how 
light the sky still is overhead, you know
it cannot be really dark on the ground.

The sky can look waaaay too dark 
in a poor photo. Usually it produces a
strong cyan blue - especially at the top, 
whereas it is actually
 more of a cobalt or ultramarine.
Take the photo to a window 
and look halfway up in the sky
to compare,
 and then down at the pic.
You will see it. 
The blue sky overhead is not what
you paint. 

Shadows are not the same gray 
over everything they travel.


A middle color value goes 
deeper in shadow BUT not as dark as


The reverse is true in the light. 
IN THE LIGHT and even lighter in some cases.

Remember the ABSENCE of light is the darkest
area. Underneath bushes, rocks or in still life 
it is the line you see under the object.

Strong sun bleaches out color.

If you cannot paint plein air
then the next best way is to paint from 
a monitor of some kind. 
Even then you sometimes have to lighten
the darks to see into them.

But if you have a stash of old pics
(like I do)
which inspire you to paint them 
then I hope these hints help.

If you are a decorative or abstract painter 
none of the above applies.
In my next post I will demo a abstract version.
Cheers everyone. Thank you for staying until the end.
Stay safe.