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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Painting faces

I'm beginning to realize that I love painting faces whether it be people or flowers.  My first love in painting was flowers but I didn't want to be tied to flowers avoiding what I didn't feel comfortable painting.  So, I stopped painting flowers and began painting a variety of subjects until I felt comfortable with any subject matter.  It's all about painting shapes anyway.  It's all about painting values and shapes not objects and things.  It's also about trying to capture the emotion and feelings I get from those values and shapes.  That said, I'm feeling that old pull towards flowers probably evoked from being out in my garden which is filled with color, values and shapes.  Ah, I love summer, don't you.

"Iris Close Up"
8x10 oil

It was risky

My husband always said he didn't like to fish but that meant that whenever we'd travel all he wanted to do was ride around and explore new areas.  That's fine but it also never gave me any time to paint.  So, as he prepared for a three month sabbatical leave, I presented him and my youngest son with complete fly fishing outfits  - rods, reels, waders, special shoes, flies etc.  It was taking a chance but I was desperate.  I wanted to explore but I also wanted time to just sit and draw or paint.  It worked!!  Bob fell in love with fly fishing and I get to do more painting.  I came upon this young guy one day and knew I had to paint him.

I realized that I wanted to capture for the feeling rather than the specifics of the scene so put him back on my easel.  This is the result.  What do you think? Before or after?

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Hot days of summer

Temperatures are up into the low 90's today with low humidity.  I can't help but think of the desert when temperatures rise to over 90.  The last two winters, Bob and I spent some time in Arizona taking in the amazing southwest sunsets.  This painting was inspired by those memories.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Almost Plein Air

A little over a year ago, I joined a group of artists painting plein air - outdoors.  For me, it was a combination of painting outside and taking reference photos.  Today, although beautiful enough to be outside, I chose to paint this from one of my reference photos.

Friday, June 24, 2011


Summer officially arrived this week and with it warm, dry, sunny weather.  What else would I be inspired to paint than the coast.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Allowing the painting to speak

The weather is so beautiful that I moved my "studio" outside to paint.  I am finding more and more that I only use my reference photo as a jumping off place and allow the painting to tell me what it wants to be or do.  I know - sounds crazy - but that's what happens when I allow it to.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

I love clouds

I love clouds but not cloudy days.  I especially love the billowy white and grey clouds that come with the passing of a summer rain storm.  I don't like the long, grey days that winter can bring.  This painting is what is on my easel right now.  It's close to being finished but not quite there yet.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Life gets in the way of painting

Do you, like me, find that often life gets in the way of doing the things we really love to do.  My husband loves to fly fish though he doesn't do it very often.  I love painting.  I've titled this blog Painting Almost Every Day more as an incentive rather than a fact.  I would love to paint every day but life does get in the way so I cherish each hour that I do take.  I'm beginning to let go of the guilt and recognize that like breathing, I need to paint.  Here is a quick sketch from life.