Thursday, January 28, 2010

Three Little Figs

This winter I have certainly made New Seasons happy with each trip to their produce section! I could not help myself because once I would find a new color or texture that wasn't as gray as our landscape it came home with me. Figs were new for me to paint. There is quite a variety but with a short seasonal display in the marketplace. The most beautiful were the green ones above which I found at the Milwaukie Farmers Market. I have the names of the varieties written down in one of my journals somewhere. I did a number of 'fig'ure studies in my studio. It just so happened that in yesterday's post I mentioned my first art instructor. She has been my mentor before the term was popular. When she visited last Thanksgiving she made my year by purchasing the first painting of my fig series. To me it was the highest complement she could have given me. We had fun painting together in my studio... that is of course, until we needed the ingredients for our figgy pudding!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


After a break in my usual routine it is good to get back to the easel although I'm sharing an earlier work here. I've thought about what motivated me to paint this piece after so many friends and patrons consider this a "different" style for me. One of the reasons this may have a different look is because I toned my 12 x 24 panel almost completely black using the darkest colors I had on my palette at the time. I wanted the light in my studio to make those satsumas glow and the glass sparkle. The dark behind and beneath the objects would be what unified them. It was an exercise to go literally from dark to light. Each item has a bit of an outline from the toned panel beneath. I had a limited time in which to work and I liked it so much when I had finished that I resisted going back into my alla prima brushwork. OK, The real motivator? I was thinking about my very first oil painting instructor having me do this exercise years ago and always wanted to do a painting which would include the cup she gave me! I guess I added a few items to show if off! Funny how things just happen to work out when you are having fun! Those are the pieces that tend to show it too.

Friday, January 22, 2010


OK, I realize this is one more 'orange' image, But New Seasons had so many luscious fruits to tempt me this winter. This one happens to be a combination of a couple fruits however its name escapes me at the moment. I do know it was sweeter to paint than to eat. That is another advantage of a still life, they sustain you in more ways than one!

Speaking of sustenance, I alluded to gratitude in my title, not for fruit but for a fruitful friendship among artists. I want to thank Celeste for showing me how to set up this Blog. It was a gift from one artist to another of both time and talent. It brought back memories for me of the special artist community I left behind in WI. I have missed that for whatever reason here in OR and have begun to feel it grow inside again just based on one simple generous act. To me feeding the artist's soul is essential for artistic growth and can be found in the right type of community; one of sharing, guiding, encouraging, constructive criticism, and just enough healthy competition to raise the bar for everyone. I'm grateful for the many artists I've come to know in the past 9 years in OR!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Thoughts on 'Orange'

As I was browsing through the still life images I've been setting up to paint in my studio this winter, it occurred to me that the majority of the images include oranges or orange objects. I love warm colors (and warmth). Maybe the combination of cool, blue-gray, winter days drives me to seek its compliment. I know I'd rather be painting in my studio than outside on those days. For some reason it brings me joy to have these objects around me. I was told once that peeling an orange and inhaling the jest can lift ones spirits if depressed. I have also heard that the color orange in paintings isn't a popular seller? Anyone have a complimentary color wall space they want filled?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

A first blog post

Hello, this is my first blog post and I wanted to tell you about my solo show at the US Bank at the corner of 16th & Wiedler. My show will be up until February 1, 2010. Additionally, in February, my work can be seen at Starbucks at 37th and Hawthorne.

I hope you come see me if you are in the area.