Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Berries and Cherries

"Berries and Cherries"
6.3" x 9"
(watercolor on paper)

How can something so heavenly to eat, be so hellish to paint? I keep painting strawberries and after each one is done, I think "that's the last time I'm going to do that!" Yet, I do it again. This actually isn't a great photo of this painting, but you get the idea.

Thanks for stopping by.  Happy painting!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Today's Progress

6" x 6"

approx. 6.5" x 9"

19" x 13.5"

Oh my goodness . . . no commentary today . . . just back to work.  :)

Monday, June 24, 2013

Watercolors and Wine

A group photo.  Hey I recognize that red door!

I've attached some photos from yesterday's "Watercolors and Wine" workshop at the Hardwick Winery.  It was a beautiful day for sipping sangria and painting.  I think everyone did a fantastic job!  And this was pretty much the first time these folks ever painted with watercolor, (barring some limited high school experience.)  I don't know about you, but I was impressed.  :)

Hard at work . . . but don't dip your brush into your sangria, Donna!  :)


I was helping myself to cheese and crackers when this photo was taken.
"Get `em working then eat" -- that's my motto!

Decisions, decisions . . . what color to choose next?

Working on raised paneling . . . 

ooooh . . . and there it is!

A welcoming red door.

And a welcoming barn door!
Thank you for stopping by and taking a peek.  Have a painterly day!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

The Daily Paintworks Challenge

"On The Vine"
6" x  4.5"
click here to bid
This week's Daily Paintworks Challenge is one of mine.  I hope you'll all give it a whirl!  (And many thanks to Carol Marine for the DPW site and her encouragement.)

The idea: This week’s challenge is to create a dynamic composition - really think outside the box - and pay particular attention to your design. I’ve listed a few of my favorite “rules to a good composition” that I use to help guide my students (and me!) to dynamic arrangements of space that will draw people into the painting. Feel free to use some of them, all of them, none of them . . . whatever helps you:

- create depth through foreground, midground and background & overlap shapes
- use diagonals (oh so much more interesting than horizontals!)
- use "run-off" (have objects run off the page on all four sides – but be sure to avoid having them just "touch" the edges)
- employ the rule of thirds (divide your paper into thirds rather than halves – horizon lines and focal points should all fall on these lines - stay away from centering - create INFORMAL BALANCE
- create “shards” of negative space (maintain interest through contrasting sizes and shapes of negative shapes)
- keep 80-90 percent of your space positive (enlarge your image to fit your space, no one wants to look at a page of empty space)
- use contrast (create apparent differences in size, shape and value)
- stagger objects (avoid lining objects up)

Have fun designing!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Call Me Ishmael

Nantucket Basket - detail

Yes . . . it's official . . . I've totally lost my mind. Not one, but two white whales . . . a nantucket basket AND a strawberry?  Come on!  

I truly have been working -- it's just slow-going. And I think I'm experiencing some kind of severe OCD seizure or something. So please be patient, while the Pequod keeps plugging along.  :)

Have a great day!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

No Cavities!

No Cavities!
11" x 14"
watercolor on cradled aquabord

I'm continuing to finish up some older paintings that have been sitting around the studio, while making small steps in starting some new small ones. I had some issues with the floor in "No Cavities!" I would paint it, then scrub it out . . . paint it again, then scrub it out. I think I finally got it.  The colors in these Fisher Price paintings are sooo much fun.  I'm finishing up the wheels on "Gentleman Farmer" so hopefully that will be up soon.

Thank you for continuing to stop by to see what's new.  

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Strawberry Teasers

detail - strawberry study
work in progress

Oh my goodness . . . this isn't quite fair, is it? I was taking some detail photos to help with my progress on a new strawberry study I'm working on and thought I'd share them with you. But they really are kind of a "tease" aren't they? Not really too much information for you. 

I guess this is my version of the old "cliff-hanger" shorts at the movies. (I actually don't remember those . . . but have heard about them from my dad who I swear thinks I was born in the 1930's, which would incidentally make me older than him!)  He sometimes ask me if I remember the ice wagon, listening to The Lone Ranger on the radio or bathing in a giant bucket on Saturday nights. Good Lord! You'd think he lived out in the woods somewhere 100 years ago! I have to remind him that he's the baby-boomer, not me. Ha! -- he makes me laugh.  :)

another detail - strawberry study
work in progress

Monday, June 17, 2013


8" x 8"
watercolor on aquabord

It's not exactly time for sunflowers (thank goodness) . . . but it has been time for planting them. Unfortunately for me though, some little critter ate up all my seeds! So in honor of all my unsuccessful planting, I decided to finish up this painting I began last year sometime. I may not have sunflowers in my yard, but I least I'll have a painting to look back upon, this fall.

Thanks for coming by . . . have a good day.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Latch

"The Latch"
4.5" x 6.75"
watercolor on paper
(what this painting could look like framed)

Click here to bid.

I finally feel like I'm catching my breath this year . . . isn't summer wonderful for that!?  :)  So I've "virtually framed" a couple pieces and actually painted "The Latch" this morning before breakfast.  The image is from a door at the Hardwick Winery in Hardwick, Massachusetts. I'm still moving along on some of my other paintings . . . nantucket basket included.  Here are a couple more examples of what my recent paintings could look like framed.  Enjoy your day!

"On The Vine"
6" x 4.5"
(what this painting COULD look like when framed)
click here to bid on just the painting

"Fun Size"
5" x 5"
(what this painting COULD look like when framed)
click here to bid on just the painting

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

"On The Vine" and July Workshop

"On The Vine"
6.5" x 4"

This painting is the subject of my next 5-week workshop beginning July 1st here at my studio. You can read about it above, by clicking on "workshops." I hope you can join us! 

Now back to my other paintings.  Happy painting!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Fiddling and Winners!

"One the Vine" (wip)
4.5" x 6"

I fiddled with this little one over the weekend and will finish it up today. Then it's back to my nantucket basket!  

In other news . . . I finally decided on a name for my bowl painting (below). I want to thank everyone who wrote in with their suggestions, both here and on my Facebook. I really appreciate your input not to mention your taking the time to respond. I decided on Shelley Warburton Siegel's "Morning Blues" -- I think it brings a story to the painting. I love the word play but also the lingering question. So thank you so much Shelley, for your clever title!  I'll be sending her a little prize in the mail. In addition, I've put all your names in a hat and picked another winner who will also be getting a little something . . . and that person is Crystal Cook! Crystal posted a lovely and thoughtful suggestion here on my blog. So thanks again and keep your thinking caps on, because I'm sure I'll be back for more help. 

"Morning Blues"
12" x 16"

Have a great day and thank you for stopping in.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013


Nantucket Basket - wip 1
(approx. 13" x 19")
Nantucket Basket - wip 2

In between washes of this new painting, (which I'm thoroughly enjoying) I took out my gentleman farmer to work on: trying to adjust values using a black and white image of my painting. I find myself constantly struggling with values anyway - but throw in yellows and bright oranges and I'm completely lost! I think they're so difficult because they register gray. Ugh. 

I also continued working on some details. I feel like I'm going at a snail's pace with this guy . . . in fact he's already hayed his fields twice since I started this painting! Almost done though.  

Have a great day!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Of Prints and Gardens

"Barn Window" prints
5" x 7"
OK . . . so business first and the "prints" part of my post: I just received these beautiful, high resolution giclee reproductions from Giclee of New England, of my painting "Barn Window." They are printed on sturdy watercolor paper and look almost like originals. I am selling them for $20 + $4 shipping. If you are interested in purchasing one, please feel free to email me at

"Barn Window"  - original watercolor on aquabord
5" x 7"
click here to purchase

Now onto the "garden" part of my post.  I worked feverishly (literally -- it was like 90 degrees out! Ha!) on my gardens, Friday. For three years I've wanted some raised beds up on my hill for a few vegetables but have never followed through. Well I've been out messing in the yard this Spring and finally got my act together only to discover about 20 minutes later, Delilah, enjoying herself on Bed #1! So much for thinking that I didn't need a fence. You should see my yard -- it's a maze of silly little fences because of my two unruly, furry children. But how do you get mad at that precious face?!

Delilah -- mistaking the "raised bed" for "doggy bed"
Doesn't she look like a lion!?  :)
Thanks for stopping by -- enjoy your day!