Sunday, October 30, 2011

Halloween Challenge

I'm sorry to not have posted anything for so long. It was an incredibly busy ( and fun ) summer.  The leaves have changed to their "showing off colors" but as I type this, they are being sprinkled with a heavy wet snow. The area has been surprised by an unseasonal nor'easter and I am NOT ready to enjoy winter weather, yet. Thankfully,to ease me into the change of seasons, my dear friends Chris Beck and Pablo Villicana Lara invited me to take part in a Halloween painting challenge. Even though I have two black cats and a broom, Halloween is to me "All About The Candy". I hope you enjoy this painting as well as the others from the artists listed below. You can see all the paintings together on Chris or Pablos blog sites. Thanks for stopping in to check on my blog.

Chris Beck:

Pablo Villicana Lara:

Debbie Cannatella:

R. Garriott:

Jeanette Jobson:

Ron Morrison:

Diahn Ott:

Suzy Pal Powell:

Terry Rafferty:

Kay Smith:

Deb Ward:

Brenda York:

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Pittsburgh Aqueous Open 2011

Good news came in the mail the other day. Frosty Breakfast was admitted to the 2011 show in Pittsburgh, PA. This is a show that I remember my prof in college talking about all the time and I always thought, "Yeah, maybe someday..." . Gee wizz, I never expected that I'd be in it three years in a row ! I've had so many nice comments from friends about this painting and I'm sooo appreciative. It really was fun to do & reminds me so much of where I grew up in western PA. But it is actually from just around the corner from me here in MD.

The 65 th Annual Aqueous Open will be at Gallery Sim, 1735 E Carson Street, Pittsburgh, PA from Sept 25 through Oct 30, 2011.

I'll be away for a short time starting tomorrow, but I hope to come home to more good news. Keep your fingers crossed for me and THANKS for looking in here !

Friday, July 15, 2011

Some New Works

Is there anyone still out there? I've been negelting this blog for too long. I'm sorry.'s a couple of things that have been in the works. There are sooo many completed paintings in my mind but only a few committed to paper. The bottom is from a photo I took in NYC last year when the Baltimore group went to see the AWS show. And the top is from Chicago in June when I met with the group from the Artcolony. I'm not sure when I'll be able to get back to either painting. We've had wonderful visits from friends that we haven't seen for years and next week I'll be on the road again. Until I can get back and show you some progress with these, please take some time to visit the folks at the Artcolony is on the side bar...or any of the other wonderful sites over there on the right.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Artcolony in Chicago

I'm home from a most wonderful trip to Chicago where I met with nine other artists from all around the country. The original group was to consist of more but schedules took priority and they couldn't come this trip. All of us are members of another blog called "Artcolony". Some have been members for years and had never met so they decided it was time and picked a central location and familiar area to two of our group. Without them we would have been lost...quite literally. Thank you Debbie & Mary. We toured around the city snapping thousands of reference photos for future paintings, cramming in visits to the Art Institute, the architecture boat tour, Dick Blick retailer (art supplies of course ), a zoo, botanical gardens, rides on the EL train, the "Bean" and of course reeeely good restaurants. We returned home, all of us exhausted and sore, with less money but rich with photos that should keep us busy for years and friendships that will last even longer.

Kaaren Oreck (WI), me (MD), Mary Jansen (IL), Debbie Cannatella (TX), Nita Hoyt (TX), Ellie Sethman (CA), Cindy Agan (IN), Maryiln Wear (CA), Jane Freeman (MN) & Mollie Jones

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Army of Women

Recently I spent a few days with two wonderful friends from North Carolina. We met at our favorite NC beach and caught up on families/kids news and picked up where we left off from the last time we'd seen each being silly. The above photo is mine from that trip although it is not of my two friends, it is symbolic of the friendship most women have or should have. One of my all time favorite movies is "Beaches" and this reminds me of that too. Now, having said all this...I just a few minutes ago made an appointment for my yearly mammogram. It seems more and more people I know have been affected by breast cancer, either having it themselves or someone they love. Another friend recently forwarded a link to "Army of Women" which is a data base for breast cancer research/trials/programs/etc. I have signed up. I do not (yet) have breast cancer or have a history in my family but I'm thinking perhaps this is something we could all do to help those who do or someday shall. Please follow the link and sign up if you can.
By the way, in the photo the two women are walking into the morning sunrise...not into the sunset. ;)

Friday, May 6, 2011

More Snowy Hydranges

Half sheet of Arches Cold Press with Winsor / Newton paints.

Full sheet ( 22" x 30" ) Arches Cold Press with Daniel Smith paints.

I needed see these two side by side to compare. ( The first was auctioned to help the tsunamie victims in Japan. ) I was trying to get more subtle shapes with the blossoms in the second painting. Not sure I accomplished that. As it photographed I don't see much difference in the values just the colors.
It's not untaped yet so I may go back in. But I'll let it "cure" over night & take an other look later.


Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Where did April Go ?... or...John Salminen Workshop

I don't know how April slipped by me. I tried to use an expired coupon yesterday only to realize I was a month behind...geez. I guess I was really busy and didn't notice.

One exciting event was the annual workshop held in conjunction with the Mid-Atlantic exhibition by whomever does the jurying. This year the honor went to John Salminen, the internationally well known painter from Minnesota. John & his wife Cathy, also a talented & well known photographer, wowed and informed a group of twenty five students from as far away as Florida and DENMARK. It was enlightning to just be in their presence ! John is probably best knoiwn for his urban watercolors but this workshop was intended to shake folks from their "comfort zone" and take away the fear of abstract painting. It worked. I believe twenty five students now have a new comfort zone after this experience.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Art Auction for Japan

"Snowy Hydranges"
14" x 20"
Transparent Watercolor on Paper

Current Bid : SOLD Thank you !!


Here in the nations capital, we are looking forward to the budding of the cherry blossoms around the tidal basin in a few weeks. I don't know how anyone who comes to visit will be able to look at those pink and white blossoms without remembering the earthquake and tsunami that devestated Japan this week.

A group of artist friends has set up a site to auction paintings to benefit the Japanese Red Cross. 100% of the amount received will go to this cause. The above painting is my contribution. Please email your bids starting at $50.00. I will post current bids as I receive them and email the winner Sunday, March 20, 2011.

Thank you for your help !

Friday, March 4, 2011

Mid- Atlantic entry

This Indian corn painting was "Plan B" entry to the BWS Mid-Atlantic show this year. Ya just never know what others will think and I'm all ways surprised. John Salminen is the juror this year for entries and awards so I am "blown away" at getting in the show. This was also chosen last year to be in the Missouri water color show (Chris Krupinski ). So, I musta done something right. Paint me "happy".

Sunday, February 20, 2011

A Day in DC

Wednesday was sunny & warm in DC when I met two friends at the Museum of American Art. It was just what we needed after such a cold winter. The cold isn't gone for good yet but it was a great break and we saw some incredible art work. The building houses the National Portrait Gallery as well and after living here almost 18 years this was my first visit I'm ashamed to say. The neighborhood wasn't one that made me feel at ease before but a few years ago (?) the area was developed with the building of the Verizon Center & now is a wonderul place to visit. I'll be making up for the lost time there !

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Salt Experiments & Dots


Here's the latest. I still have some touch ups to do because I did a little experiment on it and now have to go back & fix some things. The top photo is the way it is now before fixes. The next photo is the way it was BEFORE the experiment.

I started the piece by putting salt & light pigment on the areas that are snow. I was very happy with the results and so thought when the rest was done I should go back and do some more salt there. Well, it didn't add anything more to the piece but taking off the salt residue afterwards lifted some of the color from the darkest areas so I need to go back in & tiddy up those spots.

Now HERE's a bit of FUN !! I found out via Facebook & Jane Freeman that Daniel Smith has these wonderful pages of dots. They are samples of all the watercolor pigments they make. Ya just take a wet brush & go over them to see what they look like & how they act on the paper. I had no idea that Daniel Smith made such beautiful colors. I've always used Winsor & Newton & some DiVinci before. Now I want ALL of these !!!

Saturday, January 8, 2011


Deadlines approaching and I've not been as productive as I should have been. But I did manage to get this ready to enter the Baltimore Watercolor Society Mid-Atlantic. I started it just before Christer & Jessica's wedding in October and then there were a few holidays in between. While doing it I kept hearing tidbits from Judy Morris' workshop and was "haunted" by what she called "ghosts". These are little spots in the paintings where lines might stop incomplete/unconnected or not line up. This probably happens in my paintings because I tend to work on an area then move on and then come back again, perhaps not completing the second area before moving on to a third. I really think this is one of the secrets that make the difference between a good painting and a great painting; a completed painting. More learning done on this one.