Sunday, September 29, 2013

Channeling Van Gogh

Channeling Van Gogh, Graphite on Paper, 24"x18", NFS
I'm posting something a little different today.  After doing mostly small works this year, I've decided to focus on larger pieces for a while.  To get myself up to speed on the larger sizes, I thought I would start out doing some drawings.  They are relatively quick and they are great for working out compostition, values, and shapes. As you can see, the drawing is very loose - I was after the lines and masses, not photographic accuracy.

This drawing is of a vase of sunflowers from the garden.  Taking a page from Van Gogh, I included a few less than perfect specimens in the bunch, let the different blossoms droop if they wanted to, and left a bunch of leaves to break up the many round shapes of the blossoms.  I also took many photos so I can go back and refer to them later after the flowers die.

Note:  My Daily Paintworks Gallery continues to show my small works (click on icon at right.)  My web site ( has my collection of greeting cards and reproduction prints for sale.  It also has the contact information for some of my larger works which are on exhibit in area galleries. 

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Cambridge Stream

Cambridge Stream, Acrylic on Canvas, 9"x12", NFS
Yesterday was a gorgeous late summer day.  I went to an afternoon plein air workshop with Eric Tobin in Cambridge, VT.  The workshop was held at the Porter Farm just below Mt. Mansfield along the Lower Pleasant Valley Road. This stream runs through the farm. 

I don't ordinarily paint outside - I am a studio painter by inclination - but it is good to get out there every once in a while to remind myself of some of the subtleties of natural light.  I know, you can't do that in one afternoon, but you have to start somewhere.  So, I went out there and came home with a sunburn and this painting.

Monday, September 16, 2013


Nightlife, Acrylic on Gessoboard, 6"x6", $100
This is a quick study of the lights of the summer cottages along the lake.  In the summer, most of the cottages are occupied and lights flicker through the foliage of the trees.  Soon, the leaves will be gone and the cottages will be dark.  Because of the range of colors from light to dark, my camera did not accurately record the range of colors that make up the darkest areas.

Note:  To purchase this painting, please go to my Daily Paintworks Gallery (click on the icon at right.) 

Friday, September 13, 2013

Sunset Over the Lake

Sunset Over the Lake, Acrylic on Gessoboard, 6"x6", $100
This is a painting of Lake Champlain at sunset.  The range of colors that the lake reflects is amazing - from pale pastels, to steely grays (on cloudy, rainy days), to absolutely garish reds, yellows and oranges.  I chose something in the middle of the range.  I love the golden yellows the most.  And, as always, the best colors are after the sun has gone down. 

Note:  To purchase this painting, please go to my Daily Paintworks Gallery (click on icon at right.)

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Pear and Berries

Pear and Berries, Acrylic on Gessoboard, 6"x6", $100
Last winter when I was totally color starved, I bought some strawberries and spent a day setting up still lifes and photographing them for later use.  Yesterday, I decided to paint one of them.  I used a palette knife for most of the work.  I was experimenting with foreground and background colors and decided to use the pear colors for both - straight Pthalo Blue with varying amounts of Hansa Yellow Light for the background, then the same colors mixed with white for the foreground.

Note:  This painting is available through my Daily Paintworks Gallery (click icon at right).

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Blueberry Bunch

Blueberry Bunch, Acrylic on Gessoboard, 6"x6", $100
This is the second of my blueberry paintings.  I did another one last month.  This is how the blueberries grow in our yard - in big bunches, almost like grapes.  In the photo I used for this painting, I really liked the shadow patterns on the berries.

30 in 30 Challenge:  This is #6 for me, so I am a few days behind.  I'm scrambling to catch up -I hope by the end of the week.  I am learning (and relearning) some things about how I paint.  One thing is that I almost never completely finish a painting in one day. I always like to return to it the next day with fresh eyes and a sharp mind - I get better results.  Another thing is that when I feel pressed for time, I am apt to resort to safe subjects and techniques so I can be more certain of a salable result  - sometimes that is good, other times not so much.

Note: To purchase this painting, please go to my Daily Paintworks Gallery (icon at right.)

Monday, September 9, 2013

Autumn Birches Study

Autumn Birches Study, Acrylic on Gessoboard, 6"x6", $100
This painting was an attempt to capture birches in autumn using a palette knife. I like the way the mountains and grasses turned out - definitely autumnal.  I think the trees and foliage worked pretty well, too.  Definitely a subject to return to. 

30 in 30 Challenge:  I got seriously behind last week - pretty embarrassing.  However, I am working hard to catch up.  So today, I got two small paintings finished and started blocking in a third.

Note:  To purchase this painting, please go to my Daily Paintworks Gallery (icon at right.)

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Hornet's Nest - #4 in the 30 Day Challenge

Hornet's Nest, Acrylic on Gessoboard, 6"x6", $100
Yup, I'm now officially one day behind on the 30 day challenge.  I spent the last two days at the Bryan Gallery in Jeffersonville, VT helping install their new exhibits: Living Colors - a juried show of watercolors by living artist members (I have one piece in the show), and an update of the Legacy Collection - an ongoing exhibit of work by 20 member artists, including members of the New England Plein Air Artists.Today I was back in my studio for part of the day; tomorrow will be another partial day.

This painting is of a hornet's nest that I collected last fall.  I found it hanging from a low shrub so it was easy to reach (it is also only a couple of inches across).  I waited until a hard frost had killed off the occupants, then snipped the twig it was attached to.  Paper hornet's nests seem so incredibly delicate and are actually quite beautiful.  I was lucky to get this nest since most of them are destroyed by an animal or bird looking for the larvae within days of a hard frost.

Note: This painting is available for purchase on Daily Paintworks (icon for my gallery at right.)

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Shadow Side of the Barn - #3 in the 30 Day Challenge

Shadow Side of the Barn, Acrylic on Canvas, 11"x14", $600
This painting is of a cluster of barns sitting on a hill near here.  When I took my photos, the side shown in the painting was in deep shadow.  The sun was hitting just a few spots on the south-west sides of the buildings.  This photo is a little over-exposed; the reds and oranges aren't quite as saturated as they look above. (My husband usually does my photography, but since I am posting daily, I am doing some of the photos myself - with much poorer results.)

This is painting number 3 in the 30 in 30 Challenge.  It is also the fifth in my current series of barn paintings.

Note:  To purchase, please go to my Daily Paintworks Gallery (icon at right.)

Monday, September 2, 2013

High Bush Cranberries - #2 in the 30 in 30 Challenge

High-Bush Cranberries, Acrylic on Gessoboard, 6"x6", $100
This is a painting of a branch of high bush cranberries.  The bushes are truly loaded this year - the cardinals and cedar waxwings are going to be ecstatic. The berries will stay on the bush well after the leaves fall giving a splash of scarlet to an otherwise gray landscape.

This is painting number two in the 30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge.  The idea for the challenge belongs to Leslie Saeta.  Almost 300 artists have signed on to paint a painting a day for the month of September - including me.  Fortunately there are no penalties for failing to create a painting every single day - I expect to do my best, but I am not always the fastest painter on the block.

Note: To purchase, please go to my Daily Paintworks Gallery (icon at right.)  

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Primary Colors - #1 in the 30 in 30 Challenge

Primary Colors, Acrylic on W/C paper, 7"x5", $50
This is the first painting in the 30 in 30 challenge for September.  It is also the last beautiful summer day for a bit so fitting in a painting today was probably the biggest part of the challenge so far.  This week is a busy one, so more challenges await.

Note:  To purchase, please go to my gallery at Daily Paintworks (icon at right.)