Wednesday, January 1, 2014


I noticed on FB that many people were posting a word  that would be their theme for the new year.  I immediately thought of Commitment for mine.  Sure it means being more committed to my artwork and not letting things take my time that aren't as important.  But it also means to me to commit to spending more time on my relationships with family, friends, and patrons.  As an artist, I tend to cherish my alone time.  I need things to be calm so I can ponder.  Not really deep thinking, more like creative problem solving.  And then there's the time I need to create.  As a result, I tend to not think about spending time with other people.   I hope to set aside time to visit and share more this year.

The last year brought a lot of changes in my life.  Some were good, some were OK, and a few weren't so pleasant.  Usually the ones you lie awake worrying about never turn out as badly as you thought they would. It's the ones that blindside you when you are awake and you had no idea they were coming.  Ever get those?
So here's hoping there are a lot less of the bad moments and more of the good ones for the coming year for you and me!

I am working in the studio on paintings for an upcoming show "Inspired Destinations" which will be hung in late Jan.  My space is strewn now with paintings of Italy and France.  Some complete, some in different stages, and some still pictured in my brain. I'm trying some new techniques and playing with glazes, varnishes, and palette knife painting.   I'm hoping to get more done than I think I need so there will be pieces left for other venues.

"May your choices reflect your hopes, not your fears."-  Nelson Mandela

So what is your word you would like to use this year?  Send me your Word in an email and I will send the first five of you my 2014 Calendar.


Thursday, October 3, 2013

Greetings from Italia!

It's been a fast week in Italy.  First. A stop in Milan.  Then a wonderful time in northern Italy on lake Garda.   It's been foggy and overcast so when the sun breaks through we rejoice!
So I am learning my new IPad and trying to post photos.  If you want to paint along, here's a shot of the cloister.  Sorry there's no sun, but that is the life of a plein air. Painter!  Tomorrow. On to Venice where the nice man in our restaurant today said would have the same weather but hey, it's Venice!
Ciao for now!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Day 5: Red Sea

Red Sea
12 x 12

Couldn't let the week slip by without doing a poppy painting!  This one started as a demo for the Impressionist oil painting class on Tuesday.  Of course the scene is from a photo taken in Provence during a workshop there last May.  Not saying that every time I go to France or Provence that I see a poppy field, but have been fortunate to find them.  Now if you are interested in finding them too, please join me for Painting in Provence, May 27, 2014 for a week of painting and discovery of that lovely region!!  Registration is open now:  Register before November 30 and receive a discount!  
The name for this painting came from one of my grandgirls who said it looked like a sea of red!

Also, thanks for bearing with me on this monthly painting challenge! I just found out how to post on the 30 Day blog without posting to my blog every time!  So what I will do now, is upload several paintings and send out no more than once a week.  I like my friends too, but everyday in the mail box is a little much for me.  I hope this will work!

Happy September!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Day 4: Day's End

Day's End
8 x 10

There is something quite somber about going to the Chickamauga National Battlefield and seeing the cannons and monuments.  When you read the accounts of the fighting there, you can only imagine what a hard and trying time that was for so many men and their families.  The Park, as we call it, adjoins my neighborhood so I travel through it almost every day.  This painting was done for the 6th Cavalry Museum ( exhibit "Lives and Lands of the Civil War" which is part of the commemoration of the Battle at Chickamauga. I did two more paintings which are different scenes of the area.  The exhibit opens Friday, Sept 6 4:00 - 7:00 pm and lasts until Oct 26.  

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Day 3: The Baudy Courtyard

Courtyard in France
12 x 12

For the third day of the 30 Day challenge:  This is a scene from the Baudy Hotel in Giverny, France.  I painted there a few years back while staying in the hotel just up the street from Monet's Garden and Home.  This is where the American artists stayed who had traveled to France in hopes of meeting and painting with Monet.  Today there is a restaurant in part.  I'm not sure if they lease rooms still or not, but it has a beautiful courtyard in the back and a studio where the artists used to work.  Watch for a few more paintings from this wonderful place!

Sunday, September 1, 2013

A Painting A Day

Jane Painting in the Olive Grove
oil on linen
16 x 20

Trying it again!  I am setting a goal of posting a painting a day for September.  May get a little tricky since I will be traveling a lot but hopefully I can do a sketch while on the road.  This painting is from a trip to Assisi, Italy.  Jane set up to paint in the shade, yes, it was warm that day!, and I loved the way her sundress slipped off her shoulder while she was painting.  I also love the twisted shapes of the old olive trees cascading down the hillside.  Awww, something about Italy keeps drawing me back!  I will return the end of the month to paint and play at Lake Garda in the lake district and then on to Venice!  
If you are a painter or sketcher, I plan to send back photos on my blog for you to enjoy so you will feel like you are on the trip with me!  They won't all be as complicated a scene like this and I will give you a few tips along the way about composition and cropping using photographs.  It will be the next best thing to being there!
Ciao for now!


Sunday, June 30, 2013


Florence Cafe

When you close your eyes, where are you? Are you still in your own environment surrounded by things that are familiar to you?  Or are you someplace where you have been where you remember the sights, sounds, and smells?  Maybe you can imagine a place you would like to go.  Is it very different from where you are?  What do you envision you will see?  What do you hear? Are you alone or around others?  Is the language the same as yours? Are you in a town or out in the country? Maybe at a beach or in the mountains?  Do you smell traces of flowers or freshly baked bread at a market?

There is something about experiencing a new place that has always drawn me to travel.  Perhaps you enjoy discovering new places, new sounds, and new foods?  Where would you go if you were given a trip?  There are places I have been where I would return.  Still others that I would like to visit.  

Part of the joy of being a teaching artist is helping others to record what they see in sketches or paintings.  It is like you can stop time for a moment and capture it all to yourself.  When you return and see your artworks you created, you can still feel the presence of the place.  You can close your eyes and imagine being there again, hearing the sounds, smelling the air,and feeling the heat, cold, or breeze.  

Let me know if you want to experience some of the places I will be going this year.  I would love to have you join me!

Plein Air Painting in Venice  October 5 - 12, 2013, contact: 
Painting in Provence  May 25-June 1,2014, contact:

Ciao!  or Au Revoir!