Both Sides Now

My pastels are collected on both East and West Coasts now. My goal of showing my work on Cape Cod where I now have a summer studio is now a reality. The Addison Art Gallery in Orleans, MA hosted a Painting Orleans Plein Air event during the week of July 14. Artists painted on location from Main Street down to Nauset Beach. I spotted a beautiful garden at 26 Beach Road and Leila graciously welcomed me to paint it.

Leila's Garden and Easel

Leila’s Garden and Easel


It is always a challenge to capture moments in a painting. Plein air painting can be a quiet respite from our busy world, but even the flowers were changing before me. What a privilege to watch the unfurling of the bud of a red poppy during the time I painted. A close up view of nature doing it’s magic before my eyes. But this quiet reflection was soon interrupted by a rain shower. I am glad I brought my umbrella to cover the pastel. The paintings were to be delivered to the gallery by 2 pm, so it was time to put the pastel under glass and framed in the back of my car.
Framed Painting "Leila's Garden"

Framed Painting
“Leila’s Garden”


The Addison Art Gallery hosted a great reception and sale on June 14th where artists and art collectors admired the work painted for the event.
Addison Art Gallery, Orleans, MA

Addison Art Gallery,
Orleans, MA


My painting was also included in the next show on June 21st which featured paintings done during the Orleans Garden Tour. When I arrived at the reception to show the painting to my daughter who was visitning, I found that it had been SOLD. So, I am collected on both coasts or “Both Sides Now”. And the temporary moments in Leila’s garden are captured in time and enjoyed by an art collector.
"Leila's Garden", pastel, 11x4 “Leila’s Garden”, pastel, 11×14[/captain]

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Sunday’s Bouquet

Sunflowers are featured in my latest painting, “Sunday’s Bouquet” which is a garden scene behind Asbury Church in Livermore. In many traditions the sunflower symbolizes faith, life giving force, longevity, happiness, and loyalty. Sunflowers seem to bask in the warm glow of the sun and even grow towards the sun’s path. The color yellow is symbolic of happiness and in the Chinese tradition the flower represents life and good luck. In Christianity it symbolizes unwavering faith. 

The reference photo needed some additional color and I emphasized the sunflowers and used some artistic license to rearrange some of the colors of the flowers to add interest.

Photo of garden

Photo of garden

"Sunday's Bouquet", pastel 11x17

“Sunday’s Bouquet”, pastel 11×17

In Southwest Art Magazine!

Southwest Art Magazine, Aug. 2013

Southwest Art Magazine, Aug. 2013

The August issue of Southwest Art Magazine is on the newstands. On pages 16 & 17 there is an ad for the upcoming Frank Bette Plein Air Paint Out which features 40 artists who are invited to paint outdoors in Alameda, CA. My pastel painting, “On Golden Hill” is included along with my website. I am excited to be in this beautiful art journal that has a national audience.

The Paint Out is next week beginning on July 29th when we get our substrates (paper, board, or canvas) stamped and paint on location on the island of Alameda in preparation for the Exhibit and Sale on Sat., Aug. 3 from 10 to 5 at the South Shore Shopping Center at Otis and Park Street. It is a challenge to produce 3 paintings worthy of exhibition by Saturday. We will be hitting the tree-lined streets, historic Victorian architecture, lagoons, Estuary, and beaches with views of the San Francisco Bay in search of the perfect scene that inspires and may capture the heart of a collector.

And on the subject of collectors… My painting, “On Golden Hill” of the Eckersly barn outside of Crockett, CA painted during the Valona Paint Out has been sold to a painting friend and collector in Livermore. As much as I get attached to painting, it is always rewarding to have others support my work.

More Cohasset Harbor Reflections

Harbor Reflections, Cohasset, MA

Harbor Reflections, Cohasset, MA


The Class of 1963 of Cohasset High School recently celebrated their 50th high school. My sister, Janet suggested that I might consider donating a giclee of the pastel painting that I did of our hometown harbor for a silent auction whose proceeds were to benefit the local food bank. It seemed like a win-win situation, so I packaged and shipped the matted giclee print off to Cohasset for the event. As planned, the reunion weekend which was held this past weekend was a success. The Saturday night dinner was held in one of the galleries at the South Shore Arts Center. One of her classmates bid on the giclee “Harbor Reflections”. The Food Bank receives a donation, the classmate has a momento to give to his sister of their hometown, and I welcome the opportunity to keep the conversation going about my art. Yes, it is a win-win situation.

Silk Painting Again

My demo of Silk Painting for the Concord Art Association in Concord, CA is coming in May.  So, today I got back to painting on a silk scarf.  I use a blank habotai silk scarf that has a hand rolled hem from Jacquard.  I use the green label silk colors from Jacquard Products.  First I take a clean scarf and stretch it on wooden stretcher bars using push pins.  Then after planning out the design I outline the image with gutta resist which I apply using a plastic applicator bottle with a metal tip.

Scarf with gutta lines

Scarf with gutta lines

The scarf with the gutta drawing is set aside to dry for about 30 minutes or more.  After planning the color palette I begin painting in the outlines with a Chinese watercolor brush.  Colors of the Green Label Jacquard dye are mixed or diluted as needed. 

Dye is applied within the gutta lines

Dye is applied within the gutta lines

Jacquard Silk Dyes

Jacquard Silk Dyes

It is important to carefully paint with the lines while the stretched scarf is suspended.  It works well to do this between the backs of two chairs.  Otherwise a wet area can easily smudge.  Mix up enough color to paint the background color.  I often mark of sections of the background to design to simplify this process as shown in the image above and add color to the vines.

Completed grapevine scarf

Completed grapevine scarf

After the scarf is set aside and is completely dry, it can be put in dye set.  The ratio of dye set to water is included in the instructions on the Jacquard Dye Set bottle.  Rinse with water and a mild soap.  Hang to dry.  To remove the gutta I bring the scarf to the cleaners and then they are pressed by hand.

There are several steps in this process, but I find it to be satisfying to do and I enjoy watching the silk soak up the color of the dye.  There is something very calming to watch the process.

California Gold

It was the discovery of gold in the hills of California that brought the 49’ers to seek their fortunes. There is still gold to be found at the Ironstone Vineyards in Murphys, CA .  The 44 lb. specimen of Crystalline Gold Leaf displayed at the Museum at Ironstone Vineyards in Murphys, CA  is the world’s largest of its kind. That is one reason to visit the area in addition to tasting some great wines paired with great food and viewing the art at the 16th Spring Obsession Art Show and Sale.  The Avocado, Tomato, and Marcarpone Stuffed Shells paired with the 2011 Obsession Symphony wine was my favorite pairing at the artists reception on March 2nd.  It was also fun to spend the evening with fellow East Bay Area artist Robin Leimer.

44 lb Crystalline Gold

44 lb Crystalline Gold

My painting “Daffodil Hill” was selected to be shown in the Theme Division and is on exhibit in the Alhambra Music Room through May 12th. While the vintners wait for the growth on the grape vines, the daffodils were beginning to show their own golden hues. I set up my easel by the miner’s shack where gold panning was offered. Instead of panning for flakes of gold, I shuffled through my assorted sticks of pale yellows, golden yellows, and bright orange yellows to suggest the colorful array of daffodils on the verdant hillside.

"Daffodil Hill"

“Daffodil Hill” on display – Ironstone Vineyards

On location at Ironstone

On location at Ironstone

It was great to have our friends the Nelsons stop by while I was painting before they went to the winery tasting room and the art show.  Here is my interpretation of the scene.  It was a beautiful spring day for painting at Ironstone Vineyards.

"California Gold",

“California Gold”, pastel, 11×14

“Say It With Flowers”

The Blackhawk Gallery of Danville, CA show Vision 2013 is exhibiting four of my pastel paintings. “Say It With Flowers” is one of the paintings on display Feb.1 – April 14. It is a studio painting based on a photo reference from Salinas, CA where a patchwork of flowers caught my attention. The perspective of the flower field leads the viewer down the planted rows to the distant hills.  After blocking in the sky and background, I drew guidelines for the flowers.  Some artistic license was used when I rearranged some of the masses of color. Also, I felt that the rooftops of suburban houses against the hills in the photo could be eliminated since they weren’t necessary elements in the painting.

The pastel is 12×24 on Wallis sanded board. I first applied an underpainting of peach dry pastel to give it a warm cast. Pictured here are some of the stages of the painting, “Say It With Flowers” before it was framed.

"Say It With Flowers"

“Say It With Flowers”

"Say It With Flowers"

“Say It With Flowers”

"Say It With Flowers"

“Say It With Flowers”

Blackhawk Gallery is located at 3416 Blackhawk Plaza, Danville, CA and is open Mon – Sat 10-8 and Sun 11-6.

Bankhead Theater

The Firehouse Art Studios Artists exhibit at the Bankhead Theater is showing now through early January 2013.  Several of my pastels of local California scenes are on display in the entrance of the theater.  Also showing is work by fellow Firehouse artists Lynne Shephard, Claudia Willis, and Martha Eddleman.  A reception will be held on Tuesday evening, November 27th from  6:00 to 7:30 pm.

“Late Harvest’, pastel, 11 x 17

Art Under the Oaks is Coming!

Image

Art Under the Oaks is coming to Alden Lane Nursery on July 21 & 22, 2012.  I will be one of the juried artists showing my work surrounded by the colorful gardens and large oak trees.  There will be art, music, wine and fruit tastings each day from 11 to 4.  Alden Lane Nursery is located at 981 Alden Lane, Livermore, CA.  Artists are getting their brushes, paints, pastel sticks, etc. for those in the area to enjoy.  (Thanks to my artist friend Kathi Shapiro for the photo).

Blackhawk Gallery

Blackhawk Gallery.