Working With A Deadline

Deadlines are so uninspiring but they do cause me to schedule my days to make the most out of the time I do have to be creative.

As a rule, I try to stay away from deadlines but I am working on two paintings for a show in Oceanside, CA – due date: June 30th. No pressure – HA! My watercolor paintings have layers and layers of color and right about this stage, I am having doubts and being super critical of my work. I have no idea why, but it’s a battle I have with each watercolor painting.

Here is the progress of both paintings plus another painting set aside until later:

Small Watercolors and Working Ideas

Now that I am back in my studio, it is time to finish up a couple of watercolor paintings and work out the details for a couple of more. From early in my high school days to now, I have always loved working in the controlled environment of my own room as opposed to “En Plein Air”. Painting outside is fun and though I am getting to paint outside more, the illustrator in me needs to work on paintings at any hour of the day without worrying about the changing light. I also tend to work on several paintings at a time and below is a sketch of a painting I plan to do in watercolor as well as oil.

Blessings🎨

Scribbles From the Road (Part 3)

My husband and I began our road trip starting in Southern California and traveled through Oregon, Washington, Idaho and back home south through the south-eastern corner of Oregon and Nevada. The landscape was so varied and even though it was all beautiful in it’s own way, we loved Idaho the best. Besides Coeur d’Alene, we spent time in the mountain resort town of McCall, Boise and Caldwell. Here are some highlight photos of the different areas…

Our hike in Ponderosa State Park, view Payette Lake

We continued on Lily Marsh Trail

Strolled through the Ann Morrison Park in the city of Boise

Onward home through the Jorden Valley, mountain areas and deserts…

Dove Springs is a favorite area for so many So Cal people to motorcycle ride and as we made our final stop before getting home, we were able to watch the Memorial Day crowd of weekend warriors get themselves settled for what promised to be an amazing time to be out in the desert.

Though we spent a lot of time exploring the many different areas with our two Boxers, I managed to get in a few more “scribbles” in my sketchbook

As we enter the summer months, I wish you all a safe and blessed time no matter where the days find you.

Scribbles From The Road, Part 2

Fields of Canola Flowers

Our travels continue on from Coeur d’Alene to McCall, Idaho. The Pacific North West or “PNW”, as it is known as by those living in this region, is absolutely beautiful. We traveled through mountains, farmland and ranch lands and as driving through, we are struck by fields upon fields of bright yellow. We were in Grangeville, Idaho and cars everywhere were pulling over so that people could take photos. The need for fueling up our truck came at the perfect time for me to get out and ask what we were driving by and was surprised when I was told that they were Canola flowers.

Of all of the items I buy in the grocery store, I have never once put any thought into canola oil but seeing those fields gave me a new appreciation for what is being harvested each year.

We traveled up the next mountain range and this was the sight as we were leaving…

As we climbed the mountain, we were struck by even more beauty…

White Bird Hill Summit mountain pass is at an elevation of 4,450 feet. Located at the southwest corner of the Camas prairie, White Bird is near the Salmon River crossing point for the Lewis and Clark expedition and also the location of the 1877 Battle of White Bird Canyon, which was the first fight of the Nez Perce War where the U.S. Army was defeated. The summit was named after Chief White Bird. Photos of this view do not adequately show the elevation or beauty but trust me, it is stunning!

We traveled down through canyon along side the Salmon River.

In part 3, I will share the photos of McCall and it’s landscape.

Scribbles From The Road (Part 1)

Ballpoint pen sketch while traveling

RV traveling is great to see the countryside and stay at “off the beaten path” places but can also seem long as the miles roll on and on. So this year, instead of letting myself drone out while my husband drives, I decided to make the time profitable and sketch. I’m not sure if any of you have ever tried to sketch while traveling in a vehicle, but it is not the easiest thing to do, so I figured that a scribble technique with a ballpoint pen would be my best option.

With our usual, familiar landscape, my first sketch was of the artichokes grown locally

As we traveled through Northern California and Oregon, the landscape inspired me to do a couple more sketches but since the landscape changes so quickly, these are just quick impressions.

Here are some photos of the areas we traveled through…

Mount Shasta

A small inlet of Lake ShastaCooper and Luna

Klamath National Forest

Lake Coeur d’Alene

Lake Pend Oreille, Bayview, Idaho

So much more to see and many more sketches to do, so stay tuned for Part 2

Happy and safe travels!

“A Little Meyer”

12″ x 16″ watercolor

In our yard, we have a dwarf Meyer Lemon tree which produces the sweetest, best tasting lemons! This little tree was the perfect subject and of course, it was so nice not to have to travel anywhere to create artwork. Today I finished this small watercolor painting and am pleased with how it turned out. Generally when painting, I know when to be “done” but with this particular project, I was getting way too close to overworking it and had to force myself to put my paintbrush down.

Here is a recap of the process:

1. The concept drawing

2. Drawing and beginning stage of laying down color

On the edges of the lemon and part of the stem, I painted an art masking fluid

The above photo shows the project almost completed and below, the finished painting.

Like the majority of my work, this painting shows my strong illustrator background but I enjoyed allowing myself to get looser in some of the areas behind the lemon. It is my hope that you find helpful hints in the creation of this painting.🎨

Taft Gardens

Ojai, CA

Taft Gardens and Nature Preserve is a local treasure with acres and acres (264 acres to be exact), of plants, trees and paths to meander. There were so many beautiful areas to explore but since time was of the essence to start painting, my friend and I chose a place relatively close to where we parked to start painting.

There are over 20,000 different species of plants and trees and I only captured a very small percentage of them.

The recent California fires were devastating and it seems like no area was left untouched but firefighters were able to save so much of the gardens. The surrounding hills and nature preserve was a different story but thankfully new growth has already begun with the recent rains.

Tomorrow we are suppose to get another few days of rain so I plan to head back there soon to see even more wildflowers and green hills before the summer months turn it golden.

Until next time, take care and take time to enjoy your surroundings wherever that might be.