Beach Scene (1)

5″ x 7″ oil

Today begins my adventure with painting beach scenes. I have always tended toward realism with painting but it is time to challenge myself as an artist to work quickly, not worrying about every detail but to achieve what I hope will be an impression of the scene that really draws the viewer into my work. Living relatively close to the beach all my life, I find it interesting that I have never spent any real time painting the ocean, beach or harbor but now is the time to stretch and be challenged in this area and I hope to get a lot better at it!

Among the Wildflowers

10″ x 14″ watercolor 

Some paintings go smoothly while others are a struggle. Originally, I began this subject using a different perspective, in oil and on a much larger canvas but from the start, it was just plain boring! I should have listened to my inner voice but I didn’t and after the 3/4 mark I decided to scrap it and begin again. I chose to work much smaller, using watercolors and in a looser style.

Process of this simple watercolor:

Windmill in Napa

Section of a larger painting from my vineyard series.

3 canvas panels, 15″ x 60″ each
Organizing my paintings and sending some out for framing so that I can get them up at wineries.

“Along the path at Scuplterra”

9″ x 12″ Aquarelle Arches watercolor block

This is #17 of my daily painting and even though I didn’t get this one done in an hour or even a day, it needed to be completed. Friends of ours had brought us to Sculpterra Winery in Paso Robles and not only was the wine really good (“nummy” as one of our dear friends phrases it), the grounds that had meandering paths were filled with sculptures. 

Awhile ago I had begun a vineyard series and by the time I started on this, I was burned out on painting clusters of grapes so I put it away for quite a few months but pulled it from my “to do” stack a few days ago and completed it today. As I normally work, I began with a sketch to figure out my design then did a textured effect for the background with burnt sienna and finally went in with the detail work. Planning each project ahead of time with sketches and maintaining control of the paint and detail has typified my work but I have a goal to loosen up my style like so many amazing plein air, as well as studio, watercolorists that paint with broader strokes and washes.

Question to Artists… 

I have been debating whether or not to take an online art instruction class and would like to get other artists thoughts on the subject. Staying fresh and challenged in my art is important to me and it has been awhile since I’ve taken a class (which I always get so much out of) but I’ve never taken an online course and need to know if it is worth it. Someone on WordPress mentioned Roos Schuring and although her style is completely different from my own, her work intrigues me and I would love to learn from it. Since her class is a bit pricey, I thought I would ask around to other artists and see what you think. 

#14 Payette Lake

5″x7″ oil on canvas panel

There are so many beautiful areas in the United States and one of my favorites is Payette Lake. While traveling last summer to Boise Idaho, we were told that going up to McCall was a “must see”.  The town of McCall was such a pleasure to walk around with our dogs and there were so many great places to eat and of course, the view was stunning! The lake is a 5330 acre expanse of clean, glacial water at an elevation of approximately 5,000 feet in the forests of  Idaho. An added bonus was to see the lake with the boats harbored as the sun was going down. Here is my impression of the evening scene.