I’ve needed to put my sketchbook and paints aside for a short period of time in order to mat and frame quite a few of my paintings for three upcoming art shows. Being an “empty nester” is a pretty exciting chapter in my life and I am able to pursue my art as well as be involved with so many amazing artists. Having 9+ paintings would be a pretty penny to send out to a professional framer so I’ve spent a lot of time matting the artwork myself, having glass cut and this weekend my husband will cut the frames for me., then the final stage will be putting it altogether. It is a lengthy project but I actually love being a part of this stage preparing my artwork for shows.
The Thousand Oaks Art Association is a wonderful group of talented people and I am so pleased to have two of my paintings in this show. If anyone is local, come on by to see all the beautiful work on display.
Vasquez Rocks Park, Agua Dulce, CA
Tuesday, March 6th, was a windy day but beautiful and the temperature was perfect for painting “En Plein Air” with a group of friends. I am a native Californian but have not been back to this area since I was a child and now that I have been back, I kick myself for waiting so many years to do so. This is a perfect area for so many sports along with photography, painting or just hanging out to enjoy the beauty.
Vasquez Rocks was home to the Shoshone and Tataviam peoples and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1972. These iconic rock formations known as “hogback ridges” are steeply ridged strata that sit along the San Andreas Fault system and of course, we as Californian’s have to deal with the occasional earthquake now and then because of this fault system.
This area has been used to film motion pictures, television and advertising since 1935 but prominently since 1963 with episodes of the Outer Limits, the Wild Wild West, Blazing Saddles, The Flinstones and Star Trek’s episode “Arena”, where Captain Kirk rolls a boulder on the reptiloid alien, Gorn. The prominent rock formation has been nicknamed “Kirk’s Rock” since it had been featured in a several Star Trek episodes. Taco Bell, Nike and Bank of America have shot commercials here and there are so many more, too numerous to mention but interesting to look up.
I continue to set aside days to paint outdoors and am loving the time but with all this amazing reference material, it’s time to head back into the studio. I consider myself a perpetual student and look forward to the challenge and practice of this technique. I am encouraged by what I was able to accomplish in a few hours and encourage any other studio painters to grab their gear and head outside.
There are so many wonderful sites to visit in Southern California and if you like the desert and are traveling in the area, definitely make a point to explore this area. Happy travels!
When thinking about the normal four seasons, most would say that Southern California has maybe two of the four. Well, as someone who has been born and raised here, we do have four seasons, they just aren’t the norm for most places. The seasons here are Spring, Summer, wind and fire. The central and southern part of the state have had a drought going for a few years now and it was so nice to finally have gottten the rain we needed and the hills and mountains around us were filled with beautiful wildflowers and greenery everywhere.Generally the summers are hot and during the season of Fall, the hot “Santa Ana” winds start up causing fires but things have started all too soon. Sadly, three separate fires have started this past July weekend. Two in the Santa Barbara County and one called the “Alamo Fire” south of Santa Maria.View from the vineyards of Arroyo Grande and Santa Maria southward.
Our fire season has officially begun and our prayers go out to the brave firefighters, police, many workers and all who have been affected by this.
Time for a couple of changes. In a drawing or painting, the artist will draw a viewers eye to a specific area first, called the focal point, then with color, value and shapes the viewers eye then moves throughout the rest of the art. Each new blog I post will be that focal point.
Santa Rosa Valley after a recent rain, this is what I was able to capture!