Sunday, September 27, 2009

Evening Ocean and Cliffs Oil Painting

Evening Ocean and Cliffs • 6" x 6" x 2" • oil on board

I love to study the ocean sunset with the sunlight turning into a moonlit sea. The sound of the waves crashing, trapped between the cliffs, soothingly rolling over the sand toward my feet. The kids climbing on the cliffs lit by the moonlight. Laughter in the night air. The smell of the ocean and bonfires. People scurrying across the sand, others laying in the sand and watching the sky, listening to the sounds of the sea. The California sea, an amazing place to be.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Dapple Grey Horse Painting - cool colors

Grey Dapple • 18" x 24" • oil on canvas

I painted this stunning grey simultaneously with another canvas in warmer colors. I finished this one quite a few months ago and put the warmer version aside. Everyone has been enjoying this painting and complementing it. Yesterday I went to my studio and put another layer on the warm version, today another. I am not looking at this painting or the photo, yet, they are similar. It will be interesting to compare the two paintings side by side. Tonight I pulled this one up and it was interesting to see the areas I've been struggling with without a reference photo.

Tomorrow I will be riding a 17 hand grey warmblood so he has been on my mind. My daughter looks great jumping on him. It will be my first lesson in about 7 years. I have been lifting weights, running and doing yoga to get ready. It will be quite a different feeling than galloping through the beautiful California hills bareback.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Cupcakes Challenge, Wills Birthday

Wills Birthday Cupcakes / 09-09-09 • 8" x 10" • oil on board

I always say I am my nephews square root. My birthday is 3-3 and his is 9-9. I decided to paint 3 cupcakes for him on his birthday; little did I know, it would take me 6 days. I started the painting on a very smooth surface with a layer of purple and blue outlines and shadows. Next I started working in the colors; I only used red, yellow, blue and white on this painting. The frosting is painted extremely thick using layers with a lot of shadow build up on the board. I saved the confetti for last and had a hard time applying the yellow and green without the white frosting and background mixing into my fun, bright colors. Of course, I dotted the i in Lori with a confetti candy. On the chocolate cupcake in the top right I left the white board showing along the paper wrapper so the viewer could see the original surface and the build up of paint elsewhere. What a challenge! I couldn't stop painting this and to make it nine I may have to paint it two more times. Happy Birthday Will! I love you.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Texture, Color, Light and Technique - Horseback Riding

Wild Horses • 48" x 48" • Mixed Media on Canvas • Available as Giclee Print

As I was painting my cupcakes, which I will post tomorrow, I was thinking of my Wild Horse painting with swirls of color and light. The bright colored sprinkles I added to the cupcakes are similar to these colors. My strokes of color around the image are also a technique that I have always used but is not in my abstacts and plein aire paintings. Wild Horses has a lot of texture as does the fronsting on the cupcakes. When creating this painting I also added sparkling clear fiber strands and drew with oil sticks. I started this painting by outlining the horses in black on a white canvas. It also brings to light my work as a designer, as it is very graphic.

I will be taking my first riding lesson in about 7 years at my daughters hunter/jumper barn this week. I haven't ridden in a few months and it is going to be quite different than the way I've been riding, which is mostly on trails and some dressage work in the arena. I will be riding the sweetest 17 hand warmblood and I have been riding horses under 16 hands. Quite exciting!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Misty Morning Row, Sausalito Art Festival

Misty Morning Row • 18" x 24" • oil on canvas

My husband and I went to the Sausalito Art Festival near my studio yesterday. We saw some wonderful jewelry, sculptures, paintings, etc.... People were out having a great time enjoying art and music. Afterward people were out in full force walking, biking, rowing, boating, eating and drinking. It was a fun energy as our beach and harbor are normally very quiet. The booths are set up on the lawn where my dogs run when we take quick breaks at the studio.

After the festival we went to the new wine bar where we watched the kayakers come in as the fog rolled in behind them. We shared a flight of fabulous wines. We also met the owners of a new Culinary Academy in the same building and tasted a delicious dish they were preparing. A few boaters tied up at the dock to dine. Others were coming off their boats to enjoy the evening.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Plein Aire Dock with Sea Lions and Buoy with Gulls

Painting from life is such a learning experience. I arrived at this Sausalito harbor ready to paint boats on a cold, foggy and windy morning. I was bundled up in my sweatshirt with my hood on. I had to find a place to sit where the wind would be blocked so I walked down a pier and set up on a dock behind some rocks. As I painted the gull flew away, the sun came out and the sea lions lifted their heads. I originally thought they were rocks. The fog rolled away and it was so hot that I had to peel off my jacket and ended up burning in my tank top. Kids hopped on the rocks looking for crabs, dogs played, people strolled by. Some tourists from Hong Kong came to talk to me and take photos. Then I had to pack up my things and head home. It was a great way to spend the day.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Full Moon, Planet and Clouds

Moon nests and Planet rests on cloud pillows as the forms float by in the California sky.

The coming of the full moon has been incredible in this heat. It is accompanied by amazing clouds and the planet to the right. My son grabbed the camera last night and started taking gorgeous photos through our window. I went outside and took a whole sequence of the clouds covering and uncovering the moon and planet. I wanted to lay down in the grass and sleep underneath the moon and stars.

Saturn is in the Southeast in the evening sky, but I think this Planet is Mars which is in the East. If anyone knows the answer to this please comment.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Beautiful Reflections and Hot Weather on my run today

Ballet - Yoga without music - Boy Runs to Ocean

Boy Running to the Water • 18" x 24" • oil on canvas

Boy Running to the Water • 18" x 24" • oil on canvas

While I was finishing this painting of a boy running on the beach to the ocean, my dogs disappeared and I couldn't stop painting!

These photographs were both taken in my studio on different walls. The top image is on the wall where I painted it with a light on. The bottom image is on the opposite wall with only the skylight.

After Yoga Monday I took my first ballet class. It is much harder than I thought. Listening for the beat of the music, keeping your legs straight, lunges, balancing, movement, grace etc... Ballet really was more difficult than yoga in many ways.

Tuesday morning I took the dogs running on a mountain that I avoided all summer due to ticks. They had a blast. After that I went to a figure drawing group with some fabulous local artists. It was wonderful and I really immersed myself back into it. We did a lot of quick sketches.

This morning my yoga teacher forgot the music and I had a much more intense workout. I think it really had us all focused. Ran with the dogs in Sausalito this afternoon where I pulled out my iphone to take more heron photos in the water along the houseboats. Quite colorful with some amazingly clear reflections, then brought the dogs to my studio and tied the big one to a chair he dragged the chair into the hallway and all the way to the front door of the building while I was emersed in a painting. I of course took photos.

Circling the Rabbit

click on photos to view larger

Gorgeous White Heron - Click on Photo for incredible detail

Black Vulture

Roadkill Rabbit

These beautiful birds were circling in the sky. They would land in a pine tree and then circle again. There were 3 black ones and they were clearly waiting for me to leave so they could eat the rabbit.

Drive and Jog by Photos

Click on Photo for amazing detail of this vultures wings

I have officially become a Taxi service and Dog Walker again with the beginning of school and kids activities. I have been keeping my camera with me while driving and my iphone for hiking and running. I have been capturing amazing photos of all of the birds of Northern California. The hardest is the red wing blackbird because you can only see the red under their wings when they fly in certain light and positions. I have many gorgeous photos from this week of the white pelicans but am going to put up a photo of a white heron circling along a creek while large black crows were circling a roadkill rabbit. I have zoomed in so you can see the amazing detail.