"Paintings have a life of their own that derives from the painter's soul." Vincent Van Gogh

Friday, February 28, 2014

Portrait Society

Nona / oil on cardboard / approximately 12x11

I decided to take my oil paints to the open portrait session this past Wednesday after spending several months drawing in graphite and Conte. I have not painted an oil portrait from life since I took a workshop many, many years ago at the Scottsdale Artists' School. But it was time to take the plunge and the life figure painting sessions at the Museum provided me with the push I needed. If not now, when? Nona is painted on cardboard prepared with a cool gray ground of gesso. I just love that surface for practice.

Monday, February 24, 2014


Ballerina #3 / 16x20 / 

Ballerina #10 / 20x16
After a hiatus of about 2 years of not entering any shows, I decided to throw my hat into the competition ring once more. I am not exactly sure why or what it was that prompted me at this point in time, but I am happy to report that two of my favorite ballerinas were accepted and will be traveling to San Diego, CA this May for the 44th National Exhibit of Women Artists of the West! Oh, happy day!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Art Mash 3

Lauren / oil on linen panel / 18x14

This Sunday was the 3rd open studio Art Mash that I have attended and my jitters are finally calming down, thank goodness. I was so unhappy with last weeks effort that it took all my courage to post that photo on my blog. But, of course, I know that the development of an artist occurs only after putting paint on miles and miles of canvas. Some work will be better than others no doubt. This week, I am happier with my effort - especially the color in the models face. She had such beautiful skin. I am also happy that I did not try to be completely literal in my interpretation but allowed myself artistic freedom of thought and feeling as I painted her. I think that has to do with finally settling myself down and not caring about anything other than to take maximum advantage of the opportunity to paint her.

Thursday, February 13, 2014


Final Approach / 18 x 24
One of my favorite steeplechase paintings was sold to a buyer in Florida! Makes me so happy!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

And Now a Drummer!

Tony Savage / Sepia chalk on tan paper / 14 x 11
Tony is a local big band drummer and band leader. He posed holding a cymbal from his drum kit but I chose not to include it as I wanted to focus on his features. I tried out a new chalk dark sepia pencil from Koh-i-Noor. It was medium hard and nice to draw with but did not erase well so I was forced to be precise with my lines.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

To Contemplate What Lies Beyond

To Contemplate What Lies Beyond / oil on canvas panel / 20 x 16

Oh my gosh! She was great fun to paint!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

A Gracefully Musical Morning!

Grace Hutchison Gatsby / red and white chalk on toned tan paper / 14 x 11

This morning's portrait session was very well attended - in fact, it was jam packed! I chose a corner spot with Grace looking away from me and was able to capture this sliver of a pose. Grace, who is a local musician (and treated us by playing her CD as we worked) was quite pleased with this drawing. She is going to show it to her art director for possible use as the back cover of her next CD! Imagine that! I was happy to email her a photo - but even if it never happens - I am happy! :-)

Here is a copy of her internet bio that I found on Google:

Grace Hutchison (Grace Gatsby) is a Reno, Nevada-based singer/songwriter. Raised in the Black Hills of South Dakota in a musical household, Grace began playing piano and clarinet at an early age. In her teens she trained as a classical soprano and sang in a folk band with her father, leading to nearly 200 shows and her first taste of the recording studio. At 19 she moved to Southern California where she studied guitar, piano, and vocal technique at the Musician's Institute. In 2003, she fell in love with the culture and natural landscape of Reno on a visit. After deciding to make the ‘Biggest Little City’ her home, she immersed herself in the rich arts community, working at the Reno Philharmonic for six years. She established the art-rock band The Grace Gatsbies, performing sold out shows. In 2008, she was named one of Reno's Top 101 Most Influential Performing Artists of the last 25 years (Reno News and Review). Her debut album, Strange Attractors, was released in the fall of 2012.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Raining Horses

Raining Horses / 18x24 / oil on linen panel
I usually try harder to be more creative with my titles but got stuck on this one - so
Raining Horses it is.!