Monday, August 31, 2015

Cloudy Clouds

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Here's another version of my on-top-of-the-butte-in-Eugene-vista (complete with super-catchy title). I decided to focus more on the sky with this one.

My picture of the scene actually has the previous painting in the holder, but I did both of these from life. You can see that it's pretty crispy here in Eugene (now, at the end of summer), but it makes for some great contrast!

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Layers Upon Layers

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Before my trip to the Sierra's, I got in shape by climbing to the top of a local butte with all my gear. On one of these trips I was by myself so I painted at the top. I had a lot of fun playing around with clouds, as I haven't paint much of them from life. They move fast, which is the challenge. But when they're in layers like this, you can sort of gather information from all over. This painting comes (as you can see) complete with authentic grass and dirt from the area. : ) Unless you want me to wipe it off.

Saturday, August 29, 2015


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In the Sierra's where we painted, it was pretty warm during the day but cold at night. My "pajamas" kept me warm (in addition to my sleeping bag), but were also what I usually kept on for the first painting of the day, before breakfast. On this particular morning I was near camp and spotted by one of our group. Many thanks to Suzie for capturing the real me! Keep in mind we had no access to mirrors on this trip.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Rock Face

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It's probably becoming clear to you already that I was quite enamored with the rocks in the Sierra's. I called them my outdoor still life subject. For some reason I find them much easier to paint than trees.

Just around the bend from this spot, on the same day, my pal Lori was painting a lovely scene. Unfortunately she hasn't posted the painting yet, but here's Lori's website. She's amazing! -->

Thursday, August 27, 2015


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These white rocks were everywhere near where we were camped. There was so much to paint in our general vicinity, we never had to go far. This particular scene was a short walk around the lake. Paul walked by as I was painting this and he said, "Looks good. Don't mess it up." Ha!

And speaking of Paul, check out this lovely tribute to him written by Lori Putnam. You'll also see more pictures from our trip, including the helicopter that hauled him out.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

High Sierra

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Well, we survived the mountains, but only barely. No bears or mountain lions. And though we saw lots of smoke from the fires around us, we never saw flames. Unfortunately the only disaster was a fall at the end, on the hike out. My new buddy Paul Kratter fell down a steep, slippery section of trail, dislocated his patella and broke his femur. The poor guy had to be hauled out by helicopter.

Here's our cast of characters (left to right, photo taken at the beginning of the trip): Aimee Erikson, Ernesto Nemesio, me, Bill Cone, Lori Putnam, Suzie Baker, Paul Kratter. More photos and paintings to come!

Saturday, August 22, 2015


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Pre-posted while I'm off painting in the Sierra's. I won't be able to ship anything until (at the latest) August 25th.

These aren't cows! I have shied away from painting horses my whole life because they have such specific proportions and I've been told by "experts" that it's tough to get it right. But screw it! I have a deep affection for these horses as I visit them almost every year in Germany. So I decided to just give it a go. And they look like horses to me.

This is my last pre-post. Today I should have hiked back down the mountain with my group, and will be visiting a friend for a few days in Pleasanton before I head back home with my report. Stay tuned!

Friday, August 21, 2015

Shy Cow

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Pre-posted while I'm off painting in the Sierra's. I won't be able to ship anything until (at the latest) August 25th.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Move Cow

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Pre-posted while I'm off painting in the Sierra's. I won't be able to ship anything until (at the latest) August 25th.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

What's Up Cow

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Pre-posted while I'm off painting in the Sierra's. I won't be able to ship anything until (at the latest) August 25th.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Cautious Cow

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Pre-posted while I'm off painting in the Sierra's. I won't be able to ship anything until (at the latest) August 25th.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Cow Comfort

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Pre-posted while I'm off painting in the Sierra's. I won't be able to ship anything until (at the latest) August 25th.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Cow Powow

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The last few days I've been working on a series of cow paintings that have brought me much joy! I'll talk about the joy part later, but for now I have more immediate news...

I am heading to California tomorrow to join 6 other artists on a hiking/camping/plein air trip into the Sierras! I'm really excited about this trip, because not only will it be ALL about art, but I will be hanging with some pretty awesome artists! We will have our camping gear hauled in on pack animals (mules I think?) and our food cooked for us - all we have to carry is our painting gear. I'll be bringing my camera too and will give a full report when I return. That is, if I'm not eaten by bears or mountain lions, or fall off a cliff (if I say it, it won't happen).

Meanwhile, I'll pre-post the cows so you can enjoy them while I'm away. As usual, I won't be able to ship anything until I return (as late as the 25th). Toodles!

Friday, August 14, 2015



I've redone this one a couple of times and decided I'm STILL NOT proud of it enough to sell. Alas. But it does illustrate a point I've been promising to make.

This is my final one from Hood River. And it has lots of layers going back into the distance. They say as stuff goes further back it gets cooler because of "atmosphere." I've realized that if you can keep your palette organized as you make your layers, it's much easier to do this, because often the difference between one layer and the next is really, really subtle, and it takes seeing the two colors right next to each other to really get it. So I've made this example, from the photo, taking samples of the colors from each layer and putting them in order (the light side and shadow side of each layer), in the same order I try to mix them on my palette. I haven't gotten a good picture of this on my actual palette because ... well because by the time I think of taking a photo it's gotten messy, but the concept is still a good one.

Notice that the lights get darker as they go back, and the darks get lighter, and in general the values get closer together and not nearly so "contrasty." I've been doing lots of driving this summer, and really noticing this happening as I stare out the window at the landscapes around me. Try it! But uhhhh, watch the road too!

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Fertile Valley

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This is my second painting from Hood River. My friends and I were at a park that I'm pretty sure is called Panoramic Point. I was especially inspired by the fields of growing things (orchards, I think?). There was TONS to choose from, but no perfect scene, so I mixed and matched different elements from different parts of the view. It makes me very afraid every time I do this, but I seem to get better each time, and so less afraid.

After we left Hood River there was a plein air competition there. My friend Kathleen won first place with this beautiful painting, done from (I think) the same place, on a different day. You go girl!

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Over Hill and Dale

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As promised, (a while ago) here is my first Hood River painting. It is the end of summer here in Oregon, and dry as a bone. All our grass is golden, which makes for some really lovely contrast! I especially love the colors that happen in the shadows on the grass.

My friend's, Patti and Cathleen, were painting just up the path, around the bend to the right, just out of sight. They were my lovely companions on this trip. Here they are standing in front of our hobbit-sized airbnb lodgings.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

The Bachelorette

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There are plenty of choices here for our young bachelorette. Tall ones. Green ones. Which one do you think she'll end up with?

Saturday, August 08, 2015

Only in a Pink Paradise

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I've gotten several recent requests to put out a rose ArtByte demo. I'm on it! Along with a whole long list of other ones. And I know I've been saying that for a while, so I apologize. It is going to happen. Eventually. (sheepish grin)