Have a great weekend! Happy Friday night.


Smile!  Life is good.


Oh Watercolors, where have you been all my life?


Happy Birthday!  I celebrated the April & May birthdays with my running group and got a stack of cards from everyone.

My birthday is on Mother’s Day this year.  I’ve requested a box of chocolate from my family.

I think there are close to 20 women in our running group and they/we celebrate every  possible occasion.  Lots of wine and coffee, although I don’t drink either.  At our last birthday celebration back in March we celebrated 5 birthdays with everyone giving everyone gifts.  It was becoming a little much so they decided to back off the gifts and just give cards.  All my cards were very funny.  I had the idea to paint little birthday cards for my running buddies as their birthdays come up.  Here’s my first watercolor cupcake.  I did a few in oils last year, but holy cow I love the simplicity of watercolors.  I have quickly learned that simplicity is key.  I tried one other cupcake before this and ended up ripping it to pieces.  I was trying to paint like I would with oils building layers and it was an absolute mess.  Plus I only have a few colors so I’m really limited.  I love it.


Katie Peak WIP


This might look familiar!  But it’s a new little 8×10 that I started tonight.  I blocked in the most basic colors and values.  I like the warm start that it’s off to.  The foothill painting I did for the art auction was square and 8×8 and I thought it would look better on a rectangular canvas so the hills would have a little more breathing room on the edges.  My friend and running partner asked me if I would paint a 2nd Katie Hill for her.  She tried to buy the art auction piece last Saturday but she was bidding by proxy and was outbid.  Which is nice because she drove the price up a bit and made more money for the school.  And I get to paint another one.  It’s called Katie Peak because my friend used to hike in the hills with her kids when they were little and they named this hill “Katie Peak” to motivate little Katie to hike up it.  Little Katie is starting grad school this fall and her mom thought this would make a nice gift.  Very thoughtful and I’m flattered.  I’ll post the finished piece in a few days, I need to patiently wait for it to dry and then give it another pass, or two.

Here are both Katie Peak’s together.  The sky color is bluer in the WIP.

Watercolor Cuties & Oil Cuties & another marathon

Whenever I just want to paint something, I grab a bunch of little cuties.  You know, the little mandarin oranges.  Are they called Cuties around the world?  I think I like my oil painting better…but this is watercolor #1.  Or really #2 if you count the little Self Portrait I did in 2003.  I see one little cutie in there that I like.  The light was right overhead so the shadows were a little, meh.  I thought the watercolors were fun to play with.  Those tubes are so tiny that I could barely read the colors on the labels.

The commission piece I’m working on is nearly done and coming along, I took it to my class tonight and worked on it.  I attend a painting class once a week on Tuesday nights and usually there are 5 or so people that attend.  But today I was the only one that showed up, so it was a quiet night and I got to pick Geoff’s brain all evening.  Check out his work, you will not be disappointed.  Geoff Krueger is a fantastic artist and awesome teacher.  And a great cheerleader who only has encouraging and positive things to say.  But he tells me when something “bothers him” and needs fixing.  Here’s the little guy I worked on today.  Isn’t he cute?!IMG_4944

And on another side note, today was day ONE of training for my next race.  My sister sent me her training plan for the week and I’m doing it along with her.  My little sister Sara has tried 5 times to qualify for the Boston Marathon.  I thought she was ready to throw in the towel but she has found a running coach that is going to train her through this training cycle.  And she’s forwarding the plans to me.  Today’s workout kicked my rear.  Last time I ran a marathon with her she missed qualifying by 90 seconds. But I qualified because I am older than her and the qualifying time is 5 minutes slower.  Poor young thing.  So I’m going to run along and try to help her, my older sister Jeni helped her in the last race at the Phoenix Marathon and made it look way too easy, which made little sis mad.  So I promised that I would not make it look easy.  And I won’t.FullSizeRender-92



The Work of Jill Kuhn!

Hi Everyone,

Today I’m sharing the work of the delightful Jill Kuhn. I chose to share her scrabble “Happy Birthday” painting because it’s whimsical and a lot of fun and I grew up playing scrabble.  And maybe because my birthday is next week. If you look through her work you will see that all of her watercolors have that fun whimsical flair. I also love that colorful floral watercolor that’s up on the header of her website. Along with many other people, I have enjoyed seeing and reading about your work Jill!  And she shares my name. 🙂 Her work has inspired me to get cracking with the watercolors too…

Does everyone already follow Jill and I was late to the party?!?

Jill's Art Journal

Did you know that today is National Scrabble Day?

I decided to play along and join my friend, Charlie at Doodlewash in celebrating a National day today with a doodlewash.  If you want to know more about Charlie or a doodlewash, please check out his awesome blog!

Did you know that Alfred Butts invented the game, Scrabble?  I had no clue…(oh, that’s a different game!)  Mr. Butts was a shy statistician with a degree in architecture, a mathematical mind and an aversion to spelling – go figure!  If you’d like to learn more about this letters game, I’d suggest you check out Wikipedia at this link:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scrabble

Since today is also Charlie’s birthday, I decided to create this message for him:


No butts about it, Charlie is an FANTASTIC artist and a great friend!

HAPPY Birthday Charlie!  🙂

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School Art Auction


There it is all framed.  I love the simple reveal “floating” frame, it’s my favorite.  This frame always makes a painting look finished and professional.  The little painting sold for what I would sell it for, so that’s great.  I also helped with the 4th grade class art project that was sold in the live auction, this little hill painting was in the silent auction, and it did a little too well and we were not able to buy it, to my daughters great disappointment.  I forgot to take a picture of the finished class project, oops.  I know someone did, so I’ll track it down.

AND, thank you for the great feedback on what type of watercolors to buy, it helped a lot.  I ended up buying W & Newton professional grade tubes, just the basic colors to start.  The colors I use the most with oils.  I also bought a little set of pans for my daughter that I will try out.  Before I wrote the last post, I didn’t even know they were called pans.  We will see how it goes…

Happy Monday!  I love seeing what you’re creating.  Jill