Music Star

I painted this star quickly this morning.  Right now this one is really wet, when it dries I will correct some of the lines and notes a little, and work with the shadows a little more.  But I’m impulsive and want to post it now.

I love music.  My kids take piano lessons with an incredible, inspiring, loving, demanding teacher.  She’s the best.  Her daughter made origami Christmas ornament stars out of sheet music and gave them as gifts.  I got one, it is darling.  I love it.  So I decided to paint a still life of it.  I didn’t notice until I was neatly finished that I had painted the back side of the star. The other side has a nice design, too.   I like the white star on white background.  Geoff is always saying “more paint” to me because he knows that’s my aesthetic, so here it is.  More paint.  I’ll write more about wonderful Geoff later.  He told me I could and he will give me a list of adjectives I can use on him and his work.  I’m still waiting for the list.

8×10 oil on canvasFullSizeRender-8


Study #1

I’m starting a big project that will most likely take me half the year to complete.  I like having something big that I can whittle  away at.  This is the first of a series of studies I plan to do in prep for the big one.  I decided to put up a few pics that show my process from drawing to finished.  It’s always a little different, but I’ve found that if I take the time to measure, map out, and get a good drawing at the front end, everything else eventually falls into place.  This one I decided to paint on a sky/cloud painting I did months ago.

11X14 oil on canvas

Steps 1&2, drawing and skin (I think it looks like he should be manning the Pearly Gates)


Step 3, clothesFullSizeRender-6

Step 4, adjust all the colors.  FullSizeRender-5

All done with this one.  Maybe I’ll sign it.

More to come like it, and then the biggie.

Just a Head


What if you were just a head?  Over the years I have overheard my brother-in-law say this to my sister many times.  Always out of the blue.  They will be sitting the couch together watching a movie and he’ll turn to her and say “What if you were just a head?”  So here she is as just a head, floating over a Northern California spring landscape.  I omitted the cows, although I thought of having them float around with her.  We all got a good laugh.  This one was fun to paint because I was trying out a new (to me) technique where you paint the entire canvas a color, raw umber here, start without a drawing of any sort (I looked at a photo), and wipe back the lights and move around the paint until it looks like something.  Then I painted with color because she looked a little monstrous in monochromatic raw umber.  We thought she should be pretty, because she is. She displays it proudly, I think.

I painted this Feb 2015, one of my first portraits non college years.

16X20 oil on canvas


Senior Portrait

Last December my friend asked what I was up to with my art and I showed her a few photos of portraits I had just finished.  Later that day she asked if I would paint her daughters portrait before she heads off to college.  I was excited to give it a shot.  I am thrilled with how it turned out.  I especially enjoyed painting the shadow on her cheek created by a small part in her hair, her green eyes, and the delicate “K” necklace she was wearing.  But hair is alway my favorite feature to paint.  I’m honored that my friend liked my work and had faith that I could capture her daughter’s look and personality.  Such a beautiful girl!

I took the painting in to a professional art print reproduction place and had it scanned. Great image!  Here it is.

9″X12″ oil on canvas


Atticus and Ruby


Here I go.  I plan on writing a bit about each piece I post.  I’d love to share my work with you.

Atticus and Ruby 12″x18″ oil on canvas

This painting is of my cousins beautiful kids.  My cousin saw the 3 portraits I did of my sisters kids and either she asked or I offered to paint her children.  I chose to paint the kids with contrasting backgrounds,  they will be framed together as one piece.  In college I loved the art of the Baroque period with dramatic contrast between light and dark & the work of Wayne Thibaud and his use of color in shadow and how he laid down paint- like frosting on a cake.  Some of this is reflected here and really in all my paintings.

My cousin is an artist as well and she is painting still lifes of lemons and pears for me in exchange!   Seems appropriate since she’s from Southern and I’m from Northern California.  Anyone from Ukiah has a special place in their heart for pears.  And I’m sure she had lemon trees in her yard.  Grandma did down there.