Thursday, November 17, 2011

Aspen Glow and Peak

Another 16 x 20 of aspen from Rampart Range with Pikes Peak in the distance. This was from the Lovell Gulch Trail. I hiked it in October and didn't bring my camera. This view was worth going back
to get a photo reference.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Aspen Energy

I've been waiting for months to paint this, from Rampart Range when the aspen were turning for the last time, what a beautiful drive. There is a series I want to do of this, really looking forward to painting more. The energy of the color was fabulous. I just read in Frank Waters book "Colorado" how settlers sometimes thought the bright sunlit aspen were a forest fire. The colors are the same, brilliant reds and yellows and oranges just glow with the afternoon backlighting.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Water Lilies

16 x 20 oil from a photo I took several years ago when Denver Botanical Gardens had its "Monet" Garden. It was lovely and not as far of a trip as Giverny. Had wanted to paint this scene for awhile, just before my trip to Taos, and just varnished it today. I like the composition and texture.

Aspen near Cripple Creek

They were really stunning this year, and you had to be there to believe all the color variety. Backlit against the shadowy hills, they were a color riot. For sale at Seven Arrows Gallery in Woodland Park

Aspen in Fall

A 6 x 8 oil done on location on Rampart Range Road after a hike there with my dog. It was getting later in the day, and skies were overcast. Made for more brilliant color without so much contrast. This one is framed and for sale at Seven Arrows Gallery in Woodland Park.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

"Simply Taos"

A 6 x 8 on location behind the Millicent Rogers museum at an invitational paintout from the PPANM group. It was fun painting with a group, and their show "Light and Landscape" at the museum was fabulous and well attended. In all, I completed 26 paintings in the 21 days I was there, all on location, except the few larger studio pieces I did on the days it rained all day. These were from photo references I took while on my walks. Staying in Arroyo Seco at the Waters Foundation was inspiring, and simple, as my little casita didn't require much upkeep, except for refilling water jugs. The sunsets and storms were spectacular, and there were wonderful animal sound effects from the little farms nearby. I'm still studying the on location sketches I did, and am not ready to give some of them up, as I learned a lot from the true colors of the place.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

its August Already!

Confession:I have been painting and not blogging. Life always seems to speed up in August, and this year is no exception. In June, we had a wonderful paint-out and art show for the Pikes Peak Plein Air Painters at 7 Arrows Gallery in Woodland Park. I was thrilled to win an honorable mention award after painting for a week on location

with many talented artists from across the region. This is my submission of aspen on Rampart Range, which I've painted before on location, but never in the evening. The trunks turned really purple with the changing light, and I wanted to capture it. This year, in retrospect, I've noticed most of my paintings contain trees,and I've been drawn to them. I've just learned trees are a symbol of feminine energy. I need this gift from the trees. I'm humbled to realize we intuit more than we know, if we just pay attention.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Painting Again

It's been awhile, busy with work, and teaching a new class and 2 clinicals took all my energy in April and May. Finally, the end of May, a beautiful Wednesday morning, several of us went to a place off Hwy 67 in Woodland Park. It was gorgeous, the willows were just starting to turn, and I did a little 8 x 10 oil on location. It made me want to paint again. I've learned with plein aire (painting on location) to paint fast, and can knock something out in 1-2 h

ours max, because you have to. Plein aire has made me be a more observant and prolific painter. You learn to put in what's important, and leave out what is not. I hope this translates to all of my life.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

San Luis, Colorado

From a recent trip returning from Taos, the light was wonderful on this colorful barn and trees. I had to stop and get photo references so I could paint it. That glow from the orange trees (even in winter they are orange) and blue shadows gets me every time I pass through this colorful town.

Winter Tree

I did the original painting of this in 2002, after a trip to Taos in winter. The campground was covered in snow, and I loved the patterns and texture. I didn't quite get them right, and passing through Taos recently I got a better look. The campground was still covered in deep snow, and it was a drive-by quick look, but it helped. This is the rework, and I'm more pleased with the variety of texture.

Roses and Grapes

The last silk flower arrangement, with some plastic grapes. The vase is from Siena, always a good idea to buy a souvenier you love and can use. This one is a square format, as I liked the shape better. It gets stretched from the blog format, but it is really square. The others got stretched, too. They are not as wide as the photo makes them.

Peonies and Fruit

Another vase of silk flowers, this time with apples and pears. I've always been in awe of Ovanes Berberian's peonies and peaches, and the buttery strokes and accurate colors of flower and light. I would love to master getting just the right color in just the right place like he does. It's a wonderful challenge to try, and to learn.

Flower Series-Hydrangeas and Pears

After the silk poppies, I decided to do the other silk flowers I got 7 years ago intending to paint them. Good thing they lasted! The pears were not ripe, so I decided to put them in. By the second and third days, I had to eat one, the next painting only has one pear for this reason.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Murano Walk

Painting is 16 x 20 from photo reference of Murano Italy in June, 2005. Loved the huge pink flowering tree hanging over the walkway and out to the canal.

Burano Blue

I loved this scene, with the laundry enhancing the view just as much as the geraniums. Really loved that the laundry was all the same color as the wall. That's what happens when you buy colors you love, everything will match!

Murano Window Garden

Another painting from a photo reference of Venice, Italy 2005. I've wanted to do these for years, and as the current landscape is white, white, and more white, the color was welcome. I love paying attention to the colors in the shadows as well as in the light, and the reflected color adds realism. It's a fun process.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Winter Poppies

I always miss my summer poppies (they only last about a week), and last time I was in Taos, bought these silk ones I keep in a vase to enjoy year round. Poppies don't do well as cut flowers, but I love the bright colors. I put them in front of my window and painted them.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Santa Fe Trail California

This was a scene I found while driving across the desert to California in the fall of 2006. It was a long drive, and the dry desert scenery was not inspiring for most of the trip. This colorful train appeared near the highway,as visual interest when I needed it most. We had a parallel path for many miles, and towards the end of the desert I passed it. When I finally reached California and stopped for gas, it reappeared just past the Joshua tree with the misty mountains in the distance. A beautiful scene. Since, I have learned of the recently remodeled Santa Fe depot in San Bernadino,keeping alive an important part of history. The Santa Fe RR really opened the west over a long formidable desert. And kept me company and gave me a painting.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Aspen Overlook

This one is large, 24 x 30. It still seemed too small to fit in the grandeur of the scene. If this was part of your commute between offices, wouldn't you do it on a Sunday so you could take all day to stop and enjoy the views. I did.

Even a day isn't long enough, you just want to be there and stay there in that visual feast of color and light. (Fall 2007 between Durango and Ouray.)

I've wanted to paint this for awhile, and the size of the canvas made me think I couldn't do it all at once because you can blend edges better if the adjoining paint is also wet. I learned that I could do the lay-in, then finish the work in sections, the trick was to have enough paint and work the edges accordingly.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Two more peaks

I did these two 1-20 and 1-21. The clouds were moving fast this morning, creating abstract form with rapidly changing soft and hard edges.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Renewing the Roses

I reworked the foreground in this one, the roses didn't seem quite finished. They were washed out by bright light in the reference photo, but didn't read right in the painting. Finishing them to the next degree seemed to tie the painting together.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Fresh Snow

Fresh snow on the peak, the little clouds above can be blowing snow with a wind, or real clouds. This morning they are real clouds, with a welcome blue sky!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Aspen and Pikes Peak

This one I just completed from a smaller plein aire I had done in the summer and a photo reference I had taken on site. Amazing how the plein aire gave the more accurate colors and the shadows were really off in the photo. This is why painting on location is so hard and so good, you get the real information!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Snowing on the Peak

This is #7 in the series, 3 more to go. Hoping for more snow on the peak, this morning its mostly granite. This was just a little dusting at 3:30 pm on 1-4-11.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Two more peaks

The first one at 1:15, the second at 4:30 pm. Love those sunsets this time of the year.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Twin Peaks

First one at 7:00 am, next one at 7:40 am, same subject, different light. I've always been in awe of this mountain that towers over us in Colorado Springs, and how it looks so different in different seasons and weather and times of day. There is not much snow yet this year, so the rocky crags appear and disappear into the shadows sometimes in a few seconds time. It's a good study.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Peak out My Window

This is my view of Pikes Peak, while I'm sitting here (minus the foreground of street and houses.) It was so pink at 7 am, I decided to paint it. In the time I got out my little canvas and paint it changed dramatically, then again in another 10 minutes. It probably didn't even take that long. Painting this fast is a challenge, but a canvas of 4 inches by 6 inches helps.