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Spring Radiance

  Spring Radiance 12 x 12 watercolor on paper  Newest painting of the bright colors of a sunny Southern California spring day.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

California Art Club's 100th Annual Gold Medal Juried Exhibition April 3rd - 24th


Here is my miniature in the exhibit, I just found out it sold during the exhibition.Hill Side Oaks, 9 x 12

Bishop Peak Spring 14 x 14
The second painting in the exhibit.

Here is a link to the award winners:


Monday, March 21, 2011

The Allure of the High Horizon and the Far Away

I' ve been thinking  lately about why I choose the subjects I do and wanted to share some of my thoughts about the themes in my work.

  If there is level land where I live, it has subdivisions of houses (including mine) on it. From rural Massachusetts where I looked over a semi-groomed lawn of an acre, I now have a tiny postcard of a lawn, hemmed in by your typical California suburban fence.

These are two of the reasons why I paint what I paint. To see open spaces around me, I need to look up at the hills protected from development.What started as a necessity has turned into a preference. I love to paint panoramas with high horizons and create an atmospheric perspective. The folding, curving hills and ravines create such interest that the almost invariably blue sky is usually a very small part of my compositions. The distance in my paintings adds an emotional trigger for me of wanting to explore deeper into the landscape and the picture.

I wish I'd gotten here sooner. My paintings look like I am out in the middle of a wilderness, but they are often painted  roadside or in parking lots! When there are roads or buildings, I leave them out, trying to recreate what California  used to look like.

 Sunol In September 14 x 21

Hill Side Oaks 9 x 12 (in the CAC 100th Gold Medal Exhibition)

 The Curve of the Earth 21 x 16

Monday, March 14, 2011

Delicious at Studio Gallery SF

 October Vines 14 x 14

work inspired by food & drink
March 16th - April 10th, 2011
Opening reception:  Sunday, March 20th, 2-6 pm

STUDIO Gallery
1815 Polk Street
(between Washington & Jackson)
San Francisco, CA 94109 415-931-3130
Gallery hours: Wed-Fri 11-8, Sat-Sun 11-6, Mon-Tue by appt.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Experimenting with tiny (for me) 6 x 6's

"Dark Curl 2 , 6'" square

"Dark Curl 1" 6 "square

"Wireless Palms" 6 "Square

Here are three tiny paintings. They are all 6 by 6. It was  hard for me to paint this small. This isn't my usual style, I tend to pull back and paint more traditionally when learning something new. This size seemed to work best for me with very strong and very simple value patterns.
The two "Dark Curl" paintings were actually painted as a 6" by 12" and cut apart. They were done from a photo I took along Carmel Beach.
"Wireless Palms" was a plein air piece, I was attracted to the perfectly symmetrical palm trees in a neighborhood in Palm Desert. I asked a resident what kind of palms they were because I had never seen anything like them........they are CELL PHONE TOWERS! We have cell phone towers that look like redwoods in Northern California. Anyway , I still like the painting but it always helps to know what you are painting! 
The two wave paintings were exhibited at the Randy Higbee Gallery 6 x 6 show in Costa Mesa.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

New Series, California Wildflowers(Poppies) on Hills

 Greenest Hills 12 x 21

Poppy Patterns 14 x 21

Poppy Hill II 12 x 16

Poppy Hill I 14 x 14
 With the increased rains this winter , I am looking forward to getting out there and hunting for fields of wildflowers. These paintings are so fun to do.Finding a rhythmn and varying shapes and colors so they are similar and different at the same time is the key. I usually stand out there singing something badly to give myself a rhythm.( never wear an Ipod when painting roadside, it isn't safe! )  All except Poppy Patterns were done en plein air.
Poppy Patterns is the studio painting based on Poppy Hill II. There were some interesting challenges in scaling it up. The trees which were large enough to work as a design element in the smaller painting sat there on the horizon like two isolated dark holes in the paper. They needed another dark element (the lavender hill) to organize the darks into a workable composition.
If anyone knows of some particularly lovely stands of wildflowers out there in the east bay hills, please let me know. Although lovely, the mustard is invasive and a kind of obnoxious unvarying yellow!