I hope you enjoy my efforts to paint every day!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Ozark Spring - April 13-14

I realize I have not been keeping up with posting my paintings. I have been painting, just not posting. But I like this one the best of the last few days - from a picture I took of our dogwood in the front yard. But representative of all the dogwoods that I have seen this week in Arkansas.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Goldfish - in progress

My friend took this great photo. I am having fun with this one. It is a challenge to keep the softness but also create a strong focal point.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Rusty - April 1 - 4

I think I got Rusty too dark. I need to do him larger so I can do justice to the subtle coloring of his coat.

On April 3 I took my first day off from painting since I started on January 3. That was the day that we put our dear Shasta to sleep. She was such a wonderful dog and I miss her very much.

Houston Spring - March 30 - April 1

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Agave - March 28, 2010

Took a photo yesterday of this wonderful agave cactus and painted it today. I love the blue-grey-green color and the contrast of the shadows.

Burr Oak in Winter - March 26 - 27

It is always fun to paint this tree. This time I did the sky, background and road first and let it dry overnight, then added the tree and foreground.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Listen to the Music! March 21 - 23

Went to a Doobie Brothers concert Sunday night and was inspired to attempt this. The effect from a distance is pretty good. I masked the figures, but forgot to mask the lights - big mistake! I started with the colored streams of light, then did the darks, then back to the colored lights at the end. I think in retrospect I should have masked those as well and saved for last. I might try one like this again - it presented a lot of challenges.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Orchid - in progress

I took a lot of photos today - mainly of birds in the snow on the first spring day. But decided to paint this orchid.

Lake Sundance Spring Sunset - March 18

Finished this one last night. I am happy with the colors and overall look.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

I tried some different techniques on this one. Obviously did wet on wet. But started with glazes - yellow, then pink, then blue, then purple. I took the picture tonight - it is always fun to paint something that I saw just that day. I will work more on this tomorrow but I like it so far.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

I have really struggled with this one. I think it is done and I am looking forward to starting something new tomorrow. In some ways I am happy with it. Who knows, maybe I will love it when it is dry and I take off the tape.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Roses - in progress - March 14

Well, its not a complete train wreck - yet! I think this looks better in the photo than it does in person. I am sticking with this but I have to admit, I considered just ripping this one up. Amazing though how adding some blue really helped. Whoever came up with the idea of complimentary colors really had something...

Friday, March 12, 2010

Roses - in progress

I promised myself I would do another larger painting - this is 1/4 sheet. I had a nice photo of roses to use as a reference. I always seem to go through a stage in a painting when I think to myself, "Oh what a disaster". This one is at that stage. Time to let it dry and give myself some space.

I am glad that I am thinking of all of these as training exercises.

Lake Sundance at Early Spring - March 10-11

Finished this one last night, just didn't get a picture taken. I like the shine in the water. But did not get quite the effect I wanted in the distant trees. I might add a little more shadow back there.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Lake Sundance at Early Spring - March 10-11

Back to my comfort zone. Still need to remove the masking fluid and touch up. But very close to done. Didn't have much time to paint the last two nights. Tomorrow is also busy. Plan to do something more courageous over the weekend!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Tulips - March 7 - 9

I am afraid I may have over painted. I tend to want to fill in all the blank spaces. But I still love it!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Tulips - almost done - March 8

I have to admit, I am pretty psyched with how this looks in the photo! Hopefully it will still look good in the morning after it dries. I also still need to remove the masking fluid and touch it up. But, cool!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Tulips - more color - March 7

So far I am enjoying this experiment with bigger and more. Good thing I have the Academy Awards to watch tonight while the paint dries!

Tulips - first color - March 7

In wandering around on artist web sites I came upon Nicholas Simmons -http://www.nicholassimmons.com/artist/index.htm
In an interview he said that he felt it was best for artists to start painting from their imagination rather than from a reference photo. Hmmm. Then he said that an even bigger mistake was to use a reference AND paint small. Ouch!! So tonight I went big and pushed my envelope. Here is the first step.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Turtles on a Spring Day - March 6, 2010

I had to be stealthy to get the photo I used for this painting. As soon as the shutter clicked these turtles were gone. It was amazing how fast they were!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Pont Alexandre II

Sunrise from Pont Alexandre II makes you understand why all the gold leaf!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Normandy Reflections

My friend Greg walking on the mud flats at Mont Saint Michel.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

True False - Feb 28 - March 2

True False Film Festival. Had so much fun going to 9 great documentary films this weekend!

These guys were really cool. I wish I could capture them better. They used an overturned paint bucket and bells on a shoe for percussion. Banjo or guitar or mandolin plus accordion for chords. The next night we had a full brass New Orleans band playing "Oh When the Saints Go Marchin' In".

Sunday, February 28, 2010

The Pretty Drive Home - Feb 26-27

I keep trying to capture the lacy winter trees against a colorful sky. Saw this view on my drive home the other day.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

My Missouri - Feb 22 - 24

I saw this view the other morning - sunrise coming, a dark bank of clouds above. I still look at it and wonder if there is more to be done.

Monday, February 22, 2010

My Missouri - in progress - Feb 22, 2010

I always get home late on Monday. Tonight I was more tired than usual so I really painted out of commitment and close to habit. I picked something I thought would be easy. But as usual, I started to really fall for my subject. I like how this is looking and cant wait to work on it more tomorrow night!

Funny how the painting in progress is always the one that I like the best.

Emblematic Paris - Feb 21, 2010

Sunday, February 21, 2010

San Leandro Sunset - Feb 20

I did this from a photo that my uncle took from his back deck that looks across the bay to the west. In low tide it is just very wet mud for quite a ways out.

I am still struggling to get the right look to clouds. I think next time I will paint the dark parts first and do the pink as a wash. I think that might blend better. But I like the way the water reflection turned out!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Sunrise from Pont de la Concorde

Every day in Paris the sunrise got better and better. I think this one was on our last day.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

End of a day in Giverny

Another painting from my trip to Giverny. Thanks to my Uncle David for the great composition! I really love the way this one turned out!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

More Fog

This was a day a couple of weeks ago. Day after day of fog here in the morning. I like the contrast of the pine tree in the foreground. It is hard to get the right look of the fine branches against the sky. I also am struggling with the pine needles. I need to practice on them more.

I like the light area between the pine and the other trees. That was not really there in my photo but I think it helps the composition of the painting. As Paul would say, I whipped out my artist's license!

Il Pleut a Giverny - Feb 15-16

Last fall in France we got caught in a rainstorm in Monet's gardens in Giverny. But the sun was still shining so there was light and color everywhere. We eventually found a nice table under an umbrella where we spent a couple of hours painting, eating and drinking wine. It was such a fun day!

The colors in the painting look more vivid than this picture. I need to get a better photo.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Everyday Sunset - Feb 14, 2010

I took some photos tonight at sunset - nothing real special about this particular sunset but I liked the way the sun was a big orange ball on the horizon. As I looked more at the photo I noticed the lovely variations in the clouds on the diagonal. I think this made a nice painting. I am happy with the values I got in the foreground and distance.

Overcast - Feb 13, 2010

I saw a beautiful overcast sky when driving to work and tried to memorize it. What I did not do is look at the foreground - I dont think I got it right for Missouri. Looks like somewhere else to me but I like how the clouds and dawn look.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Decided I needed to get back to doing a painting in a night. So here is the Burr Oack again - in winter.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Painting is good therapy after a stressful day at work!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Funny how the more it snows the more I want to paint flowers! I started this one last night after music practice. Only got the sketch, mask and first wash of green for the leaves and background. Tonight started to get fun with adding the pink.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Big Pine

As I was photographing the tree there was a red-tail hawk flying around. I'm hoping that this will look like a hawk to the viewer.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Big Pine - in progress

There is this big pine tree not far from my house that always looks so pretty against the sky. It is hard to strike the right balance between realistic and leaving a little for the viewer's imagination.

There is snow on the ground that is masked out. Will work more on this tomorrow.

Friday, February 5, 2010


I think it is done? So hard to know sometimes. Do I make some areas a little darker? I think when I am indecisive it is time to stop.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Bouquet - in progress

Added leaves and shadows tonight. I still need to rub off the masking fluid and trim things up a bit. But I am liking it!

As I was walking in to work today I was noticing the light on the windows, the refridgeration units. Seems like painting opens your eyes to the beauty that is all around. I hope that feeling lasts...

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Bouquet - in progress

It is fun to paint the little shapes and then see the flowers emerge. It is obvious to me now that I picked a complicated photo - this is going to take a while.

By the way - today marks one full month of painting every day!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Bouquet - in progress

My second attempt on this one. Time to go to sleep - I'll work on this more tomorrow night.


I started this one last night after getting home about 9:30pm. I have included the photo that I was working from so you can see where this was going. I was happy with what I had so far and looked forward to working on it tonight. But when I got home I could not find my sketchbook. Of course I immediately thought "poltergeist" but then reminded myself that it is usually me that just mislaid whatever is missing. However, I then saw evidence that my sweet Golden Retriever, Tahoe, had been in the area where I left my sketchbook. She has shown an attraction for watercolor paints before so I immediately began to search for sketchbook fragments. I finally found it outside. Only one of the 5 paintings was not destroyed.

I keep telling people this is not about the painting but rather the act of painting. I guess I need to believe that now.

I am starting this painting over tonight.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

On the Rise

There is one place where I can get a view of Jesse Hall and Memorial Union just over the horizon. Last night the moon was rising right next to them and it looked enormous.

I think this painting is proof positive you CAN get too dark with watercolor!

Update - this painting was chewed up by Tahoe the Golden Retriever art critic.

Friday, January 29, 2010

China Tea

This is my friend Jen's cute teapot with some tea from China. I started it Thursday night and finished it Friday night.

Update - this painting was chewed up by Tahoe the Golden Retriever art critic.