Thursday, December 28, 2017

30 in 30 for 2018

It's posted!!  And I signed up for 30 in 30, Feb. 1 - March 2, 2018 - it works out perfect that Leslie Saeta is traveling Europe for Jan, I wasn't ready to paint yet, but I have a month to GET READY - new beginnings, fresh new pieces coming!  Check it out, hope to see you there!

(this will be my 6th year in a row!)

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Imagining a Scene with Paint

"Next Gig - OZ"
12" x 12" oil on canvas

Every picture tells a story! A representational painting tries to, as well.

This wandering musician/traveler looks to the horizon with
a happy/hopeful heart.  I painted this several years ago, 
but have always liked the feeling it gave me, one of hope,
one of wonder and risk-taking.

You have to know that the Prairie Palace in the background 
was inspired by the Co-op I once worked for in Bellaire, Ks.

I dig this girls outfit, coat a little big, the guitar on the back and bell bottom jeans.
It could have been me at one time.

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

In the Meantime

I know it's true and am reminded so often, if you aren't able to paint and have an artist's blog, post some of your older things..I have been sifting through and choose this one today.
This is my red dox, Chaco done in acrylic on board.  
He is my best friend.  I captured him smiling
as he slept in the RV on a trip.

I loved his little contented smile.
He smiles often.
Here we are, neither one of us smiling - but hugs all the same.

Friday, December 15, 2017

It's Not Possible..

...but then again, it is - life IS happening here in our new location.  Just LOTS to do.  The studio became 'on hold' until we could get some more pressing items sorted out.  

Energy is the biggest item we are tackling these days, seems just about all systems needed some updating and upgrading as we ventured into the cold winter. We are living OFF GRID with a solar system and generator backup.  It was amazing to us both - as we could picture ourselves living with ONE light on and then having to turn it off to use the next electrical thing, but it isn't like that at all.  

We actually prepared ourselves for the idea of how it all works by our years of RVing.  We 'boondocked' (stayed in the RVwithout plugging into 'shore power') many times so realize what our limits are. As they say, 'it ain't that bad!'  I never thought I would have the need to understand wattage and voltage, it was really a mystery all my life, but I am getting into it these days.  Luckily, we got moved without BAD weather and we continue to pass the days of working on our place without feet and feet of snow. Lots to look forward to, be thankful for and that is what I do everyday.  

And one of the nicest things is the beautiful view we have, pinching ourselves that we are NOW back where we belong, in Colorado, and the garnering the likelihood of staying warm by the comfort of our pellet stove.  Stay tuned.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

A Sneak Peak of the New Digs

Studio space about Day 10 - moving right along, 
the added bonus is a loft space for storage above 
this 450 square foot space - very cool!  Ready for walls and ceiling.  
Stay tuned.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Almost There

I have been thinking alot about this blog and whether or not I will keep it going.
For now, "the blog gods won".
We are in Westcliffe - much of the time these days.  I have a new motto -
We have been literally knocking ourselves out 
as we MOVE OURSELVES back to Colorado - no help,
just us and our vehicles and a couple of trailers.  
Been so busy getting a studio space ready - among many other
unexpected glitches and roadblocks but all the
while it's worth keeping our 'eye on the prize'.
We wanted so badly to make this move for a very
long time now.
Soon, I will move my myriad of supplies and tools here and begin using them 
again.  I have also been thinking about 'why I paint'.  I have come to realize
that more then anything, it's about the PROCESS of painting...
the ups and downs and thinking that goes into what I am trying to express
and how I am saying it - what mood, what emotion, what color, what feeling?
I am ready to crank it up and get going again. 
It may happen around the first of 2018 - if plans go accordingly.

If you have been checking in, thanks.  I will be back soon.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Moving Update

Scene from out my backdoor in my new house in Colorado.
Update - we are in the dark area of tossing, organizing, packing, you know the drill maybe.
It's going to be some time to get a studio space up and running.
In the meantime, maybe some sketching is on the agenda..have to remember that one, 
as I pack up the studio.  I expect to have a place about 1/2 the size of my current
750 square feet that is jam packed, so lots of tossing will possibly happen.

Sunday, July 30, 2017


Time out, while we make a life change and move back to where we belong - Colorado.
Slow move - but most adventurous and on hold, studio on hold, sort of - life on hold..big undertaking but it's now or never.  Visit back often, I will be back.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Happy Blogiversary

Yep - 10 years old today.  I started this blog as a way to keep family and friends
aware and up-to-date of what life had become as we moved from our beloved lifespace
in Colorado, retired from our jobs and took the chance of living in farm country
'middle of nowhere' Kansas. Not what it used to be, but still there and
still alive at times.

I remember a time waking up each day in those first few years and being excited 
about what to write or share.  That excitement
has waned...still WE look at this spot on the globe as 'home'..but see it more now
as a place where we can gather our sense of safety and sanity from
the rest of the world.

We are restlessly always looking for a place like it, in another climate..but
haven't found it yet, don't know if we ever will.
There is definitely something to that old saying -
"BLOOM WHERE YOU ARE PLANTED'...and I think I have,
I try to bloom.  Each season is different from the one a year before.  At times it's hard to believe
it's been 10 years.  Time goes by, so fast.  In the meantime, life goes on.

If you visit here once in awhile, thanks.  At best, I share my art.
If you have been with me since those 10 years ago, you know how this blog has changed -
but me, I am the same person.  Busy, loving life and always creating.

T H A N K   Y O U

Thursday, May 4, 2017

More Practice

"Peaceful Feeling"
9" x 12"
watercolor texture with pastel
on Art Spectrum Colourfix

Just some practice...having to focus extra hard
having a new lid put on studio building, metal roof, oh so noisy.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Great Horned Owl in Pastel and Watercolor

pastel and watercolor on
Art Spectrum Colourfix sanded paper
mounted on gatorboard
9" x 13.5"

Had to force myself to stop before I covered up
all the great texture I created on the underpainting
with watercolor.  Sometimes I DON'T stop
and take it too far and then it is
impossible to return to that spot 
where I jumped in with too much zeal!

Calling it done. 
It will be framed and entered into the
ANAC Annual Traveling Show,
hopefully.  I'll let you know.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Work in Progress

Getting a start on a merged watercolor/pastel in my online class with Tonja Sell today.  I saw it right away yesterday, when the surface finally dried.  Had to get back to the studio today to get it going.  I get so caught up in art at times, it is all I think about.  Now that I've got it going, I can focus on other pressing things.  

Here is the start. Do you see the owl?

I saw other things too, but owl has been speaking to me lately. It is sometimes the last outdoor sound I hear when I let the dogs out for the last time..and then I can be awakened by that sound, through the bedroom walls in the middle of the night.  He penetrates my dreamworlds at times.  Would love it if it were a 'she'.  However, there are already two HOOTS in the night.

Stay tuned for more progress.
SIDE NOTE:  I try to use all my own source photos or borrow them from friends
or relatives,, the source for this one is from a stock photo company called Alamy.
I purchased the use of the photo from them.  
I would never copy an image from someone's photo without permission
these days.  It's only fair.  Photographers are artists too.

Working with Textures

Just off the easel..needing to be rephotographed..but this is my
iPhone photo.  I usually take my final photos with my Nikon,
it always gives me a better starting place when 
expecting to post a final piece.

Titled "Pacification" - pastel worked over watercolor 
texture on Art Spectrum 140 lb. natural Colourfix paper
(love that stuff)
adhered to gatorboard - 8.5" x 11".

Continuing to just love the outcomes
of these hidden subjects..getting really excited 
for the next one. 

Stay tuned.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Sketching and Painting

9" x 12"
wc and pastel on UART

Today - I did it like it's supposed to be done..
however, I often don't.  I like the planning and
what it requires is that I slow
down and take the moment to do so.

Used this sketch as my jumping point, 
onto the canvas
which isn't totally drawn out of my imagination.
Sometimes I look at magazines at a figure and 
change it up a bit, so as not to be a copy
but an inspiration.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Queen of My Heart

"Queen of Hearts"
12" x 16"
Arches 140 lb. cold press
watercolor and pastel mix

This is my granddaughter Sterling, who had a couple
of Halloween costumes this past year.  Several great
photos were sent my way and I put this one
in the digital divide.  It worked perfect for the
textured watercolor under painting I completed 
several weeks ago.
That 'bright light' hitting her face (I think she was
standing in front of the TV) was hard to
translate without changing it totally.  Light
can hit the eye that intensely from the giant screens.
But, I like the effect of the bright rimming light
on her turned kept it that way
and tried hard to make it seem real
and not creepy.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Box of WIPes

"Self Portrait"
watercolor and pastel
on Arches watercolor paper

This one got wiped and wiped before I was satisfied.
Finally got the eyes right and worked some more 
on everything...could keep going..maybe I will.
Always fun to do YOUR younger self, even with
new hairgrowth and 'extensions' (those were
not around in my day - ha ha)
Anyway, onward.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

In Your Own Face

WIP - DH came through the
studio today, "Gave yourself some more hair, I see"
YEP, it's called 'Artistic License' - ya man!
and of course, this is my way 'younger' face...
(check back tomorrow or the next day for update)
From the looks of it, I have a long way to go..
eyes are not right..and if eyes aren't right, it's
almost a goner to me.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Golden Day

"Proposition for the Sacrificial Lamb"
9" x 12"
mixed media, watercolor and pastel on UART paper

Here is today's practice of the last lesson I was able
to take in...
Here is the start of how it goes
 Looking deep within to find something - anything
that stirs my imagination.

Found it and then some as I worked along
(plastic overlay let's me do a quick outline of 
my image)

As you can see, it changed a little, it's so easy for me
to get carried away, when the sky is the limit.

Monday, April 3, 2017

A Bird of a Different Color

"Pandora Migrant"
9" x 12"
merging watercolor with pastel
on UART sanded paper
adhered to gatorboard

I am plugging along with the online course I am taking
with Tonja Sell.  Finally hit the part that I will be loving even more.
The underneath of this one is watercolor washes, color mixing, stenciling,
gauze placement, plastic wrap effects and lots of manipulation of the surface.
In such a hurry once it was dry, forgot to take a photo of it.
Once that step is completed, you turn the piece around and around until
you find an object or thing you can embellish into 
a piece of reality - reminds me of when I was a little
girl and would lay for hours looking at the woodgrain
on my closet door and see faces or animals.
I saw a bird..and used a plastic sleeve and marker
to draw it out to refer to
upon adding more watercolor and pastel.
I got carried away with those whispy lines on the pastel.
I saw a bird with fine, shiny, colorful feathers.
The color families you see, were the color families
that were produced in the underpainting...which
if you knew, there is some underpainting showing
through on the end result.  Next time, I will photograph the
watercolor for you to see the process more completely.
BTW, for permanency - gatorboard is my new GO TO strata
for adhering artwork to.  It is good and strong.
  Foamcore usually warps
 when using PVA glue. I order
my gatorboard from
UART comes in lots of different grit and either paper 
or board and
 is available at major art suppliers, 
I got mine from Dick Blick. Dakota Pastel
carries it too.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Getting Going with More Poppies

MORE poppies - using UART sanded pastel paper
instead of watercolor paper - making watercolor.
glue gun stencil, and saran effects...but
found that it just didn't pop
like it should.
Next lesson (I had just an inkling of what it might be and...)
I went ahead and added Derwent and pastel pencil.

Like it, oh so much, better.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Organically Speaking

"Poppy I"
watercolor - with a variety of tweaks
In my online class with Tonja Sell, part of our lessons for this week
is watercolor on different papers using
our own hand made glue gun stencils, gauze, and saran wrap.
This is the precursor to a poppy done on UART
pastel sanded paper..which reacts a little differently 
to this method watercolor paper vs. pastel sandpaper.
I see that this was an important
lesson, so I could push the technique to
look similar on the sanded pastel paper.
It will probably take more layers than 
about the three that I have here.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

More Experimenting

This time I am playing with watercolor swatches 
and complimentary colors in pastels - on top.  
Some of the colors added literally POPPED off the surface, creating an optical illusion.
The class I am involved in is "Merging Watercolor and Pastel" 
on with Tonja Sell.
Lovin' it!

Sunday, March 5, 2017


Experimenting with watercolor, stencils of all types, even ones made with 
glue from a glue gun, gauze, waxpaper, saran fascinating and fun!

Taking an online course, MERGING WATERCOLOR WITH PASTELS...stay tuned, we are 
about to get down to the nitty gritty.

In the meantime, one studio cat had to be 'shaved' the other day...her fur was 
so matted and full of knots, it was beyond our capability to help.
Had to be sedated and shaved at the vet.

She looks so cute..shows her tubbiness, however, the
other studio cat now HATES her..guess it's the 'cootie' smell
of the vet clinic and maybe because she looks so different and cool.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Keeping At It

I have decided that even if I don't PAINT, I will be drawing and sketching..
with water soluble graphite, sharing some gesture drawing..

and some black and white charcoal on charcoal paper.

Did a few watercolor color charts..

taking an online course with Tonja Sell on

Saturday, February 4, 2017

I Sell on ETSY

Check out some of the new additions to my Etsy shop.  Several of the 'now' dry and varnished 30 in 30 works are now 
for sale!  
Enjoy the special pricing while it lasts.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

DAY 31 - the Finale Poster of Painting 30 Paintings in 30 Days for Jan. 2017

As you may have noticed in my sidebar are OTHER seasons and years of 
"Painting 30 Paintings in 30 Days"
Here is this years poster.

I would be remiss in stating that I have LOVED every minute of it.
When one stands back and looks at the breadth and depth of an
undertaking like this, it blows you away.

The very best part of looking at these posters collectively
is to notice the growth and change that has occurred over 
time.  This year, I wanted to just paint, but got caught up
in painting more floral paintings then I ever have.
Along with landscapes, florals have not always been 
very comfortable to me.
But now they are much more welcomed.

I have my favorites (there are 3 or 4) they pop right out at me on the poster.
There are others that make me cringe to add them to the mix.
It's hard for me to paint something in one day although it didn't
used to bother me - I find
I wanted to have just one more day to finalize and develop a piece
on some of these.
but then the spontaneity and freshness would have surely failed.

As a whole, I am pleased with my efforts...I know what I have 
learned - mostly - I continue to pull my subject matter
up into the light and give it more color. I am more confident
at color mixing and using acrylic paint as a medium.
But my very kindred medium is still OIL paint.
One of my pushes was to LOOSEN up more on the 
brushstrokes to not be so exacting and precise
in my depictions (it has always been that) to be more painterly..
and I think I achieved that
where it was wanted.

A final note of thanks to those who regularly visited and 
left encouragement and supportive comments.
It was nice to have the company with this
undertaking..I have enjoyed seeing your
paintings and reading about your efforts.

Monday, January 30, 2017

DAY 30 - Painting 30 Paintings in 30 Days (Pye)

"Auspicious Art Critic"

6" x 6"
oil on birch panel

YAY!!  I did it!!!  Another year of January 30 in 30 painting!
I wish to thank all my friends, my blogger friends, my painting friends, 
my daughter and my husband for their support!!
AND...this little sweet girl. Most of the time, she (as you may have read)
makes her presence known by sitting in a box
on a desk
just behind where I work.

It's always comforting to know that there are a 
pair of eyes, watching my every move,
in case I need some help!

Her name is Pyewacket, PYE for short.
She is a rescue kitten..who stumbled on my property
as a wee little thing, on a very cooold November night.
I have never figured out exactly where she and
her sister came from.  But it's not important.
What is important is that they enrich
life in the studio..they keep us full
in LOVE from cats,
and make great models for occasional
pet portraits.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

DAY 29 - Painting 30 Paintings in 30 Days (#29)

"Number 29"
10" x 10"
oil on Raymar canvasboard

OK, I have to admit, I have run out of creative ideas on
titles for today.

This one turned into a paint fling after awhile.
It was 'OH so tight and precise'..not what 
I wanted at all..
so I conjoured up
my previous many sessions of learning - ala 'Kaye Franklin' -
and was very pleased with the outcome.

Too bad it didn't start that way, could have
decreased the angst through the afternoon.

Anyway, there are so many things calling to me from
all angles to be done or 'get to it' around the farmstead..I need
to be done for a few days..tomorrow is NUMBER 30!!

Saturday, January 28, 2017

DAY 28 - Painting 30 Paintings in 30 Days (Muscari/Tulips)

"Haley's Comet and Muscari"

12" x 12"
oil on wrapped canvas
  As I started today, I anticipated taking 'go along'
photos, got a few, then completely got
lost in the venture of painting
these tulips and grape hyacinth.

Here are a few at the beginning...
Discovered I needed to take out that 'blocked in' color
of the sky, it dulled down or mudded the sky
color as you can see in the next one..wipe, wipe...

 I got really excited about the muscari - they were what
kept me going on this one.

ONLY 2 more - I hope I am ready to slow it down now.

Happy 17th Blogiversary to ME

 I would like to admit, it's still here, I'm still here and it's still worthy of my attention - although sporadic.   Here are a ...