Monday, October 21, 2013

41st Worldwide Sketch Crawl

Saturday I went to a local "pick-your-own" farm for their harvest festival. Got one sketch done on site before it started to rain.

I took a lot of photos so I made this page when I got home.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Autumn leaves

Okay. So I didn't complete the 30 in 30 challenge. But I did learn some stuff from it. I learned that it's ok to commit to something and not be able to accomplish it. I'm not beating myself up over it. I made a bet of a glass of wine with a sketching friend and neither of us completed 30 paintings. So we'll buy each other a glass of wine next time we're together. Another thing I learned is that it is very hard to keep the freshness in a painting when working from a sketch in my sketchbook. The sketches are always so much more lively and spontaneous. I want to learn how to make that happen in my paintings. Anyway, I've moved on and today as I was at work with little to do, I walked outside, gathered some fallen leaves and brought them in to my desk to sketch. All I had with me was a very small Moleskine sketchbook and a #2 pencil so that's what I used. I found it difficult to get the values right. The leaves were so similar in value that they all sort of blended together. But at least I sketched something. Maybe my October challenge will be to just sketch something each day. Might be more doable.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

30 in 30 -- an update

In case any of you are paying attention, I have fallen way behind in this challenge. One good thing has happened though. The painting below of the Pyrenees from Carcassonne has just been accepted in the October Regional Exhibit at the Fredericksburg Center for the Creative Arts. That might not have happened had it not been for this challenge.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

2 more for 30 in 30

I've been working from my France trip sketchbook. (You can see the sketchbook pages if you scroll down to the post where I uploaded them.) These are much looser than I usually work so I feel like they aren't finished. Let me know what you think. I've got about 3 more that still need some work and I'm starting new ones every day.
 Castle Beynac on the Dordogne

View of the Pyrenees from Carcassonne

Monday, September 16, 2013

Art Attack 2013

Had a great time Saturday painting with about 60 other artists in downtown Fredericksburg. It was a PERFECT day--clear blue sky, temp in the 70s, and a big crowd. I did more talking than painting but everyone was interested in my sketchbook. I actually did 3 small paintings working from sketches (which I hardly ever do). I haven't had a chance to scan them but will post them soon. Meanwhile, here's a shot of me working that my pal Robyn Ryan took:

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

No 7 of "30 in 30"

Here are the next 4 painting in the "30 in 30" challenge...

 This is my very first attempt at a seascape. The colors are a little distorted on my computer but you get the idea. My friend Risa too the photo that I worked from in Collioure after I broke my foot and couldn't tour the town.

 This is a castle on the Dordogne River this is owned by Americans! It's not open to the public but I kept seeing it (from the ramparts of Castle Beynac, from the river on a boat, etc.). Very Disneyesque!

Loved this watering can in the Jardins de Cadiot. It looked like it got a lot of use.
This is a window somewhere near Beynac. I love to paint stone walls.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Day 3 of "30 in 30"

Here's a little sketch I did last night. I ran out of daylight so had to go with something inside. I've enjoyed these end-of-summer flowers so thought I'd try a sketch of them. I may make this into a larger painting. There is a lot I see "off" with this one but it doesn't really bother me since it is just a quickie.
I would like to work more on the glass vase and the shine on the table. Looking at it online, the reflection of the books doesn't really "read" and the perspective of the table is wonky. Not that it has to be perfect, but if one part is like that, it seems to me the rest should be as well. Maybe I just need to do it again and make it all more wonky. Perhaps left handed. This one will serve as a decent study.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

30 in 30 - Days 1 and 2

Here are my paintings for Sept 1 and 2. The first one of my garden shed was done standing up at my new En Plein Air easel. I felt like I was slipping on ice -- no control. This is going to take some serious getting used to. The house painting is of my neighbors house across the street. They are moving to TN so I gave this to them last night as a farewell gift. I painted it sitting down.

Friday, August 30, 2013

30 paintings in 30 days!

Can I do it? I just accepted a challenge to make 30 paintings in 30 days in September. If I can do it, I may have to change the name of my blog! no, wait, I can't do that--I just bought 500 business cards with this address. Oh well, maybe when I re-order. But first I have to prove to myself that I can do it. I'll post my work here, of course, but don't hate me if I miss a day here and there. Doesn't necessarily mean I'm not painting, just maybe didn't have time to upload.

I just bought a new easel ( and I am hoping to use this challenge to practice painting standing up. I haven't picked a theme but one may evolve as I go along. I'm also thinking about the 6"x6"x6" show at LibertyTown and the Small show at FCCA so I'm going to work accordingly.

Wish me luck! Here's the link to the challenger's blog if you want to follow all of us:

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Illustrated Journaling Workshop

I'll be teaching a workshop at LibertyTown Arts Workshop in October. Join us!
(Click on image to enlarge so you can read it)

Friday, August 2, 2013

Library show

I am tickled to announce that 13 of my watercolor botanicals will be on display in the Atrium Gallery of the Central Rappahannock Regional Library in downtown Fredericksburg, VA during the month of August. I do hope those of you who are local will have a chance to stop by. This is the final local venue for these paintings. From now on they will be entered only in botanical art exhibitions (and in my house). The library does not sell paintings from their shows. If you are interested, please contact me directly.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

My new watercolor tin.

Just thought I'd share the new travel tin I made. I bought the tin at a flea market in France, painted the inside white to serve as a mixing palette, then filled it with Sennelier (French of course!) watercolors. It's about the size of an Altoid tin but deeper so I can have 2 layers. I separated them with a card that has the names of the colors then had room to fit in a pencil, eraser, sponge, sharpener, water brush, and #4 daVinci travel brush.

The sketch, in a Stillman & Birn Gamma sketchbook, is of the Fredericksburg Courthouse designed by James Renwick.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

40th International Sketch Crawl

Saturday, July 13, 2013, four of us met up at the coffee shop and spent the morning sketching in downtown Fredericksburg Va. Here are my sketches. I was using my new Stillman & Birn Sketchbook and it wrinkled a bit because I was using quite a bit of water, but I like the paper surface to paint on.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

My Holiday in France

This is my sketchbook from my recent trip to south west France. Enjoy! (you can click on any image to enlarge it a bit.)

Thursday, May 2, 2013


Been very busy at work getting ready for, and having, our annual meeting so haven't had much time to paint. Just made Mom's Mother's Day card (she doesn't accept bought cards from me anymore!) and thought I'd share it. I adore poppies.

Monday, April 8, 2013

My new backpack

Hi everyone,
It's been a while since I posted anything. It's been a while since I sketched anything to post. I think I had the darn-cold-March blues. Ok now that it looks like spring might actually be here. I usually like cold weather but this year it just seemed to drag on too long. Anyway, here is a sketch of my new backpack. I ordered it online and was delighted with it in person. It's very lightweight and the parameters are not real big but it's got a lot of room inside and lots of wonderful pockets--note the 2 water bottle pockets on the sides. It's got room for all my normal purse stuff plus all my sketching equipment so I'm good to go. And now that it's warm enough, "go" I shall. The 39th International Sketch Crawl is this Saturday (Apr. 13) so I'll be sketching in Alum Spring Park with other intrepid artists.
I also wanted to let you know that I have had 2 of my acrylic abstracts accepted in FCCA national show titled Lines and Edges.
Have a great week ya'll.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Sketchbook Project

I entered the 2013 Sketchbook Project last April and, even after all that time, I still barely got it submitted by the deadline! I finally hit on the theme of "Accessories" and did pages of my jewelry, hats, scarves, shoes, bags, etc. It was fun but I wish I had started earlier. Maybe I'll do better next year. Here are a couple sample pages:

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

January 1, 2013

A sparrow and a junco from my front yard bird feeder on New Year's Eve. Spent a great day on Jan 1 with Master Naturalist buddies walking in the woods at the Ni River Trail. What an amazing group--all that knowledge was inspiring! Wonderful way to start the new year.