Monday, March 27, 2017


A few sprigs from my mom's pjm rhododendrons.
She has several varieies of rhodos, all gargantuan. For some reason they just won't grow in my yard.

Sunday, March 26, 2017


A few daffodils painted yesterday.
They are holding up pretty well in the returned cold weather, but I think the last snowstorm wrecked my magnolia buds.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Brussels sprouts

Interesting shapes and subtle colors ... A good subject for a little practicing.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Still life in progress

Trying something a little more ambitious; trying to keep these first washes looser and wetter.
I think it needs just a bit more--darks in the daisies and a bit more development of the hydrangeas; some lifting, too, if I can manage it.


Every color I have ... Except the one I overlooked: opera!
I think I'll use the last 1/8th sheet for some mixes, then frame it and hang it in my studio.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Daffodils, cont.

Working on more daffodils, and thought this one was going pretty good, but there's something wrong with the paper. This happens now and then...the paper's too absorbent and looks "pilly." Bad sizing? Too much humidity? Quien sabe.

This last one is the no-pencil-line start shown in my previous post.
I wasn't happy withe actual vase, so I
 made one up, but it's not exactly what I hoped for!

Sunday, March 12, 2017


My first attempt at daffodils this year. Three bloomed before it got cold and snowy.
My neighbor, who is a summer resident, has dozens blooming in her yard. As I am every year, I'm terribly tempted to go and take a few! She's not here to enjoy them, I reason, why would she mind? But I can't bring myself to do it, never have.
With (left and above) and without (right) pencil.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Hot press

A couple more still lifes on hot press.


Once in a while I pull out the hot press paper.
I like it for simple subjects painted all in one go.


A sprig of quince from the yard.
Some things have started blooming and others are in bud and today it's snowing!

Tuesday, March 07, 2017


Gave this to my brother for his birthday last week: yellow-crowned night, green, and great blue herons painted using a resist technique.
It's a bit laborious, but I like the results.
Make a line drawing of your subject on heavy paper (I use a stiff 140lb, like Arches), then paint everything that you do not want to be black with thick white gouache.
When it's dry, brush black India ink over it.
Let dry, then wash off (I do it outside with the garden hose) the ink and the gouache--leave some of the gouache on, if you want, or if you need to to keep from damaging the paper.
When it's dry, paint.

Thursday, March 02, 2017


Each of these was painted using a triad--raw sienna, permanent rose, cerulean on the left; burnt sienna, winsor violet, cobalt on the left.
After the first, wet wash dried, I went back to add some darks ... Haven't gotten to the second one yet!

Tuesday, February 28, 2017


I bought these chunky rocks glasses at a discount store; each has a blob of colored glass in the base, which is reflected above and below.
I thought they'd be good to paint, and would also give me practice with glass and grays.
So here's the first sytempt, painted in Daniel Smith's shadow violet, with some ultramarine and burnt sienna.
Kind of a mess, imho, but that means I will be able to improve!

Sunday, February 26, 2017

... forced


More attempts to keep my hand in.
I'm ready to move on to another subject; these are getting stale ... But haven't discovered what that subject might be yet!
Spending some (a lot!) of time right now making swatches of ALL the colors in my possession: a mind- and studio-clearing project! 


Sunday, February 19, 2017

forcing ...


Little simple still lifes to help me get back in the practice of painting regularly.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Dark background homework


One of the best things about taking class is having to do things you normally wouldn't (... or does that sound masochistic?)
If you search the Internet you will find many luscious paintings of desserts and pastries, but the subject never appealed to me much: what would I do with a painting of strawberry shortcake? But, I have to say, I found it fun to paint it.
I was debating whether I could/should go in and add some darker darks to define the shortbread and the cream, but 1) I don't want to lose any more of the white, which I've already lost too much of; and 2) I couldn't settle on a color, or combination of colors, for the darks. 
Decided to do nothing and wait till Monday to see what my teacher says.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Dark backgrounds

Getting back to painting class when I can. It inspires me and makes me feel like I'm learning, progressing. And it's fun too.
We've been practicing putting in dark backgrounds.
I have trouble getting darks that are dark enough and interesting.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

plein air, the red store


Our plein air group has been braving the 90-plus temps once a week.
Last Wednesday we met in Cape May Point for a morning of painting.
Worked on this too long, but it was still fun.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Plein air, 2nd ave., cape may

A pleasant morning out...last week!
These old wooden storage lockers on the beach caught my eye.
Have yet to finish for ground.
I don't seem able to finish a painting on location!

Monday, July 18, 2016

Plein air

Trying to get a little PA group together.
This morning's location was the Cape May-Lewes ferry terminal.
I arrived at 8:30 but was packing up by 10: too hot!
Still, I'm happy to have made the effort.

Thursday, July 14, 2016


Cleaning out my flat files, I found a couple of old, unfinished paintings that I thought I might be able to salvage despite their problems because there were passages in each that I liked.
Generally I don't like to work too hard on anything because I can't keep the " work" part from showing.
These still arent, and will never be, the best, but I'm happier with them now.

Sunday, July 10, 2016


These are the two palettes I use most frequently, with my messy notes on what the colors are.
I also have two little plastic travel palettes that I like...they don't get all rusty like the metal ones!


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