Monday, April 20, 2015

Chinese Zodiac Paintings

 Goat with Glasses - 7"x5" Watercolor

Tiger with Glasses - 7"x5" Watercolor

These two academic looking animals are a commission done for my husband. After a recent visit to an affiliate eyeglass lens manufacturer in China he wanted a special gift for the hosts. These represent the Chinese Zodiac signs of the recipients. 2015 is the year of the goat/sheep.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Soka University Overlook

Soka Valley View
6" X 6" Pastel on Panel

6" X 6"  format paintings have become a fun new challenge for a lot of painters lately. This is my first attempt at this size and I found the format a bit difficult to design a good composition. I'll definitely do more though as it's a quick way to capture an outdoor moment. This was painted on the beautiful grounds of the Soka University in Orange County, CA. Will definitely go back here for more painting opps.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Crystal Cove Cottage

Beach Days Bygone
oil on panel, 12 X 9

I'm so in love with this beach area of Crystal Cove. Loving the beach activity around me, the views of the distant cliff and all  the old cottages in various states of run down. Scenes of past wild parties in the 20's - 50's. I'll be posting a couple more from this beach soon.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Newport Island Boats

Newport Island Boats
12" x 9" Pastel on board

Well, I'm considering naming this one "Mast-ectomy" because it's a sailboat with a missing mast. I assume it's in for repairs? Not a boat person so I could use some comment on this. This scene was overwhelming to me. I really had to reduce the detail and focus on the big things. I think I may still have too much detail but I'm still pretty satisfied with the result.

Bike Path

 The Bike Path
12" x 9" Pastel on Board

A beautiful sunny day in Aliso Viejo park. This was painted at a spot very near the 405 freeway. It was just behind us and the noise of the traffic was quite annoying. However, it always amazes me how those things fade into the background as you get involved in the painting process. It really is a form of meditation.

Willow Tree Pastel

Backlit Willow
12" x 9"
seriously late in updating paintings lately. I've been painting but also working and doing quite a bit of figure drawing. Another love of mine! This was a morning paint out at an obscure location in Orange County. I don't think I could find it again! This was actually done in May. Time flies!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Laguna from Treasure Island Park

12" X 9" Watercolor on Arches CP

Quickly painted in Treasure Island Park in front of the Montage Resort. What a gorgeous find this place is!! The lighting was so magical - overcast but luminous. I returned a few days later to do an oil that is still in process.

Niguel Preserve Overlook

12" X 9" oil on canvas board

Learning the best spots for plein air painting is always a challenge in a new area. I've found that joining up with a class or organized painting groups is key to getting going. I've met a lot of really talented and just plain great people already here in Orange  County. I'm loving this new location!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Strauss Ranch Sycamore

9" X 12" Oil on panel

Late in posting this one. Not sure why but I kept looking at it and altering little things.  That's not usually a good thing! I was attracted to the little stream in front of the tree. Most of the water in these parts is all dried up from the scorching summer heat. But this was earlier in the summer after the late, for the season, rains.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Mission Creek Pastel

View to the Mission
pastel on panel, 12" X 16"

This pastel was done in the studio using a combination of photos from Mission Creek, Santa Barbara and Placerita Canyon, closer to home. The lighting and vegetation were remarkably similar. My photos from Mission Creek were a bit too dark and the foliage was too dense to see much in the distance. I took artist license here and "voila"! You can see the Mission in the distance. Actually, I did see it from where I took the real photo but it wasn't working for me in this size and format.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Carpinteria, Floral Carpet
Oil on panel, 9" X 12"

Another SCAPE paint-out painting. I started this one and discovered that I was standing in the midst of a tar pit. The infamous Carpinteria Tar Pits are nearby but the tar also seems to ooze out in lots of unsuspecting places. Count one pair of old tennis shoes as victims of this phenomenon! I also visited the nearby Harbor Seal Rookery - fascinating! Hundreds of seals were beached here to give birth to their cubs. Volunteers from the Sea Watch group were there to gave us a lot of information about the seals and their behaviors. Another reason to be in love with this whole area!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Botanical Garden Plein Air

Spring Garden Bloom
Oil on panel, 12" X 9"

Painted this on a workshop day at the Santa Barbara Botanical Garden with guidance and help of Lynn Gertenbach. Lynn is an awesome professional artist and teacher as well as a super nice person! I met her one day while painting at the King Gillette Ranch on my own. I look forward to many more workshop and casual painting sessions with Lynn as she lives not too far from me. She is a signature member of The California Art Club; Plein-Air Painters Of America; and Oil Painters Of America. Check out Lynn's web site to see her beautiful works.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Santa Barbara-Plein air

Goleta Slough Mustard
Oil on canvas, 10" X 8"
Available: for details.

I have been so lucky to find and participate with the SCAPE painting group. It encompasses two things I am passionate about. Painting and preserving our precious environment. SCAPE = Southern California Artists Painting for the Environment. I've had the pleasure of meeting many new friends and painting companions. It has been a link to several other art opportunities and I am SO grateful for all the new experiences. These people REALLY know where to find inspirational painting spots and it's always beneficial to chat and share with everyone. Thank you SCAPE!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

King Gillette Oak

Sunlit Oak
Oil on canvas, 10" X 8"
available, contact:

I've been doing a fair amount of plein air painting in oil recently. This was painted several weeks ago at the King Gillette Ranch. Central California is a great inspiration for this land locked, mid-west born painter. I'm drawn to the coastal areas in particular but living in Valencia and about an hours drive from the coast, I am getting more practice inland. That's not exactly a hardship as the variety and beauty between here and the ocean is phenomenal! I am still finding my way with oil and landscapes but have had some breakthroughs due to watching others with such great skill and just plain "sticking with it" at times. This is one of my earlier attempts. I'll post a few more in the next days.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Small works

Playing Koi
3.5 X 2.5 watercolor

Myrtle Turtle
3.5 X 2.5 watercolor

Ms Piggy
2.5 X 3.5 watercolor

A few more little animals works here that I wanted to publish before digging in to the oils and pastels. I have a renewed commitment to PRODUCE over the next few weeks. Hoping to get a couple of venues to show work in the really near future! Will post them as they happen.

Available by contacting

Friday, March 12, 2010

Countryside near Apt, France

Vineyard Guardian
9 x 12 Pastel

I've really missed painting in pastel and a painting session in Ojai, CA a couple of weeks ago made realize I just had to return to this medium. It was a great experience with new friends I met after a search for plein air groups in this area. The subject is from a photo taken on a trip to Provance in 2007. This was one of several heart stopping scenes I tried to document with my camera for later interpretation in paint. This painting is now an entry for the Santa Paula Art Show, March 17- April, 7. Anxious to see all the other entries at the opening reception on Saturday, March 27.

Painting is available by contacting me at

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Finally Back!

Polar Protection
2.5 X 3.5

2.5 X 3.5

2.5 X 3.5

2.5 X 3.5

Out to Pasture
2.5 X 3.5

So just where has the time gone? I can't believe how long it has been since my last post. Moving to Valencia was hard for me - painting wise. I'm now back in the saddle and will post some things that I have done in the hiatus. Also I'm committing to posting on a regular basis again. I'll see how it goes but I hope at least once a week. I've recently found some wonderful and inspirational groups to paint with so that should be a great help. I'll share more about them in the future.

One of the things I've done to keep in practice is a series of ACT cards (aka: ACEOs) with the theme of "Compassion". They've all been animals so far but I intend to add human subjects as well in the near future. In case you're not familiar with ATCs read this link for an explanation.

Please contact me for purchase of originals at

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Torrey Pines–Razor Point

View of Razor Point in Torrey Pines State Reserve
12" X 9"

Saturday was a glorious day so I chose to go painting instead of hiking with DH. The trails were busy with lots of other weekend adventurers. Full sun but winter temps made it a perfect outside day. 

Painting available for sale by contacting me at

Sunday, January 11, 2009

San Diego - January

Sunset Cliffs
Watercolor on Arches  12" X 9"

Still find it hard to believe that this is a January scene of the gorgeous coastline area known as Sunset Cliffs. Painted outside for a SDWS event on Saturday morning. And, what a beautiful morning it was to share an outdoor paint out with other San Diego Watercolor Society members. No bugs, No sun screen needed, No wind, No curious tourists, NO SNOW! Perfection.
Sorry, Minnesota friends and family. Wish you were here.  

Watercolor available for sale by contacting me at

Sunday, January 4, 2009

New Year, New Moon

New Moon Solitude
8.75 X 6.75
Watercolor on Arches HP

I'm an early riser these days. Never have a problem getting up in the dark since I discovered my favorite morning ritual. Here it is: 20 -30 minutes of meditation, a bit of reading and a pre-dawn walk with my four legged alarm clock, Maddie. This painting attempts to show the beauty of this peaceful time of day. I also thought it an appropriate posting for the new year. Wishing you all peace and beauty in 2009!

This watercolor is available for purchase. Contact me by email at