Strawberry Doubles

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 $40.00 USD (8x8in on canvas panel)

My sister left last week and my parents came a few days later.  May has been full of fun and company, but not of painting.  That’s okay.

In yesterday’s art lesson I set up a still life for my young friend with this pitcher and strawberries, but she swapped them out for some limes slices.  I was still thinking about the strawberries today so I saved them and did this while my parents were packing their suitcases.  I’ve been using a warmer yellow light in my still life lately and I like how it makes them glow.

Ready to get back in the groove of painting daily again.

Colossal Peonies

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The snow is coming down wet and thick today.  I even hear thunder a little bit ago, I didn’t even know snow storms could have thunder….scary?  The threat is real though – we’ve been hearing branches cracking on some of these older trees, yikes!

Anyways, painting in this glorious snow storm light.  Peonies have been a high request since the last peony post so I thought I’d try them again.

In other news, I was juried into a local gallery here in Fort Collins called Trimble Court Artisans, right in Old Town Square!  This is exciting news.  I remember looking into this gallery years ago when I had moved here from Minnesota, and now to be in it!  So humbled.  I’m anxious to learn how to go about holding paintings for them while still maintaining a presence in my online gallery.  I’ll keep you posted.

Integrated Tulips

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 $40.00 USD (8x8in on canvas panel)

It was one of those do-I-take-a-nap-or-paint days.  Alas, these tulips won’t last forever.  Still looking for my groove after a few days with my sister in town, but every painting helps!  I love red and purple together.

Some Demos and Visitor Updates

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 $60.00 USD (12x16in on canvas panel)

These are a couple demonstration paintings I did or had ready for the high school girls’ night I did last week- it’s been a week of family and friends visiting but I still wanted to post something during the busyness.

I was playing around with different color combinations and really loved this pink-purple-orange-green combo.  The white one below was the live demonstration > I have always loved red-white-and teal together, so that was a safe bet.

My sister leaves tomorrow, and my mom and dad come Thursday – I bet I’ll be able to squeeze some painting in between those.  I have those purple tulips that still have some life left in them!

 $80.00 USD (166x20in on stretched canvas)

 

My sister and I on top of Arthur’s Rock.

Red Glasses Purple Tulips

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 $40.00 USD (8x8in on canvas panel)

My husband is gone tonight, and he’s responsible for the clever titles.

Today was a day of accomplishment – praise the Lord!  My sister comes to town tomorrow so today was clean and stock day.  But I still wanted to make the little one feel loved, and we had a great balance of both!  AND – I got to paint something wonderful.  The purple tulips I bought yesterday are beginning to open and I can’t wait to keep painting them.

Here are some shots from the painting night I did with the high school gals last night:

Leaning In

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 $40.00 USD (8x8in on canvas panel)

I had so much fun with the tulips a couple weeks ago that I wanted to play with them some more, but in different colors.  I went looking for purple, and I got some, but they weren’t opening up yet, so I grabbed this bunch of light pink too.  Once I got them all in a vase they were bending all over the place – I was thinking about painting the whole lot of them last night, but was too exhausted to wrap my head around something so big.  So a small one it is.  A good place to start with a new subject too.  I loved how the tulips looked after the first couple brush strokes:

Peek-a-boo Oranges

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 $40.00 USD (8x8in on canvas panel)

Last night I added to the giant peony painting and didn’t like it.  It was one of those moments where I wish I could have hit the “undo” button.  Oh well, I can always start over.

So today I had to redeem myself and tried a composition Carol Marine has done and inspired me earlier this week.  I went really bold and loose because I was a bit blue to be honest, but I think it works.

Giant Peonies for a Gift

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(39.5x30in on repurposed canvas)

I pushed through the intimidation and got this guy started. (see this post for details).  And so far I’m really having fun and loving how it’s looking.  Praise Jesus.  It is one of those days I wish the baby would let me know how long she is going to sleep so I could just keep going.  Alas.

This week I also have a painting night with the high school girls from my church, so I was getting some samples ready for that too.  Last time we did floral arrangements and it was more free, this time I wanted to try a still life scene and do more of a step-by-step feel to please the less left-brain inclined.  ::wink::  But I wanted to do it myself a couple times so it sounds clear and also so they can all see some different color combinations.  We always have fun, but I’m praying to teach clearly and suggest helpfully.

Images adapted from Liz Maynes painting, Apple Frenzy.

Stay In Touch

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 $40.00 USD (8x8in on canvas panel)

I found this phone at Goodwill for $2, score!  My daughter loves playing with it, glad she still knows what it’s for.  As my demo for a still life art lesson today I painted this guy – noted: maybe something I’ve never painted before isn’t a good idea to demo.  But I think it worked out after a little tweaking later.  We were ooing and ahing over the deep purple reflections on the green phone from the pink background.  A nice surprise with background choice.

My friends are so good at staying in touch over the phone.  I’m a snail mail writer myself.

 

Peony Practice

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SOLD (12x12in on 1.5in deep stretched canvas)

My cousin is renewing her vows this weekend and having a big ceremony since 10 years ago when they got married they eloped – so sweet. I’ve been saving a giant canvas to paint for her for this occasion and just like an artist I’ve left it till the last minute ::smile::

Anyways, it sounds like peonies are going to be everywhere and they are her favorite – rightfully so.  But have you ever painted a peony?  Suggested a peony nonetheless.  They’re an explosion of petals, and I was not confident enough to tackle them cold-turkey.  So here’s my 12×12 practice for the larger guy.  I love the unopened buds peonies have, and I think that’s the key to tuning your brain into the fact that they are peonies and not roses in a painting.  So here’s my first attempt and I think I like it.  I was most excited about those yummy oranges scattered among the petals.

Growing more excited about the larger one, soon to some!

 

Sidelines to Spotlight

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 $40.00 USD (8x8in on canvas panel)

Sorry about the quality of the picture, just couldn’t get the angle right without a little reflection today.

Anyways, after the success I felt with the tulips I wanted to stay on the flower kick.  I found these lilies in the discount section of flowers at the grocery store and decided to give them new life.  Yellow is always hard for me, but I love how the purple vase turned out!

Jelly Swarm

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I did 3 small paintings live at the Tour Saturday afternoon and sold all three!  Maybe I should paint everything live.  This was the only one I remembered to snap a picture of – and I had to get it back from the buyers before they left too ::smackshead::  Oh well, just wanted to show you.

Inspired by Jess Crouch‘s Jellyfish print at Wolverine Letterpress and Publick House.

May Marks 3 Years!

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I’ve been excited to write this post for the past few days but wanted to wait till May.  I love doing these “progress report” posts because the first paintings against the current paintings always makes me smile.  Since jumping on the Daily Painting movement I’ve been able to learn more quickly and experiment with so many different things due to the sheer amount of painting I get to do – and even with a 1 year old at home!

Check this out >

Some paintings from May 2014:

Very first Daily Painting – May 8,2014

I did have some gems in there like this:

May 2014

Now see the growth!!:

most recent painting from my studio.

 

Mmmmmm.  Feels good.  Can’t wait to see next May’s progress post!

Happy Painting.

Your Filament is Showing

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On hold till May 19th for gallery jury, please inquire for purchase if interested! (8x8in on canvas panel)

Last painting before I packed up my studio for the Studio Tour and Sale tomorrow and Sunday.  Popped over to a neighbor’s house because it was on the map for the tour and got to meet another artist just down the street!  Having fun on the tour already.  Come see me at the Wolverine Letterpress and Publick House tomorrow 10am-5pm.

Here’s a progress shot because it was just so cool.

Tulip Acrobats

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SOLD (16x20in on stretched canvas)

Okay, okay enough of these tulips, right?!  I wanted to squeeze just one more in before they really bite the dust.  Plus, don’t they make more interesting shapes when they’re all bending over and stretching like this?  I’ve enjoyed every phase of these flowers – no fear of painting tulips here anymore.  And it has been nice painting from life again, I feel like I have fresh eyes for the world.

Sugar ‘Lips

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SOLD (8x8in on canvas panel)

These tulips haven’t lost their petals yet!  I tried them with a pink background today.  That sugar bowl had some nice ‘lost edges’ so I’m adding it to the lost edges challenge on Daily Paintworks this week.  The sugar bowl always seems like it’s going to be a piece of cake, but it’s actually quite challenging every time; I always want to paint it looser but get so caught up in all the details.  Just means I have to use it in still lifes more often.

Tulips Making Friends

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SOLD (12x12in on 2in deep stretched canvas)

I painted this scene last Saturday but then started tiling our bathroom with my husband and didn’t have time to post.  I’m afraid the tulips will be beyond their prime when I return to them next.  Shoot.  But they look like they made some friends during their time in my studio.

Tulips and Copper No.2

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SOLD (8x8in on canvas panel)​

My husband and I were talking about the painting from yesterday and he said he wanted to see me do this still life again from a different angle…so I did!  I just love these soft red tulips with the shiny copper pitcher.  Tomorrow I hope to do a slightly larger one with tulips!  Gotta crank ’em out before they get too ripe.

Tulips and Copper

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SOLD (8x8in on canvas panel)

Took my daughter on a WholeFoods date in hopes of buying a big mixed bouquet of flowers to play with for the next couple days.  Unfortunately they didn’t quite have what I was hoping for, so I jumped on the tulip wagon.  I haven’t had much luck with tulips in the past, but I must have learned something because I really enjoy this one.  I might just add one of these copper vases to each still life now, they are such a nice pop of dark values.

The glass item here is an old wiskey decanter I recieved ages ago.  I’ve always loved the circle details on the sides but could never get the glass topper off.  So today I just pretended it wasn’t there – it was the perfect glass addition today.

And like a good artist I hope to get a couple more good still lifes out of these guys.  Stay tuned.

Layers of Glass

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SOLD (8x8in on canvas panel)

I was missing still lifes lately so I put this one together during nap time.  I really enjoyed the whole process – I love those.  And I’m jazzed about this lightbulb, can you believe they don’t really sell these little clear guys anymore.  Everything I see is opaque white ones.  I found this guy on the floor at the thrift store!

I thought these progress shots were too cool:

Iris Patterns

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SOLD (30x36in on stretched canvas)

I did an iris bouquet from the top about a year ago and can’t remember what happened to it.  I loved it so much so I tried another iris bouquet from the top – what crazy shapes they make.

Last March’s Irises

Recently sold Irises.

I think I’m just mourning not seeing these on my walls anymore – but so glad they are in happy homes for others to enjoy.

Stick Together

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SOLD (10x10in on stretched canvas)

On a whim during yesterday’s art lesson, we switched from our monochromatic plan to these guys.  When you’re inspired, you’re inspired.

Here’s another gem from this week’s art lessons.  Yosemite National Park.  This is our 3rd in the National Park series.

 $40.00 USD (8x8in on canvas panel)

Studio Tour 2017 – what’s it all about?

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This month has been CRAZY full of art already and the big show hasn’t even happened yet.  I wanted to explain this cool even happening the last weekend in April.

Every year the Lincoln Center here in Fort Collins puts on this Studio Tour – where local makers can sign up and get put on a map, so that on the studio tour weekend anyone is free to stop by and see their space or watch them create!  Everything from pottery, jewelry, painting, fiber arts, etc.  Such a cool thing.

In the past it has been in July, but this year it’s in April in hopes that more people are in town to take advantage of this cool opportunity.

I’m participating this year, but instead of being at my home (maybe next year) I’ve joined a group of other makers and we will all be at the Wolverine Farm Letterpress and Publick House.  All month our art is on display – so go check it out – then April 29th and 30th we will all be there talking about art, making art, and selling art.

I’m hoping to paint as long as I’m there both days – with a break to go check out some other studios.

Mark your calendars and I hope to see you there!

This is me painting the other day wearing a bracelet I bought from Melina Bernhart who is also in our group for the tour – so keep your eye out for those.

The studio featured above is Diane Findley, another wonderful artist here in town.

We Need Bees

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As I’m watering my newly planted flower seeds I can’t help but wonder if the bees are out yet.  And today I saw some!  Not just one either – horray!

I have another underwater swimmer in the works but couldn’t get into it tonight, so some light hearted bees happened instead.

SOLD (8x8in on stretched canvas)

SOLD (8x8in on stretched canvas)

Some Thoughts on Canvas Prep

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My husband and I were admiring a recent painting and how warm it felt.  Which launched us into a discussion about my use of bright orange as a first coat on most paintings.  I never went to art school and never knew that painting a color on the canvas before you start your painting was a thing > so if any of you self taught artists didn’t know – try it now!

This pirate ship painting was brought up in our discussion last night:

Because I used bright orange as the first layer it made that sail almost glow!

here’s another example:

A favorite portrait of mine back from when I was painting people’s selfies.  The orange once again made all her skin tones warm and glowy.

I also like to put a first layer down because my brush flows so much nicer and holds onto more paint when it doesn’t just get absorbed into the canvas.

A fun trip down memory lane with some older paintings.  Just wanted to share these thoughts!

 

City Scape Value Study

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 $40.00 USD (8x8in on canvas panel)

Friday means art lesson day with my color-science gal.  Today we continued our value study – so important- and did a monochromatic scheme.  It was the quickest I’ve gotten her to paint!  It helped that our lesson was cut a little short today, probably put the fire under both of us to move fast – whilst chatting and having fun of course.

I sold an old favorite from the Wolverine Press show for the studio tour, I’m in a little bit of a mourning, but glad to have it gone to a good home.

Swim With Me

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SOLD (16x20in on Stretched Canvas)

I had a realization the other night when my husband asked me why I looked a little blue.  There is lots of business-y art stuff happening in my world this month, and I noticed – as I sat down to paint – that I was picking subjects to paint according to what I think people would want to buy.  And even during painting them I would be so nervous as to their outcome I didn’t enjoy myself much.

So glad he asked me!  It probably would have taken me days to stop and think about it.  So before sitting down to do this one, I asked myself, ‘what would I want to paint?’

I’ve been so mesmerized by the underwater paintings by Samantha French > so I searched Pixabay and found these cute kiddos.

And because I like the process, here are some process shots: