Practicing the Art of Suggestion


SOLD (5x5in on wood block) More birds for sale at Trimble Court Artisans

Last week of my students coming over for lessons for the summer.  Usually I don’t take breaks from lessons, but there is a lot added to my schedule this summer, so I’m simplifying.

Anyways, as a last lesson my kiddo wanted to paint birds with as few brush strokes as possible.  After being inspired by the birds of Angela Moulton.  We had a blast painting these little guys.  We each finished 3 and were inspired to try more!

Cherry Demo


For Sale at Trimble Court in Fort Collins, CO (8x8in on canvas panel)

A friend of mine and a young gal she works with came over for a painting lesson yesterday.  I’m still learning how to teach and simplify and get inside of the mind of someone who doesn’t touch paint every day – and I’m getting better.  These cherries came to mind after having another student paint them as a still life, and I thought they’d be a great subject to teach.

The girls did great and I got to whip out another one before the kiddo woke up.  The green background is my demo during the lesson, and the white one is what I got to do after.

SOLD (8x8in on canvas panel)

Scarlet Letter


SOLD (14x14in on Repurposed Canvas)

There was pressure to get to this painted today – the sunflowers are aging quickly.  I’m struggling between napping with my kiddo or staying awake and painting these days.  But I’m so glad I did.  I love these reds.

The tea pot was especially tricky, it’s hexagonal and shiny ceramic, so to simplify and still make it read well in a painting was hard!


Practice For Tomorrow


For Sale at Trimble Court Artisans (8x8in on canvas panel)

Oh man, painting was super enjoyable today!  My young friend came over for art lesson again and she is just such a joy to paint with.  I prepped a larger canvas and got it all sketched out, then chickened out.  My sunflowers last week didn’t turn out so I think that made me nervous to commit a large one with sunflowers.  So I did a quick sketch today.

I also got new still life lamps since I broke mine yesterday.  Now we each have one!  Here’s her fabulous painting from today:

Isn’t she getting good!?

And news for the Fort Collins locals, I’ll be hanging some pieces at Trimble Court on June 1st!  You can check in there to see my work for the next year!  Definitely my gallery of choice.

Prickly Pear


SOLD (8x8in on canvas panel)

So this thing is called a prickly pear, I thought that was too cute.  Images of prickly pears kept popping up in my “fig” search, who knew, and I changed my mind and painted this instead.  I actually was really excited about a still life I set up today, but my still life spot light died today.  As I was thinking about what other craft I could pick up during these precious minutes of nap time I realized I could still paint from pictures!  Ha.  The day is not wasted.

Strawberry Doubles


SOLD (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


SOLD (12x12in on 1in deep stretched canvas)

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


On Hold (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


(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!

(16x20in on stretched canvas)


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

Red Glasses Purple Tulips


For Sale at Trimble Court Artisans (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


SOLD (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


SOLD (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


(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


SOLD (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


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


(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


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!


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.