Sunday, August 31, 2008

Corn! - sold

It's Monday, Labor Day... hope you are enjoying your last bit of summer to the fullest!

"How sweet I roamed from field to field, and tasted all the summer's pride".
-William Blake

Today's painting is called "Corn!", and is reposted from a painting from last summer, now owned by a friend and collector in California (thanks Barbara!). I've been thinking about corn all evening (Sunday as I write this). Just as William Blake loved summers of old- I do too - it is my favorite time of the year! Today we spent the afternoon going to several plant nurseries, the last one also sells fresh produce from a local farm. While we were there, the farmer brought in a huge sack of ears of corn. I knew this was as fresh as I'd ever get it & bought some to take home. Oh heaven!!! that was the best! and fresh raspberries for dessert! The days are starting to get shorter now...I am going to enjoy every last little bit I can squeeze out of summer!

I do take commissions - perhaps for your favorite summer memories! Contact me at for prices per size & to discuss your ideas!

Enjoy the rest of your holiday weekend!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Campfire Below the Dunes - nfs

Hope you get to spend a relaxing, fun weekend, happy Saturday to you!

"Our memories of the ocean will linger on, long after our footprints in the sand are gone."
- Anonymous

Today's painting is called "Campfire Below the Dunes", 6"x6" oil on gessoed masonite artboard. Here is another little gestural oil sketch of friends at the beach, enjoying the company of their family on a late fall a campfire below the dunes.

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Thursday, August 28, 2008

Queen of Summer

Good gravy - it's Friday already? How did that happen so fast??

"A person should hear a little music, read a little poetry and see a fine picture every day in order that wordly cares may not obliterate the sense of the beautiful which God has implanted in the human soul."
- Goethe

Today's painting is called "Queen of Summer", 6"x8" oil on Belgian linen mounted on professional artboard (Raymar). Summer in New England is such a beautiful time and place to just "be". Two of my paintings (this one included) have been accepted into a juried group show at The Mill Gallery with the Guilford Art Center in Guilford, CT. The show runs from Thursday, August 28th through Saturday, September 20th, 2008. The Mill Gallery is on Route 77 in Guilford, CT. The show juror is Gary Sussman, director of the Vaclav Vytlacil Campus, the new facility of the Art Students League of New York.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Winter Whelk Gathering, Assateague

Good morning, and a happy Thursday to you!

"The essence of life is finding something you really love and then making the daily experience worthwhile."
- Denis Waitley

Today's painting is called "Winter Whelk Gathering, Assateague", 6"x6" oil on masonite artboard. Winter is the best season to look for shells along Assateague Beach, especially after a northeaster! This young windblown friend has an armful of large knobbed whelks.

Painters Tips:
I am still working on some small color studies for a larger painting. Small oil sketches are a quick and simple way to work out color/composition...a fun way of "thinking out loud" for painters. When working small, keep the shapes simple...sometimes this can be hard to do as it can be tempting to 'noodle' with these little paintings. Keep the brushes as big as possible - that will prevent too much noodling around with the paint!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Dune Grasses of Assateague

6"x6" oil on gessoed masonite artboard

Good morning, it's Wednesday already!

"The purpose of painting is to lift the veil of mystery into consciousness."
- Henry Hensche

Today's painting is called "Dune Grasses of Assateague", 6"x6" oil on masonite artboard. I've been working on some color studies for a larger painting. Chincoteague, VA & Assateague National Wildlife Refuge is a favorite place of mine to go visit. Sometimes you'll notice various colors in the grasses, blooming plants (weeds or wildflowers?). I always find it exciting to put these views into a painted interpretation!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Shell Seekers on Assateague - sold

8"x8" oil on masonite artboard

Good morning, a fine Tuesday it will be all day!

"Travel is the distance we need from ourselves to see the world anew. Sometimes this requires a plane ticket, sometimes just a changed point of view."
- Thomas Paquette, artist

Cheer Factor emails

I've been working on some color studies for a larger painting. Chincoteague, VA & Assateague National Wildlife Refuge is a favorite place of mine to go visit. Even off season, when the tourists are mostly gone, there's a few lone beach walkers, gathering shells in the sand. The beach grasses turn a golden brown, and continue to lighten to a golden wheat during the winter. Storms passing through bring some fierce color to the sky & darkens the water, richly contrasting the golden grasses. AND I'M GOING BACK IN SEPTEMBER!! Yahoo!! It's going to be a fun Paint-out!

Painters tip:
Monday evening I spent time at a monthly meeting of writers & illustrators. There are about 6 of us that have been meeting together for the last three years ever since we were in a children's book-writing & illustrating class together. It is a springboard of ideas for each of us- and a trusted place to 'put our ideas on the table' and receive encouragement or guidance. If you are ever lucky enough to find and nurture a group like this - it's so valuable to get out of your studio and find this kind of fellowship with other kindred spirits. Keep the numbers small - bigger is not necessarily better in regards to group size.

******I hope you will continue to join me during August as I take part in painting "A Tribute To A Beautiful Earth" - Celebrating and Conserving our Planet at One hundred thirty-seven (137) member artists from 10 countries will post their tributes to the planet at the website. The Online International Show will begin August 1st and run all month to celebrate the beauty of the world and taking care of it. ********

Sunday, August 24, 2008

It's the Berries.......... nDP

Good morning, happy Monday & welcome to a brand new week!

"Once the mind has been stretched by a new idea, it will never again return to its original size."
- Oliver W. Holmes

Cheer Factor emails:
Today's photograph is called "It's The Berries!". We spent this afternoon on a long hike in the woods over at Bluff Point Park in Groton. This summer has been an incredible growing season, and in the woods- it's no different! We could eat the whole way through! Especially blackberries! Tons of ripe ones and still more that aren't quite ripe yet (but are pretty to photograph). There are wild blueberries - which I find special delight in! My husband is always hesitant to eat those, but once he sees that I'm not keeling over, he does try a few!. There were even wild grapes growing plump and purple from vines tangled through the trees. There were a few other questionable things, a white berry growing along a red stem with a touch of blue color in there somehow. I nicknamed them "scary-berries" since I have no idea what they are & probably not something anyone would want to ingest. But nature can certainly put on a show of her grand providence. So I think I've declared Sunday afternoons a day of no painting, but instead seeing another part of the world close by on a hike through the afternoon. I hope you find a wonderful way to unwind during your weekend - a break in your normal routine or activity.

Spam blockers being what they are (especially aol users), If you have had trouble in the past receiving this email, you may prefer to subscribe to my blog:
There is a subscriber box in the upper right hand portion of the blog page.

So, as I continue to make improvements to this Cheer Factor email....and finish getting through the 'calamity' of moving, you'll see continual update to my blog, website and ebay store. Many thanks - cheer & blessings to you all!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Happy Anniversary Celebration!

28"x22" oil on .75" deep gallery wrap canvas (stapled on back) design carried over & painted on edges.

I've been married for 25 years to the most incredible man on the planet! The time has gone pretty fast - and it's certainly been action packed along the way. This painting is of the bouquet he had delivered for me. He knows I'm a sucker for flowers, and that if I see them, I have to paint them! Everything else stops when a bouquet comes to the house- let the painting begin! The colors and textures of flowers arranged by a window, backlit by daylight are a wonderful thing to behold.

Painters Tips - I tried out a new type of canvas (new to me anyway), Utrecht brand, from their 'Traditional Series', Ultra Smooth Texture, 100% cotton duck, Triple Primed with Acrylic Gesso. Usually I prefer painting on oil primed linen or canvas - but this had a wonderful surface to work with. I was using both a large palette knife and huge round brushes for the luscious texture. Click on the image to enlarge and getta load of the wonderful texture in this painting. That is just one of the things I love about oil paints. It is a medium that offers so much to the painter and the viewer on so many levels! When I paint large, I stand and walk....back and forth, looking at the set-up and comparing it to what I see progressing on the canvas. It is so satisfying to bring this interpretation about.
For purchase information, click here.

Cheer Factor Email updates:
"Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given because you would not be able to live them. And the point is to live everything. Live the questions."
Rainer Maria Rilke

Now I've got to tell you - I chose the quote about patience not because of my anniversary.....but because I've had to tell my self to be patient with all that I want to accomplish - yet I am still in the "moving-in" process. It's getting 'there' bit by little bit. The downstairs is looking pretty good! My studio is somewhat better than it was a few days ago- there's room enough to paint something large - like this floral arrangement!

I've got a desk on order (thank goodness) - so that will help with organization around my work space. The last house we were in had a built-in desk in the kitchen so doing without that has complicated things. Now the funny thing is....I've had many people write to say they really miss having the Cheer Factor emails delivered. And franklly, so do I. I miss the structure that it adds to my day and the responses that people send to either my paintings, photographs, or writings. Trying to do that during this move-in process was a bigger challenge than I thought it would be, I definitely needed the break. But I did take the time during this break to work on some other tasks....Spam-blockers being what they are, most of my aol-user recipients of these emails have had them blocked at one time or another, sometime for weeks to months at a time. One way to take care of that problem has been to insert a "subscriber" feature on my blog
You'll see it in the upper right hand portion of the blog-page. I've also tinkered with both my blog and web-site, making the back-ground white for easier reading!

So, as I continue to make improvements to this Cheer Factor email....and finish getting through the 'calamity' of moving, you'll see continual update to my blog, website and ebay store. Many thanks - cheer & blessings to you all!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Fish Cannery Ruins, Assateague - sold

8"x10" oil on Belgian linen mounted on professional artboard (Raymar)

Love the long shadows on this building & the marsh grasses at water's edge. Chincoteague and Assateague National Wildlife Preserve are such beautiful places. For more information check out this link.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Assateague Lighthouse

8"x6" oil on Belgian linen mounted on professional artboard (Raymar)

Nothin' like palette knives to get you back in the groove of painting. I'm daydreaming about my trip to Chincoteague, VA coming up in September. So to get mentally ready for our paint-out there - I go back to old photos from previous trips. When you paint the sun light you mentally go back to being IN the sunlight.... If you are not familiar with this place, here's a great link to Assateague Lighthouse and the Chincoteaugue National Wildlife Refuge. Another link will tell you more about the pony swim and the 'Chincoteague ponies'.I'm also gearing up for a large commission of Chincoteague (thanks Michele). I'll start with sketches as I plan out that composition.

A Moving Experience
I was afraid that moving once again had frazzled my brain for good. But maybe going through the hard part makes things much better in life (eventually...) I've thought a lot about how to make this move better than all the previous ones in our (former) military life. After all, moving every 2 to 3 years should make me a pro at this stuff, right? HA! (and a big HA at that!). I'd done the pre-requisite paring down, yard sale, consigments, Good Will, you name it, we've separated with a lot. Things are going along quite well so far. I've found the juggling of small business and household life a challenge for right now, it's just a matter of cardboard in the way and finding a home for orphaned papers (come on, you stackers know what I'm talking about). So one evening hubby and I decide to attack the next phase of boxes and I am going to hang pictures. That's what I do best, right? It's starting to look like a home at this point with just 3 large paintings hung and I'm getting ready to hang a particularly heavy one in the foyer. It's going over an entry table so I need to use the step stool to lift it high enough. First I raise the thing up to mark where I want it to go. As I'm coming down, the bottom step is a different distance than I remembered and it's a LONGGGG way down with this heavy painting. Yow! but I didn't drop it. I'm still okay at this point - I don't think I've injured my self from my misjudgment. And of course, since I let out a small (okay, not so small) scream, my husband is now standing by to help lift heavy stuff. So the picture is hung and I'm not too bad off. Undaunted by heavy cumbersome things, I go to hang this wonderful metal birdy sculpture over the headboard of our bed. It's a long series of birds on a branch that lays fairly close to the wall.....when properly attached. You drive the nails through the eyes of the birds and that holds the sculpture in place. So I had the right side done, and let go to do the left side and BOING right in the head. The right side popped away from the wall and sliced my forehead right open! At this point I'm bleeding which I knew before my husband said, "By the way, your head is bleeding". I felt like Larry, Moe and Curly rolled into one. How did I EVER get so clumsy to get whacked by artwork a couple times in one day? I'm re-thinking hanging those birds over the bed. I could be decapitated all from one bad nail not holding things up! So they are on the kitchen counter until I decide where they will go. Other than that, it's beginning to look like a home in this place! hmm, this brings another quote to mind,

"My second favorite household chore is ironing. My first one being hitting my head on the top bunk bed until I faint." - Erma Bombeck

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Farm Fields, Eastern Shore - sold

10"x10"x1.5" oil on gallery wrapped canvas - NO NEED TO FRAME! (but of course you can if you please) It's wired on the back & ready to hang as soon as you receive it!

This is one of my favorite views during long road trips down to Virginia Beach. We like to travel down the eastern shore instead of I-95...much calmer (usually). I've painted this scene before...a place I just love. It's been on my mind as I'm planning a trip to Chincoteague, VA in September, the annual Pleinair Paintout. It will be my 4th time back to paint during this event(?...I'm starting to loose count now!). I'm really looking forward to getting together with my friends down there & soaking in the beautiful scenery! In this particular painting I've added 2 colors to my (very, very) basic palette - Permanent Rose & Manganese Blue. It was fun using them in the mixing of greens in this piece!

And for other news - the move in is going well! Things are coming together nicely and we're finding a place for everything (even if it means taking it to the "Good Will" store or the trash bin!). At times it's over-whelming, trying to get your life pulled out of boxes, new house things taken care of....and continue painting?! Am I nuts? Each evening for the last year & 4 months I've prepared an email with a quote & a painting (or a photograph) to send out in the morning "Cheer Factor" emails. I am at a cross-roads now of many things converging. I'm still on the quest I've been on for the last 15 years or so - to simplify my life so that I can pursue the things that I truly am called to do - which is to paint. I'm sure that some side roads will continue to intersect my chosen path, but for now I will part from the 'daily' Cheer Factor emails...and perhaps develop it to something more appropriate for delivery at less frequent intervals. Cheer Factor has certainly brought a lot to MY life - I hope it's been enjoyable for you to receive as it has been for me to write. Thanks for allowing me to come join you each morning with your early a.m. coffee!

Now, you can still read about our "continuing saga" through my blog....or subscribe to my ebay store newsletters (see link above in purchase info) for the latest paintings, or my website newsletter! Many thanks - cheer & blessings to you all!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Mystic Country Farmhouse, Late Afternoon

6"x8" oil on Belgian linen mounted on professional artboard (Raymar)

This is very close to my house - at a nearby farm market where I love to get fresh produce - corn, tomatoes, peaches, you name it! As afternoon turns into early evening and the market is ready to close, the light is golden.....and the market fills with a last rush of customers preparing for dinner!

For purchase information, click here.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Queen of Summer

6"x8" oil on Belgian linen mounted on professional artboard (Raymar)

Queen Anne's Lace is such a pretty wild-flower. They are in the fields where I walk at Harkness Park. This summer has been a beauty in every way - I am certainly enjoying it here in New England.

For purchase information, click here.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Moonlight on the Resevoir

6"x8" oil on Belgian linen mounted on professional artboard (Raymar)

Today's painting is called "Moonlight on the Resevoir". This evening (Monday evening as I write this) we took our daughters out for dinner to one of their favorite places to eat in New London, the "North Indian Restaurant". Tomorrow (Tuesday- today as you read it) they are heading back to Florida for their last year in college. On the way home from dinner it was already dark outside. As we passed by the Groton Resevoir, a large crescent moon hovered over the water leaving it's reflection sparkling through the tall evergreens on this side...between the road and the water. Thank goodness my husband was driving - I had to just stare at the whole scene - and take in every bit. I knew I would paint it from memory as soon as I got home.

For purchase information (and another view of the painting) click here.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Back-lit Sunflowers - sold

6"x8" oil on Belgian linen mounted on professional artboard (Raymar)

Today's painting is called "Back-lit Sunflowers". I've found a farm market close to my home and hope to make many trips back there before summer is over. Not only is there a bounty of fresh veggies, but a painting in every direction you look! These flowers were fun to bring home to grace our table AND to paint!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Back Porch Oasis

6"x8" oil on Belgian linen mounted on professional artboard (Raymar)

Today's painting is called "Back Porch Oasis". We are still unpacking from the move....but making lots of progress! I took a break from that task at lunch time to go outside on the back deck & paint. I had flowers from my new neighbors, and I had found my large blue & white flower pot and the large rabbit sculpture in one of the boxes. The light is so pretty here, I'm finding things all around that I want to be painting!

For purchase information, click here.