Thursday, April 30, 2009

Poppies, Poppies...

Poppies, Poppies, 12 x 12

Poppies really are seductive - they kind of captivate the unwitting passersby. These red ones at the botanical garden today reminded of that scene from the Wizard of Oz where Dorothy Gale is lulled into a deep sleep in a poppy field. In my head I kept hearing that cackle, "I'll get you, my pretty!" That used to scare me so much! :)

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Grapetown Barn

Grapetown Barn, 8 x 6, SOLD

Normally, I work from small outdoor studies to paint larger work in the studio. This one was just the opposite. For this small piece, I cropped way in on a larger plein air composition that included too many elements and lacked overall focus. It is so important for us painters to keep asking ourselves, "what is this painting about?" This barn was the story, and I should have gone straight for it the first time. :)
See more Small Works

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Rolling Hills

Rolling Hills, 8 x 6, SOLD

The Texas Hill Country has many ranch roads that are very inviting. However, conventional wisdom is that a cattle guard in the road is the same as a gate; and crossing over it is equal to tresspassing. It is private property after all. These rolling hills were just beyond one of those cattle guards. I resisted the urge to go any further... though it was tempting!

See more Small Works

Monday, April 27, 2009

Quiet Rest

Quiet Rest, 12 x 12

Down a country road in the little town of Hye, Texas, I found these cows resting in the shade. Of course, as soon as I started painting they got up and ambled off into the pasture! Not the best model behavior - luckily I had some sketches to fall back on!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Blue Barn

Blue Barn, 12 x 12

I spent this weekend running back and forth between a paintout with the Outdoor Painting Society in Fredericksburg and my home, where my husband is recovering from shoulder surgery. (He is doing great and on the mend, by the way!) I spotted this abandoned tin barn from the road and made a quick U-turn to go back and paint it. The menacing sky... the rusty old structure... the warm flood of light... it was too good to pass up!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Upper Falls

Upper Falls, 12 x 12

We are having a bit of a drought here in Texas so the falls at McKinney Falls State Park are pretty small right now. At the upper falls, this little tributary spills into that wonderful swimming hole I was talking. I would like to see this place when the water is raging. It will happen - it will eventually rain here... a lot. And then we have flooding.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Come to the Water

Come to the Water, 16 x 12

April is the best month for plein air painting in Texas because of all the glorious spring color and the relatively cooler temperatures. However, today it heated up into the 90's! I spent the day painting at McKinney Falls State Park just outside of Austin, and was so thankful for a bit of shade to take shelter in. This natural swimming hole is formed by Onion Creek pouring over wide limestone ledges. It's a pretty cool place. I'll post my painting of the falls tomorrow.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Morning Lantana

Morning Lantana, 6 x 8, SOLD

A week or so ago, my class painted in a park by Lake Austin where wild pink lantana was in full bloom. I didn't paint that day, but I stared at this view on and off for a couple of hours, breaking down the elements in my mind. I am hoping to go back while the pink is still there, but used a photo reference in my studio for this small piece.

See more Small Works

Friday, April 17, 2009

Sea of Wildflowers

Sea of Wildflowers, 8 x 6, SOLD

At this time of year, even some parking lots in Texas shimmer with the color of wildflowers. This was a gully next to the beautiful parking area of Lady Bird's commemorative wildflower center. Of course, it's filled with color and texture! I did delete a few cars from the upper ridge but that is what editing is all about! :)
See more Small Works

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Follow the Eastern Path

Follow the Eastern Path, 6 x 8, SOLD

I had great plans for posting every day this week and then my days got hijacked. The unexpected happens and suddenly, it's already Thursday! But enough about that, here we are back at the Wildflower Center. On the Eastern side, the trails lead through a flatter, lower terrain. And you guessed it, wildflowers abound! Happy spring!

See more Small Works

Monday, April 13, 2009

Western Ridge

Western Ridge, 6 x 8, SOLD

I spent this morning painting at the Ladybird Johnson Wildflower which today was full of people. It's bluebonnet time and lots of kids were out of school. In addition to formal garden spaces, many trails lead out into the surrounding acres. I found this quiet spot at the beginning of one of those trails.

See more Small Works

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Honeymoon Cactus

Honeymoon Cactus, 12 x 12

I don't know the real name of this plant, but one of my painting buddies dubbed it the "Honeymoon Cactus." On their honeymoon, her then-new husband carefully broke an ear off a plant like this and took it home as a momento. They stuck it in the ground and it became a huge plant. Though the young honeymooners have moved several times since that first planting, each time they took an ear of the cactus with them, and started another plant at their new home. I love that!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Loquat Clusters Trio

Loquat Clusters Trio, 16 x 48

Loquat Clusters 3, 16 x 16

Here is the Loquat Trio... in the last two the fruits are more ripe and deeper in color. I kind of like seeing them altogether. They make a happy little group!

...And now the birds can come on in for dinner; I think I am done.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Loquat Cluster 2

Loquat Cluster 2, 16 x 16

My loquats are still covered with fruit! Even though they look ripe, obviously the birds are holding off. These luscious clumps of fruit have continued to beckon me, so I took another swipe at them today. I decided to make a little series of three paintings to hang together. I'll post the third one tomorrow and then the group after that.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Mountain Adventure

Mountain Adventure, 12 x 12

This painting is one of two on display in the Nomadas Del Arte plein air show at the Southwest Gallery in Dallas (I included the other one in my last blogpost). The opening this weekend was great fun - especially meeting all the other fabulous artists who participated. This piece sold on Friday night, so I went home recharged, with a big smile on my face!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

91 Degrees and Some Clouds

91 Degrees and Some Clouds, 12 x 12

This weekend I am participating in Nomadas del Arte, a juried plein air show at the Southwest Gallery in Dallas. This painting from last summer is one of two pieces I have in the show. The opening is both tomorrow night and Saturday afternoon; and the show will be up all of April. If anyone is in Dallas, please stop by the gallery!!!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Field of Blue

Field of Blue, 8 x 6, SOLD

You may know that Texas is known for it's Bluebonnets, a wonderful tradition started by Ladybird Johnson. Every spring we wonder if we've had enough rain (or maybe too much?) until we begin to see them lining the highways. We are always adding more because even though they are everywhere, it's never enough. Then come the Indian Paintbrushes and Winecups... it's wildflower heaven.

See more Small Works

Also, thank you Barbara Muir and Carol Schiff for giving me this "Passion for Painting" award! What an honor!These ladies are both wonderful painters - please visit their blogs to see their work!
The rules of this blog award are that the recipient shares 7 things he/she is passionate about, and passes the award on to 7 other deserving bloggers.
7 of my passions in life:
1) 30 years of marriage and looking forward to 30 more.
2) Watching my beautiful children become fascinating adults.
3) Nurturing treasured relationships in my life - friends, family, God.
4) Wet paint, a loaded brush and a smooth canvas.
5) Experiencing nature; both it's beauty and restoration.
6) Music of all types - the artform of my childhood.
7) Chocolate Icebox Cake on my birthday (grandma's recipe - yum.)
7 fabulous artists to watch and celebrate: