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Thursday, March 31, 2011

Cape Cod Sunset Pastel with Abstract Color Study

'Summer Dreams II' 8x10 pastel (top)
'Summer Dreams I' 6x6 pastel (bottom)
I remember this wonderful sunset we experienced one summer on Cape Cod. We were sitting on a bench watching people walk with their dogs and watching the sky turn pink. Two couples arrived and set up a folding picnic table complete with table cloth and flowers. Then out came the wine and two boxes of pizza. The perfect way to watch the sun set! For this painting I was working on trying out new color palettes and so I used my Analagous color wheel to choose a color scheme and them I did an abstract color study based on my reference photo. That was a fun exercise!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Summer Day on Nantucket

'Summer Day on Nantucket' 8x10 pastel
This is Sanford Farm on Nantucket Island. We took a nice long walk one summer afternoon and luckily I took plenty of photos. It must be a popular place to walk your dog because it seems we were the only ones without one! I love the rolling hills and the beautiful colors in the grasses. I used the analogous color wheel to help me choose a different color palette for this painting. We will be talking about using this color wheel tonight in my basic class. We will be doing some small abstracts so we can play with new colors! It should be fun.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Studies for a Large Marsh Painting

I have been commissioned to paint this awesome marsh view. My clients are building a home on the Georgia coast and this will be their view! I did three small studies that are 5x9 and 5x7 so we could work out the composition, format and colors. We decided on the long format and this will be large for me at 18x36. I will keep you posted on the finished painting. This is going to be fun!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Time for some Color! Poppies

'Poppy Magic' 6x6 pastel
After painting some moody paintings it is time for a splash of color. This is one of the 6x6 pastels I did when deciding what to enter in Randy Higbee's 6 Squared Show in California. I was thrilled to have a painting accepted so now I will share the others that I worked on for the show. 6x6 is a great little format to work on and I am sure I will do it again. I mounted Uart paper to archival matboard which made it even easier to do underpaintings.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Moody Sky demo Painting

'In Like a Lion' 11x14 pastel
It was a great day to stay inside and paint and I had 10 wonderful artists join me in my studio for a mini workshop on painting a moody landscape. I did two demo and this stormy sky painting was one of them. We talked about making interesting grays by layering colors instead of using the grays 'out of the box'. Everyone did some great work and I hope learned something. I had a fun time sharing! This painting is on Uart paper with no underpainting.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Through the Fog 5x7 pastel

'Through the Fog' 5x7 pastel
We have perfect weather for my mini workshop on painting the Moody landscape....rain and thunder. It is dreary outside! It will hopefully get us in the mood to stay inside and paint some foggy landscapes! I was enjoying our wonderful spring weather and I will certainly look forward to it's return! Our dogwoods and azaleas are starting to bloom and I will be wanting to paint them!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Misty Landscape....A walk in the Mist

'A Walk in the Mist' 8x10 pastel
I am having fun exploring atmospheric conditions such as fog and mist with pastels. I love the moody quality these conditions create. Whenever I travel I like to stay in a place for a few days with the hope that I can experience a clear sunny day and a moody day. It is amazing how different the landscape can look in these different conditions. I want to be able to capture all of the moods of the landscape and so I keep practicing!

Accepted into Randy Higbee's Spring 6 Squared Exhibition!

'Morning Peace' 6x6 pastel
I am excited to share that my painting 'Morning Peace' will be on it's way to California for the Spring 6 Squared Exhibition at the Randy Higbee Gallery. I am honored to be included with some of the finest artists in the country! From what I understand there were over 1200 entries so I am very excited to have my painting accepted! Now if only I could go to California to see the show!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Misty Morning on the Lake 5x7 pastel

'Misty Morning' 5x7 pastel
I love early mornings at the lake when everything is soft and pink. It's great to get up early and watch the mist rise off the lake and the sun slowly warming up the sky. I love sitting on the houseboat with a cup of coffee and listen to the quiet morning sounds. Can't wait for summertime on the houseboat and this summer we will have a dog of our own. Everyone on the lake has a dog and this summer our Heidi will be able to join the fun along with her Golden cousins Hannah and Haley!

Spring Cleaning Sale....Beach Paintings

I am offering this collection of beach pastel paintings at sale prices. Many of them are plein air studies from last Spring. I would love for them to have good homes and I need to make room for new studies. The prices are as follows:
#1 top left 8x10 #2 top right 5x7 $35, #3 middle left 5x7 $35, #4 middle right 5x7 $35, #5 Bottom left beach path 4x6 SOLD, #6 bottom left dunes 5x7 $35, #7 bottom right 4x6 $35
Please email me at if you are interested in purchasing a painting.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Landscape in Red

'Landscape in Red' 8x10 pastel
Today I tried a monochromatic landscape and I chose to use red. I love the color red but I don't use it much in my paintings...unless I am painting Poppies! In my Back to Basics class we will be studying color and working with some different color schemes. The goal is to help us keep our color choices fresh and exciting. I know that I tend to rely a lot on my favorite know the ones that are down to crumbs! I have to make a determined effort to work with new color palettes. But I have some ideas on how we can do a better job. It is going to be a fun session!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Seashore Dreams Beach Painting

'Seashore Dreams' 8x10 pastel
Today's painting is another one of my beach series that I current;y have on auction in my ebay store. This is a scene from a quiet evening after the sun went down. It was such a peaceful dreamy moment. Makes me want to go back to the beach! Here is the auction link if you are interested in this painting.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Golden Marsh

'Golden Marsh' 8x10 pastel
Golden is an appropriate color to use today since we just got a new puppy! She is a Golden Retriever Lab mix and she is adorable. Pictures to follow in the morning but for now I have to finish setting up the baby gates.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Windswept Dunes...Nantucket Painting

'Windswept Dunes' 5x7 pastel
Another Nantucket landscape painting for today. I never tire of painting from my Nantucket photos. It is such a magical and inspiring place for me. If I am lucky I may get back there soon! This painting is on Canson paper. I will have a busy week this week as I prepare for two workshops this weekend. I will take a deep breath and know that I will get everything done in time!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Queen Anne's Lace 7x5 pastel painting

'Down in the Meadow' 7x5 pastel
We are having gorgeous weather here the last few days and it is making me dream of summer. I have some ideas for a new series of meadows and flowers with a different twist. I won't have time to start on them until after next week but that will give me time to mull over my ideas. This little painting was done on purple canson paper with charcoal and pastel.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Sunny Beach Dunes 4x6 pastel

'Blue Sky Day' 4x6 pastel
Today's painting is another beach painting that I am offering this week by ebay auction. I have a lot of interest but no bids yet. I hope they will find good homes! I am offering 9 paintings ranging in size from 4x6 to 8x10 with great opening bids. I am looking forward to getting back to the beach in May. This year I intend to paint more and actually bring my supplies down onto the beach. If you would like to bid on this painting or have a closer look here is the link
click here to bid on this painting

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Moody Marsh 8x10 pastel..upcoming mini workshop!

'Marsh Moods' 8x10 pastel
I love painting moody landscapes....I like blue sky days but I also enjoy it anytime there is interesting weather. Give me a foggy day and I am happy! My mini workshop on painting the moody landscape is fast approaching and I have 2 openings. The workshop is on Sunday March 27 from 1-5. Come join us as we learn ways to paint atmospheric conditions like fog with pastels.

I offer a variety of pastel classes and workshop in my Marietta, Georgia studio. I would love to have you join a class or discuss with you how I can help you on your journey with pastels. Please click on the workshop tab at top of page for the most up to date information on all of my classes.For more information or to register for a class or workshop, please send me an email at

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Cherry Blossom...two versions

'Cherry Blossoms l' 'Cherry Blossoms ll' pastel 5x7
My Cherry trees are blooming and I wanted to paint them before the blooms were gone. Yesterday was a rainy day here in Georgia so I cut a small branch of blooms and brought it inside to paint. I was still in the 'folly' painting mode so I thought I would try two small paintings in my usual style and one in the charcoal line style. That was an interesting experiment!
I'll be shifting gears now to get ready for my upcoming workshop on painting the moody landscape. Tomorrow I'll be posting my updated Spring ans Summer class schedule. I have some fun ideas!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

A Collection of Beach Paintings

'Beach Path' 8x10 pastel
I have been cleaning my studio and came across a group of Florida beach paintings that I did last Spring. Some were done on location and some in the studio from photos. Most of them have not made an appearance on the blog. I have decided to offer them for sale by Ebay auction at low opening bids. They range in size from 4x6 up to 8x10. I would love for them to find home where they can be enjoyed. Here is the link to the bottom painting but be sure to have a look at all of the available paintings. The auction will be on for 7 days.

click here to bid on this painting

Monday, March 14, 2011

Bison in the Grass...pastel painting 11x14

'Bison in the Grass' 11x14 pastel
Every once in awhile it is fun to break away from your usual way of working and just have fun trying something different. The last group of paintings I have been working on are quite different for me but I am enjoying the process so much! Who know what it will bring to my usual way of working. I have done a series of 7 paintings of the Southwest and West. Using charcoal likes and bold pastel application really allows me to capture the boldness and color in these scenes. I can't wait until class on Wednesday when we will all try some bold paintings together.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Kiawah Island Marsh

'Kiawah Afternoon' 8x110 pastel
No painting today so I am sharing a recent marsh painting. I spent the day organizing the studio and filing my winter paintings. I was very busy this winter and so I will be putting some work together for a Spring Studio sale. Look for details later this week.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Siamese Kitten Painting 5x7

'Sleepy Siamese' 5x7 pastel
I came across some photos of my Siamese cat Maya when she was a kitten. She was so petite and prissy (still is) I love painting her and I am overdue for doing a larger cat painting. Maybe this week!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Playing with Color and Lines ...Canyons and Ravens

top 'Canyon Country' 8x10 pastel
bottom 'Mr. Raven' 8x10 pastel
Here is something different for me! If you've been following my blog you know that my pastel class has been working on trying out different strokes/methods for applying pastels. We've done linear painting, paintings done with thick side strokes, and paintings in which we used extensive surface blending. This week we will finish this unit by trying to combine all three in a single painting. I thought it would be fun if we tried a bold and graphic approach to our paintings doing the initial drawing with charcoal. Then we can concentrate on finishing the painting using different types of strokes....kind of like being a kid and coloring! What fun this was! I can't wait to try some more.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Nantucket at Night 8x10 pastel

'Nantucket Nights' 8x10 pastel
I love this time of evening when the sky still has color and the lights come on. This is a scene from Nantucket Island one summer evening. The reflected lights on the cobblestone streets were wonderful. Once you got away from the center of town it was just the glow of the gas streetlights. I remember feeling as if I had gone back in time and I was walking through town with my Great Great Grandmother who lived on the island. Today's painting is on Canson and was done with my class as we practiced using broad side strokes with our pastels.

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Lone Tree Study 5x7 pastel

'Lone Tree Study' 5x7 pastel
Another study today done on Canson paper. This is another California tree. I had so much fun taking pictures of the trees out there. They had the most wonderful shapes! I am also gearing up for my next mini workshop on painting the Moody landscape on March 27th. We will be learning ways to paint fog, mist and the moody atmosphere. I have a couple of spots left so email me at if you are interested in joining us.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

New California Landscape Painting 9x12 pastel

'Breaking Storm' 9x12 pastel
I love the moody landscape so whenever I travel I never mind if we have a few days of clouds or better yet fog! On our trip to Northern California last Fall we had a couple of days of moody weather so I took advantage and got lots of photos, The coastline was gorgeous but I also loved the rolling hills and interesting very different from Georgia!
This painting is also on Canson. I had a comment to my blog recently about Canson paper and why it is looked down on by many pastel artists. She uses it with great success for her colored pencil work. I think that many begin their journey with pastels with Canson and hard pastels such as Rembrandts because they are affordable but they get easily frustrated because the Canson doesn't take many layers or abuse. Sanded paper is so much more forgiving. So we learn to dislike canson and many never want to try it again. But that is a mistake. As you learn how to handle pastel and develop your touch you will discover that you have more control and can actually paint on Canson. So If you have a stash of Canson that you vowed never to use....take it out and try it again. I think you may be pleasantly surprised!

Monday, March 07, 2011

Sanford Farm Nantucket Island

'Summer Walk' 11x14 pastel
I love painting the landscapes of Nantucket. The beaches and coastline are beautiful but I love the interior just as much. The colors in the grasses and the wildflowers are just wonderful. Everything is windswept and wild. It is so nice that there are areas on the island that have been preserved for us to enjoy. This painting is 11x14 on Canson paper.

Buy this painting on PayPal
Price: $155 USD
Or, send me an email

Sunday, March 06, 2011

To Blend or Not to Blend? Sunset Pavillion Cape May NJ

'Late Afternoon in Cape May' 8x8 pastel
I have always avoided too much surface blending in my pastel paintings. I have always preferred to let the pastel layers blend themselves or to see my strokes. I have tried to keep my fingers off the painting except for an occasional softening of edges with my finger. In my Back to Basics Pastel class we have been taking a look at the different ways we have to apply the pastel. We have done linear marks, side strokes and this week we will take a look at blending. So I have been playing around with paintings that are mostly blended just to see what happens. I have been using canson and other drawing papers rather than sanded paper and I am really enjoying the soft moody quality I can get. So the question is you blend your pastels or do you keep your fingers off the painting? If you are a blender what are your favorite blending tools?

Buy this painting on PayPal
Price: $125 USD
Or, send me an email

Saturday, March 05, 2011

Orange Tabby Cat Painting

'Afternoon Sun' 5x7 pastel
As you may know I live with 6 cats so I have a plentiful supply of reference material when the mood to paint a cat strikes me. Yesterday I painted 3 of my cats while at the Art Walk. One of them is of my daughter's Orange Tabby named Eva. Eva loves to be down in my studio. She especially loves napping on my fleece covered chair. The other afternoon the light was just perfect on her pretty coat so I was able to get a quick photo. This painting is 5x7 on LaCarte pastel card.

Buy this painting on PayPal
Price: $75 USD
Or, send me an email

Friday, March 04, 2011

Autumn Marsh South Carolina Lowcountry

'Golden Marsh' 8x10 pastel
I will be painting tonight at the Art Walk on the Marietta Square. I'll be at the Art Forum in Dupre's Antique Market. I've decided to paint some cats tonight so it should be fun. It is a bit chilly today but the art will be inside so I hope we have a big crowd! Today's painting is a marsh scene done on canson paper. Dare I say I have been enjoying the canson!!

Buy this painting on PayPal
Price: $145 USD
Or, send me an email

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Shopping on Chicago's Magnificent Mile SOLD

'Magnificent Mile' 8x10 pastel
I started this painting as a demo for yesterday's pastel class. We were working on using the side of the pastel to paint and trying to let our marks show rather than blending them all together. For those who usually paint with the tip of the pastel or do a lot of blending, it was a bit challenging but it did make us more aware of where and how we placed our strokes. It was a lot of fun. Next week we will be trying some paintings that will be just the opposite....mostly blended. We will actually get to use our fingers which will be fun for me...I always try hard to keep my fingers off my painting! It has been interesting to explore other techniques for applying pastels.

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Daisy Pastel on Canson 5x7

'Nantucket Daisies' 5x7 pastel
Today I decided to do some paintings on Canson paper. In class tonight we will be working on being aware of the marks we make and trying to have our marks show rather than have everything blended away. Working on Canson makes this easier because we can't get as many layers as we do on sanded every stroke has to have a purpose. I was on a roll and did 3 small paintings which I will be sharing this week. I have also discovered another diversion...making flowers from felted wool thrift store sweaters. Fun! I'll share them when I get a few more made.
If you are in the Marietta/Atlanta area and want something fun to do this Friday night, consider the Art Walk at the Marietta Square. There will be an Artist's Alley inside DuPre's Antique Market as well as artists being hosted by businesses on the Square. I will be at the Art Forum at DuPre's painting so please come by and say hello!

Buy this painting on PayPal
Price: $75 USD
Or, send me an email

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

New Mexico Landscape...Stormy Skies 6x6

'Stormy Skies' 6x6 pastel
I felt like painting a dramatic sky and so I went through my New Mexico photos because I remember we had some stormy weather on our visit. This painting was inspired by one of these photos. The sky was amazing but what I loved was the sliver of light on the distant land. It's good that the storm stayed in the distance!