Wednesday, March 31, 2010

University Avenue Afternoon

I was heading into Palo Alto when I stopped for the light at University Ave at Woodland Ave. I was first at the limit line and saw this scene kitty corner from my position. I snapped a couple of shots with my camera phone before the light turned green. When I reviewed it at home, I thought this image would look great on one of those long landscape canvases. I would like to know if you think it works.

12x36 oil on canvas

The top is a modification based on a suggestion from an artist I really respect. Muted violet is what I'm looking for. This too pink?

Thursday....I uploaded a third version... little darker...

Monday, March 29, 2010

Freedom with Freesias

I really appreciated everyone's input with my last post. I believe the reoccurring sentiment was: 1. this is a common stage for an artist to go through 2. to keep on , keeping on.... or continue to create and relax a little more about where it might take you. 3. Try different styles, experiment, explore.

So in keeping with this new insight, I decided to try and paint flowers. If you look back, I have only painted flowers in a simplistic style for a commission. I wasn't crazy about. The style I'm crazy about is Diane Hoeptner's. Such a beautiful, loose and lovely style for all sorts of flowers. If you don't know her work, check her out. I believe a National Retail business is looking to use some of her paintings to decorate some housewares.

I noticed the front yard had some freesias blooming. I plunked them in a clean Pace Picante Sauce jar and painted away. I was surprisingly please with the result. I am glad I tried to tackle something I thought I could not do.

8x6 oil on Raymar panel

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Path to Painting for Myself

So most of you know I started my career in Fine Art a couple years ago so I am still an infant in terms of becoming a professional artist. That is why blogging and visiting blogs have so important to me. Other artist’s works inspire, motivate and feed my soul.

I feel I am still all over the board. Sometimes I feel like a ship without a rudder and allowing whatever dominant wind push me in any direction.

Reading this post from Katharine A. Cartwright's blog slapped me on the forehead last week. If you have not visited her blog, you must if you want some mental stimulus on the subject of art. Besides Katherine is an exceptional watercolor artist and an outstanding teacher.

I took several days after reading that post to take a break from blogs and blogging to try and figure out who I am in terms of this new role of an artist and what gives me passion when I paint.

I was working on the top painting which is another scene from the Dublin St. Patrick's Day fair. It took me about 3 days to make me feel like it was completed. It gave me a 2.5 out of 10 on my excitement scale. Then just for kicks, I painted the bottom painting in about 3 hours and it gave me about a 5 out of 10 on my excitement scale. So I'm not there yet, but besides the pet and other commissions, I'm going to start exploring on how to find that 10 out of 10. I hope you'll stick around for the journey. Love to all!

both pieces are 20x16 oil on canvas

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Darling and Debonair Dog portrait

I was delighted when a friend asked me to paint his daughter's dear dog as a gift for her.

This was fun because he gave me free rein on how to approach the portrait. He's tiny but I could tell he was a character.

I'll give you one guess as to what his name is.

9x9 oil on gallery wrapped canvas

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Day in Dublin

Dublin, California that is. Our Dublin is a neighboring city just south of where I live. Of course, they have a St. Patrick's Day Festival and parade every year. My daughter and her friend and I went to check out the fair.

As we were leaving, I caught these two teens about to tackle their lunch. Interesting how one of them contemplates how to approach her meal and the other just dives in.

I keep going back to this style of painting with the blue outlines and simple shapes. What do you think?

18x24 oil on canvas.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Coffee and Tea for Alice's Challenge

I first became a fan of Alice's Thompson's work when I saw it in Karin Jurick's art challenge. I went to her personal Blog and fell in love with her precise realism techniques and was in awe with her paintings from her trip to Japan.

Alice started a new challenge Blog this year she calls Calypso Moon Artist Movement. This is my first contribution to her challenge. This month she wanted the contributors to paint two pieces from a collection the artist has that reflects his/her personality.

I used to collect tea and coffee pots. Mostly American made Hall products. You would think it would be Japanese iron or clay teapots but I am attracted to the 40's/ 50's Mrs Ward Cleaver style pottery. The large yellow piece is actually for coffee and called the Drip-O-Lator. It's an early version of the drip coffee maker. The small piece is a tiny copy of a full sized Hall teapot and is used for cream.

8x6 oil on board.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Dedicated to da Vinci

I was fortunate enough to be noticed by talented Michelle Burnett when I first ventured out into this Blogosphere. She has a growing Painting Challenge that is filled with information on artists and styles. She presents these lessons in a way that inspires many artists from around the world to participate.

This month, Following the Masters focuses on the Italian Renaissance. This is my contribution VERY loosely following Leonardo da Vinci's practice of sketching and analyzing his subjects.

I used micron pens with sepia ink on Canson paper. 7x 9

Monday, March 8, 2010

International Women's Day

My blogger pal Narayahan wished me a Happy Women's Day last night around 10PM. I told him I didn't know what he was refering to and he told me March 8 is International Women's Day.

So I Googled and found the website for International Women's Day and was enlightened that this is a national holiday for several countries and started way back in 1911. So 'Thank you' Narayahan for letting me know about this.

Now this painting has nothing to do with celebrating Women's Day but I thought I would post it because it features a woman. It is a painting for the Flying Moleskin Project. Vern Schwarz left the subject for his book up to us. I've always admired the glamor of the 40's. This is loosely based on a photo of Gene Tierney. It is oil on gessoed paper about 10x8.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Another quick sketch

I know I need to do more, but I was inspired to draw this quick sketch last night.

Donovan was watching TV and our cat Meatball hopped up and used him as a podium to look out our back window.
They are best buds, can you tell?

6x8, graphite on paper

Friday, March 5, 2010

Big Horn Bonanza

Busy blogger pal Gary Keimig not only has his own website but three other blogs. I follow his Painting a Day blog and visit his Outdoor Adventures.

Gary took an awesome photo of a Big Horn Ram roaming around in his home state Wyoming. I can see why the gorgeous scenery and sights are a constant inspiration for this prolific artist. Gary was kind enough to let me paint this big guy.

8x10 oil on Raymar panel

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Bumping against the "Glass Ceiling" again

As you can imagine, I did deal with some [ okay a lot] of challenges when I was trying to become and after I became a police officer. The challenges not only came from my peers and supervisors but from the public in that when I started it was still rare for females to be a cop and even more rare for an Asian female to be one.

I have heard of some of the same challenges in this new field I am entering but I didn't know how intense it was until I read this article and not one woman is on the list of top artists.

click on this title to read the article:

My Education continues:
Then I watched this [ it's a little over 27 minutes] and it was very enlightening. Did you know a woman artist traveled to South America to study animals, plant life and insects before Darwin? Her style of painting the specimens was adopted by Audubon himself many years later.

Some of you from outside the States have been unable to view the video in this format. Please try going directly to this LINK and see if you can view it there. Thanks!!!

Monday, March 1, 2010


I had been admiring Kelley MacDonald's cocktail paintings when she threw out a challenge. I was never confident about painting glass or liquid but after studying her paintings I gave it a go.

I also wanted to try the black gesso that Carol Schiff recommended and Deano uses a lot of the time.

Of course I could have chosen an easier subject than a mint filled Mojito but it is what it is.

8x6 oil on RayMar panel