Monday, January 26, 2009


Southern Arizona is a place I feel at home in and have done quite a few paintings there. This painting, A Perfect Day in the Sonoran Desert was made in 2004 near Tucson and it is SOLD. It is not part of the 2007 Thirty Paintings in Thirty Days project.

Monday, January 19, 2009


In 2006 I made my fourth visit to Hawaii and finally made time for some sketching. (Since it was only pastel sketching and not full-fledged pastel plein air painting I think a 5th visit is in order in the near future.)

My husband and I visited Maui, Kauai and Hawai'i. So there was plenty of sightseeing, a bit of horseback trail riding, botanical garden walking and small snatches of sketching time. The beaches all over the islands are public, with clean facilities, shaded tables and cook-out areas. This is where families and friends meet for morning Kona, afternoon playtime for the toddlers or exhuberant teenage evening gatherings. I think that Hawaii has gotten so many things right that it does not really seem like it is one of the 50 United States. (mixed diverse ethnic populations to universal health insurance) Maybe it is the over-abundance of beauty that makes Hawaiians think they deserve the best!

I took a very lightweight and limited set of pastel pencils with me and an envelope of 9 x 12" sanded pastel papers, one chamois and that was it! I made about a dozen quick little sketches which did not give me the finished product I would normally exhibit...but it did give me a way to explore and learn and "be with" the Hawaiian Islands' landscape. When I visited Costa Rica the following year on a serious painting trip I had a better understanding of how to paint an ocean-scape because of these small sketches. Aloha.


In July of 2008 I was invited to Door County to participate in the Plein Air Festival to benefit Peninsula Art School. It was a wonderful week of painting for me. Most artists were graciously hosted locally... which gave us nothing to do but paint and attend gala evening openings at the school's gallery. It is hard work, but someone's got to do it and I feel that the effort and total focus paid off in the quality and quantity of work I was able to do in one short week. Weather was delightful and the subject matter for me ran from Lake Michigan to glorious flower gardens in full bloom to agricultural lands and old farm buildings. Sales were rewarding and I got to spend the week with Midwesterners - I value manners, reticence & warmth.

This is Nita's Garden painted on the main street of Bailey's Harbor about 7am. SOLD