Friday, November 21, 2014

2016 calendar, anyone?

After a recent vacation in Hermosa Beach, a southern California beach town where my family lived in the 60s and where I spent the happiest years of my youth, an entire new world of painting subjects rolled up on my shore. I never really had an interest in painting seascapes or beach scenes, never even thought I was capable of it. I've become a figure painter for the most part. That's what I'm passionate about.

But when I spent a week in Hermosa Beach ... riding bikes on the Strand, basking in the warm sand, body surfing the waves (okay ... getting knocked down by the waves that I body surfed in my youth) ... I stepped into my young girl's bronze skin again and was reminded of how much I loved it there, how much the beach is a part of me. And then there is that realization that if an artist paints the subjects she is most passionate about, that passion will show up in the painting and the work will be good.

And so I'm painting a series of beach paintings with the idea that I'll put together an artsy-beachy calendar for 2016. This is such a great idea which was suggested by artist extraordinaire, Rita Kirkman,  when she gave a talk to the Austin Pastel Society about how to best market our work. It's brilliant when you think about it ... every month a different painting will be featured on some one's wall for 12 months!

I hope to do about 16 paintings so that I have 12 good ones to choose from, have a 2016 calendar printed by September 2015 and have it ready for holiday sales.

Here are a few beach paintings I've done so far. And yup, I'm combining two favorites ... figures on the beach. Double passion!

Beach calendar, anyone? I'll put your name on my list!

13 x 17 pastel

Blue Morning
8 x 10 pastel

Paddling Out
8 x 10 pastel

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Four More!

I delivered these four paintings today to the North Hills Gallery Member Exhibition for the Austin Pastel Society. A couple of older ones, a couple of recent ones ... all for sale!

8x10 image, 11x14 framed

9x12 image, 11x14 framed

Summer Snack
6x9 image, 9x12 framed

Paddling Out
8x10 image, 11x14 framed

All paintings will be available for purchase online at Daily Paintworks if not sold at the exhibit, which will run until November 30th. My Daily Paintworks gallery and shop will be open November 6th where you can see some of my other paintings. Please drop in and take a look .... I hope to add a painting a day until I run out!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Jist yur run-of-the-mill French truck stop

Four months later and I'm still writing about my artists' trip to France with Margaret Dyer. This will be the last of it I think, but I just had to shoot this little pictorial your way. Our hosts, Kippy and Jerome, called this a local "truck stop" but it shore ain't lookin' like any truck stop we have around these here parts in Texas. Welcome to Le Relais, near Fontaine-Fourches, France. It was a collectors paradise and truly a visual experience!

The vintage teddy bear collection was next to my place at the table. At first I was a little creeped out but soon enough they became my friends. One of them held my cell phone while I ate.

Our fabulous group of artists!
These were the most charming porridge bowls for children. They are hollow on the inside, you unscrew the little gold birdie, and fill the inside with hot water so that the porridge stays warm. I wanted one. Good thing the teddy bears were watching closely ... one of these might have found its way into my purse. ;-))

A beautiful collection of pitchers. Most of them seemed to be Majolica but I didn't dare pick one up to check.
These gorgeous enamel coffeepots were my favorite collection there! There were so many! This photo shows  about half of them.
Embroidered samplers galore!
Antique sewing machines and baskets.
There is a name for these precious figures. Kippy, help me out ... what is it?
Last but not least ... my dessert. A lovely little cherry clafouti. Délicieux!


Friday, October 3, 2014

Las Portes et Fenetres de France

By God, I've done it again! I've neglected my poor little blog for three whole months!

Last I checked with myself, I was going to continue sharing my painting excursion to France with y'all. Oh well, as fabulous as it was I'm now onto the next exciting thing. But I did come across this draft that I had all ready to publish ... photos I took of doors and windows of France. They are all so beautiful and interesting .... worthy of a blog post.

Enjoy! Then I'll share some of my latest work. Thanks for stopping by! Au revoir!


Saturday, July 19, 2014

We'll Always Have Paris

It was touch and go but we made it to Paris.

Despite the transit strike that was going on when we arrived in France, our artists group managed to make it into Paris by train one day. Jane and I had never been to Paris before, so we were going to be mighty disappointed if we were that close but couldn't go. It was a bucket list issue for us.

First we all walked over to the Musée d'Orsay where a few of us lunched in the exquisite restaurant before touring the museum.

(It's possible that you might be seeing the remains of some absinthe cocktails.)

Jane and I then went through the Impressionists wing of the Musée d'Orsay and because we were so awestruck we wandered through too slowly. So we didn't have time to view many of the other rooms in the museum before it was time to meet up with our group again. I think that means a trip back to Paris is necessary, n'est-ce pas? (Alas, we weren't allowed to take pictures.)

Then off we went across the Seine river and through the Tuileries Gardens to the Musée de L'Orangerie. Monet, Degas, Matisse ... oh my! Again, sorry I don't have pictures to show.

We crossed one of two bridges in Paris with the "love locks," the tradition of lovers writing their names on a padlock, locking it to the bridge and throwing the key into the Seine ... a symbol of their undying love.

The bridge is packed with locks on both sides ... you have to see it to believe it! Recently a portion of the railing collapsed from the weight of them.

As our day in Paris neared the end, we walked a different route back to the metro, through some elegant areas.

The window shopping was phenomenal.

Paris .... CHECK!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014


After more than a week of painting in the studio, we held our Vernissage, the reception and showing of our work.

It was a mad dash to get the studio cleaned up but it looked so great. Our beautiful gallery!

Lots of Kippy and Jerome's friends came and joined us for champagne, appetizers, interesting conversation and to view our work. So exciting! As Kippy said, now we can say we've shown our work in Europe!
(I think I missed the memo to wear red.)

Here's Jane standing next to her board. She didn't have a lot of experience painting figures before coming to France but she could have fooled us! Her paintings were wonderful and accomplished!

Kippy and me in front of my board.

I reluctantly show you my entire board because I was teased mercilessly by a certain fellow student from Tasmania (yeah, that's you Vicki) about the one nude painting on the lower left ... you know, The Full Monty? I can't help it!! That's the pose I saw from my easel position!

But once I got home and taped my paintings to the studio wall, that painting kept whispering to me ... "TMI, TMI." So I gave her a little makeover. Er, uh ... down under. Happy now, Vicki?  ;-)

 Next post: our day in Paris. Stay tuned!