Italian Vineyard Framed & Gifted

This is the painting started years ago and finally finished that I posted early in December. It was from a honeymoon photo of our son and daughter-in-laws. It was painted as a mate to a prior Venice painting that I had done for them as a gift years ago.

I was undecided if I would give it to them or not at the time of my earlier posting. Anyway I did frame it and sent it as a Christmas gift but forgot to take a picture of it framed. My son took a photo of it and sent it to me so I could post it. I like the final result and I’m glad I gave it to it’s rightful owners!

I haven’t painted much in the last few days and must get back at it. Funny how when you are away from it a short time confidence suffers and it’s a struggle to pick up that brush and make the first stroke. Maybe tomorrow.

Until next time……sit and relax with a glass of Italian wine!



Italian Vineyard

This is an 8 x 10 oil I started many years ago and finally decided to finish. It was from a travel photo our son and daughter-in-law took on their honeymoon back in 2010. I did an 8 x 10 of the Venice Grand Canal from their photos and gave it to them as a present a few years later. Hoping to do this one as a mate to that painting but never got around to completing it.

Used my imagination and different paints to complete it but here it is none the less.  It was a hillside with what I assume are grapes growing next to a large building which I’m calling the vineyard and winery. Not too bad, not sure if I’ll give it to them or keep it!

Keeping busy in the “studio” honing those watercolor skills. Doing a lot of the small 5 x 7 little studies. Hope to be posting some in the very near future. Some are good and then some are really, really bad! I’m finding that I add too much water to my tube paints and have been having some good goes at using pans. I have a really cheap set of Koh-I-Noor in a stack of 4 pans with 6 paints in each and I really can get some good results using them! But I’m not using so much water and picking up more pigment on the brush. May think about purchasing some better grade half pans and try them! Then again it may not be the paint but the painter causing the problems! Hah

Until next time……sit and have a glass of wine on a hillside in Italy, or at east pretend to!

Guatemala Countryside

Pulled out the oils to do this painting. Actually went and purchased some Winsor & Newton Winton oils. Since I really like their Cotman watercolors thought I’d give their oils a try. Not bad to work with I’m happy with the final results. Considered a student amateur quality paint but since I’m not real versed with oils they worked just fine for me. I used a sheet of canvas paper 9 x 12 but left a bit of a border around the edge for framing possibly. Since I paint my oils on flat canvas paper at times I have to find out how to mount them to something firm for storing or possibly framing them.

This was done from a travel photo from our recent cruise vacation.  This was from an excursion we took while visiting Guatemala. A shot taken while on the bus of the countryside where there were beautiful yellow wildflowers growing all over the place so that was my inspiration along with this interesting tree.

Trying different things, pulled out the watercolors earlier today but not happy with what I came up with! Gotta get loose, continually over work the heck out of them.

Until next time…..cyber Monday tomorrow…..28 days ’til Christmas!

Sailboat Waiting

This is one of the paintings started many moon ago that I pulled out of hiding and finished!

This is an 11 x 14 canvas panel board that I had started with my old student grade oils. Finished it with my current oils that I’m using that are of a much better professional grade. Not my best effort but it is okay considering all the factors. My waves are a bit wonky but I’m happy with it over all.

Heading out on vacation tomorrow and was planning to have some posts scheduled but didn’t get that accomplished! Hopefully will get some good travel photos and I do plan on sketching and doing some painting when possible.

Until next time…enjoy the fall and stay inspired.

Queen Anne’s Lace Moonlite

Been in the studio for the past few days but not getting the results I would like to see!

Did this canvas the other day after I had used up the dark blue paint left on my palette the night before to cover a 9 x 12 stretched canvas. I had worked a bit on oils trying to finish a couple of paintings started many moons ago. Not only did I cover this canvas I blocked in four ACEO pieces for future tiny paintings.

I covered up most of the dark with lavenders and pale greens trying to create a sort of moon light shining through to highlight the queen anne’s lace flowers growing in the dark of the woods! I think it came out okay, not great but acceptable.

I tried doing some more acrylic paintings and I really can’t work with that medium! It doesn’t feel right to me. Abstract isn’t my thing which it would work great for. I feel I wasted many hours the past couple of days but it was for sure a learning experience.

My love is landscapes and natural settings. At least I know what I want to paint, just zoning in on the medium is taking some time. My heart sings when I’m using watercolor, oils and pastels. Now practice and perseverance to get to a more comfortable place with the one or two mediums that reflect my spirit in the finest light.

Until next time…..persevere my friends!

Acrylic Under Painting

This was my attempt at working with acrylics today. Used a gesso covered piece of watercolor paper since I was just experimenting. Used a reference travel photo of a garden from our spring trip to the UK. Not looking as I imagined so decided it will be an under painting for a future oil painting. I will use my water soluble oils and add some finer details and hopefully it will be salvageable.

Used a plastic shallow container with a wet shammie under a piece of parchment paper as my palette. The paints did stay moist for a longer period of time for working. I know my acrylics are student grade and they are tubes so not the best medium to be experimenting with if I want better results. I’ll see what happens when oils are introduced over this under painting.

I did a couple of soft pastel paintings while in the “studio” today also. I really like working with them and like what can be achieved using them. Future posts probably.

Until next time….remember to stop and smell the roses.

Florida Landscape

This is another attempt at the open fields that appear everywhere near our home.  The weeds that blow in the breezes this time of year always get my attention. Did something similar to the pastel I painted a few days ago, but a bit different.  This also was just drawing from my memory of what I had seen driving around the other day.

Used my water soluble oil paints and an 8 x 10 canvas board. Worked on this a couple of different sittings rather than all at once. Florida clouds are unbelievable and very hard for me to get the way I want them! Overall not a bad effort. My photo of this one isn’t the best but you get the idea. I love working with oils but even though they are water soluble I really still don’t like the clean up with them.

Have everything I need to work with the acrylics but haven’t been inspired by any subject matter to paint as of yet. Want to try something abstract but that is out of my comfort zone and really hesitant to move forward with it…..maybe tomorrow!

Here is my final Christmas card #7 of the seven day challenge, started again with a loose wash to see what appeared and I saw a tree with sparkly ornaments. This is a mixed media piece that I used watercolor, inks and watercolor crayons that have a sparkle to them, but it doesn’t show up in this photo.

20171019 Card 7

I think I will add a vertical message on the right as the card is out of balance. Only wanted to do half of the tree as that is what I saw in the watercolor wash but now that it is finished not sure?

Until next time….dance to the music as you paint!



Today I’m posting a painting I started several months back. I used one of my watercolor paper saves that had been gesso’ed. I had white around the edges and had never bothered to finish it. So while I had the water solubles out yesterday I finished it. Not my best effort but I like the colors. Sunflowers appear quite often with me, my mother loves them, and I always feel like I’m painting the particular piece for her! Small painting only 5 x 8 in size.

Here is the day 5 Christmas card, part of my 7 day challenge to complete a series of works in a week. This poinsettia was pencil drawn then I used Inktense pencils and water. The colors weren’t intense enough so I added some Crayola kids oils pastels blended with a smidgen of a linseed oil mix I use for pastels to get the desired darkness.

20171016 card 5

Until next time…try using something different you may surprise yourself!

Fishing at Sunset Beach

Today I’m posting the large canvas I’ve been working on for the past few days. This is the old canvas started 6-7 years ago and set aside unfinished. I always knew I would one day finish it just not sure when or how. Here it is and I’m happy with the result. Here is the under painting that I was working with.

20171012 Fishing Beginning

I think I remained true to the original overall feel I was going for back then. Done from a photo taken on Sunset Beach in Cape May NJ where the concrete sunken ship still remains in the water right off shore.  This I added during the finishing of this painting from a separate photo I had from that same day.

This is a large work for me, a 20 x 16 stretched canvas.  Back when I started this painting I didn’t know anything about preparing a canvas so I was working directly on a store bought gesso coated canvas. Since it is for my own collection, so to speak, it doesn’t matter how it will stand up against time. I used my better grade oil paints to complete this even though the under painting was done with a much lessor grade of oils.

Today I also worked on my 7 day challenge of Christmas cards so here is Day 2 card. A small pine cone and holly watercolor and ink. I also completed day 3 and 4 put I’ll post them tomorrow and be caught up!

20171013 Christmas Card 2

Feeling good today, accomplished a lot and forgot all about it being Friday the 13th!

Until tomorrow may the waters be calm in your neck of the woods.

Stroll by the Lake

This is the finished painting that I showed you in my blog the other day when I was inspired by the lime green grass shining through the bushes.  It went in a totally different direction.  I looked at the beginning painting for a couple of days and today with the paints I had left on my pallet and just an idea I finished it.  I’m really happy with the turn out.  Maybe I should stop clinging to a reference photo and think more outside my comfort zone and just paint!

This is a small painting measuring only 5 1/2 by 7 1/2 and it was completed on one of my gesso’ed watercolor paper recycles. I like the light affects and the composition, even the clouds!

I did work on my second day of the 7 day challenge and painted another Christmas card in watercolors but not a contender so not posting it! Tried to do a nativity scene but not good enough for giving.

Until next time, paint for your soul and no one else!