Tuscan Countryside

I’m posting this via my phone to see how this is going to work while I’m away. We will have a secure internet connection once we get to the OC condo in September.  In the mean time I hope to update my blog via phone.

So far I’m ok but can’t seem to get the painting photo on the site!

Okay got it.  I had to photograph it with the phone anyway due to size.  This is a large watercolor 12 x 15 which I added ink to at the end because it looked undone!

This will be the new normal until I’m settled in September!!

Until next time…packed and ready to hit the road.



ACEO Post 2

Today I actually spent quite a bit of time painting.  Started out doing a soft pastel landscape on a gesso coated piece of watercolor paper from a prior mess up.  Didn’t come out good at all.  Next I tried a small oil pastel on a tinted canvas piece that I had ready and did a beach boat scene, also not good!  Finally said give up and do a watercolor and be done with it!  Also not good.  Sooooo, spent a lot of time practicing with nothing to post.  Since I had four new little ACEO’s done just sitting there said if I’m gonna post something why not them!

So here they are.  Covered Bridge, from a Lancaster PA trip, Resort, from Marco Island visit last month, Iris, just a study and Black Eyed Susan’s from a recent photo! These seem to calm me when I get out of control and feel I’ve lost it all!  They take a bit of patience and control that I seem to lack these days when dealing with a large landscape scene.

What I did today may be reworked and completed at a later time who knows?  I hate wasting all that good paper you know so I will never throw anything away. There is always hope that I can salvage them into something worthy when the right mood strikes me.

Until next time, keep trying.

Sea Oats at Sunset

Got back in the “studio” today and painted a couple of things.  Started out painting this same picture with acrylics and hated it.  Did a rather large canvas so must try to fix it when I’m in a better frame of mind.  Every time I get out those acrylics I’m unhappy with them and have trouble keeping them from drying out on the pallet!

So I went back to the trusty watercolors and painted this small painting.  Used a combination of two travel photos to get this rendition.  A colorful stormy sky from one of the Marco Island photos, when it rained the whole trip, and the beach scene from Myrtle Beach.   I like the way it turned out, could be a better composition but all in all a good little 7 1/2 x 11 painting.

I spent a lot of time online today looking at other artists work to see what really speaks to me.  I’m still in love with oils but just can’t get past the dry time involved.  Looked at a lot of pastel work that I seem to be drawn to.  Maybe tomorrow will be a day to try something different.

Until next time, dream big.


Central Park Walk

So much for posting while away!  WiFi was sooo slow in our room that it wouldn’t even let me upload a painting for a post.  So today since we got home late in the day I’m posting one that I intended to post during the week.

This was from a travel photo several years ago and a walk through Central Park in New York city.  I painted this a week or so ago just trying out ink drawing and light color washes added after the fact.  This is a small painting a little larger than 5 x 6. Came out okay, a bit light for my taste.

I was able to get a few good shots for a couple of future works while away.  Hope to get painting tomorrow!

Goodnight for now, looking forward to my own bed.

Iris Study

Just messing around yesterday in the studio and did this little 9 x 6 Iris watercolor. Added the fine ink lines at the end to give it some details and frilly edges!  Didn’t scan well the lines are solid not dotted as they appear here.

I haven’t been doing much painting for a few days.  Did do some but nothing earth shattering to post!  Not that this is earth shattering by any means but you know what I mean!

Going away again for the week so I’ve scanned some prior works to post over the next few days.  Not even taking my paints with me just a sketch book and pencils should I get the chance to do a little drawing.  I hope to get some beach photos for future work should the weather cooperate this time.

Until next time…I hear the beach calling my name.

Venice Canal

This is a small ink and watercolor painting about 5 1/2 x 7 1/2.  This was reproduced from the large ink drawing that I did yesterday and scanned into the computer.  That drawing was an 11 x 15 that I scanned in two parts and stitched together in Photo Shop Elements since it was larger than my scanner bed.  I printed off the computer image onto the smaller watercolor paper and added the watercolor washes.

I used this photo of Venice Canal years ago to do an oil painting for my son and daughter-in-law as a gift since the vacation photo was one they took when on their honeymoon.  I know it is a well known photo op that you see everywhere but I am just so drawn to it! When I got the chance to go there myself a couple of years ago the large white building on the left was under restoration and was covered in scaffolding, so needless to say my vaca photos were not painting worthy!

I am fairly pleased with it although the paper wasn’t the best quality and I broke open some new student grade paints that I wanted to try out.  I picked up a set of Grumbacher Academy watercolors and gave them a go.  I use so very little paint and colors that I have to try it some more before I decide if I like them or not.  I do really like my Winsor and Newton Cotmans just wanted to check out something that is supposed to be similar.

More on the Photo Shop Element stitching of scans and how I feel about the new paints in a future post.

Until next time.


This posting I did last week when I was doing a bunch of pencil sketches.

Once I did the sketches I scanned them into the computer.  When I wanted to paint one I printed the scan onto watercolor paper and then inked and added watercolors.  This was my first attempt and I printed it out onto the watercolor paper before I actually cleaned it up.  My sketch paper isn’t bright white so the color of the paper gets scanned and I have to brighten the scan before saving it.  Live and learn right?  Anyway that is why the paper looks pinkish.  In addition to that the finished painting didn’t scan very well.  I made several attempts at it and this the best I could get.

Wanted to post it as I have several sketches that I plan to ink and paint in the future.  I don’t know what you would call these as they aren’t originals since the drawing is reproduced onto watercolor paper prior to adding the ink and watercolor wash to it.

Today I also did a large ink drawing that I really liked so decided I would scan it before painting since I occasionally ruin a good drawing when I add the paint.  In doing so I had to teach myself how to scan and stitch a piece that is larger than my scanner.  I have Photoshop Elements 6 and knew I could do it using this program but finding the right instructions proved lengthy.  When I finally found someone who explained it in steps I was done in no time.  Hence I wrote down what I did so I can remember next time this is needed.  Now that I can do this maybe I won’t try to keep my paintings scanner size or smaller!  Look out I’m going BIG.  No, this drawing was done on 12 x 15 good watercolor paper and in case I ruin it when I paint it I’ll at least have the ink drawing saved in my computer.  More on this next time, since I did reproduce the drawing on a smaller piece of watercolor paper and have almost completed it for posting shortly.

Until next time, continue to learn something everyday!





ACEO’s First Attempts

These four mini paintings are known as ACEO, Art Card Edition Originals, small little original paintings done on 3 1/2 x 2 1/2 art paper or card stock.  I wanted to try some of these to see if painting small was a possibility for me.  I actually enjoy doing them!  I cut mine myself out of a sheet of watercolor paper just to play around with.  I find interesting portions of a photo and go for it.  It forces me to really take control of the paint and not use too much water.  If I only have a little time to sit and paint I’ll do one of these.  Sometimes it gets me motivated to go on and work awhile on something larger.

This group includes, Upside Down Lilies, Florida Sunset, Spring Sprung and Flowers Along Brick Fence.  You absolutely have to name each and every  completed work, no matter how small, right?

I understand artists trade these with other artists or sell them at a small fee so people who like their work can have an original.  I think these would be nice as small prints on cards or to give as small gifts along with a mini easel!

Starting my own collection, what I will do with them remains unknown, they’re just fun little projects and studies of things I probably wouldn’t paint in a larger size.

Until next time, enjoy the journey!


Sit Awhile

Today a choose a photo from living up north and a trip to Winterthur Museum & Gardens.  I’m always drawn to benches and their surroundings.  This photo was taken at a distance from the House from a high vantage point.

Started out doing a watercolor but ended up using a bit of gouache on the trees and needed to put in a few ink touches to make it more realistic when it was dry.

Used Canson XL 140 lb watercolor paper cut to 91/2 x 7 1/2.

Like this one, took my time, paused a few times to let things dry and feel it came out pretty well.

Until next time, sit awhile an reflect!

Italy Ruins

This 8 x 10 watercolor is done from a vacation photo once again.  I believe it was a scene taken at the Forum which we roamed through for hours one afternoon.

I pencil sketched in the main portions and added the ink details when painting was dry.

All in all I’m happy with the results.  The only part I seemed to get hung up on was the lavender colored large shrub.  Overworked it a bit trying to get it right.

I am working in the “studio” each day trying different things and creating a bunch of pencil sketches for future use in some way.

Until next time…stay focused.