Wednesday, March 31, 2010

River Farm {Plein Air Painting}

20100331 River Farm 12x16

River Farm – 12" x 16" (30.5 x 40.6 cm) – Oil Canvas Panel

Wednesdays are my days to go out and paint en plein air. This schedule was started a few weeks ago, where I go out with an artist friend who has lots of experience painting outside. I am still learning about how best to paint landscapes while also dealing with the elements.

Today we faced windy conditions, one gust tipped my easel over, spilling palette, canvas panel, and all the contents stored in the easel all over the place… I was just lucky that my turp/OMS was not open yet. So from this little adventure I now know attach my easel to something heavy to avoid future times where the wind may catch the a flat canvas panel and change its function from a painting surface to a kite.

It was a fun experience, though I am exhausted from it! It reminds me of Sara Winters blog post from last year about how plein air painting can be challenging. It is and this is why I am going to keep at it, because I like the challenge :) even when the outcome does not quite match what I had in mind.

Have a wonderful evening, and thanks for reading,


Monday, March 29, 2010


How are you on this Monday afternoon? DC is having a bout of cool gray weather, I am hopeful that the weather predictions of warmer and sunnier days starting Wednesday are true! Until then I will make the most of the time by working inside.

Yesterday was a gray day also and it dampened my desire to paint, so instead I decided to get out some different steel quill pens and experiment some.

20100328 ink dwg 1

20100328 ink dwg 2

20100328 ink dwg 3

These three drawings were copied from the Metropolitan Museum of Art online Works of Art database. I have such a high respect for asian art and their use of line.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Clementine {a daily painting}

20100308 clementine

Clementine on the Window Sill – 6" x 5" (15.25 x 12.7 cm)


I have been out of commission since last week Thursday because I smashed my middle right finger and then re-injured it again on Saturday {not so bad that a bone is broken but swollen and ugly}. So no typing, no painting, no activity where use of my hands was particularly needed… So I have been reading a lot lately, Carlson’s book on landscape painting and this one on boning up on gardening skills as I am new to having a yard and tending to it.

Last night after dinner I was finally able to put on my nitrile gloves to do a little painting with only minimal annoyance to the swollen finger. The above painting is from a previous painting session as last night’s foray did not produce anything special, except for the heady experience of being in the studio and pushing paint around some. Sometimes these are my favorite times painting, where I am just there to be playing and enjoying the medium, sometimes learning new things, sometimes not.

Have a wonderful evening,


Thursday, March 18, 2010

Two Green Pears {a new still life}

20100315 peggys hutch

On Peggy’s Hutch – 8" x 10" (20.3 x 25 cm) – Oil Canvas Panel


This past weekend was spent in Monterey, VA at my friend Peggy’s house. We were four artists all inspired to spend the time exploring, chatting, playing cards and painting. It was a magnificent time and I feel very fortunate to have been included.

Over the weekend I met for the first time the very talented Tricia Ratliff. She is another career changer that has recently decided to pursue art full time. It was so special to meet in person someone so full of energy and with such dedication to her art career, that I kinda feel my head spinning thinking of all the possibilities she has inspired in me… Tricia is also an art instructor and disseminator of ideas through her blogs! Here is her one on art and ideas, and this one is of her paintings.

Have a wonderful evening, ours looks to be clear and warm. Spring is definitely in the air!


PS. Thank you for all the kind comments about yesterday’s post! It means a lot to me to receive your support.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

First Year Anniversary as a Full Time Artist!

Morning light on my desk

I am an artist... I am here to live out loud. Emile Zola

This is how I feel today. It has been a glorious day, great weather, good friends, and lots of time spent painting outside. Today is also my one year anniversary of being a full time artist! I feel so fortunate to be living this life, and having the support and encouragement to pursue art as a career.

Thank you for sharing this journey with me and being there!


Thursday, March 11, 2010

Lemons {a new still life painting}

20100307 lemon and stripes

Still Life with Lemons, Bowl and Dishcloth
8" x 8" (20.3 x 20.3 cm) – Oil Canvas Panel

Hello ~

The week has gone by so fast! How is it already Thursday? Well, never mind… I hope your week has been going well. Mine has been disproportionally filled with yard work, clearing debris caused by the three snow storms we had this winter.

Before starting in on the lawn work, some time was dedicated to painting where I completed this little gem. I love the kitchen dishcloth motif and playing with how stripes give a sense of space in a painting. It was nice revisiting this theme again. It was painted only with natural light, so during the first setting I was racing the clock and ended up painting in such darkness it was almost impossible to see the palette. I kept at it as long as I could because I did not want to lose that initial impression and excitement.

I am going to wish you a great weekend a bit early, as I am headed out of town for a few days on a painting trip with three other artists! So have a wonderful evening and thank you for stopping by and spending time here :)


PS. Here is an interesting site dedicated to the spaces artists and creative types work in, found via dear ada

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Tulip {a daily painting}

tulip - a daily painting

Tulip – 8" x 6" (20.3 x 15.25 cm) – Oil on Linen Panel

It is starting to warm up and today while working in the studio the windows were open to let in the fresh air. An added benefit was that noises of spring were filtering in all afternoon, birds chirping and children playing across the street.

Such sounds are making me giddy and excited about the changing season. During the winter months I stopped creating the small “daily paintings” to focus on larger paintings. Though now with the changing season I feel like mixing it up again and incorporating the small format again into my weekly routine. I will probably paint one small format painting once a week to keep things loose.

Thanks for visiting me today. I hope you had a nice weekend,


Tuesday, March 2, 2010

As the days are lengthening,
I am loving the warm glow of the afternoon sun.
What have you been noticing?

Today was an excellent day spent in my figure painting class taught by Danni Dawson where I wiped down everything I placed on the canvas. It just was not going well and in the end sometimes it is just better to call it a day and plan to start over again next time. I am trying out a heavy weave linen canvas that is posing all sorts of technical challenges, though I will keep trying until mastery is achieved. So every time I wipe down my work I feel like I have gained something new. {here is a nice post about Danni’s latest painting that was hung in the Art League Faculty Show}

Also for today, I want to thank Kara Holloway from the Love List for the nice interview about my work. I feel so special being a part of the “Artist + Muse” series.

Have a nice evening,


Monday, March 1, 2010

Work in Progress...

20100301 WIP Daffodils
{detail of new painting}

Hi there,

How are you today? and did you spend your weekend well?

Ours was filled with moments of joy, spending time together and with friends, playing a game of 8 ball, spending time in the studio and sleeping in on Sunday {something we hardly ever do}. It was a luxurious weekend...

The time in the studio was focused primarily on one of three paintings that are in various stages of completion. I have been churning in a particular area of this painting, so I am taking a break from this particular painting today and tomorrow, with the hope that clearing my mind and focusing on another piece will give me an opportunity to get my head around the technical issue that has reared its head... The detail above is the focal point of the painting, daffodils, a true sign that Spring is on its way... So far they are only in the grocery stores, but it can only be a matter of weeks before the parkway has fields of them.

Have a wonderful afternoon, Liz