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Saturday, January 29, 2011

#116 "Ready for the Mystery Dinner", oil, 11" x 14"

This painting was inspired by a room we stayed in at Mosswood Hollow Retreat Center. We stayed there with our entire family and had a Mystery Dinner party. Everyone was costumed to the hilt and it was fabulously fun. I first made this painting without the red dress....just the room with the light falling on the bed. Liana Bennet looked at it and told me she "just didn't care about it". It simply didn't interest her. It made me determined to make her care....hence the red dress which evoked an even more vivid memory for me of the family costume party...and won her interest in the painting. I really like this little painting. It is evocative of...what? The title could change if anyone has any better ideas. The Ray for the Day is "Ready for the Mystery Dinner".

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

#115 "Open Hearted", oil, 20"x16"

This painting is coming out a little soon for Valentine's Day, but I can't help myself. I decided to paint a satin heart to use as invitation and ad for my February Langley Art Walk which will be on Feb 5. I ran all over the place looking for just the right heart to paint (finally found this one at Walgreen's at the suggestion of an old friend). This was really a luscious painting to make. I was into the heart, the chocolates (I mean, like really into them), and those fabulous red tulips. So I wish you all a Happy Valentine's Day early. I think love, chocolates, tulips and red stuff is appropriate any old time, don't you? If you happen to be in Langley on the evening of Saturday the 5th of Feb please do drop by for a little Valentine's party. Wear red. The Ray for the Day is "Open Hearted".

Monday, January 24, 2011

#114 "Sketching in Langley", watercolor sketch

Last Wednesday I had so much fun sketching with the Whidbey Island Sketchers! These dedicated sketchers meet at a different location every Wednesday to draw. There is also a lot of laughter. When the Useless Bay Coffee Co. (where we were sketching) closed some of us continued on to Studio 106. The Sketchers will be showing their delightful work there for the March Art Gallery Walk. I'm delighted to host them. We also drank a little wine, went on to a meeting at Whidbey Arts to talk about promoting art and artists on Whidbey. Four of us just couldn't give up the day, so we wound up eating pizza at the local pizza place and talking more about art. I look forward to more sketching, laughing, talking, eating, drinking with this group. To top it off they featured my sketches on their blog! Check it out at The Ray for the Day is "Sketching in Langley".

Friday, January 14, 2011

#113 "Table for Two", oil on cradled board, 8"x8"

Okay, to follow the theme here, if you are going to make and serve coffee you need someplace to sit and drink it! Ergo, this painting. Also, I find this to be quite a charming scene. It takes place in the Two Tartes Bakery where I had my last show. The painting above the table is one of mine. The one called In a Stew. I took the liberty (artistic license) of changing the color of the chairs (in life they are brown wood) in order to make a more lively painting. I find little vignettes like this that take place in bakeries or cafes to be so compelling. Comforting in fact. They evoke potential conversation, friendship, intimacy for me. Of course the anticipation of something good to eat or drink doesn't hurt. I read somewhere recently that reading the menu sometimes creates more endorphins than the actual act of eating. Anticipation of good things to come creates good feelings. Not too surprising, is it? The Ray for the Day is "Table for Two".

Thursday, January 13, 2011

#112 "Espresso Machine", oil on cradled board, 8"x8"

So if you are going to have cappuccino and a cookie, someone has to make the coffee and have someplace to make it. Here is my rendition of an espresso machine. Once again, how does one paint stainless steel? What color is stainless steel? It's pretty much the color of whatever it is reflecting on a base of gray/white? Reflective surfaces are really interesting to look at and to paint. This was quite a lot of stuff to get onto an 8"x8" panel. I think I like to paint larger than this. I like bigger brushes and more paint better than small brushes and small spaces. It is a good exercise though. You might remember I thought small paintings would be easier? quicker? Not so. My next posting will show you where you might sit while enjoying the espresso of your choice. The Ray for the Day is "Espresso Machine".

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

#111 "Cookie Jars", oil on cradled board, 8"x8"

Well, I've been painting but I haven't been blogging. Holidays, family stuff, putting up Christmas decorations, taking down Christmas decorations, trips to Langley. Life. So I'll catch you up with my latest paintings. "Double, tall, decaf....." got me started on a small cafe series. All the paintings are 8"x8" on cradled board and reflect something about our coffee culture which is huge, especially here in the Northwest. Incidentally, I got kicked out of a couple of stores for taking photos of food. The coffee shops were pretty cool, especially when I introduced myself and told them what I was doing with the photos. Big grocery stores really don't like you taking photos of their food, though. I loved painting this little painting because I knew I couldn't paint glass so all I could do was paint the shapes and values as I saw them. Miraculously.....I ended up with glass cookie jars. The Ray for the Day is "Cookie Jars". SOLD