Friday, December 28, 2012

Variation #5

Variation #5
5x7, pastel

Hope everyone had a Blessed Christmas and hoping you have a wonderful New Year--beginning with a safe New Year's Eve!

Just finished this Variation #5. I enjoyed changing the format to horizontal, looks like a totally different picture even though it is the same old subject matter. Read Richard McKinley's blog last night about harmony in a painting. He recommended using only the number of pastels that you can hold in your hand and that's just what I did.

Lacking the time to get in my reference photos and search for a subject to paint next, so I am glad to have these variations to satisfy my need to paint.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Variation #4

Variation #4
7x5, pastel

Finding time to paint has been a chore, plus the fact that the watercolor I have been working on has hit a wall. It has been put away, just sitting on the easel until such time it tells me what to do next. This is not a problem I have much experience with, but pretty sure it is not the only time it is going to happen.

So when there was a minute to pick up the pastels, Variation #4 resulted. I truly enjoy these, no pressure, just exploring the possibilities.

This will probably be the last post for awhile. Going to enjoy my family and pray that you will be enjoying your families, also. Blessings to you this Christmas and for the New Year, too. And many thanks for your support with this endeavor.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Italian Passageway #4

Italian Passageway #4
11 x 7, watercolor

Anyone out there ever have trouble with backgrounds, besides me????  The painting I have been working on is taking way too long. It is a person and he looks great (I'm pleased, anyway) but I am at a loss for the background. The photo has a number of people in the background. The plan was to put them in loosely, but now--not so sure. It is a large painting so there is a lot of background, making the task even more daunting. All suggestions welcome.

Italian Reflections is going to live in California after Christmas--check the October post to see it. You still have time to check out the Small Works for Big Holidays show at the NBAL Gallery.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Variation #3

Variation #3
8x6, pastel

Enjoying the variation studies, trying new color combos, strokes. It is a chance to complete a painting when there is only a limited amount of time to dedicate to creating art. It really is fun; it makes me happy.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Variation #2

Variation #2
8x6, pastel

It was a busy day, but getting to paint was one of the best parts. Painting involved working on the watercolor started earlier in the week and a variation of the painting above. Marla Baggetta has done well over 100 variations of a painting, exploring color and marks. Thinking about exploring that myself, might change the size format as well.

Prayers for the those in Connecticut who experienced unspeakable horror today.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Italian Passageway #3

Italian Passageway #3
11x7, watercolor SOLD

Have not been able to paint much this week, once again life is taking priority, but that is OK.  It is good to have a child home, visit with friends, and work a little. So I am posting a painting I painted earlier this year since I haven't completed a painting this week. This painting lives in Victoria, with Italian Passageway #1.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Orvieto Gargoyle

Orvieto Gargoyle
5x7, pastel  Sold

Started a new painting today, well, really, I started it yesterday. It took me several hours to get the drawing correct yesterday. That usually is a sign it isn't going to be a loose painting, but that's OK. If I can pull this off and get this watercolor done to my satisfaction, I will be tickled pink. If that happens, then you may see it here. If not-----there is a blank canvas on the other side of the paper!!!!!!

Orvieto Gargoyle lives in San Antonio. There were gargoyles everywhere in Italy and I believe I only took one picture of them--go figure??

Also, Playing at Padre and Day at the Beach, went home to Corpus Christi yesterday. Check back to the September 9th post to see them.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Look At That!

Look At That!
7 x 5, pastel
Click to Buy

This painting was really a serendipitous affair. To be snapping pictures from a great distance and this is the only picture of this little guy with such an awesome pose, divine intervention comes to mind. It was a lesson in minimal strokes to convey the subject and realizing shadows in reality are not as dark as they show in photos. AND just how often does a little one carry Woody around----I love it!

Hope no one was offended that I called this little one a 'critter' in the previous post. When I was pregnant with my first child, my mother had all sorts of presents under the Christmas tree to  "The Little Critter".  I sure missed that when I was pregnant with my youngest. 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Backyard Glow

Backyard Glow
6 x 8, pastel

OK, so I completed a painting in an hour after painting 'Lucky' ; well, here it is. That's right, it is no masterpiece, but it is a step in the direction I am wanting to try---loose, painterly.  This isn't for everyone, my oldest doesn't like the style at all. My goal is, as I paint more, that loose strokes will suddenly appear here and there in my realistic style.

My friend tells me to "do the work" the style will come. So I am doing the work, knocked out another one this morning. I love to paint critters, both human and animal, and he is a cutie even from the great distance he was away. How fortunate to be snapping pictures and the one he was in is this awesome pose. Is your interest piqued?

Tuesday, December 4, 2012


6 x 8, Pastel

Man, it was good to get to paint yesterday! You know I have been trying to be looser, more painterly in my style---I failed royally in the loose department with this one. But now really, can a squirrel this up-close-and-personal be loose? You've got to see those whiskers, hairs, and gleam in the eye! I labored several hours on this one, thinking at one point I was going to have to get the wet rag out and wipe it off--but I didn't. Oh, the name Lucky----well, he is still running around the yard!!!

I painted a landscape after I painted Lucky, got a little closer to the style I have been striving for. It may show up in a later post.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Italian Passageway #1

Italian Passageway #1
11 X 7.5, watercolor, SOLD

This is the first in a series I started after returning from Italy. Everywhere you look in Italy there is another passageway, whether it is a road, an opening to the countryside, beautiful ancient doors, narrow winding streets, it goes on and on. If only those passageways could tell us what has gone on there throughout the centuries!

This painting lives in Victoria, Tx. along with Italian Passageway #3 (will post it another day). The owner had the opportunity to travel to Italy this past summer. Oh, to get to go back there to visit again--what a dream-come-true that would be!!!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Exploring the Process

8 x 8, pastel

This was my second painting I attempted way back on November 19. I was enjoying just getting the pigment on the paper, exploring the painting process. I used the same design/subject that I had used in Marla Baggetta's workshop. The result---not every completed painting is a piece worthy to be framed. Sometimes it is just a learning experience, a chance to try something out of the ordinary to see what does and does not work.

That hits sort of hard for me. You see I am a pretty frugal painter, if a watercolor doesn't work, just turn it over and paint on the other side! That is not an option with pastel paper. One of the great pieces of wisdom/advice Richard McKinley shared with me is that I should use pastels over a watercolor underpainting or over an unsuccessful watercolor painting. Now that was a piece of advice I liked--one sheet of watercolor paper used front, back and then one more time!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

I'm Still Here!

15 x 11, watercolor

Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving! We sure did!

If this painting looks familiar, it is. This is my watercolor rendition of Bountiful Harvest, the pastel painting that won an award in North Carolina. I haven't been painting this week, been down in my get-along, as my dad would say. So I had to pull out a painting from the summer. I was worried about getting the patina on the kettle to some out ok in watercolor, but I think it turned out pretty good. I also added the folds in the fabric that the pastel painting did not have.

I have painted a Christmas card to reproduce for the last several years, and I am hoping to get that done soon!!!! Time is running out, I am thinking.

Monday, November 19, 2012

I Finally Got to Paint!

8 x 6, pastel

I finally got to paint!!!! It was such a good feeling to pick up the pastels again. I worked on 2 pieces. The first was a variation of  the breakthrough painting I did in Marla Baggetta's workshop. It was a sunset variation, pretty fiery. It was my husband's fav. I may post it, but it is pretty wild!

This was taken from a picture I took on our first day in North Carolina. There were black and white cows off in the field to the left. That may be another picture--you know how I love to paint animals!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Do You Facebook?

7 x 5, pastel

Spikes is another painting in the Small Paintings for Big Holidays show at the NBAL gallery. This calf lives near Ledbetter, Texas. I thought he was just so cute. He is a calf--I can still call him cute!!

I am enclosing the site where you can see all the entries in the 2012 Appalachian Pastel Society National Juried Exhibition. All you need is a Facebook account.

Hope you check out the site. It is a beautiful show that runs through December 14, if you happen to be in the area.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Honorable Mention

Guadalupe Horseshoe
6 x 8, pastel

I know I posted this a short time ago but this painting received Honorable Mention tonight in the New Braunfels Art League show, Small Art for Big Holidays. The show was judged by Ron Rencher. So I thought it was worth showing it again, plus life has been getting in the way of my painting these days!!!!!

The show runs through the month of December and has wonderful pieces of art that would make great Christmas gifts including this one, so go check it out. And as for life getting in the way of painting, it isn't going to happen tomorrow either. I have to go support TAMU as they BTHO Sam Houston State University. Gig 'Em!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Veteran's Day

Veteran's, those who have given so much for the rest of us to enjoy all the wonderful things America has to offer. Those of the Greatest Generation rarely talked of what they went through during WWII. My dad just would not talk about it until a couple of years before he died. I really learned more about his years of service from his childhood friend, JD. He shared stories of the lighter side of war and the battles dad was involved in---dad never said.

So a big thank you to all veterans for allowing me the freedom to write this blog, paint whatever I want, worship, vote, the list can go on and on.

No painting posted today.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

The Business of Art

Landa Lake Linedancers
5 x 11, pastel   SOLD

The business of art is just a pain, a necessary evil, but it really can take the joy out of art. I have spent today learning about marketing my art and then this evening matting and framing my works to put in the next NBAL show next week. Now, I did have to take breaks to watch the Aggies beat the H___ out of Alabama!!!! But I digress, I would have much rather have been painting while I was watching the Aggies beat the Tide. There is just joy in painting, much frustration too, but mainly joy. I can just lose myself in the process. So maybe tomorrow.........................

The Landa Lake Linedancers live in Houston now. I know they are happy there. They are a  pretty sassy group.

Friday, November 9, 2012


Breakthrough painting
Day 3 of Marl Baggetta's Workshop

As I said in the previous blog, Marla said I had a breakthrough day on Wednesday. The painting above is the first of three completed that day. You have got to admit, when compared with the other paintings posted in this blog, I loosened up a good bit. That has been my desire, to become more painterly, not so photo realistic, find my own style without copying the subject verbatim.

I had a wonderful time at the workshop. Marla's teaching style encourages growth, each activity builds upon the lesson learned in the previous exercise. Marla is such a calm, supportive instructor, with such enviable creative ability.  I would highly recommend taking her classes. If that is just not in the cards, check out her web site and/or her blog ( You will be inspired.

Version 2
of Breakthrough painting.
One of the points Marla stressed is that we are not a slave to the photo reference!! I made the breakthrough by drawing the big shapes from the photo (Asheville School scenery) and then turned the photo over and did not look at it again. I did the same with this painting. I plan on continuing this practice and recreate this painting using ever changing color combinations. 

Painting the everyday subject.
This was the last exercise of the class and as Marla said it would be--the favorite (at least for me). She said that I have a lot of pretty pictures and that doesn't necessarily lead to a good painting! There is a painting everywhere you look--you just have to look beyond the subject matter to see the beautiful shapes.   Thank you, Marla!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Freedom of Choice

Study of Color
Freedom of Choice
To buy:
This is my painting from the morning exercise in Marla Baggetta's pastel workshop yesterday. We were to use her composition, (she's done numerous wonderful paintings using this composition but changing colors----"Variations"), but we were to pick the color palette. We were not constrained by what we saw her do or by what the photo showed. I was pleased with the outcome of my attempt. So I was anxious to get to the afternoon session.
Boy, did reality hit me right between the eyes. I had watched Marla create beautiful paintings for 2 days and had painted an OK one that morning, but I reverted back to my old ways--- putting in every little detail. I did it not only once, but twice. Oh, the frustration!
On the way to class this morning, (sadly, the last class) I had a revelation----choose what to paint using the composition (shapes, preferably pleasing shapes) rather that the subject matter! It is something Angie Banta Brown has been telling me for years and I knew it, but haven't executed too well. But today was better!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Larger than Life

Apple study
 concentrating on variation of strokes.
Today, was the first day of Marla Baggetta's workshop. It was a wonderful day. Love her style of painting and her instructional wisdom. I have learned so much already, can't wait for tomorrow. 
The size of that apple is 12x9, good for at least a whole cobbler don't you think!!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Guadalupe Horseshoe
6 x 8, pastel

As wonderful as the trip to Asheville, NC was, it is good to get back to painting. I had started this little painting prior to the trip and was thinking it was going to be a dud, a wash off. But I got back into it yesterday, like Richard McKinley told me, "Get in and play with the medium", I did. I am pleased with this one, which is unusual, because I struggle horribly with landscapes. Hoping the upcoming Marla Baggetta workshop will help with that problem.

The reference for this painting is a photo from last fall. The colors were beautiful. I was so excited when I saw them.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Old Glory
20 x 16, matted watercolor SOLD

Being in Asheville, NC the last few days was a wonderful experience, but we were so glad to be back home tonight. Good memories abound at home. This painting found a new home last weekend because it reminded the purchaser of a family home---memories of times gone by.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

I Am So Blessed!

APS National Juried Exhibition
judge, Richard McKinley, PSA

That is Richard McKinley critiquing my painting, "Bountiful Harvest" during the walk through prior to the awards reception last night. He was so complimentary in his comments about my painting, that I became a tad emotional. It was such an awesome moment! I am kicking myself that I did not video it with my phone, but as you can see, I wasn't able to get too close to the action.

I was just thrilled to have him say really nice things about the painting. But it got even better!!! I won a Merit Award for the painting!!!!!!!!!!!! I have had so many "firsts" these last 4 months, but I think this may just take the cake. I have been blessed beyond my wildest expectations--recognition for my efforts after only 8 months of painting seriously in pastel is surreal.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Monarch Birch

Monarch Birch
7 x 5, Pastel

We are watching the 4th game of the World Series, what pitiful conditions to sit out and watch a baseball game! Maybe it's OK for football, but not baseball. Makes me wish for the beautiful spring in Colorado.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Quackers in the Pool

Quackers in the Pool
6 x 6, pastel
matted and framed to 12 x 12
Click to Bid

Really had a great day at the CRRC Market Day! Three paintings have new homes and I hope the new owners enjoy them as much as I enjoyed painting them. Met a number of interesting people. Always interesting to talk to people, who enjoy art.

Enjoy this beautiful weather!! "Quackers in the Pool" is available to purchase, but if it still lives with me in the middle of November, it will be entered in the Small Works for Big Holidays Show at NBAL. If you haven't seen the Artoberfest Show at the NBAL Gallery, you are missing a great show.

Also, you MUST see the two artists show at Cactus Jacks in Gruene, Texas. Rita Kirkman and Jeanette Cuevas are premier pastel artists.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Italian Reflections

Italian Reflections
14x11, SOLD

This is my latest watercolor. So many great memories of Italy, wish I could paint them all. The sky reflected in the window looked unreal, it was such a brilliant blue.

Thirteenth century church reflected in a thirteenth century building window---just too cool.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Good for the Eyes

Good for the Eyes
16x20, matted watercolor

This is one of my paintings available to purchase at the CRRC Market Day, this Saturday, October 27, from 9-4. The CRRC is on Mable Dr. just below Canyon Dam and the Tye Preston Library. This and several other paintings will be matted only which reduces the cost. All matted paintings will fit standard frames available at Hobby Lobby, Michaels, etc.

I will have a number of the paintings that you have seen on this blog available, framed and ready to hang. Hope to see you there. My booth is inside, nice and warm for the cold front that is heading our way!!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

       Curley #2       
9 x 12, pastel

Can you tell I like to paint animals? This is my second version of Curley, the first lives in Pennylvania with a couple who had a Curley who looked just like him. This Curley needs a good home, too.

Attended the TPS show opening/reception last night. There is some beautiful art there by artists from across the nation. Hope you can get by to see it.

Also, New Braunfels' own, Rita Kirkman, has a two woman show opening next Friday at Cactus Jack's in Gruene. Her partner in art is Jeannette Cuevas. The reception starts at 6 pm on the 26th. There are rumors that door prizes of their art will be given away that night!!!!! This coincides with the Texas Clay Festival in Gruene.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

On Alert

On Alert
7 x 5, pastel

This dog had no clue I was interested in taking his picture. I discovered that is the key, plus a telephoto lens!! Other dogs I have attempted to photograph go bonkers whenever I aim the camera at them. The Lost Maples Dog really spoiled me!! 

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Lost Maples Dog

Lost Maples Dog
7 x 5, Pastel  SOLD

This is the painting that started it all. It is the first painting I completed in Rita Kirkman's Miniature workshop last March. I enjoyed painting it in a stressful sort of way--if you know what I mean.

But----do you know how hard it is to get a good picture of a dog??? I snapped this photo at Lost Maples so easily---but I spent over an hour last March in Landa Park trying to get one good picture of all the dogs there that day. The only one I got was taken with the advantage of a long lens--I will post him tomorrow.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Feedin' with Grandaddy

Feedin' with Grandaddy
15x11, watercolor

This is the painting I referenced in the last blog. I had the pleasure of watching this routine every time we visited grandaddy----so glad I had the where-with-all to snap a picture of it. This activity ended way too soon. 

Friday, October 12, 2012

TPS National Juried Show

Wanted to share the flyer sent out by Art Incorporated (hosts of the show). I am thrilled because they chose one of my accepted entries for the flyer. You may recognize, Orvieto Alley, in the lower right corner from an earlier blog entry on September 21. Hope you can make it to the show!!

I have been working in pastel mostly, so decided today that I need to get back into watercolor. I pulled out one I have had drawn for years and started painting this year--it is really a sentimental piece. I will post it when I get it completed.

Monday, October 8, 2012

New Braunfels Icon

New Braunfels Icon
27 x 19, Watercolor

This painting is my third entry accepted in the Artoberfest Juried Show. This was a real challenge, my first attempt at architecture and an automobile!

Hope you can get by and see the show.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

River Relics
12 x 12, pastel

This is another picture from Salida, CO and another painting accepted into the Artoberfest show in New Braunfels. I was fortunate to get all 3 entries accepted into the show.

These kayaks are leaning against the wall of an artist's studio. I have a photo of him standing where I took this picture painting the kayaks en plein air!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Another First!!

Lost Maples
12 x 9, pastel
The Artoberfest Juried Exhibition opened this week and I was blessed to have 3 paintings accepted into the show. Lost Maples was awarded 3rd place in pastel! My first award for my art-- I am so humbled. (I apologize for the quality of the photo-I forgot to take a picture before I put the painting under glass--bummer.)

This is a wonderful show that runs through the second week in November. Hope you can get there to check it out.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

This Little Piggy

This Little Piggy
5 x 7, pastel

The Comal County Fair was the news maker here last week. Unfortunately, I didn't make it there to take pictures of the critters. This little fellow (well, he wasn't too little!) was a contestant in the Youth Show last March. Painting animals is always a challenge, fur, eyes, catching their personality (oh, yeah, they have a personality!). Think this guy is saying, "What are you lookin' at?"

The New Braunfels Art League Artoberfest Juried Exhibition opened yesterday at the gallery--drop by and see it.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

FIBArk Freestyle

FIBArk Freestyle
4 x 6, pastel

One of our favorite places to vacation is Salida, CO, any season it's great. Each June, around the 3rd week, FIBArk draws thousands of people to this quaint town. The highlight is the activity on the Arkansas River, all sorts of competitions. The things they do in these tiny kayaks blow the mind, flips, somersaults, 360's, you name it they do it. 

Monday, October 1, 2012

Watercolor Study

                                         Citta Della Pieve Farmer                                      
11 x 7.5, watercolor

I have been painting the same subject in different mediums. I think that painting with pastels has allowed me to loosen up when I paint with watercolor. It is good to evolve!

Paintings are turned in tomorrow to be juried for the Artoberfest Show---keeping my fingers crossed!! Good luck to all those entering!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Orvieto Alley

Orvieto Alley 
(24 x 18, pastel)

Wow, time really flies! I have been busy getting all the paintings framed and ready for the shows and then yesterday, I just could not stand it any longer-----I had to paint! So the blog got pushed to the back burner.

Anyway, Orvieto Alley is the third and final painting accepted in the TPS National Juried Exhibition in San Antonio. This show will be at Art Incorporated, 9401 San Pedro, the last two weeks of October. Hope you can get by to see it. I can't wait to see all the art juried in by Doug Dawson--should be great!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Italian Man
(7 x 5, pastel)

OK, so I tried real hard yesterday to contain my excitement that I had paintings juried into the Texas Pastel Society Exhibition. My son said I had to tone down my blog entry! What does he know! I am ecstatic, more like blown away---but at the same time humbled that this has happened.

Italian Man is another painting that has been accepted in the show. I saw this man several times a day while in Citta Della Pieve. It is early in the evening and he is sitting on the steps of the largest cathedral at the center of two plazas. One of the greatest things about Italy was that every evening the streets were filled with people of all ages visiting.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Wildseed Farm

Wildseed Farm
(10 x 8, pastel)
Wildseed Farm is one of my entries to the Texas Pastel Society 2nd Biennial National Juried Show that was accepted into the show. Entries were selected by juror, Doug Dawson, PSA and will  be on display at Art Incorporated, 9401 San Pedro, San Antonio, October19 - November 2, 2012. The opening reception is Friday, October 19, 5pm -8pm.

I just love the Wildseed Farm in the spring, everything is in bloom!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Feels So Good

Feels So Good
(10 x 14, watercolor)

Had to post this guy today, because I feel good too! It has finally rained !!! PTL!
You just know how good scratching that itch feels.

Today I've got to get on matting/framing my entries for the Artober Art Show down at the gallery--much rather be painting! Rainy days are great for creating-don't you think?

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Very First!!!

Bountiful Harvest     (10 x 8, pastel)

I was notified today that this painting has been accepted to The Appalachian Pastel Society's 2012 Juried National Exhibition!!!! This painting was one of 74 paintings out of 230 submitted that was selected by the juror, Richard McKinley, PSA, PSWC-DP, NPS. It will be displayed October 18 - December 14, 2012 at The Asheville School Gallery in Asheville, North Carolina.

This is my first ever acceptance into a juried show!!! I have to thank Rita Kirkman (check out her blog, Rita Kirkman's Daily Paintings) for the workshop that ignited my desire/ability to work in pastel and for encouraging me to enter shows outside of our local gallery. I also have to thank Angie Banta Brown (check out her web site) for years of instruction, encouragement and friendship, helping me to get to this point in my art experience!!!

Monday, September 10, 2012

One Year Ago

Citta Della Pieve Farmer      (10x8, pastel)

One year ago today I was blessed to join a group of artists and travel to Italy for 10 days. It was a trip of a lifetime. If you ever have the opportunity to go--do not hesitate.

This farmer lived on the outskirts of Citta Della Pieve and he was quite a character!

Citta Della Pieve Farmer  10 x 8 pastel

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Pastel Show at Christus Santa Rosa In New Braunfels

8 x 6 inches
Playing at Padre
12 x 9 inches

Several of you have tried to leave comments and have been unsuccessful----I wish I knew how to help you!! I really would love to hear what you have to say. I will continue to try to figure it out and get back with you!!! Thanks for trying! You can always email me.

Christus Santa Rosa Hospital in New Braunfels has designated a wall in the hallway on the way to the cafeteria as an art wall and cooperates with the New Braunfels Art League to have members' art  hang there. The current show runs for the next 3 months and the medium is pastel.

Art to be hung is submitted and then juried by the hospital to determine what pieces will grace the walls during that show. I was blessed to have these 3 paintings accepted and they are hanging there now.

Day at the Beach
7 x 5 inches
So drop by the hospital (formerly McKenna) to check out all the lovely art hanging in the pastel show, you won't be disappointed. Oh, by the way, all the art is for sale.

Sorry about the quality of the photo of Peek-A-Boo. I forgot to take a picture of it prior to framing---bummer.