Friday, December 28, 2007

Snow Teddy

Haven't painted yet today, but we finished this year's snowman.

And made a video...

Friday, December 21, 2007

Sunshine on Snow, December

10" x 8" Oil on mounted canvas

We are getting snow at our altitude now. As a result, this is our view out the front windows during those few days we have sun. I am happy the days will be getting longer soon. Probably the only good thing about the low angle of the sun is that it can light the mossy trees up this way. The bad thing about these December days is that we get the "two sunsets" because the sun goes behind Temple Mountain. That makes the sunny part of the day very short - probably only a couple of hours, sigh.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Out for a Walk

I don't know how instructive this work-in-progress picture is, since there was no special wet into wet or under-painting involved. However, since the painting took a couple of sessions, I wanted to share it. I liked the initial sketch but forgot to take a picture.

The scene is a chilly mid-morning walk the day after Thanksgiving. I loved the bright colors and contrast of the photo I used for reference.

Here is the finished painting:

10" x 8" Oil on mounted canvas.
In Private Collection
Lynnwood, Wa

Monday, December 03, 2007

Mt Index in November

My daughter wanted to "paint with me" a few days ago, but the weather was horrible with rain starting after snow. So, we gathered supplied in front of my laptop and painted from a photo of Mt Index from a sunny day in November. It is from the same location as I painted from earlier.

Here is her effort from that afternoon:

10" x 8" Oil on canvas.

My version was a little bigger in the same format. Here is where I got that first day:

Here is the finished larger piece. You can tell they were painted from the same photo. That's good, right?!

20" x 16" Oil on gallery wrapped canvas.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Thanksgiving Flowers

8" x 10" Oil on mounted canvas.

Flowers are a tough still life subject. Trust me, that's not just my opinion either. These were part of the bouquet our Thanksgiving guests brought us. I really liked the yellow and purple complements together (and there are actually more varieties in the full collection.) One of my particular struggles here is that I don't know the names to title my painting! :^) Sure, there are some daisies and little roses, but what are the others? I have a shamefully small knowledge here. My Grandmother who worked in the seed factory would know every one...sigh.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Silver Creamer

7" x 5" Oil on mounted canvas.
$65 - Shipping to US included.

New (old) shiny things! My personal globetrotter shopper picked up a silver tea set on her last trip. While the set will never be family heirloom quality, it shined up just right for painting (which was the point.) My favorite is tea is a simple breakfast tea with milk. So that is what you have here if you look closely.

I have noticed it has been pretty thin out there in the painting blogosphere and I am no exception. So, it is good to get a post up again. I hope you all are enjoying the start of the holiday season.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Steilacoom Cyclocross Run-up

8" x 10" Oil on mounted canvas.
$100 shipping to US included.

I was not completely satisfied with the previous cyclocross painting. I wanted to create one that showed the speed and movement of the racing. I used some softer edges and more blurring to get the impression. The subject here is a Kona racer right at the beginning of the huge run-up at Fort Steilacoom Park. He is shouldering his bike to attack the 200 meter gully that rises up from the shady path by a small lake.

Saturday, November 10, 2007


Approx 3" x 3.5" Oil on mounted canvas.

And now for something completely....smaller.

Two chestnuts. If you are scratching your head, here is a photograph of them. I guess they could have been done a little tighter. If anyone wants this painting, I would throw in the chestnuts, too.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Canadian Cyclocross Championship

The Canadian Cyclocross Championship was held on an appropriately cold and dreary day, but luckily there was no real steady rain. The event was held along the river in Kamloops, British Columbia. The course wound through a beautiful riverside park, using the sandy beach to make a couple of the run-up sections.

I started with a block in from my photo reference using Raw Umber.

I continued with blocking in the main colors on the figures and the background of sand and water. Right now, I am establishing the front wheel of the lead rider. At this point I have to decide how tight to complete the details. The major shapes seem right except for the front wheel of the second bike.

This painting is of the early leaders in the race. Notice that bib number 1 (Greg Reain) is leading the race as you might expect. (The numbers are assigned by the current UCI rankings for riders.) I finished up the painting over the next couple of days, stopping while the details were still fairly loose. Greg Reian finished up second to the eventual winner, Mike Garrigan (Number 4...who was somewhere behind at this point.)

16" x 20" Oil on gallery wrapped canvas.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Skykomish in Fall

10" x 8" Oil on mounted canvas.

Here is Skykomish on Friday afternoon. I started this painting with a yellow ochre under-painting. This painting is loose enough that is really only comes together from a few feet away. The clouds were rolling in from the northwest casting shadows on the mountains toward Stevens Pass. The building in the foreground is the railroad depot. This railyard in my small town is an infamous superfund site. Part of the town has already been picked up, moved, had the soil cleaned, and replanted. The trains that were the cause of the problem keep rumbling through, but they certainly are not dumping diesel fuel anymore.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Rail Bridge at Kamloops, Canada

10" x 8" Oil on mounted canvas.
$100 - Shipping to US included.

With a nod to Monet for the idea on the motif, I painted the Rail Bridge as seen from Riverside Park in Kamloops, Canada. This view is from the south bank nearing sunset. The day produced a nice glow on the big pilings that hold up the bridge.

Here are some detail pictures of the painting, but it looks best from a few feet away, of course!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

River at Kamloops, Canada

10" x 8" Oil on mounted canvas.
$100 - Shipping to US included.

As a fan of Monet, I am always fascinated by pictures with water reflections. The stretch of river at Kamloops that we visited last week was a beautiful setting. This painting is the view from Riverside park showing some wonderful reflected fall color. The river was pretty still early in the day, so this painting took quite a while getting the reflection realistic. There are some more views of this that I want to try in search of a larger painting subject.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Track Day

10" x 8" Oil on mounted canvas.
In private collection,
Muncie, Indiana.

My son raves about track days. I'm sure he will be looking to get in another when he gets back from Iraq this next month. Of course, since he is stationed at Miramar in San Diego, the air will need to clear before outside days are pleasant. I pray that all of these troubles abate, soon.

Here is a detail look:

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Candy Corn Escape

7" x 5" Oil on panel

Mom never believed that the candy corns were escaping and running away at night.

$75 Shipping to US included.

Today's daily painting is a fun still-life for the Halloween season. See you in a few days.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Mt Index in Fall

10" x 8" Oil on mounted canvas.
$100 - Shipping to US included.

Mount Index is my favorite feature of Sky Valley. Whenever I travel in or out of Seattle, I get several nice views of it along US Highway 2 (as long as it is not hiding in the clouds.) This particular view was from Sunday morning with the raking sun highlighting the ruggedness of the mountain. Soon the mountain will disappear more and more, but when it is out it will have a fresh white cover!

Here are a couple of detail pictures:

Friday, October 12, 2007

Pear Portrait

5" x 7" Oil on panel.
$75 - Shipping to US included.

Here is a nice impressionistic view of a very ripe green pear with some huge red grapes. I really went for complementary colors here and a composition to highlight that contrast and capture some depth with the shadows. The pear is one of those varieties that I probably should know, but don't. It was one of the ones we picked up in Wenatchee last month. The grapes suckered me in by being HUGE. I say "suckered" because when I went to eat them I found out they were "seeded". Argh. The size is not worth the extra work. So, I guess the subject has a theme of more pretty than nice to eat.

I thought I would try a closeup view; what do you think? (Click so see it larger.)

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Hwy 2 Motorcycle Curve

12" x 9" Oil on Canvas.
In private collection.
Richmond, Va

Years ago when I was young(er) I thought motorcycles were crazy. Around 10 years ago, I started riding my first motorcycle and now I ride quite a lot. I even work as a moto-referee for bicycle races. So, nice smooth pavement twisting into the distance has a lot of appeal to me.

This painting subject is one of those nice curves along US Highway 2 that sports some nice bright fall color right where the road swings between a rock outcrop and the Skykomish river. This is one of the curves just before the big ramp up to Stevens Pass. There are not very many good motorcycling days left this year before the snow regularly falls at the pass.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Swan Gourds

12" x 12" Oil on gallery wrapped canvas.
$100 - Shipping to US included.

These swan gourds are something I had never seen before. They really do remind you of swans. We picked them up at a fruit stand over the pass outside of Leavenworth. Apparently they will get a lot lighter and lose the green skin as they dry out. You have to air dry them carefully so they don't sit on one spot and rot. At this point, they are still as heavy as a melon.

Money Creek Road

10" x 8" Oil on mounted canvas.
$100 - Shipping to US included.

Fall color is finally replacing all that GREEN here in the Evergreen State. While we may not have the fantastic golden Aspens, this painting from yesterday shows off some of our local color. We had a few hours of real sun before the gray skies re-descended on us. It lit up the yellow Maple tree and produced some nice shadows skipping across the road.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Miller River

7" x 5" Oil on mounted canvas.

As I have said before, "I'm working on my procrastination; I almost have it perfected." I had a whole week of time at home for painting and here is my first post. I do have some dovetailed drawers put together, but the painting blog does not really care about that. Well, enough self loathing...(heavy sigh).

Today's painting (well Thursday's really since the ol' satellite dish internet is a bit unstable lately) is a view of Miller River on the road toward Skykomish. The light really highlights the trees that are just starting to change at this time of year. I am looking for something to use for a larger painting, but this may not have quite the dramatic contrast that I am trying to find. It is at least on the list of possible subjects.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Lake Dorothy Plein Air

10" x 8" Oil on mounted canvas.

This is a painting executed on site during today's hike to Lake Dorothy. We took my 73 year old mom on the hike to gather blueberries and do some painting. The trail really is only 1.5 miles long, but we were not so gently reminded that it has some elevation gain. The trail climbs up near a cascading creek. Halfway up there is a nice bridge near smooth rock water channels that makes a good break. So even though it was a bit more work than we expected, the payoff was worth it. The three generations of girls collected a couple of gallons of berries and I have this painting.

As you can see below, the clouds were rolling by, so it was the usual challenge changing conditions. It is good to get out in our beautiful mountains.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Pear and Grapes

7" x 5" Oil on panel.

Fruit is good food. This pear had a wonderful blush to it that is similar to the glow of the grapes. These grapes are juicy California reds that are disappearing as I write this. The pear is still not ready as one of its "flat-mates" proved. It will just have to wait...

Monday, August 27, 2007

Caledonia Sunset - Pink and Blue

10" x 8" Oil on mounted canvas.
$100 Shipping to US included.

Another day and a little later in Caledonia. I love sunsets and sunrises that are pink and blue. The contrasting clouds and pink light usually will get that "look at that..." comment. This sunset reminds me of Alpenglow in the mountains even though Caledonia is pretty far from any mountains.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Caledonia Sunset

10" x 8" Oil on mounted canvas.
$100 Shipping to US included.

This is a sunset view from Green Acres near Caledonia, Minnesota. I kid you not! They call the out of town subdivision "Green Acres". It is a collection of relatively new homes for the well to do in the area. Some of the newest are even impressive by national standards. However, it fits fairly well with the farming community and the modest, adjacent golf course.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Marymoor Study

7" x 5" Oil on panel.

This is a study executed from memory of a sunset at Marymoor park. The sun was creating a spectacular "silver lining" around a hole in the clouds to the west. The light was still hitting some of the trees making them shimmer. I feel the study is only partly successful. It captures the trees okay, but I'm not happy with the sky. I hope I am able to record a sky like that with something better than my memory in the future.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Peach #2

5" x 5" Oil on panel.
$75 Shipping to US included.

I revisit the same little peach sitting on white marble this time. You can just see a hint of reflection on the surface. I also changed my angle of view for this one. My goal was to get more of the look of white peach fuzz in a painting done in one sitting.

This one is the last appearance for this peach, since it is time to eat it. I'm sure I can get a replacement somewhere.

UPDATE: This painting was juried in to the Arts of the Terrace 2008 show. It is being held at the Montlake Terrace Library September 27 - October 4.

Sunday, August 19, 2007


5" x 5" Oil on Panel.

This painting was finished up late last night. (yawn) I picked up the peach at the Whistling Post "farmer's market" in Skykomish yesterday. It was hazardous waste pickup day in Sky and it was Saturday, so the little tavern provided a market at the adjacent vacant lot (er, I mean the small park.) So, after having my used oil collected, I went over to the market. There were several people selling crafts and artwork. Live music was provided by a kid improvising on a tenor sax over his drum machine backing track. The music was actually okay, considering the circumstance. However, the "farmer's market" aspect was a little light. There was only one table with produce. They had little green apples, nectarines, and peaches. I chose apples and a peach at a dollar a pound.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Homemade Guacamole

10" x 8" Oil on panel.

We have been making guacamole at our house lately as part of following Dr Roizen's You: On A Diet: The Owner's Manual for Waist Management Guacamole is apparently the perfect food because:
  1. Avocado's have some kind of magic "good fat".
  2. Tomatoes are full of lycopene and other good stuff.
  3. Garlic and onion have super immune system help and more good stuff.
Who knew...

Anyway, it sure is fun mushing it all together in a bowl with some lemon juice and fajita seasoning. The result is very tasty. I hope you find this painting tasty too.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Peaches and Black Cherries

7" x 5" Oil on Panel

These peaches are very juicy and colorful. The black cherries were very dark. They needed to be painted and the diary was nearly dead.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Green Lake Plein Air

10" x 8" Oil on panel.

This painting is from a EAFA Plein Air outing to Seattle's Green Lake. When I think of Green Lake, I think of the walking, running, and bike path that circles the convenient sized lake. Here the path swings past the Bathhouse Theater. There is a lot of activity around Green Lake even on a rainy day. Green Lake is much smaller than White Rock Lake in Dallas where I grew up, but they are similar as a draw for outdoor exercise in the middle of a city.

It was a rainy day in Seattle after a long string of good weather. The oil and water were fighting each other on the panel, so it added some extra challenge. I really wanted to capture the wet pavement and the rich red of the tree next to the bathhouse. It is nice to get a post up here on the diary after my hiatus.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Missing (Inaction)

I must admit I am back from my trip, but no daily paintings to show for it. I had a very eventful trip to California for the Amgen Tour of California. Lots of fun and work and travel and some sickness...

UPDATE: Still no (good) excuse for not posting. I have a couple of rose paintings that were not good enough to show here. Other concerns have art at a lower priority, sorry.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Rose in Vase

5" x 7" Oil on panel

Today's painting is the long stemmed red rose in its shapely bud vase. My plan is to continue this series as the rose opens up over the next few days. The flower has some nice color variation and the vase has a nice reflections. However, I am not feeling that happy with how they are captured here.The moody drama of it may be too dark in this photo for the web...

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Valentine's Day Rose Bud

7" x 5" Oil on panel
In Private Collection.
Skykomish, Wa

Red Roses are beautiful presents for Valentine's Day. The best are probably a bouquet one of a "dozen" roses that actually count 14. The fourteen just seems right on the 14th. Even a single, red long stem rose like this is a sweet present on that day. Try it and see.

Monday, February 05, 2007

My Dog Victor (The Tired Sheltie)

10" x 8" Oil on panel
Private Collection
Houston, Texas

Today's painting is a portrait of my dog Victor. He has a lot of personality, but like most dogs he likes to sleep a lot. In this painting, he is tired and not really bothered by the attention.

My family has always had Shelties for pets. Of course, that means we think they are one of the best breeds. Not too big, friendly, and smart. Victor came to our family as a potential show dog, but he has a placid personality and unfortunate baby teeth that let his tongue hang out (a serious fault for a Shetland Sheepdog.) For the first few years of his life his buddy and Alpha dog was Bela. Bela is whole 'nother story, but for Victor he was the boss and that helped spell the end of the show career. Victor is the grandson of Jamie, who holds the record for show wins for a Sheltie and won the working group at Westminster. Oh well, I don't think Jamie could look this sleepy.

As for the names, you can type "Bela and Victor" into Google and you will get quite a few hits that explain from where our Dogs' names came. I have even heard of other people who named their dogs Bela and Victor.

Saturday, February 03, 2007


10" x 8" Oil on panel.

Grapes...of wrath? I took on the grapes again tonight. I wanted to study their look and get the feel of the grapes in Monet's Apples and Grapes. I think they would like some apples to keep them company, but there were none around. They do have some nice glow in person.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Grapes and Cheese

7" x 5" Oil on panel.
$75 Shipping to US included.

It may look like I paint only on Friday nights, but that is not my intention. I really need to work on my procrastination; I think I have it just about perfected. (sigh)

It felt good to get this little painting done, but those grapes are rather troublesome when painting alla prima. I think some glazing and dry brushing would have been nice, but that would take some drying time not available in one sitting. This is something to study and work on in the future.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Fat Tire Friday

5" x 7" Oil on panel
$75 Shipping to US included.

Friday night is a great night for beer. Here is a yummy fat tire ale for you. It has a really nice glow in a classic pint glass. The cap is in that recognizable New Belgium color scheme. This was a fun still life to get me going again. My constant cough is still pretty annoying, but the beer may help that. Cheers!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Sake Vase with Dried Flowers

10" x 8" Oil on canvas on panel.
$100 Shipping to US included.

These dried flowers have been in another vase for years in our house. Tonight some of them used our Sake pitcher for a vase. I think this painting came out nice and moody. I hope the photo does it justice.

I will be posting again early next week.