Saturday, August 20, 2016

White Noise

I found these guys separately, in my sketchbook pages, and decided to bring them together. I didn't know if they would get along or not. But Lo and behold, they started kickin out the jams! So I gave them each a brand new white suit, a few people to watch them, a hint of some city life, and off they went to see what kind of trouble they could get into! 
12x9 oil

Friday, August 19, 2016

Let's Dance!

This is a mixed media painting, 10x8. I say mixed media because it is oil over acrylic, but not totally covered. I left the parts of the acrylic that I liked, but enhanced parts with my oh so creamy oils! Anyways, they look like they want me to get up and dance. So I will.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Dinner Can Wait

"I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free",  Michelangelo.
I discovered this quote last night and I love a lot of things about it: the vision he had before the creation, the confidence and faith of what would be before it happens, and others things. It also reminded me of negative painting. He was getting rid of all that marble that didn't look like an angel!
This is a photo I snapped at our local farmer's market. The calf was eating until the little girl reached down and touched him. My imagination told me that this moment of her touch was more important to him than his food. But I could be wrong. The beauty is, it doesn't matter!

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Stay With Me

I saw this horse in a field and stopped to take a picture. He walked right up to me, and didn't seem to want me to go. He was really beautiful, and I tried hard to capture him, but I don't think I did him justice. Maybe I'll go back and talk to him about it!

Saturday, August 13, 2016

They Invited me for Thanksgiving!

Another photo from my day on Claude's farm. This turkey, she told me, was going to be eaten for Thanksgiving. Wow, I thought. Glad he doesn't know it. He thinks he was invited for Thanksgiving!
See why communication gone awry is sometimes a good thing? Ha! Very fun to paint this:)

Monday, August 8, 2016

"I'll Have the Mussels"

This is one of those "one mark at a time" paintings. I was enjoying creating this imaginary little scene where I would love to be. People having fun, laughing, and well......eating mussels! With this kind of painting, it's fun to just go back and forth.....a lighter spot here, a darker spot there. Tweak, tweak, tweak, until it looks right to me, and not worrying about what the rest of the world might think. Just mindin' my own business and getting lost in thought. Good for the soul!
I will start the next session at the Birmingham Community House this fall. Class starts October 17th. It's the foundations and fundamentals of painting. We always have fun! If you live in the area and would like to paint and meet new friends, try it out!

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Wednesday, August 3, 2016


I snapped this photo last summer at a park. This dog was way bigger than this little girl. She was scared and very tentative, but curious. She finally reached out with such trust and love in her face! I just found it so endearing!
I am enjoying my oils so much again! Maybe my new little makeshift studio will become permanent.....

Monday, August 1, 2016

I See Your Point

I love painting these random little scenes (from memory). Maybe because I want to be here. As far as the title, the boats all point to the focal point (not on purpose!). But also, it's a good thing to remember to think about. "I see your point" might be something we don't say enough these days!   

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Made Ya Look

I was invited to a friend's house one day this week, who lives in a big, cool, old farmhouse. Chickens, hens, roosters, turkeys, bee houses, garden, and probably more animals on the way. Like miniature animals. Like a miniature donkey! I'll be going back. We had lunch overlooking part of Lake St. Clair, and there were lots of these guys. It was a sunny day, the water was alive and shimmering, and the sky was blue. A fish reuben sandwich and a fun conversation made it a great day. Thanks, Claudia!  

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Hold Me

I found this little guy at our local farmer's market. There was a whole group of baby ducks. I don't know what a group of ducks is called. Not a gaggle, not a flock, I can google it, but might just wait to see if it comes to me first. What a concept! Anyways, I cropped it really close, and the big challenge immediately became apparent: AHHHH...hands! No! Say it ain't so! But nothing beats practice. So I practiced. And it was fun! Little Luddie is starting to let mom paint more often. Photos coming soon of a beautiful Golden Retriever growing up.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

I Know My Mother Loves Me

Silly faced little guy. But not silly enough that his Mom would think he's anything but perfect!
I had a Mom like that. Boy, how lucky was I! I am back to oils more often than not, because that's what is set up in my makeshift studio. I love them. Especially that yellow green. Gearing up mentally for the challenge!

Saturday, July 23, 2016


I saw this man walking in Leland, Michigan. He seemed very sweet and gentle, and made me wonder if he was a Grandpa. So when I started to paint him, I decided to give him a grandchild. Oh, how I love the artist license! This is 8x10, oil on canvas.

Monday, July 18, 2016


Wow, it's been a while! As they say, life gets in the way sometimes, and I haven't been on my computer much. I am looking forward to getting back in the groove and checking out what all my friends are doing, too. This commissioned piece came at the right time. It made me very happy to do this dog painting. A friend lost her beloved dog some time ago, and wanted a memory. It is 20x20, and I framed it for her in a floater frame from Great service and prices! It allows for the whole image to be visible. It was important here, because of that paw down there. Every fraction of an inch had to show. Anyways, with all the horrible things going in in this world, I was grateful to paint this cute face. I will be participating in the 30 in 30 challenge coming up. How? I don't know! I had to move my studio into our dining room, as we wanted the puppy to have a quiet space downstairs. Yes, the puppy trumps my space right now! He's worth it, too. I hope many of you will join me in the challenge. I love the support and friendships that we share for that month. 

Thursday, May 26, 2016

The Little Boat and a Tree

There once was a boat and a tree.
Who became good friends, one could see.
But the tree always feared that one day,
the boat would just plain sail away. 
But he learned there's one thing that's a must,
To believe in his faith and his trust.
that although sometimes life brings dismay, 
All things will work out the right way.

This little poem just came out of nowhere, just like the painting did. I believe it, though, with all my heart. "Keep the Faith" is more than just a little saying. It's an anchor. It will get us all through the toughest times in life. And that's what I have to say about that...

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Alright. That Does It!

A friend moved to a farm a few years ago. She was nice enough to send me some pictures of her chickens. This started out (as the photo was), with two chickens. One was on the other side of  this one and behind a bit. No matter what I did, the second chicken was just getting in the way. So finally I made it vamoose. Now I was left with an image that clearly has a broken rule: the chicken is headed right off the page! Compositionally, that's not supposed to be good. BUT, here's where rules are made to be broken.....I liked it this way! Lots of glazes and layers here. And she is hopping mad about something! 

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Brown Eyed Girl

I loved playing with glazes again here. So fun to use Indian Yellow especially. But also Burnt Sienna and Magenta. This nice girl is just chilling out in a nice cool field and reflecting on her life, and where she wants to be in five years......should she go back to school? Get a different job? Take up art? It all seems so cow-plicated right now.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Class Creations!

Here are the birch trees (some didn't bring) from last week (mine included). Awesome job! And today we played musical chairs. We started out at with a drawing using Jessica Miller's portraits as our inspiration. They got the shape of the head and shadow shapes done. Then they blocked in the darks. Then the bossy teacher had them move to the next seat for 4 minutes.....and on and on for 4 minute intervals until a whole rotation was complete and they ended back at their original seat. BUT, they had to do it upside down! The picture each was given, had to be placed upside down, and the painting thusly was upside down. The bossy teacher didn't even let them turn it right side up even once. This is a VERY good exercise to do in that the brain can't get in the way by saying things like "hey this doesn't look like a face, hey this doesn't look right, etc"). They were only to concentrate on SHAPES and VALUES and colors. And lo and behold, they turned out great! A very fun class at the Birmingham Community House, as always.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

The Little Pink Church That Could, and Luddie (the little dog that could)

This was from a photo my daughter took of a church out west. I totally went off track with how it looked in the photo, but kept the pink color of it. I love it that it's pink! I added the people, too. That's what they mean when they say photo "reference".  I can't seem to avoid going off  track. 
Also, Colonel Ludlow Mueller wanted me to update you on his cuteness status. 

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Out of the Blue

This was a demo I did in class yesterday, where they painted right along with me. I like to have a list of objectives to cover when we do this, rather than just painting. I give them the list so they can remember what we talked about (I don't STOP talking) as they painted theirs. On this list are: (in no order) perspective, warm vs cool colors, values, composition, negative painting, tools to experiment with, glazing, scumbling, adjusting, light, etc. I had a box of things I use to create texture. For example, dragging in an arc direction, the darks on the shaded side of the tree with my old business cards, index cards, cardboard.Also talked about using q tips, brayer, sponges, etc. We cover a lot with one painting! When I got home, I finished mine, and I'll try to remember to take pictures of all of the class  paintings on Monday. I also talk alot about "breaking the rules".  For example, you probably wouldn't normally see turquoise "spots" in a scene like this, but the minute I added them I knew it was finished! It was suggested again after the class that I create a video of a demo (a great compliment). It is on my to do list! The class is phenomenal. I still can't believe that some of these people have never picked up a paintbrush, and are creating beautiful paintings! They are awesome, and I appreciate their open-ness and willingness to just dig right in and banish the fear.  Not to mention the friends I meet along the way by teaching. Oh...and the laughter. It's pretty cool when you spend a few hours totally forgetting about everything except right here, right now, and having fun.