Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Reclining Cat Study 10" x 14"
Watercolor on Arches
Cats are so languorous as they recline about the house. This little study in watercolor is a study in violets, lavendars and blues.

Praying Man 8" x 14"
Colored Pencil on colored paper
I am moved deeply by images of people praying - reaching out to God - seeking conscious contact with the One that speaks to their heart.

Cellist - 8" x 10" Pencil drawing on paper
This is a little quick sketch I did of a man playing the cello. My father played the cello and I remember listening to him play when I was a child. I love the peaceful mellow sound of a cello.
Red Stripe 10" x 14"
Charcoal and Conte Crayon on Paper
Here is another one of my drawings - this time incorporating charcoal and conte crayon. I tried to capture the idea of a young man who is a bit revolutionary in character, but deep in thought as he is reading.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Seated Nude 2
10" x 16"
Conte Crayon on Paper

Here is another nude drawing of the same model. Although the pose is similar, the drawing is more bold and the woman looks less timid. Both of these drawings are available as prints at Fine Art America. See link.
Seated Nude
16"x 20"
Conte Crayon on Paper.

This is one of many nude drawings that I have done over the years - drawing in a studio with a live model. I tried to create a mood as well as render the figure in a realistic manner.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Friday, July 25, 2008

Art Studio Tour

If anyone is in Western North Carolina anywhere near Leicester, North Carolina on August 16th and 17th, check out this wonderful Studio Tour. One of my friends, Pat Calenda is showing her pottery and photography along with 21 other artists who will be showing their work in a variety of media. Here is a link to the website about the event: http://www.cometoleicester.com/index.htm

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Enter with a Happy Heart
16" x 20"
Available as a print through
Fine Art America website.

This old bicycle was leaning against a white picket fence outside a B&B where some friends of mine were staying. They took the photo and suggested I do a painting. It was an interesting study to do and reminds me of days gone by - although these days I am riding a bicycle more and more due to the high gas prices.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Fish Traps
16" x 20"

I painted this by first blocking out the area of the boat - just using tape and tinfoil to cover the area. I find it is a lot cheaper than using the mask that is found in art stores. Then I used a wet on wet technique to rough in areas of different shades of blue, green and lavender letting the paint blend and move around on the paper. Then I placed wrinkled up saran wrap down over the wet paint. I left it to dry and then removed the saran wrap and the masked area of the boat. You can get some great accidental effects that way. I then painted in the boat and "bumped" up some of the areas of color around the boat and the spit of land.
If you do any traveling down in the Bahamian chain of islands off the coast of Florida or even further south in the Caribbean, it is not unusual to see fishermen going out in all sorts of boats - some like this fellow with his crab traps piled up in the bow of his boat. The sea and the way of life of the people that work their boats to eke out a living - fishing and catching crabs - call to me.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Watching the Waves Roll In
18" x 24"

This is a watercolor of my son and grandson watching the waves roll in while we were at the beach along the Oregon coast. The fog was beginning to roll in. My grandson was fascinated by the breakers pounding the beach and had great fun running back and forth as the waves rolled in and out. His father kept a close watch on him. That afternoon remains etched in my memory as a treasure of our time together there.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Jade's New Hat
11" x 14"

I did this little watercolor painting of my granddaughter, Jade years ago. As with my other grandchildren, I am completely enamored with her and everything about her.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

At the Beach
16" x 20"

Giclees available through Fine Art America (see link)

This is a portrait of my son holding my youngest grandson. We were on vacation on Sanibel Island and were at the beach not far from the fishing pier.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Blue Crabber
16" x 20"
Giclees available on Fine Art America website. (See link)

I saw this fellow rowing his boat toward one of his crab pots on Tampa Bay not far from the shoreline of Safety Harbor. While most people row facing the stern of the boat, he faced forward.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

First Snook
16" x 20"

Giclees available
through Fine
Art America
(see link)

This is a portrait of my grandson showing off the first snook that he had ever caught. It was a beautiful day on Sanibel Island to do a little surf fishing.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Man in Red Cap
Oil on canvas
11" x 14"

Original in private collection of artist.
Giclee available through Pedlar's Child gallery.

This past year I began to paint in oils again after spending several years devoting all my time to watercolors. I had forgotten how wonderful oils are to work with. I painted this in the space of one morning with a few changes added a few days later. I feel it is one of my better pieces.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Gather Us In
16" x 20 "

Original sold.
Giclees available.

This is a watercolor of an old black lady. I was inspired by a favorite song by Marty Haugen that I was listening to as I painted this portrait. I tried to capture the look of a woman who has been down a long hard road - one who has suffered many trials and tribulations. She is old now and close to that time when she will being going to her Maker.

Here are the words to the music I was listening to as I painted this painting - Gather Us In.

"Here in this place new light is streaming,
Now is the darkness vanished away,
See in this space our fears and our dreamings,
Brought here to you in the light of the day.

Gather us in -- the lost and forsaken,
Gather us in -- the blind and the lame,
Call to us now, and we shall awaken,
We shall arise at the sound of our name.

We are the young --our lives are a mystr'y,
We are the old -- who yearn for your face,
We have been sung throughout all of histr'y,
Called to be light to the whole human race.

Gather us in -- the rich and the haughty,
Gather us in -- the proud and the strong,
Give us a heart so meek and so lowly,
Give us the courage to enter the song.

Here we will take the wine and the water,
Here we will take the bread of new birth,
Here you shall call your sons and your daughters,
Call us anew to be salt for the earth.

Give us to drink the wine of compassion,
Give us to eat the bread that is you,
Nourish us well and teach us to fashion,
Lives that are holy and hearts that are true.

Not in the dark of buildings confining,
Not in some heaven -- light years away,
But here in this place the new light is shining,
Now is the kingdom, now is the day.

Gather us in and hold us forever,
Gather us in and make us your own,
Gather us in -- all peoples together,
Fire of love in our flesh and our bone.

Thundering Breakers
18" x 24"

Giclees available.

This painting is done from a photo I took of the Pacific Ocean waves rolling in off Pacifica, CA. It was winter and we were there for a funeral. The sky was overcast which fit our somber mood. The sea was magnificent - powerful - and awe-inspiring as the waves thundered in and swept onto the beach over and over.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Crossing Over Acrylic 16" x 20"

This is the first painting I did after my husband passed away. I had not planned on the figure in the front of the boat to resemble him, but while in the midst of painting, I realized that I had painted him. He always loved the sea and was a commercial fisherman when he was young. The boat is headed to safer waters away from the breakers and deep water beyond them. As I painted, all this became symbolic of my husband's journey from life into the peaceful waters of eternal life. I painted the figure rowing the boat golden - in my mind - Bill's guardian angel bringing him home to God. It is interesting how painting a subject - two men in a boat - can be such a catharsis in times of grief.

Original is in the private collection of the artist. Giclees are available at Fine Art America link.
Honeymoon Island
10" x 20"

Giclees available through Pedlar's Child
Art Gallery.

Honeymoon Island is my favorite beach. It is a protected wildlife area and therefore left undeveloped for the most part. There are only four buildings on this beautiful stretch of beach.

Honeymoon Island, a barrier island, is now a State Park made up of 385 acres of pristine nature off the coast of Dunedin, Florida. The gulf side of the beach is about four miles long and has virgin slash pine and mangroves along St. Joseph Sound. The island is protected from development and only has four bathhouses along the beach – one of which is depicted in my painting of Honeymoon Island.

It was first inhabited by the Tocobagan Indians and was later populated by Spanish explorers, pirates, traders, and fishermen in the sixteenth century. Artifacts such as skeletal remains, pottery and chains have been found on the island.

In the 19th century, some attempts were made to homestead the island with little success until a hog farm was started on the island and it became known as Hog Island. In October 1921 a hurricane hit the island and split it in two with Hurricane Pass cutting between the north and south parts of the original island.

However, by the 1940's, the unattractive name was changed to Honeymoon Island, since it had become a popular destination for newlyweds. A businessman from New York by the name of Clinton Mosely Washburn had purchased the island in 1939.

He, together with Life Magazine, Newsreel, and the Clearwater Lions Club, began a contest for newlywed couples where the winners would spend their Honeymoon on the island. One hundred sixty-seven couples won a stay and came down to Honeymoon Isle. They stayed in one of the fifty thatched huts built on what was then the main beach area. World War II ended the honeymoons and the island was then used for a rest and recuperative retreat for factory workers.

Simon Greets the Day
16" x 20"

Original in collection of the artist.
Giclees available.

This painting is part of my series of watercolor portraits of old people. This portrait was done from a photo taken while traveling in the Caribbean. I tried to capture the sunlight warming his skin as he pushed the curtain back to look outside early in the morning.
I named this old fellow 'Simon' after the Simon that was pressed into service to help Jesus carry the cross. Simon was reluctant initially, but obediently helped carry Our Lord's burden for a while. I believe we are all like Simon - called to carry burdens - whatever they might be - in service of others. Even though the weight of those burdens are heavy and age us, we can choose to greet the day with a smile and a twinkle in our eye.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

The French Beekeeper
Gouache on Watercolor paper
11" x 14"

Original in private collection.
Giclees available.

This is a portrait of my great grandfather, Camille Pierre (C.P.) Dadant. He migrated with his mother and sisters at the age of 11 to the United States during the Civil War. His father, Charles, had come over a few months prior to C.P.'s arrival to build a little log cabin for his family to live in. Originally, they grew grapes, but found soon that beekeeping was more profitable in the area where they had settled along the banks of the Mississippi river.
C.P. and his father built a business specializing in beekeeping and beekeeping supplies that still exists today - five or six generations later.
This painting derives from a photo taken around 1910 as C.P. walked to work at the factory at the bottom of the hill. In the background is the Keokuk Lock and Dam. C.P. was one of the business men that was instrumental in moving to get the dam built across the Mississippi at this point.
September Mourning
16" x 20"

Giclees available.

I painted this shortly after 9/11. The planes were still not flying and images of the buildings collapsing were still repeatedly filling the television. Feeling lost and frightened as to what was going to happen, I wandered down to the little local marina to try to make some sense out of it all. Already a local group of artist had taken the name, WAR (women artists something or other) and were painting violent images.
I chose, instead, to paint peace-filled images such as this painting of sailboats in a marina with a flag at half staff under a rather ominous sky. I wanted to show that the terrorist's attempts to destroy our country did not succeed. Our country and way of life prevailed despite the recent tragic events.

One Thirty-Five
16" x 20"
Original is in a private collection. Giclees available.

There are many wee cracker houses in the little town in Florida where I live. Many have been torn down to make room for McMansions, but there are still a number of these wonderful little houses. I am trying to do paintings of them from time to time to preserve the history of what life was like. Recently, there has been an increased interest in tiny homes however. It is my hope that these little cracker houses will be recognized for the treasures that they are.
The term, 'cracker' is used locally to denote a person that is a native-born Floridian. It is not considered to be a derogatory term, but rather a term of great respect. Most of the population of Florida consists of people who moved here from other states. Crackers were born here and are proud of that fact. It is said the term originated from the sound of the cattle ranchers' whips crackin' as they moved their herds. I didn't realize that Florida actually has a lot of cattle. It isn't just all orange trees and beaches.

Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen
16" x 20"

Original has been sold. Giclees are available.

This watercolor is a portrait of an old lady who, at the time of the painting, was over one hundred years old. I found her face to be beautiful. I love to paint people of all ages but most particularly people whose faces show that they have been down a road or two and have survived times of trouble and sorry. She is a woman of great dignity and character.

Poling the Flats
16" x 20"

Original is in Private Collection. Giclee available.

The transparency of watercolor lends itself well to the light airy atmosphere of tropical settings. This fisherman is poling the flats off the coast of a Bahamian island. A few years ago I crewed on a yacht sailing from Providenciales in the Caicos Islands up through the Bahamian chain of out islands. In this painting I tried to capture the feel of the salt air, the ever-changing hues of blue in the out island waters. The people I met along the way were mostly poor and hard-working with a deep understanding of nature and the rhythms of the sea.

White Heron
16" x 20"
Original has been sold.

I have always had an interest in birds of all kinds. There are many very beautiful white herons that live in the estuaries not far from my home. I tried to capture the essence of the moment as this bird perched watchfully waiting - serene - yet alert.