Friday, February 27, 2009

My Great Uncle Bruce

This is a picture of my great uncle Bruce and an example of his incredible skills as an artist.  This man is a hero and an inspiration to my family nearly 65 years after his death during WWII.  He was an incredible son to my great-grandmother and a wonderful brother to his three sisters.  He worked as a commercial artist before enlisting and left our family with beautiful paintings, drawings, ads and letters that will be cherished for many more years.  His life was a short 26 years but he left a legacy through his art, his letters and his love and dedication for his country. He loved his family, his three sisters and his mother, and I think by serving and protecting his country, he felt he was serving and protecting them.  His sisters, in a way, have done their part by telling his story and keeping his memory alive.  I am inspired by his work and incredible ability, but more than that, his loyalty to his family and to fighting the good fight.  

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Art & Soup

Art & Soup was a lot of fun this year!  Although I would've loved to have sold more paintings, I did speak with quite a few people who were interested in commissions... which is great! I love doing commissions and creating a painting that someone will cherish for years to come.  My favorite soups were s'more soup (thanks Brian) and a spinach and feta soup from the Greek Isles.  mmm. I also really liked the enchilada soup from the restaurant at Mahoney.  There was a lot of great art too!  I highly recommend getting a ticket next year!  Hopefully, I'll be there again :)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


24 x 30
oil on canvas

Here is the full painting.  It depicts three young men after going through a scary, but amazing experience in Costa Rica.  On our last mission trip we were enjoying our fun day on the beach when some rip tides caught several of our friends on the trip.  Some made it back to shore by somehow swimming through the currents to get back to the beach.  Two were unable to get back on their own. They later told us that they were swallowing a lot of water and may have blacked out at some point.  Those who had made it back to the beach either ran for help or starting desperately praying.  This beach was private and pretty empty.  Two men happened to be walking by as we were praying and we asked them if they were good swimmers and they said yes.  They swam into the currents and coached the two men back to shore.  We then prayed with them, praising God for answering our prayers and they continued walking down the deserted beaches.  We all have wondered who those men were and whether or not they were angels sent to help at the moment when we needed it.  I don't know the answer to that, but I do know that God does send angels to help us and He is in control at all times.  This story is one that I will never forget and will remind me of God's faithfulness in our time of need.  I am so thankful that God brought those men safely out of the water and that He allowed me to be there to witness a miracle.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Milagro (detail)

Milagro (detail)
oil on canvas

Here is a detail shot of my most recent painting.  There is an amazing story behind it, but you will have to wait to see the whole painting... maybe tomorrow.  I had a lot of fun doing this one, I feel like I am venturing in a new direction with my work and I am really excited about it!  I will still always do portraits and pet portraits but I really love working on a painting that tells a story.  So, I hope that gets you excited to see the rest of the painting!

Friday, February 20, 2009

my messy palette

This is what my palette looks like when I am busy painting. Cleaning up my palette is always on my to-do list, but I never seem to get to it! I used to be a little more organized. I would have my colors all lined up in logical color wheel order, I would scrape it clean often and clean my brushes after each use. I have gotten much more lazy these days! I have a scrapings pile that is ever present, my brushes are lucky to get cleaned every few days and my colors are all out of order. I guess, the most important thing is that I am getting paintings done right?

Thursday, February 19, 2009


8 x 8
oil on canvas


I've been wanting to paint this photo of Cosmo for years now! I finally got to it! I realized as I was posting this that I forgot his little pink nose! whoops. and my signature. So, I'll be amending that tomorrow.

I hope you don't mind Mackeys that I painted your cat! He is a good subject!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Ode to Winter

Even though I am very excited for spring to come, there is something that I really love about winter.  The gray days are perfect for staying inside and getting artwork done.  Soon, it will be beautiful outside and I will want to be out in the garden and enjoying the sunshine!  So, I am resolved to enjoy this last little bit of winter, by painting as much as possible before the weeds start begging to be pulled.  I love warm weather just as much as the next person, but I think winter is under appreciated.

I got a lot of painting done today, but won't be posting them for a couple more days.  VNA Art & Soup is coming up on Sunday!  I hope I'm ready!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Beautiful Studio

Diane McGregor's studio

One thing I love is a beautiful art studio.  I stumbled upon a fun blog that reveals the studios of artists all over the country.  This studio I found exceptionally beautiful.  It is so neat and tidy and bright and to top it all off it's in one of my favorite places: Santa Fe.... sigh....

I highly recommend checking out this blog if you like to check out other artist's spaces!  It's fun to get ideas and be inspired by other hardworking artists!

Monday, February 16, 2009


20.5 x 27

I finished Anticipation today, now I just need to frame it for Art & Soup! I have really enjoyed getting back into drawing and I hope to keep sketching like crazy because it is so much fun! A special thanks to Xavier for letting me draw this picture of him :)

My cat was trying to sneak into the photo. Isn't she cute?

Friday, February 13, 2009

Riley in the snow!

Snow Day!

I think Riley felt like a puppy again playing in all the snow today!  I worked on "Anticipation" tonight, but didn't quite get it finished so you'll have to wait a little longer.  I thought I would entertain you with my cute dog in the mean time :)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Anticipation (detail)

Anticipation (detail/in progress)
19.5 x 25.5

Available for purchase at VNA Art & Soup

Here is a sneak preview of a drawing I am working on currently.  I've been super busy at the flower shop because of Valentine's Day so I haven't been able to finish it quite yet!  Stay tuned for the completed drawing!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


19.5 x 25.5


I was inspired to do this drawing from a photo that my friend Melissa took of her daughter. When I saw it I couldn't wait to draw it! It is so cool to see birds captured in flight like that! So, thanks Melissa for taking a really cool picture and then letting me use it for a drawing!

Note: my photo isn't that great, the light was reflecting off the black pretty bad and the birds are all washed out. I will try to re-post after I have a chance to take a photo with daylight.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

In the Morning

In the Morning
16 x 20
oil on canvas

Available for purchase at the VNA Art & Soup

In the morning, O Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.  Psalm 5:3

Monday, February 9, 2009

How To Find Time to Paint

Pages from my sketchbook

My "No Rules" sketchbook

This little sketchbook is one way that I get my creativity out of my system. I often struggle to find time to paint.  Actually, I never "find time" to paint.  You have to make time to paint.  I am often looking for tips on how to make time, save time and not procrastinate.
Last week we went to my Grandma's house to help her organize her art studio and I found a great book on her shelves called The One-Hour Watercolorist by Patrick Seslar.  He has many useful tips and ideas that got me thinking about how I am using my painting time.  I know many of you out there would like to pick up a paintbrush, but can't seem to get started so here are some of my favorite tips from Mr. Seslar that may help you (and me too!)
1. Realize that you can accomplish something in as little as one hour.
2. Designate a work space.  It doesn't have to be anything fancy, the kitchen table, spare room or even the attic will work.
3. Start small.  Work on a small painting or drawing to start out.  This will build up your confidence and it can feel really good to complete a project!
4. Do some quick sketches... they don't need to be incredibly refined and they get you warmed up.
5. Limit your palette.  Try a one-color value study or a two or three color palette.  This will develop your knowledge of color and value and is a big time saver!
6. Keep an idea file. This is one I need to work on.  I have so many ideas and images to work from... the problem is that they are all over my studio as opposed to a "file." This can become a problem when I really want to start a painting but I just can't find the picture I need!
7. a tip from me... keep a sketchbook/journal where no rules apply!  Just get creative.  Doodle, paint, draw, write, stamp or collage whatever your heart desires!  I always go into it thinking, "ok, no one will see this, just have fun." Sometimes ideas for a more finished piece come out of this sketchbook, but it is also just an outlet for my creative energy. Above are some snapshots of my "no rules apply" sketchbook so you can see how I get to explore different styles, mediums and subject matter in one book! After I complete something I usually feel like I've accomplished something and don't really care anymore whether or not anyone sees it.  If you are struggling to start a painting or drawing because of a lack of confidence maybe you should try something only for yourself.  You'll probably be surprised and it will only make you a better artist!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Orchid II

Orchids II
8 x 8
oil on canvas


Here is the second in a series of three orchid paintings I am working on. They will be available at Art & Soup, a benefit for the VNA.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


Orchid I (detail)
8 x 8
oil on canvas


I love painting portraits, but I am trying out some new subject matter. I rarely paint flowers or a still life of any kind. I don't have anything against them and I enjoy other artist's still life pieces. I want to do more of them and I am starting now.

I also work in a flower shop in Rockbrook called Blooms. It is here that I have developed a deeper love and appreciation for all flowers but orchids are definitely on the top of my list. They are truly beautiful! I am working on two other orchid paintings to go with this one and they will be available for purchase at the VNA Art n Soup.

For all you facebook people, this "note" is actually imported from my blog at

Monday, February 2, 2009

Random Sketches

I thought I would post some random sketches today.  I worked on the orchid painting today but it isn't quite finished yet.  I also worked on a few others, but they had some loose ends that still need to be finished up so I had to resort to posting some sketches.