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Saturday, March 31, 2007

Spirit of Tuscany

This is a 15 x 30 in watercolor done by combining several of my photos from Italy. The buildings came from one photo, and the wall and foreground trees from another. I think it captures the "Spirit of Tuscany."

Friday, March 30, 2007

Bella Venezia

This was painted from my reference photos from Italy. It is a half-sheet watercolor. The original photo didn't show much happening under the bridge, so I used my imaginination and added the people sitting at the tables and the pots of flowers. I gave this to my niece as a belated graduation gift.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Abstract Collages

Here are a few more collages done in the first 2 days of the workshop with Jerry Brommer. The first is a cruciform design (7 1/2 x 7 1/2). The second is a T shape (7 1/2 x 7 1/2) and the last is 11 x 11 in a radial design. I think I learned a lot in the workshop and will enjoy trying more collages on my own.

Tuscan Gold Collage

Our final projects for the class were landscapes. Of course I had to do Tuscany. It's amazing how much the collage papers add to the scene. It's Tuscany taken one step further. The workshop taught me a lot about design and balance in my paintings.

Cinque Terre Collage

This 11 x 15 painting was also done at the workshop. It's a bit more realistic, yet it still has a lot of abstract work in the bottom. I really like the deep colors I was able to get with this technique. My reference for this was one of my mini painting I had done in the Cinque Terre.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Floral Collage II

This is another of my floral collages. It is 11 x 15, done with stained paper. It took a long time to stain the papers for these projects. It worked best if we stained them the night before so they could dry by the time we needed them.

Floral Collage I

We did floral collages from our imaginations. The rule was to try to balance the colors in different parts of the design. Some of the papers are good for soft foliage that sticks out of the arrangement.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Stained-Paper Rhythm Design

This was one of my favorite stained-paper abstract collages that I did at the workshop. I like the rhythmic movement of the colors. This is 11 inches x 11 inches.

Stained-Paper Collage II

This is another of the small (7 1/2 x 7 1/2) collages I did in the collage workshop last week. It's a very interesting method of collaging. By staining the paper yourself you have a lot of control over the colors you can use.

Stained-Paper Collage I

My sister and I just finished a stained-paper collage workshop in SC with Gerald Brommer. This is one of the small abstracts that I did in the class. I really like the vibrant colors you can get this way.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Quiet Evening

"Quiet Evening" is an 11 x 15 watercolor. I painted it from a reference photo from WetCanvas's weekend drawing event. I'm always drawn to sunsets and sunrises. What a way to start or end the day!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Capri Harbor

"Capri Harbor" is an 11 x 15 watercolor. It was done from photos I took in Italy. The harbor was a busy place. Ferries were constantly coming in, people were fighting to get taxis or lining up to take the funicular up to the town. Pleasure boats were lined up with people sunbathing, or having cocktails. I painted a quieter version of the harbor...maybe early morning.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Flowered Staircase

"Flowered Staircase" is a half-sheet watercolor. It was painted from a photo I took in Castellina, in Tuscany. I loved the long staircase and the flower pots going up. But every time I passed by, the lighting was not good. I took the photo anyway, and adjusted the lighting to provide some shadows on the staircase and the wall behind the flower pots.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Going Out

"Going Out" is an 11 x 15 watercolor done for the Weekend Drawing Event for WetCanvas , a painting group I belong to. The reference photo was taken at a heritage park in I believe Alberta, Canada. I did the flowers in this painting a lot looser than I normally paint, and I really like the result.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Tuscan Backstreets

"Tuscan Backstreets" is a 15 x30 watercolor done from my reference photos of the small towns we visited in Tuscany. In the early afternoon the streets were empty, and the shops were closed. Shutters often covered the windows while people relaxed inside. In Tuscan towns there are often pots of flowers outside and flowerboxes beneath the windows.

Marsh View

"Marsh View" is an 11 x 15 watercolor that I did for a weekend drawing project for WetCanvas. The moderator provided the photographs. You could use any medium to do your representation. Of cours, I used watercolors. This picture reminded me of the tidal marshes in Cape Cod. I like the trees silhouetted in the far distance.

Friday, March 9, 2007

Pigeon Feeders in St. Mark's Square

"Pigeon Feeders in St. Mark's Square" is an 11 x 20 watercolor done from reference photos from my trip to Italy. Anyone who has ever visited Venice knows that there is a constant commotion in the square from people who feed the pigeons. The pigeons are everywhere...on the ground, on people's heads, in their hair...it's wild!

Cypress and Poppies

After returning from Italy I started painting larger pictures from my photos. "Cypress and Poppies" is 15 x 30. It's the typical Tuscan scene. The cypress trees are often scene like this in lines against the hillside.

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Lounging in Capri - May 2006

"Lounging in Capri" was painted while I was doing just that. I was sunning myself poolside at Villa Sarah. The pool area was surrounded by potted plants and had a typical terra cotta floor, but the blue lounge chair just made the picture! You can also see other Capri buildings in the distance. I would love to be there right now.

Villa Sarah - May 2006

In Capri we stayed at "Villa Sarah" which was about a ten minute walk from the center of town. It was a lovely, quiet place with lots of flowers and arched windows. You could relax here, away from the hustle-and-bustle of the town.

Capri Street - May 2006

One day I walked far, far from the center of town. This was the view from a little park I found. I love the fact that there were always potted plants everywhere. I liked the brick wall and the shadows cast by the tree. "Capri Street" shows the typical look of Capri, not the tourist look of Capri.

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Capri Hillside - May 2006

"Capri Hillside" shows the different architectural styles of homes build on the island. Many of the homes have arched entrances or windows, and some are Moorish in design. The island has lots of foliage and rugged rocks.

Capri Coast - May 2006

"Capri Coast" shows the rugged coast of the Isle of Capri with it's houses built along the hillside. The houses are many different styles and many different colors.

Positano Corner - May 2006

Positano is built on the side of a steep hill. When you arrive by bus as we did you, are at the top of the town. You can either walk from there or take a bus to the harbor. There is one steep, narrow street that winds it's way in one direction only all the way to the harbor and then back up the other side of the town. "Positano Corner" was painted while I was sitting in a tiny park along the top of the street. The building with it's balcony and iron gate attracted me. Of course the water can be seen in the background.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007


I have been experimenting with watercolors and oil pastels for texture. "Primavera" is 15 x30. The subject was a house just outside Castellina in Chianti. In the week that we were in Tuscany we passed this house at least twice a day. I loved the stone wall and the flowers drooping over it. The cyprus trees weren't really there, but should have been.

Positano Balcony I - May 2006

"Positano Balcony I" was also painted outside our hotel room. I love the plant wrapping around the post as it climbs up. It was such a lovely spot!

Positano Balcony II - May 2006

"Positano Balcony II" was painted from our hotel balcony, right outside our room. It was lovely, with lots of potted plants, a beautiful tile table, and a view to die for.

Checking the Menu - May 2006

"Checking the Menu" was painted down in the harbor in Positano. I loved the color of the building, the shutters, and the white ironwork under the windows.

Monday, March 5, 2007

Pink Doorway

This 7 x 10 watercolor was done from a reference photo supplied by WetCanvas for their Weekend Drawing Event. It was taken somewhere in Sussex, England. I loved the pink door surrounded by the brickwork. I'm very happy with how the reflections in the doorway came out.

Positano Waterfront - May 2006

This was a restaurant just at the edge of the beach in Positano. My husband would spend his morning writing at a table, while I painted. Then we would have drinks and a yummy lunch. It was a busy spot, with several local artists coming out and painting every day.

Positano Beach - May 2006

I love the way the boats were lined up along the beach. Luckily I painted the sailboat first, because it was gone before I completed the painting of "Positano Beach."

Beach Path - May 2006

Positano is such a scenic town, but not easy to get to. It was a wild bus ride along the edge of the cliffs, but worth every minute. The beach was tiny, but with super views of the houses on the hillsides. "Beach Path" was painted down by the beach, by the little rental cabana.

Saturday, March 3, 2007

December Roses

Once in a while I'll attempt painting flowers. My husband brings me flowers quite often. These were such an unusual color I knew I had to try them. The painting is 11 x 15 inches.

Sorrento Afternoon - May 2006

"Sorrento Afternoon" was also painted from our hotel. This time I was sunning myself at the pool. I love the terra cotta roofs and the red umbrellas on top of the modern building. There is a domed church in the painting. I don't know if that was the church that rang the bells all the time, but it seemed to do it nonstop at times, sometimes playing a song. Luckily we weren't too close to it. Ciao Sorrento!

Leonelli's Beach - May 2006

The town of Sorrento is perched high on a bluff. In order to reach the beach there is a steep walkway that zigzags down. The beach itself doesn't have much of a sandy area. Instead there are piers built out into the water, covered with cabanas and beachchairs. It's very colorful! My husband didn't want to walk down, so I went alone. I walked about halfway down the cliff and sat down to paint. I knew if I went all the way down, I would have to climb all the way back up to the top in the heat. Finally when I was done, I hiked back up. My husband told me he had something to show me. There was an elevator that went through the cliff to the beach!

Sorrento Charm - May 2006

"Sorrento Charm" was painted from the balcony of our hotel, about a 15 minute walk from the center of Sorrento. We were high up on a bluff overlooking the water. What a view!

Thursday, March 1, 2007


I finished this painting over the weekend. It was done from photos I took while driving through Utah, going from one national park to another. I had passed this spot, and then turned around to get a few photos. "Solitude" is the perfect title because it was this lovely old barn in a very wide open lonely area. I love old buildings. They have such character. It is 15 x 30 inches.

Tuscan Garden - May 2006

This is another painting done at our agriturismo. It is the garden off the office. "Chianti Garden" captures the Tuscan scene of tiled roofs, stone buildings, and beautiful trees and flowers.

Badia a Coltibuono - May 2006

Up in the Tuscan hills, on a tiny, winding road I found this small restaurant. I loved the trellis on the side, and the big planters everywhere. Lunch at "Badia a Coltibuono" anyone?

Before the Wine - May 2006

In early May the vines are not very big, but I decided I had to capture them anyway. The winding stems of the plants were wonderful...entwined around the wire and the posts. I call this "Before the Wine."