Sunday, December 27, 2009

What's on the Easel

Full throttle painting this week. This is the last "chunk" of time I will have to get ready for the February show at the Gallery at Harmon's and Barton's. In the meantime, two other opportunities have presented themselves that I had to address.

First, I sold four items from my Etsy shop. A great thing that left only three items in my store front. Not a very inviting place to - I have four new quote series almost ready to post.

Second, the Maine Art Education Association is having an exhibition at the Saco Museum next month! This is an opportunity I did not want to miss. I decided to restart my work on "Stranded at Sea" This piece is the direction I want my work to go in but I knew that I could not fill a room with it by February so I had put it on hold. It's just about ready for exhibition.

Every day that use Acrylics I discover delicious color layer possibilities! The Acrylic mediums just add intrigue to the surface. There is not limit to what this medium can do. My newest love is how Soft Gel Matte layered over colors looks so much like encaustic. It's really yummy.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Winter Studio

Snow Day!!!! :-) I get the chance to post my new winter studio digs. Thanks to Caren Marie Michel I now have a wall space to paint on. This took two days to set up but I am really happy with the results. What is on the work space right now is one of two 30x40 paintings that I am working on for Feb. Well - now that this is posted, I need to take a shower, fill some water jugs and, get ready to loose the power!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

What's On The Easel

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Progress on 30x40 birch panel. This one is a late winter sunset. The Panel is wrapped in a crisp, snowy batik fabric. I consider this about 40% complete. It needs many more glazing layers and lots of work on the trees and edges. This photo shows some areas of wet acrylic that appear much lighter than when dry. Water in the suspension makes the paint appear whiter and cloudy.

The four seasons series is coming along too. I have been working the sky and water portions exclusively. When these are pretty much set I will start the trees and land portions.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

What's On The Easel

A sunrise like this just makes me want to stay home and paint!
Falls light is second only to winters.
These are two paintings in a series of four that I am working on for my show in February. The surface only has 2 layers of glazed colors on it right now. Glazing is one of my favorite ways to work on an image. The color layers lay on top of each other in very thin, transparent layers and become rich and varied as I place more colors. These two paintings are only about 2% complete. Shows how much you can do with only two colors.
This painting is large - a 30x60 birch panel wrapped in a luscious batik in greens. The work is only about 20% complete. My plan is to build up multiple layers of mediums to create a lush, full feel to the Queen Anne's Lace in the foreground.
This is the other large painting. I clearly recall the exact day I saw this sunset. I was on my home from work and just coming up the driveway. I had both kids in the car and they just wanted to go home and eat! I just HAD to take the shot before the light disappeared behind the trees ! This piece will be my biggest challenge. Snow is sort of magical and I want to get just the right feel.

Monday, September 7, 2009

What's On The Easel

A most wonderful trip to Reid State Park Friday with fellow painter Caren Marie Michel. We walked the entire length of one mile beach. We swam in the very cold, very high surf. We had a fast lunch. We painted. It's difficult to imagine a more perfect day!

Reid is one of my favorite places to go. The varied environment makes it a never ending source of inspiration. I have never taken the time to go there in the winter but it is on my short list of things I need to do. Reid is on George Town Island. The island has many breathtaking areas such as Five Islands and of course the park. Reid is the northern sister area of Pompham. I prefer Reid. Less people, more varied scape's to choose from.

Next week I have four days at school - and then the grind with a full week after that. All of my exhibition paintings are on supports and ready to complete. My plan today is to get at least 2 glazing coats on the 4 seasons series and perhaps some layers on my newest Lily watercolor. I will be posting the progress.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

What's On The Easel


This is the most difficult image I worked on this summer! The fog attempting to lift over the islands just off of Winslow park in Freeport. It is 9x12, La Carte sanded card. By the way - Winslow Park is a painters paradise!

Some of my favorite blooms of the summer!
Victorian favorite - Clevia.
My Lotus bud that I pray blooms today because tomorrow I will be at work and miss it!
This bud is large. If you cup both your hands together as if you are praying and then open your hands but keep your finger tips and palms touching - the bloom would fit right inside the cavity.
And the ever sweet Morning Glory!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

What's On The Easel

We had a rainbow the other night. Although this is a single,
its not uncommon to see double ones up here.
They are always in the same location too.

Well - last day of break for me. Teacher workshops tomorrow. At least the weather is my cup of tea!
Completed a small pastel at Winslow park. The fog came and went all day and I managed to capture a brief moment of clarity. This is a 5 1/2 x 9 soft pastel on Sennelier La Carte pastel card. I am not really fond of this paper. It cannot take even the smallest dot of moisture! Its frustrating when the surface dissolves! My plan is to only work on Wallis after my stash is gone.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

What's on the Easel

Progress. Have put a pretty good dent in my newest paintings. The Bridge is in pastel with a watercolor under painting and its geometric shapes are giving me a hard time. I will likely complete the water color and the pastel before I go back to school. The acrylics will be a long term affair.

2, 30 x 40 panels in Acrylics. "Bull Pine and Queen Anne's Lace" and "Snowy Sunset"

1/4 sheet watercolor "Water Lilly Shadows" and

1/4 sheet Wallis paper pastel " Bridge over the Marsh"

Sunday, August 9, 2009

What's on the Easel

I have 8 new paintings started in anticipation of my solo exhibition in February. Two 30 x 40, a series of four 18 x 24, all acrylics. I also have a new quarter sheet watercolor and as well as a quarter sheet pastel started. My summer goal was to have a plan in place and the compositions on supports before I went back to school. With all of the planning and drawing done, I can just enjoy the painting process.

The exhibition is planned around a title that I think will work well for that time of year. I will share that when I get closer just in case I change my mind. The gallery at Harmon's and Barton's is really lovely with large windows that look right over Congress Street. These are some of the images I will be working with - all my own shots.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Paint Out

I spent yesterday on a paint out with Pastel Painters of Maine in the Scarboro Marsh. Although the weather was not the best - the sky was dramatic at times and I love dramatic skies. I met some very nice people and the work was beautiful! The best part was to see so many people out painting together!

I used some paper that I forgot I had purchased! One of my fellow artists asked me what it was and I did not even know! Shame on me! Came home and started to try and figure out what I had painted on! It is from UArt. I bought a sample pack because it claims to have the waterproof quality of Wallis paper but I have NOT tried it out with water color yet. I liked it ok - the true test will be it's ability to take water. I intend to try
that with a study for my next 30 x 40 acrylic painting. Wallis pastel paper is my favorite!
I am now an official member of the Union of Maine Visual Artists! I joined yesterday. I will have one free web site page on their site so be looking for that update as soon as I get the link set up.
Meeting tonight with the "Buxton Art Association" - that's the name for now at least. We doubled in size from the last meeting! Its all very exciting. This meeting will be held in the GAR hall in Standish. We are looking for a group home base.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

New Website Design

After reading some of the book "I'd Rather be in the Studio" by Alyson Stanfield, I decided that I needed to clean up my web site. It is now cleaner and leaner. Please feel free to comment. You might also like to check out her blog -

Started six new panels for my exhibition in February. Two are 30x40 and four are 18x24. I have my show title and a set direction. I will post that information when I get a bit closer to the date.

I did the cliff walk in Prouts Neck with a fellow artist last week. If you have never done this walk you really should. It's beautiful.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

What's on the Easel

Ferry Beach in Scarborough yesterday. Stopped by the roadside to get a good view of the marsh. This is on Route 207, Black Point Road looking West across the marsh. Summer greens are beautiful! I'm pretty good with photo shop but no matter what I do the digital image of this pastel is not even close to the way the color looks in real life.

For one thing, the foreground has some accents that do not show well in digital form. The neutrals in the mid ground are much richer in the real artwork. One more reason that people need to go and see real artwork - photos do not do them justice.This painting is 9x12. The support is charcoal colored Sennelier La Carte Pastel Card.

This was a quick sketch on Ferry Beach looking towards the Old Eastern Railroad tracks.
One of the few nice summer days we have had of late.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

New Supplies

Just received a new 72 color set of unison soft pastels. They are just so beautiful! Now to make color inventory sheets! Dakota Pastels had the best price.

I think my meeting with JM at Harmons and Bartons gallery went well. My work looked strong and I felt good about the space. I was not able to make a commitment for the month that was available. I was ready for October but only September was open! Right when I am starting back to school! I have asked for a later date - February of 2010 is the next available date.

This is a close up of my newest painting "Stranded At Sea." I am happy with the color. I achieved it with multiple layers of glazes. I still have a lot of work ahead on this one.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Whats On The Easel

Well - summer studio is now CLEAN! Screens in the windows and supplies in place. Two paintings are going on right now. Goal one is to finish "Night Owl" - first known as "Black Iris" until I found out the real name. This painting is on an 18 x 24 birch panel wrapped with a luscious bali batik fabric in yellows and deep ochers. Textured gels and mediums add to the yummy color and feel.

I have also started my environmental series. The first one is titled "Stranded at Sea" This work is only in its infancy. I have added it here to try and show how the under layers add to the overall color and richness of a final painting. The bear will be greatly concealed with text and collage. The entire panel is 48 x 24. The portion with the bear is a raised panel that is 4 x 6. This bear panel will "float" in a sea of deep blue.

My summer studio is now open. Great view! I really really need an easel now that my panels are getting larger. Will be shopping for one that is flexible.

Acrylic Painting Class

New art work! School was out Friday - NOW I get to catch up with "stuff" This work by adult ed student J. Calderbank! She loves birds, nature and especially crows. Can you tell?

Sunday, June 14, 2009

What's On The Easel

One week left of school then I can have my time back! Went out painting last Sunday with a fellow artist down by the Saco River in West Buxton. This is the result. Let me know what you think. 9 x 12 soft pastel on LeCarte paper. Great weather - great day.

Saturday, May 23, 2009


Pretty certain my "Black Iris" real name is "Night Owl" see if you agree! I call it a black iris. It is so dark and a beautiful shade of blue violet! I should really come close to completion this weekend. PLEASE hurry June 19.

Check out my sketchbook folder on Flickr! This is how I develop my ideas, take notes and sketch out image ideas. This is my third sketchbook and definitely my best one. I made the book myself - modeled after one I saw in a catalog. I can change out pages, add more or, do whatever I need to expand.

Two pretty exciting things happened this week. I attended my first B.A.A. (Buxton Art Association) meeting. A group of local artists getting together for chat and camaraderie. I also made contact with a possible exhibition venue for this coming fall in town Portland right on Gongress Street.
Step by step.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Acrylic Painting Class

Last Wednesday night, a small group of people from my acrylics class in Westbrook gathered for our last class together. Greg Locsin was our gracious host. I really hope to see this class build in to a real community of artists and creatives, getting together to share ideas and encouraging people to keep productive.

I know that I have really looked forward to Wednesday nights all winter. The conversations and wonderful working atmosphere has helped me to keep painting even after an exhausting day at work.

I found it interesting that we should meet in the very building that I was hired in over twenty years ago in Westbrook and I could not wait to see the old Forrest Street School!

For more photos, please check out my Flickr photostream - click my acrylics class collection. Keep checking back too because I plan to add work from other students too.

Thank you all for such a wonderful time. I am looking forward to a new session next fall. I do believe that the dates for winter session will be September 16 to December 16. See you there!
Left to right: by Greg Locsin, by Stephanie Emery, bottom by Everette Brown, by Olga LaPlante