Saturday, May 24, 2008

Speaking of Dogs

Dogs touch us in so many ways. They provide comfort and friendship and become cherished members of the family. Since dogs are social creatures surely they see us as part of their pack. Misha, the aged Golden Retriever who is the subject of this pastel painting, was with us for 14 years and was greatly loved by our family. During her last year I decided to do this portrait of her which was influenced by A. Wyeth's painting called, "Christina's World". Misha had a morning routine in which she took a skinny dip in our farm pond then enjoyed rolling and laying in the cool grass. I've been kidded about this painting and it's been dubbed "Christina's Dog". Pastel on terra cotta colourfix..not for sale.

Friday, May 23, 2008


Just in from an energetic ball session with our young golden retriever Koda. She has WAY more energy than I can handle! Our play time made me think of all the dogs that have come into our lives. We've had many dogs over the years and so have our friends. All were or still are beloved companions and confidants to their owners.
This a small painting of just such a companion. He belongs to our long time friends and his name is Freddy. I painted this after he stayed with us for a short time while his owners went on a short vacation.(Apparently we are the designated dog sitter in this part of the state) He moped for a bit then eventually warmed up to us and became very playful. Still, he must have wondered where his mom and dad were...this quizzical look said it all..

Saturday, May 17, 2008


There's nothing like the taste of a handful of freshly picked Maine blueberries! They grow wild everywhere around here and although they may be small, the flavor is more intense than any cultivated variety. It's much too early for the berries..the blossoms haven't opened yet but I imagine savoring them with my morning cereal in the middle of summer ...Oh.. and superb in a homemade cake recipe served with fresh whipped cream...yum..
I obtained permission to use the photo taken by famous photographer Saxon Holt, who's exquisite closeup of the little blue gems appears in, "The Garden Design Book", by Cheryl Merser.
Blueberries was a pivotal pastel painting because it was my first to be accepted into a national show... and I discovered how a toned background added depth and richness to my work. In this case the support is canvas board that I covered with orange acrylic paint. It was just the right color but very slippery, so I sprayed fixative between layers as the painting progressed. It took approximately two weeks to complete(my husband made me stop) and won the Merit Award in the Pastel Painters of Maine 3rd Annual National Show in Kennebunk six years ago. The size is 16 x20...Not bad for my first show!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008


Lots of projects going on at the moment so I thought it would be interesting to show a favorite painting that was finished a few years ago. This is a mixed medium with pastel over a watercolor underpainting. I came across a heavyweight paper from Khadi, India, in a local art supply store that was used here. It's 100% cotton rag and wonderful to work with because it's practically indestructible and has a lightly textured surface that holds pastel. Experimenting can yield unexpected results like this painting. The green horse was washed in with watercolor glazes, and the background and other horses were drawn in charcoal and pastel. Multiple pastel layers build up the verdigris texture while leaving some of the watercolor showing through. The oxidized patinas of ancient copper and bronze sculptures inspired the aged finish for the main horse.
To a large degree this is a self portrait...the layers of crusty old patina are the metaphor for the layers that build up my life. In this I see myself surrounded by the people and events that have been influential in so many ways. The size is 16 x20...

Friday, May 2, 2008


We just finished redesigning my web site with a clean look and some new work added. A Scratchboard category has been added as well. It's a medium that is really interesting because of the wood block print effects that can be achieved and I plan to explore that in the future....maybe larger scale works with some abstract qualities. I'm excited about it..!
On the show front, "Midnight Auto" has been accepted into the Pastel Painters of Maine 9th International Juried Exhibition which will be held at the popular midcoast gallery, The Chocolate Church in Bath, Maine. I'm honored that my painting is one of 55 selected out of approximately 300 submitted by pastel artists from Maine and across the country.
I've also been invited to participate in Skyline Farm and Carriage Museum's 3rd Annual Exhibition called , "Fertile Ground". This show pulls together sculptors, photographers and painters living in Maine who are inspired by Maine's landscape and open lands. It should be a great show with broad appeal. Please check my Artist page for dates and times..There will be more info here about the shows as they draw near.
I also have paintings for sale at Olivia & Company, 4 School Street, in Freeport and my fine art note cards are also sold through Edgecomb Potters three galleries, on Rt 27 in Edgecomb, 8 School Street in Freeport, and Exchange Street in Portland's famous Old Port shopping district.
This is an oil study of a nearby field in Autumn. The textures of the dried grasses and the dark sky indicating a storm on the way really help to convey the season. I sold this study but will do a larger version.