I just received a wonderful letter in the mail from MASF (Miniature Art Society of Florida). They have awarded me with the "Excellence in All Entries" prize along with first place in botanicals/florals. I'm so tickled for there are truly so many fine and skilled artists that participate in this show! (I'd hate to be the judge.) I am still giddy with excitement and keep running into walls and speaking gibberish. What a great week!
Yesterday I decided it was a great day to ditch the house work, the shopping and the laundry and go to the zoo. I'm so glad I did for here at our Brookfield Zoo we have White Pelicans rescued from the Gulf goo. It was late afternoon so the ligthting was simply magical! I've got several paintings in mind with these...and miniatures too!
It has been a while since I've posted. This is the season to regenerate and sketch. It's so beautiful outside with all the fall colors I have a difficult time planting myself inside the studio. However...I did manage to complete one last miniature for the season. This guy was taken from a reference photo I had captured years ago. I love the way the figure is reclining and the way the face is seriously pondering. He is off to Florida now and hopefully will be a part of the upcoming MASF show. In the meanwhile...time to stretch out those eye muscles and paint something large again!
Well here we go again...yet another illustration done with Adobe Illustrator. This one I had sketched out on paper months ago and didn't get around to until recently, (had difficulty figuring out the numerous layers and lines...ugh! What a mess!) But I felt compelled to finish it for a dear watercolor artist, Paul Jackson has begun a fundraiser campaign to raise money for the gulf oil spill clean up. This image I will donate to the cause. It will be appear on Zazzle.com where customers can preview this along with many other wonderful designs and then purchase a t-shirt or whatever with the image on it. All the profit goes to the clean up effort. I'll get specific link soon and post it. Now...think I should get back to watercolors for once?!
This Mockingbird, (an addition to my songbird card series) was completed for a dear Texan friend of mine. My friend lives here in Chicagoland now and she often speaks of how she misses the lovely concerts Mockingbirds graced her with down south. Though Mockingbirds are the state bird of Texas they are widespread throughout the west. I grew up with them in California and have wonderful memories of "teaching" the local birds new whistles. They often sang at dusk which is why I included the full moon in this portrait. And just to assure my friend that this is indeed a "Texan" Mockingbird I placed him in a Pecan tree...the state tree of course!
I apologize for not checking in for some time. I have not been slacking though-just terribly busy! I'm one of those who sticks her fingers in too many pots at once! I'm happy to report that my miniature drawing of the Cooper's Hawk won the drawing catatgory award in the Seaside Miniature show. It was sold immediately afterwards. My miniature painting of the waterfall also sold...which is great...however...there is that inevitable sense of loss as I am quite fond of that particular scene and the painting was such a joy to do! I'm happy someone else enjoys it too!
This leaf painting above is now hanging in the LaGrange Art League gallery. It is similar to another painting I had done of leaf duff. I love leaf patterns on the ground...and fall leaves light up the soil like a casket of jewels. Who could resist?! Yes...I'm jumping the gun on fall. But it's my favorite season! It's a fleeting season as well so I don't feel guilty extending its spanse of time!
I'm getting a lot of mileage out of this Green Heron reference photo I took last year. I love this bird so much I wanted him to be a part of my graphics bird card collection so here he is...again. He was drawn with Adobe Illustrator. I worked on him last week. A series of water birds will follow, (a Canada Goose, a Great Blue Heron for Debbie, and a White Pelican, and I think an egret...any other suggestions?)
I seen a number of Green Herons stalking dinner along the various streams here in IL. They are marvelous birds and are gifted with unique grace. They are wonderful to spot for they sit so still and patiently! This guy was taken from one of my photos and superimposed on another background photo I had shot. I used lots of masking material in creating the woods in the background and intend to develop this technique further. Masking is tricky but it lends itself to marvelous textural effects one can achieve no other way! Now that spring is here in full force I will focus more on the brilliant colors that it brings. Flowers abound in our sweet little town and I intend to take advantage of them!
It took me a whole week to complete this little drawing! I just don't know how pencil and colored pencil artists have the patience to go through this process over and over again! Thankfully, for me this was just an exercise to get back to drawing for a spell. Drawing is SO important in the painting process. It's easy to forget that sometimes when all one wants to do is play with those pretty colors!
This is a rendering from a photo of my sons when they were little. Of course, my sons now think this picture is creepy. I told them I didn't care. It reminds me of those wild times when those two had unlitmited energy and wrestled each other until they dropped. Ah...the good old days! Today they are two outstanding young men but they still have been known to take a respite from maturity and wrestle each other to the ground on occassion!
This guy was rather a quickie. He's just graphite after all...no color to worry about. I love drawing and this hawk and old oak tree allowed me to indulge in textures and value range like no other! I may have to do another pencil drawing as this one was so satisfying and fun!
One can only dream of those summery garden jewels while trapped in a wintery ice cave of a studio in February! This miniature is done on hot pressed Frabriano watercolor board. I used both watercolors and colored pencils for this composition. Perhaps a spring boquet or landscape should be next. I need bright colors to pull me out of this winter stupor!
Here's the first miniature of the year! I found this guy at the Lincoln Zoo. He was sitting at the top of this rock pile in a single beam of sunlight. He knew he was breathtaking and regal. That's why I titled it "Sentient". I think this ape knows he's of royal lineage! Now on to something a bit more colorful to chase the January blues away!
I'm kicking the year off with a burst of color. I love the Bromeliad collection they have at the Garfield Conservatory in Chicago. These plants look as though they have landed here in little space pods from alien planets! It would be fun to do another Bromeliad using a rainbow of colors...perhaps I shall! On my pallette now however is a Green Heron and miniature for a spring show. So much to do! So little time! Happy New Year's!
I grew up in culturally diverse San Francisco Bay Area and indulged in all forms of creative venues varying from music and dance to rich visual treats at museums.
I earned a BFA in Graphic Design at CCA and relished in the fine arts and design courses offered there. I graduated just before the dawn of computer graphics applications and have always felt blessed to be one of the last students taught the disciplines of exacting, hands-on skills required of the pre-computerized field. We were trained to apply strict adherence to detail and almost Zen-like focus on precise execution. This disciplined arts oriented ideology has influenced my approach not only to what I do in the studio but to life in general.
Of course, I have learned computer graphics applications since. I would be deceiving myself if I didn’t embrace one of the most amazing and flexible tools available to the modern day artist/designer. I only hope my work reflects that of carefully thought out artistry and evokes sentiments of beauty and balance as good design is meant to do. Hopefully my passion for thought provoking art coupled with love of the outdoors brings you visual contentment and joy.