Monday, October 22, 2012


Davenport, 30 x 22, pastel on BFK
It's official. I have now lived in Washington longer than I lived in California. In many ways, I think of myself as a Washingtonian. I follow Washington state politics, watch local and state news, pay state (and federal) taxes. I carry a Washington driver's license. Raised my sons in Washington.

But, there are times when I still feel like a California girl. I hum tunes from the Beach Boys, check the surf reports, and paint California subjects. Like today. 

Just north of Santa Cruz, Davenport sits on beautiful cliffs above the Pacific Ocean. I stood in this spot, several years ago, with a group of friends and watched the waves crash. The wind was so strong that we didn't dare pull out our painting gear, but we saw evidence of painters there before us. One tree stump was covered in daubs of oil paint.

I may be a de facto Washingtonian, but today I feel more like a California girl.

Beach Boys "Good Vibrations." Obviously.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Akua ink monotypes

I am honored to be working with printmaster Sharri LaPierre this fall. She is teaching me many aspects of printmaking and I am an eager learner! We spent a few hours in her studio this week with a focus on monotype, using the water based Akua inks. 

I wanted to create surfaces for future drawings or pastel paintings. These could become underpaintings for figure sketches in ink or charcoal. Or, maybe I will frame them without any modifications.

Check out this video by the creator of Akua inks to see an example of their use!

Sarah Vaughan and Wynton Marsalis do "Autumn Leaves
." Life is good.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

you are invited

"Oasis Palm" 18 x 24, pastel on archival paper

"FORM, COLOR AND LINE: The Language of Abstract Art"

With the dawning of the industrial revolution at the end of the 19th century, artists felt a desire to express some of the massive societal changes in science, philosophy and technology.  Steering away from art that represented  form and figure, artists felt a pull to create new art that  expressed the philosophies of the modern age as well as concepts and emotions.
With our own society’s massive changes due to advances in technology, many of today’s artists are discovering that abstract art  - whether partial or total  - is an expressive frontier.

The show will run for the month of October. Participating artists are Maebel Astarloa-Haley, Melody Cleary, Marcia Petty, and Katherine van Schoonhoven.   

Artists' reception Sunday, October 14th from 12:30-2pm.

The Doll Gardner Gallery
West Hills Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
8470 SW Oleson Road
Portland, OR 97223

Tuesday, October 9, 2012


"Unexpected"     16 x 20, oil on birch panel
I have been thinking a lot about composition lately. A strong composition will draw my attention from across a room. Thinking alone isn't enough. I have also been reading Edgar Payne's book "Composition of Outdoor Painting."  All of Payne's notan illustrations of strong compositional designs leads to more thinking.

Sooner or later, though, thinking and reading lead to action. Cruciform design, colors inspired by fall. 

Click image to enlarge.

Electric Cello. Unexpected.

Monday, October 1, 2012

flower power

22 x 30, acrylic and pastel on BFK
The motto for the counter culture movement in the 1960s and 1970s: Flower Power. With it came images of flowers on clothing, in hair, and handed to rifle toting soldiers and guards.

Flowers continue to connote peace and a resistance to violence. At least, it is my aim to suggest and promote that with this flower.

Peace. How I long for it!

Pete Seeger "Where Have All the Flowers Gone?"'