The Inspiration behind this painting began with the sounds of the water gently bubbling over the fountain sculptures. The one large fountain that is not shown in this painting was to my right and directly in front of my easel was a green patio umbrella and two Adirondack chairs. (see photos below)
I would have loved to include all these elements in my painting but the canvas just wasn't big enough! So, I focused my attention towards the back corner of the Fountain Garden. The large round sphere sculpture and the three stacked planting pots took center stage. I included the mixed metal pinwheel sculpture and the sign. Although the sign would not have been necessary, the space was so well designed that one could easily tell its main purpose: a place of rest and relaxation. But, the cream color sign with green lettering was welcoming touch that graciously invited any visitor to this visual oasis.
The sound of the bubbling water from the fountain was the initial pull but I was also captivated by the color harmony, the various plant textures and the contrast of the light and darks between the base of the Japenese Maple tree.
Although I am not a gardener, and have very little knowledge and experience of successfully growing a garden. I can still appreciate and marvel at the work of the experienced gardener's hands. Master gardeners like the folks at Acer Gardens have the ability to visualize a space similar to the way and artist visualizes a painting. Using the same principles of shape, color texture, composition and focal points. I love seeing how others use their imagination and create beautiful spaces for all of us to enjoy.
A small group of us from the Madison Art Society gathered that day, a little overcast but still worth going out to see my fellow artists friends, explore the beautiful scenery and painting together..
Plus, we were invited back - always a great sign!
Look forward to painting a winter scene - perhaps with snow and wreathes and Christmas trees!
'Thank you Acer Gardens!
Link to Acer Gardens Website: https://www.acergardens.com
Current and Upcoming Shows
Oct 21 - Nov. 4, 2020 Capturing New Canaan - Sale and Exhibition at The Carriage Barn Art Center in New Canaan, CT. I have three pieces in this show. Here's the link for more information carriagebarn.org
Shoreline Art Trail 20 -Open Studios is ON!! For the month of November and December the Shoreline Art Trail artists will be opening their studios, for one on one scheduled visits.
If you live in the area of Connecticut, New York , Mass or Rhode Island,- come and visit my home studio. Appointments are made through an easy to follow online app and you can choose the day and time that works best for you. Days and times are Friday- Sunday 10-3pm.
I will have my latest work available for sale, some framed and some unframed. With special pricing on older works.
Open Studio Appointments will be available for scheduling on November 1, 2020. -
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Like always, thank you for being apart of this journey!
Painted on location at Bauer Farm in Madison CT. This is a beautiful property with plenty of great places to paint. There is an old white farm house close to the main road with barns and an old tractor off to the side. Then in the back there's a lily pond with a covered bridge. As you follow the windy driveway up to the back of the property there's a community garden that offers a wide array of colorful flowers and vegetable plants. This feels like such a classic New England property I could only imagine the history of the family and activities that took place on this picturesque setting. It feels like a scene out of a Nicholas Sparks book.
This is a favorite place for the painters of the Madison Art Society to go. It's not only convenient and close to home it offers so many choices. There were about 8 or 9 of us painting yesterday. Some working in oils, others in watercolor and a few in pastel. Each painting is so different, so unique. That's what I love about going out plein air painting. So much variety and an abundance of inspiration.
this painting and many more are available in on shop page here
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My first trip to the Lavender farm and I was so amazed at how beautiful and peaceful this place is. It's a 25 acre farm that grows lavender plants. But that's not all... they make lavender oil and from that they have fragranced a huge variety of charming gifts and products.... all with the intention to relax and stay calm!
The first time out here I came with the Madison Art Society we were just a little bit early for the full bloom season. So I began my painting, blocking in the shapes and the gazebo with full intentions of returning a few weeks later.
My friend Patty and I have been painting together for a few years now. We headed out around 9:30am on Friday morning. We arrived about 20 minutes later - walked around, checked out the shop and found a cool place under a shady tree.
I brought this painting back with me just to pop in the violets and bluish-purples of full blooming lavender plants. When I was here the first time the day was slightly overcast. The dark tree line in the distance gave a nice backdrop for the gazebo architecture. I was debating to put a few people in the painting but for now I'll just assume they are laying down in the fields.... relaxing of course!
Definitely planning a trip back again soon!
11 x 14" oil on canvas
coated with protective varnish
$425 + tax and shipping
click here to purchase
Lavender Pond Farm website
Chester Winter Carnivale, oil, 11 x 14" $225 unframed, email me if you are interested in purchasing
3" gold leaf frame available for additional $75
So happy to be back posting on my blog. I've been very busy these days with the Corks and Canvas Painting Parties. I love teaching and the parties are the perfect combination of sharing my knowledge with offering a night of fun and relaxation for those who want to paint but not sure where to begin.
However, It also feels good to balance out the teaching and parties with time in my studio working on my own pieces. This painting was started and almost (95%) completed back in February.
I joined a couple of my fellow artists at Maple and Main Gallery on an all day paint out during the town wide Chester Winter Carnivale. Although the sun was shining, it was still very cold outside. Cold enough for the ice sculptures not to melt. Lot's of people, great food and even a tractor pull right down Main Street!
I was able to put the finishing touches on this painting today and so happy to share it here on my blog. I thought today would be a great day to post this snowy winter scene since we actually had snow on the ground this morning when I woke up! Yes, snow on April 16th! How crazy is that! It didn't last long and I doubt we'll get any more... but those poor crocuses in my garden must be so confused!
Here's a few photos from the Winter Carnivale
Thank you for viewing my work!
"Saturated in Stillness", oil, 16" x 20", 2013
"In our stillness, we acknowledge God's greatness and we are in peace in our life. Stillness saturates us in the presence of God."
- quote by E'yen Gardner author of The Wilderness Experience.
This painting is a larger version of the plein air painting I did on sunday morning. It was so peaceful at this lily pond in Bauer Park. Occasionally I could hear the slightest "plunk" from the water's edge.. it must have been a small frog. Other than that the silence and stillness of studying this scene from a painter's view has a way of opening up an awareness of God's presence and just how huge God is compared to this very small view of the world that I see before me.
It takes me a good 15 to 20 minutes to really settle down, to clear my mind of the busyness and that's the time when the "awareness" dial cranks up and my senses are heightened.
The smell of freshly cut grass.
The monarch butterfly flutters from one bloom to the next.
The green lily pads morph into a loosely crocheted blanket of pale yellows, apricot, dusty rose and mint green. Reminding me of the blanket my grandmother so lovingly made for my daughter Victoria when she was first born.
How wonderful it is to not only be able to capture a moment in time but to weave in cherished memories.
To witness life as a colorful tapestry that only our Creator can carefully and lovingly orchestrate.
"Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty." Psalm 91:1
with much gratitude,
"Morning Stillness", oil, 9 x 12, available on Dailypaintworks.com auction starting bid $200
Early Sunday morning I met up with my painting buddy Patty at Bauer Park in Madison, CT. After scouting out the location on Wednesday morning, I knew I had to return soon. With two lily ponds, a cover bridge, sunflowers blooming in the garden, barns, and a white farm house ... you get the picture... beautiful scenes everywhere you turn.
The grass was still wet with morning dew and the only other folks we bumped into was a couple and their two dogs.
One was an older chocolate lab but the other was a funny breed I had never seen before.. a Plott Hound mixed with blood hound. The tiger-stripped fur, face of a lab yet short legs and long body just threw me for a loop. The dog's name is "Bo" and I found out very quickly that he and his brother were rescued from a Florida highway. A very happy, friendly dog was right at home sniffing the sent of my dog on my shoes and wagging his talk. He must have know we were talking about him.
So, back to this morning's painting. I knew I didn't have much time, I was racing the clock because the spot I chose at 8am was cool and comfortable behind the big tree on the right but by 9:30 it was shining right on me and warming me up. I finished up by 10:15 packed up, headed home, showered and made it to church by... well, a few minutes after 11. :)
This painting will be up for auction on Dailypaintworks.com. If you'd like to bid on it please click here
Jim's Front Porch, oil on paper, 6 75 x 8.75
This is a view of our friend Jim's front porch. I accompanied my husband Dean this morning when he went to cut the grass at Jim's house.
The sun was shining just right on the front porch. Long thin slivers of light were dancing across the cool concrete.
I've been trying out a new type of surface. It's called Arches Oil Paint Paper. It's really cool. I watched a short you tube video on how to use this special oil paint paper and thought I would give it a try. No priming or gesso required. All I did was tear off a smaller piece from the large 20 x30 sheet and tape it to a board.
Pros on Arches Oil Paint Paper:
- fast set-up
- easy to block in larger shapes by using less pigment and more turpentine
- very difficult to layer lights over darks
Perhaps I wasn't using the best brush for layering but the lighter colors wouldn't sit on top and they would absorb quickly into the background. That's when I decided to pick up my palette knife and apply the paint like frosting! It was fun! If I didn't like an area I would just scrape it off and start again. By the time I was done the light had shifted but it felt good to be outside painting plein air again.
Yes, I agree, this is a much different style then what I've done in the past... but it looks like the winds of change are blowing! And I'm feeling much more courageous these days!
I would love your feedback on this new style... just leave a comment below.
with much gratitude,
"A Painter's Paradise" , oil, 6 x 6, $85
Today is Day 29 of the 30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge that I signed on to be apart of with Leslie Saeta and over 260 other artists... Only one more to go!
My theme is: Connecticut Treasures.
Last July I had the pleasure to see one of the most spectacular horticultural sites in Connecticut. In Griswold, CT there's a farm called Buttonwood Farms and back in 2003 they planted one acre of sunflowers. People came from miles to see and photograph these beautiful flowers. By 2012, Buttonwood Farms planted 14 acres of sunflowers! An oasis of golden splendor! The farm sold the sunflowers by the bunch for $5 and all the proceeds went to Make-A-Wish Foundation of Connecticut.
I met up with two fellow plein air artists who were enjoying a morning at their easels. The day was heating up by about 10:30am and at 11:15am the watering tractor made its rounds leaving sparkling puddles of water along the path... and I came very close to getting a sprayed!
Now onto the last painting of this Challenge.....
"Purple Beach Umbrella", oil, 6 x 6, $85
Today is Day 21 of the 30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge that I signed on to be apart of with Leslie Saeta and over 260 other artists.
My theme is: Connecticut Treasures.
Since the temperature dropped significantly since that beautiful Sunny Sunday (just 2 days ago) I decide to paint the beach hoping to feel those hot rays and wishing it was just a little bit warmer in my studio today.
We maybe the 3rd smallest state in the United States but we sure do have plenty of beaches. From Weed Beach in Darien to Calf Pasture in Norwalk, then onto Sherwood Island in Westport and Penfield in Fairfield, Walnut Beach and Silver Sands in Milford to Hammanaset and the list goes on... but one of my all time favorites is Rocky Neck in East Lyme, CT. There's something about this location that always draws me back. First of all, Rocky Neck is unusual because when you pull into the parking lot you can't see the beach at all. You have to follow a walking path that takes you through a tunnel where the Metro North Railroad goes over and out the other side you step into a whole new world! The late afternoon sun dances across the bluish-green waters, the sand is hot and gritty on your feet and in the distance the rock formations makes a gentle bend outward toward the sea with very lush green foliage growing all around. Even writing about makes me want yearn for a day at the beach.
Join in the Journey
Hope you join me on this 30 day painting challenge... you can sign-up for these blog posts to be delivered right in your inbox... just look for the email sign-up box in the right column. Feel free to comment below and share either your favorite places and/or things to do in CT or... which is your favorite CT beach?
Angel Wings Bridge, oil, 6 x 6, $85
Today is Day 20 of the 30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge that I signed on to be apart of with Leslie Saeta and over 260 other artists.
My theme is: Connecticut Treasures.
Highlighting a roadway seems well, kind of funny as a Connecticut Treasure but not this one. It's the Merritt Parkway Rt. 15 in CT. Heading north from NY and into the middle of CT I can say that I've travel this road my entire life. Growing up in New Canaan, CT I know some people may dislike the daily congestion, the ridiculously sharp exit ramps and the zero to 60 in a second entrance ramps, after all it was built in the 1930's and here's what Congressman Schuyler Merritt had to say at the groundbreaking ceremony in July 1934.
"This great highway is not being constructed primarily for rapid transit but for pleasant transit. This county [Fairfield County] is fortunate in having such beautiful backcountry and it is our great duty to see that these beauties are preserved."
See so here beauty clearly outshines function!
But there's a personal story behind this painting and it's just a little love story. In 2008 when I meet my husband Dean, he was on the road a lot traveling daily for work and all my family still lived in Fairfield County. Quite often we would both be traveling on the Merritt Parkway at the same time in different vehicles. And we would use this bridge that crosses over James Farm Road in Stratford as a landmark, and I dubbed it the "Angel Wings Bridge". So I'd ask Dean, "How far away are you from the "Angel Wings Bridge?" and once he got there he's call and say over the phone (with his earphones in)"give me a kiss I'm going under the Angel Bridge now" and from that day forward each time we pass under this bridge we give each other a kiss.
Join in the Journey
Hope you join me on this 30 day painting challenge... you can sign-up for these blog posts to be delivered right in your inbox... just look for the email sign-up box in the right column. Feel free to comment below and share either your favorite places and/or things to do in CT or... Have you ever driven on the Merritt Parkway and seen this bridge near Stratford, CT? please share, I would love to hear your story.
Branford, CT 06405
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