Nature caught in watercolor
A balancing act in spontaneity and control while remembering to breath .
I have always been inspired by nature; its forms, colors, textures, and especially by the play of light over and through the subject. When I can catch the fleeting effects of ambient light it is a magic moment for me. If I can also catch the essence of my subject; its mood, character, fragility, movement, or stability then magic has surely occurred. I love gardens and have always been a gardener, creating gardens wherever we have lived. Many of my paintings are of landscapes or garden details. I show and sell originals and hope to get them posted here soon.
Retirement from teaching in 2013 has allowed me time to work in watercolors. I work “en plein-air” whenever possible and at other times from memory using photos only for reference. My painting is evolving slowly as I gain confidence and experience and has recently begun to include figure studies. I am also working on developing a line of note cards with a garden/bird theme which will eventually span the four seasons. Continuing a love of ceramics I design and paint glazed ceramic tiles. I have done custom work; creating tiles for kitchens, baths, and other installations. These designs like my note cards are based on details taken from nature.
I am excited to be able to share my work with you and others through this blog.
Thank you, for taking a moment to “catch the magic”.
Angel in the dust
If you love someone tell them now. If you have a loved one, pet or person, paint their portrait now. i have some drawings but never found the fortitude to do a painting of Robyn and now he’s gone.
July 21, 2017
Robyn passed today-this morning at about 9:30 we let him go.
Anne had gone out to feed him and found him down, hot and in distress.
She cooled him with the hose and finally coaxed him to his feet. He was able to walk across the pasture and move into the shade but went down again almost immediately this time on his other side. When the Vet finally got here the diagnosis was a badly twisted colon and the choice either surgery (not a good one for a 32 year old thoroughbred) or a painful death. The second dose of pain-killer was putting him to sleep. We allowed the vet to euthanize him there in the shade at the top of the meadow.
On a sun-filled morning with a soft summer breeze Ann lost her best friend, a friend of 23 years. She discovered him; neglected in a cow pasture,(the fate of many a gelded racehorse that will not tolerate confinement in a starting gate), and brought him home to Esperanza to begin a new life. He’s been with her ever since she was 13. He saw her through the tough years of junior high and high school He saw her through college and endured until she returned from graduate school in Edinburgh. During those 6 years that Anne was away he gave Jamie a reason to get up morning after morning. He was our constant companion.
He gave me memories that will last a life time and courage and understanding as well- And I am crying too hard now to keep writing this….
Rob N Run, grandson of Secretariat and Native Dancer, so sweet in the stable, such a streak of temper and fire under saddle, you will be greatly missed: Your stubborn determination always to be outside roaming free regardless of the weather, your grudging acquiescence to getting on a trailer (and the time you simply wouldn’t) your high jinks at events like rearing when you got to X (instant disqualification-did you know the rules?), your complacency when other horses misbehaved, your complete distrust of jumps made out of wood but willingness to breast anything made out of stone or steel regardless of its height or breadth, your flashing speed and incredible length of stride and lazy daisy-cutting walk, Your great big head that rubbed against little me I loved it all. I’d cheerfully hold up your head to put applesauce and antibiotics down your throat. I’d soak your foot to help ease the abscess and brush your furry coat but now you are in heaven or wherever horses go. Just one thing I am sure of; you’re here with me wherever I may be.
I had to wonder this morning when you passed did Joker neigh across the field and are you with your friend at last?
and then in the evening a magically silly night in Oak bluffs: dining out a la fresco, riding the flying horses (I got a ring every revolution but missed the prize), and eating ice-cream while watching the lights on the harbor. Maybe these images will emerge in later paintings. Sorry-No photos or paintings for now.
Sketching in watercolor while perched on a rock amid the tide drift on Katama Bay:
and then from the steps of a wharf in the cool morning fog.
Later in the heat of the day viewing the work of so many artists island wide. I especially liked the work of Colin Ruel below:
He works in acrylics on birch plywood using water and spray and with a deep empathy for the islands.
Galleries, galleries, galleries -so much beautiful art work and so inspiring!
Then in the afternoon at South beach and the airport:Sitting on the edge of the sand and finally unable to resist the giant waves I just had to get my feet wet-Oops
And the Atlantic has a pair of prescription transitional glasses to turn into sea glass.Now my whole world is a water-color blur.
And still, I can do (sort-of) a little sketch of the house in Edgartown where I stayed.
The child in me is so very grateful-thanks friend.
Photos from my week on the isles of shoals off Portsmouth NH:
I have tried to include some of the buildings so you might get a sense of the island culture. I actually had a tendency to photograph seaweed and rocks and grasses. In fact I took very few photos as my flash card was nearly full when I arrived; I had only expected to shoot a few documentary shots. I had not intended to work with photography; my original goal for being on island was to paint. After my easel broke in mid stroke I decided to go with the flow and just enjoy the camaraderie of wonderful fellow conferees and the chance to learn in new areas of interest including singing and learning about my camera!
I have enjoyed almost 2 weeks gallivanting about New England and up into Canada and now hope to settle down to working again. By mistake i overwrote a whole set of photos but when i recover from that i’ll post some from my week out on the Isles of Shoals.
The tiny bit of painting i did while away can be found in my other blog.
There is so little time and so much to do. But i mustn’t fret over all I’ve missed for now the sun is giving warmth and i am gaining faith in each day bringing a new day that can be filled with hope. And with hope comes life, and joy, and a willingness to take risks. Next week I’ll be out at the Isles of Shoals (painting of course) and then up to Vermont and Montreal. I ‘m pretty disgusted with my work. There’s a stack of quarter sheet paintings from the last week and a half and they would make great kindling. Still i believe in my New Day and there will be a tomorrow.
So yesterday i tried to paint the little guest cottage. It was pretty hot even with the breeze off the West Meadow-
And today my drive home up the lane felt like entering a stage so i painted this.
There is so much green and gold. Just this evening while studying the routes into Montreal on Google i looked up and was transported by the golds and greens in the treetops beyond the North lawn back-lit by the setting sun. I really want to paint that but I’ve got to pack and get some sleep too.