Thursday, December 31, 2009


It's almost a new year, the last one sure came and went in a hurry. Nothing to do but make the best of the next one, hope all your worms are fat and juicy!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


Hmmm, don't know what got into me on this one, must be in a party mood for the upcoming new year?!

December Evening

This is how nice the weather has been over the Christmas holidays. I'm trying to learn how to handle the new "open" acrylics that have a longer drying time. They just don't have the nice buttery feel of oils so it may take some experimenting but it would be great for field work if I can figure out how to use it properly.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Erin & Picasso

Picasso, living up to the flamboyance of his name!

Sunday, December 27, 2009


This one was too cute to resist for Christmas! Hope everyone had a wonderful, peaceful holiday. We had glorious sunshine for our PNW Christmas present, quite a difference from last years snow! Both were gorgeous though.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Dog ina Bucket

Here's another "mini" commission for the holidays. It was more about painting the bucket than the dog at this size but fun!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Pepper Jelly on Fish

A quick painting before this pepper and lime become jelly! Fish plate a nice complement I think. I'll use this for the jar labels. :-}

Friday, December 18, 2009


Just so you know that I am still painting, this perky boxer dog painting will be a happy Christmas (hopefully!) for her owner.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Winter Cedar

I love to walk in the woods after a snowfall and with the cold temperatures we're having I might just get a chance soon! I also like using a palette knife to lay the snow on like frosting, even on these small paintings I think it is more effective than trying to paint the snow.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Going Up

This is the easy way on my running route. That's what you get for living near the bottom of the Lackey Road dip! About where that shadow is at the bottom of the dip, is Dutcher Creek, a small salmon stream that forms the west border of my property, a half mile on your left into the woods.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Berry Bounty

I'm not sure how anyone could think that the arctic is a barren place. This is just the top layer of one square foot of tundra. Cranberry, crow berry, bear berry all serve a variety of critter palates, including ours.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

the mad hatter!

This is my niece modeling my newest hats. No, actually, I've made two more since then. The madd hatter knits again! These hats and my small paintings will be for sale at an upcoming holiday open house art sale hostessed by a friend of mine, you're invited!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Dahlia Field

I've moved on to late summer now, sun is shining somewhere!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Endless Summer

I needed a little sunshine after all the rain we've been having lately.... it's great to be able to paint your way back into summer!

Ecorche' = what lies beneath the skin

This is what I've been working on, along with portraits. Experimenting with the slideshow, hope it works!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

FernWood Knits

In between new paintings right now but here are some new hats anyway. Including one new style with the vertical stripes. The one on the bottom shows how they look after knitting but before the wool blends together as fabric in the felting process. Knitting is a wonderful project for waiting.... waiting in dr. offices, for the plumber, etc. etc.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

NPCA | NPCA's Friends of National Parks Photo and Essay Contest

My photo and essay about Gates of the Arctic National Park was a winner! click here to find out more NPCA | NPCA's Friends of National Parks Photo and Essay Contest

Thursday, October 29, 2009


Here's another small commission image of Cassie, tried to get her out of the water for this one!

I've got to get some more boards cut, I sure like the smooth surface better than canvas for these small paintings where one little stroke can make or break the likeness.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Cassie, Wet

Back to the dogs... here is another commission piece of Cassie, I was happy with the "wet" feeling. This is a companion image to one called "Joyful Noise" I posted awhile ago. I have one more to do and it will make a nice grouping for the owners of this well loved k-9.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

America's Second Best Idea

This is an essay I wrote for the Nat Parks Conservation Assn. I actually got carried away and wrote 2 of them (with attached images) I'll post the other one tomorrow.

In 1916 the US Congress created the National Park Service with a mandate to; "conserve the scenery and natural and historic objects and the wildlife therein and to provide for the enjoyment of same in such a manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations." It would have been simpler for them to just say; "save it for the artists." Keep it for those who will remind us what America is all about when we forget. Creating the Artist in Residence Program in the National Parks must have been America's second best idea. Artists were integral in selling the NPS idea to the public and congress back in 1916. Today the artist advocate and interpreter has a similarly vital role in reintroducing us to our wilderness heritage as pressures of expansion, commercialism and climate change push against the NPS mandate to conserve, protect and leave unimpaired. It is the blessing and burden of artists' to remind people that they don't have far to go to find the sublime landscape. A National Park near you is a good place to start. The nooks and crannies of paradise are waiting to be rediscovered by the artist in us all.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Caribou Country

One more arctic inspiration finishes a poster collage I'm putting together along with an essay for the National Parks Conservation Assn., I'll post them later. It's been fun painting on a big canvas for a change.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

First Ride

Why crawl when you can ride?

Monday, October 5, 2009

Afternoon Glow

This is what I see on my late afternoon runs.  I love how the back light sets the trees on fire!  

Sunday, October 4, 2009


I painted this as a barn warming gift for friends that have just opened up their fantastic new equine training facility.  I told Mark it should be in "Barn Beautiful" with all the little details of how to make an efficient, safe and beautiful horse barn!  It's quite a place.  If you like dressage horses, check out Beth's website here

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Honey Crisp

Fall is apple time in Washington.  I have 4 big honey crisp apples on my baby tree and bunches of Akani which are great tasting but don't keep well so the kitchen smells like applesauce and cinnamon.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Arctic Evening

Here is another image inspired by my Gates of the Arctic trip this summer.  This caribou skull was on the gravel bar at our first campsite.  You can just see Mt. Igikpak in the background.  Tallest peak in the park, it is the source of the Noatak River which was our playground for 2 wonderful weeks.  

Monday, September 21, 2009

Barely Noticed

He barely noticed us anyway.  We certainly noticed him!  This big grizzly came up over the edge of the canyon very close to where we were sitting much to the surprise of all.  Fortunately he was not offended by our presence and sauntered casually by.  Locking eyes with a grizzly this close definitely makes a strong impression.  I remember how long and golden tipped his thick coat was, ruffling in the breeze.  I've painted him at a much safer distance since I don't have any bear spray here in the studio.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Heirloom Eggplant

Here's another go at my market treasures from this weekend.  Better, I think, but I still have a ways to go to get them right.  I don't know what got in to me about the ground, they are sitting on a fun napkin that I have.  I decided it would be a good challenge to see if I could render it without going crazy.... hm, probably too late for that anyway. 

Sunday, September 13, 2009


I went to the farmer's market yesterday and couldn't resist this interestingly colored eggplant, not mention it's "appendages".

Friday, September 11, 2009


This is some of what makes up all that glorious local color on the tundra.  The cranberries are ripe and delicious on morning cereal or on top of dinner's no-bake cheesecake, yum!  The other spidery looking plant is Labrador Tea which, in the mild climate of Washington can grow several feet high, but in the arctic habitat it is found huddled near the ground.  There is also moss and lichen included to feed the caribou.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Local Color

OK, here you go on your adventure down the Noatak River in arctic Alaska.  Your trip may not be exactly in the order that I experienced it.... this is further down river than where we started, but you will hopefully get a feel for the place anyway.  I just want you to know that I am NOT making up these colors, they will hurt your eyes, you may need sunglasses.  Enjoy the trip.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Sheep Skull on the Noatak

There's a story here and I'm back to tell it.  I have been away in Alaska for the last several weeks, participating in the Artist in Residence program at Gates of the Arctic National Park, This first painting from that adventure shows a Dall sheep skull found near our first camp spot. Our party of 4, including two incredibly knowledgeable and patient park rangers and two artists in residence (aka. AIR heads) was dropped into the Noatak River drainage by float plane to see what we could see.   We saw a lot!  It's so very comforting to know that a magnificent wild land still persists way up here north of the arctic circle, you'll see more of it coming up in this blog.  I hope you'll enjoy sharing my adventure.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Joyful Noise

The title pretty much says it all, I think.  

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Making A Splash

This is a larger version of a mini painting I made awhile back.  It was nice to be working on a decent sized canvas for a change, although I'm not complaining since many of the small ones have sold :}   

Friday, July 10, 2009

Cherry Lover

Here's something different.  I was trying to figure out a unique association for these wonderful cherries stolen from my neighbors tree, so I stuck this napkin behind them on the table.  It was fun to paint.   

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Water Dog

Here's a happy dog patiently awaiting the chase.  

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Dancing Feet

Many armed sunflower stars are incredibly colorful, especially when viewed up close.  They have all kinds of pokey parts to keep barnacles and algae from growing on them and the fuzzy stuff on top that makes them feel somewhat slimy is their gills.  They have thousands of tube feet, that suction them along the ocean floor.  They can actually move quite fast and are voracious predators.  A cockle (clam) will flip itself away if you put it in the same tank with a sunstar. 

Saturday, July 4, 2009

She Shell

Ahhhh, summer at the beach.  Happy 4th everyone.    

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


This colorful fellow lives up to his name when he gets his motor going!  

Monday, June 22, 2009

What Next?

Here's a second go at Nick.  In the first one I got his muzzle a bit too long and in this one a bit too short, but I like the lighting and it feels like Nick.  Only a dog can look at you in just this way!


I've never met Dudley but I'm told he is a rescue dog.  It felt like I was painting a happy-go-lucky soul.  That's the bonus about painting animals, the feel good part rubs off.  

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Trotting Out

Some friends have built a top notch facility nearby where they will train dressage horses.  It is a gorgeous stable and large arena with state of the art footing.  Beth has just started giving lessons there and I stopped by for a photo shoot.  The only bad thing is that it's really making me want to ride again!  The open space of the arena and leading lines of wood and beams have me itching to do a large painting, but I thought I'd experiment a bit with this little one first. 

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Big, Bad, Bob

That's Bob, the dog with the skull & crossbones/heart on his collar.  He's not actually bad at all, but i bet in his younger days he could make his opinions clear.  Self contained, that's my take on Mr. Bob.

Sunday, June 7, 2009


Cancer gracilis, the graceful cancer crab.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Run Off

I can hear the chickadees busily chattering in these branches, I want to paint this larger so I can include them in the image too.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

My Resident Art Critic

This little, but vocal, red or Douglas squirrel can frequently be found outside my studio window perched in the cedar tree.  Surely he's exclaiming over my wonderful painting skills?!  He actually fell out of the tree the other day.  A minute later he (or she) was back up at the bird feeder none the worse for his gravity training.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Forest Flower

Salmonberry is one of the first forest flowers to welcome the hummingbirds in the spring.  This was a challenge with the busy forest background but I like how it turned out.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Seeing Stars!

I had to share this photo, taken on one of the lowest tides of the year (minus 4).  I think all the seastars in south Puget Sound have migrated to Vaughn Bay to "get it on".  That orangey stuff on the top middle seastar is eggs.  There are 4 different stars represented in this photo, clockwise; short spined, mottled and ochre stars, the lower middle is a leather star which is not common in the south sound, first one I've ever seen and quite spectacular.


I've been spending the last several days enjoying the spring low tides and volunteering with   We collect marine critters and interesting stuff from the beach to put into touch tanks for kids (and adults too) to get a closer look.  It's a miraculous world out there.  I didn't have  time to paint but did capture some gorgeous photos to work with later.  On this cloudy day at the beach image, I was experimenting with Gamblin's, Torrit Grey paint.  Today it's bright sunshine, several perfect days in a row in fact.  (We northwesterner's really know how to appreciate sunshine!)