Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Ferry Thoughts

I've been wanting to paint this since our trip to Monhegan Island last summer.  Although it's devoid of bright color, I think it's really atmospheric and works well.  It was a cold, rainy ride back to the mainland, and we were all bundled up inside the cabin to keep warm.  Even in bad weather, it feels so good to be by the ocean.  The only drawback to being in the cabin was when the captain said over the loudspeaker: "If anyone feels sea sick, there are bags for you."  I felt fine until he made that comment...then not so much...

Saturday, January 28, 2012


Come join us for the Grand Opening of ArtVisions Gallery and Studios, at 7005 Booker T. Washington Highway, Wirtz, VA, on Sunday, February 12th, 2012, from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.  Our members are Rose Mary Atkins, Sue Beckett, Whitney Brock, Nancy Brown, Marie Campbell, Rita Carroll, Mary Lou Koons, Shelley Koopmann, Kathy Lietz, Jane Schafer, and Nancy Stellhorn.  If you are in the area, stop by and meet the artists.  There will be refreshments and Grand Opening discounts.  We are all very excited about our new venture and hope you will join us to celebrate!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Bluebird Man


This is a wonderful man named Herb who is the keeper of the bluebird houses at Booker T. Washington Park.  He and his wife go around to all the houses to check on the bluebird population and status.  I met them at the park when I was there to plein air paint on a beautiful day.  At the time there were baby sheep, so I didn't get much painting in, but I did get a lot of pictures.  If you're ever at Smith Mountain Lake, check out the park.  It's well worth the visit.

Sunday, January 22, 2012


As you can see, chivalry is not dead.  This couple owns an inn with absolutely beautiful flowers and landscaping.  He does the cooking for breakfast, and she works in the garden.  A perfect match!  We stayed there for two nights and really enjoyed the visit and the stories about the owners' lives.  My need to document the everyday occurrences in my life is what pushes me onward with my painting.  I can never wait to start the next one, even though I may not be totally finished with the one on the easel.  Life is full of paintings waiting to happen.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Smith Mountain Lake Sunset

Sky studies are the hardest, I think.  They look like they would be relatively easy to paint, but getting the cloud tones and the movement is difficult.  If painting from a photo, the colors don't show up as vibrantly as the actual scene.  If you've ever tried to take a picture as the sun was setting, you know what I mean.  I'm happy with this one, though.  I think you can feel those clouds moving.  I'm so happy to be back in the studio painting again.  Even Tallulah (my Sproodle) is content to be left in her crate for a while....

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Conversation Pit

Three men sitting in a space between the rocks, probably discussing politics or the stock market :-)  However, I prefer to believe they were discussing the beauty of the landscape, which was breathtaking!!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Snowman with Shovel

Keeping ahead of the falling snow is the key, according to my husband.  That way he just has to push and not lift.  I love painting snow, and this one was no exception.  There are so many colors you can use in the white.  Actually, there isn't too much pure white in this painting at all....only at the very end of my painting process as a highlight.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

View From the Cape

This might be a disappearing scene here at Smith Mountain Lake.  The land is for sale, and we are all hoping it doesn't sell too fast.  This was last winter's snow.  I know I'm not popular when I say I hope we will see more snow scenes like this during the winter of 2012.  You can't beat the beauty of a new snowfall!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

AARP Rocker and His Groupie

This is really a rough preliminary painting, and I've gotten a lot of information from the process of getting it started.  I've found that this helps me quite a bit and impacts the final painting.  I thought I'd put it on the blog so that when I complete the final version, it will be fun to see how it changed.  These two men were enjoying the outdoors and gathering quite a crowd.  The man to the right was keeping time with his hand.  He looked very dapper with his red tie.