Friday, June 28, 2013

Welcome to my Studio!

My art studio is featured in the new issue of the Cloth-Paper-Scissors Studios Summer edition magazine.  The editor, Linda Blinn is celebration the arrival of summer with this issue and asked me to write an article about my studio in Bend and how I travel with my journals and paints to  Mt. Desert Island, Maine with my traveling studio.  Here is a peek at the article:

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Artful Gathering Online Art Retreat - available World Wide!

My art is featured this week as the website banner for Artful Gathering Online Art Retreat
Registration is open for some pretty awesome art classes.
You can do at these classes at your own pace
and in the comfort of you own home.  The best part is that you can take this class 
from anywhere in the world if you have internet!
I will be teaching a watercolor class all about COLOR!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Catching up in my Journal with Stencils

I have been finishing a few pages in my Provence journal that I started during my recent trip to France.  My friend, Pam Carriker's has a brand new line of art stencils and I took one with me to France to see how I could use it to enhance some of my journal pages.  Her stencils are quite fabulous and some of them deal with drawing faces.  We met for dinner not too long ago and had a wonderful time talking about art and sharing ideas.  She generously gave me one of her stencils that she knew I would love - the  Primary, Secondary, Tertiary Stencil.  I wanted to share some of my journal pages where I used her stencil.
Here you can see I used it behind the pitcher.

I used several stencils as the background for this page about Vaison-la-Romaine.  You can see where I used Pam's stencil on the lower left. 

I used Pam's stencil to make this color wheel painting.

We are both teaching with Artful Gathering Online Art Retreat.  The second session starts on July 16, 2013.  If you have ever been interested in drawing faces, you will love Pam's workshop, Still Pursuing Portraits.  My workshop, The Good, the Bad and the Beauty of Color is - well- you guessed it - all about color!  Be sure to check out all the creative and fun workshops available at Artful Gathering Online Art Retreat!

Finally here is the other side of the journal page - my painting from the day we spent at Vaison-la-Romaine....

Monday, June 24, 2013

Butterflies in my Garden

Butterfly Weed Blossoms 

Butterfly Weed Flowers
One of my favorite things to do beside painting is to spend time in my garden.  Many years ago, I decided to devote my garden to helping the birds, butterflies, dragonflies, bees and other wee creatures procreate and survive.   One addition that I really wanted for my garden was Butterfly Weed.  I remembered it’s lovely orange blossoms from when I lived in Alabama.  I finally found a plant labeled Butterfly Weed at one of local nursery.  The tag showed the beautiful orange blossoms that I was excited to have in my garden.  I carefully tended it but it took many years before it started to bloom.  I was so disappointed to see these first blooms as they were not at all what I remembered from my childhood.   These were pale colored and the few butterflies that came to my garden totally ignored these plants. 
No butterflies on these flowers but the honey bees and ants like it.
Over the years the butterfly weed did what weeds know how to do best and that is to spread to various parts of my garden.  This year is a banner year for the blossoms.   Upon closer inspection I find that they are quite lovely and have a delicate sweet smell.  While trying to get some artsy photos of the blossoms, I was looking underneath the leaves to see if I could find butterfly eggs.  I found some little black spots that could have been a fleck of dirt.  I took photos of them so that I could enlarge them and get a better look.  Sure enough - they are butterfly eggs!  These are beautiful chocolate brown to black ovals with perfectly spaced grooves.  They look like tiny rocket ships ready for launch.  I search my books and went online but could not find any mention of black butterfly eggs so I wasn't sure what kind of butterflies they would turn into.  Everyday I check my eggs.  

Closeup of butterfly egg
Yesterday, I am so excited to share with you, I now have a tiny little caterpillar munching away on the butterfly weed. I can now identify the butterfly to be.  It is definitely a Swallowtail Butterfly!  It may even be the Oregon Swallowtail.  I hope it will survive and that I have more hatch.  I will keep you posted!

Friday, June 21, 2013

Painting in our Journals - Inspiration from Local Tradition

One of the most exciting things about traveling with a group of painters is that we can immerse ourselves in the local traditions.  During our recent painting trip to Provence, France, we were lucky enough to be in St. Remy for La FĂȘte de la Transhumance.  This happens once a year, 50 days after Easter.  This moving festival is dear to the hearts of the Provençal people and is without a doubt the most famous festival in the south of France.   This is the day that celebrates the flocks of sheep being herded to their summer pastures. Historically, this journey could take up to 10 days by foot. 

Over 3,500 sheep, lambs, goats and donkeys filled the streets of St. Remy on Monday, May 20, 2013.  The whole event was made even more colorful by the local shepherds tending the sheep in their traditional costume with the help of their well trained dogs.  As they passed by the sheep were stepping on my toes, parting their path in confusion and running through the crowds of people.  The shepherds did not seem to mind as I reached out and petted their silky wool.
I made this short video to show you how marvelous this day was.  Then look below to see how some of my students used this inspiration to paint some fabulous pages in their watercolor journals. 

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Photo Paintings: A Slice of Life - Watercolor Workshop

Here is another workshop that I love teaching - Photo Paintings: A Slice of Life.  We always have a good time and it is a fun and easy way to make some incredible art!  Below is a short video that shows some of the students fantastic creations from past workshops!
Here is where you can sign up:
CREATE, Chicago:  Photo Paintings: A Slice of Life - 2 classes offered - Aug 24 or Aug 25, 2013
ART & SOUL, Portland, OR:  Oct. 4, 2013

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Join Me at Art & Soul Portland, Oct. 2013

I just posted this little video about my Flip, Flaps and Fold-Outs watercolor/mixed media workshop at Art & Soul, Portland, Oregon.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Painting on Location, Provence, France

One of the challenges about painting on location is to find the right spot to sit.  First of all, it is important that you find a safe spot and you will be comfortable for a certain amount of time.  You will need to a good view of what you want to paint.  Don't forget to bring:  your watercolor palette filled with watercolor paints, several brushes, pencil, eraser, something to hold water and water,  camera, and your watercolor journal.  Here are some photos of our fun group painting out and about in Provence, France.  

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Student's Watercolor Journals from Provence, France

We share our journals and all the painting we have been doing while enjoying happy hour with French wines and cheese.....  Just look at all these beautiful paintings!  What do you think?
Liz's Journal:  Scenes from Les Beaux, inspired by Yves Brayer, French artist

Phillis's Journal:  Inspired by local costumes

Scenes from around our Hotel

Robin's Journal:  Vaison la Romaine

The reds of Roussillon


Beautiful red poppies

More beautiful red poppies

Saturday, June 1, 2013

A Windy Day to Paint in Roussillon

The famous Mistral winds of Provence has followed us to the east as we explore and paint plein air in the little town of Roussillon.  Roussillon is known for its colorful buildings of reds, ocres, and yellows mined from the nearby rocks.  It is also designated as on of France's Plus Beaux Village de France!  The Mistral has pushed away all the rain and the clouds so that we have a beautiful, sparkling day to paint, if you can stand the gusty wind.  Several of us walk to the outskirts of town to paint the village while others paint in the cute, colorful streets of the village.
I learn that the bell tower of a lot of the hilltop villages are open to allow the mistral to pass through.

Colorful red buildings are found throughout the town.

We explore.

Great view of the town

Barbara and Liz find a sunny spot to paint.

JoAnn shows her beautiful painting in progress.

Ice cream shops are plentiful!
I buy this little ceramic chicken made from the nearby colorful clay.
I visit my favorite store that sells pure pigment in little jars.

More colors of pigment.
Would you like to learn the joys of keeping a watercolor journal?  We are now taking reservations for painting in Umbria, Italy, September 7 - 13, 2014:  The Colors of Umbria; Keeping a Watercolor Journal