Monday, March 30, 2020

Osage Orange

Oh my!  What a hard day's work I've had!  Too tired to haul another limb, I grab my small sketch bag from the car and start drawing!  I thought I had brown black ink in this pen, but I didn't.  So, I decided to add a bit of watercolor at the end.  I could only see a little color at last light, so this is minimal.  I love all the birdsong as night rolls in.  The frogs are beginning to sing now, too.  I love spring!  Painting number 2646 in 2646 days.

Sunday, March 29, 2020

First Tulips

It seems so early, but my first tulips are up and shining brightly in the sunshine!  Even though this day has been completely full of hard yard work, I just had to take a few minutes to capture this!  The ink around the edge is my new Robert Oster ink - Great Southern Ocean - and wow!  What a cool color and spread it has when wet!  I actually thought I had another color in this pen, and didn't intend to use this, but I did not have time to run into the house, so I just used what I had.  I like the pleasant surprise!  Painting number 2645 in 2645 days.

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Lock and Dam II

When asked by a patron for any Dubuque pieces I might have left, I searched and found this one of the iconic Lock and Dam II, drawn off a bluff at the Eagle Point Park.  I pre-sketch almost every painting in the field before I start in the destined medium, which was the case here.  I painted a large, long painting, changing the format after completing this ink study.  I had run out of frames, so this one was not framed for the show, and came back home in my paper tote.   Such a unique place!  Painting number 2645 in 2645 days.

Friday, March 27, 2020

Forsythia by the Barn

After the crazy storms we had during the night, I was SO relieved to see blooms still on this forsythia by he barns!  We had so much marble sized hail, the ground was white like snow afterward!  I kept thinking that I had missed my chance to catch their beauty, and they would be stripped in the morning.  I was wrong!  These beautiful bushes still shine on this overcast day, with more storms expected tonight!  Oh, how I wish I could have painted them all day long!  But alas, this is real life and I had much to do around the homeplace today!  Perhaps I can revisit the forsythias tomorrow!  Painting number 2644 in 2644 days!

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Getting Acquainted

This sweet lab is such an affectionate boy!  He thinks he's a lap dog, but at 110 pounds, he can absolutely squish me!  My painting companion in the field, he is always very near.  Whether I am gardening or painting, he sticks to me like glue.  Very accident prone, he has lived through some harrowing experiences!  Like a cat - he certainly must have 9 lives!  Painting number 2643 in 2643 days.  This painting is now showing at the Buttonwood Art Space - though I'm pretty sure it is closed due to the "stay at home" order. Stay safe and healthy out there, my friends!

Wednesday, March 25, 2020


I love how this drift of daffodils is blooming in profusion, heralding in spring!  A time of renewal and rebirth, these beauties are certainly a sign of hope!  With gorgeous weather and even sunshine this afternoon, it was sheer joy to capture this in ink and watercolor.  I can't wait to spend the next few days outside with my flowers - and maybe the cows, too!  Painting number 2642 in 2642 days.

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Spring Daffodils

The rain has moved out, leaving heavily overcast skies in it's wake.  I was hoping to see a little sun, so I waited until late in the afternoon to paint.  Today, I chose a white panel to paint on, which I rarely do.  I would much rather have another color down, that white is so bright in the field.  Any color to tone is better than white.  Since I don't use turp or mediums, I just block in with the mid tones. I jump to the palette knife pretty early,  pushing the lights.  So relaxing to breath in their fragrance as I work.  Can't wait for the beautiful days to follow!  Painting number 2641 in 2641 days.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Opening Clouds over the Creek

Painting along this creek offers many rewards.  The chatter of birds and singing of frogs is my accompaniment, and gentle breezes keep the new mosquitoes at bay.  Simply standing in this spot and REALLY observing the landscape, takes me out of myself.  There are no worries and the chores of the day drift out of my mind.  There is only this time, this space, and my very tactile oils.  Stroke by stroke the painting unfolds, and just as I am finishing, the clouds begin to open up, showing a little blue sky.  Another day with a run and a paint, certainly a day well spent.  Painting number 2640 in 2640 days

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Creek in the Woods

When I come to a place like this, with pen and ink in hand, the outside world fades away as I draw.  The very act of drawing is very therapeutic, and stroke by stroke I slip into my "zone".  The frogs and crickets keep me company, singing all the time.  I love having so much extra time to relax in the field.  There is nothing better than immersing myself in nature.  With a run and a sketch, all becomes right with the world.  Painting number 2639 in 2639 days.

Saturday, March 21, 2020

Camp Fire

As I sat by the fire, after a day's work hauling branches, I thought this would be the perfect thing to sketch.  I've not drawn nor painted a fire before, so why not?  With boots too muddy to go into the house, I grabbed my sketch bag from the trunk.  This palette fans out, with many colors to choose from.  It has remained in my car for over a year, and I can see that a few of the paints have cracked.  Perhaps from the extreme temperature fluctuations?  It does not affect their performance, and they were actually perfect for capturing this scene!  I love sitting by a fire, watching the dancing flames as the smoke rises.  A hot mug of tea, and chili awaits.  Painting number 2638 in 2638 days.

Friday, March 20, 2020

Old Hay Rake and Daffodils

So good to see the sun today - even though the winds are blustery!  Oh what a difference a day makes!  I sat out for hours after sunset on the balcony last night, just soaking up that gorgeous weather and watching the stars.  Oh, how I loved that!  Then today, I have my winter coat on as I paint!  With the hard freeze expected tonight, I thought I had better capture these blooms in oil in case they get nipped!  The old hay rake behind the daffodils is the one used on this farm when my grandma and grandpa were first farming the land.  Love that old machinery!  Painting number 2637 in 2637 days.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

First Day of Spring

On this first day of spring, I am celebrating amongst my first daffodils to bloom!  This variety is called Ice Castles, and I planted them many years ago under the windmill, and down by the road.  Their blooms never fail, even though these are very shaded now.  The theme from Ice Castles was playing during the Shawnee Mission West Homecoming announcement on the football field, played by the band, as my name was called.  I remember sweetly the big, big hug my father gave me, and long to feel those strong arms around me again.  So therapeutic to immerse myself in spring, capturing these blooms with paint and brush.  Love these moments with no news, no chatter beside the crickets, frogs and birds!  Painting number 2636 in 2636 days.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Evening Creek

On this crazy day of social distancing, I am finding my zen through pen and ink.  Shopping for a few staples now involves networking with family members, hitting a couple of stores south of town, and then delivering those parcels to who needed them.  We are all doing that.  Grabbing door handles and goods with a clorox wipe and wiping down the card pad and card have become the norm.  I even grab those bags with a wipe as I grab them - since yesterday we heard how long the virus can live on plastic.  So, finding a little time in nature, along this creek, is my return to sanity.  Within a few strokes I am completely absorbed in the landscape, and glad that I picked up my fountain pen loaded with the brown black ink!  So thankful for these moments of tranquility.  Painting number 2635 in 2635 days.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Penguin Pair

I spent several days plein air painting at the Kansas City Zoo, really enjoying the opportunity to study the animals.  Especially fun was getting to sketch the Humboldt penguins before and during feeding time.  These two were so sweet, preening each other, standing together the whole time I sketched, only moving when the girls came in with tasty morsels!!  Such a treat to get to paint these darlings.  This painting will be in the "Art of Kindness" Show at the Buttonwood Art Space in February and March.  Painting number 2634 in 2634 days.

Monday, March 16, 2020

Twisting Creek

How quickly the world is changing with this new social distancing!  My very full schedule has wound down to a luxurious choosing of times and tasks to be done in any order I see fit, with no alarms and no guilt about late bedtimes.  I am already getting so much done!  Without all those restrictions, I can work until I finish a thing before moving on.  After accomplishing so much, my sweet reward is a long run and pen and ink at water's edge.  These moments are where I find my zen.  Michael moves back from college tonight to finish his semester online.  Thank goodness for these little slivers of normal in my day!  Painting number 2633 in 2633 days.

Sunday, March 15, 2020


Our Urban Sketchers KC group is adjusting things to accommodate the new social distancing measures, with new daily prompts to make it fun!  Today's prompt is "kitchen", and rather than sketch my whole kitchen, I narrowed down to this sweet little kalanchoe I picked up during an Art Mob event at Suburban Lawn and Garden.  The creamer it is in was given to me as a birthday gift from a friend years ago.  I have been wanting to paint this cheerful orange tropical - and am glad to finally be getting to it!  Painting number 2632 in 2632 days.

Saturday, March 14, 2020

Creek Solace

I love the peaceful quiet near the winding creek on a day like this.  Not too many people come to this trail when rain is threatening, so I sketch with only the wildlife to accompany me.  Frogs and a pair of coots  chatter on the water, adding to this day's experience.  I love the total immersion I get from plein air work.  It is like escaping from the world for a little while, to return rejuvenated.  Painting number 2631 in 2631 days.

Friday, March 13, 2020


I look forward to the first daffodils of spring all year long!  I've sprinkled them all over the property through the years, and it is a joy to see how they multiply and spread.  I used one of my newest fountain pens for the ink work - and I don't remember which cool new ink I loaded it with!  I like the unpredictable surprises that occur with new inks. That warm tone changed the mood of my daffodils when I added in a little water!  Not what I expected, but I like it!  I will definitely have to explore the three new fountain pens that I loaded with new inks a month ago, before leaving town!  Many happy suprises surely await!  Painting number 2630 in 2630 days.

Thursday, March 12, 2020

Tranquil Creek Inked

Wanting to soak up another warm day with a run outside, I headed to a favorite trail after the gym.  As I ran, scene after scene appealed to my senses but eventually brought me back here.  A dark day, I was unsure if the rain would hold off.  The ink I use in my fountain pens is fugitive when wet!  This landscape drew me in, and I started with the line work.  Using a pen I have not used for a while - I had a little trouble getting the nib to release that ink!  I kept wetting it over and over again until finally it was flowing freely.  I'll need to rinse out the nib to assure good flow next time.  I'm so spoiled with the TWSBIs, this almost never happens.  I probably allowed the bag to lay over at some point, drying some of the ink inside the pen.  When I was packing up, I realized a storm was fast approaching behind me!  Almost a mile from my car, I ran back as the first raindrops were falling!  Just another plein air adventure - lol!  Painting number 2629 in 2629 days.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Creekside Afternoon

Peaceful and tranquil, I am drawn to the motion of water.  I love the twists and turns of this local creek, and I try to come by often for a run and a paint.  This day was so gorgeous, I had to come!  Spring is in the air!  Hints of green are appearing at water's edge, and the frog song was so loud it almost drowned out the bird song!  This calm day led to glassy surfaces on the water, which is a joy to capture with my oils.  This place has many moods and colors, changing so much with the seasons and days.  This is the way to seize the day!  Painting number 2628 in 2628 days.

Tuesday, March 10, 2020


Sometimes I get the chance to paint the coolest animals!!  In response to another painting I posted, the friend who owns this beauty sent me a couple of gorgeous pics of her!  I simply could not decide which I liked best, so I am painting them both!  I love this artist life!!  Painting number 2628 in 2628 days.

Monday, March 9, 2020

708 Wilkie Street

I love finding charming towns in the places I visit to paint!  Dunedin, Florida is a hidden gem close to the west coast of Florida.  Stumbling into this town during their Mardi Gras festival, we had a family day of eating, shopping and of course I had to get in some ink and watercolor!  One of these sketches was seen by the owner of this cottage, and she asked me to commit it to paint!  Love the charm of this place - and it was a joy to get to paint this!  Painting number 2627 in 2627 days.

Sunday, March 8, 2020

Boulevard On Tap

It is so fun to get together with other sketchers on first Saturdays in Kansas City!  This weekend we met at Boulevard Brew House, where they give the tours of their facility.  I found my spot in front of the Shasta Camper on the second floor, and painted three from that location!  This was the second - and it is just to the right of the photo booth.  I don't remember this being here last time, and they have added more sitting areas to gather with friends.  What a great space to spend a little time sketching, sipping and visiting!  Painting 2626 in 2626 days.

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Boulevard Brew Hall Shasta

This morning was our monthly Urban Sketchers KC sketch event at the Boulevard Brew Hall!  A Kansas City icon, this is a great place to gather with friends.  While Mike took a tour of the place, I sketched this super cool Shasta camper turned Photo Booth for my first painting of the day.  What a great start to a beautiful day!  Painting number 2625 in 2625 days.

Friday, March 6, 2020

Three Bison

Bison are so interesting to study and draw!  I've only had the opportunity a couple of times, so this is a real treat!  The best part of going to a preserve is the chance to get up close and personal with these large animals.  Here is a miniature ink and watercolor in ATC size, the best size for a tiny painting window.  Painting number 2624 in 2624 days.

Thursday, March 5, 2020

Gesa at the Fence

What a treat to paint such a gorgeous horse in her natural surroundings!  As I composed this scene I knew I wanted to go for a square format.  With two choices, I chose the new 8x8 Shizen paper that I had just picked up at a new favorite local shop (Artists and Craftsman Supplies).  This paper was the hot pressed one, which is different than my normal paper.  Oh my!  Was it ever different!  I had to work and work to get the paint to move like I wanted it to!  This paper was fine for my inks, but oh how different it was for the watercolors!  The very best thing about a challenge is how it drives me to power through until I succeed!  Haha - I guess that is my secret competitive nature shining through!  I ended up very happy with this piece after the struggle - but I will save this paper for ink only in the future!  Painting number 2623 in 2623 days.

Wednesday, March 4, 2020


My very first time to the sponge docks was amazing!!  The Anastasi had sponges strung up to dry dockside to the market area.  This historic piece of Tarpon Springs is a treasure - both for painting and shopping!!  The sweet aroma of greek food wafting over from the restaurant just about drove me crazy before I could complete this painting!  Our meal at Hellos was outstanding, too!!  Painting number 2622 in 2622 days.

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Fred Howard Park in Watercolor

Even an overcast day is amazing at the beach!  This ink and watercolor was the third painting of the day, and the light was almost gone.  When the colors are fading or dull in the landscape, I turn to ink for my subjects.  Drawing can be done anytime, values are king here, then once I am finished I can decide whether to wash in some color or not.  Watercolor is perfect for this.  I would not normally turn to my oils for the subtle scenes.  Perhaps this is just my intuition.  I try to always listen to it and rely heavily on it when painting.  It is almost like I am a channel through which the landscape pours on it's way to my surface.  Painting number 2621 in 2621 days.

Monday, March 2, 2020

Elk and Bison Prairie

The Elk and Bison Prairie was a pleasant surprise upon arriving!  Beautifully nestled in the hills, a winding road led through this natural space.  Woods surrounded large prairie grass ranges, with winding creeks twisting through.  The large herd moved slowly as they grazed, walking right into the car path and across.  A couple crossed and others walked close enough to touch them.  But of course, we didn't!  They can be unpredictable, and they are not as gentle as cows!  So cool to spend a little time with them in such a beautiful space.  Painting number 2620 in 2620 days.

Sunday, March 1, 2020

417 Scotland St.

These cottages in old town Dunedin are full of charm!  Nestled between picket fences and flowering bushes, spring arrives early on the gulf coast of Florida!  So glad I had time for a couple more ink watercoler paintings!  Painting number 2619 in 2619 days.