Busy Makes Happy

 

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painting #1 of the South Yuba river

If any of you have wondered if I have gone missing for good, here I am! Actually what happened is that I have recently purchased a Kindle Fire tablet and discovered that I can use it to take and upload photos to Instagram. I have tried Instagram before using my cell phone but I hated the quality of the photos (picky me). Posting there is so much easier, less than a minute and I am done. It takes me forever to navigate around WordPress, I almost dread it because it is so funky and slow. I haven’t given up entirely on my blog here but if you want to see what I am up to follow me on Instagram: Here I am!

I have also discovered that I can do a far better job of editing my photos of my paintings spot on. Going from my regular camera and editing I always seem to run into having my blues stand out a bit too much or my yellows are off.  On Instagram I am amazed how spot on I can get my paintings to be. Plus it is so fun and easy.

 

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painting #2 of Bullards

This painting was started as a plein air but finished in the studio. It was so difficult to capture what I saw there and I almost decided to turn this over and use the other side. I decided to finish it and I really like the water.

 

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painting #3 of Bullards morning light

This painting is not as yellow and pink in the sky, more subtle, keep that in mind. I had gone out to plein air paint at Bullards one morning, showed up at 5:45 am. So beautiful there but so very difficult to capture what I was looking at. I decided to sit and watch the light hit that section of trees and I think that about 30 minutes passed and I just sat and observed. In the not so long ago past, this would have upset me, the fact that I couldn’t capture what I was looking at.

Once I got back into the studio, I decided to paint entirely from my memory of the morning. It was simply magical how it poured out of me. To realize that you can’t truly capture Gods’ creation to the absolute T is imperative to being at peace as an artist, imho. But, we sure can express how we feel about what I see or experience, that is for certain. That is my goal.

 

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painting #4 of the North Yuba

Perhaps a little more detailed with the rocks than I like but then I had fun with this one. 

 

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painting #5 of the South Yuba

No don’t adjust your monitor, this was purposely painted with an out of focus, soft approach. I didn’t want to fuss with details or bringing it up to a finish, I wanted an impression, that is all. This was painted saturated wet on wet. 

Thank you for bearing with me on this long post, have a wonderful 4th of July for those who celebrate!

**A word about photos. The paintings and photos on my blog are mine, taken by me and copying them would be stealing from me. If you find a photo that you would like to copy or use, I request that you ask me for permission and I expect you to give me full credit for my own photo. Thank you so very much.

 

 

 

 

 

Morning on the North Yuba

 

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on 200# Saunders quarter sheet

Oh my I am so picky today! I am thinking that I need to stretch my creative muscles and go for a really loose painting. I keep picking the above painting to bits. I have a problem with all those rocks, maybe it is my picky mood. So I started another Yuba river painting but more loose and carefree.

 

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layer number 1

I always love starting out a new painting, so exciting! I started out with wet on semi-wet here.

 

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layer #2

I often will bring the background to a certain stage than move onto the middle or foreground. I don’t like to complete a background because often it takes a back and forth work to bring a painting to the correct feeling or value.

 

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layer #3 or more

I started to move on those rocks and the back trees on the left and gradually brought the water up slowly. I used a wax crayon to protect the whites.

I do believe that those rocks were my enemy and yet I loved how a lot of them  presented that special glow that I saw that morning. In the final stage I did lump some sections of the rocks into a more concrete mass. All in all, not bad but I am missing my wild and loose and fancy free approach. I need to go bareback on that wild pony!

colors  used: Aureolin, Quin. Gold, Cobalt Blue, Ultramarine Blue, Tiger’s Eye Genuine, Prussian Blue, Cereluen Blue

 

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This is the reference photo of that morning on the North Yuba….beautiful, don’t you think?

*A word about photos. The photos on my blog are mine, taken by me and copying them would be stealing from me. If you find a photo that you would like to copy or use, I request that you ask me for permission and I expect you to give me full credit for my own photo. Thank you so very much.

 

 

 

 

 

Another View of Goose Lake

 

I had a difficult time getting  my photo to marry up with my painting but I tried, keep that in mind.

 

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Goose Lake on Lanaquarelle 140# quarter sheet

I have been working on multiple paintings and this one is pretty much finished though I might put in a few dark sections in the back woods. Goose Lake is up in the same area as the Sierra Buttes and for some reason I am intrigued with this view. Here are my previous posts of Goose Lake: Goose Lake in Sierra County and Pastel of Goose Lake and last but not least Acrylic of Goose Lake.

As I worked on the above painting, I kept to an over-all feeling and gist of Goose Lake and tried not to rely solely on my reference photo. I like to imagine myself at the scene, hearing the birds, feeling the environment as I paint. I usually listen to music that helps me to imagine that I am there, in this case Native American flute music. Often when I paint a forest scene, I will listen to nature and bird sounds or lately Chinese music.

Again I truly feel that it is important to paint what you know and love, but that is my own personal prerequisite. I worked on this painting (as I am accustomed to do) when I am in the zone. Once I feel my artist eye or view wane, I step away. The sky, backwoods were painted wet on wet. I went back in to put in some calligraphy. I took more care with painting the trees in the front.

Lately my goal is not to be precise or detailed, I want the essence of a scene, there is something appealing to me about this approach.

Colors used: Aureolin, Cobalt Blue, Prussian Blue, Ultramarine Blue, Quin. Gold, Moonglow

*A word about photos. The photos on my blog are mine, taken by me and copying them would be stealing from me. If you find a photo that you would like to copy or use, I request that you ask me for permission and I expect you to give me full credit for my own photo. Thank you so very much.

 

 

Bullards and Crystal Hermitage at Ananda

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painting #1 on Arches 140# quarter sheet

I was trying for a landscape with minimal detail, just enough to give the viewer the essence of the scene. At first I wasn’t too happy with it but the more I look at it, I believe that I reached my goal. I am trying for that happy medium where I don’t needle my paintings to death with superfluous detail.

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Tulips at the Crystal Hermitage at Ananda Village

I wanted to plein air paint at this beautiful local gardens before the tulip season is finished. This is last year’s post about this beautiful place  Glorius Tulips at Crystal Hermitage . I am planning to visit here throughout the year because they do have the gardens open for visitors year round.

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Aren’t these beautiful? I love it at Ananda. When I lived with my Mom and Sister back in the 1980’s I often would hike up the road and visit Ananda Village. I still love the area and the people.

 

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painting #2 My first painting at Ananda

I was fretting a bit about painting flowers, because I generally don’t practice with them enough. I decided to keep it loose and fancy free. I might bring in some more darks to bring out the centers but basically I want to keep it loose.

 

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painting #3

I almost abandoned this painting because I have the tendency to freak out when I can’t see where I am going with a painting. But, I pressed in and was determined to get something out of the experience. Happy to say, I ended up liking it rather than hating it. I am unsure if it is finished or not. Plein air is suppose to be not detailed to death and I want to keep the freshness and resist the need to noodle it to endless detail.

 

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Peaceful Beauty

If you ever get up to the Nevada City/North San Juan area, take the time to go see the gardens at Ananda, especially during the tulip blooming season which is typically March-April or early May.

 

*A word about photos. The photos on my blog are mine, taken by me and copying them would be stealing from me. If you find a photo that you would like to copy or use, I request that you ask me for permission and I expect you to give me full credit for my own photo. Thank you so very much.

 

 

 

 

Old Miner’s Shack

 

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on Saunders 200# 11 x 14 inches

While I worked on several paintings alternately today, I wanted to exercise my artistic muscles with a loose rendering of this miner’s shack. This is referenced from a photo that I took of an old miner’s camp called Carson Camp in Sierra Co. My husband and I took a trip to the high country last summer to scout out the area, he wanted to show me where he worked as a miner in a hard rock gold mine. Close by is the Ruby Mine where he worked back in the 1980’s. It was amazing to have him show me around and to explain the various buildings and equipment. My photo here is close enough to my painting though the Burnt Sienna used didn’t seem to stand out as it should.

I am thinking of perhaps either crisping this up a tad or starting another one. I wasn’t concerned with details as I was going for feeling. I had to catch myself when I wanted to render too much. I would like to abstract the building a bit more and to know what to showcase and leave the rendering to that area.

*A word about photos. The photos on my blog are mine, taken by me and copying them would be stealing from me. If you find a photo that you would like to copy or use, I request that you ask me for permission and I expect you to give me full credit for my own photo. Thank you so very much.

 

Sierra Buttes and Company

 

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painting #1 on Saunders 200# 11 x 14 inches

I have been working on a painting that I started about three years ago that requires a more detailed approach. As I like to do while painting on one painting is to start another one. The Sierra Buttes is one of my favorite subjects, so I decided to paint it again, why not? Here is my last post Making Do During a Snowstorm

I used Burnt Sienna and Fr. Ultramarine Blue on the mountain, I feel that it gives just the correct warmth and coolness. I chose not to go into much detail with the trees because the Sierra Buttes is the star, don’t you think?

I started out loosely with lots of water and getting the feeling and gist of the mountain rather than accuracy. To me that is more important.

 

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painting #2 on Saunders 200# 11 x 14 inches

 

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painting #3 on Arches 140# 11 x 14 inches

Both of these paintings are from my visit to the Bear Valley here in Northern California.

 

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painting #4 on Arches 300# 11 x 14 inches

I enjoyed painting this one but feel that I would like to paint this over and work more on bringing depth and doing a better job in the foreground.

*A word about photos. The photos on my blog are mine, taken by me and copying them would be stealing from me. If you find a photo that you would like to copy or use, I request that you ask me for permission and I expect you to give me full credit for my own photo. Thank you so very much.

 

 

 

 

The Weary Paints On!

 

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painting #1 wip on Arches 140# 11 x 14 inches

I have been struggling with an intense cold but I still manage to paint. No holding back now! This abstract is one that I keep visible while I work on other paintings. I keep painting on it in increments but only adding what I feel it needs and no more. In a way it is an artistic muscle builder.

 

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painting #2 on Arches 140# cp  11 x 14 inches

I am not sure if I like this one, and yet when I am working on it, I love it. The critic in me wants to jump all over it. This is based on my trip over to remote Bear Valley in Glenn Co.

 

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painting #3 on Canson Heritage cp 140# 11 x 14 inches

I practiced my wet on wet on this paper hoping to go very impressionistic. I pulled out shapes as I saw them. I over-worked the left side and basically lost my focal point. No matter, there are more paintings waiting and more lessons to be learned.

 

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painting #4 on Canson Heritage cp 140# 11 x 14 inches

I again decided to paint wet on wet and I really love how you can work on a painting for over 2 hours non-stop. My photo made that area behind the sun-lit trees too blue, it is actually a grayed down purple/blue and green color. There is a point that you know that you have to wait for it to dry before proceeding to add your calligraphy  marks or to correct. This paper is perfect for this technique and it dries extremely flat which I really like.

*A word about photos. The photos on my blog are mine, taken by me and copying them would be stealing from me. If you find a photo that you would like to copy or use, I request that you ask me for permission and I expect you to give me full credit for my own photo. Thank you so very much.

 

 

 

 

 

North Valley to the Mountains

 

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painting #1 on Fabriano soft press 300# 11 x 14 inches

I have painted this a few times before Busy with Landscapes and this one I like the best: Glory Be!  I have been going through a general dislike of my paintings but I know that I go through this cycle every month or so and it will pass, thank goodness!

 

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painting #2 on Arches  140# rough 11 x 14 inches

This painting was from a reference photo that I took from my adventure with my brother to go see Bear Valley in Glenn County in the north valley here in Northern California. This place was amazing because of all the rain we received, the land breathed with moisture. I have never seen green as I did on that trip. Most of the roads were dirt or gravel and ranches were everywhere.

 

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Bear Valley in Glenn Co. California

I saw something that I have never seen before and my brother had to point it out to me. Along the fence were two coyotes who had been shot and strung up, apparently this is suppose to be a deterrent to other coyotes. My husband told me that he remembers seeing this as a youngster on the school bus passing a ranch in Nevada County.

 

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Acid green hills!

 

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painting #3 on Arches 140# rough 11 x 14 inches

Last but not least, a view of the North Yuba river in Sierra County. Now onto other paintings and hopefully I’ll get into a better frame of mind with the next paintings.

*A word about photos. The photos on my blog are mine, taken by me and copying them would be stealing from me. If you find a photo that you would like to copy or use, I request that you ask me for permission and I expect you to give me full credit for my own photo. Thank you so very much.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trees and Light Oh My

 

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Painting #1 Evening Light at Bullards

I have been working on multiple paintings lately and nothing to show right now so I thought I would post a few from January (and from two years ago) that never made it to my blog. The above painting was one that I enjoyed working on. I decided to go back to fix the tree on the left, the edges were too sharp and it didn’t look right. I straightened the tree and I eliminated that yellow foliage. I will be working more and more on forest scenes in the next several months to learn more of a soft, impressionistic look. Soft and hard edges in watercolor can be difficult to master and I am going to master it, by golly!

 

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Painting #2

Again, hard edges where there should be soft here and there. I lost the definition of the path but over all I really like the light and feeling.

 

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My reference photo – North Yuba Trail

 

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Painting #3 – my second attempt

I really like the light in the far back trees but failed  on several aspects, sharp edges on trees, the closest tree and path needs tons of work (or not), my color choices for the rocks was undecided. The sky is too white, not enough definition. These paintings are steps to getting more experience under my belt.

I might go back and have another go at this scene but try for more impressionistic rather than trying to follow the photo exactly. Lately I have been venturing down this direction but yesterday I decided to follow the photo.

 

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painting #4

 

The above painting was from about two years ago. I like the overall softness, light and especially the handling of the trees.

 

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painting #5 – Plein air 2014

 

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painting #6 – from 2014

The above painting is how impressionistic I am aiming towards. Perhaps more simplistic than what I have in mind. At first I wasn’t sure if I liked it but my daughter snatched it up before I really started to appreciate it. Now I want it back!

 

 

I have been having a hankering to get back into portraits and figures but in watercolor. I am going to have a busy year without a doubt! Happy Painting folks!

 

*A word about photos. The photos on my blog are mine, taken by me and copying them would be stealing from me. If you find a photo that you would like to copy or use, I request that you ask me for permission and I expect you to give me full credit for my own photo. Thank you so very much.

 

 

 

 

“The Falls”

 

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painting #1 on Arches 300# 11 x 14 inches

Painting more detail (for me) with this painting of the falls located about 3 miles down the road from my house. I have visited here often to paint, it is a favorite swimming hole with the nudists. I used my plein air (photo below) as a reference though about half of it was painting by instinct. I might try this again and far looser and work on giving the focal area the credit due. I think that I got too caught into rendering and lost my focal point. I have been lately trying to exhibit more feeling rather than just show a scene.

 

 

 

 

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plein air of the falls on Arches 140# cp 7 x 9 inches

I think that I liked the main focal rock better in my plein air than the first painting at the top. I liked how I handled my tonal values better in the plein air and especially the dark value of the main rock. Perhaps I will give it a another try and go for a deeper value. It is all practice and exercising my artistic muscles.

colors used in painting #1: Lunar Blue, Raw Sienna, Quin. Gold, Fr. Ultra. Blue, Green Gold

colors used in painting #2 (guessing): Fr. Ultra. Blue, sap green, yellow ochre, Burnt Sienna

*A word about photos. The photos on my blog are mine, taken by me and copying them would be stealing from me. If you find a photo that you would like to copy or use, I request that you ask me for permission and I expect you to give me full credit for my own photo. Thank you so very much.