Another Raven

10x10 oil on cradled board

I'm enjoying painting these black birds. I've been painting in thin layers of paint getting a lot of interesting textures. I used oil paint mixed with cold wax along with panpastels sprinkled over it throughout the process.

New Birds

I have a few new paintings that I have finished in the last couple months. I'll try to get them posted before the year ends. These 3 are all 6"x6" and painted on 2" deep cradled boards. I've been playing with cold wax medium mixed into my oil paint. I like the surface texture I can get with this. 

I've really neglected my blog and facebook lately. All the social media is overwhelming for me at times. I do post more often on my instagram account. If you are interested, I sometimes post my in-progress photos there.

I have some exciting news that I will share soon! I hope you all have a safe and happy New Years Eve!

Raven - SOLD

8x8 oil & cold wax on cradled board

I've been occasionally playing around with cold wax medium. But this was the first time I used it in a painting that wasn't fully abstract. I really like the texture.

Hummingbird - SOLD

8x8 oil on cradled board

I've been painting some birds lately. I'm hoping to have a handful of them for holiday shows this winter. Here is the first one.

Carolina Wren

I heard a Carolina Wren in my garden tonight.

Image result for carolina wren song

I never saw it, and I had never heard one before. But it sang clearly, "Judy, Judy, Judy". So I googled, bird who says Judy, Judy, Judy and a recording of a Carolina Wren came up. Which was exactly what I heard. It was so pretty.

I spent the last 3 days at the courthouse downtown. I was juror number 10 in a trial of a young woman who was charged with Aggravated Domestic Battery, Aggravated Battery, and Domestic Battery. She had cut her baby daddy with a box cutter. She said she did it. Everyone saw her do it. But we found her not guilty on all three counts. *sigh*

There was doubt.

Doubt that she didn't fear for her life and was defending herself. He had beat her before. Three months before, he had blinded her in one eye and caused her to have her baby early. She didn't press charges against him then because she didn't want him to get in trouble. But on this night, with drinking and drugs she cut him. She feared him. She loved him. She hated him. So complicated. No right answer.

He was not hurt very bad. They released him that night from the hospital. He was not hurt bad because he is huge and she is small. So even a box cutter just grazed him a bit. He didn't show up to testify because he didn't want her to get in trouble.

But I heard a Carolina Wren in my garden tonight and it reminded me of her because "Wren" is her surname. Strange coincidence.  I bet she is back with him already.

Splash Landing - SOLD

12"x12" oil on cradled board

I've just finished an online workshop with Melinda Cootsona, "Six Approaches to Abstracting the Figure". It was fabulous! She showed me different ways to go beyond the photo. This is something I've been struggling with, and working toward. One approach is to use stencils. And I'm loving that. I used that technique, along with some knife work to get the texture in this new painting. I'm doing more layers, and building surface texture now. With oils, that takes time. But I'm happy with the results.

Art In Bloom Art Festival

Swing High - 12x12 - SOLD

I'm packing up my car and headed up to Cantigny Park. I'm super excited to be setting up my booth for "Art in Bloom" art fair this Fathers Day weekend! Come visit, come buy art! It's a great show and a lot of fun. I'll be hanging a lot of new work! Booth #28!

A little more information & a map on my Events page.

Your Move

12"x12" oil on cradled board

Just finished this one. I'm slowly painting larger pieces and I'm enjoying that except for the fact that they are filling up my small studio pretty quickly.

Upcoming Events!

I've just put together a newsletter that will go out to my mailing list tomorrow,
May 1. I'm repeating it here for those not on my mailing list. If you are interested in keeping up with where I'm showing my art, be sure to get on my mailing list here --> JOIN MY MAILING LIST.

Spring Weather Has Finally Arrived

The long winter has finally come to an end and that always means my art festivals are getting close! I have a May show this year, which is new for me. I've been accepted into the Old Capital Art Fair in Springfield, IL (May 19-20), and I'm pretty excited! I'm looking forward to meeting some new people in that area.

I also have a couple group exhibitions and new work at Exhibit A Gallery. Below is more information.


I will only be doing 3 art shows this year. They are:

  • Old Capital Art Fair—May 19 & 20, 2018,
Springfield, IL.
Booth #101, (last minute booth change. Please note I'm at #101 now!)

    Saturday 10am-5pm
Sunday 10am-4pm
  • Cantigny Art In Bloom—June 16 & 17, 2018,

    Cantigny Park, Wheaton, IL

    Saturday 10am-4pm
Sunday 10am-4pm
  • Sugar Creek Arts Festival—July 14 & 15, 2018,

    Uptown Normal, IL. - I will be on North St.

    Saturday 10am-5pm

    Sunday 11am-4pm
I'm also honored to be included in these group exhibitions:

The McLean County Arts Center is in Bloomington, IL. Show runs May 4-June 16. (left to right:  "Sanity" 10"x8"" oil & "Don't Look Down" 16"x12" oil.) Contact MCAC for purchase information.

"Unseen Voices"
The Foster Gallery  is located in downtown Peoria in the First United Methodist Church. Show runs May 27-July 8. (left: "Soccer Team" 6"x6" oil.Contact me for purchase information.

I dropped these 2 small paintings off at Exhibit A Gallery last month. They will be there for a while if you want to stop in and check them out. Both are 8"x6" and framed. You can contact Exhibit A Gallery for more information.

Thank you to everyone out there who follows me. I appreciate your continued interest in my art! 

Final Assignment


I handed in these two paintings for my final project. Both were full spectrum color, and both seem very different. The top one was more successful for the assignment because of the amount of passive space. I have too much going on in the second painting. But I'm happy with them both for other reasons. 
Next week I start the second session of my classes called "Look Here, Don't Look There" with Mark Daniel Nelson.

High Key


So this assignment for my "Simple Isn't Easy" class was a couple weeks ago. I've been bad about keeping up my posting. But the assignment was to paint a high key painting, then add a few darks to move your eye. I did this on my ipad on a program called Procreate. It's a very fun tool for quick studies. I didn't have a value scale around so I think I got a few of my values a tiny bit too dark. But for the most part, they are middle value and lighter. Then I added the darks to really draw the eye. 

Below is the same image changed to b/w so you can really see how the values have merged. I am very happy with this one and am in the process of trying to do this in oil. It's so much harder I think. Learning a lot. 


One Color Dominant

This was what I painted last week for my "Simple Isn't Easy" class with Mark Daniel Nelson. The assignment was to pick a color and paint a painting in that color. So I was pretty excited about this. I've been wanting to experiment with this technique for a long time. Especially with some of my jumping figures. So I ended up painting two versions! It was fun to see the same painting twice in different colors. The first is "red-violet", and the second "colbalt-teal". 

I prefer the first one but mainly I think because I like the value pattern more. Mark did a poll in class and it was almost 50/50 on which painting people preferred. Which one do you like better? Is it just because you lean more toward warm vs cool colors? I paint a lot of cool temp paintings, so I know that wasn't why I preferred the warmer version. 

Party Smurf

4x4 oil on cradled board

I'm not sure which Smurf this is, but he is ready for the party!! So fun to paint this guy. I got to use all my favorite colors!

I'm headed out of town tomorrow. First stop will be the Florida panhandle, to help celebrate my mother-in-laws 90th birthday!! Such a milestone. We didn't want to miss it. Then I will be in Birmingham for a few days while Joe attends meetings. I need to find a good gallery or museum to spend some time at!! I've never been to Birmingham. Anyone have any suggestions?

So since I'll be gone a week, I won't be able to ship any paintings until I return March 5. Thank you for your understanding.

Workshop Studies

Light dominant

Dark dominant (Juice Box)

These are a couple studies I've done for my "Simple Isn't Easy" workshop. I'm learning more about how to think about composing a composition. Merging lights with lights, and darks with darks. These two were my attempt at painting a 'light dominant' & 'dark dominant' paintings. They are fun exercises. I'm still tweaking "Juice Box". I might paint this one a few more times.

Below are two studies massing darks.


I think he's trying to tell me something!

RIP Velasa (1994-2018)
I took a few days off from the studio last week as I tried to get used to not having this furball around anymore. She will be missed. 

Tendu - Sold

8'x6" oil on panel

I enjoyed the colors in this painting. This reminds me of when my little girl did ballet.


6x8 oil on cradled board
Contact me for purchase information

My grandma had a dachshund named Cindy. She had the silkiest ears!

Good Morning - SOLD

6x6 oil on panel

I'd love to wake up to this smile every day!


6x6 oil on cradled board

I've been feeding the cardinals outside lately. I'm looking forward to Spring.
Will be dry and ready to ship by Feb. 12.

Bat Boy

6x6 oil on panel

I painted this for an assignment in my "Simple isn't Easy" online workshop with Mark Daniel Nelson. I'm loving the class so far, and even though I haven't had much time to work on the assignments, I'm learning a lot. I was thinking I was going to do still lives for the lessons. And I might still do that later. But so far I've been trying to simplify some kid paintings that I've been wanting to do.
This assignment was all about moving the eye through the painting. Mark called this a 3 zone painting. The shoes, head, then ball. Which are the zones the eye travels.

Here is another, but not as successful I don't think.
Bam Bam
6x6 oil on panel

The eye travels up the bat to the head, then the balls. 


4x4 oil on cradled board

First painting of the new year. I'm getting ready to start a commission, so I'm painting a few small pieces first.

Happy New Year!

Cardinal 6x6 oil on cradled board.

Wow, what a year! It did seem to fly by. But it's a new year now, and time for setting new goals. I'm ready for something new. I've just finished a boat load of beach themed paintings. Large & small. Now I'm looking ahead to art festivals and new & old ideas have me excited. I will continue my dogs, birds & cocktail themed paintings. I want to expand on the cocktails because that can be fun,  and spend some time on more still life paintings.

I've signed up for an on-line Master Class with Mark Daniel Nelson, "Simple Is Not Easy". (my Thursday class is full, but he's just added a Friday class.) I'm sure I will learn a TON about ways to simplify my compositions for a more abstract looser look. My plan is to post my results, but that will depend on how busy things get around here.

I'm really looking at still life paintings right now and dreaming of painting them in a way I love. I've been looking at Stanley Bielen and Susan Nally, and loving their work. I've bought some pears found some simple bowls. I'll work up to flowers because I think if I purchased any flowers right now they would die as soon as I went outside to bring them home. (it's -15 today) I'm planning on doing a small still life, from life, most days before I start my other work. That's the goal!!