Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Summer Fun 8x10, oil

More cold and snow this week here in Maine. It's a nice break to paint a summer scene. I have been exploring figurative and narrative landscapes again and hope to paint more. This was a fun painting.

Summer Fun, 8x10, oil

Thanks for visiting. Stay warm, be patient, summer is on the way.....


This painting is available in my Ebay Store - seascapes or you may contact me directly at

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Simple Mini Pochade Box

I thought I would share this post again since it's almost plein-air time here in Maine. The weather has warmed up a bit and this small kit is perfect to take in the car when you go to town or for a ride. The sun is shining and the snow is just asking to be painted.

My kit is ready. I only have to put out my paints and I am ready to go. I work with a limited palette of white, cad yellow light, yellow ochre, perm rose, ultramarine blue and burnt sienna. How simple is that.

My dollar pencil box measuring 5x8x2½

My mini pochade box.

This box is just the right size for two 5x7 toned panels. I tape wax paper on the bottom for easy clean-up and adjust the consistency of the paint with medium when I add it to the box. I'll be looking for a very, very small container, maybe something lip balm might come in, to use as a medium holder. But for now this works just fine. Two small packets of handi wipes will be taped to the inside lid. A small plastic sandwich bag with two or three paper napkins goes in my pocket.

I was asked how I clean my brushes without turps. I don't carry turps in this kit. I use separate brushes for the darks and the lights, wiping them well between mixtures.


I brace the canvas with my thumb while painting, using the lid as my easel.

The box is deep enough to securely hold two wet 5x7 panels placed back to back and on an angle. The paint brushes can either be placed at the bottom edge of the canvas or in the box, wrapped in a bit of the handi wipes.

A perfect fit.

It closes up, nice and neat.

These inexpensive plastic boxes come in all sizes so you can easily make up a kit to suit the size canvas you prefer.

It's fun to just grab the box and go without having to carry all our usual plein air gear.

Thank's for visiting. Happy painting.


My Ebay Store

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Merry Christmas

Wishing you and your family 
a very Merry Christmas
peace and joy in the New Year.


Saturday, November 25, 2017

November Ramblings

Morning Stillness, 8x10, oil
Available in my Ebay Store.
My daughter-in-law’s home decor shop, Patchwork Plus Maine on Rt. 3 in Searsmont, Maine, is gearing up for the holiday season and she asked if I would paint some small seasonal paintings for the shop. She carries a line of my work but these would be specific to the season. 

It’s been a fun change to paint snow scenes and children playing. These little paintings are no larger than 4x5, some are smaller. Happily, they are popular and I’m enjoying the challenge. Because they are oils, they still need to be done in layers, then dried and varnished. The standard painting process only in miniature. In between the little paintings I’m finishing up some larger ones. I have a stack of half finished work that needs attention.

Picking up on her energy, I decided to join in with the Black Friday and Small Business Saturday sales events in my Ebay Store. I’ve never done a sale before and this should be interesting. Ebay makes it really simple to add these events to your listings and I choose which items will be part of the sale. It was nice to check my email this morning and see all the sales. Pretty nifty! I’m still thinking about Cyber Monday…..

Our Virtual Paint-Out Group has been on vacation since October and I’m looking forward to the start-up in January. Artist Leslie Saeta starts another 30/30 challenge in January. Looks like that’s going to be a very busy month!

I hope you had a nice Thanksgiving and that all is well.

Thanks for visiting,

My Website

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Studio Sanity

A few thoughts when all you want to do is paint.

Whatever time you plan to stop painting to prepare dinner, stop sooner because food prep and cooking always take longer when you’d rather be painting.

Rinse your brushes in turp and cover your palette before leaving your studio. Something will always keep you from returning in a timely manner.

Keep a clean paper towel near your phone to use when you answer another robo call.

The dog will always be on the wrong side of the door so another piece of paper towel is needed for the door handle.

A few hurried brushstrokes will undo an hour’s work.

Unexpected company will arrive when you’re wearing your painting clothes and forgot to comb your hair.

This same company thinks you’d rather sit and “chit chat” instead of paint. 

You understand why Paul Gauguin ran away to a remote tropical island. It’s better than cutting off your ear.

Thankfully there’s always tomorrow.


My Ebay Store

Friday, October 27, 2017

Drying Cupboard

One of the hazards in an artist's studio is the vapors from drying oil paint. There were days when the paint odor was so strong in my studio that I had to open all the windows and run a fan for a few hours before I could comfortably and safely work there. This was especially inconvenient in cold weather. Now we have solved the problem.

My husband converted this beautiful two-door oak cabinet into a drying and storage cupboard. It works perfectly and the air in my studio is now fresh and clean. 


Inside the cupboard he mounted a small exhaust fan at the rear of the top shelf, vented it through the wall and into the garage. Now all the vapors from the drying paint are removed from my studio. This is a small electronics fan designed to run continuously and quietly.

I have always stored my palette and tubes of paint in covered plastic boxes but it was the drying paintings that caused the problem. Now I store all my new paintings and works in progress vertically (separated with clothespins) or in racks in my new cupboard, close the doors and the fan does the rest. 

Oil paintings take a long time to dry completely. Even when they are dry to the touch, they continue to emit vapors while the paint cures. And when you have a large amount of paintings in various stages the odor is very noticeable.

There is also plenty of room for supplies. The shelves are adjustable and I can easily add another shelf if needed. Goodbye clutter.

I feel like I have a new studio.

Thanks for visiting,

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Art Class Remembered

Looking back over my art career, some of the best times were spent in the classroom. Over the years my students have ranged in age from 9 years old in my Junior Class to over 80 years old in my Adult Class. My young students came once a week throughout the school year and it was a joy to watch them grow from children to teenagers to young adults.

Originally my painting classes were held at my gallery in Belfast, Maine, but as the gallery grew and we needed more space, I gave up my classroom and moved classes to my home studio.

My Adult Class has seen many students come and go but I had my main students that were with me for many years. They were my dedicated “crew”. We met weekly and worked very hard to incorporate the principals and theories of oil painting into our work. They were a very special group and our sessions were filled with laughter, sighs and music.

One of our very special students was Genie Francis, from the TV Series, General Hospital. She has a summer home in Belfast and it was our good fortune to have her join our classes for a few summers.

 We also had many outdoor adventures, some quite memorable.

It was my greatest pleasure to see my students enter shows and win awards. To see the smiles on their faces when they brought their ribbons and awards to class was priceless. We all celebrated together because we understood the hard work and commitment that led to this proud achievement.
When I was teaching at the gallery, summer visitors would often stop in and ask for a few lessons. They had just bought their first paint set and wanted to learn to paint. They were the most difficult students, as they didn’t understand that it takes many years to grasp the principals of painting and more years of hard work to put these principals into play. I knew they would leave frustrated but hopefully these first few classes would peak their interest and they could go on from there. They also left with a greater appreciation of the art we displayed at the gallery.
I taught for over 15 years and have now retired. I sometimes think of teaching again, but life has a way of moving on. I’ll always have a special place in my heart for my students. We were a family and together we shared joys and sorrows, triumphs and failures. We still keep in touch and paint together and their voices still echo in my studio.

Thanks for visiting,