20 July 2017

Recent Work #4

The Fountain of Youth ...

16" x 12" Watercolor, Gouache, Prismacolor pencil on Arches 2017
Is to be found among the waving Sawgrasses growing on the beaches of the eastern coast of the southern USA.  Poor, desperate Ponce de Leon only had to press onward a few more miles north to become his child self again.

Fast forward to 2017 and you'll find an amusement park of the same name a few miles south.  Of course.

Recent Work #3

The Brothers-in-Law, Fly Fishing

16" x 12" Prismacolor pencil and Dr.Ph.Martin's watercolor inks on Arches 2017
My Father's famous line, "I'm like a Lemming, I always return to the sea."
That's him on the right and my Mother's oldest brother on the left.
Happy times.

Recent Work #2

Rigging, Schooner Woodwind, Annapolis

16" x 12" Prismacolor pencil and Dr. Ph. Martin's watercolor inks 2017
Still sailing... will keep on sailing until I sail off the end of the planet into a never ending sea of stars.

Recent Work #1

Love Song

12" x 16" Prismacolor pencil + Dr. Ph. Martins watercolor inks on Arches, 2017
An extremely popular blues rock band on the SOFLA circuit, they fell in love.  Only recently, they got married. This is my wedding gift to them, my daughter the law student is doing the framing.  
You may ask"Why frogs?" One of these lovely rockers is my younger sister who collected toy frogs as a child which she called Blizzies, thus the Blizadelic Unity and thus, frogs.

14 November 2016

Divine Grace

Mr. and Mrs. Mac, woodpile, South Africa
   I was so moved by the tragedy that occurred last spring in Susanna's garden, I had to paint the tale's very happy ending Su sent to me a short time later.  This is Divine Grace at work.

You'll have to read the whole post and comments to understand what happened.

Su's words: "...Out of that tragedy, something rather profound emerged.
One of the eekers, McGyver who is a master escapist (names are important) was released from the cage the day before as he was bullying the others.
Hence his freedom and escape from torture. Iona clearly got you have more chance of surviving if you have freedom of movement.

Anyway Mac lived in the stickpile in the garden, with the rabbit and the chicken but was alone. A friend came to visit with the most beautiful lady, black and spikey - name Mrs Mac and they are chirruping in delight in the autumn sunlight. ..."

07 July 2016

Barcelona - Image of the periphery

The grey post-war years before the formation of the metropolis 

"An outlying neighborhood in the post-war years." 
From Joan Busquets' and the Harvard University Graduate School of Design's tome BARCELONA, the urban evolution of a compact city. VII.1 Autocracy, reconstruction and shantytowns.

I am drawn, passionately, to shantytowns, their charming colors, their patchwork construction and especially to the people who build their lives and communities from practically nothing.  I was inextricably driven to paint it.

The beginning... 12" x 16", No.2 lead pencil on Arches

31 March 2016

Moving Day

Dog in the Pattern, 12" x 16" watercolor inks on Arches
It was impossible to make sense out of everyone running around packing up the entire household and burly strangers barging in and out, hauling away her whole happy dog life into waiting trucks.  It was bad enough every summer when the suitcases came out, but this was outrageous, incomprehensible!

But today was different, everyone was busy, frantic, excited, looking forward to something apparently wonderful and including her in the activity wherever possible.

She chose to take a wait and see approach. Yet, still, there were moments ...

26 October 2015


John's Topanga Sunset 16" x 12" watercolor on Arches, 10/15  

He took the curve in stride, behind the wheel of a cherry red Mustang v8 convertible, slowed to the side of the road, removed his earpods, got out of the car and stood there silently, moved beyond description by the Symphony of Nature and her mind blowing end of day light show.

12 August 2015

Sunset and Moonrise ... Redux

Sunset and Moonrise at the Turf Locks Hotel
You might recognize the image, sort of, its art after all, not a photograph.  But a real photograph exists and it captured me with its funky mystery, a mystery that became more and more curious as the painting developed.   I can't tell you what is being hauled under the tarp or why the tug and and whatever is being tugged require a blue hose floater all around.  But UK John probably has a pretty good idea since he was there.  I'd love to know.  Where is the hotel?  How can turf have locks like the Erie and Panama canals do?  Maybe none of these questions matter, but its fun to have them while in the painting process because usually you are just going along with the flow, solving problems you understand from all the years the paint played its tricks and worked itself out into something that was never really planned.
I added a port bow light to insure this elderly workhorse stays safe in the dark.

12" x 16" 
watercolor and gouache on Arches

08 May 2015

02 April 2015

Refuge ... for now

16" x 12" watercolor + gouache on Arches
Update:  The words "... for now" in the title refers to this pictured area on the California coast, Pigeon Point, and is subject to multiple landslides, increasing sea temperatures and one day may well not be there anymore.   See it while you can.  For now, it is a precious refuge for all beings, especially sea life populations.

06 December 2014

The Lightkeepers' Quarters

The Light Keepers' Quarters, watercolor inks on Arches, 11-12/14

Of course, this particular documentation goes with this one, as promised earlier during this brief, wet and smokey Autumn. 

There is still more coming. I never tire of ancient rural architecture and the wide open spaces remaining - thankfully, geologically buffered from the long running habitat wars.  We like to think the waves of the Pacific will never stop and so it is with this series, all of which takes place on the still magnificent, challenging, powerful, ever changing and often extremely dangerous western coast of the American continent.

I would like to reincarnate as a Mermaid, its in my DNA, in order to document the incredible changes ahead. My late Father, the Commander, Hellcat pilot, sailor, life long navigator, once said to the child me, "I'm like a Lemming, I always return to the sea." 

So be it.

22 October 2014

In honor of Mr. Fixit's upcoming birthday

You might recall this sweet Beagle from my other blog, see Love is All at the bottom of the page.  Or, this post from 2011 here in the gallery... Same size, same Dr. PH Martin's transparent inks on Arches.
Mr. Fixit and Bitsy

01 October 2014

A light in the darkness

A light in the darkness, part one
12" x 16" 
watercolor on Arches
Known for its Fresnel lens, radiating beams of light in multiple, rotating directions all at once, the Pescadero Angel of Mercy redirects those in peril on the sea...

Pescadero, a mystical place.  A place where you find confirmations every day and night why you are alive.  A place you can take a night sauna behind the lighthouse, seaside in a funky tub on the edge of the cliff, protected by a weatherbeaten picket fence. 

22 May 2014

the counselor last summer

16" x 18" watercolor on Arches
They'd been doing rock painting in arts and crafts.Wouldn't you too like to be doing rock painting in arts and crafts? 

On the last day of camp,  aka "parents' visiting day", his proud  father stood above him and snapped an Iphone memory with auto flash.

21 November 2013

Roots in Eden

    12" x16" watercolor + gouache on Arches, 2013  
It is very practical to do your laundry on the back step with two large water tubs next to mango trees and hang the clothes in the Barbados sun.  Total cost: a single bar of blue soap.  Later on, with all the money you saved, you can go out dancing at the DJ Disco up the sand road.

24 July 2013

Soldier's Mountain

18" x 12" watercolor on Arches © 140lb cold pressed July 2013
The Farm, Arizona:

I fell in love with one of the horses and came to find he joined the farm by traveling from the other side of this mountain, leaving behind a situation of neglect akin to abandonment.  His owner was eventually located and gave him freely to the farm forever where he is happy to be at peace with the retired Pot Belly Pigs, free range chickens, a lovely female of his own species, four dogs, five cats, three chipmunks and the Watusi herd who visit every evening to catch up on the latest farm doings.

I was stunned. What a story!

Imagine this beautiful guy soldiering on in triple digit temperatures, over the cliffs and peaks with all the dangers the southwest desert environment presents?  To see him now in his current location, you'd see him well fed and well watered, hanging out with his girlfriend, kicking up the dirt in joy and surrounded by love, constant attention, shade from the elements and lots of space to play. The layout of the farm is simply one huge yard with the humans' dwelling in the center, so you will often wake up in the morning with Soldier looking in your window.

21 November 2012

Caliente free range

Prismacolor©  pencils in sketchbook
On the way to Walker Basin, off the 58, between General Beale Highway and Bodfish, lies the off-road territory of Caliente.  The geography consists of untamed spectacular pine peaks, death defying cliffs and tight old growth Oak canyons where the cattle are free range, i.e.; no fences, very much at home wherever they feel like hanging out in any particular season of the year, day or night.  Its rather like a safari park, they wander across the sole road, the rare vehicle completely out of context, but should you happen to be out exploring, they will saunter right up and ask you, with gentle Cow curiosity, who are you?

11 November 2012

NE Workshop

NE Workshop as seen from kitchen window

I keep coming across works that were never displayed here, living in my portfolio unseen.  Now is as good a time as any to share them.  (Either that or they were left out of the recent gallery revision, another likely possibility.)  This one is California, Fall 04.  You can tell its Fall by the pattern of leafless Oak branches.  It always caught my eye while washing dishes.  Art is everywhere.

18" x 24" watercolor inks on Arches