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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Father Christmas

Tis' the season for all things Santa.  I painted "Father Christmas" from life, in a three+ hour modeling session.  About eight artists set up their easels around the wonderful model who sat like a statue.  What is so interesting is that each artist ends up with a different perspective and different interpretation.  It's wonderful.  The model (Santa, I mean Steve) is a friend from church.  Steve (I mean Santa) is an amazing man of faith and has a heart for mission.  What a blessing to have this time of fellowship and fun. 

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Time Traveler

This solo traveler was busy getting to his train on time and texting along the way.  I had the opportunity to visit my sister who lives in Switzerland earlier this year.  The Zurich train station is a wonderful place full of painting subjects. 

Monday, November 21, 2011

Gossip Girls

These two chickens were just clucking away and carrying on quite the conversation.  This tiny painting (4 x 6) will be part of the Blizzard of Art exhibit at the Cedarburg Cultural Center beginning Nov. 23.  A perfect gift for that special someone in your family who loves chickens!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

More cattails

There is more color to "just an ordinary" cattail than meets the eye!  I especially love late afternoon when they are all dramatic with color and mood.  Had lots of muck on my boots after painting this little one!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Fall Torches

I have a thing with cattails.....painted this a few weeks ago plein air at Schlitz Audubon.  Especially love the fuzzy, fluffy stuff.  Just not in my oil paints!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Lynden Sculpture Garden Plein Air

Had a blast plein air painting at this amazing sculpture garden on a beautiful fall day.  And yes, I painted an orange/red tree!  This beautiful sculpture within the natural landscape is part of the "Inverse" temporary exhibit by artists Amy Cropper and Stuart Morris.  I was drawn to the bright red color in the landscape and couldn't resist.  At the very end of my painting time, a beautiful male bluebird landed right on one of the branches.  In a way, he seemed to want to say...."but hey, don't you like my beautiful color too?"  Actually, he looked quite stunning on the red branch!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

ArtBar Mini Show

This show is an annual favorite.  Imagine 400+ miniature paintings displayed in a great bar!  I have 21 pieces in this show, the opening is Friday, Nov. 4.  Sales begin promptly at 7 p.m.  The show is always changing through the entire two month exhibit.  Grab a beer, hang out with friends and buy some local art! 

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Plein Air Painting with preschoolers!

A few weeks ago, I helped my son's preschool class with "plein air" painting.  The usually squirmy kids were quite content to spend about 20 minutes painting the landscape of fall trees, Lake Michigan and wildflowers.  The experience was precious.  After the kids left to go on a hike, I was finishing up my plein air painting and heard some scratching behind me on the trail.  Low and behold, four huge turkeys came to see the beautiful paintings too!  When you have the opportunity to see turkeys so up close and personal, I am always amazed at the beautiful colors in their feathers!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The Chaos of Chickens

The title of this painting is called "Running Late."  Doesn't it appear these chickens all need to go somewhere, but don't know which way to go?  The rooster in the center seems to be the only guy who has a clue.
This painting and about 20 others will be on exhibit at Groth Design Group in Cedarburg this weekend (N58W6181 Columbia Road).  The studio tour will begin on Friday night from 6 to 9 and continues on Saturday and Sunday.  Please stop in, I'd love to see you! 

Friday, September 30, 2011

Warm and Snuggly

Cold, wind and rain has been our weather almost all week. Thought I'd do a painting of this little sheep to keep me thinking warm and cozy thoughts.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Hanging with my chicks

After an entire year devoted to painting (almost) weekly at Schlitz Audubon Nature Center, the exhibit has come and gone. It was such an amazing journey of learning -- about both art and nature. And the great friendships that have formed and strengthened along the way -- that's you Liesl and Lynn! We had amazing attendance at the exhibit and some sales too. Many of my friends have lived in the area for years and never been to SANC until the evening of the exhibit, so new members have resulted from this effort as well. THANKS to all who made this happen!

My painting obsession will continue at Schlitz as my little preschooler has one more year there (I am a lucky Mom). More winter, bigger, new places to explore on the property, new art friends to bring along. It all awaits.

In the meantime, I continue another obsession with chickens. These are from The Family Farm in Grafton, such a great place. This painting will be on exhibit during the Covered Bridge Studio Tour, October 7 - 9 in and around Cedarburg. See the website for complete details, I'll be at Groth Design group. The chickens hope you will stop by for a closer look.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Swamp Milkweed at Schlitz Audubon

I painted this a few weeks ago at Schlitz Audubon. Was captivated by the color and shape of the milkweed. It was one of those exciting days of painting, first full sun, then threatening skies, then back to full sun and what felt like 100% humidity. I loved the swamp milkweed so much that it made me get to Monches Farm to purchase some for our backyard.
Also, love this new bumper sticker my hubby picked up on a trip to Idaho.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Schlitz Audubon...and I've stopped counting

Summer is in full swing at Schlitz Audubon with the dragonflies and butterflies happy in the prairie. This was one of those happy days with fluffy clouds and some quiet time for this painter! And yes, I've stopped counting the paintings at's hard to keep track anymore!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Beecher Lake Sunset

Painted this a few weeks ago up north near Pembine, Wisconsin. It's much harder painting these sunsets with a lake in the foreground due to the glare, but always a fun time!!!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

The Homestead

My family has been farming this land for more than a century. The white buildings on the left and the farm fields in front is the land my brother farms....over 100 milking cows and lots of cropland. I'm very proud that my brother was able to buy this farm over 30 years ago from my grandparents, the land where my Dad grew up! I was drawn to this early morning scene this spring with the corn emerging through the furrows, everything seems so full of possibilities for the upcoming season.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

A word about Sunsets

I started painting sunsets more than 10 years ago, thanks to artist friends Lori and Pam. We were all staying at my parent's farm and ventured up on the hill to paint the sunset -- I was addicted from this moment on! We then turned around to paint the moon rising in the sky from this amazing vista in the farmfield. Friends Paula, Elsie and Tonia were also there painting that evening....just one of those painting experiences that will forever be cherished. My goal someday is to have a home where I can see the sunset everyday! An artist could paint these magnificent creations everyday and always have different subject material. I love the grand sunsets and the subtle ones where the sun just peeks through for an instant. These were all painted in a parking lot behind our local hospital where there is an amazing marsh with open vistas. I am grateful for this beautiful, safe place to paint!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Schlitz Audubon #52

Bullfrogs and lilypads, LIFE IS GOOD! Rumor has it, there's a blue frog at Mystery Pond....let's see a picture!!!!!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Brat Fry

Oh, I forgot to post the my "Paint the Festival" painting from the Cedarburg Plein Air event! It was a hot day full of drunken Strawberry Fest crowds. So, I found this little alley (in the shade) and had a great time chatting with Mr. Schwai about his world-famous strawberry brats. He's quite the character and a great salesman!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

A heartfelt sunset

This little sunset was painted last night. A few years ago I discovered a great place to view/paint sunsets in Mequon, right behind the local hospital. Tons of cat tails and open vistas and a nice place to park your car.
I really enjoyed my painting experience but realized I hadn't painted in the hospital parking lot for a while (actually since last fall). Since that time, a good friend passed away, actually at this hospital. I was absolutely overcome with emotion while painting this....because of her death and this is also the hospital where my son Alex was born. Good thing I was alone. The subtle nature of this sunset reminded me once again about this fragile circle of life. I truly hope this sunset GLOWS to represent Shari's enduring spirit on this Earth because when I think of her all I think about is her smile. May God's grace shine down upon all. Cheers to you Shari!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Schlitz Audubon #51

Mystery Pond....ahhh the lilypads, bullfrogs, dragonflies. Truly a magical place. I also felt a little bit like being at Monet's pond for just a moment in time. Fun to watch all the families come through seeing baby snapping turtles and tadpoles.

Friday, July 1, 2011

More Cedarburg Plein Air

"Cheryl's Cheerful Chickens" was another painting completed during the plein air event in Cedarburg. Once again, this was a blast to paint watching these chickens strut about the coop. I was lucky enough to have one land on top of the waterer. She stayed there just long enough to get it blocked in. And, this beautiful calico cat was at my feet during most of the painting making it a day to remember.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Schlitz Audubon #49

So, you know you're out painting early when....there are still turkeys roosting in the trees (about 12 of them). They were all sounds asleep with their long, awkward necks tucked into their big bodies at about 5:00 a.m. I took this picture on my way back up the hill around 7, a few were still sleeping in. What a wonderful morning enjoying the sunrise and observing nature waking up!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Cedarburg Plein Air #2

This is one of those paintings that just "happened." In other words, it was a fast and furious painting due to the subject matter and light conditions. I was so delighted to find out Cheryl had all these chickens and two geese. They were in the coop for the evening, so it was fun to observe and paint these moving, feathery targets.
Thanks to my hubby for a great title.....CLUCK, CLUCK GOOSE!!!!

Cedarburg Plein Air #1

It's been a busy few weeks preparing for the 11th annual Plein Air event in Cedarburg (I'm on the planning committee and painting). We were thrilled to have nearly 150 artists painting in the event. Here is my painting from Riveredge Nature Center (day 1) and one of the paintings I submitted for the exhibit. "Summer with my Siblings" was another one of those special opportunities to meet some neat kids. After chatting with the kids a bit, the oldest sibling went back to the house to get some artwork that he created. We talked art for a while (he's very, very talented), then I had to get back to my clouds as they were ever changing! Also made a re-connection with the homeowner of the adjacent property as she brought out Gatorade to the artists who were painting thoughtful!!!! My next postings will show the paintings on her amazing property.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Six Months

I painted this summer Lake Michigan scene a few weeks ago at Schlitz Audubon. When I brought it home, I placed it randomly next to some of my winter paintings for drying time. Then, I noticed about the same composition and skyline/treeline of these two paintings....the difference being ice vs. sand! And, the difference of six months!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

All Things Green

Tis' the season for the onslaught of green. My goal this summer will be to find more subtle variations and really study the shifts of color when warm light hits the cool light (on sunny days that is). One pleasure of plein air painting are the people you meet in the process. While painting this scene, I met three beautiful little girls and their lovely Mom (HI!!!). The girls all love to paint and draw, which always warms my heart.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Schlitz Audubon #48

It's June 2 and I wore my winter coat painting at the lake today. Well, I'd say I'm getting great value out of that winter coat! It's been fun comparing my color palette of these warm lake paintings to those of my winterscapes. I've decided that painting sand and it's variation in color/temp is not easy....a good thing to work on this summer.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Schlitz Audubon #46

Happy Syttende Mai everyone, that's Norwegian Independence Day for all you non-Norwegians out there. The lakefront at Schlitz was absolutely freezing this morning, but I thought I'm a hardy, tough Norwegian and better brave it out!

Black Tie Affair

This grouping of cows was a real challenge with all the interconnecting shapes and patterns. These cows were huddled together and looked as though they were having morning coffee and chatting about their plans for the day. It is 16 x 20.....will be on display at the Artbar " Summer in Wisconsin" show opening on Friday night.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Schlitz Audubon #45

Had a ton of fun painting these little kids scooping up stuff at Boardwalk Pond. All so eager to learn and discover. I even learned about a new turtle today (by listening in)'s a cute little Blanding Turtle with the distinctive yellow neck. This was my first attempt painting children at Schlitz.