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Saturday, December 27, 2008

Another Fine Crystal Cove Oil Painting

This is "Crystal Cove - Cottage 12", oil on stretched 10X8 linen. It is from a trip I took there on November 6, 2008. I started it on location, got sidetracked by stunning weather that day and just picked it up in my home studio over a month later, then finished it right before Christmas. I took several digital images on site that day with my big DSLR Olympus camera, so I had perfect colors to paint from besides my memory of the place, which is very vivid. There was a single seagull sitting right on top of the cottage #12, so he is included in this painting. The colors in this are very, very vintage, earth toned and nostalgic. It is painted with a tribute to Rex Brandt and his ideas of using design motifs in landscape composition and staying true to values. I have been reading a 1959 book he wrote over and over again recently, it has taught me new ideas. I think it shows here.

Price is $145.00 in a wide gold plein air frame. It is presently hung at the San Clemente Art Gallery through February 13th.

By the way, you can now follow me on where I randomly make statements on what I am doing presently. It's a great internet social network that is fun!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Tropical Crystal Cove

Here is the latest painting from my Crystal Cove trip last weekend. I think I am starting a series from this scene. I will call the series "Tropical Crystal Cove" This particular painting is titled, "Tropical Oasis - Crystal Cove" oil on linen, 16X12. SOLD. This day was a cool morning with a serious storm brewing far out at sea. The sun was still shining during the first half of the day through the low clouds. I got to thinking that Crystal Cove does look like a tropical oasis with the palm trees and lush plant and tree growth along the shore amongst the quaint, rustic cottages of yesteryear. For this painting, I decided to add a tropical slant to the palm trees, it directs the eye into the painting. Since the edges of the canvas act as straight lines, I did not want to make the interior landscape appear stiff or static with straight palm trees. The main character palm with the splashing white water became the center focal point. The cottages rested back into the cove with filtered sunlight hitting them gently. Just at the front of the painting along the bottom edge is the Beachcomber restaurant shadowed by a tall shrub on the hill I was standing on. You could not see the Burger Shack, the shrub hid it well. I added splashes of blue-green paint daubs between the branches and leaves to give a hint it was there. I was actually at the top of the stairs that lead up to the bluff cottages. I made sure I added the telephone/electric poles and the lines draping across, they also are tilted. There were many more lines than this, but I could not wreck the painting by adding them all. I wanted to draw the viewer from the bottom left corner or right corner so I made the sand light up along the paths and leading it along the path in front of the cottages to the ocean and big palm and out to sea. The clouds were truly banded across the sky with gray bottoms and fluffy white pillow tops, then a large shape of bright blue sky peeping through. There was so much detail to record in this scene that I had to edit out many frivolous things. You still get the picture and can fill in your own details, there are an incredible amount of colorful paint strokes in this painting. I think this scene should be painted much larger to capture more detail, like little fences, window trims, doors and people on the beach taking walks. This was quite a feat to capture the correct values and tints of color to make the scene readable and still look good even if it was transformed to black and white. Rex Brandt said if a painting doesn't look good in black and white, it is not going to look it's best in color. I was keep myself in balance in my color blends and all the while keeping cognisant of the true colors of the scenery. Crystal Cove's colors are unique and best recorded on location. This was started on sight and finished in my home studio. I have been painting here for five years now, so I use my memory, sketches, notes and digital images to paint from. I have kept some of my Crystal Cove paintings to hold dear in my heart the memories of a fabulous day or weekend trip. They also help me to be accurately mixing the unique colors of everything when I am painting at home. So, this painting is a true rendition of that beautiful place by the shore. This will be for sale. I will place it up for auction on eBay. Click on this link to go to the auction, starting bid is $175.00, It is now SOLD to a customer who wanted a Crystal Cove painting as a Christmas gift to his wife. Sweet! Enjoy this wonderful time of the year! Happy Holidays! Esther

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Crystal Cove paintings

I was painting here on Friday, December 12th and it was turning out to be a nice painting. I had to bring it home unfinished but I came back with it on Sunday December 14th to finish it on location. Well, someone stole it from the unloading spot where I left it while I took my wagon down to the Beachcomber. Whomever took it got an unfinished, wet oil painting that I hope stuck to their clothes and ruined them. I put several hours into that piece, it cost me money for a linen canvas and I had to start it all over again because I really loved this scene. So, Sunday afternoon, I began it again. It is not done yet, I got sidetracked. I show an image of it on location here. Actually, I like this one better, it taught me one thing, not to turn your back on your painting, but the next best thing it taught me, never throw in the towel, try again and you will do even better. I had everything in my head how to set up the composition and I even changed it for the betterment of the painting design. I am about to finish it today in my studio. I will add an image later. Well, my husband & I stayed overnight on Sunday in the cottage and partied a little too much. I was wiped out the next day and it was a day that went in my favor as it poured down rain. No painting allowed in that drenched situation. A couple we met took a picture of us on the deck and you can see in my red nose, I had already been hitting the champagne. Just look at that sunset, it was truly divine! Then during the night, the storm hit and I was not sleeping well with rain hitting on ocean front windows sideways. I felt seasick the next morning! I could not even look at the turbulent waves coming in, it made me very woozy and I love looking at the waves. The champagne and wine we drank was making it's own waves, I was so sorry I had that much. I took a picture right through the large kitchen window before we left and it shows the downpour conditions. I like that picture a lot though. I would love to paint that scene someday. So, I did not paint a lot like I had planned, but we met wonderful people and gained new friends.

Crystal Cove Stormy Weather Below

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Work 'til you can't stand no more

That's when I have to drop everything and stop painting for awhile. I ran myself ragged last week completing three new plein air paintings. I've been resting a bit lately. I got into one of those frenzied creative states, pursuing the perfect painting. Friday, November 14th I painted at the San Clemente Pier. Steve Kell was demonstrating down there. I took one look and decided to find myself a spot to paint instead before the perfect morning light passed me by. I was mesmerized by the tide coming in by the pier under the heavy posts. Many designs and colors just cried out to be captured. I love water and even love painting it more. So here is "San Clemente Pier-Incoming Tide" 8X10, oil on linen. It is on eBay right now, I will add a link later.

I kept pretty busy at home doing housework during that week also. It hadn't been done in a moon or two. I do my housework in big stunts, like taking apart the whole place and re-arranging everything once it is cleaned. I think that caused the ultimate collapse, the old gray mare just ain't what she used to be. I still didn't fall down yet. I discovered a book by Rex Brandt that I had hiding under some magazines. It is hand signed by him, it is called "The Composition of Landscape Painting." 1959 and it is a fantastic instruction book by this genius of a man. I have been reading it off and on. I am inspired to try out new theories as stated by Rex Brandt on how to arrange the shapes and colors to direct attention in the painting. On November 16th, I went hiking down the canyon to the old orange groves I love so much. Seems the pomegranates were ripening. My husband & I picked bag fulls. I discovered many new fall landscapes to paint on that hike. I made a mental note to come back with sketch book. But I got happens.

On Thursday, November 20th, I met with Jeff Horn and other's from LPAPA at Balboa Island to paint. I saw this pair of boats and the little one, actually called a dinghy had this algae growing on it's top. It glowed in the foggy mist. Then the sun tried to come out and glistened all over the water. The shadow behind this dinghy and the zig-zag reflection of the sail boat mast really cinched the composition. I had to capture that effect. Here is "Take Me On the Water-Balboa", 8X10, oil on linen.

On Friday November 21st, it was another plein air day at Crystal Cove State Park, Pelican Point. I got there fairly early and found a bluff that had a standing area perched right on the edge of a wonderful southern view of the cottages tucked into the bay and the bluffs cascading down the shore. PCH was a line with light dots for cars. The sun was coming over the far hillside and there was smoke along the horizon making the sky a buttery yellow. There was a haze cast over everything, it just looked so soft and dreamy. This was a hard one to paint. I took out a 14X14 gallery thick canvas for lack of another ready canvas. I had a lot to decide upon in placing the composition on the canvas. I think it worked out well. Here is "Crystal Cove Cliffs-Morning Haze" Oil on canvas. Man, do I like this painting, it doesn't show up as well as it looks in real life.
The next day, I went to the Randy Higbee Gallery Auction to see how my fellow artists works were selling. It was a nice crowd but sales were down, still they bid for the works. I almost got into this auction but was too late to drop off my best pieces. The wine was good though and my artist friends were all too funny. We went to Jeff Horn's annual studio sale next. Jeff is so talented, I really like his style. I had more wine and some delicious cake!
So, it was finally time for my body to throw in the white towel. On Sunday, November 23rd, I was a limp noodle. I could not lift my head for very long, my body felt drained of all it's powers. The timing seemed alright to me, I feel that my painting techniques took on a new height, I climbed the mountains and deserved to collapse. There are times when an artist feels they hit upon something big, it is unexplainable. The subconscious knows and the artist feels this newness through the hands onto the canvas. Maybe that's why I was running all over the place, I felt I was going to find something, like a treasure map with the gold at the end. Now I am going to apply the concepts of composition and color and values, lines and texture in a whole new way. Or maybe just a little different than before. Watch my work over the next months, you'll see. Happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Crystal Cove vacation

We (just my husband & I) stayed at Crystal Cove for three days from November 7-10 in a small room in one of the lodges. I didn't mind the small room for I wasn't going to spend much time in it. I did sleep, but not very well, the sound of the waves crashing hard the first night was very loud. I was excited to greet the dawn of light early the next morning. To be at Crystal Cove around the clock for three days was causing my spirit to fly pretty high and be restless. On Saturday I watched Kevin Short do a Demo for the Crystal Cove Alliance. He works so fast, I met some of his collectors and we all had great conversation. I later met with a good friend/artist, Veronica Kortz, whom I invited to come down to paint with me. I think it was too great of a beautiful day as several hundred beach goers came to enjoy the day also. I tried to paint, but the noise and people were too distracting. I thought it was better to enjoy the day on the coast and throw in the towel. So, on Sunday, learning from that lesson, I stayed on my deck of the lodge and set up a canvas. I was high up from the waters edge and the view was fantastic up the coast with the row of un-restored cottages scattered up ahead. The winds were blowing 20 knots and the canvas had to be bungie corded to the rail. I almost needed to be tied down also. But I stayed committed to the scene off the north side of the Cove and pulled off a great painting. The title is "Crystal Cove Relics", 16X12, oil on linen.
Just as I finished a crowd of people checked in one of the other rooms. It was supposed to be two people checking in, but they asked a dozen more to come and party with them. My painting was hung in the large kitchen up high so I wouldn't have to breath the oil paint during the night. I was also worried about people touching it. Sure enough, the party of folks made a big to-do about the painting at the start of their dinner in the kitchen. Everyone wanted to adopt it or show it in their home or walk away with it. Several people said they would be my gallery host. Anyway, they became very excited and vocalized it over that painting, I guess it impressed them! I was honored by the compliments and opened my wine bottle to enjoy the rest of the evening with my husband seeing that they had their fair share of wine already. We had a night walk along the cottages and it really was nice and mysterious, I could feel and hear the spirits of old Crystal Cove in some of those cottages.
On Monday, I tried to paint on the tide pool reefs as the tide was out. I got along pretty well into the painting and my husband showed up with a sandwich. Well, so did a hundred seagulls and one snowy white egret. I took time to photograph them and visit, it broke my concentration along with the tide coming in. I decided one painting in three days was good enough reluctantly. At least I took 500 digitals with my Olympus SLR, it is a fine camera. We enjoyed the sunset and packed up to go home. It was sad leaving there, I could only imagine how the former permanent residents felt when they had to move from there. The good thing is I can do day trips there anytime since we live 20 minutes away. I have fallen in love with this place and will continue to explore it, paint it and photograph it.
Funny thing is, a few days later, I sold a Crystal Cove painting I produced earlier this year on eBay to a former summer resident. She stayed there from the time she was born to her college years, from the early 1950's on. She shared stories with me and I was so delighted to hear them. She also was the niece of Roger Kuntz, a well-known early CA impressionist. The likelyhood of this was uncanny, I feel highly honored that she owns her uncle's art and now one of mine. To your right is Crystal Cove Vintage Cottages, now sold.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Close to Home Landscape

It was a dimly lit afternoon and a storm front was coming in from the west behind me. I had a deadline to paint a 14X11 work for the Socalpapa online exhibition that same day. I drove 2 blocks with my Jeep loaded up with my painting easel and supplies to the edge of the canyon. I live close by a beautiful trail that steeply descends to open space by San Juan Capistrano. On top of the hill it is Laguna Niguel, once you go past the eucalyptus tree on the trail you enter SJC with incredible vistas of hills and valleys. I have admired the majesty of this eucalyptus tree for several years, I knew one day I would paint it. So here it is finally on a 14X11, linen over board, titled "Eucalyptus, Last Glimmer of Light". It was 4pm, the left over splashes of sun between the clouds was actually behind me, it was casting spotty light on the tree's trunks and branches. The scrub weeds in front of the tree had dried flowers also catching some light. Although it was beyond the tree's overhanging branches that I captured the last glimmer of light on the SJC hills way over on the other side of the corridor. That look just sang to me, the arrangement of the natural plant growth appeared to point to the tree, the trail was positioned in a gentle curve and had been trodden upon endlessly by hikers, bikers and horses. The trunk and branches of the tree gave strong lines towards the narrow bit of light on the distant horizon. It was mine to enjoy and render for a short time. I worked furiously while bikers whizzed by, they were surprised to see a painter. I was surprised to see so many mountain bikes, it seems this place is getting more popular through word of mouth. Still, it is open space and just a couple of minutes from my door. I was standing off the trail in a bunch of prickers, it was not smart to wear sandals. I am sure they heard a couple of Ow-ow's from me. Next time I will wear boots. I have been down at the bottom of the canyon to paint the old orange groves before, they are on private land. I always had to wear boots down there because of the many rattle snakes and wood ticks that inhabit this area. So, I was leery to go down the trail on this dark day because I suspected the snakes would startle me. I said to myself, why travel so far when I have an abundance of nature so close to me, waiting to be captured on canvas? I played it safe and was better off for it. I will do this giant tree more honor another time. This is just the first time to try to understand it's design, it's essence, it's glory. I will wait to see the results of this online judging by November 15th before I decide where to offer this for sale.

Orchids Blooming

During a one week period, I acquired an orchid centerpiece from a charity function my husband and I attended. I decided to paint one of the orchids before they wilted on a 6X6 gesso covered board. It was so enjoyable to do. Just as I finished that work, an orchid of my very own decided to open it's annual bloom. I was more than happy to paint it's gorgeous flower. It prompted me to go out and buy orchid fertilizer to get my other ones blooming. I have half a dozen or more. I am anxiously waiting because I love this new series. I might just have to buy a few more orchids. These 6X6 size little works of art are quick daily paintings that offer me satisfaction of doing an alla prima (painted in one session) painting. I placed the subject in a morning light on my dining room table just to capture the natural light of the sun on the flowers. I tilted the little beauties so there was a cast shadow and the focal point was just off-center. I used thick applications of paint for an impasto (raised paint) look. I like how they look so real but are truly an artistic abstraction of each flower. I will probably place these for auction on eBay. I will add a link later. Orchids are actually called epiphytes, a plant that grows on anther plant. I did a report on them back in high school or college and got an A. I have always been attracted to them.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Montage Resort Viewpoint

On Friday, October 17th, I painted on a bluff at the Montage Resort Hotel property. There were several other Southern California Plein Air Painters (SOCALPAPA) on a paint-out there. I am a member of that association. I got there early and stayed by myself to concentrate. I found the third bluff to be a great viewpoint looking southeast. I could see a strong composition in the close bougainvilleas, jade plants and other plants that lead into the ocean cliffs and waves, then the distant shoreline and South Laguna hillside. The amount of diffusion in color and value from the foreground to background was complicated and I felt a need to simplify it poetically. I placed warm and strong colors on the garden plants and carried the warmth into the next bluff that was lit by the sunlight. Onward to the second bluff, it was in shadow and cool, such a beautiful contrast that was a joy to represent by grays, muted greens and blues. The Montage buildings were nestled on the cliff which I noted very basically to not draw attention but give a sense of place. Off to the right on the bluff was the bright sunlight dancing on the waves and shoreline. A cool morning marine layer lingered up the Coast Royale neighborhood up in the hills. The palms are a nice added detail that also represent the actual landscaping. It was a very clear day and warm, I spent most of my time preparing the colors I saw on my palette after I painted in a very warm-red-orange under layer. I sculpted out the composition into this base sketch so I could capture the morning shadows and lights in their specific design. Once I made all my piles of colors and various hues and values, I packed up and left. That wasn't how I wanted to do it, but with kids in school, I had to go. So, later in the evening at my home studio, all I had to do is download my digital images on my laptop and pour a glass of chardonnay, turn on the classical music and paint for three straight hours. The painting process flowed so well because I had focused so well on the scene earlier, made up the color puddles that I saw while on location and had a tight preliminary drawing of shadows and lights ready to guide me. The digital image on my laptop served as a reference, but my artist spirit and wisdom did the rest. I am very happy how this painting turned out as it really takes you into to the canvas and carries you along the cliffs to the shore and off to the sky. There is a melody to the seascape, maybe it was the music, I love Classical music. It places my emotions at ease and enables me to relax my body. I stroke the brush to the rhythms of the music sometimes like a conductor, it is so liberating. Just as music is full of many notes and changes in tempo, a painting's brushstrokes are also just as diverse. Both are art and one enriches the other. I will always play music to help me be more expressive in my art. I show two images, the first is the seascape on location with my fire red looking sketch. That color really helped the painting as it shows through in little tidbits of the finished piece to truly warm it up. This is a 12" X 12" gallery canvas, 1-1/2" thick sides, I painted them a blue-green. It does not need a frame. The title is "A Montage Viewpoint" and it is available. email me if interested. Price is $250.00 and is hung at the San Clemente Art Gallery until either sold or by January 9th 2009. Just an added note: This painting received an honorable mention in this Winter Judged show at the San Clemente Art Gallery!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Crystal Cove, Ca paint-out

On Thursday, October 16th, the Laguna Plein Air Painters had a paint out with a demo by Armand Cabrera who is an artist in the Laguna Art Museum's 10th Annual Plein Air Invitational. I arrived a little late and wasted no time to run down the beach to set up my easel facing south. Instead of watching the demo, I wanted to paint the subdued morning light. I saw a beautiful arrangement of low light on the last cottage with a point of perspective on the bluff beyond that faded out to a second misty bluff. Over the edge of the bluff was the kiss of light upon it and I was swooned. When I opened up my easle, I realized that I forgot my paints. I ran back towards the demonstration spot and asked Nancy Egan if I could borrow her oils, she was so kind to hand me her tub of Classic Oil Paints. I hadn't tried them yet so I ran back to my place and squeezed out my palette and then ran back to return the paints. I really didn't want to loose that special morning light. I moved very fast to set up the worksketch on the linen canvas. As soon as I was done with my preliminary sketch, the sun came over the bluff and shined on that last brown shake cottage with blue trim. All of that low light was gone. Incidentally, that is the cottage that was used for the set of "Beaches" with Bette Midler and Barbara Hershey. So, I had already put down the shadows in my sketch and lifted out the light areas and I was ready to lay in my colors from memory. I spent three hours on my little 8X10, 1 hour was used to eat my breakfast on the sand and contemplate how I would finish the painting to make it special. I felt a fire in me this day to churn out a beauty. I wanted it to be done alla prima, an 8X10 would be no problem for me. It turned out better than I thought it would in fact. I wondered if it had anything to do with the Classic Oil Paints? They went onto the linen with the ease of a gliding iron, the ending sheen was brilliant. I was excited as I neared the end of the painting. I had to leave to pick up a daughter from high school, so I thought I better not have anything more to do on it when I leave. All went as planned and I even had nice compliments from a Crystal Cove worker plus some visitors. It was a fine day that left me feeling so good to be alive and thankful to be an artist. The title of this little jewel is "Edge of Morning". email me if you would like to purchase one like this for $150.00. I have given this one to my husband, Tom, who fell in love with it. I can paint another but not exactly alike this one. I can place it into a beautiful dark wood plein air frame for another $80.00.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Pondscape explorations

A new painting! This one took me a week, it started last Friday October 3rd at the San Juan Capistrano Mission. I had personal family problems off and on the whole week. One absurdity after another, no wonder I am a crazy artist. So, I worked on this in segments in the studio. It turned out to be a good thing as I discovered ways to layer the wet oil paint over dry oil paint that added multiple auras of color. This is one rich painting in the sense of 3 dimensions because I carefully chose each color layer with alternating values. Say, the gold Koi, he is not just one value of orange and not just orange either, he is layers of deep rusty orange, gray, mauve, ice cream orange and so on with a compliment of blue streaked across him to convey he is under water. He is swimming through dark murky waters and the light gradually reveals his shape. I staggered the lily pads around in a design from warms to cools, they lead up to the violet lily on the left with the unopened pods behind it. Then your eyes go back upwards to the second lily which is lighter in value and hue. That lily touches the reflections of water Iris reeds that are actually out of the scope of the painting, but their reflection tells you they are just on the edge of the pond. At the front of the painting there are also reflections of the trees overhead. The lily pad in the bottom right is dying and half sunk into the dark waters. All of this is to give you a real feeling of the pond's depth, the koi's motion, the lily flowers and pads resting on water and the light reflecting off the water's surface. It's all a wholesome, cohesive pondscape. Hence the title, "Pondscape #1." Oh, there will be more of these paintings, I am becoming immersed in this type of landscape, which really is not a landscape since there isn't any land. My big mistake was entering the previous 30" wide painting into a landscape exhibition. It was rejected and I cried for a bit, but I am over it now. Next time, I will drive out to the country and paint a bunch of trees over the dirt. I'll make it pretty, don't worry. I could've slapped myself for being so ignorant about 'landscapes', but my artist spirit was too wrapped up in the lily pond at the mission. I was thinking of Monet too, his waterlily masterpieces are huge and not showing the land at all. It is all on dirt though. I could paint a much larger painting next time to show the whole fountain, the trees, the mission arches, the Koi, lilies and the works. It would have to be huge, a least 4 feet wide. I think I just convinced myself, I happen to have several gallery canvases that big. Since the weather is turning cold, I can do studio paintings until next spring. Ah, but the call of the wild gets to me and I have to pack my plein air easle and head for the coast. I will be painting at Crystal Cove next Thursday in fact with LPAPA in fact. The moon is getting near full and I live on top of a canyon overlooking San Juan Capistrano Hills. I could do a moonlit landscape, oh the possibilities! Right now though, my head is light, no food for six hours. Bye for now. I think I am going to list this "Pondscape #1" on eBay. CLICK HERE TO GO TO THE AUCTION.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Refreshing Waterlily Pond

I have entered this piece into the Southern California Artist's Association exhibit called Points of View. I also just became a member of that group. I am excited about this membership as it encompasses several styles of art, not just plein air. So, I can freely enter studio pieces into several exhibits each year. This latest waterlily piece measures 30" W X 12" H and is oil on hand stretched Belgian linen. After reading up on several of my art books on Monet this week, I was ready to delve into my own rendition of waterlilies. Mind you, I didn't just study Monet for a few days, he has been the focal point of my old master, great artist studies for years. I've been to see countless paintings of his in several museums, I am in awe of his work. I read his Retrospective book of 400 pages twice. So, when I read that sometimes he used a pink undercoating on his canvas, that is what I experimented with on this piece. Little peeks of it show through the layers of paint to lend a cool atmosphere and compliment the yellow-green lily pads and flower stalks. Very warm colors are in the foreground. Compliments and split compliments are dragged to create a scintillating effect in this piece. There is a dancing light effect across the pond and the delicate waterfall cascading down the fountain. I felt that was the refreshing part of the whole reason I painted this scene. The way the water hit the pond and caused the ripples, the coolness of the air surrounding the pond kept me wanting to stay there forever. Although I only took this canvas there for two hours, captured the bones of the painting and finished it at my home studio. I worked from my former lily painting, digital images, Monet's influence and my own artist soul. I was amazed at how I departed from the first worksketch that is on this blog into a wider more light filled abstraction. I discovered how an artist can truly evolve by doing a succession of paintings based on the same subject. I will like to go further the next time, painting an even larger piece, it sparked a pleasant monster out of me.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

In the Swing of Things

I have been given permission to use a quote made by Jean Stern, author/museum director in Orange County about my SOLD painting Lido Theatre Night:
"It's very good, I like it. I think you captured the intensity of the theater lights and the excitement of going to the movies at night. It also presents the magic of the experience."
I am delighted to finally be noted by an esteemed individual in the art world. He also said he will be looking for my future works with interest.
I am pleased to reveal my latest work that I started at the Mission San Juan Capistrano and completed in my studio. I had to add more color intensity in the studio to the waterlilies and lily pads. This was sort of a workstudy in progress, so I placed it on eBay, it is now SOLD. Waterlilies Dream I am including the image of it in this post also. I will place more workstudies on eBay so you can bookmark my eBay Seller's List, or check back here for specific listings.
Tomorrow evening I will be exhibiting in the San Clemente Art Walk, the last one of the year. It is on Avenida Del Mar, there will be lots of us, the last hoorah of the season. I will have some good prices on paintings that are really nice. Come support us artists!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Newport Peninsula Art Exhibition

I survived another week of a plein air competition at Newport Peninsula, barely. This was a tough one to do on my muscles and bones. We had a Fine Art Outdoor Show last weekend in addition to the juried exhibition. Friday evening, the 12th about 60 artists had a great time and awards were given. I had a work juried into the show, it felt good to be recognized by Cynthia Britain the esteemed judge of this show. It is the Lido Theatre Night and I show it here. SOLD I also show an image of it on location. It was a unique experience to me to paint at night, I thoroughly enjoyed it. Presently, it is hanging at the new Rainey Fine Art Gallery on Balboa Blvd and will be moved to the Newport Nautical Harbor Museum as works sell there. There were so many entries that there wasn't room in the museum for all 80 entries. On the weekend, the whole lot of us artists had such a good time relating to each other while sales were very slow. One of my neighbor artists took a picture of me in front of my booth. We seemed to become a family that weekend, the SOCALPAPA association is a loving group of artists. The Balboa Fun Zone as you see the ferris wheel in the background did not bring out the art collectors in droves, it brought out lookie loos I called them. Still the carnival type atmosphere with carousel music made us feel festive and the food all around was great! A large slice of pizza cost $2.50, there were funnel cakes, ice cream, so we all ate too much! Now I must lose 10 lbs, it's the start of an exercise program for me. After almost a week of trying to get some rest (this show drained me) I saw a Jean Stern lecture on early California Impressionists that lifted my spirits immensely. I went painting yesterday at the Mission San Juan Capistrano with unbridled joy. I will place a post with pictures on my latest 'waterlilies dream' painting later.... bye for now, Esther

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

In the competition!

On Sunday September 7, I entered my weary self into the SOCALPAPA Paints the Peninsula competition. The night before I was up until 2am designing my new website, It is launched prematurely and still under construction, but at least the home page, contact page, blog page and gallery collection is visible. I spent a few years studying Macromedia Dreamweaver, a ridiculously difficult web design program with tons of bells and whistles to it. I have a lot more to learn with that program, but I wanted a website that reflected my need to show my creativity and hands into everything I make. I hand sculpted a gold logo of my signature, hand extracted paint tubes for navigation bars and even an antique gold frame to showcase my latest works. There is supposed to be a belgian canvas background, I have to figure how to float it behind my main frames still. Adobe Dreamweaver's website has the greatest knowledge base to ask questions.
Well, I got off to a great start at the Balboa Island Pavillion on Sunday. I started a 16X12 painting around 3pm, it took me awhile to find the right subject with lots of interesting colors and lighting. I show here three images of the spot I found. Keep in mind that the painting is not done. I am going back today to finish it this afternoon. I was kept company by lots of interesting people, fisherman, tourists and even a 75 year old lady who cleans soda cans off the fishing boats when they dock in the evening. Oh, the Pelicans were my favorite creature, I must paint one, maybe today. I love them! All day long they wandered around the dock I was at. I took lots of pictures and so did a fellow artist I was with Veronica Kortz, we loved the whole area. It's fun to know I can go here to Balboa Island and bask in the sun painting, then wander around looking at the sights each day this week. The completion is Friday when we turn in two paintings. There is a reception that night at the Newport Harbor Nautical Museum 6PM-9PM, Sept 12th. Then Saturday and Sunday Sept 13th & 14th, I will have a booth in front of the museum during our outdoor art sale from 10Am - 6PM. Come see us all, there is going to be the most gorgeous art! Remember, this is PLEIN AIR art, done on location. Bye for now, I have to run, I feel like I am in the Olympics running, no, swimming! Esther :>)

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Working Harder Than Ever!

I am publishing the new website in it's infant stage just to knock off the old one. So, if you see some missing links and images, I will correct them. I am working very late tonight on it as tomorrow I have to register for a week long paint out in Newport Beach. I will be painting en plein air Sunday through Thursday at the Balboa Island area. Then on Friday I turn in two paintings at the Newport Harbor Nautical Museum near the Balboa Fun Zone. Also both Saturday and Sunday I am doing an outdoor art exhibit and sale with Socalpapa. It should be fun. More later! Go to visions2art to see my website.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Hi there! My first blog posting!

I am just about ready to launch my newly designed website. It may be done in the next couple of days. I've had a dinosaur website for 8 years now. I am adding this blog to it, there will be a link to this page from my website, If you go there and see a sepia toned antique victorian lady floating across the top banner, it still is the old website. My new one will have paint tubes for navigation bars that I designed in Adobe Photoshop CS2. I also will have an antique gold gilded frame to house my thumbnails of my latest works on the front entry page. It is going to be a beauty of a website, I am excited about it. Above is a small thumbnail image of one of my recent plein air paintings from my 5 day trip to the High Sierras. All of my older works will be gone, it's time for the new works to shine. So, be ready to get an eyeful soon! Esther