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June, 2011

Symbolic Stars & Stripes

As we approach this all-American holiday weekend I was remembering that I had painted elements from the flag in my illustration for the Utah Opera’s production of the “Grapes of Wrath”. This is a truly American story of persevering through hard times. My illustration portrays Tom Joad alone against a landscape that cuts through him as a symbol of his dependence on the land for his very life. The parched colors of that landscape portray how the drought of the 1930s has made his life impossible. A simple house that sits alone in the background was his family’s home, now left behind. Small overloaded farm trucks travel under the big sky and across the dusty brown and ochre ribbons of plowed land that become the stripes and stars of the American flag, the promise of a better life. Joad is dominant in the center of the illustration, symbolizing the strength and will of the dust bowl migrants. The billowing clouds overhead represent hope and possibility.

Tuesday Tea Time

Today’s tea cup is another in the geometric series I have started. This cup is an exploration of squares…a square cup and square saucer and sugar cubes. It seemed to satisfy my craving for balance in design just as a little something sweet satisfies. One lump or two?
“Sugar Cube Cup”, digital illustration

Water & Air Feed the Soul

It’s summertime and what feeds my soul is a blue sky with billowy clouds, birds in flight, and listening to the sound of water in a cool canyon creek. These things usually find their way into my paintings in one form or another. My painting above is an allegorical representation of water and air in their intertwined relationship with one another. I love the dreamy quality, the fluidity of the shapes and the color combinations in this piece. Art is food for the soul at anytime – good for your spirit, inspiring and life enhancing. What things in life lift your spirit and feed your soul? Do you live with art that inspires and speaks to you?
“Water & Air”, gouache on paper, 12 x 16 inches, $700

Tuesday Tea Time

Going through some of my paintings from years past I saw this and thought it would be a perfect Tuesday Tea Time post. I painted “Two Tea Cups” in 2003 and it has a nice larger companion piece called “Jars and Vases” which was reproduced as a print. Both of these paintings are from a series of still lifes and have a nice combination of color and pattern. The tea cups are whimsical references to fine china patterns. Now I am thinking about how much I enjoy making a proper afternoon tea with assorted little sandwiches – two of my favorites are cucumber, and black olive with cream cheese – and other nibbles such as cookies, fruits and cheeses and drinking tea out of a china cup. But I’ll get back to my painting for now and save that treat for this coming weekend.
“Two Tea Cups”, acrylic on canvas, 26 x 32 inches, $1,500

Still Life with Energy

I usually create my paintings in the water-based paints — gouache, acrylic, or watercolor — but I do enjoy the buttery richness of oil paints too. This painting of vases and flowers is one in a series of lively still lifes I have painted in oils. My husband and I have a collection of pottery vases in shades of blue and green and while the pottery in the painting are my stylized interpretations, the actual vases that I love still provide me with the inspiration. The painting above is currently on display at Caffe Niche in Salt Lake City.
“A Green Vase and Two Blue”, oil on canvas, 16 x 20 inches, $1,200

Tuesday Tea Time

Purple and green is a favorite color combination of mine. Those two colors seem to work together in most any shade. This is a lighthearted illustration I did a while back that has a teacup on it so I thought it would be appropriate to post it today for tea time. It was on the front of a direct mail piece promoting an event at a gift and home accessories store called New Orientation. And, you’ll find it right on the home page of their website. If you are in need of an actual teacup…you can find it in their wonderful little shop!

Breakfast with Art

This morning I stopped at Caffe Niche to snap a few photos of my paintings there and someone was nice enough to take a shot of me.

I liked seeing people having coffee and breakfast amongst my art hanging around the restaurant.
One of the things that I enjoy about being an artist is hearing people’s comments and thoughts about my art. Please stop by Caffe Niche, have a look around and let me know what you think. Thanks!

Tuesday Tea Time

Sitting on the patio with a cup of tea over the weekend—hanging out with my two cats, reading, musing, and painting a small watercolor. A small painting may get started here but usually gets finished in the studio. The light and weather outdoors is too unpredictable to stay out for many hours painting. I do admire those plein air landscape painters who brave the temperature outdoors—too hot or too cold—the wind and the insects. For me the mornings this past weekend were temperate, beautiful and apparently inspiring.

“Cup with Blue Vase”, watercolor, 10 x 7 inches

How it all started and my companion.

Enjoy an Artful Meal at Caffe Niche

Hungry for an aesthetic experience…or just plain old hungry? Treat yourself to a delicious meal at Caffe Niche surrounded by my art throughout the month of June!

The paintings on display are works from three recent and ongoing series. The gouache pieces are based on my interest in allegory, symbolic representations of nature, women, and colorful themes. The watercolor and oil paintings are expressions of my love affair with pottery vases and the exuberant feelings I get from flowers. The acrylic on plywood paintings allow me to paint intuitively and spontaneously brushing and scraping paint, leaving the grain of the wood revealed to express a raw emotional quality in contrast to the calm and peaceful figures. At the heart of my art—besides my love for lyrical line—is a pursuit of harmony in color interaction and balance of shape and form. I hope my art offers you feelings of serenity, contentment, and a sense of discovery.