Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Last of the Light

A month ago I was chasing the moon and went up to Lizard Head Pass to see where the moon would be rising.  As a waited, this scene just happened right in front of me and I couldn't resist.  It was a good thing too, because where the moon came up wasn't good looking anyway.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Moonlit Clouds

I have been chasing the moon this last two months and especially the moon behind clouds.  I awoke early one morning hoping to catch such a scene and was rewarded with this.  This is "en plain air", which is done on site as it is happening, which is why it is a little rough.  As you may imagine it is a little hard seeing the artwork and looking at a bright moon.  I use a headlamp and make sure it doesn't shine directly on the canvas, as that blinds you as well.  This will be used for a larger work soon.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Old Pump House Door

While I was home I took a drive with my mom to visit some of the old places that my grand parents and great grand parents had lived.  Many of the old houses were long gone and newer houses were taking their place.  One that is still standing is now a bed and breakfast, lovingly restored by the owners.  Over the years they have added out buildings but, luckily, many of the old out buildings still remain.  This is one view of the pump house with its door latching being replaced a few times.  The door knob is gone, an old hasp has been pulled out and re-nailed, and the final, concrete block in front of the door to secure it.  I didn't get it completely finished because I ran out of time and had to leave it to dry, but I got most of it.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Last of the Color

I have been out and about for the last week.  I attended the American Impressionist Society's symposium in Indianapolis last weekend then visited with my mom near St. Louis.  I always love getting a chance to paint here and I was lucky that there was still some color.  This scene is less than a mile from the earlier painting "The Road Home".  There is usually a flock of turkeys hanging out in this field, but it could be turkey season and they are laying low.  I used to hunt quail and pheasant with my father and these fall scenes bring back fond memories.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Leave The Light On Please.

This was the porch of guest house I was staying at while attending Plein Air Moab.  I would leave the light on because sometimes I would come back after dark and it is really dark in the country when there is no moon out.  I got up early one morning before sunrise and painted this familiar rustic scene. This painting won a Award of Merit at the Plein Air Moab this October.  I would like to give a shout out to my friend Sonya Johnson who also won an Award of Merit at Plein Air Moab for her beautiful pastel painting "Late Afternoon Glow on the Monocline".  Way to go girl!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Old Red

Well, after a bizarre 2 weeks of first, being evacuated from our home for a wild fire, then losing internet access for a week, I am finally getting back to posting.  Luckily the the wildfire took out no homes and everyone was safe.  I want to thank the brave men and women firefighters who fought on that line all night to save everyone's property and what an awesome bunch they are!

The internet got lost just after that because of an upgrade to the system, not the fire as I had thought!  It is a real eye opener to have no access for a week.  The bad, couldn't post or do much of anything I used to on the web,  the good, I got lots of things done that needed to be taken care of!

This is another old chair in front of "Back of Beyond Bookstore" in Moab that I did, post show for Plein Air Moab, just because I thought they had so much character.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

This was one of many wonderful views in Moab.  These old chairs were in front of Back on Beyond bookstore with their retro feel and funky peeling paint of various colors.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

These two pieces have been juried into the 11th annual Lone Tree Art Exhibition and Sale, that is opening at the Lone Tree Arts Center in Lone Tree, Colorado.  The opening is this Saturday, Oct. 20 from 3 - 5 p.m. so if you happen to be in the neighborhood, please come, see the show and say hello.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Last week was Plein Air Moab and I spent the whole week painting around that magnificent area.  This was the first one I did.  I was staying at a guest house near Fisher Tower and got up very early to catch a nice sunrise scene.  I drove up to Fisher Tower hiking trail, which was pitch black at the time and waited.  I became enamored with the silhouette of one of the towers, the early signs of the sun coming up with the faint image of the plants and rocks in the foreground.  I had to paint fast because it changed quickly but I liked the result.

A tip when painting at night or when you need light.  I found that if I hung my headlamp around my neck upside down, that it would illuminate the palette and the painting without blinding me to the scene beyond.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Although I haven't been posting for a while, I have been painting.  I have been in a slump and not many good paintings have been coming out.  The good news is that I recently returned from a workshop with T.A. Lawson, a brilliant artist and pretty nice guy too!  This class was a good kick in my slump and got me thinking in the right direction.

This was from the first day.  I never expect to get a good painting in a class but this one turned out okay.  I probably should have been working on landscape or structures but I got enamored with this hasp, its honest, down home quality with rust, peeling paint and all.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Road Home

I have gone home to visit my mother and I love visiting with her, but I also love sneaking out early in the morning to paint here.  This is the midwest and mornings can be soft and green.  Although there has been an awful drought here, it is still greener than my other home in southwest Colorado.

This scene holds many memories for me.  I practically lived on my horse when I was younger and this was usually where I went.  This area is next to a creek and it flooded often.  A wonderful way to pass hot, muggy days was to ride through the cool flood waters.  At this exact spot we had to dismount to save our lab, Buck, who had gotten caught in the swifter water just before he was swept into the main channel.  And here too was where I found my first leach, thankfully not on me, taking it home to examine.  When I was riding home this is the view I remember.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Lazy Day

When we were traveling near Yellowstone Park we stopped at the Grizzly and Wolf Center in West Yellowstone.  This is a great place to view grizzlies and wolves and learn all about them.

This bear was just happy to be out and decided to enjoy some sunshine.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The Morning March

We went on vacation recently.  I found myself going out to watch the sunrise every morning and being enthralled by the beauty of the light on the clouds,  with everything so peaceful and fresh.  On this morning there was a group of clouds rhythmically marching across the sky.

Sunday, July 8, 2012


This painting was hanging around my studio for a while waiting to be finished.  I was undecided about a few things and had to wait around for the sunset to be just right.  It was amazing how many times just when it was getting close, clouds in the west would block the sun.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Sunset Serenade

Until recently we have had no clouds around for quite a while, hence the excitement about clouds.  We are getting some rain but I wish it were more.  This was a nice sunset view from my house.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

This was the second day of the Mancos Open Studios Tour and the Weber Canyon fire.  The fire was much closer this day and the winds carried the smoke overhead covering the sun.  Those little bits of white and black stuck to the painting are actually ash from the fire.

Things are looking better there today but it is still only 15% contained.  This and the previous posted artwork are for sale and the purchase price will go directly to the Mancos Fire Department.  You can purchase it from the Goodnight Trail Gallery or you may contact me directly, because the gallery may be temporarily closed because of the fire.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Weber Canyon Fire, Day One

     On Friday a fire started up Weber Canyon near Mancos, CO.  Well before this fire broke out, we were to have our first Mancos Open Studio Tour this Saturday and Sunday.  I was painting in town on Saturday and the smoke and fire were all I could concentrate on so I painted it.  I decided that I will donate all the money to the Mancos Fire Department for their hard work at trying to get a jump on it.  Unfortunately it is tinder dry here and with winds the fire grew rapidly.  It has now taken about 6000 acres of land and, thankfully, so far no houses are involved.  If you wish to purchase this, or the other painting I will post tomorrow, you may call the Goodnight Trail Gallery in Mancos at 970-533-1177.  100% of the price of this painting is going to the Fire Crew.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Noon Moon

I have been out for a while.  My son just graduated from high school and I had quite a few family members come to visit for the occasion.  I had to spend a good deal of time just cleaning before they came, and recoup after, but it was well worth it to see everyone.  I truly enjoyed having them here.

I went out painting yesterday, up in the mountains with friend Veryl.  It was a glorious day and we wasted none of it.  This is up at the base of Helmet Peak in the LaPlata mountains.  I was looking for something fun to paint, when I turned around I noticed the moon hanging beautifully among the trees. I knew this was just what I was looking for.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Luna Chapel (Sharp's Studio)

This is a view to the immediate right of the previous painting and connected to the Couse house and was used as J. H. Sharp's Studio.  As I understand it they were next door neighbors and close friends.  This was an old chapel in the beginning that Sharp converted into his studio...lucky guy.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Couse House

While in Taos I wandered across the road from my hotel to visit the E. I. Couse house.  "Couse learned of Taos in May of 1902 through a conversation with his friend, Ernest Blumenschein. Two weeks later Couse arrived in northern New Mexico with his family to begin a lifetime of summer residency and the development of the oeuvre for which he became famous. He was one of the founders of the Taos Society of Artists in 1915 and its first president. A painter of Native Americans in Taos for the rest of his life, he was honored with many major prizes and awards. Couse died in 1936 after a long and distinguished career."  If you are in Taos make a reservation to see this place.

Thursday, May 10, 2012


Portrait group has been moved to Thursdays and today our model was this young man.  He struck such a wonderful contemplative pose I decided to title it so.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Morning Meditaton

While visiting Taos this weekend I stayed at Casa Benavides.  A wonderful bed and breakfast that has a long history in Taos.  The owner grew up there and was neighbors with E. I. Couse and J. H. Sharp who lived right across the street.  I was in my version of artist heaven.  

This scene greeted me just outside of my room in the mornings and I just couldn't resist trying to paint it.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

PAAC Show Taos

Summer Monsoons
Light in the Storm
Above are two of my pieces for the Plein Air Artists of Colorado show in Taos, NM this weekend.  I feel honored to have had two of my pieces juried into this show.  There are many outstanding artist in this group and if you are in the area on on May 5,  please come by and celebrate the opening with us at the Wilder Nightingale Gallery.   The accepted works are also available for your viewing pleasure and purchase through the PAAC website.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Another Old Timer

This old timer lives in Ridgeway, CO. right in front of a gorgeous old firehouse there.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Kickin' Up the Dust

This big guy lives down the road from me and was nice enough to hang around so I could get some photos and sketches of him.  Like most bulls they have to bellow, rub and kick up some dust to show how tough they are this time of year.

I am working on a larger version of this and needed to work out a few details so I painted this one.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Spring in the High Country

I went up to Lizard Head pass today to see how much snow is left up there.  It was a beautiful day so I set up and painted.  There were a few clouds casting shadows on the snow.  I am not sure what peak this is but it is near Vermillion peak.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Trout Study

We were supposed to be on Spring Break but my son and I came down with, I think, food poisoning.  We were pretty sick for a couple of days but are now recovering.  Since I was around I went off to do "portrait Wednesday".  Well the model must have ate at the same place because she was out too.

Since that was not an option we went down to the river near the fish hatchery.  Though the intention was maybe some river scene we ended up mesmerized by the beautiful fish at the hatchery and worked there instead.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Spring Reflections

This is the oldest cabin in the county.  It is hard to imagine a family living in this, especially through winter!  The phrase "cabin fever" must have come from this sort of living arrangement.

Monday, March 26, 2012

The Old Barn

I have always had a love for old barns and spent much of my childhood playing in them.  This old barn is part of one of the oldest ranches in this area and a favorite of mine.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

A Sudden Blizzard

This is a scene just outside of my studio.  A blizzard enveloped the area very quickly yesterday and stayed for a couple of hours.  As always, I am enamored with the softness of these kinds of scenes.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Model Study

I am taking a workshop this week at the Scottsdale Artists School with Aaron Westerberg.  He is a wonderful artist and teacher whom I highly recommend taking a class with.  Between class all day and open studios in the evenings, gallery walks and dinners with new friends, I haven't been able to post much.  This is from the Monday evening open studio portrait group here at the school.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Evening Color

This was done earlier but left the studio before I could get a picture of it.  Since it just came back I thought I would post it.

I am off to Scottsdale to attend a workshop by Aaron Allen Westerberg.  I will try and post what I can from that workshop.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Woman Reading

This is the second tonal sketch/painting of Mac from yesterday.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Woman Reading (Head Study)

It is portrait Wednesday again.  Today I brought my friend Mac to sit for us, a person I have long admired and wanted to paint.  She is a fiesty 91 year old that looks and acts much younger than her years.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Sun and Snow

Since it was a school holiday yesterday we went up to Telluride.  While the family went skiing I wandered down near the park where I could walk along a cleared trail to find something to paint.  Since the snow was up to the picnic table tops I decided to clear off a table top as my base of operations.  Wading out to the table was rather interesting with a backpack on. Although it was about 15ºF, the sun was warm and sitting out of the wind made it rather nice on my perch.  

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Snowy Eve

It has been snowing and the softness of evening, with the snow muting the landscape, has a zen like calm that I love to paint.

Thursday, February 16, 2012


This is from portrait Wednesday.  This has a full body to it but I am not happy with the lower half so I will probably just crop it to just this much.  Last weeks effort got into an unfortunate accident and had to be wiped.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

The Muddler Minnow

Well, I thought this was a Woolly Bugger for the longest time, but I stand corrected, it is a Muddler Minnow.  Love those names.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Wake Up Call

I saw this in an antique store a while back and really liked how unusual it was.  This is an old ringer box from an antique phone and somewhere in the 40's someone added a clock to it, hence the name.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012


It's portrait Wednesday again.  Today's model was David, a wonderful person and colorful character to boot!  I haven't finished it but wanted to post it anyway.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Scary Kewpie

I have been in a slump lately so I decided to do some small still life paintings to try and jump start myself.  I set up at least 3 different scenes but wasn't pleased with any of them...then I looked up.  There, staring down at me from the shelf above, lit from below like a horror flick was this Kewpie doll.  I figured it is good perspective practice, figure practice, lighting practice, plus a little fun.  This looks better in person, the photos I took just wouldn't cooperate.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Lost Canyon Light

This is a scene I have gone back to again and again, trying and capture it.  Yesterday morning was about 10ºF when I started and today was just a little better, at 20ºF.  I came up with a plan to park my car in such a way that I could sit, partially inside, with easel just outside the door.  Although my hands and knees took the brunt of it, I did fairly well cold wise.   Not the same for the rest of it.  Oil paint tends to get thicker when it's that cold and so did my medium.  It was a challenge, but just being there watching the morning light coming through the canyon illuminating this area was worth it in the end.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Learning the Ropes

This is an update from an earlier post.  I was unsure about the background and it made several changes before I was happy with it.  Anything that sets around the studio for a while runs the risk of being changed or scraped and repainted.