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    A Holding Pattern  and the Struggle to Land N ow more than ever do you find yourself asking "How am I doing?" How many times have you said, "It's been a  really weird   year"?  It seems trivial to say the big challenges are about readjusting our daily lives. Over the past eight months, we've had to reconfigure how to shop and keep 6' apart, attend school, see the doctor, enjoy a dinner out....and just breathe!  So, just last week as I was painting on a most difficult piece and pondering my personal challenges, I decided that the phrase   "Life imitates art"   is relevant more than ever.  Are my struggles at the easel in effect, in sync with the world around us? Why yes they are. Let me explain. On my easel sits a piece that is   whooping my butt !  I would work for 4 hours on a particular area of the piece, resolving all the problems of the world upon my easel. Then.... the following day I'd return to my studio and scrape it all off!  A
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Chosen Faculty for Plein Air LIVE!

Sharing a bit of shameless self promotion. I've been asked to be on staff for the Beginner's Day, April 14th at the 2021 Plein Air Live event. Join me and others as I share tips, tricks, and advised experience on painting outdoors. Pastels have their own qualities that make plein air a very rewarding experience...but there are some pitfalls and challenges too. My focus will be on plein air with pastels along with other Professional artists teaching Oil, Watercolor, and Acrylic for the Plein Air Live "Beginners Day". Boot up your computer, laptop, or smartphone, grab a note pad, and your sense of humor to learn and laugh along with me and other professional artists as I demonstrate my method with pastels en plein air. This "Beginners Day" is available through registering for the Plein Air Live event. Learn more at Plein Air Live April 14-17th HERE !

An Artist's Voice Is Not Heard

  An Artist's Voice   Is Not Heard Grandpa's Barn, Creswell, OR.  Demolished c..2010   I'm hoping all is well with you and are getting through your summer unaffected by all the bad news out there. It's been so difficult to find positive in our world, and as an artist, I feel a deep responsibility to bring some beauty into your life.  You see, it's more of a calling and I must do what I am destined to do.  So hand over the reins for a minute and hear me out, OK?  So over the past ten months, give or take, I have been feeling something brewing in my artwork that was not apparent to me until last week.  As the paintbrush was burning up the easel, my work began to steer towards barns and rural life.  Simple subjects. Things that I could relate to on a deeper level.  And through discussion and feedback from my collectors and artist peers, there seems to be a common thread that is felt in my most recent work:   Nostalgia   Fond melancholy Calm Hope Resolve and all those f
    Keeping It Light  . . . . . . in Uncertain Times   I sure hope all is well with you during these uncertain times.   I'm doing my best to stay vertical under all the circumstances thrown at me. Sometimes I could compare each day to a dartboard game, and then when I go out painting, the world becomes a beautiful place to just be.   So when life's situations get a little out of bounds, ever more than now, I just gotta make a little fun!  We've all heard that laughter is the best medicine, and honestly, I am sort of a fan of this humorous drug. I love how my heart and body feel after a great laugh, giggle, or simply a smile. If I could find ways to make someone smile, game on!  I have often been caught finding humor during inappropriate times, smuggling my laugh into my bent elbow to keep from exploding at some personally embarrassing situation.  So welcome to my world!  While out painting on site, I can be found wearing a hat to protect my face from the glaring sunshine. O

Life's A Trip...

    Life's a Trip . . . . . . when you get back up   H ow are  you  doing during this unrest and an unworldly pandemic ?  It seems so long since I have seen a familiar face within 3 feet of me, sharing a good laugh, feeling the summer heat together while outside in the July air.  Personally, I have noticed that my  way  has been negotiating with my  will , and I'm trying to find balance with what is more important: whether I stick to my old routine (which has been cut short), or just relax a little more ... and take another nap. It seems that my motivation is slipping, so I figured I would  Google "getting motivation" and this is the first thing that popped up:   Set goals Choose goals that interest you Find things that interest you within goals that don't Make your goal public Plot your progress Break up your goal Use rewards Don't do it alone. Everything looks attainable, but there is one item on this list that is really challenging, and that is #8.   Don

Seeing through your hopes and dreams

"Delight of the Dreamer"  12x12" Pastel on sanded paper, $1,650 Available through  The Mission Gallery Enter into any room that is flooded with filtered light, and you might sense your mood shifting, and perhaps your eyes might even begin to moisten. For me, I am always in touch with my senses, especially my sight, and perception of how people relate to one another. It's almost funny to say this, but to me, I am on the observation deck of life.  A few years back, I came upon this scene inside the Swan House at the Atlanta Historical Museum after a thunderous Spring downpour. Upon entering into this one particular room at that very moment, I felt a compelling sense of elevation by the light that was wrapping around this young girl. It evoked feelings of hope fueled by anticipation, curiosity, and dreams. And now, now more than ever, this piece seems more poignant. One might question if she is isolated in an empty room along with an empty chair to sit, be still and thi

Finding Grace...amidst the chaos

  (At the MET in NYC)   Life as we know it sure has taken us for a loop or two. I don't know about you, but I am beginning to sense that we are living in the midst of a paradigm shift. How we communicate, shop, move about, learn, and conduct social gatherings has suddenly been realigned.  I want to know if you have had to conduct a video phone call... in your jammi es?   Or been shopping for that needed necessity, but too nervous to enter into a grocery store so you just do without?  What about those loved ones who are, or have suffered from illness?  I'm sure you know what I mean.  Drive-up pharmacies, facial masks, drive-thru coffee shop kiosks, binging on news headlines, and online shopping are now taking a front seat. As for me and my creative family of artist friends, we have had to cancel all art gatherings, gallery events, and classes have had to be re-imagined...OVERNIGHT!  BAM!  ZOOM! Let's count the benefits of a solitary, home-bound life:  families engaging in co