Sunday, June 29, 2008

The Nature Concervancy - Hassayampa

One of my favorite little towns in Arizona is Wickenburg. Rich in history, lush desert, mountain views, and the Hassayampa River. All along the river there are Cottonwoods, beautiful in the summer rich green and in the winter, bare & purpleish. Just on the outskirts of town is the Preserve cared for by the Nature Conservancy. During the heat of the summer it is only open on Fri. Sat. Sun.. There is an old ranch house , displays about the wildlife, bunkhouse made of adobe, and trails. Take the time to pull off the highway down the little dirt road to the Visitor Center. See Bernadine for any questions and to get all kinds of information. Wear boots, the brush is thick and the trails sandy. But what a wonderful surprise when you take the Lions trail and come to the cool running water of the River. When you get into town, take the street to your right just before the big intersection that leads to Vegas. The restaurant Anitas is fun for good margaritas & chips. Also check out on next to Bashas is the Little Red School house, go in, it's worth it. Arizona Plein Air Painters will be painting the school house and the Preserve for a show in 2009. More on this great western town coming as I will be painting there quite a bit. Don't let the heat keep you from painting, just find shade!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Tough Critic

Plein-Air painting has it's advantages, you get to paint outdoors instead of the studio for one. It also has it's challenges, like horses that don't really like your easel. This lovely horse was sure I had a treat and just wasn't sharing, he knocked over my whole easel to get my attention. This green pastured scene is in the tiny town of Cornville Arizona. This property is bordered by Oak Creek. The painting on the easel is now at the Joyous Lake Gallery. Next time I am up there, I am bringing some carrots.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Libby Hart- New Mexico Artist you can help

Libby Hart is an artist I met last summer while painting in New Mexico and Colorado. She lives and paints in a small town in New Mexico. She is dealing with a true struggle, ovarian cancer. Her bills are high and her friends around her are trying to help. This website has several of Libbys paintings and artwork from other artists for sale. All the moneys going to her bills. If you are not in a position to make a purchase please give the info. out to others who might be able to help. Not only will they have a wonderful painting but will have helped out this lovely lady. Check it out and send the info on. It is amazing what can happen when you just get the word out.

It's a dry heat

This oil is an 11"x14" on board done up in the Cornville area in AZ. I am sure the folks who settled that town named it that so that the Valley people in the future would not want to move there. Can't blame them for wanting to keep it a secret, it is so pretty. Oak Creek runs through it so the cottonwood trees are huge, the grass green. What really sets the views off is seeing the purple of Mingus Mountain in the distance. This was done about mid-day. Don't let time of day keep you from painting. There are always shadows and the contrast can be very strong with high over head sunlight. Many artists prefer the morning light. I personally like the late afternoon light here in AZ, everything gets a thin coat of color instead of haze. Problem is, today is 114 degrees, makes afternoon painting not alot of fun. That is when I am stuck in the studio. After so much time painting outdoors, when I do have to refer to photos of an area, I usually am ok. I know the land, the sun, the feel of a place well enough to pull it out of my pictures for a successful painting. Don't let the heat be your excuse. You can even set up with a view out a window, painting indoors with the AC. You can get up really early and get done by 9:00 so you don't stick to the pavement, or watch for the first morning with rain in the forecast. That usually means a spot of rain, and cooler (cooler is relative) breezes. This painting Mid-Day Shade, is available at the Joyous Lake Gallery.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Artist in Residence at The Farm

This coming October -November I will be the Artist in Residence at The Farm at South Mountain. My plan is to spend as much time as I can down there painting on the old farm buildings, the rows of herbs & flowers, and teach some plein-air classes. Here is another painting called The Red Cottage, looking west at the back of the property. Even in the summer there is alot of shade, right now the flowers are everywhere and a bit of weeding needs done. Everyone who works here pitches in to help with cleaning, weeding, what ever is needed. They have alot of exciting plans for The Farm, to keep it an oasis in the urban scene. This summer in June, and in August, the restaurant right next to the Artist Studio, Quinessence , will be open on Friday & Saturday nights. The Cottage will be open at the same time, they carry the work of all the artists that teach and help out here. I'll keep you posted of the Tuesday morning class, and the one day workshops in painting being set up for Oct/Nov. Come down on a hot summer night, have a great meal and check out the artwork. You will not be disappointed.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Paint Map

Today I just heard about the coolest project, I wish I had thought of it. Getting artists to go out and paint on location is something I am always trying to do. After getting a email newletter from the Bravura Academy I have learned of a whole new way to find wonderful places to paint when you are planning trips, and to see what others have painted. Check out two websites: and
The concept is simple, you log on and post your painting, and exactly where you were when you painted it. This means anywhere in the world! They are using google maps so you can actually see where the paintings were done. How cool is that! While you are at it, sign up for the Bravura Academy newsletter, they have extraordinary teachers in wonderful settings. Start saving now for a trip to Spain. Hey, life is short, and you won't be sorry for any travel you do. This painting was done in Payson, Az and is at the Joyous Lake Gallery this summer.

Monday, June 9, 2008

The Cottage at The Farm in Px

Here is just one of the paintings hanging now at the Joyous Lake Gallery in Pinetop, AZ. This piece is an 18x24 oil, this is The Artist Cottage at The Farm in Phoenix. In the spring the oleanders are full of flowers and the green real green. I really like the little road that leads into the back of the property and just had to come up with a painting using that little dirt pathway. To see all the paintings go to the Joyous Lake Gallery or check out the website. The gallery is open on Wed.- Sat.. If you haven't been to Pinetop in a while you'll find lots of good restaurants and little antique stores, and best of all, cool temps.