Monday, November 28, 2016

Vegetable Still Life

"Vegetable Still Life"
Image size 11" x 15"

I'm back to watercolor this week.  I really like the softness of this painting, which was achieved by painting on saturated paper.  I'm still trying to master this technique that I learned in Jeanne Hyland's workshop but it is a struggle.  She makes it look so effortless.  I am determined to get control of this technique, but I think it is going to take a long time.


Monday, November 21, 2016


Image size 36" x 96"
I just spent 15 minutes staring at my computer trying to think of a name for this painting.  I'm coming up with NOTHING!  I would love some of your ideas for a title.

I think I'm just so overwhelmed that this is finished that my brain isn't working.  This has been on my work table in my garage for over a year.  I used a combination of wax, ink, shellac and oil paint.  It wins for the largest encaustic to date.  I don't know how many pounds of wax I've applied to this, but is sure is a lot heavier than when I started.  Moving it by myself was a challenge.  Three feet by eight feet is HUGE and I'm excited to finally be able to have my worktable back.

I'm not totally sure that it is finished yet.  I need to live with it a while.  Today is the first time that I've seen it in a vertical position.  I've been working flat on a fairly tall table which is good for my back but not so good for really seeing the artwork.  

I intended this to be totally abstract, but I seem to have created another wave painting of sorts.  I'd love everyone's input on whether this is finished or need some additions or changes.  I've got a thick skin so don't be timid with your comments.  I appreciate all opinions.


Monday, November 14, 2016


Image size 12 3/4" x 13"
I started this painting by rubbing some dry pigment into the wood which had been first coated with white encaustic gesso.  It looked soft and subtle until I added a layer of clear medium over it.  The color became a bit more intense, which was fine.  I like that the grain of the wood can be seen in areas.  I've built up layers of wax, alcohol inks and shellac burns to create the texture.  

Monday, November 7, 2016


Image size 16.5" x 8.5"

This week I played some more with adding alcohol inks to the encaustic.  I bought some white alcohol ink and was excited to try it, but found it was too thick to get it to move and create a fun texture.  I will thin it with additional alcohol and hopefully I will get it to flow without losing too much opacity.  The white ink doesn't show in this painting because I totally covered it up with more wax.  The other inks colors are used only in the lower portion.

This could be read as a type of landscape or as a pure abstract.  I've played with creating a feeling of agitation and chaos juxtaposed with more soothing colors and shapes.  

Tuesday, November 1, 2016


Image size 15.5" x 15.5"
I used a mixture of encaustic, alcohol inks and shellac to create this painting.  I think it has a strong sense of power and movement.  Even though it is an abstract, it still has a feeling of water cresting before a powerful break to me.  I'm having a hard time moving away from water in my paintings - especially when using encaustic.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Powerful Peak

"Powerful Peak"
Image size 24" x 24"

I started this painting by painting and fusing a layer of clear medium as a base.  I knew that I wanted to have red bits peeking through the finished painting.  The red oil paint that I used had a very pink tone to it, which surprised me because it was a cadmium red.  Anyway, when I added white encaustic, it was even more pink in the wave crest.  I'm happy with the amount that is still showing and with the color palette.  The white is very textured and has great movement in person.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Shore Break

"Shore Break"
Image size 16" x 20"
I took a break from using a lot of texture on the foam of the wave break for this painting.  I wanted the textural part of the painting to be in the foreground in the sand. I did a shellac burn in that area to give it an interesting effect.

Monday, October 10, 2016

The Pond

"The Pond"
Image Size 12" x 32"

Well, this was fun to paint as well as a being a learning experience.  I don't usually work this large in encaustic, but I really like big paintings.  This is still small compared to watercolors, oils and acrylics that I've done.  Working in encaustic is more time consuming and takes a lot more material than the other mediums that I use.  Each layer needs to be fused before adding more wax and it becomes more difficult to control the wax as the layers build.  I had real problems with the flowers in this painting because the blues and green surrounding them kept migrating into the flowers.  I kept scraping the flowers and adding more white, but continued to have the same problem.  I put a layer of clear medium over the entire painting and fused that before trying to add white again.  That did solve the problem of the greens and blues migrating, but the white continued to move uncontrollably.  I finally got it pretty close to how I wanted it and then added orange oil pastel to edges of the lily pads and brought some of the color into the white flowers which made them much more interesting.  I like the sketchy look of the pastels so I also added some lines with white oil pastel to the lilies.

I'm really happy with this one and can't wait to polish it.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Palm Tree Trio

"Palm Tree Trio"
Image Size 6.5" x 5.5"

I've painted this scene many times because it is one of my favorite views in Laguna Beach.  The reference photo was taken from Heisler Park looking down to the beach.

I painted the support red because I really liked the red specks peeking through on the wave painting I finished recently.  I wanted to see if I could get a similar look using red oil paint to start the painting rather than coating the surface with red wax.  I also used oil pastel to add some detail as finishing touches to the painting.


Monday, September 26, 2016

The Blues

"The Blues"
Image Size 22" x 15"

This didn't start out being a wave, but it seems to have morphed into a suggestion of one.  I chose a  paper with a surface I had previously textured using thick and thin gesso over a painting that I didn't like.  I really hate wasting paper!  ; )  Since I didn't like the colors that were peeking through, I began layering colors and playing with creating texture and this is what it became. 

It's been pretty hot here this week so I guess this is my unconscious attempt to cool things down a bit.   

I love the texture in this painting and the feeling of movement that it creates.  All of the layers don't show in this photo, but up close the layers make this painting very interesting.
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