Mar 23, 2017

Your favorite movie here

Your favorite movie here7 x 9½" watercolor
Fast forward to North Carolina and to spring. Finally, the weather was such on Tuesday that I could get in some plein air painting. This is the third watercolor I did that day. The Rialto is Raleigh’s most popular theater, maybe its most popular theater, period. I have sold every painting I have done of it. In 2008, I put a not-so-subliminal title in the marquis. When the movie Words and Pictures came around, I painted the theater, including movie title, mostly because I liked the name of the movie so much. I don’t know who bought the watercolor, but when someone saw it had sold, they asked me to paint it again on commission. His daughter had been proposed to the night she and her future husband attended the movie and had become engaged.

So, the name of this one is Your Favorite Movie Here. I am willing to put the title in upon request by the person who buys the painting.

Mar 13, 2017

View from a window

Looking Back at Kelley and Mack’s7 x 9½" watercolor
If I had known what crummy weather we would be having in Carolina in March, I may have chosen this month to go to California. Turns out, the weather was largely the same, except there was possibly more rain in what is supposed to be “sunny” California. I experienced a couple of perfect days to stay indoors. Kelley’s house included a lovely view of the backyard which had in it a fabulous Jacuzzi hot tub. On a sunnier day, I managed to squeeze in a watercolor of her house. Paintings like these make good host gifts when I travel. Kelley proved to be the ultimate host on my trip.
Haghighi Home, 7 x 9½" watercolor

Mar 4, 2017

It's In the Details

Mission San Juan Capistrano, 9 x 7½" watercolor
Where would we be without our phones to tell us what day we were where? After painting Hidden House Coffee in San Juan Capistrano, I moved my car, so as not to overstay my welcome in the free lot, and slipped over to Mission San Juan Capistrano. Sitting outside a Starbucks, I painted this view of the entry to the landmark mission. Paintings in this style beg for details. The person who introduced me to calligraphic watercolors, Frank Webb, was a former student of Watercolor Great Edgar Whitney. It is difficult for me to remember which is a Webb quote and that which Webb pulled from his large collection of Whitney quotes. Speaking of calligraphic watercolors, “It is not about the nouns; it’s about the adjectives” is one of my favorites. Subject matter with more adjectives than this scene offered would have made for a better calligraphic watercolor.

Feb 26, 2017

Edible Icons

The Original Frozen Banana, 9 x 7½" watercolor

I was wrong. It was my fourth day, my third full day, that I painted Hidden House Coffee. The first day, I spent within the walls of Mission San Juan Capistrano, painting the ruins of a church. Visit my web site blog post.

The afternoon of my second full day, I drove to Balboa Island to paint the landmark Frozen Banana place that earlier I had put on my mental checklist of things to paint. If it’s anything like Krispy Kreme is to North Carolinians, and I lived in the area, paintings of this place would be a bread and butter money-maker for me. But alas! I live in North Carolina, and, dollars to doughnuts, paintings of Frozen Banana establishments here would be about as popular as Krispy Kreme shop paintings would be in California.

Feb 22, 2017


Hidden House Coffee, 7 x 9½" watercolor
It was my second day in California. Just, the day before, I had been introduced to California freeways when I’d dropped my second cousin off at John Wayne Airport, just south of L.A.  It was a good introduction, still dark out, the rush traffic had just begun to build.

It was also my second day to head for San Juan Capistrano, not so very far from where I was staying in Laguna Niguel. There was a parking lot there near the Amtrak station that allowed five hours free parking. I’d been given rave reviews of nearby Hidden House Coffee, and it was my intent to paint it. Between coats of paint, I could slip in and grab a coffee. This style of watercolor requires two coats, a very loose wet coat, which, when totally dry, is followed by a second coat of calligraphic brushstrokes that define the details.

Aug 5, 2016

Black-eyed Susans

Black-eyed-Susan time at Barbara’s, 8x10" watercolor
I am not the only one I know who has felt a little down lately. Something about the days getting shorter reminds us that winter is on its way. But, not that quite. On the contrary, it has been too dang hot for plein air painting. And for that, we can blame summer. So today, just to get a little dose of Vitamin D, I faced the heat and finished this watercolor of my neighbor’s house with her Black-eyed Susans. Started years ago, I wish I had finished it before Barbara passed this year. 

Jul 19, 2016

Mountain Getaway

Brenda’s in Blowing Rock, 9½x7" watercolor
When it is not possible to stay with friends, I have started looking for Airbnb accommodations. Last weekend I stayed at a lovely home in Blowing Rock, NC. I absolutely loved my stay there. A second room for a small additional fee was available for my traveling friend, Sandi. We were in Blowing Rock to participate in a paint out at Moses H. Cone Memorial Park with other members of PAINT NC (acronym for Plein Air In The Triangle).