Saturday, December 31, 2011

Another Garlic Adventure

This is basically same technique as previous post, tried a different background color. Like having two going at the same time so I can try different colors and test out brushstrokes.
"Holiday Garlic", 4x3 inches, watercolor on board

Monday, December 26, 2011

Winter Solstice 2011

This post shows the progression of this painting. Took two days to do it. Lots of layers.
Maybe I was a Druid in a past life. I'm always so aware of the markers in the calendar for the seasons and the path of the sun. Anyway, I started this on the winter solstice and it felt like the white robes of the priests were being glorified and as my art friend said, consecrated.
"Winter Solstice 2011" watercolor on board, 4x3 inches.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Yellow Onion with Red/Green Palette

I decided to take on a project. Actually it's an old idea from my teacher Hong Nian Zhang at The Woodstock School of Art. He taught us three complementary palettes. (RED/GREEN, BLUE/ORANGE and YELLOW/PURPLE). I was never able to keep a predominately single color in any of my paintings like he did (I ended up using his palettes but getting a different color sense which is perfectly fine) so I'm going to concentrate on this concept and see if I can do 6 onions in each of the primary and secondary colors. Now that I've said this outloud I wonder how far I will get!
Yellow Onion with Red/Green Palette, 4x3", watercolor on board

Friday, December 9, 2011


"Blue Cup with Floral Bud", 4x3", watercolor on board

Happy Holidays everyone!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Bubble Glass and Onion

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Haven't posted in awhile cause I've not been up to painting; have allergy/cold symptoms that have made me really tired. Sometimes I try and paint when I'm not well and just end up throwing it out, so might as well just give in!
The image I've posted is the set up that I used in my watercolor DVD demo. I just ran out of prints that I have of it but wanted a friend who doesn't have a mac to see it so I thought of posting it here. Guess this is as good time as any to plug the DVDs and book (sent my first order to Israel a couple of weeks ago!). The book is $25 and DVDs are $35 plus shipping.
Hope to get back to painting soon and have something to post.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Ponytail Onion

Wasn't sure whether to call this Ponytail Onion (which makes it feminine and I suppose self-reflective) or Phillip Pearlstein Onion which would allign it with some art history. I did see one of his paintings at The National Academy School and Museum yesterday so I may have been influenced by how he treats skin.
"Ponytail Onion"4x3 inches, watercolor on board

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Happy Halloween

Looked like a pumpkin almost as much as an onion. Guess we are influenced by holidays as much as anything else.
"Halloween Onion", 3x4 inches, watercolor on board

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Steve Jobs

I have a couple of Apple products which I am totally addicted to; thanks to Steve Jobs!!
wc1159,1160,1161 all watercolor on board, 3x4 inches

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

White Onion

Funny thing happened; I have learned how to cut an onion without suffering stinging tears that last for hours! If you use white onions and store them in frig and then put them in freezer for 15 minutes before you cut them and then cut them next to gas stove with burner turned all the way up you won't get any of those fumes in your eyes! I know this is an art blog but since I've been painting onions for weeks now and finally figured out how to do this I figured I'd share this info. Just seems too coincidental not to. Maybe I'm becoming "one" with the onion!
"White Onion", 4x3 inches, watercolor on board

Monday, October 3, 2011

Color Palette Update

I recently received a question from a reader of BIG ART, small canvas who had a really good question about how to make sense of all the colors in each of the palettes. So here goes:

Color Theory for Complementary Palette

I have an update for the three complementary palettes that I've been using. They are in my book on pages 27-29 of Big Art, Small Canvas. As some of you may know Daler Rowney doesn't make Chrome Green anymore. Or rather they have renamed it Yellow-Green. I also substituted a couple of colors since another palette color was close enough. Some colors are not substitutable but to make purchasing easier I looked for ways to reduce the number of colors needed. Also, using Winsor Violet Dioxazine is much less expensive than Bright Violet by Old Holland.

There is a reason for each color used for each of the three palettes.

There is a true color, a warm version of the true color, a cool version of the true color, a light neutral version of the true color and a dark neutral version of the true color.

I also included a favorite color for a certain reasons (which I will explain in the palette).

In the ORANGE/BLUE palette:

For the oranges: Cadmium Orange is the true color

Chrome Yellow hue is the cool color

Cadmium Red deep hue is the warm color

Naples Yellow is the light neutral

Mars Violet Deep is the dark neutral color

For the blues: Cobalt Blue is the true color

Winsor Blue hue is the cool color

Mauve (blue shade) is the warm color

Violet Grey is the light neutral

Indigo is the dark neutral color

In the RED/GREEN palette:

For the reds: Cadmium Red Deep Hue is the true color

Permanent Rose is the cool color

Cadmium Orange is the warm color

Indian Red is the light neutral

Purple Madder is the dark neutral color

For the greens: Permanent Green Light is the true color

Winsor Green is the cool color

Sap Green is the warm color

Yellow-Green is the light neutral

Raw Umber is the dark neutral color

Permanent Green Deep is used for making black

In the YELLOW/PURPLE palette:

For the yellows: Chrome Yellow Hue is the true color

Yellow-Green is the cool color

Cadmium Yellow Deep is the warm color

Naples Yellow is the light neutral

Raw Umber is the dark neutral color

For the purples: Bright Violet (or Winsor Violet Dioxazine) is the true color

Ultramarine Violet(or Mauve Blue Shade) is the cool color

Permanent Rose is the warm color

Violet Grey is the light neutral

Mars Violet Deep is the dark neutral color

Purple Madder is a favorite and used as a dark warm

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Pair of Pears

Both of these are 4x3 inches, watercolor on board.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Another Walk

I'm feeling more comfortable with the paint and the shapes. Hopefully the next one will continue this path!
"Landscape 1154", watercolor on board, 4x3 inches

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Walking the Woods

We house sat for our son last month and I was able to walk the rail trail in New Paltz, NY. Took a lot of photos with my iphone. Also looked at Carlson's Guide to Landscape Painting (great book for reference and all kinds of tips). I hope this inspiration lasts and I get to do some more!
Landscapes 1151 and 1152, watercolor on board

Monday, August 29, 2011

More Layers?

I'm thinking of putting more layers on both of these. Hmmmm.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Alissa Craig Onion

I was upstate house sitting for my son and got to go to Kingston's farmer's market and spotted this gorgeous specimen of an onion. The vendor was happy to tell me the name and must have been perplexed at the amount of time I took to pick one onion from the batch!
"Alissa Craig Onion", watercolor on board, 3x4 inches.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Vidalia Onion

Vidalia Onion, watercolor on board, 4x3 inches

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Garlic and Garlic

Wanted to use Chinese White again. Found out it's not a shortcut; still have to put lots of color in the painting and then use it as an overwash. Can't believe how many layers it takes to do one of these!
"Garlic Angle" and "Layered Garlic" 3x4 inches, watercolor on board

Friday, August 12, 2011

Red Onion

Does anyone know what the hairy part of an onion is called? This one had a lot of hair.
"Red Onion" watercolor on board, 3x4 inches

Thursday, August 11, 2011


I saw the Richard Serra drawings at the Met yesterday; what a genius he is! He made drawings feel like sculpture. Check it out on their website. There was also very simple ones of upright lines. So yep, I thought, if he can do lines I can do onions.
"Upright Onion" watercolor on board, 4x3 inches

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Watermelon Slice

Watermelon Slice, watercolor on board, 3x4 inches

Friday, August 5, 2011

onion studies

Doing studies of single objects is new for me. I've been doing small paintings since '97 and they've all had about five objects in them which makes each object quite small. So using only one object in the same format makes them quite a bit larger. Also, I felt I was doing a "whole painting" by incorporating a multitude of objects with pathways for the eye to move around. Someone in my art group said, "Oh, lots of artists have simplified their subjects as they've gotten older"! I know she was trying to support me but ohh, I'm getting old? :(
Onion Study, 3x4 inches, watercolor on board

Friday, July 22, 2011

Rose Studies

I was watching an interview with an artist who was having a show at The Whitney (sorry, can't remember his name) who said very humbly that he was never sure about the quality of his work. Artists just have to live with these concerns. I believe it requires faith in ourselves to keep going. Here he was with a show at The Whitney and still worried about his work!! Not only do we have to face blank canvases we have to deal with uncertainties as a normal mode of working.
We are a strange and wonderful group!
"Rose Study" and " Rose and Bud" 3x4 inches, watercolor on board

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

American Artist Magazine Articles

If you'd like to read these articles on my work please go to my website and click on "Resume" and scroll down to Publications. Clicking on each article will give you a pdf file to download.
I wanted to put these on the sidebar but couldn't figure out how to do. If anyone knows please instruct!! Thanks!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Solo Garlic

I don't know if you'll be able to see the background color; it's a very light purple. I may try another one with different table color. Not sure if this is too neutral or if it needs brighter color.
Also want to try a few cloves instead of a whole piece. Trying to get a good composition, so far haven't figured it out yet. Tomorrow may be a good day to get the composition figured out even if it is July 4th!
Solo Garlic, 4x3 inches, watercolor on board

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Neutral Floral Study

A study in neutrals.
"Neutral Floral Study" 4x3 inches, watercolor on board

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Reasons to have a blog

What I like best about this one is the tablecloth. I have to remember this!! (This is one good reason to do a blog; you get to write down {even if it's online and everyone gets to see it} what you're thinking and might otherwise forget.) The thing I like the least is the glass. Maybe I should work some more on it? Another thing about posting is that you get to look at your work critically. I find when I scan an image and see it on computer it gives me a fresh look and then an even more critical eye happens when I see it in a post. Anyone else see it this way? Same idea as looking at a piece in a mirror; guess whatever works!!
wc0852 watercolor on board, 3x4 inches

Monday, June 20, 2011

Floral Study

I am exploring a different, hopefully deeper experience of the rendering of flowers while keeping the shadows interesting and integrated in the composition. Also played around with cadmium red to get some darks.
"Floral Study" 4x3 inches, watercolor on board

Friday, June 10, 2011

Bowl of Cherries

I wanted to see how dark I could get the cherries and contrast it with keeping the background and the bowl light. I've been reluctant (afraid?) to use staining colors but forged ahead and found I could lift the color when I needed to!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Renovation Project

Wanting to connect the objects to the background so I just added a few more layers of color. I think it helps the lemon also; more contrast.
Memories of Morandi watercolor on board wc1011

Friday, June 3, 2011


I often rummage through my watercolor drawer looking at past pieces for inspiration and just to get a sense of where I've been in order to decide where to go next. I look for clues as to where my work may be going. Lately I've seen paintings that need a lot more work. It's become a project. In all my years of painting this is the first time I've done anything like this. When working in oils I always thought that if I started reworking something it would be just as well to just do another one from scratch. As soon as you change one thing another needs "adjustment". So what makes this different? I think it's a matter of my eye "seeing" better. Just comes with putting in the hours.
"Two Pears" watercolor on board, 3x4 inches

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Taking it Further

After seeing watercolor show at Salmagundi Club I have reached for the Chinese White!! Added the dark background and now I am happy!