Sun Series #1

Sun Series #1

Saturday, February 8, 2020


Feb. 8, 2020

"The Weight of Winter - Jan 26"
oil and cold wax on paper
mounted on board with collage
15.5 x 12"

This is the last painting in this series even though as you can see from the photo of my yard
it is still winter here.  After a week of unseasonable weather, the snow has returned.
While I have no intention of painting the actual landscape I have been inspired in all of the pieces
by the way the horizon line divides the painting into a dark area vs. a light area.
The paintings have been both fun and a challenge which is always a good sign to me.

Originally I did this series as a way to learn about working with oil and cold wax.
Now I want to work on some larger pieces with these materials.
It will be slow going as I build up the layers.
Stay tuned and wish me luck!

Thursday, February 6, 2020

Still Winter Here!

"The Weight of Winter - Jan 23"
oil and cold wax on paper mounted on board
with collage
15.5 x 12"

As I look out my window today, winter is still upon us.
Not with snow but with ice this morning.

This piece is the fourth in a series of five that I did in January.
Ohio winters have a varied look and feel.
They run the gamut from white and snowy to gray and overcast.
We've had lots of gray this year.
My take on this series is more about the emotional aspects of winter.
That heavy, oppressive, weighty feel of short days that seem excessively long.
But it has been good to have the time to do this work.
I love exploring new media and finding a way to make it my own.

I recently put the five "Weight of Winter" pieces on my website.
I do like the great black and white contrast in these pieces.
The hints of green and pink as the series grew foretells the coming of spring.
Check them out on the website!
They are for sale.

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Learning Curve

"The Weight of Winter - Jan. 20"
oil and cold wax on Arches oil paper,
mounted on board with collage
15.5 x 12"

Most of my art life when painting,  I have worked with acrylic paints.
I did use oils in college and was reminded of that as I was sorting through some old slides of my work.

[Slides!?  Remember those?
It has been a long time since I've documented my work with slides now that there is
digital means to do this and the cloud for storing them.]

But I have strayed from my original intent here...acrylic paint vs. oil paint.
I always liked acrylics because they dried fast and I could add another layer, then another layer, etc,
But the blending and richness of the oil paints especially with the cold wax in them
is very seductive and fun to work with.
I also see the relationship to encaustic painting in the way you can excavate the surface
revealing underneath layers when using oil paints.
But it dries so sloooowly.
I am learning I need to use many thin layers working up to the impasto kind of surfaces in some areas.
I like the tension between thin layers and heavily painted areas.
Just need to apply some patience (not a strong suit of mine).
And perhaps work on more than one piece at time which I often did when working with
the hot wax of encaustic painting.
It's all about the transfer of knowledge from one technique to the next.
This is my current learning curve.

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Artistic License

The Weight of Winter - Jan. 15
oil and cold wax with collage on panel
15.5 x 12"

I'm still finding my way with the oil paint and cold wax, noticing that this
mixture responds differently on the rigid panel than it does on the Arches oil paper.
I want to use these panels since I have several of them so on future pieces
I will be adhering some paper to a few of the boards.

During the past week the winter I observed outside my windows was gray and overcast.
Much of the week while painting I could see dull brown and light green grass.
The bare branch in the work is a nod to the possibilities of Spring.
And the evidence of high winds which ripped branches from the trees in our yard.
On January 15th as I was closing in on finishing the painting we had a dusting of snow,
so hence the white, which truth be told I really wanted in there whether it had snowed or not.
Some actual observation.
Some memory of winters past.
Some artistic license.
Enough said.

Sunday, January 12, 2020

The Weight of Winter

"The Weight of Winter - Jan.8"
oil and cold wax on Arches oil paper with collage on panel
15.5 x 12"

While we haven't had very much of a snowy winter as winters go in Ohio,
the day I started this small painting we had a good three inches of snow.
It was cold and kind of gray.
I do like all of the seasons that we have in Ohio but often, snow or no snow, winter can be oppressive.
It is not just the weather but also the cabin fever, the lack of sun and being outdoors, and a routine
that is really no routine (if you know what I mean.)

I have a few more of the panels I used for this piece so want to continue this series throughout January.
It will be interesting to see what my mood inspires as the unusually warm winter weather continues.

Sunday, January 5, 2020

New Beginnings and New Workshop Schedule!

"While You Were Sleeping"
oil and cold wax on Arches oil paper
22 x 15"

A new year.  New media to explore.  New commitment to writing.
Who doesn't love new beginnings, second chances, fresh starts and do-overs?
That is what I am hoping for myself in 2020.

The past two weeks amid all of the holiday plans and events, I have had the most prolific
art making time I have ever had during the Christmas holidays.
Usually I get side tracked by people, travel and/or get togethers that my studio time is neglected.
Sometimes, to be honest, it is just plain procrastination that keeps me from the studio.
Maybe I better make one more batch of cookies.
Or the day is so chopped up that there just isn't enough time to go to the studio.
But somehow this year I have completed the above painting and worked on another project
for an exhibit this summer.

2020 looks to be a busy one for me in terms of teaching.
Here is a list of the workshops that I am looking forward to teaching.
Hope to see you in the new year!

2020 Workshops

Composition for the Quiltmaker   Scottsdale AZ   Feb. 14-17   Sold Out!

Mixed Media Collage    Morgan Conservatory    Cleveland OH    March 7-8.   Details at the Morgan

Collage with Stitch   Quilt Surface Design Symposium   Columbus OH
May 25-31.  Details at

Collage with Stitch   Pocosin Arts  Columbia NC    June 26-30
Details at

Collagraph Printing   Peter's Valley   Layton NJ   July 17-21

Encaustic Painting   Peter's Valley    Layton NJ   July 24-28

Collagraph Printing    Morgan Conservatory    Cleveland OH  
Aug.  (date TBD) Details at Morgan   

It is such a pleasure to meet other creatives and share an artistic  journey together.  I look forward to seeing you in 2020!


Tuesday, December 31, 2019

New Year's Wishes

"Child's Play"
mixed media collage

I came across this quote by the writer Neil Gaiman.
It is my fondest New Year's wish to you.

“May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness. 
I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone 
who thinks you're wonderful. 
And don't forget to make some art, or write, draw, build, sing, 
or live only as you can. 
And I hope in the next year, you surprise yourself.” 
-Neil Gaiman