Tea Time Discovery


“Painting” with only paper can be a fun change of pace, and is a good exercise in really having to pay attention to color values.  I often like to throw in a little extra challenge and fun by adding images here and there for the viewer to discover.  In this collage, “Tea Time Discovery”, there are a dozen images hidden in the piece… I Spy style!  Can you find them?

  • crab
  • girl
  • sea shell
  • woman
  • gold llama
  • violin
  • dog
  • owl
  • red rasberry
  • guava
  • lizard
  • turtle

Happy hunting!

If you would like to purchase this piece, find it in my etsy shop here!

If you would like to make your own paper painting, I am holding a workshop this week at Tessera Fine Art Gallery, and I would love to see you there!


Participants will make their own 8 x 10 collage on a stretched canvas. I look forward to seeing what everyone comes up with!





Once in awhile I get to be part of a fun and sentimental commissioned project.  This one was a hometown piece for a Christmas gift incorporating a church, main street businesses, and the old water tower.  Now I think it would be fun to do a whole hometown series… I don’t do a lot of buildings, but I had fun with this mix of paper and paint, so maybe there will be more on the horizon!

365 Faces Challenge

365 faces 2016 copy.jpg

If you have followed me in 2016, you know that I made an attempt to do 365 faces throughout the year.  Well, I didn’t quite make it… in part because I made a poor choice of journal in which to do faces.  It was a lovely leather bound book, but the paper was difficult to work on.  So, I counted any face whether in sketchbook or in an actual piece of art, or even on the many Christmas ornaments on made.  That actually brought my total near the mark, though then I ended up losing track of them all.




So, I learned a few things… be more organized in documenting my faces, and pick my surfaces more carefully.  I don’t feel like I failed at all however since I was rather lenient with myself on this project… after all, the goal was simply to practice, practice, practice and hopefully come to some improvement.  My favorite face came in the later part of the year and helped me feel I was getting somewhere!


So, I am going to repeat this personal challenge in 2017.  This time I am giving myself a stack of 4 x 6 cards to have in handy places where I tend to have sketching time.  In my purse, in strategic places through the house where sitting happens, etc.  Quick sketches count, as well as artwork, but I do look forward to having a big stack of faces on my little cards.

What are your artistic goals for 2017? Anyone want to join me in the 365 faces challenge?

Christmas Portrait

Hope all of you had a very merry Christmas!


One of my handmade Christmas presents this year was an attempt at portrait painting.  From a favorite photo of two of my granddaughters when they were quite young, I painted these two as princesses complete with jeweled crowns and gowns.

This was quite a challenge for me… most of my faces are of imaginary people so there is no concern about making them actually resemble the subject!  I have a renewed admiration for those artists who do portraiture!

“Mud Bath”

Mud Bath watermark.jpg

I really enjoyed making this piece.  First off, I just really like elephants!  And I love texture and the crackled “mud” background in this piece really captivated me.  And finally, the whole concept of these elephants painted from photos I took at the local zoo being represented on a sojourn to their African roots, and enjoying a nice messy tromp in a big, luxurious pool of mud appeals to me as well.

This piece is already sold, but I think some more mud play will be coming up!




Choose Joy


Sometimes happy accidents happen in art.  “Choose Joy”  was one such accident.  I had been working on six or so faces on wood panels at once.  The other five had already gotten their preliminary coat and I was ready to do just one more… but I was nearly out of time.  Wanting to at least use the paint on my palette, I decided to hurry and just rough in my lights and darks with the leftover paint.  This quick, rough painting was so much better than the other five!  I was so happy with my rough painting that I left it with just some minor touch ups and work on the eyes.

I also like how the face doesn’t fit on my board.  It helps to really focus on the face instead of the setting.  I will have to remember that.

The trick will be trying to repeat the process.  Maybe set a timer so I have to hurry?

The Art of Lester Raymer


Earlier this week I shared the general studio area and grounds of the Red Barn Studio and Museum.  Today, I would like to share a small sampling of Lester Raymer’s works.  Raymer was born in 1907, and worked as an artist until his death in 1991.

Raymer was very accomplished in an extensive variety of mediums including painting, sculpting, carving, pottery, woodworking, metal work, fiber arts….. you get the idea!  I also love how he repurposed sardine tins, erasers, farm tools, spools, and so much more into his diverse artwork.  The photo above shows his oil on wood painting “Enigma II” and also some of his carved horses and embellished trunks.

Th Kite

This is my favorite of the many watercolor pieces housed in the museum.  I love the little gnome style children carrying the Japanese kite.



Sacred, iconic style art was one of Raymer’s common themes. The twelve apostles turn up in places like the brick wall of the patio, on furniture, or in wood carvings.  He created numerous mother and child paintings and figurines as well.




There are many versions of these little gesso covered fabric creations.  This Mary has yarn hair and baby Jesus is holding a ball made from a used eraser!


I also love his fabric based wall hangings. Some of them have very elaborate detail. If you look  closely you can see some jewelry and other creative embellishments in this piece.




So many different styles make me feel better about my own diverse artistic forays!  This man must have truly loved creativity in every form!

More pieces include circus or jester themes, lots of roosters, lino cut prints, ceramics and metal work!

I like this painting of the Illustrated Man, painted shortly after the Ray Bradbury book by that name was published.


Raymer also altered a lot of furniture by adding molding or carvings, or in this case, a fascinating painting.




If you would like to learn more about Lester Raymer, I recommend this book, available from The Red Barn Studio gift shop.  I also encourage you to make a visit to the Red Barn Studio where you can take a free tour of the museum and grounds.


And if you want to purchase a Raymer work… consider this one!