I’ve been a writer much longer than I’ve been painting. But I’m really glad I’ve found this other creative means of expression in the past few years.
Phoebe, a friend, posted on Facebook a photo of a flower arrangement she had received. After I painted this, inspired by her photo, I posted my own version on Facebook and struck up a conversation with a woman from my church, who became my first customer.
This now belongs in the collection of Robert and Jacque Garcia. Thanks to Jacque, I can now call myself a professional artist.
I captured my youngest daughter’s radiant smile in this quick sketch, colored by watercolor pencils.
This was a technique I learned in a watercolor class at Clovis Adult School, taught by my former colleague, artist SW Parra. After doing a portrait of Clark Gable in class, I did this painting as a birthday gift for my son Mikel.
When we first moved to Fresno in 1978, our first house had a lilac bush in the backyard. Now, I run through my Clovis neighborhood, and this lilac hangs over a fence. I captured some photos of it blooming and painted it. It was my first time trying to paint the weathered wood of a fence.
NOT FOR SALE
After a several month foray into other art mediums – drawing and acrylic painting – I returned to watercolor. This was inspired by a photo I took of a geranium in front of my mom’s house.
The Blossom Trail in the spring is a beautiful tradition. I captured the brilliant color and the attention of a passing bee in this small acrylic, which lives in my office.
Larry Patten, a friend, posted a photo of this scene. I tried to capture the brilliance of the autumn colors in this painting, which I gave to my boyfriend for Christmas.
I love peacocks. This painting was my re-entry into larger scale acrylic. 16 by 20 is the largest canvas I’ve worked on – so far.
NOT FOR SALE
Norene Bitler was my paternal grandmother. The photo that inspired this painting was taken in 1969 on the campus of Ohio State University, where my dad was a student. Grandma always looked sharp – nicely dressed, completely put together with perfect accessories.
I want to do more portraits. This was actually my second attempt at recreating this scene, and I like how this version came out better than my first try.
NOT FOR SALE
More exploration using pen and ink.
I completed this project in my drawing class.
I took a drawing class through Clovis Adult School, taught by my former colleague Teresa Doffing. I knew we had a project coming up using pen and ink, and I wasn’t sure how that would go, since I’d never worked in that before. This was a practice project I did before the class. It also enabled me to capture the memory of an orchid I had gotten at work, since I knew I wouldn’t be able to keep the plant alive for long.
Sometimes I crowdsource my artistic inspiration. I posed the question on Facebook, “What should I draw tonight.” Someone responded, “Lizard,” and this is where I went with that suggestion.
“Lion and Tiger”
- June 2015
I did this pair as gifts, very close together. Now in the collection of Beverly Bell and Lori Crane.
Up until I did this painting, I had been very sporadic with my art. When I did this one, I was coming back from a health issue, not running as much as I usually do, and focusing on a creative pursuit seemed a good outlet for my pent up energy.
This painting revisits of a photo project I had done several years before.
NOT FOR SALE
We were visiting family in Goldendale, Wash., as we do every year. I thought I’d be in the mood to do some writing while I was up there. My mind had other ideas. I got the urge to paint, so I had to go searching for art supplies in The Dalles, the nearest “bigger city” to where we were staying.
I finished this while we were up there and gave it to our host, my mother-in-law Barbara Patterson.
I hadn’t painted in nine years, but I decided to start again. I did this as an anniversary gift for Randy Bell, my partner in crime, after we had been together two years. I think Yosemite is his favorite place in the world, and we’ve been there many times together.
I started this one shortly after I finished my first painting (see below). This one didn’t follow a step-by-step guide – I used a photograph as inspiration. After this one, I did another one that I wasn’t as happy with, then I started another that I never finished. Then I didn’t lift a paintbrush again for nine years. This one hangs in my mom’s home.
I decided I wanted to learn to paint, so I bought a book that taught how to do this painting, step by step.