Wednesday, December 30, 2015


Could not name this one. It took me three days to paint this landscape. My husband is still hospitalised, so running back and forth has left me a little time challenged in the painting department. The good news is that he is improving fast now. Today he was working on walking with a cane and had a shower.
This is from my photo archives. We don't have a lot of snow as yet in Michigan. Except for the 15 inches that fell the weekend before Thanksgiving. And completely melted three days later! That's Michigan for you.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Walk This Way

This painting is from a photo in my archives. A walk with a granddaughter when she was about 10. She's 17 now. Time flies. I like how this turned out. It was one of those days that I didn't have anything in mind but I managed to get busy. Pretty soon the paint took over and I was lost in it. I really needed that because of the situation I am going through now. Hopefully I can repeat this tomorrow.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Happy Holidays

My husband's recovery is moving along faster than anyone expected. It is the best present ever. The week after Thanksgiving he was at deaths door (ventilator, medical comma and many drugs to keep him going.) Today he was up with a walker. His lungs have healed and he's looking at complete recovery. I am truly grateful. He is still in a rehab hospital but I don't think it will be long before he's home.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015



The field across from my house. I think this is a poor attempt. I can't get my head into it. And I need to paint.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Bad Times

This is a painting from a few years ago of land around my house . Frankly, it is exactly how I do not want to paint. I have not been able to paint in the last few weeks because my dear husband almost died of legionella pneumonia. He is now making progress toward recovery but it is slow going. Hopefully I will continue my daily painting soon. My head just isn't in it right now.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

More Winter

More winter. Actually, it is gray and rainy here. This was painted from a picture in my file. The view is down the street from my house.

Thursday, December 10, 2015


I saw this early this morning and painted it from memory. I have very little time to paint in the last two weeks but I am trying hard to keep it up. This was a good experience even if it is a crap painting. I have little time to develop sketches or go out and take pics. Maybe I'll learn something .
This is my one hundredth post on my blog. Yeah me!

Monday, December 7, 2015

Poor Visibility

Very gray today.  Fog all day. Like living in Seattle or London.  Very unusual for Michigan. This is a field down the road from my home.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Morning Frost


I shot this in my neighborhood the other day. Early in the morning. The world can be beautiful that time of day.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Ice Flow, Anchor Bay

This is a pic from last winter. My husband drove me to Anchor Bay to take pictures of the ice flow. Typical me, I forgot to put the battery in the camera. I took this with my cell phone. This is how I feel today.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Walk Home


I hope I can put this painting down now for good. I saw this view once on a walk with my grand kids. I've reworked it 4 times with different media. Somehow it still isn't right. Wait, maybe I'm still not done with it.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Five O'clock

Big day. I actually painted this without any reference material at all. I figured what the hell- I've spent a lifetime sketching woods, I must be able to come up with something. It's stiffer than I would like but you must start somewhere.
I spent a lot of time as a kid walking\playing in woods like this. Back when a kid could spend a day playing in the woods. In the late 1950's , my Dad started a gun club in Macomb County, Michigan. (Sport  shooting) Last I checked , it was still going strong. The early members all had kids and would bring them on Sat. and Sun. while they worked or shot trap.The kids ran wild in the woods, making up games and forts and challenges. Can you imagine unsupervised play in a woods today? With shooting in the background???

Sunday, November 22, 2015



Bam!! We woke up to winter today. No gradually freezing ice. No flurries off and on for a few days. Just 15 inches of snow! I know this is nothing in some parts of the world but....Really? And I just returned from a week in 80* weather. I think this painting says exactly how I feel today.

Lover's Key, FL on Wednesday.
My back porch on Sunday.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Jen's New Plant

I just got back from a little vacation in Fort Myers, Florida. I really hoped to paint more than I did. I took five panels. Some times it's hard to set aside time to paint when traveling with a non-painting partner.(My husband is a potter.) I did work on this painting a few hours on three separate days. I learned I can work on something repeatedly and not get sick, bored or mad at it. There's lots going on here. In my mind it was the hardest painting I have done lately. The first day I didn't have any medium so I blocked it in completely with OMS. That was a learning experience I'm going to repeat. We did have a great time. We even went to Miami over night to see some museums. That's always good to do to get creative juices going.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Country Home

This little house looks almost engulfed by the woods. Fall is rapidly ending here, it is into November after all. Most of the trees have lost all their leaves now. I may have one or two colorful landscapes left from the pictures I've taken. After that, who knows? I like to paint landscapes the most so winter will be a very big challenge.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Road View


Here's another painting from Tuesday's photo trip. It was a beautiful sunny morning and I got enough material for several paintings. This is the cedar swamp from up on the road. I always like the idea of views behind the view. Or secret gardens. Or what comes next?

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Good Morning

I finally got out of the house early enough to catch the early morning light.The colors are amazing that time of day. Unfortunately, I am not a morning person.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Cypress Swamp

These trees look like fir trees all summer and shed their needles in the fall. It looks like a swamp of dead trees all winter.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Fall Walk

This is the third version of this painting. It's OK. I made the mistake of doing it in pastel first which I really liked. Then I painted it in oil. That was a dud. So I tried it again. The pastel is still more interesting. I think I learned something here, but what???

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Rain, Rain

Gray rain today. This is the field down the street again. The fall colors are still beautiful in the rain.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Rose Township

I love trains.  I live in a town that has been a hub since the beginning of trains in Michigan. Once a month for a week or so the activity picks up and you hear trains  night and day.  It's possible to get stopped for a train going to and coming from town. I have never lived in a place where I  couldn't hear a train in the background. I love the sound in the night. The engineers have different, distinctive whistles. Some can be downright sad. One day, I'll get up to painting an actual train.

I had a very productive day. I also finished "Dozens". A large, messy bunch of flowers. Just the way I like it. 24x21, oil on panel.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Dozens (unfinished)

I have nothing finished for today. I spent the morning shopping with my daughter. I've also spent time this week doing painting related things. So- this is a painting I'm working off and on for two weeks around the other stuff. I just cant resist large bunches of flowers. These bloom in my garden from now to frost. It's a big painting, 24x21.
I have been out learning to take pictures on manual setting with a tripod. I've learned lots. It just takes practice but its worth it. The depth of field is so much better than on auto.  It's a beautiful time of year to be out walking around  shooting pics.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

North Woods

In Northern Michigan, the woods are covered with ferns. They turn a range of colors from rust to cream before they return to the earth for the year. It's a very pretty sight that goes on for acres. Late afternoon it's quiet, peaceful and the light through the trees is unreal.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Sunday Morning

I'm really happy with this painting. I went on Sunday morning to Fenton (the next town over) and took pictures. Lovely morning. People out walking were nice. Good experience. Yesterday I painted this. I feel it's mine from start to finish and that's great.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Just Nuts

These are from a shag bark hickory tree in my yard. I've lived here 16 years and found them  only last year. They are really are too much work to eat. (but delicious)  Makes you appreciate the times we live in.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Summer Revisited

Remembering summer?? No, I just didn't have one thing in mind to paint yesterday. Another student had this little picture so I worked with reds and oranges. Fun. Not much work here, just playing around. Sometimes it's a good thing. I  have only one more class. Boo Hoo.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

A Tight Squeeze

A spot on my street really has trees growing right up to the very edge of the road. Two cars can barely get by. If a truck comes, one driver has to yield. Every now and then a chunk gets taken out of a trunk. They won't be there forever.

Monday, October 12, 2015

River or Creek?

Another view in my neighborhood. A swampy area with water running through it. Beautiful colors in fall.  I've been shooting pictures the last few days because the weather has been gorgeous. This one was taken with a cell phone at mid-day. These last few pastel landacapes are the largest ones I've done since my challange started. It just feels better.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Hensell Road

This is a view of my road. I waited for the fog to mostly lift to take the pic but figured the shot was a loss. Actually, I am happy with the results.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Alice In Wonderland

"Alice In Wonderland", 24"x20", oil on panel

Yesterday I worked for several hours on a painting which I realized was an absolute dud. It's aggravating when you put time in on a work that doesn't pan out. It was an arrangement of gourds with a gargoyle I won in a white elephant game years ago. Once again, the idea was better than reality. I'm going to do it again because I love the gargoyle.  
So, tonight I am posting a painting I've been working on for the last week. Unfinished but close. The annual LARGE aster  painting. Below, is an unfinished work from five years ago. Started after my Father died, the idea was a vanitas in commemoration of him. Maybe I'll take it to my class tomorrow and get help to finish it.

Unfinished, 30"x23", pastel on watercolor paper

Monday, October 5, 2015

Fall Things


I bought these at a farm stand down the road. Two for a dollar. Put the money in a mailbox next to the stand. The joy of country living. I also bought a small pumpkin for a dollar. You can't get that at Kroger.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Apples x 3

It's suddenly fall here. Time for apples and cider mills and fires and whiskey. I think I'll try a few fall themed still life paintings in the next few days. This one is from the pastel class which is turning out to be really fun. It's good to push yourself into something different every once in a while.

Thursday, October 1, 2015



Pastel painting is proving to be a real challenge for me. This is the Pine River - again. I imagine this is what it looks like this time of year.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Lone Pepper

The last pepper from the garden. It's been a good summer here - garden wise. Lots of tomatoes, beans and spaghetti squash. Great carrots because my husband planted them. Mine never come up so I get him to plant them every year. Now the only thing is left is to tear it down.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Early Morning


One of my many unfinished paintings revisited. This time I'm happy with it. I don't have many early morning experiences with painting because I am not a morning person. It just feels wrong to be walking around before seven thirty. I need to conquer that because I know the light is best then. Any suggestions?

Friday, September 25, 2015

Asters Again

Here they are again. Every fall, the last beautiful wild thing to grow along roadsides. Every year I must paint them. This was a pastel sketch I did for my class. Today I started a painting. Large, of course, because you cant really paint asters small.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Fall in Michigan

Is this a painting or a sketch? It's pastel on paper, a little bigger than usual and really fun to do . Not serious, loose, just mindlessly putting color down. I wish it all could be like this. Something about paper gives me permission to just screw around. This turned out way better than the previous one. In my opinion.

Monday, September 21, 2015


Well, I must say, I think this one really has TOO much color. I'll have to find out what to do about that in my class. I have an enormous amount of pastels (I think). Some I bought over the years but mostly I have boxes a very nice lady gave me about 12 years ago. Her husband passed away and she gave me his art supplies. I don't know how long they last but they seem OK. The thing is, even with all these colors the exact one you want is not there. It's not like mixing paint.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Path to the Road

 Well, I had my first class yesterday and, right off the bat, Alla talked about color in landscapes and how to select color combinations. Yeah, I knew I was in the right place.This is a repeat of the painting I posted on July 16. It is definitely NOT green. It is a Fall painting class after all. I like this version way better than the first one.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015


Second try at humans. This actually turned out way better than I thought it would. I took the pic at the Holly car show in spring.  This is the second try. The first one got wiped because the feet were off the panel. So, I guess I learned something-start at the bottom next time. Duh.  Or at least take more time measuring. I think you can tell it's a timid attempt. A little washed out. Afraid to use strong color but I'll work on it. In all, I'm happy with it. Tomorrow I'm starting a six week class with one of my favorite instructors. I know I'll learn something new.

Monday, September 14, 2015


The picture for this portrait was taken 2 years ago at Arts, Beats and Eats in  Royal Oak, Michigan. Doesn't she look like she's having a blast? We try to go every summer. I always take lots of people pics. I'm amazed every time at the volume of pictures I take.I started taking pics with a Cannon AE-1 and Kodachrome film. You got them back from the developer and threw most of them out right off the bat. And black and white required different film. Cameras today are really remarkable. Actually, all technology today is amazing, if you think about it.

Friday, September 11, 2015


I've had this picture for about a year. We were at a dinner theater in Fort Myers and this lovely older lady let me take a pic of her. (Way older than me!) She had on a turquoise pant suit that was perfect for her. I love that picture and am very happy with what I've done from it.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015


This is a portrait of a woman at our local farmer's market. Of course her lips were not this large but once I put them in...I liked them. Anyway who will ever know? That's the fun of painting strangers. If you don't get it right, who knows. How do we know Mona Lisa looked like ML? Hell, I could have a whole world of people I make up.

Monday, September 7, 2015



I hope everyone is having a terrific  Holiday weekend. My yoga instructor's dog Sally alway's  comes to Thursday's practice. She is old and very well behaved. 

Friday, September 4, 2015

Late Summer


These flowers always show up late summer. I've drawn and painted them many times. I've never liked the results as much as I like this painting. Maybe orange was a little strong for the background but I like it. Orange is for fall.