Friday, December 2, 2011

Commission: Cattle Egret (2011), 11 x 14"

I painted this graceful bird as a commission. I decided to paint it in a more realistic style than many of my paintings, because I wanted to be sure to capture the character of the bird, not just its general shape. I am really happy with how this painting turned out--from a certain distance it looks like a photograph. Below is the original photo along with the different stages of progress.One other interesting bit about this painting is that I didn't know in the beginning what kind of bird this was. We originally thought it was a Great White Heron (a genetic variant of the Great Blue Heron), but they are pure white over their entire bodies. This bird has brownish/orangish plumage on its head, back, and chest. After doing some internet research I was able to find out that it is actually a Cattle Egret. Here are some other photos I found:

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Paintings for Sale!

Many of the paintings that are pictured on this blog are for sale. I have updated all the links in each post to go to current listings on Etsy and Ugallery. I also have several giclee prints for sale on Etsy as well, so check those out.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Pet Portrait Commission: Maddie the Beagle (2011), 12 x 12"

I've been working the past few weeks on my latest commission. I didn't post about it earlier because the commission is actually a surprise birthday gift for the recipient! The person who commissioned the painting wanted to surprise his wife for her birthday! This painting was a special challenge, because the photo I had to paint was in black and white. I did have several other color photos for reference, which was extremely helpful. Here's the original photo:
And here is a color photo I used as reference:I did a detailed sketch as usual, and completed painting the head and body in one sitting (so cute!):
I was instructed to leave the background as nondescript as possible, and to use a palette of muted greens or browns. I decided on greens since that contrasted better with the color of the dog's fur. I used really thick paint and chunky textures, especially in the top section of the painting. I mixed five subtly different shades of green/blue-green and placed them randomly next to each other without any blending. I really love how the whole painting turned out! Here is the finished painting along with some close-ups:Check out my other pet portraits here:
Olive, the Boston Terrier
Bear, the Yellow Lab
Bun, the Mini Lop

Want to commission a pet portrait of your own? Contact me here:

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Monday, September 5, 2011

Monday, August 29, 2011

Mark Your Calendars--Salt Fork River Art Festival

Be sure to mark you calendars for this year's Salt Fork River Art Festival! I'll be showing my paintings there again this year. Here are some details:

Where: Sleepy Creek Vineyards
8254 E 1425 North Road
Fairmount, IL 61841

When: September 24-25, 2011

Not only will there be great art, but Sleepy Creek Vineyards makes some delicious wines that you can sip while viewing the art!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Hay Bales II (2011), 6 x 12"

This painting is based on a photo by David DeHetre, found on Original photo can be found here. Used under a Creative Commons License.


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Recap: Downtown Festival of the Arts

I had a great day at the Downtown Festival of the Arts. Not only did it not rain, but I sold seven paintings! I loved when someone told me they recognized my style and knew they had seen me at another festival. There was also someone who saw my art at the Taste of Champaign and had regretted not buying something then...she bought a painting this time! I got to hear some amazing stories of how my art touched people, and that really was the best part. :-)

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Booth location change

So, my booth location has changed for the Downtown Festival this Saturday. I am now in booth number 8. You can check out a great map here on the Champaign Park District website. I've also updated my post below, with the map showing the new correct location.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Champaign Downtown Festival of the Arts

The Downtown Festival of the Arts is in less than two weeks! I will have fourteen new paintings to show, including my largest painting ever! Here are the details along with a map:
Location: Downtown Champaign, Neil St.
Date: August 20, 2011
Time: 10:00am-6:00pm
I am booth number 8--come say hi!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Still Life with Zinnias (2011), 9 x 12"

Here it is, my first ever still life! In general, I dislike still lifes because I think they are cheesy (see this post). I think it is very difficult to paint a still life with character. When I found this photo, however, I was immediately inspired to paint it. My favorite part are the colors--especially the flowers and the aqua table cloth. I think this painting is just pure delightfulness. I've now found several other photos that I would like to use as still life subjects. By the way, I should mention this painting is the last painting I needed to complete before the Champaign Downtown Festival of the Arts in two weeks (Aug. 20). I'm getting excited! I will post more details about my booth location when I know them.

Original photo by Carl E. Lewis, found on Photo used under a creative commons license.

For sale at my Etsy site here.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Field of Poppies IV (2011), 8 x 10"

This painting is a larger version of an earlier painting. It is a little more detailed than the previous painting. Both are just pure joy, don't you think? I can think of nothing more cheerful than a field of poppies.

I am nearly done with all the paintings I needed to complete for the Champaign Downtown Festival of the Arts on August 20. I plan on finishing the last one today. Its subject is a bit different from what I normally paint, so check back for a post on that soon.


Monday, August 1, 2011

Painting the Edges

I first want to announce that I sold two paintings on Etsy this weekend! I'm so excited. One of the buyers asked that I continue the painting around the edges. I've never done this before, but I was glad to agree to do it. I finished the painting this morning. I think it turned out great! Here are a couple pictures. The painting is Sequatchie Valley, TN II.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Field of Lupine (2011), 8 x 16"

This painting has undergone quite a transformation. Here is a before picture:

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Snowy Avenue (2011), 6 x 9"

My first ever snow painting! It's not exactly seasonal (the heat index in Illinois is 107 degrees), but delightful nonetheless. I think I managed to incorporate just about every color of the rainbow in this painting. I love it. :-)


Thursday, July 7, 2011

Early Spring at the Arboretum II (2011), 8 x 10"

This painting is a small version of an earlier painting. It has less texture than I sometimes use, which was necessitated by the amount of detail in the painting and its small size.

I started another painting yesterday of the Kankakee River (inspired by our trip to Kankakee on the fourth of July). Hopefully, I will complete it in the next few days!

For sale at my etsy page.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Bluebell Forest IV (2011), 8 x 10"

This painting is based on a photo by Herry Lawford, found on Original photo can be found here. Used under a Creative Commons License.


Illinois Sunset (2011), 9 x 12"

This painting is based on a photo I took out of my apartment window. In the original photo, the sun is setting over the apartment complex. I tried, first, to paint building silhouettes at the bottom, but my husband said the buildings looked like warehouses... so I changed them into foliage.

For sale at my etsy page.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Irises III (2011), 9 x 12"

This painting is based on a photo taken by my sister at an iris farm in Nashville! I have several other iris paintings planned that are inspired by her lovely photos. After my previous irises painting was stolen (see post here) I knew I had to paint them again. They are my absolute favorite flower to paint--so colorful and dramatic!

This painting joined the Taste of Champaign show on Sunday. I wasn't originally planning on showing this piece (it wasn't totally dry yet), but I had sold so many paintings that I needed to bring some more to fill up the empty space. The Irises didn't end up selling, but many people commented to me about it. Look for it at the Downtown Festival of the Arts, August 20th!!

Taste of Champaign: Recap

The Taste of Champaign was last weekend and was a decided success. The rain held off (mostly) for the whole three days of the show and I sold eight paintings! It was great fun, as usual, to talk with people about my art and to hear their comments and thoughts about it. I received so many thoughtful compliments--it's really a great feeling to know people appreciate my art since so much of my time is spent painting at home, obsessing over small details in my paintings. It's just reassuring to know I am able to bring people happiness through my art. Here are some shots of my booth:One thing I noticed was that paintings with "local" subjects sold better than those, say, of Wyoming or Tennessee. I will be keeping this in mind as I prepare for the Champaign Downtown Festival of the Arts in August. I would like to complete another 12 canvases before then!! I had better get painting soon!

For those of you who would like to join my facebook fan page, here is a link:

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Taste of Champaign

The Taste of Champaign is just over a week away! I will have my own booth this year where I will be selling my paintings. I will have 29 paintings for sale in a large variety of sizes (from 2.5 x 3in. to 18 x 24in.), plus the portrait of Olive will be on display! Here is some general info about location and times:

West Side Park, Downtown Champaign, IL
June 17-19th
Friday, June 17-5:00-10:00pm
Saturday, June 18 -11:00am-10:00pm
Sunday, June 19-11:00am-6:00pm
*Note: Artists are permitted to pack up early each night because of lack of lighting. Art booths may start closing as early as 8:30pm Friday and Saturday.

Below is a map of the layout of the park. My booth is number 8 (circled and highlighted in yellow).

Friday, May 20, 2011

Peony Garden, Allerton Park, Monticello, IL, 8 x 16"

I'm finally back to painting, after a week of mostly cloudy skies in Illinois. I only paint on days that are sunny, because my apartment is too dark otherwise. My latest painting is another local scene--I'm hoping it will sell next month at the Taste of Champaign! I'll be posting more info about the Taste of Champaign as soon as I know my booth location. Some general info:
West Side Park, Downtown Champaign, IL
June 17-19th
Friday, June 17-5:00-10:00pm
Saturday, June 18 -11:00am-10:00pm
Sunday, June 19-11:00am-6:00pm

This painting is sold!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Article Feature!

An article about my art has been featured on the website It is a whole mini-critique and description of my art--I am very flattered! Here is a link to the article.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Woodland Phlox, Lake of the Woods Park, 8 x 10"

Last weekend we visited Lake of the Woods forest preserve in Mahomet, IL. The wildflowers were in full bloom! I took a ton of great pictures--many of which I hope to paint. Here's a pic of me photographing some purple trillium.This painting is sold!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Garden Path at the Arboretum (2011), 5 x 7"

I recently took some great pictures at the arboretum on the U of Illinois campus that I thought would make great paintings. I'm trying to find more inspiration where I live.


Thursday, April 28, 2011

Wyoming Countryside (2011), 6 x 8"

I think this is the last Wyoming painting for now. Up next are another Bee Rock painting, two of the arboretum, and a really unusually shaped one of the Sea of Galilee. Stay tuned!


Sunday, April 24, 2011

Sequatchie Valley, TN II (2011), 6 x 12"

Check out this wikipedia article about the Sequatchie Valley in Tennessee. It is quite a pronounced geological feature and looks awesome from space!


Saturday, April 23, 2011

Sequatchie Valley, TN (2011), 9 x 12"

I love this painting so much, I think I am going to keep this one too. I am planning, though, to paint this subject again on a 6 x 12 canvas. I already have it sketched--it will be more of a panoramic view of this beautiful valley.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Red-Winged Blackbird (2011), 12 x 12"

I can't decide if this painting is too "folksy." Is it possible to paint a bird and have it not be folksy? I'm not sure. But, I like the texture of the tree and the varied tones I added to the sky. Those features give this painting more interest than it might have otherwise.

For sale at my Ugallery page.


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