Tag Archives: painting

Happy New Year 2014 New Story


An icy walk by the river recently while the sun was out. Calgary was one of the coldest places on earth just before the holidays and we have had lots of snow, the most in 112 years.

I am thankful for the Chinooks that lessen the strain of the winter. And today is mild bright and sunny.

Now the new year is upon us. I wrap the old year in thoughtful reflection to make way for new intentions. 2013 was a year in which I learned a lot about myself, how far I could push myself and how much tenacity I have. I worked a seasonal job while still on the lookout for something permanent. Lessons for art & music are on break until the new year.

The old story has leaving with the old year, and what I am letting go of are to be burned on paper in the fire. 2014 begins with a New Moon, a powerful time for setting intentions and the start of a new story. I am making decisions about what I will create this coming year, which is also going to be the Year of the Green Horse.

Painting has become like meditation and prayer for me. The season has been busy, selling some paintings at art fairs and here are two of my latest that I am very fond of. Had a great time painting these. Both are 6 X 6 on Gallery Wrap canvas. They are for sale. Please contact me, if you are interested.


Wishing you an abundant year in health, physical, emotional, mental, spiritual and financial. Let us create and prosper in 2014.

Thoughts on the Process of Art


In my soul searching I have come to a deeper understanding of some of the fundamentals regarding my creative journey.

The process of art is observation. Technical knowledge does not overrule observation at a conscious level.

Mindful seeing. The view is both internal, and external, microcosm, macrocosm, as it is within, so it is without. Sensing space between the lines and forms, data is filtered and new connections made.

Patterns emerge through lines and shapes, forms creating rhythm and texture. Our perception is a projector onto the canvas, reflecting the essence of inspiration.

A lifetime of observation delivers with smooth precision on the canvas effortlessly transformed by imagination. The place where pure expression exists without modification.


Balance is unspoken, an internal knowing. The integration of what at first appears to be opposing forces may be the only true reality.

‘”Beauty is truth, truth beauty,” – that is all/Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.’ ~Keats

A hushed moment, however fleeting, is etched into the mind forever. Trees in their grandeur allow gentle beauty that reaches to the depths of soul. Immersed in the golden pools of light, I gather the energies for the next creative manifestation.

Prevailing Flow


Well here we are in summer, despite the random golf ball sized hail, summer prevails. Perennials are shorter this year, with fewer smaller blooms.

I do have a patch of sunflowers out back by the garage, planted from seed that are doing well, as well as a patch of dahlias and callas started from bulbs. Sweet peas are coming up near the front porch.

This is a challenging area for gardening, and I have noticed many have turned to container gardening, which they can bring in if the weather is too severe. It was at least a week into June before anything could go into the ground. Once again I have been relying on the gardens of others for picture taking. My hollyhocks never did reappear.

pale pink

The truth is I have not had much energy for gardening, or other things as well. Turns out my thyroid has become under active. I began homoeopathic treatment for it two and a half weeks ago, and I feel some difference already. It takes time to remap the body.

Apparently hypothyroidism is one of the problems that can be corrected with homoeopathy. It was a tremendous relief to find out the cause of my symptoms, and to be on the path to wellness. Clearing my body, and clearing my space. I am on vacation, a stay-cation, finding time for relaxation, neglected tasks, and to set some new patterns. I will do some shorter day trips, including Banff this weekend. I hope to have some interesting experiences to share.

I may have to move within the next six months. I have become attached to this spot, having been here almost six years. Part of me wants to stay, but I feel a slight excitement of having new digs, which may be therapeutic. My vision is more light, French doors, and everything on one level. I have begun the clearing process, which will make room for new things to enter my life. Shifting is constant, reshaping our lives moment by moment.

Random Thought; ♥ “A seed has it’s own will,
encouraged by the wind, it repositions itself where it can best
flourish.” ~ moi ♥


This piece has been on my easel since before the art show. I was frantically working on it the night before the show was hung, and my friend came by to assist in the show set up, and said, “Deb … Deb … put the brush down! It’s over.”

Her words did not sink in, initially (not the first time that has happened), yet, as the glaze over my eyes started to clear, I could see she was serious, and right. It was time to pack up the brushes and paints, and transport what I had. It is a good thing I do not paint in oils, or I would be transporting wet paintings all of the time!

Now I am wondering can I get back into the flow. I thought it could be inspirational and motivational to post this work in progress. What I love about this painting so far; the contrast, the light, the water is almost heart shaped, the tree branches are almost bowing to drink, and there is a pathway from the heart to the light. Now tell me, did you see all of that in it’s early stages? Should be interesting to see what prevails.

Critters, Curtilage, Canvas & Clearing

Painted Lady



The butterflies are arriving. This is a painted lady, who tend to show up here about this time of year during their migration process. Add this to the menagerie that is developing around here.

I had a woodpecker on my chimney the other day-tap tap tapping on the tin cover-it sounded like a machine gun-I think he had OCD, because he couldn’t stop! The other night I went outside to take pictures of the full moon. A rustling in the trees made me think it could be bats, and sent me rushing back into the house, startled. Not to mention the spider in the downstairs sink where I wash out my paint brushes!

Attention robins and catsThe robins have begun dive bombing the cats, who are intensely watching the nest. The robin, when startled, hops out of the nest, does a little dance on the railing of the deck, and his head feathers stand on end, while he takes great pains to stand his ground.

When threatened in the nest, the female sits with it’s beak open. Amazing how the parents take turns sitting. They are ever so quiet at night. Not sure how many eggs are in there, but there seems to be one small one who has just learned to fly. I want to peek, but that may cause distress. Robins in the yard is no longer a rarity, now they are just part of the family.

Backyard Plein AirI didn’t make it to Fish Creek Park this weekend to paint. Instead, I took my portable easel out onto the deck, and stayed close to home. Rain was threatening, but never came, however the wind did not disappoint. So I was pleased to be working on this new landscape, close to the comforts of home. Working from a photograph, this one is acrylic on canvas, 20 X 24.

It was such a lazy weekend-enormous effort was required for the smallest of tasks, but I puttered away and got a few things done. My neighbor graciously dug up a couple of her ferns, for me to plant under the pines, where nothing else seems to grow. As well, I was the recipient of two shoots from her mature poppies, the huge crepe paper kind, which take a long time to get to that stage.

Robin BlossomsThe peonies I planted last August are coming up, as are the other perennials. Once growth begins it picks up momentum. Hoping this is true for all life forms including the human variety.

I am seeing positive signs everywhere of new beginnings, expansion, and abundance, yet how it is all going to go down is the puzzling part.

Apparently, the orchestration, and the how of it all is not my part to play. I just need to clean and clear to make room. And some days, the resistance to doing that is enough to cause inertia. However, baby steps will do fine, until I can travel in leaps and bounds.


LusciousI am going to share with you a sneak peak at the newest luscious painting plan. This is a two foot by three foot piece.

At the moment this is just the pencil sketch on the canvas, possibly a little difficult to discern. You will notice I have used a grid to transfer the image to the canvas.

The reference image, garden peonies in a vase, is a photo I took last summer. I really like the idea of this being a horizontal painting. Most often when I see of a vase of flowers it is often a vertical placement. I have been debating which approach to take with this one, whether to under paint or not. Stay tuned.

MagpieIsn’t it something to see all the amazing resources available to us through the miracle of the Internet?

Whether it is a tutorial, a video, a group web class, a group meditation, or social networking, nearly anything your heart desires is right at your fingertips.

I can say my exposure to computers and to the Internet has really contributed in a big way to my growth, both as an artist, and as a person. An acceleration of awareness has occurred that would have been otherwise impossible. So much to see and experience, with people unselfishly sharing their knowledge. To think that six years ago I wouldn’t have been able to tell you where the on switch was.

MoonriseThe moon was up early this afternoon, and I got a lucky picture of it just before it clouded over. And to complement the moon in Taurus, as moonwoman stated in her article about moon energies I have been doing paperwork today. I am determined to sort out my affairs, so I can move forward, in spite of myself.

It is snowing soft sticky snow, which clumps to the trees, swaying on a background of pale luminous gray. Though late, I have just made a hot steaming cup of tea to warm my insides before crawling in under the duvet to read. A second glance out my window reveals near blizzard conditions. It’s a luscious life.

“As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
~Nelson Mandela

The Artist in Me Wants Out!

The Artist in me Wants Out

Work In Progress
18 X 24

dance tree paintingI have been painting up a storm, while listening to Dvorak’s New World Symphonies 7, 8, & 9. I am sure if Dvorak were alive today he would be creating soundtracks. And I sincerely mean that as a compliment.

Letting the artist in you out, is a matter of finding your voice. It is direct relation to your personal process, so developing this takes a long time. Firstly by knowing yourself, paying attention to what you believe about yourself.

Expressing your purpose and passions your own way. How others do it doesn’t matter. I am finding confidence with each new brushstroke. Overcoming fears, obstacles and outmoded beliefs … that has been my process. The process is ongoing.

Belief systems can keep you stuck. Clearing emotions which hold those systems in place is crucial to freeing ourselves. Our new found freedom will improve our personal energy, vision and creative flow. My inner artist is beginning to stir.

Painting From Life

Painting From Life

Spring TulipsSpring has been taking it’s time settling in around here. Looks like today will be a start, if the rosy glow from the early morning sunrise has anything to say about it. I am hoping for a hot and dry summer, the hotter the better. It will take some doing to get the chill out of these bones.

In trying to get back into the swing, get jazzed about life I picked up my paintbrush in hopes of capturing some of the beauty of the flowers, my first attempt since the surgery. Healing well, thankful for the caring individuals who took me where I needed to go, brought prepared food, so I wouldn’t have to do a single thing but get better.

Besides stretching out your birthday for as long as you can, for the whole month, if possible, I recommend scheduling surgery or downtime near your birthday. Having been spoiled
on my birthday with flowers, they have also been comforting as a focal point while I convalesced.

When I shop for groceries, flowers, fruit and vegetables are all considered to be multi use items. Nothing is immune. The quality of each specimen must look decent enough to fit into a painting or a photograph, even if only to be eaten or discarded later. By the time each individual item has been selected, I have seen numerous strange looks being cast my way sometimes from a lineup which has formed at the in-season array.

Sunday, I am delighted to say, I’ll be off to the Opera “Carmen”. It is a matinée, then dinner. Wishing you all a swell weekend in hopes you will be able to make the most of it. Do a little of your own painting from life if you can. Nothing like a good dose of life imitating art to warm the heart.



Solitude Acrylic/Canvas 20 X 24 WIP
This is the early beginning of a new landscape I started today. Starting this one, felt like a breath of fresh air. I do not have the right sized canvas yet, to begin the really large one I want to do, so that will have to wait.

I also have about three paintings in the final homestretch, which you shall be seeing, just as soon as they are ready. I am trying to develop a freer painting style, which isn’t a new goal, yet I feel I am getting closer.

All of the underpainting I have done on recent paintings, has proven to be an excellent study in values. Now it is time to simplify, taking into account what I have learned up until now.

No Compromise

No Compromise

ExtravaganceA new painting just started yesterday. I chose not to do an under painting, since I wanted to improvise, in hopes of achieving a fresh feel.

Struck by the words of Jack White, in his e-book, “Mystery of Making IT”, he pointed out, if you paint what people like, and will buy, then you will be able to reach your goals.

Extravagance Acrylic/Canvas 16 X 20

Now that does not mean it won’t be something I don’t enjoy painting.

He also suggests that the artist pay attention to what is said about your work, then give the people want they want. I know that the feedback I have received from my patrons, includes they like the flowers, the intense colours, to my delight, it is the very thing I enjoy doing.

After reading Chapter Two, in his book this morning, which I found out about, thanks to Terri West, I spontaneously unwrapped a new canvas, picked up my brushes, and let myself loose, throwing caution to the wind. What a good feeling when you are enjoying the act of painting, without compromise!