Sunday, December 12, 2010


Click on images to enlarge

This painting is of my friend's daughter Hannah. I chose to paint her when I picked her mother's name for Secret Santa this year and we had talked in the past that she would love to have a painting of her. As soon I as drew her name my first thought "could I possibly get it painted in time?"  After arranging for Hannah to get to the studio for photographs secretly, my husband captured the beautiful image below my painting posted here. That same night I began to paint and.tilted her slightly using Photoshop CS5 to add more movement and I imagined warmer tones throughout to accentuate her beautiful olive skin and brunette hair, so I added other colors to compliment. I could easily enjoy creating more of these paintings. It may be that I love music as much as I enjoy painting. Special thanks for suggestions from my painter friends including Richard Ramsey. If you are interested in learning more about painting backgrounds in this style, I highly recommend his DVD tutorials which you can find using this link
 His instructions and videos are detailed, clear and sharp. Tell him I sent you :)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


(click to enlarge images)

I'm sending you this card, sealed with a warm embrace
that I hope puts a smile on upon your friendly face.

Between the lines, I hope you'll see
how very dear you are to me.

For there's magic in written words
that can speak a happiness tha'st felt not heard.

So across the miles, I'm reaching out
like a warm wind, to let you know that
I'm thankful for your continued support and comments
on my blog, my friend.

Thanksgiving is for remembering special people...near and far. I'm thinking of
 you on  this special day and giving thanks that you came my way.

Saturday, November 20, 2010


Click on images to enlarge
My sunshine doesn't come from the skies,
It comes from the love in my dog's eyes
  Unknown Poet

Happy 5th Birthday, Gigi! At only 5 1/2 pounds she fills our entire home and hearts with her endless joy and an endearing spirit. She is constantly reminding us that the simplest things in life fulfill you the most from a simple walk smelling all the wonders of the world or to pause and enjoy the wags and kisses from near by friend along the way. It's amazing what these gentle creatures teach us and give to us unconditionally. Our day begins and ends with this adorable smile on her face, what else could you ask for to make life complete?

Friday, November 12, 2010


Photographer Eugene Wong
Click to Enlarge Image

  I've have been so excited about posting my artistic impression of this photograph since Eugene shared it with me. He was traveling in Xian, China and got separated from the tour group and went into a back room of a terra cotta factory where a man was finishing a piece of furniture. During this time of year kids were out of school for the summer so she wasn't actually doing her homework but rather the studies were given to her by her parents to try and get an edge up and be ahead when school reconvened. As he told me, apparently only 71% of high school grads go on to higher education and it takes two incomes to send your child on. The lighting in this image immediately struck me as it gently lit the young girl's hair. I could invision this as a great piece of art. I hope you agree. Let me know your the comment link below. I love getting feedback from you. 

Sunday, October 31, 2010


Original Photograph by Cheryl Rankin

This photo from Morgue File struck me because it's at angle I would've shot myself! So thank you Cheryl! It's fun sharing these paintings with the photographer to let them know even a simple shot like this can be seen in another way. I think it makes a cool piece of art. I emailed Cheryl to let her know that I painted her boots and this was her response "That is sooooo cool! Love your work. I'm honored that you felt my humble boots/leaves photo worthy of your time. I liked mixing-it-up in this painting! This one could be perfect for embellishing it with acrylic paints after its printed on canvas. Hope your enjoying my fall postings and stay tuned more to come plus a special painting of my dog Gigi to celebrate a special day.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


Click on any image to enlarge for viewing
My husband Ralph originally took this photo of me on our trip to Vermont. I just love yelling "STOP" when I see something on the side of the road that I have to photograph...however, I'm not sure how much he loves the sudden heart-stopping moment that it causes!  It's a photo I've had for some time sitting in my "to paint" folder,  just waiting for the the moment of artistic inspiration to hit me.  The last image posted is what I saw through  my lens and eventually captured as soon as the blustery winds of Autumn calmed easy task and requires lots of patience!

Saturday, October 23, 2010


Autumn Blaze
A special thank you to my subscribers who took a few minutes and submitted their entries to my comments area on my blog to name my latest post (as seen here again in a smaller image.) This was a difficult choice to make but I really felt John Hancock's description says it all and I'm sure that you all will agree. John wll recieve his personally signed print by end of week and hopefully you will stay tuned for more of my interactive posts soon.
Congratulations John!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


"Art is not what you see, but, what you make others see," 
-Edgar Degas

THAT'S RIGHT! You could be the one to name this painting!
 (For my blog subscribers only)
LEAVE A COMMENT which includes your idea for the title of this painting before Friday, Oct. 22nd. I will choose the one I like best and you will win one FREE 8x10 photo print of my painted version, personally signed by me and mailed directly to your home! Be creative, this should be alot of fun!  
The original photograph  is from MorgueFile and I have emailed the photographer to let them see my artistic interpretation. I'm anxious to hear all of your ideas and Good Luck! To subscribe for free to my blog just type in your email at the top right of the screen and don't forget the second step to confirm it when you recieve an email from Feedburner.

Saturday, October 16, 2010


"How silently they tumble down
And come to rest upon the ground
To lay a carpet, rich and rare,
Beneath the trees without a care,
Content to sleep, their work well done,
Colors gleaming in the sun.
At other times, they wildly fly
Until they nearly reach the sky.
Twisting, turning through the air
Till all the trees stand stark and bare.
Exhausted, drop to earth below
To wait, like children, for the snow."
Elsie N. Brady

Fall is my favorite season! Beauty abounds and my breath is taken away! It calls to me to move to the Northeast every year....until it snows!  I dream of owning a home one day that has a large desiduous tree in the front yard framed by my bay window so that I can just sit and bask in it's beauty until the last leave has gone. This is much looser than my past paintings but I enjoyed working on it. I chose to use one of the photos posted on the photo sharing  site because unfortunately we have yet to see any fall color here in Fullerton, which is slim at best on a good year. Hope you enjoy not only the change of season but a slight change in my artistic interpretation for this latest posting.
Photograph by Mary R. Vogt

Thursday, September 23, 2010


"Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting and autumn a mosaic of them all."

Stanley Horowitz

Since I'm working on completing a couple of other pieces of art; I will start the first day of autumn with an old favorite of mine as it combines so many of my favorite things, my dog Gigi, the warm colors of fall and the invitation of thought of "Where does the green door lead? I photographed this image without Gigi from our "leaf peeping" trip to Vermont several years ago and then added Gigi as I've done in a few of my previous paintings. Hope you enjoy taking a moment to let your imagination lead you through the green door and let me know where it takes you in the comments below.

Sunday, August 22, 2010


Click to Enlarge Image
  I just can't get enough of these swimming photos to paint! Certain images just SCREAM to me; "Paint me, Paint me!"  This one is no exception. The water cascading from her arms as she flew through the water felt like she truly was creating butterfly wings. I liked her form being slightly offset. I was not looking for the perfect pose; to me, that would be boring. These young athletes really inspire me as they compete and put everything out there for the win! The amount of strength and power that goes into this swim stroke looks exhausting! I also removed the swim team logo from her cap to draw focus to the delicate feathering of the water forming captivating butterfly wings. Don't forget to "dive in" and leave your comments below. Thanks for looking!

Friday, August 20, 2010


 I took this photo during another swim meet that included younger swimmers competing. I really felt for this little girl in the red bathing suit as I watched her shiver and doing her own "little dance" to stay warm prior to the whistle to jump in the water. As you can see in the photo, as soon as she got into the water her whole attitude changed and she was quickly focused and in position for the start of the race to begin.  Quickly as I was taking the shot; I also noticed these other girls glancing over at their competition in the red.  With only seconds left my finger quickly pressed the shutter button to capture that perfect line-up then with the sound of the starting pistol the race was on!!! Silently, I felt myself rooting for the tiny girl in red as if she was my own.
 Click the image to enlarge

Sunday, August 8, 2010


  This painting is of another young female swimmer at Derek's meet. I removed the floating lane lines and kept the dramatic splash she was creating from the butterfly. It's amazing watching these young atheletes fighting for the win. I'm very competitive myself and it takes everything in me "not to jump in"  and race to them to the best time!  I liked the title as I thought it was fitting but it's also the acryonym for Fullerton Aquatics Sports Team. Click on the image to enlarge

Wednesday, July 7, 2010


 This is my neighbors 10 year old son Derek, determined to win!. I was able to attend one of his swimming meets last year and have had this image in my folder "to paint" waiting for some artisitc inspiration since then and I am so excited I have revisited it and created what you see here. This is the same crop as the original photograph taken and I loved the angle, the splash and rush of the water around him along with his competitive expression.Everything just came together on this one in one evening! I have the original without his name but added it for effect to print it out on a 20x30 poster for him. The print turned out vibrant and textured just as I had hoped! He is a bright young man and seems to excel in all his swimming meets. He didn't know that I painted this so I'm excited to give him his poster! My next attempt will be to print this on canvas and add acrylic paints for even more texture. Stay tuned..I hope to post those results too!  If you are a local athelete and are interested in having me attend one of your events for your own photopainting; email me with your details. I look forward to hearing from you. 

Monday, July 5, 2010


This is my husband Ralph, and I know the first thing you are saying to yourself  "I hope she has alot of insurance on him." LOL And the second thing you're probably thinking is "I hope she is taking the photograph from the ground! Yes, I clearly could not be hanging by a rope and try to manage taking a photo at the same time of this precarious climbing area, I'm artistic not technical! While I enjoy hiking and breathing in the great outdoors, I will leave all the "big boy" stunts to him and keep my feet a little bit firmer on solid ground with a 300 mm zoom lens. 

Sunday, June 20, 2010


The original photograph of Travis was taken by my husband Ralph who was hanging on the other side of the rock with one hand and camera in the other! Boys will be boys! As if this was not challenging enough, just prior to capturing this image they had disturbed a bees nest and was fighting off angry bees between shots.
   The title "The Crux" is a climbing term which refers to the hardest move on a route or the hardest section of a climb.Sports portraits are some of my favorites to create because of the action and feeling they give the viewer. 
   With summer upon us, I'm sure you will be seeing more of these images posted. Hopefully I can get on the other side of the rock to photograph my husband in one of these precarious poses too! 

Let's all hope the rope holds me.....

Sunday, April 25, 2010


This one is a little different for me and so much fun! I have been recently studying the works of Karin Jurick. She is a natural media artist who lives in Atlanta, Ga. and paints incredible people paintings among many other things. If you would like to check her out at
 Her paintings have given me a whole new "vision" and her style is something that I admire very much.
Ralph and I drove by this couple waiting for a bus and I yelled "Wait!" Stop! I need a photograph of that hat and those shoes! Ralph quickly made a quick U-turn and I took this photograph from across the street. I used mostly the palette knife set to my own adjustments but I also used Den's Oil Blender brush for the background. I also decided to paint out the post between them to eliminate the distraction, then as always I finished in Adobe CS4 with color adjustments and final framing by adding texture. When I look at his expression, I can hear him thinking "Are we really going out with that HAT again???
What do you think he is thinking?

Sunday, April 11, 2010


  I have to say this piece makes the list as one of my favorites. I passed this fence everyday on my way to work and finally I photographed this last spring and have been waiting for the true moment of creative inspiration to turn it into the art piece I envisioned. The combination of the soft, dainty, pink flowers against the rugged grain of the wood, speaks to me. I love using all the digital tools available to transform these "ever-changing images" that we pass every day, into contemporary modern art. This same fence today is completely  shrouded behind a dense curtain of purple and pink Bougainvillea. 
Lesson learned: "take the time to stop and smell the roses"...or in this case Bougainvillea!

Friday, April 9, 2010


In the spirit of the spring season I am continuing my series of flower paintings while enduring, sneezing, itchy watery eyes and sore throat! Yes, it's all in the news we are having one of the worst allergy season's ever which means I will have plenty of flowers to photograph and paint. A good stock of antihistamines and tissues are on my next shopping list. 
  This is the second of my Gerbera paintings and still remains one of my favorite flowers next to the Sunflower. Keeping the crop simple without framing actually created more of a challenge for me as my focus went directly to making sure the texture of the brushwork came through on the final image.
 Hope you enjoy and Gesundheit! 

Thursday, March 4, 2010


Meet Jake! An endearing Weinmariner with a sweet disposition, that is loveable, playful and a puppy full of love!  I've also painted him on the beach with his owner Guy, which you can view at my website. This was just a fun day of photographing him in the back yard and I really loved the expression captured here. He was playing catch and was in a stance to run and catch.  I love cropping to really draw you into the eyes and and added a warm glow surrounding him. I also removed the tags and wall border in the background prior to painting.  I painted mostly using acrylics and a messy brush for the backround. His eyes give you a peek into his gentle soul. Please feel free to leave your comments.

Saturday, February 27, 2010


Click Images to Enlarge
Happy Birthday Casey! He is my brother's first and only son and was photographed by my brother Larry on their vacation. This is the second painting of him, I also painted him as a toddler a few years ago using a heart brush that I created. You can view that in my website gallery.  I couldn't wait to paint this one as I especially loved the reflection that he captured. I painted this in really warm, bright and rich colors for the summer and enhanced Casey's sun-kissed complexion. It makes me anxious to skip these cooler month's of winter and go directly to my favorite time of year, summer! I'm sure they will be feeling the same way after enduring the extreme winter conditions in the northeast. I used alot of my favorite brushes including the palette knife and created a watercolor style border in Adobe CS4 then added a paper texture in Corel 11. This will print nicely on water color paper and then I plan on mailing it to them in West Virginia to celebrate his 5th birthday. Please feel free to leave your comments, reading them always feels like a ray of sunshine!

Saturday, February 20, 2010


Click either image to Enlarge

This posting is of a friend and wonderful young lady, Janae.  I was so pleased to be invited to share in the experience of her wedding day. Seeing the warm colors of the setting sun glowing off her olive complexion and the beading throughout her gown and headpiece, I couldn't  resist stealing her away from the wedding photograher for just a quick moment to pose for me.  Prior to painting I adjusted the color tone and contrast of the photograph and then painted with many brushes in Corel 11 which includes Marilyn Sholin's portrait brushes, a mixture of Jeremy Sutton's brushes, Acrylics and Den's Oil Brushes. In my final touches I created a warm light off to the right side to give it more depth and drama.  A very special thank you to Jill Garl and her portrait painting techniques and excellent suggestions. Mary Lou, I hope you  enjoy my creative expression of this very memorable day for you and your daughter. From this day forward and til death do us part, I promise to be grateful to hear your comments.

Saturday, February 13, 2010


Click Images to Enlarge

HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY! My art posted today originated with a photo I took of a gift bag. Don't these little candy hearts just make you happy when you see them? The pink little boxes they come in with the plastic heart window is a happy memory for me.  If you click on the image you will see more detail that I added. I used a mixtured of Jeremy Sutton and Marilyn Sholin brushes in different opacities and mixed up the "jitter" option in Corel 11 to get the end result I was hoping for. I then added a paper texture in Adobe CS4 which I thought added a "wet" look or somewhat water color technique. I like the simplicity and the fact that the peace sign just so happens to be right in the middle of the bunch. Peace and Love truly are a great blend! Wishing you a happy heart day and don't forget to "share the love" and leave your comments.

Monday, January 4, 2010

My New Year Painting Gets Pic of the Week!

GREAT NEWS! I'm so excited that my new year painting of Gigi was chosen for the "Pic of the Week" by the editor at Corel Painter Official Magazine Website! Check it out here . Her painting is on the front home page. What an exciting way to start off the new year with my art!

Saturday, January 2, 2010


Click Images to Enlarge

Happy New Year! As we close on 2009 and move into 2010, I can only hope this next year won't go by so fast! It's amazing how quickly we move through the month's, isn't it?  I hope that the new year will be a transition to recovery for our economy, the housing and families affected.  I'm excited to start the second year of my blog and am excited about all the new things I am learning in the digital art field. I will continue posting more art and possibly some videos explaining my thought process for each new posting.  I hope that you will stay tuned and thank you so very much for your continued support! I truly appreciate all of you and your comments.
  I really wanted to create something different for the new year art piece. I've seen lots of clocks, champagne and a few calendars used, but of course I wanted to incorporate Gigi into this piece, she has kinda of become my muse. The "smile" is a result of a good long walk on our warm day and the color tones were an inspiration from images that I have seen for vintage, Wells Fargo Messenger advertisements. I experimented with the Norman Rockwell brush and as always used my faithful Jeremy Sutton's Mish Mash and Den's oil bristle brushes. I added a canvas texture as I went back and forth between Adobe CS4 and Corel Painter 11 as I do most often. Don't forget you can click on the image to enlarge and of course please leave a comment.