Spring Flow–San Ysidro

Spring Flow–San Ysidro– Oil on Linen– 16×20″ (Available)

I love views where I can see the water in the creek twisting and turning on the path back home to mother ocean. The sun was getting low this afternoon causing that play of light and shadow that I enjoy so much when I’m painting. The canvas almost blew away on this one as the winds whipped up the canyon, but my reflexes dropped my brush to grab the easel.

In progress…

I had scoped out the site the day before hiking with my daughter. I’ve been forgetful lately and didn’t bring a panel, but she kindly tore a page out of her sketchbook for me to paint on…

Path of Least Resistance

I’ve been working on a large canvas recently and painting from memory…

36×48″ oil on canvas (available)

I wanted to create a view that exists over time on a hike in our local mountains, but you can never quite frame with a camera. Do you know moments like this when you are on canyon creek trail watching spotlights penetrating the oak and California Bay canopy and illuminating patches of creek water and leaf litter. In the distance you glimpse an occasional peak of the ocean and Channel Islands. The title describes the chosen journey the creek takes as the raindrops return home to the Pacific.

Detail

The Edge of the Season

18×24″ oil on linen– Happy Thanksgiving everybody! I have so much to be grateful for. One thing I’m thankful for is the time I get to spend outdoors with a paintbrush appreciating nature and I’m thankful for you for appreciating it, supporting it and encouraging me to continue creating it.

The inch of rain we had a couple weeks ago is bringing back the green as baby grasses and herbs are sprouting. In Southern California, all the stuff we learned about seasons in Kindergarten is horsefeathers. Rather than everything going dormant and dying in late fall and winter, around here the first autumn rains bring an early spring and new life to the landscape. So happy Spring in November, everybody!

Space to Wander

24×36″ oil on linen– Chinese artists of the past used to say you should wait at least a year has passed since you’ve seen something before you paint it. The idea was that after that much time, instead of trying to copy nature you were painting your personal impression of how a scene made you feel. This painting is from my many memories of hiking through meadows and oak lands in Southern California. I wanted to offer the eyes a space to wander and explore… come hike with me in my imagined landscape.

Chaparral Peaks

Oil on Linen Panel– 16×20″ — The dogtooth above is Cathedral Peak and the dragon’s back to the right is Arlington Peak. I love their forms with their bones of sandstone pushing a little higher every earthquake and their sinuous eroding canyons growing deeper every rainy season. Fire, earth, air, water are all at play sculpting these mountains and this cooler weather is perfect for climbing them.

Misty Morning Paintouts

Fog Burnoff– Goleta Slough 14×18″

Just one week until my big Open Studio Art Sale. On Labor Day Weekend, September 3-5 come by as my guest at 1128 Via Regina from 11-5 Saturday or Sunday!

I’ve been out painting on some of those misty mornings we’ve been having. It is fun to play with the subtlety of the greys and to try to catch that mysterious light.

Misty Beach Walk– 9×12– oil on linen

Alpine Symmetry

24×36″ oil on canvas– (available)

I saw several gems of lakes like this one backpacking this summer. There is no actual trail going here, but there are alpine creek drainages to follow or talus field passes that take you off of the most common routes and let you experience hiking in a different way. In some ways, there is more energy in way finding and more mindfulness of steps that aren’t graded and switchbacked for stock travel… and for this you get the reward of recognizing how many little secret meadows, glens, lakes, tarns, granite art forms and other surprises are tucked into the rocky arms of the Sierra Nevada. This little lake sits on the eastern flank of Seven Gables which you can see beginning to rise on the right side of the canvas.

Fresh paint…

9×12 oil on linen panel

Here are a couple of new ones recently off the easel. I painted a nice misty morning view from the cliffs above Hendry’s on the Douglas Preserve a couple days ago, watching the people on the beach play and walk around not unlike the ants that have been in our kitchen. : )

I also made another neighborhood painting with two small panels of a corner on Valerio Street and once again enjoyed chatting with the friendly neighbors and hearing a little bit of the story of place. It is interesting how this type of conversation is often about a tree… either one that’s there or one that used to be. Trees make a neighborhood, don’t they?

Valerie Street Diptych– 6×16″ oil on two panels

Pleasant places to paint…

Los Olives Summer Day– 8×10″ oil on linen panel

Here are a couple of pleasant painting locals from the past week. The top one was made after a walk around Lake Los Carneros and a delicious sandwich with my family in Los Olives. (We brought a couple more small works to show at the Los Olivos General Store if you find yourself up that way.)

The second was made at El Refugio State Beach at the moment when the sun burns through the marine layer and it’s time to jump in the ocean. I hope you are all enjoying your summer days!

El Refugio Beach Day– 9×12″ oil on linen panel