Friday, December 12, 2014

French Vacation (Paris) La Cure Gourmande

I was able to spend a little time on the Isle Saint- Louis in the center of Paris. Nice streets to explore and shop. I saw this shop with so many cookies! I liked the colorful display in the window with the assortment of pretty boxes. I don't know how I escaped without eating something!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

French Vacation (Paris) La Petite Rotonde

Not far from my hotel in Montparnasse was this nice cafe. Isn't is beautiful? The weather was almost perfect while I was in Paris at the end of August. Great for sitting outside. 
I also included a little sketch that I did. 

Monday, November 17, 2014

French Vacation (Paris) Self-Portrait

Even if it doesn't look  like me, it brings back good memories of sitting in cafes with my workshop friends! We went to this one before dinner in the Latin Quarter, the last day of our workshop. Le Sorbon. It was a good one but how to choose from so many! 

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Fine Arts & Flowers - Virginia Museum of Fine Arts

I was visiting my sister in Richmond, Virginia for a few days last week and decided to see an exhibition being shown at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts titled "Fine Arts & Flowers". The exhibition celebrates floral interpretations of masterworks in the permanent galleries, created by garden club members throughout Virginia. Here are a few of these impressive arrangements and their corresponding works of art.Take a look and enjoy!

Add I think my linocut could inspire an interesting floral arrangement!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

French Vacation (Paris) Seine River Boat Excursion

My workshop teacher arranged a sunset boat ride on a Bateau Vedette de Pont Neuf on the river Seine in Paris. It was magnificent to see the banks of the river from that point of view! And I got to revisit my favorite bridge, the Pont Neuf, which I crossed many times during my last visit to France. On the boat we passed by some of the well-known landmarks like the Eiffel Tower. Of course I had to take a few photos! Now you can be assured that I was in Paris! 

Friday, October 17, 2014

My French Vacation (Paris) Notre Dame

This is my "yes, I really was in Paris" photo! I stopped behind the church one afternoon to draw in the garden. (I think it's called Square St. Jean XIII)  A few days later I returned with my art workshop friends for a "pique-nique". Savoureux et sucre!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

My French Vacation (Paris) Food

I found this very colorful food in Montmartre. I've never seen anything this fancy! So beautiful..

Saturday, October 11, 2014

My French Vacation (Paris) Bench

I'm almost sure that I have seen the oldest bench in France or maybe the world! There is no denying that it has provided a nice spot for resting and reflection. I think that two large trees once accompanied it. How fine!


Tuesday, October 7, 2014

My French Vacation (Paris) Hotel

I loved making a sketch of this hotel. There were flowers on every balcony - so  pretty!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Sunday, September 28, 2014

My French Vacation (Paris) Hotel Delambre

I loved that I had a room in the hotel with a balcony...and flowers! It reminded me of the etching I did a few months ago. I had such fun going out there and looking down at the Montparnasse street that was my home for a week. Here are two photos from there.

Monday, September 22, 2014

My French Vacation (Paris)

Last week I returned from a wonderful 3-week adventure to France. There were so many great parts to it that I thought I would start at the beginning and show some photos I took along the way. I became especially interested in going when I found a workshop called Capturing the Paris Wow, taught by Cynthia Morris, a writer and creativity coach. Our goal was to fill a small sketchbook with images and/or writings of our experiences in  Paris. We traveled around the city, sometimes together and sometimes alone, and experienced as much as we could in six days. With all of the goings-on, my mind had trouble imagining that sleep was necessary!
Here are a few photos of my hotel, Hotel Delambre, in Montparnasse ,Paris.
A small hotel with a friendly staff!
The plaque by the front door says "DANS CET HOTEL A VECU, EN 1891, L'ARTISTE PEINTRE PAUL GAUGUIN"   I think Gauguin stayed here but I'm not entirely sure. But as an artist, I like the idea!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014


This is a part of a painting that I wasn't really happy with but still, it reminds me of summer days at the beach and I like that. Happy rest of summer!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Bluebird House

A friend gave me this bluebird house this year, so after painting it with some new colors, we put it in the yard to see what happens. Some of the neighbors have good luck attracting bluebirds. I was told that it could take 2 or 3 years before the bluebirds find it. WELL, 22 hours later there was a beautiful bluebird sitting on the top of the house and I couldn't believe it! Then 2 hours later the house wrens were moving in. They were so much fun to watch building their nest that I couldn't bring myself to stop them. People told me that I should have because they can build nests in all sorts of places. But bluebirds need the boxes more. Also, house wrens will destroy other birds' eggs in the box so what to do!?? It's so complicated!! Anyway, while the little wrens were growing in the box, I saw this big black rat snake in my yard and decided to place the black baffle on the pole to keep it away from the babies. It seems that birds have so many predators stealing their young.
Maybe next year I'll be lucky enough to have bluebirds. :-)

Friday, July 4, 2014

Washed Ashore - Art to Save the Sea

Yesterday I went to see an exhibit at the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center here in Virginia Beach. It's a project directed by environmental artist Angela Haseltine Ponzi and created to educate the public about the devastating effects of marine debris and plastic pollution on our sea life. It's a traveling exhibit and I'm glad that I had the chance to see it. The sculptures are really very creative and colorful, quite pretty! All made from debris found in the ocean.  But of course it's sad to realize that so much debris is littering the oceans. Here are a few of the sculptures I saw:

they found lots of syrofoam

cigarette lighters on fish
Plastic bottles

the blue is made from pieces of flipflops
Lydia the seal made mostly from lids

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Goldfinches - Gouache Painting

As you can see here, I love to play with shapes and colors!
Maybe it's a little busy but I enjoy making it so. The birds do get lost in all the foliage in the real world!

Thursday, June 19, 2014


Who would not love zinnias? They come in the most beautiful colors and they are easy to grow from seed and love hot weather!. If only there was enough sun at my house. :(  I was coming back from running errands this morning and noticed a sign outside Stoney's Market in Virginia Beach which said "fresh-cut zinnias". Now I had to think about that for a minute but decided there was no way that I was not making a u-turn to check it out. I ended up with this nice bunch. Seriously, who could resist those? 
I have a feeling that I might return to the market for their sunflowers. Also brilliant!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

French Window Etching - Final

I didn't show earlier the final etching of the French window I did for a friend. But I did show some proofs of the process.We looked at some pictures of windows, decided on some details that she liked and then I put this together using a little imagination. Here it is! 

Friday, May 23, 2014

Chrysler Museum and the Rubber Duck!

The Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman's Rubber Duck has settled in the Hague Inlet across from our newly renovated Chrysler Museum's main entrance. It really is a world traveler after visiting Holland, France, Brazil, Japan, New Zealand and several other countries. Now here it is in Norfolk, not so far from my studio. Thought I would go check it out. It was a beautiful day! The yellow and the blue! Art or not?

I wonder how it got so big........

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Box Turtle Painting

I started my turtle etching but found time running short so decided to create a painting for the show instead. Etchings require a lot of going back and forth with possible corrections and with going out of town several times, I wasn't sure I could finish in time for the "Earthscapes" show at my art center. So I turned to gouache painting to create this turtle scene. I wanted to make a scene which included some of the native plants in my lawn like wild strawberry and violets. 

Tuesday, May 6, 2014


Just around the corner from my house I found an explosion of buttercups, sometimes considered a weed but they are beautiful here in the light of the late afternoon. They are from the family Ranunculus, Latin for "little frog" since many species are found near water, like frogs. Isn't that interesting? There's the false belief that these plants give butter its characteristic yellow color but that's definitely not true because the plant is poisonous to cows and they know it!
Here are a few photos I took yesterday afternoon.

a little sketch
Love long shadows like these