Sunday, November 22, 2015


oil on linen mounted on board 14"x11"

It's been so long since I last posted that I felt unfamiliar with the process just now! 

I've been so excited about this composition, with some colored fabrics and other studio paraphernalia lined up on a wall shelf in such a way that a beautiful tower seems to have been created- but may have spent a little too long on it.  I am really glad to be moving on to something new. 

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Bethlehem with Wires

pen and ink wash 7"x8"

I very regretfully mucked up the upper left hand corner, but other parts I'm happier with, so I'm posting.

Still waiting for my skylight!

Friday, September 11, 2015

Manayunk with Saint John the Baptist Church

pen and ink wash 6 7/8" x 9.5"

I loved working on this quintessential scene of my favorite Philadelphia neighborhood. In the background you can see the "Manayunk Cathedral", or Saint John the Baptist Church.
I tried to keep this pen and ink a little lighter and more delicate, because I think I've been letting my ink drawings get a little oppressively dark. 

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Morning on Race Street, Perkasie

pencil, pen and ink wash 6.75"x8.5"

I've loved working in pen and ink wash for a long time now, but am new to using masking fluid. I ordered some stuff called "Incredible White Mask", and tried too my first effort with it as just an experiment. I had special fun with using the mask for all the telephone and electric lines in this sunlight scene. 

As usually happens with my pen and inks, the first day had me painting with very light tones, but by the end my darks got very dark (this took me three mornings). I don't plan that; it just seems to happen. I'm hoping there is still a good feeling of backlighting from strong sunlight. 

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Perkasie from Cemetery Hill

pencil, pen and ink wash and gouache 6.25"x12"

Tuesday, May 26, 2015


oil on linen mounted on board 8"x16"
click here to purchase

I like using my still life objects as though they have personalities, with feelings and desires. In this still life, everyone is comfortably nesting, as though they are birds resting after a long flight.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Kitchen Table with Daffodils and iPad

graphite 12"x9"

Daffodils from Trader Joes (a dozen for $1.79!) and some reflections in my iPad. I'm tried here to not be a slave to what I actually saw, but to experiment a little by emphasizing the negative spaces and keeping the forms simplified, but with clear edges. 

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Lilies and Blue Table

oil on board 6"x12"
click here to bid

It feels like I spent forever on this, but it was only about two and a half weeks. The blue table gave me a devil of a time, but the flowers came much more easily. 

I think now I'll paint something more quickly. It seems I need a balance of approaches to keep sane in the studio.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Long and Accidental Still Life

graphite 9"x12"

I often lug a ton of still life paraphernalia to my painting classes. Last week after I got back to my studio, I hastily took everything back out the bags and lay them on a studio table, where I'd been working on my taxes. Once I finished with my taxes, I put my papers away (which had all been on the front section of the table) and noticed an interesting arrangement. 

I like the idea of taking an unplanned arrangement of things and uncovering relationships by emphasizing overall shape over detail. 

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Farewell to my doggie

graphite 6"x8"

Here is my 15 year old wire-haired fox terrier on the last day of her life, which was this past Monday. 

She had a difficult final year, and so I'm glad her suffering is over- but it's still quite sad. In the end, the only time she seemed content was when I held her in my lap, stroking her. Now I wish I'd done more of that. 

I've been working on some larger paintings and experimental stuff, so haven't been posting quite so often. Hope you will bear with me!

Friday, February 13, 2015

Lilies with Carved Ornament

charcoal 16"x11"

When I teach drawing classes, I try and remember to bring along a can of reworkable spray fixitive. Once a student asked me why it's called "reworkable". I wasn't sure, but said that I thought you could "fix" your drawing, then add more marks over that. For the first time that is what I did with this drawing- when I'd almost had enough of it, I sprayed it and then added some additional layers of shadow. Charcoal is such an ephemeral (and sometimes maddening) medium that it was really cool to be able to make it stay in place and continue to work. I think I'll try this again. 

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Self Portrait (struggle)

graphite 12"x9"

I've always found drawing or painting a self-portrait to be monstrously difficult. I can look at other people's faces calmly and somewhat objectively, but I turn into a slithering pile of self-doubt when I contemplate my own. 

I think this drawing is passable, plus has a nice searching-in-the-dark quality- a grasping at understanding who I am now, at this middle-aged state of being a 55 year old woman.

As just about every woman past the age of 40 must think, it's awfully difficult to get older and begin to feel relatively invisible.  I hope to try many other self-portraits as a way to prove to myself that I'm not invisible at all. 

Monday, February 2, 2015

Children Sleeping

Five drawings of my sleeping children, Julia and Will. A lovely subject as close to my heart as a subject can get.

I will be leaving Daily Paintworks on February 20. I've got just a few paintings left for sale there, and you can view them here. My two art tutorials will continue to be available.

I'm now working on paintings and drawings that I don't finish in a few days, and much of my future finished pieces will still be for sale via this page.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Quebec City Chimneys

pen and ink wash 7"x7"
click here to bid or purchase

I love this view of just the top parts of a long row of beautiful homes in Quebec City. See the lower chimneys in the lower left corner? 

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Philadelphia and I-95

graphite 6 and 3/4"x 9"

I found some great views of Philadelphia by walking partway across the Ben Franklin Bridge. Here is a section of Old City, contained and wrapped around by the enormous concrete ribbon of the adjoining I-95 highway.

It's been a little over a week since cataract surgery was done on my second eye. Although I'm still adjusting to the changes, the world looks a hundred times more beautiful now.

Monday, September 22, 2014

End of a Summer Day, Saint-Roch, Quebec City

pencil, pen and ink wash 4.75" x 12"

How I love pen and ink. I like the way I have to incorporate accidents into the overall aim of the drawing- it's difficult to be too perfectionistic with a medium that is unerasable. I always start with a very faint wash, and often end up being surprised at how dark the darks end up being.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

View of Old Quebec from the Saint Lawrence River

pencil, pen and ink wash on paper

This view of Quebec City shows a slice of both the Upper Town (Haute-Ville) and Lower Town (Basse-Ville) as seen from the Saint Lawrence River. You can see here some of the beautifully geometric buildings from the University of Laval's School of Architecture.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Summer Plans

oil on board 5"x7"

At times this was really fun and satisfying to paint, but also very difficult. The patterns in this young woman's hair were wonderful to capture, but overall it sure took a while to get a good balance of light and shadow. The shadowed skin tones needed to be deep enough to keep the backlighting dramatic, but also have a glow from the reflected sun on the waters of the Casco Bay. But now I'm happy with it!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Bird Watching

oil on board 6"x 6"
click here to bid or purchase

Last month on a business trip, my daughter found this kitten wandering the streets of Atlantic City. I told her that no, he couldn't stay, but since then have become very attached to him. We still haven't named him! 

Usually I paint on flat hardboard panels, but this one is on a 3/4" cradled panel, which doesn't necessarily need a frame.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Saint-Sauveur, Quebec City, Summer Afternoon

pencil, pen and ink wash 7"x7"

The current theme in my other blog is the cityscape, and posting so many great paintings of various mighty cities has had me eager to paint another city scene. This is a view of the Quebec City neighborhood of Saint-Sauveur, with its church of the same name towering over all.