Breakfast on the misty river

  • Oil on Canvas
  • 36″ x 48″
  • $6900
  • Giclée Prints
    12″ x 16″ image size – $395
    24” x 32” image size – $495

As the river meanders towards the horizon the warm light of the sunrise colors the mist. Clouds echo the river’s trail, partially covering a low lit moon. Bountiful food, savory and sweet, and coffee make for a morning
feast. Soft breezes blow, lifting the table’s skirt revealing butterfly milkweed, a prairie plant.

It is said to never under-estimate the importance of encountering wild things during moments of solitude. The artist forsakes solitude for companionship and offers up lots of wild things:
A butterfly glides toward the table, one clings to the billowing cloth while another sits astride a macaroon.
Caterpillars crawl on cloth and a milkweed plant, where a chrysalis hangs.
A buck and doe stand alert.
Great Blue Herons fly through vaporous ribbons of mist.
Ducks are startled and erupt in flight from the river’s edge.
Turkeys swim and scurry up the bank.
An eagle soars.
A ladybug sits.
A crystal rests on the table.
Hummingbirds flutter and feed around the zinnia and turkey feather bouquet.
Planets, the Milky Way, comets, galaxies and the morning star hint at the bigger, cosmic picture.

Food, Fabric and Romance

November 11, 2009

Food and Fabric
“Reflection”  Romance Series

  • Oil on Canvas
  • 48″ x 48″
  • In a private collection

Intimacy, companionship and romance are conveyed using fabric and food. This was an early painting in the romance series. Looking at this painting is like looking at a favorite quilt. All the fabrics hold memories for me. Corn and croissant were often used in my still lifes from this period. Oranges remain a favorite, as does coffee.

Oranges on the River
Oranges on the Missouri

  • Oil on Canvas
  • 9″ x 12″
  • In the collection of DD/AF

Canoeing a river is much more relaxing than backpacking. However, I didn’t know rattlesnakes could swim until that trip. The day I crossed a swimming rattler’s path, I made record time paddling. Rob and I arrived at the designated lunch stop at least a half an hour before everyone else in our group.

If you couldn’t tell from my paintings, oranges and chocolate are a favorite, especially in the backcountry. This Upper Missouri River National Monument, thus designated by President Clinton on his last day in office, is 149 miles of widely varying terrain and an exquisite river.

Vessel with Oriole

June 11, 2009

Vessel with Oriole

Vessel with Oriole

  • Oil on Ampersand Gessobord
  • 36″ x 12″
  • In the collection of N/AM

When my grandson, Maxx, asked, “Why do you paint me and Nomi?” I could honestly answer, “Because I like to.”  Reflected in the Paul Revere bowl are Maxx and Nomi. The bird is a Bullock Oriole and there is the coffee, plus a strand of pearls and an orange. The dark negative space gives the piece a feeling of introspection.

Passages

Passages on the Mississippi River

  • Oil on Ampersand Gessobord
  • 48″ x 24″,  diptych
  • $7900
  • Limited Edition Giclée Print on archival paper, 24″ x 12″ image size – $395,  plus shipping
  • Contact the artist.

I grew up not far from the Mississippi River. It’s an awesome river, beautiful, powerful and dangerous. The Mississippi continues to be heavily used, abused by some, and for me, a symbol of adventure and freedom.

The photos in the still life represent generational passages. They are of myself and one of my sisters, our grandmother and our grandchildren. We’re all in front of the same viewpoint found in Riverview Park in Hannibal, MO.

There is a fish fossil being uncovered in the foreground near the turkey feathers. A variety of insects are in the still life mix and the male red winged blackbird courts the female while an eagle soars overhead through voyaging clouds. The full moon rises in the east.

Winds of Time

June 1, 2009

WindOfTime
Winds of Time

This painting is about memories of a life lived with tragedy, love, loss, joy, art, birth, death, friendship; all events that happen during our lifetimes.  And then there’s NOW.  Once, I met a man who wore a watch that didn’t give a time, it only said “NOW.” The photos represent events of the past, while the still life images brings you back to the present.

And then there’s you viewing this image right NOW. It’s worth examining how we experience the moment consciously and unconsciously.

Awakenings

May 23, 2009

Awakenings
Awakenings

It’s late and soon I’ll be dreaming. I should study this painting with a Jungian, where I might learn things I didn’t know I knew.

Chickadees and Coffee

Chickadees and Coffee

  • Oil on Canvas
  • In the collection of D/SM

Whether I paint them or not I enjoy collecting bird stories. “Do you have a bird story?” is a question I might pose to a complete stranger. The following was told to me by a guy behind me in the check-out lane at the grocery. While in Alaska, he’d watch the ravens in winter take turns covering the solar cells of the village lights with their wings, which kept the lights on, providing a warm perch.

There is an other worldly feel to Chickadees and Coffee. A landscape and still life combination which is surreal, yet I don’t think uncomfortable.  A dreamscape combining two curious chickadees, a dramatic  sweep of clouds, an eclipsed moon that lets you know it’s a chunk of rock floating in space, and windblown prairie with fresh oranges, coffee and eclairs. The viewer has lots of elements to draw on for a story.

Beneath the Surface

May 4, 2009

beneath-the-surface-001

Beneath the Surface

beneath-the-surface-detail002

Detail,  Beneath the Surface

  • Oil on Ampersand Gessobord
  • 12″ x 36″
  • $3900
  • Limited Edition Giclée Print on archival paper, 10″ x 30″ image size – $395, plus shipping
  • Contact the artist.

This appears to be a sweet still life. There are butterflies, caterpillar, cicada, moths, hummingbirds, 12 spot skimmers, a crane fly, cosmos, pearls, sweets and companionable coffees. But just as Ry Cooder points out, there “might be trouble hidin’ round that tree” or something lurking just below the surface.

But everyone brings their own story to a painting. The following haikus were written for this painting.

Beneath the surface
a current swells and then
transcends illusion

by Linda Varberg

The fish darts
into my awareness
and out again.

by Linda Varberg

Flying above, searching
Oh, what appetite
When from below
Surprise with a bite.

by Rob Marshall

I am in awe of
Nature’s wonders, yet I grieve
for their brevity.

by Nancy Marshall

Seeking the nectar of life, discovering.
Partaking of nature’s offerings, fulfilling.
Adding to the all around beauty, enchanting.

by Trish Maher

I’ve got rhythm!

April 27, 2009

Field of Oranges
Field of Oranges

  • 18″ x 18″
  • Oil on Canvas
  • In the collection of KH

Painted in my studio from a still life set-up. A mirror was inserted behind the fabric and oranges. Can you locate that line? This painting was the first of several that used the striped fabric. I liked the rhythm, bold contrast, and I found by edging the lines with color, the colors became richer and the painting, much livelier. Wayne Thiebaud uses this technique to wonderful effect.