Sunday, June 30, 2013


Medium: Watercolors
Size: 9.7x19.1 inches
For detail closeup views, prints ($16.95), and original painting ($950.00) -click here-

I've been spending most Friday evenings of the past month at the Oakland Art Museum for food, live music, and to sit in one of my favorite spots and watch the koi swim in the long pond.
Here's another blog entry I did recently with more koi sketches. They're mesmerizing to watch, as they glide through the dark water. The ripples mix with the reflections of the trees and the flash of red, silver, and gold as they slip under the surface.

That was the initial inspiration. After having them swim through my subconscious for a few weeks, I scribbled these rough ideas into my sketchbook.
And a more consolidated concept started to arise.
 Leading to the final sketch, ready to paint.
 Color rough in Photoshop.
 Working on the painting, using the color rough as a guide, as well as some photos taken during my koi-watching sessions at the museum.

Monday, June 24, 2013


King and Queen of Faery.

Prints available for here: Oberon, Mab

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Midnight at the Crossroads

Size: 20x26 inches
Medium: Watercolors
Prints and detail closeups available -here-

From sketches to finished painting:

Initial scribbles in my sketchbook. I've had this idea working around in my head for years, but finally got around to actually doing it. Here are some of the initial thumbnail sketches.
The fairy host spiraling up into the sky. Working out the perspective was an exercise that had my brain hurting. It's not like you can find a whole lot of reference photos of the underside of horses (or anything with hooves).
After the initial sketches, pulling it together in photoshop into a composition, based on the very scribbly initial thumbnail up above.
Redrawn, refined, ready for painting.
I rarely do this, but I started with the main figure on this piece, rather than the background. I was feeling lazy and didn't want to do a color rough. And I didn't know what colors I wanted, so I started with the known quantities and moved outwards from there. The problem with working this way is that although I skip the up-front frustrations and annoyances of doing a color rough, you pay for it later on in the process. The frustrations and annoyances are still there, just shoved further down the pipeline.  So I did get to a point where I was really hating my color (lack of) choices and wanting to just discard the piece. just keep on.

 For more closeup detail shots, visit -here-

Sketches - Ferry rides & Dancing

After a trip into San Francisco yesterday, sketches on the ride back to Jack London Square

Sailboats as we dock at Alameda.

Trailing a white frothy wake behind us as we leave the Port of San Francisco.
Also, from a few days earlier my daughter's dance recital. A bunch of kids hanging out in the wings as they await their turn on stage.

I don't envy the job of one teacher trying to keep 25 twirling little girls in check. I have a hard enough time keeping my 1 in line most of the time.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Koi in the Trees

It's Friday again, and I was at the Oakland Art Museum once more. My favorite spot is at the koi pond. Some of the fish are two feet long. They glide through the dark water in a cascade of gold and white and glinting grey. 

The surface of the pond reflected the trees from up above the wall, and so the fish looked like they moved through a forest of upside-down branches and sky.

 The other side of the reflection. i.e. the actual tree and people up above.

Tribal belly dancers  from the previous week.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

More Farmers Market Sketching

At the Sunday farmers market in Oakland again. Hot day. After loading our bags with peaches, corn, and cherries, Claire and I find a nice spot in the shade to watch and listen to the musicians. The live music is one of her favorite parts about going to the market each week. 

Today it's Jeff Pierre drumming and Diego Jameau (the Whistler) entertaining the crowd. The beat slithers through the white tent stalls, with the birdlike trill of whistling to accompany the guitar.