daily painting | melted metal

I have had several rescued greyhounds over the years, track dogs liberated from an awful life by Greyhound Friends for Life, an organization headed by Barbara Judson. Not long after she moved, with her hounds, up to Santa Rosa from Berkeley, she lost everything in the terrible fires last October (all dogs and humans were fine, thankfully). This image shows what is left of the van used for picking up the dogs (in crates) from the airport and taking them to their new homes. The shiny melted puddle flowing down the burnt driveway is likely what is left of the engine block, and Barbara has asked me to turn it into an art piece (9′ long). Insert shows the piece, primed and paint-ready, installed in my studio. It’s going to be an interesting process, and I am now communing with it to consider the color palette (I’ll use acrylics). We hope to auction it off to raise money for GFFL. Let me know if you are experienced in publicity and marketing approaches!




daily painting | tethered

In my daily painting practice it’s fun to toggle between small watercolors, large abstracts and pieces like this, acrylic on Ampersand claybord. I worked on this over the weekend while also preparing a large piece which I will talk about tomorrow — a commissioned piece unlike anything I’ve done before. This one called for bright color, which confuses me as my mood is sad and grief-filled. But works of creation pull out of us things that need the light, and this process heals me.

12″ x 12″ acrylic, pencil on claybord = $185




daily painting | gene’s market

Another gem on an Alameda corner, Gene’s Market, obviously no longer in operation, but its pink and red tones were like finding a 1950s peppermint. Bruised and no longer used, but a delightful ghost of times past. At first I thought it was an old clock, next to the crumbling market sign, but it’s a barely recognizable Borden’s logo with Elsie the cow which only old Bay Area folks like me would remember.

7″ x 10″ watercolor, pen on paper = $90




daily painting | neighbor

My neighbor’s little boat is moored just behind my houseboat and is so unassuming and cute. Tried a couple variations on it and kept returning to my loosey-goosey paint style. I know I can do detailed, realistic art if I sweat it more. But it doesn’t interest me. Capturing a feeling, a mood, or a personality is much more fun and suits me. Much happier, painting like this.

6″ x 8″ watercolor, pen on paper = $60




daily painting | catalina barge

A tugboat captain friend who works the Oakland inner harbor says this is an old ferry from Catalina, now a barge. I was giddy with relief that I can again access this end of the pier near my marina which has been blocked off due to construction, but on my spiffy new bike I can go the long way around past the guard shack and visit this broad-shouldered part of the hard-working Oakland waterfront. Really happy.

7″ x 9″ watercolor, pen on paper = $80




daily painting | barnhill posies

There’s a corner in our marina parking lot that is a riot of purple flowers. It’s next to the cat-feeding spot where neighbors feed the kitties that hang around here. This is a super simple painting, but sometimes these are my favorites. A few strokes, puddles of paint in the sketchbook drying on my sunny deck, suggestions of a happy, simple bouquet displayed on my kitchen windowsill.

8″ x 6″ watercolor, pen on paper = $60




daily painting | summer sky

This one is kind of floaty. It wants to balance in the air and be separate from the earth. Untethered. Maybe that day I was wanting to tilt up into the atmosphere and drift. It’s kind of a departure, compared to other brightly colored, earthy and fiery paintings that carry strong emotions.

12″ x 12″ acrylic, crayon, pencil on claybord = $185