daily painting | front yard

View from Wisconsin vacation cabin of front yard. It stretched all the way to Pioneer Creek. Rowboats and kayaks leaning against the flagpole, scarlet leaves starting to drift earthward from the deciduous maples, pontoon boat tied up at the dock, lily pads on the water. Maggie the muskrat’s ‘hood. Miss her. Such a lovely time of rest and painting. What a thing, to explore the north woods; about as different from California as you can imagine.

5.5″ x 5.5″ watercolor, pen on paper = $40




daily painting | coop

Ah, this was a moment! We banded this stunning female adult Cooper’s hawk last month in the Marin Headlands (see ggro.org) and she was fierce and magnificent. Fellow bander Ryan sent me the photo of her, and from that I painted this watercolor. To be a citizen scientist and have the exquisite  experience of encountering these birds of prey up close and personal is breathtaking, awe-inspiring and spiritual. I treasure this privilege and know how fortunate I am. Cooper’s hawks are particularly fierce, fearless and focused hunters. After the band is in place, and various data collected (such as wing length), one’s fingers might be a bit chewed on, if not “footed” (girls like these will at lightning speed insert their talons into your hands if given a chance). No one complains (we do not use leather gloves).

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




daily painting | marie

Another interesting evening with the Tue night figure drawing group in Oakland! I sketched Marie with my new favorite medium, water-soluble graphite in sepia. She was a quiet girl, and I enjoy experimenting with simple lines, shadows, pools of color. I think perhaps I capture more of my own mood than the model’s and I was feeling very sad about family illnesses, separations and upsets. But creating art is transporting and healing.

10″ x 7″ pen and artgraf sepia graphite on paper = $90




daily painting | fallen leaf

It was lovely to see the Wisconsin trees just starting to turn during my mid Sept vacation. Compared to same time last year, the change in colors seemed to be lagging. It was lovely to paint the various mottled colors sitting outside at the picnic table while leaves gently fell all around me. Such a wild and beautiful setting. Still missing Maggie the Muskrat.

8″ x 10″ watercolor, pen on paper = $100




daily painting | peet’s on webster

So thanks to another artist’s post on Instagram (Paul Wang), I learned of an art product and had to try it. It’s water soluble graphite (here in sepia). It’s a cake of graphite that looks like a chunk of solid watercolor pigment and it’s been lots of fun to play with. Here I was at Peet’s Coffee in Alameda, experimenting. One great thing about laptops and such devices is that people using them hold still for long periods. Great for sketching. They aren’t members of the models guild, though, so I can’t get mad at them when they wiggle around too much. Used my 10×7 watercolor sketch pad.




daily painting | caves

Mixing up my blog entries; completed a small work over the weekend (in between painting the melted metal piece, which is getting wilder by the day). There is psychological satisfaction in doing abstract work — it is healing, these expressions. Deeply upset about politics this past week. I need my work to show my insides — I am whole. I am complete. I am seen. I deserve to be heard. My colors are flying vibrantly in the wind. All of them.

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




daily painting | conover leaf

The Wisconsin trees were just starting to turn, in mid-Sept. As leaves fell and dried to gold/brown, their crinkled, curling edges created gnarled, interesting shapes. Dry and fragile, they represent the life cycle. Sometimes I hear young ‘uns worrying about getting old. I find this to be a magical time, even as the knees creak and the eyelids sag. I have been on this planet 65 years now and my confidence and comfort in my old skin is hard-won and I intend to enjoy it. I like not having to edit oneself so much, worrying about appearances or approval. Every stage of life is an adventure, and I want to enjoy this ride as long as I can until I fall out of the saddle. I used Daniel Smith Moonglow for this monochromatic painting which takes on various tones in gray/blue as it dries.

5.5″ x 5.5″ watercolor, pen on paper = $40




daily painting | metal piece update

This is the metal piece I am working on, the melted engine block from the Greyhound Friends for Life van destroyed in the Sonoma County fires last Oct. At first I tried to make it flow from one color to the next, making it fire-like. It was OK, but yesterday I needed to make it more my own creation and turn off my brain—I was trying to make it into a sophisticated piece that would do well when auctioned. Finally I let go of the final product and let myself create freely, Emily-style. It’s working better than way. Excited to see how it turns out (I might love it; I might hate it). Hope it generates funds for GFFL. It is becoming more bird-like—maybe a Phoenix. Kind of a cliche but perhaps it fits. Alas, I just never get far from the bird thing. I’m cool with that.




daily painting | pioneer creek

Watercolor sketch of Pioneer Creek, WI. Missing it. Maggie the muskrat swimming across the creek, looking to say hello. Fish fighting amongst themselves for Diane’s nightcrawlers, broadwing hawks overhead, layered lily pad leaves nudging the reedy bank. The peace of that place! Breeze rocked the pontoon boat where I sat, painting. Chilly there, now. Autumn has arrived. We never did figure out what made the very loud splashing noises now and then. Sounded like a dog dropping into the water from a tree limb. Never saw it. Really big fish jumping? That place was full of beautiful mysteries.

5.5″ x 5.5″ watercolor, pen on paper = $40