“Owen Napping” 8″x10″ original oil painting

owen na

This painting is a commission of this cute baby boy napping. Keeping the brushwork loose I was able to capture a real likeness from a photograph. Portraits and commissions are a challenge and a joy to me as a painter. If I know the person I am painting I think about them and their personality traits as I paint them. If, on the other hand I do not know the subject I may ask the commissionee (my word for person who I am painting it for) their favorite things and traits they love about the subject.


Lavender Fields 20 x 24 Oil

I can still smell the lavender and pine needles from the day I painted this on location. At a local Southern Californian farm. It was a blazing hot day but the scene was so gorgeous I went for it and painted a 20×24 on location. I was standing under a row of pine trees and the wind blew softly while it rained down pine needles onto my palette. I painted for 3 days at this location and when I drove off the farm I immediately started to miss the lovely smell of lavender and pine trees. Wow, to say lavender is relaxing is an understatement ….lavender is a balm that soothes the whole being when around it for long. 

 Despite the raining pine leaves onto my palette I was able to finish the painting alla prima!…..and stay true to the scene below.


Zion National Park 24×36

Zion National Park

Went to Zion National Park for the first time on a plein-air painting trip. Wow it was gorgeous! I was painting so I didn’t go on any hiking trails, but there are lots of YouTube videos on the many trails and hope to hike when I go back.  Really beautiful campground right in the entrance of the canyon. As a painter there are scenes everywhere to paint, one more gorgeous than the next. Stayed at Bubbleberry Inn in Springdale, Utah. The two paintings in this post are of the same scene; a small “on location” painting and then I used that for color reference to paint large one from photo. There is gorgeousness everywhere in Zion so I felt a little overwhelmed trying the find “thee” perfect location to paint! “Make a  #%** decision woman!” I said to myself.  This spot was relatively close to a bathroom so decision made! Walking around the location this scene struck me with its slivers of light hitting the cliffs. And the company of other painters and birds singing made it an absolutely lovely experience…. So where do you get good coffee in Springdale, Utah? Deep Creek coffee has excellent lattes, scones, and fresh juice.  For groceries we went to Sol Foods which had amazing  veggie soup daily in the deli in the back of the store. Lots of cute shops on the main drag in town. Can’t wait to go back!

12×16 Painted on location at Zion National Park

On Location at Zion


Valley of Fire 12×16

  Amazing rock formations at state park in Nevada. Little two lane road takes you all over the park. Feels like you are at a amusement park but the “amusement” is all nature and rocks. The deeper into the park the more amazing. I painted 3 on location and took some photos so plan to paint some larger canvases of this location.  Gorgeous scenic state park can’t wait to go back.

  8×10 “Colors of the Rainbow” (at valley of fire state park)


Big Sur 40″ x 60″ Oil Painting

Big Sur

Original oil of Big Sur, Ca. This painting was painted from small studies on location and photo reference. This piece depicts the quintessential northern California cliffs of Big Sur. Big lush green pastures and brushstrokes give this piece a feeling of grandeur. Done in the plein air style this landscape capturing the beautiful pastures of coastal cliffs.

Dusk, Avalon, Catalina 12×16 oil

20131015-161912.jpgThe perfect time of day! Certain times of day can transport you in a meditative way to another place and time. This Catalina scene remains me of my Irish ancestry. On my mother side they were from Cobh, Ireland. It’s a town on the south east side with a small cove and harbor a lot like Catalina in that the hilleside meets the sea and the town is all about the harbor. A must see town with great Bed and Breakfasts.

Catalina Lights 12×16 oil

Wow the night scenery in Catalina is breath taking! The lights look like jewels
Against the dark sky.

20131015-161319.jpgTwinkling white, yellow, and gold lights………lit like a Christmas tree!

Avalon Casino 12×16 oil

20131015-150329.jpgRecently spent time in Catalina. I always forget when away for a while how blue and gorgeous the water is. A pretty little cove. We found a great cafe with a delicious Indian cauliflower potato soup…..I think its Cafe Metropole…..or something like that. No Starbucks on Catalina, but at C.C. Gallagher they make a delicious soy latte! They also have yummy deserts.

Torrey State Park 8×10 oil

20130904-123819.jpg Torrey Pines State Park is a great place to hike. Amazing views of ocean and beach through the pines. Beautiful coastal setting in San Diego, California. The smell of the pines and ocean together is intoxicating? A must see for all travelers.

Victoria Beach Laguna 12×16 oil

20130904-121604.jpgVictoria Beach in south Laguna Beach has this old castle-ish looking structure built into the rock/cliff. Gives a medieval feeling to the sunny Laguna cove. The tide was so high this day we had to wait for surf to go back out before getting to the painting spot. Lots of beach attendees enjoying the coves this day.

Girl with Longboard 8×10″ Oil

Gilr with Longboard 8x10" Oil Painting


Girl with longboard coming out of the water at San Onofre State Beach, San Clemente, Ca. The girl in this painting looked too small for the big board, but boy did she shred the gnar a few times.

Sorrolla’s Light at Casa Romantica

20130623-150547.jpg. Painted at Casa Romantic for Paint San Clemente. It was a cloudy day but half way through the painting the sun came through and this beautiful light hit the side of the casa.

Red Tractor 12×16 Oil

Rusty old tractor was fun to paint at the steam engine museum. The contrast between the pink warn paint and heavy metal tractor gives this piece a feeling of nostalgia.