Oil painting on location in coastal California.

….on a beautiful day in Laguna Beach, Ca. I painted the scene below on location. I like to paint small studies/paintings to get ideas and good color for larger paintings later on. It is fun and challenging to see if I can get accurate color and the “feeling” of the  place on canvas.

It was late afternoon and the sunlight on the bluffs inspired me to paint this scene. The warm sun and light ocean breeze felt so lovely as I stood there and painted. When I paint on location I am always reminded how important it is to paint quickly. The light and shadows can change completely. When I started this oil painting the sun light was on the cliffs and by the end of the painting the sun had gone down and it was a more muted color seascape when finished.

In above photo I have begun the oil painting by sketching/drawing the seascape with thin paint and then I begin to put in the darks and ocean colors.

…..within a few minutes the light changed, a few clouds appeared, and colors needed to be adjusted. The setting sun was muted by the marine layer and clouds. I tried to get the essence of the cliffs, ocean, and sky, without getting into detail. …..the movement of the white water….the clouds floating by…..blocking in distant gray-blue bluffs….

In the final photo above you can see that the painting turned out much darker than the original scene I started with. I may finish this painting at home with more detail or I may just save it, as is, and use it as a color and mood  reference for a larger painting. Also, my mind has recorded the experience of being out there in nature …looking at the ocean, feeling the wind, seeing clouds float by, all of this will affect the way a final, larger oil painting is executed.

How Art Collectors Place Art in their Homes

How do experienced art collectors arrange art in a home? Without a professional interior designer, it can be a bit difficult to know the perfect places to hang your art on your. Placing art of all types throughout your home is a learned skill. Below we have some beautiful examples and practical tips for making your home a place of balanced beauty and art.



In this art collector’s home, above, a Laguna Beach seascape graces the entrance of the home above a table. The reds throughout the rustic table match the flowers in the painting, while the shell lamps go with the beach theme. It works so well because the painting is low enough to create a unit with the table. And the items on the table and shelf keep the eye moving around and back up to the painting. There is balance with the two lamps evenly placed and the painting centered over the table, and there is asymmetry with the way the rest of the items are placed on the tabletop and shelf. This creates a full and visually interesting look.



In the above photo the art collector chooses simple modern frames to go with the clean lines of the room. Both paintings are spacious in imagery complimenting the large window view of a lush backyard. Beautiful woodwork throughout the home makes a perfect setting for the landscape and seascape.


In the sunset painting placement, above, the art collector is making a dramatic statement. They put it above an antique family heirloom dresser in the entrance of the home. Placing the painting above the dark furniture with low lighting makes the painting “glow”.


Available painting “Big Sur” 40″x60″

The above is an example of being bold in the placement of art. In this small living room the huge painting (available, big sur, 40×60) makes the room feel larger by placing it over a dining bench. This room has a neutral palette with bronze/black accents which makes the greens and blues of the painting pop.



An oversized piece of art can create real drama and complete the room. Putting a painting above the fireplace finishes the room nicely and gives it a centerpiece. This piece works well with the darks in the room without competing with the florals.



Creatively displaying all original art in the home, the top image shows how well beautiful glass art on tables tops mixes well with original oil paintings. The second image shows an example of beautiful color combinations in the room  with original art on walls completes the total look.