Saturday, May 20, 2017


One of the plein air groups recently returned to the landmark 1925 Rialto Theatre in South Pasadena.  On my previous visit in 2015 I tried a small gouache piece, The Rialto Revisited.  When we were there that day, renovations looked like they had started on the deteriorating theater.  From the outside, I haven't seen any further work being done, but read that a church has signed a lease to operate the venue so we'll see what's coming.

We were all surprised on our recent paint-out day to see a film crew setting up in the morning.  They had trucks and equipment on both sides of the theater so I went looking around the area for another subject to paint.  South Pasadena has some great looking alleys and there was a nice one just across the street.  There was sunlight on the garage roofs, utility poles, and another painter also set up there so I could include her in my watercolor.   I've learned to be flexible in changing what I had in mind as I leave home for plein air painting!

8" x 10" Watercolor

Sunday, May 14, 2017


One of the plein air painting groups returned to the Mater Dolorosa Monastery in Sierra Madre last month for the paint-out.  It was summer when we were there last and I painted this gouache piece, Local Monastery

The hillside monastery is on many acres but on this visit we all painted views nearby the parking lot, having a short time to paint.  Several of us noticed a lovely valley view to the south, the tile-roofed building, and bright flowers.  My fellow painters chose to leave out the utility poles and agreed the scene looked similar to what we might see in Provence.  Of course I like including power poles and lines so I guess my painting looks more like Sierra Madre!

5" x 7" Gouache 

The view west from my painting spot
The olive grove

Monday, May 8, 2017

Eclectic Music Festival!

The South Pasadena Eclectic Music Festival for 2017 was this past weekend.  I was honored to be invited by the Laurie Hendricks Gallery to be a part of "Paint the Music" at the gallery.  Artists were to bring a previously painted piece to hang in the gallery before the event last Saturday.  Then on the day of the event we painted our choice of the music venues or musicians.  Our hours to paint were before the music festival started.  Our finished pieces had to be framed and delivered to the gallery in a few hours.

The watercolor I took in to the gallery before the event was of a clarinet player that I painted a few years ago.  On the day of the festival, unfortunately our weather forecast was for some showers.  As predicted it was overcast, windy, with a few drizzles.  Wanting to paint something to do with the music festival, I chose to try the main stage.  Things were still being set up for the first band, scheduled to play at 4PM.  I really enjoyed listening to the group's sound checks as I painted.  As I was almost finished, more trucks arrived, parked in front of the stage and my view.  Our pieces from the paint-out needed to be turned in to the gallery so I had to leave, finish up a bit, and put the painting in a frame.  It was really fun to see the participating artists' paintings.  An exciting day!          

8" x 10" Watercolor

9" x 6.5" Watercolor

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Arlington in April

Arlington Garden in Pasadena is so lovely during every season that we can always find something of interest to paint.  I had two visits very close to each other last month.  No problem.  Several of us chose some shade with a view of a table and chairs among the red poppies.  I painted this setting from different angle in Lunch at Arlington.  Red poppy season is always special here!

7" x 5" Watercolor

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Virtual Paintout - Tunisia!

The Virtual Paintout for April 2017 was Tunisia.  Last month Bill Guffey chose Ghana so we've had two recent visits to countries in Africa.  I find it fascinating to virtually look around these countries.  Living in Southern California, I do like painting palm tress and I was happy to see many in Tunisia which borders the Mediterranean.  As always, I'm looking forward to the location for next month.

5" x 7" Watercolor

5" x 7" Gouache

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Four Fences

The Friday paint-out group returned to Bailey Canyon Park in Sierra Madre a few weeks ago.  I've painted there several times, the last in August 2015, Park Pines.  The park has some of the gorgeous Matilija poppies but we were early for them to be blooming.  A few views caught my eye.  I settled on a house across the utility road, separated from the park by a variety of fences and gates.  It was lovely weather for painting and I could sit at a park picnic table under a pine tree.

5" x 7" Gouache


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Pasadena Playhouse

It's been over three years since I painted at the Pasadena Playhouse.  I wasn't happy with my painting from 2013 of the 1925 Spanish Colonial Revival style Playhouse courtyard.  I was hoping to do a better piece this time.  I chose a view from across the street from a spot I hoped would remain in the shade until I finished my watercolor.  I really like the tall palm trees and banners surrounding the Playhouse courtyard entrance.  As always I was thinking of including a figure or two but the sidewalk seems to be busy enough now.  Happier with this version.

8" x 10" Watercolor