Friday, June 28, 2013

Memories of a Young Artist Leads to Career in Wine Country

Do you remember how much fun it was in art class as a kid?

All that colorful paint and brushes to play with? I know I loved it. That's one of the things that led me to become a professional artist.

All during elementary school I was most excited when we got to do art. Even if it was for extra credit! I would create colorful maps and presentations to back up an assignment if extra credit was offered. I loved helping the teachers decorate the classroom for ANY reason! I won poster contests. I loved going to the local fairgrounds and looking at the arts and crafts displays.

Fortunately for me, my parents saw my passion and desire to create art very early. Dad kept me stocked with rocks, wood, slate and anything that I could slather paint on. Mom shared her little refinished sewing desk with me to use as my art desk. It sat right behind Dad's chair in the living room so I could do art any time of day!

Although we came from meager means my Mom was excited that I wanted to go to college. Dad was less excited. He offered to put a camper in the yard for me to live in when I told him I wanted to leave home. I probably said I needed to get out of there! He offered to design a portion of his garage for me to paint and airbrush. He was already letting me use his air compressor and offered to install a large exhaust fan if I'd just stay home and paint vans.

My desire to leave home and pursue a career in art prevailed and they let me go. Mom and Dad drove me to Columbus, only an hour away from home and set me up in my dorm room. They helped me carry boxes up to the second floor room and unpack. Mom made up the tiny twin bed with sheets and blankets from home, hung curtains and put food in the little kitchenette.

Dad's eyes were a bit teary. He definitely didn't want to leave his 18 year old daughter in downtown Columbus. (He soon supplied me with a loaded double-barreled shotgun when I excitedly told him about one of the doors of the dorm getting kicked in and the cops showing up!)

I spent 4 years attending the prestigious Columbus College of Art & Design in downtown Columbus, Ohio. Although I majored in Advertising Design my love for painting and drawing became deeply ingrained in my heart and has stayed with me all these years.

I have enjoyed the challenges of being a graphic designer in the advertising and printing industries over the years. From doing everything by hand to learning how to master the tools and software of designing on a computer, the life of a graphic designer has never been dull.

Fast forward to today. I am still extremely passionate about painting and drawing. It is a need and desire deeply ingrained into my soul. I've sold and given away so many pieces of art that I have no idea what that count would be. Seeing my art in others' homes making them happy make me happy too! Watching a child's eye light up when I show them how to draw a puppy gives me pleasure I can't even describe.

When my husband was suffering from aggressive cancer treatments a few years ago I found myself questioning my purpose in life and deeply searching my soul on what I should and shouldn't be doing with my career. The answers I came up with included the fact that life was short and I should stop second guessing my life committed to making art. I should make MORE art and I should show others how to make art.

This is why I have created Art+Vino. An opportunity to teach others how to paint and draw. Since I greatly enjoy my social life in Temecula Wine Country, what better place to teach art?

In addition to my graphic design services I have created fun art classes for beginners and intermediate students to learn how to paint with acrylics on canvas. I show people how to do this with easy to follow step-by-step instructions from mixing the paint to applying it the canvas using the right brushes. I love the look of accomplishment on the students' faces when their paintings come to life and they take home their own masterpieces!

I love to paint. Let me show you how to paint too! Please visit me at and watch for photos from classed at

See you soon and have a colorful day!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

A client asked me to create a painting matching a tray
with this design on it. It came out great.

3' wide 2' tall, acrylic on stretched canvas. 

 Although there is one more final photo of this painting on my camera, you can see many of the steps taken in creating this painting.

 Getting down to the fine detail!

Here you can see stone and window details emerging along with the addition of plants and items hanging in the shop window.

More details in the buildings, addition of window, door, canopy and signage structures are added.
I always begin by blocking in the largest shapes.  
Sample palette of background colors used in this painting included greys, subdued purple, oxide yellow and burnt sienna. A light touch of cadmium red medium help creates warm colors too.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

This painting was created for my Granddaughter Lily Grace. It matches her crib set and bedroom colors.
36 x 42" Acrylic on canvas.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

My working retreat at Dorland Mountain Arts Colony

During my stay at Dorland Mountain Arts Colony in Temecula, CA. I was able to work on several paintings during the retreat. Not only did I have an unbelievably beautiful view, I stayed in a newly built cottage. If you'd like to know more about renting a cottage go to:

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Graphite Illustration of Puppy

This is a graphite illustration I'm currently working on. I started it while sitting at the Temecula Creek Inn on Sunday during their Champagne Brunch. 

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Volcan Mountain 1

This is a 16 x 20 Acrylic painting of an area in Southern California called Volcan Mountain.
I painted this from a photo a took a couple of weeks ago.