Monday, December 28, 2020

Good Riddance to 2020

 The much anticipated end of a bad year. Not that 2021 will be instantly grand - there is still so much to get through. Yet hopeful for the new vaccine, new Administration that will bring some sanity and civility back to our country and new beginnings on many fronts.

Today is the first Monday painting session that has been rained out this year! That's a good thing, we really need the rain for the landscape we so love to be in.

The last several weeks of work:

Goleta Beach, high tide, oil on panel 8"x10"

Slough at Goleta Beach, oil on panel, 6"x12"

Slough at Goleta Beach, oil on panel, 8"x8"

Sky in Water, Devereux Slough, oil on panel, 8"x8"

Sedges, Devereux Slough, oil on panel, 8"x8"

Montecito peak from the Music Academy of the West, oil on panel, 8"x8"

Friday flower painting was also a saving grace - painting outdoors with friends, masked and distanced

Magnolia, oil on cartón paper, 8"x8"

and lastly:

Christmas Tree, oil on panel, 8"x10"

This years tree was cut from our yard - a scraggler that needed to go and it worked just fine as a 'Charlie Brown' tree. We didn't want to mask up and go out to pay an exorbitant price for something no one would see anyways. It's actually pretty nice and more free-form natural. A few light and decorations and we were all set. 


Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Mid-November re-set

 Catching my breath after a difficult, stressful month - one of the worst since the pandemic. The loss of our cabin, November elections (still an issue, really?) and the surge in Covid 19 that everyone was anticipating. Sometimes it feels like I'm losing my footing. Holidays are a wash now, so no family and friends for celebrating.

One constant I am grateful for is my artwork - time outdoors (safely) painting the landscape, patio painting flowers, working in the studio, my Zoom figure painting class and watching talks and demos by other artists online. Painting is my island of sanity. I am better at posting current work on Instagram: nwarner13

So here are recent landscapes - the first 2 are currently in "Huge Show - small art" on  :

slough, 4"x8" oil on panel

slough, 4"x8" oil on panel

carp slough, 4"x8" oil on panel

We've been painting at the San Marcos Preserve - such a beautiful spot and on the cusp of more development - huge houses.

view from San Marcos Preserve, 8"x8" oil on panel

trail at San Marcos Preserve, 6"x12" oil on panel

Another beautiful saved open space, Parma Park

late afternoon Parma Park, 8"x10" oil on panel

Then trips out to Goleta for the beach and the UCSB Lagoon:

Goleta beach slough, 8"x8" oil on panel

lagoon, 8"x8" oil on panel

Painting flowers every Friday on a friends patio has been a great, calming and fun. I've been working on cartòn paper which is a brownish straw color and makes for an interesting background.

2 purple/pink roses, 8"x10" oil on cartòn

1 white & pink rose, 8"x10" oil on cartòn

small bunch salmon pink roses, 8"x10" oil on cartòn

2 yellow orange roses, 8"x10" oil on cartòn

1 red and 1 pink/white rose, 8"x10" oil on cartòn

1 white, 2 salmon pink roses, 8"x8" oil on cartòn

2 purple/pink roses, 8"x10" oil on cartòn

Friday, September 25, 2020

september sadness

 Now we are officially in Autumn, though unofficially you can sense the change of season. Cooler mornings, a softness in the air, shorter days and longer shadows.

We had hoped to go to the Sierra cabin for my birthday (13 Sept.), after Labor Day when it's quiet and beautiful. We hadn't even opened up this year with the pandemic, and other projects getting under way. First time in many, many years we haven't opened for summer. On September 4, what is now known as the Creek Fire started in a small mountain town not far from us. There was no way we could go now. As of today it has burned nearly 300,000 acres and is only 36% contained.

Our beloved cabin burned to the ground. We have not yet been allowed to go see it.

We are just feeling sad, depressed and heartbroken. It was about 110 years old and has been in the family since 1976. Prior to this, my husband has been staying up here for nearly 70 years, helping his father build his cabin when he was a boy.

Lots of good times and good memories for our families.

I have painted the area extensively over the years. Along with many other treasures and belongings, many of those paintings are now gone. I've documented them over the years so I have images as well as paintings that are in my studio, or in people's collections. This is a painting the local Ponderosa Phone company used for it's phone book cover one year:

It's a view of a trail going up the hill behind our cabin. Maybe 8 years ago?

I'll post some other paintings from there when I get a chance to find them.

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Fogust Heat Wave

 August has been a month of extremes as far as weather goes - starting with fog everyday, hanging thick and wet - to a recording breaking heat-wave and massive fires due to lightening strikes. All this on the back of an ongoing pandemic.

As an artist I can divert my worry, anxiety and fear onto a different path. This allows me to see the beauty of nature, and the beauty in the ordinary and creatively develop myself.

Besides our usual Monday Painting sessions, and getting into the studio - I've also started meeting (socially distanced with masks) with 3 other friends for painting flowers on Fridays. This has been great on many levels: social contact, challenge of painting flowers (again!) and time outside in a different environment. It's been lovely.

I've also watched several online demos by artists I admire, taken a zoom figure painting class, participated in online shows and attended lectures and talks online. Different world.

Catching up with painting - landscape. After working at Devereux Open Space for several sessions, we painted at the beach when it warmed up in the afternoons. 

Devereux, oil on panel 8"x10"

Devereux, the other side. oil on panel 6"x8"

Haskells, oil on panel 8"x10"
This is my set-up looking at the creek that flows into the beach.

Goleta beach slough, oil on panel, 6"x8" 

We started Monday painting at a new location: The Music Academy of the West. Beautiful grounds and many shady spots. It makes you feel like you are someplace in Europe, with formal gardens and fountains.


Lily Pond, oil on panel, 8"x10"

Morning begonias, oil on panel, 8"x10"

 Geranium Urn, oil on panel, 8"x6"
the backlit urn really shined

Working on flowers and experimenting with different surfaces and techniques. The cactus blooms are outside and the picked flowers done in the studio or outside.

Epiphyllum bloom, oil on Yupo, 9"x12"

Queen of the Night, oil on Yupo, 9"x12"

Flame rose, oil on Yupo, 9"x12"

Daylily, oil on Yupo, 9"x12"

Naked Lady Lilies, oil on Cartón paper, 8"x10"

Livia's roses, oil on Cartón paper, 8"x10"

So that catches me up to now, end of August. More of the same in September, I'm sure. Painting keeps me hopeful and sane.

Monday, July 20, 2020

July whatever

Hard to track the days and months - everything has taken on a new rhythm. The only real day I know is Monday because that is our plein-air painting day.
The rest can be called whatever.

Here's the last month or so group of paintings:

lake los carneros mountain view, oil on panel, 6"x12"
This was a day we got 'fogged out' at Devereux and decided to come a bit more inland.

devereux slough, oil on panel, 9"x12"
...then a beautiful day slipped in and we went back.

Santa Ynez River, pink cliffs,  oil on panel, 8"x10"
after a week of local fog, we headed up to the River for some sunshine and water.

Santa Ynez River,  oil on panel, 8"x10"
so lovely to stand by the water and paint - listening to the local bullfrog, quail, hawks, etc.

open space, devereux, oil on panel, 6"x12"
hiked out to the other side of the lagoon for a different view

roses, oil on panel, 6"x8"
took a day to paint in a friends back yard, catching the late light

Old Barn and stables, oil on panel, 12"x16"
this was a study done on site and then developed as a larger painting in the studio. I liked the shadow side of the barn in contrast to the bright green sunlit grass.

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Sunday, July 19, 2020

Summer Covid Season

July is more than halfway gone. Pandemic is still with us (so much for 'warmer weather' stopping it.) We are still sliding down a slippery slope and have no idea what the future will bring. It's constantly in the back of your mind and adds an unpleasant layer to virtually everything you do.
But life goes on, I still get outside to paint, do my 'Zoom' figure painting class, paint whatever is blooming around the yard and keep at it. I started experimenting with oil paint on Yupo paper - a plasticized surface that is very slick. A couple of late bloomers in the Epiphyllum plants:

 epi-bloom 2, oil on yupo paper, 9"x12"

epi-bloom 1, oil on Yupo paper, 9"x12"

Then I started painting produce from our garden - a lot growing right now!

 last artichoke, oil on panel, 6"x8"

cabbage, oil on panel, 6"x6"

onion, oil on wc panel, 5"x7"

artichoke blossoms, oil on panel, 8"x10"

Next post will be landscapes. In the mean time, check my Instagram Nwarner13 for more up-to-date postings and email or DM if you're interested in purchasing.