Sandman on the Beach

I went out to Coronado Island with the Thursday painters, expecting to paint the famous holiday decorations at the Hotel Del Coronado. Instead, I was charmed by a sturdy sandman at the edge of the beach. I guess this is a close as we can get to snowmen in San Diego. The sandman was so cheerful with his big eyes and raised arms. I worked to capture that feeling of good cheer in the rest of this scene.

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Holiday Oranges

California oranges spent the last ten months growing and are now appearing on our holiday tables. When my fellow Zoom artist set up a pleasing arrangement of oranges, I could practically smell them all the way from Fresno. I enjoyed painting the subtle variations in yellows and reds.

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Boulders and Trees

This week I drove out to Ramona Grasslands Preserve. It was a cool day, quiet and overcast, and we saw coyotes, hawks, and cows. The native grass will not be visible until we get some rain, so for now, the giant boulders and oak trees dominate the views. I liked how the boulders and trees mounded together in a sociable sort of pile and wanted to capture this feeling in this sketch.

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Happy Hanukkah!

My friend Laura arranged a Hanukkah still-life for the Tuesday night painters. It was an inviting setup, and each of us happily worked away on it for our two hours. I added the figures of the children since this holiday is particularly special for them.

Happy Hanukkah, Happy Festival of Lights! May your lives be filled with light and joy!

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The Old Cactus Garden at Balboa Park

There is an old cactus garden at Balboa Park in San Diego. It looks out over the Cabrillo Bridge and is edged by buildings built for the 1915 Exposition. The plants have unexpected shapes and almost seem to be plotting secret missions for the hours when everyone leaves for the day. This one caught my eye because with its red fruit, it looked as though it was a cluster of many unusual animals that just might begin to walk on down the path.

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Happy Thanksgiving!

What could say Happy Thanksgiving better than three angels from Mexico and an ancient Christmas cactus? The angels are painted over a base of gords and papier-mâché. Each has a fruit or flower and symbolizes the bounty of this season. The Christmas cactus, which lives outside in the San Diego shade most of the year, represents beauty.

I like the combination, and it reminds me to be grateful. Happy Thanksgiving!

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Haycraft Beach

This morning I went to the nearby Haycraft Beach on Maui for a last morning of painting. It is a little county park with friendly waves, and I settled into a place in the shade while I marveled at the colors and watched the beachcombers.

Then I quickly put paint down, sprayed it to soften edges and transitions, and scraped bits away. I may have gotten carried away with the fun of making gouache marks, but even so, I like this sketch of Haycraft Beach.

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