Small paintings from the Inland Northwest and beyond    |  H o m e    |   W e b s i t e

Monday, December 14, 2015

Touch of Green

Touch of Green - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7
I'm a sucker for the reddish brown shade the cottonwoods take on for winter, but this little Russian Olive was stubbornly holding on to it's leaves and I thought it made for a great complimentary scene.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Country Road

Country Road - 5x7 - Oil on Linen Panel
I love these little country scenes, is there anything more fun than driving back roads with your music playing way too loud?

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Wheat and Sky

Wheat and Sky - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7
Nothing says late summer quite like golden wheat fields and big puffy clouds!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Walla Walla Summer

Walla Walla Summer - 5x7 - Oil on Linen Panel
On a cold winter rainy day nothing quite beats reliving road trips through the Walla Walla countryside!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Quarry Pond

Quarry Pond - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7

Remember that little sunset I posted the other day? Before it got quite  that dark I snapped this photo of a russian olive on the banks of Quarry Pond. For an invasive species they're very beautiful, especially during the golden hour!

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Refuge Sunset

Refuge Sunset - Oil on Gessobord - 6x6

I started this one on location out at McNary Wildlife Refuge, scrubbing in the major color relationships and shapes in about 15 minutes. It was a rough start, but had enough information that I could  polish it up in the studio!

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Frenchtown Farmland

Frenchtown Farmland - 5x7 - Oil on Linen Panel

I found this scene in the Walla Walla countryside near the Frenchtown Historic Site. There are lots of picturesque fields nearby with some interesting out buildings that turned out to be very paintable! I wanted to challenge myself to put more structures in a scene than I normally would, and I like the result.

Thursday, November 5, 2015


Twins - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7

I've been really focused lately on working from my photos of the Wallowa Valley, they seem to have the best little clusters of cottonwoods! I hope I can get back there to paint soon, and replenish my stock of great reference material.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Almost Sunrise

Almost Sunrise - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7
Trust me, this scene was captured by photo when the sun was rising at much more leisurely hour than it is now, I am no fan of Daylight Savings Time!

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Near Hurricane Creek

Near Hurricane Creek - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7

This little scene came from my photo reference file, I really can't get enough of the Wallowa Valley!

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Golden Cluster

Golden Cluster - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7

One of the more interesting things I've noticed as the cottonwoods and poplars are turning for fall is how different the yellow looks against various elements in the landscape. Against the hillsides and other land features the yellow appears quite light, but when you see the same color against the sky it becomes clear how dark an ochre the leaves really are. Trees have all sorts of tricks up their sleeves to confuse us poor artists!

Tuesday, October 27, 2015


Peace - 5x7 - Oil on Linen Panel

I loved how peaceful this little marsh scene from eastern Oregon was. I've been combing through my photo reference stock and years after I drove by it finally spoke to me!

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Single Family Home

Single Family Home - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7

More Walla Walla countryside! I'm really enjoying how the valley is changing color for the fall, and the bee boxes add just the right amount of structure to the organic shapes seen alongside the road.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Home for Bees

Home for Bees - 5x7 - Oil on Linen Panel

 Most of the farms along the Walla Walla River don't have much bee activity right now, but the little shelters are still out in the fields catching the afternoon light in such a picturesque way!

Wednesday, October 21, 2015


Golden - 5x7 - Oil on Linen Panel

Another view from my newest favorite spot! I can't get enough of these cottonwoods as they turn gold, especially since it won't be long before all the leaves are gone. Maybe I'll have to revisit these spots and paint them through the seasons!

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Cottonwoods at Dusk

Cottonwoods at Dusk - Oil on linen panel - 5x7

I found a fantastic new little area to paint just outside of town! It's not really new, just a little gravel road in a wildlife area that I never took before. The cottonwoods are turning colors and dropping their leaves, but these guys were stubbornly keeping their green!

Monday, August 10, 2015

Walla Walla Skies

Walla Walla Skies - 6x8 - Oil on Panel

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Capturing the building clouds over the Blue Mountains is something I could probably do forever and not get tired of! Anyone in the Walla Walla Valley will be able to tell this painting was done a couple months ago, as wildfire smoke has been hazing the view of the foothills for quite some time now.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Summer Pastoral

Summer Pastoral - Oil on linen Panel - 5x7

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I know I've painted this exact hillside outside of Walla Walla probably a dozen times, but it never gets old! Every season and every day it seems to take on a new face. On this summer day I was really captivated by the mass of tall clouds building up over the hills.

I'll be painting as part of the Plein Air Pacific Northwest show this upcoming week in Hood River, Oregon, it is worth a visit if you are in town!! There are spectacular nationally known artists participating and the work is always outstanding. Here are some of the pertinent details:

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

McNary Sunrise II

McNary Sunrise II - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7

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These beautiful sunrises have been the prelude to very hot days here in Eastern Washington. Today we had some stiff gusts of wind which hopefully will be blowing in cooler weather for the week!

Monday, July 20, 2015

McNary Sunrise I

McNary Sunrise I - Oil on Linen - 5x7 

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There's something magical about the sun rising over a marsh land. I was really captivated a while back while driving through the McNary Wildlife Refuge early in the morning and had to pull over to take some pictures!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Sunlit Moran

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My idea behind this painting was to challenge myself. One of the hardest lighting conditions for a landscape painter is the middle of the day. When the sun is high good shadows are few and far between, the whole scene becomes flat and plain with no shadows to clearly show the form of the subject. So using Google Maps I had ignored this view of Mt. Moran because of the lack of "good shadows" until I decided to tackle it anyway! I thought it would be the perfect challenge to keep this 30 paintings in 30 days project going! I hope I managed to convey the feel of the mountain even without any distinguishing shadows.

Moran Across the Water

Moran Across the Water - 5x7 - Oil on Linen Panel

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Well, one thing that this virtual trip through the Tetons has taught me is that I REALLY need to get myself over to Wyoming to do some plein air work! My usually decent Photoshopping skills couldn't seem to get the colors right in this one, the sky and clouds are much brighter in person. This area is really amazingly beautiful, and I imagine that like the painting it must be better in real life. Road trip time!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Little Cluster

Little Cluster - 5x7 - Oil on Linen Panel

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OK, it's still grey and freezing cold here, so how about a little trip back into the escapist fantasy roadtrip that is Google Maps Streetview? This little cluster was near Moran, Wyoming, near the Tetons.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Grey Delta

Grey Delta - 5x7 - Oil on Linen Panel 

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This little plein air piece is the companion of yesterdays, I did them both on the same afternoon from a slightly different spot!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015


Marsh - 5x7 - Oil on Linen Panel

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A little break from my virtual ramble through Yellowstone, this one is a REAL plein air! I love the willow and cottonwood filled marshes that surround the Yakima River Delta, where this was painted.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Bright Day

Bright Day - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7

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I just loved this scene on Google Maps! It was over in Yellowstone, and the big puffy clouds had the most amazing glare around their edges, I could really feel the sun.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Yellowstone Bend

Yellowstone Bend - 5x7 - Oil on Linen Panel

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I really loved this scene, and I wanted to challenge myself to a painting with no sky. It's very hard! I'll have to find more scenes to practice this design.

Saturday, January 17, 2015


Redrock - 5x7 - Oil on Linen Panel

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A great view I found in Arches National Park. I loved the shadows on the rocks! With Google Streetview it's easy to find good views, but not always a good view that translates to a good painting. Thankfully the lighting conditions when they drove through Arches was fantastic!

Friday, January 16, 2015

Wyoming Pines

Wyoming Pines - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7

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Pine trees near the Tetons! More Google Streetview scenes.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Stand Up Tree

Stand Up Tree - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7

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Yes, another cottonwood. But this one is from somewhere along a lake shore in Teton National Park, in a spot I found on Google Maps. Wow, did that park blow me away! Many many years ago I visited Yellowstone National Park and it was absolutely amazing, but as far as I can remember we never made it over to the Tetons. This is something that will need to be corrected! 

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Owens Valley Cottonwood V

Owens Valley Cottonwood V - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7

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Wow! After painting this tree from Google Maps Streetview I decided I should probably paint more backlit trees from life, just as soon as summer rolls around and the trees have leaves. It's definitely a tricky light to catch.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Owens Valley Cottonwoods IV

Owens Valley Cottonwoods IV - 5x7 - Oil on Linen Panel
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The trees just weren't enough, I had to throw in some fences to spice things up!

Monday, January 12, 2015

Owens Valley Cottonwood III

Owens Valley Cottonwood III - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7

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Cottonwoods are tricky! They grow in big clumps, and finding which shapes are important to include to show their structure and which aren't needed is a delicate balancing act.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Owens Valley Cottonwood II

Owens Valley Cottonwood II - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7
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Some trees have so much character. As I was looking through Google Streetview down Owens Valley in California this little golden tree really jumped out at me, it almost seemed to be posing!

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Owens Valley Cottonwood I

Owens Valley Cottonwood I - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7
OK! I think I got the grey snowy paintings out of my system, now onto a new series! I've been virtually driving through Owens Valley on Google Maps and really love the way the trees stand against the mountains and the sky. I decided I could use some dedicated tree studying, so I'll be doing a series of these cottonwoods for the next little while!

Friday, January 9, 2015

Snow Patterns

Snow Patterns - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7
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Variations on a theme. It's very nice to be able to drive through scenes like this in a warm, heated cab with someone who knows how to drive on icy roads! I think I'm all snowed-paintinged out, though all the patterns and the atmosphere have been really enjoyable.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Hillside Snow

Hillside Snow - Oil on linen panel - 5x7

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More snowy scenes, I thought the pines on the hillside were very elegant. 

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Winters Breath

Winters Breath - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7

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One of the fun things about taking reference photos from the car is you can get so many angles on a scene. This is the same fence as the last painting, but from the opposite side. There's nothing like a nice fence to spice up a composition!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Follow the Fence Line - Oil painting

Follow the Fence Line - Oil on Linen Panel - 5x7 

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There's something magical about the way a snowstorm simplifies a landscape. What was a tangle of native bunchgrass and cheat grass suddenly becomes only a white and yellow pattern, dotted with red willows and the wandering fencle lines. And of course, while driving through this magical scene I could enjoy it properly because my husband was handling the icy roads!

Monday, January 5, 2015

In the Trees

In the Trees - Oil on linen panel - 5x7

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I've been going through photos taken over the past couple months and found a series that really grabbed me. They were taken outside of Pendleton, Oregon, near and on Cabbage Hill, also called Deadmans Pass. While the pass was named for a group of emigrants killed by natives while traveling the area, the name is also fitting because of how dangerous the road is during the winter; Cabbage was notoriously treacherous even when traveled by wagon as part of the Oregon Trail.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Barn on the Mission - Plein air painting

Barn on the Mission - 6x6 - Oil on Panel

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I love this little plein air piece from the summer, it's another one from the Walla Walla countryside. These little summer pieces warm me up even with January's chilly temperatures! This was painted at the Whitman Mission National Monument, which covers a large area with lots of interesting spots to paint.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Turning - Plein Air painting

Turning - Oil on Panel - 6x6

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During the early fall I was able to stop in the gravel parking lot of an abandoned church or schoolbuilding in the Walla Walla countryside. There was a beautiful poplar tree turning gold only on top, with its lush summer green leaves left on bottom. Pair it up with the always welcome Blue Mountain foothills and it made for an irresistible scene!