Sunday, July 31, 2016

"At Rest"

5x7 soft Pastel

I spent Friday, the 29th, & Sat., 30th, in Corning, IA  participating in their  11th Annual Plein Air event.  I'm thrilled to announce this work won 1st Place.

  I created this little jewel first thing Friday morning at Lake Icaria, just North of the community.  (The competition rules stated we could paint anywhere in Adams County.  )  Artist Carlene Atwater  & I camped out at the lakes Lakeview campgrounds & were very happy with how clean/well maintained the facilities & park area was.  A GREAT place for family fun!!!

It was exciting to see how this small community (1,500) supports the arts.  Corning Art Center is maintained by volunteers  and is a beautiful space.  They even have an  "Artist in Residence " program in place.  

Tuesday, July 19, 2016


16"x 12" - Acrylic on canvas board

Well, here's something totally opposite from what I normally do with paint.  I've been wanting to try my hand painting  abstract designs and I think I've discovered a new love.

I absolutely love the flowers in my garden which believe it or not, totally make me feel so inapt (inept?)  at painting florals.  I think the solution for me is to approach this subject matter with a free spirit expressed by keeping paint fluid looking.

I'm excited by the end result with this first abstract.  Be prepared to see a lot more, very soon.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Sign of Summer

8"x 8"  Soft Pastel

I love Cone Flowers.  There are patches of these beauties here and there in my garden.  I painted these from the front porch of the Iron & Lace Store.  (I transplanted a few to from my yard to mingle with Betty Printy's Queen Anne's Lace)

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Wind out of SW

Oil 10"x 8" on Canvas board 

Bill Printy made this weather-vane that sits on top of the Iron & Lace store.  I had the perfect opportunity to Plein air paint today.  I still can't decide which medium I want to use in upcoming painting events.  I love working in both oil and pastel outdoors.  Each has its own unique set of issues when framing....the oils are wet and I have to wash brushes. .... pastels need to be framed under glass so it means more prep-work and toting glass around.  Decisions ! Decisions!  

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Poster announcement

Here's this years pastel painting for Tassel Ridge Winery's Iowa Nouveau Poster.  This makes the 6th poster design I've created for the winery.  

Every year I have a different model.  Only one of the models I've used has actually had red hair.  This is such a fun project.  I love Art Nouveau and of course, my inspiration comes from the fabulous work of Alphonse Mucha.

The poster will be released in November.  

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Lammert Paint Box & Canvas Holder

Introducing the handcrafted Lammert Paint Box and Canvas Holder .
This is a nice alternative to the traditional French Easel for workshops, demonstrating, Plein Air painting or in the studio.

Inside box dimension is 12"x 16".  Box weighs 6 lbs empty - 9 lbs filled with either oil paints or pastels.
The box is designed to store oil paints and brushes  in the box while traveling.  
(Scroll down to see photos of my oil and pastel set up)

The 11"x 11 3/4"glass palette is coated with gray paint and cardboard on the under side.  It is attached to the box with velcro and will stay in place while the box is carried vertically.  The palette and wood divider is designed to easily be removed.  

There are D-ring fasteners attached on the outside of the box for a shoulder strap.
(shoulder strap not included)

The Canvas Holder will hold a canvas vertically up to 20" and horizontally 24" or more.
The design was created so the box and canvas holder can be used with any medium weight camera tripod.  I recommend the SLIK U8000 because I like the stability of the tripod.

 Wind Tested:.......when hanging or strapping a backpack or bag with extra supplies to the back leg, this set up has remained stable, (no movement) in 25 mph wind with gusts to 40 mph.

There are slots carved in the lid area that will keep a brush from rolling around when not in use.  The elastic strapping will hold several brushes in place while in transit.  On the left door is a small bungee chord that can be used to hold towels in place or other accessories.  
(See my oil box set up below.)

When the tripod legs are fully open in place, the paint box slides down on the front 2 legs and will remain  in place until lifted back off.

This photo shows the box without wood divider and glass palette.

My Oil Box set up....
I usually have 8 tubes of paint with me at all times and 3 to 5 brushes in the box.  The bag on the left holds a viewfinder, color wheel and value finder.  I sometimes tuck a towel under the bungee chord when painting.

These are my pastels.  The main box is a Sennelier 120 half stick box.  I've used the lids of other boxes to house the pastels that I have sitting in the lid areas.  Some of those pastels are hand made and offered at Cindy's Art Beat in Fairfield, IA.

The above  photo shows how I stack my pastels in the box.  The smaller boxes fit inside the lid area when closed.  Everything fills the space so there is no movement of pastels during transit.

Paint Box (includes wood insert and glass palette).........$175.00
                                       without insert and palette..........  165.00
Canvas Holder .................................................................   60.00
Tripod ..............................................................................   50.00

May be purchased individually or All together at $285.00 plus shipping

Payment can be made by personal check (items shipped when check is validated) or through Pay Pal.
contact me at to order. 
Because these boxes are handcrafted, there may be up to a 4 week delay in receiving your set up if we don't have any in stock.  

Friday, July 1, 2016

Along Hwy 2

9"x 12" Pastel on UART #800 grit paper

I drive by this property at least 4 times a week on my way to & from  Bentonsport.   I left home early enough this morning so I could do some Plein air painting before opening the Iron & Lace store.

In a short amount of time, I was able to block in my light &  dark values.  It's  been awhile since I've worked outdoors with my pastels.  I'm definitely changing that habit, starting now.

The work you see here was created using UART paper.  I dry mounted it on foamboard so I could do an underpainting wash technique, using mineral spirits with the soft pastels.

I finished the work while at the store today.  Photos are a GREAT tool for me to use since I don’t have a photographic memory.    Still, there truly is no substitute for working on location .....from life.

I also want to thank my artist friend, Jessica Kirby,  for giving me the paper I used today.  I've been hooked on Wallis sanded paper ( no longer available ) and have primed my own boards for painting.  Now I plan to order UART paper....enough so my students in the next VFS workshop can try it out.