Best of Show update

“Hard Rock Cafe” 9″ x 13″ watercolor – framed 16 x 20

May 4 Update

I submitted this painting to an annual show at the local college where I’m attending the watercolor class I’ve mentioned from time to time. I was delighted to find out today that it won Best of Show. So, I’m a happy camper tonight and each small victory just fuels my creative fire to keep studying, keep practicing, keep working harder, day by day.

previously posted

We live in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains – a seismically active range which is crossed at one place by the famous San Andreas Fault. It’s not near us, thankfully, but any movement on that fault would certainly be felt far and wide. The “basement rock” of the San Gabriels is said to be more than a billion years old. Through those eons it has intruded, metamorphosed and sedimented into gneiss, basalt, limestone, marble, shale, quartzite, sandstone, slate and all kinds of good schists. If there’s any sort of rock you want, you can probably find it up there. This scene is of a rocky clearing in the Angeles National Forest, where enormous broken rocks, not yet worn down by erosion, lay tumbled in casual disarray .

The evergreens keep things looking verdant year round, and the chapparal is abloom with every kind of native shrub and flower. It’s absolutely gorgeous any time of year, but spring is the best.

Because I’m an insatiably curious person about art, nature, science – well, just about anything – I found a link on the geology of the San Gabriels for any locals who might be interested.

My favorite part was the discussion of the Precambrian Basement. I have a feeling there aren’t any good bargains there, though. I kept hoping with a billion years of compression and folding there’d be a diamond or two to talk about – but no luck.

Oh, and this is my entry for this week’s “Draw or paint something green” challenge.


  1. Casey
    April 23, 2007

    Another beautiful landscape – I envy you living in such an incredible place.

  2. alison
    April 23, 2007

    Great sense of distance – and a secret valley between the mountain ranges. Beautiful.

  3. laserone
    April 23, 2007

    What a wonderful painting and what a cute name for it, too! :)

  4. Sherie
    April 24, 2007

    Awesome painting and wish I lived there! I just love your style.

  5. Su
    April 24, 2007

    This is just a smashing watercolour painting – I love it!

  6. Linda
    April 24, 2007

    Ah… beautiful greens, but look at those wonderful warm pinkish-oranges, too! This is fabulous.

  7. Creekhiker
    April 25, 2007

    Karen, Just fascinating reading on this one! All those “faults” scare me a bit when I realize the mountains all around us were created by them! Love today’s rose as well.

    Hey – on May 5 (maybe the 4th as well) a well know glass artist will be working on an installation at the Arboretum. That’s not that far for you (Santa Anita exit) and might make for some interesting sketches… glass in nature kind of thing. Very “Chihuly.”


  8. andrea
    May 5, 2007

    Congratulations – it is a gorgeous piece.

  9. Malinda
    May 5, 2007

    YAY KAREN!!!!!! I am so happy for you!!

  10. juj
    May 5, 2007

    Congratualtions on your well deserved recognition for this beautiful painting.

  11. Mariana
    May 5, 2007

    Congratulations Karen, it’s a gorgeous painting!

  12. carole
    May 5, 2007

    Yay! Well done, well deserved!

  13. E-J
    May 5, 2007

    Congratulations on your success with this painting, Karen. It has a refreshingly “chunky” style for a watercolour … Nice one!

  14. nina johansson
    May 5, 2007

    Congratulations, it is very well deserved!

  15. Annie
    May 5, 2007

    Congrats, Karen. I am convinced that all of your spacious paintings of skies and mountains and lakes would win a BEST if submitted at shows. They lift my heart.

  16. Jo Castillo
    May 5, 2007

    Hey, congratulations! This is just a great painting. Nice composition and all.

  17. Martín
    May 5, 2007

    Congratulations!!! It’s a terrific work! I had visited your site and seen before. I like the use of blue/orange as contrast. really beautiful. Congratulationg again for the award!

  18. ksklein
    May 6, 2007

    Congrats! You deserved the prize!

  19. Casey
    May 6, 2007

    I’m a little late with my congratulations but they are heartfelt! You definitely deserved this honor, Karen, brava!

  20. Creekhiker
    May 6, 2007

    Congratulations Karen!!! I love this painting too.

  21. Lydia Velarde
    May 7, 2007

    Hi Karen,!
    I just read the news!
    Love the boldness!Arty Velarde

  22. Wendee
    May 7, 2007

    Wonderful! Woohoo! :)

  23. paulien
    May 7, 2007

    Karen, I hope you kknow how much you are inspiring other people. At least me. Congratulations, and here’s to many more victories!

  24. Toni
    May 7, 2007

    Congratulations!!! Way to go.

  25. Brenda Yarborough
    May 7, 2007

    Congratulations and well-deserved – you are so inspiring!!

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