California impressionist oil painting Chapparal Bloom by Karen Winters

“Chapparal Bloom”
San Gabriel Mountains
8 x 10 inches oil on plein air panel

California is colorful all year long, not only in the springtime. Summer and fall wildflowers include buckwheat and other chapparal natives. It’s an earth-tone palette, full of greens, russets, umbers and golds. The buckwheat, when it dries, is a good match for burnt sienna.

I never tire of painting the tapestry of plant life that covers our rolling hills and mountains. The California Native Plant Society is a good resource for learning about our drought tolerant beauties.

Here’s how the painting might look in a dark frame that picks up the colors in the painting, with warm touches of coppery-gold.

I haven’t talked about framing too often here, but it’s true that the frame can have a big impact on how a painting looks. Compare how the same painting, on the same colored background appears in a gold carved frame. The dark frame creates a more rustic look, which might be appropriate for a home with western accents. The gold frame creates a lighter, more elegant appearance. Which do you think works best? Do you like seeing one of my paintings with framing suggestions, as opposed to just seeing the painting by itself?

Sunset On Descanso Pond – Descanso Gardens California impressionist lake oil painting by Karen Winters

“Sunset On Descanso Pond”
Descanso Gardens Art
16 x 20 oil painting

I took this new painting “Sunset on Descanso Pond” to the Colony Theatre in Burbank today for a solo show in conjunction with their presentation of “On Golden Pond,” running from July 27 – August 28, starring Hal Linden. There is a cozy gallery area inside the theater with plenty of room for the seventeen paintings I brought. Not all the paintings are of ponds or lakes, of course. There are eastern Sierra scenes, vineyards, seascapes and more.

Sunset on Descanso Pond features the bird sanctuary area, where waterfowl, turtles and other types of wildlife abound. We used to enjoy visiting that spot often when the children were young and feeding or stale bread to the ducks and geese was permitted.

Below is the Central California landscape that I painted expressly for this show as a theme piece.

The title is “Return to Golden Pond” and it is 14 x 18, oil on canvas.

White Roses Oil Painting – Impressionist Botanical Floral

White Roses (study)
6 x 8 inches
oil on plein air panel

Iceberg roses are among the most popular white rose varieties in California (perhaps in other US states, too.) These perennial plants have a carefree look about them, somewhat different from the formality of other hybrid tea roses. I decided to paint this group in a casual impressionist style, loosely, as though they were being tousled by the wind.

Return to Golden Pond (On Golden Pond) California Tonalist Landscape Oil painting by Karen Winters

“Return to Golden Pond”
14 x 18 inches
Oil on canvas

Central California – Western Sierra Foothills painting

This painting was done for an upcoming exhibition at the Colony Theater Gallery in Burbank, in conjunction with the performance of “On Golden Pond.” In addition to a dozen or more other paintings which will be exhibited, I painted this one to tie in very specifically with the theme of the play. Although the play is set in the eastern United States, I decided to do my own take on it, as a California landscape painter. The location is a pond bordering the western foothills of the Sierras. I don’t usually paint in a tonalist/monochromatic style, but it seemed perfect for this project.

More details on the show will follow as the opening approaches.