Catalina Harbor Cat Harbor California seascape oil painting by Karen Winters

Catalina Harbor
10 x 20 oil on canvas

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The evening sun slips below the mountains of the isthmus of Catalina, separating the Two Harbors, a popular destination for sailing, hiking and other recreation. This painting was purchased by a family member in San Francisco, for another family member in Southern California as a birthday present. It was my pleasure to be in on the surprise, and I delivered the present in person this morning, to their delight.

A gift of art is something that will always be appreciated, and more than that – treasured – for many years to come. The giver doesn’t have to worry about the gift becoming outdated, or fret that Painting 2.0 will be released soon after the present is opened. Nor need they fret that the recipient may have just bought the identical item at Best Buy or Costco. A painting usually carries a message of deep emotion – a celebration of a special time together, a milestone, like an anniversary, or a meaningful shared experience like a wedding proposal or the birth of a child; the purchase of a first home. A gift of art is the making of an heirloom, and though it comes at a price, it is priceless.

When “fire season” comes in Southern California, I’ve heard people in Malibu interviewed about what they grab from their homes. The answers are always the same: First, the living creatures (people and pets); second – family photo and videos; third – original art. What does that tell you about art’s deep meaning and connectedness to our lives?

Malibu Canyon ranch commissioned oil painting by California impressionist Karen Winters

Malibu Canyon Ranch
8 x 10 inches
oil on linen panel


Interested in commissioning a custom painting as a gift? Click this link to write me.

See more of my Malibu paintings here

This little painting was commissioned as a surprise birthday present by a client of mine for whom I’ve previously done three paintings. She was looking for something western and we agreed upon this subject, which is a location not far from where her son did post-graduate work. It was fun to paint – the Santa Monica Mountains in early spring, just as some of the trees are still getting their leaves.

Descanso Gardens Rose Garden Summer Oil Painting by California impressionist Karen Winters

“Descanso Gardens Rose Garden”
(with roses and crepe myrtle)
12 x 16 oil on canvas

This is one of the paintings I’ll be bringing to Descanso Gardens for the opening of my solo exhibition on Nov. 2. The show will hang in the Heritage Gallery in the Boddy House mansion and will continue through January 2, 2012.

My reception will be on Sunday, Nov. 13 from 1-4 pm.

The summer light filters through the trees surrounding the rose garden, and gently touches all of the floral beauty, from crepe myrtles to roses to other perennial plants. I love the look of the late slanting light.

Moonstone Beach, Cambria, oil painting – California impressionist seascape by Karen Winters

Moonstone Beach
20 x 32 oil on canvas
SOLD (painted on commission)

If you’d like to commission a custom painting of the California central coast or any location, please write.

This painting was finished last April and in all the hustle bustle of getting ready for shows and paint outs, I neglected posting it here. It was a studio painting, based upon smaller studies that I did ‘en plein air’ on location. This is a typical way for me to work – to study a subject from life, and then to produce larger pieces in the studio when I can explore them slowly and thoughtfully. The original study was painted during a paint out with the California Art Club.