Colorado Street Bridge, Pasadena – with poppies – oil painting

“Colorado Street Bridge with Poppies” 16 x 20 inches, oil on linen panel

Well, I spent a good part of the fall and winter getting ready for spring shows, only to have them all be cancelled due to this terrible pandemic we’re experiencing. But I am still keeping very busy in the studio, and hoping that things will be back to normal for later on in the summer and fall.

In the meantime, I’m enjoying the time to study, explore new subject material and to continue to create without the pressure of pressing deadline.

This new painting features Pasadena’s iconic Colorado Street Bridge from a new (for me) angle, including a bonus of California poppies, which used to grow in profusion in the San Gabriel Valley.

This painting is available now, and we can certainly work out a safe method of purchase if you or someone you know is interested in owning it.

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Colorado Street Bridge – Pasadena – Spring Stroll oil painting

“Spring Stroll – Colorado Street Bridge, Pasadena – Arroyo Seco”
9 x 12 inches, oil on plein air panel

Weather is funny in Southern California. Winter may just be starting, and green grass is popping up everywhere, because of the early December rains.
Around here, plants don’t care about the calendar. If there’s water, they’ll grow – creating the illusion of spring when there are months of cold weather ahead.
My ash tree looks like it’s living in mid-summer. There’s not a touch of fall in it yet. I’m not sure what it’s going to do in a few months. Shed the old leaves out of habit? Or keep them and ignore the deciduous ritual?
Down in Pasadena’s Arroyo Seco, the grass is sprouting joyfully and the little stream is flowing. We will enjoy it while it lasts.

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Colorado Street Bridge with Sycamores – Pasadena California impressionist oil painting

“Colorado Street Bridge with Sycamores”
9 x 12 inches, oil on linen plein air panel
Arroyo Seco, Pasadena, California   SOLD

This California impressionist oil painting celebrates fall in the Arroyo Seco, when the sycamores turn gold. The river that flows through the arroyo is a welcome habitat for this California native tree which thrives on plentiful water. Wherever you see a stream in In colder, higher areas you may see aspen and cottonwoods. There are cottonwoods in the arroyo, too.

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High Water at Devil’s Gate Dam – California landscape oil painting

High Water at Devil’s Gate Dam – Arroyo Seco
20 x 24 oil on canvas

I painted this to memorialize an area near and dear to me, not far from where I live. This is the boundary between La Canada Flintridge and Altadena – the upper Arroyo Seco, once known as Oak Grove Park and now known as the Hahamongna Watershed Area. Because of the silt that has accumulated above the dam, the dam has lost much of its capacity. There are plans underway to dredge this entire area, but one of the plans will remove not only the silt, but a great number of the trees and habitat that has grown up in the area. To read more about the devastation that will be caused by the County plan, visit It makes me sad to think that views such as this may soon be gone, and probably won’t return in my lifetime, unless a more thoughtful, conservation-oriented plan is adopted.

#arroyoseco #hahamongna #watershed #DevilsGateDam #lacanada #oilpainting #landscape #california

Pasadena’s Pride – at the Pasadena ArtWalk Saturday

SOLD Pasadena’s Pride
(Colorado street bridge oil painting)
14 x 18 oil on canvas

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I’ll be exhibiting about 30 paintings Saturday, October 13 at the Pasadena Artwalk on El Molino Street from 11-5.
This one day annual event attracts large crowds from all over Southern California.
Look for me in booth 9, just a little north of the Pasadena Playhouse, near Zona Rosa coffee, on the west side of El Molino, between Colorado Blvd. and Green Street. There’s plenty of parking nearby.

I’m down to the wire on framing and packing … See you there!

Western Watershed – San Gabriel Mountains oil painting by California impressionist Karen Winters

“Western Watershed – San Gabriel Mountains”
9 x 12 oil painting on plein air panel

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The last remnants of spring storms course through the upper Arroyo Seco, which separates La Canada from Pasadena. Just weeks before the sandy riverbed was overflowing with a coursing river. Now, the willows and sage will take over, until winter rains come again.

When Day is Done Pasadena Arroyo Seco oil painting by Karen Winters

“When Day is Done”
8 x 10
California landscape oil painting on plein air panel

Pasadena Arroyo Seco – Hahamongna Park – eucalyptus trees grow against a backdrop of the San Gabriel mountains, glowing in sunset light.

California impressionist landscape oil painting – Hahamongna Park, Arroyo Seco, Pasadena – by Karen Winters


“Reflections of springtime”
18 x 24 oil painting on canvas
Hahamongna Park, (Arroyo Seco)

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Winter rains leave seasonal ponds that eventually evaporate – but while they are present they provide a beautiful mirrored surface on a day with fair weather cumulus. Some of the arroyo has been dredged of its silt to provide a greater water-holding area near the dam, but I hope that the reedy parts will stay as they are.

Arroyo Moonrise – Arroyo Seco California nocturne oil painting by Karen Winters

Arroyo Moonrise
18 x 24 oil on canvas

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The moon serenely rises over a pond in the Arroyo Seco, San Gabriel Valley, CA. I intentionally kept this within a limited color range to capture the twilight mood. I’ve really been enjoying painting a lot of water lately. Look for more of those paintings here soon.

California impressionist landscape painting – Autumn on the Trail – La Canada Flintridge Art by Karen Winters

“Autumn on the Trail”
Flint Canyon Trail, La Canada Flintridge, California
Near Pasadena’s Arroyo Seco

11 x 14 inches
oil on canvas

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The equestrian and jogging trails that wind through La Canada Flintridge are overhung with sycamore, oak and eucalyptus trees. In the fall the colors meld and fairly glow with the warm light. This stretch of trail is near Berkshire Avenue, and is popular with hikers, joggers and horseback riders alike.

The fun part of painting this, for me, was rendering the different textures of bark, turning leaves, green foliage, etc. Sycamores have a distinctively different look from eucalyptus trees, and their bark reflects light in a different way. In an area like this, the bright light is bouncing off the fallen leaves and reflecting up into the trunks and branches in interesting ways. I decided to restrict this painting to a secondary triadic color scheme (orange, green, violet) which was natural for the time of year.

To learn more about La Canada Trails, visit The La Canada Trails Council website