California Wine Country Vineyard Oil Painting – by California impressionist Karen Winters

“In The Vineyard Hills”
9 x 12 oil on wood panel
original oil painting

California’s rich Central Coast wine country was the inspiration for this tranquil scene.

Late afternoon light, and a fog bank drifted in from the sea brings moisture to the thirsty vines. Oaks and eucalyptus trees punctuate the hills with their stately beauty.

See more of my vineyard paintings here
See more of my California Central Coast paintings here

California Landscape Painting – Sierra Foothills Oil Painting

Sierra Foothills
8 x 10
oil on board

This scene is from the foothills of the Sierra, approaching Yosemite from the western side. Oak covered hills and golden grasses make for a limited palette scene.

Most of this was painted with ultramarine and prussian blue, yellow ochre, and small touches of alizarin to create the violets and warm accents. I’m using this study as a way to experiment with some color choices for larger Sierra foothills paintings yet to come.

Interested in this painting?
Click this link to write me.
See more of my paintings on my website

The Red Barn – California Landscape Oil Painting

“The Red Barn” – near Visalia, Calif
9 x 12 inches, oil on linen panel

This painting was an experiment using a very limited palette of primarily viridian and burnt sienna. A little yellow ochre was used in the sky, and a dash of cadmium red highlighted the top of the barn, but all of the rest was done with those two complimentary colors (viridian and burnt sienna)

The barn is on a ranch near Visalia, California, a Sierra foothill area known for cattle ranching as well as fruit orchards.

I have a busy reception weekend coming up and I hope you can join me at one of three new shows where my work will be displayed.

Friday night – reception 7 pm – Carter Sexton Art Gallery –
5308 Laurel Canyon blvd.
North Hollywood, Los Angeles, CA 91607
(818) 763-5050
This is a group show featuring California landscapes.

Saturday evening reception 5 – 7 pm Segil Fine Art Source gallery
Holiday Small Works Show
110 West Lime Avenue
Old Town Monrovia CA 91016
(626) 358-5563

Sunday evening reception 5 – 7 pm – dinner following with reservation
California Art Club Associates Show “Precious Gifts”
Pasadena Womens City Club – Historic Blinn House
160 North Oakland Avenue
Pasadena, CA 91101-1714
(626) 796-0560

Oh, and Sunday from 11 – 1 I’ll be painting at the Langham Huntington Hotel in Pasadena on Oak Knoll Road (S. Lake turns into Oak Knoll) – if you’re in the area.

California impressionist landscape oil painting – Spring poppies – Hillside Bouquet

Hillside Bouquet
9 x 12 oil


I have other California wildflower paintings. Please write

See more of my wildflower paintings here

On a central coast hillside, California poppies and lupines make a dazzling display. I started working on this painting over the weekend at the Redondo Beach pier art show. Thanks to everyone who came out, it was a pleasure meeting new collectors and getting acquainted with old friends. If you stopped by and wondered how the painting turned out, here it is.

This coming weekend I will be showing more than 20 paintings at the Bowers Museum Invitational Show in Santa Ana. It’s a two day show, Saturday and Sunday the 19th and 20th, from 10 am to 4 pm. The address is 2002 N. Main Street, Santa Ana. There is a meet the artists reception on Saturday the 20th from 2-4, but you can also see me in my area at any time. A portion of all painting sales goes to the California Arts Council and helps the conservation and exhibition of paintings in the Bowers Museum collection.

California Art Oak Landscape Oil Painting

Evening Peace
12 x 16 oil on canvas
(Central California, Sierra Foothills oil painting)

This painting is SOLD, but I have more oak paintings:
See more of my oak tree paintings here

This California oil painting celebrates the end of the day in Central California as valley oaks are silhouetted by the fading sun. The warm glow of sunset still lingers in the sky. Mist is already starting to form in the distant Sierra foothills, creating a sense of mystery.

Last weekend’s opening of the California Art Club “On Location in Malibu” show at the Weisman Museum at Pepperdine University was really outstanding. Although I paint frequently in Malibu it is always interesting to see other artists’ interpretations of the same subjects. I hope to return to the exhibit to see more of the paintings when there is no crowd. It was really elbow to elbow in the galleries.

California Plein Air Painting – Blue Heron Lake

Blue Heron Lake
9 x 12 oil on linen panel

This is another of the plein air paintings I did a month or so ago on our trip up through Central California. A small lake, with trees leaning down to touch the water. Yes, it was cold out there. Snow on the mountains and the wind whipped down and chilled us to the bone. One of the many other challenges of plein air painting is reflections in water. Every time the wind moves, the ripple pattern on the water changes, and that changes what is reflected and what is not. Still water reflects. Ruffled disturbed water does not. But changing wind currents puts the reflections in different places, see? At some point you just have to settle with one thing. Although this is named Blue Heron Lake, I didn’t see any that day. Maybe I’ll paint one in sometime. I have plenty of reference photos of herons in other locations, including at Descanso Gardens.

California plein air landscape painting – Wildflower Hills

California Wildflower Hills
9 x 12 plein air painting
oil on linen panel

See more of my landscapes here

A few months ago, after keeping an eye on the wildflower reporting sites, we took a trip up into the foothills of the western Sierras. The online sources were right – they really were really spectacular this year. I started this painting on site, and have been waiting for the opportunity to touch it up in studio before posting here. Among the challenges at this location was a storm system that cast ever-changing shadows over the golden hills. One minute the foreground was in light and the background in darkness. Five minutes later it was the reverse. At the point of laying in my darks I decided to go with the cloud shapes on the distant hills and leave the foreground hill bright, and then to paint it that way no matter what nature was doing.

Next week, after my show is hung this Saturday at Gale’s Restaurant in Pasadena, I should be back to painting and posting regularly. There are just too many details to take care of right now.

California Oak Wildflower Landscape – Karen Winters

The Oak’s New Spring Gown
9 x 12 oil on canvas panel


In the western foothills of the Sierra range, valley oaks begin to deck themselves in fresh green foliage … lacy layers of silken fluff. Out in the meadows they look like girls going to their first big dance. The late light of day puts the lady in a spotlight as admiring wildflowers look on.

The Meadow Wakes – California landscape painting – Karen Winters

“The meadow wakes”
(Sierra foothills, east of Visalia)
6 x 8 oil on canvas


When the first strong rays of light hit a meadow filled with fiddlehead flowers, the mist was still rising from the nearby hills, providing an interesting contrast of saturated and desaturated colors. The statuesque valley oak was just starting to put out its new foliage, creating that lacy effect that is only characteristic of earliest spring. I wonder what it would be like to live on a farm like this, with so much beauty to see in every season.

Valley Girls – Landscape oil painting – Cows on ranch in Central California

Valley Girls
8 x 10
oil on canvas on birch panel


This painting is the result of a test of a new panel I’m working on – a very fine canvas, primed for oil painting and then attached to a birch panel with acid-free archival glue. I didn’t have time to get out today so I used some reference sketches and photos to compose this peaceful scene of a valley in central California.

Although I like the “spring” of stretched canvas, these panels are very light, portable and good for plein air studies.

As I painted this, it started to have sort of a folk art feeling, so rather than fighting it, I just went with it and had fun with the process.