9 x 12 oil on linen
Devereux Slough in Santa Barbara
This painting was accepted into the 101st annual California Gold Medal show, opening Saturday night at a gala party at the Autry National Museum in Los Angeles.
The slough is just on the border of the University of California at Santa Barbara. The morning I was there a marine layer was partly cloaking the beautiful eucalyptus trees, which made created wonderful reflections in the water.
“San Gabriel Springtime”
18 x 24 oil painting on canvas
San Gabriel Mountains – near Claremont Wilderness Park, Padua Hills
Although this painting is sold, I have other landscapes.
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Spring arrives with new growth in the chapparal. Clouds race across the sky, allowing shafts of sunlight to illuminate the blooming hills, bright with wildflowers. Trails wind through the landscape, offering new views at every turn.
Eaton Canyon Afternoon Walk
8 x 10 inches
oil on canvas plein air panel
A springtime walk through the trails of Eaton Canyon, in the greater Pasadena/Altadena area in Southern California.
The wildflower daisy bushes are in bloom in the cool, but warming weather.
The San Gabriel mountains provide a backdrop to a riparian environment where eucalyptus, willow and other trees and shrubs grow in the watershed area known as Hahamongna Park. Formerly known as Oak Grove Park, it is a popular recreation area for hikers, frisbee players and mountain lions. (Just kidding, but they have been spotted occasionally in the area.) This view features one of the beautiful eucalyptus trees and the wildflowers and grasses that flourish in the springtime.
“Abode of the Desert Rat”
Mojave Desert, somewhere off the beaten path between Tehachapi and Rosamond
9 x 12 oil on linen
This painting was inspired by a trip back from Kernville a few months ago, coming back from a paint out with the California Art Club. The sun was starting to come out from under a cloud bank, and a storm was threatening. The brilliance of the sun contrasted with the dark shapes of the poplars. I imagined that some recluse was living in the trailer, enjoying the constantly changing weather patterns and quiet solitude. Not long after this the rains started coming. Those heavily rain laden clouds suggested a flash flood and we headed for high ground.
Here’s a closer detail shot:
Golden Morning in Heritage Valley
9 x 12 oil painting on wood panel
(near Santa Paula, highway 126)
Whenever we go up the coast to San Luis Obispo, we inevitably take the scenic drive through Heritage Valley, also known as California highway 126. This highway goes through beautiful peaceful farming land filled with strawberry fields and citrus groves. Eucalyptus trees serve as windbreaks along the way.
11 x 14 oil painting on canvas
A sycamore caught in the act of changing colors is ruffled by a passing breeze near Eaton Canyon, in Altadena, CA
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
8 x 10 inches
oil on linen panel
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.
Alone in the Sunset – Sunset Tree Portrait – Placerita Canyon, Santa Clarita Plein air painting by Karen Winters
“Alone in the Sunset”
(Placerita Canyon, Santa Clarita Valley, CA)
10 x 8 plein air oil painting
Most of the time when I paint landscapes, the trees are part of a whole scene, rather than dominating it. In this case, the tree is featured as if in a portrait. An individual portrait is to a crowd scene as a tree portrait is to a grove. Some times, it’s fun to just study the branches and structure of a plant and to note its behavior – how it has been bent by the forces of nature. That was my objective in this painting, experimenting with the warms and cools and the way the light plays around the edges of forms at the end of the day.