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Karen Winters' daily artblog.

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  • annie: Back, again, Karen, I got a new computer so back in the land of the living. Is it possible to put this...
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White iceberg roses oil painting – White on White

November 9th, 2014

“White on White”
(iceberg roses)
20 x 24 inches, oil on linen canvas

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See more of my floral and botanical paintings here

These roses are from my garden, which is now in full fall bloom. Icebergs are one of the most popular kinds of floribunda roses. They’re loose and casual and bloom in profusion from early spring until late fall. They would even try to keep blooming through the winter months, here in Southern California, but I prune them every year in January to give them a well-needed rest.

#roses #botanical #oilpainting #art #garden #impressionist #painting

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

October 23rd, 2014

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

Gold Rush Country Ranch California landscape oil painting

September 10th, 2014

Gold Rush Country Ranch
20 x 24 inches
oil on canvas

This new painting depicts a ranch on highway 49, not far from Murphys, California. There was something about the sculptural mass of the big oak tree that really spoke to me. Although I most commonly paint eucalyptus, I find live oak trees irresistible as well. I haven’t spent as much time painting Gold Rush country as I have the eastern Sierra and California’s Central Coast, but it’s really starting to grow on me. Maybe it’s all that gold?

Interested in this painting?
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See more of my landscapes here

La Jolla palms seascape oil painting

September 6th, 2014

La Jolla Palms
8 x 10 inch seascape oil painting

With the hot weather we’ve been having, painting this was a cool refreshing treat. The location for this is along the La Jolla, California, shore, a little bit south of the main city.

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#oilpainting #lajolla #seascape #ocean #palmtrees #impressionist #california

Yosemite Falls California landscape oil painting

July 30th, 2014

Yosemite Falls in Summer
18 x 24 inches, vertical
Oil on canvas

At more than 2400 feet high, from the top of the upper falls to the base of the lower falls, Yosemite Falls is the tallest waterfall in the continental United States. Peak water flow comes in late spring to early summer, the time that this was painted. The falls are fed by Yosemite Creek, and after the water leaves the falls, it joins the Merced River on its course out of the valley.

The challenge in painting a waterfall is to capture the soft edges of mist that perpetually rise from the thundering flow. Paint the edge too hard and the falls look like a cutout. Paint the edge too softly, and it looks like a big cottonball.

Interested in this painting?
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See more of my Yosemite paintings here

California vineyard landscape oil painting – A Taste of Sonoma

July 29th, 2014

“A Taste of Sonoma”
Original impressionist oil painting of a Sonoma vineyard
18 x 24 inches

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This is another in my series of vineyards from around California. This time, Sonoma is the featured area. Some time this fall, I’ll be traveling to the mother of all beautiful vineyard-covered countrysides … Tuscany. And yes, I’ll be bringing the easel. I can hardly wait.

California impressionist landscape “Oaks Guarding Oranges” backroad oil painting

July 28th, 2014

“Oaks Guarding Oranges”
9 x 12 oil painting
California Central Coast, near Cayucos

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Through the years, some of our most enjoyable travels have been along the many backroads that criss cross California. This small road goes inland from Cayucos, just a little north of Morro Bay. Closer to the water, the marine layer softens all the edges. The fog is soft and gray. As we drive inland, the fog burns off and takes on other colors. There are many orange and avocado groves along these country roads, which proves that the area does not often get frost. But it is hot as blazes in the summer. We will commonly see eucalyptus trees used as windbreaks to protect orange groves, but along this road the California live oak trees were doing the job.

Norfolk Terrier Dog Pet Portrait

July 25th, 2014

“Jack and Lucy”
Norfolk Terrier double portrait
12 x 16 inches, original oil painting

These adorable dogs were the subjects of a recent portrait commission for a long-time client and friend of mine. Her two dogs are getting up there in years, and she thought it was a good time to have their portraits done for posterity. Lucy, on the left, is the younger of the two. Jack, on the right, is eleven, I believe. Jack had already had his summer haircut, but Lucy had not.

Now, there’s no way you can get two dogs to pose and hold a pose with the light on them “just so” … so every portrait begins with a photo session. That involves a fair amount of crawling around on the ground to shoot them from the right angle. My husband and I were shooting simultaneously, to maximize the number of reference photos we’d get before the dogs ran out of energy or patience with us. The next step was to edit the pictures in Photoshop to put together a composite where the light and direction of their gaze was consistent. After client approval of the reference composite, it just comes down to the painting, which was very enjoyable.

If you’re interested in having a portrait done of your favorite pet, please write.

Click this link to write me.

Russian River oil painting

July 23rd, 2014

Russian River Drifting
8 x 10 inch
Original oil painting on panel

The Russian River, in Northern California, near Guerneville, is a wide tranquil river (in summer at least) where people come to swim and float rafts, and to kayak. Our daughter did a 2 mile swim in it one July a few years ago when she was participating in “Barb’s Race” triathlon. A wet suit helped keep out the cold.

Interested in this painting?
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Maui Hawaii oil painting, Napili Bay Waves

July 18th, 2014

Napili Beach Waves, Maui, Hawaii
16 x 20 inches
oil on canvas

This painting comes from our vacation in Hawaii last year, where we enjoyed some time on Maui as well as Kauai. Napili Bay is a lovely lagoon on West Maui, a little north of Lahaina. It features a beautiful soft sandy beach, tide pools, shallow water for wading and excellent snorkeling. Across the bay you can see the island of Molokai, which I featured in this painting. I’m guessing that this is a popular wedding destination, it’s so beautiful.

What attracted me to this scene, other than the gorgeous turquoise water, was the huge thunderhead which was building up over Molokai.

Interested in this painting?
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