Tuesday, September 29, 2009

sure signs

As if it wasn't enough that I had to actually put on socks yesterday, today I found this lovely harbinger of fall on the road.

Monday, September 28, 2009

5 minutes of your time

My friend Roz wrote about collage in her blog today. It got the juices flowing and I went to work. (Of course I never need a lot of prodding to do collage work.) Thanks for the inspiration Roz.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

acorn squash

It was a dark and stormy night......well, really just sort of rainy and windy. That, plus the acorn squash for dinner makes it feel mighty fall-like.

Friday, September 25, 2009


My friend Grace has two new kittens that I met today. They are siblings, Willis and Lola. Willis is a yellow tom with pretty white boots, but Lola definitely hit the jackpot in the gene pool. She has the most beautiful markings--grey swirls and stripes and circles. I didn't do them justice in my painting, but you get the idea.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

stop and smell the rosehips

How have I missed this fact before (maybe its an age thing, like starting to recognize and identify bird calls)--the seed pods and fruits of most flowers and trees are often more beautiful and intricate than the blossoms themselves.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


full disclosure...this collage of bittersweet vines is actually a cover for the sketch underneath that went from bad to worse and finally just had to be put to rest.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

apples again

Apples made the front page of the paper again! Apparently our summer/early fall weather has been perfect for a bumper crop of apples. This is news I can live with.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

bike trail

Yet another in a string of perfect late summer days. I took a ride on the near-by bike trail. It was full of other bikers and hikers out enjoying a beautiful September Sunday.

Saturday, September 19, 2009


I like abstract painting.....when someone else does it. When I try it myself, my right brain is busy enjoying the play of color, the lost and found edges while the left side is quietly whispering "hey, look at that face in there"or "check out the apple". It just needs to have something "real" to hold onto. Today's page started as an abstract but before too long some sort of tropical fruit made its way onto the scene. The struggle continues.

Friday, September 18, 2009

next phase

My blackberry lilies have hit their next phase and are showing off the reason for their name. Just a few of the misshapen green pods have opened to reveal the seeds, which look just like blackberries. Ain't Mother Nature grand?

Thursday, September 17, 2009

thai chiles

My goal was to capture the essence of this basket of chiles without getting too detailed and trying to paint every little pepper. I stopped short of doing every single one, but it did get fussier than I wanted.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

morning row

I haven't kayaked nearly as much as I hoped I would this summer and now the time is getting short for that particular activity. Time to row while I can.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


Do apples make the news in other places? They do here in the land of the Honey Crisp. (James Lileks wrote a funny column on this in the Star Tribune last week). This year's newsmaker is called the SweeTango, a genetic mash-up between the Honey Crisp and Zestar. I found three lonely SweeTangos left on the display in the produce section yesterday and brought them home to check out the hype for myself. Verdict: the hype is earned, they are great. Wonderful crisp texture, sweet with just enough tangy flavor.

Monday, September 14, 2009


I liked the Eric Carle-like eggplant collage, so stuck with it for today's pears. I may be like the very hungry caterpillar and collage my way through all the food in the kitchen.

Saturday, September 12, 2009


I was somewhat surprised when I opened my fortune cookie looking for words of wisdom to find the word "Eggplant". I wasn't quite sure how to interpret that fortune! Upon closer inspection, these particular cookies have a fortune on one side and a Chinese vocabulary lesson on the other. Others had more common words like "son" or "house" but I felt very fortunate to get "eggplant"--or "qie zi" as I now know.

Friday, September 11, 2009

before and after

Its a testament to some sort of self-control that I took the time to sketch and paint this lovely cupcake from Yum Bakery before digging in. (Let's just gloss over the lack of self-control that allowed it to get into the house in the first place!) I added a corner of the cupcake paper and some crumbs when I was done.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

abstract collage

My work table is covered with scraps of paper for a project I am working on, and I decided to start the day with a 10-minute collage. Unfortunately, the amount of paper used here didn't make much of a dent in pile I need to clean off the table. Maybe if I collaged the broad side of a barn.....

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

nasturtium pod

As if I needed another reason to love my bright, cheerful nasturtiums, today I discovered the pods that form after the flowers. They are round and fat with twisting stems--as cheerful as the flowers.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

last of the season

I bought a few ears of corn at the farmer's market today. There was only one stall that had any and I suspect it was the last for the season. On the bright side, there was a new stall with the first few early varieties of local apples. Must be fall.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

crab apple jelly

I finally picked a bag full of crab apples and tried my hand at jelly. It was fun, relatively easy and best of all it looks so pretty. I made four beautiful red jars full, but already gave one away. (Besides, three is a better number artistically speaking).

Friday, September 4, 2009

blue dish

I bought a new casserole dish today just big enough for two people. I talked myself into "needing" this smaller, empty-nest size, but in reality it was the beautiful blue color I couldn't get past. And the cute rooster sticker sealed the deal.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

glad shadow

I've been nursing this bouquet along for well over a week now, plucking out drooping buds, down-sizing the vase, until finally today this is all that is left--the last few blossoms from the top of a stalk of glads.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

MN State Fair

a quick collage of some guinea fowl done when I got home--the newspaper was perfect for their subtle gray coloring

watercolor sketch of an Asiatic Brahman

also known as the "Great Minnesota Get Together" (I prefer my son's version--the Great Minnesota SWEAT Together). I met with a group of other Twin Cities journal artists for a "sketch out". We spent some time in the poultry barns and then did some general people watching/sketching. Check out some of the other work at Twin Cities Sketchers It was a perfect day weather-wise. It didn't even earn its usual "sweat together" title. Add some deep fried cheese curds to the mix and it was a great day at the fair.