Wednesday, December 30, 2015

"Backlit Blue"

"Backlit Blue" 8x10 oil
This is one of several new originals headed to the Southeastern Wildlife Expo in February. Should be a great show!

Sunday, December 27, 2015

"Three Kings"

"Three Kings" 12x24 oil
Soon after the elk rut, a small group of large bulls feed on the edge of shadows cast by the setting sun. Epic battles for dominance and harems of cows long forgotten, these giants willingly tolerate each other as winter draws near.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

"Bitterroot Magic"

"Bitterroot Magic" 8x10 oil
Fly fishing on the Bitterroot River in western Montana has it's benefits... both in quality fishing opportunities and painting inspiration!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

"Lane Shift"

"Lane Shift" 12x16 oil
Trout in rivers and streams take up positions in the current and let the water bring their dinner to them. Almost always facing into the current, their choice of feeding lanes is influenced by factors like depth, current speed, access to cover, angling pressure, and of course abundance of food.
Observing trout as much as I do, I'm always fascinated by their movements. Contently feeding on aquatic insects, a big rainbow might seem to be glued to a favorite spot. Then for reasons we can only guess, the trout will shift to a new position and resume foraging. I'll be forever intrigued by the things happening below the surface of moving water.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

"Breakfast Interruption"

"Breakfast Interruption" 12x12 oil
The first of my new works for the Southeastern Wildlife Expo in 2016!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

"Handsome Drifter"

"Handsome Drifter" 8x6 oil
Working with some new colors on my pallet, this small commissioned piece turned out very nice. I love pronghorns and their beautiful markings. They make for wonderful painting subjects.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

"Great-Horned Owl Triptych"

"Great-Horned Owl Triptych" oil
Since my return from the Birds In Art exhibition at the Woodson Museum in Wausau, the paint has been flying! The trip this year was especially inspiring and I'm riding this wave of productivity as long as it lasts. These little 8x8 studies were a lot of fun. I wanted to concentrate mostly on the brushwork and getting some big juicy blobs of paint down. One of the most difficult things for me is putting down a big fat brush stroke and then leaving it alone! I have a compulsion to fiddle with the paint until all the brushy painterly freshness is gone. I might have to start wrapping myself on the knuckles if that continues!!!

Saturday, September 5, 2015

"Shiras and Sage"

"Shiras and Sage" 46x30 oil
This piece has been on and off the easel for over 4 months! It's by far the most adventurous (and largest!) oil painting I've attempted.
I wanted to convey the feeling of being in the Rocky Mountain west in the presence of unpredictable and dangerous wildlife. If you've spent much time in places like this, you'll eventually have an encounter when the outcome is in question for a moment or two. It could happen while hiking or maybe following a game trail through a willow thicket from one fishing spot to the next. Stepping into a small clearing and something out of place catches your eye. In an instant you realize you're already too close and this could end badly!
The wild look in the moose's eye helps to define the animals unpredictable nature. What will happen in the next instant is anyone's guess!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

"Grizzled Veteran"

"Grizzled Veteran" 30x15 oil
Reserved for the 2016 Southeastern Wildife Exposition in Charleston, SC.

Friday, August 28, 2015

In Memory of Otis the Wonder Dog

It was two days ago when I took Otis to our favorite fishing spot. We never catch much to speak of at this place, but there is a big rock where we can both sit and watch the carp swim by. This time we were not fishing... just watching... and Otis' tail was wagging with joy, as it always is when we come here. Otis leaned hard against my leg as if to comfort me and I scratched his ears.
A drizzling rain started shortly after we arrived and neither of us cared. The rain actually helped to hide the tears that were now flowing freely. It would not be the last time the tears would come. We both knew the day was fast approaching when he would have to leave and we were spending every moment possible doing things he loved.

So today I lost my best friend and my heart is heavy. For the past 12 years Otis the Wonder Dog has been my constant companion. He was given the title of "studio assistant" when he was old enough to pick out a toy and drop it on my foot. This of course was the signal I needed to take a break and do something fun... which we almost always did.

His illness was short and he did not suffer. For that I am grateful. Somewhere during that time I came to realize just how quiet and lonely this house would be without him. He has slept beside me on the bed since he was a puppy and I will miss his reassurance of his muffled snoring and the occasional twitch of puppy dreams in the dark. If I would get up during the night, he would always steal my spot and pretend to be asleep when I came back. Of course he loved to ride in the truck and the regular trips to the post office will never be the same. In his later years he came to love going out on the lake in the kayak even more. It was impossible to be anything but happy when we did things like that.
A sweet boy to the very end, he was always quick with doggy kisses (whether you wanted them or not)... especially if I was having a bad day. If I was sick, he would refuse to leave my side. Once when I managed to injure myself, he slept for three nights with his head on my neck and chest. It was the only time he ever did this.

This sweet nature seemed, at times, to be the glue that held our family together. I jokingly said to a friend once that because of this, I should have named him Elmer.
"Otis" however, was the name that fit. The first days of our partnership, when he was only 6 weeks old, his tiny legs had some trouble negotiating the terrain of my yard. He staggered from side to side and often took a short tumble before resuming his playful romp. So Otis it was, his namesake being the happy harmless town drunk on the Andy Griffith Show (many of you are probably not old enough to remember that!).

Our sweet boy lead a happy and playful life. Now that he is gone, there seems to be a void in the world that can never be filled. We were lucky to have him with us as long as we did.
Miss you bud.

Monday, July 6, 2015

"Sonny" and "Dozer"

Here are a couple of fun little fox studies that will probably lead to a bigger project.
"Sonny" 6x8 oil

"Dozer" 8x6 oil

Friday, July 3, 2015

"Early Riser"

This is the result of painting for 3 days in Mountain Trails Gallery in Jackson, Wyoming. It was great interacting with gallery visitors and getting to know the gallery staff. I had no idea if this painting was going to work or not, but the more paint I put on it the more I liked it.
"Early Riser" 18x13 oil


I am just fascinated by these little swallows. I was lucky enough to shoot some photos while in Wyoming last week. There were several families of violet-green swallows nesting in holes and crevasses in the cabin I stayed in.
"Violet-Green" 4x6 oil

Sunday, May 31, 2015

"Aqua Gold"

"Aqua Gold" 18x24 oil
After spending a few days away from the studio on a fishing trip with some good friends, I came back to work with a renewed enthusiasm! This one was off to a good start, but I really enjoyed spending the last 2 days finishing it off.
Maybe something bigger up next???

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

"Time for a Change"

"Time for a Change" 16x20 oil
This is the last of 14 original oil paintings headed to Gettysburg for the History Meets the Arts show, June 13-14. Contact Lord Nelson's Gallery for more information.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Birds In Art 2015

"Twilight Watch"
I got the "BIG email" Thursday morning with news of my acceptance into the 2015 Birds In Art exhibition at the Woodson Art Museum in Wausau. The painting "Twilight Watch" made the cut and I couldn't be happier. It will be great to see all my BIA friends again on opening weekend in September.
While 2015 marks my 9th consecutive year in the Birds In Art exhibit, this one is special. In the past, my entries were painted in acrylic. This year I held my breath entering oil paintings for the first time. So along with the sigh of relief, the acceptance email offered up some uplifting and inspirational validation for the new direction of my work.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

"Twilight Watch"

"Twilight Watch" 12x24 oil
I got this one in just under the wire! "Twilight Watch" will be one of my 2015 Birds In Art entries. Keeping my fingers crossed for a return trip to Wausau this September!

Monday, April 6, 2015

"Pony Sunset"

"Pony Sunset" 6x12 oil
I'm a little frustrated with my uploaded photo. I had a hell of a time getting a digital image that looked anything like the painting, but finally got something close. Now that I have it uploaded to my blog, the image has changed again and looks nothing like the actual painting. Ugh!

Monday, March 30, 2015


"Edgar" 9x9 oil
I probably should have been working on my taxes yesterday instead of painting, but once I got started on this one I couldn't put my brushes down. It was really a lot of fun seeing this one come together.

Friday, March 27, 2015

"Tall Aspens"

"Tall Aspens" 36x18 oil
It was my day to wrap up big projects! This was the 2nd and I'm really happy with this one.
Time to start something new....

"Silent Departure"

"Silent Departure" 13x30 oil
I haven't posted in quite a while. There have been big projects on the easel and I wanted to wait until they were about wrapped up before unvailing them.
I'm really happy with this one and glad I took my time with it. I'll be posting another in a day or two. Stay tuned...

Friday, February 27, 2015

"Mountain Melody"

"Mountain Melody" 12x12 oil

"Bend on West Boulder"

"Bend on West Boulder" 9x12 oil
Putting the finishing touches on a few paintings for the NatureWorks show in Tulsa next week. I'm really happy with this one :)

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

"Radiant Blue"

"Radiant Blue" 16x9 oil
One of the works I will be featuring at the NatureWorks Art Show and Sale in Tulsa next month.

Friday, January 23, 2015

"Early Encounter"

"Early Encounter" 20x24 oil
With less than 3 weeks left before the SEWE show in Charleston, SC, I'm spending some long hours in the studio putting together a body of work. Soon after SEWE, I'll be at the NatureWorks show in Tulsa. Lots to do before then!
Stay tuned...