Friday, December 12, 2014

2 plein air paintings from 2014

2 plein air paintings I did in 2014 at Skokie Lagoons.
(Actually, they were each about 2/3 plein air, and 1/3 finished up in the studio.)

oil on board

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Monday, November 17, 2014

Emily Oaks Tree

pen & ink and ink wash on Fabriano toned paper
12" x 20"

This was done at Emily Oaks in October during the Brush With Nature plein air event. It was accepted, but I didn't get it framed in time to have it included in the show.


Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Figure paintings from EAC part 3

Another one from Eleanor Spiess-Ferris' class at EAC
The model is Mugsie

oil on board

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Figure painting of Sojourner

oil on linen-covered board

I have been working on finishing (or deciding they were already finished) a bunch of figurative paintings I have from my EAC classes. Here is the first installment.

The model was Sojourner, and I managed to finish her up to about her elbows.

Painted in Ken Minami's class at Evanston Art Center


Friday, October 17, 2014

Monhegan Island Drawings

I recently did some drawing on Monhegan Island, Maine

Manana Island
marker and pencil on toned paper

Calf Cove
pencils on toned paper

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Studying Inness

I have been somewhat obsessed lately with the work of George Inness (1825-1894), and I'd like to bring some of the technique and expressiveness of his work into my paintings.
I did 4 studies from his paintings (below) and also visited The Art Institute of Chicago in order to look at some of his paintings in person. I made some notes from a painting (The Mill Pond) as well as a sketch from a bronze of George by Jonathan Scott Hartley.

Studies after (clockwise from top left):
Home at Montclair 1892,  Landscape 1888,
Summer, Montclair (New Jersey Landscape), The Trout Brook 1891

oil on Arches 12" x 16"  oil paper

colored pencil in Strathmore Toned Tan sketchbook

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

3 (more or less) recent watercolor sketches

I decided to torture myself and play around with watercolors again:

plein air, Michigan City, IN

Contesse de Ternay

plein air, Skokie Lagoons

Winsor and Newton watercolors in Holbein sketchbook

Monday, August 25, 2014


Jack Black from a scene in Tropic Thunder

oil on Arches oil paper

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Michigan City Mullein

Wild Mullein sketched plein air while on vacation in Michigan City, IN.

pen & ink with white pencil on Strathmore Toned Gray paper

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Illinois Beach State Park Tree

Portrait of an amazing old dead tree I saw at Illinois Beach State Park

pencil on Canson Mi-Teintes paper

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Ezra portrait

Portrait of Ezra

My son's Betta died a week or so ago. I had already completed this portrait of Ezra and now this sits where his tank used to.

oil on 4" x 4" panel

Thursday, May 29, 2014


From time to time I will buy some interesting fruit or vegetable and bring it home with the intention of painting it. This time I actually did.

oil on board
11" x 14"

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Oregon coast study

From a reference photo taken last summer on the Oregon coast near Yachats.

watercolor with gouache in Holbein watercolor sketchbook
7" x 5"

Wednesday, April 30, 2014


A friend gave us these around Easter and I decided to paint them before they began drooping.

oil on 11"x14" board

Monday, April 21, 2014

Recent Sketches from Nature

A wonderful gnarled old tree I spotted in Illinois Beach State Park

Caran d'Ache Neocolor II wax pastels in Strathmore Toned Gray sketchbook

Milkweed plant at Illinois Beach State Park

marker & white pencil in Strathmore Toned Tan sketchbook

Fallen tree at Skokie Lagoons

oil on board

Friday, April 4, 2014

South Haven Sunset

South Haven Sunset
from various photos taken on family vacations to South Haven, Michigan

oil on canvas - 36" x 12"

Some detail images:

Friday, March 14, 2014

Fun With Pen & Ink

I have gotten back into pen and ink work again lately as I am contemplating doing another Lincoln portrait. (see others here, here and here.)

A beautiful gnarled tree I found in Bunker Hill Forest Preserve.

Noodlers #41 Brown ink with Esterbrook 788 nib in Strathmore Toned Tan sketchbook

Horse and Round Tailed Ground Squirrel from online references.

Noodlers #41 Brown ink with Esterbrook 788 nib on Rives tan paper

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Some Figurative Paintings

Painted from life in my Evanston Art Center Class with Eleanor Spiess-Ferris. I have more of these awaiting completion. I never can seem to finish them off in the course of a 2-week pose.

oil on canvas board

An experiment with the Zorn palette (excepting the background).
Reference image from here.

oil on illustration board

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Trees & Snow color study

A color study for a larger painting.

Seems to show some influence from a book I got into recently: Impressionists in Winter: Effets de Neige by Charles S. Moffett. I am a very selective, and not massive fan of Impressionism, but the more restrained colors used in the winter scenes in this book clicked with me.

oil on Arches oil paper

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Snow Oil Sketch

oil sketch from inside the car at Bunker Hill Forest Preserve in Chicago last Monday

oil on board

Saturday, January 11, 2014

cherry branch

an older one - from a branch of a neighbor's tree that is no longer with us

oil on 8" x 10" board

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Pajama George

Once upon a time my daughter asked me to make a painting for her of something she likes. I chose her longtime companion, Pajama (Curious) George. A late Christmas present.

oil on 4"x4" board