This summer I’ve been spending time working on color studies. In my jewelry I work a lot with black and white, but for my original art, my larger pieces, I wanted to explore color.
In exploring color, I wanted to introduce unexpected and bright colors to the animals. I wanted the colors to make the animals a little abstract and not true to life, but brilliant.
Humpback whales are prevalent in California during migration season. For the last two years, you can see the whales easily from the coast; one day in Half Moon Bay, we were standing on the beach and we could see a pod of whales surfacing just past the waves. I’m not sure why they are so close to the coast line, but it amazes me that these huge and gentle creatures and swimming just hundreds of yards from where I’m standing.
Humback 1 is available for preorder as an 18 x 24 or 8 x 10 print.
I’m super excited to announce the launch of new artwork that I’ve been working on over the summer. The first piece is Coyote, and is meant as a companion piece to Jackrabbit.
For Coyote I wanted to portray the predator in a softer light, in a kind way. Often people thing of coyotes as aggressive and almost vicious, so I wanted to counter that and present another way of looking at these wild animals. I’ve seen coyotes in the open spaces and in the hills above my house, and they are graceful and careful, but always know where they are going.
Coyote is both rebellious and playful; she symbolizes the trickster, and inspires transformation. She’s always got something up her sleeve, and she can get out of any situation.
Coyote is another piece in my California collection, honoring and portraying native animals in California.
Coyote print is available for preorder in my store in an 8 x 10 size and a 18 x 24 size.
Sharks are one of the most misunderstood animals; great whites are one of the most feared animals, and current conservation status is Vulnerable. There is a lot we don’t know about sharks, because it’s difficult to observe them and they are difficult to keep in captivity. Great white sharks don’t feed and often die in captivity; the Monterey Bay aquarium has had some success getting them to feed, but has not kept them for a long period of time. Sharks are caught just for the fins (in a practice where the fin is cut off and the shark tossed back to die, which is one of the most cruel practices I can imagine) or get tangled in fishing nets as a result of by catch. Great white sharks are the top of the ocean food chain, and are important to keeping oceans healthy.
Follow this link to dispel some other shark myths!
I’m really excited to be part of the Etsy team’s pop-up shop in Ghiradelli Square in July. We’re open on the weekend of July 15 and 16 from 11 – 5pm; the entrance is on Larkin Street, between North Point and Beach Streets. If you live in the Bay Area or are visiting that weekend, stop by and shop local artisans. We’re also offering classes the weekend of the 15th and the weekend of the 29th; check out the Etsy page for information on signing up for classes.
I wanted to capture the sea lion at it’s most majestic: basking the sun. Sea lions can be seen from almost any seaside location in northern California, and even off the piers in San Francisco.
My California Condor pencil sketch is available as an iPhone cover. I love the bright oranges and pinks of the condor’s head contrasted with the silky black of it’s neck ruffle.
The Condor is also available as a print and framed too!
To anyone who has ever been camping or picnicing (generally being outside with food) anywhere in the western US, you’ve met a Steller’s Jay. They sit up in trees and squawk very loudly, then suddenly they are swooping down majestically to steal food. Once while camping in King’s Canyon, they stole our bacon out of the hot frying pan while it was still cooking.
Despite their annoying behavior, they are beautiful, with black, high crested heads and bright blue bodies and wings. Being members of the Corvidae family, they are in the family as rooks, magpies, crows and ravens, and are very smart.
In my color study, I wanted to capture the high contrast of the bright blue against their shiny black feathers
Just outside Goblin Valley is a canyon called Temple Wash that has pictographs; the site is significant because it contains pictographs of 2 different styles, Fremont and Barrier Canyon style. This also means people were painting the panels at 2 different times. Fremont style is estimated to be 800 – 1,400 years ago, and Barrier Canyon is estimated to be 1,500 – 8,000 years ago. It is thought that the creators from different cultures could have existed at the same time. Also the figures in the panel are quite tall, and it’s guessed they were meant to be seen from a distance.
Here you can see the dark red pictographs at the bottom of the cliff face. Even though I was quite far away (there is a wooden fence to keep people away) I could still see the images were quite detailed. We also brought a pair of binoculars, so we could see the images more clearly.
You can see on the left is a human figure with horns. To the right is a dog figure, a “medicine man” figure holding snakes, and several other human figures. There is a lot of damage due to the rock shearing off the cliff face. There was also severe vandalism around 2000, but it looks like the state cleaned that off.
Across from the panel is part of the San Rafael Swell. In this area the earth has been pushed up and is pretty rough, and you can see the geological layers distinctly.
Selfie with the pictograph panel behind me!
Today I’ve posted a detail of my Jackrabbit print. I use soft pastels, because I love the way the medium can be pushed around and mixed, but I also can cover and layer the colors. The Jackrabbit print is available in 8 x 10 or 16 x 20 sizes. (The watermark doesn’t appear on the print!) The Jackrabbit Print is available framed also.
Pronghorn Sketch and color study. I love the yellow and ochre with purple and violet!