Sunday, August 24, 2014

Art Abandonment—Sunday August 24

Sunday afternoon, on my break from the gallery, I abandoned some art around Portland Maine. 
Trader Joe's, LeRoux Kitchen and the Maine Surfers Union.

Plein Air painting—Two Lights, Cape Elizabeth Maine

Another beautiful day here in Maine so we spent the morning painting at Two Lights. Sporting my latest handmade Scrunchie, I did a quick 8 x10 oil study of the view across to Richmond Island.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

RIP Jorge Royan artist

I met Jorge at the Usk Symposium in 2012. We took a class from Nina Johansson who had us take painted impressions from the streets and manhole covers and then swap with someone to then use as a background to sketch on. I ended up swapping with Jorge and while we sketched together on the hot July morning in Santo Domingo DR he kept reminding me that he gave me really great backgrounds to work with. Laughing, we fell into the rhythm of the pure joy of sketching.
He invited me early on to join the Sketching Workshop group on FaceBook and I immediately accepted. He created a diverse and dynamic group that thrived on the love of sketching, along with sharing ideas and giving feedback. Jorge continued to always challenge himself and in return would challenge us. His absence is deeply felt among us.
My deepest sympathy to Jorge's family for their loss.
Rest in peace Jorge Royan

Sunday, August 10, 2014

A lovely summer day in Maine

Richmand Island from Kettle Cove, Cape Elizabeth, Maine
8"x 8" quick 60 minute oil study

Yesterday started out with Plein Air painting at Kettle Cove, then a bit of that daily to-do stuff, but finally ended with Sophie and I and all the other people and dogs of Willard Beach watching the amazing cloud show and then the full moon rise—WOW.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Portrait practice

Sketched a few portraits on my day away from the gallery and those intimidating canvases. 
Artist/Television news photographer Bill Barton and reporter Jana Barnello of Channel 13 in Portland Maine.

Saturday, August 2, 2014


Still walking, still drawing horizontal things around my house and though I am still avoiding, one out of the three commissions is done…and they love it! Now, I think I will go take a long walk…

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Plein Air painting—Kettle Cove, Maine

Nothing beats summer in Maine, so yesterday when a friend suggested we do some Plein Air oil studies at Kettle Cove, I jumped at the opportunity. The last time I painted outside with oils was 2007, so first I had to find all the stuff. Basically my oil paints have not been touched since long before my Camino walk, so it took some pliers to get some of the tubes open and of course, I forgot a few things and had to improvise...
The fog drifted in and out, but I managed to quickly get paint on my canvas and caught up in the pure joy of it—after all it is summer and just a small study. 
It was a lovely couple of hours painting outside.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Still avoiding...

...still taking long walks, still drawing horizontal things around my house


Saturday, July 26, 2014


I am so avoiding working on the three commissions I have lined up. Drawing all things horizontal in this silly 3"x 8" sketchbook that I have no idea why I bought years ago.

Monday, July 14, 2014

July Sunday in Maine

An early morning 8 mile walk with Patti, a latte, a green smoothie, 5 hours at the gallery staring at a canvas, and take out sushi. Much like the Camino, but no 20 lb pack, a green smoothie and take out sushi. I'm ignoring the canvas...
Pecha Kucha presentation on July 24 at Asylum in Portland Maine. I am presenting with 10 other people who have amazing stories to tell. I am presenting my Camino journey through my sketches.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Santiago de Compostela

I returned home from Spain two weeks ago. It has not been easy to assimilate back into life here after my amazing journey. The Camino occupies a great deal of my thoughts and I find I terribly miss being a walker/sketcher/pilgrim...
My accordion sketch book of the plaza in Santiago finally got colored in after sadly sitting unopened until today. What great memory of going from window to window of the Parador Hotel sketching this beautiful scene.
Gracias nuevo España. Realmente fue un buen Camino.

Close-ups of accordion sketchbook.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Muchas gracias Spain

The sun was out with bright blue skies for our last morning in Santiago. We had a couple of hours to kill before our long trip home so I went in search of my last café con leche. Almost as much as the café con leche, I love the cup and saucer and the little spoon. Sadly, I left my last red lipstick mark on my last cup in Spain.
Muchas gracias Spain. It truly was a “Buen Camino”
(In case you are thinking “that is just so tacky”…I always wipe it off before I leave)

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Santiago, Spain-one last hug for St James

One last visit to the cathedral where I hugged St James...for the second time.
We leave tomorrow after 40 days, 32 of which were on the Camino, it is time to go home. I am tired, ready for my home and my own bed, being back with my sweet little dog Sophie, walking the beach and getting back to the gallery and painting. However, I am already thinking about my next walk/sketch...

Santiago-panorama of cathedral and plaza

Still drizzling I managed to find a place to sketch the cathedral and plaza from the tall window in an old unused restaurant in the Parador hotel off the plaza. I used a USK accordion sketchbook. I can't believe I took this on as my attention to detail can wane as you can see if you look close : ) I kept saying to myself "they actually built it thousands of years ago, so at least I could finish my sketch in a few hours" so I carried on through the afternoon.
Patti took a photo of me with my sketch (in the drizzle) before I attack it with watercolor. Then off we went to shop and check out the local market where this "non-meat-eater" scored her last local jamon before we head back home tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

After the Camino-Exploring Santiago, Spain.

Still cool and drizzly in Santiago as we explore the city. I didn't have to go far to find a cafe con leche, ending up with a delicious grande and sketching this woman at a "Restaurante/Jamoneria". I've never heard of a Jamoneria, but it was a regular cafe with jamon hanging from most parts of the ceiling...interesting...
Some of our pilgrim friends are still here, but tonight we sadly said goodbye to our most wonderful new friends-Lawrence, Neil, Wim and Erwin. I will miss you guys!!!!

Monday, May 26, 2014

Santiago, Spain-A day without walking

It is a little rainy and cold in Santiago so I am layered up in all my Camino clothes-luckily they are freshly laundered. A quiet day with no walking, a late morning cafe con leche, souvenir shopping and reflection. When the sun finally came out for a bit I sat and sketched, but kept it simple-no cathedral for this ex pilgrim/sketcher!!!

El Camino di Santiago-finished!!!

We arrived in Santiago around noon on May 25th. We walked 500 miles in 32 days. We congratulated other pilgrims and hugged our new pilgrim friends as we waited in line for our compostelas. Someone said "When you get to Santiago you are no longer a pilgrim you are a tourist". 
I am coming trying to come to terms with that...

Saturday, May 24, 2014

El Camino di Santiago- tomorrow we finish our journey

After 13 miles in sun and clouds we reached Arca-O Pino which is the final town on the Camino before Santiago. We are enjoying the most delicious dish of Pimentos de Padron before we head back to our final Camino Albergue bunk-room of pilgrims. Tonight we share with 14 other pilgrims.

Tomorrow hundreds of us start our 12 mile walk into Santiago. We have no idea what that means...

On my way to Santiago!!!

Friday, May 23, 2014

Camino di Santiago-25 miles to go...

Yesterday was another drizzly walk in Galicia to Palas de Rei. Cold and rainy so I was left to sketch in the cafe at the Albergue. The walls were covered with pilgrim paraphernalia and coins from all over the world. Lots of pilgrims sharing the sleeping quarters, but at least I had the highly coveted lower (abajo) bunk.

This morning, with 40 miles to go, I got up at 5:45 leaving a bunk room filled with 20 sleeping pilgrims from all over the world. We have been walking now for 30 days and getting a good nights sleep on the Camino is almost impossible. 
I looked in the mirror and there I was, as usual, with my hair sticking out all over the place and dark circles under my eyes. I thought "I am so over the Camino", but I brushed my teeth, put my hair up, downed a cafe con leche grande, pulled my poncho over head and my 20 lb pack and off we went to walk 16 miles in the pelting rain...
25 miles to Santiago.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

El Camino di Santiago-closer everyday

We walked 14 miles yesterday in our new ponchos : )
The Province of Galicia is the final third of the Camino and is much colder and wetter, but Santiago is within reach-only 3 walking days left. So different than the meseta or middle region of the Camino where it was hot, dry and flat and messed with the perception of time and distance, tested your mind, confronted your heart and seemed almost an unfathomable distance to Santiago.

We arrived in Portomarin a little cold and wet, but without ponchos we would have been soaked. All the cafés surrounded the plaza and the church of San Nicolás, so I sketched from the warmth of a cafe. 
52 miles to Santiago...and rain is predicted most days.