Friday, June 27, 2014


Gimlet. Oil on panel, 12" x 12".

Finally! Gimlet is the first of a series of around eighteen pieces for my upcoming Mixology art and recipe book. Vodka Gimlets are my specialty, so it was a natural to start with this one. There will have to be some in-depth experimentation with recipes after this. I know, it sucks to be me. 

Gimlets are pretty colorless, except for the limes. Everything else--vodka or gin, simple syrup---is clear. I used sugar cubes instead of the s.s. to add some interest, but still wanted a complimentary color. That ended up being the fun part. A run to a local flooring store yielded some Marmoleum samples, one of which is seen here as the "countertop." I love the pattern, and found it fairly easy to imply with a few strokes. Working a bit bigger felt weird, but it allowed me to add details like the pattern in the depression glass bowl.

These paintings will be available after the book is released, hopefully in November. 

p.s. Don't worry, I'm not a total jerk. I will return the samples and buy a few strips of Marmoleum for future paintings.

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Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Rose Reflections

Oil on panel, 8" x 8".
This was a really challenging project---so many reflections! The shaker, serving tray, glasses, ice, spoon… the back wall was the only non-reflective thing in the whole setup. I really like the patchwork effect of the reflections in the shaker.

Starting tomorrow I will work on pieces for the mysterious Big Project---a Mixology book containing a collection of paintings and corresponding cocktail recipes. I will post the book paintings as I go, but they won't be available for purchase until the book release. I will try to mix in some small paintings for Daily Paintworks as I have time.

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Monday, June 23, 2014


Original oil on panel. 8" x 8".
Today I felt like a totally different color scheme. I forget when I don't work with this particular green for a while, how invasive it is! It gets into absolutely everything, and the strong pigment can beat up all my other pigments without breaking a sweat. I do love the brilliant kelly and turquoise colors I can get with it, though. I had fun with the reflections in the shaker, and the big, one-stroke highlight in the shot glass.

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Sunday, June 22, 2014

Fresh Mix

Fresh Mix. Original oil on panel, 8" x 8".
Happy with this. I finally ran out of 6" x 6" panels, and moved on to one of the 8" x 8"s I had made. It was nice to work a bit bigger, and it was getting to be time. Had a much better go at the ice here, too. A combination of careful arranging and less-is-more seemed to be the key. The toughest parts: the measuring end of the bar spoon, and taking the photo. This one really wanted to glare!

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Thursday, June 19, 2014

A Rocky Start

A Rocky Start. Original oil on panel, 6" x 6".
The title refers to the beginnings of a drink on the rocks, but it may have well have described the painting session. I wanted to do something a bit different and fairly simple, and succeeded with the "different" aspect. I lost the "simple" when I tackled my new prop ice cubes! Not sure how much they look like ice cubes in the end. The painted ice cubes look like the prop ice cubes, but the jury is still out on the props themselves...

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Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Candy Store

Candy Store. Original oil on panel, 6" x 6".
After a week away at a plein-air pastel landscape workshop, I was feeling a bit out of touch with my oil still life series. The only thing that appealed this morning was this collection of modern glasses. They didn't look like much on their own, so I started filling them with odd combinations of liquids. I was almost done painting when I realized there wasn't a real focal point. Enter the cherry, which gave the whole thing a candy-like feel.

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Sunday, June 15, 2014

I'll Make Manhattans


I'll Make Manhattans. Original oil on panel, 6" x 6".
I learned recently that Manhattans should be stirred rather than shaken. Shaking makes the drink cloudy, while stirring preserves the beautiful golden-ruby color and clarity. You can still use your shaker for mixing, of course! I like to add a tiny splash of the cherry juice as well. 

I am really happy with the Bakelite strainer handle in this piece especially, and the color harmony between it, the countertop, and the warm orange tone of the Bulleit Rye in the shot glass.

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Thursday, June 12, 2014

The Usual Suspects

The Usual Suspects. Original oil on panel, 6" x 6".
With a name like "the Usual Suspects," I suppose I ought to have turned the beadboard backdrop on its side. It would look more like a proper lineup. Still really happy with this piece.

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Wednesday, June 11, 2014


Summertime. Original oil on panel, 6" x 6".
This piece looked fairly summery to me, with all the citrus and bright green depression glass. The combo of that, and the onset of really good porch nights, contributed to the title. That, and the Django Reinhardt Pandora station I've been playing to get in a "vintagey" mood. I'm sure the song Summertime played at least twice in the time I spent painting today.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

French 37-1/2

French 37-1/2. Original oil on panel, 6" x 6".
I only had about half the ingredients for a French 75, but the perfect glass! I love this yellow depression glass piece. It has a cute molded pattern that I will never capture in this lifetime. Maybe if I come back as a photo realist...

Monday, June 9, 2014

Peony in Pink

Peony in Pink. Original oil on panel, 6" x 6".
Some peonies were sitting around for my open studio, and they looked great with the vintage cranberry glass decanter set. It seemed like it would be so much fun to go back to some more familiar subject matter. Meh. Turns out the most fun part was the decanter. The least fun part was keeping red out of things that weren't supposed to be red.

Sunday, June 8, 2014



Moontinis. Original oil on panel, 7" x 5".
While I still had the rocketshaker, I couldn't resist taking another shot at it. I'm surprised at how much I enjoy painting shiny things. Somehow I always assumed it would be a giant pain. Not so much.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Moon Shot


I think there are about eight shakers in my collection at the moment. My husband Paul only has one: the world's most awesome shaker, in the shape of a retro-futuristic rocket. I'm pretty sure he still has me beat. I thought the little onion looked like the moon.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Green Glass Galore

Green Glass Galore. Original oil on panel, 6" x 6".
This one really made me work for it. Surprisingly, the green glass tiles, while tedious, were not the worst of it. I ended up wiping down both the martini and shot glasses, then breaking out my secret-weapon tube of green. Whew, time to put something a little stronger in the glass!

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Drones Club Fruit Salad


I don't know how many reading this might be P.G. Wodehouse fans, but Plum hooked me at about age seventeen. I've enjoyed imaginary trips to the world of Jeeves, Bertie Wooster and company ever since. This piece has a jazzy, old school feeling about it that I really liked. And, it's sort of how I imagine members of the Drones Club took their vitamins.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Kind of Blue

Kind of Blue. Original oil on panel, 6" x 6".
I've been meaning to put these two barely-blue depression glass pieces together for a while. The champagne coup has always been a favorite model. The little bowl has the cutest design on the sides. It's just suggested here. It would take someone much more detail-obsessed than me to do it justice. I took some liberties with the height of the tiny shaker to balance out the composition a bit better. 

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Pink Drink

Pink Drink. Original oil on panel, 6" x 6".
This crazy iridescent cranberry glass shot is part of a set, with another glass and a decanter. The glasses are very modern, with stripes and a funny asymmetrical slant. I spent way too much money, but it had my name all over it. Resistance was futile.