After the Fire
Picking up and moving to a new place for half a year is proving to be an interesting transition. Definitely not a bad one, but traveling and hoping you have packed everything you need.
I brought a lot from my kitchen, as my new kitchen in the north is so much smaller and out of date compared to the house l sold. I do miss the view of the harbor when I am in my Washington home, but adapted by enjoying the trees (that constantly make a mess of my back yard), the deer wantering through and the smaller space. I finally had the kitchen of my dreams, but not the marriage. So the choice was be happy in the house and miserable in part of life or move on. I am very happy I moved on.
Then there is the packing of clothes. So very often when I get dressed in the morning I realize that I left a few too many things behind. When I arrived in California it was supposed to Fall, but it was still summer and I had no summer clothes. Thanks to Nordstrom Rack I found end of summer sale clothes, so filled in what was missing. (sort of). With the Pandemic having the right clothes certainly is not as important. I just needed a few lighter weight clothes and some T-shirts to get me to Fall.
Fall has finally arrived and I am savoring the weather and finally got a studio, of sorts set up in the 1918 garage. I got a heater, a light and have a folding table and one easel for my art. I got the heater after the first day I painted and had to wear tights, a turtleneck, a flannel shirt, overalls, a fleece vest, cashmere gloves, which I cut the fingers off, a hat, Ughs and I was still freezing. The heater has helped a lot.
The fires were finally under control in Central California, so I painted the above painting in honor or that and for all the people that lost homes, pets and loved ones. I usually do an abstract rather quickly, but I think I felt a little emotional over the fires that blazed so close. The painting was done for our home in Vacaville and seems to fit in perfectly.
Time for Changes
This 30″ x 40″ painting was done for my now ex-husband. He insisted he have it when he moved out, but after a bit sent it back to me. I decided I must have been a little depressed when I painted it.
There are musical notes added in the background with the use of collage, which is not my normal style of artwork. I decided best to paint over it, to remove the memory of bad times.
This one makes me smile a little more. The colors are lighter and the addition of more gold leaf add a little lightness to the piece
The Air is Clearing
It is so very nice to finally awaken to fresh clean smoke free air. Another day at last in my studio enjoying putting paint on a 36″ x 36″ canvas. With time in my studio and time in my kitchen life is good. I called the “The Air is Clearing”, as I could almost see the sky become blue during the day.
When I am not painting I seem to be cooking and made this Plum, Nectarine and Blackberry Galette in the morning.
My friend Reed really liked I think, as this was what was left after breakfast…
The recipe is in one of my earlier posts, and it is so easy and so delicious, you should make one. The last one I made with peaches and blackberries. I like to add a little cinnamon on top and four or five dabs of good butter, with an egg wash and a little sugar on the crust. I use Italian Joe’s Pie Crust recipe, as it is moist, flakey and goes together easily:
Italian Joes Pie Crust
3 cups (375g) Plain Flour (unbleached and unfortified)
2 tbsp Sugar
I tsp salt
2 sticks (220g) of Butter
(small cold cubed)
1 beaten Egg mixed with
3/4 cup Milk (cold)
- Mix flour, sugar & salt to evenly distribute the dry ingredients
- Place mixture into a large bowl ( He uses a food processor, but I prefer doing by hand.
- Add cold butter cubes with the flour mix and use cold bakers knives or your fingers until it transforms into small pea-sized crumbs
- Add egg and milk mixture mixing by hand or cold utensils until the mixture comes together or take the mixture out to the work surface
- Make a well with the flour crumbs mixture adding the egg and milk mixture in the well and lightly handling the mixture by hand or utensils.
(do not knead)
- Incorporate all ingredients together to form a dryish dough
- Wrap it well with cling film & refrigerate for 1 hour
- Roll out the dough split it in half for two pie crust and roll it out bigger than the pie dish
- Fit the rolled out pie dough in the greased and floured pie dish making sure pie dough is press all around the crevices of the dish so it doesn’t sink in or collapse when cooking.
- Cut around the edge of the pie dish and refrigerate again for 20 before egg washing it and filling it with pie filling and cooking in the oven.
I put the second half of the pie dough in plastic wrap, then use my Seal A Meal to seal it before I freeze it till I need it.
Red Meets Black!
In addition to sketching and doing a relatively impressionistic type paint, I love doing big abstracts. This one did not take much time, but just made me happy painting. I usually put on some great music and just enjoy the energy. Stacey Kent is my newest artist of choice. I was introduced to her music when staying a friend’s house. With all the fires going on in Washington, Oregon and California the idea struck me that the all the fury of the fires leaves behind the sadness of the blackened trees and lost homes.
This is fairly large at 48″ wide x 24″ tall.
Back to the Studio
It was a summer that I did not venture into my art studio, and yesterday I realized painting is what makes my heart sing. That and some great Rhythm and Blues music in the background make for a wonderful day.
Two days ago I picked up a piece from a wonderful Interior Design Studio in Edmonds that sells quite a bit of my work. The owner took me to house she is redoing and asked if I could do something for the living room to put above the fireplace. The colors were rich grays, taupes, bronze and a little bit of yellow green. This piece is 30″ x 60″ and painted over a previous piece I had done a long time ago.
It was done in a time when everything I did had some purple in it. In the last couple of years I have finally grown tired of purple. I find painting over a previously painted abstract gives depth and life to a new painting.
In this case, since it was already framed, I just used green guerrilla painters tape to cover the frame, so did not have to remove it and could get right to painting.
Whenever I do a bigger piece, I make it so you can hang it vertically or horizontally. It is one thing I do to make it easier to use in what ever environment you hang the art. In my own home, I may hang it one way for a while, then change 90 degrees in another place. That way I don’t grow tired of the piece as quickly.
At the end of the day yesterday I felt this piece was complete and had a great start on a second piece. I plan to spend a lot more time in my studio in the days to come. It makes me happy!
Artwork in its new home
For the last about 15 years I have been enjoying the creative pastime of painting and drawing. Over the years I have sold many pieces and with the exception of a doctor’s office, where I helped install the work I seldom get to see it in it’s new environment.
The second photo is of a piece I sold at Interiors of Edmonds and the new owner was kind enough to share a photo of it hanging in her lovely home. All artists should be so lucky to see where their work finds a home.
Thank you for sharing.
Back to Painting
For many years I took classes with a wonderful impressionist artist and enjoyed the time and progress that I made in the class and the other artists that came to paint and learn. I live on the beach and love my morning, evening and anytime of the day view out my back window to the beach beyond. Over the years I have photographed it and shared the photos here and on Facebook.
Taking the class I wanted to paint the scene in different moods and shades and colors, as it was always changing. I painted it about three times and our teacher decided for me that I could no longer paint it in class. I went along with it because she was the pro. I left that class about three years ago due to political differences. If we disagreed with her political beliefs we were yelled at, put down and not allowed to say anything in response as it was her home (garage) where we painted.
Time has passed and I do know I learned a lot about colors and how to mix them from her and from watching fellow artists; but I also have since thought about how many times Monet painted haystacks or a cathedral at Rouen in France. No one told him he could not paint a subject he was fascinated by. Kevin McPherson, a contemporary artist produced a book called “Reflection on a Pond”, where he painted his own pond 365 days in a row.
Yesterday having passed the real estate broker’s exam, and not being in my studio other than to sew I spent the afternoon painting my interpretation of my view. I just repainted my master bedroom in gray and have the desire to do a series of paintings in black, white & gray, with maybe one accent color. Here is the first of this series. I was inspired by another painting I did earlier called Airstream, that my youngest son loved, so I gave it to him.
Now I am finally inspired to paint again for the sheer joy of it with no intention of running all over trying to sell it or put up another show. I will post on my website: www.dianakingsley.net, but that is as much as I will do going forward.
Do you see the horse?
Started this before the power went out the other day and the colors were just singing to me. When I finished I looked at the photo and saw a horse head. If you have a better name please share with me.
Not sure if you can tell by the photo, but I used Gold Leaf on this one too. Gold Leaf is interesting to use, as it sort of has a mind of it’s own and no matter how exacting you want to apply it, it moves and takes on a life of its own.
Green with Envy
As I said earlier, I was having a great day in the studio till the power went out. I call this Green with Envy since I incorporated Gold Leaf once again in the piece.