Saturday, September 17, 2011

New Line of Greeting and Holiday Cards from Lisa

In the past few months, I have been working on a new line of greeting cards to add to the twenty one cards I designed last winter, some of which have sold out and had to be reprinted. This time I have eleven new cards, making a total of 32 images to choose from.  Included in this latest set are several cards with winter and seasonal motifs.  Most are landscapes and streetscapes, some include animals, and some are flights of fancy inspired by old children's book illustrations.  They are 4.25 x 6" and are blank inside, for you to write your own personal greeting. All of the greeting cards are printed on 100% recycled stock, with high quality envelopes and clear protective sleeves. They are available at Books Inc., Vines Cafe and Gallery, Red Wagon Collectables and the Alameda Natural Grocery in Alameda, and also at The Framer's Workshop on Channing, and Castle in the Air on Fourth Street, both in Berkeley. The greeting cards will be priced at $3.25 retail, but I will also accept mail orders with an additional charge for shipping.

Be sure to see my post of December 25, 2010 for all of the images from my first set of cards
(most are still available, some in limited quantities).

These are the images of my new line of greeting and holiday cards:

New Landscapes:

 Alameda Evening, Bungalows and Palms

September Sunset, Taylor Avenue

Island of Ghosts

Sunlit Courtyard

Winter Street

New Holiday and Seasonal Cards:

Christmas In Our Parlor

Early Spring

Christmas Cottage, Taylor Avenue

Winter Gifts

 The Eiger by Moonlight

Firelight Pug Dance

Monday, July 25, 2011

Lisa's Paintings at ACCI Gallery, Berkeley

I am very pleased to announce that this month I was juried into ACCI (Arts and Crafts Cooperative, Inc.) Gallery.  ACCI is a Berkeley landmark that has been on the corner of Lincoln Street and Shattuck Avenue for over fifty years, and is in the heart of the famous Berkeley Gourmet Ghetto.  It is also the oldest arts and crafts cooperative west of the Mississippi.  The handsome old brick building, formerly a French laundry, has been extensively renovated over the years to provide a spacious, well lighted space for displaying a wide range of high quality original art, including jewelry, ceramics, sculpture, textiles, glass, photography, and paintings.

I currently have eight framed gouache landscapes exhibited at ACCI: a selection of atmospheric scenes of the East Bay, San Francisco, and the Monterey Peninsula. My extensive line of greeting cards based on my paintings is also available at the gallery (see my December 2010 blog posting for all of the available images).

Below are some photos of the gallery and of my pieces there.  Visit the ACCI gallery website to look at all of the artists represented, and to learn more about current exhibitions and events. Please stop by ACCI Gallery to see my work and the huge selection of other fine arts and crafts on display.

The entrance to ACCI Gallery on Shattuck Avenue in Berkeley.

Lisa's landscapes at ACCI

More of Lisa's paintings, between a quilt and a bronze sculpture.
The small outdoor sculpture garden is in the background.

Lisa's paintings displayed above some of
the large selection of hand-crafted contemporary jewelry.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Fairytale Pugs by Firelight

I have just completed a commissioned painting for my friends Phil and Sue Lauer.  They have three pugs and a wonderful website at Pupstar Sonoma, featuring their adventures with their friends and their pugs.  Both Phil and Sue are terrific photographers and are also serious mushroom hunters in the northern California woods, as well as collectors of carnivorous plants like sundews and venus flytraps.  We decided on a fairytale scene for the painting, in a dark forest by firelight, with lots of mushrooms and a carnivorous plant or two! Their three pugs dance gleefully around the fire, surrounded by a fairy ring of mushrooms of many varieties, with an owl and a frog as the amazed audience.

One of the things I love about doing my pet portraits is including all of the crucial details that are important to the owners - setting the animals in real or symbolic landscapes, with special objects or toys, and concentrating on the personality of that particular pet - in this case three pugs in one picture!

Below find photos of the progress of the painting over the course of a couple of weeks, from the full-sized final sketch to the finished 12" x 17" completed work in gouache, titled Firelight Pug Dance: Blue, Roxy and Bono.

Pencil sketch, final size.

The sketch has been transferred to heavy rag watercolor paper,
 And the some of the outer details have been roughed in.

More detail and color - only the pugs
(the most challenging part of the painting, so I left them until last)
 are still in sketch form.

The fire now "glows" more effectively, 
and the mushrooms and carnivorous plants are taking shape.

Blue, Roxy and Bono start their dance!

The final painting on the easel, masking tape removed.
I've darkened the owl's wings and toned down the white smoke
with a pale purple wash to make the core of the fire the brightest
thing in the picture, and I've added shadows under the dancing pugs. 

Firelight Pug Dance: Blue, Roxy and Bono

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

New Exhibit of Lisa's Paintings at Tomate Café in Berkeley

From May fourteenth through June twenty-fifth, ten of my framed California landscape paintings and one small giclée will be exhibited and for sale at Tomate Café at 2265 Fifth Street (at Bancroft Avenue), in Berkeley.

Tomate is an excellent, “artsy” restaurant in West Berkeley near the Fourth Street shopping district, and serves breakfast and lunch every day of the week. It’s also dog friendly, with a lovely leafy patio in the courtyard for sitting with your favorite canine.  Come on by, have a latte or a great meal, and take a look at my recent work!

All of the pieces exhibited at Tomate (and most of my paintings for the last 30 years) were framed at The Framer's Workshop in Berkeley. Carefully chosen frames and mats make an enormous difference to the final look of a painting, and the experienced staff at Framer's is excellent at working with the artist to match the style and tone of a painting with the perfect frame. My digital files don't show the gorgeous frames - but you can view them at Tomate! 

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Painting the Marshes of the Bay Area

   Most of the Bay Area was once ringed by ancient marshes and wetlands. Starting in the mid-nineteenth century more than a third of the original bay was filled in, drained, and paved over with roads, bridges, cities, military bases, docks, industrial parks, shopping malls and suburban development.  In recent years large areas of bay wetlands have been restored, but much is gone forever.   Arrowhead Marsh, one of the few large protected wetlands on the Oakland shore, is a favorite spot of mine, and I have painted it several times. In clear weather you can see San Francisco, Mount Tamalpais, and Oakland from the marsh, and sometimes hundreds of birds. I love the abstract shapes of the landforms, the huge sky and the reflective water in marshland, which changes in mood so dramatically with the time of day and the weather.

   Wetlands also exist in unexpected places.  Port Chicago, on the banks of Suisun Bay north of Martinez, is where the waterway Walnut Creek eventually flows into the bay.  The creek has been routed through concrete conduits under the towns of Contra Costa County, but ends up as an open waterway and then a river wetland at Suisun Bay.  Waterfowl like the swans I painted overwinter here, sharing space with the nearby Naval Weapons Station, refineries, salvage yards, and gravel plants. The sight of these huge birds flying over the fortress-like gravel plant was an amazing experience, and I hope my painting of it captures some of the drama of the moment.