i’ve run off to a seaside cottage for the week. it’s in a lovely old complex of other cottages by the sea and i’m truly madly deeply in love with it.
it does not have an ocean view because it’s in the back, but this is one of the paths to the beach.
this very scenic (and probably v.v.v. expensive rental cottage is one of the ones that face the ocean).
i snapped this shot of myself as i walked over to joyce’s place for coffee the other morning. lucky for me she rises early!
later that night she, sharron, and i watched the sun sink into the dark mercurial water.
dawn, dusk, and everything in between. i am an alert witness to the unfolding drama on the shore.
for the first time ever, i’m exploring with oil paint on paper. i met the california artist sterling hoffmann on the headlands of mendocino painting en plein air. over the years i have been attracted more and more to california landscape & seascape oil painters. when i retire i shall plant my easel by the sea and paint my way up and down the coast!
first though i have to learn what the hell i’m doing.
my friend pam has been exploring with oil paint on paper for the last couple of years and i decided to join her. oh what fun i’m having.
this cottage has the perfect countertop for painting. i go out many times per day to visit the ocean and take pics with my phone.
then i try and capture what i’ve seen.
…while i paint i watch youtube videos on brush cleaning, oil paint mediums, paper preparation, and listen to music and the crashing waves!
i’ve made 3 trips to the art supply store in santa babs to pick up various mediums, brushes, and more paint.
i found some sort of sea plant on the sand my first day and started with that.
it’s dreadful, but you’ve gotta start somewhere then i painted this apple and banana:
a cat friend leaped onto the dutch door to encourage and supervise my progress.
my favorite medium so far is a solvent-free gel in a tube. it speeds drying and makes the paint creamier. there’s a lot to know about oil painting and i know absolutely nothing. but i have learned to clean my brushes really well in some odorless mineral spirits followed by some safflower oil. also i found a soft pink rag on the street, washed it, and i use it for the final swipe after washing with soap at the end of the day.
it’s all terribly fun. i wish i had another month here, but alas my week has sped by and i’ll be heading back to los angeles soon.
most nights i meet dear sharron for sunset watching.
i also am keeping my eyes on the santa ynez mountains which make up the coast range. i have the ocean at my front, and mountains at my back.
this morning there was snow on the tippy tops.
great flotillas of clouds rumbled by overhead. i stayed on the beach until i felt raindrops.
earlier in the week sharron, joyce and i got together for one of our mini art retreats. we all horsed around in our sketchbooks with ink, watercolor, and gouache.
i added more shells to this page below that i started at joyce’s back in september.
i painted the persimmon in gouache then added some oil to the top once i was back “home”.
happy thanksgiving dear ones (americans) and to everyone else blowing kisses out across the waters to wherever you are.
i’ll just be here. exploring, expressing, writing, reading, and being gloriously ALIVE.
see you soon!