Tolga Kashif Queen Symphony


Without art and music in the world, there are some mornings I wouldn't get out of bed. So thankful I can hear and see and feel the beauty. In Alaska, Dad hauled boxes of vinyl and reel-to-reel into the middle of nowhere every time we moved ~ even when light plane or boat was the only access. We woke up and went to sleep to whatever music matched his mood. He blasted Sousa or Strauss down the valleys because he could. He'd bring us boxes of the latest Disney soundtrack or Rock n Roll 45's if he went into town. Dad would have loved Spotify or Pandora. Freddy Mercury is one of the great composers of the last century. Here Tolga Kashif pays tribute. And I can make it one more day.

Prescient ...

Prescient. Acrylic. 24 x 12" 

Prescient. Acrylic. 24 x 12" 

Started this painting the day before Kilauea spoke... I love the Big Island.  

Spring ...


Don't tell the rest of the garden but this little nook of bulbs nestled into the base of the Empress Tree is my favorite part of spring. 

Try, Try Again...

Working The River: Oregon City Downtown, Elevator No 2, 36 x 18" Acrylic

Working The River: Oregon City Downtown, Elevator No 2, 36 x 18" Acrylic

Downtown Oregon CIty Elevator No 2. is the second iteration of this unusual Oregon landmark. The first is enjoyed in a private collection yet, I wasn't totally happy with the first attempt. New and improved version in terms of composition. 

Working The River: Toledo

Working The River: Toledo, Acrylic on Canvas, 30x24" 

Working The River: Toledo, Acrylic on Canvas, 30x24" 

New work in the series "Working The River." The longer I work on this project, the more closely I observe operations like this, the more concerned I am for the earth.

She speaks...


She Speaks From Both Sides of Her Mouth. Pastel on archival paper 9"x12". 

I've been doing a massive clean out of the studio and surprised to discover how prolific my work is. This commentary was made in late evening, the time of walking between the worlds when the subconscious directs the impulse rather than the daytime mindful push forwarding a body of work. Late night expression is so different from the "real" art I make. I've dismissed most of it, not showing the work, not acknowledging these outliers. Images tucked away until I forget about them. Time to let them live and breathe. 


Fractals and factions...


Deep in the corner of a Christmas box, I found a kaleidoscope, an inexpensive trinket bought on a whim to remind me of childhood. The magic is in smoke and mirrors, creating fractals. As I turned the barrel, I had a fleeting thought of how the planet and people on it resemble the toy. We are each a beautiful color, part of the world design. Yet, we divide into factions, each group believing their cause is the one to "fight" for the right to be right for. We classify and categorize and specialize each other and our alliances. We scramble to compete for cash to fund our pet project. The Big Bad Other isn't destroying us, they don't have to. They are using the divisiveness between us to their advantage. What if we took the word fight entirely from our vocabulary? What if we channeled the same level of energy to respect each other, rotate our opinions a few degrees, and coalesce into a bigger picture of cooperation, consensus and unified whole? Technically fractals go on forever and don't end at the edge of our myopia. 

Wyeth's at the PAM


Three generations of Wyeth's at the Portland Art Museum. Newell Converse is hands down my favorite of the work represented in this exhibit. He apprenticed with Howard Pyle. His illustrations join many artists of that era - Maxfield Parrish who influenced Fred Machetanz, Minerva Teichert who studied with Robert Henri - in the pursuit of narrating history and their social/cultural experience. 

Almost finished...


Almost finished is not the same as completed. The stage where I can find any distraction to avoid making a commitment to the ending. The shapes and shadows of the reflections and buoy need refining. While the values are more accurate the colors need minor adjustments. Enjoying the new muted palette.


Working the River: Buoy ~ first block. Oil. 36 x 18." 

Working the River: Buoy ~ first block. Oil. 36 x 18." 

About this time every year, I feel as if I'm being dashed against the creative rocks. I'm beginning to realize I have a yearly artistic cycle and summer is my Kali time to clean out the studio, cogitate, regroup ~ especially when it's hot weather. Rain, cool and a little Elvis later, here's a block-in for a painting continuing my "Working The River" series. Of course, there will be a few more sessions of push - pull adjusting the paint and values with brushes or knives. I'm happy to have something on a canvas and understand creativity is never permanently broken. 

Femme sur le bleu...

Still wading through the flat files and purging ... I like this one. Ink on acrylic ground.

Studio purge...

After a particularly discouraging drawing session decided to purge the oversize flat file. Charcoal. 36 x 23. Kinda like this one... 

Regaining control...


How do we stay informed about current art news without going under? 

We want to stay tuned to what's happening in our areas of interest, although how to filter what's coming in is becoming a challenge for all of us, especially when we'd rather spend our time in creative endeavors. In this era of information inundation news feeds are great. I use the free app Feedly although there are others to choose from. Download the app of your choice to your digital device. Follow the instructions to connect with websites and blogs you want to follow. You'll receive a daily or weekly compilation of the blogs and news you enjoy. You can read what you choose when you are ready to kick back and catch up. 

Is it only me or is Facebook getting crazy?

We want the potential Facebook offers for our business yet we don't want an incursion of information we're not aligned with. We have a desire to stay connected with family and old friends even though they may have differing views on issues important to us. For starters, keep your personal Facebook page and your business Facebook page separate. 

To reduce the tension associated with some FB posts we can create lists to edit out information we don't want to see regularly. Then we decide when it's convenient to update with people we care about or pages we follow. 


On your Facebook timeline page, choose "Friends." The list of friends shows with a box to the right. Click on the friends box. When you agree to friend someone, the pulldown gives you the option to assign the person to a list, for example, "close friends” or "acquaintances" and offers you the opportunity to create your own category. You also have the choice to opt out of their "notifications." 

These categories show up on the left sidebar of your FB homepage when you open your news feed. Under EXPLORE click "Friend Lists." Your categories will pop up in a list format and you see only posts associated with the list you've chosen. I have a "family" list for the times I want to connect with people I love yet don't want to wade through the newsfeed to catch up. There is a list for art friends and a list for business acquaintances. Yes, we can always go to their timelines to see what’s up, however, that feels more than a bit intrusive to me. 

Taking charge of Facebook allows us to keep the relationships we've valued over time and yet distance ourselves from posts disrupting to our peace. 

If you want to take your exploration a step further, on a scale of 1-10, ten being worst ever, note the level of disruption to your sense of truth and personal agitation after you make a run through Facebook. Take the challenge. Unplug for a week. Focus the time instead on hearing your own soul, trusting your heart. What is the right next step for you? At the end of the week, note from 1- 10 how you feel. Is there a difference? May be a clue to limit personal Facebook contact to close family and trusted friends, set a goal to post business info once a week ~ or unplug all together. 

We don't have to be helpless victims of social assault to stay connected to people we love and grow our business. If we take a few minutes to restore our boundaries on the web, we'll have more creative energy and more time to make art, write that novel, or build the boat we’ve dreamed of. 

Your Art Business License

Do you know the information you file with the Secretary of the State of Oregon Business License Registration is public? How many of you know an artist or other entrepreneur who has a box at the mail center down the street?  We do this thinking it will protect our privacy as much as possible in this era of open information. The common misconception is this serves as the business address to satisfy the State of Oregon licensing, however, the State considers any kind of post office box illegal even though there is a street address attached to the mail center. Hiring an Agent Representative only forwards legal notices and doesn't fulfill the physical location requirement on the state license application or renewal. You can list the place where your tax records are stored as the legal address for your business ~ if your CPA is willing to forward the junk mail resulting from sales sharks who surf the licenses. Bottom line? If you do business in the State of Oregon, take the time to inform yourself and choose options to avoid fines or worse. The people on the other end of the phone at the office of the Secretary of State are knowledgeable and polite so it's easy to call and have your individual questions answered if the web page doesn't cover your concerns. You can also check with the local Small Business Association or SCORE for information and assistance.