3 years ago, I had open heart surgery so skiing was put on hold for quite a while. Yesterday we went skiing and I am feeling so glad to be alive. Life is SO GOOD! When you find something that makes you smile just thinking about it – go for it YEAH!
is a painting done from the memory of a strenuous hike I did in high school with my cousins up to the top of the Koolau mountain range at the back of Haiku valley on Oahu. I believe it is now called the “Stairway to Heaven” hike and is not open because a large storm damaged sections of it recently. You can find information about it easily by searching, “Stairway to Heaven, Hawaii”.
This hike is straight up “literally” most of the way and is not a hike for weenies. It takes stamina and half a day to climb all the metal stairs that were installed by the military leading up to the top where there was a “naval communication cable” antennae stretched from one bunker to another bunker across the valley on the opposing ridge line. Take food, water and bedding but sure to keep that pack light cause these steps do seem to be never ending by the time you reach the top. We were allowed to camp at the concrete bunker on the ridge leading up to the top of the mountain trail.
The next morning just a few minutes before sunrise I woke up stiff but eager to take the short walk up the path on the ridge to the very top of the Koolaus. The top isn’t very far from the bunker (under 5 minutes). In ancient times, the runners traveled on this path stretching from the north to south of the island carrying messages between neighboring villages and the royalty. When you reach it you find that this famous route is surprisingly only a couple feet wide with one heck of a drop off on each side. There are strong winds all the time and earth shattering views of both sides of the island from this ancient pathway. I sat there and absorbed the history as I witnessed the most beautiful sunrise and panoramic view of the island I ever seen. It had moving rainbows appearing and disappearing randomly, a sight I will never ever forget.
is a celebration of painting the spirit of the horse using a collage of all ages, hues, and personalities. It was simply inspired from my ongoing love of the equine since early childhood. My first job was in the summer working for “Tugman’s Stable” which was within walking distance from where we lived in Kahaluu, Oahu, Hawaii. The duties included feeding, cleaning stalls and riding beautiful ex-race horses in the surrounding mountain paths every day. A job I really loved.
is a portrait inspired by a memory of a cute little boy that I saw getting an “ice cream headache” in front of the rides at the state fair just over the border in Oregon. I noticed him during my walk out to the RV after closing my own “facepainting” booth for the night. I did face painting at five state fairs every year for awhile, just another venue of art explored by this artist.
The mystery of where the 3 missing paintings ended up afterwards begins after they are placed in Holy Family Hospital’s initial “Shamrock Gala” fundraiser auction. The event was held at the Davenport Hotel in Spokane WA in March of 2008. A beautiful affair that I was graciously given a ticket to attend. Tuxedos and formal dinner attire were required to a sit down meal with table center pieces that had tree branches painted gold, foliage and tubular lights intertwined. I have a souvenir wine glass from the event pictured below, “Latah Creek” and “Shamrock Gala” on it. Here is a link to more information about the event that was rec’d later.
One of the paintings did find a home, “Koolau’s Haiku K504” was purchased during the course of this auction by a sweet couple who I was able to meet afterwards. I recall that they live somewhere here is Spokane WA but I regret that I never did think to get their names or contact information when I was introduced to them.
I would like to be able to locate these missing children (lost oil paintings) from the beginning time period of my oil rub-outs career so I can complete the information for my records. I wouldn’t mind seeing them again also. Please feel free to contact me with any suggestions you may have to help locate them.
I would like to be able to locate these three lost oil rub-out-oils. Not knowing where they are almost feels like a missing child to an artist. Please feel free to contact me with any suggestions you may have to help locate them.
BTW. Four foot wide just doesn’t fit inside small vehicles for transport. These large guys had to travel on top of my Subaru, wrapped in tarps and tied down for the trip. This is where I learned that, “Size really does matter!”
These beginning large “rub-out oil” paintings had been admired by many who attended the art shows I was in
There were often returning prospective collectors obviously in the throes of decision making, some even following me from one show to the next measuring and discussing transportation possibilities. This was followed by phone calls and emails. But the interest did not result in sales and as time went on it became apparent that there was going to be an insurmountable difficulty in finding anyone with a large enough home or business space to hang these 4ft x 4ft paintings.
Back at the studio, things became more and more cramped in my studio as my husband and I continued to build a new home and after work and on weekends. Every time I returned from a show I found myself repairing these large paintings because they were getting scratched and dinged during transport.
I had to decide to donate the 3 largest oil paintings to charity because they were too difficult for me to move around show-to-show and find enough storage space for them in-between the shows.
After the Louis Maestas seminar weekend in 2004, I felt totally inspired and no longer afraid of using oil paints in my studio. Lou had told me that he could see that I already had what it takes, and I should use my talents now. He suggested some next steps to take and advised that I “just start doing large oils”. My husband was inspired too by meeting him and seeing his beautiful work, so he went into action building self framing large board canvases to paint on. I textured the first canvas’ right away and began painting from the heart.
There was a total of 4 really large ones that I did immediately after the weekend spent learning with Louis Maestas. One of these large northwest landscape oils was entitled, “Horseshoe Lake Boat Reflections L604“. It was sold to a local collector so my records are complete and I know it’s present day location.
My small studio became very busy and full of drying oils as I went on the road applying at and touring art galleries, and setting up my art at events.
I learned how to do rub-out-oils in 2004 when I took a seminar by Louis Maestas, at the gallery in Sandpoint, Idaho. You can see more information about this technique at Lou’s gallery link. He is truly a gifted and inspirational artist mentor and if you ever get a chance to see his work or go and meet him I suggest that you do! He is a self confident artist with no ego, and his talent is a blessing that he has no worries about sharing it with others. I strive to become like him in any way I can. I still feel a great love for this artist and his beautiful work, from just one weekend spent learning from him.
Rub-out is a fun and simple method of laying a layer of oil pigment on the canvas and rubbing back off the highlights with cloth and fingers. Prior to this I had painted mostly with watercolors and acrylic or concentrated on drawing, avoiding oils, finding them quite confusing and difficult to use. I still do a lot of watercolor work but oils are my favorite medium for larger works, and rub-out is the foundation block of how I go about painting with them.
Here are the 2 paintings done during that weekend seminar in 2004.
The “onion” was the first oil painting I did as I learned how to use oils. Lou laughed at mine saying I must be an “artist” because I was the only one who painted the onion cut open. everyone else had simply painted the sphere shape. I have a naturally creative artist mind. Yep.
We went home and started a second painting of our own subject that evening, that we packed up and brought back to the class and finished the next day with his help.
This is the second oil rub-out done at Lou’s class that weekend. “Hillyard Skate Park G104”. Lou laughed again when I showed them my painting because I didn’t choose a simple subject for my second attempt at oil painting. “No.” I chose to paint a skate park landscape filled with a dozen or so figures performing aerial stunts. Yep, that ought to be easy. We artist’s are crazy people aren’t we?