Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Mentor - SOLD

"The Mentor"
6x6 Oil on Panel
Click Here to see other Available Work

This is one of a three part series I'm winding up for a commission. It seemed to me like this little boy was sitting and contemplating the wisdom of times before, and the great face in the stone very much looks like a wise mentor to me. What do you think?

As much as everyone decries the evils of Facebook, I had a acquaintance from high school that happened to have an 18 hour layover here in Singapore. We were able to meet up, and I got to show her around Singapore, which was so much fun. Her husband then commissioned me to paint a series of three small paintings from their trip to Cambodia and Thailand for her Christmas present (shhh, don't mention it on FB! It is a secret!). I loved doing this because I had been to these places and could also connect with the locations - plus the husband is an excellent photographer, and has a great eye - which made my job much easier!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Holiday Cheer study - SOLD

"Holiday Cheer Study"
Click Here to see other available work
I have been remiss in posting, but part of that is because I sold so many paintings in the last week, I have had to hole myself up in the studio. That, and I've been working on some larger pieces so they're not ready to post yet. Overall, not a bad problem to say the least. This is one of the guys that sold before I could even post it! It was a study that I did for the larger painting I used for my Christmas cards. It is a beautifully decorated home on Balestier road. I just love the moulding, as it really looks decorated for the holidays - year round!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Arab Street

"Arab Street"
12"x12" Oil on Panel
$475 Unframed
Email Me to Purchase

This scene is from a corner of Singapore known as Kampong Glam, and is one of the older sections of the city. It is just down the street from the mosque Sultan. You can find all kinds of neat things in this area - there are some wonderful silk vendors, and some super neat little markets to poke around in. You'll also find some amazing Turkish and Middle Eastern food... mmm hummus is yummus!

Also - don't forget to come see my new work at Fancy Faire at the Orchard Hotel! I'll be there tomorrow and Wednesday!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Emerald Sunset

"Emerald Sunset"
$1,500 (SGD $1,850)
Email Me to Purchase
This is honestly one of my favorite pieces that I have completed. I love Emerald Hill. It has been gentrified yes, but it just looks so beautiful when the shophouses are lit up at night. It is currently hanging up in my dining room, and I'll only release it to a very good home, I've been enjoying it too much! Having a rotating collection of artwork is kind of one of the perks of being an artist.

I'm sorry about not posting more sooner - I've been working on some bigger projects, and they've really been a total time suck. Also, this week whenever I sit down at the easel, I keep on striking out and just wiping off the painting. They can't all be winners, can they?

Monday, September 24, 2012

Emerald Sunset Study II

"Emerald Sunset Study II"
6"x6" Oil on Gessoboard
$120 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase
This is another study of my larger piece, Emerald Sunset. I love that little strip of shophouses up on Emerald Hill. They are so beautiful at night.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Peranakan Pottery

"Peranakan Pottery"
6x6 Oil on Gessoboard
$120 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase
This little shophouse is from one of my favorite areas of Singapore - Joo Chiat. It has some wonderful traditional Peranakan houses with old ceramic tiles on many of them. It also has the best American BBQ in Singapore. Mmmm Baby Back Ribs.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Tiong Bahru

"Tiong Bahru"
12x12 Oil on Gessoboard
$475 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase
This painting is of a great local area of Singapore known as Tiong Bahru. This area features really cool post-war architecture and some funky coffee shops, not to mention a great place to buy steaks at a reasonable price! I'm hoping that after the fall season slows down (mid-November) to get out on location and explore some more of Singapore. Tiong Bahru is just around the corner from my house, but exploring it even more would mean I had to get out of my studio and see it! It is those small details... :)

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Electric Shadows

"Electric Shadows"
5"x7" Oil on Gessoboard
$95 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase

This was another Theibaud inspired shophouse. The shadows were just vibrating with color, and I loved painting it. Sometimes you can find so many colors in white, it is amazing. Don't forget to come out to The Fair @ the Hilton Hotel Singapore on Thursday and Friday this week. I'll be there in a smaller booth and would love to see you!

Monday, September 10, 2012


12"x12" Oil on Gessoboard
$475 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase
I have spent several afternoons on the patio of this establishment enjoying a glass of wine in the company of friends for a hour that is most happy. ;) This is Beaujolais, the wine bar, on Club Street. It is a great place tucked just around the corner to Chinatown. I hope everyone is having a happy Monday!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Santa Barbara Sail Boats

"Santa Barbara Sail Boats"
5"x7" Oil on Gessoboard
$75 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase
This was a scene from the Santa Barbara harbor on the first day that I arrived. Such a fun scene to paint. I'm back in Singapore after having to go back to the US for the weekend, so as soon as this laundry gets finished I'm back in the studio. Next week is The Fair @ the Hilton Hotel, so if you are in Singapore, come by and see my booth! I'd love to see you there.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Venice Beach Alleyway

"Venice Beach Alleyway"
5"x7" Oil on Gessoboard
Click Here to Purchase
It is the burning season here in Singapore. That basically means that somewhere in Indonesia or Malaysia the farmers are slash and burning the palm plantations (usually) for the Palm Oil harvest. It creates this horrific smog that just turns the sky to a weird smoky gray, and generates more thunderstorms than normal. I have a really tough time with it because so little light gets in. This month of smoggy gray had taught me I probably wouldn't do so well in China, where it is like this year round. In any case, because of the awful smog, I needed to paint a blue sky. This is just down the street from my cousin's house, which is right by Venice Beach and the Santa Monica Pier. I had just had a week of cloudy gray in SoCal, and this last morning in the LA area broke with beautiful blue sky and no clouds. It was so uplifting.

And as for my husband and I, we'll be traveling back to the US first thing tomorrow morning. I wish the circumstances were better, but we are so grateful for the family and friends that we have. We have been blessed with close, happy relationships with all of our family, and I for one am eternally grateful that both of us have enjoyed relationships with our grandparents well into our adulthood. Not many people can say they have had that opportunity. 

It is times like these that make being on the other side of the world much harder. Luckily, we can get back, and see everyone. And, in the meantime, in addition to seeing all of our loved ones, it looks like it will be sunny in Kansas, so we'll be able to also enjoy some Mexican food and BBQ!

And as a side note - all you Gulf Coast people, make sure you are tied down and have extra ice for the drinks in case power goes out!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Duxton Hill Club - SOLD

"Duxton Hill Club"
Oil on Gessoboard
SOLD - Click Here to see other available work
I delivered this painting over the weekend to one of my best collectors. Being able to connect and catch up with one of my collectors was such a wonderful way to start off the week. I just love having people come visit me at the studio, it definitely breaks up the monotony of being in a room by yourself and painting! This collector has a favorite haunt here in Singapore, and he wanted to remember it for when he repatriates back to the US. Such a fantastic idea, in my opinion.

Also, while he was there, he decided to take a couple other painting with him. I couldn't be happier the home that these will have!
"Club Street Chic"
Oil on Gessoboard

"Morning View"
Oil on Gessoboard

Thursday, August 23, 2012


6"x6" Oil on Panel
$95 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase
You better watch your potato chips, he's conducting some surveillance. Don't be fooled by this relaxed, one-legged pose, he's watching your picnic basket!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Santa Monica Tower

"Santa Monica Tower"
6x6 Oil on Gessoboard
Click Here to Purchase
This was from my last morning in Southern California. I had just endured an awful week of the June Gloom (it was April). Not exactly inspiring, and pretty impossible to paint when you can't see across the street. But I woke up the last morning at my cousin's house, and the sky was a beautiful California blue. So I walked down to the beach and just enjoyed the solitude. There is something about the ocean that just renews my soul.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

SOLD - Joo Chiat Icing

"Joo Chiat Icing"
Click Here to view available Paintings
This wonderful guy from the Joo Chiat area sold to a collector who came over for a studio visit on Friday. It was a fantastic way to start the weekend! This will eventually be traveling to Houston as a gift for her mother. I'm still hunkered down in the studio this week, painting away. I have a super busy fall coming up, so I'm just trying to get as much painted now as I can! Happy Hari Raya, if you are in the Sling!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


6x16 Oil on Gessoboard
$395 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase
I love, love, love this one. It really just reminds me of a circus or carnival. I'm especially happy with how the yellows turned out. This shophouse is in Chinatown, although in real life, the colors on the house have faded significantly in the two years since I took the original reference photo. In any case, until this one finds a good home, I'm really enjoying it on my drying shelf in the studio.

Speaking of my studio, I've been working on really making it my own, "feathering my nest" as Dreama Tolle Perry puts it. One of my biggest struggles has been lighting. I have a full wall of giant windows that face mostly East South East, so I get fantastic morning light, but they're tinted. Also, by the time the afternoon comes around, I have indirect light from outside (which is not enough) and a warm (very warm) flourescent overhead light. So, by the time the afternoon rolls around, I've really been struggling to see, which has been heightened by the fact I'm now seeing colors so much more clearly. 

Well, today I finally got fed up. I've been looking for a decent lighting solution since we moved here, but so much is flourescent, which I can't stand. Too cold or too orange. Ideally, I would like to find a 3 bulb halogen floor lamp like the one I had in the US, but so far I've had no luck. As per usual when I'm in doubt and don't know where to go, I wound up at Ikea. Ikea winds up being like the closest thing to Walmart or Target here, when you don't know the exact widget store for what you need at home. 

In any case, all I did was take one of their track lights and sit it upside down on top of my book case. Viola! With three halogen lights, I can almost work at night (not quite, but almost). With another track of 3 lights, I could totally take over the world. In case you want to use this solution, make sure you get the wall plug-in attachment. It is ugly, but makes the whole thing totally transportable to the next apartment/studio situation. Yay!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Behind Club Street

"Behind Club Street"
6"x6" Oil on Gessoboard
$120 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase
This little guy is on the street just behind Club Street, Gemmill Lane. I'm really starting to see colors in shadows, which is really exciting. Right now it is really only when looking at photos, but I've been going out to get photo references and sketching more right now than I have been, so hopefully I'll start seeing in person soon too. It feels like a paradigm shift. At the edge of a lot of shadows there is either an acidy yellow-brown color, or like a crazy pthalo blue. This seems to happen mostly with white (or light colored) buildings and super strong sunlight, when the shadow takes on almost a blue hue.

A great example of an artist that over-exaggerates those colors is Wayne Thiebaud.

Here's another great example of how he exaggerates the shadows. 

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Emerald Sunset Study

"Emerald Sunset Study"
6"x6" Oil on Gessoboard
$120 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase
I had a really tough time with this one. The shophouse is pretty much silhouetted, but I didn't want it to be flat. I really wanted to get the correct shadow colors. In the end I really feel like I did a good job with it, and I love how realistic it looks. One of the toughest parts of it was getting the dark red color correct. Until I used the Photoshop color dropper to make a swatch, I kept making it a dirty dark red. In fact it was a really beautiful fuschia. All by itself it was a crazy pink purple, but in the context of the whole painting it reads as a dark red, which is just fascinating. 

The other color that was giving me a run for my money was the reflection of the sky. Initially it seemed like since the sun was setting, the window should reflect a yellow color as well. But since the sun is coming from behind, the window is reflecting the sky in the opposite direction of the views, which is the blue you find towards the top of the sky during a sunset. Even that blue kept on coming out more muddy - until I used the color picker again. This is a fantastic tool to have in the arsenal! I like to use it to get a truer idea of the color, and then I push or pull it in the way that I whichever way I want to empasize it. In the meantime, it gives me a great jumping off point.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Jade Dreams

"Jade Dreams"
5"x7" Oil on Gessoboard
$95 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase
Here is another shophouse, this one is from the backside of Little India, close to the Lavendar MRT station. There are a couple streets of some really cool ornately decorate and painted shophouses back there. I've been experimenting a bit with the 5x7 format. It is totally different and a bit of a challenge. Stephen Masgsig, who does Postcards From Detroit, works quite a bit in the 5x7 format, so I've been looking to his work for some composition ideas.

Yesterday was National Day here in Singapore, so we had a few people over to grill and watch the fireworks. It is especially cool because all of the aircraft pretty much buzz right over our apartment. I think one of the coolest parts of the whole show is when the choppers come in with a giant Singapore flag. It passes almost literally over our heads. I've found a video someone uploaded that shows you the choppers and flag bits...

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Spottiswood Coral

"Spottiswod Coral"
5"x7" Oil on Gessoboard
$95 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase

This lovely house is down in the Spottiswood Park area, which is just south of Chinatown. There is a neat little enclave of shophouses in this area, about two streets spread over two or three blocks. And this coral guy is one of the ones that faces the main road and is in a strip of bars and restaurants.

I'm looking forward to tomorrow, which is National Day here in Singapore. It is similar to our 4th of July. We're having a few people over to watch the F-16s do fly-bys of the down town area. They literally weave in and out of the skyscrapers. It is pretty wild. 

As an aside, one of our acquaintances was on the team that did this Mentos ad, which does double duty in addressing Singapore's low birth rate. Quite the creative way of addressing a national health issue...

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Tanjong Pagar Palms

"Tanjong Pagar Palms I"
$995 Framed
Click Here to Purchase

Happy Monday! I'm so glad I get to be back in the studio tomorrow morning. This past week has been very productive - just not in the studio. I now have at least a year's supply of art supplies. Paint, panels, and even rags. So exciting! We finally have some of our things that have been in storage for over three years. A lot of the things were our wedding gifts. It was kind of like Christmas all over again! For the first time in three years, our apartment feels like a home, not a temporary residence. Nevertheless, time to get back to the studio!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012


12"x6" Oil on Gessoboard
$195 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase

I just loved driving down the 101. For most of the trip I pretty much had my camera just perched atop the steering wheel as I drove. At least until the windshield gathered too many bugs... This tanker had such beautiful colors and reflections in it, I couldn't resist painting it. The perspective was a lot of fun too.

Our container arrives today! I am so excited to finally have our things out of storage. The downside is that this week has been crazy, so I haven't had much studio time. The upside is that along with the container comes about a years worth of art supplies (and two years worth of Cascade!). 

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Morning View

"Morning View"
5"x7" Oil on Panel
$95 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase

This painting took so much longer than I thought it would. But this is the first time I have really tackled people in any way, shape, or form in months. It was kind of an adventure. I found this scene on a Saturday morning down by the Ferry Market in San Francisco. The market has some wonderful food - lots of fresh fruit, jams, popcorn, cheese, you name it! So tasty. But behind the tents and stalls, there are some fantastic people watching opportunities. Plus, when you add in the the view of the Bay Bridge - just amazing!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Greek Detail

"Greek Detail"
4"x4" Oil on Gessoboard
$45 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase

I was having a stuck afternoon. All the shophouses looked the same, I couldn't seem to come up with any new compositions or colors. I was tired - just stuck. So I zoomed in on the corner of one shophouse and decided to do a small study of the top of one of the columns. They're so hard to showcase in a regular painting, just too much detail. This definitely helped get my brain on another tack and loosened me back up. Plus, I had a lot of fun experimenting with the colors in the shadows. The bright magentas and purples were so fun to work with!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Aqua and Palms

"Aqua and Palms"
12"x12" Oil on Gessoboard
$475 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase

Since yesterday's blog post was quite the epistle, I figured I'd leave today's short and sweet. This is a view from lower Tanjong Pagar looking towards Chinatown. I just loved the turquoise shophouse and the palm trees lining the street next to it. Made me so happy to paint it!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Club Street Arches

"Club Street Arches"
6"x6" Oil on Gessoboard
$120 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase

This is a lovely little house right up on Club Street, close to Chinatown. I was finally able to get there during a time of day that had a lot of the houses in this beautiful light. Turns out that time of day is first thing in the morning!

Right now I am finding more growth and development in my art from trial and error and seeing what works than I could learn from somebody telling me how to do it at this point. Mostly this is because I am working on developing my style - that involves quite a bit of inner reflection and study of others that you simply have to do on your own. Your style has to do a lot with three things - your color palette, your brushstrokes, and your subject matter. 

My subject matter is slowly growing and evolving, but I'm really trying to define my style more through my colors and brush strokes. To do this, I'm especially enjoying studying other artist's paintings - how they crop them, how they frame a subject, the lighting. Then I look at the color and brushstrokes and figure out what I like, what I don't like. I have especially started looking at other artists for their color handling. For example, I have been struggling and struggling with yellows. How to have them go to shadow without having them look muddy. For the painting above, I took a look at Karin Jurick's painting, "Hot Seat." (Click Here to view/purchase)

Since I was having a rough time with the shadow side of yellow, this was a perfect painting to use for study. She has one small spot that is pretty much black, and another that is a very warm black/brown. But then for the rest of the medium shadows, it is much warmer than I initially tought. I was taught that shadows make colors cooler, which initially you are taught to mix compliments - so that would mean to add blue/violet. And yes, they do, but if you go too cool, too quickly, the color winds up looking muddy and dead. 

Karin's shadow is ALIVE. She doesn't define too much, and she doesn't make the shadow just one flat plane, but it the shadow stays nice and warm. It is basically a burnt sienna, and in some places a really lovely red orange. When you use these warmer darks, it still gives the impression of shadows, but the shadows become much richer. Shadows aren't always blue. In any case, since my shophouse was a yummy buttery yellow, I didn't have the shadows go too warm, as I didn't want the shadow to be warmer than the sun-drenched portion. This was a great exercise, and I learned quite a bit.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Light Urple

"Light Urple"
6"x6" Oil on Panel
$120 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase

Yes, yes, the title for this one comes from one of the great 90's SNL skits: Celebrity Jeopardy. If you haven't seen the skit before, here is a link, I hope it makes you smile today!


If this shophouse looks vaguely familiar, well, I've done this one a couple of times. It has sort of been my baseline since it was the first shophouse I ever attempted to paint.

Yeah, so looking back on the last one is kind of a bit embarassing, not going to lie. I kind of miss that point when I thought everything was a wonder and that art supply stores held lots of mystery. Nevertheless, it really helps reinforce that as you get to a certain point in your work, "brush miles" are what really count.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Chinatown MRT

"Chinatown MRT"
6x6 Oil on Gessobord
$120 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase

Back to the shophouses! This one is right by the entrance to the Chinatown MRT. If you come up from the MRT, and look up to your right, this house is right there. As for painting the shophouses, it feels good to be back. I really enjoy coming back to them and trying new ideas on them. On this one I really wanted to try and work on painting the details in the architecture. I've done it a little bit, but not in quite as much detail as this one. Man, it was fun.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Motel California

"Motel, CA"
6"x6" Oil on Gessoboard
$95 Unframed
Click Here to Purchase

This is another one from the California series. The Eagles song "Hotel California" was stuck in my head, so pardon the punny title. :) I basically pulled into San Luis Obispo for about an hour and took a bunch of photos. I'm still sad that I was only there for an hour, and that it was in the middle of the day, when the lighting wasn't so great. It is such a neat little town. Definitely on my list of places to go back to in California.

At the end of last week I took a look at the calendar and had a small breakdown. I realized that the fall show season is only a couple of months away, and that I had very little new work showcasing Singapore. Whoops! So, the California series has been put on the back burner while I come back to Singapore. This fall I am doing some larger pieces, and I'm really enjoying doing them. Shophouses have kind of become my happy place. I'm always growing, learning and exploring, but I love coming back to the houses after a break. I usually come back stronger, with fresh, new ideas. Here's a progress photo of one currently on the easel (it will eventually be 12"x24"... that's BIG for me!).

Sunday, July 8, 2012


6x6 Oil on Gessobord
$95 unframed
Click Here to Purchase
This is a wonderful little signal house that I saw as I was driving south on the 101 from Palo Alto to Newport Beach. That highway has some beautiful scenery on either side of it. I am only sad that I didn't have the time to really explore more of the nooks and crannies - I had to boogie down to Newport Beach for my workshop. 

Sorry about not posting much the past couple of weeks. I've been working on this California series, and after letting it sit for a week or so, I went back to the paintings. Only a couple of them were really up to par, and should have been wiped off. I think I was just locked in such a battle with them that I didn't want to let go. But that is one of the things I've started to learn about painting - when to not release things. The journey is about painting every day - but there are going to be some lemons in there, and that is okay. The lemons are an important part of learning, it means you are pushing yourself.

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