Fun in the sun

Wallow Lake - plein air

Painting en plein air at Wallowa Lake

June is one of my favorite months and it is turning out to be a the kind of June you dream of, with perfect weather for this time of year. Painting outdoors is what I most enjoy in this world, and there are opportunities galore this month. One of my paintings was accepted into the Wallowa Valley Festival of Art in Joseph, Oregon, so we travelled there and stayed at nearby Wallowa Lake for four nights, where I was also able to paint in my travel journal while out on the lake fishing, and set up my easel to paint in the park by the lake one afternoon. So beautiful there. My husband, John loves this place too, so we had a great time doing things such as fishing on the lake for five hours, and taking the tram to the top of Mt. Howard to hike around and have lunch at the Summit Grill atop the mountain, with fantastic views of the lake and other snow-capped mountain tops.

Wallowa Lake- journal

A small watercolor painting in my travel journal while fishing on Wallowa Lake with John.

The art show and festival in Joseph was extremely inspiring ~ so many wonderful Pacific Northwest artists. Many amazing artists are from the Joseph, Enterprise, Wallowa County area, and there were also artists from around Oregon, Washington, and Idaho, as well as other states. In other words, I was in good company!

Quick Draw

About a dozen artists demonstrated their media and artistic talent during the Quick Draw event, including the Juror.

Quick Draw 2

Quick Draw 4

Quick Drawer painting flowers.

Kona Red at the WVFA
Kona Red at the WVFA, my entry in the Art Show.
Wallow Valley Festival Art 1

The juror explained his reasoning for the awards given to award recipients.

Wallow Valley Festival of Art 2

Many beautiful paintings, pastels, and sculptures in the show.

During the summer, there are numerous Paint the Town locations planned that I will be attending. I went to the first session in late May, at Glen Creek and painted a small acrylic on canvas. It was so nice to get out and paint again!

PTT-Glen Creek

Setting up to paint the creek ~ Glen Creek ~ for Paint the Town.


PTT-Glen Creek acrlyic

Getting started…

Also, various art shows in Salem, such as Valley Views at the Red Raven Gallery. The show will be juried by a wonderful plein air painter from Corvallis, Mike Rangner.

The World Beat Festival, which is June 27-28, is a fun event. I design graphics (Poster, Program, and other promotional materials) for World Beat in exchange for a booth at the festival, and share it with Artists in Action members. There are a dozen members signed up to participate this year. Go to: for more information about this awesome event at Salem’s Riverfront Park.

Beanery – On the Edge


Grand Teton triptych – at the Beanery through June 2015

I have oil and acrylic paintings showing at The Beanery, a coffee shop in downtown Salem. They are there from June 1-30. Stop by for a cup of jo and see them.

Thanks for checking out my blog. Please leave me a message by clicking on the word cloud at the top of the page, if you have any comments or questions.





The Month Before Christmas…

Winter is in the air and the spirit of Christmas upon us, and it always seems that the season creeps up slowly then hits suddenly. I’m never quite prepared for it, and I doubt I ever will be. I like to hold on to summer as long as possible, then fall approaches with Halloween, and when Thanksgiving is here I want to enjoy the harvest and warm comfort of good food and family. I don’t even want to think about Christmas until it’s December!

Pears in Square Dish with ApplesHowever, when I went shopping for some last minute Thanksgiving decorations, when Thanksgiving was still a week away, I had a hard time finding anything left in the store, or in the several stores I went to. Not even a single marked-down item for Thanksgiving was to be found.

Everything was already set up for the Christmas shopping extravaganza. Red and Green, tinsel and lights. Please don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas — but why do they get rid of all things Thanksgiving a week before Thanksgiving!

I realize that many stores start putting out Christmas trees and decor in September so that shoppers  get in the “mood” for holiday shopping, but that’s just not my game. Sure, when Christmas is here, I’ll wish I had started shopping for gifts in June, rather than wait until December, but I will probably never do that. I never have, so chances are slim I’ll start now.

Christmas, in my mind, is a time to celebrate our lives together in Christ. Born in a manger, with cows and sheep all around, Son of God ~ a Gift to us all ~ given to teach us what Truth and Love are so we can live in Peace and Love one another with Joyful hearts.

But what says Christmas, like Black Friday!  This year, Black Friday started early ~ a week before the day we Give Thanks for all we have. This is the biggest farce of all!

Does it make sense to you? … Not to me!  I stick with my old-fashioned belief that there is a time for every season under heaven. The marketing world wants us to move too fast, to jump ahead, making it impossible to take time for the present moments and enjoy the ambiance of each occasion. Let’s not be sucked into the money-grabbing capitalistic machine where the bottom line for the holidays is increased sales!

  •  I will have a Christmas tree.
  •  I will send Christmas cards.
  •  I will wrap presents and prepare gifts for my husband, daughters, sons, grandchildren and other family and friends.
  •  I will send packages to those I love, too far away to be with.
  •  But I will not make buying gifts the most important aspect of the season!

It’s a time to be joyful and remember the good in our lives and the love we have for each other! The gifts are merely a token of that love. It’s not about getting or giving the biggest, best, most expensive thing you can afford or add to your credit line ~ and its not about fulfilling everyones wishes and dreams. It’s about sharing something special with your loved ones ~ the hugs and kisses, the smiles, the laughter, the songs. Creating happy memories ~ the smells and tastes, the twinkling lights and candles, and sharing the traditional foods and treats.

I hope you have a very Merry Christmas!

 If you are in Salem, Oregon ~

  • Be sure and join the Artists in Action on Wednesday, December 3rd for an Art Walk and reception for the Something Red show in downtown Salem. See the AiA website, for more information about this fun art event.
  • The Holiday open house at the Enid Joy Mount Gallery, for the Keizer Art Association is on Saturday, December 6th from 11 am – 4 pm, with the Small Works show and holiday gift boutique.
  • The tree lighting ceremony at Willamette University is in the evening on Saturday, December 6th. There is a free Christmas concert and sing along in the Smith Auditorium after the tree lighting on the WU campus.

An artist? To be or not to be…

A memory from my childhood came to me the other day, and it helped me understand my current thinking patterns and why I am the way I am. 

Drifting back in time ….

I was about six years old, and in the first grade. It was in the mid-50′s and our teacher was a kind and good spirited woman. Her name was Miss “Chersum” (at least that’s how the name is pronounced, but I believe it was spelled much differently ~ Kjiersm ~ maybe Norweigen?). She was tall and thin and I remember her always wearing an ankle-length full skirt with a wide belt (very stylish in those days) and high heels. She seemed old to me, but she was probably only in her late-30s to mid-40′s, with a tinge of grey showing. She had wonderful control of her classroom and we all loved her,  even when she pushed us on to study and learn.  It was story time, so she asked all the kids to come sit on the floor while she read from a book with heartfelt enthusiasm.

I had another personal agenda that day. My aunt Gloria had asked me to “paint a nice picture of a ballerina today while you are in school,” so she could frame it and we could give it to my mom as a Mother’s Day gift. So, when Miss Chersum began to read the story, my mind wandered and I slipped quietly over to the sink and easel area, put a piece of paper on the easel and started to paint. All the kids became restless watching me do this, and Miss Chersum looked up from the book and asked “Trishy, what are you doing?”
I simply told her I had to paint a picture to give to my mom for Mother’s Day, and that she needn’t worry because I was also still listening to the story. I think, because I was so straight foreword about it, she was a bit floored. But, I think she liked me since she instructed the rest of the class to just sit still and listen to the story and not to pay attention to me. And she allowed me to carry on quietly.  So I painted the picture while the story was read, and afterward all the students came over to see what I’d done. I took the picture to my aunt’s house after school. Auntie Gloria was my biggest fan and a great supporter of my artistic bent. She had the picture framed and we gave it to my mom on her special day.

In retrospect …

Looking back on the situation, I just have to laugh — at myself and Miss Chersum and the whole situation. I’m so thankful that this teacher allowed me to “do my thing” that day. It was a gesture that meant a great deal to me throughout my life and it spurred me on to believe in the integrity of expressing myself as an artist.

 In our world today ….

Society has a tendency to give mixed messages to artists. On one hand the “Artist”  is viewed with renowned importance to culture, and on the other hand an artist is viewed as a flake — a kooky or eccentric person. Perhaps there is a little of both in each artist or in the art world as a whole. But without artists, our society would not be human, or humane. We would be like robots. Art is a form of appreciation of the natural world, of life and living. Visual artists capture what they see, dream, feel, and experience, and they share it in a way that others can hopefully relate to and appreciate. Artists add meaning and a touch of beauty to our lives.

Therefore, be what you will, and make no excuses! 

A time for every season

Riverview en plein air 

Painting en plein air overlooking the Willamette River in Independence, Oregon

August was lovely, mostly hot and sunny, but it went by much too fast. September in Oregon can be very beautiful, but just the word “September” brings on notes of Fall — shorter days, more clouds, cooler temperatures, and the never ending pattern of rainy days that await us. A little tear forms in my eye when I think of summer ending. I like to make summer last as long as possible — BBQ’s, watering the garden, sun bathing, and just feeling the warmth of the sun on my shoulders while I’m taking a walk or working in my garden.  I know the end of the warm season is inevitable, but it always seems to come too soon, no matter what. But I guess it’s true – there’s a time for every season.

My plein air paintings for the Paint the Town show are still in need of some finishing touches. The show is in October, but the art is due September 27.  I’m happy with the paintings I’ve done this year. They are all acrylic on board, which is a different medium for me. I usually work in watercolor on paper when painting en plein air. I’m starting to appreciate acrylic paints and feel more comfortable using them. I have about four paintings started. One is close to finished, the other three are in varying stages of completion. As I work on them, I’ll decide on which three to frame and submit.

John and I are going on a vacation for a week — first to Idaho, to visit my daughter, two grandsons, and son-in-law, and then we’re traveling on to Yellowstone National Park for a couple of days. So, I’ll need to fit the time in around that trip to finish up my paintings and get them ready for the show.

I’m planning to take my camera and my watercolor-travel-journal along. I hope we will have some time to relax and take in the surroundings on this trip so I can paint for an hour or two at different locations. I’ve never been to Yellowstone, so I’m looking forward to the experience.

If you are going to be in Salem during the month of October, be sure to stop by the Elsinore Gallery to see the Paint the Town exhibit, from October 2-24, 2013.  The Reception and Awards ceremony will be held at the Elsinore Gallery – First Wednesday, October 2, 2013. For more information about the show and directions to the Gallery go to  and

An added thought:  I am amazed by Nature and God’s miraculous creations in the world and universe. When I see a flower blooming, pick a ripe tomato from my garden, see a bird in flight, a shooting star in the night sky, and so on, I am filled with wonder and awe. The same goes when I see a work of art, no matter what shape or form it takes, no matter how romantic or bizarre, objective or non-objective, useful or decorative, whether it’s done by a renowned professional artist or small child. The reason for this is because all artwork was conceived and produced from a seed of inspiration planted in a human mind. And what is closer to God than a human being? We are all His creation and everything we produce is just as miraculous as a tall tree that grew from an acorn.


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